When Dreaming BIG Pays Off
Written by: Tia D. Rudd
Not only does actress Kendra C. Johnson encourage PLUS Model Magazine readers to Dream BIG, she is leading by example turning her dreams into reality. Best known for her roles in fan favorites such as the television show The Game as well as starring alongside Oscar winner Mo’Nique in the film Phat Girlz this talented actress is destined for greatness. Most recently, cast in her first series regular role as Linda on the new sitcom Tyler Perry’s Love Thy Neighbor for the OWN Network, Kendra is excited to embark on this journey. Taking a little time out of her busy schedule to talk to us about her new role, Kendra’s story is definitely one of courage, determination, and inspiration that every woman should read.
Tia: Kendra, The entire PLUS Model Magazine team is so proud of you; it must be really exciting working with two power houses such as Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry. Tell us how you are feeling now in this present moment?
Kendra: It is awesome; it is an amazing blessing. I have had lots of dreams and being a series regular on a sitcom was one of them. Working with Tyler Perry was a dream and just meeting Oprah was one. But for each of those dreams to come together and happen in concert, is beautiful. It happened so fast, it was mind blowing. I am very excited. I am humbled. I am grateful.
Tia: Tell us a little about your path to being cast in the new series Love Thy Neighbor.
Kendra: Last year I had, what I like to call, a HUGE small role in Mr. Perry’s film Single Mom’s Club. That was my first opportunity to work with him and was its own very timely blessing. I literally was on set one day, but it was an incredible experience. The cast and entire crew were amazing. Mr. Perry was very welcoming and made me feel super comfortable. He seemed to make an effort to help me believe my contribution to the film was valued. At our wrap party, I shared a beautiful conversation with Mr. Perry’s casting director during which, she mentioned the two new pilots they were working on for the OWN network – a drama and a sitcom. The following Monday, my agent got a call from the casting office, inviting me to audition for both shows. It was the week before Christmas. I auditioned and had a great time. I felt like I left it all in the room and that is a great feeling to have after an audition. I hoped to hear from them some time after the New Year for a possible callback. Needless to say, things progressed MUCH quicker than I imagined they would. I was cast as a series regular in the sitcom and began filming February 14th, not even two full months after my initial audition. I am still in awe!
Tia: Earlier in our conversation you spoke on how Mr. Perry made you feel very welcome and comfortable. Explain a little more about how he was able to accomplish that. I also know he had a HUGE surprise for the cast before taping started.