For Zoe Saldana, science fiction has given her a chance to stretch her acting wings.
“I get to imagine the unimaginable,” she said regarding working in the genre. “I’m always in awe of writers, directors and actors who are able to pull off a world we’ve never seen – I love working with people who let their imaginations go.
“Plus, you get to play characters who defy gravity. I like that. It makes me feel superhuman because, obviously, it’s been brought to my attention continuously since I was born that I’m not a conventional person because of the color of my skin or my gender or my cultural background. So I think science fiction has given me the ability as an artist to be colorblind, and gender-blind, and to imagine and reinvent myself and be the chameleon actors are supposed to be.”
That hasn’t always been the case. When taking on the role of Nina Simone in Nina, Saldana took heat again for her color, this time being told she was not black enough to portray the singer. “You have no idea who I am,” she told critics at the time. “I am black. I’m raising black men. Don’t you ever think you can look at me and address me with such disdain.”