Press Coverage: Tika Sumpter Shines In Southside With You

Tika Sumpter

All we can say is…what a refreshing, positive story about two fantastic role models!

What’s better than a sweet and innocent love affair that unfolds over the course of one day? Especially when that first date leads to a lifetime of love between two powerful people that we’ve come to know as one) the President of the United States and 2) the First Lady.

That is the plot point of Southside with You – which is a true gem for Executive Producer and artist, John Legend.

Inspired by Barack and Michelle Obama’s first date, SOUTHSIDE WITH YOU recounts the eventful summer day in 1989 when a young law firm associate named Barack Obama (Parker Sawyers) tried to woo lawyer Michelle Robinson (Tika Sumpter) during a daylong date that took them from the Art Institute of Chicago to a screening of Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing to the site of their first kiss outside of an ice cream parlor.

Take a peek at the trailer that made us fall in love! Southside with You – In theaters, August 26, 2016

Truly excited about the release, I was able to chat with Tika Sumpter and John Legend about the refreshing film and why they believe it will touch the hearts of moviegoers everywhere.


For the first question – we discussed Barack’s confident personality and what advice do Tika Sumpter and John Legend have for millennials in pursuit of their dreams.

Konnect: In Southside with You, Obama was very persistent and very confident. What advice do you have for millennials who are in pursuit of a dream?

Tika Sumpter: What advice do I have for millennials? Getting what you want and not stopping. Yes, I think it’s finding passion for what you really want to do. I think a lot of times there’s a problem with distractions – with media and trying to hurry up and get to the goal rather than just allowing the journey to just unfold through learning. So, I would just say take your time and figure out what you want to do, and don’t be so obsessed with what everybody else is doing – and focus. I think these two had laser focus about what they wanted to do in life, and just being yourself. I think John has some advice for millennials.

John Legend: So much of it is about work. I think we get the sense that being successful, there’s a lot of shortcuts, and these people that go on American Idol or seeing someone in a reality show that became famous kind of by accident, and you think that’s the only way you can succeed. But, most people that succeed in life, find the time, behind the scenes doing work that may not be appreciated at first, and they put in the time. They put in the work and they put in the preparation. That’s what happened to me in my career. Around Hollywood there are successful actors and performers. Most of them had to put in that time and put in that work. And, so I think for anybody who’s young and thinking about what they want to do in life, just find what you want to do. You might start with something and realize that it’s not for you, but once you figure out what is for you, then there’s no substitute for that ever.

Michelle Obama

Tika Sumpter and John Legend on relationships:

Konnect: For a couple that is so in love, and has so much chemistry, what advice do you have, both Tika and John, for overcoming the challenges that come with being in love?

John Legend: You have to start with knowing why you’re there in the first place. You have to know that it’s not supposed to be perfect. My first big hit was Ordinary People. Sometimes we fight, and sometimes we go through ups and downs, but if you really believe from the beginning that you’re with the person you’re supposed to be with, then you find ways to get through all the challenges. And, that takes work, that takes communication, that takes compromise, but it’s worth it.

Tika Sumpter: And, I absolutely agree with John. It’s work. We live in a microwave society. We want what we want when we want it, and it takes work for anything to be great.

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