By Tamlyn Canham
Thuso Mbedu‘s Hollywood star continues to rise. Not only are critics raving about the South African actress, but her peers are also singing her praises.
— Barry Jenkins (@BarryJenkins) June 17, 2021
Thuso told her that she is a big fan.
But Charlize said she was having a fangirl moment of her own.
“I’m so in awe of the work that you have done. There’s this emerging South African talent coming forth right now, and I’m just really proud and really impressed. You guys are stepping in and setting that bar,” she said.
Charlize added that Thuso’s Amazon Prime series, which tells the story of a slave who escapes a plantation in Georgia, made her feel hopeful.
“I have to say, there was something about your show that was, of course, riveting, shocking, infuriating, and it got every single emotion out of me, but at the same time, it felt like a warm blanket.
“In a way, I could feel the energy of how this thing came together. It made me feel hopeful, really, really hopeful,” she said.
A lesson about slavery
Thuso says ‘The Underground Raildroad’ has been a learning experience for the cast and viewers.
“I felt like this is an opportunity for people to learn because we think we know until we realize that we really don’t.
“When I had a couple of friends come to view the premiere with me, two of them are from South Africa, but they’ve been in the U.S. for over 10 years, and one of the first things they said after watching the very first episode was, ‘I didn’t know. I did not know. I’ve been living in this country for so long, but I did not know that this is what the Black body went through on this land.'”
The 29-year-old says her friends are now “actively trying to educate themselves”.
“The hope is that because now we all understand what the foundations were, there is no way that we could go backward. We can only get better from here.”
Thuso’s portrayal of Cora has earned her several nominations, including ‘Outstanding Actress in a TV Movie or Limited Series’ at the Black Reel TV Awards.
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