Amandla Stenberg is the new carefree Black girl infiltrating mainstream media — her words not ours — but, quite frankly, it’s true.
Stenberg recently shared the photo below on Instagram, gushing about her lead role in the new YA film Everything, Everything, a film that not only boasts a majority minority cast but is also written and directed by two women of color.
“May 19th ya’ll go see ur carefree black girl infiltrate mainstream media,” she captioned the photo.
We think it’s definitely cause for celebration, especially given Hollywood’s track record for overlooking minorities when casting lead roles in mainstream market films.
Stenberg, who has become known for her activism and for being good pals with Beyonce, told us that was a major draw for her as well.
“I think it’s rare that you see movies like this that are actually interested in diverse casting so that drew me to it immediately,” she explained. “Then the fact it was directed by a Black woman was really a draw for me.”
Anika Noni Rose, who plays Stenberg’s mother, said she loved how the film has a strong female cast, but isn’t really about that at all.
“You know, reading the script you wouldn’t know, it’s not delineated, we are not talking about who we are and the color of our skin and what that means,” said Rose. “I think that is a vacation for us to be in a movie where we are represented … where we are really having conversations that are meaningful and relationships that are fleshed out and that are thorough. I think that makes a huge difference.”
In the film, based on the New York Times bestseller, Stenberg plays Maddie, a young girl with a rare autoimmune condition that keeps her confined to her house … that is, until she meets the boy next door, played by Nick Robinson.
Director Stella Meghie told us she just got lucky with the casting, getting her first choice in Stenberg and Robinson, whose onscreen romance will simply melt your heart.
“Amandla was so perfect for it and Nick, they just had the exact right tone,” said Meghie. “And Ana [de la Reguera] and Anika were so great and I wanted them both so deeply. I just ended up with the right people.”
We couldn’t agree more. Everything, Everything is, quite honestly, everything, everything. But don’t take our word for it; be sure to see it when it hits theaters May 19.