New series pairs strangers and challenges them to talk about race and bias

Jesse Williams, host of "The Look Back," discussed the new series, which focuses on tough and enlightening conversations about race in America.
4:51 | 07/09/20

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Transcript for New series pairs strangers and challenges them to talk about race and bias
pairing everyday people from very different ends of the spectrum and giving them a unique opportunity to talk about race. It's called "The look back." So let's take a look. Do you think that being gay is a choice? I really can't be sure because I don't understand -- just like you said that you don't understand what it's like to be black and to be honest with you, they're not the same thing. Joining us now, the host of that series, actor and director Jesse Williams. So happy to have you here with us. I watched this earlier today and was blown away. Everybody needs to see this. You paired up complete strangers. You gave them a chance to talk about race and bias, talk about what people can see and hear when they watch your series. We saw this as a real opportunity to be vulnerable and have these conversations in both a place of comfort and on anonmyty, because these things start with us. We have our own biases and we have our learned experiences and conditioning. We're a part of the conversation, we can't just view it as an in group, out group thing. I was pleased to have the opportunity to take this on. I mean, what we're experiencing right now is a revolution of action of information, compassion and policy all in one. That requires us to utilize a whole range of entry points or levels. Question have everything to gain by being open and honest. Yeah, it's incredible to watch the growth that happens just in these conversations, was there something that was surprising to you when you watched it back? I was pleasantly surprised to watch people reach a turning point right before our eyes. You see people come in. I remember there was a conversation between a young woman in North Carolina, Lynn, and a man in Atlanta, and Lynn admits I absolutely had a bias against Middle Eastern folks. I don't know anybody from the Middle East, everything I'm taking in tells me I should be scared of you. And you know what, the more I talked to you, a Palestinian gentleman who lives in Atlanta she says the more I talk to you I realize we were placed in this conversation for a reason. You're exactly who I had an unfounded fear of and this is helping me and we saw that across demographics several times with people started in one place and you watched them learn and grow in a comfortable, safe place that doesn't require them the pressure of social media. Real vulnerability having these new conversations that you don't have an invested relationship with. So that was pretty cool. Yeah, it was beautiful to see them realize that until you expose yourself to people who aren't like you, you can't fully understand where you were and where you can go from there. What do you hope the ultimate takeaway is from this project? I think that all of this -- we can attack this thing -- this thing being issues of division in our country, to put it lightly -- from all angles. You know as I said, this is a revolution on all wavelengths. What I hope and expect to take away from this is, opening up another option for folks to see more and more people talking honestly and being open to the experiences of strangers. Both as individuals and as a group. I know that nonwhite folks in this country are always made to feel their actions and especially their mistakes far less than more accomplishments, their mistakes are highlighted as representative of their demographic, of their minority group. Whatever you want to call it. I definitely don't prefer the term minority. That's where the opportunity is. I think narrative change matters. What we watch on TV matters. Procter and gamble, they put together the look and the choice and the reidentifying black in these campaigns before this most recent trend has occurred. That's what matters. Humanizing people. We're not just statistics, we're not just our race, our sexual orientation, or however we identify, we're actual people, had a childhood, we're just trying to do our best by and large. We're human beings. We're in this together. It's a powerful series. Again, it's called the look back. Jesse Williams, thank you for making this happen and thank you for being with us. Thank you. We turn now to Jen Ashton.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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