Ellen DeGeneres just gave Oscar viewers a gift almost as amazing as Parasite’s historic Best Picture win. Jerry Harris of Netflix’s Cheer was DeGeneres’ correspondent at the 2020 Academy Awards, and honestly, I’m not sure who is more blessed: Harris for meeting Brad Pitt on the red carpet, or Pitt for getting to hang out with Harris.
Harris is one of the cheerleaders on the championship-winning team at Navarro Community College. His bright smile, "mat talks," and general enthusiasm made him an instant favorite amongst fans and currently, he has over 900,000 followers on Instagram.
"You think that only a few people are going to watch this cheer documentary. But it turns out there’s a lot more people than we ever could have imagined," Harris told People in January of the newfound attention.
Harris impressed DeGeneres so much when members of the Navarro squad appeared on her talk show that she decided to give him a job. She shared on Instagram that Harris was going to be her correspondent at the Academy Awards just days ago, along with a hilarious reaction video of Harris hearing the news for the first time.
Harris was a natural on the red carpet, greeting stars like Billie Eilish, Mindy Kaling, and Idina Menzel. Pitt, however, totally changed the game for Harris.
“I gotta say hi to Ellen. My dear old, old friend Ellen,” a smiling Pitt responded after Harris told him to say hi to DeGeneres back at home.
When Pitt headed inside, Harris turned to the camera, clearly delighted to have met the Once Upon a Time in...Hollywood actor.
“The whole place went quiet when I was talking to him,” Harris told his cameraperson at the event. “That says a lot in itself. I can’t believe everybody went quiet just because I was talking to Brad Pitt. He stopped for me! I’m just over here waving like — who am I? He just stopped for me and was just so happy and thrilled to see me, just as I was so thrilled to see him.”
If Pitt is looking for a new project to adapt for his production company Plan B, I, for one, would love a biopic about a certain cheerleader. Given Harris’ reaction to this interview, Pitt may be the only person outside of the Navarro team to have a shot at learning the true meaning of #FIOFMU.