— the highest paidBlack actress —on the power of the penin ‘Perfect Stranger’…and real power inHollywood.
Beverly Hills, CA — If directorSpike Lee hadn’t cast her in ‘JungleFever’ 16 years ago, Halle Berry couldvery well be that pretty face with thegift of gab on television delivering themorning news or possibly the eveningnetwork news. That’s right, move over Katie Couric – it’s the CBS EveningNews with Halle Berry. And perhapsinstead of the highest paid Blackactress in Hollywood commanding$14 million a film, Berry would be the highest paid anchorwoman – likeCouric.
“Right after I graduated highschool, that’s what I wanted to do. Iwent to college for one year and that’swhat I thought I’d spend my lifedoing,” said Berry on her aspirationsto become a journalist. Not manypeople know that journalism, specificallybroadcasting, was the AcademyAward-winning actresses’ first careerchoice back in the day and interestinglyBerry gets a taste of life on theother side as a print reporter in hernew sexy thriller, “Perfect Stranger,” opening this weekend.
“I think there’s power in the pen andmy character is very impressed with thepower she wields as a journalist,” sheadds. In the movie, an internet cat-andmousehigh stakes game, Berry playsRowena Price an investigator reporterwho goes undercover to get to the bottomof a friend’s murder. When shelearns the friend’s death may be connectedto a powerful ad executive(Bruce Willis), she ends up taking onthree different identities – in her questfor the truth. The closer she gets to thetruth, the more you’ll learn how farsome people will go to keep a secret.
As for Berry, she believes in takingsecrets to the grave. “Nothing goodcomes from talking about other people’sbusiness,” she has said. ButBerry has no problem telling on herself. She’s about to turn 41. She’s atype1 diabetic. During a low point inher life, she attempted suicide. Sheeven lost the hearing in her left earafter a boyfriend physically abusedher. She wants children, however,she’s vowing “never, never” to marryagain. After two failed unions, she’stelling the world – she’s just wants tobe happy.
That’s right! The first Blackwoman to win an Oscar for bestactress, the highest paid Black womanin Hollywood, the woman, who’s theinternational spokesperson for RevlonCosmetics and the woman who justlanded a coveted star on Hollywood’sWalk of Fame, is searching for truehappiness. “We’re all trying to make our way,” she said.
“I’m in a really good space in mylife, and I can honestly say it’s notbecause of any one thing. It’s becauseI feel good about me. As I’ve gottenolder, I’ve become more comfortablewith who I really am, all parts of me,knowing that my physical self doesn’tdiminish me in anyway, or my talent.”
She has every right to be thrilledabout three major things: 1) a newman, Canadian model Gabriel Aubry,2) movies and great roles keep comingher way and 3) she was absolutely ontop of the world and very emotionalwhen claimed that star onHollywood’s famous Blvd. “I’malways emotional. I’m an emotionalwreck,” said Berry about the waterworksthat flowed during the big ceremonylast week.
“I just wear it on my sleeve – that’sjust the way I am. I didn’t think anythingcould be bigger in my career. Ithought the monumental moment hadcome and gone, but being there andhaving my Mom there and being therewith all the greats of this industry havinga star with my name on it felt reallyimportant and being a woman ofcolor, it was even more important.”
From Bond Girl to Cat Woman andDorothy Dandridge, Berry has morethan 40 major films and TV movies toher credit. Although she’s been “criticized”for some of the roles she’s takenincluding the Oscar winning part in“Monster’s Ball,” the stunning beautyand thoughtful interviewee is quick todefend her movie selections. “I chosea role based on a character. Do I relateto it or not, can I imagine myself bringingthis character to life and does itoffer me a new challenge,” she told theLA Sentinel.
“If it feels too familiar like I’vedone it before, I automatically say no.I’m not interested in making lateralmoves. I always want to go up andtake risks. Even after Oscar, I have notchanged it.”
Talk about taking risks. Berry willshock the world in her upcoming project,“Nappily Ever After.” The movie,which she’s producing and developingwith Alicia Keys, is based on the bookwith the same title. What’s shocking isthat the film has a scene where Berryshaves off all her hair a la BritneySpears recent fiasco. Berry told the‘Hollywood Reporter she’s “terrified”about the scene. “I’m scared to death,but that’s what I must do. I supposegoing bald could be a little excitingtoo, so we’ll probably film the processfrom beginning to end.”
Another thing you may findintriguing about Berry, she has beenquoted as saying she wants to be thenext Spike Lee. “I want to help otherBlack folks to get into Hollywood andbe successful in Hollywood.”
“Producing is empowering,” saidBerry who produced award-winningand culturally important films as“Introducing Dorothy Dandridge” and“Lackawanna Blues.” “To create situationsfor yourself which feels meaningfulfor you and others is empoweringand so for me, it’s about findingmy sense of power and knowing whatto do with what’s been given.”