Vivica Fox (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
By Joy ChildsSentinel Contributing WriterAsk what makes her happy, and she'll quickly tell you the "peace of mind" that comes from the wisdom one gains in her 40s-and "family," with whom she is spending more time these days.Now you can add "engaged" to that 'happy' list: Vivica Fox is going to marry Atlanta club promoter Omar "Slim" White. So what if there's a nearly 20-year age difference between the two. That doesn't matter a bit to the youthful, jubilant Fox: Many a man (maybe yours!), young and old, Black and White, has lusted after the Black beauty for the 20-plus years she's been in the entertainment business.Fox says she's got herself a good Southern man; and when you ask to see her engagement ring, you're nearly blinded by the exquisite 8-carat rock that the Atlanta native gave Fox while the two vacationed in Miami's South Beach last month. Fox (who married rapper Christopher "Sixx Nine" Harvest in 1998 but got divorced in 2002) has no children and, while she won't be rushed into motherhood, she admits she's open to the idea with her newfound love.
That, however, will have to wait until the two first set a wedding date.Vivica Anjanetta Fox (who goes by "Vivica A. Fox" for theatrical billing purposes) hails from South Bend, IN, and comes from a family of four children in which she's the baby girl. Her earliest memories of wanting to be an actor were born at the age of 13 when a beautician aunt cut her hair in such a way that she envisioned herself as the glamorous actress she has become. Then, while in high school, a Diana Ross concert, where for the first time she witnessed a Black diva's hair, makeup and costume changes all in one show, inspired her to dream of what acting could mean for her.So after high school, she moved out west to California, where she had, as she calls it, a "Lana Turner" experience: Referring to Hollywood folklore, which has it that acting legend Lana Turner was 'discovered' sitting on a fountain stool at the then-popular Schwab's drugstore in Hollywood, Fox says she was discovered by famed casting director Eileen Knight. The result: A journey that has taken her early on from a modeling career to twenty-plus years in the business. It began with roles on soap operas like "Days of Our Lives" and "The Young and the Restless" and evolved to an impressive range of movie-star turns in blockbusters "Independence Day" with Will Smith and "Kill Bill Vol. 1" with Uma Thurman; to "Set It Off" with Queen Latina; "Soul Food" with Vanessa Williams; "Two Can Play That Game" with Morris Chestnut; and "Three Can Play That Game" with Jason George.As leading lady in movies, Fox has starred with the best of them but never, she quickly adds, with Samuel L. Jackson, whose work ethic she greatly admires-to the point of identifying Jackson as one of the big-named actors she'd like to work with some day.Then there are the dozens of television shows and episodes she has under her belt (including a groundbreaking stint on Larry David's "Curb Your Enthusiasm") and that are on the horizon (an episode of "Melissa and Joey").Less known but equally important are the stage plays that she has produced and/or starred in: "Whatever She Wants" and Je'Caryous Johnson's "Cheaper to Keep Her," the latter of which is currently on a national tour and stars Fox and sexy, soul crooner Brian McKnight. And then there's the entrepreneurial side of Fox, featuring her trademark wigs. Sixty new looks will be available at www.vivicafoxhair.com in February.Businesswoman. Actress. Sisterfriend. Soon-to-be-married: Vivica Fox has got a lot to be happy about this year.