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Queen Latifah is spreading holiday cheer this season. The actor/rapper is making sure employees of her soon-to-be defunct talk show have a memorable Christmas by paying the crew throughout the holidays. E! News is reporting, while the show has stopped production Latifah will still pick up the payroll tab for her talk show staffers out of her own pocket. Last month QL’s self-titled talk show was cancelled after two seasons on air. Original episodes of the show will broadcast throughout March. Although the show boasted A-list celebrities and politicians such as former President Bill Clinton, Denzel Washington,  and T.I., the show wasn’t a ratings success.

MUST READ: The Reign Is Over: The Queen Latifah Show Has Been Cancelled

Back in 1999, Latifah first entered the chat fest arena with a program that was considered a “Dear Abby for the Hip-Hop Generation”. While Latifah’s talk show career has ended, her acting bio is becoming red hot. Latfiah is gearing up to play the late blues icon Bessie Smith in HBO’s biopic Bessie, which she will serve as an executive producer. As Latifah garners critical acclaim for Bessie, she’s already thinking about portraying another legendary singer: Pearl Bailey. Earlier this year, #TeamBeautiful caught up with Latifah at a press conference where she admitted she would love the chance to play Bailey, when a reporter commented on her uncanny resemblance to the late singer. Latifah remarked:

You know, I’ve been hearing that for years and years. I grew up watching Pearl Bailey. And, I opened up a book one time and I thought it was me in this book. And, I was like “I don’t remember taking this picture.” And then, as I looked closer, I realized it was Pearl Bailey, but we looked so much a like that I thought it was me. She was a big influence on me as a kid, because she was so spunky and she was out there and she, you know, she related to everyone, and had crossed barriers and I think that was very cool to me. So, I would love to be able to bring her life to the screen in some way. But, next up to bat for me is the Bessie Smith Story for HBO. So, I’ll be playing Bessie. Let me get Bessie done first and then I’ll jump into Pearl.

Bessie debuts in 2015 on HBO.


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