John Legend is telling all about his relationship with Barack Obama and Michelle Obama

By Abby Stern
August 13, 2016 03:55 PM
Danny Moloshok/AP Images

John Legend recently took a family vacation to Italy with wife Chrissy Teigen and 3-month-old daughter Luna Simone.

But it was back to work for Legend on Friday.

The 37-year-old was on hand for the Los Angeles press day for the film Southside With You, which he executive produced.

Set during the span of one day, the film takes its the audience through the first date of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama – who then went by Michelle Robinson.

“I’ve been around both of them quite a bit and I think they are just so cool,” Legend told reporters of the Obamas during the press conference at The London Hotel in West Hollywood, CA.

“We are so fortunate to have two people who are so brilliant, so authentic, so honest and full of integrity and who have a true love for each other and create this beautiful partnership together as the representative couple of America.”

Michelle and Barack Obama
Rex USA

As for what makes the couple so “cool,” Legend offered his own insight.

“What’s so cool about them to me is that, with all this power, with all this grandeur that surrounds the office they’re still really down to Earth,” he said.

He continued, “They still are really in touch with the people and still so relatable and I think that comes from the fact that they know where they come from and know where they met.”

“I think they still carry that with them everywhere they go and I think it gives them perspective,” he said. “Whether they’re in the White House or hanging out with their friends or wherever they are, they’re authentic and that’s what I think about the President and First Lady.”

Aside from executive producing the film, Legend – who previously won an Oscar in 2014 for co-writing the song “Glory” with Common for the film Selma – wrote the song “Start” for the soundtrack.

“My sense watching the rough cut of the film was one, it was a very intimate look at a very public couple so I wanted the song to feel intimate and close and I sang it in a way that is basically like a whisper,” he shared.

“The idea behind the way I wrote it and the way I sang it was to create that sense of intimacy and vulnerability and uncertainty that we all feel in a first date,” he added.

Tika Sumpter and Parker Sawyers in Southside with You
Matt Dinerstein

Said Legend: “He saw something special in her and I think eventually she saw something special in him. He basically was saying like I say in the song, we don’t know where it’s gonna go but it won’t go anywhere unless we start. This movie is about the start.”

Southside with You hits theaters Aug. 26.

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