Richa Moorjani, star of Mindy Kaling's Netflix comedy Never Have IEver,fills us in on her personal connection to the show and how her Bay Area upbringing prepared her for stardom.
Congratulations on the release of Never Have I Ever Season 2! How has working on the show aligned with your personal and professional aspirations? Thank you! This show has been a dream come true for me as an artist and a person of the South Asian diaspora. Never Have I Ever is one of the first and only shows with multiple leading South Asian voices behind and in front of the camera. It’s the type of show with characters I craved to see when I was growing up, and I’m honored to be a part of something that’s been so important and inspiring to so many all around the globe.
How have your Bay Area roots influenced your career? While many people think of the tech world and Silicon Valley as the defining culture of the Bay Area, it’s probably less known for being a rich, diverse hub of artists. My parents met in Berkeley 40 years ago and started a Bollywood band together (Geetanjali), which they still perform with today. Through my family, I was exposed to and surrounded by arts and entertainment from a very young age, which inspired me to pursue a professional career in acting and dance.
Favorite on-set memory? My favorite on-set memory from Season 2 was when I (as Kamala) had to dress up as a video game character to attend a convention with her nerdy, sexist lab mates in order to fit in. It is just such an unexpected and painfully hilarious look for Kamala, and it was so much fun to collaborate with the costumes and makeup and hair departments to create the look.
What do you hope viewers learn from watching the series? I just hope the show continues to inspire and uplift people and to pave the way for more stories with authentic representation, while helping people from other backgrounds to broaden their understanding and perceptions of South Asians in America.
What are your plans for the summer? Aside from the excitement of Season 2, I hope we get to have a somewhat normal summer where I can go out and do some of the things we all missed out on last summer! And workwise, I’m excited to start on my journey of another career dream I’ve always had—producing—now that I have some time off from shooting.