“Black women, we made this movie for you and it’s about time you received the big-screen treatment,” director Malcolm D. Lee told the crowd of moviegoers at the Regal L.A. Live in downtown Los Angeles on Thursday.
In his review, Variety‘s Peter Debruge praises the latter actress as a scene-stealer in her role as the outspoken friend in her group, the Flossy Posse, but Haddish’s response to the compliment had reporters in stitches.
“I appreciate it, but you know I’m from South Central so I don’t ever like to be told that I stole anything because I’m not a thief and you can go to jail for that,” she quipped.
Haddish, who also appeared in “Keanu” and NBC’s “The Carmichael Show,” said this was the “best work I’ve ever done.” The film is considered to be the raunchiest comedy to date centering around African-American women.
“That was one of the things that I really loved,” Smith told Variety on the red carpet. “Giving ourselves the license to let go in that way; I think that it’s sometimes difficult because there is a certain standard that we have to hold that does not allow us to be our complete selves considering our [American] history.”
She continued, “To be able to show these women who are intelligent, full of heart, and who are responsible but take a weekend to cut loose, is a beautiful thing. A movie through our lens and our culture, it still has universal themes that doesn’t make it gender-specific or even color-specific, and that’s a beautiful thing to be moving in that direction.”
“Black-ish” creator Kenya Barris re-teamed with his “Barbershop: The Next Cut” writing partner, Tracy Oliver, to pen the Universal comedy. Oliver says a few elements from the movie, which is set during the Essence Festival in New Orleans, are inspired by true events.
“There’s a scene where you see a certain man’s thing — that happened to me and my friends,” she admitted.
The cast is rounded out by Mike Colter, Larenz Tate, and Kofi Siriboe, who described his college co-ed character as “young and ready” to show some skin for a steamy scene with Smith.
“Female empowerment is something that people are craving right now. Black girl magic is real and everyone is feeling it.” Lee added.
“Girls Trip” hits theaters on July 21.