I am very happy to be able to talk with Actress/Comedienne COCOA BROWN about her return in the long-running comedy series on the Oprah Winfrey Network, “Tyler Perry’s For Better or Worse”.
We also get into COCOA BROWN’s celebration of her weight loss of 50 lbs, through diet and exercise and how the weight loss has affected her as a single mother and woman.
Cocoa Brown, a native of Newport News, Virginia is best known for her starring role as fan favorite “Jennifer” on “Tyler Perry’s For Better or Worse” on the Oprah Winfrey Network, juror “Queen B” on FX’s smash hit “American Crime Story: People v. OJ Simpson”, which recently won multiple awards at the 2016 Emmy Awards and the films “Ted 2” and “Single Mom’s Club”.
EJ: Hello Ms. Brown thank you for your time. I would love to start off by congratulating you on your recent weight lose. How did this transformation come about?
COCOA BROWN: Well after I had my son back in 2012 I begin to slowly start the process of getting healthier for him but as well as myself. I was diagnosed with just diabetes in the 3rd trimester and because diabetes runs in my family I knew I had to take some serious precautions to prolong my life. It began slowly with walking drinking lots of water and watching my portions and just basically what I ate. But with the help of meal supplements and vitamins I’ve been able to take this 4 year process and make it part of my lifestyle.
EJ: Would you say that being on TV there is pressure to maintain a certain size?
COCOA BROWN: Luckily for me I came in the business considered a plus size actress so a lot of the roles I got called for just that. But as time progressed and I begin to lose weight I noticed that a lot of those rolls would not be made available to me and I was kind of in a crossroads because I’ll never be a size 2 and according to industry standards even with the weight-loss I’m still considered plus size. So if anything I’ve been told not to lose too much weight which to me is pretty funny
EJ: Is there a personal weight goal or are you just going for healthy living?
COCOA BROWN: I would like to lose about 30 more but basically it is a healthy lifestyle but I’m trying to live and maintain for not only myself but my son.
EJ: You are from Newport News, Virginia is that where your career started?
COCOA BROWN: Well I did my first play when I was 10 years old but I have to say my actual career started in 1996 in Washington DC.
EJ: You have had the opportunity to work with two icons in entertainment Mr. Tyler Perry and Ms. Oprah Winfrey, was there ever a moment you felt a little intimated being in the room with them?
COCOA BROWN: I wouldn’t say intimidated but more so starstruck and also just completely in awe of these two iconic people. Something about being on the set with Mr. Perry makes you want to step your game up
EJ: What are you like on set? Are you into pranks, do you crack jokes or are you all business?
COCOA BROWN: Well I pride myself with having the reputation of being professional and easy to work with but overall I’m all about my business and giving the best performance that I can but I will crack a joke or two especially if things get really stressful.
EJ: The new season of “Tyler Perry’s For Better or Worse” just started and we are so happy you are back. Should we expect some surprises from your character this season?
COCOA BROWN: I think the biggest surprise is that Jennifer and Richard have become item. 2 characters that couldn’t be any more opposites and they falling for each other and dealing with the opinions of their friends on their union. I so appreciate this story line from Mr. Perry because so many times us thicker sisters get forgotten about on screen when it comes to matters of the heart and right now I believe just from the comments from the fans that this new love in Jennifer’s life is giving a lot of my thick sisters hope.
EJ: If you had to give up one, would it be Acting or Comedy, and why?
COCOA BROWN: I would hate to give up either because both Bring me equal amounts of joy for different reasons but if I had to pick One at this moment it might be comedy because it does take me away from my child a lot and with him getting older Mommy just wants to be more present and involved in his everyday life.
EJ: Congratulations is in order for your Screen Actor’s Guild Award nomination, are there any awards that you wish to one day put in your Trophy Case?
COCOA BROWN: Thank you! But just to be on the ballot was an honor in itself. But who wouldn’t want an Emmy, Oscar or screen actors Guild on the mantle. All artist do this for the love but as a human you want to be acknowledged and rewarded for your hard work
EJ: You recently released your comedy CD “One Funny Momma”, which is currently available on iTunes, tell us about that project?
COCOA BROWN: I was deeply honored Bounce TV reached out to me to shoot my one hour special it was a labor of love and a long time coming. What I am most proud about is that I am the kind of comic that can do any kind of material but I was able to let the world see me do clean comedy and shut up the naysayers lol
Thank you for your time and we at The official AO will continue to support your career and accomplishments.