LOS ANGELES, CA (FOX 11) - This week, FOX 11 News goes In Depth exploring Black History Month as it relates to the entertainment industry. This show aired on Oscar Sunday as we talked with actors about the past, present, and future of diversity in the industry! Debbie Allen's interview was recorded at ABC-Prospect studios where they shoot Grey's Anatomy. She took me on a tour of the hospital and ER sets. In-studio, we had Jayne Kennedy-Overton, Art Evans, Raeven Kelly and A Russell Andrews. In all, it was great conversation and perspective.
Actress Debbie Allen talks about growing up in the 50's and 60's. It was a time of segregation, separated bathrooms, and unequal opportunity. Among other things, Allen tells the story of being unable to have dance lessons in Houston, Texas when she was four so to escape racism her mom to her and her sister, actress Phylicia Rashad to Mexico. Also, in this segment, actors Art Evans and Jayne Kennedy-Overton give their perspectives of the challenges in their early days. Kennedy-Overton was the first black Miss Ohio and one of the first women sportscasters on the NFL Today.
Art Evans, who appeared in such movies as "Die Hard 2," "Fright Night," and TV shows like "The X Files" talks about Oscars diverse nominated films this year with Kennedy. And, talk about who they are rooting for from Denzel Washington to Moonlight and Fences.
Raeven Kelly and A. Russell Andrews join the round table to give another generation's perspective on Black History Month as it relates to the entertainment industry and talk about what they expect to see going forward.
We go to Debbie Allen's Dance Academy and to see her students having lessons. Allen talks about their lives in the shadow of the segregation years. Debbie is married to former Los Angeles Laker Norm Nixon so, it's an unfair competition with Debbie and I shoot some hopes outside her Grey's Anatomy offices.