Taryn Manning is a terrifyingly entitled woman in Karen, the upcoming thriller from Coke Daniels inspired by the real-life “Karens” of the world. Known for her breakout role on Orange Is the New Black, Manning will play a racist woman in the movie similar to some of those witnessed in viral videos calling the police on neighbors for insignificant reasons. The first trailer has just recently been released, and you can take a look at it below.
Coke Daniels (His, Hers & the Truth) directs the movie, which follows Taryn Manning as “Karen Drexler, a racist white woman who makes it her personal mission to displace the new Black family that has just moved in next door to her. Community activist Malik (Cory Hardrict, American Sniper) and his wife Imani (Jasmine Burke, Saints & Sinners) are the couple who have just moved to the Atlanta suburb, but they won’t be backing down without a fight.”
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Roger Dorman and Gregory Alan Williams also star. Producing the movie are Mary Aloe (Bruised) and Craig Chapman (Honest Thief) alongside Gillian Hormel, Autumn Bailey-Ford, Manning, and Hardrict. Vanzil and Victor Burke and Anik Decoste are executive producing. Danie’s Flixville USA is also producing with Aloe’s Aloe Entertainment in association with Hormel’s Ludascripts, the Peanut Gallery Group, Bondit Media Capital, BET, and Burke Management.
“I felt a social responsibility, even though I’m playing the opposing side, if I have to sort of play the villain and do all that to help make change, I was more than willing to step into the role,” Manning said of her casting in an TMZ interview. “If you don’t like me in the role, perfect, I did my job just great. But the main point is that what’s been going on is just devastating, and it’s time for a change. And for me to be a part of that bigger picture meant a lot to me.”
Revealing that she watched a lot of real-life “Karen” videos online to prepare for the role, Manning added: “I’ve seen a lot, and of course I’ve been watching more, because now I’m wanting to find all different levels of them, and different types. Yeah, I mean, it’s definitely a lot of studying going on, but it’s so bad, and so everywhere, and that’s the point of this film, and why it’s so timely, and why I’m so excited.”
“Last year during the global pandemic and civil unrest, I – like many of us – felt anger, despair and hopelessness,” director Coke Daniels also said, per Deadline. “The overwhelming amount of support from people around the globe, who want to see change, has been such an inspiration.”
Manning is probably best known for playing Pennsatucky on Orange Is the New Black, a role she played for all seven seasons of the Netflix series. She is also known for playing Cherry in Sons of Anarchy and has many movie roles including 8 Mile, The Vault, and The Murder of Nicole Brown Simpson. The actress more recently appeared in the comedy Last Call with Jeremy Piven, Jamie Kennedy, Zach McGowan, and Bruce Dern.
A release date hasn’t yet been revealed for Karen. Per Deadline, 13 Films has boarded sales on the movie ahead of the Cannes virtual market. The new trailer for the movie comes to us from Flixville USA on YouTube.