Prepare for a night of laughs, music and more in honor of the 2019 Red Nose Day!
Celebrities are uniting for a good cause on NBC’s Red Nose Day Special, which will mark the 5th anniversary of the showcase. This star-studded event aims to raise awareness and funds to help children be safe, healthy and educated across America and around the world.
Cardi B has postponed concerts through the end of May to allow her body time to recover from post-baby liposuction and breast surgery.
A show Tuesday night in El Paso, Texas, was postponed, as was the rapper’s appearance at a Memorial Day weekend event in Baltimore.
“Cardi was overzealous in getting back to work; she didn’t take the time necessary to fully recover from her surgery,” the rapper’s rep told People. “Her strenuous schedule has taken a toll on her body and she has been given strict doctor’s orders to pull out of the rest of her performances in May.”
Radio station 92QJams in Baltimore said Tuesday that its 92Q Spring Bling Festival was being postponed until Sept. 8. The event had been set for Friday.
Cardi B admitted earlier this month that she’d gotten liposuction and breast work done in the time since her daughter was born last year.
“I have some news for y’all. I should have canceled today,” she said May 5 at the Beale Street Music Festival in Memphis, according to People. “I shouldn’t really be performing because moving too much is gonna [mess] up my lipo.”
Shortly before that, she’d told Entertainment Tonight that she’d gotten her breasts done as well. Kulture, her daughter with husband Offset, is now 10 months old.
“[I]t’s actually like a very long process, recovery,” she told E! News about her liposuction in early May, when she admitted she had told fans because she didn’t like lying about things. “It actually takes like a little bit more than three or four months.”
On another topic, earlier this week, Cardi posted a profane “public service announcement” on Instagram advising fans who see her in public to simply come up to her and say hi rather than screaming out her name and asking her dumb questions.
A rep for Cardi didn’t reply to The Times’ request for comment Wednesday.
The Queen Latifah-starring “Star” will not be back next season.
Empire will return for its final season this fall on Fox — with Jussie Smollett a question mark — and should count itself lucky. Fox, the lowest-rated network among the big four broadcasters, is hitting the reset button for the 2019-20 season by canceling eight shows and adding 10 new ones.
Empire companion drama Star is among the goners as the network makes room for an eclectic mix of wrestling, three new animated comedies and a 9-1-1 spinoff starring Rob Lowe.
“We are turning the final season of Empire into a large television event,” Fox Entertainment CEO Charlie Collier told a teleconference Monday (May 13). “One of the great benefits of announcing a final season is that you actually allow the fans to lean in and have the ending they deserve.”
Collier dodged questions about Smollett’s future with the show. The actor was accused of staging an attack last January in which he said two masked men beat him, hurled racist and homophobic slurs at him, doused him with a chemical substance and put a rope around his neck. Criminal charges were dropped but the uproar has yet to subside, making Smollett a continued publicity liability for Fox.
When pressed, Collier said there is an option to include him in the series “but at this point we have no plans for that.” A spokesman for Smollett didn’t immediately reply to a request for comment.
Jussie Smollett Willl Not Return to ‘Empire’ Next Season
As for Star, which had been paired on the schedule with Empire, it fell victim to Fox’s prime-time schedule, which is an hour shorter per night than the other networks, Collier said. The network also wanted to give Empire a strong send-off by pairing it with returning medical drama The Resident, he said.
Fox was split from sibling studio 20th Century Fox Television after Walt Disney Co. purchased the studio and other major assets of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire. But Collier, in a strenuously upbeat statement, said today “marks a beginning for Fox Entertainment” as it works with a variety of studios for its new shows.
“Fox is not only open for business but we feel like we’re stronger than ever,” Collier said. He gave much the same pep talk later Monday to a theater filled with ad buyers, then asked stars from the new series to take a bow and required that they describe their projects in five words, apparently Fox’s version of haiku poetry.
“This time, there’s no virgins,” Tori Spelling offered for the Beverly Hills, 90210 reboot, titled BH90210 and set to debut this summer. While the network is emphasizing it’s still in the series game, the presentation went heavy on sports: A succession of analysts and hosts, including Terry Bradshaw and Michael Strahan, touted upcoming game coverage. The network even worked a football legend into a mini-performance of The Masked Singer.
Hidden inside a deer costume, he gamely tackled “Luck Be a Lady Tonight,” and the show’s panelists were asked to guess his identity. After speculating that the mystery man wasn’t really a singer and mulling the clues provided, Jenny McCarthy proved her detective skills: It was Joe Namath.
Kodak Black was arrested Saturday on a weapons crime in Miami, where he planned to perform at Rolling Loud. (Photo: Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for TIDAL)
MIAMI – The Rolling Loud Music Festival celebrating hip-hop artists in South Florida did not go so well for Kodak Black and Lil Wayne.
The U.S. Marshals Service said in a news release that Black was arrested Saturday at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. The statement said he was charged with a crime in connection with weapons, but didn’t elaborate.
Meanwhile, Lil Wayne said on social media that he refused to perform after being subjected to a search by security personnel or police. It wasn’t immediately clear Sunday who had done the pat-down on the superstar rapper, whose real name is Dwayne Michael Carter Jr.
But here’s what he had to say on Twitter:
“To all my fans who came to see me at Rolling Loud, I’m sorry but I won’t be performing,” the post says. “The Festival Police (Not Rolling Loud) made it mandatory that I had to be policed and checked to get on the stadium grounds. I do not and will not ever settle for being policed to do my job.”
Lil Wayne has sold more than 100 million records worldwide.
Lily Wayne declined to perform Saturday at Rolling Loud festival because police “made it mandatory” that he be searched before the show. (Photo: Nicholas Hunt / Getty Images)
As for Kodak Black, whose current name is Bill Kapri and who was born as Dieuson Octave to Haitian American parents in Florida, this arrest is the latest in a lengthy rap sheet he has assembled at the age of 21.
Authorities say Black will make an initial appearance in Miami federal court Monday. Court records don’t list a lawyer for him.
Most recently, Black was arrested last month on drug and weapons charges as he crossed from Canada into the U.S. near Niagara Falls, New York. In Florida, he has been charged at different times with drug and weapons possession, armed robbery, sexual assault, probation violations and fleeing from officers.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Miami-Dade County police were also involved in his most recent arrest.
Offset was the target of a drive-by shooting at an Atlanta recording studio on Wednesday night, according to TMZ. Surveillance footage obtained by TMZ shows the Crossover Entertainment Group studio being sprayed with bullets by an unknown assailant hanging out the passenger-side window of a vehicle shortly after 9 p.m. ET.
When Atlanta police eventually arrived on the scene, Offset was allegedly long gone from the premises. The TMZ report goes on to state that stray bullets hit three cars, the outside of the studio building, and one window of a nearby apartment. A witness believes Offset was targeted because he was reportedly standing outside taking a break from recording just minutes before the attack.
It appears that the Migos rapper escaped the incident unharmed. The only injury reported to police was an individual who was shot in the leg, but the victim has yet to be discovered. A previous arrest warrant was reportedly issued in Offset’s name for an altercation that resulted in him smashing a fan’s phone at a Georgia Target store in April.
The Atlanta Police Department offered up the following statement when contacted about the alleged shooting. “On May 8, 2019, at around 9:05 p.m. Atlanta Police responded to 1310 Ellsworth Industrial Pkwy in reference to a call of shots fired. Upon arrival, officers spoke with the reporting party who advised that while he and others were at the location, occupants of a dark SUV started to shoot towards the building,” the department stated.
“The shooting resulted in damage to three vehicles, the building and the window of an apartment in the area. It was initially reported that someone was shot in the leg, but officers were unable to locate a gunshot victim. Investigators are working to determine the circumstances surrounding the shooting. One of the reporting parties advised ‘Offset’ had been at the location at the time of the incident. That information has not been verified as ‘Offset’ was not on scene when police arrived. The investigation continues.”
Offset’s Instagram did see some activity on Thursday (May 9), as he reposted a portion of the star-studded “Enzo” video for his collaboration alongside DJ Snake, Sheck Wes, 21 Savage and Gucci Mane.
Michael Lang in New York City this March, at a press event announcing the planned artist lineup for the Woodstock 50 music festival.Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Woodstock 50
Acrimony continues to grow between the promoters and the former investors of Woodstock 50. Whether the music festival, planned for this summer to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the original Woodstock, will even happen remains in question — but in the meantime, the event’s main showrunner has lobbed serious claims against his onetime financial partners.
On Monday, Michael Lang, one of the organizers of the original 1969 festival and the leading promoter behind Woodstock 50, accused the Dentsu Aegis Network, the company that had been planning to fund the 2019 edition, of draining $17 million from the festival’s bank account. He also accused Dentsu of trying to coax artists who had agreed to play Woodstock 50 to cancel their engagements.
The festival lineup announced in March ranges from legacy artists Santana, David Crosby and John Fogerty to current stars including Jay-Z, Chance the Rapper and Miley Cyrus. Woodstock 50 is scheduled to take place Aug. 14-16 at a racetrack in Watkins Glen, N.Y., about 150 miles from the original Woodstock location; however, the promoters have yet to secure permits.
Lang made his charges in a letter addressed to Dentsu; several media outlets, including Variety and Rolling Stone, have published excerpts. Multiple requests by NPR for comment from both Lang and Dentsu Aegis over the past week have not been returned.
Reporting on the Monday letter quotes Lang as writing that one of Dentsu’s divisions, Amplifi Live, “illegally swept approximately $17 million from the festival bank account” on April 29, the day that Dentsu announced that it was canceling Woodstock 50. At the time, a statement from Dentsu said: “We don’t believe the production of the festival can be executed as an event worthy of the Woodstock Brand name.” Lang has previously told press that Dentsu’s announcement came as a surprise to him.
In addition, Lang wrote in the Monday letter, “We also have evidence that Dentsu representatives have gone so far as to say that should the talent back out of Woodstock, they would be seen favorably by Dentsu, and that this could result in their performing the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, where Dentsu is a major organizer. In these actions too, Dentsu has acted not only without honor, but outside of the law.”
Dentsu responded in a statement published by Varietyon Tuesday, saying: “As financial partner, we had the customary rights one would expect to protect a large investment. After we exercised our contractual right to take over, and subsequently, cancel the festival, we simply recovered the funds in the festival bank account, funds which we originally put in as financial partner.”
Since Dentsu’s cancellation announcement on April 29, the Woodstock 50 organizers have insisted that the festival will still happen. On the event’s website, a message boldly proclaims: “Our intention holds firm. To deliver a world-class, once-in-a-lifetime festival to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Woodstock.”
Tickets to the festival are still not yet available, and Lang and his partners still need to pull together tens of millions of dollars in outside investment. Billboard reported on April 29 that the Woodstock 50 organizers sought $20 million from touring giants Live Nation and AEG, but both companies declined.
Dave Chappelle, the comedian and star of “Chappelle’s Show” and recently, “A Star is Born,” will be the 22nd annual recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts announced Tuesday.
Chappelle will receive the prize at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall on Oct. 27. The gala will then be broadcast on PBS on Jan. 6, 2020.
“Dave is the embodiment of Mark Twain’s observation that ‘against the assault of humor, nothing can stand.’ For three decades, Dave has challenged us to see hot-button issues from his entirely original yet relatable perspective. Dave is a hometown hero here in Washington, D.C., where he grew up. We’re so looking forward to welcoming him back home,” Kennedy Center president Deborah F. Rutter said in a statement.
In 2017, Chappelle celebrated 30 years in comedy by releasing four stand-up specials on Netflix and a residency at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City. Chappelle won his first Primetime Emmy in 2017 for his hosting “Saturday Night Live,” and he won again in 2018 for his stand-up special “Equanimity.”
The event will be co-chaired by Tamia and Grant Hill.
This year’s gala is under the direction of the creative team from Done + Dusted, the Kennedy Center’s producing partner for the Mark Twain Prize since 2018. It’s also the 22nd year that the gala will be broadcast on PBS.
The event was created by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Bob Kaminsky, Peter Kaminsky, Mark Krantz, and John Schreiber.
Jussie Smollett‘s “Empire” costars aren’t satisfied with Fox’s plan to keep the actor’s character off the upcoming season and are lobbying network execs to bring him back full-time.
Sources on the show tell us cast members — including Taraji P. Henson and Terrence Howard — feel Jussie deserves a fair shake, and that should include a full return to the show. Just last week, Fox announced Jussie got an extension through season 6, but also … it had no plans to bring his character back to the show.
Our sources say as soon as the announcement was made, Jussie’s costars got busy contacting “Empire” brass and pushing for his return.
As for why … we’re told the cast feels Jussie’s character was an incredibly important part of the show, and they don’t feel his return will hurt ratings. In one of the final episodes of season 5, Jussie’s character, Jamal, got married in the first gay, black wedding on primetime TV.
We got Jussie out just before the episode aired, and asked how he was feeling. He said, “Pride.”
Jussie’s still got some serious legal issues ahead of him, though … he’s locked in a nasty civil lawsuit with the city of Chicago which sued him for the cost of the investigation into the alleged racist and homophobic attack.
One theory on Jussie’s contract extension is that Fox is waiting to see how the case plays out before making a final decision on his future with the show.
The superstar is only the fourth woman to reach the mark.
Beyoncé makes her 60th appearance on the Billboard Hot 100 chart as “Before I Let Go (Homecoming Live)” debuts at No. 75 (on the list dated May 4). The single, released April 17 as a bonus track on her Homecoming: The Live Album, bows after its first full week of tracking.
The cover of the 1981 hit by Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, which reached No. 13 on the Hot Soul Singles chart (now Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs) enters with 6.9 million U.S. streams in the week ending April 25, according to Nielsen Music. It also starts at No. 28 on Digital Song Sales with 6,000 downloads purchased in the same window.
Though “Go” doesn’t yet make the all-genre Radio Songs chart, the single has claimed a fast start at R&B/hip-hop radio, bursting 45-27 on R&B/Hip-Hop Airplaywith 7.2 million in audience in the week ending April 28.
In addition to its Hot 100 start, “Go” also opens at No. 45 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (which, like the Hot 100, blends streaming, sales and airplay data). Homecoming, meanwhile, ascends 7-4 on the all-genre Billboard 200 and 4-2 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts following its first full tracking week.
Beyonce Launches ‘Before I Let Go’ Challenge
“Go” gives the superstar her 60th Hot 100 entry, a sum bested by only four women in the chart’s 60-year history. Beyoncé trails only the top performer among women, Nicki Minaj, who boasts 102 visits, Taylor Swift (78) and Aretha Franklin (73). Among all artists, the Glee Cast reigns supreme with 207 appearances, followed by Drake(193).
Notably, Beyoncé has appeared on the Hot 100 as a soloist at least once each year since 2002, when she charted as featured on then-boyfriend JAY-Z‘s “03 Bonnie and Clyde,” which climbed to No. 4. It was the first of 18 solo top 10s for Beyoncé to date, six of which have gone all the way to No. 1. As a member of Destiny’s Child, she also graced the Hot 100 each year from 1997 through 2002 and again upon the group’s reunion in 2004-05.
John Singleton, the groundbreaking film director, screenwriter and producer, died Monday in Los Angeles after suffering a stroke on April 17. He was 51. A family spokesperson said Singleton passed away peacefully at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, surrounded by his family and friends.
“We want to thank the amazing doctors at Cedars-Sinai Hospital for their expert care and kindness and we again want thank all of John’s fans, friends and colleagues for all of the love and support they showed him during this difficult time,” the family said in a statement.
Earlier on Monday, the family had made the decision to remove Singleton from life support at Cedars, where he had been in the ICU unit since suffering the stroke 13 days earlier. Singleton suffered the stroke while at the hospital and had been “under great medical care.”
John Singleton Remembered: Hollywood Reacts To Director’s Death At 51
A two-time Oscar nominee for writing and directing his debut film Boyz N the Hood(1991), Singleton was a trailblazer in black cinema. He was a benchmark in filmmaking and his voice spoke to an audience with black storytelling that had never been seen or heard. He shined a light on black narratives in the ’90s, adding his pioneering voice to the need for inclusive voices in the industry.
Singleton testifies before a Senate subcommittee on Capitol Hill in 1992
Born in L.A. on January 6, 1968, Singleton attended Blair High School and went on to Pasadena City College and then to USC School of Cinematic Arts. At first, he was toying with the idea of pursuing computer science, but then he enrolled in USC’s Film Writing Program — and this was the spark that started a career that would cement him as one of the most influential filmmakers of our time.
It wasn’t long after graduating from USC in 1990 that he released his first feature film, Boyz N the Hood. This would start an extraordinary run at Columbia Pictures, where he won a green light for three films in five years — a feat rarely matched by contemporary directors — all by the age of 26. Also at Columbia, Singleton was heavily backed by studio chief Frank Price, a political conservative who responded strongly to Singleton’s talent and family-oriented social messaging.
The Boyz N the Hood script was spotted by a studio reader, Jeff Stockwell, who went on to become a screenwriter in his own right. The film essentially put Cuba Gooding Jr. and Ice Cube on the map as prolific cinematic actors. The movie also starred such A-listers as Angela Bassett and Laurence Fishburne as well as Morris Chestnut, Regina King and Nia Long. Written and directed by Singleton, Boyz n the Hoodfollowed three men as they navigated their lives through the obstacles of race, violence, cultural identity and relationships in L.A.’s Crenshaw neighborhood.
It put a spotlight on what many would refer to as “urban” filmmaking when in reality it was just Singleton telling stories that he knew and thought deserved to be told. He was a black filmmaker putting a lens on the black experience with compassion, empathy and a degree of rawness that has never been done before. He broke ground in more ways the one.
“Boyz N the Hood,” 1991
Boyz N the Hood was a commercial and critical success and Singleton earned Academy Award nominations for Best Original Screenplay and Best Director. At the time, Singleton was 24 and was not only the youngest person ever to receive a Best Director nom but also the first black person nominated, paving the way for the likes of Lee Daniels, Barry Jenkins and Jordan Peele after him. Boyz N the Hood cemented its legacy in Hollywood when the U.S. Library of Congress saw it as a culturally significant piece of art and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry in 2002.
As an example of the film’s national influence, Singleton was invited in July 1992 to testify before a Senate subcommittee at a hearing titled “Children at War: Violence and America’s Youth.” He and other witnesses spoke about the possible causes of rising homicide rates among America’s youth, including violence in media, substance abuse and the availability of weapons. Coincidentally, the chairman of that panel — the Senate Labor & Human Resources Subcommittee on Children, Family Drugs & Alcoholism — was Sen. Christopher Dodd, who would go on to lead the MPAA from 2011-17. Click here to watch Singleton’s full testimony, including his interaction with Todd.
While at Columbia in the 1990s, Singleton added youth, hipness, and cultural awareness to a rich mix of talent deals that were skewed toward more established names such as Penny Marshall, Danny DeVito and Harold Ramis. His production company New Deal Entertainment became a training ground for young black executives and was an obligatory stop for black music stars including Ice Cube and the late great Tupac Shakur, who were only beginning to find their way with older white executives.
In 1993, he followed up Boyz N the Hood with Poetic Justice, starring Janet Jackson, Shakur, King and Joe Torry. In this dramatic road-trip movie, the world is seen through the eyes of the titular Justice, a poet played by Jackson. In the film, Shakur’s character leads everyone on a road trip from Los Angeles to Oakland as they interact with one another, attempt to build relationships and deal with their own baggage.
“Poetic Justice,” 1993
In 1995, Singleton continued to explore race relations and identity in the collegiate drama Higher Learning, which reunited him with Ice Cube and Fishburne. The film featured an all-star cast including Omar Epps, Michael Rapaport, Jennifer Connelly, Kristy Swanson and Tyra Banks. This would be followed by numerous films including Rosewood (1997), Baby Boy (2001) and Four Brothers (2005). He even lent his voice to prominent Hollywood IP including the Shaft remake in 2000 and 2 Fast 2 Furious in 2003.
Singleton, EP Dwight Williams and producer Stephanie Allain on the “Hustle and Flow” set
Singleton also served as producer of the critically acclaimed Southern hip-hop drama Hustle & Flow, starring future Empire leads Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson. The aforementioned Stephanie Allain would partner with Singleton to produce Brewer’s Hustle & Flow film that in 2005 pushed both into the spotlight with its critical acclaim and an Oscar nomination for Howard.
Written and directed by Brewer, the Paramount film was difficult to get funded. Singleton believed in it, supported it financially and took it to Sundance in 2005 where it was a hit. Everyone was clamoring for the movie, but Singleton went with Paramount because it promised him two additional features. However, Paramount allegedly didn’t follow through with the promise and Singleton sued the studio and MTV films for $20 million in 2011 for alleged breaches of contract and fraud. They eventually settled to end the litigation. In the end, Hustle & Flow was made for $2.8 million and grossed more than $23 million.
Singleton continued to be a voice in film and TV, championing the black community and encouraging studios to let them get behind the camera.
Singleton professed joy at seeing other black filmmakers match or surpass some of the marks he had set. “I hope to God he breaks my record,” Singleton said of Daniels right before he became the second black man nominated for a directing Oscar. Yet it seemed that Singleton’s achievements momentarily were forgotten, as the #OscarsSoWhite movement later excoriated the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and Hollywood in general for a lack of racial and gender diversity. By that time, Singleton, though still in his 40s, had seemed to become an elder statesman. Never quite as insistent as peers like Spike Lee in demanding change, he had already changed the industry.
He carried on and continued to use his platform to tell inclusive stories in film and TV as a director and producer. He also co-created and executive produced the FX drama series Snowfall, which focuses on the start of the crack epidemic in Los Angeles and has been renewed for Season 3. He also directed episodes of Billions, Empire andAmerican Crime Story, along with Marion Jones: Press Pause for ESPN’s 30 for 30.
“In his private life, John was a loving and supporting father, son, brother, and friend who believed in higher education, black culture, old school music and the power of film,” the family statement said.
“John’s confidence in his place in Hollywood was only matched for his passion for the sea. John kayaked in Marina Del Rey every morning. His greatest joy, when not on set, was sailing his boat, J’s Dream, up and down the Pacific Coast. The American writer Willa Cather once said, “There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in the storm.” We who have grown up with John, made movies with him, sailed with John and laughed with John, know the universe of calm and creativity he created for so many. Now in the wake of his death, we must navigate the storm without him. It is, for us, heartbreaking.”
Like many African Americans, Singleton quietly struggled with hypertension, his family said. More than 40% of African American men and women have high blood pressure, which also develops earlier in life and is usually more severe. His family wants to share the message with all to please recognize the symptoms by going to Heart.org.
Singleton is survived by his mother, Sheila Ward, his father, Danny Singleton and his children Justice, Maasai, Hadar, Cleopatra, Selenesol, Isis, and Seven.
Details about memorial services will be provided at a later date.