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Entertainment news: 'Tarzan' kiss, Christian Siriano, Abby Wambach, Mary Lambert
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2016-07-19

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The UK Mirror reported that a gay kiss was cut out of the final edit of the new Tarzan film—because test audiences were left "perplexed" by it, the director has revealed. The new film, The Legend of Tarzan, includes a character named Captain Leon Rom, a ruthless Belgian soldier played by Christoph Waltz, who is now rumored to be Tarzan's secret love interest. The film initially included a gay kiss between the lead character, played by Alexander Skarsgard, and Captain Rom, but director David Yates has now admitted it was cut out of the final edit.

Christian Siriano and longtime boyfriend Brad Walsh tied the knot at their Danbury, Connecticut, home, Page Six noted. The star-studded ceremony was attended by a number of famous faces, including Kelly Osbourne, Alicia Silverstone, Christina Hendricks, Jackie Cruz and more. Orange Is the New Black's Danielle Brooks, who was recently nominated for a Tony, serenaded guests with a rendition of Rihanna's "Drunk on Love."

Legendary soccer player Abby Wambach ( who won the 2011 ESPY Award for Best Play of the Year ) was one of three people ( along with former football player Peyton Manning and ex-NBA player Kobe Bryant ) to receive the Icon Award at the 2016 ESPYs Awards on July 13, TheWrap noted. Wambach, an out lesbian, gave a speech about how her efforts to always fight for women's equality have made her feel as proud as any of her on-field achievements, according to Hollywood Life. Justin Timberlake presented the award to all three individuals.

On the one-month anniversary of the Orlando, Florida, shootings, out singer Mary Lambert dedicated an a cappella rendition of "Amazing Grace" to the victims, according to On Top Magazine. "If there's one thing we can learn, it's to dance anyway," she said. "It's to sing anyway. It's to kiss anyway. It's to hug everyone. It's to love harder, love louder. Despite—always despite." Lambert performed her tribute during a visit to the Los Angeles office of The Advocate.

At the one-month anniversary of the Orlando tragedy, first openly gay world title contender Orlando Cruz visited the Pulse Nightclub Memorial and the victim's crosses to leave boxing gloves and flowers, Fight News noted. Due to his commitment with a scheduled televised title fight for July 15 in Kissimmee, Florida, he was unable to leave his training camp to attend the vigils and memorials for the victims. Cruz lost four friends in the tragedy. Cruz won his fight, knocking out Alejandro "Alex" Valdez in the seventh round, PinkNews noted.

UFC women's bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes recently became the first openly gay athlete to win a championship with the organization—and the first Brazilian-born female to capture a belt, Rolling Stone noted. with a sensational performance against Miesha Tate ( 18-6, 5-3 ) in the main event of UFC 200, which took place July 9 at Las Vegas' T-Mobile Arena. Nunes' partner is fellow UFC fighter Nina Ansaroff.

Actor Josh Hutcherson ( the Hunger Games series, The Kids Are All Right ) was in Atlanta recently to kick off that city's version of the PowerOn campaign, which provides LGBT youth access to computers and important online resources, The Georgia Voice reported. PowerOn was founded in 2014 by Straight But Not Narrow ( which Hutcherson co-founded ), The Trevor Project, Human IT and LGBT Tech to encourage people to donate old or broken laptops, tables and smartphones so that they can refurbish and redistribute them back to those in the LGBT community that need them the most.

Openly gay personality Billy Eichner asks out Daning with the Stars/America's Next Top Model winner Nyle DiMarco—on screen, People noted. Appearing in season two of Difficult People, DiMarco plays an unassuming customer who Eichner asks to dinner after deciding that he needs to take more risks in his life. "He's funny and charming and incredibly attractive," Eichner, 37, told The Insider of DiMarco, 27, at the New York premiere. "I had nothing to do with casting him, but I was so glad that he did it."

Newly discovered FBI tapes reportedly confirm Whitney Houston's secret lesbian affair with longtime pal Robyn Crawford, according to Radar Online. Houston met Crawford in East Orange, New Jersey, in 1979 and named Crawford her "personal assistant" when the singer's career skyrocketed in the 1980s. Musician Bobby Brown, Houston's ex-husband, blasts Crawford as "disrespectful and dismissive" of his marriage in his new book.

The private art collection of the legendary musician David Bowie is to be revealed to the public for the first time, BBC News reported. Nearly 300 works by artists including Damien Hirst, Henry Moore, Jean-Michael Basquiat and Marcel Duchamp will go on display at Sotheby's in London before being sold at auction in November. ( Basquiat's graffiti-style painting "Air Power" is considered the most valuable lot in the auction. ) Bowie died of cancer at age 69 in January.

Actor/rapper Deadlee is using his art to turn stereotypes on their ears, Fox News Latino noted. The Los Angeles resident is a self-proclaimed "homo-cholo"—referring to the fact that he's gay and a "cholo," a term used to refer to Mexican-Americans who identify with gang culture. Deadlee, whose given name is Joseph Thomas Lee, is known for lyrics that tackle subjects such as race, class, sexuality and police brutality. Three years ago when got married, he changed his name to LeMar, a combination of Lee and Martinez, his partner's last name.

One of the stars of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers has revealed he was hurt by a joke superstar actor and former castmate Bryan Cranston made about his sexuality, The Daily Mail noted. David Yost, who played Blue Power Ranger Billy Cranston in the smash hit series from 1993 to 1996, said he struggled throughout his career with homophobia in Hollywood. Yost added that he was hurt by a comment Cranston made in 2009: "The Blue Power Ranger's last name is Cranston. ... He's the fey one." Cranston responded to Yost's comments, saying he didn't remember making the joke but he accepts responsibility for the "thoughtless remark" and apologized to the actor.

Out comedian Pat Brown's ( named Best Female Comic at the Las Vegas Comedy Festival ) debut stand-up comedy album, The Pat Brown Sextape, will be self-released July 26 in both video and and audio formats, a press release stated. The video will be available to stream for free on Pat's website, ComedianPatBrown.com, for a limited time. Among the tracks are "Moving to New York," "Dating over 35" and "The Motherhood Question."

Mean Girls star Daniel Franzese is engaged to boyfriend Joseph Bradley Phillips, US Weekly noted. The actor, who played Damian in the hit 2004 comedy, met his new fiance at a Starbucks in North Hollywood two years ago. Franzese, 38, confirmed the news as well on July 18, posting an Instagram about Phillips saying yes, with the location listed as Starbucks.

LGBTQ-owned organic chicken farm Hip Chick Farms won big on a recent episode of West Texas Investors Club, led by the older brother of actor Matthew McConaughey, a press release stated. Hip Chick Farms [hipchickfarms.com]—an organic, frozen chicken product company founded by Serafina Palandech and her wife, Jennifer Johnson—won $500,000 in funding. The couple and their daughter live on their family farm, the Ramblin' Rose, in Sebastopol, California.

Jennifer Lopez deleted a tweet after sparking backlash on social media, The New York Daily News reported. The "Waiting for Tonight" singer outraged a slew of fans when she tweeted—then deleted—a post featuring the hashtag "All Lives Matter." "Did all lives matter when you stole music out from under countless black women?" wrote @RicheyCollazo.

Judge Judy Sheindlin might be the one facing the judge next year, Deadline noted. The TV host and CBS were handed a trial date of Oct. 23, 2017, for a lawsuit over the profits from her long-running show. With the $47-million annual salary of the former family court judge near the heart of Rebel Entertainment's action, L.A. Superior Court Judge Yvette Plazuelos also said during a status conference that a final status conference will be held Oct. 17, 2017.

Tyra Banks, Rob Dyrdek and Rohan Oza are set to host the new NBC reality series Funded, TheWrap noted. Funded—the first series from the newly formed Universal Television Alternative Studios—will see the hosts select from a group of start-ups, each choosing one to champion and mentor. At the end of each episode, the start-ups and their mentors must face a venture capitalist in front of a live audience, and convince him their company could be the next great company if they can get the fund's backing and that $1-million cash infusion.

Fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger has joined a growing list of Greenwich residents who have been targeted by thieves who steal Range Rover luxury cars, Greenwich Time reported. Hilfiger's Range Rover was swiped June 29, according to Greenwich police, part of a trend law enforcement officials have documented around the region. In most cases, the cars were unlocked, and the keys or fobs—remote car starters—were inside. The news first broke in the New York gossip tabloids when Hilfiger told a Page Six columnist his wife's $130,000 black Range Rover Autobiography was taken from their gated estate.

Misty Copeland, the first African-American prima ballerina for the American Ballet Theater, has joined Disney's forthcoming Nutcracker adaptation, TheWrap noted. Copeland wil play the lead ballerina in the film and star in the project's only dance sequence. Lasse Hallstrom will direct the live-action adaptation of the E.T.A. Hoffmann classic.

Tatyana Ali, who played Ashley on the '90s sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, claims in a new lawsuit that Warner Bros and Telepictures swiped her idea for the daytime talk show The Real, Deadline reported. Ali says she came up with the concept for the show and eventually pitched to execs in 2012 but was told they "decided to decline." The Real debuted about six months later as "a direct production" of the concept she proposed, according to the suit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court.

Rose Byrne ( Neighbors, Spy, TV's Damages ) has been cast opposite Oprah Winfrey in HBO Films' The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Deadline reported. The film tells the true story of Henrietta Lacks, an African American woman whose cells were used to create the first immortal human cell line. Told through the eyes of her daughter, Deborah Lacks ( Winfrey ), the film chronicles her search to learn about the mother she never knew and to understand how the unauthorized harvesting of Lacks' cancerous cells in 1951 led to unprecedented medical breakthroughs.


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