Sunday, September 18, 2016


Chocolate-Covered ATLANTA-Resident/Playwright/Actress/Producer DANAI GURIRA is awash in a sea of color for the FALL STYLE Issue of ATLANTA Magazine!!!

DANAI GURIRA portrays the multi-layered character MICHONNE in the wildly popular AMC Network series, The WALKING DEAD.

DANAI also had just enough time for an interview with ATLANTA MAG Journalist ERRIN HAINES WHACK.

Here are some interview interludes:

Errin Your character Michonne on The Walking Dead is a survivor. Part of her strength is her vulnerability. Why do you think she resonates so much with viewers?
Danai I think from the get-go [executive producer] Robert Kirkman created a very fascinating woman on the page. Right down to her dreadlocks—you don’t see that type of hair on TV very often. Down to the fact that she has this stunning Japanese weapon of war as her weapon of choice.
I love the fact that she is a complex human being. She contains a certain degree of mystery. She also has a very big heart. That only starts to come out as she’s progressed through the seasons.
Errin It seems that portraying strong women is really important to you. It’s also a theme of the play you wrote, Eclipsed, which starred Lupita N’yongo.
Danai Plays are definitely my vehicle. [They are] really my manifestation of how I want to see and hear African women. I was born in the United States but raised in southern Africa, which is where my parents are from, where my family’s from, and what my heritage is. [Eclipsed] is something I started to create because I couldn’t find those stories about African women. I couldn’t find the complex narrative that allows the African woman to be seen front and center on a stage and her story to be given as much value as anyone else’s.
Errin You recently signed on to Marvel’s Black Panther superhero film, which stars four black leads. I think this really has the potential to break the internet. What was it like to get that offer?
Danai I was like, “Really? Me? Oh. Oh, that’s amazing.” I was surprised.
Errin Why?
Danai Because I never imagined I would be asked to do this. When I met with [director] Ryan Coogler, whom I deeply respect and admire, I was floored by his vision and by his heart, his energy, his power, his intellect, and [his] ability to tell a story. I was really amazed by the parallels [between the story and] the things that I try to do as a storyteller in theater.
Errin You’re also playing another high-profile role, Afeni Shakur, in All Eyez on Me, about the life of Tupac Shakur. How much did you know about her before you took the role?
Danai I’m a researcher. I’m a playwright. I’m an academic. I read Jasmine Guy’s book [about Afeni Shakur], which is basically her talking about her life [in] first-person, very vividly. You really get a feel for her voice there through that narrative. How she made [her son] such a special human being.


Danai Gurira

Danai Gurira

Danai Gurira

Danai Gurira

Danai Gurira

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