Written by: Janelle Emokpae
Marsai Martin is one of the most influential and inspiring teens in our current day. She has made more accomplishments than some adults would ever dream of, all while being a young black woman. At 16, she has managed to star in the hit TV show Black-ish, make Forbes's 30 under 30 list, and become the youngest executive producer in history. With these accomplishments, I know that I'm not the only one wondering, how did a person at this age be able to achieve such high ranks? Through hard work and dedication, Marsai Martin was able to rise to the top and maintain her great success.
Born in Plano, Texas, Marsai has always had big dreams for herself. At a young age, she knew she wanted to make a huge impact on the film industry and society as a whole. Like most little girls, she would be asked what she wanted to be when she grew up. Instead of the typical response such as a lawyer or doctor, she would reply by saying, "a legend". Of course, hearing this from a little girl, most didn't believe she would become so successful in the film industry. She began her acting career at age 5 when she scored her first role in a TV commercial. Her mother says that she always knew that Marsai had something unique about her. She had an ambitious personality and gift that she eagerly wanted to share with the world. In 2013, Marsai and her family packed their bags and moved to Los Angeles, California to pursue her acting career.
In 2014, Marsai was cast as Diane Johnson in the hit series Black-ish. Due to the show's popularity, she began to gain traction from the public and was open to many opportunities. She earned numerous awards and nominations from the NAACP, BET, and SAG award shows. Her passion for the film industry grew as she began to take on more roles in acting. At the age of 10, she proposed to create a movie that would later be called Little. The movie was released in 2019 with notable co-stars Regina Hall and Issa Rae. The movie made $49 million in the box office and was a success, to say the least. Marsai's production of Little officially made her the youngest Executive Producer in history at the age of 14, but she wasn't done. She founded her own production company, Genius Productions, and signed a production deal with Universal Studios. This made her the youngest person to get a production deal at any studio.
Now at age 16, Marsai is taking Hollywood by storm. She makes appearances in several films and earns awards after awards with no plan on stopping any time soon. She announced that she is working on producing and starring in a film adaptation for the novel Amari and the Night Brothers for Universal pictures. She plans to amplify black voices in her future films and encourage young people to pursue their dreams. Being an advocate, an award-winning actress, and producer all while being 16 is not an easy task. Her biggest goal is to become the youngest billionaire in Hollywood and it’s safe to say that this dream will become reality.