Variety Streaming Room
The stars and creators of the HBO Max competition series “Legendary,” including judge Leiomy Maldonado, MC Dashaun Wesley and executive producers Jack Mizrahi, Rob Eric and David Collins, joined the V…
The stars and creators of the HBO Max competition series “Legendary,” including judge Leiomy Maldonado, MC Dashaun Wesley and executive producers Jack Mizrahi, Rob Eric and David Collins, joined the Variety Streaming Room, hosted by Variety’s Caroline Framke, to discuss why it was important to highlight the stories behind the dances.
The competition series, inspired by ballroom culture, follows eight houses as they vogue their way through nine balls to win a cash prize of $100,000.
Maldonado, who serves as a judge alongside Megan Thee Stallion, Jameela Jamil and Law Roach, shared one of the reasons that makes the series so special is the way the show highlights the contestants’ personal journey to the ballroom.
“I think the most important thing about the show or how the show has portrayed ballroom and has brought it into the spotlight is the fact that you get to see the actual stories,” she said. “You get to hear why these people were inspired to be a part of these houses, why this is so important to each individual, what it takes to even have the courage to get out there and have the confidence to even compete.”
The Afro-Puerto Rican dancer went on to add that for many in the competition the houses they have become a part of are sometimes all they have. “That alone is something that’s beautiful,” said Maldonado. “Some of us, some of the people in our own community, they don’t have that. They don’t have a family. They don’t have somebody that they can call to for support or for acceptance or for anything. And this show shows that, and that’s the most important thing about ballroom.”
Beyond the competition, the executive producers agreed that it was necessary that viewers heard the stories behind the dances. “It was incredibly important for Jack, myself, David, that you went much further than just the competition of it all,” said Eric. That you actually got to know who was behind the competition.”
Watch the full interview above.