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Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2023-12-13



SHOWBIZ Queer musicians, Marvel situation, Elliot Page, Nicole Kidman
by Andrew Davis

This article shared 10587 times since Thu Mar 21, 2024
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Queer musician Joy Oladokun released the single "I Wished on the Moon," from Jack Antonoff's official soundtrack for the new Apple TV+ series The New Look, per a press release. The soundtrack, curated and produced by Antonoff, features covers of popular early-to-mid-twentieth century songs performed by artists including Bleachers, Florence + The Machine, Lana Del Rey, The 1975, Beabadoobee, Nick Cave, Perfume Genius and more. It will be the first release on Shadow Of The City, Antonoff's new imprint at the independent label Dirty Hit.

Out Grammy-nominated, chart-topping saxophonist Dave Koz puts a modern spin on songs from classic animated Disney films on his new EP, Dave Koz Does Disney, a press release noted. The EP includes songs from a wide range of Disney eras—from Pinocchio's "When You Wish Upon A Star" and Mulan's "Reflection" to "Let It Go" from Frozen and Encanto's "Dos Oruguitas," a song written by Lin-Manuel Miranda."As a lifelong Disney fan, I always knew there would come a time I'd do a project centered around the amazing songs in the Disney repertoire. This year being the 100th anniversary, it seemed like the perfect time," Koz said in a statement.

Illinoise—the dance-musical stage adaptation of out musician Sufjan Stevens' 2005 concept album Illinois—will transfer from off-Broadway's Park Avenue Armory to Broadway's St. James Theatre next month, arriving just a day before this season's Tony Award eligibility cut-off date, per Deadline. The production—featuring direction and choreography from Justin Peck as well as a book by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Jackie Sibblies Drury—will start performances with a matinee at the St. James on Wed., April 24. In an extremely busy late-season Broadway schedule, Illinoise becomes the 14th show scheduled to open between April 11 and April 25, joining such productions as Uncle Vanya, The Great Gatsby, and The Heart of Rock and Roll.

Non-binary Australian-American R&B artist Forest Claudette has released the single "Gold," per a Warner Records press release. The track arrives ahead of their upcoming EP Jupiter, which will be released on May 3. "Gold" arrives on the heels of the single "Kobe Beef" and Claudette's cover of the Red Hot Chili Peppers' classic track "Can't Stop." Upcoming tour stops include Los Angeles, Brooklyn, Copenhagen, Brighton (UK), London and Sydney.

Marvel Studios fired Beau DeMayo, the out gay man who created the Disney+ show X-Men '97, Out reported. DeMayo's Instagram has been deleted, and Marvel gave no reason for the firing. DeMayo was expected to attend the show's Hollywood premiere that took place on March 13. DeMayo had previously written for another Marvel show, Moon Knight, and worked on early drafts of the upcoming movie Blade; he had already written two seasons of X-Men '97 and was said to be working on a third. According to the subreddit MarvelStudiosSpoilers, Jeff Sneider said on the The Hot Mic podcast that DeMayo was allegedly fired, in part, because he was "probably difficult to work with," adding that "I don't think the OnlyFans stuff helped." DeMayo was a prolific poster, but his OnlyFans account did not feature nudity. Brad Winderbaum—the head of streaming, television and animation at Marvel Studios—told EW, "I can't talk about the details, but I can say that Beau had real respect and passion for these characters and wrote what I think are excellent scripts that really the rest of the team were able to draw inspiration from [to] build this amazing show that's on screen." He called the situation with DeMayo a parting of ways instead of a firing.

Speaking at the BFI Flare, London's LGBTQ+ film festival, Elliot Page took aim at the idea that queer films are for a small audience, NBC News noted. He said that "30% of young people identify as LGBTQ," referring to a survey released earlier this year about Gen Z adults in the United States. "So I'm sorry, but this is not niche." Page also discussed coming out as trans to The Umbrella Academy creator/showrunner Steve Blackman before shooting the third season of the series, and how it was then woven into the storyline.

Oscar-winning actress Nicole Kidman revealed to Elle that she wants to perform her viral, often-quoted, regularly parodied 2021 AMC ad with one of the queer artists who has re-created the number, per EW. "My dream will be to be onstage doing it with a drag queen," she said. "I've got to be able to do that at some point." Among many drag acts who've mounted satirical presentations of the commercial, RuPaul's Drag Race alum Katya filmed a spoof for her traveling tour with fellow queen Trixie Mattel.

Five members of the LGBTQ+ community have accused drag personality Shangela of sexual assault or coercion, per The Hollywood Reporter, citing a Rolling Stone article. Shangela (real name: Darius Jeremy Pierce) settled a previous rape case that allegedly took place on the set of the HBO series We're Here through mediation in February. All five told the magazine that they came forward after HBO production assistant Daniel McGarrigle filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court accusing Pierce of drugging and raping him after a 2020 wrap party. An attorney representing Pierce has denied all claims.

More than 1,000 Jewish creatives, executives and Hollywood professionals have signed an open letter denouncing director Jonathan Glazer's The Zone of Interest Oscar speech, per Variety. The development happened after The Zone of Interest executive producer Danny Cohen became the first member of the film's production team to publicly address Glazer's speech, saying "I just fundamentally disagree with Jonathan." While accepting the Academy Award for best international film, Glazer delivered a set of pre-written remarks in which he compared his Holocaust film to the current conflict in Gaza. The open letter has signees including actors (Debra Messing, Tovah Feldshuh), executives (Gary Barber, Gail Berman), creators (Amy Sherman-Palladino), directors (Eli Roth, Rod Lurie) and more.

However, out Oscar-nominated playwright Tony Kushner has come out in support of Glazer's speech, describing the British director's comments at the ceremony as an "unimpeachable irrefutable statement," The Hollywood Reporter noted. Speaking on the Haaretz Podcast, Kushner replied "Of course—I mean, who doesn't?" when he was asked if he agreed with Glazer's comments. Kushner added, "What [Glazer's] saying is so, is so simple. He's saying Jewishness, Jewish identity, Jewish history, the history of the Holocaust, the history of Jewish suffering must not be used as an excuse for a project of dehumanizing or slaughtering other people."

At the Human Rights Campaign's (HRC's) Los Angeles dinner on March 23 at the Fairmont Century Plaza, actress Jean Smart will receive the National Equality Award while Oscar-nominated actor Sterling K. Brown (American Fiction) will receive the Ally for Equality Award, per a press release. First Lady Dr. Jill Biden will deliver the evening's keynote speech. Additional guests are slated to include Alexandra Billings, Ashlee Marie Preston, Blossom Brown, Madison Werner, Lazarus Lynch, Kevin Ninh (i.e. Kevin Flawless), Maeta, Godoy, Kerri Colby, Aura Mayari and more.

Will & Grace star Eric McCormick, who identifies as straight, was recently interviewed on ITV—where he was asked about the debate of a straight actor taking on a gay role, Deadline noted. "That's a tough one for me because I didn't become an actor so that I could play an actor," McCormack said on Good Morning Britain. "There's no part I've ever played where I wasn't playing something I'm not. It's part of the gig." He added, "If gay actors weren't allowed to play straight actors, Broadway would be over. So this is what we do." McCormack also noted that he wants to think that he represented the LGBTQ+ community well.

While at Lenny Kravitz's Hollywood Walk of Fame ceremony, Denzel Washington joked that they're so close that their friendship may have transcended platonic boundaries, per EW. Washington honored his longtime friend with a speech about the meaning of "friendship," literally. "I looked it up, Webster's," Washington said. "A person who one knows, and with whom one has a bond of mutual affection, typically exclusive of sexual relations." Washington paused and glanced at Kravitz, and continued, "Well…" jokingly suggesting that their friendship might have crossed a line or two. The event also included a roast from Kravitz's daughter, actress Zoe Kravitz.

On April 9, Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) will present Fresh Kill, marking the New York/USA premiere of a new 35-mm print restoration by Shu Lea Cheang, per a press release. The recipient of the 2024 LG Guggenheim Award, Cheang directs this "eco-satire in which a lesbian couple [played by Sarita Choudhury and Erin McMurtry] live on Staten Island [and] find themselves ensnared in a vast conspiracy involving a ghost ship of nuclear refuse, ominous television commercials and deadly cat food," according to the release. In June, BAM will also spotlight Cheang by hosting a retrospective of all four works of Cheang's Sci Fi New Queer Cinema: Fresh Kill (1994), I.K.U. (2000), Fluido (2017) and UKI (2023).

The 55th NAACP Image Awards continued to honor Black excellence recently, with Queen Latifah hosting the live telecast, Deadline noted. Among other honorees, The Color Purple continued its winning streak on the final night of the Awards, winning Outstanding Motion Picture; Fantasia Barrino also took the award for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture, with co-stars Colman Domingo and Taraji P. Henson winning their respective categories. Domingo, who's openly gay, also won an award for Rustin in the Outstanding Actor category. Usher was named Entertainer of the Year the same night the artist received the President's Award. Abbott Elementary was named Outstanding Comedy Series and Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story was named Outstanding Drama Series two days earlier.

Queer Tony, Grammy, and Emmy winner Ben Platt is set to play a three-week concert residency at Broadway's refurbished Palace Theatre, per Playbill. The concert is the first announced tenant for the historic venue, which closed in 2018 to be lifted and make room for new retail space below. Platt will give 18 performances May 28-June 15 in celebration of his upcoming third album, Honeymind. (Tony winner Michael Arden will direct the residency.) The Palace Theatre has hosted legendary performers such as Judy Garland, Josephine Baker, Harry Belafonte, Elvis Presley, Shirley MacLaine, Bette Midler, Diana Ross, Liza Minnelli and more. The venue's last show was 2017's SpongeBob SquarePants.

Recently, Barbie released its newest "role model" dolls—featuring dolls made in the likenesses of Viola Davis, Shania Twain, Dame Helen Mirren, Kylie Minogue and other inspiring women—to celebrate International Women's Day and commemorate Barbie's 65th anniversary, USA Today noted. Eight influential women from eight different countries had dolls created in their likenesses to honor and recognize how they "embody the brand's mission to inspire stories to shape the future," said Krista Berger, the senior vice president of Barbie and Global Head of Dolls.

The Gucci family saga that Ridley Scott's movie House of Gucci introduced is set for another take—this time in the TV sphere, and with the real Gucci family as part of the production team, Variety noted. Gaumont, the French film and television group behind Narcos and the upcoming fashion world series Becoming Karl Lagerfeld, has signed an agreement with producer Giorgio Gucci, who represents the Gucci family, to make a TV series about the rise of the iconic Gucci brand.

Olivia Benson—the iconic character portrayed by Mariska Hargitay on Law & Order: SVU" since 1999—was immortalized at NYC's Rockefeller Center to commemorate the series' 25th anniversary, per The New York Daily News. In honor of the beloved detective on the long-running NBC procedural, the character's name temporarily took over 30 Rock with an immersive pop-up. There were free drinks as well as a photo booth. There was also a kiosk offering commemorative 25th-anniversary newspapers, limited-edition T-shirts and black tote bags with the show's famous "Dun Dun" sound effect printed on the front.

Sam Taylor-Johnson's film Back to Black, based on the life of the late British singer Amy Winehouse, will be released in U.S. theaters on May 17—but the soundtrack, Back To Black: Songs from the Original Motion Picture, will be available on April 12 via UMR/Island Records/Republic Records, per a press release. The 12-song set features three original recordings from Amy's highly influential debut, Frank; three songs from Winehouse's multi-award-winning album Back To Black; and a new track, "Song for Amy," sung by Nick Cave. Also, five songs from artists who were an inspiration to Winehouse—The Shangri-Las, Billie Holiday, Minnie Riperton, Dinah Washington and Sarah Vaughan—will also be featured on the album.

To no one's surprise, Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour broke records on Disney+, per Deadline. The movie garnered 4.6 million views, making it the number-one music film ever on the platform per the studio. These viewership numbers are based on only three days of streaming; views released for other movie premieres on Disney+ were based on five days of viewing (i.e. The Little Mermaid, Elemental). The Disney+ edition of the concert featured the performances of new songs by the 14-time Grammy winner such as "cardigan" as well as four additional acoustic songs: "Maroon," "Death by a Thousand Cuts," "You Are in Lov," and "I Can See You."

Grammy-winning, multi-platinum recording artist, and international superstar, Ariana Grande debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 with her critically acclaimed new album eternal sunshine—marking her sixth #1 album, per a press release. It also debuted in the top spot on the Spotify Global Top Albums Chart, US iTunes Chart, US Apple Music Chart, Billboard Top Album Sales and Top Streaming Albums charts. Recently, Grande appeared on Saturday Night Live as the musical guest, performing "we can't be friends (wait for your love)" and "imperfect for you."

The eight-episode second season of House of the Dragon will debut June 16 on HBO and will be available to stream on Max., per a press release. Westeros is on the brink of a bloody civil war with the Green and Black Councils fighting for King Aegon and Queen Rhaenyra, respectively. Returning cast members include Matt Smith, Olivia Cooke, Emma D'Arcy, Eve Best, Steve Toussaint, Fabien Frankel, Ewan Mitchell and others.

Cara Delevingne's home in Studio City, California, was consumed by fire—causing the roof to collapse and seemingly leading to the deaths of the model's two cats, People reported. According to the Los Angeles Fire Department, firefighters arrived to find heavy fire in the rear of the 6,650-square-foot home. It's unclear who was staying in the home in her absence (as she was in London), but the fire department confirmed an occupant sustained minor smoke inhalation.

Climate-change protestors disrupted a performance of the Broadway' production An Enemy of the People, Variety noted. The disturbance briefly halted the play and resulted in several of the cast members, including star Michael Imperioli, helping to usher them out of the theater. The activists—who identified themselves as Extinction Rebellion—interrupted the performance three times before Imperioli (without breaking character) began pushing one of the protestors toward the exit.

Sources say the host of HBO's Real Time fired CAA, his reps for more than two decades, after he was not invited to openly gay CEO Bryan Lourd's private Oscar party at his home, per The Hollywood Reporter. Maher was reportedly furious that he was snubbed for the event. The party at Lourd's home drew J.J. Abrams, Barry Diller, Kamala Harris, Margot Robbie, Bob Iger, Alan Bergman, Dana Walden, Brian Robbins, Jason Blum, Brian Grazer, Donna Langley, Pam Abdy and such CAA clients as Julia Roberts and Jennifer Aniston, among others.

Andy Cohen weighed in on the drama surrounding Mauricio Umansky and the Hiltons following Paris Hilton's scathing remarks about revelations on his Netflix show, Page Six noted. Cohen defended Umansky on his SiriusXM show, Radio Andy, that it was "his story to tell." In the "Buying Beverly Hills" episode, Umansky brings up his fallout with the Hilton family that occurred after he left their Hilton & Hyland real estate agency in Los Angeles more than a decade ago. "My father is a consummate gentleman and has always taken the higher road. He would never speak negatively about his family-especially in the press," Paris wrote. "Frankly, we are all sick of him using the Hilton name every chance he gets to plug his lame show. It is enough already."

This article shared 10587 times since Thu Mar 21, 2024
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