The No Air hitmaker grew close to Houston while shooting the new rags-to-riches story last year (11) and Sparks was preparing to hit the red carpet with the soul superstar at Clive Davis' pre-Grammys party in Hollywood in February (12) when the icon was found dead in her Beverly Hills hotel room.
Recalling the horror of the night Houston died, she says, "I was about to go change into my dress and there was a knock on the door. It was my publicist, who told me, 'Whitney's gone.' I said, 'What do you mean? Did she leave the hotel already?' And she said, 'No - Whitney's passed.'
"I was so shocked I couldn't even move. I didn't know what to do. I didn't go to the Grammys (pre-party) that night, and I cancelled a lot of appearances after that. I didn't want people asking me about her. I just didn't think it was my place to say anything."
Sparks isolated herself and lay low for weeks as she mourned the tragic loss, and she admits she is full of sympathy for Houston's daughter Bobbi Kristina and her mum Cissy as they continue to deal with the legend's passing.
She tells the New York Daily News, "I ended up being secluded; I cut myself off for a couple of months. I was just crying, I was so devastated. And I'd only known her for the two months we worked together. I can't imagine how her family and friends who had known her for a long time felt. She was very loved."
"I was somebody who had listened to Whitney's music and tried to emulate her. So to get to work with her in this intimate setting, to do scenes where we were yelling at each other, and then holding hands with her... I just loved her."
Whitney Houston has the greatest love of all — the love of her fans. And starting on Aug. 15, Houston-enthusiasts will get the chance to see some of the late singer's memorabilia when L.A. Live's Grammy Museum opens the first exhibit dedicated to the talented artist.
According to the The Hollywood Reporter, "Whitney! Celebrating the Musical Legacy of Whitney Houston" will display memorable items such as photographs, concert posters, and the dress she was wearing at the 1994 Grammy Awards when she was awarded the album of the year for The Bodyguard soundtrack.
Grammy Museum executive director Robert Santelli said about the exhibit — which is slated to run through Feb. 2013 — "We are particularly excited to showcase her long connection to the Grammy Awards show and to celebrate the musical genius that made her one of America's most-awarded pop and soul vocalists."
BET Awards 2012: Mariah Carey and More Pay Tribute to Whitney Houston
Whitney Houston & Jordin Sparks' Celebrate Video Debuts
Cissy Houston Is Writing a Whitney Houston Memoir
In the first BET Awards ceremony since her February death, Whitney Houston was, unsurprisingly and justifiably, the recipient of a lengthy round of remembrances and musical tributes.
Houston's longtime friend Mariah Carey kicked off the honors, telling stories about the superstar while clearly battling her emotions. That was followed by nearly 20 minutes of various tribute songs and covers dedicated the late Houston: Monica sang "I Love the Lord," a gospel tune that Houston herself once covered; Brandy pitched in two Houston classics, "I Wanna Dance with Somebody" and "I'm Your Baby Tonight"; the legendary Chaka Khan served up her own "I'm Every Woman," which Houston famously remade in 1993; and finally, Whitney's brother, Gary, and mother, Cissy, performed. It was the latter's moving rendition of "Bridge Over Troubled Water" that left stars in the audience — including Beyonce and Soulja Boy — and no doubt viewers at home teary-eyed.
Sunday night's BET tribute in song was merely the latest of its kind for Houston. Check out that video below, followed by Jennifer Hudson's instant classic from the Grammys — the day after Houston's death — and a clip from the Glee episode that honored Houston in April.
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BET Awards 2012: Kanye, Interrupted
Whitney Houston Dies at Age 48
Whitney Houston and Jordin Sparks's 'Celebrate' Video Debuts
Whitney Houston's loved ones are driven to create new works in the deceased music icon's honor. In May, Bobby Brown performed his new song "Don't Let Me Die" on The Tonight Show, as a tribute to his late ex-wife. And now, Houston's mother Emily "Cissy" Houston has taken to writing a memoir about her daughter's life.
The Washington Post reports that Cissy, 78, has signed a deal with HarperCollins Publishers to release a book about Whitney's personal and professional life, chronicling both the highs and lows for which the singer-songwriter was known. HarperCollins says that Cissy will handle the project with “candor, honesty and respect,” delving into even the more controversial aspects of her daughter's experiences with the utmost love. As such, the book will also serve as an expression of Cissy's hardships attached to losing her daughter at the age of 48.
This will be Cissy Houston's second published book, after her own 1998 memoir How Sweet the Sound.
[Photo Credit: David Edwards/Daily Celeb]
Bobby Brown Sings About Whitney Houston's Death on 'Tonight Show'
Whitney Houston's Final Song, 'Celebrate' — LISTEN
Jordin Sparks Honors Whitney Houston at Billboard Awards
Whitney Houston died only three months ago and already her family has signed a deal to star in a Lifetime reality show called The Houston Family Chronicles. The networked announced the deal today and the show will start airing by the end of the year.
We're going to get to see Whitney's sister-in-law and former manager Pat, her husband Gary, and their daughter Rayah as well as Whitney's mother Cissy. Bobbi-Kristina, the singer's daughter with Bobby Brown, will also appear on the show. This will be Bobbi-Kris' second time on a reality show, after one season of Bravo's Being Bobby Brown where she learned that her father once pulled a turd out of her mother's ass.
Yes, this is what the Houston family's history with reality shows are. Why would Pat let this happen to her family again? She insists that the deal has nothing to do with Whitney's death and that she's been negotiating this deal for years. Well, that may be the case, but, come on. The deal finally happens while the corpse is still warm? And she thinks that is just a coincidence? If so, then she didn't learn anything from the last foray into this genre that is made to exploit people's emotional frailty. This is not going to end well, me believes.
Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan
Whitney Houston Dies at Age 48
Whitney Houston Biopic in the Works: Too Soon?
'Sparkle' Trailer: Whitney Houston Passes the Torch in Final Film
Details into Whitney Houston's last will and testament have finally been revealed. According to Inside Edition, the document was written in 1993 and leaves all the late singer's worldly possessions to her only child, 19-year-old daughter Bobbi Kristina. This includes all of Houston's money, furniture, clothing, personal effects, jewelry, and cars.
But Kristina won't receive all of her mother's money right away nor all at once. The money will be placed in a trust until Bobbi turns 21. She will then receive money gradually: more when she turns 25 and the remainder when she turns 30.
It was also discovered that Houston amended the will in 2000, while she was still married to former husband and father of her child, Bobby Brown. But it turns out the R&B singer won't receive anything, though he is mentioned in the document.
The will additionally clarifies that if Kristina had died before Houston, then Brown, her mother Cissy, and other relatives would share the assets. Cissy is the executor of the documents, while her brother and sister-in-law are the trustees.
To see an actual portion of Houston's will, click here.
Click on the picture above for more photos of Whitney Houston.
Source: Inside Edition
Though Bobby Brown assured the world last week that his daughter with Whitney Houston, Bobbi Kristina, is "doing much better," other members of the family aren't as easily convinced. In fact, the New York Daily News is reporting that Bobbi is now under the watchful eye of her grandmother Cissy Houston, who is determined to keep the 18-year-old on the right path, and that means away from drugs and depression.
One source explained the situation, saying, “In the aftermath of Whitney’s death, she’s running the show," adding that Mrs. Houston “couldn’t do nothing with Whitney and the hangers-on, moochers and enablers that sucked the life out of her....she has the reins of this now.” Her attitude is: “I’ll be damned if I’m burying my grandbaby.”
But it looks like Mrs. Houston is going to have her work cut out for her, given how hard Kristina's taken the death of her mother. In fact, she became so distraught over the news that she was rushed to the hospital twice shortly after her passing.
Additionally, The Daily Beast reported that Kristina was found doing drugs after her mom’s funeral on Saturday, though Houston's camp denied the allegations. Whatever the case, let's just hope she gets the love and support she needs now that her grams is looking after her. After all, grandmother knows best.
Click on the picture above for more photos of Whitney Houston.
Whitney Houston's representative confirmed to People magazine that Houston has entered into an out-patient rehab program to treat her alcohol and drug related issues. "Whitney Houston is currently in an out-patient rehab program for drug and alcohol treatment. Whitney voluntarily entered the program to support her long-standing recovery process." In 2000, she was charged with a misdemeanor drug offense when airport police at Kona International Airport found half an ounce of marijuana in her handbag. Charges were dropped in 2001 after she passed a substance abuse assessment. Houston entered rehab for the first time in March of 2004 and after she checked out five days later, she told Diane Sawyer about the condition that lead her to seek help: "I partied a lot. Trust me: I partied my tail off. You get to a point where you know the party's over." She returned in 2005 after her mother, Cissy Houston, petitioned a court and asked that the judge order her back into treatment.
Sources: People, MTV, People
The tune, which was a huge hit for Gladys Knight & The Pips, was originally titled Midnight Plane to Houston until Whitney Houston's mum Cissy rejigged it.
But songwriter Jim Weatherly insists the hit will always be dedicated to Fawcett and her former husband Lee Majors in his mind.
Weatherly tells Nashville Story Source he wrote the song after chatting to his pal on the phone.
He says, "She said she was packing her clothes and she was gonna go back and visit her folks and she was taking the midnight plane to Houston. When she said that a little bell went off in my head.
"I actually used Farrah and Lee as kind of like the people in the song... It's just a simple little story about a girl that comes to L.A. to make it, becomes a star and everything, finds it too hard and goes back (home)."