Thursday, November 30, 2006
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
"Ain't no man gonna leave Angela Bassett. You don't leave Angela Bassett; we don't care what your favorite color is. Nobody's gonna leave Angela Bassett. They shoulda made it somebody else."
By George C. Wolfe
The first time I saw Angela Bassett perform was in an off-off-Broadway hole-in-the-wall in the early eighties. A friend of mine had dragged me there to see yet another production of Jean Anouilh's Antigone, and to this day I can recall the sensation of sitting in that cold, dark theater, watching Angela work. I remember being rendered powerless by that endless swirl of contradictions that was her performance: absolutely in control yet the essence of vulnerability; sensual, delicate, provocative. . . fierce! And what she was doing to that language-kissing and caressing it one minute and then spitting it out with haughty disdain the next. Anouilh never had it so good.
I met Angela after the performance, gushed excessively, and we vowed we'd work together. Sometime thereafter, she moved to L. A.-where being blond is considered a talent-and defied the odds as a film actress. However, I must admit that every time I see her on the screen, it only makes me long for her return to the stage. Maggie the Cat, Lady Macbeth, Cleopatra (Shaw's as well as Shakespeare's), Hedda, Medea: They all have the gifted Miss Bassett's name on them, as does a new play I'm working on called Angela, Come Home.
*George Wolfe went on to direct Angela in the 1998 stage production of Macbeth
A few of the contributors to Angie B News have had the opportunity to have a little chat with Mr. Courtney B. Vance about the subject of his book Friends: A Love Story (that of course he co-authored with his wife, Angela Bassett). There was a lot of gushing about the anticpation of the book, a lot of "I love you and Angela", and even more 'God Bless' yous. Heres some of our conversation with Mr. Vance:
Simonique-OMGGGGGGGG! I'm so excited for this book! Angela and Courtney's relationship is so admirable and the story of how they make it work is well worth being told. Lets show our support for Angie and Courtney this New Years guys!
CBV-Bless you! We think you'll like the book and we are very excited about seeing the response. We deeply appreciate it!!!
Tacia-I've been waiting on this book since I heard about it a year ago!!! I can't wait, especially since the twins have MY Birthday! and the book comes out in Jan!!! yes!
CBV-Well, your wait is almost over! I know you all will love the book and get all your questions answered!!! Pre-order the book on Amazon or B & N. Enjoy!!
Simonique-Thanks so much for responding! I'm crazy excited to read your story. I have only one question: What made you, after almost 10 years of marriage, decide to share your relationship with the public in the form of a book? God Bless.
CBV-It was time. We purposely 'circled the wagons' and spent time on us because we had to figure it out first. We had to lay the foundation for our marriage before we began 'sharing.' We always try and do things "decently and in order." We hope it was worth the wait!! Blessings!
Amanda-I am so excited for this book and the fact that you decided to share your growth and experiences. You are such a beautiful couple and I can't wait for January to get here. Keep doing great things! Also, will there be a book tour? Will there be a book tour?
CBV-There will be and we'll be coming to a city near you!!
Simonique-The "early Christmas gifts" just never stop coming!! A freakin' book tour?!?! Way cool! Thanks for the news and how was your Thanksgiving??
CBV-Bless you!! Thanksgiving was nice and quiet...
Monday, November 27, 2006
*While filming Whats Love Got to do With it in 1993, Angela was new to being a film's lead star so she would drive herself home after 14 hours a day of dancing in high heels and rehearshing complex scenes. Her costar Laurence Fishburne quickly put a stop to this and talked to the producers of the movie. After that, Angela had a car and chaffuer driving her home everyday.
*Regarding her early days in the film Critters 4, Angie says "straight to video and thats not me in the shower!"
*When Angela was debating in 1999 whether or not to take on the film Boesman and Lena and spend months filming in South Africa with less than desirable conditions, her husband Courtney B. Vance stepped in and told her:
"You're an olympic swimmer, stop swimming in shallow waters"
She went on to star in the movie alongside Danny Glover.
*Does anybody know Angela Bassett's middle name?? That ones still a mystery...
Friday, November 24, 2006
Excerpt from the LA Times article God's Entourage:
Angela Bassett, elegantly dressed in a white blouse and black skirt, is seated in the 5,000-seat cathedral. She and her husband, actor Courtney B. Vance, are standing in the second row a few feet from Bishop Blake. Vance holds a Bible in his right hand, arms outstretched, and moves to the music. He gives Bassett a tissue when she starts to weep. After blotting her damp eyes, she raises her arms in the air.
In an interview a few days later, Bassett, who has attended services in the West Angeles Cathedral for more than 15 years, talks about the tears. "When you realize that every breath is a gift from God. When you realize how small you are, but how much he loved you. That he, Jesus, would die, the son of God himself on earth, then you . . . you just weep."
During a 40-minute telephone chat, words pour from the Oscar nominee as she explains that taking on the role of Esther for "The Bible Experience" was an easy choice. And if there ever is a film version, she'll be the first in line. The Bible is the greatest story ever told, she says, the greatest drama. She sprang at the chance to mingle her creativity with her spirituality. "Oh, yes, I was waiting for the opportunity."
"It's all a quest. We're all searching for fulfillment and for purpose. We can't find that without God. We'll find something . . . Is it yoga? Is it promotion and prestige? Is it fame? Is it shopping? Is it being highly favored by men and by peers? Something is at the center of our lives, and for me it's God." In between bites of broccoli and a boiled egg, Bassett says: "I really believe that what I do as an actress is my God-given talent. This is my calling . . . not my career. And I appreciate it. To lend my voice and my talent to 'The Bible Experience' is just a way of saying, 'Thank you.' "
Asked if she's uncomfortable discussing her religious beliefs in public, she sounds surprised, even impatient. She grew up in the church, sang in the choir, performed in plays. "Loving God is like my being black. I just am. [No one says] 'You know what? I'm gonna be blacker today!' It's my culture. It's not something I put on or take off or show more. You just communicate that in the way you live your life."
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Courtney himself has provided this video on youtube.com *cant stop grinning*
Angela looks flawless and Courtney looks damn handsome. Mark your calendars BassettHounds! Janurary 1st lets show our support!
Update on this post: Dec. 26th 2006
The video for the book has been disabled. You can view it here instead.
Also the new release date for the book is Valentines Day 2007
"If my Heavenly Father held my hand, my brother Larry had my back" Angela Bassett
"We are brother and sister in the craft of acting. An electrifying thing happens when the two of us work together. I haven’t experienced it with anyone else. A freedom happens when we work together. " LF
"There’s that twinkle that’s in your eye because you know you’ve got chemistry with this person. You’ve got history with this person, you have the experience, you’re proud of them." AB
Monday, November 20, 2006
NEW YORK, Nov. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- KIMANI PRESS marks the New Year with the launch of their very first nonfiction romance FRIENDS: A LOVE STORY, a book that spotlights the compelling real-life love story of Hollywood power couple Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance. Co-written with Hilary Beard, this inspirational story of love captivates readers with Angela's and Courtney's separate recollections -- from humble beginnings to past relationships and on to busy careers as their paths on the road to stardom cross and ultimately meet to form their loving family. FRIENDS: A LOVE STORY includes personal photos that chronicle their experiences, along with exclusive family photos of their young twins. This compelling memoir offers a rare peek into their lives, which have previously been private, and offers the reader valuable lessons for relationships and life.
Read the article in it's entirety here: http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/061120/clm046.html?.v=71
Sunday, November 19, 2006
Read the full story: http://www.la.com/blog/comments.php?id=3693_0_1_0_C
Saturday, November 18, 2006
Saturday, November 4, 2006
All three of us met because of a common interest, Ms. Angela Bassett. We all met each other on the internet, while individually 'bassetthounding.' We became fast cyber friends because of our mutual interest and we continue to stay friends because we're just that darn compatible! ;) Heres some things you might want to know about us:
What do you 3 do on the blog?
Simonique is the creator of Angie B News! She provides the news updates, archived facts, and is the layout designer for the blog as well. Amanda provides magazine articles, scans, exclusives and also handles the media side of the blog. Tacia is the news story and photo contributor for the blog.
Why are Angela's fans called 'BassettHounds'?
We got the idea from a male AB fan that nicknamed himself, "bassetthound". We asked him if we could use his nickname, he obliged, and now its our official title/motto! Plus it just sounds cool...and even Essence gave us a shout-out:
"Who can blame Angela's legion of Bassett-Hounds?"
Nobody, Essence, not nobody.
*If you scroll down and look at the right column on this site, you can see the Definition of a BassettHound and Our Motto*
Why are you Angela Bassett fans?
Simonique- I became a fan when I first watched Whats Love at the age of 8. In the limo scene, Angela reminded me of my mother, the epitome of a strong black woman and that strength was so appealing to me. I'd come home everyday from school and watch and rewind that scene over and over again. Watch and rewind, watch and rewind (it was all VHS back then) , just trying to soak up the power she showed in that limo scene. Angela exudes nerve, fierceness, intelligence, and beauty in every single role. She represents everything I strive to be. I'm an Angela fan because shes something like a Queen without the fancy crown.
Natacia- I'm an Angela fan because she had the courage to just "be" and not perform and settle for roles just to make a buck. Shes extremely conscious of what movie roles she chooses so that we, as black women, arent depicted in a negative light. In her words, "film is forever", its universal so other people of different cultures get their only knowledge of black people through film.
It just makes me so proud of Angela for not being a stereotypical actor in this business. Character, self-worth, and dignity are very high on her list of values that wont allow her to say "yes" to anything. She doesnt do anything to dishonor who she is and she doesnt dishonor who we are as black women. She accomplishes two things by just being who she is.
Amanda- I noticed Angela during her early days, mostly in The Jacksons and Malcolm X. But, I became a true BassettHound the first time I saw What’s Love Go To Do With It at the age of 13. I am a fan because I envision Angela to be the true role model for every young black woman. She is the epitome of class, intelligence, grace and dignity; but at the same time she brings out this charming, down-to-earth type of persona that completes the circle which makes her the accomplished woman she is. What’s not to love?
Whats the story behind your self-titled AB characters?
We all had a hard time finding an Angela B. character that fit each of us perfectly. We found that most of her characters either did something in the movie that we would never do (i.e. none of us are a Tina Turner) or they did something that we'd never have the guts to do (i.e. none of us are a Bernadine Harris or a Rosa Parks). We still havent found an exact fit, but these characters come close to our own personalities...
Simonique is a Stella Payne- I'd like to think I'm Stella because I'm just that fine. But I cant kid myself, nobody's that fine. (smile) I guess I'm Stella because I'm the more 'free-spirited' one in the group. I'm quirky, adventurous, and just like Stella I've tried to let go of my inhibitions. She went to Jamaica, got her groove on, came back and started her own business. I like to have fun, go dancing, and still get my work done in the morning. Stella is also really modern, shes independent, professional, used to doing everything herself. I'm the oldest of four children so I'm bossy like Stella, I tend to rely on myself in most situations, and I've always had an old soul. Plus I'm definitely trying to get my groove back romantically...except Stella would go for the younger fellas while I'm more partial to the older men! Hey, we all get our groove back in our own way! (smile)
Natacia is a Katharine Jackson- I'm the most traditional one in the group. Maybe not as traditional as Katharine was, but definitely more than the other two BassettHounds! I'm some-what of a motherly person. I'm constantly spewing 'dont do this, dont do that.' In the Jacksons: An American Dream, Katharine is the shelter in the storm for her children when Joe is going on his rants. She is the kind soul that keeps everything balanced. I'm semi-old fashion as well. I strongly believe in marriage. Katharine is also very traditional in that she has her heart set on keeping her marriage together. In the movie she says, "when I get married, I'm going to stay that way." Katharine and I are those church-going women you see every sunday.
Amanda is a Lornette 'Mace' Mason- I am the soldier girl of the group. I am in the military, so I know a little about hand to hand combat, weapons, etc. I like to flex my muscles every now and then, so it was obvious to the group that I was Mace. I am that tough girl, who does have a sensitive side, but can take care of myself when I need to. Although I am not quite where I want to be physically, in comparison to Angela in this role, I am close. ;-)
Do you have any other interests?
Simonique- No..... LOL! Thats so a joke (kind of). My #1 hobby is supporting Angela Bassett and her work but, I like writing. I write poems and short stories when I'm feeling emotional and I wrote an article for the Seattle/Tacoma newspaper back in high school. Now, I'm a sophomore in college studying Public Relations so I can be Angela's publicist when I grow up. Thats not a joke, I'm seriously going to be her publicist after I graduate. (smile) I love going to stage plays. My mother and I try to see at least one play every other month. I find stage much more exciting than just going to the movies although I like those too. Music has grown on me recently. I truly listen to every kind of music but the genres that I play most on my iPod are jazz, african, funk, electronica, and latin music. I also love to salsa dance, daydream, travel, talk to myself, speak spanish, and read.
Natacia- Music, art. My first love was art. I love drawing and making sculptures. I used to collect keychains, that used to be a big thing with me. I dont do it much anymore, but I have alot of keychains. I like history, black history, I research it and learn about different things. I like knowing about history because it causes you to be more aware of your surroundings and cautious of social issues. I'm a member of my church choir and I love singing and being involved in church.
Amanda- Simo might be joking, but I’m not. I could care less about anything else other than Angela Bassett, but God and my family. As a matter of fact, the order of importance in my life is 1.) God 2.) Family 3.) Angela Bassett 4.) Everything Else LOL
No, I am also interested in different forms of art. I listen to all types of music. Wait, I take that back…..anything but bluegrass. Movies, Movies, Movies. I collect movies like they are going out of style. I literally have hundreds. I lost count at 836. That is why I don’t smoke, drink or gamble. A person can only afford one bad habit.
I love poetry. I try writing some myself, but it’s nothing to publish. More like a private journal in a creative form. I am more oral than written. But I do love to read (when I get the chance that is ;-) I also love to travel. Anytime my husband and I get a chance, we like to getaway and go somewhere new. See there are other things besides Angela Bassett that I am interested in. I am not totally obsessed. LOL
You can contact all 3 of us via email at: