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Chaz Bono and Carson Kressley will put the LGBT in the upcoming season of ABC’s “DWTS”’s official: It was announced Monday that Chaz Bono would become the first transgender contestant in the history of ABC’s Dancing With the Stars.

“Doing this show is an opportunity for me to reach a larger more mainstream audience with just a simple message of being transgender is okay and not something to be scared of,” Chaz tells People Magazine.

Bono, who is now sporting facial hair, was present for last night’s big reveal but Kressley was not. Other celebrity dancers include Nancy Grace, Rikki Lake, David Arquette, Chynna Phillips, and soap star and Iraqi war veteran J.R. Martinez.

GLAAD has released this statement about the inclusion of both Bono and Kressley: “With both gay and transgender contestants represented on this upcoming season, ABC will send viewers a strong message about the diversity within the LGBT community. At a time when transgender representation in the media is sorely lacking, Chaz Bono joining the cast of a series like Dancing With The Stars is a tremendous step forward for the public to recognize that transgender people are another wonderful part of the fabric of American culture,” said Herndon Graddick, Senior Director of Programs at GLAAD. “His documentary, “Becoming Chaz,” was a great chance for viewers to meet the man behind the headlines. Appearing on such a high profile show will allow millions of Americans to get to know him in a whole new light.”

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Lunch Break Video: See my friend Scott Morris sing The Carpenters classic “I Won’t Last a Day Without You”

Scott Morris and I met in line for a movie at Outfest last month and as we chatted away, we discovered we have a lot of mutual interests, including a love for the music of The Carpenters. We’ve kept in touch. A few days ago, after we took in a matinee of The Help at The ArcLight in Hollywood, Scott mentioned that there was a video of him singing one of the duo’s hits on his Facebook page. I got home and watched it and was so blown away that I asked him of he minded if I posted it on the blog. This is something I want everyone to enjoy!

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Tuesday Morning Man: David Arquette! David Arquette is going to be a contestant on the new season of ABC’s Dancing With the Stars.

I watched the announcement last night and when he walked out, he looked very handsome, healthy and happy. This is in sharp contrast to last year when he seemed to be in a spiral in the months after his split from wife Courtney Cox.

David is, of course, from the famous Arquette acting family that also includes Roseanna, Patrica and Alexis. He has appeared in many films including the Scream franchise, Never Been Kissed, Rough and Tumble, Stealing Sinatra, 3000 Miles to Graceland, Eight Legged Freaks, and played a gay hustler in the indie flick johns.

We wish David the best on DWTS and in life!

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Lunch Break Video: Highlights from one of the greatest US Opens in history which took place 20 years ago

Seles defeated Martina Navratilova to win the 1991 U.S. Open.

No matter what happens at this year’s US Open, scheduled to start today weather permitting, I’m quite certain it will not be able to live up to the two weeks of tennis that took place during the 1991 tournament.

The tournament that year is best remembered for Jimmy Connors, at the age of 39, making it all the way to the semifinals in extremely dramatic fashion. The five-time champion provided many thrills starting with his first round match against Patrick McEnroe when he came back from two sets to love down.

But there was so much more: Martina Navratilova, 34 years old and being sued by her ex-girlfriend, made it to her eighth final in Flushing Meadows by upsetting top-ranked and reigning Wimbledon champion Steffi Graf in the semifinals. The other semi featured a classic match-up between teenagers Monica Seles and Jennifer Capriati with Seles edging by 7-6 in the third. She would go on to win the title.

Even though Connors got most of the attention that year, the men’s title actually went to Swedish heartthrob Stefan Edberg who beat Jim Courier in the final. (Courier finally stopped Connors in the semis).

Andre Agassi, a finalist the year before, crashed out in the first round that year but it was a brilliant tournament that also had past men’s champions John McEnroe, Pete Sampras, Ivan Lendl, and Boris Becker still very much in the mix on the men’s side and Gabriela Sabatini trying to defend the only grand slam crown she ever won.

Here are some highlights from that remarkable year:

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Bernadette Peters back on Broadway in “Follies”

Any time the great Bernadette Peters is on Broadway it is cause for celebration.

The two-tine Tony winner appeared most recently in A Little Night Music and now she is back heading the cast of Follies which officially opens on Monday, September 12, 2011 at the Marquis Theatre.

Production shots have been released of Miss Peters in the role of Sally Durant Plummer and I had to share some with all of you.

Here’s the plot: When former members of the “Weismann Follies” reunite on the eve of their theater’s demolition, two couples remember their past and face the harsher realities of the present. Reminiscing of their younger selves and the years gone by, the crumbling theater brings back memories for both couples of good times and bad.

The score features some of Stephen Sondheim’s best-known songs, including Broadway Baby, I’m Still Here, Too Many Mornings, Could I Leave You?, and Losing My Mind.

Follies originally opened on April 4, 1971 at the Winter Garden Theatre where it ran for 522 performances and received seven Tony Awards, including Best Original Score.

The current production with Miss Peters played a limited engagement at the Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater opening on May 7 and closing with sold-out houses on June 19, 2011.

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Monday Morning Man: Alexander Naddour! Naddour is a member of the gymnastics team that will represent the United States at the World Championships in October, a competition that will provide a preview of the 2012 Olympics in London.

Gymnastics is a family tradition for this 20-year-old athlete.

“My dad was a gymnast at ASU (Arizona State University), my mom was a gymnast at Ohio State, my brother Anthony is a gymnast, my stepbrother is a gymnast, my step-sister is a cheerleader, and my dad owns USA Youth Fitness Center in Gilbert, Ariz. I was basically born into gymnastics.”

Below is video of Alexander performing his floor exercise routine:,11410,5187-0-164403-0-custom307443,00.jpg

FILE UNDER: Morning Men (2011)

How personal will Anderson Cooper get on daytime?

Anderson Cooper
Anderson Cooper may make OUT Magazine’s Power 100 list each year, but the CNN anchor and 60 Minutes contributor has never publicly confirmed or denied being gay.
In a profile in Entertainment Weekly, Anderson was asked if he’ll discuss his personal life on his new daytime talk show which debuts Sept. 12: .”My job has been reporting for so long. I have a nightly newscast. I’m not interested in who reporters are seeing. The less I know about reporters, the better, from my perspective as a viewer. I’m not interested in their personal lives. But I understand people are, and, you know, we’ll see.”
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Showtune Sunday: Channing, Merman & Streisand versions of “Before the Parade Passes By”,_Dolly!3_crop.jpg/220px-Hello,_Dolly!3_crop.jpgIn the superb documentary Carol Channing: Larger Than Life, the Tony Award winning star of Hello Dolly and composer Jerry Herman talk about how the legendary musical got terrible reviews on the road before its Broadway debut.

Then Herman came up with the show-stopping number Before the Parade Passes By, which greatly elevated the show and tied the story together.  He woke Channing up at 3 a.m. at the hotel where the company was staying and had her sing it. They then woke up director Gower Champion.

The rest is history.

While Channing is the original Dolly Levi, she was not the only Dolly. Barbra Streisand played the role in the 1969 film version and Ethel Merman, for whom the show was originally written, who finally stepped into the role near the end of its seven-year Broadway run.

Here are three of the Dollys singing Before the Parade Passes By.


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HRC President Joe Solmonese to depart early 2012 Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese is stepping down when his contract expires in March.

“Leading HRC has been an inspiring experience and a complete privilege,” Solmonese says in a statement. “I could not be more proud of our staff, our volunteer leadership and of the extraordinary progress we’ve made together as a community.”

“HRC has never been stronger and after nearly seven years, this is the right moment for me to move on,” he added. “As I explore new professional possibilities, I plan on continuing to pour my heart and soul into improving the lives of members of our community – from battling proposed marriage amendments to creating more equitable workplaces to ensuring the President Obama is reelected for a second term.”

Tim Downing, who co-chairs the HRC Board of Directors, praised Solmonese’s leadership on such milestones as the repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’, and the recent passage marriage equality in New York.

“Joe has made sure that HRC is an effective and strategic force for positive change,” Downing said. “Over the course of his tenure, he’s set the tone for delivering real reform that matters in peoples’ everyday lives.”

Solmonese’s leadership has taken the organization from 750,000 members and supporters to more than 1,000,000. Read more on the community’s record of success during Solmonese’s tenure.

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Morning Man Classic: Jean-Claude Van Damme! actor known as “The Muscles from Brussels”, “JCVD” and “Van Damage” has had his share of troubles including struggles with cocaine and with Bipolar Disorder.

But Jean-Claude Van Damme is still making movies as he tries to return to the level of success he had in the 80s and 90s when he starred in such hits as Timecop, Bloodsport, Kickboxer, Double Impact, and Universal Soldier.

While he got great notices for 2008′s JCVD, he turned down Sylvester Stallone’s offer of a role in last summer’s The Expendables which ended up being a hit. He wisely accepted a role as a villain in the film’s upcoming sequel. He also has another Universal Soldier flick in the works.

At 50, it looks like he’s well on his way to a terrific second act!

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The pre-US Open activities of Rafa and Roger’s not known what impact Hurricane Irene will have on the US Open, the year’s fourth and final grand slam tournament scheduled to start on Monday.

All the players are in New York ready to go and, hopefully, will be playing some matches soon.

The winners of a combined 26 grand slam tournaments may be behind Novak Djokovic in the rankings these days, but they are tennis legends who are as much in demand as ever.

Federer, the winner of five consecutive US Opens from 2004-08, paid a morning visit to a Mercedes-Benz sponsor event in Manhattan in New York. He signed autographs and posed for pictures with fans who have grown even more passionate as Roger has slipped in the rankings.

Federer has partnered with Mercedes-Benz back in May, 2010 as part of a multi-year agreement to become the Luxury Mercedes-Benz Brand Ambassador. recently published an article about Federer’s still lucrative endorsement portfolio:

Federer is the highest-paid tennis player in the world over the past 12-months with earnings of $47 million from prize money, endorsements, exhibitions and appearance fees. He has only one tournament title this year after averaging eight wins annually since 2003, but his income has never been higher.

Federer has long-term deals with Credit Suisse, Jura, Lindt, National Suisse, Net Jets, Rolex and Wilson. This year he renewed his agreement with Mercedes-Benz which previously was for only China. It is now a global deal which doubled the value for Federer.

He also re-upped with Gillette which is considering using Federer as part of its 2012 Olympic sponsorship program in London where Federer is a legend thanks to his six Wimbledon crowns. Federer is the only one of Gillette’s original “Champions” that had their endorsement contract renewed as the shaving giant dropped both Tiger Woods and Thierry Henry.

Federer’s biggest paycheck still comes from Nike. He re-signed with the sporting giant in 2008 for a 10-year deal that is the most lucrative endorsement package in tennis worth more than $10 million annually. In addition to his lucrative endorsement portfolio, Federer can command as much as $1 million per event for exhibitions outside the U.S.

Below is video of Federer being swarmed by fans at the Mercedes event. I’ve watched similar scenes at various tournaments over the years and can tell you that Federer is about as gracious to his fans as any champion could possibly be.

Meanwhile, Nadal appeared at Macy’s Armani Jeans shop Thursday night and some 400 fans chanted, “Rafa, Rafa.”

As for his modeling, the 25-year-old said: “I think it was good. It is the second time I have done the campaign.”

‘Now that I’m working with Armani [it] is a new experience,” he added. “It’s a different world that is very positive for me. I enjoy it a lot.’

Model material: Tennis player Rafael Nadal unveils his new Armani Jeans campaign at Macy's Herald Square on August 25, in New York City

Reports: Chaz Bono on “Dancing With the Stars” With the Stars, which has had very little LGBT representation in all its years on the air, has reportedly signed Chaz Bono as a celebrity contestant for its upcoming season.

This is GREAT news if it does indeed come to pass.

It’s not only a personal opportunity for the only child of Cher and Sonny Bono to take on a physical challenge, having him on such a high-profile show will be the most exposure most people will ever have had to a transgender person.

Chaz transitioned from the female Chastity Bono to the male Chaz Bono and his journey was chronicled in the documentary Becoming Chaz and the memoir Transition: the story of how I became a man.

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Lunch Break Video: Let’s enjoy some Captain & Tennille hits in celebration of Darryl Dragon’s birthday!’s the quiet half of the pop duo Captain & Tennille but crucial to their success.

Darryl Dragon, who turns 69 today, teamed with with Toni Tennille for a long string of hits in the 70s including Love Will Keep Us Together, Muskrat Love, Do That To Me One More Time, Shop Around, The Way That I Want to Touch You, Lonely Night and Can’t Stop Dancin’.

Darryl is unable to perform now because of of a neurological condition that causes tremors. Let’s enjoy some of the hits of Captain & Tennille.

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Designer-director Tom Ford is 50 today! icon and movie director Tom Ford turns 50 today!
We already knew what a great designer he was but boy, his 2010 directorial debut, A Single Man, was well beyond anyone’s expectations.
This seems as good a time as any to once again share an anecdote about when I met Tom on the red carpet of the 2008 GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles and I made a great, big fool of myself:Greg: “Here’s Tom Ford, THE Tom Ford. Oh, you really are this handsome.
Tom: Awe…you’re a FLIRT! Good! Go ahead! Flirt away!

Yeah, I really did say that. But I quickly regained my professional composure and we started to chat about his being at the awards to present an award to the late photographer Herb Ritts which was accepted by his friend, Cindy Crawford. Tom himself was honored by GLAAD in 2007.

I remarked on how visible Tom had been lately, appearing on the cover of Vanity Fair and the cover of OUT. Was he enjoying the higher profile?
Tom: “Before, I was working for another company and now I have my own brand and my own company and I am in a certain sense the face of my brand. I’m also the spirit of my brand. It’s my company! Of course it’s fun. I love my job, I love what I do but I’m not taken in or fooled by it. What I love doing is designing beautiful things, I love working, I love building things, I love making things. The rest of it is a kind of benefit. But it’s not something that drives me. I’m not driven to see my face on the cover of a magazine.”

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Happy Birthday to Clinton Luepp (aka Coco Peru!)

Miss-Coco-Peru,-by-Peter-Palladino - w.jpgFor 20 years now, Clinton Luepp has been entertaining audiences as the fabulous Coco Peru, a first-rate storyteller/monologist/singer.

Coco refers to herself as a “low-end celebrity drag queen” but the truth is, this is a brilliant performer with impeccable timing and lots of heart.

Last May, I attended opening night of Coco’s latest show There Comes a Time and she talked a little bit about getting older. Since today is Coco’s birthday, here are some of her thoughts about the passage of time:

“Let’s face it, I feel old. Time rolls on … Rolls on like a f*****g steamroller. Some of us get more steamrolled than others.”

Coco also has trouble with all the modern technology from iPads to DVRs: “The Wizard of Oz came on once a year and that’s when you watched it and if you missed it, well tough sh*t Dorothy!”

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Chord Overstreet says he chose not to return to “Glee” as a recurring character so he could focus on music the powers that be at Glee didn’t sign trouty-mouthed blond Chord Overstreet as a full-fledged regular for season three, he was disappointed but prepared to move on.

“Of course I was bummed initially,” he tells TV/Line. “I had the best time working on the show and I had one of the best life experiences. It was a blast. But I decided to look at it as an opportunity to dive into my music.”

Producers had invited Chord back on a recurring basis and dangled the possibility that he could become a regular later in the season. At this point, he turned them down.

“I’ve been writing music my entire life and I had an opportunity to work on a record,” he said. “It’s something I have a huge passion for. I did a lot of thinking and I felt like it was a good time to work on my album and focus on that avenue of my career. They offered me the chance to come back for a few episodes, but there was nothing guaranteed so I decided to dive into the music thing. And that’s been my main priority the past two months.”

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Morning Men Encores: David Salmoni!

dave-salmoni---08.jpg dave salmoni image by spearlight Originally posted Friday, September 3, 2010
Animal Planet’s Dave Salmoni may or may not still be dating E! talk show host and author Chelsea Handler but one thing is for sure: the man is a stud muffin.
Dave, who turns 35 tomorrow, is a Canadian animal handler, entertainer and television producer.   He has his own production company called Triosphere which specializes in wildlife films.
I saw him on Jay Leno’s show earlier this summer and scribbled down his name because I knew he’d have to be a future Morning Man.
Dave was host of the show Animal Face-Off and currently hosts and produces the show Rogue Nature on Discovery Channel as well as After the Attack and Into the Pride on Animal Planet. did a sexy photo shoot for Flaunt magazine recently and had this to say: “I think the sexiest think you can do is get into consevationism. I believe that the most conservation problems have become a financial discussion. Most of these problems are in poro countries where the population needs the same resources that hte animals need. That conflict always results in the animals coming off second best.”

He added: “When people start to realize that fresh water is going to be out most important asset over the next 50 years, you’re really going to see people say, ‘Why don’t we have any clean, fresh water? Oh, we didn’t conserve. Generally speaking, people would like to have animals around. But when push comes to shove, they would also like to have that really nice car.”
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Zachary Quinto to play gay character in new Ryan Murphy series “An American Horror Story” Quinto, best known for for TV’s Heroes and for his role as Spock in the Star Trek feature film, is in negotiations to play a gay role in the new TV series American Horror Story from Glee’s Ryan Murphy.

Deadline Hollywood reports that Quinto would appear in a “major arc” of the FX show as Chad, the gay former owner of the house occupied by Ben Harmon (Dylan McDermott) and his wife Vivien (Connie Britton) who, dealing with the aftermath of Ben’s adultery, move along with their kids into a new house that seems to know all about their fears and plays on them.

Quinto will make his debut in a big two-part Halloween episode. The first part will air in the series’ regular Wednesday time slot Oct. 26, followed by Part 2 on Halloween night.

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“I Love Lucy” Friday: In celebration of the show’s 60th anniversary, here is the show’s rarely-seen movie Happy I Love Lucy Friday everyone!

I’ve written about I Love Lucy: The Movie in the past but didn’t realize until recently that I had never seen it!

hen Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz were riding high in 1953 as the stars of I Love Lucy, they decided to capitalize on their show’s popularity by signing to do the movie The Long, Long Trailer.

What is not widely known is that the release of the movie in 1954 about a couple on a rocky honeymoon meant pulling the plug on I Love Lucy: The Movie, a feature film version of their sitcom that had already been completed.

MGM, the studio releasing Trailer, balked because they felt that having the “Lucy” movie in theaters would interfere with the film’s marketing.

I Love Lucy: The Movie had a successful test screening in Bakersfield before it was shelved, then lost for many years, before being located in a CBS vault by Dann Cahn, one of the handful of people who had been looking for it.

The movie was actually three episodes of the sitcom, The Ballet, The Benefit and Breaking the Lease, which were linked together with 12 minutes of specially shot footage featuring Ball, Arnaz, Vivian Vance and William Frawley — who made up the classic quartet of Lucy, Ricky, Fred and Ethel.

The movie was a behind-the-scenes look at I Love Lucy, which began with two audience members waiting in line for the show and then shows Arnaz warming up the studio audience and introducing the cast.

I present it to you today in its entirety. Enjoy!

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Snapped! Jesse Tyler Ferguson on vacation!

Jesse Tyler Ferguson Justin Mikita Hawaii shirltess

Hey there Mitchell, what on Earth are you doing in Hawaii with that hot guy when you’ve got your husband Cam and daughter Lily waiting for you at home?

Oh wait! This is real life, not an episode of Modern Family.

Sorry, sometimes the lines blur for me.

Just had to share a few pics of Jesse Tyler Ferguson and his boyfriend Justin Mikita as they were spotted having a beach day in Maui, Hawaii.

Photos via Socialite Life.

Jesse Tyler Ferguson Justin Mikita Hawaii shirltess

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