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Pharrell Williams and Nicole Avant on Creating New Music for ‘The Black Godfather’

  • Variety
Pharrell Williams and Nicole Avant on Creating New Music for ‘The Black Godfather’
Pharrell Williams is giving viewers an inside look at his songwriting process for “Letter to my Godfather,” a new tune he wrote for “The Black Godfather,” Netflix documentary about legendary music executive Clarence Avant.

“Clarence Avant is known as ‘The Black Godfather’ because literally as a black man, he was able to do things that were godfather-like — from the music industry, the sports industry, activism to politics,” Williams said in an exclusive behind-the-scenes feature.

Williams said he was prompted by Avant’s daughter, Nicole, to create the song after she began producing the documentary. The non-fiction film explores Avant’s rise to success after being born to a poor family in a segregated southern town in South Carolina.

Directed by Reginald Hudlin, “The Black Godfather” features appearances from various stars, influential politicians, and executives including Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Diddy, Quincy Jones and Cicely Tyson. It debuted on the streaming
See full article at Variety »

‘Madam Secretary’ Wraps With A Wedding And Whistlestop Goodbye

  • Deadline
‘Madam Secretary’ Wraps With A Wedding And Whistlestop Goodbye
Spoler Alert: Madam Secretary ended its six season run with President Elizabeth McCord (Tea Leoni) and first husband Henry (Tim Daly) kissing on the back of a caboose, as the residents of a small town cheer and the train pulls away.

They are in the midst of a whistlestop tour to pass the Equal Rights Amendment.

After six seasons, we're leaving the station. #MadamSecretary pic.twitter.com/fcRSG10Q1r

— Madam Secretary (@MadamSecretary) December 9, 2019

That the show ended onboard a whistlestop tour, a remant of a bygone and simpler era, was an apt way to wrap the series. The show’s hopeful tone and neatly wrapped scenarios often were an alternate political universe to the cynical and polarized Trump years.

That was especially true of McCord’s policy agenda. Also in the final episode, McCord was joined by members of the World Cup Champion U.S. Women’s Soccer team,
See full article at Deadline »

Madam Secretary Series Finale Recap: The State of the Union Is Strong

Madam Secretary Series Finale Recap: The State of the Union Is Strong
Did your invite to Stevie and Dmitri’s wedding get lost in the mail? Have no fear: We’ve gathered all of the highlights of Madam Secretary‘s series finale — which included the nuptials of the First Daughter and her soulmate — in a final (sniff!) recap.

The episode, “Leaving the Station,” takes place nine months after the events of the previous installment, and we pick up two days before Stevie’s wedding. She and Dmitri are planning to hold it at a gorgeously bucolic venue. They’re particularly taken with the site’s hand-hewn wooden beams and such… which will
See full article at TVLine.com »

Madam Secretary Series Finale: Téa Leoni & Co. Tee Up Stevie's Wedding, a Political Throwdown and a Lot More

Madam Secretary‘s President Elizabeth McCord has averted nuclear war, survived impeachment proceedings and re-won American hearts and minds — and all of that in just the last episode! — so yeah, she’s earned a day of celebration.

And what better reason to kick back and sip bubbly than her daughter’s wedding, which just happens to take place in the CBS drama’s series finale on Sunday (10/9c)?

More from TVLineDid Hawaii Five-0's Adam Cross Too Many Lines? 'He Has More to Lose Now'Evil: Renée Elise Goldsberry Teases Her 'No-Nonsense' Lawyer's Charged Reunion With David -- Watch VideoHawaii Five-
See full article at TVLine.com »

Television Academy Announces Newly-Elected Governors

Television Academy Announces Newly-Elected Governors
The Television Academy has elected new crop of members to its board of governors, including nine first-time members who will serve a two-year term beginning Jan. 1 2020 and concluding Dec. 31, 2021.

The freshman governors elected to their first-ever two-year term include Kim Coleman (Casting Directors); Jill Dickerson (Reality Programming); Jo Disante (Television Executives); Joe Earle, Cas (Sound); Joel Fajnor (Animation); Christie Lyn Lugo Leigh (Los Angeles Area); Luke Reichle (Costume Design & Supervision); Renee Villafan (Daytime Programming); and Derek Spears (Special Visual Effects).

Several members were also elected to two-year terms after a one or multiple-year absence from the governing body, including Kathryn Burns (Choreography); Tony Carey (Producers), and Ed Fassl (Sound Editors).

Rounding out the elections are governors who were re-elected to a second two-year term, including Lesley Aletter (Stunts); Bob Bergen (Performers); Daniel H. Birman (Documentary Programming); Scott Boyd, Ace (Picture Editors); Jeffrey A. Calderon; Rich Carter (Commercials); Terri D. Carter
See full article at Indiewire »

Tom Holland’s Drunk, Crying Phone Call With Disney CEO Saved Spider-Man From McU Exit

Tom Holland’s Drunk, Crying Phone Call With Disney CEO Saved Spider-Man From McU Exit
Tom Holland’s Spider-Man got close to leaving the Marvel Cinematic Universe over the summer when word got out that Disney and Sony were failing to come to terms on a new agreement to share the character. Holland proved to be an instrumental figure in bringing the two studios together to find common ground. During the actor’s December 4 appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” Holland told his side of the Disney-Sony split drama. The story memorably includes a drunken phone call with Disney CEO Bob Iger that left Holland in tears.

“We were at D23 and the news came out and I was obviously devastated,” Holland remembered. “It was awful. I asked if I could get Bob Iger’s email because I just wanted to say, ‘Thank you, this has been an amazing five years of my life. Thank you for changing my life in the best way and I
See full article at Indiewire »

Billy Dee’s Last Ride

Billy Dee’s Last Ride
Billy Dee Williams,” says Billy Dee Williams, ticking off the syllables with a well-manicured index finger. “Billy . . . Dee . . . Williams.”

He repeats himself three more times in his musical baritone before unleashing one of the 20th century’s most seductive smiles, satisfied he’s made his point. “There are certain individuals whose legacy you will never forget,” he says, taking a sip of his Tuesday-afternoon beverage, a vodka-lemonade concoction. “I’ve always tried to create this — Billy Dee Williams.”

Williams, who turned 82 in April, came out of semiretirement to reclaim the
See full article at Rolling Stone »

TV News Roundup: Bet Releases Trailer for Lena Waithe’s ‘Twenties’

  • Variety
TV News Roundup: Bet Releases Trailer for Lena Waithe’s ‘Twenties’
In today’s TV news roundup, Ali Wong gets two new Netflix comedy specials and Bet releases the first look at Lena Waithe’s “Twenties” series.

Casting

Michael Beach (“ER”), Anne-Marie Johnson (“For The People”) and Kellee Stewart (“Guess Who”) have been cast in Ava DuVernay’s romantic anthology series, “Cherish The Day.” They join Xosha Roquemore, Alano Miller and Emmy-award winner Cicely Tyson. Also, Blitz Bazawule, Aurora Guerrero (“13 Reasons Why”) and Deborah Kampmeier (“Queen Sugar”) join Tanya Hamilton (“Vampire Diaries”) as directors.

Joel McHale will return to host the 2020 second season of ABC’s “Card Sharks,” a competition series with two players facing off in a head-to-head elimination race. McHale is repped by UTA and Ziffren Brittenham Llp. Scott St. John and Jennifer Mullin executive produce “Card Sharks.”

Juan Pablo Raba (“Narcos”), Adriana Paz, Kristyan Ferrer, Octavio Pisano, Cynthia Kaye McWilliams (“Nashville”) and Julio Cedillo (“Sicario”) have been
See full article at Variety »

New TV Academy Hall of Fame Inductees Include Cicely Tyson, Bob Iger, and Seth MacFarlane

New TV Academy Hall of Fame Inductees Include Cicely Tyson, Bob Iger, and Seth MacFarlane
The Television Academy Hall of Fame has a new crop of inductees, all of whom have made outstanding contributions in the arts, sciences or management of television throughout their career or via singular achievements.

Chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company Bob Iger, TV executive and entrepreneur Geraldine Laybourne, five-time Emmy-winning performer Seth MacFarlane, five-time Emmy-winning director Jay Sandrich, and three-time Emmy winner Cicely Tyson are all included in the 25th Hall of Fame class.

“These contemporary performers, content creators and executives have been pioneers and innovators in so many aspects of television; and they have had a profound impact on their art and on our culture,” said Frank Scherma, chairman and CEO of the Television Academy in a statement. “It’s an honor to welcome this distinguished group of individuals into the Hall of Fame and to acknowledge their remarkable contributions, which continue to shape our industry.”

Iger,
See full article at Indiewire »

Ava DuVernay’s Own Drama ‘Cherish The Day’ Rounds Out Cast, Adds Directors Blitz Bazawule, Aurora Guerrero And Deborah Kampmeier

  • Deadline
Ava DuVernay’s Own Drama ‘Cherish The Day’ Rounds Out Cast, Adds Directors Blitz Bazawule, Aurora Guerrero And Deborah Kampmeier
Blitz Bazawule, Aurora Guerrero and Deborah Kampmeier have been added to the director roster for Ava DuVernay’s forthcoming romantic anthology drama Cherish the Day. The Own series has also added Michael Beach (ER), Anne-Marie Johnson (For The People) and Kellee Stewart (Guess Who) in recurring roles.

The new trio of directors will join previously announced director Tanya Hamilton while the actors will join series regulars Xosha Roquemore, Alano Miller and, of course, the legendary Cicely Tyson. Cherish the Day is blazing the trail when it comes to inclusion as it achieved full gender parity with a production crew of over 50% women, including 18 female department heads.

Chapter one of Cherish the Day chronicles the relationship of one couple, with each episode spanning a single day. The narrative will unfold to reveal significant moments in a relationship that compel us to hold true to the ones we love, from the extraordinary to the everyday.
See full article at Deadline »

TV Academy Hall Of Fame Adding Bob Iger, Geraldine Laybourne, Seth MacFarlane, Jay Sandrich & Cicely Tyson

  • Deadline
Disney boss Bob Iger, Nickelodeon and Oxygen co-founder Geraldine Laybourne, director Jay Sendrich and performers Seth MacFarlane and Cicely Tyson have been chosen as the latest members of the Television Academy’s Hall of Fame.

The 25th Hall class unveiled Tuesday will be inducted in a ceremony January 28 at the TV Academy’s Saban Media Center in North Hollywood. The honors go to those who have made outstanding contributions in the arts, sciences or management of television over a lifetime career or via singular achievements, according to the academy.

The 2020 group of five will join almost 150 current members in the hall, which was founded in 1984.

“These contemporary performers, content creators and executives have been pioneers and innovators in so many aspects of television; and they have had a profound impact on their art and on our culture,” said Frank Scherma, chairman and CEO of the Television Academy, in a statement today.
See full article at Deadline »

TV Hall of Fame: Cicely Tyson, Seth MacFarlane among 5 people to be inducted in 2020

TV Hall of Fame: Cicely Tyson, Seth MacFarlane among 5 people to be inducted in 2020
Bob Iger, Geraldine Laybourne, Seth MacFarlane, Jay Sandrich and Cicely Tyson are the five people chosen for induction into the 25th TV Hall of Fame. The Television Academy will host the 25th ceremony on January 28, 2020, at the Saban Media Center.

Iger is the current Chairman and CEO of the Walt Disney Company. He follows founder Walt Disney and former chairman Michael Eisner for induction. Laybourne led the team that originally founded Nickelodeon and Oxygen Media. MacFarlane is a five-time Emmy winner best known for “Family Guy.” Sandrich is a five-time Emmy winner as a director of such shows as “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” “The Cosby Show,” “The Golden Girls” and more. Tyson has won three Emmys in her career and is best known for her TV movies and miniseries.

SEECicely Tyson movies: 10 greatest films ranked from worst to best

The first induction was held in 1984 and it’s been
See full article at Gold Derby »

Seth MacFarlane, Cicely Tyson, Bob Iger Among TV Academy Hall of Fame Honorees

  • Variety
Seth MacFarlane, Cicely Tyson, Bob Iger Among TV Academy Hall of Fame Honorees
Bob Iger, Geraldine Laybourne, Seth MacFarlane, Jay Sandrich and Cicely Tyson have been selected as the next five inductees to the Television Academy’s Hall of Fame.

The 25th Hall of Fame class will be honored at a ceremony on Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2020, at the TV Academy’s Saban Media Center. The Hall of Fame selection committee chooses industry players “who have made outstanding contributions in the arts, sciences or management of television over a lifetime career or via singular achievements.”

Iger, the chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, is being recognized for the growth he’s given the company since taking over as CEO in 2005, acquiring Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm and 21st Century Fox. Laybourne is the groundbreaking female executive and entrepreneur who oversaw the creation of Nickelodeon and co-founded Oxygen Media. MacFarlane is a five-time Emmy winner who created “Family Guy” and “American Dad.” Sandrich is a five-time
See full article at Variety »

Bob Iger, Seth MacFarlane to Be Inducted Into TV Academy Hall of Fame

  • The Wrap
Bob Iger, Seth MacFarlane to Be Inducted Into TV Academy Hall of Fame
Disney CEO Bob Iger will be among the five honorees inducted into the Television Academy’s 25th Hall of Fame class next month.

The Hall of Fame honors those who have made outstanding contributions in the arts, sciences or management of television over a lifetime career or via singular achievements. The ceremony and red carpet arrivals will take place on Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2020, at the Television Academy’s Saban Media Center.

“These contemporary performers, content creators and executives have been pioneers and innovators in so many aspects of television; and they have had a profound impact on their art and on our culture,” Frank Scherma, chairman and CEO of the Television Academy, said. “It’s an honor to welcome this distinguished group of individuals into the Hall of Fame and to acknowledge their remarkable contributions, which continue to shape our industry.”

Also Read: Bob Iger Recalls Pitching Steve Jobs With the
See full article at The Wrap »

Bob Iger, Cicely Tyson and Seth MacFarlane to Be Inducted Into Television Academy Hall of Fame

Bob Iger, Cicely Tyson and Seth MacFarlane to Be Inducted Into Television Academy Hall of Fame
Bob Iger, Cicely Tyson, Seth MacFarlane, Geraldine Laybourne and Jay Sandrich will be inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame.

The Television Academy’s Hall of Fame Selection Committee announced the induction of the five individuals into the 25th Hall of Fame class Tuesday. The Hall of Fame honors those who have made outstanding contributions in the arts, sciences or management of television over a lifetime career or for their singular achievements.

"These contemporary performers, content creators and executives have been pioneers and innovators in so many aspects of television; and they have had a profound impact on ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter »

Tyler Perry Will Make His Netflix Debut With ‘A Fall From Grace’

  • Indiewire
Tyler Perry Will Make His Netflix Debut With ‘A Fall From Grace’
Tyler Perry is on a roll. He’s currently in post-production on the Bet Plus series “Bruh,” recently became the owner of one of the country’s largest studio lots (which hosted the last Democratic presidential debate), and this year released “A Madea Family Funeral” on top of an enviable list of television projects. Now, Perry will make his Netflix feature film debut with “A Fall From Grace.” Perry announced the news via Twitter (see below.)

The film will drop on Netflix beginning January 17, and it stars Crystal Fox, Phylicia Rashad, Bresha Webb, Cicely Tyson, and Perry himself. According to Netflix’s Strong Black Lead Twitter account, “A Fall From Grace” will be “centered around a divorced woman who feels restored by a new romance, secrets soon start to erode her short-lived joy.”

Both Fox and Tyson have previously starred for Perry. Fox stars in Perry’s Own series “The Haves and the Have Nots,
See full article at Indiewire »

Tyler Perry Announces Next Project – Netflix Film ‘A Fall From Grace’

  • Deadline
Tyler Perry Announces Next Project – Netflix Film ‘A Fall From Grace’
Tyler Perry is teaming up with Netflix for a new thriller about a woman whose world is shattered by secrets.

The writer-director-producer announced Friday on Twitter, his upcoming film A Fall from Grace will begin streaming on the platform on Jan. 17.

“My next movie guys!!! This is an amazing thriller!!!” Perry captioned a poster for the film. The cast includes Crystal Fox, Phylicia Rashad, Bresha Webb, Cicely Tyson and Perry.

My next movie guys!!! This is an amazing thriller!!! @netflix @strongblacklead pic.twitter.com/egPLL1xHAs

— Tyler Perry (@tylerperry) November 22, 2019

Netflix’s Strong Black Lead account also shared the news in a tweet saying the drama will be “centered around a divorced woman who feels restored by a new romance, secrets soon start to erode her short-lived joy.” The streamer teased more cast members will be announced and tagged Supergirl, Nobody’s Fool and The Game actor Mehcad Brooks in its tweet.
See full article at Deadline »

Ava DuVernay’s Own Anthology ‘Cherish The Day’ Achieves Gender Parity

  • Deadline
Ava DuVernay’s Own Anthology ‘Cherish The Day’ Achieves Gender Parity
Ava DuVernay continues to walk the walk when it comes to inclusion, diversity, representation and equity of women and marginalized communities in the industry with the new series Cherish the Day. The Own anthology drama has achieved full gender parity with a production crew of over 50% women, including 18 female department heads.

The series created by and executive produced by DuVernay has women that were hired across directing, writing, production design, camera, set design, casting, key craft service, costume, hair, makeup, editing, medical, set decoration, sound, grip, electric, transportation, accounting, locations and stunts, along with serving as post-production supervisor, property master and script supervisor.

“Ava DuVernay has been a groundbreaking leader in the entertainment industry,” said Warner Bros. Television’s Peter Roth, Susan Rovner and Brett Paul. “By achieving gender parity on her first chapter of Cherish the Day she continues to provide invaluable opportunities for new creative talent. It’s
See full article at Deadline »

Harriet | Review

A Road Less Traveled: Lemmons Lionizes Historical Icon Harriet Tubman in Safe Biopic

As the arrival of the first theatrical feature to properly pay homage to famed abolitionist and freedom fighter Harriet Tubman finally comes to fruition in the guilelessly titled Harriet, one wonders what took so damn long. One of the few black women whose heroic contributions to human rights haven’t been completely erased or overlooked, a meditation on Tubman’s life has only previously been attempted over forty years ago in the Cicely Tyson led television event “A Woman Called Moses” in 1978. The significant pressures and difficulties in what eventually led to what should be a major cinematic event at last was inherited, finally, by the right hands, in director Kasi Lemmons, a trailblazer herself with her unforgettable and moody Gothic debut Eve’s Bayou.…
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Musicians on Musicians: Lenny Kravitz & H.E.R.

Musicians on Musicians: Lenny Kravitz & H.E.R.
My early memories are waking up to the smell of breakfast and hearing concert DVDs of you,” H.E.R. tells Lenny Kravitz. The 22-year-old singer (real name Gabi Wilson) is talking about growing up the daughter of a dad in a funk-rock cover band. Kravitz, 55, says he was raised in an artistic household too, though he had a slightly different experience; his dad, a TV producer, and his mom, Roxie Roker, who starred on The Jeffersons for 11 years, took him to Lincoln Center and introduced him to friends like Nina Simone.
See full article at Rolling Stone »
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