Actress Yara Shahidi is wise beyond her 17 years. From touring with Prince at a young age (more on that later) to growing up on-screen in ABC’s hit series Black-ish, Shahidi has undeniably more experience in adulthood than those in her age bracket.
Shahidi’s talent, effervescent style and wide-ranging political knowledge is every reason why she deserves to be celebrated in this week’s Silhouette Sista Sunday.
Born to an African-American mother and Iranian-American father, Shahidi naturally has the beautiful advantage of being able to immerse herself in different cultures. In fact, the actress was outwardly outraged when President Donald Trump attempted to implement the travel ban in 2017.
The TV star wrote an impassioned post on Twitter referencing her mixed heritage, stating: “I am the result of love. More specifically, black and Iranian love. Of Shia love, of Christian love, of American love, of a love that highlights how interconnected we truly are.
“If my Baba was stuck in an airport because of a Muslim ban 39 years ago, he would have never fallen in love with my mama. I would not exist and I wouldn’t have two amazing brothers.
“Xenophobia destroys the power of love and the power of our collective potential. It creates a false sense of security for some and an environment of fear for others. Immigrants don’t threaten safety — stereotypical narratives that promote hate do.”
Shahidi took these views to, well, The View earlier in January when she articulately discussed tensions between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
Watch Yara Shahidi’s interview on The Real:
But entertainment is where Shahidi’s true passion lies. The teen was able to glimpse the world of showbiz first-hand, thanks to her father, Afshin, who worked as Prince’s longtime photographer and took her to one of the Purple One’s early concerts in London.
Shahidi pursued an acting career and ended up on our primetime TV screens, starring as Zoey in Black-ish since 2014. Shahidi’s performance was so impressive that her character has landed a spin-off series, Grown-ish, which debuted this month. It follows Zoey as she starts college and begins the foray into adulthood and all the trials and tribulations that come with growing up.
In addition to her acting talents, Shahidi is also one to watch in the fashion stakes and has been absolutely killing the red carpet this awards season. It comes as no surprise that the actress has been named a new ambassador for body positive lingerie and apparel brand, Aerie. Plus, how can you not love all that fabulous hair?!
Simply put, it’s extremely hard not to love Shahidi and we predict big things this coming year!