“Can You Feel My Struggle?…Are You Going Through The Same Thing?…I Want To Master My Craft.”
That’s what “LadyHood” webseries screenwriter & director Olivia Fraser explores with her special film called “Pretty Ok” featuring aspiring females actresses talking us through their insights, thoughts and views as women of colour within the acting industry. This short film has all been captured by creative DSLewis.
Apart from herself (Miss Fraser), she also brought Yana Penrose (‘Baddies’), Kathyrn Roth (‘The Genesis Protocol: Reflection’), Scarlett Carter (‘A Lesson Learnt’, ‘LadyHood’), Jade-Ashleigh Jeffrey (‘New Skool Life’) and Theresa Onyemah.
It’s always been noted that at the mainstream acting industry only select the few from these communities to display ‘get a tick for it’s diversity’. However, many of these actors and actresses still get limited roles and side casted to stereotypical roles – or they just not even up to par (I.e. too big, too small, colorism etc.)
Zoe Kratviz highlighted how she didn’t get a role In the ‘Dark Knight Rises’ because she was ‘too urban‘, the same can be said regarding Idris Elba for James Bond. Many are not pleased with the casting of Zoe Saldana playing the legendary Nina Simone including Nina Simone’s daughter, many suggested a rooster of black women such as Lauryn Hill and India Arie or actresses Viola Davis, Danai Gurira, Cynthia Erivo and Leslie Jones. Viola Davis highlighted the issue of opportunity at her Oscar speech. It’s the first time that Taraj P Henson won her first Oscar despite playing a diverse range of roles over the past years. But we must highlight one actress who paved the way for possibility and reinventing standard for women of colour – Halle Berry who pick up 7 AWARDS in 2000 & 2001 for “Introducing Dorothy Dandridge” and “Monsters Ball”.
Due to these dilemmas, you have Ava Duvernay who is tirelessly working to get more Black people both on and behind the camera. Bola Agbaje’s success as a screenwriter who proves that there’s more stories to tell. We can’t forget the webseries such as ‘Life Of Hers’. Plus, BAFTA Breakthrough actress Michaela Coel calls for more diversity in the television and film industry. Not to mention “Venus vs Mars” by Baby Isako that stars Letitia Hector.
The question is: will they bulge? Because no matter what happens, these ladies in #PrettyOk will always be themselves. They can play any role that they want to play REGARDLESS. To us, they’re more than #PrettyOk, because they’re making their own stories and destinies everyday in a fierce commercialized acting industry.
And for that reason, we crown these ladies and countless others as jewels 👑.