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The Pulse of Entertainment - 2012

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Eunice Moseley
Freelance Associates

January 6, 2012
reginaking_dorianmissick_southland.jpgRegina King and Dorian Missick partner on new season of ‘Southland' on TNT, premiers January 17, 2012 
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TNT's "Southland" has actors Regina King and Dorian Missick as partners in the 4th season of the dramatic series, which premiers January 17, 2012 at 10 p.m.ET. King plays Detective Lydia Adams, often known for losing her cool while balancing work and motherhood and Missick plays her partner.

"Southland," nominated for a SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a TV Series, takes a valid look at crime in Los Angeles and the LAPD. Picked up for ten episodes, "Southland," was created and co-executive produced by Ann Biderman. "Southland" is produced by John Wells Production in association with Warner Bros. TV.

"My choice was to be on a show that was an ensemble. I'm not really interested in 17 hour a day every day...that's what you get when...the show is all about you," said Regina King, who will serve as Social Media Ambassador at the SAG Awards, about starring on the TNT weekly series.

Dorian Missick added that one of the things he loves about the show "is that the writers really do play attention to detail."

The cast also includes Michael Cuditz as Officer John Copper, Shawn Hatosy as Detective Sammy Bryant, Lucy Liu as Officer Jessica Tang and Ben McKenzie as Officer Ben Sherman. Regina Kings former co-star on "227", Marla Gibbs, is on the series as well.

"The cool thing was that she auditioned for the part so it wasn't like Regina created this opportunity for Marla," King pointed out. "Then they called and asked me would I be ok with it and I said,' Of course'."

"Southland" seasons 1 - 3 are currently available on DVD. For more information on TNT's weekly series, "Southland," log onto www.TNT.TV/series/southland.  

Machine Gun Preacher, the life of Sam Childers, is now on DVD and Blu-Ray
sam-childers.jpg"Sometimes to save a life we have to reach out and forget the cost," said Sam Childer, a biker turn preacher, who the Marc Forester directed Relativity film Machine Gun Preacher is based on. "Don't count the cost."

Childers didn't count the cost when he picked up a machine gun on behalf of refugee children when he learned of their plight in the Sudan. Sam witness children enslaved and/or brutally killed - along with their families - if they did not join the despicable Lord's Resistance Army.

The former drug dealer literally single handedly saved 100s, and now thousands, of children by freeing them at gun point and taking care of them ay an orphanage he build in the heart of the torn and dangerous area.

"It...reminded me how I use to hurt people," Childer said when I asked about his reaction to seeing the film the first time. "Thank God for opportunities to help people."

Sam, who is played in the film by Gerard Butler (300), said his non-profit is currently working on three projects that concern sex trafficking in the Sudan, Uganda and the United States.

"We also have a television show, ‘What if you had a second chance'," Sam added. "I believe prostitutes don't want to be a prostitute and homeless people don't want to be homeless."

In explaining how hard it is for him to finance his attempt at saving children against slavery Childers pointed out that, "I've been fighting a battle all week long. It always comes from...a brother and sister in Christ. Remember it was religious people that hung Him (Christ)."

For more information on Machine Gun Preacher log onto www.MachineGunPreacher.org/movie/ and for the DVD and Blu-ray log onto www.BlockBuster.com.

Janaury 13, 2012

joyful-noise_scene.jpgWarner Bros' Joyful Noise is a must see for all music lovers, arrives in theaters January 13, 2012 
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"Gospel is influenced by so many genres. We have to allow that influence for the youth," said Queen Latifah about the Praise & Worship music used in the Warner Bros' distributed Alcon Entertainment presentation Joyful Noise, which stars Queen, Dolly Parton, Keke Palmer, Jeremy Jordan and Courtney B. Vance. "It's a new generation. I don't remember people dancing in the church, but it's the kids' way and it's for the right reasons."

Joyful Noise, which arrives in theaters January 13, 2012, is a must see for all music lovers. Not only do you get the most inspirational Contemporary Praise & Worship music from beginning to end, but you will see some dance moves not normally seen in traditional churches.
Written and directed by Todd Graff (The Abyss) and music by Maryn Warren, Joyful Noise centers on the Divinity Church Choir and their passionate attempt at winning the National Joyful Noise Competition. Vi Rose (Queen Latifa) is the new choir director who refuses to ‘modernize' the choir's performance for the competition.

Choir member G.G. Sparrow (Dolly Parton) is Vi Rose's rival for the choir director position and a supporter of change. G.G.'s grandson Randy (Jeremy Jordan) develops a soft spot for Vi Rose's daughter Olivia (Keke Palmer), also a choir member and soloist, and joins the choir to get closer. Vi Rose is fighting against the budding young relationship and the choir's plea for change.

"Meryn brought me these love songs turned into Praise for God," Dolly Parton said about the outstanding music used in this film. "He did a marvelous job. You can dance to it and praise to it."

Joyful Noise also stars Kris Kristofferson, Dexter Darden, Angela Grovey, Paul Woolfolk and Jesse L. Martin. Queen Latifah and long time manager Shakim Compere are co-executive producers, along with Timothy M. Bourne. This musically driven film presents the Gospel through Pop, Country, Rock, R&B and Spiritual channels. The Divinity Church Choir will also tackle songs from artists that include Michael Jackson, Chris Brown, Usher, Paul McCartney, Sly & the Family Stone and Stevie Wonder.

To learn more about the Warner Bros' distributed film Joyful Noise log onto www.JoyfulNoisethemovie.com.  Joyful Noise is rated PG-13 and arrives in theaters January 13, 2012.

Disney ABC Television announces its winter schedule; ‘Let It Shine' and ‘Scandal' appear to be winners
scandal_cast.jpgI attended the Disney ABC Television Group Winter Press Tour where they announced their programming schedule for winter 2012. Of the many shows announced the Disney Channel original movie "Let It Shine," starring Courtney B. Vance (The Preachers Wife), Dawnn Lewis (A Different World), Tyler James Williams ("Everybody Hates Chris"), Coco Jones and Trevor Jackson, and the ABC series "Scandal" starring Kerry Washington (Ray), Columbus Short (Stomp), Tony Goldwyn (The Pelican Brief), and Jeff Perry ("Grey's Anatomy") appear to be winners.

Created and co-executively produced by Shonda Rhimes ("Grey's Anatomy"), "Scandal," is based on the life of co-executive producer Judy Smith, a Crisis Communications Strategist, played by Kerry Washington. Directed by Paul Hoen, the Disney movie "Let It Shine," is about parents (Vance and Lewis) - rooted in a traditional church - who are trying to deal with their son, played by Tyler, who has a passion for Hip-Hop music.

"2012 is starting with an omni-bus distribution deal with Comcast," said Disney Channel's President Gary March. "Our content will be available for laptops, smart phone and tablets. Our viewers are digital."

In 2011 Disney Channel was the #1 network for kids and received the highest ratings across all platforms: Disney XD, and Disney, Jr.
The rest of the schedule includes "The Revolution," a reality show where a person's body, mind and wardrobe is revolutionized. ABC's "Missing" starring Ashley Judd and Cliff Curtis; "Don't Trust the B____ in Apartment 23; "The River," "GCB," ABC Family's "Switched at Birth" and "Jane By Design," and returning shows "Desperate Housewives," "Modern Family," "The Middle," "Suburgatory," and "Happy Endings."

For more information on the new shows of ABC Disney Television Group log onto www.DisneyABCTV.com

January 20, 2012

Red_Tails_photo.jpg20th Century Fox's Red Tails makes its' own mark on history, arrives in theaters January 20, 2012
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Famed George Lucas is back, 18 years after his last project, to create the 20th Century Fox distributed film Red Tails based on the lives of the first group of black U.S. Airmen from the experimental Tuskegee training program. Red Tails, which arrives in theaters January 20, 2012, is a LucasFilm, LTD presentation and is directed by Anthony Hemingway. It stars Terrence Howard, Cuba Gooding Jr., Michael B. Jordan, Ne-Yo, Tristan Wilders, David Oyelowo, Nate Parker, Elijah Kelly and Daniela Ruah.

The Tuskegee airmen, during World war II, not only lead the country into integration, but the men's outstanding record of not losing a bomber it was assigned to protect, garnered them so many honors and metals you would think they almost single handed help win the war. The truth in its content, the unbelievably real air-fights and the outstanding acting from all involved will certainly guarantee that Red Tails makes its' own mark on history.

The well writer script by John Ridley and Aaron McGruder successfully takes you back to the time of racial segregation and have you walking away in disbelief at how theses men, literally, fought without fear to keep America free.

For those sentimental movie goers like myself, be sure to bring some tissue for several heart-wrenching moments. Get more information on this rated PG-13 20th Century Fox film by visiting www.RedTails2012.com.

George Lucas, Richard Roundtree, Hattie Winston and Sony Pictures honored at the AAFCA Awards
georgelucas.jpgI was invited to attend the African-American Film Critics Association's 2011 awards where a crowd of distinguishing black actors wined, dined and then observed the honors. Special awards went to George Lucas (Red Tails), Richard Roundtree (Shaft), Hattie Winston ("The Game") and Sony Pictures.

Of the many industry people attending I watched as Bill Dukes, Sheryl Lee Ralphs, Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer (of The Help), Kevin Frazier ("The Insider") and Rocky Carroll ("NCIS") mingled. The top ten films of 2011 for the African-American Film Critics Association are The Help, The Tree of Life, Drive, Pariah, Shame, Rampart, The Descendants, A Better Life, My Week With Marilyn and Money Ball.

Some of the many awards went to such 2011 notables as film producer/directed Ava DuVernay who won "Best Screenplay" for the film I Will Follow and the documentary "The Black Power Mix Tape," which won for "Best Documentary." George Lucas received the Cinema Vanguard Award; Richard Roundtree received the Legacy Award; Hattie Winston ("Reed Between The Lines") and Sony Pictures received the AAFCA Horizon Award.

For more information on AAFCA or on how you can become a member log onto www.AAFCA.com.  

Praise and Worships' Juan Santiago & Uninhibited Praise's latest live album is an ultimate worship experience
juansantiago.jpg"The first album I wanted a Worship CD...but it changed. I said the 2nd will diffidently be a worship album," said Juan Santiago about his latest project with his choir Uninhibited Praise titled "Juan Santiago & Uninhibited Praise: Ultimate Worship Experience: Live" (The Naro Group).

The two disk CD set is full of lovely selections that are certainly Praise & Worship in delivery and content. Each song is lead by one of the Uninhibited Praise members who collectively have one of the most amazing harmonic choir sounds.

"I'm Puerto Rican ...I really like different styles of Gospel," Santiago confessed when talking about the range of Praise & Worship songs on the album. "I put my own twist on the songs."

Recorded live, the "JSUP: Ultimate Worship Experience" gives you that in-the-church feel.

"I exceeded my expectations," he added. "It was great having the Spirit come in - beginning to end. The choir doesn't remember recording it...they were in a zone."

That is certainly evident throughout the 12 selection album. My favorite songs on the "JSUP: Ultimate Worship Experience" CD include "We Need The Glory," lead by Minister Bennie Duncan, a great make-you-want-to praise and worship God song; "Majesty," lead by Will Rhodes, a beautiful song about ones love for God; "Holy Is The Lord," lead by Minister Bennie Duncan, is a sweet and emotional song with unbelievable harmony as support, and "Were You There, lead by April Umstead, is a powerful testimony.

Juan took Uninhibited Praise on the road on January 7, 2012 for a "JSUP: Ultimate Worship Experience" tour. Learn where the tour is going next and how you can listen to the new live album at www.JSUPLive.com 

January 27, 2012

 kirkwhalum_romancelanguage_cover2.jpgKirk Whalum offers the essence of ‘Romance Language' on newest album release, featuring the vocals of Kevin and Peanuts Whalum

"I hope the album makes an impact on people...reintroduce beauty to another generation," said Grammy Award winning saxophonist Kirk Whalum about his newest album, "Romance Language." The project is due to be released on Valentines' Day on the Mack Avenue/Rendevous imprint. "Romance Language" is basically a remake of the John Coltrane/Johnny Hartman romantic song collection of 1963, with the vocals of Kevin (and his uncle Peanuts).

"Romance Language," his 19th recording project, is produced by Kirk and John Stoddart, and also includes several original selections. The CD will also be the world's first complete LiveAudio optimized album for JAMBOX by JAWBONE, a leader in personal mobile technology devices. LiveAudio allows music to be heard in a 3D-like, surround sound.

"This project has been up my sleeve for a long time," Kirk pointed out when asked how the project of "romance" songs came to be. "I kept thinking of Kevin and me...his voice is so pure...rich sound. I think I had to get over it was Coltrane...He's one of my favorite..."

That Coltrane influence is evident when you hear the project, Kirk's horn playing and Kevin's moving vocals brought out the essence of the language of "romance." The album also evokes visions and mood of that Coltrane time period, so much so that it moved me to tears.

"Music can...create imagery," Whalum pointed out when I told him how emotional the songs made me. "It can change the atmosphere almost."

My favorite cuts on "Romance Language" includes "They Say It's Wonderful," featuring the "very" smooth vocals of Kevin Whalum, "Lush Life," also featuring Kevin, put me in a "dream-like" state, and "Almost Doesn't Count," featuring the emotional vocals of Hugh "Peanuts" Whalum, where the fabulous Kirk Whalum actually makes his horn cry (and so did I).

Find out more about the "Romance Language" release by logging onto www.KirkWhalum.com.  

The 43rd NAACP Image Awards nominations announced, ABC, Columbia Records, The Help and Beyonce' led
imageawards_announcement_hosts_2012.jpgRecently the 43rd NAACP Image Awards nominations were announced by Vanessa Williams ("Desperate Housewives), Tracee Ellis Ross ("Reed Between The Lines"), Corey Reynolds ("The Closer") and Craig Robinson ("The Office") at the Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills. ABC Network, The Help, Columbia Records and Beyonce' led in the number of nominations received.

The 43rd Image Awards will be aired live on Friday, February 17, 2012 at 8:00 p.m. ET on NBC, the network that originally aired the awards show. The event is to honor projects that promote diversity in the arts.

ABC Network led in the Television category with 18 nominations with "Grey's Anatomy" leading with five of the 18; DreamWorks Pictures led in the Motion Picture category with eight nominations with The Help leading with five of those eight; Columbia Records led in the Recording category with eight nominations with Beyonce' leading with four of the eight for her latest album "4", and in the Children's Programs category Nickelodeon led with five nominations.

The 43rd NAACP Image Awards is sponsored by UAW/Chrysler, Hyundai, FedEx, Wells Fargo, Ford Motor Company and Bank of America. You can log onto www.NAACPImageAwards.net for more information.

‘Majors and Minors' tape finale', winner to be announced January 29, 2012 on HUB-TV
majors_and_minors_cast.jpgI was invited to the taping of the finale' of the reality show "Majors & Minors," on HUB TV and promise to keep the winner secret until its' airing on January 29, 2012 at 10:00 p.m. ET. The finale will be aired in two parts on January 22 and January 29, 2012.

The 12 finalists that were chosen out of 40,000 submissions worked tirelessly for 13 weeks with professionals on their original song, choreography, vocals and presentation. They had the guidance of such industry ‘majors' as Brandy, Jennifer Hudson, Claude Kelly and Jordin Sparks - just to name a few.

From what I saw of the performances at the finale' choosing one out of the 12 will be very difficult because they all had that "star" quality and an abundance of talent and personality.
Boardwalk/RCA Records will present the winner with a record contract and an opportunity to perform on a national Country tour. At the final show on January 29th each young artist will perform their selection one more time.

The cast includes Ashley Nicole Greene (who invited me), Grace Jeanette, Sabrina Lentini, Emily Kocontes, Kennedy Noel, Nia Holloway, Hailey Dibiasi, Michael Woodard, Austin Crute, Brandon Michael, Cameron DeFaria and Josh Metzler.

For more information on HUB-TV's "Majors and Minors" reality show log onto www.MyMajorsandMinors.com 

February 3, 2012

najee.jpgPlatinum selling Najee shows another side on new Shanachie project, ‘The Smooth Side of Soul'
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"It was time," said multi-wind instrumentalist Najee about his newest album, "The Smooth Side of Soul," on the Shanachie imprint. "I wanted to find a different direction."

Najee - who plays multiple wind instruments that include tenor and alto saxophones, and the flute - is known as a Contemporary Smooth Jazz artist. Najee's career, which includes 10 albums, has garnered two platinum and four gold selling projects. On this new CD Najee gets a little choppy with his Smooth Jazz skills and really goes off on the flute.

"The Smooth Side of Soul," features Phil Perry, Chris "Big Dog" Davis (songwriter and producer), Jeff Lorber (keyboardist and producer) and James Lloyd (piano). One selection, that's one of my favorites on the CD, "Just To Fall In Love," has an accompanying music video that features Phil, Vanessa Bell Calloway and N'Dambi. The "Just To Fall In Love" song is a favorite of mine because Najee totally takes off on the flute. I also find myself playing over and over again "Dis N' Dat," a finger-snapping, toe-tapping number that was co-written by Will Downing, Phil and Big Dog, and the "Mari" cut has Najee's flute skills evoking images of me enjoying myself on a sail boat.

"They are all my friends," Najee said about his album's featured guests. "Phil Perry ...and I will tour together on ‘The Smooth Side of Soul' Tour."

Najee's tour will cover the U.S. and countries overseas, such as Africa. The tour will start in May on the east coast. Visit his website at www.NajeeMusic.com for more details on the tour or his latest album release "The Smooth Side of Soul."

Grammy and Emmy winning Soweto Gospel Choir launch North American tour
soweto-gospel-choir-credit_Pop-EyeHeinrich.jpg"We normally tour America every two years because it has such a demand," said Beverly Bryer executive director/co-creator and producer of the Soweto Gospel Choir. "America is our favorite place to visit. Americans respond to us."

The 26 member South African Gospel choir has garnered two Grammy Awards, an Emmy Award and an Oscar nomination. The Soweto Gospel Choir tour will visit the U.S. and Canada from January - April, 2012 - a total of 43 cities. The proceeds from the tour will go to their charity, Nkosi's Haven/Vukani, which fights AIDS.

"Most don't read music...but...its part of the culture," Bryer said about the unbelievable skills of the choir members. "...A Contemporary (Gospel) group...in the townships they get American music and other music. We brought in a couple that was dancers and in a year everyone was dancing...natural talent, and it don't stop after the show."

The American Gospel Music Award winning Soweto Gospel Choir will also be seen in the new Pepsi commercial with Keri Hilton and Akon. Their first American album debut was on Shanachie Entertainment, titled "Voices From Heaven," and it reached #1 on Billboard World Music Charts. Their next release "Blessed" garnered a Grammy Award win.

To learn more about the Soweto Gospel Choir's North American 2012 Tour log onto their website at www.SowetoGospelChoir.com. 

May 4, 2012 

ASCAPICreateMusicExpo_April20_2012_Brunopanel.jpgRock & Roll Hall of Famer Eddie The ASCAP ‘I Create Music' Expo's Stargate and Smeezingtons Master Sessions were a big success


Recently ASCAP held its 2012 "I Create Music" Expo in Hollywood offering Master Sessions that included panels of industry heavy-hitters questioned by a moderator, as well as the audience. As you enter the three day event you see tons of exhibitors. I had a chance to sit through the Master Session of two production teams - Stargate (Mikkel Eriksen and Tor Hermansen) and The Smeezingtons (Bruno Mars, Ari Levine and Philip Lawrence).

Stargate, who just launched a record label with Jay-Z, credits include Kate Perry's "Fireworks" and Wiz Khalifa's "Black and Yellow." The Smeezingtons credits include Bruno Mars' "Grenade," and Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa's "Young, Wild & Free," which features Bruno.

"We were all nervous," said Mars about working with Cee-Lo on the hit single "F*ck You." "Cee-Lo's been an inspiration to me. I sang the first verse for him... and he said, ‘Man I love it." He wanted to change it to ‘fu*ck you and that girl too'."

The Stargate team talked about working with Wiz Khalifa on the "Black and Yellow" single.
"Khalifa had a mix-tape out...we could relate to," said Tor Hermansen about why they wanted to work with the rapper.

Tor and partner Mikkel Ericksen met in Norway - their native country - and together they brought American Hip-Hop and Pop there to a starving market. Here in the U.S. they note working with Ne-Yo as their big break.

"We work as a team," Mikkel pointed out. "We know each others' strengths."

For more information on other ASCAP events log their website at www.ASCAP.org.

There's nothing strange about D'Angela Proctor, ‘Sunday Best' and ‘The Family Crews' producer
DAngelaProctor.jpg"I was practicing law and absolutely hated it," said D'Angela Proctor, co-founder and co-owner - along with Nia T. Hill, of Strange Fruit Media. The company recently produced Chaka Khan's tribute to Trayvon Martin (www.FearKillsLoveHeals.org).  "What helped me to escape were romance movies and books."

Presented with an opportunity to produce BET's Teen Summit, Proctor didn't hesitate. From there she produced everything from music videos, commercials, television series, to documentaries and films. Her credits as a producer include Babyface's "Grown & Sexy," Seal's "Live From Bermuda," "Angie Stone Live," Mint Condition's "Life in Luxury Brown," and Anthony Hamilton's "Coming From Where I'm From."

"You have to continually be out there," Proctor pointed. "It's built on relationships."

D'Angel's film credits include The Seat Filler, starring Kelly Rowland, Duane Martin and DeRay Davis; Truth Be Told starring Blair Underwood and Regina King; Hustle and Heat starring Vivica A. Fox, Meagan Good and Duane Martin; Book of Love starring Treach, Robin Givens and Salli Richardson, and Sacred starring Nas, Elise Neal and Isaiah Washington.

Strange Fruit Media credits include BET's "Sunday Best" and "The Family Crews," Dreamgirls' "One Night Only," and Tyler Perry's "Family Reunion."

The production company has revolutionized how a production company should be operated and its success allows them to finance independent and commercial films. The partners created Momentum Entertainment, a distribution and marketing company for their projects.

May 11, 2012

dark-shadows-pic.jpgWarner Bros' Dark Shadows is a successful blend of horror and comedy, arrives in theaters May 11, 2012


"We were talking about how we should do a vampire movie with a vampire that looks like a vampire," said Oscar nominated Johnny Depp (Pirates if the Caribbean) about the remake of the classic comedic/horror television series "Dark Shadows." Depp, who stars in the Rated PG film with Oscar nominated Michelle Pfeiffer (Batman Returns), Eva Green and Helena B. Carter, was in on early discussions of the project with Academy Award winning director Tim Burton and Oscar winning producer Richard Zanuck (Driving Miss Daisy). "Dark Shadows was what we thought of (that had a vampire that looks like a vampire)...I grew up a fan of the Shadows."

Presented by Warner Bros. Pictures in association with Village Roadshow Pictures, Dark Shadows had Johnny Depp as producer, working along-side Richard. The feature film brings back to life the characters Elizabeth Collins (Pfeiffer) - matriarch of the Collins family; her very distant and mysterious relative Barnabas Collins (Depp) - cursed to live his life as a vampire; former love of Barnabas Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green); the Collins' live-in Psychiatrist Dr. Julia Hoffman (Helena B. Carter), and the beautiful live-in nanny Victoria Winters (Bella Heathcore) - who is the mirror image of Barnabas' one true love, Josette.

The modern day twist to the classic tale is that Barnabas awakes from being buried alive for two centuries as a vampire in the year 1972 - his reaction to the modern day inventions, such as McDonalds, automobiles and the television - brings the comic relief.

"He is a well schooled gentleman," Johnny Depp said about his character Barnabas. "He comes back in a new time...it's about how he reacts."

How Barnabas reacts to the new modern world brings a light-mood when the films' horror moments make you reach out to hold "someone" for protection. Dark Shadows, starring Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green and Helena B. Carter, is a successful blend of horror and comedy. Its stellar cast also includes Jonny Lee Miller as Elizabeth's stealing brother Roger Collins; Chloe G. Moretz as rebellious daughter Carolyn Stoddard; Gully McGrath, the bright 10 year-old nephew David Collins, and Jackie Earle Haley as the Collinwood Estate caretaker Willie Loomis.

Dark Shadows' producers also include Oscar winning Graham King (The Departed), Christi Dembrowski and David Kennedy. The screenplay was written by Seth Grahame-Smith and story line by John August and Grahame-Smith. Also available in IMAX theaters, Dark Shadows is an Infinitum Nihil/GK Films/Zanuck Company production and a Tim Burton film.

For more information on the Rated PG film Dark Shadows log onto www.DarkShadowsTheMovie.com.  

Pure Flix's Me Again, starring Della Reese, is an inspiring journey to finding ones' self - now on DVD
della-reese2.jpgPure Flix Entertainment released to DVD the inspiring drama of one man's journey to finding himself. The feature film stars Emmy Award nominated Della Reese as elderly woman Muriel, who is the motivating and guiding force for Pastor Rich Chaplin's (David A.R. White) journey to finding out what's important in his life. Me Again also stars Andrea Logan White (as Chloe, the top fashion model), Ali Landry (as April, Rich's wife), and Bruce McGill (as Big Earl, the angel).

"She's the focal-point," said Della about her character Muriel. "When he's trying to find his real self - who he is - she knows him and what he wants."

White also directs (with Jeffrey Peterson) and produces the faith-based film - a Latigo Film, David A.R. White and Jeffrey Peterson production. Other producers include Anna Zielinski, Michael Scott, Russell Wolfe, and Elizabeth Travis. The screenplay was written by Tommy Blaze, who also appears in the film.

"What we conceive as trouble is a way to the real us," said Reese, who is a pastor, about the film's ‘lesson'. "We have to go through stuff...you say, ‘Why me?'...it's to learn...life is a lesson."

Rich, in his disappointment in his life, wishes for a different one - and his wish is given to him.
Pure Flix is currently the leader in quality, faith-based films which addresses real-life issues. Me Again is also available on Blu-ray.

"You know when you go through a situation...you make the hurtle and clear it...you know that process," Della pointed out.

Dove Family-Approved, Me Again - though filled with life-lessons - gives a light-hearted look at Rich's journey to finding himself. Recommended for all ages Me Again's movie trailer and more information can be found at www.PureFlix.com/MeAgain

May 18, 2012

battleship-scene.jpgRihanna gives stellar performance in Universal Pictures' Battleship, in theaters May 18, 2012


R&B/Pop sensation Rihanna gives a stellar performance in Universal Picture's newest film release Battleship, based on the Hasbro classic naval-combat board game of the same name. Battleship, a powerful new take on alien contact, arrives at theaters May 18, 2012.

Rihanna plays Petty Officer Second Class Cora Raikes - a weapons specialist, who assist Lt. Alex Hopper (Taylor Kitsch), a naval weapons officer aboard the USS John Paul Jones, in saving the world from aliens' attacks. The aliens', far advance in many ways, came to earth in answer to our satellite messages sent into space looking for other intelligent life.

The cast also includes Brooklyn Decker as Sam Shane, a VA physical therapist and fiancée to Hopper; Alexander Skarsgard as Stone Hopper, Commanding Officer of USS Sampson and older brother to Lt. Alex Hopper; Tadanobu Asano as Captain Tugi Nagata, commanding officer of the Japanese destroyer Myoko; Liam Neeson as Admiral Shane, commander of the Pacific Fleet and father of Hopper's fiancée; Hamish Linklater as Cal Zapata, a scientist who mans the satellite in Hawaii - which is sending the messages in outer space; Jesse Plemons as Jimmy Ord, a boatswain aboard USS John Paul Jones; John Tui as Chief Officer Walter "The Beast" Lynch, as USS John Paul Jones' engine room expert, and U.S. Army Colonel Gregory D. Gadson as Lt. Colonel Mick Canales, an Army combat veteran who lost his legs in the Iraq war.

Taylor Kitsch did well as the out-of-control brother who is forced to grow up when he has to step in as commander of the only ship in a position to save the world. Kitsch is assisted by Rihanna who carries her role like a seasoned actress, though this is her motion picture debut. She takes on the role of a hard noise female Navy officer on a ship of men faced with the task of "manning up" to help save the world.

Tensions build during the battle practice of an international fleet of battleships, as things turn horribly wrong when aliens land in the seas near them. Once competitors, now allies, all countries unite in a battle to save the world.

Battleship is produced by Brian Goldner and Bennett Schneir of Hasbro (Transformers and G.I. franchises), Scott Stuber (Safe House), Film 44's Sarah Aubrey (The Kingdom), along with Duncan Henderson (The Perfect Storm). The science-fiction, action-adventure film is directed by Peter Berg (Hancock), who is also amongst the producers. Battleship, written by Jon Hoeber and Erick Hoeber (Red), is Rated PG.

For more on Universal Pictures' Battleship, which is sure to be a franchise, log onto its website www.BattleshipMovie.com.  

Grammy winning David Banner's new album features 16 of the worlds' top artists, newest single ‘Californication' features Snoop and Nipsey Hustle
David-Banner.jpg"Nothing's for free," said Grammy Award winning recording artist/producer David Banner about the free download of his newest album "Sex, Drugs & Video Games," on May 22, 2012 for his fans on www.LiveMixTapes.com and www.DavidBanner.com. "I have 16 of the world's top artists and will have 16 videos...top quality videos... I paid for everything."

David Banner's "Sex, Drugs and Video Games" project features such artists as Chris Brown, Lil' Wayne, 2 Chainz, and Bun. B. The newest single, ‘Californication,' is his third single and it features Snoop Dogg, Nipsey Hustle, Ras Kass and Kree.

Banner is also promoting his 2M1 Movement to liberate artists and help them take control of their music, movies and all content. He is asking fans to ‘donate' $1- though the download is free - and when he receives $2 million he promises to consistently deliver positive influential urban culture content via music, videos and movies - "to the people, by the people."

"For $1 you receive more than control," David explains about his 2M1 Movement. "You control your image. It keeps fans congregated together...not just for downloads, but to create a community. We have the influence and the ability."

Banner made clear that after $2 million he intends to shoot a movie, where admission costs would be only $5.

"We can do whatever we want to do," David said. "Struggle is a part of the process. Even what I'm doing now is a struggle...not having a family, not having a place, not seeing my little brother grow (up)."

Banner explained even though these are his struggles, his life gives him the money to continue to keep his dream alive. On May 14th David Banner released the single "Believe" featuring Big K.R.I.T.
For more on David Banners new album "Sex, Drugs and Video Games" or on his 2M1 Movement log onto his website at www.DavidBanner.com or www.LiveMixTapes.com.

May 25, 2012

leelahjames3.jpgShanachie releases Leela James' ‘Something's Got A Hold Of Me,' Etta James cover


"It took a life of its own," said Soul/R&B singer Leela James about her upcoming Shanachie Entertainment tribute to the late legend Etta James titled "In The Spirit of Etta James." "It evolved into what it is. Just took on the...era. I guess it's fitting...it still captures Leela, but has the vibe from that time."

In preparation for the release of "In The Spirit of Etta James," the Los Angeles native released the first single, "Something's Got A Hold Of Me," and soon an accompanying video. James' infectious vocal style puts a modern day twist to the up-tempo song of the Rock and Roll and Blues Hall of Famer Etta James.

"I listened to a lot of her music," Leela explained about her choice of Etta James songs to cover. "Her standard records I felt were the ones I wanted. Some were too dated."

Born with Gospel as part of her up-bringing - along with R&B, Blues and Funk - Leela James has developed a very soulful, funk influenced, bluesy R&B sound that is clearly her own. Her debut album, "A Change Is Gonna Come," had production assistance from Kanye West, Raphael Saadiq, Wyclef Jean, James Poyser and Chucky Thompson.

Leela's Shanachie debut album "Let's Do It Again" will be followed by the Etta James tribute album. With "In The Spirit Of Etta James" Leela gives modern day ‘flavor' to legendary and sometimes signature pieces of the icon Etta James. Other songs on the upcoming tribute project include "Hurt Me So Much," "I'd Rather Go Blind," and "At Last."

"In The Spirit of Etta James" is produced by Grammy Award winning Shannon Sanders and Drew Ramsey and is slated to be released in June, 2012. Log onto Leela's website, www.LeelaJames.com, for more information on her upcoming Etta James tribute album on Shanachie Entertainment.

WE tv premieres new reality show, ‘L.A. Hair,' May 31, 2012, starring celebrity hair stylist Kim Kimble
kimberlykimble_LAHair.jpgOn Thursday, May 31, 2012 WE tv will premiere a new reality show, "L.A. Hair," starring celebrity hair stylist Kim Kimble. The eight episode reality show will air at 10:00 p.m.ET/PT, and feature some of her celebrity clients - Kelly Roland, Brandy and Mary Mary.

"I thought I would be nervous," Kim Kimble said about being afraid of what the reality show captures of her life. "I can honestly say I'd do everything the same. It was therapeutic."

The audience will see Kimble jet-setting from one client to the other while managing her hair care and styling business that includes not only hair salon and stylists, but hair care products and tools. The one hour episodes include her mother Jasmine - also a hair stylist.

"L.A. Hair" regular airing time on Thursdays will be 9:00 p.m. ET/PT as of June 7, 2012.

"I put care into hair care," said Kim. "Celebrity clients are more open... Hair ‘care' is important to them."

Kim Kimble is in the process of expanding her ‘brand' into a bigger building, adding more stylists and repackaging her hair care product line. The viewers will see some of this.

"If this goes well you might see Kim Kimble Hair Salons popping up all over the country," she confidently concluded.

Kim's staff - seen on the show - includes hair stylist Angela, Dontay, Terry, and China, her assistant Anthony, and receptionist Charity. Visit www.WEtv.com for exclusive video, photos and blogs on the show, "L.A. Hair."

The George Lucas produced 20th Century Fox film Red Tails is now on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Download
REDTAILS_DVD_cover.jpg"They spared no expense on giving the audience that experience...It was the graphics," said actor Elijah Kelly about the realism of the air fights in the 20th Century Fox film Red Tails. Kelly stars along-side a powerful cast that includes Academy Award winner Cuba Gooding, Jr. and Academy Award nominee Terrence Howard.

Red Tails, the George Lucas produced film, is now on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Download. 

"My part initially was a small part," Elijah pointed out. "When I got on the set they allowed me to have liberties...and it went to me being included in the billing."

Red Tails is an inspiring story of a group of real-life African-American Tuskegee Airmen who, in 1944, were finally given a chance to prove themselves. The band of ‘brothers' surpassed everyone's expectations, even their own.

Also casted in Red Tails are David Oyelowo, Nate Parker, Tristan Wilds, Method Man, Ne-Yo, and Michael B. Jordon.

June 1, 2012

kimberlyelise_hannahslaw_stagecoachmary.jpgKimberly Elise is Stagecoach Mary in the Hallmark Movie Channel Original film ‘Hannah's Law,' premiering June 9, 2012


"It's in the 1800s...I am Mary Fields, a fiction version of her," said Image Award winning actress Kimberly Elise who stars alongside Sara Canning, Greyston Holt, Danny Glover, Billy Zane, Ryan Kennedy and John Pyper-Ferguson in the Hallmark Movie Channel Original "Hannah's Law" to premiere on the Hallmark Movie Channel Saturday, June 9, 2012 (8:00 p.m. ET/PT, 7 C). "It brings in historical characters, puts them all together."

"Hannah's Law," written by John Fasano, is about the life of a strong-willed heroine, Hannah (Canning) and her friends Wyatt Earp (Holt), Doc Holliday (Kennedy), mentor Isom Dart (Glover), and best friend Stagecoach Mary (Elise). Hannah is driven to bring to justice the McMurphy gang who brutally murdered her parents and young brother. The film, produced by Nomadic Pictures Production 3 and Sony Pictures Television, also includes the characters Lockwood (Zane) and Frank McMurphy (Pyper-Ferguson) - the outlaw.

"I had to train on stagecoach driving for two weeks with professional cowboys," Kimberly pointed out about how she prepared to play Mary Field, better known as Stagecoach Mary. "The first week I walked with a horse pulling me...then pulling one cart, then two horses until eventually I was driving six horses and a big stagecoach!"

The real Stagecoach Mary was the first African-American and the second woman ever to be employed as a mail carrier in the U.S. Born a slave around 1832 and freed in 1865, Mary Fields was 60 years old when hired by the United States Postal Services only because she could hitch a team of six horses faster than the other applicants. She never missed a day, which earned her the nickname Stagecoach. She died of liver failure in 1914 when she was over the age of 80.

"The costumes help me to create her," Kimberly said about her role. "There is no video of her so I had to use my imagination."

On Saturday, June 9th we will see how she brought to life this legendary lady in the Hallmark Channel Original Movie presentation "Hannah's Law." For more information on the Hallmark Movie Channel Original film "Hannah's Law," or the Hallmark Channel log onto www.HallmarkChannel.com.  

Bass player Brian Bromberg masters the skill on new album ‘Compared To That'
BrianBromberg.jpgGrammy Award nominated bass player Brian Bromberg to release his 20th solo album "Compared To That," June 5, 2012 on Artistry Music/Mack Avenue Records. The project is a mixture of Jazz selections that have Brian mastering the bass in such a way that it doesn't even sound like the typical bass guitar.

"One of the things that make me different from other bass players is I use a Piccolo bass guitar (plays an octave higher than the norm)," said Brian about his unusual bass sound. "It's about the melody...I don't used the bass in a way you would normally hear. People can't tell it's a bass."

Bromberg's bass skills earned him a Grammy Award nomination and resulted in 20 albums so far. On "Compared To That" he plays with a 10-piece horn section, full orchestra string section and a collection of prominent musicians that include Jeff Lorber, George Duke, Alex Acuna, Gannin Arnold, Charlie Bisharat, Randy Brecer, Vinnie Colaiuta, Bela Fleck, Larry Goldings, Mitch Forman, Gary Meek and Tom Zink.

My favorites cuts on the album include the cover of Chicago's "Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?" for the awesome horn support; "Forgiveness," a sweet love song; "If Ray Brown Was A Cowboy," a funky selection with has lovely piano support; the hot title song "Compared To That," and "Hayride," a funky Country sounding selection with great Banjo support.

"I have three albums coming out this year," Bromberg informed me at the end of our talk.
Aside from his "Compared To That" CD release on Mack Avenue, Brian will also release on July 3rd "Bromberg Plays Hendrix," a tribute to Jimmy Hendrix and "In The Spirit of Jobim," where he pays homage to Antonio Carlos Jobim.

For more information on this fascinating bass player and/or his album releases "Compared To That," "Bromberg Plays Hendrix," and "In The Spirit of Jobim" log onto his website at www.BrianBromberg.net.

(NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., June 23rd 12 - 5pm at the Celebrity Center in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com.)

June 8, 2012

the-soul-man-cast.jpgNiecy Nash stars with Cedric the Entertainer in the TV Land new series ‘The Soul Man,' premieres June 20, 2012


"He said, ‘you are my TV wife,'" said Niecy Nash about how she was chosen for the role of Lolli - wife of Rev. Boyce, played by Cedric The Entertainment - in the TV Land new comedy series "The Soul Man."

On Wednesday, June 20, 2012 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT TV Land's "The Soul Man" premieres starring Nash, Cedric, John Beasley, Wesley Jonathan and Jazz Raycole. The sitcom is about a Soul singer turned minister (Rev. Boyce,) who returns to his hometown to preach in his father's church.

How his family adjusted to the change - from a superstar's lifestyle to a humble life operating a church - is the focus of the show.

"What I'm able to bring to the show is my experiences...I was 1st lady of a church...in St. Louis," Niecy pointed out. "There are so many coincidences."

To learn more about the TV Land comedy series log onto www.TV Land.com and for Niecy Nash log onto www.NiecyNash.com.  

Ester Dean receives ‘Song and Songwriter of the Year' 2012 BMI Pop Awards
EstherDean_BennyBlanco.jpgRecently BMI (Broadcast Music, Inc.) presented their 60th Annual BMI Pop Awards at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel where they honored songwriter Carol King with the BMI ICON Award. Ester Dean received both the "Songwriter of the Year" (with Benny Blanco) and "Song of the Year" for Katy Perry's "Fireworks."

Carol King is a legendary songwriter who has won 31 BMI Awards for such song-gems as "You've Got a Friend," "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman," and "Up on The Roof." Ester Dean led in BMI Awards for Katy Perry's "Fireworks," Rihanna's "Rude Boy," "S&M," and "What's My Name," featuring Drake and Nicki Minaj's "Super Bass."

While covering the red carpet arrivals for the elegant event, I was able to talk to such songwriters as RedOne, who won four BMI Awards (Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" and "Poker face"); Benny Blanco won four (Ke$ha's "Blow," Katy Perry's "Teenage Dreamer"); Bonnie McKee won three (Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night" and "Teenage Dream"; Claude Kelly won two (Bruno Mars "Grenade" and Miley Cyrus "Party in the USA"); Evan Bogart and Nash Overstreet for Hot Chelle Rae's "Tonight Tonight," and Makeba Riddick for Rihanna's "Rude Boy."

Ester Dean and Benny Blanco both won BMI's "Songwriter of the Year" Award and Dean won "Song of the Year" for Katy Perry's "Fireworks". Powerhouse vocalist Chaka Khan was the entertainment for that special night.

For the complete list of BMI Pop Award winners and honorees log onto www.BMI.com  and to view my videotaped interviews from the red carpet log onto www.Youtube.com/FreelanceAssociates.  

(NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., June 23rd 12 - 5pm at the Celebrity Center in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com.)

 June 15, 2012

tomcruise_rockofages.jpgRock of Ages, Warner Bros.' new musical film is rocking awesome, arrives in theaters and IMAX June 15, 2012


Warner Bros.' Rock of Ages starring Tom Cruise, Alec Baldwin, Russell Brand, Julianne Hough, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Diego Boneta, Malin Akerman, Mary J Blige and Paul Giamatti is rocking awesome. From the beginning to the end it is nothing but a party woven with that age old story boy-meets-girl - while they're searching for fame. Adapted from the Chris D'Arienzo Broadway musical of the same name, Rock of Ages is directed by Adam Shankman ("Hairspray"), and arrives in theaters and IMAX June 15, 2012.

Justin Theroux, D'Arienzo and Allan Loeb are screenwriters on the film based on D'Arienzo's Rock of Ages musical. The film centers round the boy-meets-girl romance of Sherry (Hough), a small town girl and Drew (Boneta), a city boy both pursuing their Hollywood dream. Another romance is between the superstar "rocker" Stacee Jaxx (Cruise) who suddenly sees through his drunken haze, of adoring beautiful women, to see the love of a head-strong journalist Constance Sack (Akerman).

"We had a couple weeks to figure out how to do a love scene on a hockey table and make it fun," said Malin Akerman. "The tongue in the ear wasn't in the script I did that (to Tom). We just kept laughing. I was really excited because I got to act with Tom Cruise. He has powerful vocals, he even broke a mic."

Rock of Ages include hits from some of the best rock bands in the 80's - Def Leppard, Foreigner, Journey, Poison, REO Speedwagon, and Twisted Sister - which are performed in the film by an outstanding cast. Tom Cruise vocals were so impressive it made me wonder, at first, if it was really him singing, but according to the director it was him. Even Alec Baldwin had his turn at working his vocals.
Multi-platinum selling, nine-time Grammy Award winning Mary J Blige did an excellent job with her acting in Rock of Ages as Justice, the owner of a strip club. Catherine Zeta-Jones blew me away with her dancing and singing skills in several scenes in the film.

"I visited strip clubs with my husband," Mary J Blige said about her preparation for the role and when asked about her experience on set of Rock the Ages Mary said. "It was the best times in my life and career... Tom Cruise came to the table read dressed as Stacee Jaxx!"

D'Arienzo and Skankman serve as co-executive producers on the New Lines Cinema presentation, Corner Store Entertainment production, in association with Material Pictures, Offspring Entertainment, Adam Shankman film. Rated PG-13 Rock of Ages arrives in theaters and IMAX June 15, 2012. Log onto Rock of Ages website for more information on the film or the cast log at www.RockofAgesMovie.com.  

Russ Parr's The Undershepherd receives ABFF nomination, winners announces in Miami June 20-23, 2012
ISAIAH_MALINDA_theundershepherd.jpegThe 16th Annual American Black Film Festival (ABFF) will announce the Narrative Features and Grand Jury award winners June 20-23, 2012 in South Beach Miami. Isaiah Washington, Common, S. Epatha Merkerson, Kimberly Elise and Malinda Williams are among the list of nominees for the Grand Jury award.

This years' Grand Jury President is actor Mekhi Phifer who will be at the closing day festival to present the awards. The Narrative Feature film nominees are Better Mus' Come, about the political warring in the 1970s in Jamaica; The Dark Party, is about two best friends going on a blind date party; The Last Fall, about a NFL journeyman dealing with the end of his career; Luv, is about an orphaned boy facing the truth about a relative; Elza, is about a woman going home to meet a father she has never met, and The Undershepherd, about two ministers opposing views effecting a community.

"One of the reasons I wanted to do the film I can relate with the character," said Malinda Williams, who stars in The Undershepherd with Isaiah Washington, Louis Gossett Jr., Vannesa Bell Calloway, Elise Neal, Clifton Powell, Keith David, Robinne Lee and John Wesley. "She was a woman trying to keep up appearances of being the first lady of a powerful ministry."

Established in 1997 the ABFF's core mission is to promote cultural diversity with the motion picture industry through its film showcases and special contest.

For more information on the nominees of the ABFF log onto www.ABFF.com.  

Disney Channel's Original Film Let It Shine is bursting with talent, premiers June 15, 2012
let-it-shine-disney-tyler_coco.jpg"I'm an actor to the very core of me," said Tyler James Williams ("Everybody Hates Chris") about his starring role as Cyrus DeBarge in the Disney Channel Original Movie Let It Shine, which premiers June 15, 2012 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. He adds, "I do music on the side line to keep creative."

Let It Shine is about a preachers' son, Cyrus, who is a gifted rapper who is full of self-doubt and a father set against Hip-Hop music. Let It Shine also stars Coco Jones as Pop star Roxanne Andrews; Courtney B. Vance as Pastor Jacob DeBarge, father of Cyrus; Dawnn Lewis as Gail DeBarge - Cyrus mother; Trevor Jackson as Kris McDuffy a dancer and best friend to Cyrus; Brandon M. Smith as rapper Lord of Da Bling - a ‘hater' of Cyrus; Alex Desert as Levit - Cyrus employer; and Algee Smith as rapper Da Boss.

"We have this rap battle going on... its high energy," said Algee about his role in the movie. "It was fun!"

Fun is just what you will get if you watch the Disney Channel Original Movie and many great messages for adult as well as young adult. The music will leave you wondering whether the actor's weren't really actual rappers, singers and dancers.

"I'm an actor, rapping," Algee informed me.

What a good actor they are all then. Let It Shine doesn't disappoint those looking for a little drama.
At the movie premiere in Los Angeles many Disney Channel actors came out in support of the Let It Shine premiere, such as the casts of "A.N.T. Farm," "Dog With A Blog," Good Luck Charlie," "Jessie," "Kickin' It," "Lab Rats," "Pair of Kings," "Shake It Up," and "Sofia The First."

Disney Channel's Original Movie, Let It Shine, will premier Friday, June 15th 8 p.m. ET/PT. Find out more about Let It Shine at www.disney.com. (Check local listing for re-airing)

(NEWS: Attend free, the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., June 23rd 12 - 5pm at the Celebrity Center in Hollywood, CA. Public welcome - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com.)

June 22, 2012

brave_scene2.jpgDisney PIXAR successfully achieves three firsts with new animation Brave, arrives in theaters June 22, 2012


On June 22, 2012 Disney PIXAR releases their 13th full-length animated film, Brave, successfully achieving three firsts for the movie production company. Known for its PIXAR animation with toys, Disney PIXAR will feature its first featured female protagonist, red-headed princess Merida (voiced by Kelly Macdonald) a headstrong skilled archer and daughter to King Fergus (voiced by Billy Connolly); its first period piece with historical references set in the Highlands of Scotland, and its first epic adventure set in a natural human world.

Directed and co-written by Mark Andrews (The Incredibles) and Brenda Chapman (The Lion King) Brave follows teenage princess Merida as she struggles with finding herself and finding the courage to control her destiny. Her destiny it seems is in the hands of family tradition. The combination of historic reference, the thrill of the unknown and the funny humor provoked by the many characters that include Merida's triplet red headed brothers Harris, Hubert and Hamish and the three prince suitors competing for her hand in marriage.

"My character was to marry her," said Kevin McKidd (voice of Lord MacGuffin and his son, suitor Young MacGuffin). "But there was a shift ...it was a good shift. She decides to marry who she wants. Change your fate or not, there's always a pay-off."

"Just knowing it's PIXAR you know it's going to be special," said Kelly Macdonald (Merida). "...With the most cutting-edge technology."

Merida is controlled by her mother Queen Elinor (voiced by Emma Thompson) who is determined to marry Marida off to one of the Lord's sons as tradition calls for. Merida tries to take control of the situation with a potion given to her by a witch (voiced by Julie Waters) that unfortunately didn't change her mother's mind, but changed her mother into a bear.

She suddenly finds herself trying to save the life of her mother, protecting her from her father and others out to kill. White she is trying to save her mother, at the same time she is racing to solve the riddle given to her by the witch that leads to a cure - before the second sunrise.

Very suspenseful, Disney PIXAR's Brave is a treat for the whole family with an underlining theme - don't settle, control your fate, wait for love.
Rated PG Brave arrives in theaters June 22, 2012. Visit http://disney.go.com/brave/index.html for the trailer or for more information.

Jackee Harry stars in the heart warming Pure Flix movie Brother White, with cameo by Bebe Winans
JackeeHarry_brotherwhitepromo.jpg"I was looking for a project on the Gospel Music Channel," said Jackee Harry ("Sister, Sister") about how she ended up in the Pure Flix DVD-film "Brother White." "I did ‘Clean Up Woman'. For five years they've been looking for another project for me."

"Brother White" is David A.R. White, a tale of his own "fish-out-of-water" experience as the child of a pastor. The film also stars Reginald VelJohnson ("Family Matters"), Andrea Logan White (Holy Man Undercover), Ray Wise ("Twin Peaks"), Anna Margaret (Disney recording artist), and Grammy Award winning Bebe Winans - who makes a cameo appearance.

The inspirational faith and family drama follows Pastor James White from his mega church in Southern California under the tutelage of television evangelist Johnny Kingsman (Wise). Unappreciated, White jumps at the chance to pastor over an impoverished Divine Faith Apostolic Church in Atlanta. The mega-church at first is glad to have him gone until a miracle happens at the Atlanta church.

"(White) He has written three more (screenplays) that he's looking to put me in," added Jackee, who also starred in Oprah Winfrey's "The Women of Brewster Place."

Pure Flix Entertainment, LLC is the largest Christian studio that produces, distributes, acquires and markets the most Christian and family-friendly film properties for movies and television. "Brother White" was written by David A.R. White, co-founder of Pure Flix Entertainment.

For more information on "Brother White," which is now on DVD, log onto www.PureFlix.com.  

Grammy Award winning guitarist Frank Gambale releases 20th album featuring Jazz/Pop vocalist BOCA
frankgambale.jpgGuitarist Frank Gambale, a Grammy Award winner, released his 20th album, "Soulmine" (Wombat Records), which features Jazz/Pop vocalist BOCA. Known for his Jazz fusion style Frank did not disappoint on this project offering Jazz, Pop, and R&B selections.

"This is the first time I used a vocalist that wasn't me," Gambale pointed out about featuring artist BOCA. "I've done 20 solo albums and half the albums have vocals. I met her (BOCA) through some musician friends of mine. She has an obvious talent."

The first single off the "Soulmine" project is "Forbidden Kiss," which has an accompanying music video directed by award winning Nigel Dick (Guns ‘n Roses, Britney Spears). The album includes the skills of five-time Grammy Award winning bassist Victor Wooten and drummer Joel Taylor. Though Frank does most of the keyboards on the album, pianist Otmaro Ruiz contributes and Brian Auger is on organ.

My favorite cuts on the "Soulmine" project include "Open The Mind," because Gambale goes crazy on the guitar, "Be The Change," a nice R&B/Pop selection, and the first single "Forbidden Kiss," a lovely smooth Jazz selection where Frank has his guitar crying in the back.

To learn more about Frank Gambale log onto his website at www.FrankGambaleSoulMine.com or www.FrankGambale.com

June 29, 2012

brandy_dropdeaddiva.jpgGrammy Award winning Brandy returns to ‘Drop Dead Diva' on Lifetime July 8, 2012


Brandy Norwood is back with her feet on the gas pedal with appearances - since 2010 - that include a reality show with her brother Ray J on VH1, "Brandy and Ray J: A Family Business;" ABC's "Dancing With The Stars"; CW's "90210"; BET's "The Game," a recurring role as Chardonnay; her recurring role as Elisa Shayne on "Drop Dead Diva" on the Lifetime Channel, and Tyler Perry's "The Marriage Counselor" due out summer, 2012. On July 8, 2012 her last episode for this season on "Drop Dead Diva" will air at 9 p.m.

The comedic drama is about a wannabe model that dies suddenly, but her soul is now in the body of a brilliant, plus size, recently deceased attorney - Jane. Brandy's character Elisa is a former girlfriend of Jay Parker, a soul also returned in another body. Elisa is an attorney at the firm also who fled town with her son after it became public that Parker (played by Josh Stamberg) is the father.

"I related to her in so many ways," said Grammy winning Brandy about her character, Elisa Shayne. "I had my daughter at 23. I've struggled...I have all that to pull from."

In the episode with Brandy she gets to work with tennis pro Serena Williams who also makes a guest appearance as an attorney. Elisa is still a bit in love with Jay, but doesn't want to get her heart broken again by him (because he cheated on her in the past).

When asked what advice Brandy would give her character Elisa she said, "I'd tell her to keep doing what she is doing, fight for what's right. Don't let fear hold you back. I try not to have regrets. I face my fears always. I never let my fears hold me back. I would feel guilty. Like with ‘Dancing with the Stars,' I didn't know how great I would be, but I tried to face it."

Well, we will see if Elisa faces her fear on July 8, 2012 when Lifetime airs "Drop Dead Diva" at 9:00 p.m.

Brandy started in entertainment on the 1993 ABC sitcom "Thea," and then in 1996 she had her own sitcom on UPN, "Moesha." That same year she signed a recording contract with Atlantic Records and released her debut self-titled album that garnered a Grammy Award for "The Boy Is Mine," a duet with Monica. In 1997 she appeared in Rodgers and Hammerstein's' television movie Cinderella and their 1999 film Double Platinum. In 1998 she starred in the film I Still Know What You Did Last Summer and released her second album "Never Say Never." In 2008 she released "Human" on Epic Records.

Norwood is ranked by RIAA as the best selling female artist in American history with 100 awards, 15 million sold in the U.S. and 50 million world-wide. Learn more about Lifetime's "Drop Dead Diva" at www.AENetworks.com or about Brandy at her official website www.4EverBrandy.com.  

Fox Searchlight Pictures' Beasts of the Southern Wild is an epic tale of survival in the Bayou through the eyes of a child
Beasts-of-the-Southern-Wild_hushpuppy.jpgSix year-old Quvenzhane Wallis narrates and stars as Hushpuppy in the Fox Searchlight Picture Beasts of the Wild, just released to theaters. Dwight Henry, who stars as Wink in the Rated-PG film about the way of life for a community of defiant South Louisiana bayou residence, is Hushpuppy's father. Beasts of the Wild is directed by Benh Zeitlin and written by Lucy Alibar and Benh Zaitlin. It is based on the stage play "Juicy and Delicious," written by Lucy.

I was totally impressed by the acting skills from Quvenzhane, which made it seem more like a documentary, that it left me wondering if this community's struggles were a really historical event. Henry also gave a stellar performance. That's why it is hard to believe they casted Henry from a nearby bakery and Wallis from a Honduras Elementary School - after auditioning 4,000 children in New Orleans since 2009.

Running out of time the little community is sinking by rising water caused by a man-made damn. Faced with, not only being abandoned by her mother, the failing health of her father Hushpuppy learns as best she can how to survive. Her imagination and misguided way of life taught to her by her father is what helps her survive the water, the storms, the lack of food and a life where she is practically raising herself.

Winner of a Sundance award, Beasts of the Southern Wild - as seen through the eyes of a six year-old - brings imagination, suspense, laughter and tear-provoking moments. A must see for the family Beasts of the Southern Wild is presented in association with Cinereach and is a Cinereach and Court 13 Production, in association with Journeyman Pictures. Learned more about the film at and the rest of the cast at www.BeastsoftheSouthernWild.com.  

Chain of restaurants, 9021PHO, partners with the Los Angeles Children's Hospital to auction artwork of children
9021PHO_launch_May23_2012_GregAghamanoukian_president.jpg"Our new partnership with the Children's Hospital of Los Angeles is to raise money for kids," said Greg Aghamanoukian, president of 9021PHO's chain of restaurants by Executive Chef /Owner Kimmy Tang. "We're a young company...and ambitious. The next five years our plan is to build 15 more restaurants based on the reputation of Chef Kimmy Tang.

The delicious Asian Fusion restaurant in Beverly Hills was the site for the opening of the partnership where they had a revolving door of wonderfully made items from the 9021PHO menu: Michelia and Vegan Spring Rolls, Steamed Shrimp Dumplings, Crispy Mock Chicken and Catfish, and Grilled Beef wrapped in Vine Leaf.

"Every restaurant...will have a wall of art put together by kids during their stay in the hospital," said Greg during his opening ceremony address. "We will have 5 or 6 in each restaurant. Customers that come in will get a ‘Bid Sheet' with the art selection. They place a bid amount, sill the envelope and place it in the box. At the end of the month the highest bid gets the artwork and we give 100% to the hospital."

The 9021PHO chain, that also caters, has a location in Westlake. You can learn more about Chef Kimmy Tang, the art work, the menu and the 9021PHO chain at www.9021PHO.com....

July 6, 2012

reginabelle_higher_cover.jpgFour-time Grammy winner Regina Belle releases a powerful sophomore Gospel album, ‘Higher,' available June 5, 2012


"You really have to concentrate on your response to not just the people, but God," said four-time Grammy and Academy Award winner Regina Belle about her second Gospel album, "Higher," (and ninth recording project) on Pendulum Records. "I want to change people's lives....I don't have the luxury of just entertaining people."

The soul-stirring project is so powerful, I must say, it made me take another look at the legendary vocalist, now First Lady of New Shield of Faith Ministries in Atlanta (headed by her husband John S. Battle, III). On June 5, 2012 Regina releases a project she can be sure, will change lives. Her first single off the "Higher" project is "Make an Example Out of Me" written by Micah and Heidi Stampley. The single reached the Top 20 Gospel Radio Charts. It is a testimony of her own experience after being diagnosed with a brain tumor - which she has made a full recovery from.

"Higher" is produced by Ray Davis, Ruben Rodriguez, Chris Walker and Belle. It has special guest appearances by Pastor Shirley Caesar, Kathy Taylor and Lowell Pye (Men of Standard).

"People inspire you to write songs for better or for worst," Regina said when asked about her inspiration for some of the songs. "It reflects circumstances I went through with my health. I prayed that it would be used for the good, to be an example...to help somebody."

"Higher" certainly did just that because one of my favorite cuts from the album helps me by giving me inspiration in the mornings -"God Must Have Been With You." That selection is a powerful testimony of God's grace and Regina puts her all into that number. Other favorites of mine include the first single "Make An Example Out of Me," a passionate heartfelt prayer in song; "The Lord Is With You," has a little Jazz flavor; "That's How God Does," has an Urban feel to it; "Coming Back," a heartfelt song of God's forgiveness; "We Win," a nice R&B influenced selection targeted, I'm sure, to the younger listener; "Lord Of All," a beautiful masterpiece with Jazz influence where Belle does unbelievable things with her voice, and "Been So Good," featuring Shirley Caesar, is a rocking Praise & Worship offering.

"I always thought before, using music was to inspire people. Now I want to change people's lives," she concluded.

For more information about Regina Belle and her sophomore Gospel project, "Higher," log on onto www.ReginaBelle.org.

The 37th Annual Gracie Awards Gala attracts the elite females in media to Beverly Hills
GracieAwards_2012_AngelaKinsey.jpg"There are so many amazing women here," said Shaun Robinson (CNN's "Access Hollywood") about the 37th Annual Gracie Awards Gala held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
Hosted by Angela Kinsey (NBC's "The Office") the Gracie Awards Gala attracted the elite females in media to come to honor and be honored. Hannah Mclalwain (Oxygen's "Glee Project") and Vicci Martinez (NBC's "The Voice") was the entertainment for the evening.
"I think that celebrating positive influences (is what Gracie is about)," said Erin Fuller, President of the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation (AWMF) who presented the award gala. "When you see other people and certain important project (being honored)...it's really exciting."

I covered the red carpet arrivals for the 37th Annual Gracie Awards Gala and had the pleasure of talking briefly to women I admire and watch almost every day. Just to name a few there was Sarah Shabi of USA's "Fairly Legal"; Ariel Winter of ABC's "Modern Family"; Elizabeth Cohen of CNN; Angela Kinsey of NBC's "The Office", and Hannah Mclalwain of Oxygen's "The Glee Projects."

The Gracie Awards is presented by AWMF, the philanthropic arm of the Alliance for Women in Media that supports education programs, charitable activities, public service campaigns and scholarships to benefit the public, the electronic media and allied fields. The Gracie Awards were established in 1975 to honor programming and individuals of the highest caliber in all facets of radio, television, cable and web-based media.

The 37th Annual Gracie Awards Gala was made possible by Arbitron, Beasley Broadcasting Group; CBS News; CNN, Disney/ABC Family Group; E! Networks; ESPN, Ford Motor Company Fund; Katz Media Group; National Association of Broadcasters; Oxygen, Premiere Networks; RLTV, and House of Mandela. Find our more on the AWMF and the full list of award winners at www.TheGracies.org.

BET Awards '12, the premiere awards show of the year, attracting 7.4 million viewers
BETAWARDS_2012_chantemoore.jpgThe BET Awards '12, I must say, has become the premiere awards show of the year, attracting over 7.4 million viewers. Though the red carpet was hot enough to make the ground melt (literally) the music, the celebrities, the gowns, the suits, other outfits, the weekend long festivities, the performances and professional staff gave me one of my most memorable assignments so far this year.

It was crazy but I had the pleasure of talking briefly to many of my favorite performers: Michelle Williams, Faith and Nicci Gilbert, Yolanda Adams, Letoya Luckett, Chante Moore, Jessica Reedy, the cast of The Soul Man (John Beasley,, Jazz Raycole and Wesley Jonathan) and Luke James. Many were already inside the venue, the Los Angeles Shrine Auditorium, to prepare for performances or get out the heat. Rushing by me I saw Rick Ross, MCLyte (the event's announcer), 2 Chainz, Swizz Beatz and Mindless Behavior.

Backstage, the atmosphere was even classier than last year (if at all possible). Headed by Stephen Hill (President) Debra Lee (CEO) BET's staff - and its media department - did an excellent job coordinating it all. While backstage - before my camera's batteries died - I was able to take pictures of winners Kevin Hart (Best Actor) and Miguel (Best Collaboration) who doing photos and quick Q and A sessions.

This celebration of talent is the most varied Urban awards event to come out of this century. If this is an example of what I can expect from this network in the coming years, I may have to keep it lock on BET.

Maze featuring Frankie Beverly received the Lifetime Achievement Award and Rev. Al Sharpton received the Humanitarian Award. Of the nominees winners include Beyonce' for Best Female R&B Artist; Chris Brown, Best Male R&B Artist; Jay-Z and Kanye West won two awards Best Group and Video of the Year; Wale featuring Miguel, Best Collaboration; Drake, Best Male Hip-Hop Artist; Nicki Minaj, Best Female Hip-Hop Artist; Beyonce' and Alan Ferguson, Video Director of the Year for "Party"; Big Sean, Best New Artist; Yolanda Adams, Best Gospel; Viola Davis, Best Actress; Kevin Hart, Best Actor; Diggy, YoungStars Award; The Help, Best Movie; Serena Williams, Subway Sportswoman of the Year; Kevin Durant, Subway Sportsman of the Year; Mindless Behavior's "Hello", Coca-Cola Viewers Choice Award; Common, Centrie Award; Sarkodie (Ghana) and Wizkid (Nigeria) tied for Best International Act (Africa), and Wretch 32, Best International Act (UK).

The BET Awards '12 will be re-airing (check your local listing for day and time). You can log onto www.BET.com for more information and a complete list of winners.

(Eunice Moseley is a syndicated entertainment columnist, www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., Oct. 20, 2012 from 1 - 7pm at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com.) 

July 13, 2012

jacoblatimore.jpgJacob Latimore headlines the '#1 Girl' Tour, with Mindless Behavior

"It was the fans," said singing/dancing/acting teen sensation Jacob Latimore about sharing the headline on the "#1 Girl" Tour with Mindless Behavior. "(The Scream Tour) was an amazing thing... it was the fans that wanted me on this (#1 Girl) tour."

His fan-base not only is the cause of him being introduced to us via the "Scream" Tour, where he opened up for Mindless Behavior and Diggy Simmons, but why he is now a headliner himself before he even releases his debut album (RCA Records/Crown World Entertainment). His performances were the talk of the "Scream" concerts.

The "#1 Girl" Tour began earlier this month in Rye, New York and this weekend it arrives in Baltimore at Pier Six Pavilion on Friday, July 13, 2012 and in New York at the Beacon Theater both Saturday and Sunday, July 14th and 15th.

His label has released digitally three singles off the upcoming album "Like ‘Em All" remix with Issa and another remake with Diggy Simmons, "Nothing on Me, and his most recent single "You Come First," will be released July 17th.

"We're just enjoying that (latest single release) and still working on my album," Jacob said about what he plans to promote while on the tour. "Acting, I have some projects I can't speak on...in both film and television."

His acting abilities have landed him roles in the film Vanishing on 7th Street opposite Hayden Christensen and Thandie Newton in 2011 and on BET's "Reed Between The Lines" with Malcolm Jamal-Warner and Tracee Ellis Ross.

"I'm open to everything," he said about acting role choices. "My favorites are comedy and family focused roles."

The 15 year-old only rising-star said keeping his family in the picture and going back home to visit his grandparents and old friends is what is keeping him grounded.
"It reminds me where I come from," Latimore concluded.

Well it's not the "Scream" tour, I am sure the audience will be screaming for Jacob because to watch him perform is like seeing the next big superstar in action at the beginning stages.

Find out more about the "#1 Girl" Tour and where it will stop this summer (tour ends September 6, 2012) at www.WeLoveJacon.com.  

Grammy winning Michelle Williams signs with Light Records, readies for third Gospel album release
michellewilliams_gospelpic.jpgGrammy Award winning singer/actress Michelle Williams recently signed a recording deal with Light Records/eOne and is preparing for a 2013 release of her third Gospel album. Light Records is the home of The Winans, Andrae Crouch, Jessica Reedy, Ricky Dillard, JJ Hairston & Youthful Praise and Dorinda Clark Cole.

"I had no idea they were looking for me," said Williams about how the deal come to be. "My manager said James Robinson (president of Light Records) said he loved my music and wanted to sign me. I never knew he knew my songs. He even knew the track number!"

Michelle said she is glad to be with a team that is passionate about her music and understands her vision. Her vision brought her to Destiny Child in 2000 where she remained a member through the Grammy Award win and the Hollywood Walk of Fame Star. Destiny's Child became one of the best-selling female groups of all time.

In 2002 she released a debut solo Gospel project "Heart to Yours" which reached the top of the Gospel charts and became the best-selling Gospel album in 2002. Her sophomore Gospel album, "Do You Know," was released in 2004. In 2008 Michelle released her first Pop album, "Unexpected," which garnered two top U.S. Dance Hits with "We Break the Dawn" and "The Greatest." She has collaborated with such Gospel greats as Pastor Shirley Caesar.

"I have so many choices," Williams said about what we can expect on the album. "Crazy, I think I know, but it might change. Could go one way...could go the way God wants you to go."

When asked about her ideal collaboration for the album she said, "Kirk Franklin. I never worked with him...who better."

Also an actress Williams has starred on Broadway on Aida, The Color Purple and Chicago. She has also starred in the national stage play "What My Husband Doesn't Know."

For more information on Michelle Williams log onto her website at www.IAmMichelle.com and for updates on her upcoming Gospel project log onto www.LightRecords.com.  

Multi-Grammy nominated Ledisi is taking over with encore tour, first book and album
ledisi2.jpgSeven-time Grammy Award nominated Ledisi is taking over the entertainment industry with an encore tour, "BGTY/Be Good To Yourself," featuring Eric Benet off her highly successful fifth album "Pieces of Me" and her first book release, "Better Than Alright: Finding Peace, Love & Power." Her voice and showmanship on stage has helped propelled her to heights I am sure she is totally impressed with.

"He (Eric Benet) was trying to get me signed to his label on Warner Bros. and when my manager mentioned his name, he has always been a great guy,...he fit perfectly," Ledisi said about her choice to tour with Eric Benet - who is currently promoting his newest album release "The One."

The last two years have been a world-wind for the Verve Forecast recording artist because of her fifth album's success. "Pieces of Me" is her highest charting album of her career debuting at in the top 10 of Billboard Top 200 Charts - which resulted in three Grammy Award nominations.

That release was followed by her "Pieces of Me" Tour in 2011 that had 22 sold out shows. She then released her first book, "Better Than Alright," on Time Home Entertainment in 2012 - which details her journey to self-love. "It took a while to embrace myself and walk in my own walk," she said.

Last, but I am sure not least, she is currently on her second tour off the album - the "BGTY" Tour.

"I was exhausted I did not want to be in the studio or to go to the gym," Ledisi said about how the album received its name "Pieces of Me." "But I went in the studio (with Claude Kelly) anyway. Women can multi-task... I got it done. The album is about pieces of me."

So Ledisi says she multi-tasked with the multiple pieces of herself - the recording artist and the woman to do what she needed to get done. When asked about her high energy performances she said, "It starts from you and radiates to the audience. You have to be careful what you give them. I am still like a kid, I am so happy people take the time to come...If three people came I'd do the same performance as if it was a full house."

The "Pieces of Me" album has three selections I can't get enough of, the first love is "Bravo" a hot song that is surely an anthem to those, like Ledisi, looking for self-love; the title track "Pieces of Me" and "BGTY" a doo-wop flavored song delivered in a fresh way.

The "BGTY" Tour launched in late June at the Hampton Jazz Festival and will end August 5, 2012 in Atlanta. For more information on the tour, her book or the "Pieces of Me" album log onto www.Ledisi.com.

(NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., Oct. 20, 2012 from 12 - 5pm at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com) 

July 20, 2012

Take_6_One_cover.jpgTake 6 takes us to church with their newest album release ‘One' 
By Eunice Moseley

"Most of our records are Jazz...this particular project is straight Gospel," said Claude McKnight member of the multi-platinum selling a cappela group about their newest album release "One" on Shanachie.

In celebration of the 25th anniversary Take 6 (McKnight, Mark Kibble, Joel Kibble, Dave Thomas, Alvin Chea and Khristian Dentley) released a Gospel project that has a guest appearance by Stevie Wonder. The sextet, known for their Jazz/Gospel influenced projects, has garnered 10 Grammy Awards and 10 Dove Awards during their career. On this new project Take 6 focuses solely on Gospel taking us from ole' time Spirituals to Contemporary R&B influenced songs.

"We always ministered," Claude pointed out. "On this one we wanted to get home how the belief system works."

Take 6 offers 11 selections to explain their message, of that I find I play over and over again "Down Here I've Done My Best," because their harmony had me visually in a cotton field singing of my misery with ole' time Spirituals. "Can't Imagine Love Without You," featuring and written by Stevie Wonder, is a classic Wonder masterpiece with Take 6 offering harmonic supporting vocals. Their cover of the Spiritual "What a Friend We have in Jesus," which includes a twist of Jazz influence, is also a favorite along with "Glorious Day," a jump-and-shout selection and "Further Along," for its ole' time Spiritual feel.

"'One' to us is there is ‘One' Jesus, ‘One' Savior and ‘One' way to come to the Father," stressed McKnight. When I asked about their 25 years together he said, "We continue to do it because we are ‘One.'"

For more information or to hear some of the album, "One," log onto www.Take6.com.  

ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards, a spectacular event honoring Quincy Jones and Pharrell
ASCAP_June28_2012_EricaCampbell_MaryMary.jpgAs the red carpet opened we were all anticipating who would show up of the honorees, awardees and guests of the 25th Annual ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards held recent at The Beverly Hilton. After the arrivals dinner was served as the program began, which honored Quincy Jones and Pharrell Williams.

"I work real closed with Jay-Z," said producer/songwriter S1, who was with his songwriting partner Shea Taylor, about how they ended up working with Beyonce' on "Best Thing I Never Had." "(Coming up) we will be working on a lot of Kanye West and we're about to dive right back in with Beyonce'."

I also talked briefly to Erica Campbell (Mary Mary), who won for "Walk;" Lonnie Bereal, who just released a project,-"The Love Train," was there to accept an award for Chris Brown's "Wet The Bed," featuring Ludacris; Drumma Boy was awarded for LMFAO's "Party Rock Anthem;" Xscape member Latocha Scott was there to promote her upcoming solo album, and Miguel, who was there to accept an award for "Sure Thing," stopped briefly for a picture.

During the dinner special honors were given to Quincy Jones, who seems to tear up receiving the Founders Award and Pharrell Williams received the Golden Note Award. Noah "40" Sheibb was named Songwriter of the Year and EMI Music Publishing received Publisher of the Year.

Though spectacular in its presentation and stage setting the ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards seems to be a big family gathering of the biggest songwriters and producers in the business.

"Go after your dreams, don't give up," said Mary Mary's Erica Campbell.

For a complete list of the ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards winners log onto www.ASCAP.com

(Eunice Moseley is a syndicated entertainment columnist, www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., Oct. 20, 2012 from 1 - 7pm at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com)   

July 27, 2012 

Ledisi-Benet-Beacon.jpg

Ledisi's ‘BGTY' Tour, featuring Eric Benet, receiving standing ovations across the country  
By Eunice Moseley

I was invited to review the Ledisi ‘Be Good To Yourself (BGTY)" Tour, featuring Eric Benet, when it arrived at Club Nokia in Los Angeles and need I say it left me feeling so ‘good' about myself and the future of R&B music. Her simple set does not prepare you for the powerful performances by both her and Eric. So if you haven't seen the show, do ‘yourself' a favor and invest in tickets, it's worth it.

Eric Benet opens the show singing his favorite hits, as well as songs from his current album release "Real Love," fitting title for a man with ‘real' vocal power and range. He had his lovely and talented daughter India comes sing a selection as well, and he even blessed us with a look at his beautiful baby girl.

Then lady Ledisi did her thing with her curvy backup singers who also amazed me with not only their vocals abilities, but their dance moves. Ledisi owned the stage as if her whole life was meant for that moment. She gives everything physically and vocally combining R&B, Soul and Jazz. I just loved the way she incorporated skating into an R&B flavored song. Her band was also a stand out feature at the show.

The "BGTY" Tour is the second leg off her latest album release "Pieces of Me," the highest charting album of her career, yet it seems it is just now getting full-steam. Will there be a third leg of the tour? The way it's sweeping across the country stacking up standing ovations you never know.

Ledisi's tour, which started in June, just finished a show in Washington, DC where even the First Lady Michelle Obama came out to see this unbelievable talent. I have no doubt she walked away feeling good about it as well. Bravo to the seven-time Grammy Award winning singer/songwriter and her traveling partner Eric Benet for a great show.

The "BGTY" Tour is headed next to Detroit, Buffalo and Nashville as it comes to an end in Atlanta in early August. Find out more on Ledisi's tour, her album and her first book, "Better Than Alright..." release on Time Home Entertainment, at www.Ledisi.com.  

Jazz pianist Marcus Johnson expands branding from music to wine, FLO Wine Brands
marcusjohnson_flo_wines.jpg"I like wine," Billboard topping Jazz pianist Marcus Johnson said about his new venture into wines with his FLO Wine Brands (red and white). "It's one of the things I've like for the past 25 years since I got out of Law School. I had a friend that had wine tasting at his house and I learned to enjoy it with food...I always had the idea to brand beyond music alone."

His branding into wine not only made him a sudden success in that field, being one of few blacks (if not the only one) to have a wine collection - Chardonnay and Red Blends. His FLO Wine Brand comes from the appellations of California and is distributed by Southern Wine and Spirits. The FLO Wine Brand is incorporated into his "Sip and Sounds" Tour that combines wine tasting with his music.

"I look out into my audience and its women in general," Marcus said about audience response to the combination of music and his wines. "It's (wine) something I like and fits perfectly with music - the FLO CD."

The FLO Chardonnay and Red Blend wines are sold in most spirit and wine carrying supermarkets, such as Giants on the east coast and Albertson's on the west coast.

"I would love to have us go to being the top 20 wine brands in the country," Johnson added.
Marcus said that each venue he performs at he brings his wine and because of the audience's response to the wines the venues decide to keep it in stock.

"We only have two (Chardonnay and Red Blend) for those with developed pallets," he concluded.

The Flo Wine CFO is Sean Johnson and its president is Rob Piziali. The FLO Wine Brands can be found in nine states so far, but the response has been overwhelming and that number is increasing as I type. So look out for the Marcus Johnson FLO Wine Brand at your next dinner out on the town, at the next venue for a show and in your local supermarkets.

Learn more about the FLO wines by logging into www.FloBrands.com, and learn more on Marcus Johnson's "Sip and Sounds" Tour by visiting www.ThreeKeys.com.  

(Eunice Moseley is a syndicated entertainment columnist, www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., Oct. 20, 2012 from 1 - 5pm at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com)

August 3, 2012

the-soul-man-cast.jpgTV Land's ‘The Soul Man,' the family sitcom everyone's been waiting for 
By Eunice Moseley

Drowned in a sea of reality shows we really don't want to see, against a backdrop of reruns of legendary sitcoms we wish we could see more of, TV Land's "The Soul Man," starring and executive produced by Cedric the Entertainment, has found a place in history. Also starring Neicy Nash (Lolli Ballentine), John Beasley (Barton Ballentine), Jonathan Wesley (Stamps Ballentine) and Jazz Raycole (Lyric Ballentine), "The Soul Man," is undoubtedly the next legendary family sitcom in the making.

"I'm proud to have something on television my kids can watch," said Neicy Nash about the show. "My first husband was a pastor," she said about similarities in her character Lolli and her own life.

A spin off of TV Land's "Hot in Cleveland," where Cedric guest starred as a minister with women problems, "The Soul Man" is Boyce "The Voice" Ballentine, an R&B superstar from Vegas who returns home to preach in his father's (Beasley) church. His wife (Nash) and daughter (Raycole) have a lot of adjusting to do to the lifestyle changes, with his younger brother (Wesley) in tow to heighten the laughter.

"He only makes sense to himself, that's what makes him funny," Jonathan said about his character Stamps. "He is the opposite of Cedric's character. I had fun improvising - some didn't work...each episode you learn more."

Full with fresh on-the-mark jokes and punch-lines, it's clear to see why the live audience of "The Soul Man" sitcom needs no prompting to laugh at the right times and on cue.

"We have real diverse writers," Cedric said about his scriptwriting team. "We have African-Americans, non-African-Americans, three women and two young African-American writers. We get drafts and the script gets tighter."

Airing on Wednesday nights at 10 p.m., the half-hour multi-camera live show is signed on for twelve episodes - the last to air September 5, 2012. Guest stars include Sherri Shepherd, Kim Cole, Anthony Anderson, Robert Forster, Tamar and Trina Braxton, Tamala Jones and Yvette Nicole Brown and Cedric Yarbrough - the former neighbors from Vegas.

The brain-child of Cedric and Suzanne Martin ("Hot in Cleveland"), "The Soul Man" is also executive produced by Martin, Eric Rhone, Sean Hayes, Todd Milliner, Keith Cox, and Larry W. Jones - Stan Lathan is director.

Learn more on TV Land's "The Soul Man" by visiting www.TVLand.com.  

Summit Entertainment's Step Up Revolution premiere worthy of the franchises' fourth movie franchise release
stepitup_premiere_ciara.jpgI was invited to cover the red carpet arrivals of the Summit Entertainment premiere for Step Up Revolution (Step Up 4) 3D, released to theater July 27, 2012. Step Up Revolution stars Kathryn McCormick ("So You Think You Can Dance") as Emily, an aspiring dancer and Ryan Guzman as her love interest Sean. The premiere was held at the Grauman's Chinese Theater in Hollywood.

The level of the red carpeted event was worthy of the Step Up franchise's fourth installment. Written by Amanda Brody and directed by Scott Speer, Step Up Revolution is being praised for adapting its dance scenes to the script, characters and backdrop - that of Miami.

The Step Up franchise began in 2006 - set in my hometown of Baltimore - directed by Anne Fletcher and starred Channing Tatum and Jena Dewan (and Baltimore R&B sensation Mario as Miles Darby and Heavy D as Omar). Step Up 2: The Streets - also set in Baltimore - released in 2008 from Touchstone Pictures was directed by Jon M. Chu and choreographed by Jamal Sims, Hi-Hat (Bring It On) and Dave Scott (Stomp the Yard). Step Up 3D was released in 2010 and was written by Amy Anderson and Emily Meyer. The third sequel was also directed by Jon M. Chu and was set in New York - as the lead characters attend NYU.

Step Up Revolution also stars Misha Gabriel, Stephen Boss (Step Up 3D), and Peter Gallagher, and is executive produced by Matthew Smith, with Adam Shankman, Jennifer Gibgot, Patrick Wachsberger, and Erik Feig as producers. The full cast and crew arrived at the premiere along with former Step Up cast members such as Mario. Pop/R&B sensation Ciara - who has a song on the soundtrack for the 2006 Step Up release, came in support, along with Vanessa Williams, Cassie, Ashley Argota ("True Jackson"), Ashley Tisdale - just to name just a few.

Step Up Revolution 3D is in theaters now and you can learn more about the film and cast members at www.Facebook.com/StepUpMovie.

(Eunice Moseley is a syndicated entertainment columnist, www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., Oct. 20, 2012 from 1 - 5pm at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com 

August 10, 2012

OddLifeTimothyGreen2_scene_jennifer_joel_cj.jpgDisney's The Odd Life of Timothy Green is an inspiring tale of parenting, in theaters August 15, 2012
By Eunice Moseley

"Tim taught me that everyone is not a nobody, no matter who you are, you can make a difference in the world," said 11 year-old actor C J Adams about his starring role in the new Disney movie release The Odd Life of Timothy Green - in theaters August 15, 2012.

Adams stars in the family film - that offers fantasy, drama and excellently placed comedic relief - along with Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton. Garner and Edgerton are Cindy and Jim Green a couple with a passion for parenting.

Directed by Peter Hedges, the Ahmet Zappa story tells of the never ending journey couples go through to have a child. The fantasy mixed with reality made for an inspiring tale of parenting.

"You can make a family, it doesn't have to be traditional," Jennifer Garner said about the theme of the movie.

Cindy and Jim Green experiences a miracle that allows them to ‘finally' be parents of the child of their dreams. The Odd Life of Timothy Green is written by Hedges who let the script have its natural flow from Zappa's birth of the tale by creating an almost simplistic look at the reality of the parenting process.

"The real magic of life is actually for all of us, it's loving unconditionally," said Peter. "I wanted to tell a story about being human."

The Odd Life of Timothy Green also stars M. Emmet Walsh as Uncle Bub, Lois Smith as Aunt Mel and Odeya Rush as Joni Jerome. A Scott Sanders Production this Peter Hedges Film is Rated PG.

Leela James delivers a soul-stirring Etta James tribute in her new album release, ‘In The Spirit of Etta James'
leela_james3.jpgShanachie Entertainment artist Leela James delivers a soul-stirring Etta James tribute in her newest album release "In the Spirit of Etta James." The project is an excellent blend of the legendary Rock and Roll, and Blues Hall of Famer Etta James' legendary style with her own, Leela James, signature style and sound.

In a previous interview James admitted she wanted to keep the feel from that time period but still caption "Leela.

"I listened to a lot of her music...and used her standout records," said Leela James. "I could relate to some, but they were too dated."

James has taken her Gospel influenced upbringing and mixed it with Soul, Blues, Funk and R&B to create a page of her own in music's history books. James' previous album release, "A Change Is Gonna Come," which had production by Kanye West, Raphael Saadiq, and Wyclef Jean, forewarned us she was coming to make her imprint on the industry. "In the Spirit of Etta James" she tells me she is ‘just' getting started, and I anticipate the musical experience.

My favorite cuts on the project include "Something's Got a Hold On Me," a Funk/R&B hand clapping selection, "I'm Loving You More Every Day," a great cruising in your car song - with a vocal delivery that gave me an Aretha Franklin vibe, and "Damn Your Eyes," which she gave a very hot rocking twist to.

"In the Spirit of Etta James," is produced by Drew Ramsey and Shannon Sanders.

Disney ABC unveils exciting new programming at the recent TCA
ABC_Disney_presstour_2012_DWTSCast.jpg"I wanted to bring family comedy back since taking this job," said Paul Lee, president of ABC Entertainment Group about the new programming."

On Wednesdays at 8:30 starting September 25, 2012 the network will unveil The Neighbors, starring Jami Gertz and Lenny Venio as Debbie and Marty Weaver who move into a Long Beach neighborhood of "civilized" aliens. Alien neighbors are played by Toks Olagundoye, Simon Templeman, Clara Mamet and Tim Jo.

October 10th at 10/9 p.m. (Central) it premieres "Nashville," a musical drama that stars Hayden Penettiere, Connie Britton, Powers Boothe, Clare Brown, Robert Wisdom, Eric Close, Charles Esten, Sam Palladio, and Jonathan Jackson. If you are a country music lover this series will include every kind of music in Nashville, according to Connie Britton who plays Rayna James.

"Dancing with the Stars: All Stars" continues on September 24, 2012 at 8/7 p.m. (central) with its new season. There will be 13 participants, past finalists, that include Bristol Palin, Melissa Rycroft, Helio Castroneves, Pamela Anderson, Drew Lachey, Gilles Marini and Kelly Monaco.

"I wanted the best of the best," said executive producer Conrad Green about the new season's choices. "I wanted the best personalities, the best dancers and I got everyone on our wish list."

For more about the Disney ABC upcoming programming log onto www.DisneyABCTV.com.

(Eunice Moseley is a syndicated entertainment columnist, www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference Sat., Oct. 20, 2012 from 1 - 5pm at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com) 

August 17, 2012

sparkle_scene1.jpgTriStar's presents Sparkle, offering stellar performances by all, arrives in theaters August 17, 2012
By Eunice Moseley

TriStar Pictures presents the Bishop T.D. Jakes and Whitney Houston executive produced remake of Sparkle, starring Jordan Sparks as Sparkle, Whitney Houston, Mike Epps (Friday After Next), Omar Hardwick (The A-Team), Derek Luke (Antwone Fisher), Carmen Ejogo (Glory) and Tika Sumpter ("Gossip Girl") - it arrives in theaters August 17, 2012. The film offers stellar performances by all; even CeeLo Greens' small part was bigger than life.

Directed by Salim Akil (Jumping The Broom) and written by Mara Brock Akil ("The Game), Sparkle not only didn't disappoint but the customs, hair and music was utterly breathtaking. Even though watching the late Houston was tear-jerking in itself, it didn't overshadow her magnificent performance and those of her co-stars. The storyline (by Joel Schumacher and Howard Rosenman), though in line with the original, had some new twist to it which includes new music by R. Kelly.

Produced by Debra Martin (Just Wright), along with Jakes, the Akils and Curtis Wallace (Not Easily Broken), Sparkle is just one of many projects coming from Bishop Jakes.
"I'm working on a lot of things," said the Bishop. "I want to bring Sparkle to Broadway; I have a film, Heaven's for Real, a faith based movie coming out in the spring of 2013; an indie film Winnie, a story about Mandela's marriage to Winnie and what it brought to the table, and "Women Thou Art Loosed: on the 7th Day" is coming out on DVD."

With all these projects going on and Bishop Jakes currently promoting Sparkle you would think it was all taking away from his unprecedented way of spreading the Gospel, but according to him that is not so, "The church still sees me as a pastor," he said. "What people don't know is that the church is not making movies... it's a whole separate company, separate staff, separate facilities. The advantage is I draw more entrepreneurs and business people. It changed me because I get out officiating close to people who see life from one sphere... yet staying true to who I am. There are all kinds of ways of going into the world."

The Bishop hopes that Sparkle unify people through music, "The Original Sparkle is historical, has music and cultural value and the role music plays from a sociological perspective reminds young people who we come from. The struggles and challenges of life are still the same."

So it is and as in the film Sparkle in the end it all works out for those that love God and ‘try' to work towards God's purpose. To name a specific actor for their outstanding performance would be to downplay the stellar performances by them all. I certainly see multi-awards being racked up on this project. Bravo!

Rated PG-13, see the movie trailer for Sparkle and learn more on the actors by visiting www.Sparkle-Movie.com.  

Tyscot recording artist Damita releases her much anticipated Contemporary Gospel album ‘Anticipation'
damitahaddon.jpg"I am more excited about this (album) than another of the others," said Damita, known for her R&B//Pop flavored Gospel, about her newest project, "Anticipation," release on the Tyscot imprint.

The project not only offers her trademark R&B/Pop influenced sound, but on this one, according to Damita, produce Frederick "Blaze" Crawford add some Hip-Hop influence with rapper Regula, making this project - for me - one of the best Gospel albums I've reviewed this year.

In 2000 Damita released her self-titled project on Atlantic Records and the second, "No Looking Back," in 2008 on her current label Tyscot. "Anticipation" is her third project.
"We're on a promotional tour now," said Damita about the album's release, at the time Nashville was the next stop.

Damita co-wrote the album with Blaze, "He said it would be great to add a rap hook so he called Regula who dropped it."

What an excellent addition to an otherwise predictable R&B/Pop Damita Contemporary Gospel sound, to make a fresh new Urban sound. My favorite cuts on the "Anticipation" album include "Won't Turn Back," a futurist sounding song that will make your feet move for sure, which rapper Regula bringing that Urban vibe; the simplistic "Be Reveal," a sweet song of love for God with a powerful vocal delivery; "Elevate Me," another hit with an Urban feel with Pop flavor; the Heavenly sounding "Anticipation Waiting," a Pop sounding inspiriting selection, and "Turn The Lights On," love the background vocals lifting Damita sweet vocals magnification.

Advice to other artist from Damita is to "Keep working hard, don't settle and change who you are. There are lots of creative ways to get your music heard."

For more Damita or to hear the album, "Anticipation," log onto www.Tyscot.com.  

BMI's ‘Next Fresh Thing' showcased four outstanding rising stars at The Viper Room
BMI_NextFreshThing_July25_2012_ShaneFree.jpgI was invited to attend the Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI) presentation of their "Next Fresh Thing" showcase where they presented to the public four outstanding rising stars to The Viper Room in Hollywood. Shane Free, Troy NoKA, Revenge of the Nerds and Dawn Richard were the talent presented.

BMI - a global leader in music rights and performing rights management organization representing over 500,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers - always an advocate for its members presented an excellent setting to showcase the talents when they chose The Viper Room.

The event started with the unbelievable sounds of Shane Free - a Reggae/Rock offering. Born in Trinidad and raised in Barbados, Shane was a powerhouse performer. He released his first single at the age of 15 and he recently enlisted producer Inotchz for the second single "Fire Waist."

Troy NoKA does it all rap, produce, songwriter and musician; he brought spoken word to the show entertaining us with his wisdom. Troy is best known for his production skills for such projects as Frank Ocean's "Nostalgia" and Chris Brown's "I Should Have Kiss You".
Revenge of the Nerds, a group of songwriters/producers from Los Angeles (David Randall, Kyle Coleman and Ramir Vincent), have written and produced for such artists as Jojo, Kevin McCall, Frank Ocean, Kid Ink, Ginuwine and Pixie Lott.

Last, the highlight of the event was singer/songwriter Dawn Richard (former member of the group Danity Kane and Diddy's Dirty Money). The New Orleans native just finished a tour with YMCMB and PJ Morton and is prepping to release her solo album "Goldenheart" this year.

For more information on BMI log onto www.BMI.com and for more on their"Next Fresh Thing" talent log onto www.ShaneFreeMusic.comwww.R3vengeoftheNerds.Tumblr/comwww.TroyNoKA.com, and www.DawnRichard.Tumble.com.  

(Eunice Moseley is a syndicated entertainment columnist, www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS: Attend the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, Host/DJ is Roc (KJLH 102.3fm), for the Sat., Oct. 20, 2012 event held from 1 - 5pm at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA. - admission is free! - www.UpliftingMinds2.com) 

August 24, 2012

oogieloves.jpgKenn Viselman's interactive movie, The Oogieloves in The Big Balloon Adventure, for 3 - 5 year-olds is a wonderland for all ages
By Eunice Moseley

Kenn Viselman, the man responsible for 20 billion in entertainment programming for children 3 - 5 years old, brings for the first time a similar concept to the big screen with The Oogieloves in The Big Balloon Adventure. A Rated G film, that still offers a wonderland for all ages, stars Toni Braxton, Cloris Leachman, Christopher Lloyd, Chazz Palminteri, Jaime Pressly, and the three Oogieloves: Goobie, Zoozie and Toofie - arrives in theaters on August 29, 2012.

While watching a Tyler Perry Madea movie Kenn noticed the women mimicking what they saw on the screen and he started to think of a movie that would do the same for his demographics (children 3 - 5 years-old).

Viselman achieves that in The Oogieloves in The Big Balloon Adventure because the audience is encourage throughout the film to stand up, dance and sing along - all 3 - 5 year-olds present did just that. The movie repeatedly shows the audience cultural differences between today and the 1950s, such as the little song they sang every time one of the Oogieloves pants fell down - reflecting today's culture with the "pants half down" style.

"I wanted a movie for the youngest possible," said Kenn on his reason for bringing, for the first time, an interactive movie just for a selected age group. "What would make young kids go to the movies?"

Viselman had to bring this interactive movie to the theaters himself because the studios at first thought it was a big risk, even though Kenn has made 20 billion in similar programming, and then later they wanted to much of the percentage he said. "I believe in Rated G, the studios don't," Kenn pointed out. "I believe there is enough violence in the world. Can we show love...just experience love?"

Love is what the film is about as the love of the three Oogieloves for their friend Schluuly drives them on in search of five helium balloons for his birthday. The balloons blew away so the race is on to get them back, for Schluuly's surprise birthday party - before he wakes up. Cloris Leachman, Toni Braxton, Christopher Lloyd, Chazz Palminteri, and Cary Elwes and Jaime Pressly each have possession of one of the balloons.

It was a joy for me to see kids' (3 - 5 years old) happy faces, when I screened the film, as they immediately began singing and dancing along. The interaction was to help the Oogieloves succeed in getting the balloons back so they can have that birthday party at the end - what kid doesn't like birthday parties!?

The Kenn Viselman presentation of The Oogieloves in The Big Balloon Adventure arrives in theaters August 29, 2012, log onto www.Oogieloves.com for more information.
Sony Pictures presents Premium Rush starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Dania Ramirez, in theaters August 24, 2012
premiumrush_dania_ramirez.jpgCan you believe a movie shot mostly on bikes? Well the new Sony Pictures release Premium Rush, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Shannon, Jamie Chung and Dania Ramirez, does just that. The action film, which arrives in theaters August 24, 2012, has Joseph and Dania dodging speeding cars and crazy traffic each day to deliver the package.

"Most of the time we were on bikes," said Dania Ramirez about her scenes. "We talked on bikes, had a relationship on bikes..."

Ramirez, who before this was a bit afraid of bikes, is not new to action movies thanks to her role in X-men.

"I had a fear of riding bikes, so I wasn't a master," she said about her experience.

Dania grew up in New York, that and her playing volley ball in high school and college gave her just the edge she needed to land the role.

Directed by David Koepp, the film follows Wilee (Joseph) - one of New York's best bicycle messengers - as he finds that his last envelope of the day has put him in a life or death chase through Manhattan. Dania is Vanessa a fellow bike messenger and his on-screen love interest.

"I had chemistry with Joseph," Ramirez pointed out. "The director also thought I had the essence of the role."

Produced by Gavin Polone, and written by David Koepp and John Kamps, Premium Rush is Rated PG-13 - arrives in theaters August 24, 2012. To see the complete cast log onto www.PreminumRush.net  for more information.

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS FLASH: KJLH 102.3FM's DJ Roc host/DJ the Sat. Oct. 20, 2012 "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records and sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com. Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA, the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com) 

August 31, 2012

kirkwhalum_longbeachjazzfest_2012.jpgThe Long Beach Jazz Festival returns to Rainbow Lagoon Park for its 25th year
By Eunice Moseley

"I've been coming here for ten years," said legendary Jazz saxophonist Kirk Whalum about his performance at the three-day Long Beach Jazz Festival held at the Rainbow Lagoon Park near the ocean. "It brings the heart and soul to Long Beach...that makes it unique."
~
I truly enjoyed attending the event near the water, where in three-days over 30,000 people come to enjoy great Jazz (and R&B/Soul), adult company and good food. The headliners for the weekend included The Isley Brothers, The Blackbyrds, Leela James, Jonathan Butler, Keith Sweat, Poncho Sanchez, Rick Braun, Chrisette Michele, Al Williams and Friends, David Sanborn and Brian Culbertson (The Dream Tour), Larry Graham and Graham Central Station, Eric Darius, Dianne Reeves and Kirk Whalum.

I had time enough to see the outstanding performances of Dianne Reeves, who did amazing things with her voice going from scatting to Latin and African chanting all with her signature twist of Jazz, and Kirk Whalum. I talked with Kirk briefly backstage before he blew me away, literally, with his sax skills. Hearing him on his albums is great, but to hear him live takes your breath away. I know I was out of breath just watching him.

The 25th Annual Long Beach Jazz Festival was presented this year by US Bank with a theme of "Jazz and Beyond." The event hosted tons of vendors with food, refreshments, art, gift items and a second stage of great talent in the pavilion area. The Long Beach Jazz Festival also offered a VIP section where attendees were catered to, as if they were in a Jazz club.

Find out more on the Long Beach Jazz Festival log onto www.LongBeachJazzFestival.com or www.RainbowPromotions.com.  

The Merge Summit three-day conference offered great entertainment and highly inspiring panels
Merge_August23_2012_yolandawatts.jpgThe Merge Summit returned to Los Angeles for the 4th year, with its three days of entertaining events, inspirational people and educational panels/workshops, held at the historic Millennium Biltmore Hotel. Presented by Holly Carter, president and CEO of Releve' Entertainment and Chair of The Merge Summit, and Robi Reed, V.P. of casting and talent at BET Networks and co-chair of The Merge Summit, the events' weekend started with a red carpeted opening night gala reception hosted by Derek "Fonzworth Bentley" Watkins ("The Game") and Faune Chambers.

While covering the red carpet arrivals I could feel the excitement by everyone involved of the opening night gala, excited to hear great inspiration performances and to network with many industry people attending in support.

"I'm here to see people in the industry that are God fearing people," said comedian/actress Kym Whitley about her attendance at the Merge gala. When asked what she was up to Kym added, "Me and Kim Coles have a comedy night every Tuesday at the Comedy Union."

I had a chance to also talk to actor Dorian Missick ("Southland") about his co-starring role on the hit series "Southland," with Regina King, "It's very challenging, but not as challenging as a natural detective," he said to me about this role on the hit series. "We'll be back (on the air) in February, we go back to work in November."

Talk show personality Rolanda Watts and many others stop by to talk. Other attendees to the Merge Summit Opening Night Gala include LisaRaye, Sonja Norwood, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Regina King, Niecy Nash, Shaun Robinson and many more.

The theme for the 4th annual Merge Summit was "Integrating Faith and Entertainment." The other two days included panels and workshops on career development, and keynote speakers, such as Denzel Washington.

For more information on The Merge Summit Conference log onto www.TheMergeSummit.com.  

Terrell Taylor releases powerful new Praise & Worship album, ‘He Is Good: The Live Experience'
terrelltaylor.jpg"It was recorded here in Atlanta," said Terrell Taylor, president of T.N.T. Ministries, Inc., about his newest album, a Praise and Worship project, ‘He Is Good: The Live Experience." "I wrote the music and the musicians did a great job interpreting it."

They did an excellent job indeed, because it was the quality of the musicians that stood out for me, such as one of my favorite cuts on the "He Is Good" CD, "Entrance of the King," a soundtrack worthy selection.

"I arranged the orchestra," Taylor informed me about the "Entrance if the King" cut. "Wanted people to experience what it would be like if the King of Kings was invited."

Terrell has been a Praise and Worship leader for many years and wanted to give the listeners of "He Is Good" the feel of the church, and he did just that. You can hear that church feeling in some of my other favorites on the project that include "Exalt His Holy Name," an awesome Praise and Worship selection, along with "Over All The Earth;" "He Is," a hot jam for Christ features a rap blend; "His Promises Are Yes and Amen," a heartfelt cut; "Let Us Worship," I love the horn lead; "In The Blood of the Lamb," which has a Pop feel to it, and "New Horizon," which has a beautiful vocal delivery by Joslyn Brockman.

"I'd want my songs in churches all over the world," Terrell Taylor said about his project. "I just came from South Africa and its played in English! I want people to experience the joy and presence of God."

For more information on Terrell Taylor and his newest Praise and Worship album, "He Is Good: The Live Experience," log onto www.TerrellTaylor.com.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS FLASH: KJLH 102.3FM's DJ Roc host/DJ the Sat. Oct. 20, 2012 "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records and sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com. Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA., the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com 

September 7, 2012

anthony_hamilton_2.jpgAnthony Hamilton's ‘Back To Love' tour with Estelle kicks off, stops in Los Angeles and Baltimore in September
By Eunice Moseley

"They both owed me a lot of money," laughed Grammy Award winning Anthony Hamilton about why he picked Estelle and new-comer Antoine Dunn to be featured on his "Back To Love" tour - which is promoting his latest album release "Back To Love". "Estelle is great...she adds a nice energy. She's soft, wild, and chocolate. I should change the name to the ‘Chocolate Tour'!"

Hamilton, a multi-platinum artist, was cited by Billboard as one of the top 10 best performers during this year's Essence Music Festival. His "Back To Love" tour featuring Grammy Award winner Estelle kicks off September 8, 2012 in Columbia, SC, then it arrives in my hometown of Baltimore September 14th at Pier Six Pavilion and in Los Angeles, where I am now, September 21st at the Greek Theater. The tour ends in Savannah, GA October 7th at the Johnny Mercer Theater so don't sleep; make sure you go see why he is a Grammy winner.

"'Back to love' sums up what I love to do," Anthony explains. "We need to get back to love, back to family, back to friends..."
Hamilton, who has sold over 20 million albums worldwide, said he looks forward to meeting people who don't know about his music. Those that know his music will find him singing songs they didn't expect.

"I'm going to switch some songs around, not sing them the regular way, but give them a nice twist," he pointed out.

Voted one of the "Best of 2012...So far" by iTunes, Anthony Hamilton has a mission with this tour to spread as much love via his music as possible, and being that he was raised in the church I think he is just the man for it.

For more on Anthony Hamilton's "Back To Love" Tour log onto www.AnthonyHamilton.com.  

Grammy nominated Mint Condition releases ‘Music @ The Speed of Life,' with DJ Jazzy Jeff as featured guest
MintCondition2012.jpgNominated for two Grammy Awards for their last album "7," Mint Condition (Rickey Kinchen on bass; Larry Waddell on keyboard/piano; Jeffrey Allen on sax; Homer Odell on guitar and Stokley Williams on vocals) releases their newest project September 11, 2012 on Shanachie Entertainment.

"The title (of the album) is just about changing. Our lives are moving fast. We went from the boom-box to now iPods. Everything is moving fast," said Rickey Kinchen about the new project "Music @ The Speed of Life". "I want them to listen and give it a chance. Check it out and enjoy. A lot of it is real."

For example Rickey said the first single off the "Music @ The Speed of Life" album titled "Believe In Us," he wrote after having a conversation with a friend in the kitchen who found out his girl didn't believe in God. He stressed they weren't a couple any more, but that's what you will hear on the album real R&B, real stories."

Mint Condition made the top ten list with their collaboration via Stokley's duet with Kelly Price on "Not My Daddy. Looking better than ever the guys have been tapped by Prince to appear on his "Welcome to America" Tour and was the house band on TV One's "Way Black When"

If the single is any indication of what's in the album, we can expect that signature sound of Mint Condition found in such hits as "Pretty Brown Eyes" and "What Kind Of Man Would I Be." Celebrating 20 years this year the band's "Music @ The Speed of Life" project has featured guests, such as DJ Jazzy Jeff and Brother Ali.

"I like to record what pours out my heart," Rickey said about his songwriting skills. "I'm a true writer. Every song I came up with stays fresh ... I listen to it all. This is the first album we didn't have anything to say about the songs. We were all happy about this whole album."

The band is currently touring and will have stops in Minneapolis September 28, 2012, Washington, DC October 6th and Los Angeles October 19th. I look forward to hearing more of the album and hopefully seeing a Mint Condition concert performance.

"We are still relevant, though we haven't had a Rolling Stones article," Kinchen points out. "If I wasn't in the band, I'd say they're the best band in history!"
For more information on the new "Music @ The Speed of Life" album by Mint Condition log onto www.MintConditionMusic.com.  

Grammy nominated Lecrae takes Hip-Hop and delivers the Gospel in a new way on latest project ‘Gravity'
lecrae-prayin.jpg"I want to share how we were exposed...in the Urban community. We broke the cycle, you can take a different direction," said Lecrae, a Grammy Award nominated rapper whose lyrics speak about the Gospel and deliverance in a way his peers in Hip-Hop can relate.

‘I saw God do changes in my life," he continued. "One of my good friends back in the day did crazy stuff. I was the proof that life can be different."

In 2010 Lecrae released "Rehab" and it sold 250,000 albums. The Atlanta based rapper released a mix-tape in May, 2012, "Church Clothes," hosted by Don Cannon. With over 350,000 twitter followers Lecrae is rapidly becoming a house-hold name for his style of delivering the "good news."

"I don't understand ‘Gospel' music. I didn't grow up on Gospel music, I grew up on Hip-Hop," Lecrae points out about being classified as a Gospel rapper. "I paint a picture of reality; people are losing their lives and family. When you're broken people turn to God."

"Gravity" is Lecrae's seventh studio album. The first single off the project has been released titled "Lord Have Mercy" and its straight hard-core rap, but with a message of Godly ‘hope." I anticipate hearing the rest of the album.

Lecrae will be touring this fall on his "Unashamed" tour. For more information on Lecrae's music or his newest project "Gravity" log onto www.ReachRecords.com.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS FLASH: KJLH 102.3FM's DJ Roc host/DJ the Sat. Oct. 20, 2012 "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records and sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com. Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA., the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com. 

September 14, 2012

jeniferlewis_djpierce_webseries.jpgFamed Broadway actress/singer Jenifer Lewis launches comedy web-series, ‘Jenifer Lewis and Shangela'
By Eunice Moseley

"It's an exaggerated version of our real lives," said famed Broadway actress/singer Jenifer Lewis (Thing Like A Man) about her new scripted reality-influenced web-series "Jenifer Lewis and Shangela." "DJ Pierce (who is Shangela) is a big fan and came backstage with his mother (when he was young). He was adorable. He knew every one of my lines."

That friendship between the acclaimed veteran actress and the aspiring entertainer blossomed into much more. DJ eventually moved to California to "make his mark" and was welcomed by Lewis with a rent free room.

"I have this room for college students to stay. I let them stay rent free, give them a light bill or something," she informed me. "He became my assistant."

A failed attempt on RuPaul's "Drag Race" reality show changed their relationship again as Lewis became his "mentor," encouraging him to keep going at it.

"People would watch us...we talk movie quotes. We quote movie quotes as we speak. We have a great chemistry," she added. "Someone said you should capture this. I said no reality show for me and someone said how about a scripted show. So I called my screenwriters."

"Jenifer Lewis and Shangela" is releasing four episodes, the last to air Wednesday, September 19, 2012 at www.youtube.com/JenLewisandShangela.  The web sitcom is directed by Emmy Award winning Mary Lou Belli ("The Game"). Lewis' writers include team Mark Alton Brown and Dee LaDuke ("Girlfriends"), and team Deborah Dean Davis and Margaret Oberman ("Saturday Night Live").

The series follows the comic adventures of Jenifer Lewis and Shangela as the veteran actress mentors the up-and-coming drag performer who lives in the basement apartment of her Hollywood mansion.

Lewis has over 300 movie and television credits that include What's Love Got To Do With It, The Preacher's Wife, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and more recent Princess and the Frog and Cars2. Pierce credits include NBC's "Community" and CBS' "The Mentalist."

"Jenifer Lewis and Shangela" is produced by The Collaboration Factory.

"We got meetings with some big people," Lewis said about the success of the web series so far.

To see the web series log onto www.Youtube.com/JenLewisandShangela and like them at www.facebook.com/JeniferLewisandShangela.  

Olympic high jumper/actor Jamie Nieto co-stars in Jerusalem Countdown, now out on DVD
JamieNieto.jpgActor and two-time Olympian (2004/2012) Jamie Nieto (Encounter) co-stars in the action packed drama Jerusalem Countdown as an FBI Agent. The Pure Flix Entertainment film also stars A. R. White, Anna Zielinski, Lee Majors, Stacy Keach and Randy Travis.

"I got the role based on an audition," said Nieto, a High Jumper on the 2012 London Olympic team, as well as a talented actor. "I think they did a great job. It's an end of time film. It deals with the rapture and its action packed with special effects - a heavy hitter."

Jerusalem Countdown follows several individuals whose lives are connected in a race against time to save the world, a world already privy to its faith. Though Jamie Nieto's time on screen is short his performance, like those of all the actors, was a stellar one.

The film is based on a bestseller of the same name by John Hagee, a pastor. White plays Senior FBI Agent Shane Daughtry faced with an impossible job - to find the terrorist smuggling nuclear weapons into America. Majors plays an arms dealer, Keach a retired FBI Agent and Travis is the CIA Deputy Director in this Armageddon tale.

"It's an interesting takes on how the rapture would happen," Nieto pointed out. "Cause you never know what could happen. I had to learn (how to be an FBI Agent). The lead actor (his FBI partner played by Anna Zielinski) gave me some tips."

Jerusalem Countdown was an "edge of your seat" type film and the ending was a big surprise to me. For more on the film log onto www.PureFlix.com/Portfolio/JerusalemCountdown and for more on actor Jamie Nieto log onto www.JamieNieto.com.  

Multi-Grammy nominee Tye Tribbett tapes upcoming album, ‘Greater Than,' in Los Angeles at the Angelus Temple
tyetribbett.jpgI was honored to cover the taping for the upcoming new project from multi-Grammy Award nominee and multi-Stellar Award winner Tye Tribbett titled "Greater Than." The live CD/DVD was taped at Angelus Temple in Los Angeles, the last of a two part taping for the DVD. The first taping took place in Miami on August 17, 2012.

Tye Tribbett is known for his high energy performances and his Contemporary Gospel hits such as "Everything," "No Way" and "Victory." The tapping was presented by Tye Tribbett and Kingdom Music.

I cannot wait to see the DVD because the tapping was extraordinary. From the lightning to the orchestra filled with young, but well seasoned musicians - a string section with violins, a horn section, two lead guitars, bass, two keyboardists and a drummer with the power of Titans.

His "choir" of nine vocalists not only gave an outstanding performance, that includes animation and style like I haven't seen in a while, but the dance moves would bring any Urban youth to the altar to be "saved" so they can be on Tye Tribbett's team. I saw signature dance of Prince, The Time, James Brown, Dru Hill/Sisqo, and many more. I was excited for the next song just to see what dance moves the choir would do or what "style" of music Tye would present the Gospel in.

Tribbett, as always, gave everything he had and still was able to stay vocally on key - I was totally impressed. He showed his keyboard skills and if that isn't enough for you to get the CD/DVD when it's - the songs are revolutionary.

"Greater Than" will be his fifth recorded album. For more on Tye Tribbett or his latest project log onto www.TyeTribbettWorldwide.com.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com. NEWS FLASH: KJLH 102.3FM's DJ Roc host/DJ the Sat. Oct. 20, 2012 "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records and sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com. Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA., the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com. 

September 21, 2012

looper-main.jpgJoseph Gordon-Levitt looses himself in Tri Star Pictures', Looper, also starring Bruce Willis, arrives in theaters September 28, 2012
By Eunice Moseley

"I wrote it ten years ago," said Rian Johnson, screenwriter and director on the new Tri Star Picture release of Looper, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis. "I wrote the main part for Joseph. He is a real dear friend...as an actor he disappears into his part."
Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Premium Rush) stars as Joe, a hired gun from the future (2072) who travels to the past to assassinate them. Then one day the mob targets him to "close the loop,' and send his future self played by Bruce Willis to assassinate him.

"It's a very deep honor. It's the first time it happens to me," Joseph Gordon-Levitt said about the lead role being written with him in mind. "We've been talking about this movie or a long time."

When I mentioned that Rian said he loses himself in his role just like Bruce Willis, Joseph said, "My favorite performance is when you don't see the actor, you see the character. I spent three hours in the chair to change my face so you will not see me," He added. "Looper was a unique challenge."

He went on to explain that his job was to be more like Bruce Willis' acting in character. So he studied Willis in movies to learn his acting skills and other techniques.

"I studied Bruce. Studied his movies," Joseph said. "Bruce recorded some of my monologues so I would know what he would sound like."

The action/sci-fi film also stars Emily Blunt, Paul Dano, Noah Segan, Piper Perabo and Jeff Daniels. Rated R, Looper is produced by DMG Entertainment, Endgame Entertainment, and FilmDistrict, and arrives in theaters September 28, 2012.

For more information on the Tri Star presentation of Looper log onto www.LooperMovie.com

Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Pena battle the war on drugs in End of Watch, arrives in theaters September 21, 2012
endofwatch_scene2.jpgTaken from the life experiences of a South Central Los Angeles police office and his partner, the Open Road Films and Exclusive Media presentation of End of Watch, starring Jake Gyllenhaal (Broke Back Mountain) and Michael Pena (Crash), arrives in theaters September 21, 2012. In End of Watch Officer Mike Zavala (Pena) and Officer Brian Taylor (Gyllenhaal) stumble onto the FBI's hidden war on drugs run by the Mexican cartel, right in their neighborhood in South Central Los Angeles. But neither could look away as ordered, so the battle the war on drugs in this dramatic thriller. End of Watch also stars Anna Kendricks, America Ferrera, Cody Horn, Natalie Martinez and Frank Grillo.

"We spent five months on the streets from 4 p.m. to 4 a.m.," said Jake Gyllenhaal, sporting all his hair and a beard now. "We did tactical training, S.W.A.T., fighting training, sparing - we developed a relationship with the police officers and everyone in the community saw us around. It shaped my life as a person."

Jake and Michael told of stories that had to be toned down for the movie that happened during "their" watch in South Central.

"This movie I hold close to my heart," Michael Pena added. "Jake wanted me to do the best that I could do. He helped me train and we did ride a-longs together."

"It was shot in 22 days," Jake informed of the actual filming of End of Watch.
"Jake had a hand-held camera with him and sometimes we wore an apparatus with a monitor wrapped around," Michael said when questioned about the in-your-face camera shots used in the film to indicate it's being shot through the lens of Officer Brian's own camera. In the film he is using his camera to document his time on the streets. "Like when I was about to fight the dude...you just saw my hands. We wanted people to feel like they were inside of the movie."

End of Watch had you on the edge of your seats nervous about what dangers they would face the next day. I was wondering would they survive the watch and if that day, seemingly, would be their last.

"A friend of mine is a cop and he and people he worked with would bring cameras to work with them, like everyone else," said David Ayer (Training Day, S.W.A.T.), who is screenwriter, director and producer of this film. "He showed me the footage and I saw nothing like it. I had never seen this before. James (his friend the cop) was in drugs (division)...for eight years. His partner was black. The guys would give him grief about being with a black guy - he'd tell me his story... I used a Latino because my wife is Mexican, so I know the culture."

End of Watch is also produced by John Leshner, Nigel Sinclair and Matt Jackson. The Rated R film is an Emmett/Farla Film, Crave Film, Exclusive Media Group, Grisbi Production. For more on End of Watch log onto www.EndofWatchTheFilm.com.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.comNEWS FLASH: Meet EURweb.com publisher Lee Bailey and Praise 98FM's Lady Charmain (program director) at the KJLH 102.3FM's DJ Roc hosted "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records Saturday, October 20, 2012. The conference is sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com and Praise 98FM. Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA, the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com.) 

September 28, 2012

hoteltransylvania_scene.jpgHotel Transylvania is very funny, yet very romantic, stars Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, Luenell and Ceelo Green, arrives in theaters September 28, 2012
By Eunice Moseley

I laughed from the beginning to the very end while screening the Sony Picture Animation, Columbia Pictures presentation of Hotel Transylvania (3D). The Rated PG film is a very funny, yet very romantic tell of a father's over-protective love for his daughter and a daughters' love for a man. Arriving in theaters September 28, 2012 Hotel Transylvania is directed by Gennedy Tartakovsky, and produced by Michelle Murdocca. Written by Peter Baynham and Robert Smigel, it stars Sandler as Dracula, Selena Gomez as his daughter Marvis; comedienne Luenell as Marvis' shrunken head door-notice; Fran Drescher as Auntie Eunice, and Ceelo Green as Murray the mummy.

"I got to meet Adam, he produced it," said Selena Gomez when asked if she met the cast while recording her voice-overs. "I never got to work with the other actors, but he was there to see where I was at with my voice... I've done a few voice-overs, this is the biggest."

Selena said she didn't change her voice, in fact, it seems Adam is the only one that changed his voice to sound "Blah, Blah, Blah" like a vampire. Ceelo Green voice was distinctive, certainly Fran Drescher's voice is distinctive, and funny girl Luenell's voice rang out clear as well.

"This is my second Adam Sandler film," Luenell informed me about how she was cast. "We met on That's My Boy...he reuses people and I said you don't have a resident sister, I'm down for being her."

I guess he was down for Luenell - who will also be co-starring in Taken 2, out in theaters October 5th and is still doing her stand-up - because here she is in another Adam Sandler film. This great family film also stars Kevin James as Frankenstein; Jon Lovitz as Quasimodo; Adam Samberg as "the human" Jonathan who falls in love with Marvis; Molly Shannon as Wanda the pregnant werewolf; Steve Buscemi as Wayne the husband werewolf; David Spade as Griffin the Invisible Man; Chris Parnell as the Fly, and Brian George as the Suit of Armor.

For more information or to see the trailer to Hotel Transylvania (3D) log onto www.WelomeToHotelT.com and for more on Luenell log onto www.HeyLuenell.com.  

Tri Destined' Note to Self, starring Christian Keyes and LeToya Luckett, arrives on DVD October 2, 2012
NoteToSelf_scene_Christian_Keyes_LeToya_Luckett.jpg"I wrote this in 2005," said screenwriter/actor Christian Keyes ("Let's Stay Together") who wrote and stars in the Tri Destined Studios/Image Entertainment presentation of Note to Self, which arrives DVD October 2, 2012. "I thought at the time it was a film for college students. It's a funny coming of age (story) - Stomp the Yard hadn't come out yet and when it came out it made 60 million in two months - that reinforced me. I took it to a couple studios...they were all passing...I kept pushing."

Keyes pushed his script right into the hands Image Entertainment who - due to budget cuts - went looking for a partner and found one in Tri Destined Studios. Tri Destined loved the script and felt it fit perfectly with what they wanted to produce.

"A perfect combination," director Trey Haley said about his company, Tri Destined, taking on Christian Keyes' project. "Chris brought the script to my business partner ND Brown. The storyline was something we wanted to create...it stood out and really needed to be seen. As African-American males, dealing with our feelings, we often run away. In the film Brian McKnight is the therapist who suggests that he write out his thoughts"

A romantic sports oriented film, Note to Self, also stars LeToya Luckett (Preacher's Kid) as his love interest, Richard T. Jones (Why Did I Get Married); Eva Marcille ("America's Top Model"); Clifton Powell (Ray); Valarie Pettiford (Jumping the Broom); Jason Weaver (Drumline), and Brely Evans (Sparkle). Note to Self is also presented by One Village Entertainment and Swirl Films, and produced by ND Brown, Eric Tomosunas, Veronica Nichols, Keith Neal and executive produced by Keyes and Brett Dismuke.

"He finds he likes who he is and gets a chance to see what true love is," Trey said about his Christian Keyes' character Curtis. "You see him write in his journal as he talks to the therypist; Brian McKnight gives an extremely powerful performance."

For more on the romantic film Note to Self film log onto NoteToSelf.Tumblr.com.  

Doris Bergman's annual Primetime Emmy Style Lounge and Party a fabulous affair
LisaRaye_DorisBergmanEmmyStyleLounge_sept12_2012.jpgAgain this year Doris Bergman's annual Primetme Emmy Style Lounge and Party was held at the Café' La Boheme in West Hollywood. The event catered to the Emmy nominees (and supporters) - past and present - offering a wide variety of gifts, with exquisite food and drinks. Co-produced by Michelle Faulkner the event was presented by Qmadix, with Whitening Lightning.

The event started early but that didn't stop the Hollywood celebrities from coming out. I dropped by the all day event and had the pleasure of meeting Carolyn Hennessy ("True Blood"), J Grace (singer opening up for Boyz II Men); Eva La Rue ("CSI: Miami"); Jason Ritter ("Parenthood"); Jamar Rogers ("The Voice" - semi-finalist); Melissa Peterman ("Baby Daddy"); Nicholas Guest ("Sons of Anarchy" - FX); RJ Mitte ("Breaking Bad"); LisaRaye ("Single Ladies" - VH1); Fiona Gubelmann ("Wilfred" - FX), and OKera Banks (VH1 Stylist).

"'Single ladies' is on Monday nights on VH1. We're in Atlanta shooting there," said LisaRaye on the red carpet at the Primetime Emmy Style Lounge and Party event. Her show "Single Ladies" is on its third season. When asked about that success and what she think it's due to she said, "We all are no better than the other. We love to show women it's ok to be smart." When asked about winning an Emmy she said, "You feel a power off that (when someone wins the Emmy), anyone that wins deserves a pat on the back."

Fiona, when talking about Emmy winners this year said, "I hope they ("Wilfred") get nominated and win, but I'm rooting for Jason Ritter of ‘Parenthood'!"

My interview with VH1 stylist OKera Banks (Mary J Blide, LisaRaye and Bill Bellamy) was interesting - being that I pride myself on not wearing any name brands and for having my own style - she had some interesting views on styling people.

"One thing I like to do is get to know you period," OKera pointed out to me. "We go from there and we enhance. I believe in being comfortably free...look perfect in the skin that you're in."

Before I left I could tell it was another fabulous event by Doris Bergman: the food - specially the crab cakes - was superb, the staff - so sweet, and the host Doris, as always, the bell of the ball. Gifts were provided by Rana, SimulTalk, Terox, Dermastart, Hoodswagaa, Mon Atelier, Total Healthy Lifestyle, Twisted Silver, NitroCream, Baron Hats, Executive Clothing, Nu-4U, Spongeables, Ollin Arm Candy, Bon-Bon, Whirl, Lusciouss, Honest Tea, Model in the Bottle, Michael Marcus Cosmetics, Roadkill Rance, Spontungous, Radar Watches and Chocolate Shop.

Learn more about Doris Bergman's events and her Public Relations services at www.GermanPR.com.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.  NEWS FLASH: Meet EURweb.com publisher Lee Bailey, Praise 98FM's Lady Charmaine (also program director), and Pierre Neilly (Booswet Records) at the DJ Roc (KJLH) hosted "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records Saturday, October 20, 2012. The conference is sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com and Praise 98FM. Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA, the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com) 

October 5, 2012

VanessaBellCalloway2.jpgVanessa Bell Calloway is making big moves in television and film, to guest star on NBC and Showtime series
By Eunice Moseley

"I'm going to come in and guest star as Tyler's mom," said busy actress Vanessa Bell Calloway (Crimson Tide, Lakeview Terrace) about her upcoming role in the NBC series "Go On" starring Matthew Perry ("Friends"), John Cho ("Star Trek") and Tyler James Williams ("Everybody Hates Chris"). "We start tapping in October."

Tyler plays Owens who, after a family tragedy, joins a grief counseling support group where Ryan (Perry) is a member and helps to draw him out of his shell. "Go On" is a comedy where Perry plays a head-strong sportscaster (Perry) dealing with the loss of his wife. The series airs on Tuesdays at 9/8c on NBC.

"When they write somebody like a mother of a kid in a series that's a regular...you don't know...," Calloway said about recurring roles. "When you come if you don't handle your business they can write you out...tell the story line through other characters."

Well, Vanessa must have handled her busy because not only has she been asked back, but she will also be guest starring on the new Showtime series, "Shameless," starring William H. Macy.

"Every year it's highs and lows. Some years' projects are spacey...and it looks like you're not working," Vanessa informed me. "I've been working a lot!"

Also a dancer Calloway explains that she also co-stars in the Russ Parr film The Under Shepherd, starring Isaiah Washington, Malinda Williams, Clifton Powell and Elise Neal, which was filmed four years ago and just now being released. She also appears in The Last Fall, a HBO Best Feature Film Award winning movie starring Lance Gross, Nicole Beharie and Obba Babatunde' - a coming of age sports drama. Vanessa can also be seen in the feature film The Obama Effect. The Obama Effect also includes veteran actor Glynn Turman, Charles S. Dutton, Katt Williams and boxing great Zab Judah.

For more information on the NAACP Image Award nominee, Vanessa Bell Calloway, log onto www.VanessaBellCalloway.com.  

The King's Men Tour, a powerful male testimony of what God can do through song
thekingsmentour_kirk_donald_israel_marvin.jpgI attended the much talked about "The King's Men" Tour with Kirk Franklin, Marvin Sapp, Israel Houghton and Donnie McClurkin and I witnessed four powerful testimonies from men not afraid to show their love of God. The result was a massive movement in song.

Woven into the outstanding performances of Israel Houghton, Marvin Sapp and Donnie McClurkin you will find the masterful Kirk Franklin keeping the flow by using the audience as his choir, the largest choir probably in the world. - they even sang on key. With that, and Kirk's dance moves (I saw Michael Jackson, James Brown, Prince and The Time moves), all I could do was shake my head and reach for a tissue. It seemed at times even Kirk, Donnie, Israel and Marvin broke down in tears from the power and love the audience gave - a full house audience too.

Loved the spoken word and sometimes rap style that Kirk brought to the tour. Even Marvin did a youth oriented number that fit right in with the back-up singers dance moves - who I might add can really dance. The female back-up singers can really sing, and I mean they "sang" good!

The lighting used also made a powerful statement for "The King's Men" Tour, which kicked off in Phoenix, AZ in mid-September and ends October 20, 2012 in Atlanta. On October 9th the tour arrives in Cleveland, OH; Oct. 10th in Chicago, Ill; Oct. 12th in Detroit; MI, Oct. 14th in Brooklyn, NY, and Oct. 20th in Atlanta, GA.

For more updated information on The King's Men Tour with Kirk Franklin, Marvin Sapp, Israel Houghton and Donnie McClurkin visit www.facebook.com/pages/the-kings-men-tour.  

Jazz vocalist Gregory Porter puts the cool back into Jazz at The Mint
porter_gregory2.jpgI witnessed the devotion that a fan can give an artist they love. In going to review the performance of Grammy Award nominated Jazz vocalist Gregory Porter at The Mint in Los Angeles I saw first-hand what the love of music brings out in people. Not only did the attendees to his show stand in line for 1 ½ hours (early) waiting for the doors to open, but patiently waited inside the club for another hour. When Gregory Porter opened up his month to sing the audience seemed to suddenly come alive.

As he talked us through his songs telling the history behind them, where he was personally at the time the song was created, it helped to give us our own mental projection of his repertoire. Porter took the audience into his world so they could understand his music and they understood clearly, because not only did they dance to his music but they sang along as well.

Gregory Porter's band was also a thing of perfection for my ears, especially the horn player who gave 110% - he had me sweating and I didn't blow a note. Also a stage actor, Porter has performed in "It Ain't Nothin' But the Blues," the Doo Wop musical "Avenue X" and a one-man show "Nat King Cole and Me." "It Ain't Nothin' But the Blues" went on to earn a Tony Award nomination.

Porter's debut album was in 2010 with "Water" (Motema Music), which earned him the Grammy Award nomination. His current album on the same label is titled "Be Good." Gregory sang from both albums at The Mint show to an ‘over' capacity audience.

He combined his church experiences as a youth with his personal love for the blues and he mixes it together to offer a Jazz vocal style like no other artist that's currently out. This was certainly a show I can say every music lover, not just Jazz lovers, will enjoy.

For more information on Jazz vocalist Gregory Porter log onto www.GregoryPorter.com.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.  NEWS FLASH: Meet EURweb.com publisher Lee Bailey, Praise 98FM's Lady Charmaine (also program director), and Pierre Neilly (Booswet Records) at the DJ Roc (KJLH) hosted "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records Saturday, October 20, 2012. The conference is sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com  nd Praise 98FM (www.Praise98fm.com). Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA, the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com.) 

October 12, 2012

here_comes_the_boom_kevinjames_scene.jpgColumbia Picture's Here Comes The Boom, an inspiring tale of triumph, stars Kevin James, Salma Hayek and Henry Winkler
By Eunice Moseley

"It's about overcoming," said Kevin James about the Columbia Pictures' release of Here Comes The Boom, which he stars in, as well as co-wrote and co-produced. "I really believe we can become stuck in our lives."

Here Comes The Boom, which arrives in theaters October 12, 2012, is an inspiring comedic/romantic tale of triumph, triumph over what others say you can't do but have a passion for. Kevin James (Mall Cop, Zoo Keeper) stars as Scott Voss, a former college wrestler now a biology teacher in a failing high school. He finds himself standing up for the job of the music teacher played by Henry Winkler ("Happy Days," "Royal Pain"). Everyone thinks Scott has gone crazy when he decides to raise the money needed to keep the music teacher's job by fighting in Mixed Martial Arts (MAA) competitions - with a surprising end.

"It was really fun, funny and relaxing, but at the same time too, it very seriously makes sure it has a message," said Academy Award nominated actress Salma Hayek (Savages, Puss in Boots), who also stars in the film, about her experiences on set. "What I love, as a mother, it's hard to find a film that the (whole) family wants to see. This film has something for everyone. It's about the community. We complain and look to government, but what can we do... what you do ‘is' important."

Salma is so right, Here Comes The Boom has the comedy for all ages, the high school scenes for teens; the mixed martial arts for the men (or sports loving women); a wide range of inspiring music for the music lovers, and the romance between the characters of Kevin and Salma for the sentimental adult viewers like me.
Kevin really seemed to display real skills in wrestling, that's how good his acting is in this film. I walked away seeing him - as an actor - in a "whole" new light.

"Kevin is made out of rubber...so athletic...you wouldn't think so. He's a tough guy I didn't pull him apart," Hayek laughed while describing her physical scenes with him. "I was not going to do any damage...He did his own stunts and he did good."

Salma's character, Bella, was the only one in his corner in the beginning when everyone thought he lost his mind with the plan to save "music," but in the end they were all believers.

"If anyone could do that in real life, he (Kevin) could," Salma pointed out.

"We did that (the build-up) by design," Kevin said of the progression on the MMA fights in the film. "The fights got bigger and bigger overall. He overcame. Good over evil."

A Hey Eddie/Broken Road/Happy Madison production, Here Comes The Boom was directed by Frank Coraci, written by James and Allan Loeb, and produced by Kevin and Todd Garner. Executive producers are Adam Sandler, Jack Giarraputo, Jeff Sussman and Marty P. Ewing. The Rated PG film arrives in theaters October 12, 2012.

For the movie trailer or more on Here Comes The Boom, starring Kevin James, Salma Hayek and Henry Winkler, log onto www.Boom-Movie.com.  

The soulful Gospel vocalist Deanna Ransom is back with a new album release, ‘Never Say Never...Again.'
DeannaRansom.jpgI was totally impressed with the vocals of Gospel artist Deanna Ransom on her newest album release "Never Say Never...Again" (NuVybe Records). Reminiscent to me of Faith Evans with a touch of Jazz influence, Deanna Ransom offers an excellent Praise and Worship project with production by Grammy Award winning producer Herb Middleton. The 13 selections on the CD offer a range that showcases the style and power of her voice.

"It's a take from my very first album ‘Never Say Never,'" said Deanna Ransom about the concept for the project. "I reunited with the producer on that project. Right before Herb and I reconnected the Lord was talking to me about restoration (of relationships). The enemy puts in wedges."

The result of the reunion is a powerful and inspirational piece. My favorite cuts on the album include "On Our Side," which brought tears to my eyes - a lovely love song; "Hallelujah," has an Island/Caribbean feel to it; "Never Say Never," a powerful Praise and Worship selection; "I Am Healed," a great testimony, and "Rise Sistah," featuring Melba Moore and J. Wright Middleton, for its spoken word and inspiration anthem theme.

Ransom is a winner of the 2011 Rhythm of Gospel Award for "Song of the Year" for "Mercy and Kindness" off of a previous album release and the 2010 Black Essence Award for "Female Gospel Artist." In addition, she was the 2010 Holy Hip-Hop Rhythm & Praise nominee for "Album of the Year," "Artist of the Year" and "Song of the Year" for "I Hear You."

"It's the season of major change," Deanna points out. "People need to connect with my heart - with me. (The album) that's just me, I love all different types of music...I use for God. We have to believe in the Word, He is going to work it out for His good."

Also on "Never Say Never...Again" is John "The Rap-tist" Gallagher featured on the "God of Promise" and "It's Working" selections. For more information on Deanna Ransom and her newest album release, "Never Say Never...Again" log onto www.DeannaRanson.com.

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.  NEWS FLASH: Meet EURweb.com publisher Lee Bailey, Praise 98FM's Lady Charmaine (also program director), Pierre Neilly (Booswet Records), and Trey Haley director and co-owner of Tri Destined Films at the DJ Roc (KJLH) hosted "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records Saturday, October 20, 2012. The conference is sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com  and Praise 98FM. Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA, the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com)  

October 19, 2012

donald-lawrence_jacket.jpgGrammy Award winning Donald Lawrence on new single, ‘Released,' off the ‘Bill Winston Presents Living Word: Released' project
By Eunice Moseley

"This is my church," said Multi-Stellar and Grammy Award winning Donald Lawrence about his guest appearance on the first single, "Released," off his church's latest album release, "Bill Winston Presents Living Word: Released." "It's a song I wrote some time ago. I tried to put it on two projects... it was meant for me to give it to the church."

Lawrence's mega-church in Chicago is the Living Word Christian Center lead by Dr. Bill Winston, known for being an inspiring and motivating speaker.

"I've been a member since 2005," said Donald, also co-host of "How Sweet the Sound" national choir competition. "Pastor Winston is a brilliant teacher, I go for the teaching. He has a deep revelation of the scripture."

The first single "Released," is climbing the charts fast and leaves all inspired who lesson. Aside from "Released," the Living Word project offers another Lawrence song "Give," as well as "Favor Ain't Fair," and "Awesome Wonder" sung by Kim Stratton; "Be Still" and "Sacrifice of Praise" sung by Ed Tucker; "Church Medley" sung by Walt Whitman, and "Prophetic Word," a spoken word selection by the pastor.

Born in Tuskegee, Alabama, Winston - a former award winning U.S. Air Force fighter pilot - founded Living Word Christian Center, a multi-cultural, non-denominational church, in 1985. Today it has over 20,000 members. Dr. Bill Winston is also founder of the Tuskegee Christian Center, the Bible Training Center, the School of Ministry and Mission, the Living Word Christian Academy, The Faith Ministry Alliance and the Joseph Business School. His ministry is internationally distributed via radio, television, the Internet and through crusades. Pastor Winston is also an author of numerous books that include "The Law of Confession," "Transform Your Thinking," and "Training for Reigning."

"The pastor speaks in a place that I'm at," Donald Lawrence points out. "I always leave with something I've never had before. When you understand how to speak the code (of the Bible) God will give personal revelation to you. The Bible says one thing and it speaks to people in different ways."

With the "Bill Winston Presents Living Word: Released" project you get many different styles/sounds of Gospel that include R&B, Jazz and Praise & Worship.
You can log onto www.BillWinston.org for more on the project and the mega-church pastor, and for more information on Donald Lawrence log onto www.DonaldLawrence.com.  

Jazz legend Ramsey Lewis' band arrives in New Jersey November 9 - 11, 2012 at the Exit 0 International Jazz Festival
Ramsey-Lewis-chair.jpgThe legendary Jazz pianist Ramsey Lewis brings his band to Cape May, New Jersey November 9 - 11, 2012 at the Exit 0 International Jazz Festival. Lewis is promoting his newest album release "Ramsey...Taking Another Look". With 50 years in the business and 80 albums to his credit the three-time Grammy Award winner has an honorary Doctorate from Loyola University in Chicago.

"The stage show is a result of the album actually," Ramsey Lewis said when ask what we can expect on his shows, that ends at the festival in November. "Someone said you are a three (man band) what about a quintet. So I invited two more people."

Lewis' additional members bring the band a more contemporary sound which can be found on the "Ramsey...Taking Another Look" project.

"I don't think about it," Ramsey said when questioned about being on tour at the age of 77. "Life is good. The body is like anything else it slows when you get older, if you fight it you feel terrible. I have some young fellows (in the band), there is Joshua on bass, Henry on guitar, and Charles on drums."

The Chicago resident said that after the New Jersey shows it will be the last performance dates of the year for him.
"Taking a year off," Ramsey informed me.

Don't miss a chance to see the legend in action November 9 - 11, 2012 at the Exit 0 International Jazz Festival. For those aspiring musicians Lewis' advice is, "Build a sound foundation. Learn your craft...whatever instrument you play and that includes voice. Study the history. Do you know the heroes? Who started it, how it evolved? Do the homework and that might mean taking lessons. Sometimes you have to play for free to be heard."

By 1966 Ramsey Lewis was one of the most successful Jazz pianists in the country. He is most notable for "The In Crowd," "Hang on Sloopy," and "Wade in the Water." In 2005 he founded the Ramsey Lewis Foundation which connects at risk children to the world of music.

For more on the Exit 0 International Jazz Festival featuring the Ramsey Lewis quintet log onto www.Exit0JazzFest.com.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.  EVENT: Meet EURweb.com publisher Lee Bailey, Praise 98FM's Lady Charmaine (also program director, www.Praise98fm.com), Pierre Neilly (Boosweet Records, www.Boosweet.com), and Trey Haley director and co-owner of Tri Destined Films (www.TriDestined.com) at the "Uplifting Minds II" entertainment conference, presented by Boosweet Records Saturday, October 20, 2012. The conference is sponsored in part by www.EURweb.com and Praise 98FM. Held at the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood, CA, the one-day ULMII conference offers three intense seminars, an ‘established artist showcase,' and a national talent competition showcase - admission is free! www.UpliftingMinds2.com)

October 26, 2012

skyfall-naomie-harris.jpgSkyfall's surprising twists hold you spellbound, arrives in theaters November 9, 2012
By Eunice Moseley

The MGM/Columbia Pictures/Sony Picture Entertainment release of Skyfall, the 23rd James Bond aka 007 franchise has surprising twists that hold you spellbound for the whole historical two hours and 23 minutes. Skyfall, produced by Eon Productions, stars Daniel Craig who returns as 007 (James Bond); Judi Dench as M (Mother) - head of MI6; Ben Whishaw as Q, Javier Bardem as Raoul Silva (the villain); Helen McCrory as Clair Dowar; Ralph Fiennes as Gareth Mallory, head of Intelligence and Security; Berenice Marlohe as Severine, and Naomie Harris as Eve (James Bond Girl).

"It's been Halle, Grace Jones and now me," said Naomie Harris about being an the third ever African-American in the role of ‘the' James Bond Girl in Skyfall. "I feel amazing - really, really fantastic. I was in a theater, Frankenstein play, and the people casting for Bond were there, saw me.... I auditioned and three auditions later... I think they made my character unique, strong, independent, and very capable. I hope the audience watches her and be proud to be a woman."

My favorite number is three I tell Naomie and surprisingly it's her favorite number too - for the same reason. Skyfall arrives at theatres November 9, 2012 and is about Bond saving MI6 (and Mother) when it comes under attack by a former MI6 colleague, Raoul Silva (Bardem). It is Eve's (Harris) job to have Bonds back and she does this - successfully and unsuccessfully - but with a bit of humor.

"It's British as well," Naomie said about the humor part of the film, especially in her role. "I think it's important. Its classic in James Bond films, you have to raise eye brows and I love to make people smile."

There it is again, another thing we have in common; maybe I would make a good James Bond Girl! Harris, with her lovely British accent, is from London and has starred in such projects as The Pirates of the Caribbean, The First Grader and DVD films Ninja Assassin and Explicit Ills.

"I had to do a lot of stunts," she told me when asked about the action-moves she makes in the role as the Bond Girl. "I had a lot of preparation for the role...two months of driving, combat, the gun range, sharp shooting... lots of gun work. I found it very difficult in the beginning - I'm very lazy, but you get into it... it becomes fun - and it's great to have a trainer to get you out of bed."

The Rated PG-13 IMAX Experience film is the longest running film of all time at two hours and 23 minutes, but the surprises and twist of the plot will keep you spellbound. Directed by Sam Mendes and written by Neal Purvis, Robert Wade and John Logan, Skyfall also stars Albert Finney as Kincade, Ola Rapace as Patrice and Rory Kinnear as Bill Tanner.

You can log onto www.Skayfall-Movie.com for more information or to see the movie's trailer.

Navid Negahban plays a villain in the Showtime Emmy winning drama 'Homeland,' airs Sundays at 10 p.m.
homeland_NavidNegahban_as_AbuNazir_center.jpg"He is a human being," said Navid Negahban about his character Abu Nazir, the CIA's public enemy #1, in the Showtime Emmy and Golden Globe Award winning drama "Homeland," which also stars Claire Danes (CIA analyst Carrie Mathison) and Damian Lewis (U.S. Marine Sergeant Nicholas Brody). "He is standing up - right or wrong - I cannot judge that. As a character he believes he is right."

"Homeland," which airs on Sundays at 10:00 p.m., is reportedly already picked-up for a third season. The second season premiered on September 30th with Navid's character, Abu - the high ranking member of Al Qaeda - suspected by Mathison of turning U.S. Marine Brody against America while he is held captive as a prisoner of war.

"When you are playing a villain, you're not a villain, you're a character that thinks you're right when you do something....you find the hero in the character," Negahban explained to me about how he can play villains so convincingly. "When you find a love in what you're doing, that gives you a clean slate...a blank canvas you can do what you want."

Navid is a television, film and stage actor who has powerful roles in such projects as The Stoning of Soraya M., Brothers (starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Tobey Maguire); Powder Blue (starring Jessica Biel and Forest Whitaker), and Charlie Wilson's War (starring Tom Hanks, Julie Roberts and Amy Adams).

Negahban, who was born in Iran, is most noted for his role in the Fox final season of "24," where he played Jamot, an Islamic Republic of Kamistan delegate and confident to the president of IRK. He has also appeared on "CSI: Miami," "Lost," and "Law & Order."

For more information on Showtime's "Homeland," which is based on the Israeli series "Hatufim (Prisoners of War)," log onto www.sho.com/sho/homeland/home.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.) 

November 2, 2012

denzel-washington-flight.jpgDenzel Washington learns to be free in Paramount's Flight, arrives in theaters November 2, 2012
By Eunice Moseley


Paramount's Flight takes a look into life in the air as Academy Award winning Denzel Washington (Training Day) learns to finally be free of his addictions as pilot Whip Whitaker in the action-packed dramatic-thriller. Flight arrives in theaters November 2, 2012 and stars Washington, John Goodman ("Community"), Tamara Tunie ("Law and Order: SVU"), Don Cheadle (Ocean's Thirteen), Garcelle Beauvais (Crash), Bruce Greenwood (iRobot), Nadine Velazquez (Charlie's Angels), Kelly Reilly ("Above Suspicion") and Melissa Leo (The Fighter).

Written by John Gatins (Coach Carter) and directed by Robert Zemeckis (The Polar Express) Flight provides some award winning scenes, acting and script lines to make it a possible franchise. The film offers a realistic look into what the life of a commercial pilot or ‘functioning' addict might be like.

Whitaker, a former Navy pilot, has a mundane life filled with flights, women, alcohol and drugs (to keep him up). That is until a near plane crash, of which Whip becomes the hero, then later the target of investigation when three alcohol bottles are found on the plane when none of the passengers had a chance to drink and only two in the crew tested positive for alcohol consumption - Whittaker and a stewardess, Katerina Marquez (Velazquez), who died in the crash.

The thriller offers comic relief throughout and the "pusher man," played by John Goodman, is totally hilarious. The audience will be cheering for Whip and then get deadly silent when Flight's surprising ending reminds you that addiction is no joke.

Denzel Washington gives a stellar performance as a "functioning" addict who believes he is in control. You will also get to see television commentator Piers Morgan make a cameo appearance.

Rated R (for nudity) Flight's trailer and more information can be found by logging onto www.Paramount.com/flight/.  

The smooth vocals of Jonathan McReynolds breath ‘Life Music' into Contemporary Gospel
jonathanmcreynolds_lifemusic.jpgLight Records' recording artist/songwriter Jonathan McReynolds' smooth vocals breath life into Contemporary Gospel music with his debut release "Life Music" (Tehillah Music/Light Records). His sound is a mixture of R&B/Pop with Jazz influences.

"I have been writing since high school...but I just started writing ‘life music' in college," said the passionate young artist about the album. "I was beginning with an EP. I did everything myself...album cover. One of my friends was a manager when I was a kid. He said, ‘I want to help.' It was him and another young guy, Walter Thomas. It was old school and new school."

Jonathan's ‘life music' was eventually heard by Bishop Morton at Tehillah Music Group, an imprint of Light Records, who loved what he was offering. "Life Music" debuted at #3 on Billboard Gospel Charts indicating what a jewel project it is.

"I found favor with them," McReynolds said. "Good luck is favor. We understand our blessings and trials. I don't care about record sells I know being #3 makes the label happy, but I want to make a mark on music. Bless me with a wholesome life."

Well Jonathan has blessed us all with "Life Music." My favorite cuts on the album include "Lovin' Me," a sweet heartfelt song of love; "No Longer," an R&B/Pop flavored selection with a twist of Jazz influence; "Smile," featuring Ashley Washington, and "Glory Up," for its Hip-Hop flavor.

"Life Music" current single at radio is "I Love You." The catchy song has already reached Billboard's Top 20 Gospel Singles Chart.
For more on the "Life Music" project log onto www.JonathanMcreynolds.com.

Mint Condition mixes their branding with contemporary sounds creating an explosive new album
MintCondition2012.jpgI interviewed Mint Condition when their newest project "Music @ the Speed of Life" was first released, but I never had a chance to review the project until now. Just from the single "Believe in Us" I could tell I was in for a treat. I was right Mint Condition mixes their branding sound with contemporary flavor to create an explosive new album, "Music @ The Speed of Life."

This is their eighth recording project and I was told that this album is the first one that all members agreed on every song used for the project. The music video for the current single "Believe in Us" is also as uplifting as the sentimental single.

Most noted for their hits "Pretty Brown Eyes" and "What Kind of Man Would I Be," Mint Conditions' new project is on the Shanachie Entertainment imprint. My favorite selections on the "Music @ The Speed of Life" project include the single "Believe in Us," for its traditional Mint Condition branding sound with a twist of Urban flavor; "Blessed," another Mint Condition flavored cut sure to be a hit; "Slo Woman," for its Caribbean sound; "Girl of My Life," a hot Pop flavored song about love, featuring DJ Jazzy Jeff; "Completely," an explosive jam, and "649/Changes," featuring rapper Brother Ali, for its M-Factory horn support by Eric Leeds.

To hear more from the album or learn more about Mint Condition log onto www.MintConditionMusic.com.

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.)  

November 9, 2012

Terrence_J_Photo.jpgTerrence J ‘wish list' continues with his move from BET to E! News
By Eunice Moseley


Terrence J (Jenkins) was once a homeless college graduate going-for-broke when he auditioned and was hired to host BET's "106 & Park," but on November 12, 2012 he completes another item on his ‘wish list' with his move to "E! News." Jenkins' will be co-hosting with "E! News' Veteran Giuliana Rancic.

"I actually wrote down how and what I wanted to accomplish," said Terrence J about his career. "I was homeless at 23 when I auditioned for ‘106 & Park.' I never got what I wanted but... it's full of accomplishments. Every day is a step towards (what I want)..."

Terrence J is also an actor whose credits are already impressive with co-starring roles in the Steve Harvey film Think Like a Man, in Burlesque and the T.D. Jakes movie Sparkle. The North Carolina native says that the "E! News" assignment is the pentacle of his successes thus far. He credits his academic achievements in preparing him for the worldwide exposure he received via his co-hosting gig at BET on "106 & Park."

"That family connection, that means so much to me, it fuels me," he said when I told him how proud I was of his achievements. "I try to stay humble and not get into trouble. You build...every time you get experiences, you get better."

The actor/television co-host said he intends to be the best co-host on "E! News" he can be while also having fun. Episodes will include interviews with comedian/actor Kevin Hart and Chris Brown on his new foundation Symphonic Love.

"E! News," a division of the E! Network, debuted in 1991 and provides breaking celebrity news, film and music reviews, and Hollywood gossip. The electronic entertainment magazine is edited by Ryan Seacrest (its' former host) and Giuliana, its' current host - the face of "E! News" - since 2002. There are at least 12 correspondents and Jason Kennedy has also been Rancic's co-host this year.
"E! News" airs weekends at 7 p.m. (ET) and encores at 11:30 p.m. (ET). For more information on "E! News" log onto their website at www.eonline.com/shows.

The 2012 Hollywood Black Film Festival premieres the Tri Destined Studio film Note to Self
NotetoSelf_premiere_oct25_2012_Eva_Christian_Brely.jpgThe 2012 Hollywood Black Film Festival (HBFF) was recently held with an opening night that included the premiere of the Tri Destined Studio film Note to Self. Aside from the film's screening, the HBFF also offered panel discussions and tons of networking opportunities.

The premiere of Note to Self - which stars Brian McKnight, Christian Keys ("Let's Stay Together"), LeToya Luckett (Preacher's Kid), Eva Marcille ("America's Top Model"), Brely Evans (Sparkles), Valarie Pettiford (Jumping the Broom), Jason Weaver (Drumline), Clifton Powell (Ray) and Richard T. Jones (Why Did I Get Married) - was star studded red carpeted event with just the cast, but others came out in support as well, such as comedienne/actress Annie McKnight (The Soloist), Yara Shahidi ("The First Family") and actor Wesley Jonathan ("The Soul Man").

Directed by Trey Haley, Note to Self had the audience laughing and cheering because of its great script and stellar acting. Produced by ND Brown, Eric Tomosunas, Veronica Nichols, and Keith Neal, and executive produced by Christina Keyes and Brett Dismuke, Note to Self is currently on DVD.
Founded in 1999 the Hollywood Black Film Festival aims to enhance the careers of emerging and established North American filmmakers through public exhibition, competition programs and industry panels. Learn more information by logging onto www.HBFF.org.

The 15th Annual First Ladies High Tea brings Hollywood out with Mary Mary, Cedric, and Yolanda Adams participating
FirstLadiesHighTea_Oct13_2012_YolandaAdams.jpgBeing witness to the many first ladies of the church at the 15th Annual First Ladies High Tea, held recently at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, inspired me in my role a woman. Hearing the stories and challenges of the first ladies of the church and those that witness all they do, I am sure, inspired all attending, which included Cedric the Entertainer who opened the event, Yolanda Adams who inspired us with a fashion show of her new clothing line, and Mary Mary who inspired us with their voices.

"I've been in the ministry for 40 years," said Rev. Beverly Crawford - who co-hosted, as well as served as one of the honored first ladies - about the duties of the first lady of the church. "When you are called God gives you the grace to do it Yolanda Adams added, "I think the biggest challenge for the first lady is time management. If you think about it they have to do the same thing on Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday as the pastors do, then they also have children (to care for)."

The Yolanda Adams Fashion show took me to a Paris runway. The styles, material and moves of the models were worthy, or surpassed, the high-fashion runway shows I have covered so far. I would pay admission to just see that fashion show again, that's how good it was.

It was great to get started with funny man and actor Cedric the Entertainment ("The Soul Man") who was accompanied by his adorable son and beautiful wife.

"The pastor is this kind of focal-point and she is his support," Cedric said about first ladies of the church compared to the first lady of the church in his TV Land original sitcom "The Soul Man." "That role ends up being the most powerful role - that's what we want the audience to get from the show ("The Soul Man")."

Aside from Rev. Beverly Crawford (Bible Enrichment Fellowship International), other first lady honorees include Tisa Hill (Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church), Togetta Ulmer (Faithful Central Bible Church), and Evelyn Perkins (True Friendship Baptist Church).

The First Ladies High Tea serves to inspire women to join forces and create a movement of service towards each other, the communities in which they live and to God. Past honorees include former California First Lady Maria Shriver; former LA County Supervisor Yvonne Burke; Nancy Wilson, TV One founder Cathy Hughes; actor/author Hill Harper, and the Honorable Kamala Harris, attorney general of California.

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.)  

November 16, 2012

regina-belle-whiteblouse.jpgTV One ‘Life After' continues with the spotlight on Regina Belle November 19, 2012
By Eunice Moseley


"I'm glad they did not focus entirely on my brain tumor, there's more to my life than what happened in 2009," said Grammy Award winning Regina Belle about her episode on TV One's fourth season of "Life After," which airs Monday, November 19, 2012 at 9 p.m. (ET).

The Regina Belle "Life After" episode will highlight her climb to worldwide fame singing Disney's "A Whole New World" from the Aladdin soundtrack; her opera performances; her transition from R&B to Gospel, and her triumph over a life threatening brain tumor.

"I'm proud of the episode, it's not a show of downfalls, it's a good reflection of who I am," Regina points out. "I said, ‘Wow, I didn't know I did all that!"

Belle, who is married to ex-NBA basketball star John Battle, won a Grammy in 1994 for that "A Whole New World" ballad she sang with Peabo Bryson. She has collected five Grammy Award nominations; one for the single "Make It Like It Was" in 1991. That year she also received a nomination for an American Music Award and in 1993 a nomination for an MTV Movie Award for "A Whole New World."

"There are some things in life that connects all of us," Regina Belle said in closing. "I'm an ‘overcomer', not cause of me, but because of my faith in God."

Learn more about the other TV One "Life After" shows which include highlights on Marion Jones, the Olympic medalist on the 26th, Tiffany Pollard aka New York from the VH1 "Flavor of Love" reality show on December 3rd, and Dionne Warwick, a five-time Grammy Award winner on the 10th at www.TVOne.tv.  

Disney Channel's ‘Sofia the First' movie premiere was fit for a princess, airs November 19 and 22, 2012
sofiathefirst.jpgI covered the movie premiere for the Disney Channel presentation of "Sofia the First: Once Upon a Princess," which airs on the Disney Channel November 18, 2012 and on Disney Jr. on November 22nd. The lavender carpeted event brought out the littlest of Hollywood stars you can imagine with parents in tow, such as tiny-little Isabella Cramp (ABC's "The Neighbors") and loads of adult stars with their little ones in tow, such as Lou Diamond Phillips ("Longmire") and Angela Bassett ("E.R.").

The animation made for television stars the voices of Ariel Winter (ABC's ‘Modern Family'), Sara Ramirez (ABC's ‘Grey's Anatomy") and Wayne Brady ("Let's Make A Deal"). It's about an average girl (Winter) whose life suddenly transitions when her mother (Ramirez) Queen Miranda marries a king (Travis Willingham) and she suddenly becomes a princess. What that means to Sofia is discovered in the song filled enchanting tale.

"I play Clover the bunny," Wayne Brady said of his character. "He so sweet but soon as you try to touch him there's a change...it's to mask the fact that he is a softy."
‘I play the King," Travis Willingham said, very kingly, and when I asked about his tone in the film he said, "He has a kind of kingly tone...but when he talks to his family he just rolling."

Directed by Jamie Mitchell and written by Craig Gerber "Sofia the First" also stars the voices of Darcey Byrnes as Amber; Jennifer Hales as Cinderella, Elsie Fisher as the Huntsman's daughter; Jess Harnell as Cedric; Tress MacNeille as Merryweather; Ashley Eckstein as Mia the Bluebird; Coco Grayson as Princess Hildegard; Tim Gunn as Baileywick; Harley Graham as Princess Clio; Russi Taylor as Fauna; Meghan Strange as Robin; Zach Callison as Prince James, and Barbara Dirickson as Flora.

For more information on "Sofia the First" or to see the trailer log onto www.DisneyChannel.com or www.Disney.Go.com/SogiatheFirst.  

James Balog's Chasing the Ice, a breath-taking look into global warming, in theaters November 16, 2012
jamesbalog_chasingice.jpgDiamond Docs, in association with Exposure Production presents National Geographic Photographer James Balog's documentary on his seven years of collecting ‘evidence' of global warming in "Chasing the Ice." The documentary arrives in theaters November 16, 2012.

"We never intended it to last this long. First it was three years, then five. It's on going, I just came back" Balog points out. "I want the viewers to know about the impact of climate change and to be inspired."

When asked about the dangers of such a project James said, "It absolutely took us to the edge. Some situations are not in the film. There were hidden dangers."

In "Chasing the Ice" Balog and crew cross the Arctic capturing breath-taking glacier changes, such as ancient mountains of ice disappearing. Watch as James risk his life in pursuit of the greatest story ever told, of the disappearing glaciers.

James has 40 years experience as a still photographer. He directed the time lapse and created the circumstances for the film makers. The Rated PG-13 film was directed by Jeff Orlowski and also stars Svavar Jonatansson and Adam LeWinter.

"The earth will always survive," concludes James Balog, who also published a picture book "Ice Portraits: Vanishing Glacier Ice." "We don't need to save it, the question is what will be the condition."

For more on the Diamond Doc presentation of "Chasing the Ice" log onto www.ChasingIce.com.  

A chat with the ladies of Paramount's Flight, starring Denzel Washington
Flight-tamaratunie_right.jpg"I'm hearing from so many people of the howling at the screen," said Tamara Tunie ("Law and Order: SUV") about the Paramount presentation of Flight, starring Denzel Washington. "That's the brilliant of the screenplay it draws you into it rooting for Whitaker, played by Denzel Washington, even with his faults they want him to succeed."

Denzel's character Whip Whitaker is a commercial pilot with an alcohol, women and drug problem that saves a plane of 102 people, and two crew members, crash landing a plane - while under the influence. The heroic art is lost in a sea of accusations that his ‘influence' state caused the crash. Tamara plays one of three airline stewards on the plan and the only crew survivor, aside from the co-pilot.

"I was blessed to be a part of the film and work with Denzel," said Garcelle Beauvais ("The Jamie Foxx Show"), who plays Deana the ex-wife of Washington's character Whip. "I loved the script and I knew Denzel would bring it. You don't know...where the movie is going to go."

In the end the film addresses the lost of his family (and son), because of his addiction.

"Imagine how terrified it must be involved in a plane crash," Tunie points out. "I trained with Delta Airlines they have a course for airline stewardess at a Flight Attendant School in Atlanta....that really helped. I also have a friend who is still a flight attendant that was involved in a plane crash. She said she thought, ‘Who will raise my son.'"

Tamara told me she wants the viewers to walk away from the film with a bit more respect for the jobs of the flight crew, "Realize the responsibility of the flight crew is not just about greeting you at the door and serving you ginger ale, it's about having the responsibility for souls on the plane," she said.

Beauvais, who will be co-starring with Oscar winning Jamie Foxx in the action film White House Down, said the film shows the human side of the airline crew.

"It shows you how much this addiction cost him," she said. "There was also redemption. He had a chance to redeem himself."

Flight, Rated R, is in theaters now and for more on the cast or to see the trailer log onto www.Paramount.com/Flight.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com and www.FreelanceAssociatesInc.com.)  

November 23, 2012

Rise-of-the-Guardians.jpgDreamWorks' Rise of the Guardians is a brilliant piece of work for an enchanting tale of the power of belief
By Eunice Moseley


The African-American Film Critics Association (AAFCA) held a screening of the new DreamWorks animated film Rise of the Guardians (3D), a brilliant piece of work for an enchanting tale by William Joyce. The Paramount Pictures presentation is directed by the first African-American animated film director Peter Ramsey and was released to theaters November 21, 2012. Rise of the Guardian stars the voices of Alec Baldwin, Isla Fisher, Hugh Jackman, Chris Pine and Jude Law.

The screenplay was written by Pulitzer Prize winner David Lindsay-Abaire (Rabbit Hole) and
is an epic and magical saga of six legendary characters - Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman, and Jack Frost. They come together to battle the evil boogie man named Pitch who is intent on taking away the hopes, dreams and beliefs of all the children in the world.

The film will bring laughter and cheers as you are also astounded by the animated 3D experience. Rise of the Guardians - which was recently honored with the "Hollywood Animation Award" by the Hollywood Film Awards - is produced by Christina Steinberg and Nancy Bernstein. Guillermo del Toro is executive producer.

For more on the DreamWorks Paramount Picture presentation, Rise of the Guardians, log onto www.RiseoftheGuardians.com.  

The 20th Century Fox presentation of Life of Pi is a visually intriguing fantasy adventure
life-of-pi_scene.jpg"We were very interested in taking on a story...that had a (theme) to believe in God or a belief in science," said David Magee screenwriter for the 20th Century presentation of Life of Pi (3D), now in theaters. "It's your faith that carries us through life. We want to tell it with fun and adventure... like the book power it had."

Directed by Ang Lee (Crouching Tiger), Life of Pi is based on the 2001 novel by Yann Martel about a young man (played by Suraj Sharma) and his adventures as a survivor with a small group of animals - that includes a Bengal tiger.

When discussing the amazing visual effects in the film David said, "It's amazing, we could not have made it 10 years ago. So many visuals are so grounded in the audience having to believe. The computer technology wasn't there - not 10 years ago. The story takes twists and turns towards the end. It's a mythical tale."

Life of Pi is Rated PG and also stars Irrfan Khan, Tabu, Rafe Spall and Gerard Depardieu.

The Floacist releases ‘Floetry Re: Birth' on Shanachie, a signature project featuring Raheem DeVaughn
thefloacist_thefloetry_rebirth.jpgThe brainchild of the Gold selling duo Floetry with Marsha Ambrosius, The Floacist, releases another solo project on Shanachie Entertainment titled, ‘Floetry Re: Birth." The album carries her signature spoken word and smooth vocal style, and features Grammy Award winning Raheem DeVaughn and Thandiswa Mazwai.

The project's release marks her 10th anniversary of the Floetry brand creation and six years since the release of her debut solo CD. The duo Floetry is most known for their chart topping hit "Say Yes."

"Floetry was created in a style of poetry and voice," The Floacist explains about the brand's sound. "They know Floetry...this is a different level...when you press play."

The 10 track project had me replaying "Start Again" for its Marvin Gaye flavor; "Children of the Sun" a sweet number that includes the vocals of Demi Mseleku; "Could It Be You?" a simple romantic song, and "Speechless" for its nice rhythm.

Check The Floacist out at www.TheFloacist.com or log onto www.Shanachie.com.  

GMC presents 'Christmas Angel' starring Della Reese and Tamera Mowry-Housley to air November 24 & 25, 2012 at 7 p.m. ET
dellaresse_izabelaVidovic_christmasangel.jpgDella Reese takes on the role of an angel again in the GMC presentation of "Christmas Angel" also starring Tamera Mowry-Housley (Double Wedding), Kevin Sorbo (Kull), Izabela Vidovic ("Criminal Minds") and Terri Polo (Meet the Parents). "Christmas Angel" airs on GMC November 24 and 25, 2012 at 7, 9 and 11 p.m. (ET).

"I left to make a fortune and I was very successful in the record business. That side was up but the other side was not up, people I should have trusted I found out I couldn't. I am going home because I realize the price I paid has left me vacant inside." said Emmy/Grammy Award nominated actress/singer (and ordain minister) Della Reese about her role has Elsie Waybright, a successful entertainer who returns home and his suspected by young Olivia (Vidovic) of being an angel when kids wishing for Christmas start coming true. "

The Pure Flix Entertainment production was co-produced by David A.R. White known for his inspirational - think-films. The film features holiday songs such as the one performed by award winning vocalist Mandisa titled "Somebody's Angel." The soundtrack to the movie also features Audrey Assad ("Winter Snow), Hillsong (Born is the King), Over the Rhine "Darlin' (Christmas is Coming)"), Matthew West ("Jingler Bells") and Josh Wilson ("The First Noel").

‘There is a piece of you in it," Della points out. "You'll find your piece and understand what's going on."

A legend in the entertainment business herself Reese warns about it, that, "You better respect it and yourself. Some want it so bad they will sell their soul. There is no such thing as overnight success. You got to go through stuff to get to stuff."

Written by Andrea Gyertson Nastell, directed by Brian and Herzlinger, and co-produced by Michael Scott, Russell Wolfe and Elizabeth Travis, you learn more about "Christmas Angel" at www.WatchGMCTV.com.

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.)   

Novemner 30, 2012

intimateapparel_cast.jpgStellar performances in The Pasadena Playhouse presentation of Intimate Apparel, runs until December 2, 2012

Sheldon Epps directs The Pasadena Playhouse presentation of Intimate Apparel, written by Pulitzer Prize winning Lynn Nottage (Ruined), the stage-play stars Vanessa Williams, Dawn Lewis, Angel Reda, Adams J. Smith and David St. Louis. All gave stellar performances in the production that takes place in 1905 in New York following a seamstress' success as a lingerie sewer and her love journey of discovery.

Image Award winning Vanessa Williams ("Soul Food," Imagine That) is the seamstress Esther who falls in love with George, played by David St. Louis (Ruined), a Caribbean suitor who sends her romantic letters. Esther lives at a boarding home with Mrs. Dickson, played by Grammy Award winning Dawnn Lewis (Let It Shine), a somewhat over protective landlord. Her favorite rich socialite client is Mrs. Van Buren played by Angel Reda ("Wicked") and her best friend is a lady-of-the-night named Mayme played by Kristy Johnson ("House"). A forbidden ‘affectionate' relationship blossoms between her and a Hasidic garment shopkeeper named Mr. Marks, played by Emmy Award winning Adam J. Smith ("Without a Trace") - owner of a local shop that has the finest satin and silk materials to be found.

The Pasadena Playhouse presentation of Intimate Apparel, a winner of the 2004 New York Drama Critics Circle Award, will run until December 2, 2012 in Pasadena, California. You can get more information at www.pasadenaplayhouse.org.  

Pixar Animation Studios' Brave, the #1 animated film this year, is now on DVD and Blu-ray
brave-poster.jpgThe 13th animated feature film of Pixar Animation Studios, Brave, is now on DVD and Blu-Ray. Distributed by Walt Disney Pictures Brave is directed by Mark Andrews and Brenda Chapman, and is produced by Katherine Sarafian, of Pixar Animation Studios.

"It began when the director made a pitch," said Katherine Sarafian about the Rated PG animated film. "It's the first we made that has a female at the center."

The film is about a Scottish, strong-willed, red headed princess named Merinda - voiced by Kelly MacDonald who defies custom - and her parents King Fergus (Billy Connolly) and Queen Elinor (Emma Thompson) - on an arranged marriage by holding out for love.

This animated fantasy adventure is of the best quality at Pixar and in its first weekend grossed, in the U.S., over $66,320,000. As of November 18, 2012 Brave has grossed $236, 619,922.

"We did it with a new software. We wanted to pursue a new look," said Katherine when questioned about the different quality/look of this film. "It takes place in Scotland. In Scotland...it has these landscapes... you always have something growing on something in Scotland. There is lots of history...we had to make it all look real. I've never been to Scotland before they filmed and it's a different beast, and has transformed through the years...and the weather changes constantly."

Katherine Sarafian, while at Pixar, has worked on such projects as Lifted, The Incredibles, and Monster, Inc. 3D. Brave also stars the voice of Julie Waters who plays the witch.

For more information on Brave, now on DVD and Blu-ray, log onto www.Disney.G.com.

‘Music Majors: The Rance Allen Group Documentary' two-disc CD/DVD set is now in stores
rance-allen-group_performing.jpg"After you been singing for as long as we have you want to, at some point, document to see your start and your progression," said Bishop Rance Allen about his group's new CD/DVD release that includes a new album "Amazing Grace" (Tyscot Music) and the "Music Majors: The Rance Allen Group Documentary."

The Grammy Award nominated singer is joined in the group by his brothers Tom (Thomas) on drums and Steve on guitar. The documentary covers the 40 years the group has been in the music business. They formed in 1969 and are credited for being one of the most influential Contemporary Gospel groups of all time.

The "Music Majors..." documentary is the untold story of the group who recently won a Stellar Award as "Best Traditional Group/Duo of the Year" and "Quartet of the Year" for their last album "The Live Experience."

"We‘re from Detroit...so we heard Motown music," Allen said about their venture into Contemporary Gospel. "In viewing your life you have to say, ‘That's God.' That's a lot of what we seen while in the struggle."

He goes on to explain the reaction of their secular sound mixed with the Gospel, "People who knew us in the church thought they had to save us."

We know now they didn't need saving. Their way was a new era of communicating the Gospel of God and they did it so well that most of the noted Contemporary Gospel artists today credit The Rance Allen Group as a big influence.

"When you are the - somewhat - originator, and I don't want to take all the credit, but when you are quoted as being an originator it doesn't mean instant success. It means that other people take it, use it and be recognized for it."

The Bishop went on to name a few Gospel artists that have credited his group as an influence: John P. Kee, Smokie Norful, Kirk Franklin, Yolanda Adams and Donnie McClurkin.

"God is allowing me to move in my later years," Rance points out. "I'm so busy girl, I have no complaints.

The Rance Allen Group is planning "The Impressions Tour" in 2013, but for now they are promoting their CD/DVD set of "Amazing Grace" and "Music Majors: The Rance Allen Documentary." For more information on the new Rance Allen Group project log onto www.Tyscot.com.  

(Columnist: Eunice Moseley is a PR/media & promotions consultant, and as well as a syndicated entertainment columnist for over 20 years - www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com.) 

 

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