Yes, Issa Rae is rooting for everybody Black, but the comedy darling behind HBO’s Insecure was surprised to learn that 62% of the show’s viewers are white and they’re rooting for her success too.
“That threw me all the way the f— off,” Rae said, to audience laughter during a Q&A at Mipcom in Cannes, Variety reports.
“Which is great. It makes me want to go back in time and find that person [who said], ‘No one’s interested in watching these’ shows about people of color.”
“Even white people are tired of seeing white-people shows,” Rae added, “turning on the TV and going, ‘Aargh, I know this story already.’ It’s overdue.”
Rae credits her show’s success to people who look like her having a seat at the table in the writer’s room.
“It’s been an amazing process. We argue a lot,” she said of the show’s writers. “We don’t want to tell the stories of people who aren’t in the room. If we’re telling a queer storyline, or this story about judging someone for having this kind of experience, [it’s important] that we have voices in the room who can speak to that as well, who can add to the argument.”
Rae also said being a woman storyteller has been empowering.
“We’re telling the show through the female lens, the female gaze, which is pretty rare,” Rae said. “There’s this male gaze we’ve always been subjected to, and this is an opportunity to reverse that.”
Making Movie Magic
And while Issa Rae is enjoying her small screen success Rae is more than ready to take her talents to the big screen.
This month, fans can see her in the highly anticipated film The Hate U Give, based on the bestselling young adult novel by Angie Thomas. The film centers around a young Black girl named Starr (Amandla Stenberg), who is inspired to activism after watching police kill her unarmed friend Khalil, played by Algee Smith. Rae plays April Ofrah, an activist who helps Starr find her voice and speak out against injustice.
Rae is also reportedly set to star in the upcoming Fox romantic comedy called American Princess.
According to The Hollywood Reporter: “The film centers on an American woman (Rae) who moves to London, where she’s drawn into a world of wealth and high society and falls in love in a very unexpected way.”
Rae is teaming up with Amy Aniobi, who wrote the script but who has also worked before with her before as a writer and co-executive producer for Insecure.