5 Things to Know About “Kindred” Newcomer Mallori Johnson

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Mallori Johnson may be a newcomer to the acting world, but she has the talent of a seasoned veteran. The 24-year-old Juilliard School graduate leads FX’s TV adaptation of Octavia E. Butler’s “Kindred” novel – which premiered on Dec. 13 – as Dana, a young, aspiring writer who moves to Los Angeles and finds herself traveling back in time to a 19th-century plantation. The series marks Johnson’s first major role after she snagged a smaller part in Apple TV+’s “WeCrashed.” And from what she tells POPSUGAR, it was an “extremely nerve-wracking” experience for her.

“Octavia Butler is so legendary, and I know she had such a huge cult following,” Johnson says. “So going into it, I was just thinking I don’t want to cause any disrespect to her legacy. And also, stepping on a set for the first time and not knowing how the camera angles work, having to really learn on my feet as I went, discovering a process, taking care of myself, all of that was very, very foreign to me.”

Though Johnson says filming “Kindred” shortly after graduating from college in 2021 was “intimidating,” she had support around her, even on days when she asked herself, “What am I doing?” “Thankfully, I had people around me who were willing to offer a helping hand and be like, ‘We got you,'” she says.

“Kindred” is now streaming on Hulu. Read ahead to get to know more about the show’s leading lady.

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