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Disney has declared Friday, November 12 Disney+ Day, and to celebrate, the streaming service announced it's debuting content from its properties Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and Walt Disney Animation Studios.

Among the launches on November 12 will be the streaming debut of the latest Marvel Studios blockbuster Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, as well as the hit Jungle Cruise starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Emily Blunt, and Disney+ Original movie Home Sweet Home Alone, based on the hit Home Alone series. 

Also on the docket are a series of shorts called Olaf Presents, starring Frozen's favorite snowman retelling several classic Disney tales; the Oscar-winning shorts Feast and Paperman; and a new Simpsons short that pays tribute to Disney IP.

Disney+ will also debut a Star Wars special about the origins and legacy of bounty hunter and fan favorite Boba Fett, a new Marvel Studios special feature, new episodes of The World According to Jeff Goldblum from National Geographic, as well as special sneak peeks of upcoming shows and celebrity guest stars to help celebrate the occasion.

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There’s another Britney Spears documentary in the works.

On Tuesday, Netflix teased Britney vs Spears ahead of a promised full trailer premiere on Wednesday.

The 18-second clip begins with text that reads, “The following audio is a voicemail from Britney Spears to a lawyer on January 21st, 2009 at 12:29 a.m.”

We then hear Britney’s voice saying, “Hi, my name is Britney Spears, I called you earlier. I’m calling again because I wanted to make sure that during the process of eliminating the conservatorship."

The Netflix doc comes after Hulu/FX’s documentary The New York Times Presents: Framing Britney Spears reignited the #FreeBritney movement back in February.

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Courtesy of Netflix

Netflix has released the first trailer for Passing, Rebecca Hall's directorial debut, starring Tessa Thompson and Ruth Negga.

As previously noted, the film is based on Nella Larsen's 1929 novella of the same name. It follows two mixed-race women, played by Thompson and Negga, who reunite in their adulthood and discover that one of them is now passing for a white woman. André Holland, Bill Camp, Gbenga Akinnagbe, Antoinette Crowe-Legacy and Alexander Skarsgard also star. Passing hits select theaters on October 27, before becoming available to stream on Netflix November 10.

In other news, Ashton Sanders has been tapped to play yet another music icon, Deadline as learned. Sanders, who currently plays RZA in Hulu's Wu-Tang: An American Saga, has joined the cast of the Whitney Houston biopic I Wanna Dance With Somebody. He will take on the role of New Edition singer -- and Houston's ex-husband -- Bobby Brown. As previously reported, Naomi Ackie will play the legendary singer in the new feature, which producer Clive Davis says will "present the full story of Whitney Houston impeccably and [ensure] that it will be realistic in every respect." Kasi Lemmons serves as director, while Academy Award nominee Anthony McCarten will write the script. A release date for I Wanna Dance With Somebody has not yet been announced.

Finally, Ashanti is taking her talents back to the screen. According to Deadline, the singer will produce and star in the upcoming rom-com The Plus One. She will play Lizzie, a soon-to-be bride who asks her “Male of Honor,” Marshall, not to bring "his hated ex, Marie, to her destination wedding." Unfortunately for Lizzie, Marshall invites Marie as his "plus one." Additional casting has yet to be announced.

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Ellen Pompeo provided an update about the fate of her long-running medical drama Grey's Anatomy, and teased that the show may be ready to hang up the scrubs after 18 successful seasons.

"They're not far off," Pompeo, 51, told Entertainment Tonight when discussing fans' theories that the five-time Emmy winning show will come to an end soon.

The actress, who stars as Doctor Meredith Grey, continued, "I mean, I've been trying to get away for years. I have been trying. It's not because I haven't been trying. I have strong relationships at the network and they have been very, very good to me, and have incentivized me to stay."

Pompeo insisted that "creatively, as long as there's something to do" she will continue starring on the ABC medical drama. "Miraculously, we keep coming up with ways to have a reason to stay and if there's a reason, that warrants it," she teased.

Season 17, she says, was the definition of creativity because it was filmed during a global pandemic. "We had to work around COVID obviously and so we had to be creative and think of ways to keep the show going and still be safe," she said.

When asked about the possibility of a groundbreaking 19th season, the actress joked, "Oh please! Oh my goodness, can we pray together?"

However, Pompeo insisted her hands are tied when it comes to confirming if Grey's is about to enter its final season, telling ET, "I'm not really supposed to say anything about it... I don't want to be disrespectful to people I've promised things to."

Grey's 18th season premieres September 30 on ABC.

 

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Kidman in Nine Perfect Strangers - Hulu

Once upon a time, Nicole Kidman was married to Tom Cruise. Now she's reflecting on that time in her life, specifically about how she was treated by the media. 

When asked by Harper's Bazaar if she was annoyed with the media's obsession over the high profile relationship, the Australian actress replied, "I was young. I think I offered it up?"

"Maybe I’ve gotten a bit more trepidatious, but I’m always trying to be as open as possible. I just prefer to live in the world that way," she continued, before a moment of silence. She then continued, "I’m wary at times, and I’ve been hurt, but at the same time I much prefer a warm approach rather than a prickly shutdown approach."

Referencing her current husband, country singer Keith Urban, the Nine Perfect Strangers star added, "My husband, Keith, says that when he met me, he said, 'How’s your heart?' And I apparently responded, 'Open.'"

Kidman, 54, and Cruise were married for 11 years before divorcing in 2001. They share two children: Isabella Jane, 28, and Connor, 26.

The Big Little Lies star and Urban wed in 2006 and they also have two children together -- daughters Sunday Rose, 13, and Faith Margaret, 10.

 

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Courtesy Peacock

Top Chef's Padma Lakshmi has been open about the fact that she gains 10 to 15 pounds while taping each season of the show.  So of course, Meghan Trainor was concerned about the issue when she signed on to host the new Peacock cooking competition Top Chef: Family StyleBut as Meghan tells ABC Audio, she wasn't going to let it happen to her.

Meghan started out with two strikes against her: Not only was she required to eat delicious and fattening food every episode, but when she started hosting the show, her son Riley was just two months old. "I was [also] trying to lose my baby weight," she tells ABC Audio. "So I was on a mission!"

"I worked out every single day before that show -- and after that show, sometimes," she reveals. "But I was the only person -- I think I'm the only person in history, dare I say -- to lose weight on Top Chef!

Yes, believe it or not, through diligent workouts and a nutrition plan, Meghan was able to avoid packing on the pounds while shooting the series.

"I was very excited. I kept coming in each week telling people, like, 'We're another pound down!'" she laughs. "So I worked very hard, and it showed me, too, like, you don't have to be afraid of carbs and all the treats. Because if you balance it out, you can still lose weight. So I did very well!"

Top Chef: Family Style, which features kids and their relatives competing in teams, will be about halfway through its first season when Meghan's other show, Clash of the Cover Bands, premieres on E! on October 13. She's also working on a new album.

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Eli Joshua Ade/HBO -- Sophie Mutevelian/Netflix

Tobias Menzies couldn't accept his Emmy for his work in The Crown on Sunday night, but he just gave his "acceptance speech" via social media -- and dedicated his win to actor Michael K. Williams, who died on September 6. 

A "very humbled" Menzies congratulated his "brilliant fellow nominees," adding, "[I] want to dedicate this to Michael K Williams, his performance as Omar in The Wire is one of the great screen performances, he will be deeply missed. RIP."

Williams, 54, was also nominated in the Outstanding Supporting Actor category, for his work on HBO's Lovecraft Country.

The actor, who had been open with his struggles with addiction in the past, was found dead in his Brooklyn apartment earlier this month. ABC affiliate WABC-TV in New York reported that drug paraphernalia was found at the scene. Police said the investigation is ongoing and the medical examiner will determine the cause of death.



A24 Films

Academy Award-winning Fargo co-writer-director Joel Coen has raised the curtain on his upcoming take on Shakespeare's The Tragedy of Macbeth.

Featuring multiple Oscar winners Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand, Coen's wife and frequent collaborator, the teaser is brief, but creepy and stark. Shot in black and white, it shows Washington as the title character and McDormand as his Machiavellian wife, who eyes Scotland's throne for her husband.

The teaser features no dialog from the acclaimed actors, only The Witch's haunting line, "By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes."

The project is a return to The Bard for Denzel, who has performed Shakespeare both on stage and on the big screen, the latter in Kenneth Branagh's 1993 adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing.

Also starring Brendon Gleeson and The Queen's Gambit co-star Moses IngramThe Tragedy of Macbeth -- Coen's first movie without his filmmaking partner and brother, Joel -- hits theaters December 25, and Apple TV+ on January 14.

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Photo: Eric Charbonneau

Justin Simien had a lot to unpack for the final season of his critically-acclaimed Netflix series, Dear White People

Unlike previous seasons, where the creator went in focused on topical issues centered on race and culture, Simien says he "started the season from a heart place."

"I went in going like, 'What am I feeling right now?' And 'How do I turn that into something that is honest but also exciting enough that warrants a final season?'" Simien tells ABC Audio. "And that's where I landed first."

Simien notes that once he "mentally... caught up" to what his feelings showed him, he noticed that there was a strong tie-in for music.

"I realized that there was this really interesting echo between the '90s and the sort of Black renaissance that you really feel in the music of the '90s," he says.

Unfortunately, not every nostalgic ballad was able to make the cut. Writer Jaclyn Moore jokes that for every "great" '90s song they considered, they were reminded that you had to pay for it.

"We love Lauryn Hill. We had some [of her] numbers -- but that's expensive," Moore laughs.

Aside from the musically themed season, Justin says the fourth season leaves plenty of room for continuation since racism doesn't officially have an end date.

"The reckoning has not completed itself," he shares. "So that was always the tricky part. It's like, how do we tell the truth about this experience and also tell a satisfying story, but at the same time not bum everybody out?"

He continues, "And I think by nature, Dear White People always has to feel a little incomplete...We are so far from the mountaintop... that there's no other way to 'end it.'"

The final season of Dear White People launches on Netflix September 22.

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Ewan McGregor was all smiles backstage at the Emmy Awards Sunday night, and he had a reason to: he had just picked up his first TV trophy, for portraying mercurial designer Halston in the Netflix limited series of the same name. 

He also gave fans a quick update about his next anticipated project, the Obi-Wan Kenobi series that will debut on Disney+ next year.  But as usual, McGregor was careful about spoilers.

"Not really," the Scot said when asked if he could give any details.

However, his lack of facial hair, unlike the titular Jedi master's, was one giveaway that he confirmed by explaining that shooting on the series has wrapped.

"It was really, really good fun," McGregor said. "I really enjoyed working with [director] Deborah Chow," who won acclaim for directing two episodes of The Mandalorian

"I think it will not disappoint," McGregor explained. "I think it's going to be good. I had a really good time making it and worked with some really wonderful people, lovely people."

Some of those "lovely people" include EternalsKumail NanjianiO'Shea Jackson Jr., and Ewan's Star Wars prequel co-stars including Joel EdgertonBonnie Piesse and Hayden Christensen. The first two performers reprise, respectively, Luke Skywalker's adoptive Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru. The latter, of course, will once again play Darth Vader, Kenobi's fallen apprentice who was once Anakin Skywalker.

The series takes place after the events of Star Wars: Episode III- - Revenge of the Sith but before Star Wars: A New Hope, at a time when Kenobi watches over a young Skywalker from afar on Tatooine.

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After suddenly going dark on Instagram last week, Britney Spears made her triumphant return to the social media service on Monday. 

The "Toxic" singer admitted that she found it hard to "stay away" from the app, but revealed that she temporarily deactivated her Instagram in order to enjoy a small getaway with Sam Asghari, her soon-to-be husband.

Spears, 39, also let it slip that she's still having a tough time wrapping her mind around the fact that she's engaged.

"Some shots from my weekend getaway to celebrate my engagement with my ... holy s*** ... FIANCÉ," she captioned the post. "I still can’t believe it !!!!"

The Grammy winner continued, "I couldn’t stay away from the gram too long so I’m back already."

Despite her celebratory return, some fans aren't exactly buying the story and believe that someone else reactivated the account. Fans have begun pointing out that the photos and videos that have been uploaded since Monday don't show Britney wearing her sparkler, nor the dark cherry-red highlights she had in her hair during last week's engagement reveal

In a later video update, Spears explained in the caption that the "red dye came out in the shower and it looked like a crime scene."

The admission only fueled fans' concerns that Britney may no longer in control of her Instagram, with some hairstylists offering their expertise with red hair dye.

"Uh red hair dye doesn't rinse out in a few days... cosmetologist/barber here," one user remarked, while others shared similar insights.

Neither Britney nor Asghari have addressed the speculation.

 

 

 

 

 

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Lil Jon is back in paradise! The rapper returns to guest host Bachelor in Paradise tonight and he tells ABC Audio what surprised him the most about the show.

"I will say this season, all the g**damn drama surprised me," he admits. "And what really also surprised me is when you think some couples are really strong and then somebody comes in and that relationship is over."

Referencing the relationship between Kenny and Mari, who fans saw break up and get back together after Kenny had a fling with Demi, Lil Jon added, "They got back together after [Mari] knew he went to the boom boom room [with Demi]. It's like, this show is crazy!"

The rapper and DJ also shares that, for the first time in BiP history, drama comes in another form -- that being a tropical storm, which led to the cast being evacuated.  With so much already at play, it was the perfect time for Lil Jon's arrival, which provided a much-needed shift for the show's energy.

"It was so much gigantic, huge, Godzilla, King Kong drama that had just happened that the energy change was well needed," he explains. "I think people don't realize, I'm known for having a good time. So when you've got someone having a good time that means they can come in and change the energy when you got all of this drama like what's going on this season."

Something else people may not realize is that, in addition to the heat and humidity, the cast has to deal with crabs. 

"The crabs are everywhere! It's like roaches in the projects," Jon laughs. "It was literally at one point like 10 crabs in the bathtub because I just didn't even care."

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Dancing with the Stars welcomed back head judge Len Goodman and a live studio audience when kicking off its 30th season on Monday. 

Of course, a brand-new season brought a fresh crop of stars who brought their A-game to the ballroom floor.  Besides Goodman, fellow judges Carrie Ann InabaBruno Tonioli and Derek Hough regularly remarked on how the competitors exceeded their expectations for a first-night performance.

Monday's premiere even yielded the first score of eight of the season, after Nickelodeon star JoJo Siwa -- who made history by becoming the first female competitor to dance with another woman, pro Jenna Johnson -- ruled the dance floor with her colorful and cheerful quickstep to Jet's "Are You Gonna Be My Girl."  The peppy number drew rave reviews from all four judges, with Bruno dubbing her performance the "groundbreaking moment we've been waiting for!" 

Siwa ended the night at the top of the leaderboard with an impressive 29 out of 40 points. However, she shouldn't get too comfortable in first place -- several other competitors made a strong first impression during the premiere, including The Talk co-host Amanda KlootsSpice Girl singer Melanie C, Olympic Gold medalist Suni LeeReal Housewives of Atlanta star Kenya Moore, and Peloton instructor Cody Rigsby.

Not everyone shined on the dance floor on Monday.  Cobra Kai star Martin Kove only managed to earn a meager 13 out of 40 possible points for his ill-prepared Paso Doble to "You're the Best Around," off the Karate Kid soundtrack.  Hough hinted that the disastrous performance could possibly be due to Kove, who's 75, not attending every rehearsal and told him, "Put in the hours and we'll see you next week."

The night also offered many memorable moments, such as Brian Austin Green revealing he's the lucky chap to be partnered with his significant other, pro dancer Sharna Burgess.  The two shared a celebratory kiss upon completing their upbeat Foxtrot to Silk Sonic's "Skate."  However, Green hinted that his dance partner won't go easy on him, and even joked before the two stepped onto the ballroom floor, "If I mess this up, I wouldn't be surprised if Sharna left me!"

"We'll see," she shot back with a devilish grin before amending, "I'll judge him...but I wouldn't leave him."

Olivia Jade also made waves when she openly addressed the elephant in the room prior to her performance, speaking about the college admissions cheating scandal involving her famous parents: actress Lori Loughlin and designer Mossimo Giannulli.

"After everything that happened, I did step back from social media and just soaked in what everybody was saying," Olivia Jade said. "I'm not trying to pull a pity card. I need to move forward and do better."  She finished the night in the middle of the pack with a score of 25 out of 40.

Dancing with the Stars returns next Monday, September 27, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. Scores from the premiere will be combined with next Monday's scores before the series announces its first elimination.

Here are the current standings:

JoJo Siwa, Nickelodeon star, with Jenna Johnson -- 29/40
Amanda Kloots, The Talk co-host, with Alan Bersten -- 28/40
Suni Lee, Olympic Gold medalist, with Sasha Farber -- 28/40
Melanie C, Spice Girl, with Gleb Savchenko -- 27/40
Kenya Moore, Real Housewives of Atlanta star, with Brandon Armstrong -- 26/40
Melora Hardin, The Office actress, with Artem Chivensky -- 26/40
Christine ChiuBling Empire star, with Pasha Pashkov -- 25/40
Olivia Jade, influencer, with Val Chmerkovskiy -- 25/40
Cody Rigsby, Peloton instructor, with Cheryl Burke -- 24/40
Matt James, Bachelor star, with Lindsey Arnold -- 24/40
Brian Austin GreenBeverly Hills, 90210 star, Sharna Burgess -- 24/40
Michael "The Miz" Gregory, WWE superstar, Witney Carson -- 24/40
Jimmie Allen, country music singer, with Emma Slater -- 22/40
Imam Shumpert, NBA player, with Daniella Karagach -- 21/40

Lowest score: 
Martin Kove, Cobra Kai star, with Britt Stewart-- 13/40

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(NOTE LANGUAGE) In a chat with Marc Maron on his WTF with Marc Maron podcast, Sopranos creator David Chase revealed a bit about the iconic show's finale -- and how Journey ended up in it.

As you may remember, James Gandolfini's Tony Soprano and his family members sit down for dinner at a diner, and Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" cranks out of a jukebox. 

While Chase wasn't re-litigating what the vague ending means -- spoiler alert, he apparently once accidentally called it Tony's "death scene" -- Chase did talk about what went into choosing that song. 

In speaking with members of his crew at the time, Chase said he was left with three choices -- one of which he couldn't remember, and the other was Al Green's "Love and Happiness."

When he mentioned "Don't Stop Believin'," Chase recalled, "[T]hey went, 'Oh, Jesus Christ, no. Don't do that! Ugh. F***.' And I said, 'Well, that's it. That’s the one.'"

Chase explained, "I wasn't saying that just to throw it in their face. That was kind of my favorite, and it got a reaction of some kind. So I can make this song lovable, which it had been."

The Emmy winner also detailed that other endings were shot to throw off potential spoilers -- but wouldn't reveal to Maron what those alternate takes were.

The Sopranos prequel, Chase's The Many Saints of Newark, starring Gandolfini's son Michael as a young Tony Soprano, hits theaters and HBO Max on October 1.

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Ben Affleck heaped on the praise for his on-again squeeze Jennifer Lopez -- but this was about her business acumen and her role as a role model for entrepreneurs of color. 

Affleck told the trade Adweek that he's "in awe" of Ms. From the Block, who was named the magazine's 2021 Brand Visionary. The cover feature on Lopez features testimonials about her from colleagues and friends, including Affleck.

"I am in awe of what Jennifer's effect on the world is," Affleck enthused. "At most, as an artist, I can make movies that move people. Jennifer has inspired a massive group of people to feel they have a seat at the table in this country. That is an effect few people throughout history have had, one...I can only stand by and admire with respect," Ben said. 

The feature details not only Lopez's cosmetics and fashion empire, but also her charity effort, Limitless Labs, which, along with Goldman Sachs, is boosting efforts of Latinx entrepreneurs.

"All I can tell you is that I have seen firsthand the difference representation makes because I have seen, over and over and over...women of color approach Jennifer and tell her what her example as a strong woman, and a woman succeeding and demanding her fair share in the business world means to them," Affleck said. 

Elsewhere in the feature, Lopez's Hustlers co-producer and Nuyorican Productions partner Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas said, "Jennifer’s brand has always been about...not allowing anyone or anything to trivialize or marginalize or stop you."

She added, "We try to pick projects with characters who are...empowered, and people are cast and our crews with as much diversity as possible, giving women and people of color an opportunity they did not have a few years ago."

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