Anthony Anderson is getting candid about him and his 'Black-ish' on-screen wife not hitting it off.
Anthony Anderson is opening up about him and his on-screen wife, Tracee Ellis Ross, not hitting it off when they first met. Although the two are now close friends and share an obvious chemistry on-screen on Black-ish, Anderson admits in a recent interview that it took a while for Ross to warm up to him.
In a new interview with Parade about Black-ish coming to an end with its eighth season, 51-year-old Anderson shared that he knew 49-year-old Ross before they got cast as husband and wife on their hit ABC show. However, he didn't make the best first impression.
"We laugh about this now, but Tracee didn't like me for maybe 10 years!" he says. "We hosted the Vibe Awards [in 2005]. As we were walking onto the stage there was a loud sound over the speaker, and I said, 'Tracee? Did you fart?' The audience loved it, but what I did not know is how offended Tracee was by that comment."
"I remember I did an episode of her show Reed Between the Lines [in 2011] and all of my scenes were with Tracee," he continues. "And when it came time for my close-up, she would leave the stage like, 'The stage is Anthony's!' I thought Tracee was just showing me the utmost respect as an actor. I was like 'Oh, my God, I've never been treated like this before! I was a guest star on her show, and she was just giving me her set!' Well, looking back on it, she didn't want to be around me!"
Anderson said Ross didn't start liking him until midway through the first season of Black-ish, though they laugh about it now.
"But today, there's nothing that I would not do for Tracee," he says. "We work the same, we learn the same, we are there for one another, and we have the ability to work with such fearlessness when we're together, because we know that we will never allow the other to fall."
Anderson reflected on the importance of Black-ish -- which centers on his character, Andre, and Ross' character, Rainbow, raising their five kids in a predominantly white, upper-middle-class neighborhood -- and said it didn't bother him that some have called the show racist.
"It says we're doing everything right," he says. "We've drawn from our personal experience, so if people say that it’s racist, then yes, it is—because some of the things we've had to deal with as African Americans living in America is racist. It's from our perspective: This is how I feel when this happens; this is what me and my family have gone through. And I believe that's why our show resonates with an audience that it does, worldwide, because of the specificity in which we deal with topics and tell our stories."
In a new interview with WSJ, Ross also reflected on the end of Black-ish, including her getting emotional during the final week of filming.
"I walked into the final week with the prayer to have an open heart so I could really be present for all of the feelings that were moving through," she recalls. "To the point that, at any given moment, tears would start to shed. Anthony towards the end was like, 'Seriously? Are you crying again?' Yeah, I'm crying, dude, I'm crying, get over it Mr. Crankypants who's pretending you're not having feelings but you are."
ET recently spoke with Ross and she revealed her favorite Black-ish moments and what she ended up taking from the set. Watch the video below for more.