She’ll portray Dr. Betty Shabazz in the upcoming TV film, “Parallel Lives,” which captures the lives of Shabazz and Coretta Scott King and the relationship they shared as the wives of two slain civil rights icons.
The singer is serious about her developing job in drama and told the press that she’s studying Mrs. Shabazz.
Beginning her acting career in Tyler Perry’s “I Can Do Bad All By Myself,” Blige has grown significantly on screen. Since deciding to become competitive in the drama industry, she’s taken acting lessons, and has equipped herself with an acting coach, piano coach, and dialect coach.
In a recent interview with Chelsea Handler, Blige spoke on putting the work in to grow as an actress.
“Even though I was given the part in ‘Rock of Ages,’ I wanted to prepare myself so I went to work for it,” said Blige. “I just didn’t want to get the part because I was Mary J. Blige. I went and did the work, I got an acting coach.”
In addition to “Parallel Lives” which will begin filming in September, Mary J. Blige is also scheduled to play jazz and blues legend Nina Simone in an upcoming biopic.