That Time I Met Jamie Foxx & Quvenzhane Wallis To Talk About ‘Annie’ #AnnieMovie

Minnesota mom blogger

jamie foxx at minnesota mall of america

How excited was I when I received this email a few weeks ago?

Hi Marybeth! 

I wanted to reach out about a special screening of ANNIE next week for Big Brothers Big Sisters which will feature a surprise introduction from Jamie Foxx, Quvenzhané Wallis and director Will Gluck. 

We have a roundtable opportunity with Jamie,Quvenzhané and Will for press prior to the screening surprise. 

Timeline is below.  Let me know if you’re interested in covering 🙂

Wednesday, September 10th


2:30PM  – Check in

3:30PM – Interviews

5:00PM – Talent surprise Big Brothers Big Sisters at screening

My response was an immediate yes, YES, YES! Once I had all the details in place I started prepping to meet the stars of Annie and learn more about both them and the film!

annie 2014 logoI had already seen a few Annie trailers and I thought it looked fantastic. If you haven’t seen any, there’s one ready for you to watch at the end of this post.

If you’re wondering about the movie, 2014’s Annie it is a remake of the 1982 classic with an all-star production team, a modern setting and a killer cast! 

I got to take part in an intimate group interview with local news outlets and a few other bloggers, which means I had chance to get up close and personal with both Jamie Foxx and Quvenzhané Wallis!

Here are the highlights of the interview:

What makes giving back to kids [see why they were in Minnesota below] so important? 

Jamie Foxx (JF): You don’t understand what it means when you come to the school. Those kids are going to have that for the rest of their lives. When they see [Quvenzhane], they see themselves. They may not become a huge star, but what she taught them is, ‘No matter what your dream is, don’t ever give up on it.”

Unfortunately, we don’t give a lot to our school system. I mean, they really need it when we show up. It’s fantastic. 

What makes Annie a great story? 

Will Gluck (WG): The story of Annie is a great story and a great message, because it’s about trying to find your families. No matter what you think your family is. It’s about finding family. Often it’s not what you think it is. 

Quvenzhané, what did you do when you found out you got the role of Annie? 

Quvenzhané Wallis (QW): When I ended the phone call, we just jumped up and down and I just started screaming on the side of the road!

What about Annie appeals to you? 

QW: The thing I like about the movie is that a dude. Well, a man, sees this girl and he’s like, ‘I don’t want this girl…but this is a girl who can help my campaign.’ But it all goes together and at the end, he finds out he really likes this girl. 

What was it like working with Jamie Foxx? 

QW: He’s funny. 

JF: Mmmmm!

QW: Handsome.

JF: Mmmmm! 

QW: …and really nice. 

All in all, Quvenzhané Wallis was quite sweet and Will Gluck was personal and very supportive of his actors. What I loved most of all was the close interaction with Jamie Foxx. The best part? Reviewing my pictures and checking out his many facial expressions!

jamie foxx facial expressions

I put together that little collage of the variety of expressions I captured on Jamie Foxx’s handsome face just for fun! Read on for more news on Jamie Foxx and Annie.

Why were Jamie Foxx and Quvenzhané Wallis in Minneapolis?

The really fantastic thing about their visit to Minnesota was the reason why they came. Quevenzhane and Jamie made a surprise visit to a high-poverty school in a Minneapolis suburb. The school, Northpoint Elementary, is a part of the national Turnaround Arts program, which brings theater , music and dance to in-need schools that have reduced arts education.

jamie foxx in minnesota northpoint elementary schoolNorthpoint Elementary is doing its own theatrical production of Annie this winter, and both Quevenzhane and Jamie helped students prepare for their production. They gave the kids performing advice and heard them sing before heading to the Mall of America.

There was a special screening of Annie that was only for members of the area Big Brothers Big Sisters organization. None of the attendees knew the stars would be in attendance, and they all super-excited by the surprise introduction by Jamie Foxx! Here’s a clip of the surprise:

A Broadway classic that has delighted audiences for generations comes to the big screen with a new, contemporary vision in Columbia Pictures’ comedy Annie. 

Director/Producer/Screenwriter Will Gluck teams with producers James Lassiter, Jada Pinkett Smith & Will Smith, Caleeb Pinkett, and Shawn “JAY Z” Carter, Laurence “Jay” Brown, and Tyran “Ty Ty” Smith with a modern telling that captures the magic of the classic characters and original show that won seven Tony Awards.

Celia Costas and Alicia Emmrich serve as Executive Producers.  The screenplay is by Will Gluck and Aline Brosh McKenna, based on the musical stage play “Annie,” book by Thomas Meehan, music by Charles Strouse, lyrics by Martin Charnin, and on “Little Orphan Annie,” © and ® Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Academy Award® nominee Quvenzhané Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild) stars as Annie, a young, happy foster kid who’s also tough enough to make her way on the streets of New York in 2014. 

Originally left by her parents as a baby with the promise that they’d be back for her someday, it’s been a hard knock life ever since, with her mean foster mom Miss Hannigan (Cameron Diaz). 

But everything’s about to change when the hard-nosed tycoon and New York mayoral candidate Will Stacks (Jamie Foxx) – advised by his brilliant VP, Grace (Rose Byrne) and his shrewd and scheming campaign advisor, Guy (Bobby Cannavale) – makes a thinly-veiled campaign move and takes her in. 

Stacks believes he’s her guardian angel, but Annie’s self-assured nature and bright, sun-will-come-out-tomorrow outlook on life just might mean it’s the other way around.

Watch this fantastic trailer for Annie now!

Thanks so much to Sony Pictures Entertainment for inviting me to this event. 

Annie arrives in theaters on December 19, 2014. Will you be seeing it in the theater? 


  1. Aw!!!! I’m so super jealous. I find Jamie Fox to be insanely handsome. I don’t know what I would say…..

  2. I really want to see this! How lovely that you got to meet them all I would of loved that :),thanks for sharing.

  3. I really like Annie so I’m sure I would love this version. So cool that you got to meet and interview them!

  4. Robin (Masshole Mommy) says:

    I am excited to see this movie. I loved the original that came out in the 80’s and I am interested to see the new version of it.

  5. Wow, that’s a really fun e-mail to receive. It’s always neat when the stars surprise the movie-goers.

  6. Jamie Foxx seems like a great guy.

    I can’t wait to see Annie!

  7. Annie was one of my favorite movies growing up. I have seen the trailer for this and I am looking forward to watching this adaptation.

  8. I’m excited to see this version of Annie. The trailer looks really cute. This is a great interview.

  9. No WAY. Annie is my all time favorite anything, since EVER. I am so excited to see this movie!!! What a fun interview experience for you too’

  10. I totally love that they did the special screening. What a treat for the kids!

  11. What a fantastic opportunity! I would be star struck… Love Jamie Foxx. The movie looks awesome and I’ve heard a lot of comments about how great the acting in it is.

  12. That is awesome! You get some really incredible opportunities.

  13. What an awesome opportunity!! And I HAVE TO see this movie, I LOVE the original so much.

  14. I love Jamie Foxx! And what little girl doesn’t dream of being Annie! That is so cool that they went to Northpoint Elementary school, what a thrill for the students.

  15. What a neat interview! I’ve loved Jamie Foxx for years!

  16. Hi Marybeth,

    Can you imagine how thrilled the students of Northpoint Elementary must have been to have Quevenzhane and Jamie make a surprise visit to give them tips on their upcoming production? I was active in the arts as a child and I would have fell out! ~ Amazing!!

    Thank you so much for sharing. Glad you enjoyed your meeting with them too.

    Mom Does Reviews

  17. How amazing for all those kids to meet Jamie Foxx in person! The Turnaround Arts program sounds like a fantastic program and how neat that you got to experience all this!

  18. So much buzz about this!! Who doesn’t love Jamie Foxx?
    Lucky girl!

  19. I am a fan of Jamie Foxx. I bet it will be great movie.

  20. Jamie Foxx is a class act! I love him and this will be one to watch for sure.

  21. I can’t even tell you how jealous I am! Jamie seems so nice.

  22. Wow I didn’t even know about this version of Annie.That looks like it would be really fun. How lucky to have met him!

  23. Sounds like a fun event. Jamie Foxx is such a handsome man.

  24. This sounds like such a great experience! How fun for you!

  25. That is so awesome that you got to meet him! I really want to see this movie when it comes to the movies.

  26. Gah! I would have loved this. How lucky for you. I am planning on taking my little boy to see this.

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