Anika Noni Rose interview: ‘Maid’
“I got to have a Regina that grew and became a person as opposed to an archetype of rich bitch,” explains Anika Noni Rose about her character in the Netflix limited series “Maid.” Regina is a wealthy lawyer who at first shows little sympathy for Alex (Margaret Qualley), who cleans her house, but she eventually forms a bond with the struggling young woman, and we learn Regina has struggles of her own. Watch our exclusive video interview with Rose above.
Based on a memoir by Stephanie Land, “Maid” follows Alex as she fights to escape an abusive relationship and make a new life for herself and her daughter. She encounters systemic roadblocks every step of the way, from byzantine government support programs to an antagonistic legal system. In Regina we’re shown Alex’s opposite, a woman who has it all — or so it seems. “It’s so rare that we see Black women in the higher echelons of society in general,” says Rose, who was also “grateful” to be able to play different dimensions of her in each episode as we learn more about her marriage and how she too is grappling with motherhood.
“There are so many women dealing with the issues that Regina was dealing with that never talk about it because of the shame wrapped around fertility,” Rose adds. The compassion “Maid” shows to Regina and that Regina eventually shows to Alex is “deeply necessary,” especially in this COVID era. “What more crucial moment have we been in in this lifetime than the one that we are in now? … We are in a crisis as human beings. We are in a crisis across the world. And if we do not find a space of empathy, we will all suffer … That doesn’t mean giving up all your earthly goods and becoming a monk. It just means recognizing that other people exist and other people matter.”