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Showtune Sunday: All about “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” which ends its Broadway run next month

It was announced last week that the current Broadway production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch will close next month after more than 500 performances.

It kicked off in Spring of 2014 with Neil Patrick Harris in the title role. He won the Tony Award then left that summer. Following him in the role was Andrew Rannells, Michael C. Hall, John Cameron Mitchell (the original Hedwig Off-Broadway and on film), Darren Criss and finally, Taye Diggs.

Below is a collection of Hedwig performances tat gives you a taste of most of the guys mentioned above plus Alan Cumming!

FILE UNDER: Showtune Sunday

Morning Man Classic Encore: Guy Madison!

Guy Madison’s handsome looks made quite an impression in a bit part he had in the 1944 film Since You Went Away.

Fans wanted to know more about him and the attention got him signed to a contract with RKO the next year. But after making several films, it became clear he wasn’t going to become a movie superstar.

So he turned to television and enjoyed great success during the seven year run of The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok.

He then went to work in Europe where he spent more than a decade – and enjoyed huge success – making spaghetti westerns.

He died in 1996 at the age of 74 survived by three children. He was twice-divorced and has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

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“Magic Mike XXL” out on DVD on October 6!

Okay, so we all know that Magic Mike XXL didn’t set the box office on fire making $65.5 million in seven weeks. But maybe the sequel to 2012′s Magic Mike will fare better on DVD where you can replay the stripping scenes with Channing Tatum, Matt Bomer, Joe Manganiello and the rest as many times as you want.

Plus, Bomer sings in the film that continues the story of stripper Michael “Magic Mike” Lane as he and his stripper cohorts take a road trip to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina to attend a gigantic exotic dancing convention.

The DVD will be out on October 6 but does not look to be packed with features, only a The Moves of Magic Mike XXL featurette.


Wishing a very happy 76th birthday to four-time Emmy winner and Tony nominee Valerie Harper

Valerie Harper turns 76 today and I hope she’s having one helluva celebration.

The TV icon was given a death sentence in early 2013 after being diagnosed with brain cancer and was told she could have as little as three months to live.

And live she did reuniting with her castmates from The Mary Tyler Moore Show for an episode of Hot in Cleveland and talking bravely and openly about her fate in various interviews.

Then, a miracle.

Her cancer is not cured but it has responded to experimental therapy and has not progressed. This has allowed her to continue to take acting jobs and to even participate on ABC’s Dancing With the Stars a few seasons back.

She had a scare late last month when she fell ill during a performance of a play in Maine and was rushed to the hospital. There were various reports about her health including one outlet reporting she was in a coma. The four-time Emmy winner set the record straight in an August 1 Facebook post: ‘I am happy to report I am not, nor have I been, in a coma. As anyone who has taken strong medication knows, it doesn’t always agree with you, even with me as this experience proves. I am confronting these hurdles with my usual enthusiasm and love of life.’

FILE UNDER: Birthdays

Friday Afternoon Video: Bill Burr on Caitlyn Jenner: Comic wishes he had a chance to say goodbye to Bruce

Bill Burr was on Conan the other night and said that while he supports Caitlyn’s transition into a woman, he wishes he got a chance to say goodbye to Bruce who he even watched on CHIPS.

It’s interesting to see a comic go for the comedy regarding Caitlyn. I was ready to be offended but don’t think he says anything too terribly offensive. What do you think?

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It was out actress Ellen Page vs. anti-gay Republican Ted Cruz today at the Iowa State Fair

Ted Cruz apparently had no idea that the young woman who confronted him at the Iowa State Fair  earlier today was Oscar nominated actress Ellen Page.

ABC News cameras captured the openly gay Page, wearing a cap and sunglasses, asking the Republican presidential hopeful: ‘What about the question about LGBT people being fired for being gay-trans?’

Cruz, a US senator from Texas, replied: ‘Well, what we’re seeing right now, we’re seeing Bible-believing Christians being persecuted for living according to their faith.’

Page countered with: ‘You’re discriminating against LGBT people. Well, would you use that argument in segregation?’

Cruz, a vocal opponent of same-sex marriage, tried to shut down the exchange by saying: ‘Now I’m happy to answer your question, but not to have a back-and-forth debate.’

He added during their five minute exchange: ‘No one has the right to force someone else to abandon their faith and their conscience. Imagine, hypothetically, you had a gay florist and imagine two evangelicals wanted to get married and they decide, ‘You know what, I disagree with your faith and I don’t want to provide flowers.”‘

The Human Rights Campaign blasted Cruz later Friday for claiming that business owners were facing discrimination by being asked to serve all customers – including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender customers – equally.

Cruz also claimed that the abuses against LGBTI people around the world are going unnoticed while suggesting that activists like Page made too big a deal of challenges in the US.

‘Ted Cruz showed today that he is living in another era where he thinks it’s acceptable to treat LGBT people differently and allow businesses to refuse service to someone just because of who they are, or who they love,’ said JoDee Winterhof, HRC’s Senior Vice President of Policy of Political Affairs.

Winterhof added: ‘Today Ted Cruz was served an important reminder that in a country like ours that values the free market economy, businesses should serve all law-abiding customers who can afford to pay equally, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.’

Page, nominated for an Oscar for her performance in Juno, is in Iowa on a project for VICE Media. Her latest film is Freehold about a lesbian police officer played by Julianne Moore and her partner’s legal battle to get her pension benefits after she’s diagnosed with cancer.

FILE UNDER: Politics

Zachary Quinto: ‘When I started, you couldn’t even count on both of your hands the number of openly gay actors in television or film’

Zachary Quinto’s latest movie Hitman: Agent 47 hit theaters this weekend, the latest feature film in this openly gay actor’s busy career.

Quinto, 38, is also set to reprise his role of Spock in a third Star Trek movie and has the films Snowden and I Am Michael out this year.

Since coming out publicly in October 2011, Quinto has also had high-profile television (American Horror Story) and Broadway (The Glass Menagerie) roles. He is thrilled with the opportunities he and other out actors like Matt Bomer and Andrew Rannells have continued to have in a business where being openly gay was once considered career suicide.

‘Matt Bomer is one of my favorite friends. I’ve known him for 15 years – longer. I know Andrew. These are friends of mine. The fact that so many of my friends who are openly gay have flourishing, thriving careers is really exciting,’ Quinto tells PrideSource.

‘That in and of itself is progress if you consider that 15 years ago, when I started acting professionally out of college, you couldn’t even count on both of your hands the number of openly gay actors in any form, television or film. It was a totally different issue 15 years ago, and that’s not a very long amount of time to have made such progress.’

Feature films have especially been a place where openly gay actors have been discouraged from being out with Quinto and Ian McKellen being among the few to be prominently involved in blockbuster franchises.

‘We can’t stop, and so I do invite any gay actor to be who they are and to stand up and fight for their capacity to play different roles and to do different things. The more people can do that and stand by it, the more we’ll see it continue as we already have.

‘The more that people from diverse backgrounds can stand up with integrity and integrate who they are in an authentic way to their creative process then everybody benefits and we all move forward together as a result. So I see myself as one of many, many people who have had their own journey that has defined them and contributed to the larger goals of advancement and equality, and that’s something that I’m proud of.’


Morning Man Encore: Brant Daugherty!

Gorgeous Brant Daugherty celebrated his 30th birthday yesterday so as a present to him – and us – he gets another Morning Man feature.

Brant is best known for his recurring role as Brian on Days of Our Lives, a character who dated Sonny Kiriakis for far too brief a time. But Sonny’s heart belonged only to Will.

Brant also played Noel Kahn on the ABC Family series Pretty Little Liars, was a regular of the cast of Lifetime Network’s Army Wives for season 7, and competed in season 17 of Dancing with the Stars.
Below are some scenes from Brant’s stint on Days:

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My chat with Tom Goss about the ambitious video for his song “Breath and Sound”

Tom Goss is a rising star who unveiled a stunning new video this week for his song Breath and Sound.

But don’t expect to see the blond-haired, blue-eyed stunner in it.

Instead, the video features three couples – one straight, one gay, one lesbian – dancing the same beautiful and very complex dance.

‘I want people to be moved,’ Tom says. ‘I want them to see their own story in the dancers. If they can see their own story in one of the couples, they can relate to the other stories as well. At the end of the day, we are all moving through the same emotions.’

With videos portraying the LGBTI experience not a priority of major labels, Tom raised $19,500 earlier this year – more than double his original goal – through a Kickstarter campaign to make videos that tell these stories.

‘We shot the video in a day at YouTube Space LA,’ he says. ‘It was an extremely busy day, but artistically invigorating and inspiring. We actually shot a whole setup of me, singing and playing, but ultimately cut it. I had hours and hours of footage, so much beauty to play with.’

The video was directed by Michael Serrato who brought choreographer Andrew Pirozzi to the project who would also be one of the dancers.

‘It was a pleasure to work with Andrew because he really understood the idea, and the possible impact, from the get go,’ says Goss. ‘His dance partner was easy to cast, it’s his real life wife! They have two kids together. The other two couples were cast through a dance agency. We really wanted to cast a wide variety of people. We wanted the cast to be diverse, to reflect the reality in which we live.’

‘I want people to be moved,’ he adds. ‘I want them to see their own story in the dancers. If they can see their own story in one of the couples, they can relate to the other stories as well. At the end of the day, we are all moving through the same emotions.’

I had a really nice lunch with Tom a few weeks ago and I’m very excited about all that he has ahead. He’s so creative, talented and dedicated and I hope even more people discover him through this latest video.

Many of his songs and music videos speak to LGBTI issues and culture such as marriage equality, Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

BONUS VIDEO: Tom gets naked in the video below! What would Steve Grand have to say about THAT?


The terrific flick “Psycho Beach Party” is finally out on Blu-Ray! I highly recommend it!

One of my very favorite movies of all time is Psycho Beach Party.

I have seen that movie, written by and co-starring Charles Busch, and directed by Robert Lee King so many times and loved it more with each viewing. It’s a spoof of 1960′s Beach Party/Gidget surfing movies mixed with slasher horror films and stars Lauren Ambrose, Amy Adams, Thomas Gibson, Matt Keesler and Beth Broderick among others.

I’m so happy to learn that it came out on Blu-Ray this week and highly, highly recommend.

Ambrose of Six Feet Under fame stars as a girl who fears she may be committing murders during a series of blackouts and a a dragged-out Busch plays the female police investigator. 

Extras include a commentary and music videos.


Brad Goreski and getting and staying sober: “I hope I can show people that there’s a new life beyond drugs and alcohol”

Brad Goreski returns to Fashion Police this month. I’m glad he is a part of the revamped show as he seemed to be the only member of the previous panel who seemed to legitimately know a thing about fashion.

I mean, c’mon, how many times could Kelli Osbourne say she was “obsessed” with something or that it was “a-mazing!”

But Brad isn’t just talking fashion in a new interview with Attitude. He talks about becoming sober in his 20s:

“I’m not proud of my early twenties. I am glad I did it but it got out of hand and took over my life. I fell into it by surprise. I was just doing what people in their twenties did. It’s hard for a lot of people trying to get sober. You can’t decide if you are going through a phase or if you have a proper addiction. It really snuck up on me. And it’s weird because I was wanting for nothing in my life. Everything was in place. I just happened to live on a gay block in Toronto where everyone partied heavily. There was a part of me that felt like I had the ability to do something better, and at that point anything would have been better. It took a lot of work and I am happy now. I hope I can show people that there’s a new life beyond drugs and alcohol. It’s an easier way of life. Watching the movie Amy [Winehouse] recently made me sad that she didn’t get the help that was available. It is out there.”

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Thursday Morning Man: Justin Baldoni!

Saw Jane the Virgin star Justin Baldoni on Access Hollywood Live yesterday and thought it was so sweet and sexy the way he talked about wanting to make it a better world for his newborn daughter.

Now that’s sexy.

And so are the many shirtless photos online of this handsome 31 year old who got his big break a decade ago with a recurring role on Everwood.

Since then, Justin has appeared on The Bold and the Beautiful, CSI:NY, Heroes, Happy Endings, Single Ladies and other series as well as in the film Shadow of Fear.

FILE UNDER: Morning Men (2015)

Caitlyn Jenner and Candis Cayne have a tight new friendship – but it’s not a romance

Candis Cayne guested on Access Hollywood Live today and, of course, was asked about her relationship with Caitlyn Jenner with whom she has grown quite close in recent months.

There is no romance as has been reported by some of the tabloids.

‘Caitlyn and I are really good friends. I really love her a lot,’ Cayne said. ‘It’s been really amazing being by her side during this entire process.’

Cayne, who played Billy Baldwin’s transgender mistress on ABC’s Dirty Sexy Money for two seasons, has been seen regularly this summer on Jenner’s docu-series I Am Cait.

The pair are seen traveling to New York City in next week’s episode, took a road trip with several other trans women in previous episodes and Cayne was with Jenner at the ESPYs and at a Culture Club concert in Los Angeles.

Cayne is aware of the criticism of Jenner who has wealth and fame as she transitioned from Olympic champion Bruce Jenner to Caitlyn. But she points out that Jenner had her own unique struggles that are ‘just as hard.’

‘She’s lived her whole life being transgender and not being able to do anything about it,’ she said. ‘She’s been going through this for 65 years.’

Cayne is a new friend of Jenner’s and never knew her as Bruce.

‘It was incredible,’ she says of their first meeting. ‘She’s just a happy, open person.’

FILE UNDER: Transgender

Update of Rosie O’Donnell’s daughter: She was found at New Jersey home of drug dealer she met online

We were relieved that Rosie O’Donnell’s daughter Chelsea was found safe yesterday after she was missing for a week.

‘No mom is perfect – we all do our best,’ Rosie tweeted earlier today after someone posted a snarky tweet about her mothering.

Rosie also tweeted: ‘When someone u love is drowning in the rapids – u throw everything u can into the water – hoping they will grab on – stay afloat #believe.’

Rosie also tweeted about the man Chelsea, 17, was found with: She was at the New Jersey home of 25-year-old Steve Sheerer who was once convicted of possession of heroin. According to Page Six, Chelsea met Sheerer on Tinder.

Rosie tweeted Sheerer’s photo along with this information: Sheerer charged w/third-degree possession of heroin with the intent to distribute, third-degree possession of heroin.

Wishing the best for Rosie and her family.

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See the trailer for “Kiss Me, Kill Me” and see if you can spot Greg In Hollywood in a crowd scene

I’m so excited that the trailer for Kiss Me, Kill Me is so good.

Can’t wait to see the movie!

Back in January, director Casper Andreas invited me to be an extra for the night for some scenes in the film which stars, among others, Van Hansis, Gale Harold, Kit Williamson, Jai Rodriguez, Jonathan Lisecki, Matthew Ludwinski, Allison Lane, and Yolanda Ross.

The film is described as an Alfred Hitchcock/Agatha Christie-style whodunit set in West Hollywood.

Had a lot of fun that night of filming which you can read about HERE.

I’ve spotted myself in the trailer!

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Taye Diggs flops as “Hedwig” – show to close

Taye Diggs as Hedwig is not a hit.

Producers of the Tony winning Broadway musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch have announced that the show will close next month due to slumping ticket sales.

Diggs had followed Neil Patrick Harris, Andrew Rannells, Michael C. Hall, John Cameron Mitchell and Darren Criss in the role of a transgender East German punk rocker who is the victim of a botched sex change operation.

The reviewers were not kind to Diggs with Elisabeth Vincentelli of the New York Post writing this week that he is ‘completely miscast’ in the role.

‘It has nothing to do with him being black and everything to do with him looking pretty damn uncomfortable in the role,’ Vincentelli wrote. ‘Diggs never connects with Hedwig. … You never forget Diggs is performing, from his awkward strut in platform shoes to the pseudo-antagonistic audience interactions. How can spitting water onto the first row look so forced?’

The show will close on 13 September after 506 performances at the Belasco Theatre in New York City.

Diggs stepped into the character’s blond wig, fishnets and platform shoes on 22 July when he replaced Criss in the role.

‘Hedwig is the role of a lifetime,’ Diggs said at the time.

It marked Diggs’ first New York stage role since the 2005 revival of A Soldier’s Play. He made his Broadway debut in 1994 in the Tony Award-winning revival of Carousel.

His best-known Broadway role is that of Benny in the musical Rent, a role he recreated in the 2005 film version.


See Dustin Lance Black’s sweet short film “Text”

Oscar-winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black (Milk) has directed a short film about true friendship between a gay teen and a straight teen.

In the eight-minute film entitled The Text, a group of male teens who joke with and tease each other are seen hanging out at school and at home. Especially close are Rafael and Diego who constantly banter as they play video games.

Then one day Diego looks at Rafael’s unattended phone and sees a romantic text from another boy. He covers for his friend in front of their other buddies and this cements what turns out to be a true friendship.

The film is sponsored by Coca-Cola and is part of a campaign Pereira & O’Dell focusing on various different scenarios which question what makes a true friend (#VerdaderoAmigo).

‘The Text was perhaps the most personal for me to direct,’ Black said in a statement. ‘As an artist, I feel I have a responsibility to share the stories of who LGBT people truly are in order to dispel any atmosphere of fear that might prevent LGBT people from sharing their lives openly.

‘For Coca-Cola to take a pro-diversity, pro-equality stance creates a lot of goodwill in the LGBT community.’

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Patrick Stewart gives Conan O’Brien a nice kiss on the lips – and Conan likes it

Patrick Stewart made clear during his appearance the other night on Conan O’Brien’s late night talk show that Ian McKellen is not the only man he kisses on the lips.

O’Brien brought up the same-sex smooching by showing a photo of Stewart locking lips with McKellen at the recent premiere of Mr. Holmes and said: ‘You guys went in for a kiss in front of all the press!’

Stewart, who is straight, explained that he and the openly gay McKellen ‘are very good friends and quite intimate friends. That’s how we greet one another or say goodbye. But Ian isn’t the only one – I don’t want you to think that I’m a one man guy.’

When O’Brien continued on the topic, Stewart asked: ‘Do you want to try it out? You were looking at me in a way that I recognize.’

With that, Stewart walked over to O’Brien and planted one on him.

The host took a moment to collect himself then exclaimed: ‘That was fantastic! I felt passion. … I felt that you finally accepted me as your better.’

FILE UNDER: Late Night

Wednesday Morning Man: Dweezil Zappa!

Believe it or not, I became familiar with today’s Morning Man last night while watching an episode of Chopped on Food Network.

He’s rock guitarist and occasional actor Dweezil Zappa who competed against fellow rockers Eddie Ojeda, Lita Ford and Kelly Hansen and made it all the way to the dessert round before losing to Ojeda.

He is, of course, the son of Frank Zappa and writes and records his own music. Dweezil, 45, has carried on the legacy of his father’s music by touring with the group Zappa Plays Zappa.

FILE UNDER: Morning Men (2015)

Freddie Smith on “Days of Our Lives” run: “The creative team told a raw, uncut, passionate love story between two men who fell in love”

On the day that his final scenes aired on Days of Our Lives, Emmy winner Freddie Smith to took his facebook page to share his thoughts on his four-year run as Sonny Kiriakis:

This is CRAZY!!! Today is the last airing episode for Sonny Kiriakis! June 2011, “Sonny” made his debut in Salem as the first openly gay character on Days of Our Lives.

I remember people being unsure how the audience would accept the character. With amazing writing and an incredible vision, “Days of Our Lives” and the creative team told a raw, uncut, passionate love story between two men who fell in love.

Will and Sonny became the POWER COUPLE known as WILSON! We were treated like every other couple on the show and the audience accepted us with open arms. I feel so blessed to have been a part of the equal rights movement over the past 4 years. I will never forget the journey I had as Jackson “Sonny” Kiriakis.

Thank you to all my friends, family, and fans for your support and love. I know Sonny will be missed, but I hear Salem always has their door open!”

FILE UNDER: Days of Our Lives