Mindy Kaling Opens Up About Facing Sexism In Early Days Of 'The Office'

HuffPost Entertainment 2 months ago

Mindy Kaling didn’t get to where she is now (Emmy-nominated writer, best-selling memoirist, actress, comedian and pop culture icon, for the uninitiated) without overcoming some hardships at the start of her career. 

And, yeah, we have some questions. Number one: How dare you make “The Office” alum feel like she doesn’t belong in Hollywood? 

Speaking with Elle magazine for the Women in Hollywood November issue, Kaling revealed that while she was working on the beloved NBC sitcom as a  writer, executive producer and director ― not to mention starring in the show for years as Kelly Kapoor ― she had to fight to receive the same recognition as her colleagues. 

When the show was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series, Kaling, who was the only woman of color on the writing staff at the time, recounted how the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences dropped her from the list of producers credited on the show because there were too many. 

Mindy Kaling on the cover of the November issue of Elle magazine.
Mindy Kaling on the cover of the November issue of Elle magazine.

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

Her efforts paid off, as she was ultimately included that year, though the show unfortunately didn’t take home any trophies. She was later nominated for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series for her work on the “Niagra” episode, which features the wedding of fan-favorite characters Jim and Pam. 

Kaling as Kelly Kapoor in "The Office."
Kaling as Kelly Kapoor in "The Office."

Despite her success since then, including creating the series “The Mindy Project” and both writing and starring in the recent comedy “Late Night,” Kaling said she’s continually treated unfairly. 

“It really doesn’t matter how much money I have,” she told Elle. “I’m treated badly with enough regularity that it keeps me humble.”

Kaling added: “I am grateful, because I do think it keeps me feeling like an outsider, which is helpful as a writer.”

And if Kaling’s most recent Instagram is any indication, she remains unbothered by her outsider status and feels more comfortable than ever in her own skin.


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Actress and writer Mindy Kaling is speaking out about the alleged sexism she endured from the Television Academy.
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Actress, writer and producer Mindy Kaling, who many fans know best from her show The Mindy Project, isn’t really the type to post revealing selfies on Instagram. While she often shares glamorous shots of herself after getting ready for a red carpet...
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Mindy Kaling revealed the Television Academy once challenged the veracity of her producer credit when "The Office" was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series early in her career.
CNN › Entertainment › 1 month ago
Angela Kinsey and Jenna Fischer, who played Angela and Pam on "The Office," defended co-star Mindy Kaling on Friday -- after she spoke up about being singled out by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, which presents the Emmy awards.
Los Angeles Times › Entertainment › 2 months ago
Mindy Kaling claims that the Television Academy devalued her work on "The Office" ahead of the Emmys — but the academy says it wasn't personal.
USA Today › Entertainment › 2 months ago
Mindy Kaling shared that the Television Academy almost cut her name from the list of producers for "The Office" because there were just "too many."
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Mindy Kaling says the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences previously singled her out and attempted to strip away her producer credit on NBC's "The Office."
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Mindy Kaling has accused the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences of singling her out.
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Mindy Kaling is pleased that her bad Emmys experience years ago means other women of color won't have their eligibility challenged in the future.
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