The next generation of Black Hollywood is filled with young scene-stealers and Shahadi Wright Joseph has claimed her place among them.
The stage performer who’s celebrating her 16th birthday today made the jump to the small screen when she portrayed Little Inez in Hairspray Live! on NBC in 2016. She followed that up by pulling double duty as a frightened teen with a demented doppelgänger in Jordan Peele’s Us, earning her three NAACP Image Award nominations. Recently, she stood out in Amazon’s THEM as the onscreen daughter of Deborah Ayorinde and Ashley Thomas.
In just five years, Joseph has become a rising talent that can’t be ignored. Find out five things you need to know about Shahadi Wright Joseph below.
1. She’s a Broadway Baby
Wright Joseph starred in the Broadway version of The Lion King before working with Beyoncé and Donald Glover on the live action adaptation.
2. She’s Not Afraid To Suit Up
The budding style star constantly slays in structured two-piece selections.
3. She’s Being Mentored By The Best
Wright Joseph has been taken under the wing of her Academy-Award Winning Us co-star Lupita Nyong’o. She referred to her as her “mentor,” in a touching photo of the two of them celebrating International Women’s Day together on Instagram.
4. She’s Politically Active
She might be two years shy of being able to actually rock the vote on her own but Wright Joseph is paying as much attention to politics as her fellow Gen Zers. She regularly uses her voice on social media to advocate for gender equality and racial justice to her one-hundred twenty-seven thousand Instagram followers.
5. She’s Crafty
Wright Joseph told Now This Entertainment that she used to knit and sell her creations (including scarves, hats, and gloves) backstage in the beginning of her career.