The lovely and talented Chrystee Pharris has made a name for herself as an actress and a soap Star. Best known for playing Simone Russell on NBC’s hit daytime soap “Passions,” Chrystee is now looking to take over the silver screen in her new indie family faith-based film Steps of Faith as well as starring in a new reality series Queens of Drama. In the midst of all the excitement of her new creative projects, Chrystee was able to sit down with us at Parlé Magazine to discuss her new work and her career thus far.
Parlé Magazine: People may best know you for playing Simone Russell on the NBC soap series Passions but you’ve been in television for a while. Tell us some of the other shows people may recognize you from?
Chrystee Pharris: I was also in another NBC series Scrubs. Passions and Scrubs are what people probably best know me from when they see me, but I’ve made appearances in Moesha, All of Us, Kenan & Kel, Lincoln Heights, Nashville, 7th Heaven, Castle, General Hospital, The Steve Harvey Show, Sister Sister, Satisfaction and many more.
Parlé: What made you want to make the change from being on TV to the big screen leading role?Chrystee: Back in 2014, I was in a season of Satisfaction, I felt like I was stuck in my life and needed something new creatively. If you want to make it with anything in life you have to create your own opportunities and that’s where I am with my life. I reached out on Facebook to people saying that I was interested in doing an independent film. My friend Brain F introduced to me to the director, (M. Legend Brown) once I read the script I fell in love with it right away.
Parlé: That film is Steps of Faith, tell us about that film?
Chrystee: In Steps of Faith, I play the lead role of Faith. The film is about a young woman who is not a church girl, but feels like she hears God tell her to move and work with children and animals, neither of which she likes. When she shares her vision with family they mock her. In the movie, we get to see her fighting through her own fears in order to complete the mission God has called her to do. It’s directed by M. Legend Brown, I star alongside Ted Lange, Irma P. Hall, Charles Malik Whitfield (“One Life to Live”) and Tracey Ross (“Passions”).
Parlé: Where can the readers check out the movie?
Chrystee: Right now the movie is only available online at www.stepsoffaithmovie.com but we are touring a few cities to help promote the movie. Be sure to check out the website to see where we’ll be near you because you’ll be able to get a DVD in person.
Parlé: How has the reception for the film been thus far?
Chrystee: It has been a really good time in my life and I’m glad that I made that change for myself. It’s important for people to know that this is a family faith based film about the human experience. A lot of negative critics have labeled it a Black faith based film but it’s so much more to that. Take away color and we are the same, we generally want the same things like happiness, love, good health and security. I’ve also heard many people of different races say that they were able to relate to the film.
Parlé: You also have a reality series, talk to us about that?
Chrystee: The new TV show I’m on is is called Queens Of Drama, which will air on POP, it stars myself and a lot of other soap opera actresses that you may have seen before such as Vanessa Marcil (“General Hospital” “Beverly Hills 90210” “Las Vegas”), Donna Mills (“General Hospital” “Love is a Many Splendored Thing”), and Hunter Tylo (“The Bold and The Beautiful”). We’re called the Queens of Drama because we’re all soap stars coming together to create a primetime show to show the world that there’s more to us than meets the eyes. For people who may not know us, after Queens of Drama they will.
Parlé: What is your true passion in life?
Chrystee: I really enjoying being a motivator, it doesn’t matter if I’m acting or just going to colleges, events and speaking to people. I try to motivate people to do better and be better in whatever it is I’m doing. I use acting as a platform in life to spread a positive message of hope and inspiration. I’d also have to say that my family has been a growing source of inspiration for me especially my three nieces. Spending time with a loving and supportive family like I have always brings me back no matter how stressed I seem to get. Everything I do I not only do for me but for them as well.
Parlé: I know you have another project you’re working on as well. Tell me about that.
Chrystee: I’m also touring to promote my one woman show In Search of O. It’s about waiting until marriage at age 27 to have sex. I explore the fantasy and reality of that experience in an informative yet entertaining way. It’s based on my personal experience.
Parlé: How can the readers get ahold of you online?
Chrystee: My main website is www.chrysteepharris.com, to get updates about my one woman show and myself. I’m also on Twitter @ChrysteePharris; Instagram @ChrysteePharris and on Facebook Chrystee Pharris.
Parlé: Any words of inspiration you want to share with our readers?
Chrystee: If they have any questions please reach out to me because I’m a wealth of information. Do your research and create opportunities for yourself. You can’t wait for someone else to do it for you and be sure to build relationships and network. If someone gives you a business card reach out to them ASAP because if you wait too long they’ll forget who you are. You can be as talented as you want, but if you don’t take the time to talk to people and build relationships then it’s all for nothing.
Readers should be sure to check out Chrystee on Queens of Drama on POP TV (check local listings) the first episode airs Sunday April 26th at 8 p.m. but the show regularly will be scheduled on Wednesdays at 8:00 – 8:30 p.m. EST, starting April 29. Chrystee wants readers to know that her show will air before Empire so there’s no worrying about conflicting schedules.
Also go to www.stepsoffaithmovie.com to check out Chrystee in Steps of Faith.