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Watch the Trailer for TV One’s ‘Three’s Complicated’ (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

Check out the trailer for TV One’s upcoming original movie Three’s Complicated. It premieres on Sunday, January 13, 2019 at 7 p.m. with encores at 9 p.m. and 11 p.m.

The project is executive produced by Shanola Hampton, who stars as the film’s central character Deja, a 42-year-old divorcee who ends up in a precarious dating scenario with a younger man who may also be hooking up with her college-aged daughter.  Also starring Tyler Lepley, Kyanna Simone Simpson and Charles Malik Whitfield, the film chronicles Deja’s complicated love story and takes a humorous look at a so-called dating taboo: romantic liaisons between older women and younger men.

It all begins when Deja is passed over at work and decides on a night out at the bar to drown her sorrows. She ends up having a weekend fling with Sonny (Lepley), a young, attractive man ten years her junior.  Deja moves on, but discovers that her daughter Eleni (Simpson) knows Sonny from school and has serious romantic designs on the handsome teacher’s assistant.  Deja is struggling to control her attraction and protect her daughter’s heart, when her ex-husband Craig (Whitfield) complicates things even further: he re-enters the picture seeking a reconciliation. Conflicted and uncertain, Deja finds herself in a complex love triangle that brings her to the brink of heartbreak or new beginnings.

“It was such a pleasure working with TV One and Swirl Films for my first time as an Executive Producer,” said Hampton. “This was such a special experience with an amazing cast and crew!”

“Shanola really leaned into this character and brought such an authentic and lovable character to life.  It’s truly a wonderful romantic comedy with all of the fun misunderstandings and mayhem to keep the audience on the edge of their seats” said Tia A. Smith, TV One’s Executive Producer in Charge of Production for Three’s Complicated.

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‘The Haves and the Have Nots,’ ‘If Loving You is Wrong’ + ‘The Paynes’ casts host Meet & Greet [PHOTOS]

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Cast members from Tyler Perry‘s hit series “The Haves and the Have Nots,” “If Loving You is Wrong” and “The Paynes” hosted the ultimate fan experience Tuesday in Harlem, NY to promote the shows’ new season which began this week on OWN. The event was co-presented by the network and the iconic radio station—WBLS.

The event included sneak peeks of “If Loving You is Wrong” and “The Paynes” and a full episode screening of “The Haves and the Have Nots.” WBLS midday personality Shaila Scott moderated the post-screening Q&A with the cast which was followed by fan photos and a reception.

Talent in attendance included Tika Sumpter, Angela Robinson and Tyler Lepley from “The Haves and the Have Nots; Eltony Williams and April Parker Jones from “If Loving You is Wrong” and Jackée Harry, Cassi Davis and LaVan Davis from “The Paynes.”

An all-new season of “If Loving You is Wrong” premieres tonight on its new day – Wednesday – at 10pm ET/PT on OWN. “The Paynes” premieres Tuesday, January 16 with two back-to-back episodes at 10pm and 10:30pm ET/PT. “The Haves and the Have Nots” airs Tuesdays at 9pm ET/PT on OWN.

See more photos + a recap of the last season of “If Loving You is Wrong” below:

Photo Credits: Bernard Smalls


#UPFRONT attends ESSENCE Festival + Radio Row + Premieres + More

Written by | Ray Cornelius 

It gives me great pleasure to share my amazing coverage of the 2017 ESSENCE Festival. My arts and entertainment radio magazine—UPFRONT—was there to capture all of the sights and sounds of this year’s festivities as part of Radio Row.  My four-day weekend began on Thursday (June 29) with a special meet & greet + reception with the cast of the indie film, “STEP.”

“STEP” is the true-life story of a girls’ high-school step dance team in Baltimore, whose teachers, counselors, coaches and families, help them achieve their dreams of going off to college. It also takes viewers into the personal lives of three of the dancers— Blessin Giraldo, Cori Grainger, Tayla Solomon—and their coach, Gari McIntyre.  The film has received rave reviews and was the winner of the Documentary Special Jury Award for Inspirational Filmmaking at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival.

On Friday (June 30) #UPFRONT began its three day stint on Radio Row. It is one of three areas that celebrity attendees can meet press and conduct interviews. I was truly blessed to have interviewed so many people including cast members from the hugely popular “Orange Is The New Black,” TNT’s new breakout series, “Claws,”  FOX’s “Empire and Star.” I also got a chance to chat with the cast of FX’s “Snowfall” and the new series “The Mayor” and “Ghosted.”

Music divas CeCe Winans, Anita Wilson and Chanté Moore stopped by the table to discuss their new projects. Winans album, Let Them Fall In Love has been killing the gospel charts and is her best work to date. Wilson talked about covering the classic jazz tune “Here’s To Life” for her new album and Moore dished about her album, Rise of the Pheonix and recording her first Christmas CD this fall.

#UPFRONT also chatted with actress and singer Lil Mama (who is going by her real name Niatia) as well as celebrity stylists Mushiya Tshikuka, Razor Chic of Atlanta and Melvin Styles. However, the highlight of Radio Row was talking to New Thought Leader, Life Coach and TV Personality—Iyanla Vanzant. She opened up about her last season + why she continues to participate in the ESSENCE Festival. She also talked about what she has learned personally from doing her award winning show, “Iyanla Fix My Life.”

“What I’ve learned personally is how powerful God is. As Black people were taught, ‘don’t tell your business in the street.’ (LOL) But when there’s a call on someone’s life to serve God, these people are showing up in amazing ways. I’ve also learned how difficult a healing journey can be. People don’t want to suffer. They don’t want to hurt. They don’t want to destroy themselves. But if they don’t have the tools and the information to heal, that’s what they do. I’ve also learned that I don’t have to be ‘on’ all the time. I’m human. I can have my time off…my days off and I don’t have to be who people expect me to be.”

In addition to Radio Row, #UPFRONT was able to attend and capture images from the night time concerts. This year’s ESSENCE Festival theme was all about female empowerment, sisterhood and “staying woke” and the entertainers who performed were true reflections of that. Friday’s show included Rhonda Ross, India.Arie, John Legend and the Queen of Motown—DIANA ROSS.

This was Miss Ross’ first time appearing at the Festival since its inception in 1995 and she didn’t disappoint. Other performances included Jazmine Sullivan, Jill Scott, Chaka Khan, Solange, Monica, Lalah Hathaway, Remy Ma, Xscape, Master P, Chance the Rapper and Mary J. Blige.

Other highlights throughout the weekend included the NOLA premieres of “Girls Trip” featuring Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, Regina Hall and Tiffany Haddish. FX also screened its new drama, “Snowfall” which included appearances by the show’s cast + the creator and award winning director John Singleton. #UPFRONT also captured images of the casts from “Detroit,” OWN’s “Greenleaf” and “Queen Sugar” + Ava DuVernay and the “WOKE Women Awards.”

See all of the rest of the images below and click here to listen to the first of two radio shows featuring exclusive coverage of the ESSENCE Festival:

The Cast of “STEP”

Ray Cornelius on Radio Row

John Singleton and Damson Idris from FX’s “Snowfall”

Ray Cornelius with “Snowfall” actors Isaiah John + Malcolm M. Mays

“Claws” stars Niecy Nash + Karrueche Tran

+ showrunner Janine Sherman Barrois

“Claws” cast with Ray Cornelius + UPFRONT Talent Producer Jess Manning

ESSENCE talking to “Black Panther” actress Letitia Wright 

Ray Cornelius with FANDANGO Correspondent Chris Witherspoon

“She’s Gotta Have It” actress DeWanda Wise 

Ray Cornelius with “Empire” stars Ta’Rhonda Jones and Bryshere Y. Gray 


John Legend 

John Legend

John Legend 


Ray Cornelius watching DIANA ROSS 

Ray Cornelius with the cast of “Detroit” – Jacob Latimore, Nathan Davis Jr., Algee Smith, Ephraim Sykes,  Joseph David-Jones

“The Haves and the Have Nots” Tyler Lepley,

Angela Robinson and Gavin Houston

Ava DuVernay during the “WOKE Women Awards” 

Jazmine Sullivan 

Tank + Angel Love + Angel Saunders

on the red carpet of the “Snowfall” NOLA Premiere

Remy Ma performing with her husband and rapper Papoose

Lalah Hathaway

Ray Cornelius with Iyanla Vanzant 

CeCe Winans talking about her new album, Let Them Fall In Love 

Ray Cornelius with CeCe Winans 

Ray Cornelius with Anita Wilson 

Ray Cornelius greeting “cousin” Chanté Moore

Ray Cornelius with Chanté Moore

Ray Cornelius interviewing Miss Lawrence of “STAR”

Ryan Destiny of “STAR”

Ray Cornelius with Miss Lawrence 

Issa Rae, Kofi Soriboe and Larenz Tate at “Girls Trip” NOLA Premiere

Queen Latifah and Jada Pinkett Smith at “Girls Trip” NOLA Premiere

Ray Cornelius with the cast of “The Mayor” – Brandon Michael Hall, Yvette Nicole Brown and show creator Jeremy Bronson

Ray Cornelius with Nicci Gilbert 

XSCAPE after their Super Lounge performance

Elle Varner


Ray Cornelius with Craig Robinson of “Ghosted”

Ray Cornelius with Melvin Styles and Razor Chic of Atlanta 

Mushiya Tshikuka talking to #UPFRONT

Ava DuVernay with the cast of “Queen Sugar”

Ray Cornelius with “Snowfall” actor Damson Idris 

Chanté Moore with June’s Diary

Ray Cornelius with Common 

Ray Cornelius with Big Freedia 

Shirley Jones of The Jones Girls 

Ray Cornelius with “Insecure” actress Yvonne Orji

Ray Cornelius with Tamika D. Mallory

Ray Cornelius with the fabulous Candace Ledbetter

Ray Cornelius with “Snowfall” actors Isaiah John + Malcolm M. Mays

Common with cast of “Detroit” – Nathan Davis Jr.,

Jacob Latimore and Joseph David-Jones


Photo Credits: RayCornelius and Mark Angel for

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‘The Haves and the Have Nots’ return 6/20 at 9 p.m. (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

My favorite Tuesday night guilty pleasure, “The Haves and the Have Nots” is back! The hugely popular one-hour series returns this summer beginning Tuesday, June 20 at 9 p.m. followed by the season two premiere of “Queen Sugar” at 10 p.m. EST.

Hanna (Crystal R. Fox), the moral conscience, is being tested like never before. Hanna and her son, Benny, (Tyler Lepley) are stripped of everything they have once Candace’s (Tika Sumpter) latest hustle fails miserably. In the premiere episode, Hanna’s family is once again pushed to their limits after Warlock (Jon Chaffin) unleashes his vengeance.

In its most recent season, “The Haves and the Have Nots” averaged over 3 million viewers in Live +3, was Tuesday night’s #1 original cable series for W25-54 and Tuesday night’s #1 original series on all of TV for African-American women and total viewers.

Take a look at the sneak peek below and stay tuned…

Photo Credit: OWN

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TVOne presents ‘Ringside’ starring Tyler Lepley, Sevyn Streeter & more (VIDEO)

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Check out the trailer for Russ Parr‘s TVOne original movie, “Ringside” starring Tyler Lepley, Allen Maldonado, Sevyn Streeter and Jackie Long. It airs this Sunday, Sept. 4 at 7 p.m. EST.

ringside_male_cast“Ringside” follows the biggest fight in boxing history that will take place May 7 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Spencer “Timber” Collier (Maldonado) defends his title against the undefeated Jaxon Hollie (Lepley). “Boxing 365,” the popular documentary series, chronicles the events leading up to the big fight. Jaxon, a college educated boxer, deals with the issue of being his brother (Long) and his sister’s keeper.

Jaxon’s record label is in the red due in part that his only artist is his very untalented little brother, TC (Tequan Richmond). In addition to the backstabbing seedy world of the boxing and recording business, Jaxon’s babysister, Selita (Streeter), a young, naive woman who gets involved with his top heartbreaking producer.

Considering all the distractions of the world of gambling, groupies and drugs, Jaxon falls in love with a freelance photographer (Raney Branch) who may not be who she claims to be. Oddsmakers don’t give Jaxon much of a chance against the much bigger steroid abuser, Spencer Collier. Jaxon Holley eventually figures out that fighting in front of millions is less stressful than all the drama that leads up to the big fight.

“Ringside” also stars Da’Vone McDonald, Julissa Bermudez, Joel Steingold and more. It was produced by Keith Neal and Eric Tomosunas from ATL’s Swirl Films.

Photo Credit:

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ATL Stars attend Opening Night of ‘Blues For An Alabama Sky’ [PHOTOS]

Written by | Ray Cornelius

The opening night of Pearl Cleage’s classic play, “Blues For An Alabama Sky” took place last night at Atlanta’s Aliance Theatre. This is the 20th anniversary of the show, which follows five diverse characters (Angel, LeLand, Guy, Delia and  Sam) scrambling to survive and make sense of their overlapping personalities, politics, and love during the Harlem Renaissance. The production stars “The Haves and the Have Nots” actress Crystal Fox along with actors Neal A Ghant, Tyrone Mitchell Henderson, Tinashe Kajese Bolden and Keith Randolph Smith.


Blues premiered at the Alliance Theatre in 1995 and starred Phylicia Rashad as the lead, Angel. The show was directed by Kenny Leon and Fox was Rashad’s understudy. Fast forward 20 years later and Fox is now getting her time in the spotlight. “The chance to play Angel was too good to pass up,” Fox says, who was able to fit the production in her busy “Have and Have Nots” taping schedule thanks to the help of Tyler Perry. The opportunity was truly a dream come true for the veteran actress.


A number of Atlanta’s top stage actors, singers and media personalities were in attendance to celebrate Fox’s big moment including Tonia Jackson, Donna Brisco, E. Roger Mitchell, Chandra Currelley-Young, Angela Robinson and T.C. Carson. Also in attendance was Fox’s TV family from “The Have and The Have Nots” including Tyler Lepley, Angela Robinson, Gavin Houston, Tika Sumpter, Reneé Lawless and Peter Parros.  The celebration continued at a VIP reception across the street from the Alliance at The Castle.

“Blues for Alabama Sky” runs through May 10 at the Alliance Theatre.  Check out more photos below:


Arts Patrons Leatrice Ellzy and Derrick Doose


Actor Al Thompson/Fashion Stylist and Costume Designer Johnetta Boone


Arts Patrons Camille Russell-Love, Imara Canady, Michael Winn and Keith Bolden


Media Personality, Yalanda “Dryer Buzz” Lattimore


Michael Winn, Tika Sumpter and Chris Walker 


Tyler Lepley waiting for Crystal Fox to come out of her dressing room


Tika Sumpter and her mother with playwright Pearl Cleage


Actors Tyler Lepley, DeEtta West and Gavin Houston


Neal A. Ghant, who plays “Leland” in the show, hugging playwright Pearl Cleage


“This is the biggest night of my life…” says Crystal Fox says as she comes out to greet friends and family


Fox with jazz vocalist and actress Theresa Hightower 


Fox is all smiles with friend and media personality Angela Robinson


Fox taking a selfie with Tika Sumpter and her mother


Actress Donna Brisco congratulating Tinashe Kajese-Bolden, who plays “Delia” in the show

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Actors Gavin Houston, E. Roger Mitchell and Peter Parros 


Keith Randolph Smith, who plays “Sam” in the show, along with actress Reneé Lawless 


Actors Gavin Houston, Chandra Currelley-Young, T.C. Carson and E. Roger Mitchell 


 Fox with actors Tonia Jackson and Thomas Jefferson Byrd


Neal A. Ghant showing us love


Fox with Tyrone Mitchell Henederson, who plays the hilariously funny “Guy” in the show

Photo Credits:

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R. Kelly Celebrates Birthday with T.I., Keri Hilson, Phaedra Parks & More [PHOTOS]

Posted by | Ray Cornelius 

Last night, Grammy Award-winning R&B artist, R. Kelly received the ultimate birthday gift when DeVyne Stephens surprised Kelly with a private birthday celebration in Atlanta and premiered Kelly’s latest single ‘Birthday’ to the VIP guests.

Tameka with Ebony Steele

Upon arrival guests mingled, enjoyed complimentary cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and music from DJ King. Upon Kelly’s arrival, instructions came over the mic to prepare the crowd for the grand surprise. Stephens sneakily lead Kelly through the back entrance of the restaurant to the main diningroom where the crowd erupted and DJ King premiered Kelly’s latest single, ‘Birthday.’

Keri Hilson

Next, a sea of female models escorted Kelly to his private section where family and friends gathered for a birthday cake presentation moments later. The party continued as guests vibed to more of Kelly’s latest and greatest hits in celebration of the King of R&B.  Over 300 guests came out to celebrate with the King of R&B at the new Time Restaurant and Lounge in Midtown, Atlanta.

Notable guests in attendance included:

T.I.T.I. – Hip-Hop Artist
Kwanza Hall – Atlanta City Councilman
Tameka Raymond – VH1’s Atlanta Exes
Phaedra Parks – Bravo’s RHOA
Marcus Stroud – Retired NFL Player
Mishon Ratliff – Singer/Songwriter/Actor
Erica Dixon – VH1’s Love and Hip Hop Atlanta
Keri Hilson – Singer/Songwriter
Ebony Steele – TV/Radio Personality
Tyler Lepley – The Have and the Have Nots
Mimi Faust – VH1’s Love and Hip Hop Atlanta
Bobby V – R&B Singer/Songwriter

 Check out more photos below:

Birthday Cake

Times Restaurant and Lounge is located in the heart of Midtown Atlanta

RKelly with D

R. Kelly with DeVyne Stephens

Group Photo

 MiMi Faust with Mishon Ratliff, Claudia Jordan and Tyler Lepley

Dice with Gosha

Dice with Gocha

Event Space

Another look at Times Restaurant and Lounge

Carl Payne

Carl Payne

Kells with BV

R. Kelly with Bobby V

Phaedra with Kwanza

Phaedra Parks with Kwanza Hall

Photo Credits: Prince Williams/

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RC attends ATL Press Reception feat. ‘HAHN’ & ‘Love Thy Neighbor’ Cast [PHOTOS]

Written by | Ray Cornelius

Cast members from Tyler Perry’s überly popular television series, “The Haves and the Have Nots” (HAHN) and “Love Thy Neighbor,” entertained members of the Atlanta press Thursday afternoon during a private reception at The Twelve Hotel in Atlantic Station.  Patrice Lovely, Palmer Williams, Kendra C. Johnson and Tyler Lepley were eager to discuss their show’s new season.

“The Haves and the Have Nots” is an hour-long drama that follows the complicated dynamic between the rich and powerful Cryer and Harrington families and the less fortunate Young family. “Love Thy Neighbor” is a half-hour comedy set at a family run diner where the menu serves up good food and valuable lessons. Each series has proven to be a ratings winner for Tyler Perry and his television partner, The Oprah Winfrey Network. Just this week, “The Haves and The Have Nots” Season 3 premiere pulled in a record 3.2 million viewers, making it the most watched season debut in OWN history.

Kendra C. Johnson 2

“Love Thy Neighbor” stars Patrice Lovely, Palmer Williams and Kendra C. Johnson

During the Q&A session, the actors talked about the fun they have working with the unpredictable Tyler Perry, who is notorious for going off script and ad-libbing in the middle of a scene. The group also chatted about how much their story lines and characters have evolved since their first seasons and how their on-screen chemistry is the result of spending a lot of time with each other off-camera.

“We’ve actually become closer,” says Palmer Williams. “You don’t see us crashing at each other’s apartments and learning lines or turning a pajama party into a script learning party. You don’t see the comradery that has developed between us even though we didn’t know that’s what we were doing. The family unit has actually become a family unit.”


Tyler Lepley from “The Haves and the Have Nots”

With so much of today’s television programming being inundated with ‘reality’ shows, the actors expressed how grateful they are to be working on a traditional, scripted program.

“I think it’s great what we’re doing because if you watch these shows, you know there is always a cliff-hanger. I think what has happened in this reality TV movement is that we’ve lost the ‘suspense’ and the ‘anticipation,’ says Leply. “It all goes hand and hand with our cell phones and the lack of communication we have with each other. I think what Mr. Perry has done is brought back ‘real’ television. Back in the day, we used to have to wait until the end of the season to find out what happened like ‘who shot J.R.’ on Dallas. Somehow  Mr. Perry  has brought that element back to television.”

Patrice Lovely

 Patrice Lovely talking about working with Tyler Perry

When asked if viewers will ever see “The Haves and the Have Nots” characters on “Love Thy Neighbor” or vice versa, they simply laughed but said it is an idea that has been tossed around.

“We’ve talked about that in joking,” says Williams. “We want Renee Lawless’ character, Mrs. Cryer and Crystal Fox’s character, Hannah Young, to show up at the diner one day. (LOL) I think that’s the only way it would work. Otherwise, viewers would not take ‘The Haves and the Have Nots’ seriously.”

After the Q&A, the actors broke off into one-on-one interviews and took photos with the media. Reality stars Claudia Jordan and Mimi Faust also stopped by the reception to greet the actors and was interviewed by the media as well.

Check out a few pictures from the reception below:


“The Have and the Have Nots” poster

Saptosa Foster 135 Street Agency

135 Street’s Saptosa Foster addressing the press

Jessica Boyer OWN

OWN’s Director of Communication Jessica Boyer thanking the media for their support of the shows

Tyler 2

Tyler Lepley talking about his character “Benny”

Palmer Williams

Palmer Williams talking passionately about their off-screen relationships

Kendra C. Johnson

Kendra C. Johnson and Palmer Williams kept the press laughing

Claudia and Mimi

RHOA star Claudia Jordan and LHHATL’s MiMi Faust stopped by the press reception

“The Haves and the Have Nots” airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on OWN

“Love Thy Neighbor” airs Wednesdays at 9 .m. on OWN

Photo Credits:

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PHOTOS from ‘Ride Along’ L.A. Press Junket + VIDEO

Ride Along’ co-stars Lil P-Nut with Kevin Hart

Posted by | Ray Cornelius

Hollywood’s hardest working actor, Kevin Hart joined his cast member Lil P-Nut at the RIDE ALONG Xperience over the weekend. The Ride Along press junket was held on Saturday at the SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills. Universal Pictures and Konsole Kingz – the leading influencers in urban gaming – hosted a gaming lounge for Hart, whose character in the film, has a gaming persona known as the “Black Hammer.”

Hart played against Lil P-Nut and top gamers in “Call of Duty” as well as “NBA2K14.” The event was also featured via live stream on the popular gaming channel, Twitch.TV. This streaming website is very popular amongst those who enjoy watching others play their favorite games live. Many gamers on this website can often be seen with multiple forms of expensive gaming equipment such as fancy set ups and gaming chairs. If you are in the market for a gaming chair, keep in mind that next to cool looks, those chairs offer quite a few other benefits you will love, such as extreme comfort and lumbar support. This could help you get to that next level where you could even consider streaming live! However whilst playing against top gamers, Hart was the main feature on Twitch.

Also spotted in the crowd was Barry Floyd of BET’s The Game, Fashion designer Karl Kani, TV Personality Daphne Wayans and Tyler Lepley of OWN’s The Have and Have Nots.

Check out the photos and the film’s trailer below:

Karl and Barry.jpg23

Barry Floyd and Karl Kani

kevin and daphne.jpg23

Kevin Hart with Daphney Wayans

Kevin on Twitch.TV stream.jpg23

Hart with Lil P-Nut and Twitch TV

Tyler Lepley and guest.jpg23

Tyler Lepley with guest


Hart gaming

Kevin playing NBA2K14.jpg23

Hart playing NBA2K14

Kevin NBA2K.jpg23

looks like someone is winning…

Kevin Praying for the Win.jpg23

Hart praying for a win…

[youtube id=”UKPULWWK-Xk#t=3″ width=”600″ height=”350″]

Ride Along starring Ice Cube, Kevin Hart and Tika Sumpter opens in theaters nationwide on January 17.

Photo Credit: Tyrin Ford