*Loretta Devine has mastered the Hollywood hustle.
Even though her short-lived ABC Family series “State of Georgia” fell victim to low ratings, she’s still recurring as Adele on ABC’s “Grey’s Anatomy.”
She’s a steady presence on the big screen as well, with recent films include “Jumping the Broom,” “Madea’s Big Happy Family” and “For Colored Girls,” “Lottery Ticket” and “Death at a Funeral” all taking place within the last two years.
Devine’s extensive body of work, stretching back to the early 80s, recently landed her The Trailblazer Superstar Award at Atlanta’s BronzeLens Film Festival, held Saturday (Nov. 12). The honor recognizes her versatility in playing a wide range of roles.
And she can add her next role as Mrs. Inez in the Robert Townsend-helmed “In the Hive” to the list of versatile roles on her resume.
The film is loosely based on the real life story of Vivian Saunders, the executive director at a school for wayward boys in North Carolina called the Hive Academy.
“She provides all the food, the education, so it’s like an afterschool program that she has gotten through the school system,” explains Devine of Saunders, whose life is the blueprint for her character Mrs. Inez. “It’s the livelihood of those kids. It’s making such a difference and it’s still going now. She came out and visited the set with some of the boys. We’re hoping that [the film] gets an audience and it gets seen.” [Scroll down to watch the trailer.]
Townsend has screened the film in various spots throughout the country, but at press time, a distributor had yet to pick it up.
Vivica Fox also stars in the movie as Billie, the misguided mother of the 16-year-old protagonist Xtra Keys.
In the exclusive audio below, Loretta explains that although she loves the finished film, the Robert Townsend experience was not always pleasant.