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Mindy Kaling Revealed She Was Excluded From An Emmy Nom While Her White, Male Colleagues Weren't

Brittany Rae 11 Oct 2019

Mindy Kaling is a writer, producer, and actor. She's a trailblazer — she was the first woman of color to ever write, create, and star in her own sitcom.

So naturally, she's faced a lot of sexism.

She recently sat down with Elle and revealed the extent of what she's been through while working in Hollywood, and it turns out the trail of sexism leads all the way to the Television Academy.

Queen Mindy got her start on "The Office."

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She was hired to be both a writer and actor on the show.

After playing it low-key in the first season, Mindy's Kelly Kapoor quickly became a fan favorite and an icon.

She also became a total meme machine.

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After that came "The Mindy Project."

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This was where she broke real ground as the first woman of color to write, produce, and star in her own sitcom.

The Mindy Project ran for six seasons. FOX originally canceled the show, but Hulu saved it.

Stan Hulu for clear skin and good sitcoms.

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She sat down with Elle recently.

Instagram | @mindykaling

The article opens with an anecdote that would define the whole piece:

While walking across the Universal Studios lot, a security guard yelled at her and asked her where she thought she was going.

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I would pay money to see this.

Instagram | @mindykaling

She then pointed to a giant billboard for The Mindy Project, where her face was very prominently displayed for the security guard to see.

"I know. I'm the star."

Man, I hope that security guard was super embarrassed.

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She recalled her time on "The Office" both on and off-screen.

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During the first season (and even beyond), Mindy was the only woman in the room.

Not only that, but she was the only person of color. Everyone else was a white male.

On the show, Mindy was also the only woman of color during Season 1.

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The show was nominated for an Emmy early in its run.

Instagram | @mindykaling

Mindy, who was part of a team of producers, naturally would have been up for an Emmy alongside them.

Except for one thing: the Television Academy claimed there were too many producers on the show's list, and cut her from it.

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Naturally, this didn't fly with Mindy.

Instagram | @mindykaling

Considering they cut the only woman and the only person of color from the list, Mindy decided to fight back.

She had to jump through hoops to get recognition for her own show, however.

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They made her endure a lengthy process.

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She said, "they made me, not any of the other producers, fill out a whole form and write an essay about all my contributions as a writer and a producer."

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They even made her go to her fellow writers.

Instagram | @mindykaling

"I had to get letters from all the other male, white producers saying that I had contributed, when my actual record stood for itself."

After all of that, the show didn't take home the Emmy. But she did make it on the list.

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After the interview was released, the Television Academy spoke out.

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In a statement to The Los Angeles Times, a spokesperson said:

"No one person was singled out. There was an increasing concern years ago regarding the number of performers and writers seeking producer credits."

I feel like excluding the one woman of color in the room was singling her out, but okay!

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They continued:

Instagram | @mindykaling

"At the time the Producers Guild worked with the Television Academy to correctly vet producer eligibility.

Every performer producer and writer producer was asked to justify their producer credits."

Remember, as Mindy said, only she was required to do that.

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Mindy once again was not having it.

Twitter | @mindykaling

Mindy took to Twitter to tweet the Academy, suggesting that the Academy apologize, rather than justify their decision.

Surprisingly, the Academy has not responded to her Tweet.

Also, I didn't know she was the first woman of color nominated for writing a comedy script. Queen.

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She then did a small thread on her experience:

Twitter | @mindykaling

According to IMDb, Mindy's accomplishments while on The Office go far beyond her producer nomination.

Her on-screen presence as Kelly wound up totaling 161 episodes, spanning 8 years. That's on top of being a writer and producer.

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Mindy was embarrassed to have to go through that process.

Twitter | @mindykaling

She also produced 128 episodes, making her way up from consulting producer to executive producer.

To force her to prove herself is so far beyond comprehension. The proof was right there for them to see.

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She shouldn't have had to prove herself at all.

Twitter | @mindykaling

Thankfully, even though she had to fight harder than any of her fellow writers to be recognized, she had good men working with her.

Hopefully Mindy sharing her story will help stop this from ever happening to another woman.

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