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Brandon Hammond

October 6,1997

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Brandon Hammond, who portrays Matty Stevenson, Ben Stevenson's son (Gregory Hines) on the new Gregory Hines Show, says that playing his part isn't hard at all. "Off the set, Gregory Hines is like a father figure to me," the 13-year old actor stated. "We like to hang out, and he gives me advice, just like he does on the show. Bill Cobbs, who plays my uncle, also hangs out with us and gives me advice, too."

Most of the advice given on the show - both to Matty and Ben Stevenson - involves dating. Does Hammond think it's good advice? "Some of it is," he said. "For example, I learned that girls always expect you to remember things - especially anniversaries. But I think Matty needs to learn to be independent, and decide what to do for himself, instead of just taking everybody's advice."

In real life, Hammond is also becoming interested in girls, but he hasn't started dating and doesn't have a girlfriend as yet.

Hammond is presently starring in the movie Soul Food, a family story. "My character, Ahmad, narrates the story," he explained. "Ahmad has ESP with his grandmother, and when she has a stroke that leaves her in a coma, he understands that she wants him to keep his family together - and keep up the fifty year old family tradition of having Sunday dinners."

Soul Food is a movie you can watch with your family, because it's about families," he continued.

In Hammond's family, his younger brother, TreVon, 1, has broken into show business. "He's modeled for Carnation," Hammond said proudly of his little brother. "And when he's older, I guess he'll become an actor, too."

It's not just little TreVon that's involved "in the business". Hammond recently brought two of his cousins onto the Gregory Hines Show as extras. "They were kids on Matty's basketball team, and it was fun having them on the set," Hammond remembered.

Besides involving family members in his ever-growing career, and bringing them onto the set, Hammond, who you may remember as the young Michael Jordan in last year's Space Jam movie, is contemplating a future not only in acting, but medicine. On the "Gregory Hines' set they joke that they'll bring him up to college age.

"I want to be a doctor because I'd like to help people," he said compassionately. "And I'd also like to cure a disease - like cancer or Aids."

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