Lauren Morelli and Samira Wiley engaged: Orange is the New Black writer proposes to actress

The couple met on the set of the Netflix original drama 

Heather Saul
Wednesday 05 October 2016 10:36 BST
(Getty Images)

After weeks of high-profile divorces, some happier news: Orange is the New Black actress Samira Wiley has announced her engagement to Orange is the New Black writer Lauren Morelli.

Wiley shared a picture of her engagement ring on Instagram under the caption ‘yes’.

The 29-year-old was propelled to fame after being chosen to play Poussey in the seminal prison drama. Before this, she worked as a bartender - a job she kept up throughout the whole of filming for the first season in case OITNB was a flop.

Morelli, who wrote Wiley’s final episode, joined the show just a few months after marrying her husband and says she realised she was gay while writing the script. They separated and Morelli came out in 2014 before beginning a relationship with Wiley.

She detailed her realisation in an essay for Mic describing how the love storyline for protagonists Piper and Alex became “a mouthpiece for my own desires and a glimmer of what my future could look like”.

"I realised I was gay in fall 2012, one of my first days on the set. It wasn't so much one thing, but the sum of many small details: how uncomfortable I felt around groups of lesbians or how I considered myself (shrug) a ‘not very sexual person’. When considered alone, these seemed like little quirks that made me me. Wanting to read a book instead of have sex is a perfectly reasonable preference to have, right?

“I am now out to my family, my friends and most of my co-workers on Orange (and now to you, dear reader). Now, when I am in the writers' room or on set, I no longer feel like I am stuck in the middle of two truths. I belong because my own narrative fits in alongside the fictional stories that we are telling on the show: stories of people finding themselves, of difficult paths and of redemption.”

Wiley will star in Hulu’s 10-part adaption of The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood’s unsettling dystopian drama about a totalitarian society where fertile women are kept under lock and key as handmaids, their value based solely on their ability to reproduce.

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