[INTERVIEW] Toni Braxton Talks New Movie Role

Pint-sized diva Toni Braxton unleashes her super-sized playful alter ego in The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure— and talks Season 2.5 of WE tv’s hit series, “The Braxton Family Values”.

EBONY: The new season of “The Braxton Family Values” premieres August 16. What should we expect?

Toni Braxton: Fun and family drama. A lot of honesty— sometimes too much. But it is important that people see how being family forces you to make it work.  A lot of folks think our show is scripted, but nothing is fake. The problems we talk about and what we’re doing is actually happening in our lives. 

EBONY: Reality shows force you reveal all, including dating. Are you seeing anyone?

TB: Nothing is going on. Dating is different when you get older. You’re not as trusting, or as eager to get back out there and expose yourself to someone. When you’re younger you meet a guy, he’s cute and you’re like, ‘lets go out’.  When you’re older you think, ‘can I bring him around my kids?’, and you think negatively before you think positively. That’s not good. So I am trying to be optimistic.

EBONY: You have a lot of projects coming out, most notably a kids movie called The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure. What made you go full kiddie? 

TB: I’m in love with kids stories and animation. We did it a couple of years ago, like 2009. It was a lot of fun. It’s from the makers of “Thomas the Train”. 

EBONY: Tell us about your character.

TB: It’s Rosalie Rosebud. She’s such a diva. She’s a little bit of me— and every diva I know. She loves roses. They are everywhere in her life, on her clothes, sunglasses, purses. She has like 25 pieces of luggage. It’s for little kids, like preschoolers, who typically have to watch this stuff at home. They get to stand up and sing, dance, jump and shout.

EBONY: How did you prepare for your role?

TB: I didn’t. I just went into the little kid that I am, that we all are, some times. I just said I’m going to have fun with her. When you’re doing things for little kids you have to think big and over the top. It was like laughing at myself as a singer a little bit too. It was a lot of fun. She has a private plan; everything in her life has to be pink, she thinks that everyone around her works for her. 

EBONY: What’s next for you?

TB: I’m shooting a Lifetime movie next month about interracial love; I am Christian and African American and my love interest is Caucasian and Jewish. I am really excited. My son Diesel is in the movie. It comes out in February.

EBONY: Anything new with you music?

TB: I am working on an album. Babyface and I our going to put out a project of just duets. It will have three or four covers, and the others are remakes. The album is called, Love Marriage Divorce, kind of like Eat Pray Love.  A single will be out by the top of the year.

EBONY: In the past you’ve opened up about our battle with Lupus. How are you feeling?

TB: It’s good to be back at work. I’ve been feeling really good and I’ve had a few great weeks. My body has gotten used to the medication. I am very fortunate and blessed.