2017 was a breakout year for Sza (who was unfortunately snubbed at this year’s Grammy’s). Her debut studio album, “Ctrl,” was released last summer and received several Grammy award nominations including “Best Urban Contemporary” album. Although she didn’t take home the golden statue, we’re confident that SZA will be back better than ever in 2018. Her sultry and sexy sound is a breath of fresh air for R&B lovers alike and her relatable lyrics chronicle her stories of love and heartbreak which for many is a soundtrack to life. SZA, we’re rooting for you this year, sis!
It’s safe to say that Issa is winning every year, and we wish her nothing but continued success in 2018. After “Insecure” quickly climbed its way into our weekly TV rotation, the world couldn’t get enough of the “awkward black girl.” Now, she has two new projects she’s working on for HBO, is gearing up for the premiere of season three of “Insecure”, and will be gracing our TV screens and magazines as the newest face of CoverGirl. It’s clear that 2018 will definitely be the year of Issa.
Young Queen Marsai (better known for her role as Diane Johnson on ABC’s “Blackish”) is a force to be reckoned with. At only 13 years old, Marsai has won a place in our hearts as our favorite TV twin sister with her witty one-liners and sassy personality. Most recently, it was announced that Marsai would be executive producing and starring in her own comedy movie, “Little,” which is based on the young actress’ idea. The project is headed by producers Will Packer and James Lopez as well as “Black-ish” creator, Kenya Barris. No word yet on when the project will be released but it looks like this year is shaping up to be a great one for Miss Marsai!
We can’t mention “Black-ish” without honoring Diane’s older sister, Zoey Johnson a.k.a. the amazingly talented, beautiful and smart Yara Shahidi. Yara’s “Black-ish” spinoff, “Grown-ish” recently made its big debut and has since become an instant hit among young (and older) fans and has already been renewed for a second season. Not only is Yara a stellar actress, she’s also extremely intelligent and will be joining the likes of Malia Obama at Harvard University, double-majoring in African-American studies and sociology.
Lena Waithe has been the topic of conversation as of late and rightfully so considering her accolades. After receiving success from her work on “Dear White People,” she made history last year as the first black woman to win an Emmy for her work on “Master of None” and has only continued to climb he success ladder. Now, she’s the creative force behind the “The Chi,” the new Showtime series that’s based off her hometown of Chicago, which has already been renewed for a second season.
If you’re a fan of Lee Daniels’ hit TV show, “Star,” then it’s safe to say that Ryan’s character, Alexandra Crane, is probably your fave. On screen, Ryan’s plays a teenage beauty who’s the daughter of a successful musician and 1/3 of an up and coming girl group that’s trying to break their way into the Atlanta music scene. Off screen, Ryan is a musician herself and started her journey in the entertainment industry when she was just in middle school. With plans to release her solo EP soon, we’re looking forward to seeing Ryan continue to flourish in 2018!
As part of the Keating 5, Aja Naomi King gives us drama every week through her role as Michaela Pratt on TGIT’s “How to Get Away with Murder.” The renowned actress has also most recently started her ambassadorship with L’Oreal’s True Match Lumi Glow collection and will be representing for women of color everywhere!