Octavia Spencer says moving to Los Angeles in the ’90s made her feel like a racial “anomaly.”
During an appearance on the “WTF with Marc Maron” podcast, the Academy Award-winning actor recalled the unexpected experience of being discriminated against while touring the iconic Rodeo Drive.
“It is so funny. It’s right out of 'Pretty Woman,'” she noted at one point. “One of the first things that you do when you move to (Los Angeles), or at least that I did, is you wanna go to those historical places ... all of those landmark places.”
“I remember going into a shop and being followed. At first ... I was just like so excited, like just walking around, and then I realized that I was being followed,” Spencer said. “It was just kind of strange in that way.”
“The Self Made” actor, who spent her early years in Montgomery, Alabama, said that she assumed Los Angeles would be a “free and liberal-thinking place.”
She added that she "felt more racism when I first moved" to Los Angeles than back in Alabama.
“I think everywhere is heavy. Everywhere has its history,” Spencer said. “I think everywhere has problems.”
“You can’t deny that Southern history is intense. It is. But what’s beautiful for me is that stuff preceded me. I was a child of the ’70s… As you grow older and the things that you can remember that wasn’t a part of my history. I learned about it. It’s not anything that I experienced.”