Raven-Symone Says 'The View' Was Her 'Transition Into Adulthood' (Exclusive)

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Raven-Symoné is opening up about how joining The View helped her grow up on her own terms.

The 33-year-old actress and singer -- already a veteran in the entertainment industry -- sat down with ET for our Unfiltered series.  

Raven started out as a child model and got her break at three years old as Olivia Kendall on The Cosby Show, and then went on to star on Disney Channel’s That's So Raven as a teen. She has also released four solo studio albums throughout her career. 

After being in the mold of a child star for so long, Raven was ready to transition into adulthood. 

"So the thing about The View and why I said I wanted to do it in the first place was because everyone that I had grown up with had to make their transition into adulthood,” Raven explains. 

Raven-Symone on The View in 2016

Raven-Symone on 'The View' in May 2016.

Lou Rocco/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

“My version of doing it -- I wanted it to be about my mind and I wanted it to be about my opinions,” she says of co-hosting the talk show from 2015 to 2016. 

After years of feeling where “all I knew [was] how to recite words that other people wrote in the emotion that I thought I was supposed to have,” Raven took a three-year hiatus at age 23. 

“There was a point after I finished the industry and took my long break where I would have a conversation with people and leave the room when I made a joke because that’s what I did on television,” she admits. 

The multi-hyphenate went on to describe how she had to overcome the instilled pattern of always performing.

Raven-Symone at 1991 Emmys

Raven-Symone at the 1991 Emmys.

Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

"I had to, like, get over these programs in my own body because I'm the little girl that entertained you since she was three, so I don't give my opinion," she says. "I give other people's opinions that are in writing and I do this and I do that. So, that's what The View was for me -- to make sure that I knew that I had a brain as well and that I'm an adult now." 

Raven is currently reprising her role as Raven Baxter on the spinoff, Raven’s Home, which she had no hesitation in playing again. 

"I wanted to revisit Raven Baxter because she was the most fun character I've ever played in my life," she says of the beloved character. "It was a black girl who had the fashion sense to the nines, knew exactly what she wanted, slaughtered the game in everything she wanted to, but also had her faults, and had the most awesome power in the world.”

Raven-Symone with 'Raven's Home' cast

Raven-Symone with 'Raven's Home' cast.

Kelsey McNeal/Disney Channel via Getty Images

Raven also had the opportunity to go behind the camera when she directed an episode of the series.

After she turned down the offer to direct during her time on That’s So Raven, the actress took a leap with the encouragement from her family and crew who said, “You need to. You are a black female who understands this genre.” 

“I love it and I would love to be a director for the rest of my life,” she gushes. 

New episodes of Raven's Home, currently in its third season, air Friday evenings at 8 p.m. on Disney Channel and DisneyNOW.

Watch Raven's full interview in the video above and peek more episodes of Unfiltered:

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