Oh what a world! When I first heard that Mo’Nique had started to form something of a diva complex, expecting pay-outs when asked to represent Precious, I balked and assumed that it was just weedy grapevines sewn by spurned extras from The Parkers who had a grudge to settle. But then similar stories continued cropping up. At the beginning of this month, the comedienne’s new publicist quit after two weeks on the job. Surely she would be humble in her demands of a media that was simply waiting on the right moment to herald her as Oscar’s Last Hope.
Especially after having crafted a career of versatility that openly flouts critical expectations — in addition to supporting bits on Ugly Betty and Nip/Tuck, she starred in the 2005 Keira Knightley bomb Domino and looks none worse for the wear.
Sadly, no! Apparently, a source claims, “Mo’Nique said she signed on to do this film for a small amount of money. She said she didn’t care about ‘no Oscar’ — all that mattered was ‘those Benjamins!’ Because Oprah and Tyler Perry are backing the film, she feels as though there should be a budget to pay for her promotional duties.” Class!
After a lot of hoop-jumping, I decided to track down someone on the inside to see if Mo’Nique would open up, if not about Precious, then about her new late night talk show and other projects in the pipeline. Because just like how Christiane Amanpour’s passion lies in covering turmoil in the Middle East, mine lies in chatting with thespians who act in films like Phat Girlz. Instead I got a curt response to the effect of:
Thanks for your interest in Mo’Nique, but unfortunately, there’s no interest in your publication. Thanks.
Burn! A follow-up from her camp revealed that Mo’Nique, who has landed nearly every Essence cover since time immemorial, was gunning for a cover feature, but unwilling to compromise. To which, I would’ve responded, “If I could, I would! And shot by Hedi Slimane, too!” But I was too busy collecting the detritus of my shattered dreams and crushed hopes to do so. I was also too busy skimming this remarkably incisive feature on the flick over at the Times.