Now that the dust has settled on the controversial New York Times piece that called Hollywood showrunner Shonda Rhimes an “angry black woman,” Rhimes is recognizing the positives.
“Some really amazing articles were written that had the conversation that I’ve been trying to have for a very long time, which, coming from me, makes me sound like I’m just, ‘Rrrraw!'” Rhimes told The Hollywood Reporter during a recent interview.
Rhimes said that while she disagrees with the Times‘ piece, she doesn’t want to see it retracted. “In this world in which we all feel we’re so full of gender equality and we’re a post-racial [society] and Obama is president, it’s a very good reminder to see the casual racial bias and odd misogyny from a woman written in a paper that we all think of as being so liberal.”
Of course, the paper and TV critic Alessandra Stanley did respond to the outcry over the article, but Stanley defended her claims saying they were meant as praise.
Rhimes, instead of getting angry over the article, asked the key question on Twitter: Why is she labeled an “angry black woman” when her white characters rant too?
The NYT article isn’t the first time Rhimes has had to correct statements made about her. She told The Hollywood Reporter about an instance in early August when she received a draft of an announcement that labeled her “the most powerful black female showrunner in Hollywood.” According to the outlet, Rhimes crossed out “female” and “black” before sending the announcement back.
“They wouldn’t say that someone is ‘the most powerful white male showrunner in Hollywood,'” Rhimes explained. “I find race and gender to be terribly important; they’re terribly important to who I am. But there’s something about the need for everybody else to spend time talking about it… that pisses me off.”
Clearly, Rhimes isn’t letting anything get her down. Nor should she. She is on top of the TV world right now, arguably the biggest showrunner in the current season. In fact, ABC has dubbed Thursday nights as Shondaland because all three of Rhimes’ hit shows air during that evening. Grey’s Anatomy kicks off the lineup at 8/7c, followed by Scandal and ending with the freshman series How to Get Away with Murder.
Read the full interview with Rhimes over on The Hollywood Reporter‘s website.