Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Kim/Poprah Eliminated on I Want To Work For Diddy???

Did my eyes and ears deceive me the other night of did Diddy look down on Kim/Poprah and say "You're Not Ready To Work For Diddy"???

Did I hear him say that? Better yet did YA'LL hear him say that?? He eliminated her because she couldn't magically make a guest list appear??? Although I DO agree that homegirl should have gotten off her butt and ran down to whatever floor this chick was on and GOTTEN THAT DAMN GUEST LIST....instead of repeatedly calling on the phone.

Actually, from what I saw from this weeks episode...I wouldn't want ANY of them for assistants because they all appear to be clueless and full of excuses whenever the big man is in their presence.

They seemed to have left it (that moment) as a cliff hanger for next week but I am an eager to find out if my girl stays or goes....

Stay tuned Fam!

"Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody else expects of you, never excuse yourself."

'American Idol's' LaKisha Jones Is Getting Married

Hey Family!!!
I picked this up from Jawn Murray's BV Buzz this morning:
Posted Sep 30th 2008 10:10AM by Jawn MurrayFiled under: BV Buzz, Entertainment
By Jawn Murray,

Season six 'American Idol' finalist LaKisha Jones is about to be a bride.
The Flint, Mich. native will wed her fiancé Larry Davis in a ceremony this Sunday in Beverly Hills, Calif.

Jones, who impressed 'Idol' judges with performances of songs like Jennifer Holiday's 'And I Am Telling You,' Shirley Bassey's 'Diamonds Are Forever,' and Aretha Franklin's 'Think,' will wear a strapless gown by Alfred Angelo, Neil Lane diamond earrings, bracelet and necklace, on loan from The Platinum Guild, and Stuart Weitzman shoes adorned with the couple's initials in Swaroski crystals.

BeBe Winans will serenade the couple during the ceremony and wedding guests include R&B singer Chaka Khan and 'A.I.' contestants Melinda Doolittle and Gina Glocksen.
The couple plans to honeymoon in Barbados.
The 28-year-old singer recently appeared on Broadway in 'The Color Purple' alongside Winans and Khan. In the production, Jones played the Church Soloist in the evening shows and played Khan's role of Miss Sofia during the matinees.

In addition, the mother of a five year old daughter Brionne has been touring as a backup singer for Khan while working on her debut solo CD.
Okay so I just added that last photo to this blog simply because I could...lol...I love blogging about folks I have crossed paths with and have the photos to prove it! Anyway, I shot this in 2007, at the Torrid Model Search in Redondo Beach, CA where we were on location shooting MADE for MTV.

Congratulations to the happy couple and continued success Kisha!
“Remember that a successful marriage depends on two things: (1) finding the right person and (2) being the right person"

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Paul Newman, movie and racing icon, dead at 83

Greetings Family

I saddened to hear of Actor Paul Newman's passing this morning...I had the honor of meeting him several years ago when I was working the stage door at Manhattan's City Center. He had gotten a muscle spasm in his back and came out where I was to stretch. He had his wife with him at the time and she was quite beautiful. I remember him being a very kind man but thing that stood out the most for me was his eyes....just breathtakingly blue - you couldn't (or rather I couldn't) stop looking at him....now THAT'S star power for you!!!
I was also a big fan of his work and I will miss his presence.

Taken from CBC News this morning.....

Paul Newman, the blue-eyed leading man who starred in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, and gained prominence for his philanthropic work and love of racing, died Friday at 83 after a long battle with cancer. He died at his farmhouse in Westport, Conn., surrounded by friends and family, publicist Jeff Sanderson said. Newman was nominated 10 times for an Academy Award, taking home the best-actor honour for The Color of Money (1986) and two honorary Oscars.

Part of a new breed of leading men who took Hollywood by storm in the late 1950s and '60s, his striking blue eyes and blond hair made him a fan favourite, but he often chose roles that were far from conventional. He played the anti-hero — most notably, in Cool Hand Luke (1967), where he starred as a man who refuses to conform to life in a rural prison, in Butch Cassidy (1969), in which he played an outlaw, and in The Sting (1973), playing a con man.

His reputation for portraying troubled masculinity was ensconced with The Hustler in 1961. He played Fast Eddie Felson, the same real-life con man he played in The Color of Money 25 years later.

As he aged, Newman said he tried for roles with more edge, such as the alcoholic lawyer in The Verdict (1982) and the shyster promoter in Buffalo Bill and the Indians (1976). "I was probably more of a character actor than people were willing to cast me," he told Interview magazine in 1998.

"But a portrayal is one thing, and whether or not audiences are prepared to accept me as anything other than the blue-eyed boy is another question. By and large, I don't think they are. They liked me while I was the cocky hero, and the smartass and the rake. I don't think they liked me as Mr. Bridge [in Mr. and Mrs. Bridge, 1990]."

He was also directed films such as Rachel Rachel (1968) and The Shadow Box (1980) and produced several projects, including They Might Be Giants (1971) and the HBO television miniseries Empire Falls (2005).

The film star also founded his Newman's Own line of salad dressings, pasta sauces and salsa in 1982, when almost as a joke, he and a group of friends came up with the idea. Also known as a philanthropist, Newman gave the profits from the business to charities, including his Hole in the Wall Gang summer camps for children. "We don't take ourselves very seriously as business people, but considering this was something that started off as a joke in 1982, we have had a lot of fun giving away … I think it's 90 million bucks, to various charities," he told Interview film critic Graham Fuller in 1998.

Born Paul Leonard Newman in Shaker Heights, Ohio — a wealthy suburb of Cleveland — in 1925, his Jewish father ran a sporting goods store, and his Catholic mother encouraged her son's interest in theatre.

After briefly attending Ohio University, Newman served in the navy and was stationed in the Pacific during the Second World War. In 1949, he completed a BA in English at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio., and also married Jackie Witte. The couple had a son, Scott, shortly after their union.

A year later, Newman's father, Arthur, died and left the running of his successful business to his sons Paul and Arthur. That's when the wannabe entertainer made a decision that set the course of his life: he sold his share of the business to his brother and moved his young family to New Haven, Conn., to study acting at Yale University.

"I didn't have anything to run for that really grabbed me, except what I happened to be doing, which was the theatre," he said in the 1998 interview. "It wasn't as though I really made a commitment to it; there wasn't anything else around. So I wasn't driven to become an actor — it just seemed to be the thing that I managed to do best."

A method to his acting

He later honed his craft at the legendary Actors Studio in New York City under Lee Strasberg, considered by many to be the patriarch of American "method acting." Newman debuted on Broadway in the original production of William Inge's Picnic in 1952 and later had a role in Sweet Bird of Youth with Geraldine Page. Both he and Page would reprise their roles for the film adaptation of the Tennessee Williams play in 1962. Warner Brothers executives spotted Newman's talent and signed him to a contract. He made several TV appearances and then made his first film, The Silver Chalice, in 1954. "I was lucky to survive my first film, The Silver Chalice. God, what a dog, the worst film of the '50s," he said in a 2004 interview with the Sunday Times.

His second film, Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956), in which he played Rocky Graziano, brought him to the attention of critics, and he went on to make The Long Hot Summer (1958) and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958). On the set of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, he met Joanne Woodward. He divorced his first wife, with whom he had three children, in 1958, and married Woodward.

'It's like falling in love'

Newman became a reliable leading man, starring in 1959's The Young Philadelphians, with Robert Vaughn, in Hud (1963) and in Alfred Hitchcock's Torn Curtain (1966). "Every time I get a script, it's a matter of trying to know what I could do with it," he said of his profession. "I see colours, imagery. It has to have a smell. It's like falling in love. You can't give a reason why."
He paired with Robert Redford twice — for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid in 1969 and for The Sting in 1973.

He appeared with his wife in The Long Hot Summer (1958), From the Terrace (1960), Paris Blues (1961), WUSA (1970) and lastly, in 1990's Mr. and Mrs. Bridge, parts of which were filmed in Ottawa.

Newman also directed various feature films starring Woodward, including: Rachel, Rachel, based on Margaret Laurence's A Jest of God. A television version of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play The Shadow Box. A screen version of the Tennessee Williams play The Glass Menagerie (1987).

"Working together has its ups and downs, but working with the person you know best can only be an advantage,” Woodward said in a 1991 interview.

“I've heard so many people say they couldn't work with their husband or wife. And I think, 'Why are you married to him then? If you can't work with him, how do you live with him?'"

A real-life lover of auto racing

While his last screen appearance was as a mob boss in the 2002 film Road to Perdition opposite Tom Hanks, Newman continued to do voice work, most notably as the retired race-car Doc Hudson in the Disney/Pixar animated film Cars. The actor, a longtime auto-racing enthusiast, also drove for the Bob Sharp Racing team in the 1970s, and was part of a winning racing team at Daytona in 1995, becoming the oldest driver ever to clock a win. "I like racing, but food and pictures are more thrilling," he told the Guardian newspaper in 2001. "In racing, you can be certain, to the last thousandth of a second, that someone is the best, but with a film or a recipe, there is no way of knowing how all the ingredients will work out in the end. The best can turn out to be awful, and the worst can be fantastic. Cooking is like performing and performing like cooking."

Newman's life has been marked by one major tragedy: his son from his first marriage, Scott Newman, died in November 1978 from an accidental drug overdose, spurring the actor to launch the Scott Newman Center for drug abuse prevention.

Newman's long relationship with Woodward produced three daughters, Elinor, Melissa and Claire, and eight grandchildren.
Rest in Peace.
“I picture my epitaph: "Here lies Paul Newman, who died a failure because his eyes turned brown".”

Jennifer Hudson to Wed I Love NY 2's David Otunga

What's up fam!

I am pretty sure that you all have heard the news by now but for those of you who haven't - Jennifer Hudson is engaged!!!!

From People Mag:

Jennifer Hudson and David "Punk" Otunga Photo by: Dave Hogan / Getty; Jesse Grant / WireImage

Jennifer Hudson and boyfriend, David Otunga, have gotten engaged, her rep tells PEOPLE exclusively. "I can confirm that Jennifer got engaged to her boyfriend Davidon Friday night in L.A." says the rep. Otunga, who is known as "Punk" from the reality show I Love New York 2, popped the question with a Neil Lane diamond ring on the Dreamgirls Oscar winner's 27th birthday.

The couple, who have been dating less than a year, both hail from Chicago. Professionally, it is a busy time for Hudson as well. Her debut solo album, Jennifer Hudson, will be in stores Sept. 30, and her next film, The Secret Life of Bees opens on Oct. 17.

I will be honest, it always makes me nervous when I see someone rushing to marry someone that they barely know....AND he's a lawyer....let's just say I am a little skeptical - I think that this will either work out very well or it will turn out VERY badly.

Either way I wish them both well.

I wonder what happened with this dude below; who was with her BEFORE she was J. Hud? Weren't they engaged???

Just curious...that's all.

"Love does not consist of gazing at each other, but in looking together in the same direction."

Friday, September 26, 2008

African American Literary Awards 2008

Hey Family!!

Last night I was a presenter at the 4th Annual African American Literary Awards, held at the historic Harlem Gatehouse on 135th Street & Convent Avenue.

The African American Literary Awards show ( http://www.literaryawardshow.com/) is a celebration of African American authors and their contributions to the world of publishing. The AALAS Awards is the first of its kind. It is the most comprehensive awards show ever to recognize, honor, celebrate and promote the outstanding achievements and contributions that authors and writers make to the publishing, arts and entertainment industries and is the brainchild of Yvette Hayward, president of Y. Hayward, Inc., a public relations company that has been a powerful resource in the literary field for over a decade. Ms. Hayward came up with the idea in 1996 because she saw there was a clear need to bring recognition to African American authors throughout the country. She was finally able to bring the awards show into fruition in September 2004.

My first experience with the AALAS awards was last year when I was a presenter for the very first time. I had never heard of this award but I was immediately impressed with the show and what Yvette was doing. Last year's show was at Harlem's Alhambra Ballroom and if you read my blog about the event - you already know how displeased I was with the service at the Alhambra.

This year Yvette wisely decided to move the event to another venue and the payoff couldn't have been better. The Harlem Gatehouse is a beautiful site and it was absolutely perfect for what she was trying to do. The house was scheduled to open at 6pm and the weather forecast for the day was absolutely dreadful (rain ALL day long!) but fortunately for me the rain held off for most of the evening. I arrived close to 6:30pm and was quickly escorted inside, where I was greeted by Ra-Fael Blanco (thank you for taking care of me boo!) who took me upstairs into the main room to show me where my seat was located.

The first persons that I ran into were celebrity photographer Rowena Husbands (http://www.blinkofaneyephotographyonline.com/) and Nicole Williams (Ambush Makeover) and I was pleasantly surprised to see that we were all seated at the same table. After we all put our bags down and got situated, we headed back downstairs to the lobby where the bar had opened and the cocktail hour was just beginning. I decided to opt out on a cocktail until later and Ra-Fael was kind enough to walk me down to the press area where I could do some interviews and get some photo ops. Also, joining me downstairs in the press area ,was author Dashawn Taylor (The Ultimate Hustler) and filmmaker (DARE) Abiola Abrams who was also the host for evening's festivities. I passed Chef G. Garvin on the staircase and as he prepared to walk past me with out so much as a glance, I stopped him with "So...you're just gonna walk right past me like i'm invisible right? It's just you and I on this staircase....Not even gonna say hello huh?" lol...which most certainly got his attention, which was exactly what I wanted. Sigh....I am a big fan of his....I like him...I really do but I can't figure him out...this is the second time I had to approach him like this....his vibe is just so weird...ya know fam?

By the time I got back upstairs the lobby area was filled with artfully constructed appetizers (which were being circulated around the room) and the cocktail hour was in full swing. The room was filled with familiar faces Yvette Hayward was the first face I saw and she was absolutely stunning in a red satin strapless dress that hugged all of her curves. Author Deborah Gregory (The Cheetah Girls, Catwalk!) was done up from head to toe in her signature cheetah print; April Woodward (Inside Edition); comedian & author Finesse Mitchell and Joy Dodd of East West PR who had her newest addition, a beautiful 3 week old baby girl named Addison strapped to her chest as she worked the room.

As the cocktail hour began to wind down and the announcement that the show was resuming was made, everyone began to make their way upstairs to the main room and their assigned seats. I found my table and took a seat and quickly began introducing myself to my tablemates; Dashawn Taylor, Marc Rashad Jones (MRJ PR & Events), recording artist Mashonda,
Devon Christopher Editor-in-Chief of Bleu Magazine (http://www.thebleumag.com/), Deborah Gregory, Kim Brockington (The Guiding Light), Rowena Husbands & Nicole Williams.
Everyone at our table was presenting an award that night and I found out quickly that I was seated at what I officially rechristened "The Cool Peoples Table". We sat there and "ki-ki-ed" all night about a million different things. As my eyes scanned the room I saw that G. Garvin and Author & PR Guru Terrie Williams were seated at the table right in front of ours. On the left I found my old friend Sonia Alleyne (Black Enterprise Magazine). As the lights dimmed, Abiola Abrams took the stage and signaled for quiet as the show began. Chef G. Garvin presented the first award for the evening and shortly after that the dinner service began.
The dinner meal & the cocktail hour was catered by none other than my girl Melba Wilson (Melba's Restaurant) and it was delicious meal. We had a choice of either chicken or fish, which was served with roasted potatoes and a sauteed vegetable mix of carrots, cauliflower and broccoli. The food was really good and our only real complaint...lol...was that there wasn't enough of it on the plate.

There was a brief intermission to allow the waitstaff to serve everyone and then the show resumed. During the break I got to chat with my tablemates and I found out during the show that my seatmate Devon Christopher was adding restaurateur to his many lists of accomplishments. This brother told me that he was opening up the first ever Atomic Wings franchise in Harlem on the 1st Saturday in November. The restaurant will be located on 113th & 8th Avenue across from Melba's and get this - THEY WILL DELIVER!!!! Now you know my people & chicken wings go hand in hand and NONE of the other establishments will even THINK of delivering to us. I predict this latest venture for Devon Christopher will do bang up business uptown!!! And let me be the first to say "Thanks Baby!". DeBorah Gregory was kind enough to give me some tips on how to focus on getting my books finished and she also let me know that "Catwalk" would be her last book for young people....she's going to focus on a more mature audience for her next work.

The awards presentation resumed and I was up next to present the award for Short Stories/Anthology. I noticed that the energy had died down a bit in the room and I took it upon myself to try to rev the room up....lol...I think it worked out well. I left the stage and disappeared briefly to hit the ladies room. When I returned I noticed that the waitstaff had passed out the dessert for the evening - mini sweet potato pies topped with a pecan &

mini red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting...yummy! HOWEVER, by the time I returned to our table there was nothing left but crumbs and empty cupcake holders....you KNOW I was about to pitch a hissy fit when both Devon & Marc managed to make both a pie and a cupcake materialize out of nowhere!!! And let me tell you family....the cupcake was good but the sweet potato pie????? OMIGOD!!! That pie took me back to my Great Aunt Emma's kitchen in the basement of 48 East 129th Street.....yeah baby....it was THAT good! Miss Melba put her FOOT in that pie ya'll!!! Whoo!!! After that I was on a mission to find a few more pies...for real.

The placement of the bottles of Paul Masson VSOP Grande Amber Brandy following the dessert signaled the end of the evening and folks began quickly exchanging information, finishing up their drinks and making their way outside. On the way out, I stopped to chat with Sekou Writes (Editor-in-Chief UptownLife.net) and Melba Wilson to tell her how much I enjoyed her food. As and added bonus, I got a very special goodie bag on the way out that was filled with books & products (lol...gifts! that always makes me smile!!!)

I have to say I have been to many an award ceremony and they are usually very long and very boring....but this awards program was the most fun that I have had in a very long time and it was 10 million times better than what went on at the Alhambra last year.

Kudos to you Yvette Heyward on a well produced event and I look forward to attending next year!

Thank you for ALWAYS looking out for me. Continued Success Mama!

"Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood and probably themselves will not be realized. Make big plans; aim high in hope and work, remembering that a noble, logical diagram once recorded will never die, but long after we are gone will be a living thing, asserting itself with ever-growing insistence."

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Milan Fashion Week Opens with Plus Sizes on the Runway!!!

But of course the Italians would be quicker on the draw than us......first The All Black Vogue Italia and now this....check this one out family!!!

From The Telegraph.co.uk:

Milan Fashion Week opens with a surprise fashion plusBy Hilary Alexander, Fashion Director
Last Updated: 12:01am BST 21/09/2008

Opening with a plus-size collection, Elena Miro brought some garden party style to Milan Fashion Week...

Garden party: Milan Fashion Week opens with a plus-size collection from Elena Miro

In pictures: Elena Miro s/s 2009 collection

Milan Fashion Week opened yesterday with a delightful surprise for all those women bored with the seemingly endless parade of lean, lithe teenagers that tends to dominate the catwalks.

Instead, the Milan season for spring/summer opened with the plus-size collection by Elena Miro, specifically designed for women of more average and generous proportions.
The theme was a garden party, interpreted in floral prints of camellia, forget-me-not and peony.

Silk dresses fluttered gracefully below the knees; chiffon blouses, which slipped down to reveal bared shoulders, were teamed with bell-bottom trousers; and short-jackets and bustiers added a more structured note to the wardrobe.

The peony was also interpreted in appliqué effects and Chantilly lace provided delicate embellishment. Accessories included gold clutches and jewellery.

The Elena Miro brand, established in the late 1970’s near Turin by the Miroglio family, is available at Harrods in London.

Milan Fashion Week, third stop on the international designer catwalk shows for next season, continues throughout this week with the collections of all the major Italian status brands including Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada, Gucci, Roberto Cavalli, Missoni, MaxMara, Fendi and Versace.

British style is injected into the Milan calendar with Christopher Bailey’s collection for Burberry Prorsum and the boho designer, Matthew Williamson, who is showing his last collection for Emilio Pucci. Williamson is stepping down to concentrate on building a global business for his own brand.
Are you listening Seventh Avenue?? The Italians know the deal....how come you all still don't?
"Stubborn and ardent clinging to one's opinion is the best proof of stupidity"

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Korto Momolu of Project Runway ROCKS!!!

What's Up Family!

Okay, so did ya'll check out the latest installment of Project Runway? The episode with LL Cool J as one of the judges? The challenge was for the designers to design for each other and a while a couple of the designers got it right....a few of them got it WAY wrong.
But I digress....lol...my purpose for this blog is to spill out my love for contestant Korto Momolu's designs....this chick is BAD ya'll - she's simply amazing!!!!

She won this week's challenge by designing a punk rock look for Suede (who wound up getting eliminated this week for the "Rock n Roll look he created for Jerrell).
But Kenley's "Hip-Hop" look for Leanne nearly took me out of here...that chick is off her rocker for real (and a rude little trollop to boot).

If you don't know about Miss Korto yet....check out her designs from the previous shows:

This was her first challenge and my most favorite designer of hers thus far.

AND she's a juicy girl too boot! I love her and I hope that one day she will design something for The ORIGINAL Runway Diva!!!!

But unfortunately, As much as I LOVE her.....I still don't think she had the winning collection at Bryant Park.

I still believe that honor will fall to Leanne.

But we'll have to wait and see I guess.....

“We live not according to reason, but according to