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Andra Day

Source: Tibrina Hobson/WireImage / Getty

‘Rise Up’ R&B singing sensation Andra Day rose up to the occasion when she was casted for her first movie role playing the legendary and iconic Billie Holiday in a new biopic titled The United States Vs. Billie Holiday, directed by the real King of ‘Empire’ Lee Daniels.

We all know that Andra Day has the pipes to play Billie Holiday, but in a recent interview Andra Day says she went to work researching everything about the lady that sang the blues.  Andra Day a nonsmoker and that doesn’t drink alcohol, the very opposite of the real Billie Holiday, felt it was important to actually be Billie in order to play Billie.

 “I went from 163 pounds to 124 pounds. I would talk like her and I don’t drink or smoke, but I started smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol. Not that I recommend people do this; I just was desperate because this is my first role. I just asked God to give me all of the pain and trauma. I asked him to give me her pain and give me her trauma.”

I wonder did Diana Ross do that when she played Billie Holiday in ‘Lady Sings The Blues‘ along side Bill Dee Williams, and can you imagine Chris Rock having to smoke rock to get in character to play Pookie from New Jack City!?  #IJS

“The United States Vs. Billie Holiday,” drops on Hulu on February 26th.

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Andra Day Started Smoking & Drinking To Play Billie Holiday in New Biopic  was originally published on