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Mo'nique: Entertainer of the year

The actress’ role in ”Precious” put her on the map

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No. 13 – The revelation

Mo’Nique’s mother didn’t think she should take the part of Mary Jones, the shockingly abusive mother of an overweight teenage girl, in the movie Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire. ”When I let my mom know about it, she was like, ‘Why would they make you be that character?”’ recalls the 42-year-old comedian and TV host. ”But nobody walked away from Color Purple believing that Whoopi Goldberg was really Celie. When they saw Whoopi the next time, nobody said, ‘Hey, Celie!’ They said, ‘Hey, Whoopi!”’ Mo’Nique should get used to hearing her name called as well: Her fearless, blazing performance has made her a front-runner for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar. But any red-carpet appearances will have to be sandwiched in between tapings of her new BET talk show, which has won her legions of new fans with its freewheeling, Oprah-at-night vibe. ”It’s where The Arsenio Hall Show left off,” she says. ”We just want you to feel good when you go to bed at night. If you keep watching TV after The Mo’Nique Show, you greedy!”