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What made you want to be a part of this film? I read the script and, you know, I knew Mickie Howard's music. Right. But, I did not know the story of her life. Mm-hm. And reading the script. There was so much that she has gone through. I mean you have. From spousal abuse, mental abuse, drug abuse. You have extreme highs when she was at the height of her career and then you have these extreme lows and it's really, her life is everything a move is made of. And we have so much in this film and we cover from her being fifteen and being kicked out and homeless all the way to mid thirties, late thirties. And That doesn't even scratch the surface, but there is so much there. Did you get a chance to meet with Miki beforehand? This whole process happened really quickly. Okay. So I got the script and I had maybe two weeks Mm-hm.>> Two and half weeks before we actually started production.>> Wow.>> Yeah.>> Okay.>> Yeah, so I had a crash course of Miki Howard, Love, she is such an amazing person. First of all, we all know her talent.>> Right.>> Which is. It's beyond and as a human being shes so loving, so loveable, and just really getting to know her since there wasn't much time, I had to make sure I at least captured her essence. Right. At Essence. No pun intended. No pun intended, but we'll take it. But yes, so that was really my goal And she was so open and she gave me, you never know how someone is gonna react. Right. Especially what we had to do. Reliving those moments. And I I was so grateful that she really gave me the permission to go there. She said "go, go further. You can do it." And not be embarrassed or feel guilty that I'm making her relive this. It's a story she once told, it's a story that I want to share. Because it's really a story of redemption and perseverance through Through the hard times, and she doesn't fall once or twice, and not even fall, but she has to pick herself up and figure out who she is multiple times, and I think it's really gonna inspire people to watch it. I can't wait to see that because sometimes we get so stuck in the valleys, if you will, that we don't really even You don't try to get back to the peak. Right. So I love seeing those stories arches. Now there's been quite a few remakes of singers from Whitney Houston to Toni Braxton, Aaliyah. And they've received some pretty harsh criticisms. [LAUGH] Were you nervous about taking on this type of project? First of all, I enjoy Some of those films, I, the, I'm always nervous taking on any project and then the fact that this woman is still alive. And she's going to watch and, she's going to judge what I do. It doesn't even matter what anyone else Does, or says. This is her life, and she's there on set watching in her part. Hey, T. Right, but she wasn't that person and that's what made it so much easier to really just dive in and go for it. So yeah, of course I was nervous, and then just the material itself, I want to do A thorough job telling this story. this woman's story, but a story that is so necessary to share. I think it is going to help people heal. I think it is going to bring up a lot of topics that we as a community sometimes wont talk about right. So. It's kind of this same feeling I had with Shyrack where people are going to have very strong opinions on what were doing and what were saying but I know that at the heart of it I know that there are people who need to hear this and who would benefit from hearing it and who will actually be healed from it. [BLANK_AUDIO]

Teyonah Paris on Starring in "The Miki Howard Story"

Teyonah Parris doesn't hold anything back as she shares her experience on the set of 'The Miki Howard Story' on ESSENCE Live.

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