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The Red Line

Source: CBS Photo Archive / Getty

CBS’ new drama The Red Line explores the emotional aftermath following the death of Black man who was gunned down by white cop responding to an armed robbery. Three Chicago families, who are connected by the tragedy, struggle to move on in the wake of killing that turns into a political frenzy.

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Emayatzy Corinealdi stars as Tia Young in eight-episode event series as a political hopeful who is battling with emotions tied to reuniting with her daughter she gave up for adoption. How they all connect? Tia Young’s daughter Jira Calder-Brennan, was adopted by the doctor who was gunned down and his husband Daniel Calder. Calder is a history teacher at the local high school who then finds comfort in a fellow teacher, who also happens to be his daughter’s teacher.

The Red Line

Source: CBS Photo Archive / Getty

We caught up with Emayatzy to discuss the new series and her role in the series by executive producer Ava Duvernay.

HelloBeautiful: Can you tell me a bit about your character and what we can expect from the show? 

Emayatzy Corinealdi: My character on The Red Line is Tia Young. You’ll see in the show, as it goes on, you find out that she is connected to the main story of the show, which is about how the tragic shooting of this unarmed Black man by this White cop sucks the life out of these three different families. And my kid is apart of one of those families. Once everything happens, she realizes as a citizen of Chicago and as a mother, that she has to do something. So she decides to run for public office and in doing so, there are a lot of things in her past that come to the forefront that she didn’t see coming her way. But she’s a woman who decides, sometimes it only takes one person. And her way of doing that is to run for office. Whether or not she is successful, we’ll have to see on the show.

HB: Your character is a hopeful politician, Black women walk through the world everyday making a political statement…

Emayatzy Corinealdi: We are. It’s one of those things where when most of know we have to be better, we have to fight harder for the same opportunities. When doing so it just makes you hyper aware of that. In the society we’re in, it’s disproportionate. We have a justice system. We have a medical system, a legal system on the system. They’re not in our favor, you know, more likely than not it’s going to go the other way. As black women, we have to stand up and make change as much as we can.

The Red Line

Source: CBS Photo Archive / Getty

HB: A lot of actors and actresses are transitioning from TV to film, it this just the way the trend is going?

Emayatzy Corinealdi: I think it’s a bit of both. Years ago it wouldn’t have even been discussed. The lines have become more blurred with the rise of streaming.

So with that, more opportunities do come and you do get the chance to have more complex roles like this one in The Red Line. Actors love the most TV really is offering that.

Catch The Red Line on CBS every Sunday at 8pm.


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Emayatzy Corinealdi: ‘As Black Women, We Have To Stand Up And Make As Much Change As We Can’  was originally published on