When Will & Grace returns to our small screens this week, there will be one notable change to Grace's character. During an appearance at the Tribeca TV Festival, Debra Messing said that she had one request before returning to the show: "The only thing that I asked for was that Grace be a feminist," Messing shared.
The actress' request is consistent with her personal and political beliefs. A staunch Hillary Clinton supporter, Messing spoke at the Democratic National Convention last July and later headlined the Women's March in Washington, D.C.
"We believe that a woman’s right to make medical and reproductive decisions are her own. We believe in a person’s right to love and marry whomever they want. We stand behind Dreamers and their right to not be ripped apart from their families," Messing told The Hollywood Reporter ahead of the Women's March. "We are celebrating and making very clear to the administration that we believe it’s time that there is an actual Equal Rights Amendment. That, 2017, it’s time for our government to finally assert that women and men are equal."
It's no surprise that Messing wanted her character to be "woke" in the revival of the beloved sitcom. She also shared that it took a few episodes to get back into the swing of things, but it helped that Messing and Eric McCormack have stayed in touch over the years.
"It’s been 11 years, and I think that I was a little tentative," Messing said. "Eventually by the third episode I just sort of relaxed, and I was like, Okay, she’s back."
In addition to Grace's feminism, Messing says the revival will approach LGBTQ issues in a more progressive manner. "Back then, LGB, we stopped at B. And now 11 years later, the conversation has expanded. There’s T, A, I, and gender fluidity and there are all these things that are now finally being celebrated in our culture," she said. "The thing we all committed to one another was that we’re going to be the show that we always were. We’re going to talk about what’s happening now."