The Story Behind Elton John’s Suicide Attempt | The Oprah Winfrey Show | Oprah Winfrey Network


SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN: -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News


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‘Exhalation’ Collection Will Expand Your Mind: A Q&A with Short Story Author Ted Chiang

Ted Chiang’s latest collection of short stories, “Exhalation” (Knopf 2019), out now, invites the mind to stretch and bend around thorny questions of physics, consciousness, free will and storytelling.


Education Game for Kids! Play Free Today!

Next 3 Major Family Movies: ‘Aladdin,’ ‘The Secret Life of Pets 2,’ ‘Toy Story 4’

Next 3 Major Family Movies: 'Aladdin,' 'The Secret Life of Pets 2,' 'Toy Story 4'

Now storming the box office, Pokémon Detective Pikachu is a live-action adventure for the whole family. Tim Goodman (Justice Smith) searches for his missing detective father with the help of his father's former partner, Detective Pikachu (Ryan Reynolds), leading to a madcap comedy that is appealing to both children and adults.

What other upcoming family adventures can we anticipate in the coming weeks? Here are three that all look delightful.


Will Smith stars…

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The curse that plagued the family who inspired ‘The Philadelphia Story’

Helen Hope Montgomery was perfectly suited to a life of excess. She regularly made the best-dressed lists beside Babe Paley and once sang a naughty song to the Duke of Windsor. She won a Charleston contest judged by Josephine Baker. A legendary bon vivant, she would become the inspiration for Katharine Hepburn’s character Tracy Lord…
Entertainment | New York Post


WATCH: A New Clip From ‘The Bobby DeBarge Story’

The Bobby DeBarge Story is heading to TV One. It tells the story of the eldest member of the DeBarge clan who was the lead singer in the 70’s group Switch. TV One has released a new clip from the movie.

Check out the tense scene below showing Motown’s Berry Gordy (played by Outkast’s Big Boi) messing with the DeBarge family’s minds in a meeting right before he welcomes them to the famed label.

Debuting during Black Music Month, the film’s stars include Roshon Fegan (Shake It Up, Greenleaf) in the lead role as Bobby DeBarge, Tyra Ferrell (Boyz In The Hood, White Men Can’t Jump) as Etterlene DeBarge, Blue Kimble (Media) as Tommy DeBarge and Adrian Marcel as James DeBarge.

Big Boi (Outkast) portrays legendary music mogul Berry Gordy, while Lloyd appears as Switch member Gregory Williams.

In his first role as a leading man, Fegan brilliantly transforms into the falsetto master and takes audiences inside the tumultuous life of the former lead singer of the late 70’s R&B/Funk Band Switch.

“The most dynamic and powerful acting role I’ve ever portrayed,” shared Fegan. “It was an honor to tell this musical legend’s life story.”

Despite his success in music, Bobby DeBarge, the eldest sibling of the world-famous pop group DeBarge struggled with fame and fortune and found his life in peril. The film explores the highs and lows of the singer’s life in the limelight, including his rise to stardom, coping with memories of his dysfunctional childhood, romantic relationships, struggles with substance abuse, incarceration and failing health.

“It was truly amazing watching the characters unfold in front of my eyes and the incredible acting that was bestowed upon this project,” said the film’s director Russ Parr.  “I think a lot of people are going to be surprised by the performances that they see.

Although this is a tragic story, I believe it’s told with dignity and respect to the legacy of Bobby DeBarge.” Parr is also a writer and producer known for the award-winning “The Undershepherd,” “Hear No Evil” and “35 and Ticking.”

Watch the clip here:



Entertainment – Black America Web


What (and Who) is New in Pixar’s ‘Toy Story 4’

What (and Who) is New in Pixar’s 'Toy Story 4'

When Pixar’s Toy Story 4 opens this June, the big screen will welcome back old favorites like so much tear-soaked nostalgia. Woody (Tom Hanks), Buzz (Tim Allen), Jessie (Joan Cusack), Trixie (Kristen Schaal), Hamm (John Ratzenberger), Mrs. Potato Head (Estelle Harris) and Mr. Potato Head, complete with voice work from the late Don Rickles recorded prior to his passing, are all right where we left them, playing to infinity and beyond in Bonnie’s bedroom.

But while this reunion…

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‘Toy Story 4’ makers explain why this movie is a thing that exists


Can it be all of 24 years since we first thrilled to the adventures of Sheriff Woody, Buzz Lightyear, and the gang in the world’s first computer-animated movie, Pixar’s Toy Story?

Back in 1995, the plot revolved around Woody’s fear that he was aging out and would soon be abandoned. In Toy Story 4, which hits theaters June 21, Woody reveals that he was probably made in the mid-1950s — which made him a mere 40-something in the original movie, but puts him in his mid-60s now. Never mind aging out, he’s lucky his plastic mold is still in one piece. 

So why bring the sheriff (and his posse) out of retirement? After all, Toy Story 3 (2010) ended with as complete and jaw-dropping a finale as you’re ever likely to see. The toys face death together in a furnace, then their owner Andy leaves for college and gives them all away to a girl named Bonnie, explaining their emotional impact on his childhood. Dry eyes when you left the theater were not an option.  Read more…

More about Disney, Pixar, Toy Story, Toy Story 4, and Entertainment



M.R. James Wrote the Scariest, Not-So-Holy Ghost Story for Easter

Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast

Though we never think of Easter as a day pocked by any kind of fear, it’s certainly the holiday that represents the most macabre event out of any of them. Skinny, sage dude, who was trying to revolutionize the world with love, gets his hands and feet nailed to a cross, then spends the afternoon up there until he dies. Upon which, he is stuck in a cave with a rock jammed into its mouth, only to rise from the dead, get out, and find his friends to see if they need to test their belief in him by sticking their fingers in his nail holes. Now let’s eat the crap out of some Peeps and Cadbury Eggs!

Easter is so vernal, with a color scheme of pinks, light blues, and yellows to match, which enlivens everything from little girls’ dresses to ubiquitous Easter eggs. But what has always produced a frisson of fear in me is one of our greatest ghost stories—let’s call it top 20—written by a man who normally reserved his frights for Christmas but saw an opportunity in the soft pastel spring of Easter.

Montague Rhodes James—M.R. to his friends and to us—was born in 1862, living until 1936. He was a scholar and provost, working at a number of universities in England. But it was while he was at King’s College from 1905 to 1918 that he did what he became most famous for.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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Global Roundup 4/19 – MUNY Casting, Corey Cott in WEST SIDE STORY, Encore Performance of ALIEN Play and More!

BroadwayWorld presents a comprehensive weekly roundup of regional stories around our Broadway World, which include videos, editor spotlights, regional reviews and more. This week, we feature Jenn Colella in PETER PAN, Patti LuPone, DEAR EVAN HANSEN London, and More Featured Content


Why Hunting JonBenet’s Killer: The Untold Story Host Elizabeth Vargas Thinks the Case Can Still Be Solved

Elizabeth Vargas, John Ramsey, BTS Hunting JonBenét's KillerTwenty-three years after the death of JonBenet Ramsey, journalist Elizabeth Vargas still thinks there could be hope for answers.
Vargas is hosting the A&E series Hunting…

E! Online (US) – TV News


Chris Simms shares story highlighting Rob Gronkowski’s football IQ

Chris Simms shares story highlighting Rob Gronkowski's football IQ originally appeared on Now that Rob Gronkowski's NFL career is over for now, everybody has their favorite story about the future Hall of Fame tight end. Whether it's Matt Patricia throwing a trash can at him at practice, or Mike Tomlin recounting his first meeting with him in 2007, most Gronk-related stories are worth the time. NBC's Chris Simms, a former quarterback who was a coaching assistant for the Patriots in 2012 remembered Gronkowski's football IQ in tight end meetings.

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Black Female Executive Is a Mighty Force at Toyota: Her Story

BLACK ENTERPRISE recently revealed the upper ranks of female leadership at the nation’s largest public and private companies with the release of the 2019 Most Powerful Women in Corporate America list. One of the standouts found on this exclusive roster is Sandra Phillips Rogers, who manages an expansive portfolio at Toyota North America as group vice president, general counsel, chief legal officer, corporate secretary, and chief diversity officer.

Holding degrees in journalism and law, respectively, from the University of Texas at Austin, this brilliant legal eagle joined Toyota in 2012 after holding a series of high-powered positions at prestigious law firms and major corporations. Considered one of the company’s most valuable senior managers, she is routinely called upon to handle complex issues, ranging from global transactions and corporate inclusion to cybersecurity and intellectual property.

One of the cover subjects of our January-March Women of Power issue, Phillips Rogers shared with BE, among other details, her professional ascension and tips she gives mentees on achieving success in corporate America. The following are edited excerpts from that interview:

Throughout your career, you’ve repeatedly shifted from major corporations to high-powered law firms. Which environment did you find most rewarding?

Well, I think both have their advantages but working in a company gets you closer to the business, and that’s ultimately why my career has taken me to Toyota. When you realize as a lawyer that you have the ability to help shape the business strategy through your legal advice and then also as an executive understanding more about what some of the corporate priorities are and how you can help them achieve it, that synergy really is very exciting to me. That’s the first thing.

The second thing is when you work for a company, you’re a part of a much larger organization. I really like that. The opportunity to be a chief diversity officer, work on various community activities and be a part of how the company is going to, in the case of Toyota, transform into a mobility company, that’s all very, very exciting and satisfying. Of course, there’s the great people and great products that Toyota makes. So that’s also very, very attractive to me.



At Toyota, you serve not only as the chief legal officer but also oversee diversity. How did that dynamic evolve?

I’ll start by saying that I have been a champion of diversity and inclusion for many, many years under my legal umbrella. In 1999, I was a part of the first diversity committee at the law firm I was employed [with] at the time. It’s been a progression and a passion of mine…and frankly, an obligation I feel to help bring more diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. So when the opportunity to become the chief diversity officer presented itself, it was a natural fit for me because I’ve spent so many years moving diversity and inclusion forward in the legal profession, also within my legal team at Toyota and other organizations that I’ve been a part of. Now, it’s very exciting to do it for the entire company. It’s something I take quite seriously but it is a very big honor for me.

In terms of your legal career, what were the cases in which you were most proud?

As I look over my career, the things that I’m most proud of are issues where there was a lot at stake, a broad impact for my client in terms of not just the legal strategy but the business strategy. It was necessary to coordinate a large team to all work together, be on the same page, and have a common strategy. It wasn’t always easy bringing various interests together, but I’m most proud of that teamwork, of how we all came together to help try to solve a very important issue for the business, customers and various stakeholders in the community. That’s what really excites me: A big hairy problem which brings together people as a team and you help solve it.

As a woman professional, how did you navigate challenges to eventually reach your current senior-level position?

For me, it’s always been important to understand the challenge, and then apply what you know in the context of the culture of the company. I’ve worked in a lot of different organizations. One approach might work in one organization but might not work in another. I’ve always viewed a challenge as an opportunity to show and demonstrate my leadership and commitment to the organization. What was always fundamental is to find out where the landmines and pitfalls were because sometimes those can derail your activities before you even get going. I think the other piece is where diplomacy and respect for people come into play. Savviness, emotional intelligence. I think these are all things that have served me very well over my career. Sometimes folks want to just go boldly into the challenge. You have to step back and understand the environment, the culture, the people, and then you have to plan a strategy that takes all of that into consideration.

Who have been your mentors and how have they helped you decide on the career path you took?

The mentors I’ve had have fallen into five buckets. One would be a person who I would call your subject matter expert. They kind of show you the ropes and help you develop your chops in a particular area of expertise. The second is the navigator, someone who helps you see around corners, tells you where you may want to go for opportunity or what to avoid because it could potentially stifle your progress.

Of course, the sponsor is very, very important. These are individuals in my career who have been my bosses or other senior people of influence who can speak on my behalf and help connect me with opportunities. The other group of mentor is the personal mentor. These are my friends and people who know me well. Some are outside the organization; some are inside. They’re the ones who can tell me, “You know, Sandra. Run your presentation by me and I’ll tell you if I think that’s the right approach.” Maybe they can tell you about how to present yourself, whether it’s a dress or how you express yourself. The last group of mentors is what I call peer to peer. That’s mainly women of color I meet at conferences to just exchange stories and ideas.

So what’s your mentorship approach and what advice do you give your mentees?

First of all, I try to build a relationship to establish mutual trust so that they know that it’s safe to talk to me, open up and really get to the core of what it is that’s either troubling them or the dreams that they have. We can figure out how we can navigate to help get them there. But it’s really about seeing an opportunity to help move someone who’s already in a great place to an even better one. I try to give them the benefit of my experiences…what’s worked for me, what hasn’t worked for me. Then, I try to figure out where they are in their organization and help them navigate some of the politics and things they need to think about.

But I want to give them some practical tools to put in their kit so that they can go back and say, “OK. I need to approach my business presentations this way.” Or, “I need to make sure I make relationships with these people.” Or, “I need to make sure that I am going to volunteer so that I can develop power.” One of the things that has just been a very important part of my career development is building power outside of the organization. If you become a leader in your community or profession that can spill over into the workplace. People find out about you, and they say, “Oh, Sandra’s leading this great effort with United Way.” Sometimes, your bosses may see you in a very limited way but then they see you differently. My counsel: Build your power within but also outside of the organization.

Define your leadership style and how it evolved?

I always start with who I am as a person. I always start with being authentic, which I find helps enable the other aspects of being a good leader. Someone’s who’s trustworthy, someone that you can rely on. If you’re seen as being authentic, whether that means a strong leader, whether it means being courageous, whether it means being vulnerable, that’s really how you build your brand as a leader. The other important piece is external to you. It’s the people that you have on your team and how you empower them to succeed. I think the other part of it is just being what I call more of a servant leader, someone who models behavior and can inspire others to follow. Those are the best leaders because when times get tough, profits are down and you’re doing more with less, your ability to help move your team beyond that is going to be based on whether you’re seen as being a part of the solution, getting down with the team at the grassroots level and help do the work to bring the situation back around.

Vital to career ascension, especially for African American women, is being heard in various corporate settings. How did you develop your voice?

One of the things that is key is for everyone to know executives in a company are looking for people to help them solve problems or come up with the next great idea. If that’s the case, your voice is really the only way that that is going to happen. A lot of people will be paralyzed feeling that their voice isn’t important, no one will listen to me or I’ll say something wrong. Most senior executives are looking for ideas. Clearly, all of the ideas are not going to hit gold but you have to realize that your voice must be at that table in order to create this new pathway for business. When you realize that you’re needed, that gives you more confidence to speak up and articulate whatever it is that you feel is going to help the company succeed. It’s about confidence and not being afraid to fail. I think that that really stymies a lot of opportunity, coming from women and women of color. You just have to realize that your voice matters.



The post Black Female Executive Is a Mighty Force at Toyota: Her Story appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Career | Black Enterprise


The Week in Movie News: Noah Centineo is He-Man, First ’Toy Story 4’ and ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Trailers and more

The Week in Movie News: Noah Centineo is He-Man, First ’Toy Story 4’ and ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’ Trailers and more



Noah Centineo to play He-Man: Sony and Mattel may have finally found their new He-Man, as The Wrap revealed that Noah Centineo (To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before) has the power of Grayskull and is in talks to star as Prince Adam in the action figure and ‘80s cartoon adaptation Masters of the Universe.


Florence Pugh joins Black Widow: Although it’s not been revealed when the solo Black Widow movie will arrive in theaters, casting…

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A Stage 3 Colon Cancer Survivor Story

March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. In the United States, colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in men and women, and the second most common cause of cancer deaths when men and women are combined. Approximately 140,000 people are diagnosed with colon cancer in the U.S. and more than 50,000 people die from it annually.

Colon cancer deaths are highly preventable with proper annual screening and understanding how your family history could play a part in your health – just ask Melinda Teixeira of Santa Clarita, California.

It all started with a doctor’s appointment to discuss some digestive discomfort she was experiencing. Melinda met with her doctor, Cindy Uypitching, MD, at Kaiser Permanente Canyon Country Medical Offices, who asked a routine series of questions that Melinda says saved her life.

“She began asking me about my family history,” Melinda, 43, recalled. “She was so easy to talk to, and very personable. She listened and took her time with me. In that conversation, I mentioned my mother was diagnosed with stage 2 colon cancer at age 50.”

Dr. Uypitching immediately knew this family history revelation was critically important.

“I listened to her carefully and based upon some of the symptoms she was experiencing, I concluded there could be a much more serious health issue based on her family history,” she said. “This led me to refer her to see a gastroenterologist. I’m glad I did, because it turned out that she had colon cancer that required immediate attention.”

Melinda met with Gina Lin, MD, a gastroenterologist at Kaiser Permanente Santa Clarita Medical Offices, where a colonoscopy was scheduled right away. Following the procedure, Melinda received the news no one wants to hear – a mass was found in her colon.

“I was told I had stage 3 colon cancer, and that I needed surgery,” Melinda said. “I was shocked! I wasn’t sure what to think; this was devastating news.”

Melinda underwent surgery at Kaiser Permanente Panorama City Medical Center to remove the tumor. She was informed she had stage 3 colon cancer with 3 of 12 lymph nodes involved. Immediately following surgery, Melinda underwent chemotherapy, which has resulted in a positive outcome. But, she faced some challenges.

“I experienced a lot of the normal side-effects during my chemo treatment,” she recalled. “All of these got better once chemo stopped. I’m in a good position right now. If I’m clear in 2 years, I can consider it to be a true remission of this disease.”

Melinda, a mother of 2, keeps a positive outlook on life with the goal of being 100 percent cancer-free. Today, Melinda eats more vegetables and exercises regularly, something that she rarely did before being diagnosed with colon cancer. And, she has some important advice for others.

“I would have definitely gotten screened sooner for colon cancer if I understood the importance of how my family history could play a role in my health,” she said. “My advice is: Don’t take your health for granted; be your own health advocate and don’t procrastinate! Preventive care is key to fighting diseases like colon cancer, and it starts with screening. So much depends on early detection and understanding family history.”

Melinda credits her positive outlook for the future on Kaiser Permanente’s integrated health care system and its emphasis on preventive care through early screening. She was impressed by Kaiser Permanente’s focus on patient safety and medical excellence exemplified by the ongoing high-quality care she received. She acknowledges her team of doctors starting from her primary care physician, Dr. Uypitching, to her oncologist, Andy Yung Su, MD, as important factors in her road to recovery.

“I’m finding a sense of acceptance of my condition,” she said. “Finding a sense of normalcy is important after something as life-altering as colon cancer, and being able to help the next person allows me to find a reason and a purpose. The facts are clear: colon cancer is curable, but it starts with screening because it saves lives, and it saved mine!”

Learn more about Kaiser Permanente Southern California’s expert cancer care and choices that are right for you.

Get more information on the importance of colon cancer screenings.

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First ‘Toy Story 4’ Trailer Debuts; Here’s Everything We Know

First 'Toy Story 4' Trailer Debuts; Here's Everything We Know

The next release from Pixar will be Toy Story 4. Though Toy Story 3 appeared to wrap up the series nicely back in 2010, Toy Story 4 will be a road trip adventure that will stand apart from the first three installments. Here's everything we know about the film.

What's the story?

Here is how Pixar describes it: "Woody has always been confident about his place in the world and that his priority is taking care of his kid, whether that’s Andy or Bonnie. But when Bonnie adds…

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New film’s love story recalls tragic tale of a real-life ‘Fault in Our Stars’ couple

Dave Prager intends to watch the new movie “Five Feet Apart” hidden away in a corner of the theater where no one can watch him cry. – RSS Channel – Health


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The story of the first American hamburger


We all love a hamburger, right? It’s become the staple fast food of America, and many of us have a specific burger of choice. But, have you ever wondered where these delicious cultural icons came from? From Wimpy, McDonald’s, and Burger King, to Five Guys, Wendy’s, and In-N-Out, burgers have become the cornerstone of fast food in the United States.

But, you may not know where these delicious patties in a bun came from, and which genius realized that grilled meat patties and bread were the perfect combination! You might think it’s Hamburg, Germany because of the name, right? Well, let’s look at some of the claims surrounding the origin of the hamburger.

George Motz: Hamburger documentarian

If you think Super Size Me was the ultimate doc about burgers, you’ve clearly never heard of George Motz! Author and documentarian Motz presented his documentary series Burger Land, back in 2013, where he travels the United States in search of the best burger in each state. Motz suggests that the definition of a hamburger should be ‘ground beef that has been patties, cooked, and put on bread.’ So, when looking at the story of the first ever hamburger, we have to look at who was the first to attempt this process.

The case for Connecticut

There is certainly a case to be made for Connecticut being home to the first proper hamburger. Jeff Lassen claims his great grandfather Louis Lassen created the first-ever hamburger out of his lunch wagon back in 1900, after running low on steak. Apparently, the dish was nameless until some sailors from Hamburg sampled it and named the dish after themselves! This is certainly a claim disputed by some, but we sort of like this version. Some claim this isn’t really a hamburger as he toasted the bread, but we feel like that’s splitting hairs somewhat!

Fletcher Davis

Another who lays claim to having invented the hamburger was a man named Fletcher Davis, based out of Texas. In the 1880s he is alleged to have opened a lunch counter serving fried ground beef patties, with mustard and onions in between two slices of bread. Fletcher and his wife ran a stand at the World Fair, and this is considered a possible place of creation for the hamburger, which of course means it could have been created by more than one person.

The birthplace of the hamburger

There is also the family of Oscar Weber Bilby, who state the claim that he created the first-known hamburger in a yeast bun, in the city of Sapulpa, Oklahoma, which he served in July of 1891. How true this account is remains to be seen, but it does have some believes, as Governor Frank Keating famously claimed Tulsa, Oklahoma to be the ‘Real Birthplace of the Hamburger,’ back in 1995!

So, though we’re still no closer to a definitive answer, we have at least managed to shed a little light on some potential theories. The next time you bite into a succulent and steaming burger, spare a little thought for all the men who claimed to have created this wonderful invention!


The post The story of the first American hamburger appeared first on Worldation.



Washington Post issues editor’s note regarding initial Covington story

The Washington Post on Friday issued a lengthy editor’s note concerning their story about the Covington Catholic controversy, acknowledging that “a more complete assessment of what occurred” emerged after its initial story. The editor’s note concerned a Jan. 19 report about the incident involving a confrontation between Kentucky high school student Nicholas Sandmann and a…
Media | New York Post


Lauren London And Nipsey Hussle Discuss Their “Building” Love Story & London Sacrificing Her Career For Her Child

Lauren London and Nipsey Hussle GQ Shoot

Source: Awol Erizku / GQ

Last month, Lauren London and Nipsey Hustle had folks scratching their heads wondering if the two had gotten engaged. But the photos that leaked actually came from another place. They were behind the scenes images from the couple’s beautiful photo shoot and piece for GQ.

The couple traveled Slauson Avenue, a Black neighborhood in Crenshaw California—sometimes on a White horseback documenting their flyness and their coupledom.

London and Hussle were photographed by Awok Erizku, the same photographer who captured Beyoncé’s pregnancy announcement and the reveal of her twins, shortly after they were born. The photo went on to become the most liked photo on Instagram.

Erizku’s other popular works include Girl With a Bamboo Earring (2009).

In the accompanying article, the two talk about how they met on Instagram when, in 2013, London was attempting to buy Hussle’s $ 100 album as a wrap gift for her castmates on “The Game.” After she secured the copies, she followed him. Hussle said, “You know what that means, right?!” He took it as a sign of her interest and he slid into her DMs.

In the article the couple, who are parents to a son named Kross, dispelled engagement rumors to say that they’ve been together for five years and are “building.”

In the piece the two discuss being important to Black culture but not necessarily crossing over to mainstream audiences. For London, in the time when she had the chance to possibly cross over, life happened.

“I auditioned to be Faith Evans in Notorious,” Lauren recalled. “I talked to Faith, Puff, everybody. It just came down that the director didn’t believe me as Faith.” Riding the ups and downs together, they seem to be having fun. But it was one single decision that made them more than just another celebrity couple in Nipsey’s eyes.

“Lauren was handpicked by John Singleton to do Snowfall. She read, got the part, shot the pilot…did stunts…this was her dream role,” Nipsey said. “And then she got pregnant with our son. That was a really hard decision for her to make. It was the toughest decision of my career by far.”

But ultimately, London said she made the right decision.

“Do I choose my soul or myself?” Lauren said. “I went with my soul.”

Lauren London and Nipsey Hussle

Source: Awok Erizku / Awok Erizku

See what people had to say about the shoot on the following pages.



Family Affair: Tiffany Haddish Shares Funny Story That Drake & His Daddy Slid Into Her DM’s

'The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part' World Premiere - Arrivals

Source: Adriana M. Barraza/ / WENN

via Madamenoire:

Y’all already know that Tiffany Haddish doesn’t follow regular protocol when it comes to celebrities and the encounters she decides to share. Nothing is off limits. And during a recent interview with Glamour UK, Haddish shared that while she was trying to date Drake, as well as his father, Dennis Graham, was trying to get at her.

Haddish said, “Drake slid into my DMs and I had seen him a few days later. He’s like, ‘Yo, you didn’t respond to my DM.’ I was like, ‘I didn’t even know you followed me. ’He was like, ‘Well, I just wanted to know if you want to be in my music video.’ I was like, ‘Oh, okay.’ So I did his music video. Then I thought, maybe something might happen. I was like ‘So you going to take me to dinner?’ And he was like, ‘Yeah, we can eat dinner.’ Then, I never heard from him again. And that’s because I was being thirsty. That’s my fault! That’s my fault. I should have been like, ‘I’ll see if I can be in your little funky video. Who are you? What do you do again? His dad be hitting me up though and I turned his dad down. So I might end up being Drake’s stepmama.”

It’s abundantly clear that Drake’s daddy is enjoying his son’s fame and access. Ain’t no telling how many celebrities he’s pushing up on.


Entertainment – Black America Web


Man who strangled mountain lion in self-defense tells his story

mountain lion attack

Last week, news broke of a then-unidentified man who was forced to defend himself against a mountain lion when it attacked him on a recreational trail in Colorado. He’s spent the time since the attack recovering from his injuries, and he’s now come forward and identified himself as Travis Kauffman.

Kauffman’s tale of how he dispatched the feline predator with his bare hands is rather dramatic, and in a new video published by the Colorado Parks and Wildlife group he explains exactly how the dangerous scenario played out.

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SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN: -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News


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This Woman’s Story Will Change the Way You Think About Public Assistance

I had a kid… once.

Her name was Averi. She looked like my daughter, but she was my niece.

My sister was unable to care for Averi. It came down to me or foster care. I decided my life was no more important than hers, so the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) granted me temporary custody. At 27, I was suddenly responsible for keeping a 4-year-old alive.

Most parents get months to prepare; I had less than a week.

I made $ 360 a week, about $ 18,500 a year. Now, I had to squeeze caring for a child — day care, food, clothes and all those unexpected expenses — out of an already razor-thin budget.

On top of that, I was consumed by grief from losing my own mother that same year.

I kept telling myself I could do this. After all, it was only supposed to be for two months.

My First Days in the Single-Mom Hustle

My first days as a stand-in mommy presented more questions than my sleep-deprived brain was prepared for: Who was going to watch her while I work? How the hell was I going to afford this?

Luckily, there was a voluntary prekindergarten, or VPK, and day care two blocks from my apartment, and they graciously let me bring Averi by the same evening I picked her up from the DCF.

Averi curiously roamed about the classroom as I quietly explained the situation to the teachers and administrators.

Back in my apartment, we settled into our first night together.

I rolled out an air mattress on the floor of my bedroom. She was required to have her own bed, and an air mattress was the fastest and cheapest solution.

The first day I dropped her off at day care was emotionally taxing for both of us. I cried the entire drive to work.

And once I got there, I could barely focus. I kept thinking through this new set of obligations, commitments and sacrifices I was only beginning to unravel. My mind raced through checklists, appointments and my shoddy finances.

I knew my salary was no match for the expenses of child care. I lived paycheck to paycheck as it was.

Rebekah, my roommate and childhood friend, shouldered the circumstance alongside me. We split rent and utilities, which lowered my core costs considerably. But my credit card debt had nearly doubled since my mom’s death.

My approximate monthly expenses were:

  • Rent payment: $ 375
  • Car payment: $ 350
  • Electric bill: $ 75
  • Internet and cable: $ 65
  • Car insurance: $ 115
  • Cell phone: $ 75
  • Gas: $ 40
  • Credit card: $ 200
  • Groceries: $ 150

Total monthly expenses: $ 1,445.

My average monthly income: $ 1,440.

Adding in the cost of caring for Averi took me to a new level of financial anxiety. Trying to map out an impossible budget only made it worse.

It started to suffocate me.

The Maze of Applying for Public Assistance

During my first home visit with Averi’s social worker, I reluctantly shared my concerns. I was so scared of losing her to the system.

The social worker urged me to apply for public assistance, which I hadn’t even considered. I had never seen myself ever needing it. But I had to do something.

Asking for help wasn’t in my familial toolbox. My parents always struggled financially, but they rarely ever asked for help. So not taking “charity” was in my blood — from gifts to handouts, I always paid my way even if it secretly broke me.

But I cared more about Averi’s well-being than my dignity. It was too real. I needed the help. Any help.

I had no idea where to begin, so the social worker provided me with a list of all the programs I was eligible for. I dove in headfirst.

I swallowed my pride and signed my name on all the dotted lines I could. Applying for government assistance at 27 years old was my new reality.

School Readiness

The first program that came through was Florida’s School Readiness financial assistance program.

It subsidized the weekly day care costs, so I could continue working without spending most of my salary on child care, like so many parents are forced to do.

After a $ 125 deposit, I paid $ 9.20 a week for Averi’s day care.

She attended VPK in the morning and an after-school program within the same building after. I had to pick her up by 6 p.m. every day, or else face a non-subsidized, minute-by-minute late fee.

Temporary Cash Assistance

Initially, my circumstance made me eligible for temporary cash assistance (TCA), a $ 180 monthly stipend designed to help struggling families with minors.

The benefits help keep children in their own homes, or in the home of a blood relative, instead of foster care.

I received an Access debit card, the same card people use for food stamps. (The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) wasn’t born yet.)

The card was automatically loaded with $ 180 each month. I could use it anywhere that accepted electronic benefit transfer (EBT) payments.

Suddenly, I was that person scouting the exterior of stores for a “We Accept EBT” sign, or quietly asking the cashier if they accepted EBT cards, worried about being judged by other customers.

Eventually, DCF approved me for the Relative Caregiver program, and the $ 180 increased to $ 240 monthly.

Women, Infants and Children

Because of Averi’s age, I was also eligible to receive assistance from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s supplemental nutrition program for Women, Infants and Children, WIC.

WIC provides assistance for low-income women with children under 5 years old. WIC serves 53% of all infants in the United States.  

Thankfully, my 32-hour-a-week job allowed some wiggle room for the sloth-like government waiting rooms. I spent a whole morning waiting.

Eventually, I walked out with a handful of food vouchers. They had date ranges and expirations and a list of specific items they could be exchanged for. How hard could it be?

The items on my monthly food allowance weren’t exactly the nutritional foods I’d hoped for.  

But I had to face it: These were the times of white bread, cereal and canned beans. No more organic eggs and vegetables or soy milk, which I’d become accustomed to consuming before I became responsible for Averi.

The monthly allowance included a whopping $ 8 for fruits and vegetables. While I would have hoped for more, I was thankful for food in our mouths, regardless of the form it came in.

Averi loved bananas and green beans, so I would purchase those fresh, along with a bag of carrots or apples, whichever I could squeeze out of that voucher.  

I won’t forget the first time I tried to use them at the register. I dreaded the whole experience, fearful of the disgusted eyes cast by other customers as they waited for me to shamefully get my government-issued rations.

I’d read the voucher over and over to be sure I followed the instructions perfectly to avoid any holdup at the register.

But at the checkout, the cashier informed me I’d made a mistake.

I’d picked up a 24-ounce loaf of bread when the voucher clearly stated I was only allowed the 20-ounce loaf. I was mortified. I couldn’t leave Averi there while I ran back, so I put everything back in my basket, careful to avoid the gaze of the line forming behind me.

There it was on the shelf, the 20-ounce loaf of bread with the letters “WIC” plain as day on the price tag.

After that, I spent much more time at the grocery store than necessary, cross-referencing my vouchers so I could avoid any unwanted hubbub at the register.


Averi caught a cold the first week at day care, and then I caught it. I hadn’t been sick in over a year, but my stressed immune system was no match for kid germs.

After that, it was pink eye.

Then Averi’s repeated sinus infections, futile prescriptions and doctor visits led to a diagnosis of asthma. She was prescribed a nebulizer treatment three to four times a day.

She hopped and bopped around with the cough of a 50-year-old smoker. Eventually, her breathing improved a little, and she got off the nebulizer.

The symptoms kept creeping back, though, so we went to the pediatrician again. She got chest X-rays that determined she had pneumonia. She needed bed rest. That meant finding babysitters or missing work.

By the summer, we both contracted scabies from visiting the place my grandmother lived. The scratching saga continued for months. I wouldn’t wish that itching on anyone.

I’m scared to think what may have happened to her if she didn’t have Medicaid.

What Life as a Single Parent Was Like

After the first week, I was informed that the original two-month timeline would actually be six months.

To pass the time, I kept her busy.

I found plenty of free kid-friendly events happening around town. We went to community festivals, parks and free concerts.

Friends gave me free tickets to museums and local events like the Renaissance Festival. Averi thrived on all of the new experiences.

I registered her for a Busch Gardens preschool pass, offered free for children ages 5 and younger. I already had a monthly pass — with a $ 7 monthly rate I’d been grandfathered into — so we frequently visited the park for free entertainment.

When she outgrew her clothes, there was someone bringing me hand-me-downs so I didn’t have to buy more. When I did, we went to thrift stores, making it a fun treasure hunt to pick out an outfit she loved.

You learn a lot about people when you fall between a rock and a hard place.

I’d come into work to find a handwritten note and AMC gift cards on my desk. Or a friend’s mom would slide me $ 20 when I hugged her. My boyfriend would treat us to dinner, or his mother would make breakfast on a Sunday morning without asking for anything in return.

Many endured DCF-required background checks just to babysit her for a few hours so I could have a wink of sleep, or time to catch up on work or other obligations.

On Averi’s fifth birthday, more than 40 people attended her party at Chuck E. Cheese.

At home, we danced around in all of the tissue paper from the gifts. The joy on Averi’s face showed she didn’t know about our struggle. She only knew the kindness of friends and family, which is exactly how I wanted it.

The network of support humbled me, and I allowed myself to lean into it.

That August, Averi started school. She received free lunches, and I made her breakfast at home. She adapted with ease, and I shouldered the expense of fundraisers, classroom activities and gifts for her classmate’s birthday parties.

One night before bed, I saw the light bulb click in her eyes as the words to Dr. Seuss’ “Marvin K. Mooney Will You Please Go Now!” started to make sense. She read every last one of them (except Zumble-Zay).

Sharing that milestone was priceless; I’ll forever treasure the memory.

The Financial Toll of Being a Caregiver

Soon August rolled into September, and as the time toiled on, so did my financial problems.

While everyone thought I was due some karmic reward, I was busy maxing out my credit cards.

I knew I’d literally pay for it in the end, but I didn’t care. My maternal instinct was to protect her at any cost.

The credit card companies started to lower my limits, because I was only making the minimum payments and overspending.

Overdraft fees on my checking account sent me to my Bank of America branch. I didn’t mean to cry when I talked to the teller, but the flood came anyway. All I wanted was to reverse a $ 30 fee for going $ 2 over my balance.

It happened more than once. One bank associate began to know my face and my circumstance. His patience and benevolence will always be beyond me, as was his advice.

He told me about financial hardship programs that would allow me to close my credit cards and pay little to no interest.

By September, I started closing my credit cards. I knew this would kill my “age of credit history,” but it was the only way I could keep from drowning in debt, consolidate and lower my interest rates.

The Life I Chose for Averi

I was granted permanent guardianship of Averi that November.

I wanted to keep her as close to my chest as she’d become, but I knew deep down I couldn’t continue to provide for her or afford our life together.

My older brother had recently moved back from out of state. We discussed the option of Averi living with him and what would serve her best long term.

On paper, I was single and broke. He had a wife and daughter and was financially stable.

We both knew living with him would be best for her, regardless of how it made my heart ache.

That Christmas came fast.

Between the donations set up by DCF and the continued generosity of family and friends, Averi wanted for nothing. Santa supplied maybe her best Christmas yet. Gifts towered over our 3-foot pink Christmas tree.

While she tore open presents, I snapped a ridiculous amount of photos, mentally preparing myself for the fact that our time, like 2010, was nearing an end.

I was coming to terms with letting go and the decision to give her a better life. A life not supported by the system. A life still with family and within an arm’s reach of me.

A week shy of a full year together, I packed her stuff, swallowing back tears.

Her moving in with my brother was an easy sell. She adored her little cousin and wanted to have sleepovers with her every night. The only problem, she said, was that she would miss me.

As we piled her stuff into my brother’s black Suburban, she hugged me tight and said, “I love you with all my heart, Aunt Stephanie.”

What My Year on Public Assistance Taught Me

My year of living on public assistance was eight years ago.

Averi now lives 2,000 miles away.

My brother took a job up north, so they moved a year after she left my care.

We’ve seen each other only a handful of times since; we stay in touch with handwritten letters.

It took me some time to readjust to life without her, both emotionally and financially.

I had plenty of credit card debt before Averi, but it nearly doubled after a year of unexpected child care. The public assistance support ended the moment she left me.

While I did receive a boost in my tax return for claiming her as a dependent, it barely made a dent.

It took me a few years to get serious about paying it off instead of wallowing. I felt like I’d made enough sacrifices that I just wanted to live without worrying about it.

Obviously, ignoring debt doesn’t work. I couldn’t escape the financial obligations lest I file for bankruptcy. That wasn’t me, or who I wanted to be. I’d already danced with the public assistance system, and this time, I wanted to clear it for good. So I faced it.

I slayed that interest-laden beast with balance transfer credit cards and a personal loan to consolidate other outstanding debts.

I inched my way out of debt every year since, and as of August 2018, I’m finally debt-free — aside from a car payment — for the first time in 16 years.

My credit score rebounded, but I had to learn some costly lessons.

I’m not embarrassed to admit that public assistance helped me through the hardest year of my life.

My experience with social workers, courts and public assistance offices made me realize how many kids need our help. Those insights led me to seek out opportunities locally.

I learned that while it isn’t easy, asking for help is OK; people love you and want to help you.

And one day, you might even have the chance to help them.

Stephanie Bolling is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She’d love to talk to you about your experience on public assistance.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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The Not-So-Funny True Comedy Story Behind the Movie Stan & Ollie

Laurel and Hardy fans who rewatch the legendary comedians’ 1934 take on Babes in Toyland every Christmas now have the opportunity to see them in another movie: the new biopic Stan & Ollie, starring Steve Coogan as Laurel and John C. Reilly as Hardy, out Friday.

The movie is a fictionalized take on the comedians’ British tour in 1953 and 1954. Their third such tour, it which would end up being their last tour together, due to the declining health of the duo TIME once described as “two of America’s few genuinely creative comedians.”

The funnymen were introduced to the public in the mid-1920s by Hollywood film and TV producer Hal Roach, who thought putting together a skinny Englishman and a rotund American would be comedic gold, says Simon Louvish, author of Stan and Ollie: The Roots of Comedy: The Double Life of Laurel and Hardy and a visiting lecturer at the London Film School. Laurel (born Arthur Stanley Jefferson in Ulverston, England) had been an understudy for Charlie Chaplin and a member of the London Comedians troupe run by Fred Karno, who is credited with having a role in launching Chaplin. Hardy was the son of an Atlanta politician, and studied law at the University of Georgia before he decided to pursue a career in singing.

Together, as TIME put it, they became Laurel — “slim, sad-eyed master mime” and “the brain behind the gags and the on-screen butt of them all” — and Hardy, “the master of mime and the bowler-bouncing doubletake” and “the withering glare.” They made dozens of silent film shorts in the late 1920s, such as Duck Soup, and began doing talkie shorts in 1929 and feature-length talkie films in the mid-’30s. Their seamless transition from silent to sound pictures was notable, winning them recognition as “virtually the only silent comedy stars to repeat their phenomenal success in talkies, probably because their miming spoke louder than words.” And the hard work that Laurel & Hardy put into lugging a piano up a staircase in The Music Box clearly hit the right note with the Academy, as the film won a 1932 Oscar.

And their popularity went even deeper than their talent. They rose to fame at a period in history when Americans needed a good laugh. “During the Great Depression, people are so desperate, and they need comedy,” says Louvish. “Here are two bums wandering about. They come from nowhere. They have no money. They’re always trying to do the right thing, but get into a fine mess. They take failure and make it into something you can laugh about.

Their relatability was a key part of what made them funny. They were “interested more, as Hardy once said, in ‘human appeal’ than in ‘straight clownish antics.’” Describing what made them special in 1965, TIME noted that “they were lovable caricatures of the dolt in Everyman, a bow and fiddle striking delightfully dissonant chords in a mad world. Witless innocence was their hallmark.”

But when their health was failing, they had trouble being funny.

Stan & Ollie is based on that point in their career, during the post-war period.

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While filming the movie originally entitled Atoll K in 1950 (later released as Utopia in 1954), Hardy’s general health worsened, exacerbated by his obesity, and Stan Laurel’s pre-existing diabetes was worsened by prostate issues and colitis. And yet they continued to tour.

“They embraced these demanding tours which were quite physically exhausting,” says Louvish. The film depicts the period as one of intense disagreement between the two; when asked whether they had a notable falling out, Louvish, who has not seen the film, says that if they argued in real life it was probably less because they didn’t like each other anymore and more because they were running on fumes. “They were both very ill in their later years,” says Louvish.

Even then, Laurel and Hardy never lost their commitment to self-deprecating humor, as opposed to put-downs. At an appearance in Newcastle, England, in 1952, they “looked down their noses at the modern generation,” TIME reported. “Present-day comedians, particularly those in America, gain laughs at the expense of someone else’s discomfort. Insult gags are a crudity we avoid,” they said.

And yet, they were determined to keep performing. “They had run out of stuff, yet they’re trying to do material and buoyed up by the fact that people love them,” says Louvish. “They can’t make more movies, yet they want to continue until death.”

Montifraulo Collection—Getty ImagesStan Laurel (left) and Oliver Hardy (right) shortly after performing at the Empire theater in Nottingham, England, in Aug. 1953 during their U.K. tour.

It wasn’t just for their own benefit, though. Their British tours came during the difficult period of post-war shortages in the late 1940s and early 1950s, and the laughter they provided was able to serve the same purpose it had served during the Great Depression.

And yet the recognition they received was more honorary than monetary. “The two men did not own their films, and thus did not reap any income from reruns,” TIME reported in 1967. “During their last years—Ollie died at 65 in 1957, Stan at 74 in 1965—neither was independently wealthy.” When Laurel received an Honorary Academy Award for “creative pioneering in the field of comedy” in 1961, he was too ill to accept it himself.

“They made us laugh because in them we kind of saw ourselves – ridiculous, frustrated, up to our necks in trouble, but nevertheless ourselves,” Danny Kaye said, accepting the award on his behalf. “Oliver Hardy delicately tipped his derby hat with his pudgy little fingers and left us a little while back. But the thin, sad-faced one, the one from whose fertile mind sprang many of the universally humorous notions that have been borrowed so freely by the comedians who have followed is still with us.”

Indeed, Jonathan Winters, Dick Cavett, Dick Van Dyke and Soupy Sales were all members of Sons of the Desert, a Laurel and Hardy appreciation society founded by fans in 1965. In light of the biopic, it’s recently been fielding an increased number of membership inquiries from young people. Before he died, Laurel had some parting advice to such fans, advising them to “have a hell of a lot of fun,” and avoid taking themselves too seriously — even when things get tough.

“Don’t sit around and tear comedy apart. It is like a fine watch, and you’ll never get it together again,” he said. “And don’t ask me why people laugh—that is the mystery of it all.”

Entertainment – TIME


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The True Story Behind the Ruth Bader Ginsburg Movie On the Basis of Sex

Ruth Bader Ginsburg is having quite a year at the movies: In May, the documentary RBG offered a new look at Ginsburg’s life through interviews with the “notorious” Supreme Court Justice herself as well as family members and scholars. And on Dec. 25, a new movie dives into another chapter of her career. On the Basis of Sex, directed by Mimi Leder and starring Felicity Jones as a young Ginsburg and Armie Hammer as her husband, Martin Ginsburg, hones in on her early years as a mother, student, professor and, finally, lawyer. Though the film spans more than a decade, it focuses on Ginsburg’s first gender discrimination case, Moritz v. Commissioner. In the case, which took place in 1972, the Ginsburgs argued as a team that Section 214 of the United States tax code—which denied Charles Moritz, a never-married man, the right to deduct expenses for the care of his ailing mother—was unconstitutional.

On the Basis of Sex is an origin story,” Leder said at the New York premiere of the film, with an audience that included former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Gloria Steinem (whose work has a few hat-tips in the film) and Ginsburg herself. “But Ruth Bader Ginsburg is not a superhero. She’s a woman.” Mortal though she may be, the Ginsburg Leder depicts is certainly a woman who is super: she takes care of her young daughter, Jane, while acing her own Harvard Law School classes and making sure her husband passes his, even after he is diagnosed with testicular cancer.

Viewers might be surprised to find that for a biopic whose subject was involved in its development, On the Basis of Sex is somewhat fictionalized. “This film is part fact, part imaginative—but what’s wonderful about it is that the imaginative parts fit in with the story so well,” Ginsburg told NPR’s Nina Totenberg following the New York screening. The screenwriters, who include Ginsburg’s nephew, Daniel Stiepleman, clearly decided that strict adherence to fact didn’t always serve the story.

There are some moments of the film—namely, sexy scenes between Ginsburg and her husband—that might raise eyebrows. But when Totenberg asked Ginsburg about these scenes, Ginsburg smiled and responded, “My children are in the audience: I think they probably would agree with me that their daddy would have loved it.”

Here’s what’s fact and what’s fiction in On the Basis of Sex.

Fiction: Ginsburg attended her husband’s classes for him while he underwent cancer treatment

Jonathan Wenk—Focus FeaturesFelicity Jones stars as Ruth Bader Ginsburg in Mimi Leder’s ‘On the Basis of Sex.’

In the film, when Martin “Marty” Ginsburg is diagnosed with testicular cancer—a grave diagnosis in the 1950s—he and Ruth agree that they’re going to fight it together. Soon after, Felicity Jones’ Ruth arrives late, briefcase and books in hand, to a class full of men. After explaining that she’d be attending her husband’s classes in his stead, she responds affirmatively to the professor’s incredulous question: “In addition to your own?”

Though the cancer diagnosis and the couple’s reaction to it is true to life, Ginsburg didn’t really attend her husband’s classes during his third year of law school. Instead, their peers helped out. His classmates took diligent notes and sometimes even tutored him. “That’s why I don’t think of Harvard as the fiercely competitive institution it’s sometimes described as,” Justice Ginsburg said in a separate interview with Totenberg for the Academy of Achievement. “When Martin became ill, my classmates, his classmates, they all rallied around us, and made it possible to get through that year.”

Ginsburg did type her husband’s papers and make sure he was able to complete his coursework in time for graduation. Finally, in the last two weeks of the semester, Martin Ginsburg was well enough to attend class, and he earned his best grades that semester.

Fact: Ginsburg graduated from Columbia after transferring from Harvard

After Martin Ginsburg graduated from Harvard Law School in 1958, Ruth still had one year left. But Martin was offered a job in New York City that he couldn’t pass up. Ruth decided that she needed to be in New York with him and their young daughter and couldn’t stay in Boston to complete her degree.

But the Dean of Harvard Law School, played by Sam Waterston in the film, wouldn’t allow her to complete a Harvard JD with courses from Columbia. The film’s depiction of Ruth’s rebuttal—that if students could transfer to Harvard after the first year and earn a degree, surely she could do the same by finishing coursework at Columbia—is in line with how that meeting really went down. Despite her protests, Ginsburg did end up earning her degree from Columbia Law School.

Later in life, after she had achieved great success in her career, the faculty of Harvard Law School wanted to grant her an honorary degree. But she declined: her degree would always be from Columbia, and, as she said about the incident, “You can’t rewrite history.

Partially Fact: Even with her outstanding resume, Ginsburg couldn’t land a job with a law firm

Jonathan Wenk / Focus FeaturesFelicity Jones as Ginsburg.

Once she graduated from Columbia Law School, Ginsburg should have been unstoppable. She was at the top of her class and had been on both the Harvard Law Review and the Columbia Law Review. But she was also Jewish and a woman, and finding work was not easy.

Though the movie shows that Ginsburg couldn’t get a job as a lawyer and joined Rutgers University Law School faculty as her first job, she actually clerked for a few judges before her position at Rutgers, starting with U.S. District Judge Edmond Palmieri. The discrimination Ruth faces in the movie during job interviews is not dissimilar from how Ginsburg has described those experiences. One judge, Ginsburg recalled in the Academy of Achievement interview, wouldn’t consider her for a clerkship because he didn’t feel comfortable swearing in front of a woman.

Once at Rutgers, Ginsburg wasn’t free from discrimination because of her gender, either. When she became pregnant with her second child, James, she did not yet have tenure. Fearing that if she told her colleagues, she wouldn’t be hired for the next year of teaching, Ginsburg hid her pregnancy with baggy clothing until she had received the next year’s contract.

Fact: Martin Ginsburg cooked dinner for the family

Jonathan Wenk / Focus Features—© 2018 Storyteller Distribution Co., LLC. All Rights Reserved.Armie Hammer as Marty Ginsburg and Felicity Jones as Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

The picture the movie paints of the Ginsburgs’ egalitarian marriage is true to the life they led. Martin, who died in 2010, loved to cook dinner for the family and supported his wife in all of her professional pursuits—an arrangement that was not particularly common for that time. Ginsburg has said that when she met Martin at Cornell, where they both earned their undergraduate degrees, she was drawn to him because he was the first man who cared about her intelligence.

At the New York premiere, Ginsburg said that the way Armie Hammer’s Marty chops vegetables as though he were on the Food Network was especially touching and representative of her beloved husband. Martin was such a talented cook that he often made dinner for his wife’s law clerks.

Partially Fact: Ginsburg’s first big case was a tax case

On the Basis of Sex suggests that the case the movie follows is Ginsburg’s first. And although Moritz v. Commissioner definitely was the first well-known case Ginsburg tried, it wasn’t her first.

What is true, as Ginsburg told Totenberg, is the movie’s depiction of how she came to discover this case. “I don’t read tax cases,” Ruth tells Marty in the film. But he encourages her to read this specific one about Moritz. Ginsburg says that Marty, who was a tax attorney, really did present her with this case, and she even said those exact words in response.

Once she read the case, she knew they had to take it on. Because the plaintiff was male, Ginsburg knew the judges would be more receptive to the concept of gender discrimination—and the notion that it was harmful.

Fiction: Ginsburg flubbed the beginning of her first opening statement

Jonathan Wenk—Focus Features(l to r.) Armie Hammer as Marty Ginsburg, Justin Theroux as Melvin Wulf, and Felicity Jones as Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

One of the first things Ginsburg wants to clear the record on: she would never flub the opening of an oral argument. When Jones’ Ruth begins her argument for three intimidating judges on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, she pauses uncomfortably. “Whenever you’re ready, Ms. Ginsburg,” one judge goads.

But the real Ginsburg said this is one of the film’s moments of fiction. “I didn’t stumble,” she told Totenberg.

Fact: Ginsburg and her husband split the time when arguing Moritz v. Commissioner

The two Ginsburgs did split the time arguing this case before the judges. First, as the movie shows, Martin argued the tax aspects of the case, and then Ruth argued the gender discrimination aspects of the case.

The pair won the case. The 10th Circuit decided that the tax code was “invidious discrimination,” marking the beginning of Ginsburg’s mission to take down each and every law that discriminated on the basis of gender. (Despite the movie’s title, Ginsburg did use the word “gender” instead of “sex” in her brief for this case.)

Fact: Ginsburg was childhood friends with ACLU legal director Melvin Wulf

Jonathan Wenk—Focus FeaturesJustin Theroux as Melvin Wulf and Felicity Jones as Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

In the movie, Ruth’s childhood friendship with the legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Melvin Wulf (played by Justin Theroux), is tantamount to her success in Moritz. This is true. The two attended a Jewish summer camp together, and when Ginsburg told her friend about the case she and Martin had found, he agreed that the ACLU would finance its litigation.

Fact: Moritz led to Ginsburg’s continued work with the ACLU

After winning Moritz, Ginsburg co-founded the Women’s Right’s Project at the ACLU in 1972, where she continued the fight to promote gender equality. Without Ginsburg’s work eradicating the laws that discriminate on the basis of sex, the country may not look how it does today: a country which, in spite of its problems, does have very few such laws that remain federally, according to Emily Martin, the vice president for education and workplace justice at the National Women’s Law Center. “It’s definitely the case that as a result of the work that she led, what was once really common in the law no longer is,” Martin tells TIME.

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12.21.18 Clark Stinks; Clark tells the story of how he retired early

Christa reads listener posts about how Clark has missed the mark in his advice this week. If you have a “Clark Stinks” to share you can leave it here; Clark tells his story about how he retired at 31 and why he continues to teach personal finance to millions.

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Watch ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ Video: The Story Continues

Watch 'Mary Poppins Returns' Video: The Story Continues

An award-winning actress as well as an exceptional musical talent, Emily Blunt has now taken on the challenge of starring as a nanny extraordinaire in Mary Poppins Returns, opening soon in theaters everywhere. The film begins as Michael Banks (Ben Whishaw) and his sister Jane (Emily Mortimer) are struggling to deal with tough economic times and the very real danger of losing their family home.

Mary Poppins arrives just in the nick of time. She helps Michael and Jane deal with their…

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Real Housewives of Beverly Hills Season 9 Trailer Promises the “Real Story” Is More Shocking Than the Headlines

Cast, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Season 9Lisa Vanderpump’s final season of RHOBH is comin’ in hot.
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Ginsburg reveals family story to new US citizens

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Why Joan Lee is Such an Important Part of the Stan Lee Story

When Stan Lee died on November 12, 2018, the world mourned the loss of an icon; a figurehead of popular culture. Lee’s contribution to Marvel has had an unprecedented global influence, and it is difficult to imagine the current climate without Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Steve Ditko in the picture, pioneers of the pop-culture world we have come to love. Although Stan became the ‘face’ of modern Marvel because of his film cameos, the Marvel universe — cinematic or otherwise — would have been a very different place if it wasn’t for one key influence. The person who would encourage and support Lee, propelling him to massive success: his wife, Joan Lee. Joan was a writer, voice-over actor, and half of one of comics’ most famous unions for over 50 years.

The Lee Origin Story 

Stan Lee Cameo Thor Ragnarok
Stan Lee in his Thor: Ragnarok cameo.

During the 1960s, Stan, at this time an established writer at Marvel, was employed to write stories he felt lacked emotional core. He was tired of their violence and bravado and believed they lacked character nuance and relatability. He wanted to create something richer, something with a stronger backbone of humility and humanity; traits that would come to define Marvel characters and legacy. On the verge of quitting the business, Joan said the words that became a catalyst for change and set her husband’s path on a different trajectory.

“Why don’t you write one the way you want to write it?” she said. “You’re going to quit anyway, so if he [Stan’s boss] fires you, who cares? But get it out of your system.”

These words marked the turning point in Stan’s career; they gave him the fire to write a story in his vision, not the way he was expected, with characters who were heroic and powerful, relatable yet flawed. He created a family of outsiders who would bicker and fight amongst themselves. The comic he wrote was Fantastic Four (1961). Stan may have written the comic, but Joan Lee had changed the game.

Mother Marvel

The Lee union has always been respected and held with affection by fans. She may be primarily viewed as a guiding force — ‘Mother Marvel’ to many — but the vivacious Joan Lee was a successful woman in her own right before she met and married Lee in 1947.

Born in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in 1922, Joan Boocock quickly established a modelling career in her late teens. However, she strove for more and yearned to escape the cold of the North of England in search of adventure and better times. In 1943, at the age of 21, she married Sanford Dorf Weiss, an American serviceman she had known for 24 hours. Joan had acquired the new life she craved but not the great love story.

“In many aspects, it was a great marriage,” Joan once conceded. “But after living with him a year I was finding him sort of boring…”

Never one to follow convention, the day she divorced Weiss was also the day she married Stan, the two services taking place in adjacent rooms in the same building. They married after dating for two weeks, on December 5, 1947, a union that lasted until Joan’s death 69 years later. In one interview, she described her husband as “the best looking, nicest man I’ve ever known”.

The Real Mary Jane Watson 

Mary Jane in the recent PS4 Spider-Man game.

Joan and Stan’s meeting was not a conventional one. It could have even been written by Mr Lee himself.

Stan once described how he “wanted to get married,” after the war.

“I wanted to live with a girl, I was tired of living with sergeants,” he said.

Having established a reputation as something of a womaniser during his youth, he had arranged to meet — at his friend’s suggestion — “a gorgeous redhead” model in New York on a blind date. However, it was Joan, another flame-haired beauty (albeit a married one) who opened the door instead. He was immediately besotted with this girl from Northern England, informing his friend: “I have drawn that girl’s face a thousand times, I am going to marry her”. Six weeks later, they were married in Reno, Nevada, by the same judge who would preside over Joan’s divorce.

Joan’s “comic-book face” (Stan would always say she had the perfect face for comic books), has been rumoured to have influenced various characters, but never more so than Mary Jane Watson, the beautiful red-haired girl-next-door adored by Peter Parker. MJ was created in Joan’s vision, inspired by Stan’s very first meeting with the woman who would soon become his wife on New York’s Madison Avenue.

Stan’s Personal Superhero

Joan would appear in a number of Stan’s projects, both live-action and animated. Her most significant roles occurred during the 1990s, when she appeared in two animated Marvel shows. She voiced Miss Forbes in Fantastic Four as well as Spider-Man’s Madame Web. Then, of course, there was the obligatory Lee cameo in X-Men: Apocalypse.

Although she is best known for steering the canon, in more ways than we will ever know, Joan was also active behind the scenes, both at Marvel and in her own right. In 1987, she wrote The Pleasure Palace, a novel about a man building the world’s most luxurious ocean liner while romancing several women at the same time. Three more unpublished novels were found among her possessions when she died from stroke-related complications on July 16, 2017.

Despite her husband claiming she had no interest in comics, there is more than a touch of the Starks in this synopsis of Joan’s playboy character, a slight inflection of Howard and Tony. Had Tony Stark really been influenced by Howard Hughes as Stan claimed, or had the seed been planted by Joan’s, at that time, unpublished idea? The movie director Kevin Smith once referred to her as “Stan’s personal superhero” and “Marvel Muse” but Joan was infinitely more than a muse, and who knows how much of an influence her unseen work had as she silently, privately, inspired Stan towards ‘Excelsior’?

‘Spider-Verse’ Producers Want Marvel to Reboot the Film in 2038


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‘Elseworlds, Part 2’ Recap: Batwoman’s ‘Arrowverse’ Story Begins

SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Elseworlds, Part 2” the second part of the 2018 “Arrowverse” crossover, which aired Dec. 10. “Arrow’s” leg of the “Elseworlds” crossover had a little more to think about than “The Flash’s,” mainly because it served as the first introduction to Ruby Rose’s Batwoman. For […]



Trump tries to change the story, but Russia cloud darkens

President Donald Trump is dipping into his playbook of distraction and denial, but even his skills at weaving alternative narratives cannot disguise the growing threat he faces from special counsel Robert Mueller. – RSS Channel – Politics

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What Gabrielle Union Wants Everyone to Learn From Her Story: “There’s Hope” | SuperSoul Sunday | OWN


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Rita Moreno Will Return to WEST SIDE STORY for Steven Spielberg Reboot

Rita Moreno, who famously played Anita in the original 1962 film version of West Side Story, will return for Steven Spielberg’s upcoming adaptation. Moreno will play Valentina, a reconceived version of Doc. She will also serve as an Executive Producer. Featured Content


The Strange Story That Connects Rocky, Muhammad Ali, Andre the Giant, and a Bear

Outside of New Jersey — and boxing fans of a certain age — Charles ‘Chuck’ Wepner isn’t exactly a household name. But his story is as remarkable as it is bizarre, and very possibly inspiration for one of the most beloved characters in film history, Rocky Balboa.

Indeed, Wepner so believes that the Rocky franchise is based on his life that he sued writer/star Sylvester Stallone, with Sly eventually settling out of court. There are definite similarities between the two stories, some of them pretty specific. But Wepner’s life also took twists and turns too ridiculous for a Hollywood movie, his story featuring the likes of Muhammed Ali, Andre the Giant, and a bear called Victor, as well as drugs, prison, and lots and lots of blood.

Birth of The Bayonne Bleeder

Chuck Wepner on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

Born in February 1939, Chuck Wepner grew up on the tough streets of Bayonne, New Jersey, where he learned to fight at a young age. Very much outside the boxing ring. Wepner joined the Marines after seeing the movie Battle Cry. Largely because the characters all attracted beautiful dames. And while there Wepner boxed, his stamina and ability to take a punch quickly making his name.

After leaving the corps, Chuck bounced at a go-go club at night, while he spent his days training as a heavyweight. Running up the steps of the Hudson County Park at the end of sessions, which Stallone DEFINITELY didn’t steal for the Rocky flicks.

Wepner was good at boxing. Really good. Working his way to the very top, and fighting the great George Foreman (who knocked him out), and the great Sonny Liston (who knocked him out). The Liston fight became known as the bloodiest in history, with Wepner needing 72 stitches, and journalists joking that he drank more blood than Dracula over the 10 rounds.

All of which contributed to Chuck becoming known as The Bayonne Bleeder. But those jokes and jibes didn’t stop him landing a fight with ‘The Greatest.’

Chuck Wepner vs Muhammed Ali

In March 1975, Wepner fought Muhammed Ali at Richfield Coliseum, just south of Cleveland. The build-up to the bout was eventful, the pair exchanging heated words on talk shows and at the weigh-in. With Ali somewhat bizarrely vowing to avoid Chuck’s face in the fight.

“He bleeds,” exclaimed Ali during the press conference. “So I’m gonna make another announcement. There will be no shots landed in his face. I will not land one head shot. I will win this fight by laying on the ropes. He’ll get tired. He’ll punch himself to death. And then I’m gonna hit him in the stomach. Hit him in the side. And I will beat him without one punch landing here [motions to Chuck’s head]. I want no excuses about cuts.”

Ali stayed true to his word during the early rounds, tiring Wepner by utilising the ‘rope-a-dope’ tactic he’d used to defeat Foreman in the ‘Rumble in the Jungle.’ But he caught Chuck above the eye in Round 7, and ‘The Bleeder’ started to gush.

In Round 9, however, Wepner did the unthinkable. With a big right-hand to the ribs, he knocked the champ down, only the third time Ali had hit the canvas in his career. The fact that he was standing on Muhammed’s foot at the time of the punch merely a minor detail. Ali was on the ground.

Big mistake. Because Muhammed Ali got up before the 10 count. And Muhammed Ali was mad. He proceeded to pummel Wepner for the rest of the fight, but the Bleeder wouldn’t go down. The fight was finally stopped in the 15th and final round. With just 19 seconds remaining.

In spite of defeat, Chuck exited the ring a hero who had very nearly gone the distance with the greatest fighter of all-time. What he didn’t know was that a young actor was in the crowd and looking for inspiration for his next role. “I said that’s it, that’s me,” Sylvester Stallone claims during ESPN documentary The Real Rocky. “The Bayonne Bleeder — Chuck Wepner — that is the way I feel.”

The first Rocky movie followed a year later, and changed the lives of both men.

Chuck Wepner vs Andre the Giant

Following the Ali fight, promoter Don King had dollar signs in his eyes — as ever — and the World Wide Wrestling Federation saw an opportunity. So a mixed match between Wepner and wrestler Andre the Giant was organised, and touted as the ‘War of the Worlds.’

Playing out in front of 32,000 at Shea Stadium — as the undercard for an Ali fight being beamed in from Japan — the fight was a fake. But it’s nevertheless an entertaining spectacle, the 6ft5, 230-pound Chuck going toe-to-toe with the 7ft, 450-pound Andre.

Both men jab and parry and hold for the first couple of rounds, though it’s pretty clear who holds the ascendancy, with the New York Times reporting: “Wepner was a baby against the giant.” And so in the third round, the orchestrated move occurred, with Andre head-butting Chuck, and tossing him from the ring. Wepner being counted out and losing the war.

Rocky Balboa fighting 'Thunderlips' in Rocky III.

In a strange case of art imitating life — or stealing from life if you happen to be Chuck’s lawyer — Rocky III featured a similar sequence. With Balboa participating in a charity bout with wrestler Thunderlips — played by Hulk Hogan. But all does not go according to plan.

“Alright, guys, you know this is for fun,” says the referee. “So take it easy, and give them a good show.” Thunderlips hasn’t read the script, however, and goes to town on ‘The Italian Meatball,’ taunting Balboa as he clobbers him, and prompting Rocky’s trainer Mickey to shout: “Run for your life!”

Like the Wepner fight, wrestler tosses boxer out the ring. But unlike the Wepner fight, Rocky crawls back in, and somehow throws Thunderlips out. The bout ending in a much more Hollywood-friendly draw.

Chuck Wepner vs Victor the Bear

A ‘Victor the Wrestling Bear’ promotion.

Wepner’s life became something of a circus after the one-two punch of Ali and Andre. With Chuck too often the clown. There were the girls and the booze and the drugs. With a spell in prison for cocaine possession. But maybe the most stupid thing Chuck Wepner did was box a bear. Twice.

Victor is a pretty famous bear, and his story is somewhat tragic. Because while he wrestled — and defeated — dumb humans for most of his life, he was also defanged, declawed, drugged and muzzled for those fights.

In 1976, Victor fought Chuck Wepner as the Convention Hall in Asbury Park, New Jersey. In aid of the Make-a-Wish Foundation. And in spite of those handicaps, Victor beat the proverbial out of his human counterpart.

The plan was for Chuck to signal the bear’s trainer Tuffy Truesdell when he’d had enough. At which point Truesdall would blow a whistle, and Victor would back off. Trouble is, Wepner boxed Victor hard, resulting in the bear throwing Chuck across the ring, and pinning him down so he couldn’t signal to Tuffy.

Wepner ultimately survived the match. But only just. Which makes it all the more insane that he got back in a ring with that very same bear, at a Country Club charity event no less. Speaking to Everlast, Wepner describes the match as follows…

“I’m sitting in the corner. And I’m looking over at this bear sitting there with its beady little eyes. And I said to [trainer] Al: ‘This bear remembers that I hit him a few times. I’m telling you, this bear’s pissed off at me.’ The bell rang. This bear stood up on its hind legs, and I spun around, tried to jump out between the ropes, and the bear took one leap, grabbed my leg, and when he pulled me I got caught in the ropes, and he slung me out about 10 or 12 feet out onto the dinner tables, and everything went splat.

“Two of my buddies picked me up and said, ‘Come on Chuck, get ’em.’ I looked up at the ring, the referee was counting, the bear was standing there. He was up to four, and I said ‘Five-six-seven-eight-nine-ten — that’s it, you win Victor!’ And that was it. I didn’t even get back in the ring. The fight lasted less than a minute.”

Check Wepner vs Sylvester Stallone

There’s no doubt that Chuck enjoyed the fame and notoriety that being the real-life Rocky brought him. Wepner attended screenings where the audience applauded him when the credits rolled. He walked out to the Rocky fanfare before his final fight. And Chuck even formed something of a bond with Sylvester Stallone, who wrote a role for him in Rocky II.

In an early draft of the script, Rocky had a sparring partner called Chink Weber. A name that isn’t a million miles from Chuck Wepner. Stallone asked him to study the script, and travel to Philadelphia for an audition. Trouble is, Chuck was partying hard at that time, picked up some girls for the journey, stayed up most the night, and ended up failing the audition. The character was ultimately cut from the movie.

Their paths crossed again a decade later, when Chuck was serving time in Newark’s Northern State Prison, where Sly was shooting Lock Up. According to Wepner, Stallone embraced him, and told his fellow inmates that Chuck was the real Rocky.

Then in the mid-1990s, Stallone was shooting Cop Land in New Jersey, and Wepner visited the set, where he spoke with Stallone and had his photo taken with Robert De Niro. But according to Chuck, Sly making a movie in his backyard and not involving him was the final straw.

Wepner sued Stallone for a ‘right of publicity’ claim. Stating that the star improperly used his name to promote the Rocky films, and never made good on promises he’d be paid. Stallone countered the suit by claiming that Wepner benefited by making public appearances as ‘The Real Rocky’ for decades.

Unlike the movies, however, there was no dramatic climactic showdown. Rather, Stallone settled the lawsuit out of court for an undisclosed fee. Thereby putting to bed one of the strangest friendships/rivalries in Hollywood history.

The Bleeder vs The Brawler

Chuck wasn’t done with the movies just yet, however. Wepner decided to tell his own story — warts, bears and all — in an official biopic starring Liev Schreiber. Just as Chuck was going into production though, rival feature The Brawler was announced. By producers who had previously worked on Chuck, and who — according to another lawsuit filed by Wepner — stole essential details from his film.

“Comparison between the two scripts, sizzle reels and marketing materials makes it clear that defendants used portions or all of the plaintiff’s script, budget, production schedule, sizzle reel, and other production materials to develop their own copycat film, which defendants apparently intend to release before the authorised Wepner film,” claimed the suit.

Yet again the case was settled out of court for an undisclosed sum. With Chuck ultimately hitting US screens in May 2017, to some acclaim but little financial success. The Brawler meanwhile — which stars Zach McGowan as Chuck — is due for release this December. Doubtless to rather less acclaim…

As for Wepner himself, he’s had all manner of ailments in recent years, including a hip replacement and major back surgery. While he was diagnosed with cancer last year. But as ever, he’s come out fighting, undergoing surgery and chemotherapy. Then taking centre stage at his own celebrity roast.

He’s also readying himself for the imminent unveiling of a Chuck Wepner statue at the Stephen R. Gregg-Bayonne County Park. Which is a bit like a certain celluloid statue stationed at the top of the steps outside the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

A fitting tribute to a remarkable man. And the one time that Chuck Wepner has followed in Rocky Balboa’s footsteps.

5 Best Boxing Games

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Inside the love story between Khalil Mack and Chicago

QBs are king in the NFL, but not in Chicago, where defensive stars reach legendary status. And in Mack, the fans finally have another worthy talent. – NFL
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‘Green Book’ is a touching story of friendship against all odds

For audiences needing a warm break from cold Oscar bait like “First Man,” try “Green Book,” a film that leaves you feeling good instead of like a trauma victim. The lighthearted drama, about a road trip by two men — one white, one black — is unflinchingly optimistic. The movie, set in 1962, is based…
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The One Thing Sarah Paulson Stole From the American Horror Story: Apocalypse Set Will Warm Your Heart

Sarah Paulson, 2018 Emmys, 2018 Emmy Awards, Red Carpet FashionsSarah Paulson has a soft spot in her heart for a certain witch. The American Horror Story: Apocalypse star and director took to Instagram to reveal the one item she took home from the FX series….

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It’s Here! See the First ’Toy Story 4’ Teaser Trailer

The world of Toy Story is getting all forked up! A new toy named Forky wreaks havoc in the first official teaser trailer for Toy Story 4, the next sequel to Pixar’s first feature film and the latest installment of the $ 2 billion franchise.

Toy Story 4
Still from Pixar’s newly released ’Toy Story 4’ teaser trailer.

The 90-second trailer, which the Disney animation company released on Monday, November 12, shows the characters dancing in a circle to the tune of Judy Collins’ folk song “Both Sides, Now.” Woody, Buzz Lightyear, and Jessie hang with Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head, Rex, Hamm, an Alien, Slinky Dog and Forky.

Toy Story 4
Still from Pixar’s newly released ’Toy Story 4’ teaser trailer.


But Forky, a spork decorated with pipe cleaners and googly eyes, isn’t happy-go-lucky like the rest of the characters in the teaser. “I don’t belong here!” he exclaims, breaking the circle and causing a pile-up collision of toys.

“Somebody get him before he pokes an eye out,” Woody says off-screen.


Toy Story 4
Still from Pixar’s newly released ’Toy Story 4’ teaser trailer.

In the YouTube description, Pixar offers a synopsis for the new movie: “Woody has always been confident about his place in the world and that his priority is taking care of his kid, whether that’s Andy or Bonnie. But when Bonnie adds a reluctant new toy called Forky to her room, a road trip adventure alongside old and new friends will show Woody how big the world can be for a toy.”

Toy Story 4 is directed by Josh Cooley, who also helmed the Pixar short Riley’s First Date?, and produced by Inside Out producers Jonas Rivera and Mark Nielsen. Hollywood newcomer Stephany Folsom was tapped to write the script after Parks & Recreation alum Rashida Jones and writing partner Will McCormack opted out of the project. (In a statement, the duo cited “creative and, more importantly, philosophical differences” with Pixar.)

Toy Story 4 is slated for theatrical release on June 21, 2019.

Us Weekly


The True Story Behind Outlaw King: What to Know About Scottish Independence Hero Robert the Bruce

Warning: Contains spoilers for the movie Outlaw King

Increasing anxiety about the U.K.’s preparations for leaving the European Union has some Scots talking about how, in a world of Brexit, they might be able to actually pull off independence.

And whenever talk of Scottish independence ramps up — not infrequently; a referendum on the topic failed in 2014 — people look for lessons in the story of the legendary king who led Scotland to independence in the 14th century: Robert I, also known as Robert the Bruce (Bruce being his family name). So it’s perhaps fitting that, amid the ongoing political turmoil, a dramatization of his story is in theaters and becomes available for streaming on Netflix on Friday. Outlaw King stars Chris Pine (and, yes, all of Chris Pine) and is based on a pivotal period in Scottish history.

The film begins with the English siege of the Scots’ Stirling Castle in 1304, as a Warwolf — a huge medieval trebuchet — lobs boulders at the stronghold, in a motion similar to “an overarm pitch,” explains one of the film’s historical advisors Tony Pollard, Professor of Conflict History & Archaeology at the University of Glasgow (who also served as historical advisor to the TV series Outlander). At that time, most of Scotland’s castles were already occupied by English garrisons, and the King of England, Edward I, was flexing his power as overlord of Scotland and demanding the Scottish elites give him their fealty.

A succession crisis in Scotland had empowered Edward I. There were no heirs to the Scottish throne left after the death of the King of Scots Alexander III in 1286, so the Scottish nobility put together a committee of guardians to keep the government running. After the death of the Queen of Scots Margaret, Maid of Norway, in 1290, the guardians asked Edward I to come serve as an independent arbitrator to evaluate claims to the Scottish throne. As a result, John Balliol became King of Scotland in 1292.

But his reign didn’t last long. After Balliol sought an alliance with France, England’s enemy back then, Edward I himself came back to invade Scotland and drive out Balliol in 1296.

Now the independent kingdom of Scotland was facing direct rule by the English crown. Hard up for cash after the invasion, having “stretched his resources to a breaking point,” Edward I tried to shake down the Scots — including seizing their wool, the country’s main export at the time, according to Dauvit Broun, a professor of Scottish History at the University of Glasgow, who wasn’t involved in the film.

That’s when Robert the Bruce decided that enough was enough. He declared himself King of Scotland.

But in order to rule, Robert had to eliminate the competition. Scottish nobles who backed Balliol had been keeping a government going in his name. To be king, Robert the Bruce would have to get rid of anyone who challenged his own claim to the crown. So in February of 1306 at the church of Greyfriars in Dumfries, Robert the Bruce met with John “The Red” Comyn, one of the most powerful nobles in Scotland, who had been spearheading the effort to establish a Balliol kingship. Comyn didn’t walk away from the meeting alive.

There’s debate about whether Robert the Bruce killed Comyn himself or whether accomplices did, but he’s thought to have been in on it — and in the film, he’s depicted as murdering John “The Red” Comyn himself, which is what many people think happened. Robert the Bruce and his wife Elizabeth de Burgh were inaugurated King and Queen of Scots at Scone shortly after. Not a lot is known about de Burgh, and later in the year she was taken prisoner in England.

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But, though the murder of John Comyn secured his power in one way, it also made Robert the Bruce — who by then called himself King Robert I — a toxic figure in Scottish society. Soon enough, he was forced to flee.

“The most powerful nobles of Scotland treat him as a terrorist,” says Broun. “Not only is Robert I trying to establish an independent Scotland, but [also] he’s facing a civil war.”

In June of 1306, he struggled to keep up with the English army in the Battle of Methven, depicted in the film. “He’s basically an outlaw and the English are trying to bring him to book,” says Pollard. “[Robert the Bruce] comes close to being captured and beaten.”

His time as a fugitive is a mystery to historians.

“Nobody knows where he went when he was fugitive, but it looks like he thought hard about strategy,” says Broun. “He stayed out of a battle until he knew he’d have a better chance of winning, and that was controversial because kings were meant to be military heroes. He resolved that every castle he took he would destroy because he reckoned that, for the King of England to win, he would need to garrison Scotland, and you can’t do that unless you’ve got castles. It’s a bit like taking a bomb and destroying Buckingham Palace. But Robert I took the view that if he was going to win, it was only going to be because he had the support of the people, so he didn’t need castles.”

The film aims to depict Robert I’s military genius by highlighting the guerrilla tactics he used to overthrow the superior military force that was Edward I’s English army. One aspect of that involved creating what Pollard calls a “human porcupine” of sorts, with hundreds of men in one big group holding nearly 20-foot-long spears straight out in front of them.

The Scots also had a home turf advantage in terms of navigating the boggy, marshy battlegrounds. “Bruce deliberately picks land where the strength of the English Army can’t be brought into play,” says Pollard. “The English are knights in armor on horses, and Scots were men on foot, who didn’t have much in the way of cavalry.”

Robert’s first victory as king came in May of 1307 at the Battle of Loudoun Hill, close to his longtime family stronghold of Carrick (now part of Ayrshire).

“It’s significant because it means that he’s no longer just a fugitive,” says Broun. “But he’s still only someone who controls a small region of Scotland, his home region, which is not very different from being a noble — except he claims to be king.”

So the most famous and most important battle in Robert the Bruce’s career came even later, after the period of time covered by the film.

It was the Battle of Bannockburn, in June of 1314 that really paved the way for Scottish independence. Edward I had actually died shortly after the battle of Loudoun Hill, but at Bannockburn, Robert I defeated his successor Edward II.

“The Battle of Bannockburn is really the conclusion of the civil war,” says Broun,”[and] shows everyone who isn’t an inveterate opponent of Robert I that he’s in charge, that he can defeat the King of England. The few nobles who are still swithering say, ‘Okay, the reality is Robert I is in charge.’”

Elizabeth de Burgh is said to have been returned to Robert I after the battle as part of a prisoner exchange. Scotland’s independence from England would be official until the two nations signed the Treaty of Edinburgh in March of 1328. Robert I died the following year but Scotland would remain independent until James VI of Scotland inherited the kingdom of England after the death of Elizabeth I in 1603 and became James I of England. Oliver Cromwell conquered Scotland completely in 1650, and the Scottish and English parliaments merged in May of 1707.

And yet Robert the Bruce’s reputation as a national hero endured.

“He was reduced to being a fugitive and yet managed to restore Scotland as a fully-functioning independent kingdom. This makes his achievement even more remarkable,” Broun says. “He had to improvise constantly and had to work really hard to be king, as opposed to being born into it and not having to struggle for it.”

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The True Story Behind the Movie Can You Ever Forgive Me?

For a collector, the price of a celebrity letter is as much determined by its content as the name signed on the end. The juiciest letters, the ones that offer some hint of Ernest Hemingway or Dorothy Parker’s inner lives, fetch the highest prices. For Lee Israel, a celebrity biographer by trade and the subject of Melissa McCarthy’s new movie Can You Ever Forgive Me?, the best way to acquire such letters was to buy an old typewriter, do a bit of research and bang one out herself.

Israel had been a moderately successful celebrity biographer through the 70s and 80s, writing books about actor Tallulah Bankhead and journalist Dorothy Kilgallen. But in the late 80s, Israel’s career went into decline and she began selling forged letters of dead writers and actors in order to get by. She was eventually brought to trial by the FBI and sentenced to six months under house arrest and five years probation, but not before she had forged more than 400 letters, some of which remain in circulation to this day.

Can You Ever Forgive Me?, which comes out Oct. 19, is based on Israel’s memoir of the same name. Directed by Marielle Heller (The Diary of a Teenage Girl) and starring McCarthy as Israel, the film tells the story of her transformation from writer to forger after her career as a biographer goes into a tailspin.

Here’s what the movie gets right and what it doesn’t.

Fact: Israel had a former girlfriend named Elaine

Israel, portrayed in the movie as a depressed misanthrope with a drinking problem, refers again and again to what seems to be her one real human connection in the past — her relationship with her (ex) girlfriend Elaine (played by Anna Deavere Smith). Near the end of the movie, Israel and Elaine meet again, and it becomes apparent that Elaine has moved on even if Israel, who had pushed her away in the first place, has not. Like many of the movie’s characters, Elaine is a real person. In her memoir, Israel describes falling in love with “a brilliant, beautiful bartender named Elaine, a lapsed Catholic who now observed only Bloomsday and St Patrick’s — the first with solemnity, the latter with wretched excess.”

Fact: Israel had published a poorly received biography of Estée Lauder

Israel’s published Estée Lauder: Beyond the Magic in 1985. The book ended up contributing to the collapse of Israel’s career as a biographer. Lauder herself had offered to pay Israel not to write the biography, and when the author refused, Lauder published her own memoir, which undercut the sales of Israel’s book. Rushed out to beat Lauder’s book to market, Israel’s biography was poorly reviewed — in the The New York Times Book Review, Marylin Bender wrote that Beyond the Magic “comes off as a cut rate job.”

Fact: Israel began selling letters in order to pay for treatment for her sick cat

In the film, Israel takes her cat to the vet, but is short on cash to pay the bill. In her memoir, Israel also claims that she was unable to pay the vet bills for her cat Doris. While researching an article at the Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center, Israel says she stole three letters by Fanny Brice and sold them for $ 40 each. She claimed she felt no guilt for the theft; the letters “were from the realm of the dead. Doris and I were alive.”

Fact: Dealers began to get suspicious of Israel’s letters because they dealt too explicitly with Noël Coward’s homosexuality

In the film, the net begins to close on Israel when a dealer grows suspicious of her Noël Coward letters. In real life, one of Coward’s friends who was also a collector noticed that some of the playwright’s letters that Israel had sold referenced his sexual orientation. While alive, Coward had been extremely discreet about his private life. Many dealers began refusing to buy Israel’s letters after the fakes were exposed.

Fact: After dealers began to catch on to Israel’s embellishments and forgeries, she began stealing real letters

In both the film and the memoir, Israel decides to go into outright theft after her fakes are exposed. “I was going to take a crook’s tour of major university libraries,” she wrote, “replicate some valuable letters in their various collections, and then replace the McCoy with forged copies.”

Fact: A dealer demanded Israel give him money in order for him to not testify against her

In the film, a slimy rare books dealer tells Israel that he was approached by the FBI and demands $ 5,000 to buy his silence. In her memoir, Israel writes that dealer Alan Weiner really did ask for the money. Promising to pay him, she later sold him stolen letters, effectively making him buy his own silence.

Fiction: Israel destroyed the evidence of her crimes after being served with a subpoena that forbid her from doing so

In the film, Israel is served with a subpoena that explicitly forbids her from destroying evidence related to the forgery case. She immediately goes home and destroys all the evidence she can find. According to her account, Israel was only confronted on the street by a pair of FBI agents, which prompted her to go home and dispose of her research materials and typewriters. Of course, it might be fair to take this particular detail of Israel’s recollection with a grain of salt.

Fiction: Israel befriends Jack Hock at a bar after first meeting him at a book party several years earlier

The film fictionalizes much of Israel’s friendship with Jack Hock, a likable grifter played by Richard E. Grant. She befriends Hock at a bar shortly before beginning her forging escapades. In real life, the two had been longtime friends until Israel found out that Hock, who had been shopping one of her books in order to make a movie adaptation, had forged her name on an option extension.

Fiction: Jack Hock was homeless

The film strongly implies that Hock is homeless, or something close to it. But in her memoir, Israel describes staying at Hock’s “well-appointed Mitchell-Lama apartment.” After they begin stealing and selling letters together, Hock moved into an apartment on West 72nd Street.

Fact: Israel caught Hock trying to steal from her

In the film, Hock tries to swindle Israel out of her share of their ill-got earnings. This episode played out in real life remarkably similarly to the way it does in the film. Hock, claiming to have sold a collection of stolen letters for $ 1500, gave Israel $ 750. When she asked to see the rest of the money, it was revealed that he had actually been paid $ 2,000 for the letters. After the incident, Israel began accompanying Hock to their sales and waiting to meet him nearby when the deal was completed.

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5 Must-See Anime for Fans of ‘American Horror Story’

Ryan Murphy’s American Horror Story has filled our nights with paranormal activities. From a house haunted by the corrupt spirits of its victims to a coven of witches seeking to become supreme, fans can’t get enough of its ingenuity. But if you’re an anime fan, you’re in luck —  there are countless shows and movies like the American anthology series. So here are five anime to watch if you like American Horror Story.

Midori (Mr. Arashi’s Amazing Freak Show)

anime to watch if you like American Horror Story Midori or Mr. Arashi's Amazing Freak Show

Starting off our list is Midori, one of the most disturbing movies in anime history. The film centers around a young girl named Midori who, after selling paper flowers to go on a school trip, finds her ailing mother dead. With no one to help her, she turns to a circus run by the creepy Mr. Arashi.

The circus’ acts include snake women, people getting eaten by ants, and performers twisting and turning into impossible shapes. But instead living a joyous life with the circus people, she’s assaulted and forced to perform horrifying acts on stage, like biting a chicken’s eye out. Thankfully, things start to look up for Midori when the magician, Masamitsu “The Bottled Wonder,” brings her under his wing. Is Midori’s luck about to change? Or are things too good to be true?

From bizarre acts that would make you sick to your stomach to humorous scenes, Midori is an ero-guro (erotic grotesque) film that American Horror Story fans will love.


anime to watch if you like American Horror Story Kagewani

One way to boost website traffic is to post about things that people are naturally curious about, like cryptid sightings. And that’s the plan that a video blogger concocts. But things become too real when an actual monster kills his entire crew.

Elsewhere, on a school campus, a sandworm creature is hunting down a group of students, killing them one by one. And more of these attacks take place all over the country.

Sousuke Banba, a researcher with a profound interest in unidentified mysterious animals, explores these events. Soon enough, he gets a break with the word “Kagewani.” The mysterious word leads him to find various connections between a pharmaceutical company and the strange animal attacks.

Did you love the suspense of Asylum or Roanoke? Then don’t waste any time and watch Kagewani. Its picturesque style of animation and use of dark colors brings the creepy factor of American Horror Story. Since it’s shorter than the standard length, it quickly gets to the point with several jump scares and other freaky surprises.

Devilman: Crybaby

anime to watch if you like American Horror Story Devilman Crybaby

There are a lot of things that go bump in the night, including creatures of the netherworld, who feast on the living. The only way to defeat these monsters is to use their own power against them. Akira Fudo, a sensitive and caring young man, gets dragged by his best friend, Ryo Asuka, to fight these creatures, thus becoming a Devilman.

This brings him to the seedy underworld of demons where only bloodshed and death exists. Even so, Akira’s new abilities awaken an insatiable and primal part of him, while also giving him a lean yet sturdy physique. Now, he and Ryo must destroy the demons that bring harm to humanity and their loved ones.

As one of the best anime to premiere on Netflix, Devilman Crybaby gives a new spin to the horror genre, much like American Horror Story. Its new style yet colorful animation and awesome soundtrack featuring catchy Japanese rap tunes are only a few of the reasons to turn on Netflix and give the series a try.


anime to watch if you like American Horror Story Memories

In the sci-fi horror movie Memories, three seemingly unrelated stories come together to reveal the true narrative. This is a similar approach to how all the seasons of American Horror Story are related, but each brings its unique take to the genre.

The first story, Magnetic Rose, takes place in outer space where two space engineers find a mansion, revealing the tragic fate of a renowned opera singer. However, hallucinations start to take over and they must do everything they can to retain their sanity.

Back on earth, in Stink Bomb, a lab technician accidentally takes several pills that enhance his flatulence to a lethal degree, killing everyone around him. Now, he must take refuge in his company’s headquarters all the way in Tokyo. But, with military forces after him will the lab tech be able to hold it in?

Lastly, in Cannon Fodder, there’s a boy who wants to become an artillery officer in a fortress city. The young boy spends his days dreaming of firing a cannon for the sake of the fatherland.

Kakurenbo: Hide & Seek

anime to watch if you like American Horror Story Kakurenbo

An innocent kids’ game ventures into the horror territory in the short anime film Kakurenbo: Hide & Seek. The movie centers around a group of kids playing the Japanese version of hide and seek, Otokoyo. But, instead of playing in a safe location near adults, they venture into the abandoned ruins of a Kowloon-like city. Rumor has it that a demon appears and takes away children who dare to play the game. To make matters more spooky, some kids have indeed disappeared.

Even though Kakurenbo: Hide & Seek doesn’t have the bloodfest of Hotel or the intricate storyline of Asylum, the movie does deliver a bucket load of suspense and creativity that American Horror Story is known for. From its animation that comes to life thanks to cell shading to its tense mood and easy-to-follow plot, the movie builds up the suspense factor without not much storytelling.

At less than half an hour long, Kakurenbo: Hide & Seek makes for a great horror snack between AHS episodes.

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