Actor Lance Gross has been the fudge in plenty of women’s chocolate sundae fantasies since getting his big break as Calvin on “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne” in 2007. When not causing your girl to mentally cheat on you, Gross has been busy racking up acting credits on the big and small screens. Gross was last seen as the good-natured husband done wrong in “Tyler Perry’s Temptation.” Though Lance Gross is still promoting his last film, he’s also embarking on his new job as the ambassador to the new and improved hair remover Magic Shave.
The Urban Daily caught up with the actor in New York City where he was promoting Magic Shave and its “Work Ur Magic” contest. The contest is a cool and innovative way for the brand to interact with consumers. By logging on the Work Ur Magic website, you are introduced to a Facebook game where you are introduced to a beautiful woman by Lance. He makes the introduction and even helps you spit a little game to get the virtual beauty interested. After viewing her profile, she sends you a chat and the more questions you get right about her, the better your chances of scoring a “date.” Fret not if you continually lose the game, you still have the chance to enter for a chance to score a guys trip to Las Vegas for you and three of your friends.
When The Urban Daily chopped it up with Lance Gross we talked about everything from his feelings about how dark-skinned people are portrayed in Tyler Perry films to what rapper he would like to play in a biopic. Being that Lance is an Oakland, California native, he tried to help this New York rap snob understand Kendrick Lamar’s rapping voice.
Follow Lance Gross as he brings the brothas a new way to get clean for the ladies.
TUD: How did you team up with Magic Shave?
LG: First of all, it’s an honor to be the new ambassador for Magic Shave. It was just a perfect situation. I was approached and it was the perfect situation because in the industry I’m in, being on camera, even working on “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne,” I used to have to shave every other day. The problem that some African-American males face is razor bumps. So if you eliminate the razor, you eliminate the bumps. Magic Shave is perfect for that because it’s so easy. You just put it on and it only takes four minutes and you actually get a closer shave than you would with a razor. Also, it lasts longer than shaving. It lasts four days.
What is the “Work Your Magic” game and how does it tie into Magic Shave?
“Work Your Magic” is a fun and interactive game at Workurmagic.com where guys can learn about Magic Shave while having fun and talking to ladies. It’s a game where it’s set up for a person to win a trip to Vegas with three of your boys. It’s kind of like “Hitch.” I introduce the guys to a girl and its their opportunity to show that they’re smooth. Being smooth is a big part of the game.
You just mentioned “Hitch.” So have you ever needed a dating coach?
I’ve never needed a professional dating coach. I guess that person would be my dad because he was the one I would go to for advice. He taught me about the birds and bees and I took it from there. But I’m good in the dating department I guess. [laughs]
What are you working on next when it comes to acting?
Well, I have “Temptation” that’s out in theaters now. It’s a Tyler Perry film. Also, I have a new show that I just shot the pilot for NBC. It’s untitled still, but I feel like they’re going to call it “List of Demands.” It’s directed by Phillip Noyce. He’s like one of the best action directors there is out there. He did “Salt” with Angelina Jolie. He has a long laundry list of action films.
It’s a lot of action. It’s really like the answer to “Scandal,” if I had to compare it to anything–just with more action. I’m playing a secret service agent who’s working his first day on the Presidents son’s detail and on that first day, the President’s son gets kidnapped. It’s heavy, but it’s fun. I’m doing my own stunts with it. So this is a new chapter in my life and I’m full speed ahead with it.
Tyler Perry movies always catch a lot of criticism about the portrayal of dark-skinned characters. As a dark-skinned man, what do you say to that?
I feel like I was portrayed in a great light in “Temptation.” I feel like my character really had an arc and it was respectful. He was the guy fighting to save his marriage. If I were to feel I wasn’t being portrayed well–I don’t feel that way about his projects–but it’s all in what the actor decides to take on. I like to take roles that are true to myself and my career path. I’m not going to do anything just to do it. It has to be meaningful. It has to have a great message. I don’t knock Tyler Perry at all. Everybody has an opinion about something and I feel like Tyler is looked at through a magnifying glass just because he is so successful at what he does so everybody is going to nitpick about something. I mean if there’s nothing, they’re going to find something.
What is currently in heavy rotation on your iPod?
Ah, man! Kendrick Lamar. Right now that’s in heavy rotation. I’m from the West Coast and he makes that good West Coast music that we were, I won’t say lacking, but we were kind of…it’s an album where you don’t have to skip one song. Like, it’s what you ride to.
Okay. So help me out. I was raised a New York rap snob. So sometimes, I just don’t get Kendrick Lamar’s voice. I’ll like the song and then just shut it off because his voice–I just don’t get it sometimes. Help me put it into context. Am I missing something?
A lot of people say that about his voice, but I don’t know. It’s just good music to me. I mean yeah, he’s got a weird voice, but the music is so good. What he’s rapping about–I feel it. I don’t know if it’s because I’m from the West Coast, but it just tells a story and paints a picture.
With all of the recent controversies in rap music, like Rick Ross’ rape line, what do you think of the state of rap music?
I’m familiar with the Rick Ross song and I’m friends with him. I like the song although I don’t feel he should condone rape. Not to say that’s what he was doing, I mean that’s how it was interpreted, but I honestly don’t feel like he was talking like, “Yeah, let’s go out and drop Mollys and rape ’em.” I think it was just a punch line that he used. I don’t agree with what he said, but I like the song. I don’t agree with people killing people, but I listen to a lot of rap where people get killed. Kendrick Lamar talks about killing people. That’s just the content. It’s expression. I think he’s talking about stuff that happens and that stuff is real. That’s music.
What rapper would you most like to play in a biopic?
That’s a good question. I would say Diddy. I don’t know. I mean we both went to Howard University. [laughs] I admire Diddy. He’s made huge strides in the music business from producing to managing to rapping. He just makes good music.
Are you trying to take Derek Luke’s spot? [laughs]
[laughs] Nah! That movie was about Big so if they do it where the focus is on Diddy…I mean Derek Luke did it. He chose to do it in somebody else’s biopic. So now if it becomes solely about Diddy, I’ll play Diddy.
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