The “Master of None” writer and star sported the new do at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s Grants Banquet in Los Angeles on Thursday. Speaking to Variety’s Marc Malkin, she joked that she has “gotten gayer” since the haircut and said that it was anything but an impulsive decision.
“I felt like I was holding onto a piece of femininity that would make the world feel comfortable with who I am,” Waithe said. “I thought for a long time, ‘Oh, if I cut my hair, I’ll be a stud — in the gay world, there’s a lot of categories — I’ll be a stud or I’ll be a butch,’ and I’ve always thought, ‘Well, no, I’m not that, I’m still soft,’ and I said, ’Oh, I gotta put that down, ’cause that’s something that’s outside of me.’”
No stranger to making bold, LGBTQ-positive statements on the red carpet, Waithe said she now feels “so free and so happy and so joyful” about the decision.
“I really stepped into myself,” she told Malkin. “If people call me a butch or say, ‘She’s stud,’ or call me sir out in the world — so what? So be it. I’m here with a suit on, not a stitch of makeup, and a haircut. I feel like, ‘Why can’t I exist in the world in that way?’”
These days, the Emmy-winning Waithe is busier than ever. Last month she announced plans to collaborate with comedian Kid Fury on a “surreal dark comedy” series for HBO. The as-yet-untitled show will, according to Variety, follow a “20-something sarcastic gay black man navigating adulthood and responsibility” in New York while struggling with undiagnosed depression.
She’ll develop new drama and comedy projects for Showtime as part of a newly announced deal with the premium cable network and has written the script for a romantic feature, “Queen & Slim,” which will begin production this fall.
- This article originally appeared on HuffPost.