Actors Trevante Rhodes and Lil Rel star in the new Netflix thriller, Bird Box, along with Sandra Bullock. During a segment of Between Two Faves, the pair discussed diversified the horror/thriller genre and make it means to be apart of the streaming giant’s Strong Black Lead initiative.
“I think it was important, simply because it is,” Rhodes said of choosing his role. “The more you see somebody, you know what I mean, the more you feel seen, [and] the better it is for everybody really.”
He continued, “It was really just an opportunity to show a different dynamic, a different perspective, a different ideal and then getting in the space with some amazing people.”
“We’re not doing anything heroic. We’re just dead.” – Lil Rel
Lil Rel said he loved how their characters are changing the face of the genre.
“What I’m loving about especially in the horror/thriller genre as far as Black actors go, you look at our film and even like a Get Out. We’re starting to like become the heroes in some of this stuff too.”
Both actors joked about how Black characters “always die first” in scary movies. They also offered up some advice if a real-life scenario similar to the one in Bird Box occurred including staying indoors and not letting anyone in your home.
Watch the full interview below to hear how their families reacted to their Hollywood careers and what it was like working with Bullock.
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Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.