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Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 03/ 5/2008

Easing Diddy's Transition to the Left Coast


Sean 'Diddy' Combs walks this year's Oscars red carpet. (Bloomberg)

Earlier this week Sean "Puffy" "P.Diddy" Combs announced he was shopping for homes on the West Coast. In an interview with he said, "In order to make movies, you gotta be where they are being made."

I'm giving that the big side-eye.

I understand more than anyone the urge to creatively express yourself and to push yourself to learn and accomplish new things. But Puff -- hard pill to swallow coming up next -- you are not a great actor. I'm sorry. It needed to be said. "A Raisin in the Sun" received some good reviews, but you fell far short of the talent and skill of Sidney Poitier next to Audra, Phylicia and Sanaa.

And your small roles in "Monster's Ball" and "Made and "Carlito's Way," well, those didn't carry the movies either, did they?

So before you go buying real estate during a housing crisis, let's pause and reflect on how you might better spend your money and time.

One: Acting lessons. If you haven't already, look up Tasha Smith. She's a working actor who helps folks like the top model wannabes develop their skills in the craft. I'm sure talent played a great part in Angela Bassett becoming an Academy Award-nominee and Golden Globe winner, but hon, Angela also has a degree from the Yale School of Drama. She put the work in and that's how she got the results. And, again, Angie has talent.

Two: Check out the competition among your hip-hop peers. Mos Def was nominated for an Academy Award a Golden Globe and an Emmy for his role in "Something the Lord Made." In a review of "Idlewild," Entertainment Weekly said Andre Benjamin from Outkast pulled off "the considerable trick of making silence speak." Ludacris did a turn in "Crash," and Rolling Stone described him as magnetic in "Hustle & Flow." And then there's Eminem in " 8 Mile." Do you really want to compete with these guys in auditions? 'Nuf said.

Three: Parenting. Don't you have, like, 37 children? I realize you have enough money to pay for help to raise your kids, but maybe it's time you took it to the house. You won't be young forever and neither will your children. Enjoy that before it's gone.

Four: Cut me a check. I mean, if you have to spend money on something worthwhile, I can see no better cause than growing my bank balance.

Five: (and most importantly): Can I get a record deal? Put a sista on the come up man! I can't be worse than Danity Kane. Mull that over and get back at me.

In closing, you keep finding "talent" and doing the music production thing and let's leave the acting to the actors.

-- Tanya Ballard Brown, who admits she has no acting talent, will chew the scenery on her way out of the newsroom.

By  | March 5, 2008; 10:43 AM ET
Categories:  Celebrities  
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Well played.

Posted by: 23112 | March 5, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

LOVE IT!!! Why do men feel the need to pierce both ears?! He looks absolutely ridiculous.

Posted by: no_bs_4me | March 5, 2008 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward live on the east coast. Ditto Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins. And countless other successful actors. So really, if you're good enough you don't gotta be where movies are made.

Posted by: arlington | March 5, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

He's a (wealthy) mess: I thought his Proactiv commercial was bad enough: "Moisturize my situation and preserve my sexy..." Gimme a break.

Posted by: AAA | March 5, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Diddy: They banned your wack perfume commercial. Stay behind the scenes, it's what you do best.

Posted by: hype2new | March 5, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

"In order to make movies, you gotta be where they are being made."

Movies are being made in Canada, please move there.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

He could have just said he was moving to LA to be with Kim and the kids. He's an ok actor. He had some moments in a few films. He was funny in Made. (Tanya you have to admit that!) "Didn't I tell you not to call him Red Dragon?"

I'm not knocking his hustle but I think he should just produce films and not star in them.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Liz, you say it so much better than anyone else. Quite simply: you rock!

Anon @ 11:24: best laugh of the morning for me.

Posted by: Centre of Nowhere | March 5, 2008 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Dear Centre of Nowhere:

Because I'm as much of a spotlight hog as Diddy, I'd like to point out that I, Tanya B. Brown, wrote this post. So, I am rocking. NFT.

Posted by: Tanya Ballard Brown | March 5, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

I've been to Canada. I have a Canadian brother. I ask you, anonymous at 11:24 -- what did Canada do to deserve Diddy? Is it the universal health care or the legal pot that got your goat?
They make movies in Transylvania, too. I'm just saying.

Posted by: other liz | March 5, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Hey, 11.24: one of the unwritten benefits of NAFTA is that the bad actors move from Canada to the US (we already sent you Keanu and Shatner, for instance).

So thanks, but no thanks on Diddy. (Also, no touchbacks. You guys keep Shatner - and Celine, especially.)

Posted by: byoolin | March 5, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

i know it! and he's so hard on those danity girls.

Posted by: amzam | March 5, 2008 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Puffy go back to makin' your once a year club bangers. I miss that. I can't shake it to this current music. And what about the Benjamins? You have plenty. Your acting skills won't bring in Will Smith money. Like Suge said, you all up in the video ... let's take it back there.

Posted by: Flake | March 5, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of Celine, I just found out that my dad, a 60 year old black man that turned me on to Miles Davis, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane actually likes Celine Dion and went to see her show in Vegas.

I. Am. So. Ashamed.

Posted by: 11:24 | March 5, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

That was hilarious. Doh, is that how you spell that? I sure hope so. I regret that you left out that HE should write ME a check. I mean, since he's wasting money and all and has 37 children.

Posted by: honeysmoke | March 5, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

I'm sorry, I just don't get Sean John P. Puff Daddy Puffy Diddy Combs.

I'm gonna go out on a limb, but maybe it has something to do with all the name changes...

Posted by: Chasmosaur | March 5, 2008 11:43 AM | Report abuse

You said it right Tonya! He'd better serve others by really helping...behind the scenes!

Posted by: bbinnc | March 5, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Stick to perfume,clothes, and music Diddy [or whatever you call yourself these days]

When you have a stellar cast in a classic like "A Raisin In The Sun" you need a trained actor to play a role like Walter Lee. Although, I didn't think he was horrible it could of been so much better with Isaih Washington, Idris Eldra, Anthony Mackie, Hill Harper, etc.
Diddy "Stay In Your Lane"!

Posted by: mydchomegirl | March 5, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

While I'd like to take credit, the above piece was written by an esteemed (and soon departing colleague -- Tanya Ballard.

Posted by: Liz Kelly | March 5, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

I just saw Four Brothers on TV not too long ago. Andre Benjamin was very good.

Posted by: jlr | March 5, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

11:24, after reading your 11:36, may I suggest that *you* move to Canada? Nobody will know you there and you won't need to tell them about your father. (You'll need to forget about him - being into Celine is like being a Scientologist: you won't get him back.)

Posted by: byoolin | March 5, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

There is no celebrity I dislike more than Diddy. He's fungus on creativity.

Posted by: Lisa1 | March 5, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Congratulations Tanya! You are a wonderful person and an excellent writer!
Best of luck in your new endeavours.

Posted by: mydchomegirl | March 5, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Also, the man looks like he was hit upside the head with a two-by-four

Posted by: unjustifiable snark | March 5, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

I think perhaps he's limiting his vision by looking only on the West Coast; instead, I believe he should split the difference and look for something in the Midwest to give him access to either coast. (The image of the "P. Diddy Studio and Tornado/Biofuel Research Center" does amuse me.) He could also skip California and instead buy up a section of Montana for a studio/government-repelling compound.

By the by, they do make lots of movies in Romania, but I'm going out on a limb to hypothesize that it's not a celebrity hotspot given its lack of a serious club scene.

Posted by: CentrevilleMom | March 5, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Oh hells no, CentervilleMom, keep him out of my part of the country. I do, however, like the Romania idea

Posted by: Livin in the Midwest | March 5, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Don't think I haven't considered it, byoolin.

Posted by: 11:24 | March 5, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to get in on that #4 action please but I prefer cash, small bills, 10s & 20s will do just fine.

Posted by: Bored @ home eating lunch | March 5, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

um, could we make it romania after august? i plan to be spending some time there this summer.

Posted by: b | March 5, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Tanya stay hatin'! That's why we can't get nowhere as a people!


Posted by: Rhome | March 5, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Hey, I have imaginary friends in Canada. Let's send him to France instead (tee-hee)

Posted by: omni | March 5, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Even though a lot of great actors live in the West Coast it doesn't mean that P. Diddy has move there to pursue a career as an actor; simply because actors are not established they are taught and they keep on learning from life experiences and that's what Diddy needs to do or analyze in his life.

Posted by: LA26 | March 5, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

liz, i like your column, but a 'sista' you aint. sorry. you took some liberties with that one.

Posted by: sista girl | March 5, 2008 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Hey, I have imaginary friends in Canada. Let's send him to France instead (tee-hee)

Posted by: omni | March 5, 2008 01:43 PM

Yes, let's send him to France & he can hook up w/Marion Cotillard.

Posted by: jes | March 5, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Liz didn't write this column, sista girl.

Posted by: Whitey McWhiteypants | March 5, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

sista girl, Liz Kelly did not write the column, Tanya B. Brown did, which if you had bothered to read carefully, is indicated at the bottom of the column and by the posts by her and Liz Kelly correcting other posters.

Posted by: Not Tanya | March 5, 2008 2:24 PM | Report abuse

I'm hoping--and thinking--he will producing movies, not making them. He did say "made." C'mon, give him some credit, people: he IS a smart businessman. And as someone smartly noted, Kim and the kids are on the other coast.

Posted by: monica | March 5, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Agreed. I'm glad someone finally said it. Everything isn't for everybody. Puff makes a good living as an Entertainment Mogul. He should stop there. There's plenty of money in Hollywood, but there's also lots in music. Keep to what you know.

Posted by: Another Brown | March 5, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Love Mos Def, but correction needed- he did not get nominated for an Academy Award - he was nominated for an Emmy and Golden Globe award for Something the Lord Made.

Posted by: Smitty | March 5, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

I concur w/everyone about Fluffy sticking with what he does best- hanging behind the scenes. While his performance in "Raisin in the Sun" was not horrible, he ain't no Sidney Poitier. That ego of his knows no limits- one critically acclaimed gig and he's already to hone up his "acting" career by moving to the west coast? Bro-man, please.

Posted by: plamar1031 | March 5, 2008 6:13 PM | Report abuse

How could you forget Ludacris' fine performance as the Ice-T's psycho stepson on Law & Order SVU? That was some fine acting there.

Diddy needs to pick something and stick with it. Warren Buffet didn't make his milliions by jumping from job to job. Bill Gates just (!?) did computers. The Hunts tried to corner the silver market. Specialization is the name of the game.

Although, if he is handing out checks, I'd like one too please. He can pay me not to have children.

Posted by: ep | March 5, 2008 6:27 PM | Report abuse

Maybe he's right. Maybe there are no acting coaches in New York, or movies and TV shows filmed there. None whatsoever.

Posted by: Kate | March 5, 2008 9:06 PM | Report abuse

Laughing out loud! Sean is a horrible actor. He made a wonderful screenplay quite boring. Go back to rapper that throws rockin' parties.

Posted by: Cindy | March 5, 2008 10:03 PM | Report abuse

PD should take lessons from Madonna. You can take acting lessons, star in multi-million dollar productions with huge advertising budgets, and even marry a director. But you cannot create acting talent where there is none. Enjoy the spoils of your riches, PD. Try a fake British accent. Pronounce your disgust for Americans who don't find your talent as engaging as you do. Then count your money and just go away.

Posted by: LLL | March 6, 2008 12:19 AM | Report abuse

Dig your article Tanya but I still love Diddy! It's most probably his relentless ego that does it for me!

Posted by: Simi | March 6, 2008 2:48 AM | Report abuse

Who's to say he isn't moving to the West Coast to take acting classes. He's just putting the cart before the wagon. People please stop the hateration. He's go-getter.

Posted by: Joanne | March 6, 2008 8:02 AM | Report abuse

"Putting the cart before the wagon?" So who's pulling your cart-wagon train, Joanne? You forgot the horse.

It's OK, P.Diddy's doing more that "putting the cart before the horse" too. He's about as horseless as your comment too.

Posted by: Wagoneer | March 6, 2008 8:57 AM | Report abuse

The Swayze - I absolutely heart him. Shameful, yes, but so true. Hope he does well with this terrible disease.

Poofus Papa, or whatever Puff Diddy Combs Guy calls himself - please, oh please go away. There really is no one else as into you as you are into yourself. So maybe you could retreat to somewhere and just love on yourself and leave the rest of us out of it. But keep on supporting those 37 chilluns, it's not their fault their dad's an egomaniac who can't figure out what his name is. Ooooooh, could the name changes be a great way to dodge legal judgements??? Could Poofus be way smarter than we all thought? Gotta chew on this for a while....

Posted by: jaybbub | March 6, 2008 9:47 AM | Report abuse

OMG-I Thought I was the only one who saw through this guy. The guy's only talent is for self-promotion and that's it.
He can't rap, sing, act or dance.He can't even run a record label, quick what are his successful acts on Bad Boy right now?
...the last five years?... the last ten?

Posted by: Anonymous | March 6, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse


I sincerely apologize!
My (very) bad.

Posted by: Centre of Nowhere | March 6, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

I think Diddy did pretty good in a Raisin in the Sun but I have to agree some acting lessons could help. Lets get a couple more roles before we start moving places please.

Great article T"Double B"

Posted by: Michelle | March 7, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

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