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OWN hosts ‘Cherish The Day’ Launch Party [PHOTOS]

All eyes were on the A-T-L Thursday night for OWN’s swanky launch party for its newest dramatic series, Cherish the Day. The highly anticipated two-night premiere begins on February 11.

The invite-only soiree took place at the Stave Room in the Midtown district of the city and was hosted by OWN president and CEO Tina Perry along with the show’s creator and executive producer Ava DuVernay.

Chapter One of the “anthology series” chronicles the stirring relationship of the two star-crossed lovers, with each episode spanning a single day. The narrative will unfold to reveal significant moments in their relationship that compel us to hold true to the ones we love.

Cherish the Day cast members in attendance included the show’s leads—Alano Miller and Xosha Roquemore as well as Kellee Stewart, Michael Beach and Anne-Marie Johnson. Not present but also included in the show are Dorien Wilson, Loren Lott, Bryan Terrell Clark and the queen mum—CICELY TYSON.

Other notables in attendance included the hosts of TV One’s Sister CircleRashan Ali, Syleena Johnson and Trina Braxton plus actresses DeWanda Wise, Jasmine Guy and Terri J. Vaughn. Other famous faces spotted in the crowd were actors Joel Rush, Karon Riley, André Holland, Omar Dorsey, celebrity makeup artist Derrick Rutledge and Exonerated Five member Raymond Santana and his fiancé Delicious.

The evening included a sneak peek of three different scenes along with commentary and a Q&A session featuring the cast and DuVernay. We also listened to some dope sounds from DJ Princess Cut and enjoyed some refreshing cocktails, food and much more.

See the picture gallery below including a few of my selfies:

CHERISH THE DAY premieres on February 11 and 12 on OWN.

Photo Credits: Paras Griffin Getty Images/ OWN + RayCornelius.com

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Greenleaf’s Merle Dandridge to star in ‘Once On This Island’

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

“Greenleaf” actress Merle Dandridge is returning to her Broadway roots this fall in a new production of the Tony-winning musical, “Once On This Island.” The show play the Circle in the Square Theatre beginning with previews this November.

“Once On This Island” is being described as “a musical celebration that sweeps us across the sea to a small village-where, in the aftermath of a great storm, a joyous new life begins. It is the tale of Ti Moune, a fearless peasant girl who falls in love with a wealthy boy from the other side of the island. When their divided cultures threaten to keep them apart, Ti Moune, guided by the island gods, sets out on a remarkable quest to reunite with the man who has captured her heart.”

According to BroadwayWorld, Dandridge will star alongside my fellow USF alumni Quentin Darrington, Alex Newell and Tony Award winner Lea Salonga. The show also features former “American Idol” contestant and CAU alumnae, Loren Lott.

“Once On This Island” will be directed by Tony nominee Michael Arden and is choreographed by Camille A. Brown.

Dandridge has appeared on stage in several productions of “Aida,” “Rent,” “Tarzan,” “Monty Python’s Spamalot,” “Ain’t Misbehavin” and “Smokey Joe’s Cafe.”

Click here for tickets!

Photo Credits: BroadwayWorld.com and OnceOnThisIsland.com

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RC Exclusive - Ent Recap

Fox hosts Special Atlanta Screening of #ShotsFired [PHOTOS]

Written by | Ray Cornelius 

Fox recently held an Atlanta screening of its upcoming series #ShotsFired and boy did it have people talking! The invitation only event was held at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights and featured the one-hour viewing along with a post talk back discussion with the series’ co-creator Reggie Rock Bythewood and cast members DeWanda Wise and Jill Hennessy. It was moderated by multi-media personality and HGTV star Egypt Sherrod.

#ShotsFired is a 10-part series airing March 22 and follows two out-of-town Black prosecutors who are brought in to investigate the murder of a white teenager by a Black cop. However, things are not what they seem and the two must keep their personal bias and suspicions to themselves to seek the truth.  It features Sanaa Lathan (like you’ve never seen her before) as Ashe Akino, a rough and tough investigator who is searching for answers alongside her very young boss and special prosecutor,  Preston Terry played by “Race” star Stephan James.

#ShotsFired also includes iconic TV and film actors Helen Hunt as North Carolina Governor Patricia Eamons and well as “Underground” actress Aisha Hinds as Pastor Janea James. Versatile actor Tristan “Mack” Wilds plays Deputy Josh Beck, who is under investigation while Wise and Hennessey play the mother’s of the two slain teenagers, who are interestingly connected.

According to Bythewood, he and his wife Gina Prince-Bythewood created #ShotsFired after the death of Trayvon Martin.  “This is like a mission’s statement because it let’s you know that were not playing here and that this is for real. Yes, were entertaining. We got hip hop music. We sorta got somewhat of a mystery going on but it’s real here,” said Bythewood during the post talk back.

Both Wise and Hennessy talked about preparing for their roles as grieving mothers of sons shot by police officers. They also talked about the irony of how many of their scenes were often taped at the same time real life situations were being playing out around the country involving unarmed African-American men and white police officers.

“What’s amazing about releasing this show right now is that we’re at a point where we’re prime for readiness. We’ve been taking our democracy for granted and this last election was like a serious wake-up call.  I feel like this show is fuel for the fire and I am really excited to see what it’s going to ignite,” said Wise.

#ShotsFired debuts on Fox March 22. See more photos below from the red carpet including shots of Atlanta celebrities Dionne Farris, Da Brat, Joseline Hernandez, Crystal Fox, April Parker Jones and more!

Singer-songwriter Dionne Farris  has a song that

will be featured in a future episode of #ShotsFired

Hip hop icon Da Brat with her new artist Cornbread

LHHATL’s Joseline Heranadez

Rapper Billy Bang will have music featured in an episode of #ShotsFired

#ShotsFired actress Jill Hennessy

Former American Idol contestant Loren Lott

#ShotsFired actress DeWanda Wise

Triple threat performer D. Woods 

If Loving You is Wrong actress April Parker Jones striking a pose!

The Haves and the Have Nots star Crystal Fox 

Celebrity Stylist Gocha Hawkins 

Egypt Sherrod moderating the panel discussion

Dionne Farris + Reggie Rock Bythewood 

Egypt Sherrod, Reggie Rock Bythewood and Jasmine Burke 

Dionne Farris with 135th Street’s Saptosa Foster +  Shante Bacon

Ray Cornelius + Underground star Alano Miller 

Photo Credits: RayCornelius.com + FOX

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RC Exclusive - Ent

‘Empire’ star Tobias Truvillion hosts ATL Watch Party and more [PHOTOS]

Written by | Ray Cornelius

While many of you were watching the dramatic season finale of “Empire,” I was actually hanging with one of the show’s new stars—Tobias Truvillion. He plays suave music executive and Jamal’s new undercover boo thang D Major on the show.

He was in Atlanta Wednesday night to host a special screening of the show’s season finale at T.I.’s Scales 925 Restaurant and Lounge. In addition to his appearance, Truvillion was also in town promoting his upcoming film, “The Products of the American Ghetto.”

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Tobias Truvillion

According to a casting website, “The Products of the American Ghetto” depicts the life of a young boy, Brian, who wants out but the only images of success that he see’s are the drug dealers around him. Yes he knows about doctors and lawyers, however where he is from he is taught that those are not options that are easily attainable. He’s told by teachers that he can’t go to college, He’s told my adults that,“where you are is where you will be and its your place.” Brian results to joining the drug game to stop his mom from selling her body to take care of him and his siblings. Through this story we see exactly how the kids in these environments get lured into the drug game and how they see it as their only way out.

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Tobias Truvillion with Terayle Hill

The script is based on a book written by Tierre Ford while he served time in a federal prison and features Truvillion along with Robin Givens, Darrin DeWitt Henson, Keith Robinson, Rodney Perry, Momma Dee, Loren Lott, Shamae Morton, Tasia Grant, Terayle Hill, Yung Joc and more!

Check out more photos and the trailer below:

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Tobias Truvillion taking pics with fans

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Tobias Truvillion on screen with Jussie Smollett in “Empire”

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“The Products of the American Ghetto” debuts later on this year

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Tasia Grant stars in “The Products of the American Ghetto”

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Tierre Ford wrote “The Products of the American Ghetto” while serving time

https://youtu.be/WDharq1Tn8I

Photo Credits: RayCornelius.com