Over the past 30 years, beautiful actress Angela Bassett has played an impressive line of real-life characters from Rosa Parks to Tina Turner and Betty Shabazz has a new role as an L.A. street cop named Athena Grant in “9-1-1,” a new series about first responders that premiered to rave reviews last Wednesday on Fox.
The show draws together three branches of first responders: the Police Department, the Fire Department, and the 9-1-1 emergency team.
While Bassett says she was attracted to the part because of the character’s story, as well as the police work, it’s definitely not a role she takes lightly. Just the amount physical stuff she has to do on set is different for the beautiful 59-year-old actress. But it’s one she faces head on.
“I love doing action,” says Bassett to the Detroit News. “Since I’m not 21, there’s some, ‘Let me get to the gym so I can do it.’ But I love to defy expectations. I want people to see this is what 59 can look like, what 59 can do.”
In order to get her body right for the next six decades, Bassett works with trainer Corey Calliet. He has also worked with Michael B. Jordan for Creed and a ton of other celebrities.
“I like her doing circuits,” Calliet tell People.com. “You do each movement for 30 seconds, then you take a break, get the heart rate down to get it right back up. The reason why I like doing it so much is because it’s the fastest and the most effective way to burn fat.”
Calliet has Bassett cycle through moves such as mountain climbers, jump squats, lunges, push-ups and high knees for 30 seconds on, 30 seconds off, and continue the cycle for up to an hour at a time.
“It’s a very hard 45 minutes to an hour because you’re going all the time, and I don’t give too many breaks unless you’re about to puke, faint or die,” he says. “You have bring the pain every day when we train. It’s the only way you’re going to get the results to look amazing on the screen.”
He wants to particularly work on toning Bassett’s lower body.
“It’s the biggest muscle group, so you’re going to burn a lot of calories while doing it,” he explains. “I’m going…
… through a lot of old-fashioned moves — lunges, squats, leg extensions, leg curls, but in the HIIT form. I’m not going to do too many hard, sculpting movements; this is more conditioning, taking what she already has — the great foundation of the body she has — and make it better.”
“I have been trying to be more thankful lately. Whatever it is, I am trying to be thankful,” explains Bassett. “Sometimes it’s what I want and expect, and other times it is not what I want at all. I am trying to find a way even when it isn’t what I want or the best circumstance, to find a way to be thankful. I want to be able to learn and grow from the situation personally. We grow best when we are tested and tried and come through it. It is hard to be thankful when it is falling apart and when people are gossiping about you.”