Memphian wins competition from BET, Issa Rae’s ColorCreative
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Memphis author, screenwriter and playwright April "Skyy" Blair decided 2018 would be her "year of yes," a leap of faith to start saying yes to things she normally would not consider.
That year is culminating with her winning a nationwide contest offering the chance to turn the winner's script into a television pilot.
- AP names its Breakthrough Entertainers of 2018
- 2018 Breakthrough: John David Washington, 'Black KkKlansman'
- 2018 Breakthrough Entertainer: 'Boo'd Up' singer Ella Mai
- AP Breakthrough Entertainers 2018: Natasha Rothwell
- 2018 Breakthrough: Henry Golding of 'Crazy Rich Asians'
- Breakthrough Entertainer: 'Insecure' star Natasha Rothwell
- PHOTO GALLERY: Henry Golding - AP Breakthrough Entertainers 2018
- 2018 Breakthrough Entertainer: Country singer Kane Brown
- PHOTO GALLERY: Elsie Fisher - AP Breakthrough Entertainers 2018
- PHOTO GALLERY - John David Washington
- AP Breakthrough Entertainers 2018: Henry Golding
- 2018 Breakthrough: Elsie Fisher of 'Eighth Grade'
Breakthrough Entertainer: ‘Insecure’ star Natasha Rothwell
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Natasha Rothwell claims she is shy in real life, but her scene-stealing supporting roles in HBO's hit show "Insecure" and the film "Love, Simon" have proven otherwise.
Rothwell's outspoken TV character, Kelli, shines with witty one-liners and brash behavior, sometimes even more than "Insecure" series' star Issa Rae.
On Emmys carpet, Issa Rae, Ann Dowd and Laura Dern talk inclusion in Hollywood
Rihanna: ‘I couldn’t sleep knowing I can’t help someone’
Issa Rae, Childish Gambino part of Rihanna’s Diamond Ball
NEW YORK (AP) — Issa Rae will host Rihanna's fourth annual Diamond Ball next month, and Childish Gambino will perform.
Rihanna's black-tie event will take place Sept. 13 at Cipriani Wall Street in New York. Global Citizen CEO Hugh Evans will receive the 2018 Diamond Ball Award.
The gala will benefit Rihanna's Clara Lionel Foundation, which promotes education and arts globally and assists emergency response programs.
Issa Rae on ‘Insecure,’ Drake and being a Lyft driver
NEW YORK (AP) — Issa Rae's character on the hit series "Insecure," who works for a nonprofit, does what most people in need of extra cash do: She becomes a Lyft driver.
But the idea of making the show's lead character a part-time driver came from Rae's own experience: The actress said she applied to become a Lyft driver and was rejected.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Sterling K. Brown and Donald Glover aren't such Emmy outliers this year.
More than a third of the 101 acting nominations for the 70th Primetime Emmy Awards went to ethnic minorities, according to an analysis by The Associated Press. That's up from a quarter of the field last year, when Brown ("This Is Us") and Glover ("Atlanta") won top acting awards.
Naomi Campbell: ‘I’m open to everyone’
NEW YORK (AP) — Designer Raf Simons scored a repeat win at fashion's glittery awards ceremony Monday night, again displaying his considerable influence in American fashion less than two years after taking the reins at Calvin Klein.
"Thank you, women!" Simons said, accepting the prestigious womenswear prize of the Council of Fashion Designers of America from presenter actress Cate Blanchett. It was actually the Belgian designer's third CFDA award in two years; last year he won for menswear, too.
Twitter is attempting to shift the narrative around how women are treated on its platform, but some women who've been viciously attacked on the site say the company hasn't put enough muscle behind protecting vocal female users.
C.J.: ‘Insecure’ co-star Yvonne Orji lives her values, not her character’s
Stories about Yvonne Orjis vow of celibacy already exist in the zeitgeist and there is nothing to add, said the co-star of HBOs Insecure.
Issa Rae says female creative voices have been amplified
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Issa Rae said she feels that women's voices have been amplified in the film and television worlds and she's happy to be part of the group leading the change and opening doors for others.
"I do think there's a renaissance in so many different ways," the actress said at NFL's Women's Summit on Friday. "We have a newfound power, a newly rediscovered power. We're like, '...We can speak up, and we can get stuff done, and we can make a change, and we can reclaim our stories."
DuVernay, ‘black-ish,’ ‘Power’ win at NAACP Image Awards
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A jubilant Ava DuVernay was named entertainer of the year at an NAACP Image Awards ceremony that focused on the black community's power to create change.
DuVernay lauded other black artists from the stage as she accepted her award Monday night, naming writers and directors such as Shonda Rhimes, Gina Prince-Bythewood, Kenya Barris and "Black Panther" Ryan Coogler.
Jack White's new album due March 23
Blige, Rae and Boseman among NAACP Image Awards presenters
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Mary J. Blige, Sterling K. Brown, Issa Rae and Chadwick Boseman will be among the presenters at the upcoming NAACP Image Awards.
Numerous other stars, including actors Michael B. Jordan, Terry Crews, Yara Shahidi and "Get Out" star Daniel Kaluuya are also scheduled to present awards during Monday's ceremony, which honors entertainers and writers of color.
Mary J. Blige and Jay-Z lead NAACP Image Award nominations
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Mary J. Blige and Jay-Z are the leading nominees with five apiece for January's NAACP Image Awards, the group announced Monday.
Blige's nominations are for songs and videos off her album "Strength of a Woman," while Jay-Z was nominated for his "4:44" album and songs on it, as well as a nod for entertainer of the year.
Bruno Mars, Issa Rae, Chance the Rapper, Chadwick Boseman and director Ava DuVernay are also nominated for entertainer of the year.
Companies are looking for diverse ad teams to avoid blunders
NEW YORK (AP) — CoverGirl executive Ukonwa Ojo was struck when the team from an ad agency entered the room to pitch ideas for revamping the cosmetic company's image. For the first time in Ojo's more than 20-year career in business, she found herself working with an African-American creative director.
Kimberly C. Roberts
Voting is now open to the general public for the 49th NAACP Image Awards — NAACP Entertainer of the Year.
The winner will be revealed during a two-hour special airing live on TV One on Jan. 15, when the nation observes the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.
It’s fair to say Jermaine Fowler stole the Emmys show on Sunday night.
In between award presentations and host Stephen Colbert’s segments, Fowler injected humor and energy into the three-hour-long show at Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater.
Metallics and feathers galore on Emmys red carpet
A force of red, a wealth of metallics and a strong show of feathers took the carpet at the 69th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, led by Nicole Kidman, Tessa Thompson and Tracee Ellis Ross.
And what's a dress without hair and makeup? The winners in beauty trends Sunday night in Los Angeles included precisely executed wet looks and matchy-matchy makeup.
Emmys red carpet includes Issa Rae in revenge red
Tessa Thompson stunned in a bright, multicolored halter gown by Rosie Assoulin, Chris Sullivan represented in a dapper top hat, painted nails and purple bow tie while little Joe — Jeremy Maguire — from "Modern Family" — vamped in a purple cape Sunday on the Emmys Awards red carpet.
Golden Globe-winning actress Taraji P. Henson will host “Black Girls Rock! 2017, airing at 8 p.m. Tuesday on BET.
Stars honoured at Black Girls Rock Awards
NEW YORK (AP) — Democratic U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters has been added to the list of honorees at BET's 2017 Black Girls Rock Awards.
BET said the congresswoman will earn the Social Humanitarian Award for "being a fearless and outspoken advocate for under-served population." The event, hosted by Oscar-nominated actress Taraji P. Henson, takes place Saturday at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark.
With nearly all-Black, female-led casts, both HBO’s “Insecure” and feature film “Girls Trip” are clearly breaking all types of color and gender barriers. But it’s what’s happening behind the scenes that is changing the game on a more interesting frontier. Female writers like “Insecure’s” Issa Rae and Erica Rivinoja and Tracy Oliver of “Girls Trip,” are leveling the playing field when it comes to male and female nudity, by putting more naked men on our screens. It’s just what Hollywood needs.
NEW YORK (AP) — Taraji P. Henson will host BET's 2017 Black Girls Rock Awards honoring "Insecure" creator and star Issa Rae and others.
BET said the Oscar nominee and "Empire" actress will host the Aug. 5 event at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark.
Rae, who is the also the writer behind "Insecure," will receive the Star Power Award. The HBO show launched its second season this week.
If the second season premiere of HBO’s “Insecure” proved anything, it’s that the show is more secure in what it is.
The comedy series starring Issa Rae returned Sunday night, bringing viewers right back into the ever-tilting world of Issa Dee (Rae) and her friends.
Lupita Nyong'o is not spilling much about her wildly anticipated heist film with Rihanna, except to say it will be a movie of the people.
NEW YORK (AP) — The response to season one of Issa Rae's HBO series, "Insecure," was so strong, particularly on social media, that countless (and hilarious) memes were created about the star characters, and the show's male fans rallied behind the male lead after he had been cheated on.
It sparked the age-old debate about male and female relationships.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — When Emmy Award nominations are announced Thursday, multiple champagne toasts may be in order for a multitasking troupe of sitcom stars.
Aziz Ansari, Donald Glover and Issa Rae are among those who lead shows they also created or co-created, write and sometimes even direct, and who could reap a welcome embarrassment of Emmy riches.
NEW YORK (AP) — Chris Brown, DJ Khaled, Lil Wayne and New Edition have been added as performers at this month's BET Awards.
The network announced Tuesday that Post Malone and Roman GianArthur would join previously announced performers Bruno Mars, Migos and Future on June 25 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.
Other set to hit the stage include Trey Songz, Tamar Braxton and Jessie Reyez. "Saturday Night Live" comic Leslie Jones will be host.
Jamie Foxx and Issa Rae will be presenting at the BET Awards.
Who needs a Hollywood pitch meeting when you've got the internet?
A film that fans literally willed to happen is coming to fruition.
Rihanna is to star in a new movie based on a tweet.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Issa Rae is just starting to feel the side effects of having a hit show.
The creator, writer and star of HBO's "Insecure" is getting more and more opportunities — and she's also getting recognized on the streets of her suburban Los Angeles neighborhood.
Exicting new projects for both Hailee Steinfeld and RuPaul
Kimberly C. Roberts Entertainment Reporter
Rae gets laughs, King draws tears at Essence pre-Oscar gala
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — Actresses Aja Naomi King and Yara Shahidi quoted James Baldwin. "Insecure" creator Issa Rae shared awkward memories of her first trip down a Hollywood red carpet. And singer-songwriter Janelle Monae, who makes her acting debut in two films best-picture nominated films at Sunday's Oscars, insisted black women "have a right to have our stories told."
Issa Rae feels ‘validated’ by Black Women in Hollywood honor
When Issa Rae watched Oprah Winfrey being honored at Essence magazine's Black Women in Hollywood Awards last year, the actress hoped she would one day be recognized in the same fashion. But she didn't think it would come this soon.
Rae, Janelle Monae, Aja Naomi King and Yara Shahidi will be honored Thursday in Los Angeles at the magazine's 10th annual awards. Past honorees include Oprah Winfrey, Viola Davis, Halle Berry, Taraji P. Henson and Octavia Spencer.
Black Women in Hollywood Awards to fete Monae, Rae, others
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Essence magazine will celebrate Janelle Monae, Issa Rae, Aja Naomi King and Yara Shahidi at its 10th annual Black Women in Hollywood Awards.
The magazine announced Thursday that it will recognize "Hollywood's Next Generation" at a gala dinner hosted by Gabrielle Union in the days leading up to the Oscars. The Black Women in Hollywood Awards will be held Feb. 23 at the Beverly Wilshire.