*Seemingly since the dawn of time our Lee Bailey has been a fixture at the NAACP Image Awards nominations.  As time marches on so to does Uncle Lee continue his annual migration to cover the venerated award show’s nomination ceremony.  Recently the lovely Kimberly Elise seemed to glow with glee as she basked in the light of 19 nominations for Tyler Perry’s “For Colored Girls” and other works.

“I think it’s fantastic. I’m so happy that we have the Image Awards.  It’s an award that recognizes work for work and people for people,” said Elise.  “‘For Colored Girls’ is an amazing, amazing film and we got a lot of nominations and that’s just such a blessing.  It was so fantastic.”

“For Colored Girls” has been celebrated for highlighting the talents of an ensemble cast of African American actresses.  We asked Kimberly what she enjoyed most about working on the film and what she thought of the controversy surrounding the film.”  

“I’m incredibly proud of being a part of this Tyler Perry Film and the biggest pleasure for me was amazing part for me was working with the actresses in the film,” she explained.  “That’s what it was all about to me.  And the reaction, I don’t really invest myself too much in that.  That’s for the universe to decide.  That’s what art is all about.  You put it out there for people to react to and you move onto the next whatever.”

As others have mentioned in defense of Perry’s work, Elise cited Perry’s gargantuan task of turning a stage play into a film.    

“I think they were a little hard on Tyler,” Kimberly told Uncle Lee.  “He was faced with a tremendous challenge.  One of the things that I respected most about Tyler is his bravery.  He didn’t keep himself in a box. He kind of pushed outside of that.  Most people wouldn’t do that.  He doesn’t have to do that.  He’s super-duper rich.  He could continue to make movies and act.  I commend him for stepping out of his comfort zone and for giving so many black actresses the chance to shine.  There were like nine of us in there and we each had an incredible part to play.  It’s because of Tyler.”

As Kimberly Elise continued about her way actress Sanaa Lathan stopped to chat with EURweb.com for a spell.  It seemed as though Willow Smith was the topic of the day as she and others constantly applauded her talent.  We asked Lathan, being someone who grew up around the business, what advise would she give to Miss Smith.

“Gosh, she needs to give me some advice,” joked Lathan. “I don’t know.  I think she’s doing everything right!  I would just say keep a good head on your shoulders.  Keep people around you that really love you for you and not for all of the other stuff that’s going on with you now. Just keep your eye on your  dream and keep going.  I probably need to talk to her for some advise for me.”

Some in our readership are aware of Lathan playing the voice of Donna on “The Family Guy” spin off the “Cleveland Show”.  She’s also part of what appears to be a solid cast for a film due to be released later this year.

“Right now I’m working on ‘the Cleveland Show’ on Fox,” she reminded.  “I play (Cleveland’s wife) Donna.  I also have a film coming out in October called ‘Contagion,’ directed by Stephen Soderberg.  (Starring) Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Laurence Fishburne.  Just an amazing cast.  It’s an ensemble movie and I’m just thrilled to be a part of it.  Stephen Soderberg did ‘Traffic’ and in that it was centered around drugs.  In ‘Contagion’ it’s about a disease and we see it as it travels around the world. You get to see different story lines and different circumstances from the characters.  Laurence Fishburne plays the director of the CDC, the Center for Disease Control. I play his fiancee.”

We can’t wait to take a look at that one.  It seems like it’s going to be hot.  But as she continued on her way up the red carpet the Willow lovefest continued as comedian Affion Crocket Jr. gave her props as well.

“She has her whole family but she comes from her own lane.  She’s talented!  I want to see Willow do her thing.”

We see the look on your face, and we’re sure Mr. Crockett will forgive you for not knowing who he is, for now. But you’ve seen him around. Trust us on that one.  He has appeared in such films as “Never Back Down,” “Soul Men”, and “Dance Flick” to name a few.  Now he is teaming up with Jamie Foxx to bring sketch comedy back to Fox.  

“I’m a comedic actor, but the show we have coming on Fox is a sketch comedy kind of like “In Living Color.”  Me and Jamie Foxx are co-producing together.  The only way I would say that it’s modeled after “In Living Color” is, for one, Jamie came from that school of comedy and I studied “In Living Color.”  It’s in that same vain.  It’s raw, edgy comedy from an urban perspective but we’re hitting the masses as well.  You can expect it March 31st after ‘American Idol.’  We’re going to start with an hour long special.  Then we’re going to come back on June 9th.  That’s prime real estate right there.  We have a great president in Kevin Riley at the network and he gave us a lot of support.”

Wow, sketch comedy is coming back to Fox, and that’s a great thing.  What’s that you say?  They already have a sketch comedy in “Mad TV?”  We beg to differ.  Meanwhile, the nominations were announced on January 12 and the 42nd Annual NAACP Image Awards are slated to air live on Friday, March 4th on Fox.  (If you missed our coverage, read all about it here.) As mentioned previously, Tyler Perry’s garnered a whooping 19 nominations for his various works.