All Articles Tagged "Angela Bassett"
When it comes to arm inspiration, I look to women like celebrity trainer Jeanette Jenkins, First Lady Michelle Obama, and actress Regina King. But the set of arms that always make me want to do some curls on sight belong to Angela Bassett. Not only does she look fabulous at 57, but her body stays right and tight. When people say they have arm envy, it’s because Bassett has brought out the guns.
If you’re looking to get arms like Bassett or any of the other sheroes mentioned above, here are five exercises that will help you blast the fat, shake the flab and tighten and tone those arms. Trust me, it works!
Medicine Ball Push Ups
This is no joke, and will have your arms burning. But the results will be evident sooner than later if you keep up with these push ups.
Start off in a standard push-up position, but put one hand on the ball. Lower your chest down and then press up. That’s one. As you come back up, roll the ball to the opposite hand and repeat. Do three sets of 10 to really feel the burn.
Lunge Medicine Ball Slams
Want to work both your arms and legs (and butt)? Lunge medicine ball slams are the way to go. Get in a lunging position. Move one foot to the front, the other to the back. Initially, stand up straight as you lift a medium-sized medicine ball above your head, keeping it in front of your face (not pulling it behind), and then slam it down. Three sets of 10, switching legs, will really get the muscles working in your arms and legs.
Hit the floor! Place your hands on a pair of dumbbells and get your body in a plank position. Keep your back down and your body in a straight line, arms completely straight with your hands right below your shoulders. Contract your core and one at a time, lift one dumbbell up, pulling your elbow up high and squeezing your shoulder blade. Bring the dumbbell back down and repeat on the opposite side. That’s one set.
Now this one is quite terrible, but it’s totally worth it! Get in the traditional plank position on your hands. One hand at a time go down to your elbows and then push yourself back up into the original plank position. Contract your abs throughout and keep your body in a straight line. No rounded back!
One-Hand Kettlebell Swing
Bend low, but keep your back flat and your shins vertical. Focus your weight in your heels. It’s not meant to be a full squat; you should just be hinged over. When you’re ready, grab a kettlebell of a reasonable weight you can lift. At least a size 10 bell. Lift your bell up high, flip it around your wrist lightly, and lift it completely above your head. Three sets of 10 on each side will have your arms on fleek in no time!
With Kim Kardashian contemplating surrogacy we took a quick look at fifteen celebrities who have used surrogates and are quite happy that they did. We salute them and their ability to make their family happen by any means possible!
Al images courtesy of WENN
15 Celebrities Who Have Used Surrogates
This post featuring some of the most charitable celebrity moms in Hollywood and beyond will certainly warm your heart and possibly get the wheels turning how you too can give back in 2015.
All images courtesy of WENN
Giving Back: 15 of The Most Charitable Celebrity Moms
Just because a whole lot of people of color weren’t nominated for Academy Awards this year, it certainly didn’t stop the party.
Every year, for the past six years, Alfre Woodard hosts the Oscars’s Sistah Soiree. And the name tells it all. Woodard invites Black actresses to gather together and celebrate their accomplishments throughout the years.
Variety reports that she started hosting this party because she was tired of feeling like there was so much competition and animosity between Black actresses.
During the cocktail party before the dinner, held at the Beverly Hills Wilshire, Woodard said: “Every time we hear each others’ names, it felt like it was on of our reps going, ‘If that b-tch turns it down, then you can have it! I was like, wait a minute. When I hear my sister’s names, I want to have a joyful feeling in my heart about it.”
During the party, sponsored by Elizabeth Taylor’s White Diamonds Lustre fragrance, Woodard struggled to find a quiet space to complete the interview.
“You see how loud it gets! It’s always like this, because all the women in this room have more in common with each other than anyone else in the professional world. We’ve all been on the same journey- we speak a common language.”
While I’m sure quite a few of us would have loved to be in that room, the invitees can’t even bring their significant others to the party. “From the first time, everyone just fell into each others’ arms. it was immediate bonding.”
The idea to host the gathering had been on her mind for years but 2009 just so happened to be the year both Viola Davis and Taraji P. Henson were nominated for Doubt and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. But she didn’t just want to honor the nominees.
“It’s to honor the women who are nominated and the women who, in a perfect world, should have been. I wasn’t going to have a gathering of women actors and not have CCH Pounder or Lorraine Toussaint here!”
The event also serves as a means to show support.
“We know the ones nominated will be out and (are) being celebrated. But when they’re on the carpet, when they’re walking onstage, there are people like them wishing them well. The women who know exactly what you’re doing, actors of quality, saying good on you. We got your back.”
British actresses Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Carmen Ejogo, who plays Coretta in Selma, shared a moment Ejogo was a support for Mbatha-Raw when she first moved to the United States for the short-lived television show “Undercovers.” Mbatha-Raw recalled feeling lost.
“I actually asked Carmen for advice.”
And Ejogo responded, “You clearly found your way, babe.”
Later, Ejogo for continued, expounding on her excitement for Mbatha-Raw and explaining how event like this “remind you we’re all in this together and we have to support each other. I feel like I’m celebrating everyone. It’s a wonderful moment.”
I cannot tell you how much I love these images!
An interesting element to Lifetime’s Whitney, which the storyline didn’t delve into too deeply, was the legendary singer’s relationship with lifelong friend Robyn Crawford. For years, there has been speculation that the two were a little more than friends. When addressed with questions about the nature of Crawford and Houston’s relationship, Whitney executive producer Angela Bassett insisted that she’s just as clueless about it as we are; however, she broached the subject with subtlety in the film, as the speculation was also part of the singer’s story.
“There always has been [rumors] and they still persist and I don’t know,” she told Entertainment Tonight. “But, there was always the speculation, so my thing was, let it remain. But it’d be however the audience sees it. If they read into it, that’s what they read into [regarding] their life – two women who are close and love each other and support one another.”
“I think what they had between them is a real, honest and fierce affection and caring for one another,” Bassett continued. “May we all have a friend who will fight for us.”
Apparently, she also wasn’t too interested in delving into Houston and Crawford’s relationship because the singer’s sexuality didn’t have much to do with the story that the production team sought to convey.
“[Whitney’s sexuality] really wasn’t that important,” Bassett said. “What was important to me was, they were good friends and they really cared about one another, and that’s a good thing. Now, whatever else you wanna read or tell or say–it’s good, it’s bad– it’s what you put on it.”
Interestingly, she shared that she’s no stranger to lesbian rumors, herself.
“Listen, it’s been said of me. I moved to LA and lived with a friend of mine who was an actress — I didn’t wanna live alone in this big town!” she laughed. “Then after a while there was speculation, and it was like, ‘Lord, let me get my own place!'”
Did the interactions between the twosome catch your attention while you were watching Whitney?
News that Lifetime and Angela Bassett would be collaborating on a biographical film about Whitney Houston was met with plenty of criticism and adversity. Considering that Angela knew the late singer personally, it had to be a pretty tough situation, especially since Whitney’s family was also against the project. Despite everything that was working against the actress-turned-executive-producer and her production team, Angela says that she eventually received a sign that told her she had Whitney’s blessing to move forward.
“Driving to work to the production office about 4-5 weeks before we started filming….we’re trying to get everything together with everyone who’s going to be filming with you,” the beauty explained during an appearance on “Live with Kelly and Michael.” “So I’m driving off the exit and her song immediately comes on. It comes on every day on the radio but it comes on at the exit. Traffic slows down and I see this huge bus passes by and on the back of it, I see this huge writing saying ‘WH’ and it’s in her favorite color, which is purple, which I read in her mother’s book. With her music playing, I see her initials, in her favorite color. I have trepidation, how will this play out in the end.”
Angela went on to say that the revelation made her quite emotional.
“We all have great hopes in the beginning. I just started crying–I’m glad I was at the exit because I couldn’t see–I was laughing like, ‘Okay girl, I hear you, I feel you, thank you, I know it’s going to be okay and it’s going to work out.’”
During another appearance on “Good Morning America,” Angela also opened up about how the time that she spent with the late singer on the set of Waiting to Exhale prepared her to take on this project.
“I was fortunate to be able to work with Whitney on ‘Waiting to Exhale’ and before I met her I was enthralled by her, by her gift, by her talent, but to work with her, be able to tell her that… to be able to observe her, work around her, observe her generosity, her regularness, her joy, her easy laughter…I thought that maybe that moment just prepared me or gave me insight to be able to tell part of her story.”
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“She Was Good To Me And I Tried To Be Good To Her.” Angela Bassett Talks Directing The “Whitney” Biopic
It seems like we’ve been waiting for quite some time for the Whitney Houston biopic to air. We have just about a week to go. And in anticipation of the biopic’s premiere, we spoke with the film’s director and Houston’s ‘Waiting to Exhale’ co-star, Angela Bassett. During our conversation, Bassett spoke passionately about everything, including what she learned working with Houston, not having the family’s support, why she felt this was the right story to tell and Whitney’s overall greatness.
How did you get involved with this project?
The executive producer Larry Sanitsky– we had done Betty and Coretta —we were having lunch and you finally get to ‘What are you working on?’ And he told me he was working on Whitney and looking for a director. And [asked] did I have any suggestions for him. And I was so excited about that. I remember two years previous, I was just disgusted to hear that they were discussing making a movie about her because she had just passed and it was just so heartbreaking. And I remember thinking, ‘Please, please. We just need time, time, time. I know we tell stories in Hollywood but you need time to get there.
So with the passage of two years I said, ‘I know someone will tell a beautiful story about this wonderful girl and I wish I could direct it. But I haven’t directed anything and, as you say, a lot of music is involved and that would be a big thing. That must be like shooting a sports movie, like shooting a concert. And so I tried to come up with some names for him later but he heard just the wishful phrase, “I wish I could direct it.” And I didn’t think he would do anything with that. That wasn’t my intention. Then he went away, did what he had to do, came back, called me. And I thought he was calling to say he’d found a director or did I want to go to this art dinner show and he said, “Would you be interested in directing it because you can. You wanna do it?”
From the moment that everyone heard about Lifetime’s plans to make a movie on Whitney Houston’s life, it has been well-known that Cissy Houston, Bobbi Kristina, and most of Whitney’s family, haven’t been enthused about the idea — even if Angela Bassett is at the helm. Last summer, Cissy Houston spoke out against it:
“In the two years since Whitney’s death [in 2012], many people have stepped forward to speak about their close relationship with her. I find it difficult to believe people who knew and supposedly loved her would participate in a movie about her done by folks who didn’t know her. We are exhausted by the continuing misinformation and comments offered by people who did not know her. Please please let her rest.”
But despite such strong opinions against the movie from Cissy (and you know Bobbi Kristina acted a fool about the whole thing), Bassett still tried to reach out to members of the family so that they could be involved with it. Once they were finished filming, it was important for Bassett to have someone from Houston’s family view the biopic so that word could be spread throughout the family about it. So she contacted Dionne Warwick, the cousin of the late star. As Bassett told TheWrap during a screening in Beverly Hills on Tuesday:
“Well, I’ve spoken to Dionne. I was able to show it to her because I want Miss Cissy to see it.”
So Bassett screened the film for Warwick, and thankfully, the outcome was positive enough.
“This is their heart, so we don’t play with folks’ hearts. I was able to show Dionne, and it went very well. She appreciated it. So, now she can go and report to their auntie that we honored her.”
And even if Cissy isn’t a fan of it, or chooses to never watch the movie, Bassett says she doesn’t regret making it, especially since she says that she felt Whitney’s presence with her during filming.
“Never did I think, ‘I shouldn’t have done this.’ There might have been moments where you say, ‘How’s it going to come together? Will people receive it positively?’ But I really felt her presence, and I knew it would be OK.” Her spirit was with us.”
You can judge the film for yourself when it premieres on Lifetime next Saturday, at 8 p.m.
These famous people didn’t get caught up in the glare of being famous and made their own backup plans in terms of attaining a higher education. Top contenders include Shaq with a Ph.D in Education, Author Hill Harper with a juris doctorate from Harvard Law School and Lupita Nyong’o who has a master of fine arts from the Yale School of Drama.