Entries in Jennifer Hudson (20)


Alicia Keys, Jennifer Hudson and More Perform at Inauguration Balls

Michael Kovac/WireImage(WASHINGTON) -- Alicia Keys, Jennifer Hudson and several other artists capped off Inauguration Day for President Obama Monday night with performances at the two official balls at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

At the Commander-in-Chief’s Ball, Keys revised the lyrics to her hit "Girl on Fire" to honor the president.

She sang, "He's the president and he's on fire...Obama's on fire.  Obama's on fire."

Hudson performed the Al Green classic "Let's Stay Together" as the president and first lady Michelle Obama danced.

Vice President Joe Biden and his wife Jill danced to Jamie Foxx's rendition of Ray Charles' "I Can’t Stop Loving You."

At the Inaugural Ball, staunch Obama supporter Stevie Wonder entertained the crowd with his hits "Sir Duke" and "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours."  Fun. performed “Some Nights” and “We Are Young.”

This was the scheduled lineup for the two official balls:

Commander-in-Chief’s Ball
Alicia Keys
Brad Paisley
Jamie Foxx
Jennifer Hudson
Marc Anthony

Inaugural Ball (Halls A, B & C)
Alicia Keys
Brad Paisley
Glee cast
John Legend
Stevie Wonder

Inaugural Ball (Halls D & E)
Alicia Keys
Far East Movement
Glee cast
Katy Perry
Smokey Robinson

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Sundance Filled with Celebrity Sightings

(PARK CITY, Utah) -- By day, A-listers were all over the place. Alicia Keys and Jennifer Hudson posed for a portrait at the Village at the Lift on Friday, where celebs checked out the latest Ugg boots and chilled in the Samsung Galaxy lounge. (Keys and Hudson are working too — their movie, which Hudson stars in and Keys produced, The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete, premiered here Thursday.)

Keys also dropped into the Keratin Complex pop up salon on Main Street to check out their hair styling goods. Shailene Woodley, star of one of the festival’s most buzzed about movies, The Spectacular Now, joined her there. Over at Oakley’s Learn to Ride lounge, Adrian Grenier spent the day snowboarding. Octavia Spencer and Ben Savage stopped by to try on sunglasses, and Lil Jon came through for tequila shots.

By night, it was a different story. The hottest ticket in town was Dave Grohl’s concert at Park City Live, where the Foo Fighters frontman performed with such luminaries as Stevie Nicks and Rick Springfield. Good luck getting in, though. The same was true at the Tao pop up down Main Street, where people begged to be let into the Park City outpost of the Las Vegas nightclub. Saturday night is historically bigger and better than the first evening of the weekend — let’s see if that holds true this year.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Jessica Simpson Teams with Jennifer Hudson in New Weight Watchers Ad

Youtube(NEW YORK) -- Jessica Simpson’s latest Weight Watchers commercial teams her up with another famous singer who shed a miraculous amount of pounds on the program: Jennifer Hudson.

Simpson and Hudson tout the benefits of Weight Watchers in the latest “Expect Amazing” ad, posted on YouTube Wednesday and debuting on TV Thursday. “I naturally became a healthier me,” says Hudson, who went from a size 16 to a size 6 in 2010, when she was Weight Watchers’ celebrity spokesperson. Simpson, who took on that role in May and lost more than 50 pounds, says, “I amazed myself.”

With another baby on the way, Simpson is no longer following the Weight Watchers program. On Christmas Day, the singer-turned-fashion designer revealed that she’s expecting her second child. She’s since showed off her burgeoning baby bump on Twitter.


Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Jennifer Hudson's Former Brother-in-Law Gets Life Sentences 

Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- A judge in Chicago has sentenced Jennifer Hudson's former brother-in-law, William Balfour, to three consecutive life sentences for the 2008 murders of Jennifer's mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew, WLS in Chicago is reporting.

Balfour was convicted in May of slaying the three family members in a jealous rage, believing that his estranged wife, Julia Hudson, was dating another man.

The judge, earlier on Tuesday, denied Balfour’s motion for a new trial.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Jennifer Hudson, Beyonce on Essence's "35 Under 35 Young, Black & Amazing" List

John Shearer/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Jennifer Hudson, Beyonce, and Willow Smith are just a handful of the young women who are featured as part of Essence magazine's 35 Under 35: Young, Black & Amazing Women list.  Monica, Brandy and Alicia Keys are on the list, too, alongside stand-out athletes, writers, actors, entrepreneurs and activists, too.

Jennifer is noted for her strength, particularly in the wake of the murders of her mother, brother and nephew in 2008.  Essence applauds Willow for celebrating her own uniqueness, and not living in the shadows of her celebrity parents, Will and Jada Smith.  The magazine highlights Keyshia, writing that she never let "a rocky upbringing" in Oakland, Calif., stop her from making a success of her life.

Monica is also considered "Young, Black & Amazing" material.  She's noted for always keeping it real, "whether it’s in her lyrics, her reality show or in an interview about her love life."  Essence also includes Kierra Sheard on its list, highlighting the gospel singer's youth organization, Bold! Right! Life!

Esperanza Spalding gets high marks from Essence for making her name in the jazz world, while Elle Varner is applauded not only for her singing skills but her musicianship, too.  She plays the piano, flute and guitar, according to Essence.

Brandy is noted for her nearly 20-year career.  Essence gives props to Beyonce for her resume, which is packed with music awards, and some film credits, too.  And Alicia Keys is celebrated for her work outside of music, including her role as an ambassador for Keep A Child Alive.  The non-profit group helps families affected by HIV/AIDS.

The 35 Under 35 honorees are featured in Essence's August issue.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Jennifer Hudson’s Advice to Weight Watchers Successor Jessica Simpson

ABC/Donna Svennevik(NEW YORK) -- Jennifer Hudson’s got some advice for her Weight Watchers successor, Jessica Simpson.

“Try not to snack with the baby,” she told ABC News Tuesday night at the New York launch of her QVC clothing line. Hudson became the diet company’s spokesperson after giving birth to her son David in 2009.

Hudson slimmed down from a size 16 to a size 6 in 2010 and continues to stick to the Weight Watchers diet.

“My baby likes making cakes,” she said, “and when you’re making a cake you always lick the stuff off your fingers. Those things, we don’t realize what we’re taking in.”

“It helps if you write it down,” Hudson advised. “Write down what you’re eating, you’ll be far more aware. And be active with the baby. Be active with them and you’ll stay in shape. There’s no workout like running around after a 2-year-old.”

Simpson signed on to be the company’s new spokesperson in May after giving birth to daughter Maxwell Drew Johnson.

“I think she will do awesome,” Hudson said. “She’s a pro. She knows what she’s doing, for sure.”

Hudson’s svelte figure inspired her to start a clothing line that enhances a woman’s curves while making her feel “comfortable and cute,” she said. Her collection of form-fitting dresses, blousy tops and maxi skirts debuts on QVC in September.

“It’s a whole new world for me, although I’ve always had a love for fashion,” she said. “It’s a tough industry.”

Hudson, who shot to fame after her stunning turn on American Idol season four, plans to return to the studio this fall. She wants to “take a lot of time” with her third studio recording and focus on songwriting, but there’s one cover that might also make an appearance on the album.

“I was actually just listening to this song called ‘Let Him Fly’ by the Dixie Chicks,” she said. “That, I really want to cover.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


William Balfour Found Guilty in Jennifer Hudson Family Murder Trial

(CHICAGO) -- A jury has found William Balfour guilty of murdering actress Jennifer Hudson's mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew in 2008.

Balfour, 30, was accused of killing the three in a jealous rage, believing that his estranged wife, Julia Hudson, Jennifer Hudson's sister, was dating another man.

The jury found Balfour guilty of all counts against him after some 18 hours of deliberations over three days.

Balfour, charged with three counts of first-degree murder and additional charges including kidnapping and burglary, pleaded not guilty. Convicted on all counts, he now faces life in prison.

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Jennifer Hudson, her fiance and her sister, Julia Hudson, entered the courtroom shortly before the verdict was to be read. The verdict came shortly after the jury told the judge that it was split, prompting the judge to tell jury members to resume deliberations in hopes of reaching an agreement.

The trial began on April 23 in Chicago. Prosecutors called more than 80 witnesses over two weeks, and the defense rested its case after 30 minutes, calling only two witnesses to the stand. Balfour did not testify.

Prosecutors alleged that Balfour fatally shot Hudson's mother Darnell Donerson, 57, in her living room, and then shot Hudson's brother Jason Hudson, 29, as he lay in bed. He then kidnapped Hudson's nephew Julian King, who was 7. Investigators believe the boy was shot in the head as he lay behind the front seat of an SUV.

Prosecuting State Attorney Veryl Gambino said Balfour was in a state of rage over Julia Hudson's dating another man, and said Balfour had issued several threats against her and her family. Balfour allegedly was enraged Oct. 24, 2008, after he saw balloons another man sent to Julia Hudson and punched them.

The killings happened in the family home in Chicago's tough Englewood neighborhood, where Jennifer Hudson grew up.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Jury Deliberations Underway in Hudson Family Murder Trial

Debra L Rothenberg/FilmMagic(CHICAGO) -- The jury in the Chicago trial of the man charged with murdering three of Jennifer Hudson's family members began deliberations Wednesday.

The case was handed to them about 4:47 p.m. local time, and they deliberated until about 9:30 p.m.  Their deliberations will resume at 9:30 a.m. local time Thursday.

Earlier Wednesday, the prosecution said during its closing arguments that Hudson's former brother-in-law, William Balfour, was "fueled by his obsession, his jealousy, his determination to catch his wife, Julia Hudson, with another man" when he allegedly murdered the Oscar-winner's mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew in 2008.

The defense argued that the prosecution failed to prove that Balfour was responsible for the murders.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Jennifer Hudson Family Murders: 911 Call Released

Debra L Rothenberg/FilmMagic(CHICAGO) -- The harrowing 911 call that was placed by Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson's sister when she discovered her mother's dead body has been released by the judge overseeing the trial of the man accused of the brutal murder of the actress' mother, brother and 7-year-old nephew.

On October 24, 2008 Julia Hudson had just discovered their mother's body on the floor of her home when she ran outside in a panic and called 911. The call was released on Monday by the judge overseeing the trial of 30-year-old William Balfour, who is accused of the triple murder, at the request of the media.

"Somebody's killed my mother! Somebody's killed my mother! Please!" Julia Hudson can be heard screaming at her family's home on Chicago's South Side.

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"Please help me! Please … please send an ambulance, yes! Please!" Hudson screams when the dispatcher asks if an ambulance is needed.

William Balfour, the ex-husband of Julia Hudson, is accused of the murder of Darnell Donerson, 57, her brother, Jason Hudson, 29, and 7-year-old Julian King. Prosecutors have said that Balfour killed the three in a jealous rage, believing that his ex-wife was dating another man.

Judge Charles Burns said there's no evidence Balfour's due process rights would be harmed by releasing the tapes to the media. Balfour has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder charges in the killings.

On the anguished call, Julia Hudson's grief and desperation can be heard as she answers the dispatcher's questions about whether her mother had fallen.

"No! I just got home from work and there's a bullet … there's a bullet hole in our front door," she breathlessly says. "I don't know, she's on the floor, I see blood coming from her head … I didn't touch her, I just ran out of the house."

The audio was played in a Chicago court last week when Julia Hudson testified about that horrifying discovery. At the moment when she made the call she still didn't realize that their brother Jason was also dead inside the house. Later in the call, she senses that he and her 7-year old son may also be in danger.

"Where's my brother at? What happened?" she says. "I don't know where Julian is or nothing!"

It isn't until police ask Hudson her name, which then made it clear that these deaths would become not just another sad episode in one of Chicago's most violent neighborhoods, but a high-profile case garnering national attention.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Jennifer Hudson Gives Tearful Testimony at Murder Trial

John Shearer/WireImage(CHICAGO) -- Jennifer Hudson took the stand for nearly an hour Monday afternoon as the first witness in the Chicago trial of the man charged with killing her mother, brother and nephew.

"None of us wanted her to marry William," she said of her sister's marriage to defendant William Balfour, her voice cracking with emotion. "We did not like how he treated her."

Crying on the stand at one point, Hudson, who has vowed to attend every day of the trial, paused for a few seconds to compose herself. The award-winning actress and singer choked up when asked about her relationship with her mother, saying, "I slept with my mom until I was 16 years old." Hudson also testified she would sign blank checks and leave them for her mother, so that she could pay the household bills. 

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Hudson, 30, described the last time she saw her mother, a few days before the killings in the family home. She said she remembered it vividly because it was one of the few times that the entire family came over to share a meal. "Thank God I got that," she testified.

Hudson's voice cracked with emotion almost every time she spoke about her mother. At one point a deputy brought her a box of tissues and a cup of water.

Hudson testified that she knew something was wrong on the day of the killings in 2008 because her mother didn't text her that morning as she usually did by 9 a.m.

Despite her powerhouse of a singing voice, Hudson had to be instructed more than once to speak louder on the witness stand, even with a microphone in front of her.

Hudson said she learned of the killings from her sister, Julia, and flew back to Chicago to identify the bodies of her mother and brother at the medical examiner's office. She did the same thing a few days later for her 7 year-old nephew, for whom she said she had often babysat.

On cross examination, the defense asked Hudson about brother Jason Hudson's being shot in the past. The defense's opening statement painted a portrait of Jason, 29, as a drug dealer who "brought danger" to himself and his family.

After testifying for about 50 minutes, Hudson, who used a private entrance to gain access to court, sat in the gallery with fiance David Otunga and a bodyguard, in addition to two deputies who guarded the bench on which she sat.

Showing little emotion, Julia Hudson testified later that she knew Balfour was a drug dealer. "I eventually fell for him, after him being so persistent," she said of their relationship. They were married Dec. 30, 2006. She didn't invite or tell her mother, brother Jason or sister Jennifer about the wedding.

She testified that their relationship took a tumble after she returned from a trip to Japan with Jennifer promoting Dreamgirls in February 2007. She said she realized in the year after Japan that Balfour was having relationships with three other women. "It was not a secret, they would call, I would answer," she said.

She said her mother and Balfour "didn't get along."

"He was jealous," she said. "Wouldn't like anybody to do anything. Everything was a problem."

The jealousy apparently extended to her son from a previous relationship. "Julian couldn't kiss me. 'Don't kiss my wife,'" she said Balfour would tell her then-six-year-old son, Julian.

Balfour's trial opened Monday morning with State's Attorney Veryl Gambino recounting the defendant's alleged threat to his estranged wife, Julia Hudson, in the weeks preceding the killings: "If you leave me, I'll kill you. I'll kill your family first and then I'll kill you."

Gambino went on to describe Balfour as being enraged that Julia was dating another man and said he had issued several threats against her and her family, despite his being involved with two other women. Balfour allegedly went into a rage Oct. 24, 2008, after seeing balloons sent to Julia Hudson by another man and punched them.

After fatally shooting the actress' mother, Darnell Donerson, 57, in her living room, prosecutors allege, he shot Hudson's brother, Jason, as he lay in bed, before kidnapping her nephew, Julian. Investigators believe the boy was shot in the head as he lay behind the front seat.

Balfour has been charged with three counts of first-degree murder. His trial is expected to last a month.  

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio