All Articles Tagged "African-American actresses"
We know quality roles are hard to come by in Hollywood. We do, we really do. For black actors, you can multiply that reality times 100. So we don’t blame the actors that made our list. They choose to hone their craft, albeit under the limited scope of their typecasted roles. Hey, some actors are so grateful for the hefty paydays that they won’t fight too hard to go outside their comfort zone. In good fun, we’ve highlighted the actors who stay faithful to their types but who we hope to see in other roles (much bigger ones) before the year is over.
We love Jenifer Lewis but she’s played the feisty black mama 10 too many times. She’s so good at being comedic and sassy that producers obviously can’t get enough of her and choose to risk using an actress whose played the same role in so many other black films and television shows. I remember her best as Toni’s mom on Girlfriends and Tina Turner’s mother on What’s Love Got To Do With It. How could she tell on Tina to Ike like that!?
by Selam Aster
As much as we complain about Black actors being relegated to the sideline roles in major feature films, it’s interesting to see just how Black filmmakers do the same thing in their own films. Exhibit A: Jumping The Broom, directed by Salim Akil and produced by Tracey E. Edmonds, Elizabeth Hunter, T.D. Jakes, Glendon Palmer, and Curtis Wallace.
I know I’m late to the game but I recently watched this film about the family of a rich woman (Paula Patton) meeting her middle class fiance (Laz Alonso) and his family just days before their wedding. It’s a cliche setup for sure but what stuck with me after watching the movie was not the lack of a fresh comedic formula but the casting of Patton in the lead role.
Don’t get me wrong, this is not a personal attack on Patton. I’m sure she’s a lovely person who works hard for her roles. But let’s call it what it is. Jumping The Broom mirrored the same formula of so many Holllywood feature films in which white actors populate the lead roles and Black actors are thrown in to add flavor, jokes, comedic relief, from their minor roles. In this case, the side actors were the rest of the cast including the always-delightful Loretta Devine and the hilarious Mike Epps.
I’m not saying Patton is white, but she played that character like a straight up white girl. In fact, she could’ve easily been replaced by Tara Reid and no-one would probably have noticed if they just closed their eyes. Just because you’re playing well-to-do doesn’t mean you’re devoid of all of the natural sass and rhythmic intonations of a Black person.
(Rolling Out) — How did the concept of The Green Room come about? I started teaching classes in Atlanta a year ago. I was teaching from acting books I had accumulated from 15 years of living in Los Angeles. My students would ask, “where ccan I get this book?” And I could only send them online. There was no place in Atlanta for them to go and get it. I called Samuel French, that’s the name of the bookstore in Los Angeles, and asked them about opening up a Samuel French store in Atlanta. Through my conversations with them, it sparked the idea to open my own bookstore and to just distribute their books and then the coffee bar, lounge and all that came into play because that’s what I would like if I was going to hang out at a bookstore.
(Black Enterprise) — It can be difficult creating your own identity in Hollywood—especially when you’ve been known for so long as part of an explosive combination, T&T (that’s code for the bombastic wonder twinsTia & Tamera Mowry). But somehow, after 20 years in the showbiz and allowing America to watch them go from pubescent adolescents actresses on the 1994 sitcom Sister, Sister to 2010 with Lifetime’s Double Wedding, the Mowry sisters, 32, have managed to create their own paths together yet maintain their individuality. Now, the siblings have ventured into reality TV territory with their self-titled Style Network show Tia & Tamera (airing tonight at 9pm EST). Although only three episodes have aired sans the drama of cat fights, drink-tossing, messy public divorces and scandalous infidelities, the Tia and Tamera show, debuted with the highest-ratings in the history of the Style Network’s programming.