Jordin opens up about her beloved time with Whitney on the set of their forthcoming movie Sparkle, and muses on the overall essence of the queen she got to know before her tragic passing in February.
Check out some excerpts below:
Part musical, part cautionary tale, the movie tells the story of three sisters, Sparkle, Delores (Tika Sumpter) and Sister (Carmen Ejogo), whose successful Motown singing act disintegrates in the face of drug addiction and familial strife. Originally Houston had signed on solely as executive producer, but eventually agreed to also play the girls’ mother, Emma. “I think she was hesitant at first, and then she said, ‘Yeah, I really want to do that,” says Sparks.
On set in Detroit at the first table read, Sparks, who has d worshiped the pop star since childhood, was appropriately tongue-tied. “She walked in and I was like, ‘This. Is. Awesome.’” But over time the two women grew close, bonding over a slavish devotion to the craft-services table and a near constant habit of singing under their breath. “One day, actually, she was walking behind me and singing ‘I Have Nothing,’” recalls Sparks. “And then she reached out and said, ‘I forgot I sang that. I was annoyed that day and just didn’t ant to do it. We ended up doing it in three takes!’”
When Houston died unexpectedly in February, Sparks (who attended her memorial service) was grief-stricken. “She was always so full of light,” she says, choking back tears. “Every day… she would open the door and ask, ‘How are my babies this morning? Are my babies good? God is good. Praise the Lord.’”
Still Sparks has no illusions about the demons that plagued her late costar (and, ironically, some of the films characters). “I can see how people can fall and people can flip or they can just get in with the wrong crowd.”
Sparkle was Whitney's last on screen movie before she passed away, hitting theaters August 17th. She will forever be loved and missed.