‘Black-ish’ Star Marsai Martin Chats the Importance of Diversity & Her New Show, ‘Saturdays’

marsai martin

Marsai Martin is getting candid about diverse storytelling in the entertainment industry.

PureWow had the pleasure of chatting with the 16-year-old Black-ish star, who is now working with Invisalign's ChangeMakers program to celebrate teens making an impact in their communities. Martin opened up about her upcoming comedy series, Saturdays, and revealed why it was so crucial for to her to include a diverse group of actors.

While speaking about the show, which will center on a 13-year-old girl Black girl who's passionate about roller-skating, Martin explained that her aim is to create a narrative that will inspire and empower young Black girls. She told us, "You don't really get to see shows like that often, especially where our leads are beautiful Black kids and Black girls. There's not really an outlet for us to truly play characters that have fun and that are very exciting. You don't see that often."

She added, "It's one of those things where, if you don't see it, then how do you know you can be it?"

In case you missed it, Deadline confirmed in March that Martin got a Disney Channel pilot order for the show. Yes Day actress Danielle Jalade will be starring as 13-year-old Paris Johnson, and other cast members include Omar Gooding (Smart Guy), Golden Brooks (Girlfriends) and Jermaine Harris (The Map of Tiny Perfect Things).

Martin, who is set to executive produce for Genius Entertainment, revealed that the new comedy will also address what it's like to live with sickle cell. She told us, "It touches on sickle cell, which our main character has [and] which is also very big in the Black community. It hasn't been said often in the entertainment industry. But at the end of the day, our main character Paris is still a very vibrant, exciting and fun girl. She doesn't let anything like sickle cell stop her from doing what she loves, and that is our main point in the show." 

Aside from discussing the new series, the Little star opened up about her current partnership. She told us, "What inspired me to be part of this project is that I've always wanted to put a smile on everyone's faces, and that's what I do for a living. I try to bring joy and have something that people can relate to as much as possible—and I feel like Invisalign advocates for that."

Working to empower young Black girls and spreading positivity? That certainly brings a smile to our face.

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Associate Editor, News and Entertainment

Nakeisha has been interviewing celebrities and covering all things entertainment for over 8 years, but she has also written on a wide range of topics, like career...