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Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained has been racking up the awards nominations, and newcomer Daniele Watts is getting attention for her small but memorable role as Coco in the film. We caught up with the up-and-coming actress to talk hair, career and working with Kerry Washington.

Where are you from originally and how did you find yourself in Los Angeles?
DW:
I moved quite a bit growing up. I was born in California and I lived in Orlando in middle school. I moved to Atlanta in high school.

I decided to go to college and I had a great guidance counselor who made me realize it was possible to pursue my dreams in entertainment. She had worked for VH1 for a short period of time. She said, “You need to go to New York or L.A.” Had she not said that, I don’t know if I would have made it out here.

When did you get the acting bug?
DW:
When I was in high school I was very involved with a community theatre organization called ARCH productions (Artists Raising the Consciousness of Humanity). We would tour shows to different high schools about relevant teen issues. Then afterwards we would host a question and answer session.  That made me realize the transformative power of the arts and how storytelling and self-expression can be a window for people to understand themselves better.  It actually can contribute to people living more full lives.

You played the role of Coco in Quentin Tarantino’s latest film, Django Unchained. How did you get the role?
DW:
Well. I’m a hustler. Part of my success has to do with the fact that I do a lot of research. I was reading the trades and talking to friends who work in casting offices or interned for producers. I tracked down the script. I filmed myself in my apartment and sent the tape to the casting office and started writing them letters and I got a call from my manager saying Quentin Tarantino wants to meet you on Friday.

DJANGO UNCHAINED

Let’s talk about your upcoming film, “You are What I Want” Can you give us a brief synopsis?
DW:
A hook-up turns into an obsession. In a short film that examines the questionable fallout in seeking one’s happiness in other people. The character I play, Whitney, goes on a journey of meeting a guy, deciding he’s the guy she wants and pursuing him. I was interested in showing a black girl vulnerable in a way that I don’t’ typically see in movies. A lot of times they are very strong and sassy. For us it was an examination of humiliation. [……] So many people are afraid of putting themselves out there.

How do you take care of your natural hair?  Do you have any staple products or a particular regimen?
DW:
I can’t really say that I’m that disciplined. Part of the reason that I grew my hair out is so that I didn’t have to follow a regime. My hair really responds well to the Mixed Chicks live-in conditioner. I also really like Deva-Curl no-poo. I wash it with Deva Curl no-poo and that gets it all smooth and soft and I comb it. Then I put in some kind of conditioner like Dove or Suave Coconut. Then I wash it out really good, comb it. Leave some in and then put Mixed Chicks on in the shower, kind of rinse it out and then shake the rest of the water off and don’t touch it afterwards.

What is one thing that you discovered about your hair that you wish you knew before going natural?
DW:
My hair loves water. I can go swimming as much as I want. I can run around in the sprinklers.

Check out the video to hear Danièle talk about why she decided to go natural, and what it was like to work with Kerry Washington…

Rinny

Texan by birth, Los Angeleno by situation. Lover of Tame Impala and Shoegaze music. Comedian by trade. Macaroni and Cheese connoisseur by appetite.

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31 Comments on "Django Unchained Actress Danièle Watts on Natural Hair and Working with Kerry Washington"

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Jo Somebody

She has an infectious smile! 🙂

Najah

“Django Unchained” = Blaxploitation of the worst kind. Quentin is a monster. And he LOOKS the part too!!!! God I hope I’m allowed to see what’s coming to this bastard.

Intreegme

She is marvelous!….simply beautiful, bubbly, and u can tell she has a great spirit herself. I salute her:-)!

Natasha

She stood out to me in the movie. Adorable girl and I love her hair.

TWA4now

NICE INTERVIEW! What a nice, bubbly young lady! All the best to you and love the hair too! GBU<3

krise

Such a bright, bubbly, and personable young lady! So refreshing to see her embrace her natural hair AND be a working actress in Hollywood. I live in LA, and I definitely see a shift for more black actresses being WORKING NATURALS, and it’s awesome!!

Nana

She’s sooo adorable. I love her!!! Wishing her great success in her acting career..

Shon

What a sweetheart! I think she was in the last season of Weeds! Hope she continues getting big breaks!

Sue

I loved how happy and vibrant she is. Def. would like to see more videos.

Brittany

I can’t wait to see what her future holds for her. She is definitely talented. I think she’s an awesome person inside and out. I love her natural hair and she’s really cool!!!!

taimatsuko

She is so cute <3 I loved her in that movie!

kinkykhick

That is one happy young women. Bless her little ray-of-sunshine heart.

Mimi

OMGeeee!!! She’s so bubbly and I love it! She reminds me of me. lol

Amma Mama

Nice, her next movie souds quite interesting.

Amma Mama

*sounds

dagnatz

Love this interview! How can I see the film “You are What I Want”??? Love her work!

dagnatz

Love this interview! How can I see the film “You are What I Want”??? Love her work!

neochasez

So glad to see her success…I loved her character on Weeds!

80sbabee

I loved this interview. Shes awesome.

Jacky

So happy for her!

Phuong
Every one is saying seeirs one, Well check, cause they only put one seeirs out and stop production (according to all news articles). The figures are actually GREAT, but i’ve seen them upwards of $8K for a complete set, that’s kinda crazy. Its a sellers market, if you got them at cost. I have 5 except for Broomhilda who wouldh’ve ever thought the price would sky rocket over 100x the cost, well folks it did, Now that some online sites are banning the sale, it will even get a higher demand for them. Good luck to any one who wants… Read more »
deb

oh god she’s so adorable i literally want to hug her face

Cherelle

Just watched the interview 🙂 what a lovely lady!

Cherelle

Please share where the french maid outfit from the film is from lol I really want one 😛

Mai

Try Cosplay websites. They have lolita maid outfits that look pretty similar.

Virginia

The costume designer no doubt made that specifically for the movie.

Cherelle

I could only dream 😛 thanks for response

Gloria

She is absolutely adorable!!!! Love her hair!

Coley Cole

What a cutie! I wish her the best!

MissAfrobella

Love her personality. She’s absolutely gorgeous!

Donna R. Sampay

I was so glad to see her in Django Unchained. I remember her from when she played Donalyn Sullivan in the Cold Case episode Read Between The Lines, which was one of my favorite episodes.

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