TV Personality and Extra Correspondent A.J. Calloway has not only been suspended by Warner Brothers from the show, but he now has a total of six accusers who have gone public with sexual misconduct allegations against him. Calloway hadn’t initially been suspended from Extra when the first accusations were made, but the studio did investigate and found nothing to suggest misconduct at work. Now, with additional accusers coming forward, Warner Brothers studio suspended Calloway and is expanding their ongoing inquires. Calloway, 44, through his lawyers has denied all wrongdoing. His lawyers added the former BET 106 And Park host is devastated by these accusations that are completely false. Can Calloway overcome six accusations in the Metoo era, or is his career done? And, could this result in criminal charges?
Has the Queen Of Hip Hop Soul found love?!!! Mary J. Blige is on a roll with her career and personal life. Her upcoming Netflix series is The Umbrella Academy, and she’s playing a hitwoman. When Blige strolled the red carpet for the premiere, she was not alone. Her date…..was an African entrepreneur…Yes! Nana Kwame Bediako was her date and what we know about him is he’s from Ghana. Plus, he’s quite successful and wealthy from business. We don’t want to rush things, but this looks very promising. Mary J. Blige’sUmbrella Academy begins streaming this Friday.
The Jussie Smollett update finds him going public with Robin Roberts on Good Morning America (GMA). Smollett reported to authorities being the victim of a racial and homophobic attack a few weeks ago in Chicago during a 2am food run he made. He was briefly hospitalized, released and later returned to performing. Reports have surfaced in the media that there are doubts about the actor’s story with some critics accusing him of making the attack up. Smollett denies that and told Robin Roberts he is forever changed by the attack, and he’ll never be the man this didn’t happen to. Smollett recounted to Roberts that two men did yell racial and homophobic slurs at him, and that one man put the rope on his neck and the other poured a substance on him. The actor also said one of the men yelled this is MAGA (Make America Great Again) Country N**ger before punching him in the face. Smollett, who says he was on the phone with his manager during the attack, also said he fought back punching the man back before being kicked in the back by the second man.Smollett, who got very emotional during the GMA interview, also says there’s no doubt in his mind the two persons of interests on the surveillance video are his perpetrators. As of press time, no arrests have been made.
It All About Motown:
Let’s start with Smokey Robinson. The man is a legend, a songwriter, a singer, a record producer and now a J-Lo defender. The man known as The Mayor Of Motown sounded off on critics who were less than thrilled that Jennifer Lopez headlined the Motown 60th anniversary salute on this past weekend’s Grammys. Some say she was an inappropriate choice because she’s not African American. Some said those were hard songs and maybe not suited for her. Others just plan didn’t like the idea. Robinson made it clear she was a great choice because Motown made music for all people. He also said Lopez being from Brooklyn gave her the perfect background because of how big Motown music is in the big cities like New York. Robinson called any negativity stupid. When show time came, Robinson actually joined Lopez on stage. Reports got out because of all the pressure, J-Lo was a nightmare for the backstage crew and was very difficult. When she performed she thanked so many people….except for Motown Founder Berry Gordy…who sat in full view with his and Diana Ross’ daughter Rhonda.
Speaking of Diana “Don’t Be Lazy” Ross, she did participate in her own set and sang some tribute themed songs to her career as well as to Motown. Ross is celebrating her 75th birthday this year and is stepping up her public appearances and concert touring to mark the occasion. During her Grammy performance, The Boss noticed the crowd was a little slow to stand to their feet. Well she fixed that, and they don’t call her The Boss for nothing. Miss Ross told them to get on up, don’t be lazy and join her in song. Motown’s most famous Diva looked like a million bucks. Meanwhile, Miss Ross is in the midst of her Diamond Diana Las Vegas residency at the Wynn Hotel & Casino through February 23rd. And, Diana Ross: Her Life, Love And Legacy, the documentary and film of her 1983 Central Park Concert will premiere in theaters on her birthday, Tuesday, March 26th.
Motown/Universal is releasing a new album from Marvin Gaye that’s been on the shelf for four decades. You’re The Man was originally intended to be the follow up to Gaye’s massively successful 1971 concept album What’s Going On. You’re The Man was the intended album, and the title track was released as a single. But, when the single only saw moderate success, the album was shelved, and Gaye’s million selling 1972 Trouble Man soundtrack came next. You’re The Man will include some songs that have been previously released such as My Last Chance and I Want To Come Home For Christmas. You’re The Man will be released Friday, March 29th three days before the 35th anniversary of his death and four days before what would have been Gaye’s 80th birthday.
The Grammys also took some heat for the briefness of the Motown tribute and even worse, the very few minutes given to 20-time Grammy winner Aretha Franklin. Turns out the Grammy folks are presenting a pair of specials dedicated to both icons. First, there’s A Grammy Celebration For The Queen Of Soul, a CBS tribute special hosted by Tyler Perry. They’ll be appearances by President Barack Obama, Celine Dion, Quincy Jones, John Legend, Barbara Streisand, Willie Nelson, Tony Bennett and Smokey Robinson. Performances include Sza & Alicia Keys on Daydreaming; Patti LaBelle on Call Me; Andra Day & Fantasia on (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman; and Franklin’s silver screen portrayer Jennifer Hudson (Respect: The Aretha Franklin Story) with Think. Aretha! A Grammy Celebration For The Queen Of Soul airs on CBS Sunday, March 10th.
Next, Smokey Robinson and Cedric The Entertainer (CBS’s The Neighborhood) will host a Grammy special entitled Motown 60: A Grammy Celebration. Performers include Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder, John Legend, Boyz II Men, Chloe X Halle, Ne-Yo and Thelma Houston. The 60th Anniversary Motown special airs Sunday, April 21st at 8pm on CBS.
The 50th Anniversary of The NAACP Image Awards will be celebrated on TV One. Netflix garnered 22 nods followed by HBO with 20 nominations, ABC grabbed 18 and Marvel took 13. 14 nominations went to the billion dollar box office champion Black Panther. Writer/Director Ryan Coogler and Lead Actor Chadwick Boseman are not only nominated in their categories, but they’re also in the running for Entertainer Of The Year with Beyonce, Regina King and LeBron James. Donald Glover has five nominations spread amongst his work as Childish Gambino with his Grammy winner This Is America getting two nods, and as actor/producer/director getting three nominations for his F/X show Atlanta. Congresswoman Maxine Waters will receive the NAACP Chairman’s Award for public service. The Golden Anniversary Of The NAACP Image Awards will air on TV One Saturday, March 30th.
Big changes are coming to America’s Got Talent on NBC. Tyra Banks, who replaced Nick Cannon, had already been replaced as host by Terry Crews (Brooklyn Nine-Nine). Now comes word that Producer and Judge Simon Cowell wants to shake things up more. So what does that mean? Mel B and Heidi Klum are out. Howie Mandel and Simon stay. So who’s replacing the ladies? Gabrielle Union (Being Mary Jane on BET; Bad Boys Spinoff L.A.’s Finest on Spectrum) and Julianne Hough (Dancing With The Stars) will take the two judge spots. All these changes will take place for this upcoming season of America’s Got Talent on NBC.
Speaking of Gabrielle Union, her Bad Boys spinoff, L.A.’s Finest, is coming to Spectrum Originals Network after the Being Mary Jane series finale airs on BET. L.A.’s Finest has Union reprising her role as Syd Burnett (Martin Lawrence’s sister and Will Smith love interest). Her character teams up with Nancy McKenna played by Jessica Alba (Fantastic Four). Both actresses are executive producers. First up is closing the Being Mary Jane drama afterfour seasons on BET. The series finale of Being Mary Jane will premiere Tuesday, April 16th on BET, and L.A.’s Finest premieres on Monday, May 13th on Spectrum Originals. Union also graces the cover of March’s Women’s Health magazine.
Oprah Winfrey got Philly’s own Bradley Cooper, Michael B. Jordan and possible Presidential Candidate Beto O’Rourke on a special edition of SuperSoul Conversations in New York. The Mighty O got Cooper to talk about his Oscar embarrassment because despite multiple nominations, he didn’t get a best director’s nod. Jordan confessed to Winfrey he sought therapy after playing the villain Erik Killmonger in Black Panther because he had to delve into a cold, lonely place to get that character down. Finally, Winfrey and O’Rourke take turns asking each other, are you running for president? Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations airs Saturday, February 16th at 8pm on OWN.
The 91st Annual Academy Awards on Sunday, February 24th at 8pm on ABC.
Lupita Nyong’o is on the covers of both US and Marie Claire magazines. The Oscar winner and her Black Panther Co-star Winston Duke head the cast of Oscar Winner Jordan Peele’s new film Us. Nyong’o and Duke play a married couple who take their two children to a beach house on vacation only to be confronted by the entire family’s look a likes (doppelgangers) who are also in the neighborhood. Us hits theaters Friday, March 22nd.
Tyler Perry inThe Madea Farewell Tour is coming to The Met Philly March 20th through the 24th. Meanwhile, Tyler Perry’s A Madea Family Funeral, the character’s big screen farewell, co-stars Cassi Davis (The Paynes), Patrice Lovely (Love Thy Neighbor), Joel Rush (If Loving You Is Wrong), Rome Flynn (How To Get Away With Murder) Wrestler/Actor David Otunga, and Jen Harper (Greenleaf) and will hit theaters Friday, March 1st.
Sunday, March 3rd marks the return of Uncensored and UnSung on TV One. UnSung will feature Shirley Murdock, Adina Howard, The Jets, Crystal Waters, Lloyd, Kenny Lattimore, Gospel Artist Tasha Cobbs-Leonard and Glenn Jones. Meanwhile, Uncensored will feature Fantasia, Ne-Yo, Tasha Smith, Reality Star Tami Roman, Naturi Naughton, Jermaine Dupri and Kirk Franklin. Both shows’ season premieres air Sunday, March 3rd with Unsung premiering at 9pm and Uncensored at 10pm on TV One.
Little is a movie coming out this spring, but it’s already going into the record books. A high powered but super mean business executive (Regina Hall from Girls’ Trip) is transformed back into her 13-year old self with her present day mind (Marsai Martin, “Diane” from Black-ish). Her assistant (Issa Rae of Insecure) is the only one who knows the truth, and must keep her boss’ business going until they can make her normal again. Will Packer, Hall and Martin are the executive producers and that makes Martin the youngest executive producer in movie history. Little, co-starring Tone Bell (CBS’ Fam) and Justin Hartley (NBC’s This Is Us) opens in theaters April 12th.
Essence Magazine’s February issue is an homage to the Essence Black Women In Hollywood Luncheon. A shared cover features the Luncheon’s 2019 honorees: Jenifer Lewis (Black-ish; Think Like A Man; What’s Love Got To Do With It), Kiki Layne (If Beale Street Could Talk; Captive City), Amandla Stenberg (The Hate You Give; The Hunger Games) and Regina Hall (Scary Movie; Girls’ Trip; Little).
Check out who’s coming to town:
This Friday, February 15th –Brian McKnight in concert at Ocean Resort Casino’s Ovation Hall in Atlantic City. For Tickets and information log onto ticketmaster.com.
This Saturday, February 16th – Erykah Badu and Busta Rhymes at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. For Tickets and information log onto ticketmaster.com.
This Saturday, February 16th – The Isley Brothers 60th Anniversary Tour at Ocean Resort Casino’s Ovation Hall in Atlantic City. For Tickets and information log onto ticketmaster.com.
This Saturday, February 16th– Boyz II Men celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the album II at The Met Philly, Broad and Poplar. Log onto themetphilly.com/events for tickets and information.
This Sunday, February 17th– The Valentine’s Day Soul Jam starring The Stylistics, The Manhattans, Bloodstone and Harold Melvin’s Bluenotes at The Tropicana in Atlantic City. For tickets and information log onto ticketmaster.com
This Sunday, February 17th – Gladys Knight in concert at the Parx Casino in Bensalem. For tickets and information log onto parxcasino.com/xcitecenter
Saturday, March 9th – Tony Toni Tone’ & Jody Watley in concert at The Keswick Theater, Glenside, Pa. For tickets and information log onto keswicktheater.com/events/all.
Saturday, March 16th – Comedian JB Smoove at the Parx Casino in Bensalem. For tickets and information log onto parxcasino.com/xcitecenter.
Wednesday, March 20th – Sunday, March 24th– Madea’s Farewell starring Tyler Perry at The Met Philly, Broad & Poplar Streets. For tickets and information log onto ticketmaster.com
Friday, March 22nd and Saturday, March 23rd– Lionel Richie in concert at The Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City. Log onto ticketmaster.com for tickets and information.
Saturday, March 30th– Mariah Carey in concert at The Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City. Log onto ticketmaster.com for tickets and information.
Friday, April 26th – The New Stylistics featuring Russell Thompkins, Jr., The Manhattans featuring Gerald Alston and The Delfonics featuring William Hart in concert at The Keswick Theater, Glenside, Pa. For tickets and information log onto keswicktheater.com/events/all.
Friday, May 3rd – Wayne Brady at the Parx Casino in Bensalem. For Tickets and information log onto parxcasino.com/xcitecenter
Friday, May 10th – The Mother’s Day Music Festival Weekend starring The Whispers & The Force MD’s at Caesar’s Circus Maximus Theater in Atlantic City. Tickets go on sale this Friday, February 1st. For more information log onto ppshows.com and for tickets log onto ticketmaster.com.
Saturday, May 11th – The Mother’s Day Music Festival Weekend starring Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, Kem, Al B. Sure and Christopher Williams at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Tickets go on sale this Friday, February 1st. For more information log onto ppshows.com and for tickets log onto ticketmaster.com.
Sunday, May 12th – The Mother’s Day Music Festival Weekend starring After 7 and Dru Hill at Tropicana Showroom Theater in Atlantic City. Tickets are on sale now. For more information log onto ppshows.com and for tickets log onto ticketmaster.com.
Thursday, June 6th – One Nation Under A Groove-George Clinton’s Farewell Tour with Parliament-Funkadelic at the Franklin Music Hall, formerly The Electric Factory, 421 North 7th Street. For more ticket information log onto ticketmaster.com
If you would like more info please email me at PattyJackson@iHeartMedia.com or check me out with my midday reports at 10:30am, 12:30pm and 2:30pm during the day.