WattsHomieQuan is here to entertain the masses, spreading nothing short of good vibes and laughter from Watts to the rest of the world. Exploding onto the scene with his hilarious Instagram skits and accurate impersonations of all your favorite celebrities, WattsHomieQuan, real name Watts Hannin is an actor, comedian, director, writer, and rapper all in one.
In describing himself, he states, “I’m a young dude from Watts, Los Angeles. I basically maneuvered my way through the city and took my life’s experiences and created relatable skits dedicated to the people in the city that I’m from. The hood, I gave people from LA a voice by wanting to show the world who we are and what we do. Have some fun with it.”
WattsHomieQuan got his big break auditioning for Nick Cannon’s Wild ‘N Out, and proceeded to do 4 seasons of the show (Seasons 12 through 15). That instantly opened the door for even greater opportunities, such as being featured on Issa Rae’s “Insecure” and assistant directing for Beyonce’s “Black Is King” musical and visual album.
But his biggest passion project to date? His own comedy sketch show called Growing Up IN LA. The goal is to bridge the gap between black and Latino communities in Los Angeles while giving his community the platform to speak their truths.
AllHipHop: Being from Watts, what was that like growing up?
WattsHomieQuan: Growing up in Watts was an amazing experience for me because it taught me so many things. I was forced to grow up a lot faster — not in a bad sense, but being able to see what’s going on in the city and decide which sides I should go to. Should I go to the positive side or should I go this gang side? Where I see because it’s all around us. We don’t have too many opportunities in Watts. I allowed the things around me to shape and mold me into this person to be able to explain why we do certain things, or why someone would have this state of mind or that mindset.
Growing up in Watts, it was amazing. Things people don’t know about Watts, it’s a lot of love within the city too. You gotta get in there to know. If you hear it from somebody else, “Oh, Watts is dangerous” — it is. It has its moments, but it’s not like that. We have a lot of dope people that came from Watts, musical roots, all different stuff like that. It was an amazing experience growing up in the city.
AllHipHop: When did you realize you were funny?
WattsHomieQuan: As a kid, my mom used to have me doing dances that I knew and cracking jokes amongst the family. Grown people used to laugh at me, so I thought, “Okay, alright. I got a lil something.” It was really my personality. I never really thought about it at first, I was 8 years old like, “Alright, I’m just funny.”
AllHipHop: Who were your biggest influences?
WattsHomieQuan: Martin Lawrence, Eddie Murphy, Richard Pryor, the Wayans, Jamie Foxx, Dave Chappelle, Katt Williams, Ice Cube, DJ Pooh. Bernie Mac, because my parents used to have all the VHS tapes of Def Comedy Jam. I used to watch that as a kid and say raunchy jokes. [laughs]
AllHipHop: What was your first big break?
WattsHomieQuan: My first big break musically was Diddy’s REVOLT TV. It was a time where they had a contest for Big Sean’s Dark Sky Paradise. I had to rap on stage with Big Sean, and I had to recite his lyrics. That was the first big thing I did. It helped push me because I had a chance to work with Big Sean, and then Wild ‘N Out was the next one. That was two years after that, but that’s what sparked for some people to remember me.
AllHipHop: How was your experience rapping on stage with Big Sean?
WattsHomieQuan: It was in Hollywood. It was amazing because Big Sean gave me dope advice, letting me know that it’s okay to be nervous but to be comfortable. Just have fun and do it. He said, “I don’t even remember half of my lyrics sometimes.” He’ll say a part of his verse and when he stops, I go. It was an amazing experience.
AllHipHop: Is your name from Rich Homie Quan?
WattsHomieQuan: Right. My real name is TyQuan, so the Quan is mines. Rich Homie Quan was dope. He was going crazy, everybody was listening to his music. I wanted to include the city in my name wherever I went, his name sounded hard so I said “Rich Homie Quan? WattsHomieQuan, that’s hard! Alright, cool.” And it stuck.
AllHipHop: Talk about how Wild ‘N Out happened. Nick [Cannon] is the kindest soul, so how was that experience?
WattsHomieQuan: That experience was crazy. It was during a tough time in my life where I was homeless, this was back in 2018. I was talking to God and I asked him to show me a sign, like “I need something to do.” When I got on Instagram, Nick Cannon posted, “Hey, who do y’all want to see on Wild ‘N Out?” So I took the last money I had, went to the Slauson, bought a Wild ‘N Out hoodie and got the dude to put the fake Wild ‘N Out logo on there. I did skits every single day to get his attention.
Then DJ Hed from the radio called me because that’s my partner. He said, “Aye, bruh, you got a chance to talk to Nick?” I said “nah, people are playing.” Because people were telling me that they’d introduce me to Nick. just to get closer to me and talk to me. Nobody really does it but Hed did it. He called Nick Cannon, put him on the phone. Nick said, “Hey, I ain’t seen your content, but people telling me to work with you. I can’t guarantee you’ll make my show, but I can give you an audition.” I told Nick straight up, “Bro, don’t give me nothing. Give me an audition and I’ll show you why I deserve to be on this show.” And I did it.
AllHipHop: Were you funny as hell?
WattsHomieQuan: Hell yeah. They made me do my own audition tape, and I‘d never really done that before. I went to the barbershop, I decorated the barbershop like the Wild
‘N Out audience. I got some girls to be the Wild ‘N Out girls, and I played this game. I did it back and forth: I played the red team, the black team. I made my own video with just me, doing all these different games. Two months after that, they called me and let me know that they wanted to fly me out to Atlanta to audition.
AllHipHop: How’d it feel getting the audition?
WattsHomieQuan: It felt good man, I was nervous. I didn’t believe that it was real until that first episode. I was in shock, because it’s a dude from Watts who’s from the hood, who doesn’t have any cosign, no representation, nobody to do that. I was able to do that. I felt good because my situation allowed people who come from where I come from to see hope and know that they can do it too, because I’m from the same spot they’re from.
AllHipHop: You’ve done 4 seasons right?
WattsHomieQuan: I did 4. Technically, I’m a senior at Wild ‘N Out.
AllHipHop: Favorite episode?
WattsHomieQuan: There’s two. My first episode, with Kandi Burruss and Lil Baby. The second one, I was able to give a Nipsey Hussle impression after he passed away. That was big for me and the culture because Nipsey was one of my partners, so it felt good to be able to do that.
AllHipHop: What was your relationship like with Nip?
WattsHomieQuan: I’m the only person that can do Nipsey’s voice, so I used to do his impressions on Instagram. Lauren London commented on it laughing, he commented on it. Plus the street s###, my family is associated with his section so he already knew about me. We’re talking like, “Hey, come to the set.” We started doing some s### together. 4/20, I did the impression in front of him and Lauren London. They laughed. After that, me and Nipsey became cool. Everywhere he was at and I was there, he’d walk over and say something. Or even if I’m somewhere and he’s doing something, he’d stop and come talk to me, just show me love.
AllHipHop: Talk about being in the new House Party remake!
WattsHomieQuan: Oh my God! It was directed by my boy Calmatic, executive produced by Lebron James. It’s a dope film, we have a lot of amazing stars in there. I play myself, but also the hood character I play on Instagram. It’s ScammerQuan, and I’m pretty much a hood dude who hasn’t really been out the hood. I’m exposed to this fantasy s###. I’m thinking about flockin’ the house so I’m asking “how much does this cost?” [laughs] Pretty much I’m a hood dude inside the movie.
AllHipHop: How does it feel to be acting and doing all these projects in that world?
WattsHomieQuan: Amazing man, amazing. This is something that I’ve dreamed for, that I wake up everyday saying, “Lord, this is what I want to do.” To be able to get in a New Line Cinema film, it’s truly amazing. A blessing, and it’s the start amongst many more.
AllHipHop: Talk about doing an episode of Insecure as well.
WattsHomieQuan: I was playing myself, WattsHomieQuan. It was a scene where Issa Rae’s boo thing, sneaky link, whatever you wanna call it, Nathan was in a barbershop and his friend got mad at him for taking his barber client. He exposed that he’s bipolar to the shop, I walk in in the heat of the moment. The sad thing about it was I had to get my hair cut by the dude who was angry, so I got a f##### up haircut. It was an amazing experience though, to be able to have fun and improv, be on the set for the last season of an epic show. Issa Rae really worked hard. I watched it on Youtube before it got picked up so to see that and be a part of history, it was a fun experience for me.
AllHipHop: You were also the assistant director for Beyoncé’s Black Is King! That’s huge.
WattsHomieQuan: I was 2nd’s assistant director. I got the alley oop from a dope director named haitianev. He works on a lot of music videos and dope stuff for celebrities. He gave the opportunity to my son’s mom, Myeka Williams, another director inside the DGA. She’s a dope director, directs promos and videos for TV shows. We got the call, and we didn’t know it was Beyoncé until we got there.
AllHipHop: Who did you think it was?
WattsHomieQuan: I just knew it was a high-profile artist. They gave us the shot list, they gave us everything. They said “Oh by the way, it’s Beyoncé.” I’m like, “What?” They said “Yeah, Beyoncé requested you guys.” We’re like, “Oh s###, okay.” We get in there, it was amazing to see her work in person. We’re able to see her in front of us, perform, dance, set the whole choreo up. She was so sweet to everyone. She thanked the whole crew, she took her time out to say thank you to everyone. She gave so much love. I had the chance to chill with Blue Ivy. Her favorite snacks are Cheeto Puffs and Capri Suns. [laughs] It was funny, a dope experience. I was blown away because I’m from the hood, I’m here working in front of Beyoncé. She chose us to work. Man, it was crazy.
AllHipHop: Talk about starting your own comedy sketch, Growing Up In LA!
WattsHomieQuan: My TV show, it’s on Youtube. 5 episodes. I wanted to create a sketch show because we don’t have anything of that nature from the hood standpoint. It’s tied into many things that inspired me as a teen growing up until now. It’s a variety of sketches about my experiences growing up in the hood and trying to maneuver throughout the city. It’s also a way to do regular content that’s suited for everyone around the world with the TV. What I’m watching on the TV is the skits I’m reenacting. TV shows like Cops, Cheaters, Reno 911, I’m watching myself act. I’m portraying all these characters through the TV, that was a way to be able to bridge all the comedy sketches. I did it all myself: took the last money I had in my bank account, and made it happen. No budget, no other, back support. Just made it happen.
AllHipHop: Talk about uniting the Black and brown communities as well.
WattsHomieQuan: That was very important to highlight because in the city, no one’s really showcasing or highlighting that. We have differences between both communities, but people that are really from here know that we get along well within the community. There’s a chosen few that we did some stuff on our end, they’ve done some stuff on their end, and they’re tryna push a narrative. But I wanted to do something different by showing it because we live in the same neighborhoods, we go to the same grocery stores. We have to interact and work with each other. I wanted to bridge that gap because I love everyone, and I want to push more peace in the city amongst the Black and brown community, to show them that it’s okay. It’s okay to love each other, it’s okay to not be ashamed of it. Because if you go to a Snoop Dogg concert or an Ice Cube concert, who’s there? It’s us. I wanted to show love and bring us together.
AllHipHop: What’re you most excited for next?
WattsHomieQuan: Everything, everything in my life has to unfold. There’s certain things that I’m going to do that I’m not sure of as of yet. Big things are gonna pop up, but I’m excited for it because this is what I want to do. I want to do more films, TV shows. Write more, direct stuff. I’m excited for everything. Whatever’s gonna come, I’m excited for.
AllHipHop: Goals for yourself?
WattsHomieQuan: My goal is to continue to be an inspiration to those who are around these areas, who don’t see a way out. I want to be a voice for us, to show us that it is possible to do so. My other goal is to continue to move in who I am and become a dope actor. I want to get another role in a feature film. It could be a Western, it could be an action film, it could be a love story. It could be one of those old, Black, singing documentary-style movies. I want to do it all. My goal is to work, work, work, and inspire.
AllHipHop: Anything else you’d like to let us know?
WattsHomieQuan: You can find my content, besides Instagram, on Youtube at WattsHomieQuan. All my skits will pop up there. You’ll find my TV show inside of a playlist, all 5 episodes. Instagram @WattsHomieQuan, TikTok @WattsHomieQuan1.
I’m thankful for y’all to be a part of this and watch my journey. Also believe in yourself wholeheartedly! Whatever you want to do, whatever creative, trust yourself. Trust in the journey. You don’t need validation because if you got it in your spirit and God gave it to you, that’s the only validation you need. Push hard, keep going. Those no’s aren’t no’s, they’re just no’s for you right now because you’re not supposed to enter that door.
You’ve got another path to go through. That way, you’ll understand and know what it takes to get there. Don’t worry about the time. Push and make that s### happen because one day it’s gonna come true, and nobody can f### that up but you.