Riverdale actor Vanessa Morgan announced on Twitter on Wednesday that she would no longer be accepting roles that don’t properly represent black people.
Earlier this week, Vanessa and former Riverdale co-star Ashleigh Murray expressed their frustration with black characters being sidelined for white leads.
Vanessa said she is tired of black people being used as “sidekick non-dimensional characters” to white leads or being used only for shows to appear diverse.
Vanessa’s character, Toni Topaz, has had significantly less screen time than other regular Riverdale characters and very little storylines outside of her relationship with her girlfriend Cheryl.
Vanessa also said that she is the lowest paid regular on Riverdale.
“To my black fans, I have now made it my purpose to fight for us,” Vanessa said. “To the six-year-old me who had no role model that looked like me on TV. This is for you. We aren’t your token black non-dimensional characters. This is being black in Hollywood. I will fight for YOU.”
Vanessa said she feels like she can finally speak up and be heard, and that she hopes real change is coming.
“Usually everyone is fake listening,” Vanessa said. “I really hope a change is coming.”
Ashleigh Murray, who now stars on Riverdale’s spin-off Katy Keene, also said she hopes we can implement “real change” regarding the way black actors are treated in Hollywood.
“We are not asking for special treatment,” Ashleigh said. “We are asking for equal treatment.”
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