Cassandra Freeman has been a familiar face onscreen as she’s landed roles alongside Hollywood’s most notorious actors for the past 8 years. Guest starring on last season’s Single Ladies, the actress is rejoining the delicious cast for the reprisal of her role as Morgan Hayes. Vixen sat down with the beautiful, comedic and vivacious star to get the scoop on life on set, the advantages to being single (in real life) and working alongside Denzel Washington and Chris Rock.
This season you’ve reprised your role as Morgan. What’s the set like with the other girls?
Well, we all had the experience last year on set together and it always feels like coming home to family. We’re all huggers and kissers. Lisa Ray is awesome, I always feel like she’s great at bringing stability. She’s like my guru, and makes me check myself.
Is there a real chemistry between you guys on set?
Yeah, for sure. We are there for hours on end so thank God its good chemistry—otherwise it’d be impossible to do a show like that.
And the cast wardrobes are amazing! That has to be the biggest perk to this entire project?
For sure! Now we have a new wardrobe stylist on the show, Anthony, he’s from Project Runway. He’s amazing, and if you see our wardrobes, it will take hours to go through everything. I always feel like I’m princess Barbie or something. It’s very much like Sex and the City on set.
How did you break into acting and getting the role in Single Ladies?
I’ve been acting since I was 15. I went to a great arts high school in Jacksonville, Florida. I auditioned there to be in the band, and I begged my dad to let me do acting for a year. And of course it turned into something I wanted to do after aciting in plays like For Colored Girls. I was like “oh my god, I should be doing this.” When I went to Florida State I never really got casted. I was like the maid in the Shakespeare play. And then I went off to NYU and got my masters in acting. I landed a spot in the film, Inside Man and things started taking off. As for Single Ladies—ultimately I’ve been auditioning since it started. I loved the script and to read it is amazing. Finally this role came up, and I didn’t even go in for it. I didn’t even get called in for it. Then out of the blue, my people are like “you have to go in tomorrow.” The producers specifically asked for me.
With the influx of reality shows now, is it important to keep sitcoms like Single Ladies afloat?
Here’s the thing, we’re in the renaissance of great TV. I don’t think it’s a problem. Right now we have every network starting to promote scripted shows like Hulu, Amazon, Netflix, everything is doing scripted series. I think networks are starting to see that it’s a great tool to push people and it’s great for propaganda and pushing your brand. For VH1, to do a show like Single Ladies is brilliant because we do have a lot of entertainers, and people that are current so it’s a good thing. I teach at Fordham, and I tell my students that whatever you value, is the content that you come out with. If you don’t like what you’re watching, turn the channel to another network. There’s something for everyone.
I’ve noticed that the ladies on the show make single life look fabulous, but in reality it isn’t all of the time. What do you think are advantages to being on your own?
Look.. I just got a new bed, and it is SO nice to sleep in the middle of my bed. There are a lot of great things, like I’m a person with a lot of energy, so it’s really fun for me to even go to parties by myself because I love the idea of meeting new people. I love meeting new men and women. You know with relationships, sometimes you have to check in, really take care of them. It’s so nice not having a parent! I’m currently single so I’m enjoying every bit of it!
What was your worst dating experience?
Okay so this was many years ago. But I went on a date, and I remember the guy asked me ahead of time and wanted to pick me up. It’s one of my rules and a really big deal for a guy to know where I live, so that usually doesn’t happen and I prefer to meet them. So I told him I will drive over to him, and then we get to his car and go out to eat and then we were supposed to head to the movies. But instead we went to Blockbusters (that lets you know how long ago that was) and I was flipping out. Like what? We’re going to watch movies in his house? I went along with it. So we get to his house and we watch the movie. I went to the bathroom and when I come out of the bathroom, I kid you not, he was BUTT NAKED—in a tiger G-string! I’m shocked and had to tell him he was really confused about what tonight was going to be about. He had an amazing body but that freaked me out. I ran out and never called him again.
That’s horrifying! Sorry that happened to you. When it comes to dating, is it okay for the woman to be the aggressor/initiator or more submissive?
I’ve been engaged many times, and women always ask me how did I get the ring. I’m the girl who gets proposed to, or the men are asking me on dates. And I think the reason is because I’m not necessarily out looking for a boyfriend. But even when the guy approaches me, it takes a lot. I think dudes approach girls more if they seem really uninterested.
It’s always the women who aren’t putting themselves too much out there or not hard core hunting that land great relationships
Absolutely. And even if you’re going on dates with people, it’s not asking “when are we going out again?” Men are like lions, they want to go out and hunt. So if they see the thing they’re hunting for laying out on the ground, they are going to think something’s wrong.
You’ve worked with a lot of big names already—like Denzel Washington, Isaiah Washington and Chris Rock—who’s one male actor that you’d love to work with, particularly as a love interest?
Oh my goodness, that’s such a dangerous question! There’s so many people. I always feel bad saying it because I know certain people are married, but who wouldn’t love Blair Underwood, or Michael Ealy. Yumm!
And I read somewhere that Chris Rock actually encouraged you into doing standup comedy?
Yea for sure. After the I think I love my Wife movie, he was such an encourager and was like, “ Oh, you’re funny.” And I’m like brushing it off, then he goes, “ no you’re like really funny.” So I said “Really?” and it took me a minute to process that Chris Rock, one of the biggest comedic figures of our time, told me I’m funny. I should do something with it. So I went and did it, and it was great. I just couldn’t keep up doing standup because I didn’t understand the lifestyle of it. Like if I’m supposed to keep doing the same jokes. I didn’t get it.
What are some other projects we can catch you involved with?
I’m actually working on my own web series. I need a place to release all of my Lucille Ball-ness. It’s called “12 Months of June.” It’s about a girl, she’s a lawyer, an intern, but really she’s having a midlife crisis and realizes that maybe she’d be happier if she was a life coach. She thinks she’s Tony Robins or Oprah, but she’s really bad at it. And all the people that she gives life coaching too don’t really need it. So it’s following her on her journey of figuring it out. Really funny.