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Another star reporter, this time at the New Yorker, out after ‘improper sexual conduct’

The New Yorker has fired its Washington correspondent, Ryan Lizza, over what the magazine called “improper sexual conduct.”

>> Read more trending news

New Yorker officials said in a statement that they recently learned of the “improper” conduct and made the decision to let Lizza go.

“We have reviewed the matter and, as a result, have severed ties with Lizza,” according to the magazine’s statement.

It’s unclear what the “improper sexual conduct” refers to, but Lizza issued a statement denying any improprieties.

“I am dismayed that The New Yorker has decided to characterize a respectful relationship with a woman I dated as somehow inappropriate. The New Yorker was unable to cite any company policy that was violated,” Lizza said.

Lizza, who has worked at the magazine for the past decade, apologized to his family and colleagues for any embarrassment, but said The New Yorker was wrong.

“This decision, which was made hastily and without a full investigation of the relevant facts, was a terrible mistake,” Lizza said.

The New Yorker hasn’t revealed any details of the complaint against Lizza and apparently has no plans to do so.

“Due to a request for privacy, we are not commenting further,” according to the magazine’s statement.

>> Related: Charlie Rose fired from CBS amid sexual harassment allegations; PBS cuts ties with newsman

Lizza’s termination follows other recent high-profile firings over allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct, including former “Today” show anchor Matt Lauer, former CBS “This Morning” anchor Charlie Rose and New York Times reporter Glenn Thrush.

Mary J. Blige Nominated for 2 Golden Globes

Mary J. is going her thing!  

The singer/actress is nominated for two Golden Globes.

She’s nominated for doing what we’ve known her for for so long, music.  She gets recognition in the Best Original Song-Motion Picture category for the movie Mudbound.  The song is “Mighty River” with music by Raphael Saadiq and lyrics by Mary J. Blige, Saadiq and, Taura Stinson.  You probably recognize Saadiq for being a member of the group Tony! Toni! Tone’!

According to Netflix, Mudbound is described as:

Two Mississippi families -- one black, one white -- confront the brutal realities of prejudice, farming and friendship in a divided World War II era.

Mary J. Blige is also nominated for her acting chops!  She gets a nod for Best Supporting Actress, Motion Picture for Mudbound as well.  Mary J. plays Florence Jackson in the Netflix original based in a racially seismic time.  Jackson is the matriarch of the family and of course, we know she’s the woman holding it together for everyone else.  

Blige isn’t the only singer nominated for a Golden Globe.  Mariah Carey is also up for an award in one of the same categories as the What’s The 411? artist.  Carey is up for a Best Original Song-Motion Picture award for the movie, The Star.   The music and lyrics for the song of the same name are by Mariah and Marc Shaiman.  

The Star is an animated film about the first Christmas.   The Star features voice work from Oprah Winfrey, Tyler Perry, and Anthony Anderson just to name a few.

Have you seen either movie?  If so, what did you think?  

Make sure you comment on this post on Facebook



Chante’ Moore Accused of Inflating Album Sales

Chante Moore is accused of some shady stuff!

According to BlackAmericaWeb she allegedly accepted money that was fraudulently obtained.  The story also says the 50-year-old used the money to inflate sales for her latest album,  The Rise of the Phoenix.  

If you were listening to the  Tom Joyner Morning Show Monday you heard Tom and Sybil talking about this story.

The R&B Diva’s LA star allegedly knew about the scam which apparently included a salon in Georgia, money to pay for gifts, plane tickets, a house and a lot more.  Two men are said to be at the heart of it all.  The men say they lost $3.6 million.  

The article says:

Since they believe their money was used to “directly used to finance the launching of Moore’s latest resurgence effort with her new album, including all advertising and marketing efforts put forth therewith,” they believe they are entitled to any profits from the record.

Moore is apparently denying the claims and wants the case thrown out.  The judge has not ruled.

She was married to Kadeem Hardison before marrying Kenny Lattimore.  Moore has two children.

Family, friends celebrate Kirk Douglas’s 101st year

Kirk Douglas had a lot of help to blow out his many birthday candles over the weekend.

Deadline Hollywood reported that the Hollywood legend rang in 101 years on Saturday at his Beverly Hills home and was showered with tributes from his famous family. 

>> Read more trending news

The senior Douglas’ 17-year-old grandson, Dylan Douglas, posted a photo on an Instagram of himself planting a peck on his grandfather’s face.

“Happy birthday 101 years and still sexy love you with all my heart Pappy,” Dylan captioned the photo.

Dylan’s mother, actress Catherine Zeta-Jones, offered her own well wishes for her father-in-law. She shared a photo on Instagram of Douglas and herself with the caption, “101 today!!!! My darling Pappy on my knee. Happy Birthday to my wonderful, inspirational and loving father in law, Kirk. Love you with all my heart.”

Zeta-Jones’ posts came in lieu of her presence at Douglas’s lunchtime birthday bash, but she definitely didn’t miss out on singing her father-in-law a personalized rendition of “Happy Birthday” through FaceTime, according to The Daily Mail

In addition to his 73-year-old son, Michael Douglas, — who flew in and out of the celebration to rejoin his son Cameron at the birth of his granddaughter — Kirk was joined in celebration by his wife of 63 years, Anne, 98, nieces and nephews and Hollywood bigwigs. 

Douglas’ family presented him with a bright, sunflower-patterned cake with his age written in frosting, and his cardiologist allowed the “Spartacus” star to enjoy his yearly, physician-permitted shot of vodka, according to Deadline

Born on Dec. 9, 1916, Kirk Douglas has enjoyed a storied career spanning several decades. The veteran was known for playing the title character from “Ulysses” (1954), starring in “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” (1954) and his famed role as “Spartacus” (1960). 

Considering the 101-year-old actor was up and dancing just last year, he’s still got plenty of youth left inside.

Patti Labelle appears to “out” Luther Vandross and Marsha Warfield “outs” herself

Last week this video (see below) started to make it’s rounds on the internet.  It’s Patti LaBelle on Andy Cohen’s late night show Watch What Happens Live and she seems to reveal why legendary singer Luther Vandross never came out.

Basically she says Vandross didn’t come out as homosexual because he wanted to stay loyal to his mother and to his female fans.    But is the notion that Luther was gay something new?

Well Marsha Warfield relates to this.  Marsha Warfield?  Yes, you remember her.  Among other things, she played the security guard on the TV show Night Court.  The show was on from 1984-1992.  

Warfield took to Facebook to say she dealt with the same issue with her mother.  However, she says she never hid who she was.

When I told my mother I was gay, she said she knew, and had known all my life.Then, she asked me not to come out publicly while she was alive.I agreed, even though the request and her admission were hurtful in ways I couldn't put my finger on then, and probably haven't completely worked through now.But, everybody who knew me, knew I was gay.The people I didn't tell knew anyway, and tacitly agreed to pretend that the unacknowledged had been acknowledged and accepted.Like I'm sure is true for millions of other glass door closeted people.When I went to bars, which was frequently, I never tried to hide who I was.So, it was an open secret.Had I never come out publicly, many, many people would have known.It would not then have ever really been a betrayal of trust to "spill the beans."Because it wasn't a secret, it was an uncomfortably kept promise to my mother.But, it was also not the only reason I didn't come out swinging when she passed.The fear of the judgment of strangers and their holier-than-thou "shoulds" was at least as big of a burden to bear.But the "shoulds" that "should" matter don't.Nobody should have to hide their sexuality.No parent should ask their child to.There should be no shame in being gay.

And, I ain't mad at Patti LaBelle.

I'm mad at the people who are.

She then posted this saying the black community is to blame for people not revealing their sexuality. 

Did you know Luther Vandross was gay?  What about Marsha Warfield?

Leave your comments for us in this post on Facebook.

Photos: Golden Globes TV nominees

Ellen DeGeneres’ California home threatened by wildfires

The Thomas Fire is impacting thousands of California residents, including talk show host Ellen DeGeneres.

>> Read more trending news

DeGeneres tweeted Sunday night that her Santa Barbara home is in danger from the raging wildfire.

“We just had to evacuate our pets,” she wrote. “I’m praying for everyone in our community and thankful to all the incredible firefighters.”

The Thomas Fire has burned through at least 200,000 acres through Sunday evening and also interrupted transmission lines in the Santa Barbara area, leaving more than 85,000 customers without power.

>> PHOTOS: California wildfires burn thousands of acres

The fire began seven days ago and has forced more than 88,000 people to evacuate their homes, KCBS reported.

More than 4,000 firefighters have been deployed to the firefight.

Christopher Plummer gets Golden Globe nomination for role taken over from Kevin Spacey

The Golden Globes nominations were announced Monday, and among the surprise shut outs and front runners, Christopher Plummer’s nomination is gaining attention.

>> Read more trending news

The actor quickly replaced Kevin Spacey in the role of J. Paul Getty in the Ridley Scott film “All the Money in the World.” Having reshot Spacey’s parts in the film in the span of some weeks, Plummer has been nominated for best supporting actor.

Related: 75th Golden Globe Awards nominees announced

The decision by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which holds the award show, could be the fastest turnaround from performance to nomination, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Related: Kevin Spacey scenes cut from ‘All the Money in the World’ movie, recast with Christopher Plummer

Plummer replaced Spacey in the movie, which also stars Michelle Williams and Mark Wahlberg, after Spacey faced multiple accusations of sexual misconduct and was cut from the film. The mystery-crime film follows the kidnapping of John Paul Getty III. 

Twitter reaction to the nomination was mixed.

EW.com reported that Plummer’s nomination indicates that the final cut of the film was done just in time for the Dec. 4 deadline to be screened by the HFPA before nominations were made.

In addition to Plummer’s nom, “All the Money in the World” has two other nominations, including best supporting actress for Williams and best director for Scott. 

The public can view the movie Dec. 25.

Superheroes stage holiday shopping spree at Target 

Christmas shoppers can usually find superheroes on toy shelves at Target. But, here’s a twist: shoppers at a Kansas City area Target discovered superheroes shopping for toys at Target.

>> Read more trending news

Iron Man, Thor, Supergirl, Snow White and Captain America were among the comic book heroes shopping for kids Sunday night at the Target in Mission, Kansas, The Kansas City Star reported.

Armed with $17,000 in donations collected by Elite Comics in Overland Park, the superheroes picked out toys that will be given to kids staying at Children's’ Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, the Star reported.

“It means a lot,” said Captain America, also known as Jerry Holtorf of Overland Park.

Holtorf’s parents battled cancer. In his trips to the hospital, he said he saw children in their own fights against the disease. He wanted to help make the kids’ Christmas a happier time.

“Cancer doesn’t discriminate in age,” Holtorf said. “What (my parents) were going through in their room, a 6- or 7-year-old was going through in the next room and it breaks your heart.”

The caped crusaders summoned a rental trailer to cart away their packages, bound for children in the hospital. And if anyone wants to join the crusade, there are still opportunities ahead.

“We’re not done,” said Elite Comics owner William Binderup, who added that he will be accepting new, unwrapped toys through Dec. 22.

Chef Mario Batali leaves 'The Chew' amid sexual harassment allegations

Chef Mario Batali is stepping down as co-host of ABC’s cooking and lifestyle show “The Chew” after being accused of sexually harassing and inappropriately touching women, USA Today reported.

>> Read more trending news

Multiple anonymous women alleged in a story by food-trade publication Eater New York that Batali had groped their breasts or buttocks, amid other allegations.

Batali apologized and pledged to try and “regain” the “respect and trust” of his fans, family and business associates.

“I apologize to the people I have mistreated and hurt,” Batali said. “Although the identities of most of the individuals mentioned in these stories have not been revealed to me, much of the behavior described does, in fact, match up with ways I have acted.

“That behavior was wrong and there are no excuses. I take full responsibility and am deeply sorry for any pain, humiliation or discomfort I have caused to my peers, employees, customers, friends and family.”

Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group — which services about two dozen restaurants owned by Batali, Joe Bastianich and others — confirmed that Batali “will step away from the company's operations,” USA Today reported.

“We have asked Mario Batali to step away from ‘The Chew’ while we review the allegations that have just recently come to our attention,” ABC said in a statement. “ABC takes matters like this very seriously as we are committed to a safe work environment. While we are unaware of any type of inappropriate behavior involving him and anyone affiliated with the show, we will swiftly address any alleged violations of our standards of conduct.”

Batali has been one of four co-anchors of “The Chew” since its inception in 2011, Variety reported. He also recently signed a deal with Food Network to produce new episodes of his cooking series “Molto Mario” for the first time since 2005. Food Network had no comment on the status of that project, Variety reported.

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