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Wednesday
Mar202019

Tyler Perry helps family of murdered Georgia single mom

ABC/Eric McCandless(LOS ANGELES) -- The family of a woman who was murdered Saturday in the Atlanta suburb of Alpharetta, Georgia is received a surprise helping hand from film and TV mogul Tyler Perry.

Forty-five-year-old Tynesha Evans, a single mother of three daughters, was shot and killed March 16 at a local Wells Fargo bank, allegedly by an ex boyfriend.  Evans had fallen on hard times recently and went to the bank because her ex, who's been arrested for her murder, had reportedly offered to help her cover her rent when the family was threatened with eviction.

According to Atlanta's WSB TV, Perry gave the family a call after hearing about the story.

Evans' daughter, Audrey Turner, said she almost didn't answer the phone when it rang.  " [T]he person on the other end said, 'This is Tyler,'" Turner told WSB.  "I said, 'Who?' He said, 'This is Tyler.' I said, 'Tyler who?' and he said, 'Tyler Perry.' At that point, I just broke down crying."

Perry reportedly offered to fly Evans' body back to their home state of Wisconsin, where her funeral will be held, and also offered to pay daughter Sharadiant Turner's tuition at Atlanta's Spelman College, where she's a freshman. 

"This is amazing," said Sharadiant of Perry's generosity.  "We can't thank him enough."

A GoFundMe page has also been established to help the family.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Wednesday
Mar202019

First full-length 'Toy Story 4' trailer brings back the old gang and some new friends

Pixar/Disney(NEW YORK) -- The first full-length trailer for Disney-Pixar's Toy Story 4, released on Tuesday, reunites Woody and his old flame Bo Peep, and introduces a new friend, named Forky.

Set to the Beach Boys' "God Only Knows," the clip introduces Forky, voiced by Tony Hale.  Forky is a spork that the toys' new owner -- Bonnie, the little girl introduced in Toy Story 3 -- has made out of a spork, a pipe cleaner, popsicle sticks  and a pair of googly eyes.

When Forky questions his value as a toy and runs away, it's Woody and Buzz Lightyear -- voiced once again by Tom Hanks and Tim Allen, respectively -- to the rescue. While trying to convince Forky to come back home, Woody meets Bo Peep -- voiced by Annie Potts -- who tries to convince him there's a better life for toys than just being a child's property. That leaves Woody facing his own identity crisis.

Toy Story 4 opens nationwide June 21. Disney is the parent company Pixar and ABC News.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday
Mar192019

'The Kids are Alright' dad Michael Cudlitz lightens up from 'The Walking Dead'; remembers Luke Perry

ABC(NEW YORK) -- Fans of The Walking Dead loved Michael Cudlitz as Abraham Ford, the tough-talking talking former soldier who met his untimely end at the end of Negan's barbed-wire bat, Lucille.  But his current gig is much more, shall we say, family friendly.

Cudlitz stars in ABC's The Kids are Alright, a '70s-set sitcom in which he plays a stern yet loving dad raising eight sons.

"I know...what I physically bring to television," the six-foot-one,  imposing actor smiles, "And...it's not necessarily warm and cuddly -- people hire me to kill things, and I get that," he says, laughing. "But I wanted to lean into...something that was lighter."

And The Kids has heart, Cudlitz says.

"It's just this love that is pulling this family through -- [the family] is definitely ruled with 'a semi-metallic fist' -- but because it has to be [or] the kids will win," he laughs.

Cudlitz has had a long career both in front of and behind the camera: he put himself through college as a set builder, and once served as the construction foreman on Beverly Hills, 90210 -- on which he eventually appeared as an actor.  

While Cudlitz admits the early 90210 scripts didn't show much promise, he adds, "When the show really hit its stride...for a young, young audience that was the only place that they could...get a lot of that information...about dealing with, you know, suicide, rape...mental health issues...the crazy stuff that kids were, and are, actually dealing with at that age."

Cudlitz also saluted late 90210 star Luke Perry, who died earlier this month following a stroke.

"That dude that touched a lot of lives," he says. "The world is a dimmer place without him."

The Kids are Alright airs tonight at 8:30 on ABC.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday
Mar192019

Wendy Williams reveals she's been living in a sober house

Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Wendy Williams made a stunning and emotional admission on her show on Tuesday morning: The talk show host revealed she's been staying at a sober house.

"I have been living in a sober house...You know I've had a struggle with cocaine in the past," she told her audience, her voice shaking with emotion. "I never went to a place to get treatment. I don’t know how, except God was sitting on my shoulder, and I just stopped. But there are people in your family -- it might be you -- who are struggling and I wanted to know more of the story."

Williams explained that she goes to the sober facility every night after work, where she is among her "brothers and sisters caught up in their addiction and looking for help."

"They don't know I'm Wendy. They don't care I'm Wendy," she said. "It's been really interesting, this ride."

Wendy also revealed that her husband and son were the only ones who knew that she's been seeking treatment.

"Only Kevin and Kevin knows about this. Not my parents, nobody," she said. "I am driven by my 24-hour sober coach back to a home that I live in...with a bunch of smelly boys who have become my family."

Wendy went on to explain her sober house routine. "Doors locked by 10 p.m. lights out by 10 p.m., so I go to my room and stare at the ceiling and fall asleep to come here and see you."

"So that is my truth," she added.

The news comes a week after Williams launched a substance abuse hotline through her Hunter Foundation.

As previously reported, on March 4, Williams returned from an extended hiatus of her show amid rumors of personal problems. She attributed her time off to a fractured shoulder and "complications regarding her Graves' Disease."

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday
Mar192019

Into the Spider-diverse: Oscar-winning 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse' available for purchase today

Credit: Sony Pictures Animation. © 2018 CTMG, Inc.(LOS ANGELES) -- Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's Oscar-winning animated film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is finally out on 4K, Blu-ray and DVD.

Featuring a very diverse cast, Spider-Verse stars the voices of Nicolas Cage, Mahershala Ali, Shameik Moore, Jake Johnson, Chris Pine, Lily Tomlin, Hailee Steinfeld, and Zoe Kravitz.

The movie centers on a device that tears the fabric of reality, uniting different versions -- and even different species -- of the web-slinging hero from various dimensions. They all come together in the Brooklyn, New York home of an African-American high schooler named Miles Morales.

With the Peter Parker we know killed in the line of duty, Morales takes up the Spider-Man mantle. Helping him -- sort of -- is Peter B. Parker, an adult, divorced, paunchier version of Peter Parker -- the one we're familiar with -- who comes from another dimension.

Another character is Spider-Gwen, who's from a universe where Peter Parker's girlfriend Gwen Stacy is the one who gets the super powers, thanks to that fateful radioactive spider bite.

While promoting the movie, Shameik Moore spoke about the effect that the character of Miles Morales would have on kids.

"I saw some earlier version of Miles Morales and...I saw myself in the mirror," he told reporters. "In that moment, I was like, 'I didn't know that there's a black Spider-Man,' number one and number two...it just looked like they took a photo of me and animated it...So I do realize the importance of it and...'with great power comes great responsibility.'"

Jake Johnson, who voices Peter B. Parker, agreed.

"We both love this idea of inclusion -- it's time for anybody to wear the mask," he told reporters. "And I'm really glad it's not just Peter and Miles because...my daughters would say things like, 'I want to be Spider-Woman.'" And I'm like, 'We don't have a term for that.' [But] the term is now going to be 'Spider Gwen.'"

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday
Mar192019

First 'Rocketman' footage unveiled at legendary club that hosted Elton John’s US concert debut

Paramount Pictures(LOS ANGELES) -- Monday night at L.A's legendary Troubadour Club -- the same venue where Elton John was propelled to U.S. stardom 50 years ago -- star Taron Egerton helped unveil 20 minutes of footage from the Elton biopic Rocketman.

The footage was screened for various reporters, industry insiders and celebrities, including Darren Criss and Sir Patrick Stewart. Elton’s husband David Furnish was also on hand to present the first look.

According to USA Today, the clip featured a stylized interpretation of Elton’s first overseas show at the Troubadour, with Egerton as Elton performing “Crocodile Rock” and, at one point, floating over the crowd as he sings.

The footage included other glimpses of both Elton’s rise to success and his self-destruction, along with shots of his manager John Reid, played by Richard Madden, and collaborator Bernie Taupin, played by Jamie Bell.

Rocketman hits theaters May 31.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday
Mar192019

Mandy Moore gets her Hollywood Walk of Fame star next week

Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBC(LOS ANGELES) -- This Is Us star Mandy Moore will officially get her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame next week. 

Moore will be inducted on March 25 in the TV category, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce announced Monday.

The 34-year-old actress and singer was announced as an honoree last June, along with Oscar winners Robert De Niro, Lupita Nyong'o and Anne Hathaway, among others.

Guest speakers have yet to be announced. The event will be live-streamed exclusively on the official Hollywood Walk of Fame website.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday
Mar192019

'Riverdale' will address Luke Perry's death, says executive producer 

Marc Hom/The CW (LOS ANGELES) -- Two weeks after Luke Perry's untimely death from a stroke at age 52, Riverdale's executive producer says the actor's death will be addressed on the show.  They're just not yet quite certain how. 

At an Academy of Television Arts & Sciences event for the CW's Chilling Adventures of Sabrina in Los Angeles on Sunday, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa told Entertainment Tonight, "You know, honestly, we are I think all still in shock and are all still processing and grieving.  We know that we have to address it in some way, but we’re giving ourselves a little bit of time and space before we figure out the best way to honor him."

Perry played Archie's father, Fred Andrews, on Riverdale.

"Luke was, is, and will always be a big part of Riverdale," says Aguirre-Sacasa. "We’re kind of a family and when a loss like this happens, you carry it always. It changes and it hopefully becomes a little less painful as time goes by, but you’re changed."

"When I was with the crew, I said, 'It will never be the same,' and that’s true because Luke was such a part of the show," he continued. “There are still a few more episodes that have Luke in them, so we’re glad to share those.”

Adds Aguirre-Sacasa, "His spirit -- which was so generous and wise and vivacious -- we hope will infuse every episode, so in my mind, every episode for the rest of time on Riverdale will have a bit of Luke in it."

Riverdale airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on the CW.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Monday
Mar182019

Taraji P. Henson says the 'Empire' cast is "strong" amid the Jussie Smollett drama

ABC/Craig Sjodin(LOS ANGELES) -- Taraji P. Henson is staying busy and keeping it positive.


In an interview with Extra, Henson briefly spoke about her Empire co-star Jussie Smollett, who last week pleaded not guilty to charges that he filed a false police report by claiming to be the victim of a homophobic and racist attack which he allegedly arranged himself.

"You have to stay strong, stay positive, full of hope," Henson told the entertainment news site, before adding that her Empire cast is also "strong."

In addition to her FOX series, Henson is also gearing up for her latest film, The Best of Enemies, starring Sam Rockwell. It follows Henson as Ann Atwater, a civil rights activist in Durham, North Carolina who faces off against the local leader of the KKK, C. P. Ellis, over desegregation.

Henson reveals that after her upcoming project, she's planning to take a break.

"I’m taking the summer off," she said. "I'm just going to take this summer and be normal, take a vacation — a couple, a few — I have a girlfriends' trip coming up, then me and my fiancé have to do something."

As far as her upcoming nuptials with fiance Kelvin Hayden, Henson says she needs "a year" to really plan it all out.

"The dress should come first; I think I know who will make it," she said, joking that she doesn't have a dress or a date set yet.

Henson film The Best of Enemies hits theaters April 5.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
Monday
Mar182019

After severing ties with Lori Loughlin, Hallmark tells fans her 'Heart' will go on

ABC/Eric McCandless(LOS ANGELES) -- After Lori Loughlin was arrested in the wake of the Operation Varsity Blues college cheating scandal, Hallmark Channel, which airs her show When Calls The Heart, severed ties with her.  But while Loughlin may have been canceled, the show is not.

Sunday's episode of Heart was pre-empted, while the network figures out how to continue the Western drama without Loughlin's character, Abigail.  But Hallmark Channel took to Instagram to assure fans of the popular series -- who call themselves Hearties -- that the show will go on..

"#Hearties, we assure you that Hallmark Channel has no plans to cancel When Calls the Heart," the message read. "Hope Valley has many more stories left to share and we will let you know the details soon."

Judging from reaction to the post, the fanbase was split.

"Lori was the heart of the show!" one protested. Another griped, "We all make mistakes. God gave to the world the ability for our mistakes to be forgiven. Praying that Hallmark extends God's forgiveness to Laurie [sic]."

But another said of Loughlin's alleged involvement in the college admissions scandal, "People need to look up the definition of 'mistake.' This was a blatant disregard for the law."

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