It’s always unique when people have a diverse background, especially when it’s in your everyday household. Crystal Roman, a New York native, is the creator of the Black Latina Movement and comes from a Caribbean background and channels her upbringing in her company, which is a theater and film production company. Crystal wants to change the narrative of Black Latina in film and wants them to be represented in a positive way. DELUX got the opportunity to talk with Crystal about her upbringing, her influences growing up as a Black Latina Woman and the creation of her company.

DELUX: What was your upbringing like as a black Latina woman Crystal? 

Crystal Roman: I was fortunate enough to grow up with strong influences of my Caribbean culture all around me. It really molded who I am today as a woman from the food I ate, and the music listened to. It was always around me and reinforces on a constant basis. My mom is Latino and my grandmother is Puerto Rican and my grandfather is Jamaican. My dad is white Puerto Rican so my household was very Caribbean.

DELUX: That’s really diverse, did you know your uniqueness of background when you were younger? 

Crystal Roman: Yes and no. Yes, because of figures in my life like my great grandmother and grandmother would always remind us that we were worthy and deserving of anything we wanted in life. But no and not in a negative but there was no uniqueness in the sense that in our communities there were tons of Black Latinas and that background was not unheard of or different.

DELUX: What made you want to create a movement for Black Latina women?

Crystal Roman: Just out of frustration for wanting a career in front of the camera and feeling at that time, which was about 19 years ago there weren’t enough roles to choose from. So, I decided to go behind the camera and create them.  

DELUX: Growing up did you have any Latina women that you looked up to in film? 

Crystal Roman: My mom always made sure there was strong women of color roles models that I was aware of. In school there use to be a “dress up as your favorite famous person” day and I remember two years that stuck out in my mind was the year my mom dressed me up as Janet Jackson and Oprah. My mother wanted to be sure I understood the impact these women played in music, media and for the culture in general. 

DELUX: Do you feel like Latina women I missed represented in television and film? 

Crystal Roman: Absolutely! We aren’t maids, housekeepers, hypersexual or baby machines. There is so many complexities to Latinas and we often get stereotyped. Things are changing but we still have a lot of work to do. 

DELUX: What was the process like of starting your company/movement? 

Crystal Roman: The movement definitely snowballed into something bigger than me. It was just about a collective of women working together to create a platform for women of color. What started out as a play based on my frustrations as a Black Latina became a full functioning production company that I am extremely grateful to have all the supporters throughout the years. 

DELUX: One of your productions is called Cecilia the Celibate. How did you come up with the concept for that?

Crystal Roman: Through the conversations that many women have amongst themselves regarding the dating scene. The accessibility of sex through a DM and the search for genuine, authentic and organic interaction from the opposite sex removing the sexual aspect can be a distraction when wanting to get a fuller deeper connection. So that Is how I got the concept.

DELUX: Do you have any other upcoming projects?  

Crystal Roman: We are working on screening Cecilia in other states as well as our tour for Black Latina the Play. And a spring 2020 run of our stage play Of Mothers and Men.

DELUX: What message do you have for the people? 

Crystal Roman: We have to strive to understand each other and that we all just want to be heard, seen, loved and not put into the boxes that society puts us in for their own comfort. 

To learn more about The Black Latina Movement go to
https://www.blacklatinamovement.com/

Danii Gold

Danii Gold, also know as Bri, is a writer/journalist and creator/blogger of DaniiGold.com. She specializes is entertainment, business and lifestyle stories.
Follow her @DaniiGold.Bri
Danii Gold

Latest posts by Danii Gold (see all)