January 09, 2014

LAWT WIRE SERVICES

 

Despite filming it’s entire second season, the plug has been pulled for BET’s “Reed Between the Lines.”

The show’s star, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, confirmed the network’s decision to not air the sophomore season in an email to AccessAtlanta.com.

“There’s really not much to say about ‘Reed Between The Lines,” the actor wrote. “BET decided not the air the second season, even though it was shot. As a result, there’s really nothing to say about the show.”

A BET spokeswoman did not answer questions concerning the status of “Reed Between the Lines” or the reason behind the cancellation, AccessAtlanta noted.

“None of us were happy to hear [the cancellation.] They had their reasons, a lot of which I don’t understand,” Warner expressed to the site during a follow-up interview. “I thought it was a great execution of dealing with a guy who thought he had a perfect family and marriage only to find out there were issues along the way.”

News of the cancellation officially puts the cap on “Reed Between the Lines.” The series, which also starred Tracee Ellis Ross centered around a happily married couple (Warner and Ross) and their children. Although it featured two TV veterans, “Reed Between the Lines failed to become a certified hit as it averaged
about 1 million viewers.

Things further went downhill after Ross decided to leave the show after the first season aired in 2012. Ross’ departure did not prevent BE from greenlighting the shooting of the entire second season in the fall of that year. Without Ross, the show went in a new direction with Felicia D. Henderson being brought in as the new executive producer. Henderson’s vision for “Reed Between the Lines” included a long-distance marriage where Warner’s character Alex taking care of the children after Ross’ character moved to California to take a new job.

In September 2012, Henderson revealed to AccessAtlanta that she wanted to portray Alex as a good role model as a single dad and caregiver, in addition to having Alex leave the house and start teaching on location, rather than be an online professor.

Henderson also expressed a desire to focus on three generations of men who are “interesting, intelligent, positive but flawed men” with the inclusion of Alex’s father, played by Charles Robinson and two childhood friends, which included a character played by Tony Rock.

BET’s passing on the second season of “Reed Between the Lines” doesn’t signal the end of Warner’s time on the small screen. This past Monday, the entertainer guest starred on an episode of “Major Crimes” on TNT.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

January 09, 2014

LAWT WIRE SERVICES

It has been reported, at the 69th annual New York Film Critics Circle Awards, Armond White, a well-known and extremely controversial film critic for the New York City culture review City Arts reportedly made disparaging remarks about best director winner Steve McQueen (“12 Years a Slave”) as McQueen took the stage.

Like a lot of films he reviews, White – to put it mildly – hated McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave” when he reviewed it back in October. But, as we said, he allegedly took things to a whole ‘nother level with his outrageous comments Monday night (01-06-14).

According to Variety, White’s alleged and shocking words were: “You’re an embarrassing doorman and garbage man. F— you. Kiss my ass.”

Well, as we also reported, the NYFCC … which White is a longtime member of and even a past chairman, issued an apology to McQueen.  Also, it’s being reported that the organization has called an emergency meeting to address the incident. If rules permit, and certain members get their way, you can look for a future report saying White is a ex-member.

However, White, in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter, is claiming that he he’s being slandered. He insists he never made those comments and has a message for his associates in the NYFFC.

Via the Hollywood Reporter, here is Armond White’s full and unedited take on the situation:

The comments that I supposedly made were never uttered by me or anyone within my earshot. I have been libeled by publications that recklessly quoted unnamed sources that made up what I said and to whom I was speaking. Someone on the podium talked about critics’ “passion.” Does “passion” only run one-way toward subservience?

The press has accustomed itself to treating me as a bete noir–so much so that eavesdroppers at the event continually misrepresent my behavior, even to the point of repeating such lies as distorting my cheer for Robert De Niro’s The Good Shepherd into “heckling” and that I “made Annette Bening cry”–both false allegations. Among some Circle members and media folk, there is personal, petty interest in seeing me maligned. I guess the awards themselves don’t matter. It’s a shameless attempt to squelch the strongest voice that exists in contemporary criticism.

Right now former NYFCC Chairman Joshua Rothkopf, acting Chairman Stephen Whitty, Karen Durbin, David Denby, Rex Reed, Dana Stevens and others have arranged a Communist-style special “Emergency Meeting” supposedly in the interest of legislating “decorum”–a meeting based entirely upon something that none of them actually heard and one that is really intended to purge me from the Circle. Only David Edelstein, with whom I’ve had past public disputes, showed the common courtesy to inquire if the rumors were true.

Did I make sotto voce comments to entertain my five guests? Sure, but nothing intended for others to hear and none correctly “reported.” I don’t even know what it means to call Steve McQueen a “garbage man” or “doorman” even though the racist implications are obvious. None of this makes sense which is what happens when online journalism reports a malicious lie.

As for the group’s craven “Emergency Meeting.” I dont care what they decide. It’s not a meeting I plan to attend. –Armond White

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

January 09, 2014

By Pat Hendricks Munson

 

Idris Elba and Naomie Harris who portrays Nelson and Winnie Mandela in the oscar-worthy film Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom were in Palm Springs this past weekend to screen the movie as part of the 25th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival being held now through Jan 13. 

Elba and Harris, who said she was very nervous to play Winnie Mandela but received rave reviews from Mandela’s former wife,  along with U2's Bono and The Edge participated in a question and answer session after the film’s screening Sunday at the Annenberg Theatre in Palm Springs.  Elba taught about the “profound effect” of making the movie, meeting Nelson Mandela and the bitter sweet London premiere. 

Three quarters through the premiere the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, was handed a cell phone.  Her expression and the tears rolling down her face let Elba know that something was amiss as the Duchess handed the phone to her husband Prince William. Elba soon learned what the call was all about; Nelson Mandela had just died. Once the film ended an official announcement from South Africa’s President Zuma was read to those in attendance.

The star of Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom felt it would be inappropriate to continue promoting the movie.  However, he was strongly encouraged by Mandela’s daughters that he most promote the movie and help keep their father's legacy alive. Bono, a friend and long-time supporter of Mandela’s wrote the Golden-Globe nominated theme song, “Ordinary Love” for the movie.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

January 09, 2014

LAWT WIRE SERVICES

 

NEW YORK (AP) — A musical inspired by Tupac Shakur songs is going to bring gangsta rap to Broadway.

Producers said Wednesday that “Holler If Ya Hear Me” will open at the Palace Theatre in June under the direction of Kenny Leon, who helmed the Broadway hits “Fences” and “The Mountaintop.” The new musical sets Shakur's music to an original story.

Rapper and actor Shakur, who had multimillion-seller albums like “2Pacalypse Now” and “All Eyez on Me,” was known for his raw lyrics that drew on the rage of a coarse urban existence. No casting was announced.

The musical has a story by Todd Kreidler, who was a dramaturg for “Radio Golf” and “Gem of the Ocean,” and choreography by Tony Award-winner Wayne Cilento of “Wicked.” Afeni Shakur, the late artists’ mother, is producing.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

January 09, 2014

LAWT News Service

 

Imani Hakim, best known for her role as Tonya Rock on the UPN/CW sitcom Everybody Hates Chris, to star as Gabby Douglas in the Lifetime Original Movie “The Gabby Douglas Story” (working title), produced by Sony Pictures Television. The movie details the inspiring true story of the international gymnastics phenomenon, who overcame overwhelming odds to become the first African American ever to be named Individual All-round Champion in artistic gymnastics at the Olympics.

Hakim will play Gabby Douglas, as a teenager and young adult.

The cast also includes Sydney Mikayla who will portray Douglas during her childhood, Peabody Award-winning actress Regina King as her mother and Golden Globe® and Emmy®-winner S. Epatha Merkerson as her grandmother.

“The Gabby Douglas Story” is set to air on Lifetime in February 2014.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

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