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  • I've definitely been guilty of like trying to be what I felt like I was expected of me, hey, I'm Kara patterson and I play Jessica Baxter on the Disney plus series, Turner and hooch and I am Brandon jay McLaren, I play Xavier Wilson on the same Disney plus series.

  • Turner and Hooch.

  • I'm really excited to have a discussion about being black artists and professionals and creator and all our, our shared experiences.

  • So yeah, let's let's go ahead, let's do it.

  • So Cara, how did you get started in in enacting?

  • I always loved it as a child, but my mom was, she was a single parent and I wasn't able to be exposed to her much, she wasn't able to put me in all the classes and do all that stuff.

  • So I didn't really get a chance to really explore it until high school.

  • I was really kind of thinking it was a hobby because I didn't really feel brave enough to say I wanted to really be an actor.

  • I was just like, this is my hobby is something I would do on the side.

  • It was really some teachers that took me under their wing and really gave me the courage to go at it full force and I've been doing it, everything I actually started out doing commercials.

  • My mom, uh I was 12 and my mom there was an ad on the radio saying they needed ethnic kids to uh to audition for commercials.

  • So my mom came home one day and she was like, yo I heard this out on the radio, do you wanna do you want to audition for commercials?

  • And I was like, yeah, sure.

  • I do understand like when you say it does take courage to be able to tell people like, hey, like I wanted to do this as a profession and I don't know if there's like, like, I don't know, like I know like my, both my parents are immigrants too, so it was really hard for them to kind of understand that like, you know, you know, like that was definitely a part of like me, like taking longer to sort of admit to myself and everybody else and I want to do this, you know, as a job and my mom is from Trinidad and my dad's from Grenada and I know that they really wanted to afford their Children the opportunity that they felt that they didn't have.

  • Um and so I think that's also maybe the reason why there was so kind of hesitant about me going into acting, they were just scared and then they wanted they just wanted, you know, security for their kid.

  • I think.

  • Absolutely, have you ever had to change anything about yourself to get a role?

  • I had to learn how to be myself because there was a difference between how the industry saw me versus how I saw myself, I've definitely been guilty of like trying to be what I felt like I was expected of me and but I don't think that I got very far doing that, it doesn't go well and when I'm like, listen, this is my interpretation of this character, this is what I bring to it and really embrace my authenticity.

  • That's when I've been rewarded the most.

  • What about you?

  • Have you ever felt like you needed to?

  • I mean, you know, for me, like oftentimes like my my dreads has been an issue.

  • I've definitely not gotten roles because I refused to cut my hair.

  • They were like, well sorry, like, well I'm not cutting it, you know, But I think that's getting better and sometimes that means saying no to things, you know what I mean, that you're not necessarily comfortable, but it's so funny you bring up hair because that has been a big issue as far as um in a big topic among black actresses as far as like the hair that we bring to a role because of my type when if, if the character was listed as beautiful or classy or elegant, that I couldn't wear my natural curly hair, I was like straightening my hair at first.

  • So that was a part of when I was referencing, you know those times when I was trying to be what people expected of me over time as as it went on, I just realized like why can't my natural hair be considered beautiful and classy and why am I stressing myself out, I can't be my full self and it puts a lot of the focus on the external and just you know, really nitpicking myself and we get so much rejection, we just have to really be vigilant about not adding onto it and rejecting myself before I even, you know, get started.

  • Yeah, there you go.

  • You have like you never know what they're looking for, right?

  • And you can never like and it's like it's such an exercise in futility trying to figure out what they want because a lot of times they don't even know what they want until they see it exactly.

  • And even being rewarded by getting the job with my natural hair then there's the hurdle of the industry needs to catch up to that I don't have anxiety going to a set because there would never be like somebody who knows how to like cut my hair, I'd always have to bring in my own person or like go like on my own time to like my own bar.

  • And it's like guys like I shouldn't have to like, like I should be and what's not here is when you see white co stars and they're able to just sit there coffee and get into character and just like they're not and I'm in the mirror with my Home girl on Facetime, help me with my wig because this woman don't know how to do my leave out, right, you know, whatever.

  • So Brandon when it comes to acting, how important is it to have passion for the craft?

  • I just love acting?

  • I like like looking into somebody's eyes and being truthful.

  • Like I like the process of like reading um I like learning about the character and those are the things I think that that prop you up when you would not be working, right, when you're in between jobs, when you're, you know, you've done a billion auditions and nobody's biting what gets you through those times or is if you just actually love acting.

  • Um So yeah, I think it's really important if you had one piece of advice like piggyback on what I just said for young and upcoming actors and actresses of color, what would it be?

  • Well, I think just like what we've been saying is the number one is to own who you are and to speak up.

  • I was so grateful to just get an opportunity that I would just take anything.

  • And a lot of times, you know, it's so hard to get these jobs and then you get there and sometimes you get there, you see like, oh there's some of the same microaggressions that happen like at the office job or at my side job waiting tables and like favoritism and bias happens and like, and I'm still experiencing some of that and I'm like and you think that is everything when you're doing your passion, that everything's gonna be roses once you, all I gotta do is start working, but like I know you can be grateful and you can still speak up for yourself, what stories centered around people of color and filming tv do you feel like you aren't seeing, I wouldn't mind seeing sort of more like more like the celebration of of of us and and uh and and like accomplishment type stories instead of diving into sort of the trauma, what about you?

  • I feel like more people need to tell their stories if that were to happen, we wouldn't get the same types of stories, all the nuances and all the think beautiful things that happen, you know, as a personal color as a black person because the resilience is important, not just the the trauma, the bounce back, we got to see the bounce back, I feel like my job and the reason why I do this with my life is to create a body of work that I feel like I'm telling uplifting and positive stories about the black experience and about that and I specifically am intentional about telling stories that shine a positive light on black women.

  • Yeah, I try to just do my part to create something that I can be proud of and then hopefully my family and kids and grandkids will be proud of.

  • Do you think about legacy?

  • What do you think about, you know, I never had before until recently, you know I'll go to these cons and I think I was like the second black power and you have like the leader of the rangers and I go to these cons, these little black kids will be like, hey man, like you know, I watched you when I was nine and I didn't, I've never seen like a black, like a black person in a leadership role and then I saw you as a red ranger and so I've always kind of carried that on two.

  • It's like I want to be, I want to I want to like open people's eyes up and look like me.

  • Like hey, like I can also exist in those spaces.

  • There's room for me there too.

  • That's important for me.

  • Representation is so important.

  • And then that's a big reason why I was so excited that they wrote the pregnant, my pregnancy and I would hope that it would be inspiring to other black women and other black actresses that your life doesn't have to stop.

  • So I think people need to see those images and say like, whoa, it is possible.

  • Um if he can do it, I can do it, you know, Oh awesome to connect with you today.

  • I am, I'm so glad that we have this opportunity to share our experiences together.

  • Thank you for joining me.

  • Thanks for joining us on Disney Plus Voices Catch Turner and Hooch now streaming on Disney Plus right?

I've definitely been guilty of like trying to be what I felt like I was expected of me, hey, I'm Kara patterson and I play Jessica Baxter on the Disney plus series, Turner and hooch and I am Brandon jay McLaren, I play Xavier Wilson on the same Disney plus series.

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Advocacy and Authenticity in Entertainment | Disney+ Voices

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    林宜悉 posted on 2022/04/18
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