In the comedy Lottery Ticket, Kevin Carson (Bow Wow) is a young man living in the projects and working at a local Foot Locker, until he wins $370 million in the lottery, causing everyone to suddenly want a piece of him. Naturi, what was it like to do a kissing scene with Bow Wow, since you guys are such good friends? Naturi: We are friends and I’ve known Bow Wow since I was a teenage in the business myself.
Brandon: Yeah, I like to improv a lot and it was a blessing that Erik [Davis] allowed us to have that freedom with the whole script. Naturi, with this being your third feature film, is the process getting any easier for you?
Ice Cube, when you first became very successful, did your friends change and want something from you? Brandon, can you talk about what it was like to do the dramatic work that you did in this film? Brandon: This is going to sound so corny, but I used to watch a lot of Disney movies when I was a kid. In that one scene, I tried to embody that for every kid that feels like they want to get out.
Brandon: Honestly, one of my favorite movies is Titanic, so I would order Leonardo DiCaprio to the ‘hood in Detroit, and I would have him re-enact it. Jackson, Naturi Naughton, Ice Cube and Terry Crews talked about how much fun they had making Lottery Ticket together, what they would do if they won $370 million and how money can change people.
I didn’t notice that, as we were filming, until afterwards when I saw the movie and I was like, “Yo, that’s crazy!” When you make it from nothing to something, your life does drastically change overnight.
He caught me looking at him sometimes and said, “What the hell is this boy looking at?” But, I was trying to pull his energy, and my uncles’ energy. We just were there to make sure he could get his vision off and we could help him do it, and put a little two cents in there, that’s all. When you’re 70, you don’t have to lose your swagger, and I don’t expect to lose mine anytime soon. Do you think people will be surprised with your performance in Lottery Ticket, if they expect you to be the bad-ass protector?
How does it feel to have all of that happening right now, and how do you balance that with your family?

Jackson) and Stacie (Naturi Naughton), his grandmother (Loretta Devine) and the reclusive Mr. I just remember older cats pulling me aside and telling me what I need to do to be a man in this world. It’s a good thing to just do things that people enjoy, especially when they ask you to do it, over and over again.
I was talking to Erik about doing this movie, and the whole thing about the ‘hood is that it’s all about posturing and tough guys, but when all that stuff is peeled away, that’s what makes people identify with you.
I talked to some of my cousins and listened to what they would say, and they were like, “We just can’t control it. You might have that one ex that didn’t like you, and now she wants to come back in the picture. With Jimmy, it’s so funny because people can go, “Okay, that’s the real brother.” It’s really good because they can see the stuff in The Expendables one week, and then see what happens in this movie, which actually makes this funnier.
I wanted to bring my castmates with me, so that’s why when I actually did the record for “My ‘Hood,” I wanted to make sure Erik [Davis] directed the video. I wanted him to represent the kid who really wants to do more, but he can’t because of his current situation of being in the projects. It feels good to still be in the mix, doing my thing, having fun with it and growing my company. From film to film, I realize my strengths and my weakness, and I realize how much better I get.
It’s not his fault, but it’s his birthright and what he was born with, so I tried to embody that. I might just be like, “Oh, Jesus!” I really don’t know what I would do, but I know I would want to do something great. It was definitely fun playing Kevin because there are so many similarities that I can relate to, just dealing with the pressure. I remember getting with Erik [White] and saying, “Man, let’s make this one of those classics.” In my career, I started out with Cube in Friday After Next, and I always stay in the urban comedy genre because it just never gets old.
We put in the work, we were professionals and I was working with someone I respect and know that I’ve had a friendship with.
I learn the lingo, I ask questions and I’m on set trying to figure out which shots they’re going to use.

Everybody that wants to be successful should always be careful of what you wish for. A lot of artists and entertainers want to put the genie back in the bottle and wish they could go back to being what they were.
A lot of people don’t understand that, when you’re in that position, it’s a lot of pressure on you because everybody is watching and everybody wants a piece. I just wanted to draw from these people that have been instrumental in my life, and I couldn’t wait to play him.
If people want to see more family fare, that’s what we’re gonna give them. We gonna be good at it, and we’re gonna try to be better than everybody else. So, I just felt it, and then I tried to get mad at Bow Wow, but it’s hard to get mad at him because he’s got those hazel eyes and he’s nice.
I was ready to get out of the box and play something a little different than what everybody has seen. What I decided was that, who was cool with me before I made the money was going to be cool with me now. The one thing I love about the film is that it preaches the importance of friendship, loyalty and trust, and hopefully a lot of people can leave with that when they see the movie. You just say, “All right, we’re about to kiss, so don’t be puttin’ your tongue down my throat. Who wasn’t cool with me before I made this, I’m giving them problems all the time, like I was before.
People come up to me and they just love these characters, and Jimmy the Driver is a character that everybody is going to like, continue to like and want to see again. I always take one step at a time and, right now, this is on my agenda to make sure this is the #1 movie, come the following Monday.
Being on my third film, and being lucky enough to be in Lottery Ticket as my third film, is a true blessing.
That’s how I live, and we’ll keep going forward, and not worry about what happened in the rearview mirror.
I actually got my comedic timing up, being around all those people, because they are so fun.

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