The shocking death of Poussey, in the final two episodes of “Orange Is The New Black” Season 4 was as difficult for the audience to watch. Turns out it was as difficult for Danielle Brooks to shoot.
The poles apart transformation that Danielle Brooks’ Taystee had to go through in “Orange Is The New Black” Season 4 is never easy to portray in such a short amount of time. She barely had time to mourn the loss of her best friend before she was required to wage a rebellion against Caputo for unjustly letting off Poussey’s killer.
Even though shooting the scene was tedious and emotional challenging for Danielle, she revealed in an interview with Variety that she was grateful for “Mad Men” director Matthew Weiner, who understood her level of commitment to the scene.
“I remember talking to him and saying, “I have to be honest, I can’t do this over and over again. Yes, I’m trained as an actor, I went to school for this and all of that. But this is not something I can do over and over again.” So for that close-up, we only did it twice. Because I told him: “The minute you say ‘action,’ I’m going to give you what you need,” she elaborates.
But more than the plot itself it was the terrifying sight of Poussey’s limp body that finally led Brooks to break down:
“And then seeing Samira [Wiley]— Poussey — lying on that floor. It made my work much easier than it would have been if it was anyone else. Because I’ve known Samira since 2007. She actually helped me move into the dorm at Juilliard, when I was a student. So I have a very, very close relationship [with her],” she said.
In a different interview with Cosmopolitan, Brooks admitted that even though she was initially surprised that Poussey was the character that gets killed off at the end of season 4, the pieces of the puzzle fits when one really thinks about it:
“…people pay attention to [characters] they’re invested in, so it only makes sense for the writers to choose someone that the fans are so invested in, and that’s Poussey. It’s making the impact that it’s supposed to make and it’s really allowing people to understand that this is the world we live in,” said Brooks.
Did you find Poussey’s death just as shocking?
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