REGINA HALL TALKS ‘GIRLS TRIP’

Film fea­tures old col­lege friends and lots of dis­as­ters

The Hamilton Spectator - - GO - TA­MARA BEST New York Times

Tahiti, Bar­ba­dos, Mex­ico, Hawaii. All of those des­ti­na­tions are on Regina Hall’s wish list for get­aways with her girl­friends. “I al­ways want to go some­where warm,” she said. “I would prob­a­bly not be like, ‘Oh, let’s go some­where it’s freez­ing and ski.’”

For now, Hall is va­ca­tion­ing vi­car­i­ously through Ryan Pierce, her char­ac­ter in the movie “Girls Trip,” out Fri­day, July 21, which is set in New Or­leans dur­ing the an­nual Essence Fes­ti­val. When Ryan, an au­thor, and the “Flossy Posse” — her friends from col­lege, played by Jada Pin­kett Smith, Queen Lat­i­fah and Tif­fany Had­dish — re­unite af­ter years apart, it’s not ex­actly a re­lax­ing spa week­end. There are hal­lu­ci­na­tions, a club fight and a zi­plin­ing dis­as­ter that leaves a char­ac­ter stranded above the streets, des­per­ately in need of a bath­room. “Some­how that trip goes all wrong,” Hall said.

A na­tive of Wash­ing­ton, Hall stud­ied journalism in grad­u­ate school at NYU but de­cided to pur­sue act­ing. Her Hol­ly­wood ca­reer spans more than 20 years and in­cludes roles in films like “Scary Movie” and “Think Like a Man.” In a re­cent in­ter­view in New York, Hall, 46, talked about one of her own va­ca­tions and spoof­ing the Weeknd on “Lip Sync Bat­tle.” Th­ese are edited ex­cerpts from the con­ver­sa­tion.

Q: What’s a mem­o­rable mo­ment from one of your own girls’ trips?

A: I ran out of money (in Ja­maica) be­fore I was work­ing, and I was broke. We didn’t have de­par­ture tax money. Well, we did, but we wanted to buy rum, so we just said we didn’t. We were at the bar wait­ing for the bar­tender to put down drinks for other peo­ple, and we would just pick them up and walk away. There’s a lit­tle bit of fear in there that you can laugh about later and go, “Oh my God.”

Q: Does ev­ery woman need her own Flossy Posse?

A: It’s ev­ery­thing. Out­side of fam­ily, it’s the con­stant. You can be vul­ner­a­ble and hon­est and es­pe­cially when you’re not mar­ried — and even if you are — the sup­port sys­tem of your friends to talk you down or up is vi­tal. You need that on a per­sonal and pro­fes­sional level. I don’t have a mil­lion friends who act, but I get so ex­cited for all of them.

Q: At one point in the movie, old wounds re­open and an ar­gu­ment threat­ens to end their friend­ship.

A: I was re­ally con­scious about not want­ing to curse at them. I wanted that scene of four black women fight­ing not to feel like a re­al­ity show. I wanted there to be real hurt and dis­ap­point­ment over past griev­ances. But I wanted it to rep­re­sent that there is a line that we have with each other that we re­spect and don’t cross, even when we feel hurt.

Q: At the Women in En­ter­tain­ment Em­pow­er­ment Net­work awards in 2015, your dat­ing jokes drew a lot of laughs.

A: Ev­ery­one’s take on hu­mour is so dif­fer­ent, I know mine is a lit­tle sub­tle some­times. There’s com­edy in life. I think it’s just that com­mon­al­ity of what it is to be alive that I al­ways try to think about, and so I’m as­sum­ing that’s what con­nects peo­ple with me.

Q: Have you ever done standup? A: No, the clos­est I came was host­ing stuff. It’s a to­tally dif­fer­ent grind. Maybe one day I’ll do an im­promptu thing if I can test the au­di­ence first. Maybe where ev­ery­one is drunk so it will just be funny any­way.

Q: When you went up against Lupita Ny­ong’o on “Lip Sync Bat­tle,” you did a con­vinc­ing im­i­ta­tion of the Weeknd, right down to the hair. It was a good bat­tle, even though Ny­ong’o won.

A: Lis­ten, Lupita Ny­ong’o came out, and she brought it. I was im­pressed — it was a fair loss but a loss no less. We were both try­ing to fig­ure out what the other was do­ing, and we couldn’t. She thought I was do­ing Ri­hanna, and I thought she was do­ing Bil­lie Hol­i­day. (Ny­ong’o per­formed “Bai­lando” by En­rique Igle­sias.) I think I de­serve a re­match. I don’t know, Lupita might be scared. (laughs)

Q: You and Tracee El­lis Ross, known as TMurda for her hip-hop al­ter ego, rapped along to Drake and Fu­ture’s “Jump­man,” which was posted on­line. Did you get any feed­back from them on your skills?

A: No, I didn’t. I haven’t met Drake or Fu­ture. I don’t know how well we did, but I think they should be proud. I mean, I know Tracee brought it.

Q: Next you could do “Bad and Bou­jee,” by Mi­gos.

A: Bad and bou­jee, those are the only two words I know.

Q: Well then you have some work to do. What would your rap name be?

A: I’d be R-Real-O.

PHO­TOS BY TONY CENICOLA, NYT

Regina Hall, stars in the movie “Girls Trip,” about a wild re­union with col­lege friends, talks about her ca­reer, com­edy and more.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.