All Articles Tagged "Gabrielle Union"
Gabrielle Union has a new job!
According to Entertainment Weekly, the actress will be providing the voice of Nala for Disney’s upcoming television movie, The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar.
James Earl Jones will reprise his role as Mufasa, and Ernie Sabella will do the same for his character, Pumbaa. Rafiki will be voiced by Khary Payton and Timon by Kevin Schon. Rob Lowe, Max Charles, Atticus Shaffer, and Sarah Hyland will also lend their voices to the film.
The movie will shadow Kion—Nala and Simba’s second-born son—and the rest of the Lion Guard, which is a task force of animals responsible for preserving the Pride Lands. The adorable film will be directed by Howy Parkins. It will also feature new music from Christopher Willis and Beau Beck.
The Lion Guard is set to premiere in November of 2015. A television series, which will be based on the film, will later follow the premiere in 2016.
Too stinking cute!
Gabrielle Union Dishes On Dwyane, Beauty Secrets And The Key To Success In Her Most Personal Interview Yet
Yesterday, Gabrielle Union stopped by Reddit to answer “absolutely anything” from her fans. And Gabby definitely delivered. She dished on everything, from how she and Dwyane Wade make it work to her hopes for a role on Empire. Check it out!
She’s fresh out of season two of “Being Mary Jane” and Gabrielle Union has already snagged another major role. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the beauty will be reuniting with Jamie Foxx in Sleepless Night. The action thriller is a remake of French movie Nuit Blanche.
Foxx has been cast to play a crooked cop who is forced to reclaim a bag of stolen drugs in order to save his son, who has been kidnapped by a ruthless crime boss. He is also tasked with dodging internal-affairs officers who are hot on his trail. Union has been cast to play the rogue cop’s ex-wife, who also assists in the rescue. The film is being produced by Open Road Films and directed by Baran bo Odar.
Union and Foxx have not headlined a film together since 2004 romantic comedy Breakin’ All The Rules. Speaking of Gabby, it is also being reported that she’s in final negotiations to appear in Keanu, a New Line Cinema comedy from Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele. Union will be playing Key’s wife, who wishes that her polite husband would become more assertive in and out of their marriage.
Sandra Bullock may be the World’s Most Beautiful Woman according to People’s 2015 list, but we’re super excited about the inclusion of some of our favorite brown girls in this year’s annual lineup. In a special online sneak peek of this yearly issue, People highlighted Laverne Cox, Gabrielle Union, and Miss Cookie herself, Taraji P. Henson, who are all on the list of 50 beauties. Eeek!
Mary Jane, a.k.a. Mrs. D Wade, is highlighted in a gorgeous black and white beach shot and lauded for being “not only talented and stunning but also hilarious and down-to-earth.” It should also be mentioned that she’s turning 43 this fall… jus’ sayin’.
Featured in a stunning floor-length formal gown, People said of Laverne Cox: “The actress has left a big impression on Hollywood (and America) in a very short amount of time. Cox’s skillful performance as Sophia on Orange Is the New Black and her work advocating for transgender women make her one of our boldest beauties yet.”
Taraji P. Henson
We couldn’t have said it better than People ourselves, who noted Taraji’s “captivating portrayal of Cookie has finally put Henson directly in the limelight, where she belongs,” adding that “The actress, who’s a longtime Hollywood veteran, never fails to charm us with her beauty and sharp wit.” Agreed!
People’s World’s Most Beautiful issue hits newsstands this Friday but you can check out the other ladies who made the sneak peek — including Ariana Grande, Vanessa Hudgens, Meghan Trainor and more — on People.com.
As of this winter and spring, primetime television from Tuesday through Thursday has belonged to three Black women: Gabrielle Union, Taraji P. Henson, and Kerry Washington. As of this week, Being Mary Jane, Empire, and Scandal are all number one in ratings during their collective time slots. That in itself is a huge compliment. Arguably three of our favorite and most popular actresses in films are dominating the small screen as well (How do they have time for this and movies?). Some may suggest that this is because the actresses have quite a following; but the truth is they’re all very good-or at least incredibly entertaining shows.
For each of these actresses it has been a long time coming before getting their just due. In homage to their
running dominance great performances, this week’s Throwback Thursday is dedicated to some of the films that helped establish and solidify these three women in Hollywood.
Films We Loved Before They Were Mary Jane, Cookie, and Olivia Pope
I like to believe that we are not the sum of our mistakes or past situations. But as women, I’ve realized that we are hard on each other and play forgiveness close to the chest. In particular, we’re not too keen on playing nice when it comes to women who have been “the other woman.” They are rarely able to have their slates wiped clean by judgmental people outside of their love triangle, and they often walk around with a permanent marking (figuratively speaking of course) to remind them of their past transgressions.
Even after delivering a great TED Talk last week on cyber-bullying, which she says she was one of the first people to deal with, Monica Lewinsky was still referred to as “trash” by commenters online. As one woman put it, “I cannot forgive what she had done to the family, and I have no sympathy for the shame she had received. She is not innocent, the people who were innocent and being hurt are the child and the wife.”
Even a Heather Wilhem, a writer for the Chicago Tribune, questioned people looking at Lewinsky as something of a “hero”:
“…what does it say about our culture that, in certain circles, Lewinsky is now elevated to a mythical ‘victim’ status, a prototype of ‘slut-shaming’ and potentially even a new feminist champion?”
Even if a woman who was “the other woman” becomes the celebrated mistress-turned-wife, her wrongdoing is rarely forgotten.
Alicia Keys has had two kids with Swizz Beatz. They are arguably one of music’s most adorable couples and have a relationship worth gushing over. But to this day, some women haven’t forgotten how she found her prince charming. If we let Keys tell it, her relationship with the producer began “long after” he separated from ex-wife, Mashonda Tifrere–but she was telling a different story.
The songstress is classy, stunning, and when she isn’t making our ears happy, she is warming hearts worldwide with her community service efforts. She has even found a way to make peace and be friendly with Tifrere! Because of that, you would think people would cut her some slack.
But not all women are so lucky.
Whether it’s a sly comment under the breath, a side-eye cast after complimenting a family picture, or outright calling a spade a spade, it seems that women struggle to forgive and forget with other women.
And while we shade these other women, the men are hardly ever a part of the conversation. What about Swizz Beatz’s involvement in his supposed affair with Keys? Or Dwyane Wade? Or even former President Bill Clinton?
Why do we give the cold shoulder to mistresses, yet we allow these men – who play an even bigger role in these situations – to get away with it?
It’s hard for women to start over with a cheating scandal in their past. But assuming that this is the one and only time something like this has happened, we shouldn’t put a woman down permanently for one misstep. If the situation is in the past and all parties are moving forward, why can’t we allow her to open a new chapter in the story of her life?
We are too hard on ourselves and should afford the next woman – who is deserving – a second chance, as we would all want. We will never know the full story behind the relationships and who played what role in them falling apart; for that reason alone, one relationship and the poor choices surrounding it should not be the defining factor of a woman’s life and how her story will be told.
I decided early on I did not like BET’s hit scripted drama, Being Mary Jane. More specifically, I took a glimpse at Mary Jane Paul, the show’s successful-but-conflicted main character, and I found her difficult to understand.
Mary Jane Paul is raw in a way that is painful to watch. MJ is scattered, showing flashes of brilliance and ugliness within the same exquisite frame. As viewers, we are not conditioned to see shards of glass in our heroines, only the reflection of an Ideal Black Woman. I could not see myself in Mary Jane’s struggles.
However, I recently read Roxane Gay’s excellent essay “Not Here to Make Friends,” from her book Bad Feminist, and it made me reconsider my visceral reaction to Being Mary Jane. Gay writes:
When women are unlikable, it becomes a point of obsession in critical conversations by professional and amateur critics alike. […] Why aren’t [these women] making themselves likable (and therefore acceptable) to polite society?
While Gay’s essay discussed the literary portrayal of women in general, Black women are especially not allowed to be unlikable. We tiptoe around the ever-present stereotype of an angry Black woman with an “attitude.” God forbid we do show a range of human emotions. Others will quickly remind us we are Black, female and fundamentally undesirable.
What does it mean when we can’t like Black women who are “beautifully flawed?”
Admittedly, I have struggled with dislike for other Black female characters like Scandal’s Olivia Pope and How to Get Away With Murder’s Annalise Keating. Each bad decision presents a lesson from which the character may not learn. I understand these women are not the fodder of PSA specials.
Still, I thought, it’s somewhat unsettling Black women on-screen cannot find a happy medium between “having it all” and “having nothing at all.” Real life seldom centers the happiness of Black women. Is it too much to ask to see it on television?
I consider this desire for Clair Huxtable clones a byproduct of using fictional characters as didactic props. Just like Karen White sang decades ago, “I’m not your superwoman,” MJ is not here to save Black women with one-sided “representation.” The most we can hope for is growth for her to save herself…or to realize she doesn’t need saving at all.
And maybe that’s what’s worth watching about Being Mary Jane and other shows with Black women who do not have it all together. We get to cheer on Black women being imperfectly human for once. If we cannot be raggedy in our fictitious lives, where else are we allowed such flexibility?
I do not have to see myself in Black women characters in order to appreciate a broader truth about Black womanhood. Their vulnerability yet reveals an underlying strength. And that is beautiful.
Ultimately, Mary Jane and other “unlikable” Black women characters pose the question: Who are we beyond the simple caricatures others make of us? We are complicated women. And we do not have to pretend to be anything less.
These Hollywood A-list actors took five and stepped behind the camera to produce and direct various films and TV projects. Get the scoop on what Gabrielle Union is up to, which critically acclaimed films where directed by Chris Rock and Denzel Washington and more!
Take Five: 15 Actors Turned Directors
Gabrielle Union says she and Dwayne Wade definitely have a prenuptial agreement, especially after the experience she had ending her first marriage in which her ex ended up pocketing a chunk of her earnings.
Union paid a visit to Access Hollywood yesterday to talk about Being Mary Jane, her beef with Charles Barkley and a few of the details behind her wedding and marriage to DWade.
When the topic turned to prenups, Union said she was all about them.
“In the first marriage, I lost a lot of money to someone who was not extra supportive,” Union starts, noting that this is a second marriage for both she and Wade. She says that she was the one learning the lines and showing up on set. And when it was time to end the marriage, the financial part made the love seem very “conditional.” She never wants to feel that way again, and doesn’t want her partner to either.
“So let’s just take that off the table. I got my stuff, you got your stuff. I got my career, you got your career. And let’s just build something together,” she says.
For more click on the video above. And below, an IG of the couple posted just this morning, showing off a little Prada action.
Like many of us, the death of Whitney Houston shook Gabrielle Union. But it also taught her an important life lesson. In a recent interview, that’s being circulated by the Associated Press, Union said, “It just kind of made everyone say, ‘What do you want your legacy to be?’ And I really doubled down on ‘I only want to do things that I care about, that mean something.”
And by things that mean something, she meant she wanted to portray characters with depth.
“So, no, I don’t want to play perfect characters that are wholesome role models…and have all the right answers.”
And if you’ve ever seen just ten minutes of “Being Mary Jane,” you know her character is messy as hell and rarely makes the right decision.
But, I would be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy watching her mess. I consistently holler at the screen; but at the end of the day I know quite a few women are battling those same issues, in less dramatic ways.
And Union said that she happens to love playing a character that messy.
“Within one scene I could be, you know, showing a bunch of different colors, and I’ve never been challenged like this. I’ve never been this gratified with my work. Ever.”
That has to be a great feeling.
“I don’t want to play perfect characters that are wholesome role models and everything to everyone and have all the right answers and who can get out of a terrorist cell with their bra,” she laughed, referring to a recent episode of ABC’s “Scandal.”
Union said on the day Whitney passed, she was in a meeting with Salim Akil, the executive producer for “Being Mary Jane” and his team. Akil had also directed Houston in Sparkle.
“They had just done ‘Sparkle’ with her. … and there were so many people in that room and we were having this great conversation about basically my career going this great direction with this great character. … and you see this other light just literally go out and you see … everyone’s looking at their phones, you hear people gasp and run out of the room, and it was one of those really life-affirming and life-questioning times.”
Union remembered that she admired the fact that Akil asked the team to end the meeting early. “There’s a lot of producers who would have kept going.”
Union realized that with her characters she wanted to send a more honest message.
“It’s Ok to be a flawed person because we’re all flawed human begin and we’re just doing the best that we can.”
And even though she says watching the sex scenes with her husband Dwyane Wade can get a little uncomfortable, it was the best creative decision she’s made.
“I felt like a lazy actress. … You get complacent, and when the checks are coming in it’s like, ‘Eh, maybe I’ll get to challenge myself next week.’ The next thing you know years have gone by and you’ve not really done anything that feeds your soul.
“And then there’s this.”