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‘It Was Something That I Was Internalizing’: Kyla Pratt Opens Up About Being ‘Triggered’ When Fans Bring Up Her Work as a Child Actress

Fans of the popular Disney series “The Proud Family” were elated when news broke that actress and singer Kyla Pratt would be reprising her role as Penny Proud on the animated series reboot “The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder.”

The 35-year-old is no stranger to Hollywood, having started her acting career when she was eight. However, although she’s starred in several very successful projects, the actress admitted she was triggered when fans would mention her work as a child star and not her more recent work.

2016 Winter TCA Tour - Disney/ABC - Arrivals
PASADENA, CA – JANUARY 09: Actress Kyla Pratt attends the 2016 Winter TCA Tour – Disney/ABC at Langham Hotel on January 9, 2016 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Vincent Sandoval/WireImage)

While talking about her journey during a recent interview on the “Jemele Hill Unbothered” podcast with host and journalist Jemele Hill, the “Love and Basketball” actress shared, “I think it was something that I was internalizing; I know that people would say things that they didn’t realize was triggering.”

Pratt said it was incredibly frustrating when fans would ask for updates and her current ongoings, seemingly unaware that she had just appeared on something. “The worst thing was always, ‘Oh my gosh; you used to be an actress. What are you doing now?’ and I’m like, ‘I just did a TV show; y’all didn’t see it? You wanna check it out?’” she added. 

Still, the “One on One” star said she tried to make the conscious effort not to take fan comments too personally and acknowledge that perhaps there was a need for self-reflection and internal work that had to be addressed on her part.

“When you’re in your feelings about certain things and certain comments come your way —you know — but I’m one of those people, I try to recognize why I’m being triggered or what it is that someone’s doing that’s making me feel some type of way in order for me to work on it,” she explained.

“So I knew it wasn’t coming from a malicious place from them, so I knew it was something that I had to work on,” she added. 

In 2001, Pratt lent her voice to the role of Penny in Disney Channel’s first animated series and one of the first shows to center around a Black family, “The Proud Family.” Later in the discussion, the actress shared that she was thrilled when she was initially approached about returning to the show.

“I said there is no way that y’all can do this without me. What do you mean am I interested in being apart of?” the actress quipped. “Like if I wasn’t interested, you were gonna try and do this with someone else?”

She added, “I was genuinely — I was ridiculously excited because I feel like back in the day, Disney Channel didn’t keep shows on for over a certain amount of time. So I feel like our show was needed, and we had more in us, and it just didn’t happen … So when they called about the reboot, I was like, ‘absolutely.’ ”

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