By Carly KilroyMary J Blige may be the Queen of Hip-Hop/Soul, but the music vet is channeling her inner rock star for the upcoming film Rock of Ages. The nostalgic movie—based on the hit Broadway musical of the same name—focuses on the journey of a small town girl, who follows her dreams to the bright lights of Hollywood during the 80s rock star craze. Blige, in keeping with the time period, will be sporting her own big hair and flashy rocker style.
MJB will be playing the role of Justice Charlier, the owner of a gentlemen’s club that’s in jeopardy of going out of business due to local protest. She describes her character to ScreenRant as, “the rock…she's probably the person with the most problems that they never see. She has to keep everybody lifted up. That's the inner work."
Blige admitted that she was specifically chosen for the role by the film’s director Adam Shankman. "I have to thank Adam Shankman because he actually picked me and gave me the part," Blige continued. "I didn't have to audition or anything, so the director, I love him and I'm just so happy!" Shanksman is responsible for the success of another Broadway-spun movie you might’ve heard of, called Hairspray.
Of course, we couldn’t expect the queen of hip hop/soul to act in a movie based around music without adding her own vocals to the mix. She explained to ScreenRant, “I love the fact that everyone is singing. It's like, we act-sing, act-sing. So there are songs like 'Any Way You Want It' by Journey that I'm singing and 'Shadows of the Night' by Pat Benatar.”
It’s amazing to think that while MJB was shooting the movie, the nine time Grammy award-winner was also in the middle of putting her tenth album My Life II...The Journey Continues, Act I together. The album debuted on November 21, 2011 and charted at number five on the Billabord Top 200 in its first week.