(Victoria Will/AP Photo)
In the 1974 Beverly Johnson made history as the first black model to appear on the cover of Vogue Magazine. For years she had an illustrious career in fashion, film, and television. In an essay for Vanity Fair titled “Bill Cosby Drugged Me. This Is My Story.” the former model and actress turned haircare entrepreneur reveals how she first met Cosby, while trying to snag a minor role on The Cosby Show.
‘Like most Americans, I spent the 60s, 70s, and part of the 80s in awe of Bill Cosby and his total domination of popular culture. He was the first African American to star in a dramatic television series, I Spy, a show my family in Buffalo, New York, always watched. Cosby cut a striking figure on-screen then. He was funny, smart, and even elegant—all those wonderful things many white Americans didn’t associate with people of color. In fact, as I thought of going public with what follows, a voice in my head kept whispering, “Black men have enough enemies out there already, they certainly don’t need someone like you, an African American with a familiar face and a famous name, fanning the flames.”
Imagine my joy in the mid-80s when an agent called to say Bill Cosby wanted me to audition for a role on the The Cosby Show. Cosby played an obstetrician, and he sometimes used models to portray pregnant women sitting in his office waiting room. It was a small part with one or two speaking lines at most, but I wanted in.’
Read more at Vanity Fair.