‘Sparkle’ Actors Mike Epps, Omari Hardwick and Derek Luke Remember Whitney Houston

Whitney: Her Very Best
A look back at Whitney Houston's best videos.
It somehow seems fitting that Sparkle — a movie about the lives of a musical family in 1960’s Motown — would be Whitney Houston’s final starring role.

It’s been 6 months since her passing, but for her costars, Houston’s legacy lives on.

“Whitney seems like she’s one of the people to be real with, not ‘Hollywood.” Mike Epps told Celebuzz. “I would talk to her about real stuff, life.”

“She said, ‘Straight up, man, if anything ever happened to me, I did it it. I’ve seen everything, had everything.”

So how did the Epps and his castmates react when they found out about her tragic death?

Costar Omari Hardwick was leaving a movie theater when he got word of Houston’s passing. As someone who’s lost a young son, an uncle and a cousin, the news hit him especially hard.

“I was with my lady and friends and they were trying to hide the phone,” he recalled. “It was very weird because there was [also] this young girl and she was trying to get me to get a picture with her when I’m receiving the news.”

Actor Derek Luke echoed the sentiments of his costars.

“I thought it was a rumor when I heard that she passed away,” he confessed.

Though the Sparkle cast is still heartbroken over the loss, they firmly believe that the legendary singer has moved onto a better place.

“I remember hearing an analogy about heaven — it’s like being in another room — that you spend more time in heaven than you do on earth,” Luke told us.

“You can definitely believe she’s in a great place,” his castmate Epps added.

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