Following her first haircut in years, Jurnee Smollett is ready to step back in time — and she's taking viewers along with her. The actress recently shared a fascinating behind-the-scenes video showing how she achieved the beauty look for her upcoming portrayal of Leti Lewis in HBO's highly anticipated Lovecraft Country. Smollett wrote, "The physical transformation into Leti began with this haircut."
For the thrilling series set in the 1950s, Smollett wears her hair in a bouncy, curly bob with a deep side part. Smollett collaborated with celebrity hairstylist Nikki Nelms on Leti's look after asking producers Misha Green and Yann Demange to bring her on. "Creating a character is a very intimate process, one no actor does alone," Smollett said. "I'm so grateful to have a team of folks that can help execute the vision." She added, "I cant wait for you all to meet LETI F*CKING LEWIS."
Smollett went on to mention that Nelms was also behind the long, blond hairstyle she wore to portray Black Canary in Birds of Prey. In an interview with Build earlier this year, Smollett said she insisted that a Black hairstylist be part of the hair department for the superhero film. "It wasn't something that they were aware of — the importance of Black women hair and having a woman of colour do it," Smollett said. "But they were open and they were able to listen, and when I explained it to them, they said, 'Absolutely, we'll bring her in.'"
Ahead of Lovecraft Country's premiere on Aug. 16, watch Smollett's transformation into Leti ahead, then browse a few photos of her in character.