Ever since Tia Mowry-Hardrict burst on the scene with her twin Tamara Mowry-Housely in Sister, Sister, she’s been breaking barriers, and proving talent and hard work are the key components to longevity in the entertainment industry. As an actress, producer, author, wife, and mother, she can do it all. In her latest project, Lifetime’s Miracle In Motor City, she brings a heart-warming story to the screen just in time for holidays.
In Miracle In Motor City, Mowry-Hardrict stars in the role of Amber, a woman finds herself in trouble when she takes on the task of creating an unforgettable Christmas pageant at her local church. Throughout her journey, she learns the meaning of the power of love, the gift of family, and the true meaning of Christmas.
EBONY recently caught up with the booked-and-busy actress and dished on her secret to multitasking, her partnership with Lactaid, and what is was like working with the legendary Smokey Robinson on her latest film.
EBONY: From acting, producing, your various business ventures, and your family life, you embody what it means to be booked and busy. We all want to know one thing: How do you manage to make it all happen?
Tia Mowry-Hardrict: Man, you know, it’s so funny because one of my friends was like, “Do you know what you do is a gift? There’s a lot of people who don't know how to do that." I love to multitask. I’m a serial multitasker. I know how to compartmentalize. My friends say, “Tia that’s not normal.” I think it's just a part of my nature.
In all your endeavors, what has helped you most in achieving balance?
I think it all boils down to being able to prioritize, compartmentalize, and then also being able to forgive yourself when something doesn't get crossed off that checklist. I'm okay with saying, “I was able to get to this but I wasn't able to get to that. But you know what, I'm definitely gonna get to it the next day and if that doesn't happen the next day, it'll roll over to the next day.” I've realized that's the system that I have. I'm not too hard on myself but I'm also not too relaxed or too lenient that things don't get done.
You definitely have the gift because in addition to your work in TV and film this year, you recently partnered with Lactaid. How did you connect with the brand?
What's so special about my partnership with Lactaid is that it comes from personal experience. A lot of African Americans have a lactose sensitivity. My whole family does. For me, it wasn't something that I always realized until I was in my early 20s. I just started to notice that I was having stomach discomfort. At first, I didn't make the connection that it was food-related. I was introduced to Lactaid around that time and I loved it. I'm a foodie. I love milk and I love ice cream. I was very happy that there's an alternative there. Lactaid is 100% real milk, just without the lactose—so you're able to enjoy the benefits of what real milk has to offer.
Did it take time for you to adjust your recipes to using Lactaid or was it a seamless transition?
It was a smooth transition. The coolest thing is that cooking with Lactaid is very easy. If you want a smoothie, you could use Lactaid instead.
As we enter the holiday season, your latest film project is Miracle In the Motor City, which is airing on Lifetime. What about the film spoke to and made you want to be involved?
I love Christmas. It's something that I look forward to every single year. I get to spend quality time with my family. Also, I love working with Lifetime. I feel like a lot of their movies are very real, very relatable, and very grounded. But not only that, I feel like they give incredible opportunities to women of color. Where else can you see a slate of films with a wide-ranging diversity of female leads from African American to Latinao Asian? Not only has the network given us the spotlight in front of the camera, but also behind the scenes. Rhonda Freeman Baraka, who wrote the film, is a Black woman.
During the holiday season, there’s always a plethora of Christmas-themed films. Tell me what distinguishes Miracle In the Motor City Christmas from the rest of the pack?
What I think is so profound about this story is that my character Amber wants to adopt her foster child but she's kind of stuck with this idea of a traditional, conventional family. At the end of the day, she realizes that love is all that matters. Love is all you need and she's learning that lesson also with Eddie, her romantic interest in the story. They work together but they broke up because of a lot of distractions and outside noise. They love each other, they have this connection and if they just focus on that love, then... I know it's kind of cheesy...but, love conquers all.
The film has a tremendous cast but tell me how was it to work with the legendary Smokey Robinson?
Working with Smokey was and still feels like a dream. I grew up with Motown because my mother played it all the time. Motown is so influential on Black culture and to be able to put a spotlight on Motown’s history with this movie was incredible. We took the cast to the Motown Museum in Detroit, and to see Smokey Robinson, Diana Ross, and Michael Jackson and then to be able to be working right next to Smokey Robinson—oh, it was amazing. Just being in his presence is a learning experience and you realize why he is so phenomenal and a legend. He's professional and he’s humble and so talented.
Miracle In Motor City is currently airing on Lifetime.