All Articles Tagged "acting"
“I couldn’t walk away from it, it really wouldn’t rest. I’d watch TV and I saw people doing plays and I thought, ‘Wow why does this affect me so much?’ I had to go back to it,” said Tiffany E. Green, an up-and-coming actress and businesswoman.
Green’s proudest claim to fame is her appearance in the 2012 romantic-comedy drama Silver Linings Playbook. The role of Tanya (Chris Tucker’s girlfriend) turned out to be non-speaking. Still, Green is proud to have nabbed a role in a major film —especially since she recently recommitted to making it as an actress.
“You never know what’s going to make it when they go into the editing room. I felt good seeing myself in the film. I felt good when it went off and the credits came up — and also because it’s an Oscar-nominated film,” Green told MadameNoire via phone. “It was the first time I was on the set of a feature film with this caliber of actors. I was excited and after a while I felt like that’s where I needed to be. It wasn’t a major role, but at the time I had only been doing this for a year and it gave me confidence.”
It’s been more than ten years since Green decided that she wanted to be an actress. In 1999, she began taking classes and getting involved with community theater productions. When things in the performance arena didn’t pick up as planned, she opted to pursue an alternative passion. Green swapped out community theater for community college where she studied fashion merchandising.
Making It Behind-the-Scenes
“Through acting I realized I was into styling and wardrobe,” said Green. Though her goal was to appear on the big screen, she began working behind-the-scenes on independent films. Green then began making her own clothing and started networking with stylists in other areas of entertainment.
Lending her fashion expertise and pieces, Green landed jobs styling MTV and BET commercials in addition to BET’s annual fashion special Rip the Runway. Green also contributed to styling entertainers like Vivica A. Fox, Alicia Keys and Keyshia Cole.
“Once you build relationships with different stylists, they use your garments, then other people hear about it. It picked up so fast and suddenly I wasn’t able to pursue acting,” she said. “When I was doing it I lost the love for fashion, because there was something else that I really wanted to do — and that was acting.”
Green’s stint in fashion and entertainment lasted for about six years. When she moved back to her hometown of Philadelphia, Green decided to seriously go after an acting career. She again focused on attending workshops and acting seminars to strengthen her craft.
Getting Back Into Acting
“This is a tough business, it’s very competitive. There’s a lot of rejection and you’re constantly faced with tough decisions. It’s definitely not an easy career to follow,” said Green who’s thankful that the industry’s definition of talent carries flexibility.
“It’s not always based on how great you are. You just have to have the tools to understand why some make it and why some don’t. You just have to stay focused. I’m in Philadelphia, closer to New York so the tone is a little bit different. Hollywood is a whole different ball game,” she added.
Luckily, shortly after making a visit to a local casting agency, she was offered a part in Silver Linings Playbook. The movie happened to be filming in Philadelphia.
“You never know when opportunity awaits and you have to be prepared. There’s a saying, ‘If you stay ready, you never have to get ready’ — and I live by that,” said Green.
Well, this is actually a bit of a surprise.
As she continues to make her mark in Hollywood, Nene Leakes has hit a bit of a stumbling block: NBC has decided to cancel The New Normal after just once season. Nene has been part of the cast from the beginning.
This does come as a bit of a shock because not only had it received critical and fan acclaim, it wasn’t doing horribly in terms of ratings. The Huffington Post reports that while ratings did consistently drop, they maintained about 3.39 million viewers. Yes, it debuted to more than six million viewers but new shows almost always hit highs and lows.
Leakes played Rocky Rhoades, a former production assistant of one of the main characters, as well as all her family members when they popped up on the show.
While she is most likely very disappointed, Nene kept it very professional by tweeting:
That’s right Nene, say all the right things because we know she’s a hustler and her next opportunity might be right around the corner.
For now, she still has her recurring role as “Coach Roz” on Fox’s Glee which has been renewed for another two seasons. We don’ t know if her character will be around that long but she can ride it until the wheels fall off. Plus, we know she isn’t going anywhere as HWIC (Head Wife In Charge) on Real Housewives of Atlanta.
Good luck to Nene and the entire cast as they make their next moves!
It looks one of our favorite singers turned actress is going to be very busy in 2013.
Jill Scott, aka Jilly from Philly, is set to c-star in the CBS pilot Second Sight, According to EURweb. The show will likely premiere in the fall.
Second Sight will center around Detective Ross Tanner (played by Jason Lee) who tries to hide the fact that he has an ocular disease that causes him to have hallucinations. But when he tries to catch a serial killer, he realizes that it’ll take his eyesight just as much as his experience as a cop to find him.
Scott will play Dr. Callier, the specialist who treats his disease.
Second Sight will also star Derek Luke, cast as Det. Paul Giroux, an overeager cop who is part of Tanner’s team. He may or may not know about Tanner’s disease but either way, he wants his job.
Jill Scott is going to be pretty busy this year. In addition to this latest announcement, she’s also in the upcoming film Baggage Claim and she’ll be a performer at the 2013 Essence Festival. Want more? Jill also casually mentioned on Twitter that she’ll be releasing two albums this year. Whew!
As for the Second Sight, CBS isn’t known for keeping an audience’s attention, especially black viewers, so we’ll see how this goes!
Does this sound like something you’d watch?
Goodbye Idris Elba, hello DJ Driis.
That’s right, Idris Elba is officially taking a break from Hollywood. The Luther actor told The Daily Mirror, a UK newspaper, that he’s taking a break from acting to focus on his other baby: music. According to Black America Web, he told them:
“This year I’m not going to work as an actor so I can concentrate on music. I do it from the heart, not for the money.”
Well great, good for him. But what about those who love to see him on the big and small screens? One one hand, you’ve got to respect that the man is going to use his fame and opportunities to do things that are important to him. But on the other hand, we like his look- excuse me, his acting.
If you’re not familiar with “DJ Driis,” you might avtually be in for a treat. He’s compiled mixtapes in the past, hosts others’ mixtapes and he, obviously, deejays. Right now, he’s in London doing a seven week residency at one of their popular clubs. He also directed Mumford & Sons’ “Love of the Light” video. Elba also made his own musical debut in his own video for “Private Garden” back in 2011.
So yes, his track record in the music industry has been pretty good and steady so we’ll see what he does next.
But don’t worry, according to IMDB, we might get to see him on the screen after-all: he has three movies in post-production that should hit the screen. So maybe he’s just not filming anything new – we can accept that. Maybe once he’s ready to get back to work, that James Bond role will be waiting for him.
Are you going to be checking for DJ Driis?
Showtime’s hit series House of Lies has earned much attention since it debuted in 2012. Now in its second season, the clever comedy about an over-the-top consultant, played by Best Comedy Actor Golden Globe winner Don Cheadle, continues to up the ante with guest stars. Nia Long is among the selected actors to appear on the series this season and we hear her upcoming episode may raise some eyebrows.
Nia talks about her character, Tamara:
“The very first time you meet her, she talks about how she’s been out of the game raising children. She’s a wife. And coming back into the game she wants to have some sort of integrity for herself. When you look at the characters on House of Lies, they are all very twisted. They are not what they seem. They’re back stabbing. They’re just ugly people, not nice people. They go for theirs. I think Tamara’s approach to things isn’t that way. She has a different way of getting what she wants.”
On what it’s like working with Don Cheadle:
AH-MAZ-ING! He is probably my new favorite person right now. At first I was so intimidated and nervous and I never get that way. I don’t know what it was about him. I don’t know what it was that made me feel that way. I think it was me coming on to a show that’s already established. I’ve seen almost everything he’s done. I’ve always wanted to work with him. I really like him because he stays under the radar and does great work. He doesn’t care about the fanfare or the fame.
Don’t you just love her? It’ll be great to see her back to work. You can read the full interview on Essence.
Do you watch House of Lies?
Olivia Pope And The Depiction Of Multifaceted Womanhood: Why We Love Kerry Washington And Her Honest Portrayals Of Women
I haven’t heard this much criticism of a television character… ever. Kerry Washington’s role in the hit prime time drama Scandal as Olivia Pope, the boss yet internally conflicted “fixer”/mistress to the President of the United States has EVERYONE talking. And when I say “everyone” I do mean everyone. On Thursday nights at 10 pm EST, my Twitter timeline is rockin’ with Scandal hashtags by family, friends, politicians, athletes and actors alike, raving about the twists, the turns, the brilliant writing, the fashion, the flashbacks, the very different funky 70s soundtrack… Every aspect of the show seems to be something of a phenomenon, especially since it’s the first primetime drama with a black female lead role on a major network in years. Some of us see progression in that. Some of us see off-the-charts talent and entertainment.
Still, the show has its vehement critics. Those not unlike CBS, Atlanta reporter Mo Ivory who breaks down Washington’s role as “no different than Joseline from “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta” or Kim from “Real Housewives of Atlanta” – she just has more expensive clothes, a higher paying job and tighter security.”
I don’t agree or disagree with Ivory’s thoughts. I’ve been so focused on Washington’s accurate portrayal (no matter how messy) of just a WOMAN in general that I haven’t had the time to bust down a list of the horrible characteristics.
I watch Kerry beast through her performance as Olivia Pope every week and think to myself that I have NEVER seen such a consistent powerhouse performance in primetime, week after week. As Pope, Washington peels back the layers of a very human woman who can clean up anyone’s, EVERYONE’S mistakes and hiccups around her but is just barely holding together the steadily unfolding mess that is her own life. I don’t see a black woman who is a mistress when I watch Olivia Pope. I see a woman in general who has issues just like the rest of the world and is trying to get clarity and peace of mind in the midst of a crap storm of confrontation and seemingly buried secrets. Kerry Washington executes the human-ness of the role flawlessly. That’s what I’m tuned in for.
Is she playing a mistress? Yes. I know, I know. That sets black women back hundreds of years and blah blah blah. I don’t agree with all that simply because for years, blacks have had to fight with screenwriters and directors and producers to allow us to be human beings on screen. Not caricatures. Not trumped up stereotypes. Not ALWAYS Mammys and drivers or harlots and drug dealers. Just everyday, normal human beings, whatever that entails. For this particular role, Kerry Washington unfolds a woman’s struggle with loving someone she cannot wholly have, being strong for everyone else all the time, working almost ‘round the clock, trying to cover past mistakes with present goodwill. Who of us haven’t dealt with at least one of the above?! She plays a human being, people! She shows the multi-faceted womanhood that many of us try to deny by criticizing roles like this or even everyday people like this.
About a month or so ago during her interview with Oprah, Washington drew parallels between Olivia Pope and her character of “Broomhilda,” a slave woman in the deep south spaghetti western Django Unchained, which opened as a box office hit with very mixed reviews. She expressed that her goal as an actress is simply to honor humanity by telling these stories in as real a way as possible. Washington also stated that she felt honored to play both roles because it showed how far we had come as a nation. Her ability to be able to play such a multi-layered character like Olivia Pope essentially was an answer to her character Broomhilda’s prayers that one day that kind of freedom would be possible for a black woman. She talked about the timeline of black acting, citing that in the beginning, everything was stereotypical if you wanted to be a black actor. Then, there was the era of “black perfection” where all roles taken on by black actors had to be pristine, no flaws. Now, we live in an age where we are beginning to be allowed to simply be human. Flaws and all.
That idea struck a chord with me as I reviewed Washington’s body of work from Save The Last Dance to Django. She has always chosen roles that some might say have made black folks “look bad,” yet they offered an honest look into the lives of honest characters. And what is a serious actor if not an honest vessel?
During her acceptance speech at the 2012 Black Girls ROCK! event, Washington said, “I get to honor humanity. We are all valuable human beings and all our stories deserve to be told.”
We, as freethinking human beings need to stop being so quick to judge the black artist. What Kerry Washington and Viola Davis and countless other black actresses are doing is monumental if we change our outlook. We cannot whittle down the idea of black art only to what makes us feel comfortable. Was Viola Davis’s role as a 1960s maid too painful a memory for some of us? Is Olivia’s role as a mistress (no matter how classy and fierce) too telling of many a modern day reality for some of us? I see Washington as a brave soul for pushing through and bringing a truth to television that has long been airbrushed to ease internal tensions. I see Washington as an example of the versatility black women have not been allowed to exhibit for so long. The honesty we have not been able to speak on or to portray without feeling some sort of way. I celebrate her courage to honor humanity even in the face of such opposition. If we’re more fixated on the flaws of the character rather than the honesty those flaws bring to entertainment, perhaps we need to do a bit more soul-searching and a little less judging.
La Truly is a late-blooming Aries whose writing is powered by a lifetime of anecdotal proof that awkward can transform to awesome and fear can cast its crown before courage. La seeks to encourage thought, discussion and change among young women through her writing. Check out her blog: www.hersoulinc.com and Twitter: @AshleyLaTruly.
NEW YORK — Toni Braxton’s autistic son makes his acting debut in her new Lifetime movie, “Twist of Faith,” and could have had a bigger role, but the singer didn’t want to put too much pressure on him.
“He was supposed to play my son initially but by the time we worked out the shooting schedule, school had started,” Braxton said of 9-year-old Diezel. (She also has an 11-year-old named Denim.)
“Even though he’s considered high functioning right now, he wasn’t in the past, and that’s why I thought him carrying the movie and trying to do the movie and tutoring would have been too much for him,” the 45-year-old singer said.
See what part Diezel will play, plus Toni’s thoughts on working with her son on The Huffington Post.
You would think this would be obvious, but being an award winning musician does not automatically qualify you to suddenly become an actor. In fact, there really is no connection at all; but for some reason, these artists have fooled themselves into believing there is. Sure there are the few exceptions like Will Smith, who was able to cross over into acting without any acting training at all; but let’s be real, most musicians are NOT and will NEVER be Will Smith. Somehow, that didn’t stop them from trying. Here are 10 singers or rappers who tried their hand at acting… and failed:
Sure the autobiographical movie, Get Rich Or Die Tryin’ had something of an interesting story line, and some might say it was worth it just to see 50 cent’s booty alone; but when you actually look at more than 50 cent’s behind, he is a not so good actor. This was another case of “acting” like yourself…and even though the movie was about him, he still had a hard time making his own storyline seem convincing.
When you open the gates of conversation with Denzel Washington, there’s a chance he might say something that’ll make you say, “Well, alright now!”
During a recent trip to London to promote his most recent film, Flight, Denzel spoke with The Guardian about his role and how he got into the business. As they further discussed his character and his relationship with God, the reporter noted that it must be interesting to be a Christian actor (as Denzels says he is) living in a place like Hollywood. That clearly piqued his interest because he told the reporter he was confusing the glitz and glamour ( and bs) of Hollywood with the city of Los Angeles. He continued:
“But actually, even within the industry, I don’t have any actor friends. My friends are old friends. One’s an ex-music guy, the other’s a restaurant owner and the other’s an ex-pro ballplayer.”
That’s not even the good part. Here’s what he had to say about why he doesn’t have any actor friends:
“Because I don’t make friends! Maybe I’m not a butt-kisser, maybe I’m not a schmoozer. I’m not about to go to a party to try to get a job. And then when you have children, the other friends become other parents. We’d coach baseball or basketball. My wife and I were raised right. I don’t want movie-star friends. And being African American, there were no big movie stars to hang out with anyway, not when I was starting out, they were just the third guy from the back! For whatever reason, I never befriended any white actors.”
Listen, when you’re an actor’s actor and can transform yourself into any role given to you, it seems you are able to fully be yourself when you’re not working and everyone will just deal with it. He is not here for the shenanigans that he’s known since the 80s that the entertainment industry brings. He wants no parts of it and it clearly hasn’t bothered any directors because he’s held down a job since about 1983.
But Denzel knows that he’s major…right? I mean, the ladies have been loving him since…maybe A Soldier’s Story? Well, he doesn’t subscribe to the whole celebrity thing either:
“I’m a working actor! What’s a celebrity anyway? Paris Hilton’s a celebrity. I’m just a working actor.”
Indeed. I wonder will his daughter Olivia, who he took as his date to the Golden Globes Awards to seemingly introduce her to the other movers and shakers of the industry, have the same attitude if she reaches a certain level of success.
What do you think of Denzel’s comments?
Because it’s not enough that their marriage has been featured on reality television in some capacity for almost as long as they’ve been married, Toya and Memphitz are on their way back to a small screen near you.
That’s right, TMZ is reporting that Toya and her husband, Mickey (aka “Memphitz”) are in the process of filming a reality show pilot. According to sources, the working title is Mickey and Toya: The Wright Way and it’ll feature the couple attempting to start a new business while trying to keep their marriage together.
It appears Toya’s full-time job is now reality star. Many people already knew Toya as the ex-wife of rap star Lil Wayne (they also chare a child together, 14 year old Reginae). That title helped land her first reality show on BET, Tiny and Toya, in which she co-starred with rapper T.I.’s wife, Tameka “Tiny” Cottle. While the show was a success, it only last one season (allegedly due to Tiny’s husband’s “concerns”). Luckily for her, Toya’s reality star “power” was revealed and she was able to land her own show, Toya: A Family Affair, which also aired on BET and featured the ups and downs she went through with a family full of problems, raising her daughter, and eventually being married to Memphitz.
Toya and Mickey were married in 2011 and while they seem to be a nice couple, they’ve had a little “cloud” over their relationship for the past few months based on Mickey’s alleged past “issues.” In 2012, singer K. Michelle starred in VH1′s Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta and she alleged that Mickey was physically and verbally abusive during their business and personal relationship. Mickey denied all the allegations and Toya stood by her man.
Sources say the show is being shopped to BET, MTV, Oxygen and FUSE but if history is any indication, we know where it’ll land.
Will you be watching?