Nicki Minaj announced her return by simply stating “MEGATRON” on both Twitter and Instagram. Returning to IG again, Minaj brings her stunning beauty to announce the mysterious release will be available next Friday.
June 21 will mark the day that we hear or see “Megatron,” but there is still heavy speculation on what exactly it will be. Could be a project, single, short film, who knows. But with a date now available, the game got a week to get their moves together. There will also be a Queen Radio on the same day to mark the occasion.
Images shared on Instagram also show what is likely a music video shoot. It’s officially Nicki SZN.
Education starts at home and legendary Queensbridge MCNas is planning to help our children start off on the right path.
On Thursday (June 13) the “If I Ruled The World’ rapper made the announcement via a post on Instagram, writing, “My first kids book is on the way,” mentioning that he and Mass Appeal have launched a kids brand called MAJR.
The description of MAJR reads: “Our mission is to inspire future generations through the creation of unique toys, apparel, and innovative learning tools. Major is here to reflect the diverse hues of both the modern family and popular culture, because education starts in the crib.”
Nas posted a photo of a potential book cover on his Instagram. The book is titled I Know I Can after his children empowering song, “I Can.” The book series is listed on MAJR’s official website as part of a series “empowering kids to be whatever they want to be when they grow up.”
MAJR launches with a selection of apparel available with matching designs for parents and children. The first toy in the collection, “Boomblox”, a set of building blocks that form into an old-school boombox, has also been announced, with shipping expected to take place in the fall.
In addition to apparel and toys, a cornerstone of the new brand will be a collection of kids’ books driven by some of the biggest names in hip hop. The first book, inspired by Mass Appeal co-owner Nas’ hit song “I Can”, will be the “I Know I Can” book series, empowering kids to be whatever they want to be when they grow up.
“I’ve always understood the limitless power of young people, and being a father has brought it even closer to home,” said Nas. “We’re introducing MAJR to prepare today’s youth for tomorrow’s world. Our goal is to help children of all backgrounds fully realize their potential by tapping into their creativity in new and innovative ways.”
While the book’s release date has not been announced, Nas will be busy performing all through the country as he kicks off his 22-date North American summer tour with Mary J. Blige on July 11.
Kid Cudi is one of the most talented rappers to simultaneously carve out a lane in the film world as well, already starring in the 2014 movie adaptation of Need for Speed, the Shia LaBeouf-directed short film MANIAC from 2011 and Kanye West’s “Seven Screen Experience” 2012 short film Cruel Summer amongst other projects. Now, the Man on the Moon emcee is fulfilling one of his childhood dreams by starring in the new Bill & Ted: Face the Music film alongside Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter.
Really excited about Bill and Ted man this is gonna be unreal. These movies were my childhood!! Crazy dude.
Announced by Deadline earlier today, the “threequel” will continue the duo’s hilarious time-traveling epic that started with Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure in 1989 and was last seen three decades ago with the 1991 sequel Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey.
Here’s how Deadline describes the plot for Bill & Ted: Face the Music:
“Yet to fulfill their rock and roll destiny, the now middle-aged best friends, Bill (Alex Winter) and Ted (Keanu Reeves), set out on a new adventure, when a visitor from the future warns them that only their song can save life as we know it and bring harmony to the universe. Along the way, they will be helped by their daughters (Brigette Lundy-Paine & Samara Weaving), old friends, a new batch of historical figures, and a few music legends.”
Whether Cudi plays one of said music legends or a completely new character is still under wraps, but it’s being reported that his role will be pretty significant. While many are still holding their breath for a new season of How to Make It in America — a Domingo-led spinoff would be dope, too! — this is a role that we can definitely get behind in the meantime. Congrats, Cud!
‘Bill & Ted: Face the Music‘ is scheduled to premiere on August 21, 2020, directed by Dean Parisot and based off a screenplay by Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon. We’ll keep you all updated as more information arrives regarding Cudi’s involvement in the project and film production overall.
It’s a well-known fact that Nipsey Hussle was a man about his people during his short lifetime, and thankfully we’ll see him being honored for his humanitarianism during the 2019 BET Awards ceremony happening this summer.
The South Los Angeles-bred emcee, born Ermias Joseph Asghedom, will posthumously receive the Humanitarian Award for “the spirit of uplift he evoked in his community, his work as a devoted son, brother, father, partner, friend and all-around community advocate and philanthropist, musician and businessman” according to the official press release by BET.
Take a look below at how BET further sums up their decision to honor the Crenshaw legend with one of its top honors of the night:
“Over the past few months, “Neighborhood Nip’s,” work as an entertainer was only a small piece of who he was, and that would have been superseded only by his remarkable and tenacious efforts to advance his community, empowering and employing underprivileged groups through real estate investments, science and tech learning centers for teens. Nipsey’s work within his community reflects the artist outside of the world of music, and BET Networks is honored to acknowledge his work in front of his peers as well as the world of entertainment on one of its biggest nights in black entertainment and culture.”
Connie Orlando, Executive Vice-President, Head of Programming and Executive Producer for this year’s BET Awards ceremony, gave her personal reasoning with the following statement: “As a prolific artist and leader, Nipsey Hussle was zealous about driving change for the betterment of his community, empowering and employing those in need and being an influential and highly respected leader. His passing was a tremendous loss to the entertainment industry and to the culture. We will continue to remember his advocacy and be inspired by the groundwork he set forth and his dire commitment to social change. We are forever grateful, humbled and honored to have experienced his presence and we are invested in doing our part to ensure that the marathon will indeed continue. It is an immense honor for us to recognize him with this year’s Humanitarian Award.”
Be sure to tune into the 2019 BET Awards live at 8PM EST on June 23, which is also scheduled to include a Nipsey tribute performance by YG, John Legend and DJ Khaled.
85 years ago, Hollywood observed and made commentary on the social demon of colorism.
White-American director John M. Stahl brought to life William Hurlbut’s screenplay (based off Fannie Hurst’s novel). Disrobing various racial tropes about Blackness of film, this collective peeled away how difficult skin complexion is for Black people in America, and how the issues around Blackness are not necessarily based on beauty or intellect, but how it translates to access and assimilation.
Who can forget this movie, Imitation of Life, where you can see a Black-skinned Ms. Deliah Johnson and her white-skinned daughter Peola tussling with skin based identity? This issue mirrors not just things that were believed in the 1930s… but those sentiments that continue to be a stain on our cultural concepts of value, beauty and acceptance in the new millennium. Reaching back to slavery, this notion is not just cultural but also systemic and Hurst, Hurlbut and Stahl scrapped the surface of this in this movie. Now in 2019, Power‘s star Naturi Naughton has stepped up to pick up the charge, erode the wicked concept of colorism and systemically impact what Blackness means by working with Procter and Gamble, My Black is Beautiful in partnership with DoSomething.org and their call-to-action campaign #RedefineBlack.
Naturi understands first hand how colorism impacted her a young dark-skinned girl. As one of the founding members of the R&B singing group 3LW, she was known not only by her gifted voice, but by her color. It gave her a complex. Was she pretty enough? How did she rank in comparison to the creamy complected young ladies that shared the stage with her in the group, and the charts with her in the late 90s.
“It is so important for me to represent this cause. I always want to support Black girls because I was there,” she shares. “I want them to know that those insecurities will wear off eventually.”
For her it was coming out of 3LW, going to college, having a community that supported her and then achieving success in another arena. Broadway, with all of its diversity helped redefine beauty and value for her. She was in the revival show, Hairspray and that was important shift in how she saw herself. Television also helped.
“It was an evolution for me being a darker skinned woman… ” She reveals ” Which is why didn’t I always feel beautiful. But then I started to get really powerful roles like Tasha in Power. I was also the first African-American bunny in the Playboy Club television show. Even when I was cast as Lil’ Kim in Notorious. All of these roles helped me understand that my Black was beautiful”
It was all serendipitous.
She did not seek out roles that would celebrate her dark skin, but by what she believes is the intervention of God, accepted jobs that empowered her to walk in confidence. Taking control of what she understood was beautiful in her self, her complexion and the complexity of these Black characters were her first steps towards the powerful process of redefinition.
Motherhood also helped in the evolution of her awareness and why she believes it is important to redefining the word in systems of academia and socially accepted spaces.
“My responsibility is personal in a way because I am the mother of a little girl with Black skin.” She tells The Source, “She will grow up unfortunately in a culture the does not include her. I have to work to redefine that so that her world is better. Being a mother has shown me what beauty is… and given me a sense of accountability to participate in redefinition.”
And this pours over also into her work in Power.
Her character, Tasha St. Patrick, is will emerge as a fighter for her family. She sees her character as much stronger than before, never giving up on her family. A character like this for Naturi is evident of how Hollywood is needed to reshape the word “Black” and how people see Black people. This season Tasha will show the world just how strong Black women are as mothers, particularly mothers who no longer look to their mate to give them identity. Naturi believes that “Strength is the redefinition of Black.”
Check out how this campaign will shift how culture in a very real way.
The plan is to have the public (people of all races) to go to www.MBIB.com to join the movement to redefine the word “Black” by signing a petition to send a clear message to dictionaries that it’s time update the word. My Black is Beautiful and DoSomething.org will send the petition to all major dictionaries including Merriam-Webster and Oxford insisting that they update their definition of Black to represent beauty and empowerment. The campaign will also ask that the dictionaries prioritize ranking of ‘Black ‘as it relates to identity and skin color, driving visual and semantic distance between Black identity and the association with something that is evil, soiled or stained, update the references/examples of usage of ‘Black’ to phrases Black people use to identify themselves (i.e. Black is beautiful) and finally capitalization of ‘Black’ when referring people.
Thanks to Nas and Will Smith, teenagers all over the world will get the chance to learn about finances in the most fun way possible. According to BusinessWire, Nas and Will Smith are among 11 people in a funding found for a finance based app tailored for teenagers called Step.
Step is an all-in-one banking solution that combines basic features and use of checking, savings, credit or debit cards into one bank account that is pretty easy to use. Its simplistic user experience is tailored specifically for young adults. Step co-founder and CEO, CJ MacDonald expressed to BusinessWire that the easy use is apart of their strategy for educating their young users about financial literacy.
“Teens and parents are ready for a seamless mobile banking experience, one meticulously designed for their needs,” said MacDonald. “We’ve partnered with the best in the business to create the right solutions for the next generation. As we move into a cashless era where digital content and transactions fuel our daily lives, the need for innovation in financial services increases. We want Gen Z to be more equipped and educated when it comes to money.”
The app will enable users to seamlessly send and receive money, shop online and in-store, and access to virtual wallets in the likes of Apple Pay and Google Pay. The Step app also comes with a card, appropriately labeled the Step card which also comes with a “fee-free and interest-bearing” bank account. Users are also not required to have a minimum balance and aren’t hit with any hidden or overdraft fees. Parents of account holders will get the chance to monitor their teen’s account and have the opportunity to set limits and guidelines.
Will Smith’s Dreamers fund and Nas, alongside Wndrco, Ronnie Lott, Matt Rutler, Kevin Gould, Noah, and Jonah Goodhart joined existing Step investors Crosslink Capital, Collaborative Fund and Sesame Venture for a total $22.5 Million Series A funding for the project. The funding follows the overflow of Step’s waitlist which exceeded 500,000 since it has been announced.
The world is now paying attention to one of the most egregious miscarriages of justice done to five Black and Brown boys in the modern era. Known as the Central Park Five, Antron McCray, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana, Kevin Richardson and Korey Wise, spent years in prison for a rape crime that they did not commit. In 1989, the young Black and Brown teen-aged boys apprehended for “wilding in the park,” and later attached to a rape that happened the same night of their melee. Well, that statement in partially true. Korey Wise was not even in the park at the time. Korey was only present in support of his friend Yusef… a choice to be dedicated to his homie changed the rest of his life.
The boys were pressed for at least seven hours without attorneys or parents. By the time their “confessions” were taped, the boys had been peppered with threats, starved and promised they could go home if they pinned the story on a list of names of other boys that they did not know. It is important to note that the only two that really knew each other were Salaam and Wise. The boys complied, lying under pressure and this was the nail that doomed the minors.
The young men were convicted, based off these confessions. There was no evidence to support their guilt. They were later exonerated after the real rapist stepped up and took responsibility for the vicious and violent crime he perpetrated on the young jogger thant night.
Ken Burns produced an amazing documentary about their case. But many have come to know about this case because of Ava Duvernay’s new Netflix film, When They See Us.
Recently released is Korey Wise’s actual confession. Watch how the Assistant D.A. Elizabeth Lederer gives him a can of Pepsi Cola as she seals his doom.
Well, now her decision to prosecute these young men, have sealed her own professional doom. Earlier this week, she was forced to resign by students protesting her professorship at Columbia University. You took their life, the community will now take yours.
Cuba Gooding Jr. is about to turn himself over to the authorities and it’s not an act. The Academy Award winner will reportedly surrender to authorities in response to being accused of groping a woman at an NYC rooftop bar.
According to TMZ, he plans to surrender Thursday and expects to be booked for a misdemeanor charge of forcible touching.
“The NYPD takes sexual assault extremely seriously and urges anyone who has been a victim to file a police report so we can perform a comprehensive investigation, and offer support and services to survivors,” police said in a statement on Monday (Jun. 10).
“Responding cops searched the area for Gooding but did not find him,” continues the site. “The case was referred to the NYPD Special Victims Division, the sources said, which is probing a potential forcible touching charge.”
“All I have to say is the following, in this time and age we need to let people speak for themselves; we have to let people express themselves,” he said. “And now I’m giving the process the chance to show what really happened, what went down.”
The Freemans will back in the saddle. Also, Sony has announced that the creator of the Boondocks, Aaron McGruder is slated to make his return as director.
On Wednesday, Variety reported that Sony Pictures Animation has announced a host of new projects slated to be released in 2020, including a Boondocks “reimagining. The fourth season of is the series is the only season not directed by McGruder.
To ensure that the show will stay on the cutting edge of giving satirical commentary, the brass at Sony announced that McGruder will helm the chair of creative direction. Studio executives described a plot that is eerily similar to the current political sphere, one that will follow the Freemans’ battles against Uncle Ruckus, who is now an evil tyrant running the Woodcrest County government. Huey, Riley, and Grandad will attempt to fight Ruckus’s iron fist in ways that are “both topical and radical” Complex reports.
John Witherspoon, who voices Robert “Granddad” Freeman on the show, recently hinted about the show’s potential reboot during an appearance on The Joe Rogan Experience.