Luke Tennie


“The Nickel Boys” is a Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Colson Whitehead that was adapted into a limited series by Amazon Prime Video. The series tells the story of two boys, Elwood and Turner, who are sent to a reform school in Florida during the 1960s. The cast features talented actors who bring the characters to life, including Luke Tennie as one of the boys.

The Nickel Boys Cast

Luke Tennie

Elwood – Played by Kelvin Harrison Jr.

Kelvin Harrison Jr. is a rising star in Hollywood, known for his roles in “Waves” and “Luce.” In “The Nickel Boys,” he plays Elwood, a bright and ambitious young man who is sent to the reform school after being falsely accused of a crime. Harrison Jr. delivers a powerful performance as Elwood, capturing his determination and resilience in the face of injustice.

Turner – Played by Alex R. Hibbert

Alex R. Hibbert is best known for his breakout role in the Oscar-winning film “Moonlight.” In “The Nickel Boys,” he plays Turner, a streetwise teenager who befriends Elwood at the reform school. Hibbert brings depth and nuance to the character, showcasing Turner’s vulnerability and loyalty.

The Nickel Boys Staff – Played by Colman Domingo and Jharrel Jerome

Colman Domingo and Jharrel Jerome play the staff members at the reform school, who are responsible for the abuse and mistreatment of the boys. Domingo, known for his roles in “Fear the Walking Dead” and “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” delivers a chilling performance as the sadistic Mr. Nickel. Jerome, who won an Emmy for his portrayal of Korey Wise in “When They See Us,” brings complexity to the character of Spencer, a staff member who forms a bond with Elwood.

Boys Casting

The Importance of Authentic Casting

The casting of “The Nickel Boys” was crucial to the success of the series, as it required actors who could accurately portray the experiences of young Black men during the 1960s. The casting team searched far and wide for talented actors who could bring the characters to life, ultimately selecting Harrison Jr., Hibbert, Tennie, and others.

Luke Tennie as one of the Boys

Luke Tennie plays one of the boys at the reform school, alongside Harrison Jr. and Hibbert. Tennie is a relative newcomer to Hollywood, but he brings a raw intensity to the role, capturing the fear and desperation of his character. Tennie’s performance is a standout in the series, showcasing his talent as an actor and his ability to embody complex characters.


“The Nickel Boys” is a powerful and important series that sheds light on the brutal reality of the American justice system. The talented cast, including Harrison Jr., Hibbert, Tennie, Domingo, and Jerome, bring the characters to life with authenticity and depth. Their performances make “The Nickel Boys” a must-watch for anyone interested in social justice, history, and great storytelling.

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