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Everything You Need to Know About Samira Wiley, The Extraordinary Poussey on 'Orange is the New Black'

By Dustin Rowles | Celebrity | July 8, 2014 |

By Dustin Rowles | Celebrity | July 8, 2014 |

Through two seasons of Orange is the New Black, Samira Wiley — who has been elevated to a series regular for season three — has become the biggest fan favorite of the series. In fact, it’s our affection for Samira’s character Poussey that drives much of the tension this year. Her and Taystee’s friendship is tested, and at times, there seems to be an actual threat to Poussey’s life, which is a terrifying prospect.

We also learned more about her backstory this year. She’s from a military family, and a German girlfriend, and German girlfriends and military families don’t exactly work well together.


We still don’t know why she is in prison (a first season hinted at a pot bust), but we do know that she does have a supportive father.

As for Samira Wiley, she, too, seems to have a supportive family. Her and Danielle Brooks (Taystee) both actually come from religious families. Both have fathers who were pastors, and both Brooks and Wiley attended Juilliard, where they were already friends. In fact, Brooks — who was cast as Taystee first — helped Wiley rehearse her lines before her audition to play Poussey (they watched old episodes of Scared Straight as research!). Basically, Taystee and Poussey’s platonic romance began before the show even started.

As for Samira’s actual love life? There are rumors — backed by some photographic evidence — that she’s dating an Orange writer, Lauren Morelli, who recently came out after ending a six-year marriage to her husband.



Here’s eleven more things we know about Samira Wiley from her Twitter account.

1. She prefers iPhones.

2. Thunderstorms are a turn-on.

3. Her first name rhymes with Shakira.

4. This is her favorite Vine video of all time.

5. She’s diabetic.

6. When she was little, she was in love with Lil Bow Wow, who is actually the exact same age as Samira Wiley (27).

7. She would like children someday.

8. She cuts her own hair.

9. She would marry O’Neil, f*ck Bennet, and Kill Caputo.

10. She was a huge fan of that House of Cards twist.

11. She flat-out loves Regina King.

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12. She and the rest of the Orange is the New Black cast can dominate a Pride Parade.

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.