More than 15 years after she starred in the film version of Terry McMillan’s charming and inspired Waiting to Exhale, it looks as though Whitney Houston is coming back for the sequel, Getting to Happy. This time out, however, there may be less charm.

For one thing, Houston has added a lot of miles since Waiting to Exhale came out in 1995. And if half the press reports are to be believed, most of them have not been the kind that brings an actor seasoning and experience for her craft. Perhaps more to the point, reviews of McMillan’s sequel were mostly not good. Publishers Weekly called the book “disappointing and uninspired” and Kirkus said the book was “Full of sitcom moments and windy dialogue — aging chick lit at its most superficial.”

Though official sources have yet to confirm, Angela Bassett, who starred in the original and says she is slated to reprise her role in the sequel, confirmed the project on CBC’s The Talk, revealing “that everyone from the original cast is on board and Forest Whitaker will direct,” according to Shadow and Act, who also included a clip of Bassett talking about the project. And though, when you watch it, it feels a bit like Bassett may be talking out of school, the industry has been buzzing with news of a possible sequel — and the fact that McMillan was again involved with the screenplay — since the book was published last fall.

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