GABRIELLE UNION NEWS, INTERVIEWS & UPDATES
News for 7/20/2003
The following article titled
Gabrielle & Her Boys appeared in the July 18, 2003 edition of USA Today.
Gabrielle Union Interview@The Omaha Weekly Reader
Gabrielle Union Interview@USA Weekend
Gabrielle Union Interview@EURWeb.com
News for 7/15/2003
Gabrielle Union Interview on the Indie Neo Ned
News for 7/7/2003
The following interview appeared in the July 2003 issue of InStyle Magazine.
News for 5/31/2003
Interview with Gabrielle from the April 25, 2003 issue of Entertainment Weekly Magazine.
News for 5/6/2003
'Dahmer' Star Takes Bite Out of 'Neo Ned'
LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - "Dahmer" star Jeffrey Renner has been cast in the title role of the indie feature "Neo Ned," with Gabrielle Union as the female lead.
Renner will play a troubled young man who belongs to the Aryan Brotherhood. While a patient in a psychiatric hospital, he falls in love with a young black mother (Union) who thinks she is possessed by the spirit of Adolf Hitler.
Production is expected to begin later this month in Los Angeles. Van Fischer ("Blink of An Eye") is directing.
Renner received an Independent Spirit Award nomination this year for his role as infamous cannibal Jeffrey Dahmer in "Dahmer." He next stars in Columbia's "S.W.A.T." Union most recently starred in "Cradle to The Grave" and "Deliver Us From Eva." She stars in the upcoming "Bad Boys II."
News for 3/25/2003
Gabrielle interview from the March 2003 issue of Upscale Magazine. Click on the pics to read the article.
News for 3/15/2003
From US Magazine
From the United Press International
Gabrielle: Black Actresses Look Out For Each Other
Gabrielle Union says instead of competing with each other for roles, black actresses generally go out of their way to help each other.
"Vivica Fox has been like a mentor," Union told reporters in New York. "You see all this back-biting with a lot of actors, but in black Hollywood, it is really like, 'Let me grab you, let me pull your coattails.'"
Fox isn't the only black actress who "hipped me to investments ... hipped me about the business," said the stunning "Cradle 2 the Grave" star.
"She's great, but everyone is like that," she explained. "You go back and Viv, Jada (Pinkett Smith) Tisha Campbell, Regina King; they all are like, 'Let me talk to you for a second. Let me show you what's supposed to be going on. You're contract is supposed to be like this, this is what you do,' and in turn, we're like, 'Meagan Good, come here... let me help you out.' It's like, all love."
News for 2/1/2003
From the Chicago Sun-Times.com
Strength in unity
By Cindy Pearlman
LOS ANGELES--She's a rising young star who plays opposite Will Smith in this summer's "Bad Boys 2." And her name is above the title in the new film "Deliver Us From Eva," which opens Feb. 7.
Beautiful Gabrielle Union should be telling us quirky, funny anecdotes about her life and adventures in Hollywood.
Instead, she would rather talk about her rape.
"One out of four women is sexually assaulted in their lifetime," Union says. "That means I'm not the only one, although this is a topic you're not supposed to talk about.
"As women, we can't keep it buried. You have to talk about rape and not turn rape into this huge, shameful secret," she says.
Slowly and painfully, Union recalls a night a decade ago when she was a teenager in her hometown of Pleasanton, Calif. She was working at a discount shoe store to earn some spending money. That night, she wasn't even supposed to be at the store, but a Jimmy Buffett concert was in town and a co-worker begged her to switch shifts.
It was closing time, and Union was ready to call it a night. "One man was sticking around the store, looking at shoes, but I didn't really pay much attention because I really wanted to just go home."
Union was vacuuming in the back when a female co-worker suddenly began to scream her name. Union had a terrible feeling and was tempted to rush out the back door. Yet, she ran to the front. "I didn't want to leave my friend alone because this sounded like trouble."
She raced to the front of the store to find the man holding a gun and robbing the cash register. Soon, he was waving the gun at the girls, poked it into their backs and demanded they go into the back room and take off their clothes. He locked them in a back bathroom, and the whole nightmare seemed to be ending. "For a few minutes, it really sounded like he was leaving the store," Union recalls.
But the man came back and told a naked Union to follow him into another room, where she was raped. "I just left my body," she says. "I couldn't believe this was happening to me and all I kept thinking was, 'I'm a good person. Why is this happening? I get good grades? I'm a good girl.' "
At one point, her attacker dropped the gun, and Union found the courage to grab it. She fired off two shots, but missed. Her attacker was so infuriated that he began to hit her.
"I fought back because I felt like it was him or me, but he was much bigger," she says. At that point, all she could think of was her family getting a phone call from the police saying their daughter had been raped and killed.
A few minutes later, the man fled the store. He raped another girl, and turned himself in a week later. Meanwhile, Union dealt with the aftermath of being raped and now urges girls to go to the hospital or their local rape crisis center.
"You have to take care of yourself, and I want girls to know that what they do is like a normal trip to the gynecologist," she says. "No one judges you. It's not your fault. Plus the people who help you are very nice."
The emotional issues that followed were tougher to understand.
Union hated that her family treated her like a fragile piece of china. Her grades began to go downhill, and she didn't want to be with her friends because the local paper reported that "a black girl" was the victim of a rape. "There weren't many black girls in town, so everyone knew it was me," she says.
"There's a huge element of shame that comes with being raped, even though people tell you it's not your fault," she says. "Bottom line: No one wants to be a victim."
This isn't the type of story young actresses share with the press, but a steely Union insists that it must be told. The first time she spoke out, it was because she was trapped.
"I had to tell my co-workers the story a few years ago," she says. "I had been working on a [TV] show called 'City of Angels.' I had never told anyone in the business what happened, but one of our story lines was about a serial rapist who was loose in the hospital where the show was set.
"Every single week, I'd get my script and I was so terrified that my character would be next," she says. "I knew I had to say something and tell the powers in charge because on the set people were even making jokes about rapists. I think this was a reaction to the seriousness of the topic. They wanted to 'keep it light.' But if it was your sister, your mother or your aunt--well, it's not funny. There is no such thing as a 'rape joke.' "
Union feared that if she told her story, she would get extra attention from her peers, which was exactly what she didn't want. "I don't want to be coddled or hear, 'Oh, you poor thing. Will you ever be all right?' "
That's a tough question.
Union says she will never completely "get over" what happened to her. "Over time, it's not so fresh," she says, "But it will always be there."
Meanwhile, her rapist turned himself in, took a plea bargain and was sentenced to 33 years in prison. "But it's been 10 years, and in California with good behavior you only have to do a third of your time," she says. "He could be getting out this year."
Union says that thought is terrifying, but she has to move on and think about helping other girls.
"They say rape is the most under-reported crime," she says. "It affects so many people. Young girls don't know what to do when it happens to them, so they never tell anyone. They don't seek medical attention. I hope some of these girls read this piece and think, 'Well, if Gabby can go to the hospital and the police station and then talk about her rape, then maybe I can, too.'
"It's freeing to speak out. And now people understand why it's my personal choice not to go into [convenience stores] at midnight. It's why I don't hop out at the ATM in the dark. It's why certain strangers make me feel uncomfortable and I don't do the polite thing. I just move away from them."
In the years since the attack, Union has managed to put much of the pain behind her. She graduated from UCLA and got married two years ago. Still, she realizes that sharing her pain can help others. "When I talk about rape, there's always another woman who approaches me and says, 'It happened to me, too. I understand and thank you for giving us a voice.' "
News for 1/18/2003
Today's Black Woman Interview with Gabrielle, Meagan, Robinne & Essence
News for 12/19/2002
From InStyle Magazine
News for 7/25/2002
Gabrielle's interview with MTV.com
News for 7/18/2002
Union Due as Lead for 'Bad Boys' Sequel
HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - Gabrielle Union ("Bring It On") has inked to star as the female lead opposite Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in "Bad Boys 2." She will leave for Miami shortly to start shooting the Columbia Pictures project.
She plays Syd Burnett, sassy, smart half-sister to henpecked Det. Marcus Burnett (Lawrence) as well as the love interest of footloose Det. Mike Lowrey (Smith).
The original 1995 buddy cop movie "Bad Boys" made $141 million worldwide and seemed natural for a remake a la "Lethal Weapon." But in the years since, the team of Lawrence, Smith and helmer Michael Bay all became A-list gross participants like its producer, Jerry Bruckheimer.
Union, who next stars opposite LL Cool J in USA Films' "Deliver Us From Eva," also toplines in Warner Bros.' "Cradle to the Grave" next year. She also has a smaller role in the upcoming "Welcome to Collinwood" and appears opposite Katie Holmes in Paramount's thriller "Abandon," which marks the helming debut of Oscar-winning "Traffic" scribe Steve Gaghan.