“I did know [that this role] would be something that people felt very passionately about.”
The actor will be the first Black person to play Anne Boleyn, who was the queen of England from 1533 to 1536, in Channel 5’s upcoming movie Anne Boleyn.
But because of this role, Turner-Smith received a lot of backlash for portraying a historic white Queen on-camera. However, she says this role was made for her because she relates to her character more than her haters know.
“I had just become a mother and that was what really jumped out at me, the story of Anne as a mother,” Turner-Smith recently explained to Glamour.
“I did know [that this role] would be something that people felt very passionately about, either in a positive or a negative way,” she continued. “Because Anne is a human in history who people feel very strongly about.”
“More than anything, I wanted to tell the human story at the center of all of this,” Turner-Smith added.
Turner-Smith also loves that there will be an all-female production team with the exception of one man working with her.
“I do also enjoy working with men and I’m not limiting myself in that way,” she said.
“But I think it’s important right now that women get to tell our own stories – in the same way I’ve relished the opportunity to work with Black filmmakers, because there’s a certain nuance to the storytelling that I don’t find when I work with white filmmakers.”
“When something’s helmed by female filmmakers,” she added, “there’s so much power in that.”
Anne Boleyn is set to premiere on Channel 5 on June 1st at 9 pm. You can watch the official trailer for the series below:
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