Queen Latifah Talks ‘The Equalizer’ Reboot & Why She Signed On for the Series

Queen Latifah is starring in CBS’ reboot of The Equalizer, which premieres tonight after the Super Bowl!

The Oscar-nominated actress opened up in a recent interview about why she decided to sign on for the series and how she feels about taking on the role previously played by Edward Woodward on the small screen and Denzel Washington on the big screen.

“The only reservation I had was Denzel,” she told USA Today. “I had to figure out how to create a character that was going to be different from his and obviously not get in his lane, but not like the original, either.”

Latifah stars as Robyn McCall, an enigmatic woman with a mysterious background who uses her extensive skills to help those with nowhere else to turn. McCall presents to most as an average single mom who is quietly raising her teenage daughter. But to a trusted few, she is The Equalizer – an anonymous guardian angel and defender of the downtrodden, who’s also dogged in her pursuit of personal redemption.

Latifah explained in her interview why she decided to join The Equalizer. She said she liked the thought of “delivering some justice (as) a Black woman on network television. I thought the idea of it was incredible and necessary and fun.”

“When we started this project, little did we know that we would face a pandemic; we would face such amazing divisiveness in this country; we would have to deal with a real, real hard look at the racial inequities, of the social inequities, of the financial inequities of this country,” she said. “We just didn’t know that, God, would we need to see justice. There’s just so many different things that are going on that made this show timely.”

Executive producer Debra Martin Chase says that the show was created for Latifah.

“I think one of the advantages we had was that we created this show for Queen Latifah,” she said. “So it wasn’t like (producers) wrote a script and then we decided to cast a Black woman in the role that was written kind of in the vanilla way. Robyn McCall was developed as a Black woman.”

The Equalizer will premiere on CBS after the big game!

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