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Star Scoop: Zoe Saldana Is Pregnant, Jimmy Kimmel’s New Girl,

By  July 23, 2014

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Earlier today, The Hollywood Reporter proved our suspicions true and confirmed that Guardians of the Galaxy lead Zoe Saldana is expecting her first child with husband Marco Perego. The reveal must not have fared well with the THR cover star, and the post has since been removed. We still can’t deny her glow… or the urge to plea for an invite to her baby shower. Congrats, Zoe! [E! Online]

Say it with us now: awwww! Jimmy Kimmel shared pics of his 12-day-old newborn June on his namesake show Monday night. He told the crowd that he and his wife were doing fine and that he managed not to scream during her delivery. More cuteness, please! [ABC News]

We’re used to seeing James Franco on the silver screen, and thanks to Broadway hit Of Mice and Men, we got accustomed to his skills on the stage. Now, the National Theater’s NT Live is merging the two. Of Mice and Men, in which Franco stars alongside Chris O’Dowd and Leighton Meester, will film a private performance of the show to be released in select theaters. [Variety]

Save the date. We’re going On the Run with Jay Z and Beyoncé—again—September 20. HBO teased its exclusive concert special with the power pair via Instagram, revealing that the filmed version of the joint concert will air a week after its September 12 and 13 live date. [Huffington Post]

Speaking of IG drops and Bey… the vinyl version of her self-titled visual album is coming soon. [Instagram]

American Horror Story fans shouldn’t expect Freak Show to fall on the “campy” side of things. Fox CEO John Landgraf told press at the 2014 Television Critics Association summer press tour that season four of the spooky anthology series will be more chilling than season three. “Some years it’s going to be big and bright and brash and campy the way Coven is,” he said. “Other years it’s going to be dark and brooding, like Asylum was. I guess I would put Freak Show half-way in between the two. It’s got a little bit more humor and a little bit more camp, but it’s got a brooding period feel to it also.” [International Business Times]

A$AP Rocky may want to learn to keep his hands to himself. The Rihanna collaborator and GQ style star is facing a lawsuit from a (former) fan who says he slapped her during last September’s Made in America Festival in Philadelphia. The plaintiff is seeking $75,000 in damages, and judging from past complaints against the Harlem-bred emcee, he may have to cash out. [Rolling Stone]

Casting Room: Anthony Hopkins Lands First TV Role in 25 Years

By  July 23, 2014

Before new shows and movies are on your radar, they’re being planned, executed, and put into motion by production teams far and wide. Each week, Glam is going to give you the rundown on your favorite celebrities and their new gigs, from Hollywood’s rising stars to Broadway’s top talents. Welcome to the Casting Room.

Anthony Hopkins

Sir Anthony Hopkins is going sci-fi. With only five television credits to his name—the most-recent of which happened in 2007 as a narrator for PBS’ American Masters—Hopkins is headed to HBO for a television reboot of Westworld. The 1973 thriller centered in on a futuristic theme park where androids malfunctioned and attacked human guests, who were originally lured by the attraction’s tagline “Have we got a vacation for you!” 

It will be Hopkins’ first acting role for TV in 25 years. He’ll play Dr. Robert Ford in the pilot, the “the brilliant, taciturn and complicated Creative Director, Chief Programmer and Chairman of the Board of Westworld” with “an uncompromising creative vision for the park.” He’ll be joined by Evan Rachel Wood, who plays an android that is seemingly unaware of her artificial existence.

Star Wars: Episode VII director J.J. Abrams will bring his science-fiction expertise to the pilot as executive producer, bolstering its campaign to be picked up for a full season.

Now, more from the Casting Room:

FILM
The Company Man Matthew McConaughey
The Deep Blue Good-ByChristian Bale
The Disappointments Room | Kate Beckinsale
Grimsby | Penelope Cruz joining Sacha Baron Cohen
Hail Caesar | Scarlett Johansson joining George Clooney, Tilda Swinton
How to Talk to Girls at Parties | Elle Fanning
The Janson Directive | Dwayne Johnson
The Jungle BookNeel Sethi joining Lupita Nyong’oScarlett Johansson
King Arthur | Idris Elba
Light Between Oceans | Rachel Weisz joining Michael Fassbender
Paddington | Ben Whisaw replacing Colin Firth
Pixels | Jane Krakowski joining Adam Sandler
Race | Jason Sudeikis, Jeremy Irons joining newcomer Stephan James
Truth | Robert Redford
Untitled Cold War Thriller | Amy RyanAlan Alda

TELEVISION
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. | Lucy Lawless | ABC
American CrimeRegina King | ABC
Castle Ryan Sands | ABC
Covert AffairsLynn Collins | USA
The Flash Wentworth Miller | The CW
Girlfriends Guide to Divorce | Bernadette Peters | Bravo
The Good WifeSteven Pasquale | CBS
The Mindy ProjectRhea Perlman | Fox
Mom | Jaime Pressly | CBS
RevengeBrian Hallisay | ABC
Sons of AnarchyMalcolm-Jamal Warner | FX
StalkerElisabeth Röhm | CBS
The Vampire Diaries  Jodi Lyn O’Keefe | The VW
WestworldAnthony Hopkins | HBO

#Trophies: Denzel Washington Is Adding a Lifetime Achievement Award to His Stock

By  July 23, 2014

Denzel WashingtonKing Kong ain’t got nothing on Denzel Washington.

The decorated A-lister, whose career started with an uncredited role in 1974’s Death Wish, will receive the 2014 Donostia Lifetime Achievement Award at the 62nd San Sebastián International Film Festival this September in Spain. The honor puts the Academy Award-winner (and four-time Best Actor nominee) in the same category as past recipients like Al Pacino (1996), Jessica Lange (2002), and Meryl Streep (2008).

Washington’s newest bestowment will coincide with the European release of The Equalizer, his second collaboration with director Antoine Fuqua, and a Sony Pictures’ reboot of the 1980s CBS television drama. According to Variety, the project is buzzing with Oscars potential, considering Fuqua’s Training Day was responsible for earning Washington his second Academy Award, and Washington’s character-driven acting repertoire: Malcolm XThe Hurricane, and Flight, for starts. 

The Equalizer, starring Washington, Chloë Grace Moretz, and Melissa Leo will land in theaters September 26.

 

 

One Direction Will Light Up 3,000 Screens!

By  July 22, 2014

Directioners won’t have a problem catching Where We Are at local cinemas. That’s because One Direction’s concert film is being released in 3,000 theaters worldwide.

One Direction

Arts Alliance, an event cinema distributor responsible for promoting Coldplay Live 2012 and Pearl Jam Twenty, will produce 10,000 screenings of the 1D’s second concert documentary, over 50 territories, in just two days. The film, executive produced by Simon Cowell, is being touted by the Arts Alliance as “the biggest global ‘event cinema’ release ever” and “the first of many record-breaking theatrical releases” according to Variety. It chronicles (and is named after) the band’s current international tour, and features performances of their biggest hits (like “One Thing” and “Best Song Ever”) at Milan’s San Siro stadium.

Where We Are — The Concert Film’s October 11 and 12 showings will act as a grand finale One Direction’s tour; the eponymous live show wraps October 5 in Miami.

Fans will be able to purchase tickets for the cinematic feat on July 28; if sales are anything like their tour, they’re bound to go fast!

Learning with Lucy: Scarlett Johansson Talks Her Superhuman Role

By  July 22, 2014

Scarlett JohanssonThe premise behind Lucy is a fascinating one: a drug mule, forced to work for a Taiwanese mob, is implanted with a drug that unintentionally enters her system and allows her to access her full brain capacity. The Luc Besson film builds upon the theory that humans only use 10 percent of their mental prowess, leaving the majority of their brain power untapped.

Scarlett Johansson tackles the titular role, which falls in line with some of her more recent work. Like Her and Under the SkinLucy keys in on an entity that transcends mere human existence, and, as Vulture reporter Jesse David Fox puts it has a “great desire and capacity for learning.” From operating system, to alien, to superhuman, the characteristic is one Johannsson says helps her look at humanity differently.

“The rules don’t necessarily apply to these characters because they’re not even human,” she told Fox. “That has allowed me to step back and really examine human behavior in a way. As I know myself better—as I get older—I don’t have to relate all of my work to my own experience, necessarily. It’s not as important to me to be able to have a total relationship with the character I’m playing.”

Days ahead of Lucy’s July 25 release, Johansson set down with Vulture to talk being overexposed, looking toward the small screen, and, of all things, tuna sandwiches.

Why Lucy was a perfect fit:

“When I first met Luc, I was doing a Tennessee Williams play that was visceral and raw and this project seemed so abstract. It was challenging in a different way because the character is in this constant state of transition and struggles to hold onto the nuances of herself and her life that make her who she is — that make her human, in her mind. In comparison to the work that I was doing when we met, it seemed like a totally different challenge.”

Why there’s no need to combat celebrity culture:

“It’s something that you see because it’s a part of this overexposure that we experience in celebrity culture and the 24-hour news feed that we’re on. Still, I guess there’s not much you can do about that. It’s there and there’s no sense in fighting against that. ”

How television could be on the horizon:

“I like the idea of the television. I like the long format of it… It depends on if that was brought to me or created by me. But I like the idea of having the time to really imagine a character in a much more in-depth way. Having that freedom sounds kind of fun.”

On tuna sandwiches:

“I live in New York, so I’m surrounded by different sandwiches all over the place. I would say my favorite type of sandwich is probably … maybe a tuna sandwich. I have a simple life.”

Read Johansson’s entire interview here.

Kelly Osbourne Loves to Play the Villain, and Will be Wearing Birkenstocks

By  July 22, 2014

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Fashion Police’s Kelly Osbourne‘s alter ego is a Disney villain? Osbourne’s dream came true when she received the role as the voice of Hildy Gloom, the villain in Disney XD’s new show, 7D. “I never wanted to play the princess but being a villain was my dream role,” she said. “I still watch cartoons, and my parents think I’m crazy. At least now I can pretend I’m doing it for research.”

Osbourne, who recently launched a new line of MAC makeup in collaboration with her mother, relates to her villain character being bad with the best intentions. She said, “I feel so fearless when I play her. Hildy is my alter ego–my Sasha Fierce!” While she loves villains with Hildy as her Sasha Fierce, she named Maleficent of Sleeping Beauty as her all-time favorite character.

In addition to her packed resume as a makeup maven and voice-over actress, Osbourne works to maintain a healthy lifestyle, which now includes her must-have snack, Wheat Thins Popped. Similar to fashion trends, Osbourne mixes up what flavor to stick in her bag. “It all depends on my mood at the moment, just like the color of my nails,” she said. “It’s hard to pick because I go through phases. I couldn’t choose just one–I love them equally.”

Osbourne certainly appreciates style given her post at E!, and credits Jane Birkin as one of her woman crushes. “She carried a picnic basket as a bag and made it look chic for starters,” she explained. “She’s a timeless beauty and definitely one of my style icons along with Grace Jones, Liza Minnelli, and Bettie Page to name a few. I’m also really influenced by Teddy Girls and Tank Girl (the movie) right now.”

In terms of style trends of the moment, Osbourne is saying yes to the Birkenstocks, and thinks you should too. “I love Birkenstocks and socks right now–there is a right way to do this!” she exclaimed. Whatever you’re rocking Birkenstocks with, there is no denying this summer trend has some staying power!

 

Star Scoop: There’s a New Saint Laurent in Town, Robin Thicke Sells Out, Linda Perry Goes Primetime

By  July 22, 2014

140723_Saint Laurent Movie

There’s Yves Saint Laurent, then there’s thisSaint Laurent, the unauthorized YSL biopic, is coming soon. Today, the first trailer of the Gaspard Ulliel and Léa Seydoux starrer has arrived. Get your translators ready: it’s in French, sans subtitles. [GlamChic]

To date, Robin Thicke’s Paula—an attempt to win back his estranged wife Paula Patton—has sold just 26,000 in the U.S., 530 in the UK, and 158 in Australia. That’s no typo: one hundred and fifty-eight is right. And it seems like the embarrassment of the campaign hasn’t gotten him out of the dog house. The pair have put their $2.985 million Los Angeles abode on the market. Twenty years gone… we just hope it doesn’t rub off on Jay and Bey. [Variety]

Linda Perry may not be trending on your Twitter timeline, but she will be soon. The singer-songwriter-producer—responsible for hits by PinkChristina Aguilera, and Gwen Stefani—is breaking into the television game with a reality competition that promises to find music’s next big talent. “I’m looking for someone to take over this legacy of music,” she said in an interview. “There’s a bunch of kids out there that are hungry. There’s a Sia out there; there’s a Linda Perry… but there is no Bob Dylan to teach someone how to be like Bob Dylan.” [Billboard]

Louis C.K. is half the man he used to be. Ok. Not really. But his namesake FX show has been cut down to size. The network announced that the half-hour dramedy will be coming back for a fifth season, but only for seven episodes instead of its normal 14. [Vulture]

With the announcement of his fifth LP, a surprisingly funny hosting gig at the ESPY Awards, and a cosign from Kanye West, one could say Drake has plenty to celebrate. Added to that list is his approaching joint tour with Lil Wayne. Ahead of their August 8 start date, the pair have released a Street Fighter-inspired trailer, pegging them as warriors, sage and protege, on board for an “epic tournament.” Don’t you love the theatrics? [MTV]

The numbers are in and the average movie ticket in America totals $8.33. If only we could find a cinema deal that cheap in New York City. [The Hollywood Reporter]

Kanye West isn’t Name Dropping Anymore

By  July 21, 2014

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Mr. West is in the building, swagger on hundred thousand trillion with GQ magazine. Kanye Omar West is a brand new man and he’s letting his freak–albeit, handsomely chic–flag fly on the pages on the August issue of the men’s magazine.

“You see I haven’t name-dropped and said a bunch of negative stuff about people,” West said, drawing attention to his penchant for speaking, um, extemporaneously. While it is true that West did appear to be rather calm—because you know, he drops bombs—there was no shortage of #ThingsKanyeSays.

He Gets Dressed with the Paparazzi in Mind

“I hope we don’t see no paparazzi today,” West said. “Because I’m still getting acquainted with these jogging pants I threw on. Like, ‘That’s not my statement!’

West isn’t Out to Get You… Or the Paps

“There’s no fangs. I don’t have fangs. I’m a porcupine. I’m a blowfish. Like, I’m a—what’s the fish that blows up?” He continues, “Yeah, I’m a blowfish. I’m not a shark, I’m a blowfish.” “People have me pinned as a shark or a predator in some way, and in no way am I that. I wouldn’t want to hurt anyone. I want to defend people. I want to help people.”

Hey, Page Six, Get Over the Gold Toilets at Kimye’s Wedding

“They didn’t even talk there about the photographs, or the dress, or Andrea Bocelli singing, or the marble tables. They’re like: “It’s a gold toilet.” No. The bathrooms—that usually would be a porta-potty—were wrapped in a fabric that was neutral to match the fort. The bar was terrible, and the wedding planner didn’t approve it with me. I was having issues with this wedding planner the entire time on approvals, and I get there and they threw some weird plastic bar there. So the same materials that were used to cover the bathroom, we said, “Let’s just use that, because this is all we have to make the bar look better.” Which it did, in the end.”

Kanye Wants North to Live a Normal Life

“I talked about in it was the idea of celebrity, and celebrities being treated like blacks were in the ’60s, having no rights, and the fact that people can slander your name. I said that in the toast. And I had to say this in a position where I, from the art world, am marrying Kim. And how we’re going to fight to raise the respect level for celebrities so that my daughter can live a more normal life. She didn’t choose to be a celebrity. But she is. So I’m going to fight to make sure she has a better life.”

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He’s, um, Taken with Carine Roitfeld?

“Carine Roitfeld is the Walt Disney of what Tumblr is today. She is the Kanye West of what Tumblr is today. She’s the single most important person to what street style is today. And she was at the wedding seven seats down from Kim, who is one of the number one fashion plates of today.”

It Didn’t Hurt His Feelings Jay Z and Beyoncé Didn’t Attend his Wedding

“It doesn’t even matter to me whatsoever, who would show up. Because the most important person to show up there, to me, was Kim. And that’s all that matters to me. I had to fight for that for seven years. But the fact that these other people showed up that are from such different worlds but have done such dynamic things—they’re all, in a way, equal to what Kim has done in TV or what I had done in music. I was so moved that I just wanted people to stop and think they weren’t sitting at a table full of fashion people, they weren’t sitting at a table full of celebrities, they weren’t sitting at a table full of movie directors. It really was a representation of the way we receive information today, post-Internet.”

 Page Six Can’t Kill His Vibe

“Page Six can’t overshadow the main point: Carine Roitfeld was sitting next to Kim Kardashian.” Well played, Ye, well played.

Kim Kardashian is a Dinosaur

“Kim is this girl who turns me on. I love her. This is who I want to be next to and be around. And then people would try to say, “Well, you know, if you’re a musician, you should be with a musician, and if you want to design, you need to be with a girl from the design world.” I don’t [care] about people’s opinions. Because when a kid falls in love with an airplane or a bike or a dinosaur—especially if you’re an only child and it’s not because of the book that the sibling was reading—it’s like, you mean to tell me that the dinosaurs walked the earth and stuff like that?! That’s amazing! You mean to tell me that these giant multi-ton crafts can fly that fast and that loud, and they can flip, and there’s danger, the possibility of them exploding? That’s [so] cool! You mean to tell me that this girl with this body and this face is also into style, and she’s a nice person, and she has her own money and is family-oriented? That’s just as cool as a fighter jet or dinosaur! And just as rarely seen.

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… And She Gave Kanye Skills

“And what I had to learn from Kim is how to take more of her advice and less of other people’s advice. There’s a lot of Kim K skills that were added. In order to win at life, you need some Kim K skills, period.”

We’ll Have New Music, Soon, Maybe

“I think most likely September. I go back and forth. Like, should it be September or should it be October? Should it be November? When Beyoncé was working on her last album, she took a while. I was thinking it could somehow come out in June, like Yeezus, and just kill it for the summer. But then I’m like, I have to work on Adidas and be with my child.”

 He’s Actually Happy

“This is a multi-lifetime process that we have now embarked on. Meaning starting now, you’re just starting to see a glimmer of what the idea of West will mean. So right now, at this age and with this visibility and with the skill sets that Kim is now giving me, I think I have a good chance of success in building something that has longevity, high integrity, high success rate, and is very fulfilling, not only for me creatively but also in adding fulfillment to people’s lives. Adding ease. Adding wonder. Adding magic.”

His Taste is Still Better than Yours

“This is Christopher Columbus. This is uncharted waters we’re on. We’d be super happy to be on land, and also a little bit like, “Ah, the journey’s over!” But I feel like, we got the Vogue cover, Steve McQueen won the Oscar, we finally got married… You know? We have a child. We’re a family now. I am an arbiter of taste, and people think that I have the ability to make things cool—or if I’m doing it, it should be cool. And I feel that this stuff’s starting to be cool. And that feels good to me. Because I don’t like walking around with people thinking I’m doing uncool [stuff], because there’s nothing I’m doing that’s uncool. It’s all innovative. You just might not understand it yet.”

 

Star Scoop: Kanye Is Back in the Stone Age, Jonah Hill Gives His Blessing, NPH is Headed for AHS?!

By  July 21, 2014

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Just call Kanye West king of the quotables. In his August 2014 cover for GQ magazine, Yeezus compares wife Kim Kardashian to dinosaurs, crowns Drake as hip-hop’s reigning champ, and—what we really want to know—hints that his next album could drop as soon as September. Which means it’s bound to end up soundtracking some Spring 2015 shows. [GlamBuzz]

Funny guy Jonah Hill took on a serious role over the weekend: officiant of Adam Levine and Behati Prinsloo’s Los Cabos, Mexico wedding. The pair said “I Do” in front of 300 guests—including Robert Downey Jr., Victoria’s Secret model Candice Swanepeol, and Maroon 5’s Jesse Carmichael—with the 22 Jump Street star reportedly blessing their “loose, romantic, and fun” nuptials. [GlamChic]

Two of Hollywood’s hottest stars are gearing up to share the silver screen… again. Mr. and Mrs. Smith, er, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, have been tapped to star in, write, direct, and produce Universal Pictures’ adaptation of By the Sea. It will be an “intimate, character-driven drama,” that Jolie says will allow the two to “be actors together and be really raw, open, try things.” [TIME]

Everybody is hopping on the American Horror Story train, and with season four drawing nigh, Neil Patrick Harris wants in on the Freak Show madness. “I wrote a letter to Ryan [Murphy], asking if I could be in it,” Harris said in an interview with Entertainment Weekly Radio. “And he didn’t respond.” Until Friday, when Murphy tweeted that he has a role in mind for the Broadway buff. [Huffington Post]

No, ladies and gents, this isn’t your typical Craigslist ad. In an unconventional promo tactic, the first trailer for Nightcrawler has landed via the popular postings site. A jobs-wanted listing appeared on Friday from the film’s main character, Louis Bloom, a “freelance crime journalist wrapped up in Los Angeles’ underbelly.” Jake Gyllenhaal… is that you? [Indiewire]

And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for: a new look at the set of Star Wars: Episode VII. Director J.J. Abrams gave us a peek at a finished X-Wing, which was built for the epic’s Millennium Falcon. The news surely gave the space saga’s fans reason to go wild. As for us, we had to rely on Google to catch up on all the lingo. [Vulture]

Get On Up: Jill Scott on James Brown, Being Open, and A ‘Desperate’ Type of Love

By  July 21, 2014

Jill Scott may not appear until halfway through James Brown biopic Get On Up, but her screen presence—as it is in real life—is truly captivating.

Get On Up

Scott is among the stellar cast of characters who brings Mr. Dynamite’s story to life. Get On Up chronicles the legend’s rise and permeating appeal, with flashbacks to lesser-known aspects of his life: being abandoned by his mother as a child, hustling at his aunt’s Georgia brothel, facing his first arrest at 16. Scott plays DeidreDee DeeJenkins, the second wife to Chadwick Boseman’s Brown, during his Godfather of Soul era.

Glam spoke with Scott about the burden she carried in doing Brown’s legacy justice, what it’s like to draw inspiration from Brown as a singer, and longing for a “desperate” type of love.

Glam: What was one of your first James Brown memories?

Jill Scott: I think it was in the house, and my mother was playing music out of her old stereo and it was “dun dun dun…” And I remember my little shoulders like “what’s that?” That’s when I found out about James Brown. This funk that you can’t stop. This real, real black music. 

G: How has his impact on the industry influenced you as a singer?

JS: There’s nobody more passionate, there’s nobody left of right the way that James is. I’ve never heard a vocalist yell and scream and get that emotion out the way that he does. You can tell that it’s not just something that he does or that it’s a practiced thing—it is in the moment, it is right now. And that taught me a lot. That’s the kind of vocalist I want to be, and watching him rehearse with his band, you know how hard he works them. I’m not as hard on my band, but I really do demand a certain level of perfection, but my take on things is perfection so that we can forget it. I don’t want to over-perfect it so that it feels staged or done and tired and dry. I need it to be alive now, so rehearse the hell out of it so we know all the things that we can do and then let’s just forget it and be.

G: We get to see that “perfectionist” side of Brown in Get On Up. What other elements do you think the film reveals to audiences who may know little of his real life?

JS: I learned a lot about his childhood, about where his strength comes from. To have that level of a defiant spirit, to not fall into despair because life has been despairing. I think it just says a lot about that particular dynamic human being. You don’t have passion and power like that without having to go through some level of struggle. And his struggle was so internal—to be wounded like that by someone who was the closest to you—it will affect your entire life. You can see a therapist all you want—he sang his out. I loved in the film how he kept finding the light. He kept finding the light in the dark. It spoke volumes to me as a person, and I hope he speaks volumes to the audience as well.

G: I’m sure there was a heavy responsibility in translating Brown’s struggle and despair to the silver screen. How did you deal with that?

JS: I was actually pretty afraid. I didn’t want to talk to Dee Dee because I wanted to live inside of the script. I thought that, you know it’s the little things, and I thought she might say something that will make me feel some level of guilt for being what this woman is on this page. That made me cautious about it, so I asked. I asked her grandson to tell me about Dee Dee. He said one thing that just sparked it off for me about who she really was, who she really is: she loves him now. Now, he’s passed-away. [He’d] gotten remarried, had other children, had a whole other life after the 11 years that they spent together, but she still was in love with him. Not just loved him and had fond memories, but was in love. So that way that I approached Dee Dee was that she was just unabashedly in love with the man. The icon, the genius and yes, sometimes he takes things out or he expresses things in ways that she doesn’t like or ways that are harmful to her, but she loves the man and I wanted to stay there. I just wanted to be true to that as much as possible—to try to find some light in the dark.

G: In your own music, you’ve been very open about love: finding it, falling in and out of it. How do gauge how much to share with your fans and what to keep for yourself?

JS: Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to discern what to keep from the audience yet. I’m kind of a slave to my own pen. I listen to music, I look for “water.” I call it “water.” Music that I can swim to, swim in. Whatever kind of music it is, I kind of just wait for my pen to work, rather than trying to force it to work. And it takes time, but it is what it is. I can’t, I won’t step away from that. I won’t be a robot to something that is a gift not a given, so some things I wish I never said, some things I wish I could undo, but I was true to that moment and sang a song about something I wish I didn’t, but it is what it is.

G: It’s interesting you say water. I think your recent collaboration with SZA reflects that beautiful sort of fluidity. How did that come about? 

JS: I’m really good friends with Om’Ma Keith and we had been trying to hangout and couldn’t. He was in town, I was in town; it was like 1:00 or 2:00 o’clock in the morning. I was like “Are you up?” and he said yeah, and I went over there [to the studio] and she was there. I didn’t know her before. I enjoyed her freckles so much, I was like you’re so lucky to have those freckles and then we played a track and I started to write something and she was humming something and it was just very organic, real easy—I like that kind of environment. I like the song; I listen to it a lot. I listen to it to go to sleep—it really gives me that Zen feeling.

G: Is there any “watery” James Brown song that you would love to cover?

JS: Is it called “Please?” I would like to be that desperate. I would enjoy feeling like that, but not too often.

Watch Scott, Boseman, Tika Sumpter, and Nelsan Ellis in the trailer for Get On Up, and hit theaters when it’s released on August 1.