For seven years, Tracee Ellis Ross has played the role of mum, anesthesiologist, and wife on ABC’s Black-Ish.
The series centres around Dre Johnson (Anthony Anderson) and his wife Rainbow (Ellis Ross) who struggle to gain a sense of cultural identity while raising their kids Zoey (Yara Shahidi), Andre Johnson Jr (Marcus Scribner), Diane (Marsai Martin) and Jack (Miles Brown) in a predominantly white, upper-middle-class neighbourhood.
Now streaming in Australia on Disney+ Star, Black-Ish has been a staple in the US, mostly due to the incredible character acting by its core cast.
For Ellis Ross, playing Rainbow has been an amazing opportunity.
“I love who she is,” Ellis Ross told POPSUGAR Australia during a roundtable interview.
“I like that she’s strong, but I also love that she’s so flawed and a bit ridiculous at times and I love that she often learns her best lessons from her children.”
Ellis Ross is also proud of how Rainbow as a character shows how women get to be seen and experience being “women and a black woman” on television.
“She’s a black woman who is a mother and a wife and a doctor and a sister and a daughter, and all of those kinds of things,” she said.
“I just find, even seven years later, that I’m still so intrigued by her. I’m still so interested in her. I’m still so excited to see what she’s discovering, or some piece of her past that the writers create and I’m still loving seeing how she and Dre are still discovering and finding each other and the example that that gives out in the world.”
Black-Ish films five days a week, with lengthy shoot times and over seven seasons with 24 episodes each — that’s an incredible feat.
“I think this [show] has really taught me about stamina in a way that I never knew I was capable of,” she said. “But once you experience it, you don’t really know what you’re capable of. And I’ve learned how to care for myself within that and that’s a really good life skill for me that I’m grateful to have gotten through.”
Stream Black-Ish now on Disney+ Star.