“I’m in no way trying to be the face of blackness. The goal is to open doors, role by role, and be drowning in a sea of people who look like me, or like someone else, so anyone can see themselves reflected on screen.” – @yarashahidi, one of Marie Claire's #FreshFaces, talks being an advocate for diversity in the entertainment industry with @julesandbinoculars in the May cover story. Link in bio to read more. Photograph: @erikmadiganheck Wearing: @chanelofficial Styled By: @j_errico Hair: @naivashaintl Makeup: @emilychengmakeup
Yara Shahidi is one of five covers for Marie Claire’s May Fresh Faces edition. She’s promoting her spinoff show, Grown-ish, which airs Wednesdays at 8pm on Freeform. Marie Claire has only released the cover, an internal image and some brief quotes from Yara, who has been open in the past about the fact that she doesn’t date and that she’s committed to activism. She has some similar sentiments here.
On turning 18, voting and what that means for the future
“Even when you reach voting age, there are so few resources that are non-partisan in which you can develop your own political opinions. My ultimate goal is to turn the passions and interests we have into policy change.”
On how Yara compares to her alter ego on Grown-ish
“Yara has never dated and my character dated three guys in the span of two shooting weeks. So there was a lot that was new to me. One thing I’m learning to do is respect my own timeline. Things will happen when they happen.”
On being a vocal advocate for diverse representation in entertainment
“I’m in no way trying to be the face of blackness. The goal is to open doors, role by role, and be drowning in a sea of people who look like me, or like someone else, so anyone can see themselves reflected on screen.”
I like what she said about opening doors so that she’s no longer an exception and that she doesn’t want to be “the face.” That was my favorite quote. It’s slightly weird that she’s talking about herself in the third person, but maybe she’s trying to be very clear that she’s talking about herself and not her character. It’s cool that she’s just saying she doesn’t date in a matter-of-fact way and isn’t being preachy about it. She’s not saying it’s for religious reasons or anything (although that would be fine too) she’s just presenting it as a personal choice. She said in a Seventeen interview last fall that she was just too busy.
photos credit: WENN and Marie Claire