Omari Hardwick talks ‘Sparkle’ and friendship

Yes, all of the buzz is true, the most anticipated film of 2012, Sparkle is finally hitting movie theaters this Friday!

After hearing months of chatter, Sister 2 Sister called up the former “Dark Blue” actor Omari Hardwick, who plays Levi in Sparkle, to tell us what it was like shooting the period film with amazing talents like Mike Epps and Whitney Houston.

“My first day on the set was with [actor] Derek Luke and he and I are friends, but it wasn’t the relationship that it now is, the relationship developed on the set,” said Omari. “This was our first time playing characters that were protagonist and antagonist. We are brothers off the set and we had to be on edge and at each other’s throats on set.”

Sparkle is set in the 1960s, and chronicles three sisters who form a girl group and soon become Motown sensations, but fame becomes a challenge as the close-knit family begins to fall apart.

Omari says that he and the late icon Whitney Houston crossed paths several times during production and so did their characters.

“There is a scene where our characters are one-on-one. It was a great time together as actor and actress and people will be able to see the chemistry we all had, come out on screen in the film,” said Omari.

While Omari is using his skill as an actor to solidify his spot in Hollywood, he is a man of many talents, a former NFL athlete and thespian and current TV host. However, it was his undying love for music that led him to connect with his good friend, rapper Nas.

“When we do see each other or reach out to each other it’s usually to remind one another to remain ourselves and not to follow the money,” said Omari. “Too many people who are artistic find it difficult to remain true to the art and not to get swept up in the need or necessity to keep food on the table.”

With friends like Derek and Nas to guide Omari through the crazy world of Hollywood – we know he’ll be just fine.

Make sure you check out Omari as “Levi” in Sparkle, releasing nationwide this Friday.

See photos from the film’s premiere below.

—Marcus A. Williams

 

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