She’s conquered Hip Hop, Hollywood and Broadway; but now Queen Latifah is out to conquer daytime television with a new talk show. “The Queen Latifah Show” debuts nationally on Sept. 16. Locally, the show will air on KCBS Channel 2.
For Latifah, the latest venture is just another feather in her already impressive cap.
“My show is going to be an entertaining and eclectic mix of interviews with real people as well as celebrities–people who are fun and fascinating,” said Latifah in a released statement. “It will be a program you can tune into to feel good every day. I also think it will inspire people who watch it. I know I’ve certainly been inspired by a lot of the stories we plan to share.”
The show comes with some weighty names attached to it. Along with Oscar nominee, Latifah, the show is executively produced by power couple, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith.
“My partner, Shakim (Compere) and I have a long history with Will and Jada Smith, and we have always wanted to find a way to do something big together,” said Latifah, born Dana Owens. “We all thought this was the perfect project, and since Will and Jada’s company Overbrook has a relationship with Sony, we’re excited to be doing it with them as well. It’s definitely a family affair. Shakim and I actually grew up together. My Mom was his teacher and we started Flavor Unit together back in 1993. We have been friends with the Smiths for years. I was on ‘Fresh Prince’ with Will, and Jada and I were in a film together called ‘Set it Off.’ We have a long history, and I definitely feel like we grew up together in Hollywood.”
Latifah said she reached out to several talk show greats including Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres and Jimmy Falon for advice on her show.
“They’ve all been terrifically helpful and encouraging,” said Latifah.
The show’s set designer, rock/soul icon Lenny Kravitz, is also an impressive name in entertainment.
“I can’t wait for people to see it. Not only is Lenny an incredible musician, but he and his team are amazing designers,” said Latifah.
The hour-long show hopes to showcase Latifah’s range as a multi-award winning entertainer and her distinct ability to connect with people. The multi-topic, daily syndicated show will feature a mix of celebrity interviews, human-interest stories, musical performances and Queen Latifah’s unique–often comedic take–on pop culture.
The program will be taped in front of a live studio audience at Sony Pictures Studios in Los Angeles, and will air on CBS owned-and-operated channels.
“I am nervous because it is always overwhelming to start something new (but) I am excited to hear people’s stories and share in their journeys,” said Latifah.