As Hollywood works to become more diverse and inclusive, actor, writer and producer Mindy Kaling is taking matters into her own hands.
“I used to think, ‘When I succeed, that’s enough. I don’t have to do any more.’ I realized that was an immature position. If you want to work with women, you have to be the one who makes the change,” she told FN. As the only person of color and the only woman in the writer’s room during the first season of “The Office,” Kaling has seen the evolution firsthand.
“Now, 15 years later, that would be unheard of,” she said on the lack of diversity. For her part, she makes a point to tap assistants with the aim to turn them into writers.
“It selfishly works because they are really loyal to me, and they introduce me to other people who are great to hire,” Kaling said. “That’s how I do it.”
Kaling is continuing to disrupt Hollywood with her latest film, “Late Night,” which she wrote, produced and stars in. The movie follows her character, Molly Patel, the only female hire in the writers’ room for late-night talk show host Katherine Newbury, who is played by Emma Thompson. Her own experiences influenced the script, which highlights representation and inclusivity issues in entertainment.
She is also busy spearheading the “Four Weddings and a Funeral” TV series for Hulu as well as the untitled coming-of-age comedy for Netflix. Plus, Kaling is the face of DSW. The partnership kicked off in April and her campaign will run through 2020.
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