Chicago Pays Tribute to Funny Man Bernie Mac – DIVAGALS Exclusive!By Lisa Bricker | January 25, 2012 | Entertainment
Despite the bone chilling temperatures, family, friends, esteemed members of the Chicago community and beloved fans braved the extreme cold to celebrate the life one of their own, legendary comedian Bernie Mac on Jan. 19.
Gracing the red carpet in an elegant lilac gown, Bernie’s widow Rhonda McCullough had this message, ΓÇ£If you dare to dream, you can reach anything that you want to reach.ΓÇ¥ With that being said, the tone was set for the premiere of I Ain’t Scared of You: A Tribute to Bernie Mac.
The documentary, produced and directed by filmmaker Robert Small (pictured left with Rhonda McCullough), was a labor of love. ΓÇ£He was awesome. He made people laugh from the gut and touched their hearts,ΓÇ¥ Robert shared with the DivaGals. With one simple phone call from Small to McCullough, and the generous financial support from Comedy Central, the dedication to Bernie Mac’s life got the green light.
Small, overwhelmed by the tremendous turnout, said, ΓÇ£I’m really thrilled be here tonight and see everyone come out to pay tribute to Bernie,ΓÇ¥ he told us. “The guy loved Chicago, and they loved him too.”
Held at the ShowPlace ICON Theater near Chicago’s Southside, the night brought out local celebrities, including former Chicago Bears Tight End Emery Moorehead, a long time friend of Bernie’s.
Once inside the theater, fans were treated to some welcome and surprising news. A street named after Bernie Mac will be dedicated next month in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood where the comedian grew up. The audience was also treated to heartfelt tributes by comedian and impressionist Reggie Reg and musical numbers by singers Adrienne Locke and Javon Watson.
The film itself covered the humble beginnings of Mac’s life in Chicago, all the way up to his television and movie projects. In addition to hilarious clips of Mac’s vast work, celebrities including Chris Rock, Angela Bassett, Don Cheadle, Cameron Diaz and Carl Reiner, along with many others, shared some of their favorite moments and fondest memories of the late comedian.
Proceeds from the star-studded event went to the The Bernie Mac Foundation, which is dedicated to bring awareness and to the lung disease known as Sarcoidosis.
Bernie Mac died at the age of 50 in 2008 due to complications from pneumonia related to Sarcoidosis.
To see more pictures from the red carpet, visit our DivaGalsDaily Facebook page.┬á I Ain’t Scared of You: A Tribute to Bernie Mac airs Feb. 19 on Comedy Central.