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EXCLUSIVE! Mirabelle Lee talks confidence and representation on new Disney Channel show Saturdays
Actress, identical twin and budding entrepreneur Mirabelle Lee is no stranger to television—you may have already caught her on hits like Disney Channel's Sydney to the Max and Nickelodeon's Unleashed. But her newest project, Saturdays (produced by our fave teen superstar Marsai Martin and premiering on Disney Channel and Disney+ this month), has Mirabelle *skating* into one of her biggest acting adventures yet.
Saturdays follows Paris (Danielle Jalade), a 14-year-old who forms a competitive skating crew with her besties. Mirabelle plays Sonia, who is "a bit of the enemy in the show," she dishes. Mirabelle shares all the deets about Saturdays plus how she found confidence in her character and the exciting new venture she and twin sis Anais are working on. You're gonna want to lace up your roller skates for this...
GL: OK, so you told us that Sonia is a little bit of an enemy in the show. How did you get into character to play her?
Mirabelle: Sonia and I are very different from one another—she has a big attitude. But she also just has a lot of confidence. She exudes confidence. So to get into character for her I actually listed to a lot of Rihanna, Megan Thee Stallion and really confident female artists because that's Sonia's main personality trait. I'd even try a runway model walk sometimes.
GL: Yes, love channeling that confidence energy through music! And what do you hope people love about the show in general?
Mirabelle: What makes Saturdays so important is its representation. Skating has been such a part of Black culture for years—it wasn't just popular in the '70s like everyone thinks, it's been prominent in Black communities for decades. I hope people are going to find a character that's just like them in our show. I love going to the skating rink and I hope the show inspires little girls and boys to have fun skating as well...and maybe even start their own skate crews!
GL: What does that representation mean to you?
Mirabelle: It means so much to me. When I was growing up, I only saw a few shows with all-Black casts and though, "Why aren't there more people like me on television?" I'm so happy that I can be that representation for little girls and maybe even inspire them to skate or just to try the cool hairstyles that Sonia has.
GL: Take us behind the scenes of the Saturdays set...
Mirabelle: It was so much fun. The cast has some of my best friends in the entire world—we had a blast working together in the skate training sessions. While we took our jobs seriously and were very focused, all the skating coaches and the rest of the cast had very close relationships so it wasn't just work. We would laugh, we would joke, we would dance to warm up—it was honestly the best experience ever. They became my family by the end of filming.
GL: That's awesome. And after doing projects with your twin sis Anais, how does it feel to branch out on your own?
Mirabelle: Growing up I did a lot of commercials and print shoots with Anais, and it's always great to have her by my side. We haven't actually done a film or television role together, so that's something I'd love to do. But working on my own is kinda fun because I get to escape my world for a little bit when I'm going off to a different state or country to film something.
GL: And what do you like to do when you're not performing?
Mirabelle: I love reading. I'm a huge reader and I have a huge library in my room, so I'll honestly always have a book in my hands. I also love to bake. I bake all the time and it keeps my friends at school very happy. Each week I'll bring in a new dessert and they love it. So, you're welcome!
GL: Who is your role model in the industry?
Mirabelle: My role model would definitely be Ava DuVernay, because I aspire to be a filmmaker like her when I grow up. When They See Us [the 2019 true crime miniseries, which DuVernay wrote, directed and produced] is one of my favorite shows of all time because it spreads such an important message. The cinematography was amazing, the acting was amazing and the writing was amazing. I just hope to create projects similar to hers someday.
GL: Speaking of projects, besides Saturdays, what's coming up for you this year?
Mirabelle: Anais and I are launching our skincare line soon, called Reflect. That's something that's been in the works for a while now. I've always been so interested in the science behind my skin and I'm really excited to share the knowledge I've learned from the scientists we've been working with and to get the products out on the market for everyone to love.
GL: Finally, what's your best advice for other teen girls out there?
Mirabelle: Love yourself! I think that's the most important thing ever. You could have other people love you, but it doesn't mean anything if you don't love yourself. You need to be confident in yourself—that's what's going to take you far in life.
Stream the first six episodes of Saturdays on Disney+ right now!
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Images: Mirabelle Lee.