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Entertainment news: Ruby Rose, Viola Davis, N.C. and performers
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2016-04-19

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In an interview with Galore, Orange Is the New Black co-star Ruby Rose said she has no problem being compared to Justin Bieber or Leonardo DiCaprio, The Huffington Post noted. The 30-year-old star, who identifies as gender fluid, also sounded off on what it feels like when she's told that she's turned "straight girls gay" after becoming their "girl crush." "When people say to me that I turned them gay, I just laugh, because that's not really even a possibility," she said. "It sounds like I did something against their will in the middle of the night, as if I crept into their brain and pushed the gay button, then did an evil laugh and left them to fend for themselves—newly gay and alone in the world."

Actress Viola Davis ( TV's How to Get Away With Murder ) has a message of support for LGBT families. According to Advocate.com, Davis said, "I'm fighting for you" at the Tribeca Film Festival premiere of Custody, a movie about a mother's struggle to keep legal guardianship of her child. "I believe in you," she told The Advocate. "I think that I'm just as outraged as you are. I think you're worthy of every right that ever human being in this country, in this world, has been afforded."

Police say superstar Diana Ross was injured when an SUV ran a stop sign and crashed into a limo taking her to a performance in Pennsylvania, Page Six reported. Bethlehem police say the 72-year-old singer complained of head and neck pain after the April 13 crash. She was treated at the scene by paramedics and indicated she would seek further treatment on her own. Police said the SUV driver, a 22-year-old New Jersey woman, received a traffic citation.

Bruce Springsteen continued to speak out against anti-LGBT legislation recently at a concert in Detroit, EW.com reported. On the latest stop of his River Tour at the Palace of Auburn Hills, the 66-year-old rocker noted that he'd heard Michigan was considering a discriminatory law—and suggested that if the state passed such legislation, he wouldn't be coming back. Michigan state Sen. Tom Casperson said in March that he'll propose legislation forcing the state's students to use bathrooms corresponding to the gender they were assigned at birth.

On another legislative note, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) released a statement on the 2017 All-Star NBA game in Charlotte, North Carolina—the state what recently passed a staunchly anti-LGBT law. The NBA reaffirmed its opposition to H.B. 2, noting that NBA owners are unanimous in opposing the bill, and made clear that the league has not ruled out moving the game. HRC President Chad Griffin said, "We thank the NBA and Commissioner Silver for standing strong in support for the equal dignity of all North Carolinians and for continuing to advocate for the repeal of this hateful and draconian law."

In response to a recently passed anti-LGBT law, Cirque du Soleil has cancelled scheduled performances of OVO in Greensboro ( April 20-24 ) and in Charlotte ( July 6-10 ) as well as TORUK: Avatar in Raleigh ( June 22-26 ), according to a press release. In a statement, the organization said, "Cirque du Soleil believes in equality for all. It is a principle that guides us with both our employees and our customers. We behave as change agents to reach our ultimate goal of making a better world with our actions and our productions."

The eighth annual GayCharlotte Film Festival will present four days of award-winning feature-length dramas, comedies, documentaries and short films—including the southeastern U.S. premiere of the 2016 documentary "MAJOR!," a press release stated. MAJOR! profiles legendary activist and Stonewall Rebellion veteran Miss Major Griffin-Gracy, a 75-year-old Black transgender woman who has been fighting for the rights of trans women of color for more than 40 years. Some of the other films slated to be shown include In the Greyscale, Carol and The Danish Girl.

ABC News Correspondent Gio Benitez married boyfriend Tommy DiDario April 16, according to ABC News. The two wed in front of family, friends and ABC News colleagues inside the historic Walton House in Miami, Florida. ABC News journalists, including Martha Raddatz, Rebecca Jarvis, Kendis Gibson, Cecilia Vega and Alex Perez, along with Sam Champion attended the nuptials.

James Franco premiered his latest project, King Cobra—directed by Justin Kelly and starring Christian Slater and Keegan Allen with cameos from Molly Ringwald and Alicia Silverstone—at the Tribeca Film Festival, according to Variety. Inspired by a true story, Slater stars as Stephen, a gay porn producer behind the company King Cobra, who takes on a new star, Brent Corrigan ( Garrett Clayton ). When Corrigan wants out of his contract, Stephen refuses. The Viper Boys—two rival porn producers played by Franco and "Pretty Little Liars" co-star Allen—pledge to help Corrigan and decide to brutally murder Stephen.

ABC's Once Upon a Time showcased the fairy-tale drama's first LGBT couple that executive producers Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis promised would appear in season five—heroines Ruby ( Meghan Ory ) and Dorothy ( Teri Reeves ), EW.com noted. Ruby brings Dorothy out of her slumber by breaking the spell with true love's kiss. "True love's kiss has been a staple of this show since the beginning," executive producers Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis said. "This past Sunday's episode was just another example of how in a fairy tale, as in life, love is love."

During an interview with Maria Menounos on her Sirius XM radio show "Conversations with Maria Menounos," Margaret Cho, one of the late Anna Nicole Smith's friends, offered a glimpse into Smith's struggles, The Huffington Post noted. She opened up about the days leading up to Smith's 2007 death, explaining that the death of her 20-year-old son Daniel ( which happened just three days after the former Guess model gave birth to Dannielynn ) was extremely difficult. About Daniel, Cho said, "When a mother loses a child—I know it took them four hours to pry her off of his body. She wouldn't allow him to be buried, she just had to be next to him and near him. I couldn't even picture it."

According to a short conversation on a recent episode of I Am Cait, Caitlyn Jenner revealed that she would only date a man if she had gender-reassignment surgery, Page Six noted. Talking with ex Kris Jenner, Caitlyn confessed she wasn't sure what her dating future would hold, adding, "Right now I'm just trying to figure myself out." Kris reminded her,"You can go out for a drink—you don't have to have sex."

Instagram's famous dads Caleb Anthony and Kordale Lewis are expecting a new baby, Page Six reported. "After a long time of trying and praying, we're finally able to announce our pregnancy at 12 weeks!! ( WE'RE PREGNANT!! )," the social media stars captioned a photo of an ultrasound. Anthony, 27, and Lewis, 26, shot to fame two years ago after an image of them doing their daughters' hair for school went viral. Despite the happy image they spread—and a Nikon ad campaign—the couple briefly split in July 2015.

American Idol finalist La'Porsha Ranae doesn't think gay people are "animals," but she still doesn't agree with their "lifestyle" or "life choices," Advocate.com reported. During a press conference, she said, "I am one of the people who don't really agree with that lifestyle. I wasn't brought up that way. It wasn't how I was raised. But I do have a lot of friends and a lot of people that I love dearly who are gay and homosexual and they're such sweet, nice people. We should just respect each other's differences and opinions and move on."

Barbra Streisand's dream of starring in a movie remake of the classic musical Gypsy may not be dead after all, according to Playbill, citing Variety. Six months after Universal Pictures officially passed on the long-in-development project, STX Entertainment is currently in "advanced negotiations" with the Grammy and Oscar winner to play Madame Rose, with fellow Oscar winner Barry Levinson directing. There's no official word on who would play Gypsy.

Singer Kelly Clarkson confirmed via Twitter that she gave birth to a baby boy, Remington Alexander Blackstock, on April 12, The Huffington Post reported. This is the second child for the singer and her husband, Brandon Blackstock. The couple already has a daughter named River Rose, who is almost 2.

Miley Cyrus announced a collaboration with artist Marilyn Minter in front of 500 power women at the Planned Parenthood Spring Luncheon in New York City, according to Page Six. In a video message from her bedroom, Cyrus revealed she recently posed for Minter, and 50 limited-edition $5,500 prints of their efforts will be sold at artsy.net, with proceeds going to Planned Parenthood. Also at the luncheon: Tory Burch, Cindy Sherman and Uma Thurman.

For its May/June 2016 cover story, Plus magazine sat down with transgender supermodel Carmen Carrera to discuss how the former RuPaul's Drag Race contestant has become an advocate for LGBT issues and how losing her father to AIDS complications has inspired her to join the fight against HIV/AIDS, a press release stated. Last year, Carrera became the first transgender person to wed on national television after she appeared with husband Adrian Torres on VH1's Couples Therapy. Since then, Carrera has signed with Elite Models, appearing in W, Elle, Glamour and an Orbitz campaign.

GLAAD announced Robert De Niro as the recipient of the Excellence in Media Awards at the GLAAD Media Awards in New York on May 14, a press release stated. The award is presented to media professionals who have made a significant difference in promoting equality and acceptance. Robert De Niro is a longtime ally to the LGBT community. Recently, he shared with audiences the story of his gay father in Remembering the Artist: Robert De Niro, Sr., a 2014 HBO documentary. Previous honorees include Kelly Ripa, Russell Simmons, Tyra Banks, Judy Shepard, Julianne Moore, Glenn Close, Barbara Walters, Bob and Harvey Weinstein, Diane Sawyer and Vanessa Redgrave.

Victoria Beckham has announced her forthcoming makeup line with Estee Lauder, USA Today reported. The limited-edition line will be available on Victoriabeckham.com and Esteelauder.com as well as at select retailers in September. Beckham joins the brand's exclusive club of previous celebrity collaborators, including Eva Mendes and Kendall Jenner.

Kesha made a rare surprise appearance at Coachella on April 16, giving an emotional performance in the midst of her legal battle with music producer Dr. Luke, Variety reported. Kesha and Zedd performed the title track of Zedd's 2015 LP, True Colors. Rumors had swirled for weeks that Kesha would appear at the surprise-heavy festival, and she fueled speculation with several Instagram posts teasing fans.

At her 74th birthday party in Manhattan, Aretha Franklin said that a biopic about her life is progressing, according to the Associated Press. Franklin said, "We've agreed on all the key points. There's very little left now ( to negotiate ), very little. They have given me creative control and that's all I wanted." Plans for a biopic date back to at least 2011, when Franklin announced she wanted Halle Berry to star; Jennifer Hudson is now reportedly being considered for the lead.

Matthew Vaughn is recruiting a major star to join the cast of his Kingsman sequel, as Sir Elton John is in talks for a fun role alongside Taron Egerton in the spy movie, TheWrap reported. The "Tiny Dancer" singer would join Oscar winners Julianne Moore and Halle Berry as well as Narcos star Pedro Pascal in the sequel, which will also see Mark Strong return. The production has also teased the notion that Oscar winner Colin Firth could reprise his role as the seemingly dead Harry Hart—and Channing Tatum has signed on as well.

Dancing with the Stars veteran Cheryl Burke revealed that Beverly Hills, 90210's Ian Ziering was her least favorite dance partner in her 18 seasons with the show, according to E! Online. On Matt Weiss and Theo Von's "Allegedly" podcast ( via TMZ ), she added, "The fact that his name is not EE-AN and it's EYE-AN makes me want to throw up." Burke even admitted that when the pair made it to fourth place in season four, she went to the higher-ups to find a way to end the season early.

Fox officially announced that Ryan Reynolds will reteam with director Tim Miller and writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick for Deadpool 2—a no-brainer, given the film's grosses ( more than $757 million worldwide ). The studio also showed off a new trailer for next month's X-Men: Apocalypse.

NBC News noted Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are considering two short-and-sweet final seasons for the sprawling fantasy saga, according to Variety—seven episodes for the seventh season, six for the eighth. "I think we're down to our final 13 episodes after this season. We're heading into the final lap," Benioff told Variety. "That's the guess, though nothing is yet set in stone, but that's what we're looking at." The sixth season of the megahit HBO series premieres April 24 and will run for 10 episodes.

Details are slowly leaking out about Wolverine 3, according to a MovieWeb item that cites Cinema Blend. James Mangold is set to direct the film, and the movie will serve as Hugh Jackman's swan song when it comes to playing the indestructible mutant Logan. The idea that Patrick Stewart will be showing up alerted fans to the fact that this particular solo adventure will take place quite a few years after X-Men: Apocalypse, which is set in 1983.

Pretty Little Liars actor Brandon Jones is facing criminal charges for pointing a gun at his neighbor during an alleged dispute last October, according to TheWrap. The actor has been charged with one felony count of assault with a firearm and one misdemeanor count each of exhibiting a deadly weapon and exhibiting a concealable firearm in public.

Following a successful residency at Cafe Carlyle in New York City, singer/songwriter/actress Rita Wilson will appear as the opening act for rock band Chicago on 10 West Coast dates of their summer tour, according to Page Six. Wilson, the wife of Tom Hanks, kicks off her stint with the "Saturday in the Park" singers on June 18 in Seattle.


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