Friday, July 1, 2022

HBO Responds to ‘Lovecraft Country’ Extra Having Her Skin Darkened for Series

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*A former extra on HBO’s “Lovecraft Country” has gone viral after sharing photos of herself in ‘blackface’ after the make-up team darkened her complexion to match one of the cast members.

Kelli Amirah released a TikTok video explaining how she was uncomfortable with the makeup team darkening her skin, per Shadow and Act

“I noticed my foundation is getting darker and darker,” she said in the video. “I had no idea they were going to do this to me beforehand. And if I knew beforehand, I would not have accepted this job. Who thought this was a good idea?” Hear/watch Kelli tell it in the clip below.

READ MORE: ‘Lovecraft Country’ Star Michael K. Williams Had to Channel ‘My Own Trauma’ to Play Montrose

@kelliamirahReply to @selahhassni they really did me like Zoe saldana as Nina Simone #storytime #extra #backgroundactor #tvfilm #blackfishing #onset #part2♬ original sound – KelliAmirah

After learning of the incident, HBO issued a statement saying it was “very disappointed” to hear about Amirah’s experience on the series. 

“This should not have happened, and we are taking steps to ensure this doesn’t occur again in the future,” HBO told The Hollywood Reporter in a statement.

Amirah also addressed the blackface incident on Twitter, admitting that she was “complacent” for not speaking up.

“…[A]s this was happening, I had so many conflicting thoughts in my head,” she wrote. “This is wrong. Why did they hire me. I should say something. What would I say? What would happen? If I hold up this production how much money goes down the drain. What will be my repercussions? I’m a little fish with the big guys. And I choked…I do want to re-iterate that had I known what was required beforehand, I absolutely WOULD NOT have accepted the job. On set, in the chair, I was meek and passive and did not assert my agency as [a] black woman for the betterment of my darker sisters and for that I am sorry.”

She has a point… had she spoken up she could have been canceled and labeled as “difficult” and “aggressive.”

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is an entertainment reporter with over 15 years of experience working in the film industry in areas including production and post-production, marketing, distribution, and acquisitions. She has worked for legendary film producer Roger Corman, Quentin Tarantino's production team at Miramax, the late Larry Flynt, MTV/ VH1, Hallmark Channel, Paramount, Jim Henson Co., Parade Magazine, and various LA-based companies representing above-the-line talent.




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