Shanola Hampton by Ben Miller Shanola Hampton by Ben Miller

Pizza, Locs And Hollywood: A Conversation With 'Shameless' Star Shanola Hampton

Shanola Hampton, star of Showtime's 'Shameless,' talks Hollywood, philanthropy and natural hair.

Shanola Hampton has been a regular on our television screens for some time now, having starred in hit series such as Reba, Scrubs, Criminal Minds, and Miami Medical.

Most recently, Shanola has been playing the role of sexy, charismatic (and slightly kleptomaniac) Veronica Fisher on the Showtime dramedy Shameless, placing her sassy stamp on the show for its now five-season run. Last month, the actress also teamed up with the "Saving Our Daughters" foundation to mentorship to young acting hopefuls.

VIBE Vixen caught up with Shanola to get her take on everything from natural hair to the importance of empowering young women. – Samantha Callendar

You’re known to bring the energy to the set of ‘Shameless’. Are there any ways in which you and your character Veronica are similar?
Veronica and I are similar in spirit, but different in hustle. We both have a passion for life and love fiercely. We are also tell-it-like-it-is friends, but always from a place of genuine love.

Love the locs! What’s your hair journey been like? Any encouraging words for women embarking on their hair journey (natural or otherwise)?
Thanks! I've been on the locs journey for over 15 years. I must say I’ve enjoyed my hair short, but really love it long because I can experiment with so many different styles. I would say to anyone choosing to embark on something new with their hair- just do it, it's just hair! Have fun and sometimes it works, sometimes it won't.

What was your experience growing up in the South, then transitioning into Hollywood?
Growing up in the South we say "yes Ma'am" and "no Ma'am." Here in Hollywood, people get offended. When I first moved, I would say hello to everyone and people would look at me like I was crazy. In the South everyone speaks, if you know each other or not. I'm raising my daughter more Southern, like how her father and I were raised.

What women in the industry inspire you to do what you do on a daily basis?
I am inspired by many, any woman I see not afraid to take risks and to hustle past adversity. Oprah inspires me, as does Angela Basset, Cicely Tyson, Viola Davis, Meryl Streep, I could go on and on.

How has your involvement with "Saving Our Cinderellas” impacted you, and what do you hope others get from the initiative?
I am so excited about being a part of "Saving Our Cinderellas." I'm hoping when I am speaking with the young women they will see, I'm just a little country girl, from a small town who dared to dream, who worked and educated herself to make those dreams a reality. I want them to know and understand that when you follow your passion, no matter what it is, you will reap great benefits! I hope to evoke a confidence, to further fuel whatever fire has been ignited in them.

What’s your favorite?
Food: Food is Lasagna, Pizza, anything Italian! OH and CUPCAKES! I live to eat!
Hobby: Hobby is clearing off my dvr! I love television. Binge watching is also one of my favorite things.
Book: Oh the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss. I have a 13 month old!

What you do you see and hope for yourself in the future?
In the future I hope to continue acting on television and movies, but I'm really looking forward to the day I open a Performing Arts school.

Photo Credit: Ben Miller

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Halle Berry Is #TeamZoeKravitz As Catwoman For Upcoming 'Batman' Film

Earlier this month, it was announced that actress/musician Zoe Kravitz would step into the sleuthing role of Catwoman for Matt Reeves’ The Batman. Joining in on the chorus of people that are elated to see Kravitz in this role is fellow Catwoman Halle Berry.

The Oscar Award-winning actress took to Twitter to congratulate Kravitz on her new job, writing “Keep shining queen and welcome to the family!” Kravitz will star opposite Twilight’s Robert Pattinson who’ll play the Dark Knight.

Special shout-out to your new #CatWoman, the eternally graceful & extremely bad ass @ZoeKravitz. Keep shining Queen & welcome to the family! ♥️✨ pic.twitter.com/9YJ2EekcNG

— Halle Berry (@halleberry) October 17, 2019

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"Everybody around me said, 'Girl, don't do it. It's going to be the death of you. It's going to end your career.' But guess what I did? I followed my intuition and I did a movie called Catwoman and it bombed miserably," Berry said at 2004's Matrix Awards, per Glamour. "While it failed to most people, it wasn't a failure for me because I met so many interesting people that I wouldn't have met otherwise, I learned two forms of martial arts and I learned not what to do."

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A Tekashi 6ix9ine Documentary Series Is In The Works

Showtime is set to debut a new project about Tekashi 6ix9ine.  Supervillain, a three-part limited docuseries produced by Imagine Documentaries, Rolling Stone  and Lightbox, will explore the rise of the New York native.

“The bizarre and complicated rise of Tekashi 6six9ine is a story of our times,” said Vinnie Malhotra, EVP, Nonfiction Programming, Showtime Networks. “Beyond becoming one of the most notorious hip hop artists of this generation, his story speaks volumes of the impact of social media and manufactured celebrity in our society. We’re excited to be partnering with such heavy hitters in the world of music and documentary to bring Supervillain to life.”

The series is inspired by the Rolling Stone article, Tekashi 6ix9ine: The Rise and Fall of a Hip Hop Supervillain, released earlier in the year.

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Daniel Kaluuya To Produce Live-Action ‘Barney’ Movie

Daniel Kaluuya is taking a step away from in front of the cameras to stand on the other side of the lens. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Get Out star’s 59% company will produce a live-action film on the beloved children's television character Barney. The movie will be produced alongside Mattel Films.

“Barney was a ubiquitous figure in many of our childhoods, then he disappeared into the shadows, left misunderstood," Kaluuya said via statement. "We’re excited to explore this compelling modern-day hero and see if his message of ‘I love you, you love me’ can stand the test of time.”

Given this new take on the jolly purple dinosaur, Mattel Films’ executive Robbie Brenner believes audiences will appreciate a new approach to telling Barney’s story and “subvert expectations.” Brenner continued to state the film will not only resonate and entertain this generation’s youth but “the project will speak to the nostalgia of the brand in a way that will resonate with adults.”

In 1992, Barney & Friends premiered on PBS, launching a decades-long run (1992-2009) of kid-friendly programming. Sheryl Leach first came up with the concept of Barney when she desired programming crucial to the social development of her son. Along with a team that helped to shape the premise of the show and its characters (B.J., Baby Bop), Leach’s creation made its way to PBS’ developers and the rest is history. The show also produced resounding melodies like "I Love You" written by Lee Bernstein. The song was a staple to the end of most episodes and promoted the show's message of compassion, consideration, and optimism.

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