JENNIFER HUDSON: ARETHA FRANKLIN CHOSE ME FOR MORE THAN TALENT
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Jennifer Hudson believes Aretha Franklin chose her to portray Franklin in the movie “Respect” not just because of her singing and acting, but because of her past. Hudson says people like her who have suffered great loss do not like to talk about it with others who have not. Three members of Hudson’s family were murdered in 2008. Hudson says Franklin had her own tragedies, and certain scenes left her drained. “Respect” is out Friday.
35 PEOPLE GET COVID-19 SHOTS AT GARTH BROOKS CONCERT
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Seventy-thousand people who attended Garth Brooks’ concert in Kansas City on Saturday were offered the COVID-19 vaccine. The Kansas City Health Department says 35 people got the shots. Those who got the vaccine also were upgraded to floor seats. Brooks, who says he is vaccinated, has encouraged fans to get vaccinated as well.
BONNAROO, SUMMERFEST REQUIRE COVID-19 CARDS
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Both Bonnaroo in Manchester, Tennessee, and Summerfest in Milwaukee will require attendees to show proof of COVID-19 vaccinations or recent negative COVID tests. Both festivals start Sept. 2. Two weeks ago, Lollapalooza in Chicago made similar requirements, as COVID cases surge around the country.
STEVIE NICKS CANCELS CONCERTS FOR 2021
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Stevie Nicks is calling off all her appearances for this year because of the rising cases of COVID-19. Nicks says even though she’s vaccinated, she’s 73 and she’s “still being extremely cautious.” She had five performances scheduled, all at festivals.
GLOBAL CITIZEN WILL GO AHEAD WITH GLOBAL CONCERT EVENT
NEW YORK (AP) – Even will.i.am has his doubts about whether it’s smart to hold a concert during a pandemic across six continents next month – and he’s one of the headliners. The advocacy group Global Citizen will have a 24-hour broadcast on Sept. 25 of concerts that include 60,000 people at New York’s Central Park and 20,000 in Paris. Will.i.am, who will play Paris with the Black Eyed Peas, acknowledges there’s a part of him that says, “I don’t want to do it. I don’t want to go,” then he asks himself, “Do I want to live that way?” He says it’s a question every person must ask themselves. All who attend will be required to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test, and all must wear masks. The New York lineup includes Coldplay, Billie Eilish (EYE’-lish), Jennifer Lopez, Lizzo and Meek Mill, while Paris will feature Ed Sheeran, Doja Cat and H.E.R. (HER).
IN ROUGH OLYMPICS, VIEWERS PERKED UP A BIT IN SECOND WEEK
NEW YORK (AP) – In what was otherwise a rough two weeks in Tokyo for NBC Universal, viewers perked up a bit in the second week of the games when the U.S. team’s performance did the same. NBC’s viewership during the second week was down 46% compared to the second week in the Rio de Janeiro Games in 2016. The first week, NBC was down 52%. Overall, prime time Olympics viewership when NBC, cable networks and streaming is figured in averaged 15.6 million people in Tokyo. The Nielsen company said that was down 42% compared to Rio.
NEW YORK (AP) – Here are the top ten most-watched programs in prime time for the week of Aug. 2-8, according to the Nielsen company.
1. “Summer Olympics” (Tuesday), NBC, 14.31 million.
2. “Summer Olympics” (Monday), NBC, 13.71 million.
3. “Summer Olympics” (Wednesday), NBC, 11.01 million.
4. “Summer Olympics” (Thursday), NBC, 10.99 million.
5. “Summer Olympics” (Friday), NBC, 9.85 million.
6. “Summer Olympics Closing Ceremony,” NBC, 8.82 million.
7. “Summer Olympics” (Saturday), NBC, 8.45 million.
8. NFL Exhibition Football: Dallas vs. Pittsburgh, Fox, 7.31 million.
9. “60 Minutes,” CBS, 6.10 million.
10. “Tokyo Gold,” NBC, 5.84 million.
JENNIFER HUDSON PLAYS HER IDOL ARETHA FRANKLIN IN ‘RESPECT’
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Jennifer Hudson has in some ways been preparing to play Aretha Franklin for her entire life, but she was surprised when the Queen of Soul asked her to take on the role following her Oscar win for “Dreamgirls” in 2007. “Respect” would take almost 15 years to make it to the big screen, during which time Franklin died. Hudson believes that it’s the perfect time for the movie and that audiences may emerge from the film with a newfound respect for Franklin. The film from director Liesl Tommy follows the singer from childhood through the 1972 recording of the gospel album “Amazing Grace.” “Respect? opens nationwide Friday.
‘CODA’: A LANDMARK CROWD-PLEASER FOR A YEAR LIGHT ON CROWDS
NEW YORK (AP) – The coming-of-age story about the only hearing member in a deaf family “CODA” is poised to be something that’s been hard to find in a year light on crowds: a bona fide, heart-bursting, tell-everyone-about-it crowd-pleaser. Starring a trio of sensational actors who are deaf — Marlee Matlin, Troy Kotsur and Daniel Durant — “CODA” is also unlike most heart-on-its-sleeve movies before it. It’s a crowd-pleaser that expands just who’s in “the crowd,” enlarging a movie world that seldom depicts deaf lives dynamically or authentically. It’s a landmark film in on-screen representation that also proves just how much the movies have been missing. Apple will release it in theaters and on its streaming service Friday.
PBS CHIEF: DIVERSITY EFFORTS NOT ALL ‘OUR BEST,’ CHANGES SET
LOS ANGELES (AP) – The chief executive of PBS says the public broadcasting service has fallen short on some aspects of diversity. PBS CEO Paula Kerger says it’s taking steps toward comprehensive change to be overseen by a new executive hired for the task. Cecilia Loving is joining PBS as senior vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion, reporting to Kerger. Loving has been serving as a deputy commissioner and chief diversity officer for the New York City Fire Department. The PBS head also announced a multimillion-dollar commitment to support the work of underrepresented filmmakers, and said all producers will provide a diversity and inclusion plan for all PBS programs.