Meagan Good: Destined for Greatness
Actress Meagan Good always knew that she would end up on the big screen. Despite having a natural talent, the Hollywood looks and the ability to bring several different roles to life, the industry wasn’t convinced at first.
“Initially, [a] manager said I wasn’t going to work and she really didn’t want to take me on [as a client],” the star told JET.
Meagan was actually told “no” quite a few times while pursuing her dream of acting. She was even demoted to the role of “best friend” for not being of a certain shade – if you catch my drift. JET spoke with the actress about her humble beginnings, the evolving role of the Black woman in the entertainment industry and her upcoming television series, Minority Report.
JET: Meagan, my first time seeing you was in Eve’s Bayou, and boy did you play what I viewed as a challenging role, especially for someone so young. How did you get into acting?
Meagan Good: Thank you. I started when I was really young. I did extra work on shows like Doogie Howser, Amen and all that stuff. My mom’s best friend’s daughter was into acting, so she gave my mom’s number to a manager. Initially, that manager said I wasn’t going to work and she really didn’t want to take me on [as a client], but she did because she really wanted my sister. So that was the beginning. I did a lot of extra work and worked my way up literally…being on camera and having one line to being on scene to having two scenes to being a character to being a lead. So it’s been a really long journey, but it’s been an amazing one. I feel blessed to have only had one job for my entire life. I’m just thankful.
JET: It’s always funny when someone tells you that you’re not good enough to work in a particular field only for you to not just work in that field, but be well-known for it. It goes to show that you shouldn’t really listen to people when pursuing your dreams.
Meagan Good: Yeah. It’s really crazy. When I look at the neighborhood I grew up in, we were one of two Black families. Every time I would tell my teacher, “I wanna be an actress,” she’d be like, “That’s not realistic. That’s not going to happen for you.” I’ve been told that my whole life, and for some reason it’s made me more determined to succeed at what I believe I’m supposed to be doing. That “no” is kind of a blessing in a way you know?
JET: It’s definitely a blessing. Now we all know that we can watch you on screen, but I was surprised to find out that you’re also a member of a singing group “The Hello Girls.”
Meagan Good: (Laughs) Yeah I have a band with my sister and two of my closest friends. I’ve always been into music. My sister was the one with the voice, but I love performing and I just enjoy everything about it. So we put together a band and when we feel like it, we just come together and make music or host a show. We opened for Ceelo, so we’ve had some fun, but it’s basically at our leisure. Something we just do together.
JET: Now being an actress can be a very interesting job. What’s the most challenging obstacle, particularly for Black actresses?
Meagan Good: There’s a lot of things. Specifically talking about being a Black actress, the opportunities today are much more than they’ve ever been. Any woman that’s come before me, everyone had to fight for every single opportunity including myself. I remember going on auditions and going through each role and they’re like, “Wow you’re amazing, but we don’t want the lead character to be Black. So we’ll give you the best friend role,” and that happened to me a lot. So I made the decision in my mind that I wouldn’t be bitter or mad and that I would focus on the front line and being a part of changing that. Every single thing I’ve had to work for [is mine] because God allowed it. It’s definitely harder out there for minorities, because a lead role is not very often written for minorities and when it is, a lot of times, the whole cast will be a minority which is a beautiful thing, but I think that we should all mix it up. It should be a little of everyone in everything. It’s never been a competition for me. The goal is that we all win and we all get a shot.
JET: Speaking of Black women in lead roles, you’re set to star in FOX’s adaptation of Stephen Speilberg’s film Minority Report. Tell us about the project and character.
Meagan Good: Last year’s prayer was, “I really want to do an action movie. I want to do an action show. I want to do something where I could physically get involved in it and stretch myself. I want to play a character that’s really strong and hardcore, but she’s still a woman with a sense of vulnerability about her.” So that was really the prayer last year. A year later, it manifested and it’s crazy because I had other opportunities that came and I just waited and held out for it. And the character, I really love her sarcasm, her attitude, the way that she moves, that fearlessness and boldness. She has such a presence that she’s willing to do whatever it takes to accomplish what she needs to do the right thing. It’s really a dream character for me.
JET: Dope. Any other upcoming projects that we should know about?
Meagan Good: I have a movie I produced called A Girl Like Grace. It’s an incredible cast including Raven-Symone, Romeo Miller, who has a breakout performance. And we’ve found this incredible talent, Ryan Destiny, who plays the lead in this young woman’s coming-of-age story. Her mother is an alcoholic whose been trying to figure out life since she was her daughter’s age. Destiny’s character tries to find herself while all of these things are going on in her life. I have a passion for women. I have a passion for them wanting to find their own way and for them to value themselves. I decided to make a movie about it and it’s very raw and very gritty and a little bit shocking. The film will be coming soon to theaters.
Catch Meagan Good in “Minority Report” which premieres Monday on Fox 9/8c.