Queen Latifah (real name: Dana Owens) is taking a second stab at daytime this fall, with "The Queen Latifah Show," a feel-good talk show aimed at bringing positivity into living rooms across America.
And while the rapper/actress/CoverGirl spokesmodel plans to call on her big-name friends like Pitbull, Jay Z, Will and Jada Pinkett-Smith (who are also executive producers of the show), and even President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama — who she says she personally invited — to appear on the gabfest, there is one highly debated topic the never-married star says she will continue to refuse to discuss. Her sexuality.
"I don't feel the need to discuss my private life on this show or any other show," she tells The Hollywood Reporter. "There's the part of my life that the public and I share together. And there's the part that's mine to keep for myself. And that's mine. For me."
But that doesn't mean all of Latifah's personal life is off-limits. The burgeoning host shared some insight into her New Jersey upbringing — revealing that her Newark police officer father showed her how to fire a gun in the second grade.
"He taught me how to defend myself, and he also taught me not to be a bully," she tells the mag. "He taught my brother and I all these ways to harm somebody and then told us, 'Do not use this.'"
Not that her upbringing was surrounded by violence. Latifah's art teacher mother and father ran "a very creative household," says the star.
"For my eighth birthday, I wanted a skateboard," she recalls, revealing that her hip-hop roots grew from a love of rock 'n' roll. "I realized there was racism because people thought, 'Oh, if you like roll 'n' roll, that makes you like a white kid.' A lot of girls my age were jumping rope and they wanted to play hopscotch and they were digging all through their mom's makeup. Well, I was doing that, too. But for them, it was about clothes and boys. And I was into sports and music."
And now, after conquering both music and acting, Latifah is setting her sights on daytime TV. And while she says "music is second nature," the star admits her acting career will be moving to the backburner for the time being.
"I have to be realistic about what I can and can't do," she admits. "So whatever I do has to really be worth it. I like to master the things I do. Making this show great, that's my focus right now. I want to bring some positivity to daytime TV."
Will you be tuning in?
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