The Box Unpacked: Jacqueline opens up about The Box
What led you to make The Box with Jacqueline?
I wrote these sketches one night while researching porn for women and never planned on sharing them with anyone. Until a very persuasive person who happens to be my first and second husband and baby daddy to my two children, encouraged me relentlessly to make this a reality. So, I guess you could say it was the man behind the woman, finally.
You’re known as an actress—what prompted the decision to write and direct?
Writing has always been a favorite pastime, but I didn’t expect to be directing. My 22-year old son reminded me that my core nature is to be a boss and that no one else could do it to my satisfaction, and even though there was a bit of manspaining in that exchange, I had to agree.
Do you think of yourself as an entertainer or an activist?
I think of myself as a woman and mother who has a few things to share before I die.
What are some strategies to break recurring cycles of shame and guilt among women?
Movies, tv shows and stand-up specials. I have given standing ovations in my living room for Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin and Dolly Parton in 9 to 5 fantasize about the heinous ways they would get back at their sexist boss and for Ali Wong in Baby Cobra talking about eating her husband's ass. It’s watching mothers who are brave enough to be wholly inappropriate that makes me really excited about our evolution.
Is comedy the best platform to open people’s eyes?
It’s definitely my favorite. I think that comedians get to be the most honest and deliver the most uncensored material. Michelle Wolf in her Nice Lady Netflix special and Amy Schumer in her Leather Special have spun some powerful messages while cracking us up. I love that.
Do you have any role models?
Oprah for making people’s fantasies into realities for decades, Jane Fonda for her radical wellness approach to fusing exercise with activism and killing it in entertainment at 80, Madonna for challenging censorship and being outspoken to exalt female sexuality, Anais Nin for buying her own printing press and self-publishing her work that was deemed obscene, Hugh Hefner for embracing his nonconformist lifestyle and giving people an unlikely platform in the name of civil rights, and Wonder Woman for being the ultimate symbol for justice, power and freedom.
What do you hope The Box will contribute?
Some much-needed laughter at a time we desperately need it. With depression being our #1 threat to the human race and anxiety on the rise, laughing is a stress-reliever, and is proven to be good for your health. So if it makes some people laugh, then that would be awesome.
What’s next for you?
After Season 2, I’m working on a new series where men compete to be my butler.