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SHOWBIZ 'Tales of the City,' Kehlani, Bradley Cooper, Cosby fallout
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2018-05-02

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Netflix has ordered a 10-episode limited series revival of Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City, and production is expected to start later this year for a 2019 premiere, Deadline reported. Laura Linney and Olympia Dukakis will reprise their roles as Mary Ann Singleton and Anna Madrigal, respectively; Ellen Page joins the cast as Shawna, the daughter of Linney's character, Mary Ann.

The singer Kehlani came out as queer on Twitter ( in a post that has since been deleted ), LGBTQ Nation reported. In a tweet, she wrote, "i'm queer. not bi, not straight. i'm attracted to women, men, REALLY attracted to queer men, non binary people, intersex people, trans people. lil poly pansexual papi hello good morning. does that answer your questions?" ( She then wrote that she's the least attracted to straight men. ) When asked why she retracted the tweet, she responded, "i retracted my queer tweet because i am being corrected about the way in which i listed the gender spectrum and i'm super super sensitive to being offensive especially when i'm only trying to appreciate." She recently announced that she paired with Fashion Nova to donate $50,000 to various LGBTQ organizations across the United States, Gay Star News noted.

Four-time Oscar nominee Bradley Cooper will receive the 32nd annual American Cinematheque Award, with the annual honor to be bestowed at the organization's gala Nov. 29 at the Beverly Hilton, Deadline noted. The award established in 1986 ( Eddie Murphy got the first one ) goes to "an extraordinary filmmaker in the entertainment industry, who is fully engaged in his or her work and is committed to making a significant contribution to the art of the motion picture." Last year's recipient was Amy Adams.

Shortly after disgraced comedian Bill Cosby was found guilty on three counts of aggravated indecent assault against lesbian Andrea Constand, Bounce TV has moved in to scrub repeats of his classic 1980s sitcom The Cosby Show, Deadline noted. Bounce TV, which airs a mix of original and acquired programming geared toward African-American viewers, had been carrying The Cosby Show reruns since 2016.

Former supermodel Janice Dickinson feels vindicated following Bill Cosby's guilty verdict, EW.com noted. "I hope Bill Cosby rots in prison. He deserves every bit of 30 years and more," Dickinson, who previously accused Cosby of raping her, told DailyMailTV. In November 2014, Dickinson came forward with her accusation that she was drugged and raped by Cosby more than 30 years ago; this year, on April 12, she testified in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, court in Cosby's sexual-assault retrial.

Ellen Page announced that she's joining the board of directors of the Tegan and Sara Foundation, according to Gay Star News. The actress, who recently married dancer Emma Portner, made the announcement on Instagram. In part, Page said of the twin musicians Tegan and Sara, "They are trailblazers in our community, speaking out on behalf of those who feel they will never be heard. Their platform is a reminder to us all that even in our most isolating struggles, we are not alone."

On the April 23 live episode of American Idol, judges Katy Perry, Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan put drag queen Ada Vox into the top 10 after viewers didn't vote her into the next round, People reported. Openly gay rapper Jurnee also made the final 10 ( by also being saved by the judges ), putting two LGBTQ people of color in the select group, Human Rights Campaign noted.

Evan Rachel Wood replied to a troll on social media who questioned her acting talent, Just Jared noted. A troll tweeted while watching Westworld, "Why is Dolores still the only 'robot' on #Westworld without a personality? Oh. I know why. It's because @evanrachelwood can't actually act anything but 2 emotions." Wood responded, "Hmm. Maybe you should put on the corset in 113 degree weather, spend time away from your family, risk your life on horse-back, cry at the drop of a hat and relive your traumas over and over and over, be dragged and beaten till all hours of the night, sacrifice your childhood to work and take acting classes 5 times a week, and work your entire life fighting through criticism and sexism to make it on this show, THEN show me how its doneBu."

At the Tonys on June 10, singer Bruce Springsteen and actor John Leguizamo will receive special Tony honors during the ceremony, Deadline noted. Latin History for Morons, Leguizamo's solo show, was nominated for Best Play, its sole competitive Tony nod. Springsteen will receive his Special Tony Award for his ongoing show Springsteen on Broadway, which offers fans an intimate look at the music icon.

A performance by rapper-singer-actress Queen Latifah has been added to this year's Essence Festival in New Orleans, Page Six noted. Latifah is scheduled to appear in the Superdome on Saturday, July 7, midway through the July 5-8 festival. Organizers say fans can expect to hear her most popular hits, including "U.N.I.T.Y." and "Ladies First." Other headliners include Janet Jackson, who is to close out this year's event, and perennial fan-favorites Mary J. Blige and Jill Scott.

Page Six published a piece on the implosion of actor T.J. Miller. On April 9, the former Silicon Valley star was arrested after calling in a bogus bomb threat March 18 while traveling aboard an Amtrak train. ( No explosives were found. ) In addition, in 2016, Miller was arrested for allegedly assaulting an Uber driver in Los Angeles over a disagreement about Donald Trump. The following year, he and his wife, artist and actress Kate Gorney, were ejected from a casino in Monte Carlo. Seven months later, he went on a tirade after transgender acquaintance Danielle Solzman pointed out a transphobic joke on his website.

Speaking with Attitude magazine for its cover story on him, singer Troye Sivan said that as a 17-year-old living in Perth, Australia, he was looking for love in order to try and fit in, Billboard noted. Sivan said he ended up getting a fake ID and a Grindr profile in order to try and participate in gay nightlife: "[I] started to try to meet people who were like me, but you sort of are forced a little bit into these hyper-sexualized environments, and even though that's awesome when you're 17. ... I didn't know what else to do." Part of that experience meant that Sivan had regular encounters with older gay men, with Sivan adding that, more than anything else, these trysts left him feeling afraid.

Early in his career, fashion maven Andre Leon Talley was horrified to learn that he had a reputation for being a fashion groupie, Page Six reported. the former Vogue staffer said after a screening of a new film on his life, The Gospel According to Andre, "Because I was so busy in Paris—embracing the great Yves Saint Laurent, Hubert de Givenchy, Karl Lagerfeld—my editor came to me and said, 'You've got the worst reputation in town. You have slept in every designer bed there is.'" However, Talley insisted at the Tribeca Film Festival screening that he's made it because "what I project is originality. ... The sexual orientation was not pronounced.

Ashley Judd has filed a lawsuit against Harvey Weinstein alleging that his pattern of retaliation, defamation, and sabotage against women who refused his sexual advances damaged her career, according to Deadline. The claims partly hinge on the recent news reports about Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh wanting to cast Judd in their Lord of the Rings movies back in 1998. The suit say that as retaliation for Judd rejecting Weinstein, he "torpedoed Ms. Judd's incredible professional opportunity" when he told Jackson and Walsh "that [his] studio had had a 'bad experience' with Judd.

GLAAD announced that Ms. Gloria Carter ( the mother of Jay Z ) will accept the Special Recognition Award onstage at the 29th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in New York at the New York Hilton Midtown on Saturday, May 5, a press release noted. Carter will accept a Special Recognition Award for "Smile" and speak about the impact coming out has had on her family and countless others around the globe. GLAAD previously announced that both Ava DuVernay and Samira Wiley would receive honors at the ceremony. Ross Mathews will host and special guests include Halsey, Alexis Bledel, Laverne Cox, Lea Michele, Tituss Burgess, Nyle DiMarco, Wrabel, Blair Imani, and Asia Kate Dillon.

ESPN's recent series We The Fans: Dallas featured a gay engaged couple who have bonded over their love for the Dallas Cowboys, Outsports.com noted. The ESPN Features Unit followed 12 Cowboys fans through the 2017 NFL season—including Tim Sehon and Justin McCurry, an interracial gay couple from Arlington, Texas.

Ricky Martin, Wisin and Yandel kicked off the 2018 Billboard Latin Music Awards on April 26 with a performance of their latest collaboration, "Fiebre," Billboard noted. The performance began with Martin appearing solo on stage surrounded by dancers holding torches until the recently reunited duo Wisin y Yandel showed up, adding their urban twist to the pop song. Jennifer Lopez was among the others who performed.

Screaming fans greeted former boy band 'NSYNC on April 30 as the band members were honored with their own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Reuters noted. Justin Timberlake reunited with Lance Bass, JC Chasez, Joey Fatone and Chris Kirkpatrick along Hollywood Boulevard for the unveiling of the emblematic terrazzo and brass star that is one of the city's major tourist attractions. Among other accomplishments, the band's second album, 2000's No Strings Attached, held the U.S. record for first-week sales ( 2.41 million units ) for 15 years.

"Transgressive" queer singer/performer Christeene returns with her second album Basura on May 22, and it will be available digitally on all platforms and special-edition limited vinyl, a press release noted. On July 28, she will begin a European summer/fall tour at the Milkshake Festival in Amsterdam, and tour throughout Europe. A full U.S. tour will follow in 2019.

The family of Tim Bergling—the Swedish dance-music star known as Avicii, who died on April 20 at age 28—released a second statement, Variety noted. In part, the second statement read, "When he stopped touring, he wanted to find a balance in life to be happy and be able to do what he loved most—music. He really struggled with thoughts about Meaning, Life, Happiness. He could not go on any longer. He wanted to find peace." Avicii's cause of death has not been announced.

Black Panther star Danai Gurira stopped by The Ellen DeGeneres Show to talk Infinity War, meeting Beyonce and her recent travels to Nigeria, EW.com noted. Among other things, she did share her opinion on the rumors that an all-female outing could be in the works. "I think it is a rumor, but the cool thing is that it's showing there's this hunger for that type of thing," Gurira said. "I know that the awesome Brie Larson is filming Captain Marvel as we speak, so these things are starting to happen, and I think it's really exciting because it shows that yeah, of course, it's time we start seeing the perspective of the story come exclusively from women."

Dr. Ruth Westheimer auctioned sex advice at the Homeland Security Foundation's Ridge Awards, Page Six noted. The sex therapist surprised honorees Ronald Lauder and TV honcho Henry Schleiff at the event at The Plaza. Carol Alt, Ray Kelly, Stephen Baldwin and former SNL star Joe Piscopo also attended the event.

Martha Stewart is auctioning 5,000 pieces from her personal prop collection next month, Page Six noted. Among the 800 items currently up for bid are a collection of mid-century china ( expected to fetch $200-300 ), an Italian-style amber glass chandelier ( $200-250 ) and even a signed toboggan ( $500-800 ). Live bidding starts May 5, and will last two days; a portion of the proceeds from the auction will benefit the Martha Stewart Center For Living at Mount Sinai.

Jamie Lee Curtis was on hand during Universal's CinemaCon session to introduce the first-look trailer for the upcoming Halloween sequel, Deadline noted. Curtis, who starred in the original 1978 movie, said when she was first approached for the new film, she didn't hesitate. Universal will release the pic Oct. 19.

Hank Azaria says he's "willing and happy" to step aside as the voice of Apu on The Simpsons, or to help transition the character into "something new," calling it "the right thing to do, to me," Deadline noted. Appearing on Stephen Colbert's Late Show, Azaria suggested killing off Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, one of 20-30 regular characters he says he's voiced on the long-running animated Fox series. He'd like to see an Indian-American writer added to the show, "genuinely informing whatever new direction this character make take, including how it is voice—or not voiced," he said.

Florence + the Machine will play select, intimate dates this spring, including May 13-14 at New York's Brooklyn Academy of Music, and May 21 at Los Angeles' Walt Disney Concert Hall, a press release noted. The band will also perform in early May in the United Kingdom. Florence + the Machine recently revealed a brand new track, "Sky Full Of Song," which debuted on Record Store Day as a limited-edition 7" vinyl.

Wrestlers-turned-Hollywood figures John Cena and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson will be a movie-making tag team in the upcoming Universal action-thriller, The Janson Directive, with Cena starring and Johnson executive-producing, TheWrap noted. Based on the novel by Jason Bourne writer Robert Ludlum, the film will star Cena as Paul Janson, a former Navy SEAL who left the world of covert ops after his commander betrayed him during the Vietnam War. Now working as a security consultant, he returns to his old world when he's asked to save a Nobel Peace laureate being held hostage.

Real Housewives of Atlanta now-former castmate Kim Zolciak's former lover DJ Tracy Young called the reality star "homophobic" and "nasty" after Zolciak dismissed their eight-month relationship, Page Six noted. Young told Page Six TV, in part, "Kim and I were in a relationship for about eight months. She said she wanted to marry me. She asked me to have a baby with her." Young, who is also a music producer, spun at Madonna's wedding to Guy Ritchie.

Kanye West appeared to lose more than 9 million Twitter followers in the minutes after President Trump retweeted the rapper's declarations of "love" for the commander-in-chief, Page Six reported. The sharp decline also coincided with West tweeting a photo of his signed "Make America Great Again" hat, although he'd been tweeting praise for the president for several hours by that point.

Kim Kardashian West is speaking out publicly about her sister Khloe Kardashian's relationship with NBA player Tristan Thompson, Cleveland.com noted. Khloe gave birth to baby girl True in April, days after a video surfaced of Thompson where it appeared he was cheating on her. On the April 30 episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Kardashian West said, "I don't even know how to describe it besides it's so [expletive] up." Kardashian West also was careful not to say too much because she says True would one day be old enough to comprehend the situation.

A sequel to John Krasinski's A Quiet Place is in active development at Paramount Pictures, TheWrap noted. The screenwriting team behind the silent horror hit, which includes director/star John Krasinski, signaled it had more set pieces and characters in the original script. The film had been the number one movie at the box office for three consecutive weeks.


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