History was made at the 2022 Emmys, when Lee Jung-jae snatched the trophy for lead actor in a drama series — becoming the first South Korean star (and first Asian star) to win the prize in that category.
The Squid Game star, 49, won the coveted Emmy during Monday’s ceremony held at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.
This year’s nominees included Jason Bateman (Ozark), Brian Cox (Succession), Bob Odenkirk (Better Call Saul), Adam Scott (Severance) and Jeremy Strong (Succession).
Presented by Angela Bassett and Ariana DeBose is stunning purple and yellow gowns, the star made history as the first Korean actor to win in this category. “Thank you so much,” he said, “first of all I’d like to thank God above.”
“Thank you to the television academy, thank you to Netflix, thank you to director Hwang [Dong-hyuk] for realistic problem we all face come to life to creatively on the screen with a great script and amazing visuals,” he said.
“Thank you,” he ended, “Thank you Squid Game team!”
Squid Game is also the first foreign language series to be nominated for outstanding drama series.
The Netflix show garnered a total of 14 nominations, tying the series with Severance, Barry and Dopesick for fifth-most nods.
Back in June, Squid Game was renewed for a second season. Previously, Lee told PEOPLE what he hopes to see in season 2.
“I hope there’s some sort of twist that’ll be exciting and surprising for me and the viewers,” Lee, 49, said in December. “If it was predictable, it would be no fun.”
The 74th Primetime Emmy Awards are being broadcast live on NBC from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.