Debbie Allen Has A Few Words For Black Girls With Low Self-Esteem And She's Partnering With Shonda Rhimes To Share It
The dynamic duo.
May 09, 2018 at 1:07 am
Debbie Allen believes all black girls are beautiful AF, and she is making sure there's not a doubt in their mind about it.
The seasoned entertainer, who currently runs her own dance company and dabbles in many other impactful projects, has partnered with Dove to launch the second season of Real Beauty Productions.
“I felt that this is an initiative that has a real purpose and real meaning, and it could make a difference in our community,” Allen told Blavity. “This could help millions of young women step out of a dark space and into the light…They’ll look at these stories we’re telling and I’m sure they’ll see a reflection of themselves.”
The Dove initiative was established in 2017 as a way of putting the stories of real women into the hands of real women. Doing away with the typical Hollywood narrative, Dove, Allen and ABC powerhouse Shonda Rhimes collaborated on the project to share the stories of women who redefine beauty standards.
Rhimes and Allen will direct the production series’ newest film “An Hour With Her” which boasts an all-female crew. Allen was tapped by the project because of her own history of breaking beauty standards by helping to diversify the dance and film industries.
The film encourages women around the world to spend an hour of their time with a girl in their life to discuss topics such as beauty and self-esteem; a conversation that could impact the way a young girl could view herself for the rest of her life, and even open a conversation for other young women in the future as the trend becomes multi-generational.
While sharing her experience working to combat the European beauty standards black women are ruthlessly held to, Allen reflected on having her own idea of beauty and being involved in the Black Power movement. Allen said that during her years as a student at Howard University, she proudly rocked an Angela Davis-style afro. (In fact, her favorite scene in "Black Panther" traces back to her pride in her natural hair.
"My favorite part of 'Black Panther' was when they were in the club and [Okoye] took that wig off," she said.)
“We as black women need to see ourselves, and we look so many different ways, and people have to stand there, look at themselves, and see a reflection of God,” Allen said. “There is a reason why we don’t all look the same. We don’t need to look the same."
Watch “An Hour With Her” below: