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  /  EBONY Exclusive   /  Screenwriter Fredrica Bailey Talks Co-Writing ‘See You Yesterday’

Screenwriter Fredrica Bailey Talks Co-Writing ‘See You Yesterday’

Fredrica Bailey recently spoke to EBONY about being one of the writers of the new Netflix sci-fi film See You Yesterday.

Bailey is a 2016 MFA graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, which is where she met Stefon Bristol, her co-writer and director of the movie about two teenage science prodigies who invent a time-traveling device and try to use it to undo a fatal police shooting.

Bristol told EBONY the decision to make the lead a Black woman named after Madam C.J. Walker was deliberate, one Bailey said the writing duo made to create a powerful representation for viewers.

“Stefon and I just wanted a strong lead character, and that’s what C.J. ended up being,” she said. “As we started creating her and working with her, she just came off the page.”

Comparing main characters C.J. and Sebastian, Bailey said they mirror qualities of their creators.

“It’s funny because I always say Stefon is in some ways is similar to C.J., and Sebastian has a lot of my traits. It’s like we have children,” she joked.

Bailey shared that many hours were spent outlining the film, which was initially a short used as Bristol’s graduate film program thesis. She also said she asked her teenage niece and nephew to help authenticate the slang and other language used by today’s youth.

Watch the full interview above to learn what event the writer would change if she had access to a time machine and what her part in the film means to her.

See You Yesterday is now streaming on Netflix.

Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.