By Samantha Ofole-Prince
[The singer turned actor can be seen in the holiday film “Black Nativity,” which hits theaters on November 27th.]
In 2000, he made his movie debut in John Singletons’ groundbreaking film “Baby Boy” and has successfully shifted his formidable charisma and professional prowess from music to movies. Seamlessly transitioning between action and drama, he has amassed a body of work that includes “Four Brothers,” Waist Deep” “Transformers” and the upcoming African American drama “Black Nativity” alongside Jennifer Hudson, Forest Whitaker, Angela Bassett, Mary J. Blige, Nas and Vondie Curtis-Hall.
A contemporary adaptation of Langston Hughes’ play, it is one of several movies directed by an African American director to be released this year.
“I am very proud to be a part of one of the movies to drop this year,” says the actor. “Old Hollywood practices would be that you can’t have a movie with that many black people and expect it to be successful because it’s going to cater to a specific demographic and audience. Things are changing,” he continues, “Especially this year with movies like Lee Daniels' "The Butler," "Fruitvale Station," “Baggage Claim,” "The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete,” "12 Years a Slave” and a bunch of different type of movies that may have more of a prominent African American cast. All these movies are doing really well and getting a lot of buzz. Now everybody in Hollywood has to start rethinking what their opinion and approach to filmmaking is and that is important.”
Tyrese is currently filming the seventh installment of Fast and the Furious. The Fast and the Furious film series is one of the most successful franchise in Universal Studios history.
“I’m so lucky to be a part of this franchise. It’s almost like the best way to say it is that I can’t believe they are paying us to have this much fun. I was filming the other day and Jason Statham and Dwayne Johnson were on set doing this big fight scene and it’s just unbelievable to be playing on that level. We’re all becoming baby mad scientists and kind of picking everything apart to just help move the needle forward.”
“Fast and Furious 7” is scheduled to be released in theaters on July 11th, 2014.
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