SHE HATE ME star Kerry Washington had to fight for the role of blind ALICIA in upcoming comic book action movie THE Fantastic Four because the part wasn't written for an African-American.

The actress, who also plays Ray Charles' wife DELLA BEA ROBINSON in upcoming biopic RAY, has been a lifelong fan of the Fantastic Four and was desperate to land a part in the movie adaptation.

She says, "I play Alicia, and she is the blind girl that is in love with The Thing. In the comic book, during the 1970s and 1980s, she's sort of intuitive and always knows they're in trouble, but she's just this wonderfully, heartwarming kind person who adores this deformed rock-like man.

"I had to fight for the role because, in the comic book, she's not African-American. She has always been blonde-haired and blue-eyed.

"The studio was really willing to go with us on this one. I'm really excited to be doing it. I've signed for sequels and all of that, so it's pretty exciting."

19/10/2004 09:23