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RC Exclusive - Ent

First Look at Tom Hanks as Mr. Rogers in Untitled Project

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Check out a first look image of Two-time Oscar®-winner Tom Hanks as Mr. Rogers in an upcoming film about his real-life friendship with journalist Tom Junod.

After a jaded magazine writer (Emmy winner Matthew Rhys) is assigned a profile of Fred Rogers, he overcomes his skepticism, learning about empathy, kindness, and decency from America’s most beloved neighbor. The untitled project also includes This is Us actress Susan Kelechi Watson and Chris Cooper.

The film is written by Noah Harpster and Micah Fitzerman-Blue and is directed by Marielle Heller. It arrives in theaters October 2019.

I don’t know about you but this image screams “Oscar Winner” already!!!

Tell us what you think!

Photo Credit: Sony Pictures

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RC Exclusive - Ent

“Take the Stage” to air on 1/12 at 9 p.m. EST on ABC

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

Common, Oprah Winfrey, Quincy Jones, Stevie Wonder, Fantasia, Will and Jada Pinkett-Smith and Angela Bassett are just a few of the big names who will appear on this week’s ABC telecast of “Taking the Stage: African American Music and Stories That Changed America.” It airs on Thursday, January 12 beginning at 9 p.m. EST.

The two-hour program, presented by The Smithsonian’s new National Museum of African American History and Culture, will spotlight the contributions African-Americans have made to the global landscape and will focus on music, dance and spoken word. The show will also feature film footage of iconic items from the museum’s collections – items ranging from a plane used to train the famed Tuskegee airmen for World War II combat duty, to a bible owned by Nat Turner.

Other celebrities participating include Dave Chappelle, Chuck D., Doug E. Fresh, Savion Glover, Tom Hanks, Samuel L. Jackson, Rashida Jones, Elijah Kelley, Janelle Monáe, Octavia Spencer, Chris Tucker, Jesse Williams, Patti Austin, Christina Aguilera, Alvin Ailey dancers, Jon Batiste, Shirley Caesar, Chloe x Halle, Gary Clark Jr., Cynthia Erivo, Jamie Foxx, Robert Glasper, Dave Grohl with Trouble Funk, Herbie Hancock, Gladys Knight, John Legend, Mary J. Blige, Mary Mary, Donnie McClurkin, NeYo and Usher.

The special was filmed on September 23 at Washington’s John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts.

Will you be watching?

Photo Credit: RayCornelius.com

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RC Exclusive - Ent

Watch Tom Hanks, Viola Davis, Taraji P. Henson & Ryan Reynolds interview each other for ‘VARIETY’ (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

VARIETY has released several new videos featuring acclaimed entertainers—Tom Hanks, Viola Davis, Taraji P. Henson and Ryan Reynolds—for its “Actors on Actors” series.

Each year the publication produces these up-close and personal conversations that have become quite popular amongst its followers and subscribers. The actor’s discussions can sometimes range from how they got started in the business to awkward sex scenes to their very personal connections to the characters they play.  Check out Hanks and Davis below where she talks candidly about her sexualized character ‘Annalise Keating’ on ABC’s hit series “How To Get Away with Murder.”

“I saw that role as an opportunity for something that was way bigger than doing good work. I saw it as an opportunity for a dark-skinned actress of 50 to be in a role that is sexualized, not sexy — there is a difference between sexualized and sexy,” Davis said to Hanks. “I saw it as an opportunity, a blank palate, or canvas, to put my mark on.”

Click here to see Taraji P. Henson chat with Ryan Reynolds.

Photo Credits: VARIETY

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Recap

Diana Ross, Cicely Tyson & others receive ‘Medal of Freedom’ (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

CONGRATS to legends Diana Ross, Cicely Tyson, Michael Jordan and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. All four of them received the coveted Presidential Medal of Freedom this afternoon during a ceremony at the White House. President Barack Obama awarded the quartet along with other fellow entertainers Bruce Springsteen, Robert Dinero, Ellen DeGeneresTom Hanks, Robert Redford and 12 others.

The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the highest award a U.S. Citizen can receive and recognizes those individuals who have made “an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural or other significant public or private endeavors”.

This is not the first time Ross and Tyson have been recognized for their amazing talents at the same time. The iconic film stars were both nominees in the “Best Actress” category during the 1973 Academy Awards. Ross for her portrayal of jazz legend Billie Holiday in “Lady Sings the Blues” and Tyson for her role as Rebecca Morgan in the film adaptation of the children’s book, “Sounder.” They both lost to Liza Minnelli for her role in “Cabaret.”

Past “Medal of Freedom” recipients include Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, B.B. King, Oprah Winfrey and Sidney Poitier.

Check out the full ceremony below:

Photo Credit: Instagram

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Recap Respect

Al Green, Tom Hanks, Sting & others to be recognized at Kennedy Center Honors

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

The Kennedy Center Honors announced Thursday (September 4) all of the recipients for this year’s award ceremony. The star-studded event, which will be hosted by President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, airs on December 7 at 9 p.m. on CBS.

The year’s honorees include R&B legend, Al Green; Oscar-winning actor, Tom Hanks; comedian, actress and activist, Lily Tomlin; global music icon, Sting; and world-renowned ballerina, Patricia McBride. The show will also feature performances and appearances by big name stars from music, television/film and the arts who will salute the honorees.

“The Kennedy Center celebrates five extraordinary individuals who have spent their lives elevating the cultural vibrancy of our nation and the world,”  said Kennedy Center chairman David M. Rubenstein. “Al Green’s iconic voice stirs our souls in a style that is all his own; Tom Hanks has a versatility that ranks him among the greatest actors of any generation; one of the world’s greatest ballerinas, Patricia McBride continues to carry forward her legacy for future generations; Sting’s unique voice and memorable songwriting have entertained audiences for decades; and from the days of her early television and theatrical appearances, Lily Tomlin has made us laugh and continues to amaze us with her acting talent and quick wit.”

Congrats!

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Photo Credit: amazon.com

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Recap

Cicely Tyson, Billy Porter, Patina Miller and Courtney B. Vance win big at The Tony Awards

Patina Miller, Cicely Tyson and Billy Porter 2013 Tony Winners/Photography Credit: Getty Images 

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

Last night’s Tony Awards was a definitive moment for African-American actors everywhere as 4 out of 10 nominees took home the coveted silver medallion. Veteran actress, Cicely Tyson won her first Tony award ever for her role as Carrie Watts in the play, A Trip to Bountiful.  After a 30-year absence from the Broadway stage, Tyson is one-for-one, first time nominee and win.

cicely-tyson-courtney-b-vance-tonys.jpg23Kinky Boots  star Billy Porter is also one-for-one, as he walked away with the award for “Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical.” Porter, who stars as the larger-than-life drag queen Lola, quoted William Shakespeare during his acceptance speech. Porter also recounted the 1982 Dreamgirls’ Tony performance  as the moment that inspired him to become an actor.

Pippin  actress Patina Miller grabbed the award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical. This was Miller’s second Tony-nomination and first win. She was previously nominated for her role as Deloris Van Cartier in Sister Act: The Musical.

Television and film actor Courtney B. Vance (left) also won for Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play for Lucky Guy. Vance, who stars as alongside Tom Hanks, thanked his co-star and the show’s director and fellow nominee George C. Wolfe. Vance also thanked his wife Angela Bassett, and dedicated the award to his mother saying, “Mommy, this one’s for you.”

Not since 1982, has there been a year where four African-American actors won Tony Awards. That year included Jennifer Holliday, Cleavant Derricks and Ben Harvey who were recognized for their performances in Dreamgirls  and Zakes Mokae for his role in Master Harold…and the Boys.

Other highlights of the evening included Audra McDonald as the evening’s first presenter, Cyndi Lauper’s emotional win for scoring the musical, Kinky Boots, the cast of Motown: The Musical performing to “Dancing in the Streets” and Mike Tyson attempting  to sing and dance during the show opener with host Neil Patrick Harris.

Click here to see a full list of nominees and winners from last night.

What was your favorite moment from the Tony Awards?

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