It’s hard to remember that Netflix’s Orange is the New Black wasn’t a surefire hit. Putting a show’s entire season online at once was risky, but the critically-acclaimed show also connected with audiences across the world! Much of this praise is due to the dynamic and progressive casting which created one of the best ensembles on television. Ever wonder how the inmates of Litchfield became stars? Keep reading as we here at ClaimFame let you in on the secret origins of your favorite TV prisoners.
Piper Chapman was arrested for drug related charges, but Taylor Schilling had a much simpler life. Born in Boston, Schilling first discovered acting in middle school, appearing in a production of Fiddler on the Roof. She worked as a nanny to support herself while chasing her dream in New York City, and went on to be nominated for an Emmy and Golden Globe for her work on OITNB!
Laura Prepon found success very early in her career, appearing as the “girl next door” Donna on the FOX hit That 70’s Show. The youngest of five children, Prepon has continued to act her entire life. When not acting, Prepon is a wellness advocate, and has co-written a book about healthy living!
This Boston native described her home life as “a sports family,” showing that there really is no divide between jocks and theatre kids! While Uzo Aduba’s star turn as “Crazy Eyes” on Orange is the New Black is her first major television role, she has been a mainstay on the New York theatre scene for many years. She even won a Helen Hayes Award for her outstanding work in the D.C. theatre community!
One of the most outspoken transgender performers working today, Laverne Cox has taken the world by storm! This former reality star and drag queen didn’t have the happiest childhood, and attempted suicide at age 11 due to bullying and the prejudice of her classmates. But she persevered, and became the first trans performer to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy in the acting category!
Taryn Manning was raised in poverty in a trailer park in Arizona. Her parents divorced early, her father committed suicide when she was 14, and she had to work all through her teen years to support her family. Manning kept following her dreams though, and hustled her way to roles in Hustle and Flow, Hawaii Five-0, and of course, OITNB.
The stars of Orange is the New Black show that there are so many ways to become a star. Don’t forget to visit ClaimFame for hundreds of auditions and casting calls to help you join them!