Crossing Over: Beyonce

21 03 2007

This is a new feature about musicians who have made the leap to acting and the results. Some have gained acclaim while others have become Razzie hall-of-famers. Either way when a musician tackles the silver screen we all take notice and savor the outcome.

beyonce.jpgBeyonce Knowles
Born: September 4, 1981
Musicial Credits: As lead singer for Destiny’s Child.
1998: Destiny’s Child (Peaked at #67, Platinum)
1999: The Writing’s On The Wall (Peaked at #5, 7x Platinum)
2000: 8 Days of Christmas (Peaked at #34, Gold)
2001: Survivor (Peaked at #1, Quadruple Platinum)
2002: This is the Remix (Peaked at #29, 413,000)
2004: Destiny Fulfilled (Peaked at #2, Triple Platinum)
2005: #1’s (Peaked at #1, Platinum)

As solo artist.
2003: Dangerously in Love (Peaked at #1, Quadruple Platinum)
2006: B’Day (Peaked at #1, Double Platinum)

Beyonce has always been known for her vocal chops, not for her acting range. The talented singer is about as good at portraying complex emotions onscreen as a toaster oven and even then I think the oven has her beat. In 2001, Beyonce headlined MTV’s Hipopera: Carmen and needless to say the only tolerable parts were the musical numbers and even those were a bit on the annoying side.
She quickly followed her cable debut with a co-starring role in Austin Powers in Goldmember and the transition didn’t help matters. Her character Foxy Cleopatra was nerve wrecking and her stiff performance didn’t help the moderately funny sequel. Not only was Beyonce was bad, but America’s favorite mock spy was seriously limp. While her film career isn’t glorious, she shone on the Billboard charts with hit after hit. She launched massive singles such as “Survivor” and “Independent Woman Part I” making the presence of Beyonce inescapable.
She continued with supporting roles in two incredible stupid movies, The Fighting Temptations and The Pink Panther. While Panther found box office success the film was lashed at by critics who panned the film as moronic and unfunny. Ms. Knowles did find success on the big screen but lacked critical acclaim. On the music scene, she didn’t skip a beat unleashing hits such as “Crazy in Love” and “Baby Boy” both of which topped the Billboard Hot 100 for 8 weeks or more a piece.
Her next project was the much hyped musical, Dreamgirls – and this was her moment to shine. Instead, Beyonce spotlight was stolen by American Idol reject Jennifer Hudson who made room on her mantel for an Academy Award. Dreamgirls lacked the necessary strength to secure any of the major prizes, because let’s face it Dreamgirls was no Chicago. Beyonce and co-star Jamie Foxx were partly to blame because their lifeless performances were the major low points of the film.
As a consolation prize for leaving empty handed, Beyonce landed the biggest single of her career with B’Day‘s third outing. “Irreplaceable” topped the Billboard Hot 100 for 10 weeks and brought up the lagging sales of her sophomore album. The previous two singles, “Deja Vu” and “Right The Alarm” failed on the charts and the album quickly began to drop. Now, she’s still sitting in the top 20 with more than 2.4 million copies sold. If only movies came as natural to Beyonce as singing.

Top Tracks
“Emotion” (Destiny’s Child)
“Me, Myself & I”
“Bootylicious” (Destiny’s Child)
“Dangerously in Love”

Personal quotes from Ms. Knowles
>>“There’s plenty of days when I’m like ‘Oh God, why?’ But that’s just life. It’s every job, not just mine. Every moment is not perfect. But it’s definitely more good times than bad. You can’t even compare. And when I’m on stage it feels incredible. There are certain nights that you know you hit that crazy note and you know that spin spinned extra fast. And you look out and people are just into it and you’ve worked so hard and now it’s paying off and you can see why you dedicated your life to this.”
>>“It doesn’t annoy me, no, because I respect J-Lo. I like her, I think she’s great. And I know that I’m over a decade younger than her, it’s so flattering that I’m so young and people are comparing me to someone who has accomplished so much. But I don’t think I’m like anyone else and really, I’d rather not be compared to anyone else.” – on comparisions to J-Lo
>>“We all have our imperfections. But I’m human and you know, it’s important to concentrate on other qualities besides outer beauty”.
>>“One of the things that kept me out of trouble was doing something creative – creativity can’t be judged”.

Here is a clip from her film, Austin Powers in Goldmember




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