Gabourey Sidibe Shares Why She Doesn't Want to Be a Traditional Bride for Her Spring Wedding

Gabourey Sidibe on Brides Cover
Erich McVey for Brides

The 'Precious' actress shares her thoughts on not having a 'traditional' wedding for 'Brides' Style Issue.

Gabourey Sidibe isn't interested in her upcoming wedding to fiancé Brandon Frankel being traditional whatsoever. The 39-year-old actress opened up about her wedding plans in an interview for Brides' Style Issue cover.

Although many details for the celebration are currently up in the air, Sidibe knows what she doesn't want. For a moment, she wasn't even sure she wanted a wedding.

"The entire time we have been engaged, I've always been like, 'No, we shouldn't have a wedding.' Maybe we'll throw a barbecue, get married in the bathroom, and then we’ll come out and tell everyone we're married," the Precious actress said. 

The apprehension stems from Sidibe's childhood of attending weddings regularly with her wedding singer mom. "I was definitely one of those uninvited children at a ton of weddings -- and I actually hate them because of it. In my life, I have vowed to go to four more including my own," she half-joked.

There will be no bridesmaids and no bachelorette party, or "any other normal wedding things," the bride-to-be asserted. "It cannot be a traditional wedding. Really, it can't be. I don't want anything done the 'traditional' way. Our relationship is very much on our terms and I want it to be fun, like a true party."

Whatever Sidibe and Frankel do come up with, they know the celebration will take place in spring 2023 and will incorporate both their backgrounds, Senegalese and Jewish.

"Including my culture [in the wedding] is important to me for sure. I've been feeding him some Senegalese food in the last few years -- especially in the pandemic," Sidibe shared. "It will be a nice mix of African and Jewish touches. I want his background to absolutely be there because this is a partnership."

Erich McVey for Brides

Sidibe and Frankel met on the exclusive, members-only dating app Raya. The actress told Brides that before meeting Frankel, who has been married once before, she had never pictured herself with a lifelong partner.

"I couldn't imagine dating someone I actually liked. Turns out, totally possible! So, I'm really happy to have been wrong about where I saw my life going, partnership-wise. [Brandon] is an incredible, incredible partner," she said. "To me, weddings are very different from marriage and partnership. I think I always, always wanted there to be a partner in my life, [but] I didn’t know what he was going to look like or what he was going to be like at all."

Sidibe announced her engagement to Frankel in November 2020 with a gushing Instagram post about him.

"It's weird that people think we're already married but I guess our hearts and intentions for each other are just that clear to see," she wrote alongside a video and photo of her and Frankel at the time. "My BFF proposed and now I get to hold him forever. The funniest man I've ever met. The sweetest human to exist."

Now, as the duo plan their wedding, they're figuring out what works for them rather than sticking to the status quo. Frankel revealed that although he and the Empire actress are enlisting help to plan the special day, they are trying to do as much themselves as possible. 

"We like to outsource, but we're both very involved in everything we do. We're creative people and we're both pretty good at executing, so we'll have someone [helping], but we'll definitely be super involved," he said.

Sidibe admitted that she has no intention of being a traditional bride but the Brides photo shoot revealed the "power" of a wedding gown. 

"I started trying on dresses [at the shoot] and I was like, ‘Oh! Oh! I got it!' There's some power in stepping into a wedding dress, and now I need more wedding dresses!" she said. 

Erich McVey for Brides

"I definitely don't need a white dress. My favorite look [from the shoot] was the pink African print. Honestly, whatever I wear on the wedding day will probably be African print," she added. "It might have a little white, so it looks like a wedding dress, but it's definitely going to be colorful."

She said she has looked to her "biggest muse," Danielle Brooks, who wore a Christian Siriano gown as one of two dresses on her wedding day

The cover shoot also made Sidibe realize why she was going through the trials and tribulations of wedding planning. 

"Seeing [Brandon] in a suit just made things real for us," she shared. "That day was really incredible. It also made me think, 'Oh, I want everybody there! I really want to celebrate this.' I want everyone that I love to be at our wedding now, when I used to always say just 20 people tops."

Read Sidibe and Frankel's full interview at