Regina King recently spoke to BuzzFeed News about her role in the upcoming movie “If Beale Street Could Talk” and answered questions from young actors about what it takes to make it in Hollywood.
At this point, King has been a working actress for 33 years, starting off as Brenda in the sitcom “227” in 1985, and she said the most important quality for actors is perseverance. She also said “honesty” and “never giving up” are just as needed.
“Because you will hit a time where you’re hearing ‘no’ more than you’re hearing ‘yes,’” she explained. “And you just can’t let that ‘no’ shut you down … You can’t give up. I mean, like I said: I’m finally playing a superhero, and I’ll be 48 in a couple of months.”
King also gave other nuggets of wisdom, and one was to start seeing yourself as the person you want to become in your career immediately.
“Even if your day job is whatever, lead with ‘I’m a director,'” she advised. “Claim it.”
Elsewhere during the interview, King spoke about actress Ellen Pompeo criticizing Porter magazine for not having enough people of color working on a video shoot that she was involved in.
“This day has been incredible, and there’s a ton of women in the room,” said Pompeo. “But I don’t see enough color. And I didn’t see enough color when I walked in the room today.
The “Boyz n the Hood” actress said Pompeo’s comments could spark other actresses to speak up in the same way and help create real change in Hollywood.
“I can’t speak on what a white woman is feeling about why she is or isn’t, or is she even thinking about it, I don’t know,” King explained. “But I would guess that there are some actors that feel like if they do, they’re jeopardizing their position. They’re putting their space in jeopardy.”
You can see King’s full interview below.