The 86th Academy Awards went underway last night. Hosted by comedian, Ellen Degeneres, the Oscars brought out the brightest stars as the Academy honored those who did an outstanding job in film. What was deemed as a precedented evening, the movie 12 Years A Slave took home two top honors. Its director/producer, Steve McQueen became the first Black director and producer to win Best Picture. Also, the films shining young starlet Lupita Nyong’o became the 7th Black actress EVER to win Best Actress in a Supporting Role (12 Years A Slave).
Special congratulations to McQueen and Nyongo on their wins.
Here are the remaining winners for the evening:
Best Picture - 12 Years a Slave
Best Actor in a Leading Role - Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club)
Best Actress in a Leading Role - Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)
Best Actor in a Supporting Role- Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club)
Best Actress in a Supporting Role - Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave)
Best Animated Feature – Frozen (Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee, Peter Del Vecho)
Best Cinematography – Gravity (Emmanuel Lubezki)
Best Costume Design – The Great Gatsby (Catherine Martin)
Best Directing – Gravity (Alfonso Cuarón)
Best Documentary Feature – 20 Feet from Stardom (Morgan Neville, Gil Friesen, Caitrin Rogers)
Best Documentary Short – The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life (Malcolm Clarke, Nicholas Reed)
Best Film Editing – Gravity (Alfonso Cuarón, Mark Sanger)
Best Foreign Language Film – The Great Beauty (Italy)
Best Makeup and Hairstyling – Dallas Buyers Club (Adruitha Lee, Robin Mathews)
Best Original Score – Gravity (Steven Price)
Best Original Song – Let It Go – Frozen
Best Production Design – The Great Gatsby (Catherine Martin, Beverley Dunn)
Best Animated Short Film – Mr. Hublot (Laurent Witz, Alexandre Espigares)
Best Live Action Short Film – Helium (Anders Walter, Kim Magnusson)
Best Sound Editing – Gravity (Glenn Freemantle)
Best Sound Mixing – Gravity (Skip Lievsay, Niv Adiri, Christopher Benstead, Chris Munro)
Best Visual Effects – Gravity (Tim Webber, Chris Lawrence, Dave Shirk, Neil Corbould)
Best Adapted Screenplay – 12 Years a Slave (John Ridley)
Best Original Screenplay – Her (Spike Jonze)
Illmatic‘s 20th anniversary is panning out to be a great occasion for hip hop heads and its creator himself.
The Tribeca Film Festival co-founder, Jane Rosenthal, recently announced that a documentary on the life and works of Nas will make its world premiere during their 2014 run (Apr. 16-27). The documentary, “Time Is Illmatic“, is directed by multimedia artist One9, written by Erik Parker and produced by One9, Parker and Nas’ manager Anthony Saleh. The film follows the evolution from Nas’ landmark 1994 debut album “Illmatic”.
“Throughout the journey, we see the metamorphosis of Nas as a young street poet, full of a rich musical legacy, transforming the pain and isolation of growing up in Queensbridge Houses into raw, honest lyrics, illuminating a spirit that inspired generations from the past, present, and the future. Experiencing the stories, passion, and energy of a modern day alchemist shaping lyrical dust to diamonds was truly an honor and we are extremely proud to premiere the film at Tribeca,” said One9. “I want to thank Nas, Jungle, Olu Dara, The Jones family, the Tribeca Film Institute and Ford Foundation for allowing Erik Parker and me to create an authentic and unfiltered documentary film.”
Nas spoke of his appreciation that the film was being made and thanked everyone who were involved in the process.
“It’s an honor to premiere this film in my hometown. I also want to thank One9 and Erik Parker for their persistence and hard work. Those guys and I come from the same place and era, which gives the doc an authenticity that is important to me. We wanted this film to represent the real, from the storyline all the way down to the directors and producers.”
Following the premiere of “Time Is Illmatic“, Nas will do a special performance of the album in its entirety in Manhattan.
The Gabby Douglas Story was the perfect way to end the weekend, an awesome way to begin Black History Month and an amazing way to begin the work week.
The movie debuted on Lifetime on February 1. Gabrielle Douglas “the first woman of color and the first African-American gymnast in Olympic history to become the individual all-around champion, and the first American gymnast to win gold in both the individual all-around and team competitions at the same Olympics as well as being the only American All-Around Champion to win multiple gold medals, thus far.” She did all of that two years ago, when she was only 16-years old. Imani Hakim, most known as the little sister on “Everybody Hates Chris”, portrayed Miss Douglas (14-16 yrs) perfectly on screen – a young, positive, uplifting teen positively influencing other young Black, White, Hispanic and Asian kid’s teens her age.
The film shows people, no matter their age, not to give up on their dream. And if they keep practicing and working hard, that dream will be their reality. This was a turn from the movies involving rape, incest, murder, and other violent themes we usually see on Lifetime. Not to say these movies aren’t just as good, but this [The Gabby Douglas Story] is just one that has a more positive aspect.
Side Note: The Gabby Douglas Story’s debut reeled in over 3.8 million viewers. In case you missed the film, you can watch it in its entirety HERE.
By: LaQuesha Williams, contributing intern for STACKS Magazine
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Oscar award winning actor, was found dead in his New York apartment over the weekend. The actor was found on Sunday, laying unconscious and with a needle stuck in his arms. Police officials believes the highly respected actor died of an apparent drug overdose.
The 46 year old actor’s peers regard him as one of the best to ever do it, due to his ability to play a wide range of characters.
Hoffman – with his doughy, every man physique, his often-disheveled look and his limp, receding blond hair – was a character actor of such range and lack of vanity that he could seemingly handle roles of any size, on the stage and in movies that played in art houses or multiplexes.
He could play comic or dramatic, loathsome or sympathetic, trembling or diabolical, dissipated or tightly controlled, slovenly or fastidious.
The stage-trained actor’s rumpled naturalism brought him four Academy Award nominations – for “Capote,” `’The Master,” `’Doubt” and “Charlie Wilson’s War” – and three Tony nominations for his work on Broadway, including his portrayal of the beaten and weary Willy Loman in “Death of a Salesman.”
Most recently, Hoffman revealed that he had re-entered rehad for drug treatment. He has struggled with drug addiction for awhile, but lived drug-free for the last 23 years. Unfortunately, in an interview in 2013, he admitted to have fell off the wagon and begun using heroin.
For more on Hoffman’s story, read HERE.
If any of you are LMN fans, like myself, then you were just as anxious as I was to see the long awaiting film, Flowers in the Attic. The film, which is based off a V.C Andrews novel, titled the same, promotes abuse, incest, murder and deceit.
It’s seems as if the Dollanganger family has it all, that is, until the father of the family unexpectedly dies and the family is forced move in with Mrs. Dollanganger’s parent’s in their mansion in Virginia. That’s when the saying, “what’s done in the dark, always come to light,” is applicable. The children quickly learn their father was also their great uncle and their mother is also their cousin. Confusing, right? The point of them going to the home of their grandparents (whom they never knew existed) was to wait on their grandfather to die. Therefore their mother could claim what was in the will and allow them to live happily and wealthy ever after.
The entire mood of the film is a bit annoying, most viewers were most likely expecting to the mother fighting for her children and well-being. Then again, what mother would bring her children to place knowing they’ll have to suffer, it’ll be a lot healthier and easier for her to get a job and care for her family.
Then there is the fact that the children were pretty much naive and nonchalant from the beginning of the film all the way up until the last five minutes of the movie. I thought their mother had the best intentions for them after she was beat, but once she changed her actions and let the money make her, I knew it’d only go downhill from there.
This movie lacks reality, usually in film we’d something that can be relatable to the mass majority of Americans, but I’m afraid only a small percentage, if that can relate to this film. There were too many issues, and it made the entire film to be morally wrong. Maybe in the sequel Petals on the Wind, they can attempt to win their audience back.
Fans of HBO’s hit show “Boardwalk Empire” were dealt a cold blow yesterday. The cable network announced that the series will be ending after its 5th season.
The show gained worldwide admiration from lovers of classic prohibition-era gangster flicks. “Boardwalk Empire” centered around Atlantic City, New Jersey and its participation in prohibition. Steve Buscemi aka “Nucky Thompson”, whose wheeling and dealings in illegal alcohol distribution, corruption, murder, and gambling, is the main character in which everyone else’s lives revolve. This past September, “Boardwalk Empire” took home five Emmy awards: Best Supporting Actor – Drama Series (Bobby Cannavale for his role as “Gyp Rosetti), Outstanding Art Direction for a Single-Camera Series, Outstanding Hairstyling for a Single-Camera Series, Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Comedy or Drama Series (One Hour), and Outstanding Sound Editing for a Series.
The show’s creator Terry Winter didn’t give details as to why the series is ending. However, the Associated Press reports that Winter says we can expect a “powerful and exciting conclusion”.
The second installment to the The Hobbit trilogy will soon hit theatres. But this time around, it will premiere at a cost.
Time Warner Inc’s Warner Bros apparently believe that movie goers will spend $40 on a ticket to see “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug”. The super-tickets, which will be sold in the U.S. and Canada, will provide a grander experience to individuals and/or families who chooses to see the film. For $40, you will receive “VIP” seating in plush chairs, an online copy for home or mobile viewing, and an free online copy of the first installment “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”.
Regal Entertainment Group and Cineplex Inc are the two major theater chains that will partner up with Warner Bros on the ticket inflation. The purpose of the ticket inflation is to see if this will increase revenue (since people are not going out to theaters as much nowadays). Warner Bros will not reap all the benefit, however, Regal and Cineplex will both obtain a share of the monies earned. It is only befitting if they also earn a percentage considering that a lot of theaters are now equipped with larger screens, reserved seating, and better surround sound.
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” is expected to earn approximately $280 million total at the box office.
Paul Walker, actor and star of the ‘Fast and Furious’ franchise, died in a car explosion over the weekend in California. The details of the accident concluded that he was the passenger in a Porsche Carrera GT that crashed into a tree then pole after riding at an excessive speed. The driver was Walker’s close friend and business partner, Rodger Rodas.
Walker was on a brief break from filming the seventh installment of the ‘Fast and Furious’ series. He was in California for his charity event which raised funds for the victims of the devastating typhoon (Haiyan) that recently hit the Philippines. His charity was called Reach Out Worldwide and it focused on helping those who are struck by natural disasters. The organization was founded in 2010.
The unfortunate and timely death of Paul Walker stunned the film community and his peers. Vin Deisel, Tyrese, Ludacris, and countless other celebrities shared their words of sentiment on social media (i.e. Instagram, Twitter, Facebook). Also, Walker’s Universal Pictures family were devastated by the news.
“All of us at Universal are heartbroken,” Universal Pictures, which has released the “Fast & Furious” franchise, said in a statement. “Paul was truly one of the most beloved and respected members of our studio family for 14 years, and this loss is devastating to us, to everyone involved with the `Fast and Furious’ films, and to countless fans.”
The fans especially took Walker’s death hard. Because of his likability, the actor seemed like one of “us”…just a regular guy who’s down-to-earth and very approachable, unlike many celebrities we come to know of.
Walker’s background may come as a surprise to some. Although he’s not the biggest name in Hollywood, he’s been in the film industry for quite a while. Here are some fun facts about Paul Walker you may not have known:
1. He’s the oldest of 5 kids, and son of a model and sewer contractor.
2. He became a child model at the age of 2.
3. He grew up as a Mormon.
4. His first jobs as an actor were small parts on the 80′s hit TV shows,”Charles In Charge” and “Who’s The Boss”.
5. His first movie role was in the 1998 comedy “Meet The Deedles”.
6. After starring in the 2000 film “The Skulls”, Neal H. Moritz discovered him and cast him as an undercover police officer in the first “The Fast and the Furious”. Walker didn’t become a lead in the film until the second installment.
Paul Walker’s legacy will live on through the ‘Fast & Furious’ franchise and its cast members. He was gorgeous young man with so much more to accomplish in life. But, his presence was felt in a short amount of time and his friends and family are grateful for that.
Walker is survived by his 15 year old daughter.
Angela Bassett, Jennifer Hudson, Nas, & More Attend ‘Black Nativity’ Movie Premiere + Official Trailer
Thanksgiving is right around the corner. This is the time of year when family and friends get together to fellowship, feast, get their shopping on, and catch a few new flicks. And as such, Maven Pictures are releasing a contemporary version of an old theater classic that has warmed the hearts of many who has seen it.
On November 27, “Black Nativity” will hit theaters with an all-star cast containing many of our favorite entertainers. The film is an adaption of the Langston Hughes’ play, which follows a street-wise youngster from Baltimore. He takes viewers on a journey of being raised in a single-parent household in B-more to spending family time in New York with relatives he hasn’t seen in a long time. During his stay, he gets frustrated by the house rules imposed by the Reverend. It is then that the young man finds inspiration and a set of new friends – while he discovers what it is meant by “having faith”.
In the movie, the role of young Langston is play by singer/actor Jacob Latimore. Reverend Cornell and Aretha Cobbs are played by Forest Whitaker and Angela Bassett. Langston’s mother, Naima, is played by Jennifer Hudson. Other talented individuals featured in the film are Mary J. Blige, Tyrese Gibson, Nas, and more.
The New York premiere of “Black Nativity” took place on Monday evening at the famous Apollo Theater. The red carpet was covered with many of entertainment industries most notable celebrities. Take a look at a few photos below:
In case you haven’t seen the trailer, watch it now below:
This morning, the founding member of the group TLC visited the Ryan Cameron Morning Show (V103FM-Atlanta) to share her side of “Crazy Sexy Cool: The TLC Story”.
As shown in the movie, which premiered on Vh1 last night, Crystal Jones was apart of the original group which was to make up TLC. During an audition for Pebbles, Crystal was asked to sing while Left Eye and T-Boz did harmony in the back. When everyone realized Crystal could not sing a lick, that is when Pebbles decided to replace her. Eventually, Pebbles found Chilli and put her in the group.
During her radio interview this morning, Crystal’s stated that her portrayal in the biopic was not 100% accurate. Her manager at that time, Ian Burke, was also in the studio to clear up some of the falsehoods about the film. Both insisted that they actually thought of the idea about creating a female 3-member group. The group was to be reminiscent of the male group B.B.D. (Bell Biv Devoe). So, it was not Pebbles creation at all as she claims. Pebbles only gained ownership of the group and its name after the girls were signed to PebbiTone.
Several more interesting tidbits were revealed by Crystal and Ian that answers some of the “unknowns” many of us fans were wondering about.
- Ian claimed at first he did not want to put Lisa in the group. He initially rejected Lisa from the group because she wore a dress to the audition. Ian was looking for a girl in baggy clothes. But once he made Lisa rap for him, he was sold. Also, Lisa didn’t like the dress either. She told him she normally wears baggy clothes. That sealed the deal.
- Ian knew T-Boz was the one for the group after visiting her home at 2am. She had missed the auditions. So, he went to see her in person at her home. When she opened the front door, he immediately know she was “the one”.
- Ian says one pivotal part in TLC’s journey that the movie didn’t capture was Jermaine Dupri’s involvement. JD was actually the person who had T-Boz sing in her lower register. Her tone eventually became TLC’s signature sound.
- Ian expressed that TLC was actually SWV’s name. Since TLC hit scene first, SWV could no longer use it.
- TLC was never supposed to be a singing group; instead a girl power “movement” of some sort.
- Crystal says yes she has an issue with how she was portrayed during the audition scene. She insists that she can sing (but she didn’t take the opportunity on Ryan Cameron’s show to prove it to the world). *side eye*
- Crystal claims Pebbles indeed gave her a contract as well. However, she didn’t sign it because she wanted her mother to look over it first.
This interview with Crystal and Ian did bring up a good point. The producers should have allotted more time to (or a 2-night premiere) include other pivotal moments in TLC’s career. They says that a lot more things occurred surrounding T-Boz, Left Eye, and Chilli’s career.
It wasn’t mentioned on the radio exactly what Crystal is doing these days as a profession. But she did say that she was preparing a memoir about her life. The book will not be full of TLC bashing. But, we can expect a couple paragraphs about her short lived days in TLC. She’s since moved on and believes that everything happens for a reason.
The TLC biopic “Crazy, Sexy, Cool: The TLC Story” which aired on Vh1 last night was nothing less than superb. If you missed the premiere, check the VH1 website for a listing of air times/dates. The journey of three Black girls becoming one of the largest girl groups in the world was a historical moment we all could finally see unfold.
The 2 1/2 hour movie was worth every minute that I watched. The life story of how the three women (Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, and Rozanda “Chilli” Thomas) all became known as the group “TLC” was one that had to be told as some point. With the live wire of the group, Left Eye, no longer living it was only right that T-Boz and Chili tell their stories while still alive and well. In my opinion, the depiction of each member was damn near worthy of an Academy award. KeKe Palmer (“Chilli”), Drew Sidora (“T-Boz”), and Lil Mama (as Left Eye) all three performed their butts off in this movie. From the mannerisms to the diction, these ladies really engulfed the each group members spirit.
Pebbles and L.A. Reid‘s characters played by Rochelle Aytes and Carl Payne, too played their parts well. The real Pebble Reid, however, was highly disturbed by her portrayal in the film. She’s noted to have went on Twitter insisting that she plans to sue T-Boz, Chilli, and the movie producers for tarnishing her name. But, the girls insists that the stories told are truthful. It has been mentioned as well that the movie actually did Pebbles some justice. Word is that she was a lot more sinister acting than that. Regardless, the business dealings of Pebbles were skeptical. Yes, TLC was created by Pebbles. Yes, Pebbles gave them their first shot at a music career. But, to knowingly take advantage of young women was disgusting. Just as a woman, Pebbles should have been a bit more empathetic. Unfortunately, her character was just plain ole ruthless.
Last night, millions of fans on were raving about how good the movie was. One thing that stood out was the lessons taught in the movie. The musical journey of TLC is one that all up-n-coming artists can learn from. The girls experienced financial issues which cast a dark cloud over the group for many years. It was good to see how the group dealt with it though. The viewers got the chance to finally see what caused it, and what they had to do to get out of those bad contracts and regain their financial stability. If any lesson was learned from “Crazy, Sexy, Cool: The TLC Story”, it was that before signing ANY contract, educate yourself and hire a reputable lawyer to help you understand what percentages and stipulations are contained within. As with many other artists in the music industry, TLC learned the hard way. But, their ordeal doesn’t mean it will or can happen to you. So, please learn the business first before signing your life away.
Throughout the movie, however, there were a couple questions that wasn’t quite answered.
1. Where actually was their parents when they decided to sign Pebble’s contract? We know they were over 18 and legally able to sign off themselves. But, you would think that anything concerning money would still be overlooked by their parents. The minute she told me I was only making $25 a week, I would have push the brakes right there. It’s funny how Left Eye was always questioning why they were not being paid. Sometimes the “crazy” one actually be the “smart” one.
2. What was Pebbles underlying issue with Chilli? Was she jealous of Chilli for being beautiful? Did Chilli really sleep with L.A. Reid to get in the group (as rumors speculate)? Hmmm. There had to be a good reason why Pebbles always hated on Chilli. I mean, she kept getting pregnant “allegedly”. But, is that really a reason to kick someone out the group.
3. How did T-Boz and Mack 10 relationship play out? The movie stayed away from revealing their relationship. I wonder why. That would have been a good piece of knowledge to share. But oh well…
4. Why did they refer to Suge Knight as “Master P”? During those times, Left Eye was connected to Suge Knight as a lover (or maybe as a potential manager). Knight’s people must’ve put a gag order on the film, thus producers decided to use Master P’s name (since he was another big time CEO during those years).
5. Who was the mystery woman in the green dress (and curly hair) on the red carpet? T-Boz and Chilli was about to tear a hole in ole girl for calling their sister Left Eye crazy. All of #BlackTwitter were wondering who was the chick. That particular awards show was the VMA’s…maybe 2002 or 2003. The only female artist who wore green dresses (or green hues) was Jennifer Lopez, Kelis, and Beyonce. #BlackTwitter speculated that the girl was Blu Cantrell or Lil Kim. She could have been just a random lady on the red carpet. Who knows. But ifI had to take a wild guess…maybe it was Kelis. She’s the only singer I can think of who wore big curly blonde hair back then. See the pic below and tell me what ya’ll think.
Anyway, the movie overall was fantastic. Everyone did a good job playing their roles. Many people hated on Lil Mama assuming that she wouldn’t being able to pull it off. Instead, she went over and beyond as Left Eye. She truly embodied the rapper dialect, feisty behavior, and raw talent. Lil Mama was definitely the break out star on this project.
TLC still remains to be America’s #1 Top Selling Female Group of all time (and #2 Top Selling in the world). Their music is timeless and their story is rich in love and lessons. Kudos to the cast and T-Boz and Chilli on a job well done!
For anyone who thought the airing of the new TLC biopoic was going to premiere without a little controversy surrounding it, you were sadly mistaken. One of the most talked about stories in music history, the rise and downfall of the group TLC, is finally being told. But, there’s one person who is trying to put a stop to it.
TLC’s founder, Pebbles, caught wind of the movie and its content and is very upset at how she’s being portrayed. In a recent interview on Power 105.1′s Breakfast Club, T-Boz and Chilli were asked about certain scenes in the movie and confirmed whether or not Pebble’s character was exaggerated a little bit.
She did do some good for us, she taught us some things, she put us together, but then there’s always times when you work with people there’s always things that your never going to agree with and you don’t like their ways and people part so I didn’t think she got over that.
Chilli encountered a lot of hate from Pebbles. At one point, Pebbles kicked her out the group for being pregnant. She stated:
I didnt want to become a mother too soon, so teen pregnancy didnt happen or anything like that but when I did get pregnant and Pebbles kicked me out the group and then put me back in the group, I was scared and a lot of different emotions that made it hard to do what i did because i wanted it so bad.
Pebbles has since seen the Breakfast Club interview and quickly aired out her disgust via Twitter. Her claim is that they all played a part in this and she shouldn’t be the person to get slandered. Thus, she’s rounding up her team of attorneys and vows to sue the T-Boz, Chilli, and the network.
I’m NOT here to promote something I put on the MAP and yet have been disrespected by because of more reasons than one! Lawyers on deck????…I would say being lied on 4 as long &trying to continue to is sadder. But,the continued slander from all will help prove just what was done….Thank you love. It’s not good what they played a part of but it will be dealt with now that the slander continues. TLC without me? No way.??…
I am in shock listening to all this mess and lies on this radio interview!!This is madness!!! It’s SO hard to believe this! DO NOT believe…Love you guys. Not going to comment about this anymore on here UN officially. Dealing with this though. #??….
Damn…this is about to get real ugly.
In case you missed TLC on the Breakfast Club, here are the three-part interview. Part 1 discussed the Pebbles issue.
Novel readers worldwide can now rejoice knowing that the New York Times Best Seller “Addicted” has been made into a full length movie.
The popular erotic novel will hit theaters in March 2014. Cast members will include Boris Kodjoe, Sharon Leal, Tasha Smith, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Tyson Beckford and William Levy. The film is being pushed by Lionsgate and produced by Paul Hall and Charisse Nesbit (exec. producer). Veteran Bille Woodruff is directing.
In case you haven’t read the book, the story centers around an African-American business woman who loves sex but soon finds out that what she loves is making her life turn upside down…for the worse.
For Zoe Reynard, finding the pleasure she wants, the way she wants it, is not worth the risk of losing everything she has: marriage to the man she has loved since childhood, a thriving company, three wonderful children. But Zoe feels helpless in the grip of an overpowering addiction…to sex. Finding a compassionate woman therapist to help her, Zoe finally summons the courage to tell her torrid story, a tale of guilt and desire as shocking as it is compelling. From the sensitive artist with whom she spends stolen hours on rumpled sheets to the rough and violent man who draws her toward destruction, Zoe is a woman desperately searching for fulfillment — and something darker, deeper, and perhaps deadly. As her life spins out of control and her sexual escapades carry her toward a dangerous choice, Zoe is racing against time to uncover the source of her “fatal attraction” — as chilling secrets tumble forth from the recesses of a woman’s mind, and perilous temptations lead toward a climax that can threaten her sanity, her marriage… and her life.
Sounds quite interesting…
If you’ve paid attention to the weekly TV One show “R&B Divas LA”, then you’ll be familiar with Ms. Claudette Ortiz. She’s started in the music business at an early age, best known for her part in the group City High, but stepped away from it for years to be a wife and mother. Well, Claudette recently got her big break at another chance of stardom with R&B Divas LA. During the season, it was revealed that Claudette fell on some pretty hard times. She got a divorce and started raising her kids as a single parent. She was rumored to be homeless and had to live in a shelter in order to get government assistance. But, God has a plan for all of us and it looks like the songstress is starting to see the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
Right before the season ended, Claudette visited Hot 97 to discuss her family situation, homelessness, and what’s her plans now. It was an interesting conversation in that she kept it 100. She basically stated that while she was married she wasn’t the best at watching her finances. Luckily, however, she had enough of that hustlers spirit to invest in various business ventures so that she and her kids could maintain.
Watch the interview:
For young women who are mothers and are lacking a back up plan, it is very important to always have a Plan B. You never know when the father will leave and leave you stuck raising the kids. Claudette’s advice to manager your money properly is true. If possible, try to invest in real estate or other profitable businesses. Always put yourself in a position to where you won’t have to struggle.
Kudos to Claudette and we wish her the best!
Tyler Perry will be filming two live plays at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre in Atlanta. The first play Hell Hath No Fury Like A Women Scorned will run September 18th-20th and the second play Madea’s Neighbors From Hell will run September 22th-24th. All seats are $40.00 plus applicable fees and tickets can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com, each shows starts 8 P.M.
Tyler Perry states in his global email, “Come on down to the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and be a part of these live shows. I only want a house full of people who want to have a good time. That’s why I’m coming to you first.”
In September 2012, Tyler Perry was scheduled to take Madea Gets A Job on tour. Due to bootleggers and people selling tickets for more than face value the play was cancelled. As of now, resellers are selling tickets as high as $90.00 and up.
Last month, Perry helped OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network) record its highest rated month in network history. “The Haves and The Have Nots” and “Love Thy Neighbor” are both averaging over a million viewers a week. Regardless of the cast, Tyler Perry Productions always puts on a good show and you will get more than your money’s worth.
Article submitted by Abner Jackson III, Content Writer for STACKS Magazine
One of the most anticipated movies of 2013, “Lee Daniels’ The Butler”, lands the number one spot at the box office. The film hit theatres on Friday up against some tough competition (i.e. “We’re The Millers”, “Elysium”, “Kick Ass 2″). Movie buffs and critics point the finger at Oprah Winfrey as the movie success generator. “The Butler” marked Oprah’s returned to screen since being on hiatus from acting since 1998. In the movie, Oprah played the alcoholic wife of the White Houses’ long-serving butler (played by Forest Whitaker).
“The Butler” was produced by the Weinstein Co. and directed by the famed Lee Daniels. As you recall in previous posts, Weinstein Co. were battling another movie house for the use of the word “The Butler” as the official movie title. But, it was finally decided a few months ago (for copyrights sake) that Weinstein Co. had to revise the title before they could roll out their final marketing/promo initiatives. Hence, the final official title of the film “Lee Daniels’ The Butler”.
Other films who racked in millions over the weekend were “We’re The Millers” ($17.8 million), “Elysium” ($13.6 million), and “Kick Ass 2″ ($13.6 million), and “Planes” ($13.1 million).
Did you go see “The Butler” this weekend? What is your opinion about the film?
Christian Bale (Irvin Rosenfeld), Bradley Cooper (Richie DiMaso), Amy Adams (Sidney Prosser), Jeremy Renner (Carmine Polito), and Jennifer Lawrence (as Rosalyn) will star in an upcoming 70′s hustler flick called American Hustle. If you enjoyed Casino, Blow, or any other movie which showcases masses of money and crooks, this will be the flick for you. The movie will be released via Sony Pictures and will debut on December 13, 2013.
Brilliant con man Irving Rosenfeld, who along with his equally cunning British partner and lover Sydney Prosser, is forced to work for wild, unhinged FBI agent Richie DiMaso. DiMaso pushes them into a world of Jersey powerbrokers and mafia that’s as dangerous as it is enchanting. Carmen Polito, the passionate, volatile, New Jersey political operator is caught between the con-artists and Feds. Irving’s unpredictable wife Rosalyn could be the one to pull the thread that brings the entire world crashing down.
Here’s the official trailer:
2 Guns & Smurfs 2 Go Head-to-Head At The Box Office; The Conjuring Brings The Scary Grossing $108M To-Date
Although many believe families are preferring to watch movies in the comfort of their own home, the box office sales shows there are a few of us that still enjoy a night out at the movies.
This past week, the top two movies in the box office were 2 Guns and The Smurfs 2. As different in subject content as these two films were, they both drew in decent crowds that left movie-goers with fair criticism. 2 Guns, which stars Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg, is about two undercover agents who distrust one another more than the criminals they are trying to capture.
For the past 12 months, DEA agent Bobby Trench and U.S. naval intelligence officer Marcus Stigman have been reluctantly attached at the hip. Working undercover as members of a narcotics syndicate, each man distrusts his partner as much as the criminals they have both been tasked to take down.
When their attempt to infiltrate a Mexican drug cartel and recover millions goes haywire, Trench and Stigman are suddenly disavowed by their superiors. Now that everyone wants them in jail or in the ground, the only person they can count on is the other. Unfortunately for their pursuers, when good guys spend years pretending to be bad, they pick up a few tricks along the way.
The movie was release by Universal Pictures and grossed $27,361,124 over the weekend.
The Smurfs 2 is the sequel to one of America’s most beloved cartoons.
The evil wizard Gargamel creates a couple of mischievous Smurf-like creatures called the Naughties that he hopes will let him harness the all-powerful, magical Smurf-essence. But when he discovers that only a real Smurf can give him what he wants – and only a secret spell that Smurfette knows can turn the Naughties into real Smurfs – Gargamel kidnaps Smurfette and takes her to Paris, where he has been winning the adoration of millions as the world’s greatest sorcerer. It’s up to Papa, Clumsy, Grouchy and Vanity to return to our world, reunite with their human friends Patrick and Grace Winslow, and rescue her! Will Smurfette, who has always felt different from the other Smurfs, find a new connection with the Naughties Vexi and Hackus – or will the Smurfs convince her that their love for her is True Blue?
The Smurfs 2 was released on Sony Pictures and grossed $27,761,000 this weekend.
Other notable releases were The Wolverine ($95M -week 2), Despicable Me 2 ($326.7M – week 5), and a movie that many claim is as scary as older classics like The Omen. The Conjuring has grossed $108.6M as of week 3.
Based on a true story, this horrifying tale follows world renowned paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren who were called upon to help a family terrorized by a dark presence in a secluded farmhouse. Forced to confront a powerful demonic entity, the Warrens find themselves caught in the most terrifying case of their lives.
LOL! Jennifer Aniston & Jason Sudeikis Stars In New Drug-Trafficking Comedy “We’re The Millers” [Trailer]
If you combine one of the 1980 Griswalds family vacations and Showtime’s original series ”Weeds”, you can pretty much imagine what will happen in this upcoming flick, “We’re The Millers.”
According to a press release:
From New Line Cinema comes the action comedy “We’re The Millers,” starring Jennifer Aniston and Jason Sudeikis. David Burke (Sudeikis) is a small-time pot dealer whose clientele includes chefs and soccer moms, but no kids—after all, he has his scruples. So what could go wrong? Plenty. Preferring to keep a low profile for obvious reasons, he learns the hard way that no good deed goes unpunished when he tries to help out some local teens and winds up getting jumped by a trio of gutter punks. Stealing his stash and his cash, they leave him in major debt to his supplier, Brad (Ed Helms). In order to wipe the slate clean—and maintain a clean bill of health—David must now become a big-time drug smuggler by bringing Brad’s latest shipment in from Mexico. Twisting the arms of his neighbors, cynical stripper Rose (Aniston) and wannabe customer Kenny (Will Poulter), and the tatted, streetwise teen Casey (Emma Roberts), he devises a foolproof plan. One fake wife, two pretend kids and a huge, shiny RV later, the “Millers” are headed south of the border for a Fourth of July weekend that is sure to end with a bang.
Thurber directs “We’re The Millers” from a screenplay by Bob Fisher & Steve Faber and Sean Anders & John Morris, story by Bob Fisher & Steve Faber. The film also stars Emma Roberts, Nick Offerman, Kathryn Hahn, Will Poulter and Ed Helms. Vincent Newman, Tucker Tooley, Happy Walters and Chris Bender are the producers, with David Heyman, J.C. Spink, Marcus Viscidi, Toby Emmerich, Richard Brenner and David Neustadter serving as executive producers.
New Line Cinema’s “We’re The Millers” opens nationwide on August 7, 2013, and will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.
Watch the official trailer below:
With Jay-Z, his rap lyrics are often misinterpreted and given meanings by those who listen. However, in his song “Picasso Baby”, he does it again by relating his rap form to the abstract and expressive nature we often see in paintings. With Picasso being one of his favorite painters, Jay-Z titles the song accordingly and will soon give fans a greater appreciate to its words and meaning.
On August 2, immediately following his scheduled appearance on ”Real Time with Bill Maher” show, Jay-Z will air a special documentary-type film. “Picasso Baby: A Performance Art Film” will show Jay-Z giving a special six-hour performance of the song. The performance was taped at the Pace Gallery in New York. Special invited guests got a chance to see the artist/businessman conduct an exhausting-but-artful performance of the Magna Carta Holy Grail track repeatedly for several hours.
“Rap is thinking out loud, and you’re putting your fears and your vulnerabilities and your insecurities to music,” Jay Z says in the trailer. “Concerts are pretty much performance art, and a smaller venue is a bit more intimate, so you feel the energy of the people.”
Check your local listings for the actual air time.
The music industry’s all-time top selling R&B female group, TLC, will soon see their lives played out on film in an upcoming biopic. The made-for-television movie is produced by Vh1 and will air in October. With direct consultation from members Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozanda “Chilli” Thomas, the film will recount the rise, fall, and untimely death of third member Lisa “Left-Eye” Lopes.
When the initial cast members were announced, the public didn’t receive it too well. Many questioned if KeKe Palmer (Chilli), Lil Mama (Left-Eye), and Drew Sidora (T-Boz) could truly intimidate the group’s looks, style, and signature dance styles. But, it looks like the casting crew made the right decision. The actresses are going to make viewers do a double take. The similarities are astonishing.
According to MTV, “the biopic will be released in conjunction with a compilation album from the group that will include their biggest hits and a few new songs, including “Posh Life” penned by Lady Gaga and Dallas Austin, and “Meant To Be,” written by Ne-Yo. The group will perform the songs live with Lil’ Mama temporarily standing in as “Left Eye,” while other artists like Drake and J.Cole will potentially join them onstage as well.”
The excitement from the fans has begun to gain some steam with the recent on-set photos and sneak preview released to the public. In case you are wondering if the film will do justice to the groups legacy, take a look for yourself.
In a previous article [HERE], we informed our readers of the lawsuit pending against the filmmakers of the Oscar-worthy ‘The Butler’. Well, a final decision is forthcoming which requests that the title be changed a little bit.
The film, which is based off of the true story about Cecil Gaines and his 34-year career as the head butler in the White House, should soon be granted to opportunity to begin its fully revamped promo run. The Motion Picture Association of America overruled a previous ruling given to the Warner Brothers Co. The Weinstein Company was ordered to not use the original title ‘The Butler’, but instead could use add additional verbiage like “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” or “The White House Butler”. Also, the MPAA has ordered them to use the same size font throughout the full title (ex. “LEE DANIELS’ THE BUTLER” not “Lee Daniels’ THE BUTLER”).
The Weinstein Company has submitted their two choices to the MPAA and will soon announce the new name. However, if they decide to not comply with the ruling, the Weinstein Company will face some harsh financial penalties.
The MPAA faulted The Weinstein Company for “continuous use of the unregistered title ‘The Butler’ in willful violation of the TRB rules” and said the company is “permanently prohibited from any use of the title.” The Weinstein Company will have to pay $400,000 to the Entertainment Industry Foundation for its violations, an additional $100,000 to the EIF and pay up to $150,000 to Warner Bros. for legal fees. (via Eurweb)
Until the final ruling and title is set in stone, the Weinstein Company is not allowed to use the title in any marketing materials. If they do, they will face a fine of $25,000 per day.
The film stars Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, Jane Fonda, Robin Williams, and other big name actors. It is scheduled to hit theaters on August 16, 2013.
What’s Goin On TV and Tronzai Media is taking the videography game one step higher. The team is now diving into the documentary world with a new project that explores the life of Atlanta strippers and the clubs they work for. This first 8-minute clip features two exotic dancers from the Blue Flame Lounge. Blue Flame, as many call it, is one of Atlanta’s first strip clubs. The club came into existence over 30 years ago and remains one of the premiere spots for exotic dancing.
‘The Naked Hustle’ documentary is probably one of the first films to dive deep into this alternative lifestyle. People who frequent these clubs will enjoy seeing things from a different angle, while those who oppose these establishments will get to see and hear first hand the “true” experience the owners and the dancers go through.
Watch Part 1 below:
Idris Elba is starring in what many may consider the most important role of his life. Can he pull it off? Not sure, but we soon shall see.
“Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom” is a movie about the life of the renowned South Africa leader Nelson Mandela. Idris Elba will star as Mandela and take viewers on a journey through very important political and personal moments of the leader’s life. The film is directed by Justin Chadwick and produced by The Weinstein Co.
Recently, the Weinstein Co. previewed the trailer during the Nelson Mandela International Day celebration. The private screening was for the United Nations General Assembly. Several notable political figures in attendance were U.N. General Assembly President, John William Ashe; U.S. former president Bill Clinton, actor/activist Harry Belafonte; Reverend Jesse Jackson; Secretary General of the U.N., Ban ki-moon, and many others.
The film is scheduled to be released in theaters on November 29. Check out the trailer below:
Nelson Mandela, although hospitalized for serious health issues, celebrated his 95th birthday on Thursday, July 18.
It looks like friend to the magazine, Deji LaRay, is still making moves in Hollywood. He’s been featured several times in STACKS Magazine sharing his knowledge of the business. As an actor/editor/producer, Deji has a lot of experience in the film industry and can be an inspiration for any up-n-coming filmmakers. In case you missed our past write-ups about him, click the following links:
Article 1 – Spotlight: Deji LaRay of Guerrilla Film Junkies
Well, he’s announced that he will be in another upcoming movie. The film Abducted will be released in August 2013 and is filled with plenty action and drama. Directed by Mark Harris, the film is about a child’s kidnapping and the fathers attempt to rescue her.
In an attempt to rebuild his marriage after the death of his son, Matt Hollis decides to take his wife and six year old daughter Lara on a trip of a lifetime to LA, to escape the constant reminders of their loss. Shortly after their arrival Matt’s world is turned upside down when his wife is attacked in their holiday home, leaving her in a coma and their daughter LARA kidnapped by a child trafficking ring. Hunted by the police who mistakenly believe Matt has absconded with his daughter, he must evade capture and pursue the criminals responsible for Lara’s abduction. Realizing he only has a 72-hour window of opportunity if he ever wants to see his daughter alive again, he enlists the help of Syan an old forces buddy, Matt tears a path of bloody vengeance through the streets of LA on a collision course with Lara’s captors.
The film stars Mark Harris, Deji LaRay, Anna Nightingale, Honor Kneafsy, Feliz Ryan, and a host of other cast. Deji LaRay served as executive producer on the film along with Mark Harris (producer), Eduardo Panizzo (associate producer), and Tom Clark (associate producer).
Watch the trailer:
World’s number one female talk show host, Oprah Winfrey, and Golden Globe Award winner Forest Whitaker stars in the new film “The Butler” hitting theaters Aug 16. Winfrey and Whitaker play husband and wife as Mr. & Mrs. Gaines who are attempting to teach their son about respect, breaking down barriers and legendary actor Mr. Sidney Poitier. Whitaker character Mr. Gaines served as butler for several U.S presidents across decades.
The movie is unofficially said to already be a prospect for nominations for several awards, however, the movie title has caused a law dispute between Warner Bros. and The Weinstein Company.
The original movie title “The Butler” is a short film in the Warner Bros. library produced in 1916. Although similar movie titles are not uncommon in the movie industry, it is report that this isn’t the first title battle between the two companies. A judge recently found in favor of Warner Bros. for the name “The Butler.” Whatever The Weinstein Company decides to name the movie it is set to be a “hit” of epic historic proportion.
Written by Dameon Daniels, content writer for STACKS Magazine
Fresh off the mega success of The Great Gastby, Leonardo DiCaprio will be back to the screen as a well-to-do stockbroker. The film “Wolf of Wallstreet” a memoir that has been adapted for film and directed by the famous Martin Scorsese. The memoir was written by John Belfort, who spent two years behind bars for crimes which involved stock market manipulation. Matthew McConaughey, Jonah Hill, and Jean Dujardin will also star in the film.
Check out the trailer below…
Kevin Hart is pumping up marketing efforts for his new film Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain by incorporating a message for guys too. In a new partnership with Coca Cola’s Coke Zero™ imprint, the comedian/actor will go on a nationwide promotional tour champing the idea that as a man “It’s Not Your Fault…Enjoy Everything.”
“‘Let Me Explain’ builds on the current Coke Zero marketing platform, called ‘It’s Not Your Fault…Enjoy Everything,” said Lauventria Robinson, Vice President, Multicultural Marketing, Coca-Cola North America Group. “We have teamed up with Kevin to take a lighthearted and satirical perspective on the stereotypical things that men do, while cheering guy moments of bonding and camaraderie. Coke Zero has given men the excuse that it’s okay to be who you are; ‘it’s not your fault.’ Kevin has their back with the opening line, ‘let me explain.’ It’s a perfect partnership for a brand that celebrates men.”
“I’m excited about releasing Let Me Explain and working with Coca-Cola Zero to bring it to the masses,” said Hart. “The movie and Coke Zero share a similar view on not making excuses for a man being a man. We have reasons why we do what we do and most start with, we’re men. So it’s okay to play video games all night, talk junk with your boys or pretend you’ve worked out harder than you have – that’s what men do. Coke Zero says that’s cool and so do I.”
The tour will stop at selected cities across the U.S. and allow consumers to enjoy a private screening of the film. As consumers attend the screening at local Regal Cinema theaters, they will get the opportunity to walk the black carpet and may also receive a special guest appearance of Kevin Hart himself.
Chicago – 6/12
New York City – 6/19
Atlanta – 6/21
Los Angeles – 6/27
Additional promo efforts will include a TV spot called “Theater Seats” which will air on BET and TBS and posted online. Hart’s company HartBeat Productions will produce the TV spot and three digital vignettes that will be released on social media outlets this fall.
Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain hit theaters on July 3.
Starring in numerous films together are the dynamic comedy duo Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson in the new flick “The Internship.” If you are fans of the two, you’ll get a kick out of this new film that opened in theaters June 7.
According to the Daily Motion, the film chronicles the lives of two salesmen whose careers have been torpedoed by the digital age find their way into a coveted internship at Google, where they compete with a group of young geniuses for a shot at employment.
Check out the trailer below:
With one of the most widely talked about lives pop culture has ever seen, finally Anna’s life story is coming to screen. “The Anna Nicole Story” will premiere on the Lifetime Network on June 29th. The biopic will star 27 year old Agnes Bruckner as Anna Nicole. Bruckner is best known for her roles on “24″ and “Private Practice.” The story will take viewers on a journey of Anna’s childhood to her rise from Playboy starlet to reality star. As overly obsessed with iconic actress Marilyn Monroe, Anna’s untimely death was eerily similar to Monroe’s.
In 1993, Anna Nicole became Playmate of the Year and soon after married billionaire tycoon J. Howard Marshall. Unfortunately, Marshall passed away only 15 months later leaving Anna fighting for her fair share of his estate. The court drama with Marshall’s family lasted for years, even reaching the U.S. Supreme Courts. Anna believed as his wife she was entitles to hundreds of millions dollars from Marshall’s estate.
Based on many television appearances and her very own E! Network reality series, many believed Anna Nicole suffered from substance abuse (primarily prescription drugs).
In 2006, Anna gave birth to a baby girl name Danielynn Hope Marshall Stern. However during this time of celebration, Anna’s eldest child, 20 year old Daniel Smith, passed away of a drug overdose only two months after Anna had given birth. Her son’s untimely death and financial strain are reasons many speculate why she soon passed away.
Anna Nicole’s death was due to an apparent drug overdose. This happened six months after her son passed.
Watch the trailer: