Twenty-five-year-old Kyla Pratt has just been added to BET’s original scripted series Let’s Stay Together, the romantic comedy premiering tonight (Jan 10.) on BET. It’s been a while since we’ve seen the talented, bubbly and sophisticated actress bless our television screen, but don’t call it a comeback! Pratt’s been here for over fifteen years. The Los Angeles native has enjoyed success on the big screen starring in Dr. Dolittle, Love and Basketball and Fat Albert to name a few. Her television credits include supporting roles on popular shows such as Smart Guy, Moesha and Living Single. Pratt’s TV series One on One lasted five successful seasons before its cancellation in 2006.
In this exclusive interview with VIBE Vixen, Pratt opens up about recently giving birth to a baby girl, her marriage plans and how she became the newest addition to the Let’s Stay Together cast.-Lathleen Ade-Brown
VIBE VIXEN: Let’s Stay Together premieres tomorrow!
KYLA PRATT: I know! I am very excited we had a premiere party last week and everything turned out great.
How did you get added on to the cast of Let’s Stay Together?
Some of the writers of Let’s Stay Together use to work on One on One with me. One of them hit me up on Facebook and asked me if I would be interested, and of course, I was interested. I didn’t second guess it. It was people I’ve worked with before and trust.
Tell us about your character.
My character Crystal is very young; she’s a college student. I like to call her the broke college student who likes to use her cousins as much as she can, whether it’s for laundry or a place to stay. She’s crazy and loves to have fun. Not really serious about life at the moment, but she’s trying to stay in school and live out her dreams of being a film director.
Can you relate to her?
Yes. At her age, I was pretty crazy as well [laughs]. I wanted to have fun and enjoy myself. She’s a pretty relatable character, and I think that’s why people will like her.
You’ve been in the business since you were seven years old. How have you stayed grounded because most child stars end up going down the wrong path?
I think having people around me who love me. I was brought up to understand this is a job, and I’m very blessed to be put in this position, so there’s no reason to be running around like a crazy person and have an attitude for no reason. This is what I love to do, so I wouldn’t want to start acting crazy.
Do people still call you Breanna from One on One, or any of your old characters?
Yes [laughs]! People call me Breanna and Penny all day!
So what do you watch? Are you watching Love and Hip Hop or Basketball Wives?
I watch Love and Hip Hop faithfully [laughs]! It’s about the mixture of drama and relationships. I’m told I like to watch a lot of drama, and that’s because I like drama on TV and not in my life. I also enjoy Reed Between the Lines. That’s another one I really enjoy watching because you haven’t seen a black family on TV in a long time.
What would you say to the person that has negative feelings towards BET?
I think people are too sensitive. They always try and look for things to talk about. I mean, can we point out any of the positive things that BET has going on? To me, Reed Between the Lines is the perfect example of a positive show. Let’s Stay Together is another positive show. A lot of people say our young people are convinced to do certain things or they look at entertainment as real life. They just need to be taught that it’s just entertainment. If they are taught that, then they understand that this is not telling you to live your life this way. It’s just saying people go through things like this. I, too, watch things, and I’m like, I hope I’m never in a situation like that.
How have you evolved since you became a mother?
Girl, [laughs] no sleep, but [my baby] is my world! That’s all I think about everyday, and everything I do is just for her. I want to make sure she’s good in her future. I’m enjoying every minute of it!
How was your pregnancy?
My pregnancy was wonderful. I have a great man by my side and a very supportive and loving family that is there for me. I got to enjoy the beauty of another human being growing inside of me.
What advice do you have for Beyoncé who is a new mother?
Girl! Lord ‘a mercy [laughs]! The only thing I would say is love that baby to the fullest, and I am sure she’ll do that.
You recently penned a letter defending your family on your blog. Did you feel you owed people an explanation?
I don’t feel I owe anybody anything; it was just about putting the truth out there, so lies can stop being spread. If they got something to say after this, they can say whatever they want, but I know I am going to tell you what it is, and that’s all I can do. I was just tired of people sending me mess. That letter was for the negative people trying to push things my way. I tried to say it the best way possible without wildin’ out [laughs]. I think I did good!
How do you deal with negativity and the rumors?
I feel like people will always have something to say, so me talking about my daughter on 106 & Park was bound to happen because that’s my everything. I never announced being pregnant because I watched people in the industry have a baby, like Jennifer Freeman and Lauren London. People don’t know the actual story or know what’s really going on, and they are so negative and hurtful. I didn’t want to go through that with my pregnancy. The baby can feel what you’re feeling, so I was like I’m going to enjoy my pregnancy without having people have something to say. So at the point of 106 and Park, it was like, she’s already here now.
What do you like to do for fun?
Well, I usually hit up Vegas, do a little gambling or a day spa, you know, regular stuff.
What beauty products do you use?
I like Kiehl’s face moisturizer, and cocoa butter has been used for like ever! I’m not really high maintenance; I just like to be cleaned and moisturized.
Where do you like to shop? Describe your style.
I’m comfortable and cute. I’m very laid back. The people that get the most money from me is Guess by Marciano. I love shopping there.
What advice do you have for aspiring actors and actresses?
You have to get into the business for the right reasons. If you getting in it to get rich, it’s a very stressful business; you wont last long. You have to get into it because you love it.
Lathleen is an entertainment reporter and freelancer writer based in New York City who spends most of her time writing. Keep up with her on Twitter.