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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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‘Scoop on Blogging’ Podcast featuring Ray Cornelius (VIDEO)

Check out my interview with IceCreamConvos.com creator, media maven and dear friend—Xaviera Bryant. I talked to her for the very first Scoop on Blogging Podcast, which is aimed at helping aspiring bloggers and media content creators.

In the video, we chat about the inspiration behind this website, my radio show, UPFRONT Inside Atlanta’s Entertainment Industry and my future plans of content creation for television and films.

We also talk about the current media landscape and some media “do’s and dont’s.”

This is a conversation you don’t want to miss if you’re looking to become a blogger or want a career in media!!!!

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RC talks to Tyler Perry and cast of ‘A Fall from Grace’ (VIDEO)

Check out this past weekend’s edition of UPFRONT Inside Atlanta’s Entertainment Industry. It features Stephanie Heydt from the High Museum of Art, AAFCA’s Ed Adams plus Tyler Perry and the ladies of the Netflix movie, A Fall from Grace: Crystal Fox, Bresha Webb and Phylicia Rashad

Curator Stephanie Heydt stopped by to chat about the High Museum’s current exhibition, Something Over Something Else: Romare Bearden’s Profile Series. The show, which is now in its final weeks, features work from the iconic artist that go back as early as the 1910s all the way to the 1940s and beyond. Stephanie also opens up about an event associated with the exhibition that takes place on 1/25. (Click here for more information). 

Edward Adams from the African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA) is here to chat about this week’s Oscar nominations including snubs and the lack of diversity and inclusion amongst the nominees. 

Closing out the show is my exclusive interview with Tyler Perry and the cast of his new Netflix movie, A Fall from Grace – Crystal Fox, Phylicia Rashad and Bresha Webb. I got a chance to chat with them about their roles and more at the new Tyler Perry Studios.

Listen to the show and watch the full Tyler Perry interview below: 

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#UPFRONT talks to Edward Norton about ‘Motherless Brooklyn’ + more (VIDEO)

Check out my exclusive UPFRONT interview with Academy Award-nominated actor Edward Norton as we discuss his new film Motherless Brooklyn. It features Norton as a lonely private detective afflicted with Tourette’s syndrome who tries to solve the murder of his mentor and only friend. 

Motherless Brooklyn also stars Bruce Willis, Alec Baldwin, Willem Dafoe, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Michael K. Williams.

The soundtrack also features the music of jazz icon Wynton Marsalis

During our conversation, we discussed casting for the film, Norton’s role as star and writer/director and his admiration for Spike Lee.

Motherless Brooklyn is in theaters now. 

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Naomie Harris, Tyrese and more attend ATL Screening of ‘Black and Blue’ (VIDEO)

Check out my UPFRONT coverage from Wednesday night’s Atlanta premiere of Deon Taylor‘s new cop thriller Black and Blue. The screening was held at the historic Plaza Theater in Midtown and was attended by Taylor along with the film’s stars Naomie Harris, Tyrese Gibson, Nafessa Williams and Lucky Johnson.

In Black and Blue, Harris plays a rookie cop who inadvertently captures the murder of a young drug dealer on her body cam. After realizing that the murder was committed by corrupt cops, she teams up with the one person from her community who is willing to help her (Gibson) as she tries to escape both the criminals out for revenge and the police who are desperate to destroy the incriminating footage. Rounding out the Black and Blue cast is Frank GrilloMike ColterReid Scott and Beau Knapp.

Other notables in attendance included Clifton Powell, Cocoa Brown, Brely Evans, Mike Merrill, Marquita Goings, Reece Odom and T.C. Carson.

Black and Blue is in theaters TODAY.

PHOTO CREDITS: Getty Images for Screen Gems

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#UPFRONT talks ‘CrossOver’ episode with ‘One Chicago’ Cast [PHOTOS + AUDIO]

TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT!

NBC’S hit series Chicago Fire, Chicago P.D. and Chicago Med are uniting as “One Chicago” in a major three-hour television event beginning at 8 p.m. EST. The “crossover” episode will feature all three casts as they battle a weaponized, flesh-eating bacteria that has invaded the windy city during a tail-gating party at Soldier Field.

My arts and entertainment show—UPFRONT—was invited to NBC’s One Chicago Press Day last week where I interviewed cast members about tonight’s historic event.

Chicago P.D. star LaRoyce Hawkins talks about his excitement over the episode while Chicago Med stars S. Epatha Merkerson and Oliver Platt talk about the unpredictability of filming such a huge production. Writer and producer Derek Haas also opens up about the creative writing process of a “crossover” episode and working closely with series creator and TV icon Dick Wolf.

In addition to the interviews, I also participated in set demonstrations where I helped save a life from a burning apartment with Chicago Fire, solve a murder mystery with Chicago P.D. and assist in the emergency room with Chicago Med.

Check out UPFRONT below + photos + the exciting “CrossOver” trailer:

PHOTO CREDITS: RAYCORNELIUS.COM

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Jasmine Guy salutes Diahann Carroll on ‘UPFRONT with Ray Cornelius’ (AUDIO)

This weekend’s edition of #UPFRONT is fiyah from start to finish.

It features my interviews with LaRoyce HawkinsS. Epatha Merkerson and more from NBC’s Chicago FireChicago P.D. and Chicago Med in preparation of their three-hour televised “crossover” event airing this Wednesday October 16 at 8 p.m.

#UPFRONT also talks exclusively to A Different World actress Jasmine Guy as she remembers her #TVMom and entertainment icon Diahann Carroll, who passed away last week. She recalls her relationship with the Oscar-nominated actress on and off the screen as well as the valuable lessons she learned from her about being a black women in Hollywood. 

Check out the show below: 

PHOTO CREDIT: TNTRIBUNE.COM

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Ray Cornelius to moderate BLFF Discussion with the stars of ‘ATL Homicide’ (VIDEO)

I am super excited to announce that yours truly—RAY CORNELIUS—will be moderating a panel discussion with the stars of the popular crime and justice series ATL Homicide on Friday, August 23 from 3:30 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. during the BronzeLens Film Festival.

Atlanta homicide detectives David Quinn and Vince Velazquez will be joined by their TV alter egos/actors Angelo Diaz and Christopher Diaz for a lively discussion about their successful careers, the impact of the show and much more.

I got a chance to chat with Quinn and Velazquez during a recent UPFRONT show where we talked about the series, lessons learned and so much more. I am so looking forward to chatting with them again and would love to see your faces in the audience.

Click here to get passes!

PHOTO CREDIT: RayCornelius.com

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Clifton Powell talks Hollywood, Colorism & more with #UPFRONT (VIDEO)

Mark you calendars and join me this Sunday August 4 at 8:30 p.m. EST on CAU-TV (Comcast 23 Atlanta) for my exclusive one-on-one interview with iconic TV and film star Clifton Powell.

He stopped by the show recently to chat about the new season of his hit BOUNCE TV series Saints & Sinners. In addition, Mr. Powell also dishes about the ups and downs of stardom, being black in Hollywood, colorism and social media.

We also go down memory lane and chat about his most memorable characters including “Pinky” from the classic film Next Friday.

Check out a sneak peek below:

Photo Credit: RayCornelius.com

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RC attends ATL Screening of ‘The Redemption Project with Van Jones’ (VIDEO)

Written by | Ray Cornelius

I had the distinct pleasure recently of attending the screening of CNN commentator Van Jones riveted new series The Redemption Project with Van Jones.

The event was held at the historic Martin Luther King Jr. Center in the Auburn Avenue district of Atlanta and was attended by Jones and the three remaining King siblings – Bernice King, Martin Luther King III and Dexter King.

The Redemption Project with Van Jones offers a rare glimpse into the restorative justice process, each episode follows the victim, or surviving family members, of a life-altering crime as they journey to meet face-to-face with their offender in the hopes of finding answers or some sense of healing. 

Van Jones serves as a guide for the viewer throughout this transformational experience. Through unique access to the U.S. prison system, this powerful series explores the human potential for redemption.

The show was created and executive produced by Jonas Bell Pasht and Jonah Bekhor of Citizen Jones and Academy-Award®-nominated director Jason Cohen.

In addition the screening, the event featured a post panel discussion with Bernice along with Angela Stanton-King of the American King Foundation and activists Pamela Winn and Ricky Brown.

Click here to watch the trailer and check out my conversation with Van, Martin, Angela plus actor T.C. Carson and gospel music icon Ricky Dillard below:

Photo Credits: RayCornelius.com + CNN

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#UPFRONT featuring Russell Hornsby, Deborah Riley Draper, Terri J. Vaughn and more (AUDIO)

Written by | Ray Cornelius

Just in case you missed them, here are my UPFRONT shows from the last three weeks!

It features my one-on-one interviews with TV and stage actor Russell Hornsby; filmmaker, producer and director Deborah Riley Draper; ASPIRE TV’s General Manager Melissa Ingram; the cast of the stage play She Married the Ring and Forgot the Man; actress, producer and director Terri J. Vaughn; media maven April Love and some commentary from my blogger boo Yalanda Lattimore.

UPFRONT airs every Saturday morning at 9 a.m. on Jazz 91.9 WCLK and online at WCLK.com.

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Watch my UPFRONT ‘Ailey 60 Special’ featuring Judith Jamison (VIDEO)

Written by | Ray Cornelius

The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre is in town this weekend at the fabulous Fox Theatre and I got a chance to catch up with the company’s former artistic director Ms. Judith Jamison.

We talked about their 60th Anniversary celebration as well as the company’s new works Lazarus and Members Don’t Get Weary.We also go down memory lane and talk about her signature performance Cry and her time on Broadway in Sophisticated Ladies.

I also talk to the interim CEO of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights—Brian Tolleson—regarding Mr. Ailey as an LGBTQ advocate and human rights activist. 

Click here for tickets and more information. 

Photo Credit: RayCornelius.com

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#UPFRONT featuring Brely Evans, Christopher R. Wilson and Shelbia Jackson (AUDIO)

Written by | Ray Cornelius

Check out this past weekend’s edition of UPFRONT Inside Atlanta’s Entertainment Industry. It features my one-on-one interviews with actress-singer-director Brely Evans, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre performer Christoper R. Wilson and Shelbia Jackson, Executive Director of the DeKalb Entertainment Commission. 

UPFRONT Inside Atlanta’s Entertainment Industry is produced by Atlanta’s Jazz Station – WCLK 91.9.   It airs every Saturday morning at 9 a.m. and is hosted by yours truly, Ray Cornelius. 

Ray Cornelius with Ailey dancer Christopher R. Wilson

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#UPFRONT with Pay or Wait’s Sharronda Williams (AUDIO)

Written by | Ray Cornelius

Check out this past weekend’s edition of UPFRONT Inside Atlanta’s Entertainment Industry.

I go to the movies with film critic and “girl about town” Sharronda Williams of Pay or Wait. We discuss films that are currently at the box office like Green BookWidowsCreed II and movies to come like If Beale Street Could TalkThe Best of Enemies and The Lion King.

Pay or Wait is a series of YouTube videos featuring Williams’ commentary about films and whether consumers should pay their money or wait to see it on DVD. 

UPFRONT airs every Saturday morning at 9 a.m. on Atlanta’s Jazz Station—WCLK 91.9—and is hosted by yours truly Ray Cornelius

Photo Credit: RayCornelius.com