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Piper Chapman might be the main character in Orange is the New Black, but it was Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren who quickly swirled her way into our hearts and became our favorite lady of Litchfield.

The character is the most complex of them all, and it takes real talent, like that of the crazy beautiful Uzo Aduba, to do her justice. She did win an Emmy for the role, after all.

But in Harper’s Bazaar, Uzo reveals that she almost gave up acting just before being cast in Netflix’s original hit-series, because she had a hard time getting work:

“My family is from Nigeria, and when I was a kid, my parents wanted me to be a lawyer,” she says. “I thought, ‘You aren’t meant to be an actor. This isn’t for you.'”

For her feature, all eyes are on Uzo—literally—as she strikes a pose in a strapless Carolina Herrera dress with two oversized eyeball sleeves and a blinged-out pendant by Stephen Webster to pay homage to one of America’s favorite TV characters.

“Suzanne was described to me as innocent like a child, except children aren’t scary,” says Aduba. “Whatever she does comes from a place of curiosity.” The eyes “I focused on last.” She laughs. “Like when she winks, she thinks she’s doing it with one eye, but it’s with both. She just can’t quite nail it.”

There are no bantu knots for this one, but Uzo smiles wide and puts her gap on display, while saying:

“It took me a long time to arrive at that—you know, from my gap teeth to my name. I’m realizing, You don’t need to change anything about yourself. This is who you are, and it’s okay. That’s daring.”

Head on over to Harper’s Bazaar to read the rest of her interview and learn more about other “2014 Women Who Dare,” like Jessica Alba and Mo’ne Davis, the 13-year-old girl who made history in this year’s Little League World Series.

PHOTO CREDIT & SOURCE: Harper’s Bazaar

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