We’re so excited for Danielle Brooks! This Juilliard-trained actress has just been cast as the first Black woman on HBO’s hit series, “Girls.” Many of us have gotten to know this dimple-faced cutie as the outspoken, foul-mouthed, hilarious jailbird, Taystee in Netflix’s “Orange Is The New Black.”Brooks was brought in to the show’s second season and was fan-favorite in no time, allowing her character to be a staple on the show.
“I will be the first black woman to be on ‘Girls,’ so that’s exciting for me,” Brooks recently gushed to Ebony. With “Girls” in it’s third season, we’re hoping for a similar fate–seeing Brooks as a recurring character. Lena Dunham, the creator or “Girls” has had a lot of negative feedback about the lack of color in her show. In an interview with NPR, Lena attempted to explain why “Girls” lacked color:
This show isn’t supposed to feel exclusionary. It’s supposed to feel honest, and it’s supposed to feel true to many aspects of my experience. But for me to ignore that criticism and not to take it in would really go against my beliefs and my education in so many things.
Something I wanted to avoid was tokenism in casting. If I had one of the four girls, if, for example, she was African-American, I feel like — not that the experience of an African-American girl and a white girl are drastically different, but there has to be specificity to that experience [that] I wasn’t able to speak to. I really wrote the show from a gut-level place, and each character was a piece of me or based on someone close to me. And only later did I realize that it was four white girls.
Dunham then added rapper and actor, Donald Glover as a love interest, but that didn’t really solve the color issue on the show. Maybe Brooks will? “I like to play people who are underdogs and misfits. People who are not on a straight and narrow path. That’s exciting for me. I know the rest of my career isn’t going to be playing inmates,” Brooks said of her role in “Orange Is The New Black.”
Don’t you love when you see the results of something being spoken into existence? As the newest cast member on the heavily-criticized all-White show, “Girls,” Brooks knows that she is breaking ground. “A lot of Black women come up to me and say they’re happy to see someone like myself with natural hair and dark skin and who is my size. It’s just cool,” Brooks humbly states.
What’s next for this comedic powerhouse? The sky’s the limit as she just shot an episode of “Girls” and is hoping that fellow full-figured comedian, Melissa McCarthy “will hit a sister up.” We’ve got our eyes on you Danielle Brooks!
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