Tyra Banks returns to 'America's Next Top Model' as host

Published: Thursday, March 16, 2017 @ 6:24 PM

Supermodel Tyra Banks returns as host to
Supermodel Tyra Banks returns as host to "America's Next Top Model." (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Cosmopolitan)(Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Cosmopolitan)

Tyra Banks is heading back to her roots and returning to host her long-running reality TV show, “America’s Next Top Model.”

The retired supermodel, mother and business woman announced on Twitter that she missed the show and will be back for the 24th season, referred to as a cycle.

Variety reported that production on the new cycle begins this summer.

After running on CW Network for decades -- initially on UPN before The CW was formed --  the show was canceled. VH1 picked up the show, retooled and restyled it and singer and actress Rita Ora was on board as host, with celebrity stylist Law Roach, model Ashley Graham and Paper magazine chief creative officer Drew Elliot as judges. Banks remained on as executive producer and appeared on the first and last episode of the cycle. Executive producer Ken Mok also remained on board since the series’ move to VH1.

Despite a rumor reported by tabloid site OK Magazine that Banks wanted Ora out, the supermodel thanked the singer for her work on the 23rd cycle.

“I’m overwhelmed and humbled by the intensity of the ‘ANTM’ fan base whose deep affection for the show led me to have a change of heart. After giving it a lot of thought, I realized that remaining behind the camera wasn’t enough because ‘ANTM’ is woven into my DNA,” said Banks in a statement.

“Tyra has always been the heart and soul of the franchise and her absence was deeply felt by our fiercely loyal fans who missed their Queen of the Smize,” Mok said. “We’d like to thank Rita Ora for being a great partner and total pro. She infused this new iteration of ‘ANTM’ with passion and creativity and we wish her nothing but the best in her future endeavors.”

There has been no word on whether the judges will be replaced.

Banks will be on more than one network this year. In addition to VH1, Banks is the new host of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.” Former host Nick Cannon congratulated her on the gig with a bouquet of flowers.

Mary J. Blige receives record-setting Oscar nominations for ‘Mudbound’

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 3:44 PM

2018 Oscars Top Nominations

Mary J. Blige shed happy tears when she learned she earned her first-ever Oscar nomination Tuesday morning.

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“My phone rang at about 5:30 a.m. and it was my publicist, Amanda, and she was screaming,” she told USA Today. “And I don’t know what it is so I’m screaming and I’m crying! It’s just a really emotional time. We’re not taking this lightly because things like this don’t happen. And it did.”

Related: Oscar nominations: ‘The Shape of Water,’ ‘Dunkirk,’ ‘Three Billboards,’ lead nominees

The singer is nominated for best supporting actress for “Mudbound.” She plays Florence Johnson, a sharecropper’s wife, in the film.

“I just can’t stop crying,” Blige said.

Mary J. Blige is earned two Oscar nominations for best supporting actress and best original song for "Mudbound."(EPK.tv)

Blige has a lot to be happy about. The same day, she earned a second nod for best original song for “Mighty River,” which she wrote and recorded for the post-World War II era Netflix movie set in the Deep South. Raphael Saadiq and Taura Stinson also share writing credits on the song.

Related: Jordan Peele makes history with ‘Get Out’ Oscar nomination

The double nomination makes Blige the first person of any gender to be nominated for best supporting actress and best original song in the same year.

Although the record is a historic one, Blige expressed disappointment that the film’s director, Dee Rees, wasn’t nominated for best director. Rees is still nominated for best adapted screenplay with Virgil Williams.

Blige told USA Today she hopes people take away a message of hope from the film.

“What I hope that people take away is that no matter how bad or how awful things get or look or people treat us, we cannot give up on ourselves,” she said. “And we have to continue to look at the negative as an opportunity to do something positive, to change something.”

“Love is the answer. Love is the silver lining trough the whole movie,” she said.

James Franco, ‘Wonder Woman’ among Oscar nomination snubs

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 2:32 PM

What You Need To Know: James Franco

Nominations were announced for the 90th Academy Awards‬‬ Tuesday, and although a number of actors and filmmakers and films have multiple noms, some names expected to be called were snubbed.

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According to The Hollywood Reporter, James Franco was considered by many to likely be nominated for his role  in “The Disaster Artist.” The actor, who faces multiple sexual misconduct allegations, was not among those nominated. “The Disaster Artist” only received one nomination for adapted screenplay for screenwriters Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber.

This image released by A24 shows James Franco in a scene from "The Disaster Artist." Franco failed to receive an Oscar nomination for best actor on Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018. (Justina Mintz/A24 via AP)(Justina Mintz/AP)

Related: Oscar nominations: ‘The Shape of Water,’ ‘Dunkirk,’ ‘Three Billboards,’ lead nominees

“Wonder Woman” was not nominated for any awards, technical or otherwise, despite being a high-grossing blockbuster last year. The star of the film, Gal Gadot, was also not nominated, Deadline reported.

Despite tremendous box office success, “Wonder Woman" and the film's star, Gal Gadot, received no Oscar nominations. (Warner Bros. Entertainment and RATPAC Entertainment, LLC)(Warner Bros. Entertainment and RATPAC Entertainment, LLC)

Tom Hanks was considered snubbed when he did not receive a Best Actor nomination for his role in “The Post.” Deadline reported that his co-star Meryl Streep received her 21st Oscar nomination overall for her role in the film. The movie also has a best picture nomination, but director Steven Spielberg was not nominated.

Streep is set to join other nominees at the 90th Academy Awards March 4.

2018 Oscars Top Nominations(Warner Bros. Entertainment and RATPAC Entertainment, LLC)

Jordan Peele makes history with ‘Get Out’ Oscar nomination

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 12:08 PM

What You Need To Know About Jordan Peele

Jordan Peele’s directorial debut, “Get Out,” has earned him an Oscar nomination for Best Director. The nomination puts him among just four other black directors nominated for the award.

>> Read more trending news 

The Los Angeles Times reported that John Singleton (“Boyz n the Hood”), Lee Daniels (2009’s “Precious”), Steve McQueen (2013’s “12 Years a Slave”) and Barry Jenkins (2017’s “Moonlight”) have all previously been nominated in the Oscar category.

If Peele wins, he would be the first black director to have an Academy Award.

Related: Oscar nominations: ‘The Shape of Water,’ ‘Dunkirk,’ ‘Three Billboards,’ lead nominees

Peele has already made history as the first black filmmaker nominated for writing, producing and directing in the same year, according to Esquire

The feat doesn’t seem lost on Peele. He tweeted gratitude after the nominations were announced.

“Right now I’m just thinking about everyone who bought a ticket and told someone else to. You did this. Thank you,” he wrote.

“Get Out” star Daniel Kaluuya also received an Oscar nomination for Best Actor. “I just spoke to Daniel,” Peele wrote on Twitter. “You know when you’re on the phone trying to disguise the sound of an ugly cry? I failed at that.”

The Oscars are March 4.

2018 Oscars Top Nominations

#BlackPantherChallenge sends internet into frenzy

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 2:38 PM

Marvel Studios
(Marvel Studios)

“Black Panther” is one of the most anticipated movies of the year, and thousands of children may have a chance to see it for free thanks to the #BlackPantherChallenge

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Earlier this month, Frederick Joseph, of New York, launched a GoFundMe to help students from the Boys & Girls Club of Harlem “see a black major cinematic and comic book character come to life,” he wrote on the campaign page. He set a goal of $10,000 and nearly quadrupled that amount, raking in more than $40,000 in a few weeks.

>> Related: Man raises more than $30,000 on GoFundMe to help Harlem kids see 'Black Panther'

With all of the attention he garnered, including an appearance on the “The Ellen Show,” he began asking others to start similar fundraisers in their own communities. 

“This representation is truly fundamental for young people, especially those who are often underserved, unprivileged, and marginalized both nationally and globally,” he said.

People seem to have answered the call, because 90 campaigns have been created, with more than $100,000 raised, Joseph announced this week

A ton of celebrities have gotten involved, too, including Jemele HillSnoop DoggChelsea Clinton and most recently Viola Davis and the film’s star Chadwick Boseman.