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NY Filmmaker Gary Keys Chronicles Whitney Houston’s Rise To Stardom

Keys Interviewed Houston For His Documentary 'The Wonderful Family of Divas'
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New York filmmaker Gary Keys (credit: CBS 2)

New York filmmaker Gary Keys (credit: CBS 2)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – While investigators try to determine Whitney Houston’s cause of death, a documentary chronicles her rise to stardom from her own perspective.

Not many have ever heard the story of Whitney Houston’s life straight from the music legend’s mouth.

PHOTOSWhitney Houston’s Life Remembered

“Dionne is my cousin and I’m very proud of that,” Houston says in the documentary. “Dee Dee is my cousin and I have a whole family of really talented people.”

But family friend and New York filmmaker Gary Keys was one of the rare few who was allowed unlimited access for one day in 2010 as Houston relaxed on a couch in her Atlanta home and opened up about her rise to stardom.

“I’m honored and lucky,” said Keys.

Keys interviewed Houston for his documentary “The Wonderful Family of Divas.” The film looks into the world of one of America’s most musically influential families, the Drinkard family, which includes gospel-rooted singers Whitney Houston, Dionne Warwick and Houston’s mother Cissy Houston.

“I love to hear my mother sing gospel,” Houston says in the film.

The Houston family fondly remembered her early ambition.

“She would be screaming and my husband would say tell her to shut up and I’d say leave her alone, maybe one day she’ll be a singer,” says Cissy in the film.

PHOTOS: NJ Remembers Whitney Houston

“My family, as far as being a family, has always been my rock,” Houston says.

Houston also spoke of her rapid success.

“By the time my album came out, the first album, we were gone,” she says.

Keys premiered the documentary at a film festival in Denver last year.  He is now reworking the film to include Houston’s death.

He plans to debut the new version at the Cannes Film Festival in May.

WATCH: CBS 2’s Rob Morrison reports

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