New Hollywood Podcast: Victoria Mahoney Talks Making History As First Female ‘Star Wars’ Director And How She Connects With The Iconic Franchise

By Dino-Ray Ramos, Amanda N'Duka

The Force is strong with Victoria Mahoney. From hanging out with Basquiat during her youth in New York to directing her first feature Yelling to the Sky to helming episodes of numerous TV shows such Queen Sugar and Grey’s Anatomy, Mahoney has been through and seen a lot in her career and life. All of it has paved the way for her to make history as the first woman — and woman of color — to helm a Star Wars film. The actor-turned-director (she appeared in Legally Blonde and Seinfeld) served as the second unit director of The Rise of Skywalker and she sat in the hot seat for the New Hollywood Podcast to tell us all about it.

As she talked about her journey to Hollywood, Mahoney got a little emotional — and made us get chills and tear up as well (you can’t see us via the podcast, but we did). She shared how Ava DuVernay was instrumental in connecting her with J.J. Abrams help helm one of the biggest movie franchises in the history of cinema. Like DuVernay, Mahoney is an outspoken and wildly thoughtful advocate for women, women of color and members of marginalized communities. She goes out of her way to mentor and let the ladder down to underrepresented talent that deserves shine. She also talked to us about growing up in the most culturally rich time in New York, her love for The Twilight Zone and which of the Star Wars movies (besides The Rise of Skywalker) is her favorite.

Listen to the episode below and prepare to get inspired. May the force be with you.

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