Boris Kodjoe woke up like this. The 41-year-old actor is one of the stars of The Real Husbands of Hollywood reality spoof show on BET and was also in Addicted, the movie version of the popular Zane book. Although he’s well known for playing characters that use his gorgeous face and body to their full advantage, Kodjoe relished shaking up his image by turning to comedy. We caught up with him and asked him about Real Husbands, his career, his hot marriage to actress Nicole Ari Parker and why October is an important month for his family.
Why made you decide to go on Real Husbands?
My best friend, Chris Spencer, is the creator of the show and he and Kevin [Hart] had called me and told me they were doing a spoof on reality TV. They referenced Curb Your Enthusiasm, which I’m a big fan of and I knew right away that this was something that I wanted to do. Chris knows us all intimately so I knew the writing was going to be on the nose and something that I would enjoy tremendously. I like making fun of myself and my friends and reality TV.
Did you consider how doing the show might impact your sexy leading man image?
The sexy leading man status thing is not something I ever aspired to or wanted to build on. It’s like a label that’s put on you. Anything I can do to show people that I can be diverse and that I’m funny and can be physical it was a great opportunity to spread my wings and show people I can be multidimensional. Still to this day I don’t care about those accolades. They’re flattering but it’s nothing I can take credit for. Growing up in Germany, it was never an issue. It was never made a big deal out of. I was called all kind of names growing up being the only Black boy and people trying to touch my hair and speaking in weird accents because they thought I couldn’t understand them. I had a lot of other concerns than my look growing up. I don’t take myself seriously at all. I’m a husband, I’m a father and everything else is just icing on the cake.
Your 9-year-old daughter, Sophie, (his son Nicholas, is 8) was born with spina bifida a birth defect that affects the normal development of the spine. October was Spinal Bifida Awareness month, but you want to let women know there’s one easy way to ensure their children don’t suffer from this serious birth defect.
The key is folic acid. All women of childbearing age should be taking folic acid. (Parker took pre-natal vitamins, but in some cases, the defect develops anyway.) You never know what your absorbency rate is, so better safe than sorry. You should also support Sophie’s Voice because not only are we trying to eradicate it worldwide, we also support fortification, which is when governments pass laws forcing millers to add folic acid to flour and to rice. When they do that, women who ingest those products are automatically protected.
You and Nicole have been together 13 years – that’s like 50 in Hollywood years. What makes it work?
There’s many things, but I think a lot of people don’t give people a chance to grow through adversity. They just jump off the horse and leave the building when the road gets bumpy. When you grow as a couple, there are three growth processes that go on. There’s his growth, her growth and their growth together. You have to learn each other’s dance steps and that’s not easy.
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