Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Ang and Court to appear on Oprah

Isabel Swift wrote in her blog:
Angela Bassett and her husband Courtney B. Vance wrote a book, FRIENDS: A LOVE STORY, detailing the story of their lives, courtship, marriage and the recent birth of their twins. It's coming out this February--Black History month and Valentine's, is that perfect or what?

Angela and Courtney will be appearing on OPRAH speaking about their book FRIENDS: A LOVE STORY and their romance. The segment is scheduled to air on February 12, 13 or 14. The subject of the show is “Amazing Love Stories.” The Oprah appearance is a first for a title from Kimani Press, an imprint of Harlequin.

I got a chance to read the proposal and found it opened a window into a intriguing world I knew little about. Mavis Allen, their Kimani editor, found the final story "a fascinating and intimate look at two highly talented, complex artists' emotional, spiritual and romantic journey. It gave me a glimpse of two very public people's private world. I found it riveting."

The book will be published on Valentine’s Day, Feb 14th, 2007.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Update: Samuels talks about the Bassett article

The author, Allison Samuels, also writes about the aftermath of certain quotations that made it into print.

Actress Angela Bassett said aloud what many in the black community were saying in 2002, when Halle Berry won the best actress Oscar for "Monster's Ball." Bassett said she passed on the role, because "I wasn't going to be a prostitute on film... I couldn't do that because it's such a stereotype about black women and sexuality."

That honesty from Bassett stemmed from an informality that Samuels calls a mixed blessing: When African Americans feel comfortable with a black journalist, they may say things that could be misinterpreted when repeated out of that cultural

In this case, Samuels writes, the mainstream media picked up on the prostitute quote and parlayed it as Bassett's cruel criticism of a fellow actress, even though Samuels' piece also quoted Bassett as saying she wasn't criticizing Berry, but commenting on the dearth of roles for black actresses in general. Bassett, in a media firestorm, later indicated that she never made the comment, Samuels says.

The author says the episode disturbs her to this day, because Bassett's "moment of honesty had gone so wrong."

Read the full article here

*This explains alot. I might just pick up her book now that shes explained her intentions were not malicious. Although I'm still iffy on Samuels' wording in the article. The subtitle is "Ten years ago, Angela Bassett was Hollywood's premier black actress. What happened?"

I just dont like how she worded it and what it implies. Angela is still out there rocking each role, kicking ass and taking names on screen. I admit, its not nearly enough rocking or enough roles and definitely not enough ass-kicking. But a Queen doesnt just settle for any old crown and Angela doesnt just settle for any old role.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Newsweek Journalist writes Tell-All Book

You know that 2002 Newsweek article, Angela's Fire, that totally misquoted Angela Bassett and made it look like she was bitter about Halle's Oscar win? Well the journalist that wrote that article just released a tell-all book about her experiences interviewing black Hollywood. Her name is Allison Samuels and her book is ironically titled, Off the Record. says that she'll be revealing behind-the-scenes scoop on celebs like Eddie Murphy, Whitney Houston, Michael Jordan, Denzel Washington, Halle Berry, and our Angela. It hasnt been disclosed yet if Samuels will be detailing her contribution to the controversy surrounding her article Angela's Fire that created tension and talk about Angela vs. Halle. But thats what it looks like.

Angela said regarding the article, "What was hurtful for me was that certain phrases were taken out of context and attempted to create strife between two black women. I thought that maybe it would go away, but it was seized on by others who wanted to make something out of nothing. I have always been a supporter of her’s and continue to be. We spoke and we talked about it. We know."

This should be an interesting read (although I suggest just flipping through it at the bookstore. Dont buy it and support this horrid journalist). I admit, maybe the Newsweek folks pressured Samuels to spin the article to promote strife. Either way, I hope she will actually report the truth in her book.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The Angie B Doll

In 2000, Angela Bassett attended the 57th annual Golden Globe Awards and in 2002 this doll was created by Mattel in her likeness. Angela's Doll was auctioned off at a benefit for children.

*Thats what you find when you type "Angela Bassette" in the search engine at and this is what you find when you type "Angela Basset":

Somebody should tell
Akeelah their are some benefits to mis-spelling. For instance, you get crazy hats, black barbies, a kiss, and a great laugh. :)

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Courtney’s Letter to Angela

‘Why I Love a Black Woman’

Patience, Dedication and Faith
By Courtney B. Vance

How do I say, “I Love you?” Let me list the ways: Honey, when I think about the man I was before God brought us together, and the man I am today, I am in awe of the distance traveled! When I talk to other husbands and husbands-to-be in the course of my travels, I understand the fear and uncertainty as the conversation invariably turns toward relationships because there is a certain amount of faith involved in the journey.

I want to thank you, Angela, for loving me when I was not yet the man you needed me to be. I want to thank you for having faith that I would wake up and begin focusing on you instead of waiting for you to focus on me. I have always seen myself as a “good man” in the back of my mind, but somehow I could never quite get my actions to match up to my words. I just wanted to be trusted and to be trustworthy.

The first thing you helped me to see is a divine order to things: God, first; wife, second; children, third; work, fourth; and I am fifth. More specifically, you taught me it is not just about me anymore.

You were patient with me as I learned the value and power of becoming the “servant-leader.” I began to see that God gave only one directive to husbands regarding their wives-”love them.” You helped me to see that if I wanted to be the “head of the house,” then I should lead by being first to “apologize” and “ask for forgiveness.”

By being who you are, you gave me insight into what being the “a mature man” is all about. The mature man can let his wife “get the glory.” A mature man is secure in his wife’s love for him even when she is basking in the spotlight while he stands behind the scenes.

And it takes time for a woman to “pray her man into maturity.” Because the mature man begins to gradually acquire the understanding that oftentimes one has to “give and give and give and give…in order to get.” The mature man understands that respect is “earned,” and not “given.” And he is not undaunted by this “refining process” during those first five years of marriage. The mature man remembers that he got down on one knee and “asked" his then girlfriend to be his wife…

It is a very difficult process for a man and a woman to get this ‘understanding’ about their roles and begin to look for ways to “do“ for the other person. When does that moment happen? When the husband and wife cease competing with each other and begin looking for ways to put and keep smiles on each other’s faces? Angela, you have taught me to slow down and “change my attitude.” You have indeed “helped me meet God,” and for that I will forever be indebted to you.

And finally I want to thank you, Angela, for preparing me for fatherhood. Your sister, Lynn, and her husband sat us down and let us know that it is not about the children. “When you get married and have children,” they said, “never forget that the children would never be there if not for you and Courtney.” They let us know that we must stay focused on our marriage! The primary relationship in life is not parent/child, but husband/wife. Now that the children are here, that lesson becomes all the more powerful.

There is no such thing as a “perfect marriage.” Men are men and women are women all over the world. Just because we have been blessed to be able to make a living “playing” does not exempt us from having to do the same work every other husband and wife have to do. I just want to thank you for making the decision to work with me. What more can a man ask?


Essence Celebrates Black Love

Friends and Lovers
A duo reveal how they keep their ten-year relationship solid as a rock

Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance are that rare celebrity couple who behave like grown-ups. And that’s what makes their first book, Friends: A Love Story—and marriage—successful, while so many other efforts by celebrity couples quickly land in the bargain bin.

Told alternately from Bassett’s and Vance’s point of view, the book (coauthored by Hilary Beard) reveals their secrets to building and sustaining a strong, faith-filled union. Here’s a hint: It’s not about what happens between the sheets; in fact, Bassett made a vow to herself not to have sex while they dated.

The two actors admit they both had plenty of baggage when they began dating in 1996, after traveling in the same circles for a decade. They first met at Yale University in the late 1980’s, when both were students. Vance’s image of his happy all-American family was shattered in 1990, when he was 30. Right when his star was beginning to shine—he’d just landed a starring role in the Broadway play Six Degrees of Separation—his father committed suicide. In the wake of his father’s death, Vance promised his mother he would seek therapy. Over the next several years, in weekly therapy sessions, he conquered his own demons, including his fear of intimacy and his addiction to pornography. For her part, Bassett had grown up with little reason to trust the men in her life. From the time she was a preteen, Bassett had experienced unwanted sexual advances. Fortunately she had a close and trusting bond with her mother. When she was not quite 11, Bassett tearfully revealed to her that not one but two of the men her mother had dated were “feelin’ on me.”

Despite the sheen of the duo’s celebrity, this is no glossy romantic yarn. Friends at times sounds like a straight-up conversation between a couple sitting around the kitchen table. The candor is refreshing because Bassett and Vance keep it real: Love is a wonderful thing, but it takes work. You’ll see their hard work pay off in a happy ending that not even the best Hollywood minds could have scripted.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Working the Runway for a Cause

Angela Bassett will walk the runway in a fashion show as part of a national awareness campaign for women about heart disease. Angie along with Kelly Ripa, Phylicia Rashad, Rachael Ray, Kerry Washington, and Rihanna will work the runway on Feb. 2 in New York. They'll be wearing designer red dresses created by Donna Karan, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, and others in honor of National Wear Red Day (Feb. 2). The show starts at 11 am in Bryant Park.

Anybody lucky enough to live in NYC?

Thursday, January 18, 2007

"I've Got Love for Angela"

Jason Weaver (played Michael Jackson in the J5 movie when he was 13) says- "When I did The Jacksons I worked with Angela Bassett, I’ve always had a crush on her, I think she’s incredibly hot, there’s something about her that really just does it for me."

V. Anthony, a fellow blogger wrote:
Angela Bassett- Incredible star who should be doing her thang in a lot more movies.. It's a shame we dont see her that often any more. This lady got incredible class matched with tremendous beauty and personality... And funny thing, I had an Angela moment too.. Maybe it's the benefit of living/working in LA; I dont know...

I ran into this incredible lady on an elevator at a doctor's office building near Cedars Sinai Hospital. Again, I didn't make it obvious that I knew who she was but God smiled upon me with this moment as she and I rode up the elevator alone. Not that anything substantial happened but being in her presence was definitely a feel good moment. She smiled and said "hey..." I said "thanks.." She laughed and said "what for?" I said "for saying hello..." She laughed again and then we reached the eleventh floor. I held the door open for her and she walked out still with the same smile..

She seemed like a woman with such a peaceful presence that all you can do as a man is stand back, watch her walk and witness the glow... Inspiring...beautiful...

Monday, January 15, 2007

Sightings: pre-Golden Globe Suites

Happy MLK Day! Love and Peace.

Angie and other celebs get free stuff just before the Golden Globes!

(from left) Zoe Saldana, Terrence Howard, Derek Luke and his wife, Sophia, Blair Underwood

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Follow the Yellow Brick Ring

The Truth About Angie Tres

January 18th is Angela Bassett Day in her hometown, St. Petersburg Florida. She also has a key to the city where she grew up in housing projects.

Angela on her transition from the Sunshine State to the less sunny weather at Yale:
  • "There's no heat in those ivy tower buildings," she recalls. "I spent my first winter up against a radiator."

  • "Every time I spoke my freshman year, people stopped me in mid-sentence to ask me where I was from. I had some regionalism, some slang, that I sure didn't know about until then. I said, 'I'm finna go.' We said, 'Finna go' in St. Petersburg. I don't even know how to spell that!"
Angela on the real Tina showing up at the end of Whats Love:

"I was disappointed the first time I saw it," she said. "The whole movie, you go for the ride and believe this is the person. You suspend disbelief for those two hours. You do all the work and, in the end, you want to the curtain call."

When she saw the reworked ending, Bassett reportedly left the screening in tears. Laurence Fishburne complained that it was "a slap in the face" to a fine actor. Feelings have since been soothed and Bassett now says she doesn't mind sharing that curtain call with Turner.

"Hey, I love Tina," Bassett said. "Let her have it. This is also her time. She's still around and touring. Great, go get Tina.

Because you know what? If something like the Oscars should happen, if I should be so fortunate, it'll be me walking up there."
Read the First and Second Truths too!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Baby Got Back

Alexa Camp of Slant Magazine when referring to Angela Bassett asked: "Who knew baby got back?" Well we know now:

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Angela Bassett nominated for NAACP award!

The nominations for the 38th annual NAACP Image awards were annonced this morning revealing Dreamgirls and Everbody Hates Chris as the leaders of the nominations with 8 nods each. The awards honor "projects and individuals that promote diversity in the arts."

Angela Bassett recieved her 13th Image award nomination for her supporting role in Akeelah and the Bee. She is nominated for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture, alongside Jennifer Hudson and Anika Noni Rose of Dreamgirls fame. Angela has previously won 9 Image awards since 1995 and will celebrate her 13th nod with her co-stars, Keke Palmer and Laurence Fishburne, who also received nominations this year.

The 38th annual NAACP Image awards will be aired on Friday, March 2nd, 8pm on FOX. Stay tuned! Visit the Image awards' official site for more info.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Ode to Angela III

Excerpt from the novel “He Talk Like A White Boy” by Joseph C. Phillips:

Another beautiful, no-nonsense woman I adore is Angela Bassett. I fell in love with Angela more than twenty years ago when I was a contract player on the soap opera Search For Tomorrow and Angela was hired to play my older sister. We became fast friends and have remained so ever since.

As young actors in New York, we spent a lot of time together discussing the intricacies of the unemployment system, finding love in the Big Apple, and maintaining our sanity while waiting for the phone to ring. I can testify that she is a woman filled with grace and blessed with a terrific sense of humor and drama. Sit in the room with her for ten minutes and you know she was born for the stage. She may not have coined the phrase, “God don’t like ugly. And he aint too fond of cute,” but she delivers it with more panache than anyone I know.

Read the First and Second Odes to Angela also!

Review by Publishers Weekly

Review of Friends: A Love Story from Publishers Weekly:

Happily married actors Angela Bassett (Akeelah and the Bee) and Courtney B. Vance ("Law & Order: Criminal Intent") trade off chapters to tell their parallel autobiographies in this welcoming testament to love, faith and hard work. Bassett's story is the more compelling, moving from her poor, unstable childhood through grade school, drama school at Yale and eventual success with a clear, confident voice. But Vance's honest, charming tone carries his narrative well, relaying his struggles with insecurity and egomania as he finds early success. Both take readers behind the scenes of stage shows and major films-Boyz N the Hood, Six Degrees of Separation and What's Love Got to Do With It? among them-but focus just as much on romantic and familial relationships.

Long-time acquaintances, the pair quickly fall in love once they start dating in 1996, though readers might grow impatient during the 250 pages it takes to get there. Their stories come together to tackle marriage, the trials of a two-career household and the addition of twins by way of a surrogate mother. The only real misstep comes in the last chapter, "Lessons from Our Road Less Traveled," in which the subtle theme of religious fealty threaded throughout turns sanctimonious. Otherwise, this entertainment double-bio is a pleasure, and should hold special interest for fans of film and faith.

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Monday, January 1, 2007

Cooking your food is so 2002

Happy New Years! This is an excerpt from a 2004 CNN interview with David Wolfe, author of "EATING FOR BEAUTY." In this interview he is sharing his expertise on the raw food diet which he has been on for over 10 years. The raw food diet is pretty self-explanatory: instead of traveling on the road of evolution and cooking food; these folks eat their dinners, raw. (Read the full interview here.)

COOPER: Why do you think it is we hear so much about celebrities doing diets like this? They seem to be some would say in the forefront of these kinds of diets?

WOLFE: Well I work with a lot of celebrities behind the scenes and screenwriter in Hollywood and I think that's what is happening is there's a buzz in Hollywood about raw food. And why is that? Because your skin glows. You feel great, you feel light. You don't have all the intestinal discomfort. That's really important when you're in Hollywood because you've got to have that edge.

I met with Angela Bassett the other day. What a beautiful woman. She's been on a raw food diet now I think about two years. And I thought she looked 30 years younger than she is. I couldn't believe it; I was like that is you. It was incredible.

*I change my mind. If it works for Angie (and it definitely looks like its working), then I'm up for eating my food...raw. (UGH.)


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