LE NEWSLETTER -
May 1, 2005
Exclusive Interview with Vivica A. Fox
(May 1, 2005) Ms.
Vivica A. Fox
glides into Trattoria
Vaticano looking fabulous. We sat down and
talked about her latest projects (including Missing currently being shot in Toronto), being an actress in
Hollywood, producing, her role models and much more!
We started instantly talking about Vivica's latest film and
Tell me about The Salon.
ReelWorld Film Festival in April 2005, where
I first encountered the spirited Vivica A. Fox. It is a
sassy and heart-warming film written, produced and directed
(ďBarbershopĒ) and also
produced by Vivica A. Fox who stars as Jenny, the owner of a
neighbourhood beauty salon.
I think of The Salon
as The Beauty Shop meets Soul Food. It had a lot of messages, it
had comedy, it had drama and it was an experience. You
really felt like you went on the journey with these
characters and what they were going through. I was really
fortunate to work with Mark
Brown that I worked with on
Two Can Play that Game.
It was the second or third movie that I produced. I think a
lot of people think that when you produce, that itís just a
title. But not for me - Iím very involved with the script,
with the casting, with the wardrobe, with everything. I
like it because I feel like Iím in control of the product
that I present to my audience.
What's been your experience on your current series
stars Vivica A. Fox as Nicole
Scott, an FBI agent teamed up with Jess Mastriani (Caterina
a novice agent who has a proven track record of using her
psychic abilities to solve mysteries. Missing is on the
and is currently being shot in
The show on the first season was called 1-800-MISSING and
had Gloria Rubens on the show. After the first season, she
decided that she didnít want to do the show anymore.
Debra Martin Chase who is now my co-executive producing partner, said, ĎIím
going to find something for us to work on together.í When
they first approached me, I said 'No' because I just didnít
believe that network television supported their shows long
enough. Debra said ĎThis is on the Lifetime network - their longest show has been on for six years and they
support their shows.í Debra kept persistently calling and
explained that she was also going to offer me co-executive
And it films in Toronto, which is one of my favourite
places. I love filming in Toronto. This is my fourth
project that Iíve done up here. So, it worked out and we
closed the deal!
We took the show and added myself,
Mark Consuelos and
[Canadian]. We revamped the show and made it sexier and
edgier. Now they canít wait for us to come back -
in America. We got picked up and weíre back here for
our third season. I love it, I love it.
What do you like most about working in Toronto?
Great shopping! Iím such a girl! My credit card got blazed
up at Holt Renfrew! That whole strip is Gucci, Chanel,
Louis Vitton and for us, you get the nice exchange on the
money. I also love the restaurants here. And the people
are really nice. Everyone that comes and does our show, is
like, ďI really like it up here.Ē
When people ask me what I feel about Toronto, I always say
itís a small, clean, friendly New York.
And youíve got Canadian actors on your show Ö
My two co-stars,
are Canadians and most of the day-players are all Canadians
and Iím just really glad that the talent here is really
good. A lot of actors are from theatre and they donít
What have you found challenging when it comes to producing?
The most challenging thing about producing is delivering the
project on time and on budget, as well as getting the talent
and the quality. Being an independent film producer, the
budgetís a lot smaller.
Tell me about your indie film ďGetting
PlayedĒ and your
I play the bitch this time. I mean, I was a bitch a little
bit in Two Can Play That Game but I was the bitch
that you rooted for. I wanted to play that role Ė someone
else wins - and I had a great time playing her. Iím the
straight up stuck-up movie star. Itís starring myself,
Bill Bellamy, Carmen Electra, Stacey Dash.
Theyíre in negotiations right now Ė hopefully it will come
up and not go straight to DVD. For me, it was a learning
experience and another film under my belt.
And then thereís The
Starlet, Iím really hoping that gets picked up
for a second season. And Iím also the voice of Cadillac for
And then thereís Missing.
for 6-7 months of the year, I know that Iíve got a great job
because I love being here. Iím not searching, Iím not
looking. Iím very happy.
How do you feel
about the recent dialogue regarding the issue of whether
other nationalities are taking over the parts originally
intended for Black actresses?
If you canít beat Ďem join Ďem. Iíve got a Latin lover on
my show, Mark Consuelos.
What actors have to learn is marketability. If the film is
going to be made, if youíre going to get a budget and
distribution by hiring a person that is a little bit more
worldwide, then Ö this is the business. Itís not personal
baby. Embrace it, learn it and keep it moving.
I think the sad thing is that the bitterness that comes with
that Ė what they donít realize is that being bitter is a
turnoff to other nationalities. Iím a businesswoman after
Iím an actress. The fact is that theyíre accepting
different cultures loving each other.
Do you see yourself as a Black actress in Hollywood?
The wonderful thing is that I think finally Iíve become
colourless to people. But my role models were
Will Smith, Whoopi Goldberg.
You donít want to be considered a Black actress Ė you want
people to say I like her as an actress. I learn from other
people, Iím a sponge. I say, what is it that theyíre doing
that makes them successful? I donít hate on them. I donít
get pissed off at their success.
been times in my career that Iíve gotten frustrated and
friend of mine, Cassandra
told me a couple of things.
what the next generation is doing and stay young as long as
you can. Youíve got plenty of time to play somebodyís mama,
somebodyís grandmamma. Look at whoís hot and stay in their
rear view mirror. Look at what theyíre doing Ė stay right
there with them and sooner or later youíll be beside them
and then maybe youíll go in front of them. But as long as
you stay in the race, youíll be all good. Thatís the best
advice she ever gave me.
You have to look at longevity and not just the moment.
Donít look at the small picture, look at the big picture.
Thank goodness Iíve been mature enough not to hate and to
Whatís been one of your favourite projects?
Can I name my top five? (laughs) Iíve had some wonderful
Kill Bill was
amazing. It gave me a second energy boost for my career and
provided a lot of wonderful opportunities. I always love
working with females. When an audience goes to a movie, they
think the girls are attractive but theyíre not expecting
acting, action and believability. The girls were
incredible. And the opportunity to work with
- that was a wonderful experience.
Ė because it opened the
doors to my destiny. I fought really hard to get that
project. Originally they wouldnít even audition me because
I didnít have a big enough name. I auditioned six times and
I got it! And the movie did so wonderful. It was my first
big movie Ė it grossed $800 million worldwide and led to a
lot of other opportunities.
If you could work with any artist, who would they be?
Samuel L. Jackson
Ė the ultimate professional and
Lena Horne, the
screen goddess that radiates pure entertainment.
As most of you
already know, my
newsletters do not normally contain any form of
entertainment rumours or gossip. But,
I wanted to
give Ms. Fox the opportunity to express anything left unsaid
about her relationship with
especially given that he continues to bring up her name in
lyrics and in the press (including a recent article in the
May issue of Blender magazine).
She gave me the lowdown in no uncertain terms. Her words of
advice? ďTake the time to know someone before you get
involved.Ē This is her story, as told to me.
Vivica A. Fox
says that peopleís fascination with the relationship between
herself and 50 Cent
has lasted longer than the relationship itself. Vivica does
deny that she was
in love with 50 Cent Ė but also that he was with her. She
is, however, disappointed tshat he chose to go public with
their break-up without ever speaking
with her about it Ė which is still the case.
The break-up was apparently based on a photo shoot for
Today's Black Woman in
which 50 Cent felt he had been exploited by Ms. Fox and her
management - even though he had clearly posed for the
photos. A letter was immediately sent to
Editor-in-Chief, Kate Ferguson
stating that neither Vivica Fox nor her management
had approved the photo for the cover, originally intended
for Ms. Fox only.
Ms. Ferguson wrote to
CEO Chris Lighty
apologizing for not obtaining permissions for the
Still, the magazine chose to run the cover regardless
as they were dubbed
Hollywood's Hottest Couple. To date, no response to
the letter was ever received. Days after
the alleged exploitive photo shoot, they appeared as the
happy couple at the 2003 MTV Awards.
Exploited? It's your call.
Regardless, Ms. Fox handles the situation today with
humour with a dash of annoyance.
My thoughts are that while this certainly holds some sort of
fascination for many, itís been almost two years
since their brief encounter.
Vivica A. Fox has been hot in
since her film debut with
in Independence Day
in 1996, although she had been on television since 1988.
She strikes me as a strong and courageous woman who wants to
be remembered as such. She goes on to say that sheís
sacrificed a lot for her profession and has given it her all
Ė while enjoying every single step.
I thank Vivica for taking the time she did and for being
gracious enough to give me this extended interview. Iím
certain that we can look forward to many more exciting
projects from her in the future. Sheís not going anywhere!