This Is How Cardi B Helped Inspire ‘P-Valley’
You may have seen the Jennifer Lopez star vehicle, Hustlers last year, but you’ve never seen anything like Starz’s P-Valley on television before. Set in the Bible Belt of Chucalissa, Mississippi, the freshman drama series follows the exotic dancers of The Pynk strip club, and its gender-nonconforming owner, Uncle Clifford (Nicco Annan).
The series is a screen adaptation of Katori Hall’s play, Pu**y Valley. Now, Hall has seen her mega-watt series come to life with leading ladies, Autumn (Elarica Johnson), a newcomer at The Pynk, and Mercedes (Brandee Evans), the club’s OG who is only a few dances away from retirement.
P-Valley just recently ended its eight-episode first season with rave reviews. Now, Hall is revealing that Cardi B was a huge inspiration behind the entire thing.
Hollywood didn’t want ‘P-Valley’ to happen
Unfortunately, sex work and even exotic dancing are still frowned upon in 2020. With the release of Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s “WAP,” we saw how obsessed people still are with policing grown women and respectability politics.
Therefore, though Hall knew she had a major hit on her hands, no one in Hollywood wanted to take a chance on P-Valley. The series creator, showrunner, and executive produce explained to ELLE,
I went all around town in Hollywood, and so many people wouldn’t even let me in the door, like, ‘There are no shows about exotic dancers, and no one wants this. Sorry, not sorry.’ Ironically, there were some Black people who told me, ‘Katori, you’re Ivy League-educated, why not do something about lawyers or doctors? Why create something that plays into the pathology of the Black community?’
Thankfully, Hall didn’t listen to the naysayers and P-Valley has already been renewed for Season 2.
Here’s what we know about ‘P-Valley’ Season 2
Though there is no word yet on an air date for when we might return to The Pynk and the coronavirus (COVID)-19 pandemic means things could change at any minute, Hall has some major plans for Season 2 of P-Valley. She revealed,
We have not started, but I’ve started it in my mind. I have kept a log of all the stories I’ve wanted to tell and a lot of threads to pull, especially after the season finale. This is an interesting moment, what’s happening in our world with the virus and the uprisings, and I am definitely thinking of how we can participate in those conversations through this art. But just know, it’s not coming any time soon.
We hope that Hall continues to use only female directors as she did during Season 1.
Cardi B inspired ‘P-Valley’
Say what you want about Cardi, but the Bronx-born rapper knows how to shake the room. Known for her upbeat attitude and her blunt personality, Hall revealed that the Invasion of Privacy lyricist opens the door for P-Valley. She said,
Cardi B literally rolled out the Pynk carpet for P Valley. I was following her on social media when she was a dancer because I loved her personality. She was funny as fu*k and smart as fu*k, and even being young, she was this vibrant and political woman who was articulating herself in this powerful way. So fast forward, she just popped, and this story about this stripper-turned-rapper was on everyone’s tongue. She made other people feel comfortable and be more accepting—and was unapologetic about it the entire time. She was the starting point.