Actress Joy Bryant has teamed up with purse aficionado Monica Botkier to create the Joy Braynt Satchel. Made of soft brown pebble leather and costing a whopping $575.00, the versatile summer carryall is actually three bags in one and is part of a collection of bags by Botkier whose profits benefit Oxfan of America, an international relief organization for which Bryant is an ambassador. “I am a Sister on the Planet for Oxfam. It’s an initiative engaging women of all walks of life to raise awareness about the environment. I hosted a cocktail party in N.Y.C. to talk about the work we are doing and Monica [Botkier] came and asked, ‘How can I be a part of this?’” said Bryant. “I love the notion of creating a product where your dollars are helping make someone’s life better.” Bryant is going to Tanzania later this year to educate farmers and coffee growers on sustainable farming methods . . . and, she says, “I can’t wait to show the women the bag—I hope they dig it!” The Joy Satchel is sold exclusively at shopbop.com.
Joy Bryant is the latest Brown Sista actress to abandon the big screen for the small screen. Following in the recent footsteps of Gabrielle Union and Nia Long, Joy has taken a role on network television. The actress tweeted the good news to her fans today and was quickly congratulated by Sanaa Lathan, who herself just recently took on the voice role of Donna in the Fox animated comedy series “The Cleveland Show”. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Joy will join the cast of the NBC drama “Parenthood” and play the role of Jasmine, a single mother who moves back home to pursue a professional dance career and introduce her young son to the father he never knew. The actress will be joined by fellow cast members Maury Tierney, Craig T. Nelson, and Dax Shepard. Look for “Parenthood” to make it’s debut in early January of 2010.
Congrats go out to actress Joy Bryant as the 31 year old “Virtuality” star wed her boyfriend this weekend during a beachside ceremony at a private residence in Amagasett, New York. Joy, who is also a former model who was spotted while attending Yale University on a full academic scholarship, met her stuntman fiance, David People, while filming the Martin Lawrence comedy “Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins”. People Magazine reports that wedding guests received e-mail invitations to the ceremony that simply requested that “Ladies, leave their Manolos at home.” The actress is reported to have worn a custom dress designed by her friend Angela Missoni, while the groom sported a grey Calvin Klein suit. No official pics from the ceremony have been made available yet, but I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before they hit the net.
Last night belonged to nine-time Grammy Award winner, Mary J. Blige, the esteemed guest of honor at the Essence Black Women in Music celebration in Hollywood.
The Sunset Tower Hotel was the place to be on Wednesday as Blige accepted the inaugural Essence Black Women in Music Award. Much to her surprise, Island/Def Jam Chairman, L.A. Reid, was on-hand to present her with her statue before a star-studded, standing-room-only crowd including the likes of Raphael Saadiq, Melanie Fiona, Ledisi and Ludacris along with Taraji P. Henson, Joy Bryant, Gabrielle Union and Jurnee Smollett.
“Thank you so much for supporting me from the day I stepped foot into the music industry,” Blige said to the crowd. In the 18 years since she dropped her debut album, it’s clear that she’s very aware of how far she’s traveled. “It really means something to me to have Maya Angelou speak on my behalf,” she noted after viewing Angelou’s segment of a special, video presentation. “It also means a lot to have Oprah on my speed dial!”
The Black Women in Music celebration was the first, of many, events planned in Hollywood to kick off Grammy week. And speaking of the Grammys, be sure to tune in to the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards on Sunday night as Blige is set to join Andrea Bocelli for a special performance of “Bridge Over Troubled Water.” The audio and visual versions of their performance will be available for download at iTunes. All proceeds will go to the American Red Cross to benefit the ongoing earthquake relief effort in Haiti.