Posted by | Ray Cornelius

“Roots” starlet Emayatzy Corinealdi chops it up with her former “Middle of Nowhere” co-star Omari Hardwick in an exclusive for INTERVIEW. Corinealdi will be starring in the iconic role of ‘Belle’ that was so famously played by the late Madge Sinclair. She also opens up about why this “Roots” remake is so important to the current generation, how she deals with the pressures of being an African-American women in Hollywood and the moment she knew that acting was her calling.  Check out more photos and excerpts from the conversation below:img-emayatzy-corinealdi_181943976258

On the pressures of being both an actress and ‘being’ Emayatzy…

“It’s not something I feel pressured to be; I don’t feel like I need to be a strong black woman to make sure I’m a good example. It’s something that just is, will be.”


On why the Roots remake is so timely…

“I think now it’s such a perfect time given the climate that we’re in. We still have a lot more room to go. The fact that we have a Black Lives Matter movement along with Roots coming out again, there’s room for a conversation to be had as a result. That’s when I said, “I would be humbled to be a part of this for what it can be and the whole generation that it can speak to.”


On the Roots reaching a new generation…

“That’s why I love that in doing this one, it isn’t, “We’re doing this one so that it can be better than the original because that one missed the mark in some way.” No. This is an opportunity to speak to another generation and that’s what’s important.”


On when she knew acting was her passion…

“As far as the moment that I felt when god was tapping me on my shoulder, I do remember the moment where I realized, “Oh wow, this is what I want to do.” It came when I was 18. I had been acting and everything before then—I had been doing summer theater and was involved in everything I could be in except for drama in high school because I was an athlete. I was like, “Oh I’m not going to be in the drama department. That’s so silly.”img-emayatzy-corinealdi_181656437861

On the conversation she had with her parents and God about acting… 

“It was, “I really think I want to be an actress…can I do that? How do you do that?” “I don’t know, but I think you should do it.” “Well that’s what I’m going to do.” It was literally like that. That is how the decision came, and the path was made from there.”

“Roots” airs tomorrow beginning at 9 p.m. EST on History Channel

Click here to read the entire interview!

Photo Credits: Brian Higbee