- Anneliese van der Pol spoke about the “racism” she witnessed during the initial casting of Disney Channel’s “That’s So Raven.”
- She revealed that Raven-Symoné, who later played the lead character, was initially cast for a supporting role, while the production team was searching for a lead character named Molly.
- The team eventually noticed Raven’s talent and bumped her up to the lead position, while van der Pol claimed this decision was due to their inability to see a black girl leading the show.
Anneliese van der Pol, popularly known for her role in Disney Channel’s “That’s So Raven,” recently spoke about the “racism” she saw during the show’s initial casting.
In her interview on Christy Carlson Romano’s “Vulnerable” podcast, the actress shared her experience of how Raven-Symoné, who played the lead character, was initially considered for a supporting role.
Van der Pol revealed that during her audition, the show was titled “Absolutely Psychic” and was not named “That’s So Raven.” At the time, Raven was a sidekick, and the production team was looking for a lead character named Molly, which van der Pol auditioned for.
The actress claimed that Symoné successfully landed the sidekick role, but the show’s production team noticed her talent, which led them to make a massive change in the show’s casting. Raven was then given the lead position, and the production team started auditioning actors again.
Van der Pol believed that this decision was due to the team’s inability to see a black girl leading the show, seeing her only as a sidekick. The show proved to be a massive hit worldwide, starring Symoné, van der Pol, and Orlando Brown as three best friends navigating high school.
There is no information about Disney’s response to Page Six’s request for comment on the matter.
Raven-Symoné played the lead character, Raven Baxter, in the show.
The show’s initial title was “Absolutely Psychic,” which was later changed to “That’s So Raven.”