Gabrielle Union gets her money from NBC! Union was let go amidst much controversy from NBC’s America’s Got Talent (AGT), but chose to fight back and go public. The actress had filed a complaint against the NBC Network, Fremantle Media, Syco Entertainment and Producer/Judge Simon Cowell with the California Department of Fair Housing and Employment. That was after participating with NBC’s investigation. The network would conclude its investigation by issuing a report that despite Union’s earlier complaints directly to the network,no one associated with the AGT made any insensitive or derogatory remarks toward Union. However, there would be sensitive training implemented on AGT. Huh?!!! Remember, after Union was let go, she claimed a toxic racial and sexist environment on the set of AGT. The actress alleged being told to leave her hair alone, that she was too black and that Executive Producer and fellow Judge Simon Cowell would smoke around her inside the studio. Union’s complaint to the State of California also claimed that NBC Entertainment Chairman Paul Telegdy tried to silence and intimidate her. Now Union has reached a settlement, which wasn’t a surprise because depositions and a possible trial for NBC would have probably been disastrous. NBC ousted Chairmen Telegdy as Union opened up the floodgates for Telegdy’s former subordinates to accuse him of other toxic behavior, including racism. NBC fired Telegdy and released a statement the network reached an amicable settlement with Gabrielle Union. Translation she got paid!!!! Gabby tried to tell y’all, but now it looks like she’s helping Hollywood take a step toward equity at the workplace.
More workplace drama for the CBS daytime show The Talk. Remember in the first season how Holly Robinson Peete and Leah Remini clashed with producers and Sharon Osborne. Next thing we know, Peete and Remini were out. The ladies didn’t burn their bridges though and continued to work with CBS on other projects. Well it sounds like a case of Déjà vu because the legendary Marie Osmond had joined the show, but only for one season. At the time of her departure, it was reported Osmond wanted to pursue other opportunities. Well that was not the case. Now Sharon Osborne is being called out once again as an instigator and this time along with Cheryl Underwood. Huh? Osborne and Underwood had reportedly told CBS it’s either Osmond or us. What could Marie Osmond have done to cross Osborne and Underwood for them both to give an ultimatum? Hmmmmmmmmm!
There’s going to be a sequel to the 2019 Lion King blockbuster. The CGI reboot starred Donald Glover, Beyonce, Alfre Woodard, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Seth Rogan, Billy Eichner, John Oliver and James Earl Jones, and took in over a billion dollars at the box office worldwide. Oscar winning Filmmaker Barry Jenkins (Moonlight; If Beale Street Could Talk) is set to direct. This will also be a CGI generated version as the 2019 was. The word is the sequel will look to the future and flashback to the past to explore the realization of the legacy of Mufasa. The cast and a release date have yet to be confirmed. Also on Barry Jenkins plate is a bio-pic on the life and legacy of famed Dancer/Choreographer Alvin Ailey.
We remember NFL Legend Gayle Sayers, who has passed after a battle with dementia. A four time ProBowler, he spent 1965-1971 as a halfback with the Chicago Bears. Sayers would later have a second career as a sports administrator, most notably as athletic director for Southern Illinois University. Sayers remains the youngest player ever inducted into the Pro Football Hall Of Fame. Sayers was portrayed on the small screen by none other than Billy Dee Williams. Williams and James Caan starred in the true story of the friendship of Sayers and the late Brian Piccolo in Brian’s Song. The 1971 TV movie chronicled the two football teammates enduring friendship through Piccolo’s battle with cancer. Gayle Sayers was 77 years old.
Jackie Stallone has died. The mother of the late D’Alto Filiti, Singer/Actor Frank Stallone, Jr. and Actor Sylvester Stallone was a larger than life media personality all her own. A famed psychic, Jackie Stallone authored three books on astrology. She also helped establish women-only gyms as a long time personal fitness advocate. Stallone became integral to the creation of G.L.O.W. The Gorgeous Ladies Of Wrestling and managed talent. She was a huge part of getting G.L.O.W. on television, and there’s a Netflix series today based on the organization. Jackie Stallone died in her sleep at age 98.
Teenaged TV and Film Actress Marsai Martin (“Diane” Black-ish) is putting on her producer hat once again. Martin’s production company is adapting Savvy, the children’s fantasy novel by Ingrid Law, into a TV series. In 2019, Martin produced the film Little with Actress Regina Hall and Will Packer. Co-starring Martin, Hall and Issa Rae (Insecure), Little took in nearly $50 million at the box office, and Martin set a record as film’s youngest executive producer. Now Martin is teaming up with Universal Pictures once again as she has a first look deal with the studio. Look for an announcement on Savvy as the team shops the show around.
Actress Zendaya is in her moment and making the most of it. How is she doing that? First, she’s teaming up with Actor John David Washington for the film Malcolm & Marie for Netflix. The romantic drama was shot in six days under quarantine, and was done in black and white. Zendaya and Writer Director Sam Levinson came up with the idea of a film they could shoot while their HBO show Euphoria was shutdown due to the pandemic. Zendaya broke a record and became Emmy’s youngest Best Actress In A Drama winner for Euphoria. Washington and Zendaya are among the executive producers of Malcolm & Marie, which centers on a filmmaker and his girlfriend who return from premiere night of his latest film only to have revelations and relationship tests dominate the rest of their evening. No streaming date has been announced yet and proceeds from Malcolm & Marie will be shared with Feeding America.
In more Zendaya news, she’s going to play a Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame legend. Ronnie Spector achieved legendary status of the lead singer of The Ronettes. The group recorded for the Phillies label and utilized the world famous Wall Of Sound. Baby, I Love You, The Best Part Of Breaking Up, Walking In The Rain and their signature Be My Baby were produced by Spector’s ex-husband the legendary music impresario Phil Spector. These days Phil Spector continues to reside in prison after being convicted of murdering Actress Lana Clarkson. His conviction vindicates the many years Ronnie Spector has accused her ex-husband of abusive behavior throughout their entire relationship. Did you know Ronnie recruited new Ronettes in the 70’s including Actress/Director Chip Fields-Hurd (Good Times), mother of Actress Kim Fields (Living Single; Facts Of Life)? How about Ronnie hitting the top five again when the late Singer Eddie Money invited her to re-sing her part on 1986’s Take Me Home Tonight/Be My Baby? Now Ronnie Spector and Zendaya are teaming up to bring Ronnie’s bio-pic to the big screen. The additional cast and filming plans are still in development, but the story will be based on Be My Baby the memoir Spector co-authored with Vince Waldron.
Another testament to the late Actor Chadwick Boseman comes from his 21 Bridges co-star Sienna Miller. Boseman died in August after a four year battle with colon cancer. Miller was asked about her thoughts on her former co-star, and she decided to reveal something about him being the best way to honor his legacy. Boseman was also a producer on the 21 Bridges film, and when he learned the studio didn’t want to give Miller her price for starring in the film, he immediately objected. He made a deal to donate a portion of his salary to meet Miller’s price as he felt she deserved it. Miller says Boseman was a fan of her work, and she felt the same about him. Miller called Boseman’s actions astounding in his standing up against Hollywood’s pay disparity practices. Miller says she decided to go public because it was a testament to who Boseman was.
Kelly Clarkson will host the Billboard Music Awards. Lizzo, Post Malone and Lil Nas X are all nominated. The Billboard Music Awards air at 8pm on Wednesday, October 14th on NBC.
TV Personality/Actress La La Anthony is on the cover of the new September/October edition of Essence magazine.
Lizzo is on the cover of the October issue of Vogue talking hope, justice and the upcoming election.
Emmy/Tony/Grammy Winner and two time Oscar Nominee Cynthia Erivo is on the cover of InStyle magazine’s October Beauty issue.
Chrissy Teigen, a.k.a. Mrs. John Legend, is on the cover of Marie Clair.
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