You may know MJ Rodriguez as Mother Blanca on Pose now, but before the critically acclaimed show started breaking down barriers, the 28-year-old actress’s day-to-day was very different.
Rodriguez caught up with PureWow ahead of her keynote speech at The George Washington University’s fifth annual Diversity Summit and filled us in on her Olay Ultra Moisture Body Wash 14-day challenge (she used Olay Body for 14 days leading up to the Summit to get her skin strong a healthy). When we discussed Pose’s cultural significance, she admitted that she had no idea she was the lead of the show until after she got the part. Yep, seriously.
“I was just coming on the scene and I didn’t even know that I was the leading actress of the show until Ryan Murphy [series creator] said, ‘She’s the lead of the show.’ We were in a meeting and he said, ‘She’s the lead of the show, and she’s number one on the call sheet.’ And that turned my whole life around because I’ve never heard number one on the call sheet and I was never considered the lead actress of a show,” Rodriguez recalled.
Prior to her breakout role in Pose, Rodriguez had small parts and guest appearances on Nurse Jackie and Carrie Diaries. She told PureWow, “I never thought that I would be seen as someone who’s relatable and who can be a matriarch of a show. Ryan Murphy made that happen and it made me feel so great because not only could I be the leading force, but I could be with my other sisters on the show and we could all be leading forces together to tell a story, to entertain and to educate.”