Skip to main content

“I had moved to LA, a few months prior, but moved in a way in which I just didn't have everything planned out and, you know, I hadn't really saved all the money that a person should save before making that type of move. And I was just going through so much and just feeling so discouraged. And there was a night, I mean it was like three o'clock in the morning, I was losing my mind and praying, reading my Bible and just asking the universe, saying, ‘I need some type of message because I came out here believing that there was something out here for me. And now I'm feeling discouraged.’ And my roommate at the time she happened to have a deck of tarot cards, and prior to me moving to LA, another friend of mine did the first tarot reading I had ever done. And I just was so trying to grab at any type of message, just because I was in such a state of discouragement. So I banged on my roommate’s door, it’s like three o'clock in the morning, I grabbed those cards, and I don't know anything about tarot, all I knew is that a lot of the cards that I saw that I was pulling for myself were cards that my friend had pulled for me some months prior. And I just saw that as something, I don't know, a repeat of some of those messages that I had gotten earlier, a year or less. I'm supposed to be here. I was supposed to make that move. And that's that. … I think it was not even two weeks later that I got to audition for Beale Street.”

— KiKi Layne explains to Tamron Hall, on her eponymous talk show on March 11, that she nearly quit acting before landing the starring role of Tish Rivers in If Beale Street Could Talk, alongside Regina King, Stephan James, Colman Domingo, and Teyonah Parris. Layne also said that her faith is her “driving force” and she believes that “God is trying to do something bigger” through her acting, even if she feels unsure or discouraged at times. The actor who plays Prince Akeem Joffer’s daughter Meeka in Coming 2 America also revealed what being a part of the sequel meant to her:

“It feels amazing to be a part of that and to be invited into the family. Because what you just said, yes, family reunion, that's what it felt like on set as well. And to be, you know, one of the newbies to the family, but to be welcomed with an open heart and to be a part of that legacy, feels amazing. I mean, the first film [Coming to America] was so profound for us, you know, representing Black people, as kings and queens is showing the richness of our history and where we come from. So to be a part of continuing to tell that version of the story that's often left out of the conversation, and to work alongside the people I got to work with. I mean it just feels incredible.”