VV: How important do you think the graffiti element is to the New York culture?
TW: Some people have assumed that it’s really died down, because you don’t see it written on the sides of the train like you used to. Just because you don’t see it on trains as much doesn’t mean it’s not there. You see so many buildings and peoples’ tags all over the five boroughs. It’s everywhere, even if it’s in subliminal places.
Have you ever done graffiti before this movie?
I wouldn’t consider chalk on the sidewalk graffiti, but the first thing I learned how to do was a 3D “S.” You couldn’t tell me nothing [Laughs].
How hard was it to learn how to do graffiti?
We had this artist come in named ST1, and he gave us lessons. He would teach us how to outline, and if we were having too much trouble, he would outline it for us. It’s not as easy as it looks.
Do you see yourself doing more independent films or crossing over into major motion pictures?
To be honest, I never really paid as much attention to independent films as I do now. I’ve seen so many wonderful films that never came out in theaters. Sometimes the independent films are better than the big-budget ones. Of course I want to do a Lionsgate [production] working with other wonderful actors and actresses. I aspire to be the next Taraji P. Henson and Kerry Washington.
Where do you see yourself in three years?
Happy and financially stable, whether that be from my singing or acting career. Wherever I am between now and then, I’m going to be successful.