THE BEAR Star Ayo Edebiri Covers VANITY FAIR’s June Issue

Posted on May 21, 2024


In a new cover story for VANITY FAIR’s June issue, contributing editor Leah Faye Cooper speaks with Hollywood darling Ayo Edebiri about her breakout success on THE BEAR; Jeremy Allen White’s Eyes, hosting SNL after apologizing to J.Lo, and more.


Edebiri and Jeremy Allen White on their friendship on and off camera:

Edebiri and White play chefs and business partners in The Bear, their restaurant’s name. The onscreen relationship is electric enough that a contingent of viewers is rooting for a Sydney-Carmy matchup in hotter places than a kitchen.

“We really enjoy each other in life, on camera and off camera. I have a tremendous amount of respect for her as a person, but also as an artist. And so I hope that sort of that kind of thing shines through on camera between Carm and Syd,” says White, who was so eager to speak about Edebiri that he made time to talk to me within a day of being asked—which never, ever happens. “Syd is always able to…I don’t know, to deliver something different to Carmy, and she’s usually right,” he adds. “And I guess I think Ayo is also usually right.”

“Work can be a very intimate thing and a very personal thing and a very emotional thing, and I think when you’re also in industries that are creative or creative adjacent, I think there’s something that also invokes feelings of passion,” Edebiri hypothesizes. “Also, boy’s got some beautiful blue eyes. You know what I mean? Those are eyes you want to project onto.”

On apologizing to J.Lo before her SNL gig:

As a Gen Z cusper, Edebiri is acutely aware of how fickle audiences can be. “People could like me today and hate me tomorrow, and then like me two weeks after,” she says. In late January, Edebiri prophesied to a reporter, “It’s coming.” She meant the inevitable moment when something she said or did would tarnish her shiny image. And it happened sooner than she thought.

In the week leading up to her SNL gig, a clip surfaced online from a 2020 podcast episode in which Edebiri likened Jennifer Lopez’s career to a scam. Lopez happened to be the musical guest on the show, and an awkward tabloid brouhaha ensued. To Edebiri, the media’s suggestion that the comments sparked a beef was absurd; it wasn’t a fair matchup. “That would be like Mr. Bean and Mick Jagger beefing,” she says, “and I’m obviously Mr. Bean. She’s J.Lo!” On SNL, Edebiri poked fun at the ordeal in a sketch, and days later, Lopez told a reporter that the actor had apologized before the show. “She was very chill and nice about it,” Edebiri says.

On achieving her awards season hat trick:

Earlier this year, Edebiri pulled off an awards season hat trick, taking home a Golden Globe, a prime-time Emmy, and a SAG Award for her role as chef Sydney Adamu, a striver and budding genius on the FX Hulu comedy drama The Bear. Amid the awards run, she hosted Saturday Night Live, a return to form as Edebiri came up as a comic. “I feel very fortunate and still I don’t really totally believe it or understand it,” she says. And now we are back to her existential notions. “It’s special but strange; both a really intense experience but also something that I’m very grateful for. People have processed my life as having changed and have processed change in me that I have not processed myself. Does that make sense?”


[Photo Credit: Renell Medrano/Vanity Fair Magazine]

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