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SHOWBIZ 'Idol' alum, PBS series, LGBT film, concert series, Bad Bunny
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times

This article shared 3059 times since Mon May 18, 2020
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Openly gay American Idol alum David Hernandez has premiered his new song—"Sorry"—and the accompanying music video, a press release noted. "Sorry" is described as "a metaphoric letter to those David has hurt in the past as well as to those who have hurt him." The music video was shot a few weeks ago, but the release says the crew was kept to a minimum, with only Hernandez, director Derek Caldera and cameraman Arno Diem on set. The video is at

PBS is celebrating LGTBQ+ Pride Month with the launch of Prideland—a new one-hour special and short-form digital series following host/actor Dyllon Burnside ( from FX's Pose ) on a journey across the South. The six-episode short-form series will launch on PBS Voices, a new documentary-focused YouTube Channel by PBS Digital Studios, beginning Tuesday, May 26. A one-hour companion special, also hosted by Burnside, will premiere Friday, June 12, at 8 p.m. CT on PBS, and the PBS Video App. Episodes have titles such as "Polyamory, Demisexuality, and Being Transgender in the South" and "Championing LGBTQ+ Healthcare in Mississippi."

Breaking Glass Pictures acquired Worldwide rights to award-winning writer/director Terracino's ( Elliot Loves ) latest feature, Waking Up Dead, a press release announced. The LGBT film stars Gabriel Sousa ( Veronica Mars ), Judy Geeson ( To Sir, With Love; Mad About You ) and Traci Lords ( Cry-Baby,; Melrose Place; The Eastsiders ). Waking Up Dead—described as "a very uncomfortable comedy about suicide, assholes and a heartless Hollywood agent"—is currently in pre-production, with filming set to begin in early July.

JJ/LA, an L.A.-based event production company, announced a new queer-centric concert series: "Outloud: Raising Voices," a 10-episode benefit show featuring livestreamed performances from LGBTQA artists, noted. Outloud is slated to start Tuesday, May 26, with performances from the artists originally scheduled to perform at this year's South By Southwest ( SXSW ) festival; out actor Jake Borelli is slated to host the first episode, and Betty Who will headline, Billboard reported. Appearances from Kesha, Greyson Chance, Allie X, Vincint, The Aces and Wrabel have also been confirmed for the series; funds raised during the epic five-week affair will benefit local Pride organizers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In an interview with Rolling Stone, singer/rapper Bad Bunny said he's "never felt as masculine" as the day he did drag for his music video "Yo Perreo Sola," according to Queerty. The song, which translates to "I twerk alone," explores the issue of sexual harassment many women face when they go out to nightclubs. Bad Bunny also said he anticipated people would criticize the video, but he didn't care.

Ricky Martin and husband Jwan Yosef share kisses in a new music video, Queerty noted. The visual is not actually for a new track from Martin, but by the Puerto Rican rapper/filmmaker Residente. The song is called "Antes Que el Mundo Se Acabe" ( "Before The World Ends" ), and the video begins with a statement asking, "Instead of going back to normal, why don't we start again?" It then features dozens of couples kissing from all over the world.

The Broadway revival of Neil Simon's Plaza Suite—starring Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker and directed by John Benjamin Hickey—will postpone its opening more than a year due to the pandemic shutdown, Deadline noted. The production, which had been set to begin previews the day after the March 12 shutdown was announced, will now begin performances at the Hudson Theatre on Friday, March 19, 2021; the revival will run through Sunday, July 18, 2021.

MJ, the Michael Jackson stage musical headed for Broadway, will begin previews next March—an eight-month postponement due to the coronavirus pandemic shutdown, Deadline reported. The world premiere of MJ, featuring Jackson's music, will begin previews Monday, March 8, 2021, at Broadway's Neil Simon Theatre; opening night is set for Thursday, April 15. Prior to Broadway's shutdown on March 12, 2020, MJ was set to begin performances this July.

Speaking of Broadway, the Broadway League has confirmed that productions will now offer refunds and exchanges for performances through Sunday, Sept. 6, as Broadway remains dark over the summer because of the coronavirus pandemic, Playbill noted. An exact return date is yet to be determined. Ticketholders for performances through Sept. 6 will be contacted via email by their points of purchase with information regarding refund and exchange options.

On a related note, Broadway fans are fuming after CBS announced that a singalong version of the 1978 film Grease will replace the Tony Awards on the network next month, Page Six noted. The Tonys, which honor the best of Broadway at Radio City Music Hall, remain indefinitely postponed. Tony nominee Gideon Glick, of To Kill a Mockingbird, tweeted at CBS, "I'm certain there are a million gays out there who could help you curate a greatest hits of the Tony Awards to air instead!"

Disney's Frozen has become Broadway's first long-running casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic and industrywide shutdown, Deadline noted. The production, which opened March 22, 2018 at the St. James Theatre, announced that it will not return when Broadway reopens—whenever that might be. Frozen, which opened to mostly favorable reviews, was a solid box office performer prior to the shutdown, routinely grossing in the 80-90 percent of box-office potential.

Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley co-hosted a Smash-focused episode of "Stars in the House," ahead of the "Bombshell in Concert" event slated to take place May 20, a press release noted. Katharine McPhee ( Karen Cartwright ), Megan Hilty ( Ivy Lynn ), Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman ( score ), Neil Meron ( producer ) and Robert Greenblatt ( producer ) shared stories about the series' origin and behind-the-scenes tidbits as well as perform musical numbers. "Bombshell In Concert" will stream Wed., May 20, at 7 p.m. CT exclusively on, PeopleTV and PEOPLE social platforms ( Facebook and Twitter ).

Superman and Batwoman will be coming together in a crossover event for The CW, Deadline reported. The CW Chairman/CEO Mark Pedowitz said it would not happen in December, given the COVID-19 production shutdown, but hoped that it would happen in either the first or second quarter of 2021. The CW has aired six annual Arrowverse crossovers—Crisis on Infinite Earths—featuring episodes of Supergirl, Batwoman, The Flash, Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow, with the last episodes airing in December and January.

Netflix is developing a feature about the 1999 U.S. women's soccer team winning the FIFA World Cup, Deadline noted. That includes the iconic moment when Brandi Chastain scored the winning penalty shootout goal and took her jersey off in celebration. The story follows the journey of the soccer team that, in a stadium bursting with 93,000 fans, won the World Cup in a nail-biting final against China. The film will be adapted from Jere Longman's book, The Girls of Summer: The U.S. Women's Soccer Team and How It Changed The World.

Anderson Cooper said he decided to co-parent his new son with ex-boyfriend Benjamin Maisani, and declared that his friends have become his family, Page Six noted. The CNN host told Howard Stern on SiriusXM's The Howard Stern Show that he has remained close enough to Maisani, whom he dated for a decade, that he asked him to help raise Wyatt Morgan. "We didn't work out as a couple, but … when I was a little kid, it was just my mom and my brother, but it was my mom—she was not the most parental person and I wish some adult after my dad died had stepped in and just been like, 'You know what, I'll take you to a ball game,'" Cooper said. Cooper added that while he plans on going by "Dad" or "Daddy" by Wyatt, Maisani, who speaks French to him, will be called "Papa."

Revry has partnered with Brightcove Inc. to launch a first-of-its kind cable TV platform amid widespread cancelations of major Pride events and LGBTQ+ film festivals, a press release announced. The new platform provides an unprecedented option for those in need of community during this pandemic: a free, truly "always on" TV experience made exclusively for LGBTQ+ people. In addition to offering full access to its On-Demand library with a Revry Premium Subscription, and limited access for free with ads, now users can watch Revry's "unapologetically queer" movies, shows, music, podcasts and originals on four free live TV channels, including the first 24/7 LGBTQ global news channel, Revry Now. See .

GLSEN has launched Respect Everywhere—a series of fundraising initiatives presented in short videos running through May 22, a press release noted. The first video, now live on, features the cast of the play The Boys In The Band—including Matt Bomer, Robin de Jesus, Brian Hutchison, Jim Parsons, Andrew Rannells, Zachary Quinto, Michael Benjamin Washington and Tuc Watkins, delivering a heartfelt tribute to friend/castmate Charlie Carver, who received the GLSEN Gamechanger Award. Also, The L Word: Generation Q actress and ally Jennifer Beals will receive with the Champion Award from her castmates; Ilima Intermediate School's Rainbow Royales GSA, the "Rainbow Royales," will receive the GSA of the Year Award; and Tray Robinson will receive the Educator of the Year Award.

Former America's Next Top Model judge/creative Jay Manuel has an upcoming book: The Wig, The Bitch & The Meltdown, inspired by his time on the show, according to Queerty. Talking with Variety, Manuel said he was often made to feel uncomfortable by the things that were said and done on the show, but he felt silenced by supermodel/host Tyra Banks and co-executive producer Ken Mock. Manuel said one of Banks' indefensible actions included telling a model not to be too proud about being queer or she might turn people off, which Manuel said was an uncomfortable moment for him to film. Banks was recently accused of being a bully on social media after clips from America's Next Top Model—which premiered in 2003 and aired for 24 seasons—began recirculating online.

Michelle Visage slammed Jessie J for being "cold" and "not nice" when she joined the Drag Race cast on tour, PinkNews noted. Praising judge Nicki Minaj, "What I loved about Nicki is that she was so, I don't want to say 'real' because it's a stupid term, but she was genuine, honest and herself," Visage told Gay Times. However, she added, "ou don't know if they're going to be standoffish, not nice, a total cold person like Jessie J was to us when we did the tour in Australia."

After selling out her nationwide wellness tour earlier this year, Oprah Winfrey is determined to bring the same wisdom and inspiration straight to fans' homes with Oprah's Your Life in Focus: A Vision Forward—Live Virtual Experience, noted. The 90-minute experiences, hosted by Winfrey and taking place on Zoom, will air every Saturday through June 6.

Katy Perry and Taylor Swift may have a duet on the way, noted. When asked if she and her former frenemy will join forces on a song, Perry shyly replied, "Well, you're just gonna have to tune in to 'Idol' [this] week if all rumors are true or false." A potential collab between Swift and Perry has been swirling ever since the stars reconciled by hugging it out in the former's music video for "You Need To Calm Down," in which the pair come together as a happy meal—with Perry dressed as a burger to Swift's fries.

Speaking of Perry, she's released her new single, "Daisies," described in a press release as "an exhilarating celebration of the resilience of the human spirit in the face of cynicism and adversity." The official video, which received a YouTube Premiere, features Katy performing "Daisies" in a natural setting; filmmaker Liza Voloshin shot the clip from a safe social distance. "Daisies" is from KP5, as fans refer to Katy's as-yet-untitled fifth studio album, which will be released Friday, Aug. 14, by Capitol Records.

Oscar-nominated singer/actress Mary J. Blige ( Mudbound ) and Nat Wolff ( The Kill Team ) star in the intense action thriller Body Cam, available to purchase on Digital May 19 and for rent On Demand June 2 from Paramount Home Entertainment, a press release noted. The film will arrive on DVD on July 14. The premise is as follows: When a routine traffic stop results in the unexplained, grisly death of her colleague, a cop ( Blige ) realizes footage of the incident will play for her eyes only. As the attacks mount, she races to understand the supernatural force behind them.

Singer Charli XCX released her new album, how i'm feeling now, a press release noted. The album is executive-produced by Charli, A. G. Cook and BJ Burton, and written, recorded and released in isolation due to the effects of the current COVID-19 pandemic. Some of the tracks on the 11-song album include "claws," "party 4 u," "pink diamond" and "7 years."

Twenty years have gone by since Britney Spears released her second album, Oops!…I Did It Again—and she marked the occasion on Instagram, noted. Her post features a video compilation of clips from Spears' music videos and interviews she did while making and promoting the album. "Thank you to whoever made this ….. I just nearly dropped my phone I wasn't expecting it [crying emojis] !!!!!" Spears wrote alongside the video.

Netflix Is A Joke hosted "Kimmy vs. the Music: A Live Singing Contest That's Live" to celebrate the launch of "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Kimmy vs. the Reverend," a press release noted. The live fan singing contest was judged by the show's cast and creators—Tina Fey, Robert Carlock, Jeff Richmond, Ellie Kemper, Tituss Burgess, Jane Krakowski, Carol Kane and Daniel Radcliffe—and moderated by Jack McBrayer. Hosted on Netflix Is A Joke's YouTube page, the special event featured performances from finalists Nicholas Cradock ( Perth, Australia ), Larry Lewis ( Richmond, Virginia ), Olivia Moffat ( Roseville, California ), A. Rochelle Morant ( Columbus, Ohio ) and winner Vikki Siddell ( St. Charles, Missouri ). The cast and creators raised awareness and funds for Crisis Text Line, which provides 24/7 mental health support to people in crisis, at Also, see

Rock 'n' roll pioneer Little Richard will be buried at Oakwood University— a historically Black university in Huntsville, Alabama—on Wed., May 20, Page Six noted. Gerald Kibble, director of Oakwood Memorial Gardens, said the private funeral will not be open to the public. Little Richard's close friend Pastor Bill Minson said the singer was an alumnus of the university.

ABC renewed the newest iteration of American Idol for a fourth season, Deadline noted. However, the network did not reveal whether the judges, Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie, along with host Ryan Seacrest, would return. Perry is pregnant, and expected to have her baby later this summer, so there's question marks whether she will return.

Moby released his new studio album, All Visible Objects, a press release announced. Alongside the release, Moby is also sharing a video of him detailing the inspiration, writing and recording of All Visible Objects' songs—available on his YouTube channel. All of Moby's profits from All Visible Objects will be donated to various charities, including Rainforest Action Network and the American Civil Liberties Union; over the last 10 years, Moby has been donating 100 percent of the profits from most of his work to animal and human-rights charities.

Showtime released the official poster and trailer for its new limited series The Good Lord Bird, premiering Sunday, Aug. 9, a press release noted. The series is told from the point of view of Onion ( Joshua Caleb Johnson ), a fictional enslaved boy who becomes a member of John Brown's family of abolitionist soldiers during Bleeding Kansas—a time when the state was a battleground between pro- and anti-slavery forces—and eventually finds himself participating in the famous 1859 raid on the U.S. Armory at Harpers Ferry. Ethan Hawke, who executive-produced the series, plays Brown. The trailer is at

Fab The Duo, a glam pop-rock duo and real-life couple, released a new track, "Stubborn," from their forthcoming EP, Our Love Is Resistance, a press release noted. Fab The Duo, who met each other on Tinder, are "aiming to change the cultural narrative about love in the LGBTQ space," the release stated. The duo's most recent single, "No Prince Charming ( featuring MariahLynn )," was released in February exclusively through Billboard Pride.

Rose McGowan accused Bill Maher of impropriety, noted. McGowan, a leader of the #MeToo movement, tweeted May 9 about an alleged interaction she had with Maher during an appearance on his late-night talk show Politically Incorrect in the 1990s; she claimed he whispered to her, "My parents didn't give me a good face, but they did give me a huge c—-." Politically Incorrect was canceled in 2002 after Maher's comment regarding the 9/11 attacks; the next year, he launched Real Time with Bill Maher ( now in its 18th season ) on HBO.

Adult performer Jessie Colter has opened up to his fans about a major life change—he was diagnosed with an "incurable kind of brain cancer" in February, Queerty noted. He said on Instagram that deciding to go public with the news was a big struggle, not wanting to "diminish the good times." He added, in part, "But my life isn't over yet. There's still time to make new memories. So even though yesterday was my 38th birthday, I plan on having more birthdays to celebrate as well as other joyous occasions that I very much look forward to."

Homophobic and transphobic rapper Boosie Badazz posted a video on social media admitting he hired a sex worker to give oral sex to his son and nephews when they were 12 and 13, LGBTQ Nation noted. While some commenters cheered Badazz for his actions, others were horrified and said that someone should call Child Protective Services to remove the children from his care. In a 2016 interview, Badazz ( real name: Torrence Hatch ) said he would beat his own son to try and change his sexuality if he told him that he were gay.

R. Kelly was denied pretrial release for a third time by a New York judge who ruled that being pre-diabetic is not a compelling reason for release, Billboard noted. Judge Ann Donnelly issued her decision May 15, finding that Kelly's "diagnosis of prediabetes—a relatively common and treatable condition—is not a 'compelling reason' for his release." This was the singer's third bid to urge the court to release him since the outbreak of COVID-19.

Late Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson announcer/sidekick Ed McMahon's mansion is for sale, noted. With ailing health, financial woes from bad investments and the Great Recession's housing market, McMahon almost lost the home in 2008. Several of his friends, including Donald Trump, vowed to save the home for McMahon. However, McMahon ended up selling it to a family friend who rented it back to him until his death in 2009. The Tudor-style home of McMahon is priced at $6.795 million, and is listed by Stephen Apelian and Joyce Rey of Coldwell Banker International Realty, Beverly Hills. See

Pop TV announced the One Day at a Time animated special will premiere Tuesday, June 16, and include special guest stars Gloria Estefan, Melissa Fumero and Lin-Manuel Miranda, a press release noted. The Sony Pictures Television series had its mid-season finale on April 14 due to production stoppages as a result of COVID-19. The animated special, titled, "The Politics Episode," will be fully executed remotely and premiere on Pop TV on June 16 at 8:30 p.m. CT following a marathon of the current season.

Will & Grace star Debra Messing and Mandana Dayani, co-founder of the nonpartisan organization I Am a Voter, are launching a podcast about people who have challenged the status quo, Deadline noted. The pair are launching The Dissenters on May 21; the first season of the show will feature 20 episodes. The first season will include guests such as Together Rising founder Glennon Doyle, Adam Schiff, Jane Fonda and Patrisse Cullors.

Singer Post Malone will be launching a French rose called Maison No. 9 this summer, a press release noted. Stemming from an idea to bring together a best-in-class winery with Malone's love of the Mediterranean lifestyle and rose, Post and his partners ( friend/entrepreneur James Morrissey of Global Brand Equities; and Dre London, longtime music manager and Founder of London Entertainment ) spent much of 2019 traveling frequently to Provence and working with winemaker Alexis Cornu to try grape varietals and sample blends. See .

Makeup mogul Jeffree Star was slammed on social media for releasing a new eyeshadow palette called "Cremated" during the coronavirus pandemic, noted. "Introducing the #CREMATED eyeshadow palette & collection...Get ready to be deceased," Star wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of the palette. Shortly after dropping the new collection, critics called out the 34-year-old, calling him "tone-deaf" for releasing a product titled "Cremated" amid the coronavirus pandemic. In a YouTube video, Star told fans the product was "supposed to come out in April but the coronavirus has had the whole entire beauty industry, of course, as well as the entire planet shook, and a lot of brands and a lot of us companies have had to move things back."

Ink Master's Daniel Silva, 27, was arrested for murder following the death of YouTube star Corey La Barrie, who was killed in a car crash—on his 25th birthday, noted. Authorities said the fatal incident occurred in the Valley Village area of Los Angeles, when "a 2020 McLaren 600LT was traveling eastbound on Huston Street at a high rate of speed when the driver lost control. Driver then ran off the road and collided with a stop sign and a tree on the northeast corner of Huston Street and Carpenter Avenue." La Barrie had more than 330,000 subscribers on YouTube and more than 200,000 followers on Instagram.

Actress Ashley Benson and rapper G-Eazy were seen kissing in a car in Los Angeles—just a week after news broke that she had called it quits with model Cara Delevingne, Extra noted. The romance rumors come nearly a month after he released their cover of Radiohead's "Creep." Delevingne herself came to Ashley's defense, writing on Instagram, "It's more important now than ever to spread love, not hate. To everyone hating on @ashleybenson please stop."

Rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine tried to donate $200,000 to the nonprofit No Kid Hungry—only to have the organization reject the offer, according to Page Six. A spokeswoman for No Kid Hungry told the website Complex, "As a child-focused campaign, it is our policy to decline funding from donors whose activities do not align with our mission and values." Tekashi ( real name: Daniel Hernandez ) was sentenced to two years behind bars after turning government snitch on some gang pals while admitting his role in a string of robberies and shootings.

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