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ABC(CHICAGO) -- A Chicago judge has ruled to unseal the documents in the criminal case of Empire actor Jussie Smollett, who claimed he was victim of a hate crime in January that police later alleged he staged.

The records were sealed in March following the case against Smolllett being dropped by prosecutors.

Cook County Judge Steven Watkins ordered on Thursday that the formal sealing of Smollett's investigative files are to be lifted.

Smollett's team argued that the Empire actor had the right to privacy since the charges against him were dropped, and he was entitled to the immediate and permanent sealing of the police, prosecuting and court records.

However, the judge disagreed, saying Smollett's actions, including his interview with Good Morning America in February "are not the actions of a person seeking to maintain his privacy or simply be let alone."

"The defendant has not shown good cause to rebut the...presumption of public access," the judge concluded.

The unsealed records are expected to be released at some point Thursday.  As of Thursday afternoon it wasn't know if Smollett would appeal the ruling.

Chicago police allege that Smollett paid brothers Abel and Ola Osundairo to help him stage an attack on himself January 29. The maintained his innocence, but he was subsequently charged with 16 counts of disorderly conduct related to the allegedly false attack.  The charges were later dropped in exchange for the actor forfeiting his $10,000 bond, and the case records were sealed.

The City of Chicago later demanded that Smollett reimburse them for $130,000 to offset the cost of the investigation, but he has not.  The city is now suing him for that money.

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Starz(NEW YORK) -- The second season of Vida starts off with a bang… literally.

Melissa Barrera and Mishel Prada, who play sisters Lyn and Emma on the GLAAD-award winning Starz series, want to warn viewers that the first episode is definitely NSFW.

“Warning: The first like minute-and-a-half of season two, you probably shouldn't watch around kids or at work or anything of the sort,” Barrera tells ABC Radio.

Prada adds, laughing, “Or older people with heart issues. Anything that might cause a scare.”

“Yeah, it starts with a bang,” Barrera says.

The show is known for its groundbreaking Latinx and LGBTQ representation, as well as depicting sexuality in bold new ways. Prada says she actually got a virus on her computer while googling “research” for a sex scene. So how do their families feel about some of the more explicit scenes?

“It's funny because I usually don't say anything and I let them discover it and then we don't talk about it,” Barrera says. “It's a very Mexican thing to do. You just gloss over any uncomfortable, awkward conversations.” 

At its core, though, Vida is a show about family. This season will explore the formerly estranged sisters as they attempt to build a future as business partners and co-owners of their late mother’s bar.

Season two is available to stream on the Starz app in its entirety starting today and will debut on Starz Sunday at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

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CBS All Access(LOS ANGELES) -- Jean Luc-Pinot Noir? That might be the first thing that comes to mind after fans see the first teaser to Star Trek: Picard.

The first look at the anticipated CBS Access series shows what Patrick Stewart's brilliant-but-retired Starfleet...Admiral Jean-Luc Picard has been up to in his golden years. Star Trek: The Next Generation demonstrated that he was always a cultured man, so it's perhaps not surprising he's back to his own vineyard.

As a drone floats overhead, watering his crops, we see only glimpses of Picard, but not his face. We even get a glimpse of his handiwork: a case of Bourgoune, or Burgundy wine. Star Trek: Discovery star Sonequa Martin-Green teases what happened since the TNG days in voice over.

"15 years ago today, you led us out of the darkness," her character Michael Burnham says, teasing a major event that might be shown in the series. "You commanded the greatest rescue armada in history. Then, the unimaginable: what did that cost you? Your faith? Your faith in us? Your faith in yourself? Tell us. Why did you leave Starfleet, Admiral?"

The snippet ends with Stewart, looking up, and right into the camera. A title card reads: "Star Trek: Picard - Coming Soon."

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Photo by Brook Mitchell/Getty Images(SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA) -- "This was a recklessly irresponsible piece of sensational journalism of the worst kind," declared Australian Justice Michael Wigney, before awarding Oscar-winning actor Geoffrey Rush nearly $2 million USD in a defamation case.

The amount, $2.9 million in Australian dollars (AUD), is the largest-ever defamation payout in the country's history, reports the Australian Broadcasting Company.

In an Australian Daily Telegraph article titled "King Leer," Rush was accused of inappropriately touching his King Lear co-star Eryn Jean Norvill back in 2015.  She also said Rush chased her into a bathroom, and sent her inappropriate text messages.

The accusations came amid the #MeToo allegations that derailed the careers of Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey, among others.  Rush had vehemently denied Norvill's accusations, and even tearfully took the stand in his own defense.

Rush's award covers some covers $850,000 AUD for loss the article caused to the Shine Oscar winner's reputation.  The rest of the figure includes $1 million for past economic loss, $919,678 in future economic loss, and $42,000 in interest, according to the Australian Broadcasting Company.

The Daily Telegraph is appealing the decision.

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Paramount Pictures(LOS ANGELES) -- Paramount has released the first trailer to Terminator: Dark Fate, the film that will reunite Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton for the first time since James Cameron's 1991 blockbuster Terminator 2: Judgment Day.

Produced by Cameron and co-written and directed by Deadpool's Tim Miller, the plot mirrors 1984's original The Terminator: a savior is sent from the future to protect a young woman in the present from a futuristic killing machine sent by the machine-mind Skynet.

This time around, the Terminator in question, the Rev 9,  is played by Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Diego Luna, and his advanced model bears some of the "liquid metal" properties Robert Patrick's T-1000 had in T2. The savior is Mackenzie Davis' Grace; like Michael Biehn's Kyle Reese in the original film, she's a soldier sworn to protect her charge: unlike him, however, she's a cyborg -- though she apparently identifies as human.

As for the old guard: Linda Hamilton's introduction in the preview is as kick-butt as fans might hope: as Luna's Terminator closes in on his target, Natalia Reyes' Dani Ramos, Hamilton's Sarah Connor emerges, blasting it with a shotgun -- and then an RPG.

Before you can say "Come with me if you want to live," Connor teams up with Grace, and, of course, the old reliable T-800; Arnold's visibly aged Terminator model.

"Why do you care what happens to her?" Grace asks Connor. "Because I was her," she answers, implying that Ramos' future is key to humanity's survival, just as Sarah's was.

As you might expect, there's no shortage of action, including a pair of huge military planes ramming into each other, and an underwater Terminator vs. Terminator fight.

The movie opens November 1.

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Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Food Bank of New York City(NEW YORK) -- Mario Batali will face arraignment in Boston Municipal Court on Friday on a charge of indecent assault and battery.

The disgraced celebrity chef is accused of kissing and groping a woman against her will at a Back Bay restaurant on March 31, 2017.

Batali denies the allegations, according to statement from his lawyer, Hogan Lovells partner Anthony Fuller, who adds, "The charges, brought by the same individual without any new basis, are without merit. He intends to fight the allegations vigorously and we expect the outcome to fully vindicate Mr. Batali.”

In August, Natali Tene, 28, claimed Batali forcibly kissed and groped her at a Boston restaurant in April 2017.

This will be the first criminal charge Batali has faced. Police in New York investigated the chef but ultimately did not charge him.

Batali announced in March that he was stepping away from his restaurant empire amid several accusations from women.

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© Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures/Columbia Pictures/EON Productions(LOS ANGELES) -- There's bad news and good news this morning for James Bond fans.

First, the bad news: Daniel Craig will undergo surgery as a result of an ankle injury he sustained while filming Bond 25 in Jamaica. However, according to the official James Bond Twitter account, the surgery will not stall the release of the as-yet-unnamed 25th James Bond adventure.

Craig's post-surgery rehab is expected to last two weeks, during which production will continue, according to the post, which insists the film remains on track to meet its planned April 8, 2020 release date.


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ABC/Eric McCandless(LOS ANGELES) -- It was the 1970s all over again, as Jimmy Kimmel and legendary TV show creator Norman Lear teamed up for Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear's All in the Family and The Jeffersons, which featured live performances from classic episodes of All In The Family and its spin-off, The Jeffersons.

While the entire all-star cast shined in their roles, It was Jamie Foxx's spot-on George Jefferson, originated by the late Sherman Hemsley, that stole the show.

During the All in the Family episode “Henry’s Farewell,” Foxx flubbed one of his lines. Breaking character, the Oscar-winning actor reminded the audience "It's live!" Added Foxx, "Everyone sitting at home just thinks their TV just messed up."

The ad-lib drew laughter and cheers from the audience, and even had his fellow cast members -- Woody Harrelson as Archie Bunker, Ellie Kemper as Gloria, Ike Barinholtz as "Meathead", Anthony Anderson as Henry Jefferson and Marisa Tomei as Edith Bunker -- cracking up in the background.

Jennifer Hudson provided one of the show's other highlights, performing the iconic Jefferson's theme song "Movin' on Up."

The Jefferson's segment also provided a touching moment when 87-year-old Marla Gibbs reprised her role as George and Louise Jefferson’s maid, Florence. Gibbs is the only surviving castmember from the original series, that also starred Isabel Sanford, Michael Evans, Roxie Roker and Franklin Cover.

Lear opened the special by noting, “the language and themes from almost 50 years ago can still be jarring today and we are still grappling with many of those issues.”

One sign of the times came during The Jeffersons segment when the N word was bleeped several times.

The special also featured Sean Hayes, Will Ferrell, Kerry Washington, Jovan Adepo and Jackée Harry and Amber Stevens West.

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ABC(LOS ANGELES) -- Tonight, Jimmy Kimmel and legendary TV show creator Norman Lear are bringing viewers the ultimate throwback experience. 

As previously reported, the two funnymen have teamed up for Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear's "All in the Family" and "The Jeffersons" which features live performances from classic episodes of All In The Family and its spin-off, The Jeffersons.

The two beloved sitcoms, which aired during the 70s and early 80s, were anything but politically correct and managed to address hot-button issues like racism, divorce, interracial marriage, poverty, politics and even sexual assault.

For All in the Family, Woody Harrelson will portray Archie Bunker, Academy Award-winner Marisa Tomei will play his wife Edith and The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt's Ellie Kemper appears as their daughter, Gloria Stivik.

On The Jeffersons, Oscar-winner Jamie Foxx will play George Jefferson, Wanda Sykes will be Weezie; Will Ferrell will play their neighbor Tom Willis, Kerry Washington will be his wife Helen, and Justina Machado will play Florence, their sassy maid.

Other additions include black-ish star Anthony Anderson as Uncle Henry, Carmichael Show veteran Amber Stevens West will play Jenny Willis Jefferson, and Jovan Adepo will play her brother Lionel Jefferson. 227 comic icon Jackée Harry will play Diane Stockwell.

Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear's "All in the Family" and "The Jeffersons" airs tonight starting at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

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Courtesy of Samuel Goldwyn Films(LOS ANGELES) -- While you might not recognize actor David Dastmalchian's name, you've definitely seen him work: among many others, he stole scenes as a psycho Joker follower in The Dark Knight, and the Elvis-coiffed Russian hacker Kurt in the Ant-Man movie series.

He can also now be seen in theaters and streaming on-demand in a very different project, the intense drama All Creatures Here Below, which he wrote. He and another Marvel movie veteran, Karen Gillan, play a troubled couple who go on the run to their hometown of Kansas City, Kansas, after setting in motion a devastating chain of events.

"They are trying to make a family with a child that's not their own," he explains, "And in order to start over, they have to go back to the place where they're from, and confront the thing that they fear the most."

Kansas City is also Dastmalchian's hometown. As he explains, going home was the only way he could have pulled off the independent film, which deals with heavy issues including kidnapping, relationship and family abuse, and poverty. 

"Having my family there with me and being back in the home territory, an amazing crew and cast surrounding me -- it's a small team but a very close knit family -- just surrounding myself with people who I trust and love, that's the only way I think you can keep throwing yourself into the fire for three weeks straight and not just end up in critical condition."

Dastmalchian says he's "so blessed" to be able to pivot from small projects like All Creatures, to big studio films. "These are...giant movies where I get to play really fun characters, and I've worked with directors that have let me just go and get crazy, and then they've -- God, given me such amazing opportunities!"

He adds, "I'm such of...all these franchises...[A]nd now I'm just sneaking in somehow by the skin of my teeth as a character actor, getting to be on these sets. It's like I got the Golden Ticket."

He admits he has to keep his inner fanboy in check, however. "...[I'll] have to go do let's say a really intense scene with Jake Gyllenhaal or Evangeline Lilly, or...Paul Rudd -- Michelle Pfeiffer on Ant-Man and the Wasp, Michael Douglas! You show up to work and you have to be like pro and you can't act geeky or nerd out."

He's not always successful at the latter, he admits with a laugh.

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Photo by NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Lisa Kudrow has been in the public eye for decades, but being a celebrity hasn't always been easy.

The actress told WTF podcast host Marc Maron that during the production of Friends, she felt extra pressure to be thin. She said that she had been self-conscious acting alongside Courteney Cox and Jennifer Aniston, who are shorter than she is.

"My bones feel bigger. I just felt like this mountain of a woman next to them," the 5-foot-8 actress explained. By comparison, Cox and Aniston are a full three inches shorter.

"Unfortunately for a woman, if you're underweight, you look good and that's all I ever got," she told Maron, adding, "And when I was too thin, I was sick all the time: a cold, a sinus infection, some kind of flu. I was always sick."

She tells Maron she's long since embraced her body, particularly as she gets older.

Kudrow, 55, starred as Phoebe Buffay on Friends for 10 years; the show ended in 2004, but years before that, the five co-stars famously negotiated a $1 million per episode salary.

The actress told Maron that she's still being paid for her work on the sitcom, which is now streaming on Netflix and airing in syndication around the world.

She's also stayed friendly with Cox and Aniston, as well as her other co-stars David Schwimmer, Matthew Perry, and Matt LeBlanc.

"We had dinner [at Aniston's home] a couple years ago -- everybody -- for the first time since we were finished," she said. "We just laughed! It was really fun."

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ABC/Fred Lee(NEW YORK) -- Omari Hardwick is opening up about his unique relationship with Power co-creator 50 Cent, who, Hardwick admits, sometimes takes jabs at him online.

In a recent interview with ABC Radio, Hardwick says even with his close relationship to 50, he's still finds himself a target when the rapper decides to have a little fun on social media. However, when that occurs, Omari says he definitely holds his own.

"If you're raised like Omari or 50, then you're going to challenge each other," Hardwick explains. "Obviously, he challenges people. And as you know, Omari ain't afraid to go after people on Instagram either. So, sometimes I'll reach out and I'll say, 'Five, why do you do that?' And he gives me an explanation for why he did that. Which means that he respects me enough to give me an explanation, because he could really ignore. And he doesn't."

Omari explains that his and 50's relationship is built on trust and the fact that they have both survived adversity in their lives, including losing close loved ones to violence and growing up in tough urban settings. Hardwick says that it's those similarities that bring them together-- in addition to 50 being the main catalyst behind his critically-acclaimed role as Ghost on the hit crime drama Power.

"You're going to get a different level of respect for each other when, when each other sort of allows each other to be that thing," Hardwick explains. "50's fun man. At the end of the day, he's a fun, super intelligent cat, who again -- and I said -- he changed my life."

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Lionsgate(LOS ANGELES) -- You can say he's back -- again. Just days after his third film in the series debuted as the number-one movie in America, it's been confirmed that Keanu Reeves and his nearly unstoppable eponymous assassin John Wick will officially be back for a fourth film.

The news came via a text message to fans that referenced a catchphrase from John Wick: Chapter 3 -- Parabellum: "You have served. You will be of service. John Wick: Chapter 4 is coming - May 21, 2021"

That means the clock is ticking once again for Mr. Wick: He'll be back in theaters in 1 year and 364 days from right now.

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Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/WireImage(LOS ANGELES) -- After serving his ex-wife, Amber Heard, with a $50 million defamation lawsuit back in March, Johnny Depp is now claiming the physical injuries the Aquaman actress says he inflicted on her were "painted on bruises."

The defamation suit was in response to a piece Heard wrote for The Washington Post about domestic abuse.

In a court document obtained by Deadline, Depp claims he never abused Heard or any other woman, adding, "She was the perpetrator, and I was the victim.”

“While mixing prescription amphetamines and non-prescription drugs with alcohol, Ms. Heard committed innumerable acts of domestic violence against me, often in the presence of a third-party witness, which in some instances caused me serious bodily harm,” Depp goes on to allege in the statement.

Depp's latest salvo in his ongoing battle with Heard comes at the same time the Buckley LLP lawyers, who helped him score a victory over his former attorney of 20 years, Jacob Bloom, are suing Depp over profits from his career they claim he owes them.

In a Monday court filing, Fredrick Levin, Michael Rome and Ali Abugheida claimed Depp hasn’t paid the $347,979.89 remaining on his already discounted $535,697.28 bill. The trio allege their firm was promised the cash by last week after Depp fired them in January, supposedly in an effort to cut his expenses.

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Walt Disney Studios(HOLLYWOOD) -- We've still got three days to wait before Disney's live-action remake of Aladdin opens, but a lucky few got to see it at Tuesday night's world premiere at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood.

Will Smith stars as the Genie in the film, the role originally made famous by Robin Williams in the 1992 animated original. On the purple carpet, Smith told ABC Radio he’s thrilled that two years of work is finally ready for us to see.

"This is a beautiful night, it's been a long time coming," said Smith. "Two years to get here, and I'm on this red carpet with a movie that I love and I'm excited to have the world see it."

Smith said he's equally excited about the updates made to the new Aladdin, compared to the original.

"I would say the number-one that I'm proud of is the additions to the Princess Jasmine character," Smith enthused.  "The idea that her character wants to rule -- that added such a new flavor to the interactions between Jasmine and Aladdin."

Smith added, "And then the new song, 'Speechless,' I think is the greatest accomplishment of this movie."

Aladdin -- also starring Mena Massoud in the title role, Naomi Scott as Jasmine and Marwan Kenzari as Jafar, opens Friday, May 24 from Disney, parent company of ABC News.

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