In an exclusive chat with E! News, actress Precious Mustapha sounded off on the success of Netflix's latest young adult drama. Following its season one debut on Netflix last month, Fate: The Winx Saga found itself in the no. 1 spot in the U.S. and trending worldwide.
"I'm feeling really, really happy and like, overwhelmed," Mustapha exclusively told E! News. "And it's really nice to see the response in the sense of like, viewers have really taken to the characters and enjoyed the show."
For those unfamiliar with the show, Fate: The Winx Saga is a reimagining of Iginio Straffi's animated series, Winx Club, and follows a group of fairies attending the magical Alfea College in the Otherworld.
With an already established fanbase and longtime TVD producer and writer Brian Young at the helm, Fate was guaranteed to be a hit for the streaming service. However, Mustapha, who plays water fairy Aisha, didn't realize just how successful the show would be.
"Our directors were kind of going 'Oh, you know, this show's really popular and just wait, just wait till the show comes out'. And they kept saying stuff like that," she added. "Yeah, we had no idea how big it was going to be. Or even how big the fan base already was like, with the cartoon, until the announcement of the show came out, and we kind of were getting loads of responses through social media. I think that's when it kind of hit."
Although Mustapha, age 23, wasn't a fan of Winx Club growing up, she recognized the characters as her younger sisters were fans of the show. Per Mustapha, she was further sold on the live-action reimagining as she was a fan of TVD.
"The reason why The Vampire Diaries appealed to me was because I wanted to escape," she recalled. "I felt like I was really invested in these characters and kind of, me and my friends were, obsessed with these characters. We would go to school and talk about them for ages."
And, as Mustapha told E! News, she felt that Fate had a similar vibe. She explained, "It's very much like an escapism kind of show, especially in, you know, the year that we had and the pandemic. It's a really nice way of kind of escaping and not having to think about anything else for that hour that you're watching it—or the six hours that you're binging it."
Mustapha went on to promise fans that, if Fate gets a second season, there will be "so much more to come."
"These characters are complex, and they are quite layered. And we're only just at the beginning," she said before adding, "And I think it's really nice to see female friendship on screen because we rarely ever see that. I mean, we've got five female friends on screen and they're all completely different and tell completely different stories."
In addition to discussing the success of Fate, Mustapha honored Black History Month by sharing what the celebration means to her. "It means everything to me," she expressed. "I think as a Black woman like, I think Black people should be celebrated every single day of the year."
As for the creators she looks up to in the industry? "I really, really admire Issa Rae and Regina King," Mustapha concluded. "I think the power of like, producing your own work and creating work with other people and making opportunities for yourself is so important and so empowering. Those are two women that I really look up to and I love their work."
All month long, E! News is honoring Black History Month and you can find more information here.
Fate: The Winx Saga is streaming now on Netflix.