Friday, April 19, 2024

How Whitney Stopped Bobby’s Tell All 2008 Book


Whitney Houston‘s ex, Bobby Brown, was so down and out four years ago he planned on publishing a tell-all book. I wrote about in April 2008 and again in December 2008. It was never published.

Bobby Brown, the R&B pop star and Whitney Houston’s drug-addicted ex-husband, died three times and had to be resuscitated.

That’s just one of the revelations in the autobiography he’s self-publishing on May 13 [2008] with distributor Atlas Books of Ohio. “Being Bobby Brown: The Truth, the Whole Truth and Nothing But…” is co-written with Derrick Handspike, whom I spoke to Thursday night.

What’s the incentive at this point to sell out Whitney, daughter Bobbi Kristina and even himself? As Handspike — an Atlanta hip-hop producer and author of several books — explained: “We are very wealthy from this already.”

It’s not completely clear how the pair has made so much from a vanity press publication, but Handspike intimated that there are “investors.” “It’s a joint-venture kind of thing,” he said.

For her part, Whitney, says rep Nancy Seltzer, refuses to comment now and forever on the book. “She’s not going to talk about the father of her child.”

But starting soon, Bobby’s going to be talking. His press reps are approaching all the shows and made an inquiry to Oprah. The angle is gong to be that this is Brown’s way of telling his story, and that there’s very little about Whitney — at least not enough for which to sue him.

“He OD’d on heroin,” Handspike told me. “No one knows that. He had a stroke. They said he had a heart attack but he had a stroke.”

And then there are the three deaths. Brown relates that his heart stopped three times and he had to be revived with paddles.

Brown also owns up, Handspike tells me, to hitting Houston. “He considered it horse play. The reason Whitney called the police was that he laughed at her and then left. She said, ‘You think you’re going to just walk away from this?’ Then she called the police.”
In the book, much is learned about Brown that you may or may not be interested in. He “scored” with Janet Jackson. He also immediately hit it off with Whitney in a physical way.

“We also had bedroom chemistry.” He isn’t modest, either. “I’ve always been known to be a pretty good lover. The word on the street is that I’m well-endowed, if that means anything. Does it, ladies?”

In December 2008, I sp0ke to Handspike again. Here’ s what I wrote:
Remember the Bobby Brown book about Whitney Houston? Maybe you thought it wasn’t going to be published. I’m sure Whitney thought that, too. Well, she was wrong.

Yesterday, Derek Handspike (yes, it’s a real person—great name) published “Bobby Brown: The Truth, the Whole Truth, and Nothing But the Truth” under his own name as an unauthorized biography of Whitney’s ex husband.

Originally the book was authored by Brown himself. But when it was announced in this space last April 4th, a number of red flags went up. One of them was no doubt from Houston’s divorce lawyers. Bobby signed a confidentiality agreement with Houston in which he promised not to write anything about her.


So back to the drawing board these guys went, trying to figure out what to do. In essence, the result is that the book is now technically authored by Handspike. In his foreword, he does promise, however, that Brown “is still fairly compensated.” Who is he fooling? No one. Handspike also says in the foreword that he was forced to published the book somehow, someway, because he had “over a hundred thousand pre-orders” and that “all the major wholesalers and retailers were waiting on the edge of their seats” for this volume.

Anyway, in case we’ve forgotten, here are some of the tidbits from the original manuscript. According to Brown, he “died” three times from drug overdoses, hit Houston, and he, suggests, bedded Janet Jackson. He blames L.A. Reid for wrecking Houston’s last album, and calls him a “female dog.” He claims that Houston at first tried to block his reality show, “Being Bobby Brown,” then turned up uninvited for the filming of it. Brown also says that he and Houston came up with a word to describe their volatile relationship: “stickability.”

He writes—and I guess now Handspike says this in the third person: “Whitney and I had our arguments and fights just like everyone else. It was no Ike and Tina type of fights, but that’s what the media made the public believe.” He admits to “getting upset” and “flying off the handle …Things that that I’d regret later, I would be responsible for cleaning or having the wall repaired.”

(I do have to interject right here: at least he had the wall repaired! Give him some credit! Ike Turner never did that!)

And if you were worried about Whitney, don’t: “What people fell [sic] to realize is that Whitney is no punk. She definitely knows how to handle and defend herself in situations that could have potentially turned violent.”

There’s a lot more about Whitney and Bobby’s personal life, including this stunning revelation: Brown says that they had a pre-nup but that when they went to court, Houston didn’t invoke it. “I was able to follow through with the spousal support law suit,” he writes.
The IRS might be interested in Brown’s finances. When he was in trouble, “Whitney stepped in and we made a deal on my mansion in Atlanta. The bank was trying to foreclose on it and Whitney bailed me out. I ended up doing a little trick where I sold the house to her and we ended up being able to pull equity out of the house. It’s kind of like selling something of major value for a dollar in order to reap the benefits on the back end.”

There’s more, mostly to do with Brown’s drug addiction to cocaine. He also proves his reputation for being a romantic as details his relationship with model Karrine Steffans, explaining her only value to him was for living to up her nickname, “Supahead.” Steffans, he writes, “is also a terrible mother to her kids.”

“If there’s one thing I can’t stand,” writes Brown, who has been arrested and jailed several times for non payment of child support, “that’s a woman who is not a mother to her children. That’s a big turn-off to me!”

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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