Mindy Kaling’s new coming-of-age comedy “Never Have I Ever” will be introducing a young actress to the world when the series hits Netflix on April 27.
Based on the comedy actor/writer’s own childhood growing up in suburban Massachusetts, the show will introduce to the world the female teenage protagonist, Devi Vishwakumar.
Playing the lead role, Devi, is 17-year-old Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, a young actress from Mississauga, Ontario who will be making her acting debut on the show. Maitreyi landed the role following Kaling’s nationwide open casting call, which resulted in over 15,000 submissions.
“I don’t think I realized how many people were auditioning,” she later shared with Brown Girl Magazine. “And then when I did find out that there were 15,000 other people, I don’t think it really hit me because I didn’t just come out of straight high school and I think, right now, even still, it hasn’t hit me. The whole process of everything, getting the role even hasn’t yet.”
Recalling her first time meeting with Kaling, Maitreyi said it was an amazing feeling.
“She is one of my role models. I love her work on ‘The Office,’ it’s my favorite TV show and she writes a lot of the episodes and some of the most hilarious ones. So it was really surreal to see Kelly Kapoor in front of me and just like all of her talent,” she added.
In an interview with Flare
, the young Tamil-Canadian actor revealed that she developed her passion to perform at a young age after attending ballet and piano classes as a child.
She realized that acting was her passion in high school when she attended theater rehearsals nearly every day. This role for “Never Have I Ever” was her biggest audition yet.
“I didn’t see many South Asian role models in film when I was growing up,” she noted. “And I’m a firm believer that if you don’t see what you want [to see] in the media or in the world in general, go be it. That’s your time to make that space.”