Run, don’t walk to get your copy of Jumping The Broom! The hit romantic comedy boasts an all star cast that includes Angela Bassett, Loretta Devine, Meagan Good, Mike Epps, and DeRay Davis. Jumping The Broom follows the story of two families that converge on Martha’s Vineyard to witness the nuptials of lovebirds Jason (Laz Alonso) and Sabrina (Paula Patton). The course of true love goes awry when it becomes an all out class war between the blue-collar Taylors and the upper-crust Watsons.
The Urban Daily caught up with Laz to discuss the success of Jumping The Broom, plans for the new season of “Breakout Kings”, his upcoming role in the psycho-thriller Straw Dogs, and Hollywood rumors to power up for the role of John Stewart in the Green Lantern movie franchise.
What has been the public’s reaction to Jumping The Broom? Why do you think the film has resonated with audiences?
First and foremost the movie was relatable. You don’t have to be one particular race or religion to understand these characters. Everyone at one point has gone to a wedding where just because two people are in love, doesn’t mean the families involved will fall in love with each other as well. Then there’s that disconnect and awkward feeling when the two families meet, which a lot of people can relate to and I think that’s what made it a universal story. On top of that the movie was funny; it was one of those magical moments when we were on set because we couldn’t keep a straight face when we were filming.
In the movie, your mother, played by Loretta Devine disapproved of your character’s fiancée, Sabrina (Paula Patton). In real life, how important is your mother’s opinion in your relationship choices with women?
It’s important because you know the saying “Mother knows best” and I feel mothers do have some sort of weird psychic ability to judge character. But at the same time I keep it in perspective; if there’s someone that I’m really feeling, that I’m really in love with, I’m going to make my own decisions and be my own man. I’ll take her opinion into account but I’m not going to discredit someone just because my mom doesn’t like her. I will say this, the people she hasn’t liked in the past, she’s been right about. She hasn’t been wrong yet.
That’s a pretty good track record.
It is a pretty good record and I don’t like that. I hate that (chuckles). But what can you do?
Your TV series “Breakout Kings” has been picked up for a second season on A&E. When do you start shooting? Any ideas about plot lines and what plans they have for your character?
We start shooting the new season this fall and it’s going to have really introspective storylines for each of the characters. Last season was just introducing the audience to “Breakout Kings” as a whole, what we did and how we did it together. Next season we’re going to dive into their personal lives and it’s going to be more character driven. You’re going to get a huge surprise at one point throughout the season. I know for a fact people will be shocked at some of the things the show will reveal.
You’re in the upcoming movie Straw Dogs (opens in theaters September 16th)–can you give us a synopsis and a breakdown of your role?
Straw Dogs is a movie that’s set down south and it’s about these guys that were once local heroes, but once they graduated from high school they were no longer the stars. Their bitterness shows up in really ugly ways towards themselves and towards each other. The film is an all out psychological thriller and it’s a very aggressive movie. My character is the moral core of the story. He’s trying to keep the peace in the town and he’s sort of a fish out of water. There are so many ironies in Straw Dogs—my character is trying to keep the peace in town and he’s just come back from fighting a war in Iraq. Rod Lurie (the director) did a really good job handling that in this movie and it will make people think.
This summer has been flooded with lots of superhero movies like X-Men: First Class, Captain America, and Thor. Rumor has it they are looking to do a sequel to Green Lantern, and your name has been mentioned as a possible casting choice for the black Green Lantern, John Stewart. Is that a role you’d be interested in?
Absolutely. I’ve always wanted to play a superhero. Obviously there aren’t that many black or ethnic superheroes, but Green Lantern is something I’ve had a lot of interest in. I have been hearing rumors that my name has been thrown in the pot, which is really cool. I just read an article today that Marvel Comics is making the new Spider-man an Afro-Cuban guy. I think the superhero world is starting to open their world up to the possibility of casting people that reflect the new America. Back when those heroes were created, America was in a completely different place. We’ve grown and evolved as a country and we have all types of people who represent who we are as a nation. If you go to Iraq and look at our armed forces, it’s not just one type of person; it’s all of us. I think our kids should grow up and see all kinds of ethnic superheroes saving the day.
I understand you’re working on a script about the earthquake in Haiti and you’re reaching out to your old Wall Street acquaintances to finance this project. What progress have you made so far?
We’re trying to get into pre-production by November, so we’re working at a furious rate right now to get the script cleaned up and get all the investors to commit. Ideally we would like to get the film into all the prestigious film festivals so that as many people will see it as possible. We don’t want to miss any deadlines. We just want to make a really good story, a human story, issues that are going on in Haiti that aren’t being publicized. Everybody needs a voice, so this movie will hopefully lend a voice, as well as inspire people
On your Twitter page, your profile reads “Acting is what I do, not who I am”—can you tell us, who is Laz Alonso? What kind of legacy do you want to leave behind?
Just a cool, laid back, down to earth, regular guy. I think when it comes to celebrities, we see them on the big screen or on the red carpet, they appear to be something that they’re not and I’m just as human as the next man. I hope that through my work I can inspire people and make them reach beyond what they thought they could. That’s how I want to be remembered “This guy inspired me, I was motivated by him.”
Jumping The Broom is available on BluRay/DVD
Follow Laz Alonso on Twitter: @lazofficial
Jumping The Broom trailer: