Wendy Williams says brutally honest Lifetime biopic is the 'highlight' of her life

Karu F. Daniels, New York Daily News
·3 min read

Wendy Williams is many things, and with her new biopic, the Emmy-nominated talk show host is exposing the ups and downs of her life in a brutally honest fashion.

The much buzzed-about “Wendy Williams: The Movie” premieres Saturday, alongside a warts-and-mostly-all documentary on Lifetime.

The film details the childhood anguish she experienced from being overweight, her career as a rising radio shock jock, her cocaine habit, date rape, cosmetic surgeries, multiple miscarriages and her romance, marriage and divorce from Kevin Hunter.

“There’s a lot more to me than you see on TV,” Williams told The Daily News. “Even when I deliver my Hot Topic stories about celebrities, maybe now people understand where I’m coming from when I say certain things about certain people.”

“The documentary explains the very fabric of who I am and why I am the way I am, and I can only be me,” the Asbury Park, New Jersey, native continued. “And you don’t have to go through some of the things I’ve been through to understand that there might be somebody around you going through it too, whether it is an affection for partying, whether it is that you come from a very well-educated family and you’re choosing to date dropouts with sagging pants.”

“There’s a lot of judgment that people have on other people and you only see the surface, so I try to go as in-depth as possible that a two-hour movie would allow,” she added.

The film stars Ciera Payton in the titular role, alongside Morroco Omari as Hunter, the man viewers will love to hate. A sizable part of the movie centers on the couple’s courtship, marital bliss and woes — including his philandering and controlling manner.

“He played the hell out of that role,” Williams, who executive-produced the biopic, said of Omari, who has appeared on Broadway, and in the TV dramas “P-Valley” and “Empire.”

The self-proclaimed “Queen of All Media” also revisited the Halloween 2017 episode of her show when she passed out on live television.

“As far as telling my story again, I found myself laughing through most of the movie, including passing out on stage, because I felt it before the commercial break,” Williams, 56, confided. “And then when we came back from commercial, I knew I needed to sit down. But I didn’t I didn’t want to disappoint production. I didn’t want to disappoint people watching. I didn’t want to disappoint me.”

She also opened up about her estrangement from Hunter, with whom she shares a 20-year-old son.

The couple was together for 25 years and married for almost 22. They split after his extramarital affairs became public and reports surfaced that he fathered a child with another woman.

“If I could say one thing about how I feel about Mr. Hunter now, I would say ‘disappointed,’” she shared. “He’s disappointed me because I thought that... he offered me a lot in the way of protection and safety and he was really quite smart. And we really, we really did have nice conversations and things like that. And we were meant to be together for that period of time, but I’ve outgrown him.”

Williams, who is in the National Radio Hall of Fame, is a bestselling author and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, considers her debut film production the highlight of her life.

And she’s looking forward telling more stories in the format.

“I have a full deal with Lifetime,” she revealed. “My movie and documentary are just the first projects. I’m an executive producer there I have an office over there. I have a whole team over there.

“And I’m not here to create corny mess,” Williams added. “I want guns, drugs, running, screaming yelling, I want everything that I want to watch on Lifetime. I’m not here for sappy. I want I want the true grit. I want to cry. But then I want to laugh and I want to be frightened.”