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Issa Rae is All About Elevating Black Creatives on the Latest Cover of The Hollywood Reporter



Issa Rae, who received eight Emmy nominations for “Insecure” is on the cover of The Hollywood Reporter’s latest issue.

The actress and producer, is all about helping and elevating Black creatives in Hollywood. She has normalized Black lives onscreen with her HBO show and other projects — and it’s something she prides herself on.

On this issue, she talks gentrification, class, motherhood, code-switching, early doubts, her project with Jordan Peele and navigating Hollywood.

Here’s what the actress had to share with the magazine:

On scoring Eight Emmy nominations for Insecure this year:

Anybody can tell you when I heard Yvonne’s name, that’s when I got really excited. I had been nominated before, but I’m very much aware that I don’t do this by myself. I did feel guilty. It was just like, “Everybody else is killing it and they’re really helping to elevate me and they’re not getting the recognition.”

But Yvonne was like, “They’re watching and they’re seeing the work we’re doing.” To be a four-season show, to have it happen now, is not lost on me because there’s so many new and amazing shows. To have the culture support our show, it’s a FUBU [For Us, By Us] show in every way … I feel so blessed and we love every second.

On doubts:

[With] Insecure, it took so long and every draft was like, “No, this isn’t it. No, this isn’t it. No, this isn’t it.” I was just like, “Oh, OK. Maybe this is the end of the road for me,” especially when I’m investing in this big venture, which ended up being ColorCreative, and spent all my money and didn’t have anything. I remember being on the set of a pilot we were filming [Words with Girls] and getting the call that HBO was not feeling the latest draft and I was losing Larry [Wilmore, Insecure’s first showrunner]. I was like, “This isn’t going to happen for me, and I just did all of this for nothing.”

Thankfully, Larry leaving for The Nightly Show, as much as I love him, was the best thing that could’ve happened because it forced me to be like, “OK. It’s not a workplace comedy,” and having a conversation with HBO was really helpful just in terms of centring it. It was just like, “I’m going to put everything that I’m going throughout on the table in this pilot. If they say no, at least I tried, and fuck it.”

For more from Issa Rae, visit

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