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Entertainment news: Nick Jonas; Laverne Cox; Abby Wambach; Hugh Jackman
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times

This article shared 5414 times since Tue Feb 9, 2016
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Nick Jonas—who's played gay on two different TV shows and has been accused of "baiting" the gay community—was asked to clarify his recent comments that he wouldn't "confirm nor deny" whether he's ever had sex with a man in an interview with Complex, reported. "It's funny. I play a gay character on a TV show," he said. "Whether it's me or the character, at the end of the day it's still my body, it's still telling the story." Describing himself as a "heterosexual male," Jonas reiterated his feelings about questions regarding his large gay fan base and their redundancy, saying he's "open and comfortable about loving my fan base, gay or straight."

Anti-gay viewers were quick to take to social media to criticize the Super Bowl 50 Halftime show, which wrapped up with performances by Beyonce, Bruno Mars and Coldplay singing "Believe in Love," LGBTQ Nation noted. One person posted, "Nothing against being gay, but can I please watch the Super Bowl half time [sic] show and not have to it be all about promoting homosexuality." Some objected to the colorful display; however, the bright lights and swirling rainbow colors were for promoting Coldplay's new album.

Laverne Cox reportedly has a new boyfriend in film and theater company boss Jono Freedrix, according to Page Six. The Orange Is the New Black star was seen with Freedrix—president of the Virtual Stage, a Vancouver film and theater company—at the recent Screen Actors Guild Awards and at an after-party.

Speaking of Cox, Netflix has renewed Orange Is the New Black for three more seasons, TheWrap reported. In addition, creator Jenji Kohan will return for seasons five, six and seven as showrunner. The fourth season of Netflix's high-profile prison dramedy will premiere June 17. Lionsgate Television Group chairman Kevin Beggs said the company was "proud to continue our long-standing relationships with Netflix" and Kohan, calling the series "one of the most acclaimed shows on television."

Legendary former soccer player Abby Wambach ( who happens to be an out lesbian ) now has her own Barbie, People noted. The official Abby Wambach Barbie doll was unveiled at The Makers Conference in California, honoring the longtime member of and recent retiree from the United States women's national soccer team. The Abby doll features Wambach's signature pixie and shaved undercut, soccer uniform and Nike cleats and socks.

At the Directors Guild Awards ( DGA ) on Feb. 6, lesbian Dee Rees won best director in television movies or miniseries for HBO's Bessie, which focuses on the life of the late bisexual blues singer Bessie Smith. Other winners included Alejandro G. Inarritu—who got his second consecutive DGA win for The Revenant; Alex Garland, who received the award for first-time feature director for Ex Machina; and Kenny Ortega, who won for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Children's Programs for the Disney Channel's Descendants.

Hugh Jackman revealed that he's being treated for skin cancer for the fifth time since November 2013, according to Yahoo! News. "An example of what happens when you don't wear sunscreen. Basal Cell. The mildest form of cancer but serious, nonetheless," he captioned a photo of him with a bandaged nose. "PLEASE USE SUNSCREEN and get regular check-ups." Jackman has explained that he first discovered he had cancer after a makeup artist on X Men: Days Of Future Past and his wife, Deborra-Lee Furness, urged him to get a bloody spot on his nose that wouldn't go away checked out by a doctor.

In advance of her Super Bowl performance, Beyonce parted ways with her longtime business manager and hired a new team to promote her career and land her more lucrative deals, Page Six confirmed. The singer-actress split with her general manager of five years, Lee Anne Callahan-Longo, and is now working with Steve Pamon, who masterminded JPMorgan Chase's sponsorship of Queen Bey and Jay Z's 2014 On the Run tour.

Beyonce announced a "Formation" stadium tour following her performance at the Super Bowl 50 halftime show, TheWrap noted. Tickets for the tour go on sale on Feb. 16, with pre-sale having started Feb. 9. Stops will include Chicago, on May 27.

The Family Equality Council will honor director/writer/producer Greg Berlanti as well as couple Sara Gilbert and Linda Perry at The Impact Awards on March 12 at The Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, California, according to a press release. Calista Flockhart and Sharon Osborne ( the latter being one of Gilbert's co-hosts on The Talk ) will be the special guests.

Lady Gaga ( who earned praise for her rendition of the national anthem at this year's Super Bowl ) will lead what organizers called an "experiential tribute" to late British singer David Bowie at the Grammy Awards on Feb. 15, Page Six reported. The Recording Academy said Gaga would perform three or four of Bowie's songs in a "multisensory testament" to Bowie's creativity as a musician whose work constantly evolved over five decades. Music producer Nile Rodgers, who worked on Bowie's 1983 album "Let's Dance," will be the musical director for the tribute.

David Bowie's former bodyguard has claimed the late glam rocker indulged in drug-filled threeway sex inside a walk-in wardrobe with Mick Jagger and a famous female singer, The Mirror noted. Stuart George said he stood outside while the singers went at it—but barred the late ballet dancer Rudolf Nureyev from joining in, despite the Soviet begging to be let inside. Last month, former Bowie backing singer Ava Cherry said she was the "filling" in a sex sandwich between the rocker and Jagger when she was 19.

CBS announced with a promo during the Super Bowl that the current season of The Good Wife will be its last, with nine episodes left, according to Deadline. The Good Wife's future had been in limbo with the recent announcement that creators/executive producers/showrunners Robert and Michelle King would be departing the series after the current seventh season. The contracts of most of its original cast members, including star Julianna Margulies and co-star Alan Cumming, were ending after the season.

Channing Tatum and Joseph Gordon-Levitt will costar in a new musical comedy for Universal, TheWrap noted. Tatum most recently starred in Quentin Tarantino's The Hateful Eight and in Universal's Hail, Caesar!; also, he is in preproduction on Fox's Gambit. Gordon-Levitt was recently on screen for The Night Before and The Walk.

Point Foundation ( Point ) will honor producer, showrunner and writer Pete Nowalk with the Point Leadership Award at the organization's annual Point Honors gala in New York City, April 11, according to PR Newswire. Point presents its Leadership Award to an individual who has achieved prominence in their professional career and unequivocally supports the LGBTQ community. Nowalk, whose additional producer credits include Scandal and Grey's Anatomy, will receive the award at the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue.

"Dismissal is required because the core of the complaint—that Daniels wronged Penn by falsely comparing Penn to someone else—is constitutionally ( to quote Penn's iconic movie character Jeff Spicoli ) "bogus,'" responsed Lee Daniels to the latest version of Sean Penn's $10-million defamation suit against the Empire co-creator, Deadline reported. In a case that has been from New York state court to federal court and back again and has seen Penn's ex, Madonna, jump in as well, the actor first hit Daniels with a complaint in late September 2015.

Hollywood stuntman and stunt coordinator Shawn Balentine has come out publicly as a gay man in a deeply personal Facebook post, Gay Star News noted. "It's time to peel back the layers," he wrote. "I've been waiting until I was ready to come out as gay man on my terms. I'm ready now." Balentine has doubled for such actors as Patton Oswalt, Jack Black and Oliver Cooper in television, film and music videos.

Dan Savage's comedy The Real O'Neals has cast a gay actor in the leading role, The Washington Blade noted. Noah Galvin, 21, is set to play the starring role in the show loosely based on Savage's Catholic upbringing as a gay teenager who comes out to his parents. Producer Todd Holland told the Huffington Post he wanted a gay actor for the part; however, due to a discrimination casting law he was unable to ask those auditioning for the part if they were gay. The Real O'Neals airs Tuesday, March 8, on ABC.

Actress Rose McGowan has filed for divorce from Davey Detail, her husband of two years, US Weekly noted. The Charmed alum, 42, cited "irreconcilable differences" in the documents and is reportedly asking the judge to reject any claim for spousal support. The actress caused a stir on social media last November after calling out Caitlyn Jenner for her Woman of the Year acceptance speech after the former Olympian joked that the "hardest part about being a woman is figuring out what to wear."

Despite the Duggars' fervidly anti-gay views ( and Joshua Duggar's laundry list of sordid scandals ), TLC's 19 Kids and Counting will be back for another season, LGBTQ Nation noted. In fact, it's already filming, with TLC cameras swarming all over their home state of Arkansas.

Mob Wives star Angela Raiola is in big trouble and could use help from her fans, The New York Daily News noted. The reality star, known as "Big Ang," is battling stage 4 brain and lung cancer, and chemotherapy is not helping the disease from spreading so her family has created a GoFundMe page. The money raised will pay for cannabis oil—a common alternative medical treatment for cancer—that can cost $2,000 to $5,000 per month.

WGN America has cancelled the show Manhattan after two seasons, Variety reported. The drama, which premiered in July 2014, marked network's second original series, following Salem. The show starred out actor John Benjamin Hickey and Ashley Zukerman as physicists working on the atomic bomb project during World War II. Olivia Williams and Rachel Brosnahan starred as their respective wives, with Mamie Gummer, William Petersen and Neve Campbell having joining the cast during the series' sophomore season.

Miley Cyrus tweeted that she's joining this upcoming season of NBC's The Voice as a key adviser on Christina Aguilera's team, AOL News noted. She joins sometime judge Gwen Stefani, who was already announced as an adviser on her boyfriend Blake Shelton's team. Along with a selfie that showed her sticking her tongue out on the set of the show, Cyrus wrote, "Lickin @xtina buttonz! @NBCTheVoice #keyadviser #season10."

NBC has renewed the Jennifer Lopez freshman drama Shades of Blue for a second season, TheWrap noted. In addition to Lopez, the series stars Ray Liotta, Drea de Matteo, Dayo Okeniyi, Vincent Laresca, Hampton Fluker and Sarah Jeffery.

Grammy Award-winning singer Seal has been set as Pontius Pilate on Fox's upcoming live musical event The Passion, TheWrap noted. He'll join Tyler Perry, Chris Daughtry, Trisha Yearwood, Prince Royce and Jencarlos Canela on Palm Sunday. "The Passion," written by Peter Barsocchini, tells the 2,000-year-old story of the last hours of Jesus Christ's ( Canela's ) life on Earth through passages from the Bible and a variety of contemporary popular music, sung by the cast.

Maurice White, co-founder of Earth, Wind & Fire, has died at age 74, according to a MyFox8 item that cites TMZ. White died in Los Angeles after a long battle with Parkinson's disease. He was diagnosed in 1992 and his condition deteriorated in recent months. The band had a string of hits, including "Shining Star," "September," "Boogie Wonderland" and "After the Love has Gone."

L & T Entertainment announced the sale of the Miss Gay America pageant to Mad Angel Entertainment, owned by Michael Dutzer and Rob Mansman of Baltimore, a press release stated. There are 28 preliminary state and regional pageants leading to the national pageant, which is held in October.

Oscar winner Goldie Hawn is in talks to play Amy Schumer's mother in an upcoming comedy from director Jonathan Levine, TheWrap noted. Hawn's last big-screen role was in the 2002 comedy The Banger Sisters.

NBC has officially ordered a pilot for a TV adaptation of Cruel Intentions, TheWrap noted. The pilot picks up over 15 years after the movie left off. It follows Kathryn Merteuil ( played by Sarah Michelle Gellar in the original ) as she vies for control of Valmont International as well as the soul of Bash Casey, the son of her brother, the late Sebastian Valmont ( Ryan Phillippe ) and Annette Hargrove ( Reese Witherspoon ). Gellar is in talks to appear on the show, according to NewNowNext.

Lakatriona Brunson—known as Bernice on the reality show South Beach Tow—is now Florida's first female high school head football coach, Miami New Times noted. Brunson will lead the Miami Jackson High School boy's football team. The school has also hired former 2 Live Crew leader ( and Miami New Times columnist ) Luther "Uncle Luke" Campbell as an assistant coach.

Lena Dunham said she's taking time off for health reasons, USA Today reported. "I just wanted to let you know that, while I am so excited for Girls to return on Feb 21, I won't be out and about doing press for the new season," she wrote on her Facebook page. "As many of you know I have endometriosis, a chronic condition that affects approximately 1 in 10 women's reproductive health. I am currently going through a rough patch with the illness and my body ( along with my amazing doctors ) let me know, in no uncertain terms, that it's time to rest."

CBS has ordered two drama pilots, including a MacGyver reboot and Bull, based on the career of Dr. Phil McGraw, according to TheWrap. MacGyver, from writer and executive producer Paul Downs Colaizzo, is a reimagining of the television series of the same name and it follows a twentysomething MacGyver as he gets recruited into a clandestine organization.

This article shared 5414 times since Tue Feb 9, 2016
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