Despite their amazing chemistry throughout black-ish’s eight seasons, Anthony Anderson admits Tracee Ellis Ross wasn’t always his biggest fan.
In an interview with Parade, Anderson discussed what led Ross to dislike him for years.
“We laugh about this now, but Tracee didn’t like me for maybe 10 years!” he said. “We hosted the Vibe Awards [in 2005]. As we were walking onto the stage there was a loud sound over the speaker, and I said, ‘Tracee? Did you fart?’ The audience loved it, but what I did not know is how offended Tracee was by that comment.”
If this was their first time working together, we can’t really blame Ross for being upset about the joke. That’s the kind of thing you have to know your partner is going to be ok with before you say it in front of a theater full of people.
Apparently, Anderson was still oblivious to Ross’ feelings when he guest starred on Reed Between the Lines.
“I remember I did an episode of her show Reed Between the Lines [in 2011] and all of my scenes were with Tracee,” Anderson said. “And when it came time for my close-up, she would leave the stage like, ‘The stage is Anthony’s!’ I thought Tracee was just showing me the utmost respect as an actor. I was like ‘Oh, my God, I’ve never been treated like this before! I was a guest star on her show, and she was just giving me her set!’ Well, looking back on it, she didn’t want to be around me!”
Ross didn’t come around until the pair were well into black-ish Season 1.
“She really didn’t start liking me until we were midway through the first season of black-ish, and so we laugh about it now,” he said. “But today, there’s nothing that I would not do for Tracee. We work the same, we learn the same, we are there for one another, and we have the ability to work with such fearlessness when we’re together, because we know that we will never allow the other to fall.”
Anderson and Ross’ chemistry has always been the anchor of black-ish, so it’s fascinating to hear that the actress didn’t even like him when the show began.
We’re glad she came around, because Bow and Dre’s authentic relationship has been a television highlight. Honestly, we’re not emotionally prepared for the end.
black-ish begins its final run of episodes Tuesday, Jan. 4 at 9:30 pm on ABC, featuring a guest appearance from Forever First Lady Michelle Obama.