|Sufe Bradshaw of HBO's Veep|
There's just something so bright and refreshing about Sufe Bradshaw. Whether it's seeing her work, like playing the part of Sue Wilson, the executive assistant to the vice president (played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus) on the hit HBO series Veep, or simply talking to her on the phone about her career and her life, the energy Bradshaw puts out to her audience - or just to you - is palpable.
So it's no surprise when Color magazine asked if she considers herself a role model that her response was fast and insightful.
"Of course I do," Bradshaw said after only the slightest hesitation. "I think it's extremely important to put out a good image, especially as an example for young people. I'm not just talking about the parts I choose to play, but about the way I play them. It would be easy to play someone like Sue Wilson as a bad person, but she's really not. She's forceful, and she really does think she's the third most important person in the world, after the president and the vice-president, but you don't have to play that as her being a bad person or in a mean spirited way."
When she takes a minute to think about it, Bradshaw knows she is now living the dreams she first imagined growing up in Chicago. She's a professional actress with a resume that runs from appearances on shows like Cold Case and ER to movie roles in J.J. Abram's "Star Trek," and the Wayans Brothers "Dance Flick."
"I like the variety of the roles I've been given a chance to play. Acting, for me, is all about telling stories and I love working with directors and writers and other actors to find the best way to tell each story we are creating," Bradshaw said. "A lot of my training was in drama, but I really enjoy playing in comedies. It's all acting, but every part is different, and exploring those parts and finding ways to make it mine is what I thrive on."
As much as she loves being in front of the camera, Bradshaw's passion for storytelling is leading her to step behind the camera to direct a documentary, New Leaves, whose message is close to her heart. "It's about troubled youth and the choices they make to either do the right thing or not," she said. "I think about someone like Denzel Washington, who credits the Boys and Girls Club of his youth as being a positive influence that kept him out of trouble. He made the choice to go there and get involved in positive activity instead of hanging out in the streets and getting in trouble. I think everybody has those moments of decision in their lives, and I want to meet with them and help them tell their stories so others can think before they decide when the time comes."