Jan 17, 2020
By Nicole Bitette
“We were really excited to have people who aren’t typically in comedy writers’ rooms represented so strongly on the show.”
Day one in the writers’ room for the upcoming Comedy Central series Awkwafina is Nora From Queens was an emotional experience. For many of the women in the nearly all-female room, it was their first time being in the majority when writing for a series.
Executive producer Lucia Aniello, who previously served as an executive producer, writer, and director on Broad City, which featured a mostly-female staff, says she took her past experiences for granted, realizing on the first day that working with mostly women (there are eight women and one man on staff) was uncommon.
“There were a handful of women who were actually a bit emotional because they had never been in a room where they weren’t just one of two women in the room,” she said. “It’s not the norm.”
Earlier this month, series creator Awkwafina (known to those in her personal life by her birth name, Nora Lum), became the first Asian-American woman to win a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical. With her first Comedy Central series, which premieres on Jan. 22, she wanted to create an opportunity for women and fellow Asian-Americans, to have a seat at the (writing) table.
"The show is really important. There are so few Asian-American shows, and even fewer Asian-American shows from Asian-American creators. "