Connect with us

American Entertainment

Laura Dern Said She Lost Work, Needed ‘Security Detail’ After ‘Ellen’ Coming-Out Episode

Published

on

Laura Dern said appearing in the historic coming-out episode of the sitcom “Ellen” more than two decades ago was “an incredible honor.” However, the actor recently revealed that she lost work and needed a “full security detail” following its airing.

“I didn’t think twice about it. It was a great opportunity,” Dern said in a recent interview with New York magazine of her decision to play Ellen DeGeneres’ love interest on the show.

However, after accepting the role, Dern said “calls started coming in” from advisers in Hollywood “who were out gay men” telling her not to take the part. “A lot of people in my life were really worried,” she added.

Dern said she shrugged off their concerns, believing them to be “ridiculous” at the time. In the landmark “The Puppy Episode,” which aired April 30, 1997, Dern guest-starred as Susan, a lesbian who helps Ellen realize she is also gay. The episode, which was estimated to have been watched by 42 million people and which won a Peabody and an Emmy, marked the first time a gay character was featured as a lead on television.

See This Year’s White House Christmas Decorations

[NATL] See This Year's White House Christmas Decorations

Source link

قالب وردپرس

American Entertainment

Robert Downey Jr. Opens Up About Use of Blackface in ‘Tropic Thunder’ – NBC4 Washington

Published

on

By

Robert Downey Jr. opened up in a recent interview about his role in the satirical film “Tropic Thunder” and its use of blackface, according to NBC News.

Downey played a white actor who has undergone a skin-darkening procedure for the role of a black soldier in the spoof of the movie industry. Ben Stiller directed and also starred in the 2008 film about a group of actors shooting a big-budget war movie who are forced to become the soldiers they are portraying.

During a recent appearance on “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast, Downey described the skin-darkening makeup he wore as special-effects makeup and recalled his conversation with Stiller who had offered him the role.

“I thought, ‘Yeah, I’ll do that. I’ll do that after ‘Iron Man,'” Downey said. “And then I started thinking, ‘This is a terrible idea.'”

His resistance was short-lived, he said.

“I thought, ‘Hold on, dude. Get real here. Where is your heart?'” Downey said. “My heart is A) I get to be black for a summer in my mind, so there’s something in it for me. The other thing is I get to hold up to nature the insane, self-involved hypocrisy of artists and what they think they’re allowed to do on occasion.”

Read more at NBCNews.com.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

American Entertainment

Ex-Grammys CEO Says Rape Allegation ‘false and Outrageous’ – NBC4 Washington

Published

on

By

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Former Grammys CEO Neil Portnow said Wednesday that a rape allegation against him aired by his successor in a complaint against the Recording Academy is “false and outrageous.”

Portnow released a statement saying that the academy conducted a thorough and independent investigation of the accusation and he was “completely exonerated.”

His comment came a day after ousted academy CEO Deborah Dugan filed a complaint with the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission asserting that she had been subjected to retaliation for reporting sexual harassment by an academy attorney and for calling out the “boys club” culture that pervades the institution.

The allegations were being exchanged during what isusually a celebratory week of parties and special events leading up to Sunday’s Grammy Awards in Los Angeles.

Dugan said she learned during her six-month stint as CEO that Portnow had been accused of rape by a foreign recording artist and academy member after a performance at Carnegie Hall. The artist was not named.

“This document is filled with inaccurate, false and outrageous and terribly hurtful claims against me,” Portnow said. “There was no basis for the allegations, and once again I deny them unequivocally.”

Dugan’s attorneys did not immediately comment on Portnow’s statement.

Portnow, a 72-year-old former record label executive, did not seek an extension of his contract and left the CEO post last year after 17 years. He came under fire for saying women need to “step up” when asked backstage at the 2018 Grammy Awards why only two female acts won awards during the live telecast. Portnow again apologized for the comment on Wednesday.

Dugan also said in her EEOC complaint that she had been pressured to hire Portnow as a consultant for $750,000 per year. Portnow said Wednesday that he never demanded such a fee.

Dugan was put on administrative leave last week, and the wide range of allegations she aired in her complaint, which also criticized the awards nomination process, put the academy on the defensive and threatened to throw the institution into tumult at its most important time of year.

In response to her filing, the academy said Dugan’s complaints to a human resources executive in December about sexual harassment and other issues came only after she was accused of abusive behavior toward the executive assistant she inherited from Portnow, which Dugan denied.

The academy said in a statement Tuesday that it “immediately launched independent investigations to review both Ms. Dugan’s potential misconduct and her subsequent allegations.” Those probes have yet to be completed.

The academy said its first loyalty was to its artists.

“We regret that music’s biggest night is being stolen from them by Ms. Dugan’s actions,” it said.

Dugan said Joel Katz, an influential music attorney and the academy’s general counsel, tried to woo her romantically and attempted to kiss her against her wishes during a dinner last year. Katz issued a statement late Tuesday saying he “categorically and emphatically denies her version of that evening.”

“Mr. Katz believed they had a productive and professional meeting in a restaurant where a number of members of the board of trustees of the academy, and others, were dining,” read the statement from Katz’s attorney, Howard Weitzman.

___

Follow AP Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton on Twitter: https://twitter.com/andyjamesdalton.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

American Entertainment

Mr. Peanut Dies in Super Bowl Ad, Causing Nut Lovers Everywhere to Mourn – NBC4 Washington

Published

on

By

Planters confirmed that Mr. Peanut died during a pre-Super Bowl ad and nut lovers everywhere Wednesday are mourning his death, NBC News reports.

The snack company posted the ad of Mr. Peanut, clad in his signature top hat and holding his black cane, and his friends, Wesley Snipes and Matt Walsh, getting into a car accident to social media Tuesday. As the trio tries to escape the swerving NUTmobile, they cling to a tree branch. While they were momentarily safe, their combined weight nearly snaps the branch until Mr. Peanut decides to let go and sacrifice his life to save his friends.

“It’s with heavy hearts that we confirm Mr. Peanut has passed away at 104 years old,” Samantha Hess, planters brand manager at Kraft Heinz, said in a statement. “He will be remembered as the legume who always brought people together for nutty adventures and a good time.”

Read the full story on NBCNews.com.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

American Entertainment

Will Grammy Voters Take the ‘Old Town Road’ on Sunday? – NBC4 Washington

Published

on

By

The 2020 Grammy Awards are shaping up to be the night of the new kids, with Lizzo, Billie Eilish and Lil Nas X leading in nominations.

Those acts, who all released huge No. 1 hits in the last year, have strong chances of beating their more-seasoned competitors, from Lady Gaga to Vampire Weekend to Ariana Grande.

Or maybe they won’t. If there’s one thing we can predict about the Grammys, it’s that the oddball act might actually win. Remember when Beck beat out Beyoncé? Or when Steely Dan won album of the year over Eminem? Or when Milli Vanilli … OK, I’ll stop.

Who knows how things will really play out Sunday, when the awards are handed out live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Here are some good guesses from Associated Press music writers Mesfin Fekadu and Nekesa Mumbi Moody.

_____

ALBUM OF THE YEAR: “I,I,” Bon Iver; “Norman (Expletive) Rockwell!,” Lana Del Rey; “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?,” Billie Eilish; “Thank U, Next,” Ariana Grande; “I Used to Know Her,” H.E.R.; “7,” Lil Nas X; “Cuz I Love You (Deluxe),” Lizzo; “Father of the Bride,” Vampire Weekend.

FEKADU: This seriously could go so many ways, but let’s start with who most likely won’t win: Lil Nas X, Ariana Grande, H.E.R. and Lizzo. The other four will split a lot of the votes, eliminating Bon Iver and Vampire Weekend as possible winners. Left are Lana Del Rey, whose album was critically acclaimed and praised, and Billie Eilish, who was not just the year’s brightest newcomer, but arguably the year’s most successful singer. Though I want to say Eilish will win here, something in my gut is telling me that Lana, who has consistently released top notch music for the last eight years, will be celebrating her first-ever Grammy win Sunday night.

MOODY: It would be a cool moment to have the 18-year-old Billie become the youngest to ever take home a best album Grammy, and she certainly deserves it! But with arguably the night’s top honor, Grammy voters tend to want their winners to have a few years under their belt before granting them the biggest win of their career. While none of the nominees here have their AARP card, Lana Del Rey has been around long enough to be the veteran. After a career that got off to a rocky start, she has become one of the more acclaimed singer-songwriters of her generation, and therefore will be victorious Sunday night.

_____

RECORD OF THE YEAR: “Hey, Ma,” Bon Iver; “Bad Guy,” Billie Eilish; “7 Rings,” Ariana Grande; “Hard Place,” H.E.R.; “Talk,” Khalid; “Old Town Road,” Lil Nas X featuring Billy Ray Cyrus; “Truth Hurts,” Lizzo; “Sunflower,” Post Malone and Swae Lee.

MOODY: Clearly Lil Nas X had the most popular song of the year with “Old Town Road,” even breaking Mariah Carey’s record for the most weeks at No. 1 with his country-rap hybrid. But this isn’t the American Music Awards where popularity counts, and I don’t think a song that started out from TikTok is going to win voters over. “Truth Hurts” wasn’t at No. 1 as long as “Old Town Road” but may have resonated far, becoming an anthem for so many women (and beyond). Lizzo is 100% getting this Grammy.

FEKADU: In the past at the Grammys, the ubiquitous, unconventional No. 1 hit doesn’t take this trophy home. “Despacito,” “All About That Bass” and “I Gotta Feeling” are some good examples. However, “Old Town Road” seemed to get past being the silliest song of the year, becoming an undeniably good tune that was hard to resist, which is why it topped the Hot 100 chart for 19 weeks. That’s why I think Lil Nas X is going to take his horse to the old town road and ride it to the Grammys stage.

_____

SONG OF THE YEAR (songwriter’s award): “Always Remember Us This Way,” Lady Gaga, Natalie Hemby, Hillary Lindsey and Lori McKenna; “Bad Guy,” Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell; “Bring My Flowers Now,” Tanya Tucker, Brandi Carlile, Phil Hanseroth and Tim Hanseroth; “Hard Place,” H.E.R., Rodney Jerkins, Ruby Amanfu, Sam Ashworth and D. Arcelious Harris; “Lover,” Taylor Swift; “Norman (Expletive) Rockwell,” Lana Del Rey and Jack Antonoff; “Someone You Loved,” Lewis Capaldi, Tom Barnes, Pere Kelleher, Benjamin Kohn and Sam Roman; “Truth Hurts,” Lizzo, Ricky Reed, Tele and Jesse Saint John.

FEKADU: In my humble opinion, the top candidates here are Taylor Swift, Billie Eilish and Lewis Capaldi. Swift has some edge since she wrote “Lover” alone, but if the song had performed stronger, I would be more convinced to pick her. That leaves me with Eilish and Capaldi, who might be a bit too new to win such a huge award. Good guys do finish last because “Bad Guy” will win.

MOODY: Swift really should win this one (and should have been nominated for album of the year, too, if I can get a little Swiftie here). But as much as she deserves to win, the Grammys love a comeback story, and giving Tanya Tucker’s “Bring My Flowers Now” would be that moment voters would be proud of, plus they adore Brandi Carlile. Tucker will take home the gold.

_____

BEST NEW ARTIST: Black Pumas; Billie Eilish; Lil Nas X; Lizzo; Maggie Rogers; Rosalía; Tank and the Bangas; Yola.

MOODY: There might be eight names listed here, but it’s really a contest between two: Lizzo and Billie Eilish. Both are singer-songwriters, musicians, and have paved unique paths in the journey to fame. But as brilliant and entertaining as Lizzo is, she’s hardly a new artist, with at least two albums released already. My money is on the kid!! Eighteen-year-old Billie will likely take this one.

FEKADU: The truth does hurt, Lizzo: Billie wins here.

_____

BEST POP VOCAL ALBUM: “The Lion King: The Gift,” Beyoncé; “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?,” Billie Eilish; “Thank U, Next,” Ariana Grande; “No. 6 Collaborations Project,” Ed Sheeran; “Lover,” Taylor Swift.

FEKADU: Love Taylor, but she won’t win here. Everything Beyoncé releases is a gift, but the holidays are over. And we all know how much the Grammys love to shade Ed Sheeran — oops, I’m just thinking out loud. That leaves us with Ariana Grande, who won this award last year and dominated the Billboard charts with multiple songs from “Thank U, Next.” And in the other corner is newcomer Billie Eilish, who made an influential pop project in her bedroom with her brother, Finneas, in the producer role. Me thinks Eilish will edge Grande for the win, especially since the 18-year-old’s album scored a nod for best engineered album (non-classical) and Finneas is up for producer of the year (non-classical).

MOODY: The fact that this is just Taylor’s second nod shows Grammy voters aren’t in a loving mood toward Swift this year (maybe she’ll call them out on her next album). Mesfin makes some very good points about Eilish and I kind of want to believe him, but Grande had such a brilliant year and a hot tour that something tells me she’ll be saying “Thank You” when the winner is revealed here.

_____

BEST ALTERNATIVE MUSIC ALBUM: “U.F.O.F.,” Big Thief; “Assume Form,” James Blake; “I,I,” Bon Iver; “Father of the Bride,” Vampire Weekend; “Anima,” Thom Yorke.

MOODY: Thom Yorke has already won this category twice as a member of Radiohead. Expect this Rock and Roll Hall of Famer to win it once again with his solo work.

FEKADU: Sike, Nekesa. Because both Bon Iver and Vampire Weekend are nominated for album of the year, I thought maybe they were the front-runners. But then I remembered how epic James Blake’s album is and how he has continuously been the go-to guy in music, with Beyoncé, Kendrick Lamar, Jay-Z, Travis Scott and others requesting his services. That’ll give him enough votes to take this home.

_____

BEST R&B PERFORMANCE: “Love Again,” Daniel Caesar and Brandy; “Could’ve Been,” H.E.R. featuring Bryson Tiller; “Exactly How I Feel,” Lizzo featuring Gucci Mane; “Roll Some Mo,” Lucky Daye; “Come Home,” Anderson .Paak featuring André 3000.

FEKADU: This is “Exactly How I Feel”: NO ONE EVEN KNOWS THIS LIZZO SONG. Why is it even nominated here??? It’s extremely offensive when there were hundreds of other R&B performances the academy could have recognized instead, from Jhene Aiko’s “Triggered” to any release from Summer Walker to Ari Lennox. When it comes to the R&B categories, the Grammys are garbage. Anyway, I think H.E.R — who won this award last year — will scoop it up again.

MOODY: Someone is “Triggered” by Lizzo’s nomination! But Mesfin speaks the truth that there were way better options than “Exactly How I Feel.” The only explanation is voters love Lizzo; still, I don’t think they love her enough to give her a win. H.E.R. will take it (though I wonder if voters can pass up a chance to give Andre 3000 another Grammy).

_____

BEST RAP SONG: “Bad Idea,” YBN Cordae featuring Chance the Rapper; “Gold Roses,” Rick Ross featuring Drake; “A Lot,” 21 Savage featuring J. Cole; “Racks in the Middle,” Nipsey Hussle featuring Roddy Ricch and Hit-Boy; “Suge,” DaBaby.

MOODY: Nipsey Hussle was up for his first Grammy and lost last year, and weeks later he was shot dead. I can’t see them not honoring him by giving him his first Grammy posthumously this year, as tough as this category is.

FEKADU: The Marathon Continues, with Nipsey winning here.

_____

BEST COUNTRY DUO/GROUP PERFORMANCE: “Brand New Man,” Brooks & Dunn and Luke Combs; “I Don’t Remember Me (Before You),” Brothers Osborne; “Speechless,” Dan + Shay; “The Daughters,” Little Big Town; “Common,” Maren Morris featuring Brandi Carlile.

FEKADU: Little Big Town have won this award three times, and a Maren-Brandi collab will never fail. But it’s hard to resist the sweet sound of Dan + Shay, who won this award last year for “Tequila” and will do it again with “Speechless,” which will be played at weddings over the next 10 years. Those boys can sang!

MOODY: It will be four for Little Big Town here! “The Daughters” wasn’t their biggest hit, but the controversy surrounding it and its message about the inequities women face will make up for that.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

American Entertainment

Aerosmith Drummer Sues to Rejoin Band for Grammy Honors – NBC4 Washington

Published

on

By

Aerosmith’s drummer, Joey Kramer, is suing his bandmates because they won’t let him play as the band is set to perform and be honored at Grammy events this week.

Kramer, a founding member of the band launched in Boston, said in a lawsuit filed this month in Massachusetts Superior Court that he has been kept out of the band after he hurt his ankle last year and missed shows, including part of the band’s lucrative residency at a Las Vegas casino.

The 69-year-old Magnolia, Texas, resident says his bandmates required him to earn his job back by performing a series of solo rehearsals to prove he could play “at an appropriate level,” according to his lawsuit.

Kramer says the band is in breach of contract, arguing the requirement is an “an artificial, made-up and undefined standard” that no other member of the band has been asked to do.

He notes in his lawsuit that singer Steven Tyler, guitarists Joe Perry and Bradley Whitford, and bassist Tom Hamilton have all been recently sidelined with injuries and illnesses and weren’t asked to re-audition for their jobs.

Kramer wants a Massachusetts judge to order he be allowed to participate in two upcoming music industry events.

Aerosmith is slated to receive the 2020 MusiCares Person of the Year award on Friday at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Alice Cooper, Foo Fighters, Jonas Brothers, John Legend and John Mayer are among the artists slated to perform as the band is recognized for its philanthropic work by the Recording Academy, which awards the Grammys.

Aerosmith is also set to perform a “career-spanning medley” at the Grammy Awards show Sunday night at the Staples Center, where the band is expected to be joined onstage by hip hop’s Run-DMC, with which it has had collaborated.

“This is not about money,” Kramer said in a statement ahead of a court hearing on the suit in Plymouth, Massachusetts, on Wednesday. “I am being deprived of the opportunity to be recognized along with my peers, for our collective, lifetime contributions to the music industry.”

Aerosmith’s lawyer and manager didn’t respond to emails seeking comment Wednesday,

But the band, in a public statement Tuesday, said it has invited Kramer to join it as it is honored at the Grammy events, saying there just not enough time to rehearse together.

“Joey Kramer is our brother; his well-being is of paramount importance to us. However he has not been emotionally and physically able to perform with the band, by his own admission, for the last 6 months,” the statement reads.

“We have missed him and have encouraged him to rejoin us to play many times but apparently he has not felt ready to do so,” the statement continues. “Joey has now waited until the last moment to accept our invitation, when we unfortunately have no time for necessary rehearsals during Grammys week.”

In his lawsuit, Kramer says his fellow band members deemed his “try out” wasn’t “technically correct” and lacked “energy,” an assessment he strongly disputes.

“Nothing could be further from the truth,” he said in his statement. “I did everything they asked.”

Kramer also says it’s “devastating” that he is being prevented from being honored on the music industry’s biggest stage.

“The greatest magic and success of Aerosmith happens when all the band’s founding members are together in the house,” he said in the statement. “To be removed from my rightful place on stage to celebrate our success — a success that acknowledges my own life’s work, is just plain wrong.”

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

American Entertainment

April Trial Set for Cuba Gooding Jr. in Bar Groping Case – NBC4 Washington

Published

on

By

Two women who have accused Cuba Gooding Jr. of sexual misconduct will be allowed to testify at his trial on charges that he groped three other women at Manhattan bars in 2018 and 2019, a judge ruled on Wednesday.

An April 21 trial date has been set for Gooding, who previously pleaded not guilty to an updated indictment that covers the three accusations of groping.

Prosecutors said at the time that they had heard from more than a dozen women who could testify that the Oscar-winning star of “Jerry Maguire” was also inappropriate with them in similar settings — bars, hotels and restaurants — as far back as 2001.

The defense says there was no criminal conduct.

Gooding and his lawyers left without commenting.

Source link

قالب وردپرس

Continue Reading

Trending