The young Black Lightning actor China Anne McClain, who plays Jennifer Pierce, revealed to her fans and followers that she knew she would leave Black Lightning before it was announced that the fourth season would be its last. China Anne McClain has been around for some time, starting as a Disney star and continuing on to network television and TikTok fame, and for her, it was time to leave Black Lightning.
She had been through quite a lot in the past few years and charges the COVID-19 pandemic as her final awakening in a series of God-invoking events. Her best friend and Disney costar, Cameron Boyce, passed away in 2019 from an unexpected seizure, which brought China closer to God. She knew that she had more to offer to the world, and during the pandemic, seeing the hardship others were going through brought her to the realization that it was time to leave Black Lightning.
Why China Anne McClain decided to leave ‘Black Lightning’ has to do with her own personal journey.
China originally announced in an Instagram video that she would have decided to leave Black Lightning regardless of if the show was ending or not. She posted an emotional 13-minute video in November when the announcement was made that this would be Black Lightning’s final season to inform her fans that she would only be in a limited number of episodes.
She assured us all that she had a wonderful experience working with the production teams at the CW and Warner Bros, as well as with executive producer Greg Berlanti and showrunner Salim Akil. She also congratulated Salim and her costar Jordan Calloway, who will be part of the spinoff series, Painkiller.
In China’s original video, she didn’t give too many details but hinted that she was done with Hollywood. She shared, “These people that are dying and the way of the world now. It's real. And all this is an illusion. This industry for what it is and everything that people look to and praise, it's not important.” However, it seems that now, there’s a bit more to the story of why China Anne McClain decided to leave Black Lightning.
China Anne McClain did decide to leave ‘Black Lightning’ so she could work on new projects.
Like many actors who decide to leave shows that bring them to heightened popularity, China decided to leave Black Lightning to work on other projects. However, unlike many of those actors, China wanted to do more than solely act in material that she’s cast in. China wanted to use her voice to make a difference, which is truly admirable.
China is not only a popular actor, but she also has a major following on her TikTok with over 9.7 million followers. This gives her a direct way to connect with her many fans. In a recent Teen Vogue interview, China shared how her fans helped bring her closer to God and to her decision to leave Black Lightning.
“I have a lot of stories that I want to tell that I think are going to help a lot of these kids that are constantly tweeting me and leaving comments on my Tik Toks and Instagram posts about where they're at in life and how they've hit an all-time low, and how they're depressed and how they're anxious and stressed and they can't seem to get out of it," she told the outlet.
"I have projects that could actually help them and help those things. It was just time to go and time to focus on my babies that I'm developing with my production company and my family," she concluded.
China is like any 22-year-old who is out there finding herself, although she’s doing it in front of millions of people. Many actors are also creative artists who have their own work to bring to the world, and for China, between her best friend’s sudden passing and the distressing pandemic, it was time to leave someone else’s project, Black Lightning, and bring her own voice to the forefront.
You can catch China's remaining episodes on Black Lightning on Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on the CW.