Master of None actress Lena Waithe has joined Dear White People season 2. Waithe will play a character named P Ninny, an MC and reality star. Dear White People season 1 received critical acclaim, scoring 100% on Rotten Tomatoes. The show scored a nomination for Breakthrough Series – Long Form at the Gotham Independent Film Awards. In June, Netflix announced that the series would be renewed for a second season.
Waithe, once a writer on the Fox series Bones, is best-known for playing Denise on Netflix’s Master of None. She won a writing Emmy for penning the Master of None episode “Thanksgiving,” based on her own experience of coming out. She was the first black woman ever to win an Emmy for writing. Waithe also produced the indie comedy film Dear White People, the basis for the series.
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EW reports that Lena Waithe will bring her talents to season 2 of the Netflix comedy-drama Dear White People. Waithe will recur as a character named P Ninny, an MC who appears on the reality series Trap-House Tricks, described as something like Love & Hip-Hop. The character’s antics will give the show a chance to offer up humorous commentary on the portrayal of black people on TV. Series creator Justin Simien describes P Ninny as a “hot-mess” version of the real Lena. Waithe herself talked about the extreme character and how her personality plays into the show’s comedy:
“What’s so funny about her is that she’s not aware of how she’s coming off to the world. But, she’s a lot of fun. I just got be like really silly and crazy, and say crazy stuff, because that’s what happens in that world.”
Set on a fictional Ivy League campus, Dear White People takes a satiric look at minority students dealing with prejudice. The show was turning heads even before its first episode hit Netflix, thanks to its memorably edgy trailer. The series’ signature brand of social satire certainly isn’t to everyone’s taste, and that of course is the point. Lena Waithe and her crazy new character will help the show continue to push boundaries into its second season.
Life on the south side of Chicago is the subject of Waithe’s other upcoming project, the Showtime series The Chi. Chicago-native Waithe serves as producer, writer and star of The Chi, co-produced by Common and directed by Rick Famuyiwa (Dope). Waithe is also set to play Aech, the best friend of lead character Wade Watts, in Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One. Tye Sheridan plays Watts in the science fiction film based on Ernest Cline’s novel.
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Dear White People season 2 premieres in 2018 on Netflix.