Melissa De Sousa: Offering Reality Show Realness In “Best Man Holiday”

Melissa De Sousa returns as the bossy gold-digger Shelby in the “Best Man Holiday.”

Her character, now a reality show star on the “Real Housewives of Westchester” with a young daughter, brings her larger than life ego and persona to the holiday weekend with her old college friends.

De Sousa, who most recently starred on the BET sitcom ‘Reed Between the Lines,’ is happy to be reunited with her old friends on the sequel to the popular “The Best Man,” which was released in 1999. caught up with the New York-bred actress at the Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills to talk about her return to this beloved franchise.

So Shelby has changed her look up for the new film. Who decided they wanted you to go blonde?

I dyed my hair blonde for this one and thought that this is Shelby 2.0, but everyone is saying Shelby 10.0. She’s a “Real Housewives of Westchester” and the ombre is real popular right now. I wanted her to be current and go blonde. Everything had to be more fabulous than the first time. I told Malcolm that I wanted to go blonde for this one and he loved the idea.

Melissa De Sousa, Terrence Howard & Nia Long in “Best Man Holiday”

How do you feel about Shelby? What do you think about this character?

I have to embrace her because so many people just think she’s a b—h. When I first got the part—I mean the words just jump off the page first of all—I was like, ‘no one is going to do this better than me.’ I was so excited to play it because she just does and says all of the stuff people want to say in real life, but it’s just really table talk and you won’t say it out loud. So it’s kind of freeing because I’ve always been more introverted. I know people think I’m Shelby, but it’s really just scary to try and do that and be that. When I first got this part, I said she’s this way and she’s this way for a reason. It’s not just over-the-top b—hiness for no reason

Is your daughter by Quentin (played by Terrence Howard)? Is so, why didn’t you tell him it’s his baby?

No, it’s not his baby.

Melissa De Sousa & Harold Perrineau

If there is a trilogy—and I predict with the success of this one there will be—where does Shelby go from here?

The possibilities are endless! I couldn’t even fathom to think what could happen in a third installment. I think the possibilities are all over the place.

There’s a fight scene involving you in this movie. That definitely played into what’s happening on reality TV now.

I don’t like seeing women fight either. I’m not into what they call ratchedness – I’m so old. I saw that on Twitter, ‘Shelby is really ratched this time.’ I was like, ‘is that good?’

Part of the storyline you’re attached to in the film resolves around a sex tape video going viral. Do you have any videos or photos from your past that you’re praying don’t get released?

If I had, I would have leaked em so I could be more famous. Clearly I’m doing something wrong. I mean, they never hurt anyone now. People are taking topless pictures at this point.

The movie opens on November 15. What should fans expect?

Some people said they cried. A lot of people aren’t expecting the tears. The commercials have you bamboozled!

Cast of “Best Man Holiday”

VIDEO: Watch the official trailer for “Best Man Holiday.”

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