Abbott Elementary School Star Sheryl Lee Ralph has reflected on the racism she faced early in her career in a new interview.
The 65-year-old actress, best known for her roles in 1990s sitcoms, pleases shape women and moesha, has found newfound popularity in the ABC mockumentary set of a Philadelphia public school.
However, she revealed that she was once dropped from a TV show pilot after a producer apparently told her she wasn’t “black enough”.
Speaking about trying to get roles in the 1980s, Ralph said, “People didn’t think very broadly. You [had] Directors still trying to tell you how to be black.
“I got fired from a pilot because the producer told me I wasn’t ‘black enough,'” she said People Magazine. “Those were his words. It was terrible. I can still remember how I felt.”
In a recent appearance on the US chat show The viewRalph spoke about a time when she had experienced the opposite reaction when a casting director told her they didn’t know what to do with her because she was black.
“[I] had a memorable audition with a big casting director who looked at me and said, ‘everybody knows you’re a beautiful, talented black girl. But what do I do with a beautiful, talented black girl? Am I putting you in a Tom Cruise movie? Kiss? who goes to see that Movie?’” she said during her March 4 performance.
Ralph refused to name the casting director, saying: “Why bother? look at me now
“I left this audition with the best ammunition. Everyone knew I was a beautiful, talented black girl and I was supposed to be in the movies with people like ‘Tom Cruise’ and he was supposed to kiss me.”
Abbott Elementary School is now available on Disney+.
https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/tv/news/sheryl-lee-ralph-fired-black-abbott-elementary-b2052740.html Abbott Elementary star Sheryl Lee Ralph says she was fired from a TV pilot for not being ‘black enough’.