Why Everyone Is Obsessed With 'I May Destroy You'

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Why everyone is obsessed with the dark, often funny, frighteningly realistic 'I May Destroy You'

,” which she also starred in, and which was based on a one-woman show she wrote after theatre school. On the first day of shooting, for instance, five Black actors were crammed into one trailer, while a white actor was given her own.

“The production office felt like the place I have no access to: the curtain rod behind where Jesus is dwelling,” Coel said. Kadiff Kirwan, a “Chewing Gum” cast member who was also in an episode of “I May Destroy You,” called Coel’s treatment by the higher-ups “absolute bullshit.” “It’s like she built this house and gave the keys to someone, and they locked her out of different rooms in her own house,” he said.

Following that experience, Coel delivered a powerhouse speech at the very prestigious MacTaggart Lecture at the Edinburgh International Television Festival. At 30, she was youngest person to deliver a lecture as part of the influential series, and the first ever Black woman. That was when she spoke publicly about her assault for the first time, and when she was clear about what made the power dynamics on the “Chewing Gum” set so difficult.


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