Posts tagged with "Emmy"

Alex Bogdan illustration for 360 MAGAZINE of Jazmine Sullivan.

ESSENCE × Jazmine Sullivan

ESSENCE’s July/August 2021 issue features GRAMMY nominated singer Jazmine Sullivan and EMMY award-winning actor Yahya Abdul-Mateen II on its two covers dedicated to the “ESSENCE Festival of Culture” and “Summer Screen Kings” respectively.

In the piece, Jazmine’s Tale, the singer and ESSENCE Festival of Culture Presented by Coca-Cola headliner (which will stream across two weekends June 25-27 and July 2-4 on ESSENCE’s website and on ESSENCE Studios) slays in bold colors and white-hot looks from Stella McCartney, Fendi, Cong Tri, Aliette, Alix NYC and more. She opens up to Insecure co-creator/writer/producer Issa Rae about the importance of holding space for Black women, therapy and the freedom of sharing her own journey. She talks to Rae about:

  • ON HAVING A MASTER PLAN…OR NOT: “I wish I could say I had a master plan, but I really didn’t. I was just doing what felt natural, and luckily I had gotten with a record company and with people who allowed me to do that. But for me, I just wanted to express myself in the most natural way, and that means me writing my stories. So many of the songs at that time came from a lot of the childish stuff I was going through. For example, busting windows out of an ex’s car and literally going straight from doing it to not being able to sleep. I was restless, because I was still in the moment. And so I just started writing about it. I let my girlfriends hear it, and they were like, ‘Girl, do your thing—whatever this leads to.’ And it led to my world opening up in such a different way…”
  • ON TELLING BLACK WOMEN’S STORIES: “Before now, I had really just been concerned about expressing myself and getting my story out there—and people have connected to that. But for this project, it was important for me to share the stories of the women I love and hold dear to my heart. I feel like they are just as banging and dynamic as me. And I want to give space and opportunity to women, period…”
  • ON MAKING SPACE FOR OTHER BLACK WOMEN: “I feel like we get caught up in thinking there’s ‘only one’ of us. There can only be one R&B superstar; there can only be one rap girl at a time. That’s not true. God was not stingy when He was giving out gifts. And you’re not the only person. There are many other women, especially Black women, who can do what you do. And let’s all create spaces for each other to get out there and do that…”
  • ON FINDING THE RIGHT THERAPIST: “The first five minutes I was holding back tears, because I was like, ‘Wow, this is the first time I’m actually speaking about my feelings. And it’s not in a song. It doesn’t require notes. I don’t need to impress anybody with what it is that I’m actually doing. This is the first time.’ So I was holding back tears even doing that. But after that first five minutes, I was surprised by how much I was enjoying speaking to somebody, and somebody listening to me, and I didn’t have to perform to do it. But finding the right therapist is a process—because I went to therapy one time, years ago, and I hated the experience, and I feel like it stopped me from going for a long time. And then I found this new lady, and it’s a totally different experience. So you have to find the right person for you, that you actually want to open up to. But once you do that, a weight lifts off of you—just from speaking, just from telling your story. And that’s what Heaux Tales was. It’s like, ‘Tell it, girl. Tell it. Set yourself free.’”

In the piece, Summer Screen Kings, it’s obvious that leading man Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is here to stay. Given the space he has carved out for himself in Hollywood, the meaning of his name (which, roughly translated from Arabic, means “Graced by God”) seems particularly prescient. At 35 and a towering 6 feet 3 inches tall, Yahya’s imprint in Hollywood continues expanding. Weeks away from the release of his first leading role in Candyman (in theaters August 27), Yahya will also star in The Matrix 4, the newest installment in the Matrix franchise, as well as his third action flick, Ambulance, next year. As he heats up the issue in designers including Fendi, Hermes, Gucci and more, he talks to ESSENCE Senior Entertainment Editor Brande Victorian about what really drew him to acting, his definition of sexy and whether a rom-com is next on his list of achievements:

  • ON WHAT IT REALLY MEANS TO BE SEXY: “I don’t think sexy tries. Ease is sexy. It’s nice to have a little bit of mystery, and if I’m being perfectly honest, it’s not for me to say whether I’m attractive or not. It’s for me to have self-confidence. Confidence is sexy…”
  • ON HOW HIS CURIOSITY DREW HIM TO ACTING: “I wasn’t itching to be a star or anything like that. I wasn’t thinking about movies or television. I just started following my curiosity…I got here by staying curious, by staying humble, and also knowing that there’s so much more that I want to do…I think I’ve done a lot on other people’s terms. I’ve been able to step into projects that were already written before my name was attached, and I’m so thankful that I was able to step in and support those projects. But now I’m at a place where I’m looking to come into rooms with my own ideas, and develop those ideas and tell my own stories. I think that’s the next chapter…”
  • ON WHETHER A ROM-COM IS IN HIS FUTURE: “We need more romance…We have adventure. We have action. We’ve got a lot of stories about trauma, because trauma is very present in our world right now. But we also need love. We need more straight-up, old-school romance. I don’t mind putting my hand up and stepping into that place to say, ‘I’ll be your man, girl.’ I don’t mind that at all…”
  • ACTRESS/DIRECTOR REGINA KING ON YAHYA’S DEDICATION TO THE WOMEN IN HIS LIFE: “That man talks about his sisters and his mother with so much love and so much appreciation…I think that was one of the reasons why we connected so well. It doesn’t always work that way with actors, that you feel safe enough to be so forthcoming with your personal life, but we did that literally day one. His love for the women in his life, he leads with that…”

ESSENCE’s “Summer Screen Kings” package also features hot actors Don Cheadle (Space Jam: A New Legacy), Omar Sy (Lupin), Aaron Pierre (OLD) and Mekai Curtis (Raising Kanan). For more on this issue, which hits newsstands on June 29, visit ESSENCE For more information on the virtual ESSENCE Festival of Culture Presented by Coca-Cola, visit ESSENCE’s Festival website

All Photos: Brad Ogbonna

Town & Country 8th Philanthropy Summit – Marlo Thomas × Phil Donahue

The 8th annual Town & Country Philanthropy Summit continued today with a wonderful conversation between Marlo Thomas and Phil Donahue, moderated by Editor in Chief Stellene Volandes. This is the first time that Phil has interviewed Marlo since they first met on the Donahue show decades ago.

Please see below for highlights from the panel as well as a link to view the interview in its entirety:

Marlo on visiting St. Jude following her father’s death:

“After my father died, it was just a terrible shock to us. It was stunning because he hadn’t been sick, so it was very sudden. He was adored by us. We all loved him, and he was our funny, loving perfect daddy so it was very, very hard. We all decided that you know, we’d go to St. Jude and let them know that we were here if they needed us and so I went to St. Jude, a couple of months later. I drove up and there was a sixteen feet statue of St. Jude right at the entrance, and I started to cry because I’ve been there so many times with my dad. I pulled myself together because I didn’t want to cry in front of the parents, they have enough heartache of their own. I went inside and, in the lobby, there was this party going on. All of these little kids running around with party hats, balloons, confetti, ice cream, and cake. I said to the nurse, ‘Well whose birthday, is it?’ She said, ‘Oh it’s not a birthday party, it’s an off-chemo party.’ Well, I’ll tell you, I just gasped, to see these children celebrating one of their turns for the better. All of these moms and dads and grandparents standing around with tears in their eyes because they felt that if this child made it, maybe their beloved child would too. It was really a stunning moment for me. And then, just as I was standing there, this mom came over with a little girl about four years old, all dressed in pink. She had little pink ribbons jauntily tied around her little bald head and the mother said to her, ‘do you know who’s this lady’s daddy is?’ and the little girl shyly answered, ‘yes’ the mother said ‘who?’ She [little girl] proudly said, ‘St. Jude.’ I just fell in love with her. I fell in love with all of those kids in the off-chemo party. I fell in love with this place. And I realized for the first time, just what all of this hope and love and promise and the future of a second chance for children meant to my father. It really helped me to see myself as a part of it.”

Marlo on what she learned from her father: 

“Well, what I learned from dad, really is that he had a lot of sayings, and one of them was there’s two kinds of people in the world: those who stop on an accident to see if they can help or those who just drive by. He was literally the kind that would stop and help. I remember one time, we were driving by down Sunset Blvd. we saw these boys beating up on another little boy. And my father stopped the car and jumped out. He pulled the boys apart and gave them a big talking to. I was sitting in the car, terrified, I was eight years old. He got back in the car. He brought the little boy that’ve been bullied with him. We were going to drop him off at home and as my dad started the car, he said, ‘I hate a bully.’ And I think to him, cancer in children was a bully. A bully that he wanted to defeat. The thing about my dad too is that he really was a citizen of the world, that we all are citizens of the world…He saw himself as part of the neighborhood as a part of a community wherever he was, he was a part of that community. I think that was a great lesson for my sister, my brother, and I.”

Phil Donahue on his first visit to St. Jude and how that impacted him: 

“My first visit to St. Jude, I picked up a little bald-headed kid. I said, ‘What do you want to be when you grow up, big guy?’ This still makes me cry. The kid said, ‘I just don’t want to be sick anymore.’ Well, my god, I grabbed this kid. You know, for a very brief moment, I kind of felt how parents feel when they take a child to St. Jude. How scary it must be and how I didn’t want that child to see my eyes get moist. So, it’s a real learning experience at St. Jude. It changed me forever. I do wish everybody could visit the hospital. It’s a life-changing experience and when you see the parents arrive with a child. You see the real fear on their faces, terror sometimes. Then you see them leaving and they’re better. It’s like a godsent – the change they feel, and that their children feel.”

Marlo on being awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom and her version of the American Dream: 

“One of the things that happened in my life that was really big a great deal, because of my work with St. Jude, is that I received the Medal of Freedom from President Obama. My husband and I went, and my brother came, and the head of St. Jude came. The interesting thing about it, is when you are growing up, especially as an actress, you dream of getting an Emmy or an Oscar or a Tony, but I don’t think anybody grows up dreaming about the Medal of Freedom. It just comes as a shock when you’re told you will be receiving this at the White House. And I remember I was stunned. Remember we discussed that I wasn’t going to cry? So, I’m not going to cry, but I did because at the moment President Obama was clasping the medal around my neck, I thought of my grandparents. My grandparents were immigrants who came to this country from Lebanon to find a better way of life, to raise their family and their children. And I saw them in my mind’s eye, I could see my grandparents with all their belongings and cloth bags. And here, their granddaughter just two generations later were in the White House receiving the Medal of Freedom from the President of the United States. I mean, that is the American Dream. I’m so proud of the fact that my grandparents made a life in this country.”

Marlo on how celebrity involvement has helped the foundation: 

“That’s a very interesting thing because just as in our generation, we brought in Jennifer Aniston and Robin Williams and all of those wonderful people. My dad did that, that’s how he built the hospital. He used to say this hospital was built with laughter George Burns and the Bob Hope and all of the funny guys—Jerry Lewis and Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Ella Fitzgerald, all of the men and women that were on the night club circuit with my dad helped build St. Jude. In fact, Frank Sinatra did so many benefits that we actually have a whole wing that’s called the Frank Sinatra wing. Their generosity really built the hospital.”

Watch the full summit here.

The T&C Summit continues tomorrow with Stacy-Marie Ishmael speaking to Taraji P. Henson and Jamie Raskin, and Stellene Volandes in conversation with Andreas Dracopoulos. If you are interested in attending register directly here.

Image of Darren Criss from Christina Santamaria and BMG for use by 360 Magazine

Darren Criss x I Can’t Dance

Today, singer and songwriter Darren Criss releases his newest single, “I Can’t Dance,” via BMG.

This is the second in a series of new songs which Darren described as “character-driven singles.” He announced the track on Instagram earlier this week, writing, “Half masc, half fem, half bad bitch, half brazen baller. This song is an ode to both those we love to hate and those we hate to love. What can I say, I live for dualities.”

“I Can’t Dance” arrives on the heels of “f*kn around,” which Billboard described as “a slick alt-pop single built around a wiggly bass line.”  MTV News praised, “With synthy distortions and a banging guitar loop, the song echoes the sharper edges of contemporaries like Shawn Mendes and Justin Timberlake’s with a theatrical flair fans have come to expect from Criss.” Darren made his late-night television performance debut with the single on The Late Late Show with James Corden alongside Este Haim of HAIM on bass, The Pocket Queen on drums, frequent collaborator and San Fermin frontwoman Charlene Kaye on guitar, and the track’s co-writer CJ Baran on keys.

Music has always played an integral role in Darren’s artistry. As a solo artist, his 2017 EP Homework debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Heatseekers Album chart. Criss has toured to sold-out audiences around the world including headlining the 2019 iHeartRadio Music Festival with multi-GRAMMY Award nominee and renowned DJ Steve Aoki. In 2019, he also headlined the Balmain Music Festival for the Balmain men’s spring 2020 show. He has been featured on the cover of numerous magazines including such music publications as Billboard and American Songwriter.

As a songwriter, Darren has penned songs for the comedy musical Royalties, for which he was also the creator and executive producer. He received his first Emmy nomination for songwriting in 2015 for Best Original Music and Lyrics for the song “This Time,” which appeared on Glee’s series finale. In addition to collaborations with fellow artists including Rufus Wainwright, Sabrina Carpenter, Bonnie McKee, Jordan Fisher, and many others, he has also written for Apple’s animated series “Central Park.”

LISTEN HERE 

Book illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Idris Elba × HarperCollins

Iconic and multi-award-winning actor, musician, filmmaker, and activist Idris Elba has signed a global multi-book deal with HarperCollins to publish a range of children’s books launching in 2022.

In a major UK/US co-publication deal, world rights were acquired by Ann-Janine Murtagh, Executive Publisher, HCCB UK, and Suzanne Murphy, President, and Publisher, HCCB US, from Crystal Mahey-Morgan at OWN IT! Entertainment Ltd.

Publishing will include picture books and fiction featuring a character and world imagined and developed by Idris and his writing partner Robyn Charteris, who has written numerous live-action drama, pre-school and animation programs for BBC, Channel 4, the Jim Henson Company, and Endemol as well as educational theatre for schools. Idris Elba said, “I feel privileged to have the opportunity to bring stories inspired by my daughter to life with my incredible partner Robyn Charteris, and the powerhouse team at HarperCollins.”

Executive Publisher HCCB UK, Ann-Janine Murtagh said, “Idris Elba is one of the most iconic and multi-talented creatives of his generation and I am delighted that he is joining the HarperCollins Children’s Books list. From the outset, Idris had a very clear vision of the characters and stories he has imagined and is passionate about creating books that will appeal to all children. Robyn Charteris has a fantastic track record in writing for children, working with some of the biggest producers of children’s entertainment, and I am hugely excited to also welcome her to the world of children’s books. I feel privileged that Idris has entrusted us to bring his stories to life and I cannot wait to share them with children across the globe.”

President and Publisher HCCB US, Suzanne Murphy said, “Idris Elba is a creative force, who has many wonderful stories to tell. We are honored to be working with him and with Robyn Charteris to bring Idris’s rich and imaginative storytelling to the world of children’s books, and we are thrilled to welcome them to the HarperCollins family.”

IDRIS ELBA

Golden Globe and SAG winning Idris Elba captivates audiences as an actor, producer, and director, and continually secures his position as the one to watch in Hollywood. He is the first actor to receive dual SAG awards in one evening.

Idris’s career skyrocketed on the small screen in some of the UK’s top-rated shows. Soon after, he landed the role of Stringer Bell in HBO’s critically acclaimed series The Wire (NAACP Image Award nomination). In 2010, Idris landed the title role on the BBC mini-series Luther, which earned him a Golden Globe, SAG Award, and four Emmy nominations. In 2005, he began his film career; his credits include American Gangster (Golden Globe nomination), Mandela: The Long Walk to Freedom (Golden Globe nomination), Beasts of No Nation (SAG Award, Golden Globe nomination), and the Oscar-nominated film Molly’s Game.  He can be seen this April in the Netflix film Concrete Cowboy, which he also produced, and this summer will be starring in The Suicide Squad 2.  Other upcoming films include The Harder They Fall and Three Thousand Years of Longing.

Behind the camera, Idris made his feature-film directorial debut at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival with Yardie. In 2013, he founded his production company, Green Door Pictures, to champion diversity of thought. With Green Door, Idris released the documentary Mandela, My Dad and Me, produced the TV mini-series Guerrilla for Showtime, and created, produced, and appears in the Sky comedy series In the Long Run. He also created, produced, and starred in the Netflix comedy series Turn Up Charlie.

ROBYN CHARTERIS

Robyn began her career writing educational theatre for schools and charitable organizations internationally before graduating to television. For television she has written on numerous live-action drama, pre-school, and animation programs for the BBC, Channel 4, the Jim Henson Company, Channel 5, Initial Kids (Endemol), Carlton TV, Gullane, Hit Entertainment, Granada, SABC, Urban Brew, Disney, and M-Net.

Her credits include a BAFTA-winning children’s drama series for CBBC, creating and writing one of the first original 52-episode pre-school series for the launch of the digital channel CBeebies, creative consultancy for Mattel Toys and Lego, and a master’s degree in Playwriting.

ABOUT HARPERCOLLINS
HarperCollins UK is a division of HarperCollinsPublishers, the second-largest consumer book publisher in the world, with operations in 17 countries, and was named Publisher of the Year at the British Book Awards 2018. With over two hundred years of history and more than 120 unique imprints around the world, HarperCollins publishes approximately 10,000 new books every year, in 16 languages, and has a print and digital catalog of more than 200,000 titles. Writing across dozens of genres, HarperCollins authors include winners of the Nobel Prize, the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the Newbery and Caldecott Medals, and the Man Booker Prize. HarperCollins UK has offices in London, Glasgow, Honley, and Manchester and can be found online.

HARPERCOLLINS CHILDREN’S BOOKS, UK 

HarperCollins Children’s Books, unprecedented three times winner of Children’s Publisher of the Year (2014, 2015, 2016), is one of the leading publishers of children’s books, recognized for nurturing new talent as well as boasting a reputable list of established bestselling authors. Respected worldwide for its tradition of publishing quality, award-winning books for young readers, HarperCollins is home to many children’s classics, including The Chronicles of Narnia, Mary Poppins, the Paddington stories, The Cat in the Hat, and The Tiger Who Came to Tea, and to some of the biggest names in children’s literature past and present, including Judith Kerr, David Walliams, Lauren Child, David Baddiel, Oliver Jeffers, and Michael Morpurgo.

HARPERCOLLINS CHILDREN’S BOOKS, US: 

HarperCollins Children’s Books is one of the leading publishers of children’s and teen books. Respected worldwide for its tradition of publishing quality, award-winning books for young readers, HarperCollins is home to many timeless treasures and bestsellers such as Charlotte’s Web, Goodnight Moon, Where the Sidewalk Ends, Where the Wild Things Are and The Hate U Give; series including the Chronicles of Narnia, Ramona, Warriors, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Pete the Cat, Fancy Nancy, Divergent and Red Queen; and graphic and illustrated novels such as Nimona, Invisible Emmie and New Kid. Consistently at the forefront of digital innovation, HarperCollins Children’s Books delights readers through engaging storytelling across a variety of formats and platforms, including the largest young adult (YA) book community, Epic Reads. HarperCollins Children’s Books is a division of HarperCollinsPublishers, which is the second-largest consumer book publisher in the world, has operations in 17 countries, and is a subsidiary of News Corp.

You can visit HarperCollins Children’s Books at HarperCollins Children, Epic Reads, and at HarperCollinsPublishers.

Dance Your Dance – Laurieann Gibson

Thomas Nelson/W Publishing (a division of HarperCollins) today announced the pre-order for Emmy-nominated choreographer, creative director and entrepreneur Laurieann Gibson’s debut book Dance Your Dance: 8 Steps to Unleash Your Passion and Live Your Dream, set for release on February 16, 2021. The pre-order bundle includes access to exclusive video content from Laurieann and a first look at chapter one of the book. Additionally, the first 500 to pre-order will receive a limited-edition promotional item. Pre-order Dance Your Dance here.

Dance Your Dance highlights Gibson’s evolution from a young dancer training in New York City to a well-respected and in-demand creative visionary with an eye for cultivating music artists from the ground up. The book unveils the ultimate blueprint to achieving your dreams—a blueprint she’s implemented countless times to develop some of the world’s greatest superstars including Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry, Diddy and The Jonas Brothers, among others. Packed with personal anecdotes from her 20+ year career in entertainment and messages of empowerment, Dance Your Dance speaks to the dreamer in you: the artist, the singer, the writer, the entrepreneur, the mogul, the mover, the shaker, the thinker.

Reflecting on the power of the book’s message, Laurieann shares, “Dance Your Dance is an explosion of inspiration, passion and empowerment—an entertaining and transformative unstoppable ride to your greatness. I can’t wait for people to start reading it. I believe it can be life-changing.”

ABOUT LAURIEANN GIBSON

Laurieann Gibson is one of the most important pop culture influencers in entertainment today. Having served as creative director and choreographer for numerous international superstars, Gibson’s expertise in developing artists’ performance skills earned her an Emmy nomination for directing Lady Gaga’s HBO concert special Lady Gaga Presents the Monster Ball Tour: At Madison Square Garden. Laurieann also directed and choreographed Nicki Minaj’s sold out “Pink Print World Tour” and Diddy’s “Bad Boy 20th Anniversary Reunion Tour.” More than a choreographer, Gibson is a business force whose presence is felt across TV/commercials, film, gaming, and now publishing. She can currently be seen as a judge on FOX’s hit show So You Think You Can Dance and will serve as creative director/choreographer on MTV’s highly anticipated return of Making the Band. On top of film appearances and commercial work (previously choreographing for the likes of Pepsi and Google), she is producing a number of television projects that are currently in development. Laurieann lives in Los Angeles, California, with her doggie “son,” Samson. Connect with her here.

 ABOUT THOMAS NELSON

Thomas Nelson is a world leading publisher and provider of Christian content and has been providing readers with quality inspirational product for more than 200 years. As part of HarperCollins Christian Publishing, Inc., the publishing group provides multiple formats of award-winning Bibles, books, gift books, cookbooks, curriculum and digital content, with distribution of its products in more than 100 countries. Thomas Nelson is headquartered in Nashville, TN. For additional information, visit here.

Smithsonian Channel – ULTIMATE VIKING

By Cassandra Yany

Smithsonian Channel has authorized an innovative new series that combines adventure with rich history to unveil the never before seen secrets of Viking society. The series, whose working title is ULTIMATE VIKING, will be hosted by Kristofer Hivju, who played Tormund Giantsbane in HBO’s Game of Thrones, and award-winning journalist Gry Molvær Hivju.

“We are very excited to host this living history adventure series set in our beautiful country Norway,” said Gry Molvær Hivju and Kristofer Hivju, the co-founders of Tindefilm. “We are proud to show the fjords, ocean and wild mountains that our ancestors saw. For us, this series is all about a genuine extreme experience based on Viking society, set deep in the heart of the land of the Vikings. It’s going to be exciting, ambitious and based on historical evidence.”

The series is also set to include a one-hour documentary slated to premiere in 2021 on Smithsonian Channel. Filming for the show has begun and production will take place in Norway and the UK, with a custom Viking settlement being constructed on the Norwegian coast. The adventure series will feature a diverse cast of contemporary, highly skilled men and women who will be challenged to see if they have what it takes to live as true Vikings. 

Each episode is rooted in authentic Viking knowledge, exploring every aspect of the lifestyle to discover what it was truly like to live as a Viking over 1000 years ago. The show will follow ordinary people participating in remarkable expeditions under harsh Nordic conditions. The clans will compete against each other in a series of often extreme Viking survival expeditions, challenges and tasks based on historical facts, literature and archaeological evidence. 

“We are always looking for innovative ways to re-invent the entertainment experience for our curious global audience,” said David Royle, EVP and Chief Programming Officer of Smithsonian Channel. “Vikings have long captured the public imagination and this brand-new format pushes boundaries to create a new way for our audience to be enthralled, sometimes appalled and often surprised by the challenges of Viking life.”

The series’ cast lives side by side in a Viking settlement, with every detail true to the era, including the buildings, clothes, tools and food. Participants will need to master tools like axes and swords, learn to forage and fish in Norway’s snow-capped mountains, and master the art of sailing a Viking ship while mentored by the world’s leading Viking historians. 

ULTIMATE VIKING (w/t) is produced by Wildflame Productions Ltd., Zig Zag Productions Ltd. and Tindefilm for Smithsonian Channel. The Series is directed by Showrunner Stephen Shearman, with original music composed by Silvia Strand.

ULTIMATE KING (w/t) aims to re-imagine living history for television audiences across the world,” said Llinos Griffin-Williams, the Executive Producer of Wildflame Productions. “Our new adventure history format pushes living history to another level. It is an extremely ambitious series and one we are thrilled to be making for the Smithsonian Channel.”

View a sneak peak of the series here

About Smithsonian Channel

Smithsonian Channel™, a ViacomCBS Inc. network, is where curiosity lives, inspiration strikes and wonders never cease. This is the place for awe-inspiring stories, powerful documentaries and amazing factual entertainment, available in HD and 4K Ultra HD across multiple platforms. Smithsonian Channel, winner of Emmy® and Peabody awards for its programming, is the home of popular genres such as air and space, travel, history, science, nature and pop culture. Among the network’s offerings are hit series including Aerial America, America in Color, America’s Hidden Stories, Apollo’s Moon Shot, The Pacific War in Color and Air Disasters, as well as critically-acclaimed specials that include The Green Book: Guide to Freedom, Black in Space: Breaking the Color Barrier, Walk Against Fear: James Meredith and Princess Diana’s Wicked Stepmother. Smithsonian Channel is available internationally in Canada, Singapore, Latin America, the UK and Ireland. 

About Wildflame Productions

Wildflame Productions creates extraordinary content for audiences throughout the world from its base in Cardiff.  This UK nations and regions factual powerhouse works closely with the best creative talent and a wide range of production partners to produce content for the UK and the international markets. CEO Paul Islwyn Thomas has built a strong reputation for producing factual and specialist factual programming for a wide range of broadcasters, including the full range of national BBC channels, Channel 5, S4C, Discovery and many more. Wildflame prides itself on its excellence in storytelling, bringing great ideas and ambitious concepts and formats to audiences globally. In June 2020, the company returned to being wholly independent, after exiting the Flame Media Group. 

About Tindefilm

Located on Norway’s wild and beautiful west coast, led by CEO Hilde Nerlund and DOP Tor Siverstøl. Tindefilm creates high quality, filmic content for the global market.  Their first production, Lysleite, a creative documentary about the dwindling light in the polar regions won a Gullruten (Norwegian TV awards) and their second documentary, Bit – Ballerina Bulldog was nominated for best documentary at BIFF as well asGullruten for best original score.

About Zig Zag Productions

Zig Zag Productions is one of the UK’s foremost independent television production companies. With offices in London, New York and Northern Ireland, Zig Zag has produced over 700 hours of non scripted programming and has grown to become an internationally recognised, respected and award-winning television producer both in the UK, USA and internationally. Zig Zag has produced programming for broadcasters including BBC, Channel 4, ITV, Five, TLC, MTV, Fox, National Geographic, Discovery, OWN, Logo and Syfy. The company has also won numerous awards including the Rose D’or for Best Format.

Queen & Slim Soundtrack Out Now

Motown Records released Queen & Slim: The Soundtrack on vinyl for the first time. The two-LP limited edition of the acclaimed soundtrack is now available at participating independent record stores in conjunction with the Record Store Day’s RSD Drops 2020 program. Visit here for further details. Queen & Slim: The Soundtrack merchandise is available HERE.

Starring Oscar nominee Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out), Queen & Slim is a powerful, consciousness-raising love story that confronts the staggering human toll of racism and the life-shattering price of violence. The film, from GRAMMYwinning director Melina Matsoukas and Emmy winning writer Lena Waithe, has won numerous awards including Best Movie at the BET Awards 20.

The music in the film serves as an additional voice and showcases the range of talent across Black artists with a compelling blend of genres. The 16-song soundtrack features new tracks by Ms. Lauryn Hill, Megan Thee Stallion x VickeeLo, Lil Baby, Vince Staples featuring 6lack X Mereba, Tiana Major 9 & EARTHGANG, Coast Contra; featuring BJ The Chicago Kidand Syd, plus classic songs byRoy Ayers, Bilal, Mike Jones and others. Blood Orange composed the film’s score and is featured on the soundtrack. See below for track listing.

Queen & Slim: The Soundtrack has received numerous award nominations, including an NAACP Image Awards nod for Outstanding Soundtrack/Compilation. Collide by Tiana Major9 and EARTHGANG took Outstanding Original Song honors at the Black Reel Awards earlier this year and was named one of the best R&B songs of 2019 by VIBE.

Motown Records President Ethiopia Habtemariam, Waithe and Matsoukas served as executive soundtrack producers. AP said, “Together they’re like the perfect aux-cord DJs. They hit play, and they don’t miss.” The Atlantic noted, “The Best Part of Queen & Slim is the Soundtrack Music is woven throughout with an impressive ear for black American artists’complex relationships to the country they inhabit, and to other black people.”

TIME hailed the soundtrack as “an astounding collage of sound an ode to the past, present and future of black music.” NYLON predicted that Ride or Die from Megan Thee Stallion x VickeeLo “will be bumping in the club for months.” Pitchfork praised Vince Staples’ “Yo Love” feat. 6lack & Mereba as “a charming swerve from Staples that’s only further proof of the rapper’s chameleonic talents.” Rolling Stone said, “Guarding the Gates is an immersive and sprawling ballad as [Ms. Lauryn] Hill delivers a mesmerizing vocal performance.”

While on a forgettable first date together in Ohio, a black man (Kaluuya) and a black woman (Jodie Turner-Smith), are pulled over for a minor traffic infraction. The situation escalates, with sudden and tragic results, when the man kills the police officer in self-defense. Terrified and in fear for their lives, the man, a retail employee, and the woman, a criminal defense lawyer, are forced to go on the run. But the incident is captured on video and goes viral, and the couple unwittingly become a symbol of trauma, terror, grief and pain for people across the country.

As they drive, these two unlikely fugitives will discover themselves and each other in the most dire and desperate of circumstances and will forge a deep and powerful love that will reveal their shared humanity and shape the rest of their lives.

Waithe wrote the screenplay forQueen & Slim from a story by herself and bestselling author James Frey (A Million Little Pieces, Katerina). The film is produced by Frey, Waithe, Matsoukas, Michelle Knudsen, Andrew Coles, Brad Weston and Pamela Abdy. The executive producers are Pamela Hirsch, Kaluuya, Aaron L. Gilbert and Jason Cloth. Universal Pictures and Makeready present Queen & Slim in association with 3BlackDot and Bron Creative, a Makeready/De La Revoluci, Films/Hillman Grad/3BlackDot production.

Track Listing Queen & Slim: The Soundtrack

LP1 / SIDE

  1. Megan Thee Stallion feat. VickeeLo, Ride Or Die
  2. Bilal feat. Raphael Saadiq, Soul Sista (Remix)
  3. Vince Staples Feat. 6lack & Mereba, Yo Love
  4. Tiana Major9 & EARTHGANG, Collide

LP1 / SIDE B

  1. Syd, Getting Late
  2. Mike Jones feat. Slim Thug & Paul Wall, Still Tippin’
  3. Coast Contra feat. BJ The Chicago Kid, Queen x Slim
  4. Choker, Frame

LP2 / SIDE A

  1. Lil Baby, Catch The Sun
  2. Roy Ayers, Searching
  3. Ms. Lauryn Hill, Guarding The Gates
  4. Burna Boy, My Money, My Baby

LP2 / SIDE B

  1. Cedes Benz, The-Dream
  2. Little Freddie King, Standin’ At Yo Door (Live)
  3. Blood Orange feat. Ian Isiah & Jason Arce, Runnin’ Away
  4. Moses Sumney, Doomed

Naomi Campbell Interviews Cynthia Ervio

Naomi Campbell returns with an exclusive episode of her popular YouTube series featuring special guest Cynthia Ervio.

International supermodel, activist and philanthropist Naomi Campbell welcomes Emmy, Grammy and Tony Award-Winning Actor, singer and songwriter Cynthia Erivo to “No Filter with Naomi” – a limited-time series beneath her highly popular “Being Naomi” YouTube channel. The intimate, live streamed series has invited fans to #stayhome and save lives during this critical time and has focused on in-depth, career spanning conversations between Naomi and a close group of her friends including: designers, musicians, actors, beauty gurus and media personalities.

The series debuted on April 6th and has since featured guests Cindy Crawford, Marc Jacobs, Nicole Richie, Ashley Graham, Pierpaolo PiccoliLee Daniels, Christy Turlington, Adut Akech, Sharon Stone, Paris Hilton, Serena Williams and Venus Williams, Karlie Kloss, Anna WintourSean “Diddy” Combs and Jackie Aina. 

The “No Filter with Naomi” series returned after hiatus on June 23rd and featured a select group of episodes focused on impactful conversations dedicated to #BlackLivesMatter, social justice issues, racial and human inequalities. These critical conversations, reflective of our times, included featured guests: Opal Tometi, Rev. Al Sharpton, Alphonso Reed, Cleo Wade, Bethann Hardison, Tyler Mitchell, Indya Moore, Chase Strangio, and Tori Cooper.

Streaming live on Naomi Campbell’s YouTube Channel. View all “No Filter with Naomi” episodes here. 

Live Virtual AIDS Walk

ABC7/KGO-TV San Francisco will air a one-hour virtual special, “AIDS Walk: Live At Home,” on SUNDAY, JULY 19 (10:00 – 11:00 a.m. PDT), to raise funds to
benefit PRC, (formerly Positive Resource Center), and more than 45 other AIDS
service organizations that provide HIV/AIDS care, prevention services and advocacy throughout the Bay Area. In addition to airing on ABC7, the special will be livestreamed on aidswalk.net and PRCSF.org.

ABC7 has been a proud sponsor of the AIDS Walk San Francisco since 1987. Normally, the news team would join in the walk that’s held at Golden Gate Park. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event will
be held virtually. Additionally, AIDS Walk San Francisco and AIDS Walk New York have joined together to feature voices of communities of supporters from both cities and coasts. This year’s special will harness the strength and individual character of two landmark events coming together virtually to present the Bay Area’s largest, single-day
AIDS-related fundraiser.

Just added to the star-studded lineup for Sunday’s virtual broadcast on ABC7 are Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Glenn Close, Anne Hathaway, Jordin Sparks, Harvey Fierstein, Raul Esparza, Norm Lewis and San Francisco Mayor London Breed. They join previously announced guests, award-winning icon Bette Midler; GRAMMY®-winning global superstar Gloria Estefan; Golden Globe® winner Matt Bomer;
entertainment icon Vanessa Williams; Emmy® and Golden Globe Award winner Laura Linney; Katharine McPhee (“Smash”); Shoshana Bean (“Wicked”); Megan Hilty (“Smash”); Skylar Astin (“Zoe’s Extraordinary Playlist”); Alex Newell (“Zoe’s Extraordinary Playlist”);
and stars from “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” including Nina West, Jackie Cox, Latrice Royale, Willam, Chi Chi DeVayne, Alexis Michelle, The Vixen and Ginger Minj.

“AIDS Walk: Live at Home” will raise awareness and funds that support HIV care and prevention services, as well as mental health, substance use, housing and other important social programs. Viewers are
encouraged to register and raise funds at aidswalk.net

About ABC7/KGO-TV San Francisco

Emmy^® Award-winning station KGO-TV ABC7 is the San Francisco Bay Area’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Widely recognized for its solution-based promise to help the Bay Area communities, the station’s initiative “Building a Better Bay Area” dedicates more time, resources and reporting to the issues that impact its viewers’ quality of life. From the local economy and education, to health and safety, to race and social justice, ABC7’s focus is to bring greater perspective on the challenges currently facing neighborhoods. In addition to being the first station in the market to expand its weekday morning program to 4:30 a.m. in 2008 and their 11
p.m. weekend newscast to one hour in 2011, the station has consistently garnered Emmy nominations and wins for Overall Excellence/News Excellence, with one most recently awarded in 2019. KGO-TV is an ABC
owned television station serving San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose and all of the greater Bay Area.

Tracee Ellis Ross “Love Myself”

NEW YORK, NY (May 20, 2020) – Emmy Nominated and Golden Globe® Award-winning actress Tracee Ellis Ross releases the official music video to “Love Myself” today. “Love Myself” is the first single to the upcoming film The High Note in which Tracee Ellis Ross stars in as recording artist “Grace Davis.” Last week, Tracee Ellis Ross debuted “Love Myself” on Instagram Live to fans and friends like, Michelle Obama, Janelle Monáe, Lena Waithe, Sarah Paulson, Kerry Washington, her incredible mother Diana Ross, and more.

Written by Sarah Aarons [Alessia Cara, John Legend, Khalid] and Greg Kurstin [Paul McCartney, P!nk, Céline Dion], “Love Myself” is a pivotal song in the movie performed by Tracee Ellis Ross as “Grace Davis.” This notably marks the first time the actress has released a song, which highlights her dynamic voice as “Grace Davis” and sets the stage for both the record and the film.

The video will make its broadcast debut on BET Thursday 5/21 at noon Eastern via their cable TV music platforms BET Soul and BET Her. Republic Records and Focus Features recently announced the release of The High Note Original Motion Picture Soundtrack on May 29, 2020. The soundtrack will arrive the same day as the film, which will be available on at home on demand. Produced by GRAMMY® Award-winner Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins [Michael Jackson, Beyoncé], the 15-song Original Motion Picture Soundtrack features new recordings by cast members Ross and Kelvin Harrison, Jr. Beyond “Love Myself,” Ross delivers stunning performances of “Bad Girl,” “Stop For A Minute,” “New To Me,” and a duet with Harrison, Jr. on “Like I Do.” Additionally, classics from Donny Hathaway, Maxine Brown, and Aretha Franklin as well as the single “Mind Over Matter” by Anthony Ramos round out the tracklisting (see below).

The High Note (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

1.  Love Myself (The High Note) – Tracee Ellis Ross
2.  Stop For A Minute – Tracee Ellis Ross
3.  Let’s Stay Together – Kelvin Harrison Jr.
4.  Share Your Love with Me – Aretha Franklin
5.  You Send Me – Kelvin Harrison Jr.
6.  Oh No Not My Baby – Maxine Brown
7.  Bad Girl – Tracee Ellis Ross
8.  Track 8 – Kelvin Harrison Jr.
9.  Mind Over Matter – Anthony Ramos
10. Chemistry – Kelvin Harrison Jr.
11. Jealous Guy (Live at The Bitter End 1971) – Donny Hathaway
12. New to Me – Tracee Ellis Ross
13. Like I Do – Tracee Ellis Ross & Kelvin Harrison Jr.
BONUS
1.  You Send Me (Darkchild Mix) – Kelvin Harrison Jr.
2.  Love Myself (Film Version) – Tracee Ellis Ross

THE HIGH NOTE – At Home On Demand May 29th

ABOUT THE HIGH NOTE

Set in the dazzling world of the LA music scene comes the story of Grace Davis (Tracee Ellis Ross), a superstar whose talent, and ego, have reached unbelievable heights, and Maggie (Dakota Johnson), her overworked personal assistant.  While stuck running errands, Maggie still aspires to her childhood dream of becoming a music producer. When Grace’s manager (Ice Cube) presents her with a choice that could alter the course of her career, Maggie and Grace come up with a plan that could change their lives forever.

ABOUT FOCUS FEATURES

Focus Features acquires and produces specialty films for the global market and holds a library of iconic movies, with 127 Academy Award Nominations and 25 wins from fearless filmmakers. Upcoming and current releases from Focus include Working Title and Blueprint Picture’s new adaptation of Emma .starring Anya Taylor-Joy, Bill Nighy and Johnny Flynn; the female-led Never Rarely Sometimes Always, from acclaimed writer/director Eliza Hittman; Emerald Fennell’s Promising Young Woman starring Carey Mulligan, produced by LuckyChap Entertainment; the music industry set The High Notestarring Dakota Johnson and Tracee Ellis Ross; Jon Stewart’s Irresistible starring Steve Carell, Rose Byrne, and Chris Cooper; Miranda July’s absurdist, heartfelt comedy Kajillionaire; the Kevin Costner and Diane Lane led Let Him Go; Edgar Wright’s psychological thriller Last Night in Soho from Working Title; Tom McCarthy’s upcoming drama starring Matt Damon and Abigail Breslin; comedy Half Brothers from director Luke Greenfield; Robin Wright’s feature directorial debut Land starring Wright and co-star Demián Bichir; acclaimed filmmaker Morgan Neville’s upcoming documentary on Anthony Bourdain; and Dawn Porter’s untitled documentary on former Chief White House photographer Pete Souza. Universal Pictures International has led distribution in select markets for titles including Emma.; Never Rarely Sometimes Always; Promising Young Woman; The High Note; Irresistible; Kajillionaire; Let Him Go; Last Night in Soho; Half Brothers; Land; Untitled Anthony Bourdain documentary; and Untitled White House Photographer Pete Souza documentary.

Focus is part of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group (UFEG), which produces, acquires, markets and distributes filmed entertainment worldwide in various media formats for theatrical, home entertainment, television and other distribution platforms.  UFEG’s global division also includes Universal Pictures, Universal Pictures Home Entertainment, and DreamWorks Animation.  UFEG is part of NBCUniversal, one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production and marketing of entertainment, news and information to a global audience.  NBCUniversal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, world-renowned theme parks and a suite of leading Internet-based businesses. NBCUniversal is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation.