Posts tagged with "Television"

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.

Tyson vs. Jones Jr. x Roots of Fight

by Justin Lyons

“Iron” Mike Tyson and Roy “Captain Hook” Jones Jr. will step back into the ring Nov. 28 for an exhibition fight at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Roots of Fight, the official apparel partner for the match, is getting fans ready with the official Triller Presents Tyson vs. Jones Collection, a collaboration with Triller, an AI-powered video app that will present the fight.

The collection is exclusive to Roots of Fight and includes graphic apparel across five styles on sweatshirts and shirts. It is inspired by the colors of the promotional posters that sport bright yellow, pink and blue.

It also draws inspiration from retro concert tees worn to support for the event, to show off your favorite star or even just to wear around town.

Items in the collection retail at $48 and $80 depending upon the style. It is available by clicking right here.

The match itself features two boxing legends. Tyson, 54, is the former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world while Jones Jr., 51, racked up 66 wins in his career and held belts in four different weight classes.

Tyson is one of the most well-known and feared fighters in the history of boxing. He opened his career with 37 consecutive wins and finished at 50-6. His last professional fight was June 11, 2005.

After retiring as one of the most recognizable faces on the planet, Tyson’s stock rose as a pop culture icon, appearing in television and film, including as the lead of “Mike Tyson Mysteries,” an animated series that sees the heavyweight champ solving Scooby-Doo-like mysteries.

The fight is available on Pay-Per-View by clicking right here. It will begin at 9 p.m. EST and cost $49.99.

While Tyson vs. Jones Jr. is the main event, Jake Paul vs. Nate Robinson, Badou Jack vs. Blake McKernan and Viddal Riley vs. Rashad Coulter are also part of the main card.

Jamaine Ortiz vs. Nahir Albright, Irvin Gonzalez vs. Edward Vazquez and Juiseppe Cusumano vs. Nick Jones will be preliminary fights.

You can learn more about Roots of Fight by clicking right here. You can also follow them on Twitter and Instagram.

Los Angeles Dodgers Win 2020 World Series

The 2020 World Series was one that baseball fans won’t forget anytime soon. A season that struggled to get off the ground and faced a few pandemic outbreaks ended with the most difficult gauntlet of a playoff format in baseball history. 9 wins later, the two best regular season teams in baseball clashed.

The season closed in Arlington with a battle between the little team that fully embraced modern baseball analytics and a team that, well, fully embraced modern baseball analytics but had way more money.

The Tampa Bay Rays, a team with the third lowest payroll in the entire league, were expected to be a team that put pitching and defense first, and that’s exactly what they did. Even with Brandon Lowe becoming the team’s breakout star on offense, Blake Snell, Charlie Morton, Tyler Glasnow and the “stable” of arms Tampa Bay bullpen made the Rays the best team in the American League.

The Dodgers, on the other hand, were expected to be one of the greatest teams of all time. The offseason acquisition of Mookie Betts, arguably the second best player in baseball, put them in conversation with the Yankees in the late 1920s and the Big Red Machine for the best offense of all time.

Impressively enough, Mookie Betts was the only superstar on the team that wasn’t homegrown or brought to prominence by the Dodgers. Justin Turner, Max Muncy and Chris Taylor were all reclamation projects, and platoon outfielder A.J. Pollock was signed in free agency, but almost the rest of the Dodgers core, including the pitching staff, was a product of incredible scouting, drafting, developing and extending.

LA finished the season with 43 wins, a pace that would have been good for 116 in a 162 game season, which would tie the regular season record. They even seemed to get better as the year went on, with Cody Bellinger finally coming around toward the end of the season and Corey Seager emerging as the player the Dodgers hoped he’d become when he won Rookie of the Year in 2016.

The Dodgers faced little adversity in the playoffs until the National League Championship Series, going up against the Atlanta Braves. The Braves had arguably the hottest offense in baseball, complete with the likely MVP of the National League in Freddie Freeman.

While the Braves jumped out to a 2-0 series lead, something seemed to click for the Dodgers in the seventh inning of game two. They couldn’t quite overcome a 7-0 deficit, but they picked up some momentum scoring three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning and four more in the bottom of the ninth inning.

The next day the Dodgers came out swinging with 11 runs in the first inning, basically ending the game before the Braves ever had a chance to answer. Behind five strong innings from Julio Urías, the Dodgers went on to win game three by a score of 15-3.

Clayton Kershaw fed the narrative that he struggles in the playoffs in game four giving up four runs over five innings on the way to a Dodgers loss. The boys from Chavez Ravine proceeded to play near perfect baseball the rest of the way, riding their bullpen in games five and seven and Walker Buehler in game six. A missile from defending MVP Cody Bellinger in game seven was the deciding factor and the exclamation point on LA’s third NLCS victory in the last four years.

The Dodgers met the Rays in the World Series, who were coming off a game seven themselves against the Houston Astros. Again, the Rays relied on pitching and defense to get through the playoffs, but they brought the hottest player in the playoffs into the World Series in left fielder Randy Arozarena.

When accounting for adjusted salary for his time in the majors and the shortened pandemic season, Arozarena made $90,000 in 2020. For reference, the two highest paid left fielders for the Dodgers, Joc Pederson and A.J. Pollock, made more than $10 million last year. Arozarena out-homered the Pederson-Pollock duo in the 2020 playoffs ten to two.

Unfortunately for Arozarena, he was the only member of the Rays consistently hitting. Just as the Rays had done all season, it was a new guy delivering the big hit every night. Mike Brosseau did it in game five of the American League Divisional Series against the Yankees, Kevin Kiermaier came up with a few clutch hits and Manny Margot played a big role in downing the Astros, but Arozarena seemed to be the only one the Rays could consistently count on.

Game one was proof of that as the Rays were shut down by Clayton Kershaw, who set the tone to repave his playoff legacy. Kershaw went six innings in the first game of the World Series, giving up just one run before exiting. Dodgers MVPs Cody Bellinger and Mookie Betts both homered on the way to an 8-3 Dodgers victory.

The Rays evened the series in game two on the back of Brandon Lowe, who hit two home runs, driving in three runs. Rays third baseman Joey Wendle drove in two more on a fourth inning double and another on a sixth inning sacrifice fly. Homers from Chris Taylor, Will Smith and Corey Seager weren’t enough for the Dodgers as Blake Snell and the Rays bullpen held off the LA offense.

Though a score of 6-2 might not seem like a punishing victory for the Dodgers, they owned game three. The Dodgers current ace, Walker Buehler went six innings, striking out ten Rays batters and giving up just one run on a Willy Adames double. The bullpen trio of Blake Treinen, Brusdar Graterol and Kenley Jansen picked up where Buehler left off, giving up one run on a Randy Arozarena home run in the ninth. The Rays sent just 31 hitters to the plate.

Game four is the game that will go down in history. When everyone looks back on the 2020 World Series, they will probably remember games four and six. It might have been the craziest game of the year, and it happened on baseball’s biggest stage.

Two lefties started the game for the Dodgers and Rays, with Julio Urías and Ryan Yarbrough on the hill, respectively. Justin Turner opened the scoring with a home run in the first inning for the second night in a row. Corey Seager homered in the third inning to put the Dodgers up 2-0, a score that would hold for one inning when Randy Arozarena launched his second home run of the World Series and his record-breaking ninth of the postseason.

Heading into the top of the sixth, the Dodgers had a 3-2 lead, which they extended on a double from utility man Kiké Hernández. That set the stage for Rays second baseman Brandon Lowe, who launched a three-run homer in the bottom of the sixth to put the Rays on top for the first time in the game.

The Dodgers answered quickly on a Joc Pederson single that scored Corey Seager and Justin Turner, giving the Dodgers a 6-5 lead. The battle was just beginning, as Kevin Kiermaier homered in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game at 6, only for Corey Seager to give the Dodgers the lead once again with an RBI single in the top of the eighth inning.

It was quiet until the bottom of the ninth inning, when the unlikely Rays postseason MVP Randy Arozarena stepped up the the plate with two outs and a man on first base. Arozarena worked a full count from Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen, eventually drawing a walk to put runners on first and second base. That would bring up the most unlikely of heroes.

Brett Phillips didn’t even make the ALCS roster. He was with the Kansas City Royals before being traded to the Rays on Aug. 27. He originally pinch ran earlier in the game with little expectation of getting a plate appearance, but with the way Rays manager Kevin Cash uses his bench, the Rays were out of options. Phillips was going to bat.

Down to his last strike, the career .202 hitter flicked a ball into center field. Kevin Kiermaier score easily, but a bobble from Dodgers center fielder Chris Taylor caused the Rays third base coach to send Arozarena to the plate in an attempt to score the winning run. Arozarena fell down on his way to the plate, which should have ended the inning.

The throw to the plate from Taylor was cut off by Dodgers first baseman Max Muncy, who relayed the ball to LA catcher Will Smith. Smith was unable to hang onto the throw, and the ball rolled to the backstop, allowing Arozarena to score the winning run in the bottom of the ninth. The long shot hero scored the Rays most valuable postseason player, and the sight of Arozarena pounding on home plate for the eighth run is something that will be burned in the memories of baseball fans forever.

Game five saw Clayton Kershaw take the hill once again to face Rays hard-throwing right hander Tyler Glasnow. Again, Kershaw set out to rewrite his playoff story, going five and two-thirds innings, striking out six and giving up two runs. Joc Pederson and Max Muncy both homered for the Dodgers on their way to a 4-2 victory.

Game six had the Rays up against a wall forcing them to send out their horse, Blake Snell. Randy Arozarena immediately launched a ball into the right field seats off Dodgers starter Tony Gonsolin for his record tenth homer of the postseason. Snell was mowing down Dodgers hitters through five and one-thirds innings before giving up a single to catcher Austin Barnes.

The most talked about decision of the World Series came next, with Kevin Cash removing a blistering hot Snell from the game before facing Mookie Betts, who hit .208 against left-handed pitching in 2020. Right-hander Nick Anderson took the hill for the Rays, and Betts proceeded to slap a double down the left field line. A wild pitch with Corey Seager at the plate scored Barnes and advanced Betts to third, then Seager grounded a ball to first base, scoring Betts, who looked like he was out to prove he’s the best baserunner in the game this postseason.

The Dodgers went up 2-1, but for Rays fans and players, it must have felt like the score was 12-1, as the Rays couldn’t get a single thing going the rest of the game against the Dodger bullpen. Betts swatted a solo home run in the bottom of the eighth inning for an insurance run, and Julio Urías slammed the door over the last two and one-third to give the Dodgers their first World Series victory since 1988.

Corey Seager took home the trophy for World Series MVP, but Clayton Kershaw really stole the spotlight. The eight-time All-Star, three-time Cy Young winner and 2014 MVP Award winner picked up the first ring of his career in his tenth postseason. He was a lock for the Hall of Fame before 2020, but now he’ll get to make his induction speech wearing at least one World Series ring, and with the litany of young talent and financial resources at the fingertips of Dodgers management, he figures to eye a few more before he calls it a career.

In probably the worst story of the night, third baseman Justin Turner exited the game early because of a positive test for COVID-19. When it was announced at the conclusion of the game, it was a difficult moment for everyone who knew Turner had been with this Dodgers team the entire way. Outside of Kershaw, he might have been the most deserving of a celebration.

He even sent out a tweet thanking everyone for checking in on him and saying he could’t believe he couldn’t be out on the field to celebrate winning the World Series. The story went sour when it appeared that Turner actually did celebrate on the field, presumably placing everybody he came in contact with in danger.

The MLB released a statement saying Turner was adamant about celebrating on the field despite security officials advising him not to leave an isolated space. The story is still developing, but fans obviously voiced their discontent via social media, and it made the success of what MLB called their “bubble” to that point seem moot. While the disappointment for Turner being unable to celebrate a title that he was such a key part of is palpable, it is difficult to justify his actions exposing players, families and fans to COVID-19.

Turner, along with Pedro Baez, Kiké Hernandez, Jake McGee, Joc Pederson, Blake Treinen and Alex Wood, is set to become a free agent after not receiving a qualifying offer from the Dodgers. It is yet to be seen how this will affect him in free agency, or he could return to the Dodgers where he is already one of the organizations most beloved players.

The 2020 baseball season ended about as well as anyone who has lived through 2020 could have predicted, but baseball fans who were worried about 2020’s title feeling cheap seem to have come around to the idea that this title was equally or more trying to achieve. 60 games or 162 games, the 2020 Dodgers will go down in history.

M.O.D.O.K. HEAD GAMES

Showrunners for the upcoming Hulu series about the popular Marvel villain M.O.D.O.K. will also spearhead a brand new comic series with the character as the lead.

M.O.D.O.K. HEAD GAMES comes from Patton Oswalt and Jordan Blum, who will showcase the leader of the terroristic organization AIM.

M.O.D.O.K. will be outsmarting the rest of the Marvel universe on his way to victory and domination, but this story is a bit more personal. He is haunted by memories of a family he doesn’t know, putting his power, and his brain, at risk.

You can see everything Oswalt and Blum had to say about the supervillain story in an exclusive interview from Marvel by clicking right here. You can also see brand new, never-before-seen pages of the interior of the books from Scott Hepburn, the artist of the upcoming run.

Oswalt said the writers of the show created such an amazing world for M.O.D.O.K. that they had to go further.

“We had so much creativity to burn that Jordan just said we should fill this in in a four-issue comic series as a background. I always love that, to be able to go even deeper into that world,” Oswalt said.

Blum added that he was excited to write the 616 version, or our world’s version, of M.O.D.O.K. specifically.

“We leapt at the chance to write the M.O.D.O.K. who had been there since Stan Lee and Jack Kirby and put our spin on him and pull from a lot of the other versions of M.O.D.O.K. in the past. The character is very flexible and I think you can do a lot with him,” Blum said.

The premiere issue of the series will hit shelves of comic book shops everywhere Dec. 2, and you can keep an eye out for the series starring the historic villain streaming on Hulu in 2021.

To find a comic book shop near you, you can click right here.

You can also follow Patton Oswalt on Twitter and Instagram, and you can follow Jordan Blum on Twitter.

Simonetta Lein – Entertainment’s New Fashion Icon

Simonetta Lein is the new Entertainment’s Fashion Icon. Read her interview below!

  1. Were you nervous to step outside of your comfort zone of fashion to enter the world of television?

I began being in front of cameras when I was 16. I actually started paying my bills very young as an actress. Then social media took off and it allowed me to create a name for myself that brought me to starting The Wishwall TV Show, aired through FNL Network on Amazon Prime and Apple TV and now The Simonetta Lein Show Via SLTV. I have guests such as Bob Saget, Jodi Sweetin, Tommy Chong, Jay Shetty, Leon, Kim Sledge of The Sister Sledge and many more. We are over 40 million views and counting.

  1. What does fashion mean to you in terms of entertainment? Is it more personal for you or more about sending a message to the outside world?

It gives a message to the outside world that through fashion, you can truly express your inner self.

  1. What has fashion done for the entertainment industry? Do you feel an outfit can communicate an entire story?

The entertainment industry owes a lot to fashion as it is through looks and outfits that the image gets delivered to the public. It brought me to be recognized as one of the top 5 Fashion influencers in the world by Forbes, one outfit at a time.

  1. What do you look for in a piece before you decide to wear it and make it part of your story?

I plan everything ahead thinking about what is the mood of the photoshoot or video interview or the episode for the TV show. I like to work with the same team when possible, so I want to thank Raphael Amabile, my executive producer of Ausonia Partners for making sure that everything happens behind the scenes, Kate Massih, my production manager for making sure that it all goes smoothly, Messiah Jones and Jasmine Smith respectably for my hair and makeup style and James Clark our booker producer.

Each and every one of them makes sure that my business comes to light. Only the teamwork makes it possible.

Credits:
Simonetta Lein Top Model @simonettalein
Raphael A. Amabile Of Ausonia Partners LLC Executive Producer
Kate Massih Photographer and Production Manager @klmassih
Messiah Jones #Thewigdoctor Hair @holygrailofbeautysupplyllc
Jasmine Smith MUA @facesbyjleigh
Showroom @theconfessionalshowroomnyc
Glasses Stevie Boi @sbshades

Tyler Perry’s “Sistas” Season 2

360 MAGAZINE had the chance to sit down with the cast of BET’s hit show “Sistas,” which comes from mastermind Tyler Perry, to discuss the second season of the show.

The second season premiered Oct. 14 with a special two-episode event. You can see the third episode of the season on BET Wednesday, and you can catch up on the first season on BET.

Friendship and relationship drama are center stage in this show about four women in the middle of the Atlanta dating scene. Is Mr. Right out there in 2020?

360: What are you most excited about with your characters in season two?

Novi Brown (Sabrina): The drama. I’m just excited to see how far Tyler’s going to take these ladies, and one of my acting teachers says, “Crisis shows character.” We saw Andi in a crisis right when season one ended. Is she still on the road? What is she doing? What is Danni doing? Is Karen over there with Zac because people are dying around them? It’s getting really crazy. Then we have the whole situation with Calvin and Sabrina. Then there’s Olonzo and Maurice. I just feel like you guys should definitely expect every seed that was planted to start budding and cultivating on its own, but you can’t direct how it’s going to be. This is Tyler’s show. We just show up. That’s all we’re going to do. We just want to entertain you guys.

Crystal Hayslett (Fatima): I’m more excited because you actually get to learn who Fatima is. You get to learn more about her. You get to see a lot of different layers she has. Season one, you don’t really get to see that. All you see is that she’s a “ride-or-die” for Andi. This season she continues to do that, but it’s so much more to Fatima.

Trinity Whiteside (Preston): I’m just excited about Preston’s growth. I think with Preston being a mid-season reveal last season, we didn’t get to get into a lot of background as far as Preston individually. I think in this season you get to see a little bit more of him as an individual.

Kevin Walton (Aaron): I’m excited to see more of Aaron in a different kind of space. Season one was plenty of drama in things that were around him. I feel like he gets associated with that space as if he is that. With the opportunity in season two, you get to know him a little bit more beyond just that drama. I’m excited for people to get to see that and see how they respond. Right now everyone is like, “Red flag, Aaron! Questions! Questions! Red flag!” Soften it up for him, please. I’m excited to see that happen.

Devale Ellis (Zac): I’m excited for the evolution. Zac is not going to be the same person he was in season one. Typically that’s what happens in television. Season one to season two you see an evolution of the characters, but I’m excited for people to see where Zac goes in the season.

Anthony Dalton (Calvin): I’m excited to see the interaction with new characters coming in, especially with my character and some of the other characters on the show and the new dynamics that come with that.

Brian Jordan Jr. (Maurice): I’m most excited that people get to see more of Maurice this season and more into his personal life and not just him as an auxiliary to other people but really a deep delve into his life. I’m so excited about that.

360: How does the show’s balance of comedy and drama reflect real life relationships and real life itself?

Mignon (Danni): Life isn’t all anything. Things come to pass, right? Nothing is permanent, except for what you decide to hold dear, and I think comedy and drama being balanced is only necessary for authentic storytelling.

Crystal Hayslett: I think it hits spot on. In life, there’s a balance to everything, and Tyler, with his writing and the way he wrote everything, is the perfect balance and the perfect depiction of what real life is.

Trinity Whiteside: I think, in life, much like with the show, you take the good with the bad. You get the comedy with the drama, and those are two things that I believe drive the show and what has fans from different walks of life enjoying the show.

Kevin Walton: Funny is money. When people laugh, it kind of holds up that heart space, and we do that in general, and we do that in life. When you have comedy and drama dance like that, it is that space where you know where things hit home, and you can find ways to laugh about it and create more humor. Like Crystal said, TP does that beautifully in that space. I think it mirrors life in that way.

Anthony Dalton: I feel that it’s just the human condition. There’s pain. There’s sorrow. There’s laughter, especially amongst the black community. It resonates with the fans, and that’s why we got a season two, and that’s why our numbers are the way they are.

Brian Jordan Jr.: I feel like there are so many situations on this show that are just crazy, and I have been written in with comedic things that happen right in the middle of them. Personally, I’m a person who deals with sorrow, deals with trauma, with comedy. It’s something I’ve done my entire life. People look for joy in those types of situations, and laughter is the way we heal. Especially black people, I feel, we heal from laughter. Laughter is healing for us. I feel that it would not be an adequate depiction of the black experience if you didn’t have humor, so I think it’s perfect.

Devale Ellis: I would have to agree with Brian. I feel like we laugh sometimes to hide our pain, and Zac, in particular, was not supposed to be a super comedic character, but in order to bring some humanity to who Zac is and what he’s been dealing with, dealing with recidivism and some of the choices he made, I decided to make him a little bit funny because I wanted people to root for Zac. If you look at Zac in season one, it was hard to root for him because he made some really poor decisions, and I felt like if he was funny, it would allow Zac to be likable. He’s a charming guy. Even though he’s a little bit doltish and he makes some poor decisions, he’s not an evil guy, so for me, the comedy brings a humanity to my character.

360: The cast has made a point to say they want viewers to see themselves and people they know in this show. What has the fan reception been like, and what work is still left to do in season two and going forward?

KJ Smith (Andi): I think that, from the feedback I see, they do see themselves. They see themselves in each of our characters. We are multi-faceted, diverse human beings, and we all have different layers. I even see myself in all of us, so I think that what we’re doing is translating what it looks like to be a single, black female in this time and space, and I think people can really relate to that.

Crystal Hayseltt: People love that Fatima rides so hard for Andi, but in season one, they didn’t like the way that Andi treated Fatima. They were like, “She’s going for you. Why are you so mean to her?” Going into this season, you see more of a friendship and a bond built, which is beautiful. The fans are in for a treat for sure.

Trinity Whiteside: With Preston, I think it shows that a man can love a woman for who she is, despite how she feels or the insecurities she may have. There are people out there who love you just the way you are, and they don’t need you to change or be something other than simply who you are.

Kevin Whiteside: I feel like the fan receptivity drives the show in that space and in the relatability of those situations. As crazy as these things can be, it isn’t far-fetched from things that happen on a daily basis and in every day life. That’s where TP draws his inspiration from for these stories. That relatability is one of the successes of the show. It lands for people. When we get to, as people and the character, see, like the Twitter feeds and people’s responses, you’re seeing the things that land and people’s struggles and connectedness. They’re like, “Why would you do that? Don’t do that!” Then people go, “Damn, I’ve done that.” You see that, and I feel like that space is so important for the show because that’s what keeps people engaged. You see the drama, you want it to change, you know where you’ve done that and you’re just hoping someone makes a different decision. I think that’s huge, and I see the way that strikes a chord with our fans and is what makes them so awesome. It’s like they’re right there with you and emotionally engaged and calling us out.

Devale Ellis: I think this room here is a perfect example. We’re three of the six men on the show who represent the black men on the show, and we’re all different versions of black manhood, which I think is so important because now you have different versions of black men being represented on television for the first time. Everybody’s not a criminal. Everyone’s not gay. Everyone’s not toxic a masculine man. Everyone’s not super heterosexual. There are so many different versions of black masculinity, and I think it’s good for TV, and it’s good for us as a culture.

Brian Jordan Jr.: I think that we just continue to live and learn and be open to learning. For anybody who is creating content, anybody who is acting, there are so many different types of people in the world and so many different types of black people. There’s a quote they use on Boomerang that’s also on BET, and they say, “There’s not only one way to be black.” I think that when you continue to explore the different types of black men, different types of black women, different sexualities, different socioeconomic backgrounds and things people feel and breathe and experience, you continue to open your mind to learn, and you can always display them on television and make sure everyone is seen. The growth continues when you continue to learn.

Anthony Dalton: There’s not one way to be anything. I think that this show shows that there’s not one way to be a man. There’s not one way to be a woman. We all deal with certain things, and if we have conversations about them and try to get a dialogue and have an understanding, I feel like we’ll progress.

360: How has Tyler Perry helped get the show off the ground and get it rolling the way it is now?

Novi Brown: Besides the fact that he is Tyler Perry, he became who is is because he built it on his faith. There are so many years that he got so many noes, and I’m sure even until now some people still doubt what he’s capable of. Mignon says it all the time. He’s a maverick. He’s a leader. He’s a pioneer. He’s a person who really just shows us you can do whatever you want to do. That’s what I really, really love about our boss. It’s the best class in the world.

Mignon: We told him he should do a MasterClass. It doesn’t even have to be about filmmaking. It could just be “How to direct the course of your own life.”

Crystal Hayslett: It’s amazing. Working with him is fun. We really get to play. I love when he throws lines at me. He’s like, “Ooh, say this. Say that.” It’s a lot of fun, and there are moments where I’m laughing so hard. Then I’m trying to hold it all together because he’s so funny. At the same time, he’s so supportive. As soon as you finish he’s like, “Yes, you killed it!” He’s so supportive and makes you feel really good about your work.

Trinity Whiteside: People don’t realize how much fun we have in between takes. Tyler Perry isn’t “on-screen funny.” Tyler Perry is funny all the time. Just to have that kind of feeling around you all the time, the looseness, the comfort, it makes it easier for everyone, especially as an actor, to be able to be loose and to be free.

Kevin Walton: There’s this air of dedication in him because you see what he’s amassed and the work that he does, and there’s that space of working with him where you want to contribute to that dedication, work ethic and him pouring his heart in. Then there’s the lightness. He’s just funny, and there’s all these moments that happen outside of shooting where you’ll laugh, and you’ll play with it, then you have to get yourself together an go, “Alright. Let’s get the scene.” He’s personable, so it’s a really dope atmosphere to play with, then it also demands that you bring more, especially at the rate he shoots. It’s a really comprehensive experience when we reflect on it. Working with him is really cool. There’s that demand, discipline and his dedication, then the fun and lightness of it because he likes to crack jokes and mess around, and we get to have that fun, too.

Anthony Dalton: It’s monumental, putting that Tyler Perry stamp on this show. Him doing the Viacom deal and everything gets us into a bigger market, and it allows everyone to see themselves on this show. Tyler Perry is an icon, and to be in same presence as him, and to be a part of a successful show that he’s the head of is monumental, and it just means that the sky is the limit for, not only Tyler Perry, but for us and anybody else who walks through those doors.

Devale Ellis: For me I think it’s, one, being an example. He completely obliterated this idea of the gatekeeper mentality. Tyler Perry bulldozed his way into Hollywood his own way. He didn’t follow anyone’s rules. He didn’t go along with anyone’s ideas of who he should be in order to make it, and now he owns the largest studio in all of Hollywood. He’s one of the most paid and most celebrated producers and directors in all of Hollywood, and people continue to support his projects, so he’s an example. Also, he’s smart enough to understand that he has to change with the times. This show is a different type of Tyler Perry. We saw a lot of his Bible Belt content where he was speaking to the older generations, but now this is more of a millennial or Gen Z type of show. You have younger people getting introduced, which is crazy to me, to Tyler Perry for the first time. When you have teenagers saying, “Oh, I didn’t realize that he also did these types of TV shows,” it shows that you can have longevity if you stay with your people, you continue to research what’s going on and you keep your feet ten toes down to what’s going on in the world. Him being an example and using his following to help us push our numbers means a lot, and I’m proud to be a part of it.

Brian Jordan Jr.: Tyler Perry did something that no one else was able to do. He created a genre of media as a playwright first. People never really call him that, but he’s a playwright first. He created a style of television and film that included and showed a people who had been forgotten in Hollywood. In this time where we are observing the disparities in African-American people, I think that Tyler Perry is revolutionary with the things that he has created to serve the people who had been forgotten since the beginning of time, purposely. I think that is something that should be praised an always observed. Nobody else can do it. Nobody else has done it. He has created, and also cornered, this genre, and it’s something people will always be loyal to because he is the author of it, and that is revolutionary to me.

360: What does it mean when he is actually on set, laughing at the jokes and tying in emotionally with the show?

Mignon: He’s there every day. He directs every episode. It’s him.

KJ Smith: He’s hands-on creatively in all facets. It’s at his studio. He’s the writer, the producer and the director, so he’s on-set with us every moment of every day. If Andi doesn’t have any scenes, I can go back to my trailer. I can go back to my space. He’s there regardless. He’s there most times before people get there and after people leave, so he’s extremely hands-on, and I think his dedication and work ethic is shown in the things that he’s been able to do for so many people and employing so many people. Changing the film industry, changing the city of Atlanta as a whole. He’s an incredible human being. I love Tyler. He’s just great.

To learn more about BET’s “Sistas,” you can click right here.

Kaelen Felix Illustrates an Article about Skai Jackson for 360 MAGAZINE

Skai Jackson × DWTS

Skai Jackson, the 18-year-old television and social media star, hit the cover of 360 MAGAZINE.

A competitor on the 29th season of ABC’s hit television series “Dancing with the Stars,” Jackson is mostly known for her role as Zuri Ross in the Disney Channel show “Jessie” and its spin-off series “Bunk’d,” as well as her social media presence. Her cover with 360 MAGAZINE was featured on “Dancing with the Stars,” and you can see it right here.

Now, she is partnered with Alan Bersten in the popular ballroom dancing competition.

She danced the tango with Bersten to Nicki Minaj‘s “Super Bass” in the first week of the show and scored a 21 out of 30 from the three judges.

In the second week, she danced the samba to Ne-Yo‘s “Miss Independent.” The duo scored their lowest score up to this point in the competition with a 15, but they were saved while Charles Oakley and Emma Slater were eliminated.

Jackson and Bersten then danced the jive to “Almost There” from “The Princess and the Frog.” They scored an 18 and moved on to the next round.

Week four saw the two dance the foxtrot to John Legend‘s “Ordinary People.” Jackson dedicated the dance to her “Jessie” co-star Cameron Boyce, who died at the age of 20 in 2019.

She spread the word about dedicating the dance on Twitter.

“Just got off stage…I did my thing for Cameron tonight,” she tweeted.

She also encouraged viewers to donate to the Cameron Boyce Foundation, a program that honors Boyce with a goal to end gun violence and cure epilepsy. Combining an issue that affected Boyce personally with an issue he was passionate about, the foundation aims to be the bridge for people who want to help but don’t know how.

To help, you can follow the Cameron Boyce Foundation on Instagram, donate and encourage others to get involved.

The dance scored the first ten of the year from Carrie Ann Inaba. It also received nines from Derek Hough and Bruno Tonioli, giving it a total score of 28, the highest score of the season at the time.

The two danced jazz in the fifth week to “The Power of Love” by Huey Lewis & The News for the show’s 80’s night. Set to a “Back to the Future” backdrop, the costumes completed the feel of the movie and the dance scored a 24.

Week 6 will air Wednesday night on ABC, and Jackson and Bersten will dance the cha-cha-cha.

You can follow Skai Jackson on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Bill Gates illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 Magazine.

Bill Gates – Likewise

By Cassandra Yany

Bill Gates has backed the recommendation app Likewise, which allows users to create, share and discover recommendations for content across different media. The app has created watchlists to enjoy Emmy-nominated shows leading up to television’s big night. 

The Emmys will look very different this year, so Likewise has made it easy for users to find and binge their favorite nominated shows. The company also polled users to ask who they think will take home the statues for the Outstanding Comedy and Drama Series categories, as well as TV Movie and Limited Series. The titles with the highest votes were:

Likewise has many other curated watchlists, including some specific to events, topics, and streaming platforms. The “Popular on Likewise” section gives users the opportunity to discover highly-rated titles that may not have been recommended to them.

Likewise makes it easy to decide what to listen to, watch, or read by providing personalized recommendations for shows, movies, books, podcasts and more. It tailors content to the user’s interests, as well as their network and current trends.

Users create a profile where they post their favorite items and recommendations. When a user makes a recommendation, the app will then suggest a title that it thinks they will like. You can also ask questions to the community in order to receive endless responses containing suggestions.

In addition to entertainment media, users can recommend places, restaurants, and other webpages. You can set your location on the app in order to view the recommendations from your area.

The app is available for both Android and iOS. Recommendations are updated daily, and it also provides community and content feed based on interest along with advanced search filters to easily and quickly find what you are looking for.

Likewise can be found on platforms such as Android TV, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV to allow users to access their content from any device and view their growing watchlists. Especially since the start of the pandemic, the app has been a great resource for consumers to easily find entertainment options.

The company is based in downtown Bellevue, WA. It is an innovative startup that was founded, imagined, and funded by Bill Gates’ private office, along with other tech visionaries. The creators of the app and its employees believe that finding recommendations for TV shows, movies, books, podcasts and restaurants should be “quick, easy, and fun.”

Here are Likewise’s Ultimate Emmy Awards Watchlists:

I ❤️ Beirut

By Justin Lyons

Mika announced Wednesday that his “I ❤️ Beirut” concert, which was live-streamed Sept. 19 on his YouTube channel, raised more than €1 million for the people of Lebanon.

An explosion at a Beirut warehouse on Aug. 4 killed more than 200 and injured more than 5,000.

Ticket sales, sponsors and public donations all contributed to the large sum that will be split between the Lebanese Red Cross and Save the Children.

Tickets were purchased in 120 different countries via Ticketmaster, the most in the ticketing giant’s history. Donations also poured in from 48 different countries via a GoFundMe page.

The show featured megastars like Salma Hayek, Danna Paola, Rufus Wainwright, Kylie, Mashrou Leila, Louane, Etel Adnan, Fanny Ardant and Laura Pausini. It has also picked up interest from major television stations across the world.

Mika joined Georges Kettaneh, the secretary general of the Lebanese Red Cross, and Kevin Watkins, CEO of Save the Children UK, on a video call Wednesday to make the announcement. He thanked everyone who helped the fundraiser cross the €1 million mark.

“I also wanted to say how amazing this statement of solidarity for the situation in Beirut has been, with tickets for the stream selling to over 120 different countries around the world,” Mika said. “This has been a project that was born out of and made possible by love, and a huge amount of collaboration with friends and many new friends made in the process.”

The certified gold and platinum artist was born in Beirut and is now celebrated around the world.

Kettaneh also thanked donors, saying the Lebanese Red Cross would continue to use the funds to support the people of Beirut.

“The people of Beirut face a long road to recovery, with this generosity and the continued support we have received from around the globe, we can continue to stand alongside them for as long we are needed,” Kettaneh said.

Watkins also chimed in to say Save the Children would work to help children and families affected by the explosion.

“All donations will be going toward our emergency response efforts in Lebanon, which include weather proofing damaged homes, supporting vulnerable and displaced families with food and cash grants, and providing ongoing psychological support for children and families,” Watkins said.

Donations can still be made to the campaign’s GoFundMe by clicking right here. The goal of £150,000 has already been passed, and it is closing in on £200,000.

You can also learn more about the Lebanese Red Cross by clicking right here and about Save the Children UK by clicking right here.

Sean “Diddy” Combs x REVOLT

Comcast and REVOLT, the unapologetically Hip Hop content platform from Sean “Diddy” Combs dedicated to the creators of this generation, have reached an agreement to significantly expand its availability to Xfinity TV customers across the country in new and existing markets.

On September 29, REVOLT will be added in HD to the Xfinity Digital Starter package in Philadelphia, Northern New Jersey, Orlando, West Palm Beach, Ft. Myers, Jacksonville, Tampa, Knoxville, Indianapolis, Charleston, and Augusta, making the network available to millions more Xfinity customers. Additionally, in markets where REVOLT has been available in standard definition as part of the Xfinity Digital Premier package, the network will be moved to Digital Starter in HD, beginning September 29.

“REVOLT exists to tell our stories and empower our community,” said Sean “Diddy” Combs, Chairman, REVOLT Media & TV. “As one of very few Black-owned media platforms, it is important that we can reach our audiences wherever they are. We are excited to continue to grow with Comcast and deliver our content to millions of additional homes.”

“Comcast was one of the first television distributors to carry REVOLT to millions of its customers when it launched in 2013, and we are very pleased to bring its creative music- and social justice-focused content to even more Xfinity TV customers across the country,” said Dana Strong, President, Xfinity Consumer Services. 

As part of the new agreement, the companies will collaborate to create impactful cultural content. The first program, “Black Voices on Mute,” will feature original content that bridges the past with the present to illuminate the importance of voting and the history of voter suppression in the Black community. This short form content will amplify narratives around social justice, empowerment, and voter turnout leading up to the November 3rd national election.

This original content will also be featured in Black Voices. Black Stories, a specially curated content collection on Xfinity X1, Stream and Flex featuring a wide variety of movies, documentaries, TV series and more. Designed to educate and drive awareness, the collection of curated content specifically reflects the country’s long history of racial discrimination and injustice along with bold movies and specials featuring some of the most recent efforts by the Black community to attain social justice and create inclusive movements towards equality.   

“There is no better time than now to amplify Black stories and content, and we are excited to bring new programming from Revolt to our platform and recently launched content collection, Black Voices. Black Stories,” said Keesha Boyd, Executive Director, Multicultural Video & Entertainment, Xfinity Consumer Services. 

The broader relationship with Comcast also comes on the heels of REVOLT’s expanded commitment to social justice. In the past few months, the network aired a live and urgent town hall, “State of Emergency,” hosted by Combs, with notable guests exposing the disproportionate impact that COVID-19 has had on Black communities; partnered with NAACP, Sankofa, March for Our Lives, and Hip-Hop Week MKE for notable social justice livestream events; and launched “REVOLT Black News,” a weekly news show hosted by Eboni K. Williams that presents an unfiltered conversation about current events with the leaders of Black culture, including artists, activists, politicians, experts, and more. REVOLT has remained steadfast as an unfiltered platform and home for content by artists including its recently launched “The Fat Joe Show” and Guapdad 4000’s “The Valentino Vlog,” as well as “The Breakfast Club,” “Drink Champs: Happy Hour,” and series partnerships like “Anatomy of…”  and “What’s Good Africa.”  

With just weeks until the November election, REVOLT will air its second “State of Emergency” virtual town hall on Thursday, September 24th at 9pm EDT/6pm PDT with confirmed guests Dr. Cornel West, Kerry Washington, Tamika Mallory, Jeff Johnson, Cordae, Vic Mensa and others in a Vote or Die discussion.