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SHOWBIZ 'Red Hot' album, 'Drag Race,' 'L Word,' Qveen Herby, Lee Daniels
by Windy City Times staff

This article shared 1390 times since Sun May 30, 2021
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The Red Hot organization, which raises funds to fight HIV/AIDS, announced Red Hot + Free—a mixtape of dance beats, electro grooves and global anthems, a press release noted. Out July 2 and helmed by producer-provocateur Bill Coleman, Red Hot + Free is the non-profit's first brand new, full-length compilation since 2016's Grateful Dead tribute, Day of The Dead. This album—featuring such singers as Billy Porter, Bright Light Bright Light, Gloria Gaynor, Tituss Burguss, Cakes da Killa, Allie X and others—serves as a loose sequel to 1992's Red Hot + Dance, which included George Michael, Madonna, Seal and more.

RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars has found a second home at Paramount+, and 13 returning queens will get another shot at the crown, Deadline noted. Season six of "All Stars" will premiere June 24 on the streaming platform and welcome back contestants such as Jiggly Caliente, Scarlet Envy, Eureka O'Hara, Silky Nutmeg Ganache and more. Returning queens will sashay back to the "werkroom" to vie for a spot in Drag Race Hall of Fame and a cash prize of $100,000.

Media outlets have noted that the second season of the Showtime series The L Word Generation Q will debut Aug. 8, according to . One of the biggest changes coming is that Rosie O'Donnell will be joining the cast as Carrie, the fiancee of Tina (played by Laurel Holloman). Also, Vanessa Williams, (the one from Candyman and New Jack City, not the Miss America Pageant winner who was on Ugly Betty) will be joining the cast in a recurring role as artist Pippa Pascal.

Independent singer/rap sensation Qveen Herby released her debut album, A Woman, a press release noted. There is also a new self-directed music video for one of the album's songs, "Naughty Girl." (Some of the other songs include "Gucci Vision," "Celine Dion" and "Juice.") Anticipation for A Woman began immediately after she and her now-husband/producer, Nick Noonan, severed their major label deal in 2015 to pursue music independently after multi-platinum success with Karmin. Herby will perform new material at this year's OUTLOUD Raising Voices 2021, curated by Adam Lambert, on June 6.

Openly gay writer, director, producer Lee Daniels and his production company, Lee Daniels Entertainment, extended its overall deal with Disney-owned 20th Television, Deadline noted. The multi-year agreement is the latest deal extension for the Empire creator, coming three years after his last arrangement and seven years after he first inked with the studio. It comes after he scored two major series orders for this upcoming broadcast season; he is an exec producer on ABC's reboot of The Wonder Years and Fox's adaptation of Lawrence Otis Graham's book Our Kind of People.

On Thursday, June 17, the Max Original dramedy Genera+ion returns to HBO Max with three new episodes, according to a press release. The series continues with two episodes on June 24, two episodes on July 1 and one episode on July 8. Genera+ion is a half-hour series following a diverse group of high school students whose exploration of modern sexuality tests deeply entrenched beliefs about life, love and the nature of family in their conservative community.

HBO Max released the first look teaser and character posters for the series Gossip Girl, ahead of the series premiere on Thursday, July 8, a press release noted. This extension of the pop-culture classic (which ran 2007-12 on The CW) takes viewers back to the Upper East Side finding a new generation of New York private school teens being introduced to social surveillance nine years after the original blogger's website went dark.

The NBC stations announced that The Kelly Clarkson Show will take over the slot currently held by The Ellen DeGeneres Show by fall 2022, Deadline reported. The Kelly Clarkson Show now airs in 100% of the country across 200 stations. DeGeneres announced earlier this month that she would be ending her show with season 19 in 2022. Currently in its second season, The Kelly Clarkson Show has been renewed for an additional two seasons, through 2023.

Speaking of DeGeneres, a Page Six item discussed her real-estate portfolio. She reportedly owns $63.3 million in homes—and that hasn't put a single dent in her earnings from The Ellen DeGeneres Show. She has owned $450 million in houses and made enough profits to cover the cost of her current holdings: Rancho San Leandro and the Dennis Miller house, both in Montecito, California. She made an $80-million gross profit (not including renovation costs) on the sales, according to property records; her net profit (profit minus renovation costs) is likely near $65 to $70 million, using Millionacres flip-and-sell profit averages.

In the upcoming movie The Eternals, Brian Tyree Henry will play Phastos—and will make history as the first out gay superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, according to . In the film (which co-stars Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, Kumail Nanjiani, Kit Harrington and Richard Madden, among others), Phastos—whose powers involve creating new technology and weapons—will be married to a character played by Haaz Sleiman, and the pair will have children. The Eternals will hit theaters in November.

Armando Rubio and Kenneth Niedermeier, who co-starred on the reality show 90 Day Fiance, got married in Mexico, according to . The first male same-sex couple featured on the TLC franchise got married at the Mansarda winery in Ensenada, Baja California.

The Amy Winehouse Foundation and MusiCares announced a one-of-a-kind NFT (non-fungible token) of Winehouse from photographer Charles Moriarty and visual artist Mark Palkoski, with proceeds benefiting both organizations, Variety noted. This NFT was part of the "Back to Amy" exhibit and livestream, which will be presented live July 23 (the 10th anniversary of Winehouse's death) and will feature performances in celebration of Winehouse's legacy and cultural contributions on the tenth year since her passing. The auction for the NFT took place May 18.

Howard University announced that it has named its newly re-established College of Fine Arts after one of its most famous alumni: the late actor Chadwick Boseman, NPR noted, citing The Washington Post. Boseman was a Howard alumnus, and was the university's commencement speaker in 2018. Earlier this month, Howard named actor and alumnus Phylicia Rashad as the dean of the fine arts school.

Carrie Underwood added six new show dates from March 23 to April 2, 2022, to Reflection: The Las Vegas Residency—her recently announced headlining engagement run, a press release noted. The residency is opening Dec. 1, 2021, at The Theatre at Resorts World Las Vegas. Tickets for all 12 show dates, plus a limited number of VIP and premium ticket packages, are on sale; visit

Award-winning DJ Marshmello and Grammy-nominated trio Jonas Brothers released the official video for their new song "Leave Before You Love Me," a press release noted. The release followed the Billboard Music Awards performance that had the band close the show, which Nick Jonas hosted, with a special medley that included the new song with Marshmello. Marshmello—known for hits "Happier," "Silence" and "Friends"—recently released his first NFT project, Welcome to the Melloverse!

Singer Dua Lipa spoke out against an ad in The New York Times that slammed her, Gigi Hadid and Bella Hadid for supporting Palestinian rights amid violence in the Middle East, noted. In response to Lipa and the Hadid sisters publicly showing support for Palestinians affected by the recent violence in Gaza, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach of the World Values Network took out a full-page ad in the Times to accuse the trio of "ignorance" and spreading "disgusting libel." On her Instagram Stories, Lipa wrote, "I utterly reject the false and appalling allegations. … I take this stance because I believe that everyone—Jews, Muslims and Christians—have the right to live in peace as equal citizens of a state they choose."

Joan Rivers' lavish New York City penthouse is for sale at $38 million and is featured at . Rivers threw herself into decorating the residence, while keeping the decor style in accordance with the French-themed architecture. She resided there for 28 years and often entertained celebrities, including Princess Diana. Interestingly, Rivers believed the place had a ghost in the form of what was believed to be former owner, Mrs. Spencer; the comedian engaged a voodoo priestess from Louisiana to eradicate the spirit throughout the building.. See

A Page Six article looked at the 10 most expensive homes owned by the Real Housewives. At number three is Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum Lisa Vanderpump's 8,800-square-foot spot, which was most recently assessed at $11.6 million. Erika Jayne, also with the Beverly Hills group, moved out of her ex Tom Girardi's $13-million mansion months before it was placed up for sale in involuntary bankruptcy proceedings; it is a 10,200-square-foot house with four bedrooms and five-and-a-half bathrooms. And at number one is Real Housewives of Orange County's Heather Dubrow, whose residence is valued at $21 million; the house has seven bedrooms, 14 bathrooms, a $1-million theater, and a $12,000 wine display and cooler.

The new Friday the 13th 8-Movie Collection will arrive on Blu-ray Aug. 10, from Paramount Home Entertainment, a press release noted. The collection includes newly remastered versions of the first four films in one of the most influential and successful horror franchises in cinematic history. The eight films in the collection are: Friday The 13th, Friday The 13th Part 2, Friday The 13th Part 3, Friday The 13th Part IV: The Final Chapter, Friday The 13th Part V: A New Beginning, Friday The 13th Part VI: Jason Lives, Friday The 13th Part VII: The New Blood and Friday The 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences chose Sunday, March 27, as the date for next year's Academy Awards, with nominations set to be revealed on Tuesday, Feb. 8, Deadline reported. Although this is a full month earlier than this year's latest-ever COVID-challenged April 25 show, it is still a month later than the norm in most recent pre-pandemic years. The eligibility period for Academy Awards consideration, however, will return to the standard Dec. 31 deadline after having been extended to Feb. 28 this year for a 14-month Oscar year, rather than the usual 12 in the normal calendar year.

New Cadence Productions (NCP) announced that HBO Max will stream the HA Comedy Festival for a second year, a press release noted. The first festival took place in February 2020 over three days, in five venues with 21 shows and 46 comedians. It was and remains the largest showcase of Latino comedic talent in the world. The prerecorded live finale of the first festival—hosted by comedian Anjelah Johnson and featuring celebrities Eva Longoria, Eugenio Derbez and Danny Trejo—streamed on HBO Max last August. The festival takes place in the historic Riverwalk Area of San Antonio, Texas in September.

BTS broke the record for the biggest song debut in Spotify history with their new single "Butter," noted. The track received more 11 million global Spotify plays May 21, breaking the streaming service's opening day record formerly held by Ed Sheeran and Justin Bieber's "I Don't Care" in 2019.

In her new memoir, Rememberings, singer Sinead O'Connor states that, among other things, Prince (whose song, "Nothing Compares 2 U," was a hit that she covered) threatened to beat her up, according to Page Six. In the book, O'Connor delves into the good, the bad and the sad, saying her mother abused her terribly as a child, once locking her in her room with no food and then leaving for the weekend.

The man who killed influential singer Mia Zapata (of Seattle band The Gits) on July 7, 1993 has died, Deadline noted. Jesus Mezquia died in a hospital in Pierce County, Washington on Jan. 21 of this year at age 66; however, his death was only recently confirmed by the Washington state Department of Corrections. Zapata and The Gits had just emerged in the Seattle alternative rock/grunge music scene at the time of her death.

Actor Shakina Nayfack (Connecting…; Difficult People) announced that she is non-binary, noted. "I always felt 'nonbinary' was implicit in my identity," Nayfack posted on her social media in large text post written over the trans flag. "I've personally understood the prefix 'trans' to mean 'beyond' more than 'from one to another,' as in TRANScending gender." Nayfack added that her pronouns are still she/her, but she said they/them also work "if that's what the discourse requires."

Timothee Chalamet will play the world's most famous chocolatier in Wonka, a musical based on the early life of Willy Wonka, Variety noted. Though plot details have been kept under wraps, the Warner Bros. prequel film will explore the upbringing of the man who later created the famous house of confectionery treats. Reps for Chalamet confirmed he will be singing and dancing in the movie.

After months of negative backlash on social media, The CW announced it is scrapping the pilot for their planned live-action Powerpuff Girls reboot and is reworking the series, noted. The Powerpuff Girls update, titled Powerpuff, and following the child superheroes as adults, stars Chloe Bennet as Blossom, bisexual actress Dove Cameron as Bubbles, and queer non-binary actor Yanna Perrault as Buttercup. "In this case, the pilot didn't work," The CW CEO/Chair Mark Pedowitz said. "Because we see enough elements in there, we wanted to give it another shot. It may have felt a little too campy and not rooted in reality.

The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences on Tuesday revealed nominees for the 48th annual Daytime Emmy Awards, which will be presented June 25 in prime time on CBS and Paramount+, Deadline noted. More than 40 categories will be given out during the broadcast and on social media. Alex Trebek and Larry King received posthumous nominations.

The Shop: Uninterrupted has returned for its fourth season on HBO, and is available to stream on HBO Max, a press release noted. Joining LeBron James and Maverick Carter for the season premiere were iconic music mogul, 23-time Grammy winner and 2021 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Jay-Z; rapper, singer and songwriter Bad Bunny; WNBA superstar Nneka Ogwumike; and marketing executive Paul Rivera. The series, staged periodically throughout the year, offers conversation and debate between a unique ensemble of some of the biggest names in sports and entertainment. Past guests have included Megan Rapinoe, Stacey Abrams, Lil Was X and former President Barack Obama.

The Broadway-aimed Britney Spears jukebox musical Once Upon a One More Time will now premiere at Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C., this fall, Playbill noted. Performances begin at STC's Sidney Harman Hall on Nov. 29 for a limited engagement through Jan. 2, 2022. The musical weaves the pop anthems of Spears—including "Oops I Did It Again," "Lucky," "Circus" and "Toxic"—into an adventure about smashing the glass slipper and claiming a different kind of happily ever after.

In the months since publicly criticizing Lizzo's weight, celebrity trainer Jillian Michaels, is standing by her statements against praising overly plump bodies, Page Six revealed. The former Biggest Loser coach blasted the Grammy winner for being overweight in a viral clip from January 2020, asking, "Why are we celebrating her body? Why does it matter? 'Cause it isn't gonna be awesome if she gets diabetes." While Michaels now regrets targeting Lizzo in her obesity bluster, she's not sorry about denouncing the excess poundage.

Lindsay Lohan is returning to acting, as she is starring in a yet-to-be-titled Netflix holiday rom-com, according to Variety. In this new movie, Lohan will play a "newly engaged, spoiled hotel heiress" (according to the logline) who gets amnesia after a skiing accident and "finds herself in the care of a handsome, blue-collar lodge owner and his precocious daughter in the days leading up to Christmas." The rest of the cast has not yet been announced.

Kumail Nanjiani (The Big Sick, TV's Silicon Valley) and Issa Rae (TV's Insecure) star in the film The Lovebirds, arriving on DVD, Digital and On Demand on June 8 from Paramount Home Entertainment, a press release noted. Featuring a never-before-seen, unrated cut of the film, the DVD and Digital releases also include the original theatrical cut as well as exclusive bonus content, including a gag reel, deleted scenes, a Line-O-Rama, interviews with the cast, a Lovebirds quiz and more.

Chris Noth will reprise the role of Mr. Big in the HBO Max original series (and Sex and the City sequel) And Just Like That…, a press release announced. The new series looks at reality of life and friendship of women in their 50s. The ten-episode, half-hour series—starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Kristin Davis and Cynthia Nixon— is scheduled to begin production in New York this summer.

Gwen Stefani again defended her Harajuku Girls era in her career from longstanding claims of cultural appropriation, USA Today noted. "We learn from each other, we share from each other, we grow from each other. And all these rules are just dividing us more and more," she said during a Paper Magazine interview. Stefani has faced decades of cultural appropriation accusations, from wearing a bindi (a South Asian religious symbol) in the 90s to her 2005 "Luxurious" music video, where she imitated Hispanic culture and danced in an Our Lady of Guadalupe shirt. But the most serious claim of cultural appropriation came from the Japanese-inspired imagery Stefani used heavily on her 2004 album Love. Angel. Music. Baby, which gave rise to her number-one single "Hollaback Girl" and her Harajuku Girls entourage.

Vanessa Redgrave clarified that she will not be among the cast of The Man Who Drew God—the upcoming Italian film that is set to mark the big-screen comeback of Kevin Spacey, Deadline noted. ABC News had quoted sources in unveiling that Redgrave also would be among the cast, as well as director Franco Nero (Redgrave's real-life husband) and other Italian actors. Spacey's character in the movie will investigate accusations of pedophilia against a blind artist.

Actor James Ransone, who appeared in HBO's hit series The Wire, is accusing a Maryland middle-school employee of repeated sexual abuse while tutoring him as a child, Page Six noted. Ransone, who played Ziggy Sobotka in HBO's gritty series, posted a lengthy email on Instagram that he sent his alleged sexual abuser in March. Ransone accused his former tutor, Timothy Rualo—who now reportedly works as the department chair of social studies at Sudbrook Magnet Middle School in Baltimore County—of sexually abusing him numerous times at the actor's childhood home in Phoenix, Maryland, over the course of six months in 1992. The Baltimore County state's attorney office ultimately did not bring charges following a police investigation, the Baltimore Sun reported.

Bill Cosby has been denied parole by the Pennsylvania Parole Board, which cited a number of reasons for its decision, reported. The board cited Cosby's "failure to develop a parole release plan" and a "negative recommendation by the Department of Corrections" as factors that contributed to the decision. Cosby, 83, is currently serving a 3-to-10-year sentence at a prison outside Philadelphia for drugging and sexually assaulting a former Temple University employee at his home in 2004.

Singer, rapper and producer Akon had his vehicle stolen from an Atlanta gas station, noted. Police said Akon—whose full name is Aliaune Damala Badara Akon Thiam—was filling his white newer-model Range Rover and left it running. Using a tracking device on his phone, authorities recovered the vehicle. According to the police report, Akon had a $25,000 diamond necklace as well as a Louis Vuitton bag valued at $6,500 inside the vehicle; it is unknown if those items were recovered. In Atlanta, auto thefts, which include carjackings, are up about 47 percent from this time last year.

Heavy-metal band Megadeth fired bassist David Ellefson after he was accused of sexual misconduct, Variety noted. Megadeth co-founder and lead guitarist Dave Mustaine wrote on the band's Twitter account, "While we do not know every detail of what occurred, with an already strained relationship, what has already been revealed now is enough to make working together impossible moving forward."

This article shared 1390 times since Sun May 30, 2021
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