Queen Latifah to Host New Talk Show: Will and Jada Smith Executive Producers
Special to the NNPA from The Insight News | 9/6/2013, 2:09 p.m.
She’s conquered hip-hop, Hollywood and Broadway; but now Queen Latifah is out to conquer daytime television with a new talk show. ”The Queen Latifah Show” debuts nationally on Sept. 16. Locally, the show will air on the CW 69 channel each evening at 6 p.m.
For Latifah, the latest venture is just another feather in her already impressive cap.
“My show is going to be an entertaining and eclectic mix of interviews with real people as well as celebrities – people who are fun and fascinating,” said Latifah in a released statement. “It will be a program you can tune into to feel good every day. I also think it will inspire people who watch it. I know I’ve certainly been inspired by a lot of the stories we plan to share.”
The show comes with some weighty names attached to it. Along with Oscar nominee, Latifah, the show is executively produced by power couple, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith.
“My partner, Shakim (Compere) and I have a long history with Will and Jada Smith, and we have always wanted to find a way to do something big together,” said Latifah, born Dana Owens. “We all thought this was the perfect project, and since Will and Jada’s company Overbrook has a relationship with Sony, we’re excited to be doing it with them as well. It’s definitely a family affair.”
“Shakim and I actually grew up together,” Latifah added. “My mom was his teacher and we started (the production company) Flavor Unit together back in 1993. We have been friends with the Smiths for years. I was on ‘Fresh Prince’ with Will, and Jada and I were in a film together called ‘Set it Off.’ We have a long history and I definitely feel like we grew up together in Hollywood.”
The Queen said she reached out to several talk show greats including Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres and Jimmy Fallon for advice on her show.
“They’ve all been terrifically helpful and encouraging,” said Latifah.
The show’s set designer is also an impressive name in entertainment. The set was designed but rock/soul icon Lenny Kravitz.
“I can’t wait for people to see it,” Latifah said. “Not only is Lenny an incredible musician, but he and his team are amazing designers.”
The hour-long show hopes to showcase Latifah’s range as a multi-award winning entertainer and her distinct ability to connect with people. The multi-topic, daily syndicated show will feature a mix of celebrity interviews, human-interest stories, musical performances and Queen Latifah’s unique, often comedic, take on pop culture.
The program will be taped in front of a live studio audience at Sony Pictures Studios in Los Angeles.
“I am nervous because it is always overwhelming to start something new (but) I am excited to hear people’s stories and share in their journeys,” said Latifah.
Among the celebrity guests scheduled to appear during Week 1 of Latifah’s new talk show are: cinema star John Travolta; multi-talented performer Jamie Foxx; actress Sharon Stone; and the show’s Executive Producer, Will Smith.