Fatherhood on Netflix, Starring Teneisha Collins and Kevin Hart is Heartwarming!
Teneisha Collins joins Kevin Hart and an ensemble cast in the heartwarming film Fatherhood available to stream on Netflix June 18th, 2021 in time for Fathers Day.
Teneisha Collins' role as Ms. Burns in the upcoming feature film Fatherhood starring Kevin Hart is set for release on Netflix on June 18th, 2021 in time for Fathers Day. Fatherhood is a film adaptation based on the novel “Two Kisses for Maddy: A Memoir of Loss & Love” by Matthew Logelin. Hart plays the father, focused on fulfilling all of his daughter’s needs; despite the obstacles, life throws his way. Melody Hurd (Them) stars alongside Hart as his daughter Maddy. Teneisha joins a star-studded cast featuring Alfre Woodard (Clemency, 12 Years A Slave), Lil Rel Howery (Bad Trip, Get Out), DeWanda Wise (She’s Gotta Have It, Someone Great), Anthony Carrigan (Barry), and Paul Reiser (Mad About You, The Kominsky Method).
Thank you Teneisha Collins' for sitting down and chatting with me! This is a brillant movie, filled with so much love, joy and some pretty funny scenes!
1. Why did you choose to be part of this movie?
How could I not be a part of this movie? When you learn that Kevin Hart and Paul Weitz want to work with you, you don’t say no. I find Kevin to be one of the funniest entertainers out there, and I’ve admired Paul’s work since I first saw About A Boy, a movie that he co-wrote and directed (and was nominated for an Oscar.) But I have to say that even with an entirely different cast and director, I would have said yes to this project. Learning about the real Matt Logelin (Fatherhood is based on a true story) and how far he and Maddy have come had such a significant impact on me that I knew I needed to be involved in sharing their story with the world in any way that I could.
2. What did you learn from your character? And what similarities do you share?
My character, Ms. Burns, is 7-year-old Maddy’s Catholic school teacher. While well-meaning, I inadvertently create friction in Matt and Maddy’s story. She reminds us that, no matter how well-intentioned our actions may be, we can sometimes negatively impact a situation without even realizing.
There’s no doubt in my mind that Ms. Burns cares deeply about her students, and even sees a lot of herself in their precociousness and self-confidence (which often looks like feistiness in these kids.) I feel like I’m very similar in that way – I have never been a teacher, but I care deeply about others and their well-being, from the people who are close to me to complete strangers, especially children. Indeed, the empowerment, well-being, and education of children is one of the issues that I hold close to my heart. Oh, and I was definitely a precocious child, who knew who she was and what she wanted, so when I meet a child like Maddy (or the self-assured Melody Hurd who so beautifully plays Maddy,) I see a lot of my own childhood qualities in them. I can only hope that if I have children that they will be as amazing as little Miss Hurd.
3. What would you want your audience to learn from this movie and your character?
Kevin hart is so incredible in the role of Matt Logelin, and the gift that he gives us is a different portrayal of a Black man than what we often see in TV and Film. I love that people will see this professional Black single father in a positive light, doing his best to raise his daughter while juggling a career, because there are so many of these men, these fathers, whether single parents, dual parent households, or some type of shared custody, and they deserve recognition. Also, the real Matt Logelin – surprise – is white. What’s beautiful about Matt and Maddy’s story is that fatherly love is universal and transcends race and culture.
As for Ms. Burns, I’d love for people to see her and learn that we never know what is truly going on in other people’s lives and relationships since we only see them from the outside, so a little grace and kindness goes a long way.
4. How does this movie speak to you?
More than anything, this movie, Matt and Maddy’s story, is about love, the unpredictability of life, and overcoming tragedy. I’ve had the privilege to connect with and get to know the real Matt Logelin since being attached to Fatherhood. When I look at Matt and Maddy’s journey and see where they are today, it’s beyond inspiring. Seeing how far they’ve come, how happy they seem, how they’re thriving in their growing family highlights that there is always hope after our darkest days. I look at them and know that I can get through whatever life throws my way, confident that there will still be joy and happiness in my life.
5. How was it working with Kevin Heart?
It was incredible! A dream come true, really. I actually made a list of all of the actors, directors, and other creatives I wanted to work with, some famous, others talented people in my circle, and Kevin was somewhere on the top of the list. 6 months after putting this list to paper, I’m on set working with him, so it’s nothing short of incredible to me.
He’s a naturally funny person, so we definitely laughed a lot. But we also had some heart to hearts (no pun intended) and I have to say that he’s so inspiring and encouraging. Kevin definitely cares about others and loves to motivate others to reach the next level. I also realized that he’s one of the hardest working people in Hollywood. Even while shooting this movie, he was working on new comedy material, producing other projects, and more. His work ethic and energy are incredible. He turned 40 during our shoot and kept saying “I’m just getting started,” which is so amazing considering what he’s already accomplished. Now it’s something that I regularly repeat to myself because I’m also just getting started!
6. I could imagine working with Kevin there’s a lot of laughter involved, did you improve a few of the scenes?
We did improvise! Fatherhood is a family drama with comedic elements, so the improv we did wasn’t always comedy, but it was always fun. I feel honoured that Paul (Weitz) and Kevin trusted me, my talent, and my instincts to be able to improvise certain moments in this film.
7. Was there anything from the set that you absolutely loved and were able to take home?
My character Ms. Burns is a Catholic school teacher, so her wardrobe is very conservative. Think high necklines and long skirts – definitely different than the sleek, form-fitting wardrobe I often wear for other projects. But even through her conservative wardrobe, there were some pieces that were just so beautiful, clothing that I wouldn’t even think of wearing, but after putting them on as Ms. Burns, I fell in love with them. So I own some key pieces from my wardrobe. And I have a beautiful keepsake that Kevin gifted key cast and crew members that I will always cherish.
8. Is there anything you’d like to share that you’d like your audience goers to know?
Honestly, whenever I talk about this project there are 3 things that I always rave about. One is the real Matt and Maddy and how much their story will penetrate your heart. Their resilience is truly inspiring. The second is how great Kevin is in the dramatic role. I truly think this is some of his best work, and it’s a side of Kevin that the public isn’t used to seeing. He really dove in to this character, and I feel like he really felt a great responsibility to everyone to tell this story in the most honest and meaningful way possible. The third is Melody Hurd. If you don’t know who she is (she’s one of the stars of THEM on Amazon Prime) you will know her after this movie. She’s pint-sized but her talent is tremendous, and her personality and energy are infectious. She’s pure magic, and I can’t wait for you all to meet her – you won’t soon forget her!
Thank you Teneisha for your time, I’m eternally grateful! I hope everyone sees you in FATHERHOOD and loves it as much as I do!
Kevin Hart stars in this heart-warming, funny, and emotional true story about a widower taking on one of the toughest jobs in the world: fatherhood. The film follows Hart’s character Matt navigates the highs and lows of parenthood. From putting an infant child to sleep or dealing with family pressures, Matt is determined to beat the odds to become the best father he can be. Directed by Paul Weitz, Hart is co-producing alongside David Beaubaire and Peter Kiernan with Dana Stevens, Marty Bowen, and Paul Weitz, developing the screenplay. Presented by Barack and Michelle Obama’s Higher Ground Productions, Fatherhood is available to stream on Netflix from Friday, June 18th 2021.
Teneisha plays Ms. Burns, Kevin Hart’s character Matt’s daughter’s private school teacher, while constantly attempting to get him and his daughter to follow school rules, unintentionally creates conflict that ultimately threatens their father/daughter dynamic in this uplifting, touching, and humorous film.
Teneisha says, “This story of Fatherhood pierced right through my heart from the moment I first read the script in the Miami airport – I burst out crying within the first 10 pages. Getting to know the real Matt Logelin who the movie is based on, and seeing how far he and Maddy have come – this experience will stay with me forever. To have the opportunity to contribute to this story and to leave my influence on this project is so meaningful.”
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