Terrence J said Whitney Houston and The Bodyguard helped mold his idea of what love really is.
“She helped shape my definition of love—through her music, through her films. She helped shape the definition of what love means and that’s very powerful to me."
The BET VJ-turned-actor worked with Whitney on the upcoming film, Sparkle, but it was her first film role in The Bodyguard that had the bigger effect on him.
“Growing up, I have a step dad who is Puerto Rican but he looks White, and then my mom was Black, so I had an interracial relationship that I grew up under. So watching The Bodyguard and seeing her with Kevin Costner at a young age… It gave me my first glimpse to be able to look at something and say, ‘Oh, that’s what my mom and my step dad, you know, my dad. That’s love. That’s my own life.’ Whenever anyone would say, ‘Who is that with your mom?’ I could say, ‘Hey, it’s just like The Bodyguard.’”
Like many, he was a fan of the iconic singer long before he was hired for the flick, and while working on the movie, he learned a lesson about seizing opportunities.
“I had one day on set with Whitney and when I first saw her I really wanted to take a picture because I’m a big fan, but I said—you know, I shouldn’t do it because I look like a groupie, and now I’ll never get that opportunity back. So what I’ve learned from that experience was just to never take any moments for granted. If you see somebody and you love them and you admire their work, you gotta give them their flowers while they’re still living because you just never know,” he said.
In the film, Terrence pops up in the first scene as a club promoter. “I’m pretty much the guy that introduces Sister and her sisters to the world,” he said.
Terrence had a word of advice for his fans who are dying to see him in the movie.
“It opens up the film. So, make sure you’re not late or you might miss it.”
See scenes from Sparkle here.
—Tracy L. Scott