Okay… this isn’t exactly a freebie because I’m not sure if you’ll be able to watch this one for free on MyLifetime.com after the premiere Sunday, October 7th at 9pm.
But… I do have a free treat for you. Here’s our interview with Executive Producer and Star Queen Latifah, plus Co-Producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan!
(Listen to the interview in this video)
I love that you choose positive and inspiring work. What is your personal criteria for choosing which projects to do?
Queen Latifah: Well first of all it’s the quality of the material and also it’s who’s involved, you know, who’s a part of what we’re going to do. And then it’s also, you know, I like to kind of service the full audience of America at least. So I try to do things that are maybe just real artistic.
They don’t have the most money but it’s a great piece of work. Then there’s like big, fun comedies, big animated movies for kids like I want to do things for my nieces and nephews. So I mean my – it’s always been a kind of a full circle moment for how I choose material.
But I think, you know, a lot of it is based upon, you know, what the material is and then who’s involved, you know, and who is it going to service. You know, because ultimately we’re trying to deliver something entertaining to an audience.
So as long as it can entertain the audience, if it makes me laugh I think, you know, if it makes my, you know, my nephew laugh or my niece laugh then I think it’s good. You know, if it makes someone laugh or cry then those things are good.
I mean it’s a very varied, you know, I definitely service, you know, my African American audience but I also want to service other audiences, you know, of different cultures.
So if there are other cultural things that can be involved in it I like to make it diverse because I grew up in New York and New Jersey and so I’m used to growing up around a different, you know, different cultures.
So if there’s something that can, you know, kind of be involved in that sense I always want to, you know, give a little something there. So it varies, you know, but ultimately those are the main things.
As long as we service the audience, we give people the entertaining night, you know, that’s kind of how I choose things.
And I always have like a woman thing in there.
And then for all three of you, since all three of you produced this, what were the biggest challenges to overcome to produce this new version of Steel Magnolias?
Queen Latifah: Location. Location. Location.
Neil Meron: Well location but, you know, I actually didn’t think about this or I don’t think any of us did think about challenges to overcome. I think it was just the challenge to make the best movie we could. And, you know, I don’t think any of us really looked at the past.
We just looked at what we had. And what we had is something that we loved and so we just made the best version of that.
Well it’s true actually. I mean we never said oh, they did this before like this. No, we didn’t. You honor the material you have.
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