Monday, August 14, 2006

Omigod! Halle's 40!


So, in honor of Halle Berry's 40th birthday today, I'm going to tell the Halle Berry story that I tell everybody.

Halle was the very first person that I ever interviewed. Nothing big - it was a beauty pagea
nt magazine, my personal Ishtar if you will, but the pageant connection was how I got her in the first place. As a teen, I competed in a pageant called Miss New Jersey Teen All-American. I was about the 80th runner-up, but the national winner that year was a pretty black girl from Ohio who sent me an autographed picture. Five years later, I met her at the premiere of her first film, Strictly Business. Remember that one?

This was back in the day when you could barely know anyone and still be able to get into a movie premiere or an after party. I worked at a magazine at the time, so it helped. I don't remember where the party was that night, but I remember who was there - Nia Long and Wesley Snipes come to mind. The minute I saw Halle, I brought up the pageant. By that time, she had also competed in both Miss USA and Miss World, but no one really knew or cared about pageant stuff in that crowd, so I'm sure that mentioning it to her made me stand out. I told her that I was having no luck with her publicist in getting an interview with her and she told me to try again the next day. A week later, we were having lunch at a restaurant on 57th street in Manhattan (which is no longer there) called The Symphony Cafe. I asked for an extended lunch hour that day and my uncle, bless his heart, lent me his AMEX so I could pay for our lunch. Thankfully, Halle had mercy on me. She ordered a salad and iced tea - and damned if I didn't order the same exact thing. As if I would chow down in front of Halle Berry!

Anyway, she was very sweet and nice - no different than what you see today (from what I can tell) and yes, gorgeous. I mean, truly flawless - exactly like her pictures. And not much has changed apparently!

She was shooting Boomerang at the time and she was telling me about how she had to scramble for that role - and her roles in bo
th Jungle Fever and Strictly Business. She also mentioned how she was very, very interested in not just acting, but producing movies.

"Have you seen Little Man Tate?" she asked me. "Now, that's a movie to me. That's what I want to do. That level."

And damned if she didn't do exactly what she said she would do. She starred in and produced Introducing Dorothy Dandridge - and snagged a few awards in the process. She also produced Lackawanna Blues which won a few Emmy awards last year.

And of course, we all know about her historic Oscar win and her uh, eventful love life - but that's what the papers are for. I'll leave all of that drama to the tabloids - and the tablogs - and just say

Happy Birthday Halle! I'm glad somebody in Hollywood is making 40 look good naturally!

God bless you girl...


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9 Comments:

Blogger themakeupgirl said...

Girl I will be 40 in the spring! 40 is the new 20 dammit!! Halle looks great thanks for sharing your story!

August 14, 2006 at 1:21 PM  
Blogger Avin said...

She looks great! I really hope I can pull off 30 at 40, much less 20!

August 14, 2006 at 3:06 PM  
Blogger Rune said...

I had a dream about Halle B. the other night. I can't post that here, as this is a family blog.

Let's see some pictures of the Miss New Jersey Pageant!!!

-Al

August 14, 2006 at 7:02 PM  
Blogger Nichelle said...

TMG and Avin - She does look great - 40 is indeed te new 20! And that's great for me because I'll be 37!

Rune - Sadly, my Miss NJ Teen pictures no longer exist. And that's a good thing. It was the 80s...

August 14, 2006 at 9:46 PM  
Anonymous natalie said...

I love your Halle story!! I saw her in LA at this tea house Elixir years ago (right when Dorothy Dandridge came out). That woman was so beautiful in person with no make up on, just a bandana in her hair. To this day, definitely the most beautiful woman ever.

August 15, 2006 at 1:42 PM  
Blogger Sangindiva said...

This was a great Halle post!
All of your side stories and anecdotes (sp?)
gave it such a warm feeling that was also an
easy read.

Aiight Ms. Nichelle- you better WRITE! :)

August 15, 2006 at 2:58 PM  
Blogger Nichelle said...

Hey Natalie - I've been to Elixir in LA. - about a thousand years ago!

Sangin - Thanks. I always thought it was a funny story.

August 15, 2006 at 9:36 PM  
Blogger Nichelle said...

What a great story! Halle Berry is such an inspiration and made me believe that you don't have to long hair to be beauty. I watched a little of "BAPs" the other day only because she's is truly funny. I wish she would do more comedy.

August 16, 2006 at 1:26 PM  
Blogger Nichelle said...

Thanks Nichelle. Halle is indeed an inspiration.

I hear she's waiting for the script to "Nappily Ever After" to be ready before she cuts her hair again. I hope it gets out of development hell soon!

August 17, 2006 at 3:57 AM  

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