"Quantico" star Pearl Thusi (1st runner up in the 2003 Miss South African Teen pageant) will star in "Queen Sono" — Netflix’s first African original series. 🙌👏 The South African beauty, who starred as series regular Dayana Mampasi in the ABC drama, is set to play a highly trained spy in a South African agency in the series. "Queen Sono" will see Thusi’s character take on dangerous missions, while also facing challenges in her personal life.
"Queen Sono" will launch around the world on the SVOD service and will start production in 2019. It is expected to be one of a number of African originations for Netflix, as the digital platform eyes international growth in new markets. 🌍
The news comes after Thusi's recent controversy in South Africa. Reflecting on challenges that she's faced in the entertainment industry at the Next 100 Summit in Johannesburg, Pearl claimed that she has lost roles due to colorism. “I lost a role because I wasn’t black enough on Long Walk to Freedom [Nelson Mandela biopic starring Idris Elba & Naomie Harris], a very small role. I had it, and then two weeks before shooting I wasn’t dark enough," she said. The actress, who is an ethnic Zulu but often mistakenly assumed by others to be mixed-race, added: "These things hurt when you identify with being a black woman but apparently I’ve also benefited from it [colorism] because I’m light-skinned.” _________________________________________
Thusi's critics took to social media to criticize her for saying she had been a victim of colorism, claiming that the problem affects dark-skinned women. But Thusi didn't back down, responding on Twitter that her critics had no right to criticize her personal experiences. “They are real. My mother didn’t raise me to ass-kiss on Twitter, honestly,” she said.
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