Tyler’s back with a new drama called “Temptation.”  Starring Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Jurnee’s not a junior miss anymore.  Initially intrigued to watch the trailer by an ad with huge ruby red lips in the subway, I didn’t recognize Smollett when I first saw the trailer.
Temptation Lips

As I’m watching the mellow-drama of the clips unfold, I kept saying to myself, ‘Who is that, I know her face but…’  After watching I had to go to IMDb to see the cast, ‘Gulp’, ‘that was Jurnee,’ it was like missing a cousin’s life through her teen-age years and now she’s all grown up.  The first time I met and interviewed this brilliant actress was for her film debut in “Eve’s Bayou.”  Directed by Kasi Lemmons, it’s one of my favorites. Kasi LemmonsSteeped in traditions and flaws of the black family, it’s a coming of age story for Jurnee’s character.  In Perry’s ‘Temptation’, Smolett portrays a woman at a crossroads in her life, a character that definitely graduates her from the role of a child.  Jurnee has also graduated from childhood in life, as she took vows with Josiah Bell in October of 2010.

Jurnee Smollett-Bell

As much as I shamefully enjoy the antics of “Madea,” I’ve never been compelled to see one of Tyler’s films until now.  I’m looking forward to seeing Jurnee take on her first lead in a movie.  More than ‘Temptation’ however, I can’t wait to see Kasi’s “Black Nativity.”  Based on Langston Hughes’ gospel musical re-telling of the Bible’s nativity story, it stars Forest Whitaker, Jennifer Hudson, Angela Bassett, and Lemmons’ husband Vondie Curtis-Hall.  Hall also appeared in ‘Eve’s Bayou’.  As did Lynn Whitfield, Megan Good, Diahann Carroll – who’ll appear in Perry’s forthcoming production “Peeples” – and Samuel L. Jackson.  Jackson and Laurence Fishburne, both declined the role that Whitaker said yes to, for ‘Nativity’.  Despite my excitement, it will be awhile before ‘Nativity’s release, as it’s currently being shot in New York, set for release in 2014.  Forest was actually falsely accused of shoplifting recently near one of the sets in Harlem.  According to the Huffington Post… he ‘was reportedly less than amused when a New York City deli employee publicly stopped and frisked him in the Morningside Heights neighborhood on Friday, February 19th.  The “Last King of Scotland” star said he had stopped at the upscale Milano Market on Broadway in order to buy some yogurt before work, according to the New York Post.  The quick trip took a humiliating turn when an employee accused Whitaker of stealing and patted him down in front of other customers and employees.  “It was around lunchtime and the store was packed,” an unidentified Milano employee told the New York Daily News.  “We were like 50 people deep.  The person walked in and out really quickly so our person just made a mistake.  The employee apologized immediately” once they realized it was Whitaker.

Temptation Poster

‘Nativity’ will be Kasi’s fifth film as a director, following ‘Bayou’; “A Caveman’s Valentine”; “Talk To Me” and her short film “Dr. Hugo.”  ‘Temptation’ marks Perry’s ninth dramatic effort, although “Diary of A Mad Black Woman,” was a dramatic-comedy, his others are: “Daddy’s Little Girls,” “Why Did I Get Married” & “Why Did I Get Married Too,” “The Family That Preys,” “I Can Do Bad All By Myself,” “For Colored Girls” and “Good Deeds.”  ‘Temptation’ also stars Eric West, Vanessa Williams, Lance Gross, Brandy Norwood, Robbie Jones and Kim Kardashian.  Perry got a lot of flack for casting the amateur porn-star Kardashian, but for what it’s worth, her role seems minuscule when watching the trailer.  I get the impression Perry totally cast her for shock value; her looks in lieu of the theme and title of the film; and to capitalize on her popularity, more so than her “talent.”

Temptation Tag“Temptation” hits the silver screen on March 29th.  Perry’s productions “Peeples” and “A Madea Christmas,” are also set for release this year.  “Scandal” star Kerry Washington takes the lead in ‘Peeples’.  It’s the story of a young man that crashes the Peeples annual reunion in the Hamptons, to ask for daughter Grace’s hand in marriage according to IMDbPro.


for the love of Kasi and Tyler




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