Bow Wow

V Exclusive: Bow Wow On Possible Rap Retirement, Becoming The Next Will Smith & Madea

When you star in a movie that has grossed $25.7 million in its first weekend, not much can get you down. For Bow Wow, who is featured in the latest Tyler Perry comedy Madea’s Big Happy Family, not even querying the budding film star about his status with rap behemoth Cash Money can get a rise out of the youthful yet veteran star, Yes, rumors that the artist formerly known as Mr. 106 & Park was being dropped by Birdman and crew were dismissed. Still whispers of the 24-year-old bowing-out from the house that Lil Wayne built persist. But Bow Wow insist that life has never been better for the former pubescent rap child star turned big screen staple. And who could argue?--Keith Murphy

VIBE: There seems to be a lot of adlibbing going on in the new Madea’s Big Happy Familymovie. How much improvising did you and the other actors do on the set?
Bow Wow: We definitely had a lot of fun. Tyler gave us flexibility and room to exaggerate and improv a little bit, here and there. Tyler will just switch it up in a middle of a scene. He will say, ‘Just do it differently like this…’ There’s a scene with me mocking my baby’s mother and which was Tyler’s idea for me to do that. He gives you different things and let’s you run with it.

There are several veteran actors in Perry’s new film. But Teyana Taylor and Isaiah Mustafa (the actor from the Old Spice commercials), who are both relatively new to the big screen, also have supporting roles. Did you give them any pointers?
I was there for Teyana. I’ve known her for so long, so I was there to let her know a few pointers here and there just to help her get in pocket. With Isaiah, I remember the first day he came to my trailer. I felt his vibe. And I felt everybody’s vibe once we got to the set. There was a bit of nervousness on the set, but I felt like since I had some experience and I’ve been around for a while doing this, even though I was younger than some of the guys, I felt like it was my job to step in and take charge a little bit.

Wow…did Perry give you co-directing duties?
[Laughs] I just wanted to make sure that everybody was comfortable. I wanted to let my cast mates know that if you mess up, it’s okay. I’m right here for you to rebound. I just wanted to make them feel comfortable and be loose. If you do that, nine times out of 10 you will make a great movie.

How did you first become involved in Madea?
I got involved when my agent gave me a call. He wanted me to go downstairs at a hotel to go to a table reading. I’m thinking that I’m just filling in for somebody, but Tyler had it in his head all along that I was his guy. I didn’t know that until after the table reading because I thought I sucked [laughs]. Once I left, I got a call like, ‘Hey man…you got the part.’ Myself and Tyler together for the first time? It’s only right.

You have always played both sides of the field in terms of being a recording artist and a film actor. What is the current status of your Cash Money deal given that there were rumblings that you were parting ways with the imprint?
You will definitely see a Bow Wow-Cash Money album. Trust me…it’s going to shake the world. The album cover alone is going to shake the world. But I’ll keep that in the bag.

Do you worry about how a Bow Wow album in 2011 will translate to hip-hop fans that have gone to more street-based MC’s like Rick Ross and your Cash Money peer/boss Lil Wayne? 

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Ex-Cop Pleads To Manslaughter After Leaving Toddler In Hot Car To Have Sex

Former Mississippi cop Cassie Baker may spend 20 years behind bars for leaving her toddler in the backseat of a police cruiser while she had sex with her supervisor.

Little Cheyenne's body temperature rose to a scorching 107 degrees before she died on Sept. 30, 2016. When Baker returned to the vehicle four hours later, Cheyenne was unresponsive. Baker, 29, pled guilty to manslaughter in a reduced plea deal Monday. (March 18) It's unclear if she intentionally left her 3-year-old in the backseat of the car.

“I don’t know what I could ever do to you that could be worse than what you’ve already experienced,” Harrison County Circuit Judge Larry Bourgeois told her. “You will forever be entombed in a prison of your own mind.”

Cheyenne's father says he's still tormented by his daughter's death and often pictures her final moments.

“Every time I close my eyes, I picture her suffering, and then I picture her laying in this coffin,” Ryan Hyer said Monday. “I still see her smiling and laughing in my head, and I would assume that smile and laughter turned to pain and suffering in that instance.”

Baker and her supervisor Clark Ladner were fired days later. While speaking with the Associated Press, he was able to avoid charges after telling authorities he was unaware Baker's daughter was in the car. Judge Bourgeois will consider the prosecution recommendation at Baker's April 1 sentencing.

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Tevin Campbell Lands Guest Role On 'Queen Sugar'

The cast of Queen Sugar plans to welcome a new face to its plot for the upcoming fourth season. On Tuesday (March 19), series creator/director/producer Ava DuVernay announced the addition of R&B legend Tevin Campbell in a guest starring role.

Since August 2018, DuVernay had plans to construct a persona for Campbell after the "Can We Talk" vocalist received controversial commentary on his importance to R&B. "Rebuking any Tevin Campbell slander from millennials and plotting to write him into an episode of Queen Sugar SOMEHOW," the award-winning director wrote on Twitter. "On general principle."

Campbell's film and television resume date back to his memorable appearances on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Moesha, The Parent 'Hood, voicing Powerline in A Goofy Movie, and now OWN's Queen Sugar.

"This is so exciting for me and I want to thank Ava DuVernay. She's a do-er, she kept her word," Campbell said in a video message on Twitter. "I want to thank the cast and the crew for making me feel like I'm home like I've been here for years."

Queen Sugar is set to premiere on OWN on June 12.

Rebuking any Tevin Campbell slander from millennials and plotting to write him into an episode of Queen Sugar SOMEHOW. On general principle.

— Ava DuVernay (@ava) August 17, 2018

“@Ava is a doer, she kept her word.” Welcome to #QueenSugar, Tevin Campbell— stay tuned! 🎤

— Queen Sugar (@QueenSugarOWN) March 19, 2019

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Lizzo And Missy Elliott Team Up For Hypnotic Single "Tempo"

Lizzo has a new banger. The Detroit artist teamed up with Missy Elliott for her new track, "Tempo" on Wednesday (Mar. 20), and it's bound to shake the table.

The song's theme falls in line with Lizzo's past work; it's a body positive single, paying tribute to thick and curvy girls. After a powerful electric guitar intro, the song erupts into a head-knocking beat. "Slow songs, they for skinny h*es / Can't move all of this here to one of those (Hey) / I'm a thick b***h, I need tempo," she raps on the chorus.

Misdemeanor comes in on the third verse with bad b***h energy, spits controlled bars. "All the thick girls down on the flrrr (On the floor) / Ice on my neck like brrr (Like brrr) / I'm big-boned with nice curves," she raps.

Amid the song's release, Lizzo sat down with Apple Music's Beats 1 to talk about how she and Missy collaborated on the track. "She sent me a memoji of herself singing her verse, that's how I got the verse," she explained. "I got a memoji of Missy like smiling and then she just started rapping, and I was like, 'OMG what the hell' so I had to hook it up to my speaker system. But it wasn't even the actual track, it was like her going along in her studio."

Lizzo is gearing up for the release of her new project, Cuz I Love You, which is slated to drop on Apr. 19. Listen to "Tempo" in the video above.

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