Black History Month

Inspiring Teen Has A Few Reasons Why She’s Helping 1,000 Girls Go See ‘A Wrinkle In Time’

"You need to see what you can be."

Before you know it, Disney's A Wrinkle in Time will be hitting the big screen and transporting us all to a whole other dimension. When that time comes — on March 9, to be exact — there will be 1,000 lucky girls who will be able to see the Ava DuVernay-directed film thanks to one special young person: 14-year-old Taylor Richardson.

The eighth-grader from Jacksonville, Fla. — who wants to be an engineer, a scientist, and an astronaut when she grows up — created a GoFundMe to send girls to see A Wrinkle in Time as well as give them a copy of Madeleine L'Engle's 1962 book that it was based on. Her fundraising goal to raise was originally $15,000 and, at the time of publication, has raised nearly $18,000.

Taylor — who did something similar to this by starting a GoFundMe to take girls to see Hidden Figures last year — told A Plus that, upon first reading the novel in elementary school, she thought it was a great story but one that didn't relate to her personally.

"I didn't see me," Taylor said. "I couldn't see myself being Meg at that time. Fast-forward to 2017 when I saw the trailer for the movie and saw that the role of Meg looked like me — a brown girl! I was like, 'This can be me and many girls who look like me.' It was beautiful and amazing to see her and the diverse characters that are also in the movie."

Taylor Richardson (left) with A Wrinkle in Time director Ava DuVernay.
Taylor Richardson (left) with A Wrinkle in Time director Ava DuVernay. Courtesy: Taylor Richardson

Taylor explained that seeing Storm Reid in this starring role was "inspiring" — not only for herself but for other Black girls who don't see themselves reflected in various positions of power. It's a similar reason to why Frederick Joseph started a massively-successful GoFundMe for underprivileged children of color to go see Black Panther.

"That's one of the reasons why I want girls to see this movie. I want them to see what they can be, and this movie shows that we girls can be warriors like Meg and so much more," the STEM enthusiast added. "It's simple — representation matters. You need to see what you can be."

As Taylor explains on the GoFundMe page, she wants girls — especially those of color — to "see this movie and know that not only can [they] touch the stars, they already are one!" She encourages other girls to become "Warriors" and to become whatever they want to be, whether that be someone who wants to study STEM like her, Meg, or Meg's dad in the movie or anything else that requires them to "dream bigger."

Taylor Richardson (right) with A Wrinkle in Time star Storm Reid.
Taylor Richardson (right) with A Wrinkle in Time star Storm Reid. Courtesy: Taylor Richardson

Taylor believes that providing a copy of the book is important because "reading … allows you to take flight toward your own dreams and aspirations." Plus, thanks to the film showing them a new side to the main character, "when they read it they will identify with Meg."

By doing these amazing things — and, trust us, we're just scraping the surface of this inspirational teen — Taylor has received a slew of honors. Two of these distinctions have led to Taylor meeting the likes of DuVernay and Reid as well as being in the same room as Oprah Winfrey, who also stars in A Wrinkle in Time alongside Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling. While these brushes with influential stars are nice, it's not why Taylor does this.

That reason? "It has to be by far the little girls and boys that come up to me and say, 'Thank you for showing me that I'm more than my circumstances, that I can be anything I put my mind to,' " Taylor said. "That's the inspiration that keeps me doing what I do."

Follow along with all the amazing things this teen does by following Taylor Richardson on Twitter at @astrostarbright.

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