All Articles Tagged "countess vaughn"
“It’s Crazy Because People Like Kim Kardashian—She’s A Mother:” Countess Vaughn Responds To Body Critics Who Took Issue With Her Racy Photo
Earlier this week, we told you that “Hollywood Divas” star Countess Vaughn came under fire for some racy Instagram photos that she posted to show off her weight loss progress. One photo in particular, in which the actress poses in a top and thong, received the most attention. Apparently, fans found it to be inappropriate. We were recently able to catch up with Countess, who says that she’s not really fazed by her critics.
MN: You received quite a bit of negative attention after you posted a pretty intimate photo of yourself on Instagram.
I don’t mind. I don’t care. Just like I stated on there, it’s just self-love. I can understand that people don’t like it. It’s okay. I know everybody doesn’t love me and I can deal with that. That’s just the nature of people. People are going to react however they want to react and I embrace it—whether it’s good or bad. So you know, I know what’s up. I don’t trip about it because at the end of the day, it’s about me loving on me and understanding that this is where I’m at right now and I feel beautiful. If that bothers somebody then I’m sorry it does, but this is where I’m at. I’m about self-love. You can state how you feel about it.
MN: Of course, people tend to take things to extremes. What do you say to those people?
Don’t try to hurt me, now. When it gets to the point when you say you want to meet me out in the streets and hurt me over a picture, well that’s not what I’m about. It’s self-love. I love myself.
MN: Why do you think people were so openly critical?
It’s crazy because people like Kim Kardashian—she’s a mother—she can go and show a picture with no problem, but I guess it was just too much booty, honey. Some cheeks they can’t handle and I guess mine was doing too much. It’s okay, I’m standing up for those girls who look like me. They want to see themselves so, at the end of the day, that’s what I’m all about. There’s a market for girls who look just like me and that’s who I’m entertaining and that’s that. There’s nothing wrong with us loving our bodies. It doesn’t start at size 8. You don’t get down to a size 8 and say, ‘Okay, I can love me now.’ You have got to love yourself wherever you’re at.
MN: Did you lose some of the weight naturally, or was it primarily from the procedures you had done?
On the show I went through the process of getting work done. If you watch the show ‘Hollywood Divas’ you will see that I had work done. I wasn’t secretive about it. I wasn’t one of those people who said you know, ‘Yeah, I worked out and I did this and I did that.’ I was very straight up and said that I wanted a mommy makeover. This isn’t for everybody. I understand that, but you know, after the second baby it’s a little harder. I just needed a jumpstart.
MN: Was reality TV what you expected it to be?
Yeah, you basically know what you’re getting into and you have a responsibility to prove to yourself. People are watching you, so if it’s coming out of your mouth and you are saying it, then it’s on your heart. You have to really be in tune with that. It’s a big responsibility of what your personality is. If you are a mean person, that’s what’s going to come out. If you are laid back, that’s going to come out too. People will get that real idea of who you are.
MN: Will you be returning to “Hollywood Divas” next season?
Definitely. I have some other projects as well.
MN: Can you tell us about any of them?
I’m not the type of person who puts things out there. I don’t want to jinx it. I like for you to see me come out there and see what I do next.
“This Is Unnecessary”: Countess Vaughn Shows Off Weight Loss, And A Lot Of Skin, And Gets Criticized For It
If you watched the first season of “Hollywood Divas,” you probably know that Countess Vaughn wanted to get some work done to get her body back after having kids and struggling to control her weight. That interest was often criticized by her castmates, who felt like she needed to learn to love herself the way she is. Specifically, Golden Brooks was the most critical, telling her she needed to work on her self-esteem before considering another surgical procedure (side note: Vaughn also had a fat transfer to her butt years ago), something people, including Vaughn, took as being a little judgmental:
“…if you feel doubtful and scared on the inside, then it may all come back. I get being insecure. But before going under the knife, can we change your diet? I want Countess to look at being healthy and not doing the quick fix. Let’s go jogging, let’s juice. I think it’s coming across that she’s taking it the wrong way. I think it’s important for black women to know about organic eating, exercising, even some therapy. Fix yourself from the inside out.”
Well, Vaughn has indeed fixed herself. And while she hasn’t confirmed whether or not it was through a tummy tuck and liposuction or hard work, she’s celebrating her new figure on Instagram. Two days ago she posted a picture of her changing body.
And while she’s excited to be getting more slim and trim, some of her followers didn’t understand why she would literally post a picture of her ass for the world to see:
“This is unnecessary. Really?! smh”
“You don’t have to post half naked pics. We’re about the same size. I post plain pics to let ppl know I love MYSELF body included.”
“Omg is she serious. When will we learn smdh”
But many defended and supported Vaughn, which she appreciated.
“Thank you for your understanding. That i was bored and having fun with my phone.”
I wouldn’t have done all of this, but when you’re feeling yourself and proud…it’s a photoshoot!
Anywho, check out more images of Vaughn’s changing look below:
“I Had To Do Something About It”: Countess Vaughn Reveals She Had An Abortion So She Could Do “The Parkers”
On this week’s episode of “Hollywood Divas,” Countess Vaughn revealed the extent of what she had been through in the past that while trying to make it in Hollywood. During a therapy session, Vaughn stated that she found herself pregnant around the age of 18 when she was beginning work on “The Parkers.” While Vaughn shined on “Moesha,” “The Parkers” was to be something she would star in, front and center, and that was a big deal for her. She worried that if she went through with the pregnancy, she was going to lose her big opportunity. With that in mind, she revealed that she decided to abort the baby.
“They didn’t want to see a pregnant girl up there on TV…I knew it wasn’t a good look. I had to do something about it. I had to make a decision to get rid of the child for my career because I knew from the jump that if I let any of them know what was going on, they would have cancelled my show.”
Vaughn spoke about this time in her life a bit further on the post-show blog:
I don’t know if Hollywood has changed. When I was young, we didn’t have shows like “16 and Pregnant,” we didn’t have anything saying “yes, you can be a mother and successful.” My role models were Janet Jackson and Halle Berry who didn’t want marriage to ruin their careers. Really, I was forced by fear. The fear of wanting to do the right thing or what I thought was the right thing at the time. My maturity wasn’t there. The way I handled the situation showed that by not talking to anyone and taking matters in my own hands that I just wasn’t ready. But having a show and having money doesn’t make you ready to be a parent, either.
Vaughn also talked about dealing with other tough times in Hollywood, including being made fun of as a child star during her stint on “227.” Unfortunately, the taunts, which were done behind her back, came from an elder adult who worked on the show:
Being a child on the set, I was bored running, through the hallways and I heard a conversation I shouldn’t have heard. I kept that conversation in the back of my mind, like “is that what people really think at the end of the day.” Especially at that age, it was traumatic. To have someone smile in your face and later . . . especially being an elder who had those views of me. But I kept it to myself.
Now, I’m trying to get away from victimhood. I want to shed the energy — to get over it. I really wanted this therapy regardless if it was on TV or not, it didn’t matter. I want to be a better person and this was an opportunity to knock my thoughts off someone else. I’m not a victim, I love myself.
She told Us Weekly that while it was hard to reveal all these things, she needed to release it all:
“I really needed it to release all that I’ve been carrying all this time. I’ve beat myself up for so long about it, and I just felt like, ‘You know what girl, you’ve got to tell somebody.’ Even though the world will know, hey, that’s just me. I like to keep it real at all times. While it was being shot, I really didn’t notice the cameras being there. I was really there for help.”
Vaughn is a mother of two children: Sasha, 5, and Jaylyn, 11. You can check out Vaughn’s therapy session for yourself, and share your thoughts below:
I thought I had really sworn off ratchet reality TV, but something about seeing famous (or in some cases, semi-famous) Black women come together to create something piqued my interest enough to make me tune into “Hollywood Divas.” Featuring Paula Jai Parker, Golden Brooks, Countess Vaughn, Elise Neal and Lisa Wu, “Hollywood Divas” is a close sister-friend of “R&B Divas.” What I mean by that is, has-been or struggling celebrities of a certain craft come together to become relevant again, constantly listing their credits to validate their current staked claim (READ: struggle).
I’m not sure if I was wrong for expecting a bit more (this IS reality tv), but I was all kinds of confused and disappointed by the rollout of the episodes and the catty/shady behavior of the women on-screen. In my mind, if I’m a struggling actress trying to get my name on somebody’s marquee or credits, I’d come into a collaborative situation with my game face on and my pettiness tucked clean away.
These women don’t think like I do, apparently.
The first two episodes jumped off with tears, fake high-pitched greetings, half-hugs, shade and catty backhanded compliments. One thing that struck me in particular as crazy with a capital C is the fact that Golden Brooks, best known for her role as ‘Maya Wilkes’ on Mara Brock Akil’s groundbreaking show “Girlfriends,” spent every waking moment shading reality stars and blaming them for the reason that “theater-trained” actors with a “certain pedigree” couldn’t get work.
Um, you’re on a reality show now, boo.
She also stated that in order to get work nowadays, actors have to be active on social media with millions of followers. To say that I was annoyed and that I highly disagreed would be the understatement of the year. There are so many examples of actresses, BLACK actresses, who have made it – in RECENT years – based off of their talent and strategic choices in roles not their standing on social media.
Viola Davis, a newcomer to Twitter, gained acclaim because of her work in recent movies like The Help and now her incomparable work as the mysterious and driven Annalise Keating in ABC’s “How To Get Away With Murder.” Her Twitter followers are climbing, but it’s not because she’s so active online. It’s her talent.
Though she boasts 1.8 million followers on Twitter, Kerry Washington was on the map before she ever became active on social networks. Having masterfully portrayed Ray Charles’s wife, a former Black Panther, Kay Amin, a slave woman and now political pistol Olivia Pope, she has garnered a fanbase. This fanbase comes not because of selfies and tweets, but because she has put in the work and taken on roles that align with her values and trajectory.
“Soul Food” actress, Nicole Ari Parker, spoke candidly at last year’s Woman Thou Art Loosed “Girl Talk” segment about hearing a thousand nos before hearing the yes’ that have helped her have success.
The bitterness and jealousy seen within the first few episodes of this show has left a bad taste in my mouth, but I’m still hoping for the best. We, as Black women, already have it tough without blaming one another for what we lack. There is room for all of us to shine, we just have to get in where we fit in and be resilient.
I’m hoping “Hollywood Divas” will eventually showcase strengthened friendships, uplifting creative projects, and a positive answer to the portrayal of Black women, but I won’t hold my breath. However, it’s still early, so we shall see…
La Truly is a writer, higher education professional, and young women’s empowerment enthusiast. She mixes her interest in social and cultural issues with her life experiences to encourage thought, discussion and positive change among young Women of Color. Follow her on Twitter: @ashleylatruly and check out her site: www.ashleyjh.com.
“Create A Role For Yourself That Is Not The Maid!”Countess Vaughn Talks Transitioning From A Child Star To A Hollywood Diva
Notably known as Kim Parker, we saw Countess Vaughn grow into adulthood on “Moesha” and “The Parkers” and now we’ve finally gotten a chance to catch up on her life since then, thanks to the new reality show “Hollywood Divas.” MadameNoire got the chance to catch up with Countess at the Circle Of Sisters Expo in New York City and while we chatted she shared insight on how she’s maintained her self-esteem in a critical industry where the media and even her peers are critical of her (i.e. Golden Brooks calling her a whale in the second episode), as well as her advice on child stardom. Check her wisdom below!
What can fans expect to see from you on “Hollywood Divas”?
“Fans can expect to see the real from me. I’ve been out of Hollywood for a minute and the show gives me an opportunity to come back and play catch up in my life.”
What new projects have you been working on?
“I’ve been working on new music and fans can see me in an upcoming film. I will also debut a clothing and hair line. I want to be a woman that does it all. Viewers will get a window to see what it takes (the different stages) of me transitioning back into the industry.”
What advice would you give upcoming actresses who want to make it in the entertainment industry?
“It’s important for aspiring actresses to know themselves. If you want to be in this industry, you need to check it out first because it can weigh on your self-esteem, you know? What job do you go to where people are constantly judging you? It’s all about you being strong in your own skin. Most importantly, if you don’t like the auditions your agent is sending you to, you have to make opportunities for yourself. If your agent is always sending you out to audition to be the maid then you need to create a role for yourself that is not the maid!”
What’s the greatest lesson you’ve learned transitioning from a child to an adult actress?
“I’ve learned to not listen to what others have to say because it is not gospel.”
Now that reality shows have become a dime a dozen, it’s clear to see the folks who subject themselves to the over-the-top drama of this genre of television clearly do it for the money. But are the checks that good? If you ask Paula Jai Parker, we bet the actress would shout out a resounding yes. The “Friday” star is one of the cast members of the new TV One reality show “Hollywood Divas” and when we asked why she joined the series she said plainly that the show is the only reason she has a house and a car right now because no one else in Hollywood is checking for her.
Is that the case for fellow ’90s actress Countess and Vaughn and former “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star Lisa Wu? Check out what they had to say about joining the show, beef with current and past cast mates (like Brandy on “Moesha for Countess) and why no one watching “Hollywood Divas” should judge them. What do you think? Will you keep tuning in?
“Hollywood Divas” is premiering tonight on TV One at 10 p.m. ET. The show stars actresses who have struggled in the past few to several years with their careers and staying in the limelight: Golden Brooks, Countess Vaughn, Elise Neal and Paula Jai Parker. Also starring is reality star Lisa Wu who is sure to bring the drama. But MadameNoire feels as though there are more black actresses who can use “Hollywood Divas” as a platform to revive their careers — especially if the show branches out into other cities and future seasons.
Are you excited about the new TV One show “Hollywood Divas”? I haven’t seen Countess Vaughn in a while (aside from the time she was talking about deadly lace fronts), and I love me some Paula Jai Parker and Golden Brooks. Those ladies, as well as Elise Neal and Lisa Wu (kind of a random pick when put alongside these screen stars) make up “Hollywood Divas,” and they have some stories to tell.
When speaking on what we can all expect from the show, which premieres next month, Elise Neal spoke about the great cast and the fact that while it’s all love between them, they do have their fair share of conflict that they try to hash out:
“It’s always a little bit of conflict when it’s five women. I say this all the time on the show: I work with women. I do a show with Elise and Assorted Flavors, which is women, so I know that when you bring women together in a group it’s just because. Everybody’s gonna have a day. I try to roll with that and deal with it, but there’s personality differences and things like that.”
I’m personally excited about the show because I’ve already had the chance to see the first episode. Folks are going through a lot these days! You’ll see…
The show is being produced by Todd Tucker (yes, Kandi’s husband) and will launch on Wednesday, October 8 on TV One.
Sound like something you would want to see? Check out the first teaser of the ladies in all their fabulousness below.
And be sure to check out the full trailer here:
In March, we reported on Countess Vaughn and her unfortunate relationship with lace front wigs. While appearing on talk show The Doctors, she noted: “in 2004, my hairstylist introduced to lace-front wigs and I fell in love with them, immediately. Five years later the drama came in. The red flag was the oozing from my ears, forehead, the whole nape around my head. The puss had a horrible smell and it was painful. I let it go by for six months. What I did not realize, I had a bad reaction to the glue I used to apply the wig. My hair started to fall out.”
When Vaughn noticed the physical side effects of wearing lace front wigs, she stated:
“I went to the dermatologist but he did not let me know the long-term effects of the infection. I have skin discoloration and people assume I have vitiligo. I use makeup to cover up, especially the skin under my eyes. Skin came off of my ears. I draw in my hairline with an eye pencil. I had to go through this to teach my little one, ‘you have to love yourself before anyone else will.’ “
Vaughn’s appearance on The Doctors left fans startled, as her usually bubbly voice and personality seemed to have dimmed. However, she recently signed on to the cast of TV One’s Hollywood Divas and her transformation for the reality show has left us stunned! Yesterday on Instagram Vaughn showed off a few behind-the-scenes glam moments on the set of Hollywood Divas and we like what we see.
Click the next page to check out her new look!
A new Divas franchise is on the horizon with TV One announcing the launch of an actress spinoff to its popular R&B Divas franchise, titled Hollywood Divas. The show, currently in production in LA, will star Elise Neal (The Hughleys), Golden Brooks (Girlfriends), Paula Jai Parker (Hustle and Flow), Countess Vaughn (The Parkers) and Lisa Wu (Real Housewives of Atlanta). Can we say yes?!
According to a news release from the network, the one-hour reality series will follow these five ladies as they navigate life and attempt to stay relevant in the unpredictable entertainment industry. D’Angela Proctor, Senior Vice President of Programming and Production for TV One, said:
“TV One’s audience has a passion for programming that reveals the private stories behind the public lives of Black artists. The Hollywood Divas‘ willingness to share their experiences with inequality and obstacles when it comes to the Hollywood merry-go-round is the foundation of this series. How these women are personally affected by this phenomenon and how they individually handle the pressure, is where the Hollywood Diva stories begins.”
Even better than the announcement of this new show is news that the series will be added to TV One’s schedule in the fourth quarter of 2014 so we won’t have to wait long. Here’s a little background on the ladies to tide you over. Are you as excited about Hollywood Divas as we are??
Known for her starring roles in the television series KVille, Ant Farm, The Cape, The Hughleys, All of Us and TV One’s Belles, Elise Neal made her film debut in John Singleton’s Rosewood. Her other film credits include Scream 2, Money Talks and Love Ranch. Neal shines in her work in indie features including Restaurant, 1982, The Undershepherd, an ABFF best picture winner, and of course the powerhouse Oscar nominated Hustle and Flow, which also won the Sundance Audience Award.
Golden Brooks is best known for her portrayal of the character Maya Wilkes on the sitcom Girlfriends. She also directed an episode titled “Hustle & Dough,” and wrote a 2007 episode titled “Snap Back,” which featured guest star Erykah Badu. Brooks won the Black Reel Awards for the film Motives and also starred in Beauty Shop, Something New and the independent film The Inheritance. Most recently Brooks appeared on the CW series, Hart of Dixie.
Paula Jai Parker
Comedian Paula Jai Parker began her career on the FOX comedy program The Apollo Comedy Hour, filmed live at the legendary Apollo Theater. She left the show after one year to pursue a film career, taking memorable roles in the F. Gary Gray urban comedy Friday and earned a Cable ACE Award for her role in the HBO anthology presentation, Cosmic Slop. Parker returned to television for the WB television series The Wayans Bros. opposite Shawn and Marlon Wayans. Throughout the 1990s, she appeared in several short-lived shows, including The Weird Al Show and David E. Kelley’s Snoops. Between television projects, she appeared in a number of films, including the Million Man March docudrama Get on the Bus, Sprung, Why Do Fools Fall in Love, 30 Years to Lifeand She Hate Me. She has also voiced characters on the popular animated series The Proud Family.
Countess Vaughn began her performing career at the age of three singing at church. At age nine, she sang “I’ll Be There” to win the Star Search junior vocalist champion and overall junior champion. Vaughn started her acting career on 227, followed by roles in Thea, Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper and Roc. Outside of television, she performed in the off-Broadway musical Mama and I Want to Sing! Part 3. In 1998, Vaughn was honored with an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her performance in Moesha. In 1992, Vaughn released her first album, Countess, featuring a variety of songs, including dance music and R&B. The album’s lead single, a cover of James Brown’s “It’s A Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World,” charted in the top-100 of the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. She starred in (and also sang the theme song for) the UPN sitcom, The Parkers, from 1999 until the show ended in 2004. In 2011, Vaughn made her return to television on the BET sitcom Let’s Stay Together.
Lisa Wu shot to fame with her role on Bravo’s The Real Housewives of Atlanta. She owns her own real estate firm, Hartwell & Associates, a jewelry line called Wu Girls, a baby clothing line, Hart 2 Hart Baby, and juggles a budding acting, modeling and writing career. She recently wrapped production on First Impression, a film also starring Lamman Rucker and Lisa Arrindell Anderson, and is currently working on Atlanta Undercover.