Natasha Rothwell Shares the Most Agonizing Career Decision She's Ever Made

natasha rothwell
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Insecure writer, producer, and actress Natasha Rothwell soars onto the silver screen with Wonder Woman 1984 this summer. But first, she's offering some hilarious responses to Marie Claire's questionnaire.

1. If I weren’t a “Hollywood-type creator,” I’d be: A graphic designer or an interior decorator. I’ve always had a good eye, or so I’ve been told. I think that’s why I love directing.

2. Best career advice I’ve gotten: I can be a quotes-driven basic bitch. These may not qualify as advice because they weren’t given to me directly, but I’ve found them the most catalytic for me: “Be so good, they can’t ignore you” (Steve Martin) and “Be prolific, not perfect.” I have no idea who said this, sadly, but it’s a good one.

3. The three qualities that got me where I am today: Working hard. It seems cliché, but I work my ass off. Kindness. Both kindness and being considerate are deeply important to me. Letting other people tell me no instead of telling myself no. There are enough critics out there who want to judge me and limit who I can or can’t be. So, I try not to be one.

4. Most agonizing career decision I’ve ever made: I turned down playing a ladybug in Cirque du Soleil. True story. It was that or bet on me. Almost a year to the day I said no, I landed a gig writing for SNL.

5. Easiest career decision I’ve ever made: Saying yes to playing Kelli on Insecure. It was a dream come true.

6. Change I’d like to see in my industry: Questions of diversity, inclusion, and all things “as a woman …” being directed to people who don’t look like me. Don’t ask me about inclusion riders; ask the cis-hetero-male establishment what it plans to do.

7. Book that left a lasting impression on me: Daring Greatly, by Brené Brown. I’m that bitch.

8. First album I bought: Jagged Little Pill. Prior to that, I recorded off the radio … because I’m young?

9. Superhero power I’d want to have: I’d want to read minds or be invisible. I’m nosy.

10. Something better in theory than in practice: “Forgiveness over permission” is great in theory, but show me a more privileged saying.

11. How I clear my mind after a crappy day: Music and HGTV.

12. The last time I felt beautiful: I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror this morning (in the buff) and I did a body roll.

13. Advice to a woman with a broken heart: If it didn’t hurt, it didn’t matter. The ache is a celebration of having gone all in.

14. Relationship advice to my younger self: You are beautiful and deserving of love—just as you are.

This story appears in the Summer 2020 issue of Marie Claire.

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