NATIONAL ENTERTAINMENT NEWS

Starz(LOS ANGELES) -- Starz announced on Tuesday that Power Book II: Ghost has officially been renewed for a second season. 

After its successful Sept 6. debut, Ghost became the most-watched new series in Starz history, scoring 7.5 million global views, according to the channel. 

Power Book II: Ghost marks the first spinoff series in the expanded Power universe franchise from the show's executive producers, Courtney A. Kemp and Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson, and produced through Starz' international platform, Starzplay. Two more spinoffs will follow soon. 

"Back in 2012, 50, Mark, and I were warned that a premium series with leads of color would never work for a global audience," Kemp said in a statement announcing the show's renewal. "But we've proven everyone wrong -- and thanks to Starzplay, we have fans in the UK, France, Mexico, Brazil and beyond, all plugging into the Power Universe."

50 added, "When I had the idea to create the Power Universe I knew there were going to be many levels to its success. I am glad the fans agree. I am looking forward to releasing Raising Kanan and Force soon."

Ghost follows Tariq St. Patrick, played by Michael Rainey Jr., as he grapples with a new world: the death of his father, with his mother, Tasha, played by Naturi Naughton, "facing charges for his murder -- even though Tariq pulled the trigger." 

Power Book II: Ghost, also starring Oscar nominee Mary J. Blige and platinum-selling artist Method Man, premieres Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on Starz. 

By Rachel George
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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Focus Features/Magnolia Pictures(LOS ANGELES) -- As a tribute to Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, who passed away Friday at age 87, Focus Features and Magnolia Pictures jointly announced Tuesday that they will re-release the biopic On the Basis of Sex and the documentary RBG, respectively

Both 2018 films about the late justice will return to select theaters this Friday, in addition to their current availability on VOD and streaming platforms.  Both film companies also will donate the net proceeds from the films’ theatrical re-release to the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation in support of their Women’s Rights Project, which Ginsberg co-founded in 1972.

Focus Features' On the Basis of Sex stars Felicity Jones as Ginsberg and Armie Hammer as her husband, Martin D. Ginsberg. It follows Ruth Bader Ginsberg early in her career as she fights against gender discrimination.  The Emmy-winning documentary RBG, from Magnolia Pictures, chronicles Ginsberg’s rise to the Supreme Court and her unexpected status as a pop culture icon.

“Justice Ginsburg spent her life upholding fairness, the law, and the rights of all Americans. These films highlight only a small portion of her legacy to screen, but her vast impact on our country goes far beyond them,” Focus Features and Magnolia Pictures say in a joint statement.  “We hope that moviegoers are re-inspired by her passion, her courage and take that back into the world.”

The film companies -- along with Participant, a partner on both the films -- are also launching a social media campaign in tribute to Ginsberg, where fans are asked to share posts about RBG using the hashtag #ThankYouRuth.

By Andrea Tuccillo
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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HBO Max / Eddy Chen(LOS ANGELES) -- The cast of The West Wing is reuniting next month for an HBO Max special to raise awareness for the nonpartisan organization When We All Vote.

Announced Tuesday, on National Voter Registration Day, A West Wing Special to Benefit When We All Vote will premiere on October 15, just two weeks before the election.

The special will feature the original cast coming together with creator Aaron Sorkin and executive producer/director Thomas Schlamme for a special theatrical stage presentation of the “Hartsfield’s Landing” episode from the political drama's third season.  The episode in part involves the primary day vote in the fictitious town of Hartsfield’s Landing, New Hampshire, the first town in the nation to open their polls.

Rob Lowe, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, Bradley Whitford and Martin Sheen will all reprise their roles. It marks the first time in 17 years that the original cast of the Emmy-winning series will reunite.

The special will also include act breaks with messages from When We All Vote co-chair Michelle Obama, former President Bill Clinton and Lin-Manuel Miranda. There will be musical performances from composer W.G. Snuffy Walden, who will play The West Wing's familiar theme song, and The Avett Brothers, who will close out the show.

The West Wing ran for seven seasons on NBC and won 27 Emmys.

By Andrea Tuccillo
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Netflix(LOS ANGELES) -- Gary Oldman is being sued by a screenwriter who claims that parts of the film Darkest Hour, for which Oldman won a best actor Oscar for playing Winston Churchill, were lifted from his script.

Ben Kaplan, a teacher and screenwriter who has worked on several History Channel film series, filed the suit on Los Angels Superior Court on Friday, claiming that Oldman had agreed to using his Churchill script, before abandoning the project and signing on to do Darkest Hour, according to documents obtained by Variety.

The suit argues that Darkest Hour borrowed fictional scenes and ahistorical elements from Kaplan's script, including the false claim that Churchill came up with the idea for the British civilian armada that helped evacuate Dunkirk.

The suit also alleges that the two scripts share a similar story arc, both ending with Churchill’s “We shall fight on the beaches” speech.

Kaplan claims he started writing the script in 1999, and registered it with the Writers Guild of America in three years later, per Variety.  He allegedly teamed up with a producer in 2011, who then partnered with StudioCanal and Sierra/Affinity.  The producer also allegedly agreed to a deal with Oldman that would pay the actor a $6 million fee, before he dropped out in March 2015.

The complaint alleges “false designation of origin” under federal trademark law, as well as claims of breach of implied contract, unfair business practices and interference with contract.

NBCUniversal is also named in the suit.

By George Costantino
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic(LOS ANGELES) -- Production has restarted again on Channing Tatum's highly anticipated road-trip comedy, Dog. The film is exactly what it sounds like -- a man driving cross country with his four-legged companion, but with some added curveballs and tearjerkers.

"It’s already been a crazy ride. And we’ve only just begun," the 40-year-old actor gushed Monday on Instagram as he posted a still from his upcoming project along with a behind the scenes snap.  "If we survive the rest, it will be one of the most insane stories that I’ve ever been a part of. And I’ve been a part of some pretty crazy ones in this life of mine."

Tatum is making his directorial debut with Dog, sharing directing credits with longtime creative partner Reid Carolin, who penned the script. 

The Magic Mike star is still pinching himself over the fact he was able to bring his brainchild to life, furthering, "This is our story. It’s taken us two years to get it to the starting line."

"The next eight weeks will be like riding a bull on sickmode in ludicrous speed," Tatum cracked.  "God be with us. In Dog we trust."

The story is about Tatum's character, a former Army Ranger named Briggs, trying to make it down the Pacific Coast to attend his best friend's funeral.

He is joined by his dog Lulu, a Belgian Malinois, who also needs to say her goodbyes because his friend was once her handler.

The name Lulu was deliberate, too, as it's a nod to his late dog who inspired the movie.

Directing isn't the only new career Tatum has added to his expansive resume -- he is also a certified published author. 

His children's storybook, The One and Only Sparkella, arrives early next year and is available now for preorder.

By Megan Stone
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MTV (pictured: Kailyn Lowry from Teen Mom 2)(LOS ANGELES) -- It's been over 10 years since MTV first launched 16 and Pregnant, and now they are about to do it all over again. 

On Friday, the network announced that it will be bringing back the iconic series for a six-episode season as a "re-imagined docu-series." This means that on top of sharing the young mother's perspective of her unexpected pregnancy journey, it will also include the perspective of those affected by it. 

MTV explains that "intimate video confessionals from members of each family will allow the series to more substantively explore the lives of those impacted by the experience, with honesty and empathy."

In a press release for the new iteration, Nina L. Diaz, the President and Chief Creative Content Officer, ViacomCBS Entertainment and Youth Group said, "More than a decade after 16 and Pregnant played a significant role in bringing the teen pregnancy rate down to record lows, we are sharing the stories of a new generation of young parents and underscoring the impact of an unplanned pregnancy on families – beyond the moms and dads-to-be – by showing authentic and intimate moments with siblings and grandparents-to-be addressing the life change."

The new 16 and Pregnant will, be a part of the franchise which has spawned three hit spin-offs -- Teen Mom, Teen Mom 2, and Teen Mom: Young Pregnant. It's not the only new series, though.

MTV recently announced its expanding the franchise with 16 and Recovering, "a four-part documentary series that follows the triumphs and challenges of nine students attending Northshore Recovery High School in Beverly, Massachusetts, which was founded to address the rise in adolescent addiction in the midst of the opioid epidemic."

16 and Pregnant premieres Tuesday, October 6 at 9PM ET/PT on MTV.

By Danielle Long
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

 

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Gustavo Caballero/Bravo(LOS ANGELES) -- Congratulations are in order for Vanderpump Rules stars Brittany Cartwright and Jax Taylor because their family is making room for one more. 

Cartwright, 31, announced that she and Taylor, 41, are expecting their first child together.

"Mom & Dad," Brittany gushed on Monday, uploading a series of photos of the happy soon-to-be parents proudly showing off an ultrasound of their baby.  "The love of our lives is coming soon."

Taylor reposted the same set of images shortly after on Monday, writing, "Sooooo,........I am gonna be Dad."

While it is unknown exactly when the two will welcome their little one, Cartwright made sure to show off her already prominent baby bump in every photo, suggesting that the baby will arrive in the near future.  

Former Rules star Stassi Schroeder, who is also expecting, celebrated the good news in the comment section, cheering, "Life couldn’t get better!!!!!! I love y’all so much!!!!!!!!!!!!"  

The announcement has since kicked off a flurry of jokes regarding when there will be a spinoff show featuring all the pregnant Vanderpump Rules cast members and their children.

Cartwright and Taylor tied the knot in June 2019.

By Megan Stone
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

 

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Kevin Winter/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- After divorcing in 2005, Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt stopped sharing the screen together.  That is, until last week when the two signed on for the charity stream Dane Cook Presents Feelin' A-Live: A Virtual Table Read Of Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

Cook revealed Monday on the Better Together with Maria Menounos podcast how he managed to pull off one of Hollywood's most exciting reunions.

As it turns out, you can thank a simple text message for that.

When Dane was first piecing together the charity table read, he texted his A-list friends to help make it happen.  When he shot a message to Aniston, she was immediately on board, with Cook revealing, "she could not have been more delightful -- game -- excited."

Then, other famous faces started volunteering, but the biggest -- and most welcome -- surprise arrived when Pitt expressed interest in joining the table read.  The comedian laughed to Menounos, "I was like, 'Yes! This is gonna happen.'"

"There was no hesitation, there was no rules, there was no nothing," Cook continued, adding that Pitt and Aniston were comfortable with working with each other and sharing flirty scenes in the Zoom-like table read, adding there was "No drama."

"They both logged in. What you saw was absolutely what we had hoped," the Good Luck Chuck star relished, noting that they seemed to enjoy playing their respective parts. "Which was just nice engagement between two massive, incredibly talented people."

Despite his best efforts though, Cook admits that the table read "fell apart a lot" -- mostly due to a series of setbacks that pushed the premiere date from the spring to mid-September.

"It fell apart completely at least five times," he noted, but was thankful that persistence paid off and that he was able to share it with the world.

By Megan Stone
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

 

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CBS(LOS ANGELES) -- It looks like Drew Barrymore and Paris Hilton have more in common than meets the eye.

On her new talk show, Barrymore revealed that Hilton's new YouTube documentary, where the socialite opened up about her experiences in solitary confinement as a teen, felt like "watching a mirror image of everything I’ve been through as well."

"There was a lot of other kids like me, and my mom just didn’t know what to do with me. I was doing drugs. I was out of control. She just threw her hands up and threw me in there, not knowing where else to turn to. And that place really did help me and it did save my life, and I actually wouldn’t change a thing," the Santa Clarita Diet actress explained. 

While the situation had somewhat of a positive impact on Barrymore, the same can't be said for Hilton, who shared that she only managed to leave with "trust issues [and] PTSD."

"I didn’t deserve to go there. My mom and dad were just very strict and sheltered when I lived in L.A.," the heiress explained. "Then I moved to New York and that’s when my life changed and I just was sneaking out at night and going to clubs and ditching school, but not doing anything terrible — just wanting to go out at night, and that really scared my parents, because they were so protective."

Although the duo seemed to bond over their shared experiences, Hilton admitted that if it weren't for the director she probably wouldn't have opened up about it. 

"She told me, 'This is so important that you tell your story because you are going to help other survivors and people want to come forward with theirs," she recalled. 

By Danielle Long
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Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Adopt Together(LOS ANGELES) -- Singer-songwriter Matthew Koma announced Monday that he tattooed wife Hilary Duff's name on his body -- but his new ink isn't anywhere close to his heart. 

Koma, 33, decided to permanently write her name on his bottom -- specifically his left cheek -- and, as it turns out, his wife completely approves.

"Good luck winning a fight with your wife when her name’s tattooed on your butt cheek," the "Clarity" songwriter quipped while showing off his new body art, which shows the Lizzie McGuire's first name written in delicate cursive.

Koma also made sure his tattoo announcement would slide past Instagram's strict Terms of Service by tastefully placing a line of peach emojis down his bare backside.

Duff lauded her husband's latest ink by ribbing him in the comment section by praising his "Finest tiniest booty around #youstucknowboy."

Actress Mandy Moore gave her seal of approval, reacting with a series of raising hand emojis and writing "Dying" while comedian Whitney Cummings jokingly gasped, "Wait I just got this too."

Koma and Duff are approaching their one year anniversary, tying the knot in an intimate December 2019 ceremony.  They share one-year-old Banks Violet together, along with Duff's eight-year-old son Luca with ex Mike Comrie.

By Megan Stone
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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Sonja Flemming/CBS(LOS ANGELES) -- As health officials worldwide scramble to understand how the highly contagious novel coronavirus spreads, Sharon Osbourne is hoping her close brush with the virus will make more people take it seriously.

Kicking off the new season of The Talk on Monday, the 67-year-old host virtually revealed that her three-year-old granddaughter contracted COVID-19, despite no one else in her family testing positive for the virus.

Out of an abundance of caution, however, Osbourne will quarantine the full two weeks at home and join the syndicated talk show virtually.

"I was meant to be in the studio, I was so looking forward to it. And then, unfortunately, one of my granddaughters has come down with COVID," The television personality lamented. 

Despite missing being able to see her cohosts face to face, Osbourne delighted that her granddaughter is doing "okay. She’s doing good."

Osbourne went on to reveal a puzzling update regarding her family's health, revealing that her granddaughter hasn't spread the virus to anyone else.

"I don’t have it. Her daddy doesn’t have it. Her mommy doesn’t have it. Her sisters don’t," the host relayed, before going into how her three-year-old grandchild Minnie, who is the daughter of Jack Osbourne, caught the virus.

"She got it from somebody who works for my son," continued Osbourne before pointedly attesting, "children can get COVID."

Osbourne also revealed that she's counting down the days until she can join her fellow Talk hosts again, adding, "I’ve got one more week left of quarantining and then I’m out."

Still, that doesn't mean she's exercising every precaution afforded to her, furthering, "I don’t have it. I keep testing negative, but, you know, you have to be safe."

The Talk airs weekdays at 2 p.m. ET on CBS.

By Megan Stone
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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ABC(LOS ANGELES) -- Uzo Aduba had a special message for former congresswoman Shirley Chisholm, the woman whom Aduba portrayed in her Emmy winning role on the FX miniseries Mrs. America.

"If I could say something to Shirley Chisholm, it would be: Thank you for doing the hard thing," Aduba told reporters backstage at the 2020 virtual Emmy Awards. "I would say, thank you, thank you for making it okay to be oneself."

Aduba, who is now a three-time Emmy Award-winner, believes it was because of women like Chisholm that certain doors are now open to her as a Black woman. 

"The truth of the matter is, I had the unique opportunity to play a woman who made it her life's work to speak, represent and hold space for those people who are often forgotten and left behind or out of the conversation," the actress says. "And it became very important for me to not close the space on those who are often left behind or forgotten."

In fact, Aduba acknowledges the challenges she's had to face, even writing online that "Growing up, I never thought there was a seat for me, so I’ve decided to build my own table." Now, thanks to another Emmy win, the Orange Is the New Black star says she hopes "to add more chairs for others to come sit."

"Come and pull up a chair," she says. "I hope there are more people that are seated here. I think that a continuation, I guess would be another thing of doing and creating work that -- being adventurous and daring enough to explore work that I thought was not possible for me."

Mrs. America, also starring Cate Blanchett, is now available to stream on FX on Hulu.

By Candice Williams
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ABC News/Frame Grab via Getty Image(LOS ANGELES) -- Imagine receiving a call from an unknown number and find yourself discussin the November 3 election with none other than Meghan Markle.  According to her pal Gloria Steinem, that's exactly how the Duchess of Sussex spent her time.

Steinem says that Markle, 39, employed her bold new tactic to nudge more people to the polls, reports Access Hollywood.  

"Meg is herself, smart, authentic, funny, political," the political activist told Access upon remarking that the Suits alum is more than a "princess" when explaining how the stereotype does Markle a disservice.

"She came home to vote," continued Steinem, referencing her and Prince Harry's exit from England after withdrawing from the Royal Family.  

As for how Markle started phoning potential voters, the 86-year-old journalist says it all started during a home visit. 

"The first thing we did, and why she came to see me was we sat at the dining room table here, where I am right now, and cold-called voters," Steinem remarked during the socially distanced Sunday interview, adding that Markle greeted everyone on the phone with "Hi, I'm Meg" and followed up with, "Are you going to vote?" 

"That was her initiative," praised Steinhem.  

It should be noted that Markle will be the first member of the Royal Family to vote in an American election, as the Duchess of Sussex told Marie Claire last month, "I know what it's like to have a voice, and also what it's like to feel voiceless."

As for why she's voting, Markle continued, "I also know that so many men and women have put their lives on the line for us to be heard. And that opportunity, that fundamental right, is in our ability to exercise our right to vote and to make all of our voices heard."

By Megan Stone
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Frazer Harrison/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Gabrielle Union is helping to reimagine the popular sitcom Friends for a more diverse generation.

On Monday it was announced that Union will host an all-Black cast reading of Friends featuring Sterling K. Brown, Ryan Bathe, Uzo Aduba, Aisha Hinds, Kendrick Sampson, and Jeremy Pope. The virtual event will take place on Tuesday, September 22 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. ET at Zoom Where It Happens.

Directed by Salli Richardson-Whitfield, the table read will create awareness for When We All Vote, a non-partisan voter registration organization. It comes on the heels of the popular Golden Girls all-Black table read on September 8, which starred Regina King, Tracee Ellis Ross, Alfre Woodard, and Sanaa Lathan.

It has not yet been revealed which actor will play which cast member or the episode the group will be reading.

This is not the first time an all-Black Friends casting has been done. In 2017, Jay-Z reimagined an all-Black Friends cast in his “Moonlight” music video which starred Jerrod Carmichael, Issa Rae, Tiffany Haddish, Tessa Thompson, LaKeith Stanfield and Lil Rel Howery. Instead of using the show’s memorable theme song, The Rembrandt’s “I’ll Be There For You,” Jay-Z used Whodini’s classic 1984 track “Friends.”

To RSVP and watch the reading, go to mobilize.us.

By Candice Williams
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ABC(LOS ANGELES) -- The 72nd Annual Emmy Awards pulled off a virtual ceremony pretty much without a hitch last night, but it failed to bring in the ratings.

According to Deadline, viewership fell to an all-time low, with 6.1 million viewers and a 1.2 rating among adults 18-49 in time adjusted results. This year’s Emmys were down 25 percent in the key demo and 12 percent in total audience from last year’s host-less Emmys.

Last year was the first time the Emmys ever went below 7 million viewers, and marked a historic low for the awards show.

Sunday night’s ceremony was hosted by Jimmy Kimmel. Schitt’s Creek swept all the major comedy categories and HBO’s Succession won Best Drama.

By Andrea Tuccillo
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