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Debra Messing talks about ‘Will & Grace’ revival

The revival of Will & Grace doesn’t start production until summer but Debra Messing is already certain the new episodes will be provocative and timely.

The Emmy winner says the show ‘has always been political’ will continue to be.

‘It’s always dealt with what is happening in our culture and in our country. It’s absolutely going to be addressing in real time what’s happening,’ Messing tells Huffington Post.

‘That’s what we always did. That was never the agenda but that’s just part of the DNA as a TV show. That’s not gonna change.’

It was politics that brought Messing back together last fall with Eric McCormack, Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally in the first place.

They secretly shot a mini-episode to support Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and it instantly went viral.

Clinton, of course, lost to Donald Trump and the stage was set for the further adventures of Will, Grace, Jack and Karen.

‘It’s a scary and confusing time in our country and we just felt like we wanted to make other people laugh right now,’ Messing says.

‘And also continue to do what Will & Grace always did, which was to push the envelope, take chances and be a little bit outrageous.’

The series ran for eight seasons on NBC from 1998 until 2006 and is widely credited with helping to foster understanding about gay people and same-sex marriage.

Messing is confident the new episodes will do the same and more.

‘It’s a whole new world now where being gay and lesbian is not something that people are hiding like they did when we started almost 20 years ago,’ she says.

‘I think that there’s an opportunity to now celebrate all the other initials of LGBTQ. It will be great to come out of this next round and feel like we’re normalizing an even larger segment of underrepresented people on prime-time television.

‘I think we pushed the ball very, very far down the field. Now, the goal post is in a different place and I think that there’s obviously more to go.’

FILE UNDER: Television

Snapped! Anderson Cooper and The Rock!

So this happened. @therock couldn't be a nicer, more down to earth guy. got to talk with him about his upcoming music series called #Soundtracks. will be on @CNN thursday at 10pm. Also gave him a gym recommendation (not that he needed it.)

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FILE UNDER: Uncategorized

Ricky Martin is profiled on ‘CBS Sunday Morning’

CBS Sunday Morning correspondent Tracy Smith visits with Ricky Martin, who’s joining a rarified club: stars big enough to have a Las Vegas residency. She talked with Martin during rehearsals of his new show, which plays at the Park Theater at Monte Carlo through September, and learns why the music superstar – engaged and the father of twins – is no longer living La Vida Loca. Enjoy!

FILE UNDER: Out Stars

Monday Morning Man: Alexander Zverev!

We kick off the week with the 20th ranked male tennis player in the world. He’s Alexander Zverev and in the past year he’s beaten such top players as Dominic Thiem, Tomáš Berdych, Grigor Dimitrov Marin Čilić and Stan Wawrinka and pushed Rafael Nadal to five sets at this year’s Australian Open., Zverev is an aggressive baseliner, with a strong serve and an excellent backhand. His older brother Mischa Zverev is also a tennis pro and ranked in the top 50.

FILE UNDER: Morning Men (2017)

Celeb Instagram: Easter Edition!

Happy Easter, everybody! We got this cute little Easter bunny, isn't he cute?

A post shared by Neil Patrick Harris (@nph) on


He's Alive! Happy Easter!

A post shared by Dolly Parton (@dollyparton) on


Happy Easter from sunny NYC I can see in sunglasses thanks @lynnediamanteceo for RX lenses !!

A post shared by Thomas Roberts (@thomasaroberts) on


10 minutes late for church …happy Easter

A post shared by Tarell octavian (@octarell_again) on

FILE UNDER: Celeb Instagram

Dustin Lance Black & Tom Daley have Paris weekend


Same exact spot — four years later. #Paris

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We just got back from an amazing weekend in Paris! It was so much fun to retrace our steps the last time we were there 4 years ago! My latest VLOG is now on my channel of our time there! Check it out in the link in my bio or by going to my Instagram story and swiping up!

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FILE UNDER: Couples

SNL: Alec Baldwin returns as Trump, Melissa McCarthy as Sean Spicer plus Jimmy Fallon as Jared Kushner!

President Donald Trump (Alec Baldwin) looks back on his first 100 days with Vice President Mike Pence (Beck Bennett) and chooses between advisors Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner (Jimmy Fallon).White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer (Melissa McCarthy) apologizes for his comments about Hitler.

FILE UNDER: Comedy

Showtune Sunday: All about Christine Ebersole!

Two-time Tony winner Christine Ebersole is back on Broadway starring opposite Patti LuPone in the new musical War Paint. Those two together and Bette Midler nearby in Hello, Dolly. Wow! Tony Awards will be off the charts! Miss Ebersole won her Tonys for 42nd Street and Grey Gardens. Her most recent Broadway show was Blithe Spirit. Here are some of her memorable numbers.

FILE UNDER: Showtune Sunday

Morning Man Classic: Michael Douglas!

Last weekend I was sitting up close to Michael Douglas at the TCM Classic Film Festival. The 72-year-old Oscar winner was on hand for a screening of The China Syndrome which he produced and co-starred in with Jane Fonda and Jack Lemmon. At 72, he’s looking good! But Michael looking good is nothing new. I was just a kid when I’d see him on The Streets of San Francisco. I didn’t know it was a crush then but I was pretty into him. Then he started doing movies including Coma and Running before true movie stardom came with 1984′s Romancing the Stone. This began his very sexy period that included Fatal Attraction, The Jewel of the Nile, Basic Instinct, Disclosure, War of the Roses and his Oscar winning performance in Wall Street. Some of my other favorite Douglas films include The American President, The Ghost and the Darkness, Wonder Boys, Solitary Man and his Emmy winning performance as Liberace in Behind the Candelabra.

FILE UNDER: Morning Men (2017)

Snapped! A swingin’ Charlie Carver!

day 2 … thank you @pangeaswim

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FILE UNDER: Uncategorized

Kevin and Joaquin are together again on ‘Riverdale’

Kevin Keller is smitten with bad boy Joaquin on The CW’s Riverdale. In the most recent episode, they are now an official couple but Joaquin has an agenda. Beware Kevin!

FILE UNDER: Television

Celeb Instagram: Greg Berlanti, Robbie Rogers and Caleb! Ellen Page! Colton Haynes! Nico Tortorella!

Fish face contest. First place Caleb, second place… ?

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A post shared by @ellenpage on


Easter came early. I can't even describe what the love of my life @jeffleatham did for me today. I will try to contain my excitement but y'all know me…I'm gonna explode & it will all end up on Insta lol. On a serious note…to everyone out there who thinks love isn't in the cards for them…trust me (someone who gave up on love & happiness for yrs)…it's in the cards for all of us!!! The more you work toward loving yourself, the easier it will be. Romance isn't dead so I encourage those of you who are in relationships to go the extra mile & show the ones you love just how much you truly love them…it's such a beautiful feeling #LoveWins #Happy #LoveHarder #WhatMoviesAreMadeOf

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feels.

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FILE UNDER: Celeb Instagram

Ellen DeGeneres has surprise for gay teacher who used RuPaul’s Drag Race term in fake spelling test

This time it was fourth grade teacher Joe Dombrowski’s turn to be surprised.

Dombrowski was invited onto The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Friday after a video showing him giving a prank spelling bee to his students on April Fool’s Day went viral with more than 20 million views.

‘They’re going to remember you,’ DeGeneres told Dombrowski who teaches in Royal Oak, Michigan.

She jokingly added: ‘I don’t know that you’re teaching anything but I think it’s good that you’re funny.’

One of the made up words was a play on RuPaul’s Drag Race contestants: ‘Ro-laska-tox.’

He gave this example to the students: ‘Ro-laska-tox was surprised when Jinkx took the crown’ and added: ‘If you didn’t get the hyphens, I’m sorry you got that word wrong.’

Dombrowski’s humor is much appreciated by DeGeneres who presented him with two $10,000 checks – one to use on his students and the other to spend on himself.

Explained the teacher: ‘I like to make sure the kids are having fun and like what they’re doing. If they’re laughing they’re going to remember.’

FILE UNDER: Daytime TV

Ellen DeGeneres came out 20 years ago today!

When Ellen DeGeneres decided to come out publicly, she did it in a big way.

It was 20 years ago today that the popular talk show host appeared on the cover of Time Magazine with the headline: ‘Yep, I’m Gay.’

Adding to the publicity was that the announcement coincided with her television character of Ellen Morgan coming out on her ABC sitcom Ellen.

DeGeneres told the magazine then: ‘I mean I knew that I was going to—that was one of the things when I decided to have my character on the show come out, I knew I was going to have to come out too. But I didn’t want to talk about it until the show was done.’

Flash-forward 20 years and DeGeneres is a beloved talk show host and married to actress Portia de Rossi.

Last year she was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama who remarked on her courageous coming out.

But in 1997, DeGeneres didn’t seem keen on becoming a role model.

‘I watched my friend Melissa [Etheridge] come out, and she became “the lesbian rock star.” I never wanted to be “the lesbian actress.” I never wanted to be the spokesperson for the gay community. Ever. I did it for my own truth.’

FILE UNDER: Coming Out

Watch: Betty Buckley discusses her craft, career and powerful new live double album “Story Songs”

It’s such a joy to watch Betty Buckley sing or act. But you can see in this new episode of the BUILD series that it’s also a real joy just to watch her talk! The Tony winning Broadway legend talks about her craft and the moderator and the audience are very appreciative of this most special talent. The appearance comes as Betty has released her 17th album – Story Songs – and as she basks in the success in the hit film Split in which she is the female lead.

FILE UNDER: Broadway

Watch Alan Cumming’s strong message for leader of Chechnya about anti-gay violence

A message for Ramzan Kadyrov, leader of Chechnya! @kadyrov_95 @kadyrov_95eng

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FILE UNDER: Uncategorized

Cheyenne Jackson pays tribute to his dad who died unexpectedly: ‘I am broken. I love you daddy’

How can words sum up a noble life? How do you put into words the unimaginable grief of losing the best father and husband? I can't. I won't. We lost our Dada unexpectedly on Thursday. He loved the sea. He loved the sun. He loved his family. He loved my mom for 47 years. I am broken. I love you Daddy.

A post shared by Cheyenne Jackson (@mrcheyennejackson) on


Rest In Peace Dada. There will be no one cooler, ever on this fucking planet. You were it.

A post shared by Cheyenne Jackson (@mrcheyennejackson) on

FILE UNDER: Tribute

Video: Anderson Cooper, Andy Cohen and Kelly Ripa reveal first celebrity crushes and more

The famous trio of BFFs got together for a joint interview and photo session for The Hollywood Reporter. Among the tidbits are that Andy’s first crush was Erik Estrada, Kelly’s was Farrah Fawcett and Anderson’s was one I can really relate to: Robby Benson!

FILE UNDER: Videos

My chat with Tarell Alvin McCraney about life since the Academy Awards for the ‘Moonlight’ screenplay

The man who lived Moonlight is now living the life of an Oscar winner.

Tarell Alvin McCraney co-wrote Best Picture winner Moonlight and shared the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay with the film’s director Barry Jenkins.

But the 36 year old has had little time to bask in the Oscar glow.

The openly gay McCraney is the new chair of playwriting at the Yale School of Drama and his duties there had him traveling back to the East Coast soon after Oscar night.

‘It’s been very hectic and busy,’ McCraney told me when we chatted at the recent GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles.

‘I had to get right back on the plane. I’ve been recruiting and doing interviews. I had applications to read. It really is important to me to make sure that my students know that I’m there for them. Their work is so important to the future of what we do. We just finished our interviewing process and we just invited our next students to be in class next year.’

Because he has been so focused, McCraney has even put away the shiny, golden Oscar and other awards including the Independent Spirit Award and the Writers Guild of America prize.

‘I can’t have it out,’ he says. ‘It’s beautiful. The awards are all in a nice beautiful cabinet where I can look at them when I need to.’

The inspiration for Moonlight

McCraney’s play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue was one of three work samples that years ago he himself used to gain admittance into Yale School of Drama.

A high school classmate of McCraney’s found the play more than a decade later and thought it would be ideal for Jenkins to make as his second feature.

Jenkins took the play with him on a writing trip to Brussels, Belgium, and within 10 days had come up with the first draft of a screenplay.

The result was the acclaimed film that tells the story of Chiron during three different stages in his life.

Played by three different actors, he goes from bullied effeminate child to young gay man coming to terms with his sexuality.

A night of firsts

Because he dove right back into his work at Yale, McCraney is ‘still trying to process’ all that happened at the Academy Awards which took place at The Dolby Theatre in Hollywood on 26 February.

‘We were a lot of firsts that night – first African-American director (Jenkins) with an all black cast to win an Academy Award for best picture.

‘To win three Oscars that night, it is sort of staggeringly beautiful. I know I’m still processing it.’

In addition to Best Picture and Adapted Screenplay, Mahershala Ali won for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role.

The Best Picture win was also historic for an unfortunate reason: presenters Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty were handed the wrong envelope as they took the stage which led to La La Land being announced as the winner by mistake.

The Moonlight team took to the stage after La La Land producers made their speeches and it was announced there had been an error.

‘That moment (of winning) is something that so few people actually get to experience that no one has been able to tell me what the other way is like so this is the only way I know it – it’s the only way I know that the film that was inspired by my work won Best Picture.

‘That’s the feeling that I have and I’m grateful for it.’

FILE UNDER: Awards, Interviews

Friday Morning Man: Gui Inacio!

Here’s how today’s Morning Man, Gui Inacio, describes himself on Facebook: ‘Intuitive Artist and Fitness/Life Coach expressing his vision worldwide.’

I prefer to describe him as simply drop dead gorgeous.

He was born and raised in Brazil, moved to the United States when he was 13 and began to pursue modeling four years later.

He has since appeared in several TV series and movies.

FILE UNDER: Morning Men (2017)