‘Insecure’s’ Amanda Seales: I’m Done ‘Protecting’ Issa Rae

Author: Editors Desk, Helen Holmes, Culture Reporter Source: The Daily Beast:
April 25, 2024 at 20:23

“It’s at a point where my protecting of Issa has become turned onto me and something that people are using against me,” actress Amanda Seales said in a new interview.

Issa Rae and Amanda Seales
‘MEAN GIRL’ / Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic


Actress Amanda Seales, who starred on all five seasons of the Issa Rae-helmed HBO hit comedy Insecure, put her former boss on blast during a sit-down with Club Shay Shay host Shannon Sharpe this week.

Recounting tension between herself and Rae’s publicist, Vanessa Anderson, when she had attended an event with Jill Scott, Seales said that she felt that Anderson had a problem with her.

“I said to Issa, I don’t know what’s going on with your publicist, but she got something wrong,” Seales told Sharpe. “She got a problem with me. And she was like, that’s between y’all. And I said, ‘Well, it’s not really between y’all, because I don’t have a problem with her. But she seems to have a problem with me.’ And she was like, ‘That’s none of my business.’”

Shortly after the alleged run-in, Seales also said that she was denied entry to, and eventually dramatically ejected from, a Black Emmys party she had been invited to by actor Jesse Williams.

It was Anderson specifically who requested she be removed from the premises, Seales said.

It’s not the first time Seales has spoken about feeling cast out, either. Earlier this year on Instagram, Seales said that she has never been invited to attend the NAACP Image Awards or to the BET Awards, despite having hosted the latter.

Two days after the incident at the Black Emmys party, Seales, who told Sharpe she was kicked out by three bodyguards and left crying in a back alley, said she received a phone call from Rae. “I got a call from Issa and she called me and said, ‘Hey, I heard what happened this weekend. I just want you to know, I have nothing to do with it,” Seales said.

Speaking about the incident on The Daily Beast’s Last Laugh podcast in 2019, Seales was diplomatic towards Rae, saying they were “all professional people” who did not let personal squabbles “bleed over” into their work. “We’re friends on the show, but even on the show there are strained moments and ups and downs,” she said at the time. “So if you’re on the set every day for 15 hours a day, there are going to be those things too. Things happen.”

But this week, now that the show has been off the air for several years, she told Sharpe she was not going to “protect” Rae anymore.

“So I’ve never talked about this publicly because it is always been incredibly important to me to protect Issa... however, there’s just been enough instances at this point where I should have been protected by Issa, and I wasn’t,” Seales said. “Now, it’s at a point where my protecting of Issa has become turned onto me and something that people are using against me.”

“There’s a whole narrative that is completely false, that people keep spinning,” Seales continued. “They keep saying, you know, that I’m this mean girl on this set that I harmed these people on this set. I just wanna point out something very basic. How can I be a mean girl on a set that ain’t my set? It’s your show! You are my boss. I don’t even have the capacity to be the mean girl here. Right? Because you can fire me. So there’s no way for me to be a mean girl in this situation. And I know some people that may buck up against like the confirmation bias that they’ve created, but it simply is the truth.”

Vanessa Anderson and Issa Rae did not immediately return The Daily Beast’s request for comment.


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