The Last Word: Tyler Perry, Ne-Yo, Erykah Badu, Jamie Foxx On PCP?

What’s well everybody? The end of another week as we close out the second week of September with President Obama making his “controversial” speech to the nation’s school children and airing his critics out and taking the high road over a heckler while laying out his plan for health care reform, the country taking note of the eight year anniversary of 9/11 and Ellen Degeneres being named as Paula Abdul’s replacement as the new judge on American Idol.

Thoughts and prayers go out to the families of those who lost their lives on 9/11 as we remember one of the darkest days in our nation’s history. Congratulations to The-Dream and Christina Milian, who got married last week, Taye Diggs and his wife Idina Menzel on the birth of their son, Walker Diggs, last week; Nicole Richie and Joel Madden on the birth of their second child, Sparrow Madden, on Wednesday (Sept. 9) and Tisha Campbell-Martin and her husband, Duane Martin, who welcomed their son, Ezekiel Czar Martin, on Tuesday (Sept. 8).

Shout out to Melanie Oudin, who made waves at the U.S. Open with her string of upsets over her top ranked opponents and the sounding boards for finding something to laugh at whenever things get too serious.

So let’s set the scene with…the Last Word for the week ending September 11, 2009.

1. Tyler Perry Brings Colored Girls to Big Screen; Shares Abusive Similarities with Chris Brown

Next looks to be a good one for Tyler Perry, who plans on releasing the sequel to 2006’s Why Did I Get Married on April 2.

Variety reports the churn out two features as he plans to write, direct and produce a film adaptation of the 1975 play, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf.

Written by Ntozake Shange, For Colored Girls revolves around a series of 20 poems that explore various issues faced by black women, including love, abandonment, domestic abuse, abortion and rape. The production, which was first performed in 1975, was later made into a 1982 television movie with Shange, Laurie Carlos, Trazana Beverly, Alfre Woodard and Lynn Whitfield. Although a Broadway revival of For Colored Girls starring India.Arie and produced by Whoopi Goldberg was announced for the 2008-09 season, the project did not come to pass after funding for the project fell through.

Perry is hoping to have better luck with his adaptation. The entertainment mogul plans to assemble an all-star cast of female actors and begin shooting the film in early November in Atlanta. For Colored Girls will be Perry’s the first project for his new production shingle, 34th Street Pictures. Look for Lionsgate to release For Colored Girls in 2010.

And while he gears up for a profitable double bill at the theater, Mr. Perry is voicing a desire to have a chat with Chris Brown.

“I would love to have a conversation with Chris. A real conversation on television where he sits and he talks because I think…people want to forgive him,” the entertainer told CNN’s Marquee Blog. “People want Chris Brown to be better, but the only way he’s going to get there is to admit everything that he did, put it all out there judge it for himself and feel bad for it — for himself really truly have animosity about it.

By fully opening up, Perry believes that Brown as well as the public will be able to “move on” from all the drama surrounding his pre-Grammy awards encounter with former girlfriend Rihanna as well as gain some type of understanding surrounding him and his situation.

When asked why he would be a good choice to speak to the embattled crooner, Perry brought up a similar experience involving two people who are close to him.

“Because of my father… His mother was in an abusive relationship and my mother is too. She’s still married to the — I almost said something really awful but he is my father so I respect him,” he shared. “I had to make a choice early on because I know what it’s like to be so angry and then to love so passionately and to love so hard to be angry that you feel out of control but that when there is a moment when you can cross that line where you have to grab everything that’s in you and have to pull yourself back. So I think we would be able to relate on that level sure. I’ve never hit a woman. I’ve never hit anyone for that matter, but I understand being that angry and that frustrated and ready to go.”

2. Ne-Yo Goes to Battle With Two-Face; Closes New Disney Movie

Aaron Eckhart May have been a worthy opponent for Christian Bale’s Batman as Harvey Dent/Two-Face in The Dark Knight, but the critically-acclaimed actor will have a different nemesis as he co-stars with Ne-Yo in the upcoming film Battle: Los Angeles.

According to media sources, the singer will play a corporal in the sci-fi war film, while Aaron Eckhart has signed to star as the leader of a platoon struggling to fight against the aliens on the streets of L.A. Joining the pair will be Michelle Rodriguez, who will play another corporal, and Bridget Moynahan, who will be seen as a veterinarian.

Ne-Yo’s new role marks a new direction for the vocalist/songwriter, whose work in Stomp the Yard and Save the Last Dance 2 hasn’t stretched his acting muscles beyond the realm of music- and dance-oriented portrayals. Shooting for Battle: Los Angeles is expected to begin this week in Shreveport, Louisiana. As it stands now, the Jonathan Liebesman-directed feature has a tentative release date in early 2011.

If an acting Ne-Yo isn’t your thing, then you’ll be happy to know that he’s still attached to his day job as he has been recruited to write and sing the closing song for Disney’s The Princess and the Frog. Either way, Ne-Yo comes out a little richer for his trouble.

3. Erykah Badu Speaks on the Joys of Homeschooling

Although she’s garnered legions of fans who enjoy her music, Erykah Badu is a mother who wants nothing but the best for her son Seven Sirius and daughters Puma Sabti and Mars Merkaba.

Case in point: her decision to home school the kids as she admitted to being motivated to give Seven “special attention academically, to give him an advantage.”

“So by being home-schooled he learned how to learn — he learned how to solve problems in a nontraditional way. In doing that, he developed an edge in his schoolwork. He enjoys challenges,” Badu told Babble. “He pushes himself. He does his homework voluntarily. He does not want to miss school or be late or be untidy or not have his things in order because that was a big part of how he was brought up.

Although Seven was home-schooled until he entered the second grade, the effect of the instruction has stuck with him. Although his mother doesn’t have “any idea what Seven is going to choose to do,” Miss Badu knows that “he knows how to be disciplined and how to learn, and because of that he’s one of the top students in his school, and one of the top students in Dallas.”

Badu is currently homeschooling Puma, who is five and Mars, who she says, “just started school this week, now that she’s six months.”

Looks like the Badu clan have nowhere to go but up. The kids seem to be on the right track to following in mom’s highly successful footsteps.

4. Jamie Foxx Reminisces Over PCP Experiences

Jamie Foxx is truly living the good life. Hit songs and albums and a thriving acting career make for a really good look.

But it almost never came to be as the entertainer revealed an experience the drug PCP that nearly left him nearly comatose and still haunts him to this day.

According to Foxx, someone had spiked a drink he had when he was a student at United States International University attending a dorm room party. As a result, Foxx’s sense began to shut down and he was rushed to the hospital, where doctors flushed the drug out of his system.

“I was drinking whiskey and it didn’t taste funny, so I had no idea. It took about 15 minutes and I knew something was wrong,” the Oscar winner told WENN. “I said to my roommate, ‘Something is going on, and I don’t know what it is, but I’m going to ride it out.

“That was the last thing I said, and then I was almost in a coma and I couldn’t move, couldn’t talk, couldn’t even say, ‘Take me to a hospital.’ My friend could see something was badly wrong and he took me to the emergency room.”

Although he made a full recovery, Foxx admitted to suffering severe flashbacks that left him feeling terrified and paranoid even though his friend remained with him after coming back from the hospital.

“(He) stayed with me. Then he took me back to the dorm and I was afraid of the dark and he would talk to me every night and calm me down and say stuff like, ‘You’re OK, the demons aren’t real.’ He saved my life,” said the grateful actor, who later discovered that PCP stays in the body forever. The hallucinogenic is known to prevent the body and brain from working in sync.

“I read up on PCP after it happened. It leaves a fingerprint and you can’t get it out of your system,” Foxx stated. “It happened to me when I was 18 and I had 11-months of harsh flashbacks, and then when I was 26, and another when I was 32, and that was the last one.”

More than 20 years later, Foxx continues to “worry about it coming back.”

“ You’re afraid of the dark, afraid of things you see on television, you feel that things are coming at you. I felt paranoid, and paranoia is craziness. It’s not good.”

In Other Words…

Former Los Angeles Lakers star Rick Fox (not the BAWSE!) will be among the new faces inhabiting the CW’s Melrose Place. The actor will be seen in a recurring role on the show as the owner of the restaurant where all the aspiring actors on the show work.

 

Idris Elba is on his way back to the small screen. The actor is set to play the lead role in the BBC’s new police show Luther. The show, which is slated to air next year, will put a twist on the police show formula by revealing the murderer’s identity at the beginning of each episode.

 

Deborah Cox is on her way back to Broadway with a starring role in the new musical Josephine. The play, which is based on the life of legendary vocalist Josephine Baker, will feature the songstress as Baker. The new role isn’t the first time Cox has been on a Broadway stage. The singer was previously cast in the theatrical production of Aida. Theater and production dates for Josephine are set to be announced in the coming weeks. 

 

 I guess it’s safe to say that Whitney Houston has officially come back. The former Mrs. Bobby Brown has landed on top of the Billboard 200 Albums chart with her latest album, I Look To You, selling 305,000 copies in its first week of release.

 

Viewers of the upcoming VH1 Divas show will get an Oscar winner among its roster of talented singers. According to reports, Jennifer Hudson and Sheryl Crow will join Adele, Leona Lewis and Jordin Sparks as performers for the show. VH1 Divas, which will feature former American Idol judge Paula Abdul as host and appearances from Cyndi Lauper and Toni Braxton, is set to air at 9 p.m. on Thursday on VH1.

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