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Leslie Odom Jris opening up about his newborn son, Able Phineas, whom he welcomed alongside wife Nicolette Robinson on March 25. 

The Broadway told ABC Audio that Able is an "easy baby," but admitted that's probably because his first child, Lucille Ruby, put him and Nicolette through the ringer four years prior.

"I don't think we relaxed with Lucy for, like, two years, you know what I mean? Like, when she was asleep, we were like checking to see if she was still breathing," Leslie reminisced.

With Able, Leslie assured he and Nicolette are much "more calm and relaxed" because they've learned the ropes.

"We know that if he's in the other room, he's okay. Like, he can't roll off the bed yet," the Tony Award-winner grinned.  "Everything's more calm this time around."

"I don't mean to say that to be disparaging to our first baby, our little girl," Leslie, 39, chuckled. "We do find Abel easier... He's a good eater. Good little sleeper. He's an easy baby so far."

Speaking of eating, the Hamilton star is looking forward to celebrating Father's Day with his new family of four, and revealed, "I've been the short order cook in this house for the past year, so I want something good!"

However, Odom said he doesn't need to be spoiled: "I don't need a lot. A new book is always nice, a nice drive somewhere... a childless evening?  Maybe the grandparents taking the kids?" 

For fans who want to give Leslie a present, he encourages them to check out the song he and Nicolette wrote in partnership with Bayer Aspirin, called "Second Chance," which honors heart attack survivors and creatively uses a very special heart attack survivor’s heartbeat as a rhythm: his father-in-law’s, Stuart K. Robinson.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Walt Disney Television/Yolanda Perez

Billy Porter reflected on being marginalized by his peers in his early acting days.

Speaking with Uzo Aduba as part of Variety's Actors on Actors series, Porter recalled the production that opened his eyes that "there was nothing for us."

"It was Angels in America in 1994," the Pose star explained. "I just wept the whole time, looking at Jeffrey Wright play the character of Belize. No shade — he was fabulous. But a straight Black man... Playing the one part that I could get. Because no one respected me as an actor enough to be straight."

"I was marginalized for my queerness," lamented Porter. "So I watched this play, and it was the first time that I had ever seen a real representation of me reflected back at me. A Black queer man."

"He’s a supporting character. However, he’s the moral compass of this play. He’s not the butt of the joke. He’s not the one that’s vilified. Nobody’s beating him up," explained the Tony Award-winner.

Porter said he was in a local production of Grease at the same time, playing Teen Angel, but wore a demeaning outfit and sang a gospel-version of "Beauty School Dropout."

"I was not happy at all. It was not what I came here for at all. I did not show up in this business to be a clown," he remarked.

"I one-thousand percent know that feeling," said Aduba and referenced her classical voice training.

"Knowing where your voice naturally sits, but never getting the opportunity to ever sing, because what comes from your body, the package from which it comes, was not yet understood," she noted.

Aduba closed, "For me, the job is not to try to find a space for myself within the thing. I’m carving out my own space."

 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Photo: West2East Empire

Grammy-winning singer Ciara says she definitely has her "plans together" for this year's Father's Day, where she -- along with her three adorable children, FutureSienna and Win -- will celebrate proud papa Russell Wilson.

During an interview to promote her partnership with All Good Diapers and their initiative to donate up to 10 million diapers to babies, Ciara tells ABC Audio that she definitely felt "the pressure" to make this Sunday extra special.

"Everyone's putting the pressure on to just make this day something crazy," Ciara laughs, later noting that planning things for her husband is "sometimes... a little tricky."

"You got three kids, and you got work, and you're, like, trying to think of the best idea," she shares. "And just thinking sometimes takes time."

Thankfully, Ciara's going into Sunday well-prepared, adding that she already has her Father's Day "plans together." 

"So I feel good about that, and I can check it off of my list," Ciara says. 

"Because I will say Russ always does it really nice for me," she points out, alluding to past Mother's Days.

However, even with a highly set bar, courtesy of her generous husband, Ciara says her main goal for this national daddy appreciation day is to just make hubby Russ feel loved.

"I think it's just important for him to feel the love that he makes me feel," she says. "And he's an incredible father...and every day should be Father's Day."

"And I hope that he likes it," she adds with a smile.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Jeopardy! Productions/Sony Pictures Television

While Kent, Ohio-based graphic designer Katie Sekelsky's three-day Jeopardy! winning streak came to an end on Wednesday night's show, she's still wowing fans, thanks to an eerie prediction. On Twitter, the player shared a drawing of herself she made before her first game -- in which she pictured herself winning the exact dollar amount she ended up winning that day.

"The night before my first @Jeopardy taping, I was alone in the hotel, trying to calm down and ‘visualizing’ a win," Sekelsky explained. "I sketched myself at a podium, with a winning-type dollar amount,” she wrote. “And that winning-type dollar amount was $19,201. This is real."

Katie added, "This [amount] was not on my mind at all while wagering. I was just betting what I needed to in case Erin bet everything and got it right."

She also tagged some friends to whom she sent the drawing before the show taped, to prove she wasn't making the story up. "THERE ARE RECEIPTS" Sekelsky joked. 

Unfortunately for Katie, she couldn't divine the Final Jeopardy! question that ended her run: "A character who was going to be called Lunar Larry became him, inspired by the name of a real person." The answer was Buzz Lightyear, from Toy Story; instead Sekelsky wrote "Who is Osmosis Jones?" a reference to the 2001 animated/live-action film of the same name. 

She took the L in stride, however: Katie's Twitter profile now reads in part: "Never saw Osmosis Jones." 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Ferrer in 2008 -- Mark Davis/Getty Images

Heidi Ferrer, a 50-year-old screenwriter, sober coach and blogger, died by suicide after suffering severe so-called 'long haul' COVID-19 symptoms.

Ferrer, who penned episodes of Dawson's Creek, as well as the 2008 Paris Hilton comedy The Hottie & the Nottie, reportedly took her own life on May 26th, according to a post from her husband Nick Guthe on Ferrer's mom blog, Girl to Mom.

Guthe wrote that his wife died 13 months after she contracted the virus. He explained, "Over 13 months it took every part of her life away: Her mobility, her enjoyment of food as she had to eat a very restrictive diet, and, in the end, her ability to sleep and even to read books and enjoy them."

Guthe continued, "The excruciating physical pain and inability to sleep from the pain led Heidi to the decision she would rather leave this world on her own terms before her condition worsened more," adding, "the mental strain of Long Haul Covid sufferers is a public health crisis that must be addressed quickly."

If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide, or worried about a friend or loved one, help is available. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 [TALK] for free confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Even if it feels like it, you are not alone.

 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Marvel Studios

Elizabeth Olsen had no problem chowing down on a series of super hot wings when dishing about her Disney+ series WandaVision.

Appearing Thursday on First We Feast's Hot Ones interview series, the actress chatted about the Easter eggs featured in the Marvel series, confirming one popular fan theory that delighted host Sean Evans.

Evans asked if the house Kathryn Hahn's character, Agatha, resides in is the same one from Bewitched -- to which Olsen grinned, "It is!"

"I learn about Easter Eggs when people point them out," she continued before revealing her favorite.

"There was a wine bottle that’s poured in the first episode. The 50s episode. It’s in French, but I think it translates to something like -- House of Madness or something like that," the Wind River star added. "It’s a reference to House of M and that’s our brilliant prop guy being cute and putting in those things!"

While reflecting on her time on WandaVision, Olsen also recalled what it was like pretending to live in so many different time periods.

"It was like chaos and sometimes we had to do multiple decades in a day. So, like wigs, I’m always in a bald cap basically, wigs are constantly flying on and off," she recalled. "Kathryn Hahn and I doing vocal warm-ups trying to remember what decade we’re in. It was chaotic, but it was fun and we had a good time. It was truly joyful."

Olsen also revealed she almost quit acting before getting her big break in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, saying the 2011 thriller Silent House "was one of the worst experiences of my life."

"If that was the first movie I'd gotten, I would have gone back to theater," she disclosed. "I wouldn't have wanted to do another movie."

Marvel is owned by Disney, the parent company of ABC News.

 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



LMPC via Getty Images

A reboot of the 1972 Blaxploitation horror classic Blacula is in the works at MGM, according to Variety

The trade reports the new film is a contemporary update of the franchise, and takes place following the events of the coronavirus pandemic. Its description notes the title character, "is an ancient African prince who is cursed by Dracula after he fails to agree to end the slave trade.  He awakens after being entombed for 200 years, ready to avenge the death of his ancestors and of those responsible for robbing his people of their work, culture and heritage and appropriating it for profit."

The original film, directed by William Crain and starring William Marshall as the titular character, became one of the highest-grossing films of the year and sparked a wave of other black-themed horror films.  The hit and spawned a 1973 sequel Scream Blacula Scream.

 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Courtesy of AMC

Schitt’s Creek star Annie Murphy returns to TV Sunday, with the AMC show Kevin Can F*** Himself.

The series takes aim at the trope of the dutiful sitcom wife, while also exposing how problematic many of those shows have been over the years -- the perfect follow up to her Emmy winning turn as Alexis Rose on Schitt’s Creek.

"The character was just such a huge departure...and it proved to be very scary and very challenging," she tells ABC Audio.  "But I really wanted to kind of prove to myself that I was able to do something other than Alexis after six years."

"What I think is the most exciting part of it is that these female characters are beautifully fleshed out, but they're also deeply flawed," adds Murphy.  "That is what makes them human beings, as opposed to these like one tier squeaky clean women with a capital W."

Much like the roles the 34-year-old actress tried out for a lot early on in her career.

"There were many pilot seasons where I was getting these auditions for, like, hot girlfriend," she explains. "And I'd be like, what’s she all about.  What's her backstory?  What makes her tick?  What are her opinions?  What are her likes? And casting directors would be like? Well, she likes her boyfriend, and that would be basically it."

Part of that, Murphy admits, was her fault.  "I didn't really question anything. I would laugh along because I was told to laugh along," she says.

"It wasn't until we really started picking apart this script and seeing just how much misogyny and racism and homophobia lies beneath this laugh track that I started watching sitcoms with a very, very different lens," she continues.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



FX

FX will air a special marathon of Pose, with episodes curated by creator Ryan Murphy, starting Friday, June 18 at 7 p.m. Eastern time. 

The Pose for Pride special event will feature episodes from the recently concluded third and final season of the Emmy-winning series, as well as "special behind-the-scenes footage and vignettes" about the groundbreaking drama and its creators.

The event comes not only to celebrate the series, but also Pride Month.

The show starred Emmy, Tony, and Grammy winner Billy Porter, as well as Mj Rodriguez, Dominique Jackson, and Indya Moore. It shed new light on New York City's African-American and Latino LGBTQ drag ball culture in the '80s and '90s.

Pose featured the largest cast of trans actors in television history and the most LGBTQ+ cast and crew of any television show in history. According to the network, over Pose's three seasons, the show featured nearly 300 trans cast and crew -- everyone from executive producers to background actors and production assistants -- as well as roughly 100 LGBTQ+ characters. 

Chuck Saftler, head of Business Operations for FX Networks, ABC, and Freeform said in the announcement, "We want to take a night to showcase Pose and shine a light on its historic track record of LGBTQ+ inclusion. The final season capped off an extraordinary story and cemented Pose’s legacy as one of the most important shows ever made."

 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Wilson and Witherspoon in 2003 -- Scott Gries/Getty Images

A third Legally Blonde movie is in the works with Reese Witherspoon set to reprise her role as Elle Woods, and Luke Wilson, who played Emmett Richmond, Woods' love interest in the original film, says he's up for a reunion with his former co-star.

"Yeah. I'm always up to work with Reese again," the 49-year-old actor tells People magazine, adding, "We'll just have to see what happens.”

Wilson also admits he never misses a chance to catch the original when it's on TV.

"I'll watch it when I see it on cable, and it's on cable a lot," Wilson said.  "But just because Reese is always so funny in the movie to me. So I always watch a few things just because I like her portrayal of Elle Woods so much."

Mindy Kaling, who is on board to co-write Legally Blonde 3, told Good Morning America back in October that she had reservations at first.

"I was nervous because the movie is so iconic.  But then I thought, ‘It'd be really fun to see that character in her 40s.  What is Elle Woods dealing with as a 41-year-old woman?'" Kaling said.  "And it's been really funny to write.  And I'm working on it with my friend Dan [Goor], and I think it's going to be a great movie for Reese and people are going to love to see her in this part."

Legally Blonde was released in 2001, followed by Legally Blonde 2: Red, White, and Blonde in 2003.

 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Nickelodeon

Fans of SpongeBob Squarepants rejoice: The absorbent and yellow and porous character's best friend, Patrick Star, is getting his own show that will premiere July 9. 

Nickelodeon has released the first trailer for The Patrick Star Show, and it seems the Paramount+ series will track the affable echinoderm's entry into the world of show business. 

Bill Fagerbakke reprises his role as the voice of the titular pink starfish. The show also will feature Tom Wilson voicing Patrick's dad, Cecil Star, and Cree Summer as Patrick's oddball mom, Bunny, as well as his genius grandfather GrandPat, voiced by Dana Snyder, and Patrick's kid sister Squidina, who is played by performer Jill Talley.

Naturally, other members of the SpongeBob gang also will appear in the new series -- the second small-screen spin-off from the flagship, which was created by the late Stephen Hillenburg, who died of ALS at age 57 in 2018.

Clancy Brown, who recently appeared in the Oscar-winning Promising Young Woman, has played irascible Mr. Krabbe since the original show's launch in 1999. He tells ABC Audio that the SpongeBob franchise is a tribute to its creator.

"SpongeBob is the most amazing wave of all," the veteran character actor marvels. "Steve Hillenburg created something just completely magical and original and has lasted forever and will continue to last forever."

Brown says he's "really happy that it's getting expanded into different iterations with [the spin-off] Kamp Koral and the movie and The Patrick Show and all that stuff...You know, it's about time that that happened, and we're having a lot of fun with it."

He adds of the creative team, "So we're all keeping Steve near and dear to our hearts, and we're making these things, and we love doing it."  

 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Marvel Studios

After a recent conversation between WandaVision star Elizabeth Olsen and Big Bang Theory veteran Kaley Cuoco seemed to reveal there wasn't going to be a second season of Olsen's hit Disney+ show, that apparently may not be the case.

While Olsen answered with a flat, "No," she quickly added that she's learned to "never say never" when it comes to Marvel projects.

So will there be a sophomore season?

It seems like a strong maybe.

Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige was the featured guest at Wednesday night's virtual Paley Center Dialogue session, which was moderated by his Black Panther and Avengers series star Danai Gurira.

When asked by a fan about WandaVision's future, Feige reiterated that the events on the show will fold into the upcoming big-screen Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness.

"That's the first place where that story will continue," the producer said, before seeming to leave the hex-shaped window open for further adventures of Olsen's Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch by adding, "but there will be other places."

The sequel to Doctor Strange will hit theaters in March of 2022.

Marvel Studios is owned by Disney, the parent company of ABC News.

 

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



©1969 Paul McCartney/Photographer: Linda McCartney

New details and a new release date have been announced for the long-awaited Beatles documentary The Beatles: Get Back.

The movie, directed by Lord of the Rings filmmaker Peter Jackson, will premiere on the Disney+ channel as a three-day event, November 25, 26 and 27, and will feature more than six hours of restored, previously unseen footage.  Each episode will run about two hours.

As previously reported, the film focuses on the January 1969 recording sessions that yielded the Fab Four's final studio album, 1970's Let It Be.

Jackson created the documentary using over 60 hours of footage shot during the making of the Let It Be film and album. Whereas the Let It Be movie -- which was directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg -- focused on tense moments between the band members during the sessions, Get Back presents a more positive profile of the group's relationship at that time.

Perhaps the new movie's main highlight is the full footage of The Beatles playing their last-ever live show, the famous surprise concert on the roof of the Apple headquarters in London.

Jackson spent three years working on the project, with the full support of Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and the respective widows of John Lennon and George Harrison.

Giving a nod to the footage shot by Lindsay-Hogg, Jackson notes that Get Back offers "a detailed account of the creative process, with the crafting of iconic songs under pressure, set amid the social climate of early 1969."

He adds, "Over six hours, you'll get to know The Beatles with an intimacy that you never thought possible."

Get Back originally was supposed to premiere last September, but was initially postponed until August 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



ABC

Jacob Tremblay and Maya Rudolph are giving fans a little taste up their upcoming projects, The Little Mermaid and Disenchanted, respectively. 

The two star in Disney's Luca together, but separately they are each working on other projects with the media conglomerate. For Tremblay, that's the live-action remake of the classic The Little Mermaid, in which he will star as Flounder. 

"We started working on that before COVID," Tremblay dished to Entertainment Tonight. "Everyone on that film was, like, super nice. That's such an awesome environment. I had such a blast doing it, and I'm really excited for that one."

The remake also stars Halle Bailey as Ariel, Jonah Hauer-King as Prince Eric, Daveed Diggs as Sebastian, Awkwafina as Scuttle and Melissa McCarthy as Ursula.

While a release date for The Little Mermaid has yet to be announced, fans can look forward to seeing Disenchated, the sequel to the 2007 film Enchanted, in 2022. 

Rudolph, who joins the film as Malvina, a new adversary for Amy Adams' Giselle, shared her excitement about portraying the bad guy.

"I'm very excited about it. I mean, that's Juicy Town, USA," she said. "When you're a kid and you're the villain, you're like, 'Come on! I wanna be a princess!' But then when you get older, like, the villain is fun."

Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



Warner Bros. Pictures

The much-anticipated, pandemic-delayed film remake of the sci-fi classic Dune will finally hit a very big screen: it will have its world debut at the Venice Film Festival in Italy. 

The 78th annual event, which was scuttled last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, will be held September 1-11, 2021, and the movie's cast is expected to attend the screening at the Palazzo del Cinema on September 3.

The debut of the Warner Bros. Pictures adaptation of Frank Herbert's seminal science fiction bestseller could draw members of the movie's cast, but it's too early to tell who will attend the festival. The film stars Timothée ChalametZendayaRebecca FergusonDave BautistaOscar IsaacJosh BrolinStellan SkarsgårdDavid DastmalchianJason Momoa, and Javier Bardem among others.

In recent years, Warner Bros. launched eventual Oscar winners GravityA Star Is Born and Joker with a World Premiere at the historic festival.

Dune debuts on October 1 in theaters and on HBO Max.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



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