Barbie Star Issa Rae Expresses Concern Over Lack of Renewals for Black TV Shows, Slams Industry for Breaking Diversity Pledges


Hollywood Actress Issa Rae takes a stand against TV networks for their failure in promoting diversity in storytelling, expressing her dismay after two of her produced shows face cancellation.

Issa Rae’s Background and Commitment:

Known for her roles in Barbie and Insecure, the 39-year-old actress, writer, and producer has been dedicated to sharing Black stories, founding a theater company during her Stanford University years and establishing her own production company, Hoorae Media.

Cancellation of Shows and Issa’s Concern:

After the recent cancellation of Rap S*** and A Black Lady Sketch Show, Issa Rae voices her concern about the diminishing priority of Black stories, expressing pessimism for their future representation on both big and small screens.

TV Industry’s Broken Diversity Pledges:

Despite industry promises to increase diversity after the murder of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement, a 2023 study reveals a failure in fulfilling diversity pledges, with a decline in films featuring lead characters from ethnic minority backgrounds.

Issa Rae’s Critique on Lack of Progress:

Issa Rae criticizes the lack of progress, stating that the absence of accountability contributes to the pessimistic outlook. She emphasizes that while she can speak out, there are limits to her influence in compelling change.

Cancellation of “Rap S*” and Its Impact:**

Rap S***, Issa Rae’s recent show, faces cancellation after its second season, despite receiving critical acclaim. The series followed the journey of two friends aspiring to make it big in the music industry.

The cancellation draws attention to the challenges faced by Black shows.

Acknowledgments and Awards for “Rap S*”:**

Although not winning major awards, Rap S*** received nominations from the Gotham Awards, Independent Spirit Awards, and NAACP Image Awards.

The show’s impact is recognized, with gratitude expressed to Issa Rae, showrunner Syreeta Singleton, and the teams involved.

Delayed Second Season and Critical Acclaim:

Intended to begin its second season on Max on August 10 of the previous year, Rap S*** faced delays due to an actor’s strike.

Despite the setback, both seasons garnered a 100 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Issa Rae’s Ongoing Projects:

Following her success in Barbie, Issa Rae is now featured in the critically acclaimed film satire American Fiction, adapting Percival Everett’s novel Erasure.

Rae continues to contribute to the industry despite setbacks in her TV productions.

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