By Cindy Hicks
Superstar rapper Nicki Minaj is set to executive produce and star in her own scripted comedy series. Born Onika Tanya Maraj, the southeast Queens raised rapper will gear the show towards her diverse upbringing in the early 90’s.
The untitled show will begin shooting its pilot episode in the winter of this year and air on ABC Family in their 2016 lineup.
“I didn’t know she could even act,” said Jessica Brooks, 21, a York College Business major.
While some are confused about why Minaj is taking time off from successful rap career, the attractive entertainer knew from the start acting would be a part of her life. Minaj studied acting at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School in Manhattan, one of New York City’s top performing arts platforms. Minaj also proved her acting skills in Ice Age: Continental Drift, The Other Woman and showed her very outspoken personality during her one season stay on American Idol.
“I’m one of Nicki’s biggest fans. I actually can’t wait until it comes on just so she can prove everyone wrong,” said Carmen Garcia, 20, a LaGuardia Community College student.
Minaj has received support from hundreds of her fans and colleagues, including Karey Burke, ABC Family’s executive vice president of Programming and Development. “Nicki Minaj is a force to be reckoned with at everything she touches,” said Burke in a Deadline Hollywood report.
Notwithstanding the support, many people still have their doubts. “This just might ruin her career, but I’ll still tune in just to check it out,” said Winston James, 23, a York College Accounting major.
Meanwhile, Eric Baker was not optimistic about Minaj’s latest acting venture.
“I’m done with her. I have no good thoughts of Nicki Minaj anymore,” said the 24-year-old John Jay College student.
The only details released so far is that the show will be based on Minaj and her family’s move from Saint James,Trinidad and Tobago to Queens. Minaj expects viewers to gain an inside look into her mishaps and fun times before the fame. How big Minaj’s part on the show is still unclear and whom she will play on the half hour show has not been announced. However, Minaj did make an impromptu announcement on Instagram about casting.
“I am now launching a nationwide search to find young Nicki,” Minaj posted from her account which sent her comment section into chaos.
Minaj also showed her excitement about entering the world of acting again in an ABC Family news release. “This is one of the more unique adventures I’ve ever embarked on,” Minaj said in the release.
Since the announcement of the show, Minaj has been the topic of many conversations, particularly on television. Ellen DeGeneres premiered a parody on her talk show of what she assumed the show would look like, causing many to wonder if she took the joke too far. DeGeneres used the pretend clip as a sneak peek of what viewers could expect.
DeGeneres introduced the clip saying, “It was just announced that Nicki Minaj is producing a sitcom of her childhood growing up in Queens, New York. It’s not on the air yet, but I called in a favor and I was able to get us a very exclusive sneak peek. This is totally real, not something we put together as a joke.”
The skit showed an African-American family in 90’s television style, each member modeling enhanced body parts. Such as a butt so big it knocked everything down as young Nicki and her mother walked around. Even the family’s pet walked in the room with an extremely large butt. Although the skit was meant to be funny and get fans excited for the show, the message seem to get lost for some. Skit viewers complained the sitcom might destroy Minaj’s public image and reduced her show to a simple butt joke.
Fans now will have to wait and hope the skit is no indication of the show’s potential.