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2016 ESSENCE Festival Presented By Coca-Cola Ernest N. Morial Convention Center - Day 2

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Tichina Arnold admitted that she really didn’t want to be on Martin when she auditioned for the iconic sitcom.

Can you imagine Martin without Tichina as Pam? The Daytime Divas star revealed in a recent interview that she wasn’t thrilled about going out for the part.

“The role of Pam was originally for a heavyset girl,” Tichina told The Happy Hour with Heather B. on Sirius XM.

“I didn’t even really want Martin. I didn’t want it,” Tichina revealed. “I was up for two other shows. I tested for CCPD and Main Street.”

She continued, “I wanted to do those two shows. Those shows were in first position.”

However, working on Martin helped her sharpen her comedic acting skills. “Martin, comedically, was brilliant,” Tichina said.

Martin was a huge job for Tichina and one that paid very well. She didn’t have a problem enjoying that disposable income, but things changed drastically once Martin went off the air. Tichina revealed that she had a hard time getting acting jobs because of how closely she was associated with the role of Pam.

“I was pigeon-holed. I was Pam. When you play a role for so long, and people see you a certain–I was pigeon-holed for a very long time,” Tichina explained. “A lot of people don’t know I didn’t work consistently for 10 straight years after I did Martin. I was looking for work wherever I could get it. I wasn’t on a show after Martin. 10 years.”

Tichina did have bit parts and cameos on different shows, but she had to get resourceful in her downtime. “I started China Moon Rags. China Moon Rags fed me for a minute,” she shared.

Eventually, Tichina was able to bust out of her slump when she auditioned for the role of Rochelle for Everybody Hates Chris. But had it not been for Chris Rock, she would never have gotten the part.

“He had to fight for me to get that role. The network did not want me,” she said. We’re glad Chris got his way because it Everybody Hates Chris would not have been the same without Tichina.


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