Where do I even begin?
Queen Latifah covers the latest issue of Variety and she looks AH-MAY-ZING! The 45-year-old rapper turned media mogul dishes to the magazine about her reign as one of the most talented–and powerful–women in the entertainment biz.
Since bursting on the scene as a 17-year-old emcee, Latifah has worked her way up to become an accomplished actor, producer, and businesswoman who sits atop a $100 million empire.
Her recent portrayal of legendary blues singer Bessie Smith, a story she produced for HBO, earned her an Emmy nod, and her production company, Flavor Unit, has agreements with BET’s sister network Centric. Add to that Latifah’s lucrative deal with Cover Girl, and it’s easy to see why she’s still the Queen.
While she’s uber talented, one of the best things about Latifah, according to her business partner Shakim Compere, is her desire to help others succeed.
Not long after, she and Compere formed Flavor Unit, with the goal of helping out their friends as well. “We all got signed to record deals, but sometimes with different companies,” Latifah notes. “Some deals were really bad, so the first thing we wanted to do was renegotiate and get them better ones. And that’s how we decided we needed to do a management company. We were taking care of our family.”
Latifah adds: “We work to make sure everyone’s connected and everything happens,” she says. “But that’s what you should do. If we all elevate each other, it keeps going.”
Latifah is an international superstar, but some still doubt her ability to shine. Though it can be discouraging, Latifah doesn’t dwell on the challenges she faces, she creates her own lane.
“Most writers don’t write with Latifah in mind, so she doesn’t get the opportunities that most actors get,” Compere says. “So we’ve gotten in the habit of creating our own agenda and our own projects.”
Latifah has had her share of wins–a Grammy, an Oscar nod, several hit films–and a few losses (her canceled talk show), but through it all she remains determined to win.
What else would you expect from a Queen?
Head over to Variety’s website to read its entire profile of Queen Latifah.