Samira Wiley reveals how she fell in love with wife Lauren Morelli
Orange is the New Black star Samira Wiley has opened up about how she fell for her wife Lauren Morelli.
Samira Wiley, who has added a leading role on The Handmaid’s Tale to her breakthrough role as Poussey Washington, married Morelli last year in a beautiful intimate ceremony, a little over four years after the pair met on the OITNB set.
They then went on what looked like an absolutely perfect honeymoon in Disneyland and Italy.
Samira Wiley has now revealed when she felt that initial surge of desire for Lauren Morelli, a writer on OITNB
Speaking to BUST magazine, she said: “I was really attracted to Lauren’s mind first before I met Lauren the person.
“I got her script and I was like: ‘This person’s really talented, I can’t wait to meet this person.'”
She admitted: “Well, okay, I’m a little biased.
“It was the first script that my [character’s] name was actually in, where she says her name is Poussey. It’s the ‘accent à droite’ script.
“But then there was this rap battle in it and I was like: ‘Who is this writer? They just wrote a whole rap battle.’ I just assumed that they were going to be a person of colour.
“They were not. Let’s just say – shout out – my wife can write raps.”
Wiley, 30, said that seeing Morelli take control on set had deepened her attraction.
“I just remember her coming to set and me being able to watch her be a boss from afar, telling whatever people to go this way, answering this question,” said the actress.
“Just seeing her literally be the person in charge was really attractive to me.”
Wiley said that they needed to go on a journey of self-exploration together to get to the point where they could start dating.
This was particularly pertinent as Morelli was married to a man when she met Wiley and only realised she was a lesbian in 2012, during one of her first days on the OITNB set.
“I remember those first months with her, trying to figure out her journey with her own sexuality,” Wiley recalled.
“Feeling like she picked me as the person she was going to talk to about all of it. And it wasn’t sexual, it was just like a friend. There was something deeply intimate about that, whether there was sexual tension there or not,” she continued.
“The deep intimacy of being two people talking about the core of who we are. Talking about our journeys.
“Not even necessarily flirting on set, but on the phone, thousands of miles apart, talking about ‘Who are we? And does this make me a different person? Does this actually make me who I am now?’
“That’s how we fell in love.”
The couple were together for three years before they got engaged. They went on holiday to Palm Springs – where they would marry a year later – and Morelli surprised Wiley with a proposal.
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“Lauren has been married before, so I wanted her to tell me she was ready, her to be the one to propose. I didn’t know she was as ready as she was. I was completely shocked,” Wiley told Out Magazine.
“She was hyperventilating. I thought, Oh, this is not good. This has gone too far,” recalled Morelli.
“She was very clear she’d wait for me to be ready, so to give her something I knew she wanted so much was incredible. It was the most magical day of my life.”