American daily live broadcast TODAY has tapped TV star, producer and all-around creative Issa Rae to kick off its first-ever digital series.
Arianna Davis, Editorial Director of TODAY, tells PEOPLE magazine exclusively how this all came to be:
When we were thinking of people whose impact on the larger culture we wanted to highlight, Issa Rae immediately came to mind.
She not only created a hit series for a generation of viewers thirsty for representation but she’s also provided countless opportunities for people of colour both in front of and behind the camera, almost singlehandedly transforming the way Hollywood has traditionally worked.
The world has been eagerly anticipating what’s next from her, and the timing felt especially fitting as TODAY digital gears up for an exciting new chapter of our own!
In this issue, Issa talks about how she is rediscovering balance, her upcoming projects like RAP SH!T, and a few new movie roles.
For the cover story, Issa is sporting three gorgeous looks. For the first outfit, she is glowing in a yellow Oscar de la Renta maxi dress that bounced perfectly off her flawless skin. She wore her hair in a high ponytail with two braids swooped in the front.
For her second look, she is wearing a plunging Dundas black evening dress featuring a gold chain belt. Her third and final look is in a red power suit by Sergio Hudson, which she paired with matching Stuart Weitzman heels.
Read excerpts from the interview below:
On building a foundation with her hit series Insecure
When people are like, ‘I started on “Insecure”’ — that’s so special, whether they’re writers, costume designers, cinematographers or directors. Being able to let people hone their skills on ‘Insecure,’ and then watch them show and prove to the point where they’re now demanded by other projects … that’s dope to me because I saw that happen on Black TV shows growing up.
You start to build a foundation: a group of people that you’ve come up with, and we are the ones giving each other our second chances and our third jobs, and then our fourth jobs. And they, in turn, are doing the same thing with their extended group of people. I think it’s a mentality that’ll lead to another shift of us looking out for each other.
On her future plans
I 100% want to do more outside of the traditional industry. But I want to kill it in this industry first. I want to truly enter my mogul era, and that comes from empowering and building other moguls of colour. I think that’s my aspiration, and I just want to do it well. I want people and this industry, in particular, to take us seriously. I want to be a competitor with the best.
Read the full issue here.