The Oscars are coming up and to prepare we decided to celebrate some actresses who have made history! Many of them have helped break barriers for women in the male-dominated industry, but there is still a lot of work to be done. That's very evident since some of these made the list due to contributions they have made as recently as last year. Here are 12 ladies that have bravely made history in film and television.
1. Hattie McDaniel
This supporting actress won for her role in the classic, Gone with the Wind in 1940, making her the first to black woman to win an Academy Award.
2. Halle Berry
Lee Daniels Entertainment/Giphy
In 2002 this hot actress was the first black actress to take home a Best Actress Academy Award for her role in Monster's Ball.
3. Hedy Lamarr
In 1933, this 18-year-old leading lady's role portrayed the first onscreen female orgasm in a non-pornographic film called, Ecstasy.
4. Luise Rainer
Technically this actress made history through two roles. Luise was the first person to earn two Academy Awards in two consecutive years. One of them was for her role in The Great Ziegfeld in 1936 and the other was for The Good Earth in 1937.
5. Sophia Loren
The beautiful actress was the first woman to win a Best Actress Academy Award for a foreign film, for Two Women.
6. Fay Bainter
Before Fay, no other actress was ever up for Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress in the same year. In 1939, she was up for supporting for Jezebel and best actress for White Banners.
7. Lucille Ball
Everyone knows about how iconic this funny lady is, but did you know that she was the first woman to run a major television show all thanks to the success of her role on I Love Lucy? Probably not!
8. Laverne Cox
The beautiful actress is the first transgender person to be nominated for an Emmy thanks to her role as Sophia Burset in Orange Is The New Black.
9. Meryl Streep
The Academy's sweetheart is currently holding the most nominations out of any other actor with 19 Academy Award nominations. Impressive!
10. Teresa Graves
You might be familiar with Kerry Washington making history for being the first black woman in 40 years to lead a network drama, but this beautiful woman proceeded her. This foxy lady played an undercover cop in Get Christie Love!
11. Rita Moreno
This beauty really stole the show in her role as Anita in West Side Story. The performance was so great that she took home an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, making her the second Hispanic to do so. However, she is the only Hispanic female to have an EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony)! Only 12 people in the world have completed this high honor and Moreno achieved hers in 1977.
12. Margaret Cho
This comedian starred on All-American Girl, the first sitcom to star an East Asian family. It ended after one season due to low ratings, but Cho certainly hasn't let that stop her. She has later starred on Drop Dead Diva and more.
For the bulk of every Rocky and Bullwinkle episode, moose and squirrel would engage in high concept escapades that satirized geopolitics, contemporary cinema, and the very fabrics of the human condition. With all of that to work with, there's no excuse for why the pair and their Soviet nemeses haven't gotten a decent movie adaptation. But the ingenious Mr. Peabody and his faithful boy Sherman are another story, intercut between Rocky and Bullwinkle segments to teach kids brief history lessons and toss in a nearly lethal dose of puns. Their stories and relationship were much simpler, which means that bringing their shtick to the big screen would entail a lot more invention — always risky when you're dealing with precious material.
For the most part, Mr. Peabody & Sherman handles the regeneration of its heroes aptly, allowing for emotionally substance in their unique father-son relationship and all the difficulties inherent therein. The story is no subtle metaphor for the difficulties surrounding gay adoption, with society decreeing that a dog, no matter how hyper-intelligent, cannot be a suitable father. The central plot has Peabody hosting a party for a disapproving child services agent and the parents of a young girl with whom 7-year-old Sherman had a schoolyard spat, all in order to prove himself a suitable dad. Of course, the WABAC comes into play when the tots take it for a spin, forcing Peabody to rush to their rescue.
Getting down to personals, we also see the left brain-heavy Peabody struggle with being father Sherman deserves. The bulk of the emotional marks are hit as we learn just how much Peabody cares for Sherman, and just how hard it has been to accept that his only family is growing up and changing.
But more successful than the new is the film's handling of the old — the material that Peabody and Sherman purists will adore. They travel back in time via the WABAC Machine to Ancient Egypt, the Renaissance, and the Trojan War, and 18th Century France, explaining the cultural backdrop and historical significance of the settings and characters they happen upon, all with that irreverent (but no longer racist) flare that the old cartoons enjoyed. And oh... the puns.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman is a f**king treasure trove of some of the most amazingly bad puns in recent cinema. This effort alone will leave you in awe.
The film does unravel in its final act, bringing the science-fiction of time travel a little too close to the forefront and dropping the ball on a good deal of its emotional groundwork. What seemed to be substantial building blocks do not pay off in the way we might, as scholars of animated family cinema, have anticipated, leaving the movie with an unfinished feeling.
But all in all, it's a bright, compassionate, reasonably educational, and occasionally funny if not altogether worthy tribute to an old favorite. And since we don't have our own WABAC machine to return to a time of regularly scheduled Peabody and Sherman cartoons, this will do okay for now.
If nothing else, it's worth your time for the puns.
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Summit via Everett Collection
You can imagine that Renny Harlin, director and one quadrant of the writing team for The Legend of Hercules, began his pitch as such: We'll start with a war, because lots of these things start with wars. It feels like this was the principal maxim behind a good deal of the creative choices in this latest update of the Ancient Greek myth. There are always horse riding scenes. There are generally arena battles. There are CGI lions, when you can afford 'em. Oh, and you've got to have a romantic couple canoodling at the base of a waterfall. Weaving them all together cohesively would be a waste of time — just let the common threads take form in a remarkably shouldered Kellan Lutz and action sequences that transubstantiate abjectly to and fro slow-motion.
But pervading through Lutz's shirtless smirks and accent continuity that calls envy from Johnny Depp's Alice in Wonderland performance is the obtrusive lack of thought that went into this picture. A proverbial grab bag of "the basics" of the classic epic genre, The Legend of Hercules boasts familiarity over originality. So much so that the filmmakers didn't stop at Hercules mythology... they barely started with it, in fact. There's more Jesus Christ in the character than there is the Ancient Greek demigod, with no lack of Gladiator to keep things moreover relevant. But even more outrageous than the void of imagination in the construct of Hercules' world is its script — a piece so comically dim, thin, and idiotic that you will laugh. So we can't exactly say this is a totally joyless time at the movies.
Summit via Everett Collection
Surrounding Hercules, a character whose arc takes him from being a nice enough strong dude to a nice enough strong dude who kills people and finally owns up to his fate — "Okay, fine, yes, I guess I'm a god" — are a legion of characters whose makeup and motivations are instituted in their opening scenes and never change thereafter. His de facto stepdad, the teeth-baring King Amphitryon (Scott Adkins), despises the boy for being a living tribute to his supernatural cuckolding; his half-brother Iphicles (Liam Garrigan) is the archetypical scheming, neutered, jealous brother figure right down to the facial scar. The dialogue this family of mongoloids tosses around is stunningly brainless, ditto their character beats. Hercules can't understand how a mystical stranger knows his identity, even though he just moments ago exited a packed coliseum chanting his name. Iphicles defies villainy and menace when he threatens his betrothed Hebe (Gaia Weiss), long in love with Hercules, with the terrible fate of "accepting [him] and loving [their] children equally!" And the dad... jeez, that guy must really be proud of his teeth.
With no artistic feat successfully accomplished (or even braved, really) by this movie, we can at the very least call it inoffensive. There is nothing in The Legend of Hercules with which to take issue beyond its dismal intellect, and in a genre especially prone to regressive activity, this is a noteworthy triumph. But you might not have enough energy by the end to award The Legend of Hercules with this superlative. Either because you'll have laughed yourself into a coma at the film's idiocy, or because you'll have lost all strength trying to fend it off.
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Daft Punk bassist Nathan East has recruited pals Stevie Wonder, Sara Bareilles and Michael Mcdonald to work on his first solo album. The acclaimed musician has worked with popular artists such as Michael Jackson, Beyonce and Andrea Bocelli during his 30 years in the music industry, and now he's heading into the studio for an album of his own.
East will be releasing a yet-to-be-titled record next year (14), which will contain both original songs and covers.
He has already tapped Wonder, McDonald and Bareilles for the record, but is still hoping to enlist Eric Clapton and Anita Baker, who he's also worked with in the past.
East is also in talks for creating an accompanying documentary about the process of making the album.
Lions Gate via Everett Collection
When we last left our heroes, they had conquered all opponents in the 74th Annual Hunger Games, returned home to their newly refurbished living quarters in District 12, and fallen haplessly to the cannibalism of PTSD. And now we're back! Hitching our wagons once again to laconic Katniss Everdeen and her sweet-natured, just-for-the-camera boyfriend Peeta Mellark as they gear up for a second go at the Capitol's killing fields.
But hold your horses — there's a good hour and a half before we step back into the arena. However, the time spent with Katniss and Peeta before the announcement that they'll be competing again for the ceremonial Quarter Quell does not drag. In fact, it's got some of the film franchise's most interesting commentary about celebrity, reality television, and the media so far, well outweighing the merit of The Hunger Games' satire on the subject matter by having Katniss struggle with her responsibilities as Panem's idol. Does she abide by the command of status quo, delighting in the public's applause for her and keeping them complacently saturated with her smiles and curtsies? Or does Katniss hold three fingers high in opposition to the machine into which she has been thrown? It's a quarrel that the real Jennifer Lawrence would handle with a castigation of the media and a joke about sandwiches, or something... but her stakes are, admittedly, much lower. Harvey Weinstein isn't threatening to kill her secret boyfriend.
Through this chapter, Katniss also grapples with a more personal warfare: her devotion to Gale (despite her inability to commit to the idea of love) and her family, her complicated, moralistic affection for Peeta, her remorse over losing Rue, and her agonizing desire to flee the eye of the public and the Capitol. Oftentimes, Katniss' depression and guilty conscience transcends the bounds of sappy. Her soap opera scenes with a soot-covered Gale really push the limits, saved if only by the undeniable grace and charisma of star Lawrence at every step along the way of this film. So it's sappy, but never too sappy.
In fact, Catching Fire is a masterpiece of pushing limits as far as they'll extend before the point of diminishing returns. Director Francis Lawrence maintains an ambiance that lends to emotional investment but never imposes too much realism as to drip into territories of grit. All of Catching Fire lives in a dreamlike state, a stark contrast to Hunger Games' guttural, grimacing quality that robbed it of the life force Suzanne Collins pumped into her first novel.
Once we get to the thunderdome, our engines are effectively revved for the "fun part." Katniss, Peeta, and their array of allies and enemies traverse a nightmare course that seems perfectly suited for a videogame spin-off. At this point, we've spent just enough time with the secondary characters to grow a bit fond of them — deliberately obnoxious Finnick, jarringly provocative Johanna, offbeat geeks Beedee and Wiress — but not quite enough to dissolve the mystery surrounding any of them or their true intentions (which become more and more enigmatic as the film progresses). We only need adhere to Katniss and Peeta once tossed in the pit of doom that is the 75th Hunger Games arena, but finding real characters in the other tributes makes for a far more fun round of extreme manhunt.
But Catching Fire doesn't vie for anything particularly grand. It entertains and engages, having fun with and anchoring weight to its characters and circumstances, but stays within the expected confines of what a Hunger Games movie can be. It's a good one, but without shooting for succinctly interesting or surprising work with Katniss and her relationships or taking a stab at anything but the obvious in terms of sending up the militant tyrannical autocracy, it never even closes in on the possibility of being a great one.
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Rihanna has become embroiled in a nasty online feud with rising singer Teyana Taylor. The two women began sniping at each other after Rihanna posted a video mocking the singer on her Instagram.com page.
Taylor recently uploaded a video of herself singing a cover of Anita Baker's Caught Up In The Rapture, and the Umbrella star countered by posting a clip of her male hairstylist, dressed in a wig, performing the same song badly.
The apparent jibe appeared to provoke Taylor, who subsequently sent Rihanna a barrage of angry messages via Twitter.com, writing, "Don't play wit (with) me Rihanna f**k all this industry s**t, you & I know each other very well. Throwing subs (hints) 4 wat (sic)? U (you) got my # (number), don't show off... Y'all could bully everybody else & get away wit (with) that s**t but that s**t ain't gone (sic) work ova (over) here... Petty is petty and shade is shade, b**ch knew what the f*ck she was doing."
Rihanna later changed her Twitter homepage to a shot of an article comparing her estimated $90 million (£60 million) fortune to Taylor's $500,000 (£333,333), and wrote, "I refuse to help your career... you will not get an @ (Twitter mention) from me! Not til you pay me. No more free promo. I refuse."
Both women later deleted their tweets and Rihanna changed her home screen page again. When a fan asked Taylor, "(Why) did you delete ur (your) tweets after cussing Rihanna out for deleting hers?" she replied, "Mom dukes (my mother) asked me to take em (sic) down, so I did. But I still mean every single word."
Justin Timberlake, Nile Rodgers and Anita Baker are among the stars of the music industry who have voiced their sorrow following the death of jazz great George Duke. The legendary musician and producer passed away on Monday night (05Aug13) at St. John's Hospital in Los Angeles at the age of 67 after a battle with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia.
The news sent a shockwave through the music industry, and his famous friends and fans were quick to pay tribute to the Grammy-winning star who helped create hits for musicians including Michael Jackson, Miles Davis and Frank Zappa.
Pop superstar Timberlake hailed Duke as his inspiration, writing in a post on Twitter.com, "RIP George Duke. Funk, Jazz, Music legend... One of the greatest," while Chic star Rodgers mourned the loss of a friend, adding, "George Duke RIP my co-music director Montreux Jazz (Festival) 2006 - Your funk made us 'Reach For It'."
R&B superstar Baker writes, "R.I.P. George Duke, legendary jazz/funk keyboardist/producer," and songwriter Diane Warren offers, "So sorry to hear of the passing of George Duke. Thank U (sic) for the music. Legend."
Other stars who have posted tributes to Duke include Janelle Monae, Holly Robinson Peete and Josh Groban.
Bollywood star Jagdish Raj has died at the age of 85. The actor passed away at his home in Mumbai, India on Sunday (28Jul13).
His son-in-law Rakesh Malhotra says, "Jagdish Raj had been in and out of hospital for the past two years and had respiratory problems. He passed away this morning due to respiratory arrest."
Raj was famous for playing police officers in Bollywood movies, and holds the Guiness World Record for “the most typecast actor” due to playing an inspector in 144 films.
He is survived by his daughters, actress Anita Raj and Roopa Mahotra.
West Side Story icon Rita Moreno will be honoured for her career success with a special lifetime achievement award next year (14). The Oscar-winning actress, most famous for her role as Anita in the 1961 movie version of the classic musical, will be presented with the SAG-AFTRA Life Achievement trophy at the Screen Actors Guild Awards in January (14). The prize is the highest honour handed out at the ceremony.
It's the latest award for the star's mantelpiece - the 81 year old is one of the few performers to boast an Academy Award, an Emmy, a Grammy, and a Tony.
Moreno is still working into her eighties, and she currently stars as Fran Drescher's mother in Happily Divorced.
A treasure trove of lost images of the Rolling Stones are to be exhibited in London after the photographer's son stumbled across the collection following his father's death. Eric Swayne, who briefly dated George Harrison's first wife Pattie Boyd, took the shots at his studio in the 1960s and his son Tom didn't even know about the snaps until he found them while cleaning up his dad's home after he passed away in 2007.
The never-before-seen photos will go on display at the Proud gallery in Chelsea from 13 June (13).
The collection features images of Keith Richards, Mick Jagger and Charlie Watts, as well as photos of Richards' girlfriend Anita Pallenburg, model Chrissie Shrimpton, Boyd and actress Catherine Deneuve.
Swayne's son says, "They're just test shots for a friend, a whole series of them (Rolling Stones trio) fooling around in dad's flat with Chrissie Shrimpton."