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SHOWBIZ Gay men's chorus, upcoming films, 'Tiger King,' Mariah Carey
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by Windy City Times staff

This article shared 763 times since Sun Nov 7, 2021
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The New York City Gay Men's Chorus announced its return to the rehearsal room, per a press release. On Nov. 1, 51 members gathered at P.S. 11 in Chelsea, Manhattan, to sing for the first time since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. While a date has not yet been set for the New York City Gay Men's Chorus' return to public performances, the rehearsal was considered "an exciting and hopeful first step toward that eventuality." The chorus' board of directors is in the process of planning the next concert, to be held in early 2022; the date and venue will be announced in the coming weeks.

Searchlight Pictures' biopic The Eyes of Tammy Faye, starring Jessica Chastain and Andrew Garfield, is now available on digital, and it will be out on Blu-ray and DVD on Tuesday, Nov. 16, per a press release. In the 1970s and '80s, Tammy Faye and Jim Bakker built a burgeoning religious broadcasting network and theme park—until rivals, financial wrongdoing and scandal toppled their empire. Bonus features include "A Look Inside The Eyes of Tammy Faye."

IFC Films will release the Paul Verhoeven film Benedetta in select theaters and everywhere films are rented digitally on Friday, Dec. 3, per a press release. In this movie (starring Virginie Efira, Charlotte Rampling and Lambert Wilson), a 17th-century nun in Italy suffers from disturbing religious and erotic visions. She is assisted by a companion, and the relationship between the two women develops into a romantic love affair.

Hours after Carole Baskin and her husband sued Netflix and producers Royal Goode Productions over what they are calling "unauthorized" use of footage of the Big Cat Rescue CEO in the upcoming sequel series Tiger King 2, a federal judge in Florida denied the couple their request for a temporary restraining order, Deadline reported. However, Judge Virginia M. Hernandez Covington added, "To the extent it seeks a preliminary injunction, the Motion is referred to the Honorable Thomas G. Wilson, United States Magistrate Judge …for an evidentiary hearing and the issuance of a Report and Recommendation." Basically, the Baskins' lawsuit is just beginning.

On another Tiger King-related note, Joe Exotic—the Tiger King star who is incarcerated in a Texas federal prison for his part in a murder-for-hire plot—is asking for a compassionate release because of aggressive prostate cancer, Deadline reported. Exotic (real name: Joseph Maldonado-Passage) was sentenced in January 2020 to 22 years in federal prison after his conviction in a plot involving animal-rights activist Carole Baskin. Exotic claimed on Instagram that he didn't want sympathy by revealing his diagnosis; however, if treatment fails, he wants to "enjoy what life I have left with my loved ones!"

Apple and Mariah Carey announced their return to Apple TV+ with an all-new holiday event, Mariah's Christmas: The Magic Continues, a press release noted. "Mariah's Christmas" will bring Carey together with Grammy-nominated artist Khalid and Grammy-winning gospel figure Kirk Franklin for the first and only performance of their new single, "Fall in Love at Christmas," on Apple TV+. The new single is available for pre order now at

In a related matter, a Texas bar denied "banning" Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas is You" after a tweet claimed that patrons were not allowed to play the track during the holiday season, noted. The dust-up began when Texas theater critic Kyle Smith tweeted a picture last month of a sign hung at Dallas' Stoneleigh P that read "Mariah Carey's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You' will be skipped if played before Dec. 1. After Dec 1 the song is only allowed one time a night." After social-media backlash from Carey's fans, bar manager Lara Garrison stated, "The song is not 'banned.' We skip it on the jukebox if it is played during the month of November. Come December, we'll allow to play it once a month. This has been an ongoing joke in the bar for about [three] years now with the staff and our regulars."

Ariana Grande and Cynthia Erivo announced on their Instagram accounts that they landed parts in Universal's Jon M. Chu-directed feature adaptation of the Broadway musical smash Wicked, Deadline noted. Erivo will play Elphaba, while Grande will portray Glinda. The film is currently in development, with production set to start next summer in the United Kingdom.

The "Pop Diva Panel" of judges for the new drag-queen singing competition series Queen of the Universe was recently announced, according to . The four judges who will be joining host Graham Norton are Grammy-nominated pop singer Leona Lewis, screen and stage star Vanessa Williams, RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars season-three winner Trixie Mattel and RuPaul's Drag Race judge Michelle Visage. The series will premiere Thursday, Dec. 2, exclusively on Paramount+. Contestants hail from 10 different countries—including the United States, Mexico, Brazil, Denmark, Australia, Canada, England, France, China and India—and will perform in front of a live audience.

Transgender soccer star Kumi Yokoyama, who plays for the National Women's Soccer League's Washington Spirit team, proposed on bended knee to their girlfriend, Nami—who accepted, noted. "She said 'YES'!" Yokoyama posted on Twitter, posting pictures of their romantic on-field proposal that took place in D.C.'s Audi Field. Along with Canadian soccer star and Out100 honoree Quinn, Yokoyama is one of only two out trans players in the NWSL.

HBO Max is running a cooking competition series from Dan Levy, Deadline noted. The Schitt's Creek star has created and will host The Big Brunch. The Big Brunch celebrates undiscovered culinary voices from every corner of the country. Chefs will be offered the opportunity to share their stories and their business dreams—while also competing for a life-altering prize.

Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Rufus Wainwright has announced "Argentina"—a song and accompanying video from his soon-to-be-released all-new concert recording, Rufus Wainwright and Amsterdam Sinfonietta Live, a press release noted. The new album arrives Friday, Nov. 26, via BMG's Modern Recordings on vinyl, CD and digital download, with two additional bonus tracks on digital format and CD formats.

GLAAD commented on the opening of the movie Eternals, which has the first LGBTQ superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), a press release stated. "With the introduction of the first LGBTQ superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Eternals is changing the game for what it means to be a superhero on screen in ways that audiences around the world will applaud," said GLAAD President & CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. "GLAAD's Studio Responsibility Index reports have shown a trend of few LGBTQ characters in major studio releases, a majority of which receive less than three minutes of [screen time], but the characters of Phastos, his husband, and their son play critical roles in Eternals that will set a new standard for LGBTQ inclusion across the genre."

FX and Hulu are moving from Britney Spears to Janet Jackson with their latest documentary in The New York Times Presents strand, Deadline reported. The cable network and streamer are set to launch Malfunction: The Dressing Down of Janet Jackson on Nov. 19. The film will tell the story of the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show, which saw Justin Timberlake briefly expose Jackson's breast to millions of viewers; Jackson's career never recovered, unlike Timberlake's.

In Kentucky, nine Louisville theater companies—Centerstage, The Chicken Coop Theatre Company, Company Outcast, Drag Daddy Productions, The Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Louisville, Faith Works Studios, Minds Eye Theatre Company, Redline Performing Arts and Time Slip Theatre—will unite Saturday, Nov. 13, at the Woman's Club of Louisville for their own local production of "Music Theatre International's (MTI's) All Together Now!: A Global Event Celebrating Local Theatre," a press release noted. All Together Now! features songs from MTI's catalog of musicals, including Company, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Ragtime, Guys and Dolls, Into the Woods, Les Miserables, Mamma Mia!, My Fair Lady, Once on This Island, Disney's High School Musical, Rent, Waitress and many more. See

Broad City star Abbi Jacobson broke the news that she's been dating actress Jodi Balfour for a year, Extra noted. Along with posting a pic of herself kissing Balfour on the cheek, she wrote, "One year with this incredible human. Don't know how I got so lucky [red heart emoji]." Balfour shared her own kissing pic, writing on Instagram, "365 days of the best surprise of my life [green heart emoji]." The news comes four months after Balfour announced that she is queer.

Patrick Hourcade, the onetime creative director of French Vogue, has penned a memoir detailing his friendship with Karl Lagerfeld that includes some explosive details about the late fashion legend, Page Six noted. According to a new piece by Andre Leon Talley on the book—Karl: No Regrets, for Graydon Carter's Air Mail—Talley describes how Lagerfeld and Hourcade "met in 1976, when Hourcade was at the apex of his career as a French fashion journalist." While "Hourcade clearly states that he never had sex with the workaholic Karl," Talley writes, "the real reason Lagerfeld decided to break with him is because, after years of dedicating his life to Lagerfeld and having never discussed anything remotely sentimental, he moved in with another man."

On Sunday, Nov. 14, Oprah and Adele will sit down for an intimate conversation about how the singer's life informed the themes of her forthcoming album, 30, according to . "It was my ride or die through the most turbulent period of my life," Adele has said of the album. Adele will also touch on her life since divorcing Simon Konecki, (and potentially her relationship with sports agent Rich Paul), being on her wellness journey and raising her 9-year-old son.

A new K-pop group says it's making history: The four-member Lionesses claim to be the first openly LGBT K-pop boy band, the South China Morning Post reported. On Nov. 1, the quartet shared their first song, "Show Me Your Pride," which explores the struggles of LGBTQ+ life, coming out, hatred and homophobia, and more. A music video for "Show Me Your Pride" depicts the members of Lionesses masked until the end, when one reveals his identity. The song was produced with support from the South Korean activist organization Beyond the Rainbow Foundation's Ivan City Queer Cultural Fund, which aims to support LGBTQ+ representation in South Korean culture.

The LGBTQ film Coalesce will be coming to digital VOD on Dec. 14, courtesy of Ariztical Entertainment, a press release noted. Coalesce looks at three young men (Phearum, Songsa and Thy) whose lives traverse while managing life in Phnom Penh, the rapidly changing capital of Cambodia. The official trailer is at

Cardi B will host the 2021 American Music Awards, which are set to air live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on Sunday, Nov. 21, Billboard noted. A five-time AMA winner, Cardi has three nominations at this year's show—favorite female hip-hop artist, and two nods for "Up" as favorite music video and favorite hip-hop song. This is the fifth consecutive year a Black female star will front the AMAs. Cardi B follows actress Tracee Ellis Ross (2017-18), R&B star Ciara (2019) and actress Taraji P. Henson (2020).

Six-time Tony winner Audra McDonald will return to Broadway in Ohio State Murders, by Adrienne Kennedy, the acclaimed playwright who will be making her Broadway debut at age 90, Deadline noted. Kenny Leon will direct. Kennedy was honored in 2008 with an Obie Lifetime Achievement Award, and she was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2018. McDonald starred in a live stream reading of Ohio State Murders last June as part of the Spotlight On Plays series.

American Idol winner/The Voice coach Kelly Clarkson might have a new challenger in the daytime space from another "Idol" alum, noted. According to Variety, Respect star Jennifer Hudson is currently pitching a daytime talk show to Warner Bros TV. The speculation comes as the production company is looking for a new flagship chatfest after The Ellen DeGeneres Show ends with season 19.

Emmy nominees Calista Flockhart (Ally McBeal) and Zachary Quinto (Heroes) will star as Martha and George, respectively, in a new Geffen Playhouse production of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? in Los Angeles next year, according to Playbill. Edward Albee's play follows an older married couple who invite a younger pair over for drinks and games. As the night wears on, dark secrets begin to spill out, sending both relationships on a destructive path.

Tupac Shakur's handwritten lyrics from classic songs such as "California Love" and "Dear Mama," along with galleries that pay homage to his upbringing and late mother, are among the features in a massive touring museum exhibit, USA Today noted. The Shakur Estate announced that the "Tupac Shakur. Wake Me When I'm Free" will open Jan. 21 in Los Angeles. The exhibit is described as a fully immersive, thought-provoking museum experience that explores the life and legacy of the late rapper.

Pop star Charli XCX has announced a new album (called Crash), single and tour, per a press release. Unique in that the release is from a first-person perspective, Charli says that the album—"the fifth and final album in my record deal"—will be released March 18, 2022. The announcement follows the release of her single "Good Ones." The world tour will launch March 26 in Oakland, California; the North American leg will conclude April 29 in Chicago (at the Byline Bank Aragon Ballroom).

Gal Gadot (the Wonder Woman movies) is in final negotiations to play the Evil Queen in Disney's live-action adaptation of Snow White, Deadline reported. Gadot was reportedly intrigued at the opportunity of joining stars like Angelina Jolie and Cate Blanchett, who previously played iconic villains from the Disney vault. Production is expected to start in 2022.

Joe Jonas and ex Demi Lovato were all smiles during a Halloween party as they reunited, US Weekly noted. After starring together in Camp Rock and Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam for Disney Channel, the former co-stars briefly dated for four months in 2010. The "Confident" singer, for their part, tweeted later that year, "There are so many crazy rumors flying around today. Joe and I did split, but it wasn't over the phone. Things didn't work out but we'll remain friends."

JoJo Siwa has confirmed that she and Kylie Prew are no longer a couple, noted. "I have yet to talk about this officially, publicly, but we broke up," Siwa told Paris Hilton on the This is Paris podcast, according to Page Six. "But she is literally still my best friend." She admitted that having such a hectic schedule at her young age contributed to the breakup, as the star currently competes on Dancing with the Stars; has a reality show, Siwa's Dance Pop Revolution; and is working on several other projects.

Rapper Travis Scott said he is "devastated" after the deaths of at least eight people at his Astroworld music festival in Houston, and urged those with information to contact the authorities as at least two investigations, one of them criminal, got under way into the deadly crush, The Guardian reported. Eight people, 14 to 27, were killed in a crowd surge at the festival, and dozens were injured in a rush toward the stage as Scott performed.

Mariah Carey continued her tradition of celebrating the end of Halloween and the start of the run up to Christmas with a video, the Evening Standard noted. The singer, whose hit "All I Want For Christmas Is You" is considered a festive classic, shared a short clip on Twitter showing her smashing a carved pumpkin. The singer wore a red sparkly gown and matching high heels and brandished a candy-striped baseball bat.

There was backlash after it was announced that actor Chris Pratt would be voicing the character of Garfield in the upcoming animated film, Queerty noted. One person responded about Pratt (a member of the anti-gay Hillsong Church), "chris pratt is too homophobic to be voicing garfield, a beloved lgbtq+ icon." In September, he was dragged when it was announced he would be the voice of Mario in an upcoming Super Mario Bros. movie.

Billy Idol's remixed and remastered album Happy Holidays is out now for the first time on vinyl and streaming platforms via Dark Horse Records, a press release noted. The new edition of Happy Holidays is packaged with new artwork and available for purchase on black vinyl, CD, digital and on limited-edition white vinyl. In support of the new release, Idol confirms a select run of acoustic dates this fall and winter with longtime collaborator/guitarist Steve Stevens. Kicking off on November 27, the shows include performances at Nashville's Ryman Auditorium, Chicago's Vic Theatre, St. Paul's Palace Theatre and more.

Former Burn Notice star Jeffrey Donovan has been tapped as a lead in NBC's upcoming Law & Order revival, according to Deadline. He will play a new character, an NYPD detective, on Season 21 of Dick Wolf's venerable crime drama. Along with a couple of high-profile new cast additions, led by Donovan, the new season is expected to feature several Law & Order alums, with Sam Waterston and Anthony Anderson believed to be in talks to return.

As part of its annual "Sexiest Man Alive" celebrations for 2021, People Magazine ran an online user poll asking readers to vote for their fave sexy celebrity men in different categories, the likes of which included Sexiest Internet Boyfriend, Sexiest Olympian, and Sexiest Eyes (just to name a few), noted. Netflix star and Queer Eye food expert Antoni Porowski won for sexiest chef.

Gwyneth Paltrow released her Goop holiday guide, offering an eclectic selection of gifts suitable for all types of self-care and wellness junkies as the holiday season quickly approaches, USA Today noted. The lifestyle and health company has something for every taste, whether it's an $85 "Self-Heating G. Spot Vibrator" for lovers or a $34,000 Bubble Gum Gym. The guide also suggests, among other things, a $10,500 Chanel sled; $49 Vietnamese coffee; $95 Augustinus Bader body lotion; a $22,000 Robinson Pelham River bracelet; or a $3,795 cedar soaking tub.

Gucci Creative Director Alessandro Michele took over Los Angeles's Hollywood Boulevard recently, lining the Walk of Fame with seating and turning the stretch of sidewalk outside the iconic TLC Chinese Theater into a catwalk, Vanity Fair noted. For the "Gucci Love Parade" show, Macaulay Culkin took the runway, as did Jodie Turner-Smith, Phoebe Bridgers, Kodi Smit-McPhee and longtime friend of the brand Jared Leto. According to Vogue, the stars walked the sidewalk to music by Bjork, including tracks like "All is Full of Love" and "Big Time Sensuality."

A variety of guest hosts will continue helming The Wendy Williams Show through Nov. 19 as Wendy Williams faces ongoing health issues, People Magazine noted. Upcoming hosts include Michael Rapaport, Bill Bellamy, and Jerry Springer and Steve Wilkos. The premiere, originally set for Sept. 20, was first pushed to Oct. 4 after Williams tested positive for a breakthrough case of COVID-19 amid other health issues, such as Graves' disease.

Joe Millionaire, the controversial reality dating series that launched on Fox in 2003, is being rebooted, Deadline noted. Fox is putting a new twist on the series that saw a group of women date a man that they believed was a millionaire but turned out not to be. Joe Millionaire: For Richer or Poorer comes with a twist, this time featuring two single men—one is a millionaire and one isn't.

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