Jasmine Cephas Jones Seized Creative Control Over Her 'Blindspotting' Character

Originally produced as a film by Rafael Casal and Daveed Diggs, STARZ’s Blindspotting has been transformed into one of the most highly anticipated film-to-television adaptations. As we follow Ashley (Jasmine Cephas Jones) on this journey while raising her son (Atticus Woodward) after her partner of 12 years has been abruptly incarcerated, we watch her grow on screen while she’s forced to move in with the mother and sister of her boyfriend during his arrest.

As opposed to the perspective of two male protagonists in the film, the TV show, which will premiere on June 13, focuses on Ashley’s perspective six months following the timeline of the original movie. “It’s a comedy that is very funny but deals with a lot of important issues,” Cephas Jones told ESSENCE. She further described Blindspotting as featuring “dreamlike sequences” and a “heightened reality” when her character breaks the fourth wall, allowing her to communicate directly with viewers.

When she first got the call nearly three years ago that Diggs and Casal wanted to hone in on Ashley as the lead, Cephas Jones came on board to navigate Ashley’s character development in front of the camera and behind-the-scenes. “I’ve seen the show go through right from the beginning all the way to what it is now,” she said. “To be a part of it creatively and be seen and heard and have creative control over Ashley in a way that I’ve never really had, has been amazing. I’ve learned so much through this process.”

Check out the full interview above between Jasmine Cephas Jones and ESSENCE contributing editor D’Shonda Brown.

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