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Rhianne Barreto’s Ethnicity Almost Stopped Her Career Before It Even Began

Himal Ale Magar


Often mistaken for Rihanna, Rhianne Barreto’s acting career unofficially began when she was still in grad school. She volunteered to step up to a role when one of the actors backed out of their part.

Rhianne was born and raised alongside her eight siblings by her parents. Her mother, Tracey Barreto, is a British citizen, whereas her father, Ransey Barreto, is an Indian Portuguese born in Iraq.

Rhianne Barreto’s Unforgettable Experience Early In Her Career

As a child, Rhianne had only visited the United States once to visit her aunt, who lived in Arizona. She was the second oldest among her siblings and had always shown interest in acting from an early age.

When she landed the role of Mandy in the feature film Share in 2016, Rhianne was excited to make her first professional debut in her career. She relived the experience over an interview with The Last Magazine.

After she got the role, she applied for her visa but was rejected by American Embassy. She recalled it was on January 2017 during the United States’ Muslim ban.

Rhianne said the woman in the embassy did not believe her when she said she was born in England to British citizens.

Rhianne Barreto With Her Sister [Photo: Instagram]

However, despite numerous efforts, she was refused, and Rhianne believed she could not make it.

But, to her surprise, Pippa Bianco, the director of the movie, called Rhianne and told her they were moving to Canada for the filming.

Although everything worked out in the end, Rhianne’s refusal at the embassy was painful. Regarding the incident, she said, “As an actor, I have to use the things that happen in my life to empathize.”

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Rhianne Barreto’s Early Upbringing And Passion For Theater

The British actor got into his first role in a school play at the age of ten. The admirer of Shakespeare and theater plays went on to study at London’s National Youth Theatre.

Eventually, she would attend the prestigious Brit School, and as she described to The Face, ​”and the rest of my life has been this film… either preparing for it, making it, or doing press for it.”

After graduating from school, Rhianne was selected to perform on a show at Trafalgar Studios. The aspiring actress then acted in a recurring role on the CBBC web series Dixi.

Rhianne Barreto [Photo: Instagram]

She then went on to play Sophie, the best friend of Hanna, on the Amazon Prime series Hanna.

Besides, regarding her love for theater, the actress expressed,

“I like that there are no rules. I don’t believe in blocking too much. There’s a level of blocking you have to do, but to be an actor free on stage, to just follow an instinct without worrying about hitting a mark or a camera or a person, there’s such a freedom in that. That to me is so exciting. I feel like I can do that.”

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Rhianne Barreto| Screen Star Of Tomorrow

In 2018, Screen International revealed some of the hottest upcoming filmmakers and actors in the UK and Ireland. The annual showcase was established to identify talents, both behind and in front of the camera.

Among the list of actors, Rhianne Barreto was also named one of the Screen International Stars of Tomorrow. The breakout role that put her in the limelight was the movie Share.

Rhianne Barreto With Her Friends [Photo: Instagram]

In the movie, Rhianne plays a 16-year-old girl who is on an emotional journey of retribution. The actress offered a conspicuously modern performance as she projected someone caught up in a hostile world.

Ultimately, she won the Breakthrough performance award at Sundance Film Festival for her performance.

More recently, the British actress worked on movies like Fright Bites, Honour, and the Paramount+ series No Escape.