Rami Malek won the 2016 Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series last night (September 19), echoing praise from viewers and critics for his portrayal of wild-eyed, mentally ill hacker Elliot Alderson on Mr. Robot. The American-born Egyptian actor is the first non-white winner in the category in 18 years, since Brooklyn Nine-Nine's Andre Braugher won for Homicide: Life on the Street in 1998. After his win, he echoed fellow Emmy winners' calls for more opportunities for more minority actors and actresses in Hollywood.

"For me to stand here, as not the typical leading man, and to have come home with this speaks a lot about where we're headed," Malek, who has also appeared on 24 and in the Night at the Museum films, told reporters backstage. Given that Malek played a terrorist in the former and an Egyptian pharaoh in the latter, the fact that his biggest acclaim comes from his unique Mr. Robot role gives him hope that opportunities are broadening (Mr. Robot creator Sam Esmail is also of Egyptian descent, as is Season 2 actor Omar Metwally).

"I think we can keep going a lot further in that direction — obviously not limited to just entertainment, but socially and politically, and strive to be as progressive as possible," Malek continued.

The 35-year-old actor also embodied Elliot upon accepting his Emmy, affecting his unreliable narrator character's frequent distrust of his own eyes.

"Please tell me you're seeing this too," Malek jokingly quoted Elliott to the Emmys audience at the Microsoft Theater.

"I play a young man who I think is, like so many of us, profoundly alienated and the unfortunate thing is I don't know how many of us would want to hang out with a guy like Elliot," he said, going on to say that "there's a little bit of Elliot in all of us."

Watch Rami Malek's full backstage speech at the 2016 Emmys below.

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