Social media is comparing Keke Palmer’s career to Zendaya’s career after a couple of Twitter users sparked the conversation about Keke’s big moment this weekend after starring in Jordan Peele’s Nope.
Aiyana Ishmael tweeted about Keke Palmer’s stardom: “It’s so interesting seeing the conversation around Keke Palmer having her breakout or superstar moment and it’s wild we live in different worlds because in my household Keke been a star for forever Akeelah & The Bee was my dad’s favorite movie it went triple platinum in my home.”
Many share the same views as Ishmael including myself, I grew up seeing Keke all over my television screen. She was on Disney and Nickelodeon shows. Plus, she had the iconic moment in “Barbershop 2: Back in Business” and was in Tyler Perry’s classic film “Madea’s Family Reunion.” In all honesty, though, her breakout to me was Akeelah Anderson in “Akeelah and the Bee.” She has been a star in the industry for at least 16 years.
The tweet that started the Keke Palmer and Zendaya debate was when Melinda Eg said: “I’d like someone to do a deep-drive on the similarities and differences between Keke Palmer and Zendaya’s careers. This may be one of the clearest examples of how colorism plays out in Hollywood. They were both child-stars, but their mainstream popularity is very different.”
Social media erupted after this tweet with people agreeing and disagreeing with this statement. The problem I have with this tweet is some people are attacking Keke to defend Zendaya and some people are attacking Zendaya to defend Keke.
Does colorism exist in Hollywood? Absolutely. Is this a valid statement? It’s very likely Keke has been denied roles based on the color of her skin.
At the end of the day, I would love to see more dark skin women get more main roles. They are too many talented and skilled dark skin women out there in the industry for it not to happen. Ryan Destiny, Lovie Simone, Coco Jones, Aja Naomi King, Michaela Coel, Anna Diop, Nafessa Williams, Diamond White, Ashleigh Murray, and the list goes on.
It’s truly sad to see social media tearing down Zendaya and Keke Palmer right now to make a point when they both mean so much to the culture. They are both great individuals, hardworking, and intelligent black women but there does need to be a change in Hollywood because there isn’t enough dark skin black woman in main roles in mainstream movies or tv shows.