At this point, it’s safe to say that this is Laverne Cox’s breakthrough and that everyone wants a piece of the mesmerizing transgender activist. After nabbing a groundbreaking cover of TIME as well as a historical Emmy nomination, Cox had another monumental moment this week when it was revealed that she’s one of the cover stars for the latest issue of Essence.
For their “Channel Changers” cover, which focuses on the diversity and rise of African American women on TV, Essence chose the “Orange Is The New Black” star to pose alongside Nicole Beharie (“Sleepy Hollow“), Alfre Woodward (“State of Affairs“) and Danai Gurira (“The Walking Dead“).
According to E! Online, in the issue, Cox talks about “OITNB” and praises the show for having such a diverse cast.
“At one point I looked around and I said, ‘I don’t think anybody is going to go for this, but this is wonderful,’” Cox recalls. “It felt so good. Lo and behold, people really did go for it in a really big way.”
Cox says the show’s success comes from America’s changing idea of what normal is when it comes to telling the stories of so-called regular people.
“People are watching television in a different way,” Cox says. “People are understanding that [the traditional ‘middle America’] demographic is not necessarily one that we always need to target, which is great.”
Cox even admits that her career was failing before “OINTB” came and helped changed America’s perception of black women and black actresses as well.
“I’ve been acting for a very long time and not getting very far,” Cox admits. “I would say we needed some sort of systemic revolutionary change for me to have an acting career. Netflix has provided that.”
And Cox has provided the world with a likable and inspiring face for the transgender community, allowing us to finally get a much needed view into the lives of the transgender community. And kudos to Essence for showcasing Cox as a face for all black women and allowing her to be the first trans woman on the cover of the magazine. Truly, change has arrived. – nicholas robinson