Forest Whitaker: 'I'm Not a Tough Love Guy'

10/20/2009 at 04:00 PM ET
Johns PkI/Splash News Online

For his latest film Where the Wild Things Are, Forest Whitaker had an advantage when it came to preparing for his role; He reveals that the children’s book has been a favorite in his house for generations.

“It’s sort of been handed down in my family because it was read to me when I was a kid,” he tells PARADE. “I read it to all my kids and now they read it on their own.”

The extra bit of studying certainly paid off! “The grunts and stuff I’ve done at home with my kids,” the Academy Award-winning actor shares.

“When they were younger, I’d do it a lot when I’d read them the book. They loved the scary parts.”

And while he may have perfected his character Ira’s quirks, Forest admits his bark is far worse than his bite when it comes to his own kids. “I’m not a tough love guy,” he says.

Instead, he gladly turns over that responsibility to his “much stronger” wife, Keisha Whitaker. “They come to me when they’re trying to slip something by,” he muses.

“I have to always take a pause when they come and say, ‘Hey Dad, is it okay if we do this?’ So I just look at them like, ‘Have you talked to your mom about that?’ They know I’m the easy one.”

Together Forest and Keisha have daughters True Isabella Summer, 11, and Sonnet Noel, 13, while Keisha has daughter Autumn, 18, and Forest has son Ocean, 19, from previous relationships. Where the Wild Things Are is now in theaters.

Source: PARADE

– Anya

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Showing 4 comments

riley on

I like how both Forest & Keisha’s children from previous relationships have names that go together with each other and with their other two sisters names. They are all kind of nature-y or uncommon. How serendipitous :)

Benigna Marko on

This is so nice.
Benigna Marko

eva on

What a sweet daddy.My mother was the same way.She tried but it just wasn’t in her to be the bad cop.She was a mediator between my father and us.

sarawara on

He is such a talented actor. And his family is gorgeous!

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