Remember when we were younger and simply enjoyed the show! In hindsight, I actually realize dynamics of the film(s) affected me, although I wasn’t thoroughly conscience of it at the time. The broadcast premiere of “West Side Story” was an event! I can still recall the excitement in my house, of it airing for the first time, over the course of two nights.
In celebration of Black History Month I’m paying tribute to 28 contemporary history makers. These people have inspired me throughout my life, as well as today, and are making a positive impact on our world.
“The Color Purple” opens on Broadway tomorrow night! Starring Jennifer Hudson as “Shug Avery,” the all around female entertainer performed a segment of the show, on “The Late Show” after taking the couch with Stephen Colbert on Monday night.
Back in the day, “Krush Groove”, was the quintessential hip-hop flick. It was released through Warner Brothers studios in 1985, one year after the success of Prince’s “Purple Rain”, and starred his then protégé and companion Sheila E. Although rap and the culture of hip-hop, are rooted in advocating anti-establishment values and not “selling out”, ever since “Boyz N’ the Hood”, it’s been all about cashing in.
Bill Withers is a living legend. He is unquestionably, the most regular famous guy, I have had the fortune to talk to. When Sony/ Columbia Records released a greatest hits collection of his music titled, “The Best of Bill Withers: Lean on Me” back in 2000, I had the honor of doing a phoner interview with him.
“What Now?” is Kevin Hart’s fifth major LIVE stand-up outing. I had the fortune to attend the second set on his stop in Boston last night at TD Garden — he killed it. I LOVE comedy shows! Over the years I’ve seen Paul Mooney, Eddie Murphy, Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle, each of them two or more times.
During the 1970’s Black filmmakers found their voices by making films that spoke to urban audiences in a way that had never been done before. Films like Sugar Hill, Abby, The Zebra Killers and so many more packed theaters with audiences hungry for Horror Movies where the Black Guy didn’t die first. 40 years later, Black horror films have made a lasting impact within the Black community. These films are national treasures and should be a part of any film collection. The Museum of UnCut Funk pays homage to the Blaxpolitation Horror films of 1974.
As music fans, lovers and aficionados are perched and waiting for “Get On Up” and “Jimi: All Is by My Side,” one can’t help but think of musical biopics that have been previously released. This blog was prompted and inspired by a chat with, and query from my wife, as to how many films of this nature have been done — there are numerous. While many are excited for the lives of James Brown and Jimi Hendrix to grace the silver screen, the lives of other music icons have been brilliantly depicted. (click on photo above for full view)
The loss of National Treasures evokes thoughts of one’s own mortality and legacy. THEY DID THEIR WORK; THEY’VE LEFT THEIR MARKS ON THE PLANET; TOUCHED THE LIVES OF MILLIONS! How much time do we/ I have left? What will we/ I leave behind? My/ our child (ren) and/ or future children? This blog, a Facebook post? I believe those of us still here… STILL HAVE STUFF TO DO.
I fell in love with Bernie Casey when I saw the film Cleopatra Jones. I have been a fan every since. I hope you will enjoy our tribute to Bernie and his contributions to the film industry.
Last night was a historical one for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS). Headed by Cheryl Boone Isaacs, the first African-American to hold the position, diversity was exemplary at the Oscars. Hosted by the Fabulous Ellen DeGeneres, the list of winners and nominees was multi-cultural as well as valid, in that they made poignant statements regarding sexual; age; gender; class; and racial discrimination. This was the best thing about the winners and nominees of this year’s ceremony.
Horror movies with predominantly Black casts represent a niche segment of the horror genre that has been under appreciated for decades. A number of these films continue to entertain new generations of movie aficionados. These films are national treasures and should be a part of any film collection. The Museum of UnCut Funk pays homage to Blaxpolitation Horror films of 1972 and 1973.
Spike Lee and Spike Jonze both have new films in theaters this fall. Two of today’s most innovative directors, they both have a distinctive style that sets them apart from men behind the camera of yesteryear. In addition to displaying aspects of the human condition, Jonze and Lee get to deliver it in ways Hollywood only, and never dreamed of. Before “Being John Malcovich” was released, there had never been a film quite like it. Once Lee made his way into the fray, more black people began working in the industry of film than ever before.
Holy Summer Blockbusters! Universal’s “The Purge” will lead the box office this weekend for raking in the dough. The film studio is riding high right now, as “Fast & Furious 6” topped the box office last week, making it number-one two weeks in a row! I just knew “After Earth” would take the top spot, since ‘Furious’ was released for Memorial Day Weekend… WRONG!
Oscar Award winning actor, producer and director Forest Whitaker has several projects on deck right now. Soon to be seen as the lead in Lee Daniels’ “The Butler” opposite Oprah Winfrey, he has current and upcoming roles in six other films.
Raymond Burr was THE Robert Ironside. I loved that show. It remains to be seen if this role can be resurrected in an interesting way. But I must admit that I am intrigued by Blair Underwood taking it on.
“Iron Man 3” was number-one at the box office after the weekend results were all totaled. According to boxofficemojo.com it took in an estimated $175.3 million dollars. This ranks it the second all-time highest grossing movie opening behind last year’s “The Avengers”, which took in $207.4 million. The movie is also doing well overseas, and is on its way to earning well over $1 billion worldwide.
This past February, I used a photo of a stamp with the face of Paul Robeson as my “Profile Photo” on Facebook. Although his name is featured on the stamp, a few folks asked me who he was. I had just took it for granted that most people knew him or were aware. Growing up, I can remember seeing documentaries about him and hearing his name mentioned in multiple circles. For years, randomly in a particular setting, one might sing the words “Ol’ man river…” as a means of setting an oppressive tone for the conversation.
The new movie “42” based on the life and sacrifices of Jackie Robinson, is looking like it will be tops at the box office this weekend. Based on the book by Aaron Rosenberg and written directed by Academy Award winner Brian Helgeland, it opened with $9.1m at 3,003 venues on Friday, April 12th, according to studio estimates via Box Office Mojo.
As exemplified in an episode of Kevin Hart’s new series the “Real Husbands of Hollywood,” Richard Pryor is the all time “King of Comedy.” Hart has a poster sized photograph of Pryor on his living room wall in the BET show.