In an interview with HuffPost Live, “Being Mary Jane” star Gabrielle Union praised Shonda Rhimes for reminding network executives that diverse, female showrunners can build empires – but they need that first shot. “Success breeds more opportunity,” Union told HuffPost, “so with the success of ‘Scandal,’ with the success of ‘How To Get Away With Murder,’ basically Shonda has taken over the most important night of television with a very diverse cast of characters.”Both the leads in Rhimes’ Thursday night shows are African-American women (Kerry Washington in “Scandal,” Viola Davis in “HTGAWM”). Importantly, the leads aren’t 20somethings and the shows feature a cast of all ages and some of the hottest, most high-praised sex scenes on television. Union herself was initially among the top five choices for Kerry Washington’s lead role in ‘Scandal’ and revealed “me and half of Black Hollywood” were up for the role.Union reminds us that exposure as a Black actress is “very limited, period,” continuing:

“And when you add in women of color or women of color over a size 4, women of color with darker skin tones, women of color who want to rock natural hair, it becomes more and more limited. I have not seen that change.”

Union is currently co-starring in Chris Rock’s film “Top Five.”Related Articles:Why I Chose To Go Natural With My Hair Three Low-Maintenance Hairstyles for Natural Hair