Mariah Carey finds freedom being 'imperfect'

Lee Daniels had so much faith in Mariah Carey's acting that when the director's first choice to play a dowdy, no-nonsense social worker — Oscar-winner Helen Mirren — backed out, he quickly asked Carey to step in.
But Daniels was well aware that in hiring Mariah Carey, the actress, he was also likely to get Mariah Carey, the diva — a high-maintenance sideshow that would include an entourage of makeup artists, assistants, publicists and other hangers-on, running counter to the energy he wanted the superstar to exude in his searing drama "Precious."
So, as he gave her the role, he also issued a warning: Leave the diva act at home.
"If you come with a strip of makeup on," he recalls telling her, "I will have a backup (actress)."
"I knew that she would be out of her safety zone, and I knew that there would be no one for her to rely on, to say, 'Get me this, get me that,'" he said. "I could see in her eyes_ 'What is Lee doing to me?' But I knew that she trusted me."
By putting her faith in Daniels, Carey — who famously flopped in her movie debut "Glitter" in 2001 — may have finally proven to critics that formidable talent extends to more than just her voice. She's garnered high praise for her turn in the film, which is being released nationwide on Nov. 6.

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