Some of the biggest names in entertainment are coming together to salute Detroit’s Motown label in a new Showtime documentary titled Hitsville: The Making of Motown. It airs on Saturday, August 24 at 9 p.m.
The remarkable story of Motown Records is told through new and exclusive interviews with the label’s visionary founder, Berry Gordy, and many of its superstar artists and creative figures, as well as rare performances and behind-the-scenes footage unearthed from Motown’s vaults and Gordy’s personal archives.
The film includes commentary from living legends—Smokey Robinson and original ‘Supreme’ Mary Wilson. It also features Jamie Foxx, John Legend, Dr. Dre and iconic Motown songwriter Valerie Simpson of (Ashford & Simpson).
Universal has released the official trailer for the film adaptation of the iconic Broadway musical CATS. It stars Jennifer Hudson, Taylor Swift and Idris Elba.
CATS tells the story of a cat tribe called the Jellicles and the night they make what is known as “the Jellicle choice” and decide which of them will ascend to the Heaviside Layer and come back to a new life. The show was composed by the legendary Andrew Lloyd Webber and is the fourth-longest-running musical in Broadway’s history.
Other famous famous faces behind those cat whiskers include Ian McKellen, James Corden, Judi Dench and Jason Derulo.
Look for CATS to hit the big screen on December 20, 2019.
David Oyelowo is teaming up with teen sensation Storm Reid for the new time travel thriller Don’t Let Go.
In the film, Oyelowo plays detective Jack Radcliff who gets a shocking phone call from his recently-murdered niece Ashley (Reid). Working together across time, they race to solve her murder before it can happen.
Don’t Let Go also stars Brian Tyree Henry (man he stays working), Mykelti Williamson, Shinelle Azoroh, Byron Mann, April Grace and Alfred Molina.
Beyoncé is celebrating her role as ‘Nala’ in The Lion King with a brand new inspirational song titled “Spirit.” The Grammy-winning music superstar debuted her self proclaimed “love letter to Africa” during Robin Robert‘s ABC Special Tuesday night.
The Queen, who still can’t believe she is starring in the film, executive produced the soundtrack for the film which features her Lion King co-star Childish Gambino (Donald Glover) along with her husband Jay-Z and daughter Blue Ivy Carter. It also features Pharrell, Kendrick Lamar and 070 Shake.
In addition, the project also features collaborations with an array of African artists and musicians including Moonchild Sanelly, Tiwa Savage, Burna Boy and Mr Eazi.
Netflix is killing the game right now! Check out the trailer for their newest drama The Red Sea Diving Resort starring Chris Evans and Michael K. Williams.
Inspired by remarkable true life rescue missions, The Red Sea Diving Resort is the incredible story of a group of international agents and brave Ethiopians who in the early 80s used a deserted holiday retreat in Sudan as a front to smuggle thousands of refugees to Israel.
The undercover team carrying out this mission is led by the charismatic Ari Kidron (Evans) and courageous local Kabede Bimro (Williams). The prestigious cast also includes Haley Bennett, Alessandro Nivola, Michiel Huisman, Chris Chalk, Greg Kinnear and Ben Kingsley.
The film is directed by Gideon Raff and is available to watch on 7/31.
Jennifer Lopez is “in charge of the girls” in the new stripper drama Hustlers.
The film follows a crew of savvy former strip club employees who band together to turn the tables on their Wall Street clients. It is inspired by an article published in New York Magazine titled “The Hustlers at Scores” by Jessica Pressler and features Keke Palmer along with hip hop superstar Cardi B and pop music phenom Lizzo.
It also features Constance Wu, Julia Stiles and Lili Reinhart.
It is produced by Elaine Goldsmith Thomas, Jessica Elbaum, Benny Medina, Will Ferrell and Adam McKay.
Faith-based filmmaker, minister and best-selling author DeVon Franklin is currently working on a biopic about Grammy-winning gospel music superstar Kirk Franklin.
According to DEADLINE, Sony Pictures is behind the untitled project (I think it should be called “Imagine Me” but I digress) and will follow his humble beginnings all the way to his meteoric rise to fame as the face of gospel music and the demons he battled along the way. It is being written by Brian Ivie.
Franklin released his first album in 1993 titled Kirk Franklin & The Family and forever changed the sound of gospel and inspirational music. He has collaborated with some of the biggest names in R&B and Pop music from Bono to Mary J. Blige.
He is currently promoting his new album Long Live Love and is the host of BET’s hugely popular gospel music competition series Sunday Best. He is also the first artist in history to top all five Billboard gospel charts at one time.
Catch Franklin this Friday, July 19 at Atlanta’s Symphony Hall with Koryn Hawthorne (“Won’t He Do It”) at 8 p.m. Click here for more information.
Side Note: I think KEVIN HART would be an amazing Kirk Franklin in this project. I believe the role would challenge him as a dramatic actor and I believe he can capture the essence of Kirk.
CONGRATULATIONS goes out to Ava DuVernay‘s epic Netflix drama When They See Us. The film about the “Central Park Five” (now referred to as the Exonerated Five) received 16 Emmy nominations today including two for her in the categories of “Outstanding Directing” and “Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series” along with co-writer Michael Starburry.
When They See Us actors Jharrel Jerome, Asante Blackk, Niecy Nash, Michael K. Williams, Aunjanue Ellis, Vera Farmiga and Marsha Stephanie Blake were also nominated for their roles.
Other Emmy nominees include POSE star Billy Porter, This Is Us stars Sterling K. Brown and Ron Cephas Jones, Glynn Turman and Viola Davis for How to Get Away with Murder, Black-ish lead Anthony Anderson, Giancarlo Esposito, Lavern Cox and Maya Rudolph.
Veteran actresses Phylicia Rashad and Cicely Tyson were also nominated and as well as Don Cheadle and Mahershala Ali.
Iconic drag superstar RuPaul picked up nods for “Outstanding Host for Reality” and “Outstanding Reality Program” for RuPaul’s Drag Race.
Beyoncé’s Homecoming and Wanda SykesNot Normal both picked up nominations for “Outstanding Variety Special.”
The 71st Primetime Emmy Awards will air Sept. 22 at 8:00 p.m. and will take place at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, CA.
See the nominees and full list below:
Outstanding Drama Series
Game of Thrones (HBO)
Killing Eve (AMC/BBC America)
Better Call Saul (AMC)
This Is Us (NBC)
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Emilia Clarke, Game of Thrones
Jodie Comer, Killing Eve
Viola Davis, How To Get Away With Murder
Laura Linney, Ozark
Mandy Moore, This Is Us
Sandra Oh, Killing Eve
Robin Wright, House of Cards
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Jason Bateman, Ozark
Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul
Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us
Kit Harington, Game of Thrones
Billy Porter, Pose
Milo Ventimiglia, This Is Us
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones
Jonathan Banks, Better Call Saul
Giancarlo Esposito, Better Call Saul
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Game of Thrones
Alfie Allen, Game of Thrones
Michael Kelly, House of Cards
Chris Sullivan, This Is Us
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Lena Headey, Game of Thrones
Maisie Williams, Game of Thrones
Sophie Turner, Game of Thrones
Gwendoline Christie, Game of Thrones
Fiona Shaw, Killing Eve
Julia Garner, Ozark
Outstanding Comedy Series
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon Prime)
The Good Place (NBC)
Fleabag (Amazon Prime)
Russian Doll (Netflix)
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Christina Applegate, Dead to Me
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Natasha Lyonne, Russian Doll
Catherine O’Hara, Schitt’s Creek
Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Fleabag
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Don Cheadle, Black Monday
Bill Hader, Barry
Michael Douglas, The Kominsky Method
Ted Danson, The Good Place
Anthony Anderson, Black-ish
Eugene Levy, Schitt’s Creek
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Henry Winkler, Barry
Stephen Root, Barry
Anthony Carrigan, Barry
Tony Shalhoub, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Alan Arkin, The Kominsky Method
Tony Hale, Veep
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Sarah Goldberg, Barry
Sian Clifford, Fleabag
Olivia Colman, Fleabag
Betty Gilpin, GLOW
Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night Live
Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Marin Hinkle, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Anna Chlumsky, Veep
Outstanding Limited Series
Escape at Dannemora (Showtime)
When They See Us (Netflix)
Sharp Objects (HBO)
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie
Mahershala Ali, True Detective
Benicio Del Toro, Escape at Dannemora
Hugh Grant, A Very English Scandal
Jared Harris, Chernobyl
Jharrel Jerome, When They See Us
Sam Rockwell, Fosse/Verdon
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie
Amy Adams, Sharp Objects
Patricia Arquette, Escape at Dannemora
Aunjanue Ellis, When They See Us
Joey King, The Act
Michelle Williams, Fosse/Verdon
Niecy Nash, When They See Us
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series
Emily Watson, Chernobyl
Margaret Qualley, Fosse/Verdon
Patricia Arquette, The Act
Patricia Clarkson, Sharp Objects
Vera Farmiga, When They See Us
Marsha Stephanie Blake, When They See Us
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series
Ben Whishaw, A Very English Scandal
Stellan Skarsgard, Chernobyl
Paul Dano, Escape at Dannemora
John Leguizamo, When They See Us
Asante Blackk, When They See Us
Michael K. Williams, When They See Us
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series
Michael McKean, Better Call Saul
Glynn Turman, How To Get Away With Murder
Bradley Whitford, The Handmaid’s Tale
Kumail Nanjiani, The Twilight Zone
Michael Angarano, This Is Us
Ron Cephas Jones, This Is Us
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series
Jessica Lange, American Horror Story: Apocalypse
Carice van Houten, Game of Thrones
Cicely Tyson, How To Get Away With Murder
Laverne Cox, Orange Is the New Black
Cherry Jones, The Handmaid’s Tale
Phylicia Rashad, This Is Us
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series
Matt Damon, Saturday Night Live
John Mulaney, Saturday Night Live
Robert De Niro, Saturday Night Live
Adam Sandler, Saturday Night Live
Peter MacNichol, Veep
Luke Kirby, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Rufus Sewell, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series
Fiona Shaw, Fleabag
Kristin Scott Thomas, Fleabag
Sandra Oh, Saturday Night Live
Emma Thompson, Saturday Night Live
Maya Rudolph, The Good Place
Jane Lynch, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Outstanding TV Movie
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch (Netflix)
Deadwood: The Movie (HBO)
King Lear (Amazon Prime)
My Dinner with Herve (HBO)
Outstanding Variety Talk Series
Full Frontal with Samantha Bee (TBS)
Jimmy Kimmel Live (ABC)
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)
The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (Comedy Central)
Late Late Show with James Corden (CBS)
Late Show with Stephen Colbert (CBS)
Outstanding Variety Sketch Series
At Home with Amy Sedaris (Tru TV)
Documentary Now (IFC)
Drunk History (Comedy Central)
I Love You, America (Hulu)
Saturday Night Live (NBC)
Who Is America (Showtime)
Outstanding Variety Special (Pre-Recorded)
Carpool Karaoke: When Corden Met McCartney Live From Liverpool (CBS)
Springsteen on Broadway (Netflix)
Homecoming: A Film by Beyonce (Netflix)
Hannah Gadsby: Nanette (Netflix)
Wanda Sykes: Not Normal (Netflix)
Outstanding Variety Special Live
72nd Annual Tony Awards (CBS)
Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear’s ‘All in the Family’ and ‘The Jeffersons’(ABC)
Rent: Live (Fox)
The Oscars (ABC)
The 76th Annual Golden Globe Awards (NBC)
The 61st Grammy Awards (CBS)
Outstanding Informational Series or Special
Surviving R. Kelly (Lifetime)
Anthony Bourdain Parts Unknown (CNN)
Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath (A&E)
My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman (Netflix)
Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee (Netflix)
Outstanding Reality-Competition Program
RuPaul’s Drag Race (VH1)
The Voice (NBC)
The Amazing Race (CBS)
Top Chef (Bravo)
American Ninja Warrior (NBC)
Nailed It (Netflix)
Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program
RuPaul Charles, RuPaul’s Drag Race
Ellen DeGeneres, Ellen’s Game of Games
Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman, Making It
James Corden, The World’s Best
Marie Kondo, Tidying Up
Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series:
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss — “Game of Thrones” (HBO) David Nutter — “Game of Thrones” (HBO) Miguel Sapochnik — “Game of Thrones” (HBO) Lisa Bruhlmann — “Killing Eve” (BBC) Jason Bateman — “Ozark” (Netflix) Adam McKay — “Succession” (HBO) Daina Reid — “The Handmaid’s Tale” (Hulu
Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series:
Peter Gould and Thomas Schnauz — “Better Call Saul” (AMC) Jed Mercurio — “Bodyguard” (Netflix) David Benioff and D.B. Weiss — “Game of Thrones” (HBO) Emerald Fennell — “Killing Eve” (BBC) Jesse Armstrong — “Succession” (HBO) Bruce Miller and Kira Snyder — “The Handmaid’s Tale” (Hulu)
Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special:
Russell T. Davies — “A Very English Scandal” (BBC) Craig Mazin — “Chernobyl” (HBO) Brett Johnson and Michael Tolkin — “Escape At Dannemora” (Showtime) Brett Johnson, Michael Tolkin and Jerry Stahl — “Escape At Dannemora” (Showtime) Steven Levenson and Joel Fields — “Fosse/Verdon” (FX) Ava DuVernay and Michael Starrbury — “When They See Us” (Netflix)
Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series:
“Documentary Now!” (IFC) “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee” (TBS) “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” (HBO) “Late Night with Seth Meyers” (NBC) “Saturday Night Live” (NBC) “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” (CBS)
Outstanding Choreography for Variety or Reality Programming:
Travis Wall — “So You Think You Can Dance” (Fox) Luther Brown — “So You Think You Can Dance” (Fox) Suresh Mukund — “World of Dance” (NBC) Karen Forcano and Ricardo Vega — “World of Dance” (NBC) Tessandra Chavez — “World of Dance” (NBC) Melvin “Timtim” Rogador — “World of Dance” (NBC)
Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie or Dramatic Special:
Stephen Frears — “A Very English Scandal” (BBC) Johan Renck — “Chernobyl” (HBO) Ben Stiller — “Escape at Dannemora” (Showtime) Thomas Kail — “Fosse/Verdon” (FX) Jessica Yu — “Fosse/Verdon” (FX) Ava DuVernay — “When They See Us” (Netflix)
Outstanding Directing for a Reality Program:
Patrick McManus — “American Ninja Warrior” (NBC) Hisham Abed — “Queer Eye” (Netflix) Nick Murray — “RuPaul’s Drag Race” (VH1) Ken Fuchs — “Shark Tank” (ABC) Bertram van Munster — “The Amazing Race” (CBS)
Outstanding Directing for a Variety Series:
Alex Buono and Rhys Thomas — “Documentary Now!” (IFC) Derek Waters — “Drunk History” (Comedy Central) Paul Pennolino — “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” (HBO) Don Roy King — “Saturday Night Live” (NBC) Jim Hoskinson — “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” (CBS) Sacha Baron Cohen, Nathan Fielder, Daniel Gray Longino and Dan Mazer — “Who Is America?” (Showtime)
Outstanding Directing for a Variety Special:
Ben Winston — “Carpool Karaoke: When Corden Met McCartney Live From Liverpool” (CBS) (Netflix) James Burrows and Andy Fisher— “Live In Front Of A Studio Audience: Norman Lear’s ‘All In The Family’ And ‘The Jeffersons’“ Thom Zimny — “Springsteen On Broadway” (Netflix) Glenn Weiss — “The Oscars” (ABC)
Outstanding Directing for a Documentary / Nonfiction Program:
Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin — “Free Solo” (National Geographic) Chris Smith — “FYRE: The Greatest Party That Never Happened” (Netflix) Dan Reed — “Leaving Neverland” (HBO) Julie Cohen and Betsy West — “RBG” (CNN) Tim Wardle — “Three Identical Strangers” (CNN)
The stars aligned Tuesday night in Hollywood, CA for the World Premiere of Disney’s new version of the The Lion King. The lavish event was held at the Dolby Theatre with lots of fanfare.
Super talents Donald Glover, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter, Seth Rogen, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Alfre Woodard were in attendance for the dazzling extravaganza. Other stars to grace the red carpet included Billy Eichner, John Kani, Florence Kasumba, Eric André, Keegan-Michael Key, JD McCrary, Shahadi Wright Joseph and Chance the Rapper.
The Lion King tells the story of Simba, a young lion who is to succeed his father, Mufasa, as King of the Pride Lands; however, after Simba’s uncle Scar murders Mufasa, Simba is manipulated into thinking he was responsible and flees into exile. Upon maturation living with two wastrels, Simba is given some valuable perspective from his childhood friend, Nala, and his shaman, Rafiki, before returning to challenge Scar to end his tyranny and take his place in the Circle of Life as the rightful King.
In addition to the premiere, Queen Bey released a new single from the film’s highly anticipated soundtrack titled “Spirit.” Check that out and all of the red carpet pics below:
Oscar-winning actress Regina King will make her directorial debut with a film version of the play One Night In Miami.
The story chronicles the night R&B soul singer Sam Cooke got together with NFL icon and film legend Jim Brown, Civil Rights icon Malcolm X and rising boxer extraordinaire Cassius Clay aka Muhammad Ali.
Set on the night of February 25, 1964, the story follows a young Cassius Clay as he emerges from the Miami Beach Convention Center as the World Heavyweight Boxing Champion. Against all odds, he’s defeated Sonny Liston and shocked the world of boxing. While crowds of people swarm Miami Beach’s hotspots to celebrate the match, Clay — unable to stay on the island because of Jim Crow-era segregation laws — spends the night at the Hampton House Motel in Miami’s Overtown neighborhood celebrating with three of his friends: activist Malcolm X, singer Sam Cooke and football star Jim Brown. The next morning, the men emerge determined to define a new world. In One Night in Miami, Powers aims to pinpoint exactly what happened during those pivotal hours. Featuring the music of Cooke, including his hit song, “A Change Is Gonna Come,” the film offers a piercing narrative for the evening, which challenges the four men, strips them bare and reveals them for who they were.
One Night In Miami will be produced by Snoot Entertainment’s Keith Calder and Jess Wu Calder.
I first heard about Cooke’s relationship with these icons during the Netflix documentary, The Two Killings of Sam Cooke, which aired earlier this year.
RC will keep you posted as this project continues to develop.
HBO has released the trailer for Robin Thede and Issa Rae‘s A Black Lady Sketch Show and I can’t wait!
It premieres on August 2 at 11 p.m. and features a narrative series full of dynamic, hilarious characters and celebrity guests. The show presents sketches performed by a core cast of black women, including Thede, Ashley Nicole Black, Gabrielle Dennis and Quinta Brunson.
Also look for appearances by Angela Bassett, Lena Waithe, Patti LaBelle, Yvonne Orji, Loretta Devine, David Alan Grier, Deon Cole, Khandi Alexander, Marsai Martin, Kelly Rowland and many more.
A Black Lady Sketch Show is considered to be the first sketch comedy written by, directed by and starring Black women.
Check out the trailer for Netflix’s upcoming thriller Secret Obsession. It premieres on July 18.
Newlywed Jennifer (Brenda Song) is brutally attacked at a dark rest stop. While healing from her injuries, she can’t recall anything from her past, including the ordeal. Her husband, Russell (Mike Vogel), is just thankful she’s alive and eager to get her home. As he reintroduces her to their secluded mountain estate, Detective Page (Dennis Haysbert) pursues Jennifer’s assailant — his own daughter went missing and was never found. The same fate now awaits Jennifer, unless someone realizes that her loving caretaker is actually her captor.
Secret Obsession also stars Ashley Scott, Paul Sloan and Daniel Booko.
CONGRATS to Gil Robertson and the African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA). His organization will be recognized with the “We Are Inclusion” Award during The National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP) Media Summit – July 25-28 in Hollywood, CA.
For the past two years, NALIP has put a laser focus on encouraging diversity in Hollywood through its #WeAreInclusion campaign. That work is why NALIP has chosen to honor AAFCA. In a letter, NALIP Executive Director Ben Lopez noted that the honor — to be accepted by Robertson, AAFCA co-founder and CEO — recognizes “the cross-cultural impact [AAFCA] has had on emerging filmmakers of color” as well as Robertson’s visionary leadership to “distribute inspirational content, build an impactful membership, and hold dynamic events advancing diverse creatives.”
The mission of inclusion is a passionate one for AAFCA and Robertson and, in that work, NALIP has also been an ally. “It’s such a privilege to receive this award from NALIP on behalf of AAFCA,” said Robertson. “NALIP’s Executive Director Ben Lopez is a great compatriot and friend to both me and AAFCA overall. Both our organizations share common values in championing greater inclusion in the Hollywood community. AAFCA has partnered with NALIP on many initiatives. AAFCA wholeheartedly believes in the #weareinclusion vision and are proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with NALIP to realize that vision.”
Robertson will accept the award Sunday, July 28, at The Montalbán Theatre, named for pioneering Mexican actor and inclusion advocate Ricardo Montalbán, best known as Mr. Roarke from Fantasy Island, whose career spanned seven decades and included an Emmy and Lifetime Achievement Award from the Screen Actors Guild.