Decades after making her debut as an empowering femcee encouraging women to make something shake for themselves, Queen Latifah is still on a mission as she has most recently partnered up with Proctor & gamble to launch her Queen Collective—a program directed toward helping women filmmakers. According to the Queen, her own experiences as a woman of color in Hollywood have sparked the new initiative.
“I think it’s a continuing narrative in Hollywood, unfortunately, and we want to change that entire narrative,” she tells PEOPLE. “We want to even the playing field a little bit. Partnering up with P&G for the Queen Collective has been an amazing thing. This is kind of one step of the plan to make things a little different.”
The Queen Collective will be accepting submissions from all women looking to have their stories heard with two women being chosen to have their project financed and distributed, along with the added bonus of Latifah’s mentorship.
“I owe a lot of people credit out there for helping me along, as well as what we were able to do to create for ourselves,” says Queen Latifah. “One thing I swore that I would do if I got to a position of power, I would make sure that when I looked out behind that camera, that people would look like what America looked like.”
She adds, “We see a lot of stories that have been told through their lens in every way, shape and form. White guys have been able to tell their story in every sort of way, and unfortunately it hasn’t been that way for women. And it hasn’t been that way for people of other colors or genders. That’s the part that’s missing. We want to make sure that everyone is allowed to tell their story.”