Thandiwe Newton Is Reclaiming Her Name

Illustration for article titled Thandiwe Newton Is Reclaiming Her Name
Photo: LOIC VENANCE/AFP (Getty Images)

After being miscredited as “Thandie” in her first project—a mistake that has continued for the rest of her career—actress Thandiwe Newton is insisting people use her whole name. All of her future films will be credited with her full name, Thandiwe, which has Zulu origins.

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“That’s my name. It’s always been my name. I’m taking back what’s mine,” Newton said in her May cover story for British Vogue.

Newton also spoke about her experiences with abuse in the film industry, which started when she was sexually abused by director John Duigan at the age of 16 while shooting her very first film, Flirting.

“There’s a moment where the ghost of me changed, you know, and it was then, it was 16. He derailed me from myself utterly. I was traumatised. It was a kind of PTSD for sure. I was so distraught and appalled that a director had abused a young actress, and that it was happening elsewhere, minors getting abused and how fucked up it was. I was basically waiting for someone to come along and say, ‘Well, what shall we do about this?’’’

Although Newton faced a great deal of backlash when she first came forward with her story of abuse, soon the #MeToo movement led to countless more women within Hollywood sharing their own stories of abuse and assault.

“I have a seventh sense for abuse and abusers,” Newton said, “which I believe is one of the reasons why I was rejected a lot in Hollywood. I’ll talk about it until the cows come home, because I know I’ll be helping someone.” [Vogue]


When Saweetie announced her breakup with Migos rapper Quavo last month, she alluded to his infidelity as the reason for the split, which surprised many of her fans.

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Last week, a video surfaced of Quavo and Saweetie in a physical altercation in an elevator, in which the two appear to be fighting over a Call of Duty case, during which Saweetie gets pulled to the floor after trying to leave the elevator with the case. During the rest of the video, Quavo stands up himself but makes no moves to help his then-girlfriend up from the floor of the elevator, even after noticing the camera recording the incident.

After the elevator video went viral, Saweetie released a statement addressing the situation, saying:

“This unfortunate incident happened a year ago, while we have reconciled since then and moved past this particular disagreement, there were simply too many other hurdles to overcome in our relationship and we have both since moved on.”

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Soon after, Quavo made a statement of his own to TMZ, denying allegations that the video suggested he was physically abusive to Saweetie during their relationship:

“We had an unfortunate situation almost a year ago that we both learned and moved on from. I haven’t physically abused Saweetie and have real gratitude for what we did share overall.”

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It’s impossible for us to know what happened within Saweetie and Quavo’s relationship, but it’s more than fair to say that it’s not healthy for people in a relationship to be laying hands on each other under any circumstances. [Bossip]


  • Gwyneth Paltrow’s daughter teased her mom about her “vagina candles” on Tik Tok, which seems only fair considering her mother chose to name her Apple. [People]
  • After DMX reportedly suffered a heart attack on Friday, the rapper is reportedly in a “vegetative state.” His family asks for continued thoughts and prayers for his recovery. [People]
  • After a judge denied his request for early release back in January, Lori Loughlin’s husband Mossimo Giannulli has reportedly been released from prison two weeks early after being jailed for his involvement in the Operation Varsity Blues college admissions scandal. [Page Six]
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An earlier version of this piece stated Thandiwe’s name is of Shona origin, but it is of Zulu origin. Jezebel regrets the error.

Freelance writer & night blogger at Jezebel. Lover of television, astrology, and sandwiches.

DISCUSSION

septembergrrl2
septembergrrl

Congrats to Thandiwe on feeling ready to take this long-overdue step. My one question is how you pronounce her given name. I always heard Thandie was like Tandy, but Google says Thandiwe is supposed to be more like Tandy-way —does she also want the correct pronunciation (which would be entirely understandable), or is “Tandy” still okay?