Oscar Isaac to Lend Voice to HBO Max’s “A World of Calm” Series

Oscar Isaac is helping bring the calm…

HBO Max has ordered A World of Calm, featuring the 41-year-old Guatemalan & Cuban actor’s voice.

Oscar Isaac

The series is based on Calm, a popular sleep and meditation app, and will be narrated by several big names like Isaac.

The 10-episode order, co-produced by Calm and Nutopia, is HBO Max’s first brush with the health and wellness space and 

From the creators of the Calm app and Nutopia, the series combines mesmeric imagery with narration by A-list stars like Isaac, Mahershala AliIdris ElbaNicole Kidman, Zoë KravitzLucy LiuCillian Murphy and Keanu Reeves.

Here’s the logline: A timely antidote for our modern lives, each half-hour episode takes audiences on an immersive visual journey into another world. Building on Calm’s Sleep Stories– bedtime stories for grown-ups – each relaxing tale is designed to transform how you feel. Viewers will be transported into tranquility through scientifically engineered narratives, enchanting music and astounding footage to naturally calm the body and soothe the mind.

“With the considerable amount of stress and chaos we are all experiencing at this particularly challenging time, we could all use a bit of guided relaxation, and A World of Calmis here to help,” said Jennifer O’Connell, EVP Non-fiction and Kids Programming at HBO Max.

“Although this collaboration has been in the works for many months,” said Nutopia CEO and founder Jane Root, “this series has been entirely created during quarantine using Nutopia’s worldwide network of award-winning cinematographers and filmmakers. We hope this series of serene stories will bring a sense of much needed calm to audiences.”

Added Calm co-founder and co-CEO Michael Acton Smith: “Calm started life as a meditation app, but the brand has evolved far beyond that. We are delighted to bring the magic behind our audio Sleep Stories to the screen for the first time. These experiences are visual Valium and will help people relax and unwind during these stressful times.”

J Balvin Gives Tour of His Minimalist Colombian Homes to Architectural Digest

There’s no place like homes for J Balvin… And, he’s letting you in for a visit.

When he isn’t in New York, the 35-year-old Cololmbian reggaeton singer, whose real name is José Álvaro Osorio Balvin, lives in his native country, splitting time between a loft in the city of Medellín, and a retreat in the mountains of Llanogrande, just 30 minutes away. 

J Balvin House in Architectural DigestPhoto credit Anita Calero
Photo credit: Anita Calero

The “Mi Gente” singer recently opened up the two homes in a cover story for Architectural Digest’s July/August issue, proving that despite his bold style choices — including hair that has been every color of the rainbow — Balvin prefers a minimalist feel in home design.  

“Architecture, music, fashion — they’re all forms of expression,” Balvin says of the two properties, both designed by Medellín-based firm 5 Sólidos. “When it comes to the places I live, I definitely take a less-is-more approach. A house should be a place where you can rest your spirit. I’ve tried to create places that feed my soul, not my ego.”

J Balvin House in Architectural DigestPhoto credit Anita Calero
Photo credit: Anita Calero

In his Medellín apartment — which Balvin describes as one giant “man cave” — high ceilings, concrete floors and a muted color palette give the space an industrial feel, allowing his art collection to shine. Paintings and sculptures by artists like KAWSWhIsBeJosh Sperling, and Takashi Murakami splash color in an otherwise spare space, and give structure to the open floor plan. (There is only one door in the loft — to the bathroom). 

J Balvin House in Architectural DigestPhoto credit Anita Calero
Photo credit: Anita Calero

A garage-style door leads out to the apartment’s private pool, where Balvin likes to kick back. He describes the urban sanctuary as “a place where I can vibe with art and architecture, the things I love.” 

His country retreat in Llanogrande, on the other hand, is similarly artful, but is more family-focused. Balvin says that the home’s design was influenced by Japan because he loves the energy of the country. 

J Balvin House in Architectural DigestPhoto credit Anita Calero
Photo credit: Anita Calero

The majority of the expansive, one-level property — which is surrounded by lush jungle — is designed with black and oak wood features. Bonsai trees can be found both inside and outside the home. 

In a video tour, Balvin shares that despite having an exquisite main suite — which is connected to a walk-in closet full of approximately 850 pairs of sneakers — he never actually sleeps in his bedroom. “I like to sleep around the different rooms… I don’t like to get bored of my own places,” he says.  

The bedroom, like many of the rooms in the house, has a glass door that leads outside, allowing Balvin to take in his natural surroundings, with ample greenery providing plenty of privacy. He says he likes to sit outside and meditate, drink tea and think — often by the swimming pool, which runs down into a reflecting pool surrounded by areas to dine and lounge al fresco. 

Eventually, he plans to turn the property into a massive compound, building cottages around the main house.  

Balvin says he designed the home with hosting friends and family in mind, but that the space has also been a peaceful place to quarantine during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. 

“I really enjoy that it is a place where, basically, I’m living now,” he says in the video. “Now that quarantine has started for like three months now, I’m really happy that I created the place that I wanted. It’s not a place to show off, it’s a place for my soul to rest.”

J Balvin Partners with Deepak Chopra for Free Bilingual 21-day Meditation Experience

J Balvin is spreading a little zen

The 35-year-old Colombian reggaeton singer, who has long championed the benefits of meditation, has partnered with Deepak Chopra to launch an all-new, free 21-day mediation experience.

J Balvin

Renew Yourself: Body, Mind & Spirit, is an audio experience featuring guided mediations, storytelling and self-care wisdom from J Balvin and Chopra. 

The program, which can be accessed at choprameditation or by downloading the app, is available in Spanish and English. It’s comprised of daily 20-minute sessions that begin with “guided wisdom and storytelling” from J Balvin, followed by a meditation session.

This is the latest installment of Chopra’s 21-Day Meditation Experience, which he launched with Oprah Winfrey in 2013. The franchise currently features 17 programs.  

J Balvin has spoken openly about his struggles with depression and how meditation has served as a powerful tool to combat it.

“What makes mental health universal is that it doesn’t discriminate. It affects all of us. I have struggled with anxiety. I have been depressed. Meditation is one of the many ways that I have dealt with my mental health,” said J Balvin in a statement. “And that goes especially for this moment we’re currently experiencing: where money is so tight for many; health is such a question mark on a global level; and the fight for racial justice is more urgent than ever. When our world is in flux, our mental wellbeing is often one of the first things we neglect. But this should not be the case. In fact, it’s in times like these that mindfulness can help us most. This is personal for me.”

“The world is offering us a reset and J Balvin is the perfect partner to help us reach a critical mass of expanded global awareness,” adds Chopra.

Lele Pons Opens Up About Her Struggle with OCD & More in New YouTube Series, “The Secret Life of Lele Pons”

Lele Pons is getting up close and personal with her more than 40 million social media followers.

The 23-year-old Venezuelan internet celebrity, YouTuber, actress, singer, model and host has released her new YouTube series The Secret Life of Lele Pons, where she reveals her lifelong struggle with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and other mental health conditions.

Lele-Pons

“It’s very personal and it took a while for me to actually to be super open because at first I was embarrassed about it,” Pons tells Billboard. “But over the time, I’ve learned to be strong.”

Launched in partnership with YouTube in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, the five-part series documents Pons’ journey from childhood to present day, her therapy sessions, and how living with OCD has impacted her career as an influencer and musician.

“I’m kind of nervous about it, you know,” says Pons of launching the show. “It’s very personal and it took a while for me to actually to be super open because at first I was embarrassed about it. But over the time, I’ve learned to be strong. Now, I’m ready to let people in my life. This is my little secret and I’m basically telling them, ‘Here’s my secret, now take care of it.’ It’s the first time I show the world my vulnerable side. I owe it to my fans because they’ve been vulnerable with me.”

The Secret Life of Lele Pons airs a new episode every Tuesday on her YouTube channel.

Maluma Gives Architectural Digest a Look Inside His Colombian Countryside Home

Malumais opening his doors to his lavish home…

The 26-year-old Colombian singer, who’ll make his big screen debut opposite Jennifer Lopez in the upcoming romantic comedy Marry Me, has given Architectural Digest (AD) a video tour of his modern yet cozy house in the countryside near his hometown of Medellín.

Maluma

Maluma calls his home his “sanctuary.”S

“It feels amazing to be here and enjoy my house,” Maluma says of his art-filled home, which he has owned for three years and has decorated in a palette of browns and whites. “I needed this time in my life to enjoy and see all of the things that I have been building for a long time.” 

He explains that he always dreamed of owning a place with an indoor-outdoor feel, and this one certainly delivers. 

The main living space features high ceilings and glass walls (not to mention a sleek floating staircase situated above a tranquil water feature), with lush green foliage visible from all angles. 

The centerpiece—surrounded by a white piano, a KAWS sculpture, and horse artwork—is a unique round seating area sunken into the light hardwood floor with a sculptural fire pit in the center. 

“I love sitting down [here] with my family,” says Maluma. A simple pile of fluffy rugs and pillows provides another sitting area, where he says games of Unoand Jengaoften take place.

There’s a Scandinavian influence to the kitchen, which has all-white handleless cabinets. And although he has a chef quarantining with him, Maluma insists on making his morning coffee himself, sipping it on his deck each morning from one of his multiple mugs with various family members’ pictures on them. 

If the main floor shows off his eye for design, the lower level of the home reflects Maluma’s fun side. It seems to have everything one could ever need to stay entertained during quarantine, including a full gym, a movie theater, a blackjack table, and a Ping-Pong table that he says sees a lot of use. From this game room, comprising a framed collection of soccer jerseys, one can access the backyard, where there’s a large pool with a sleek ivory-colored pool deck, a hot tub, and a meat smoker for barbecues.

Even though everyone is eager to see the pandemic come to an end, Maluma concludes the tour with a message for fans in both Spanish and English: “I hope you guys stay at home…it’s cool to stay at home.”

Jessica Alba to Star in the Disney+ Docuseries “Parenting Without Borders”

Jessica Alba is breaking out her passport for her latest project.

Disney+ has greenlit the documentary series Parenting Without Borders (working title) starring and executive produced by the 38-year-old half-Mexican American actress, according to Deadline.com.

Jessica Alba

Slated to be filmed in sevearl international locations, Parenting Without Bordersis described as Anthony BourdainParts Unknownfor parenting. 

The travel show will follow Alba, an actress, producer, entrepreneur and mother of three, as she immerses herself with families around the world, exploring the parenting beliefs and practices shaping families today.

Kathryn O’Kane, who was a producer on the Netflix cooking documentary series Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat, will serve as director and showrunner of Parenting Without Borders.

Like Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat, Parenting Without Bordersis based on a book of the same name.

The 2013 Parenting Without Borders: Surprising Lessons Parents Around the World Can Teach Usby Christine Gross-Loh, Ph.D, reveals the surprising ways in which culture shapes parenting in countries like Finland, Sweden, Germany, France, Japan, China, Italy, and more, and offers research-based insight into what strategies are best for children and why.

Alba stars in and executive produces alongside Gabrielle Union the Spectrum original series L.A.’s Finest.The Honest Company, which she co-founded, is a leading maker of baby products used by parents.

Cardi B Lands Three Songs on Michelle Obama’s 2020 Workout Playlist

Cardi Bhas made an extra special (play)list…

Michelle Obama is hoping to inspire people to exercise more in the new year by sharing her 2020 workout playlist, and the 27-year-old half-Dominican American singer is her go-to gal.

The former first lady, a dedicated health advocate, shared some of her favorite tunes to listen to while hitting the gym. 

The 35-song playlist includes three tracks from Cardi B. Along with her single “Press,” Cardi B’s collaborations with Bruno Mars (“Finesse”) and Ed SheeranCamila Cabello(“South of the Border”) get Obama’s blood pumping.

Bruno Mars has a second song, “Perm,” on Obama’s playlist.

Jennifer Lopez gives Obama’s playlist a little old school magic with her “Feelin’ So Good Remix,” featuring Fat JoeBig Pun.

And when it comes to her post-workout cool down, Obama turns to Miguel and Alicia Keys’ “Show Me Love,” among others.

Jennifer Lopez to Take Part in Oprah Winfrey’s Wellness Arena Tour

Jennifer Lopez is ready to help put your life in focus…

Oprah Winfrey is going on tour, and she’s bringing a rock-star lineup with her, including the 50-year-old Puerto Rican superstar, former first lady Michelle Obama and Grammy– and Oscar-winner Lady Gaga.

Jennifer Lopez

Live Nationannounced that Winfrey’s wellness arena tour with WW (Weight Watchers Reimagined) — dubbed “Oprah’s 2020 Vision: Your Life in Focus” — will also include guest appearances by Dwayne JohnsonAmy SchumerTina FeyTracee Ellis Rossand Kate Hudson.

On the tour, Winfrey will hold one-on-one conversations with the superstars, first with Gaga on January 4, 2020, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The nine-city tour will also visit St. Paul, Minnesota (Fey); Charlotte, North Carolina (Schumer); Atlanta (Johnson); Brooklyn, New York (Obama); Dallas (Ellis Ross); San Francisco (Hudson); and Los Angeles (Lopez). Winfrey will wrap the tour on March 7 in Denver with BFF Gayle King.

In addition to the celebrity interviews, each full-day wellness event will include Winfrey discussing her own wellness journey; a dance exercise from choreographer Julianne Hough; talks from inspirational guest speakers; a pre-show dance party; a WW-customized box lunch; and interactive concourse activations.

Jhené Aiko Releases Six-Minute Sound Meditation “Trigger Protection Mantra”

Jhené Aiko has found your trigger point…

The part Spanish & Dominican American singer-songwriter has released “Trigger Protection Mantra,” a six-minute sound meditation. 

Jhene Aiko

OnInstagram, Aiko explained that the song is best heard through headphones for maximum benefit. The video is accompanied with calming, kaleidoscopic imagery.

“Calm down, calm down, calm down, eventually,” she muses throughout the tune, as she plays alchemy crystal singing bowls “in the key of A (third eye), E (solar plexus) and C (root chakra).”

“The E note will help in oversensitivity to criticism, will support in releasing the need to control, and support the boosting of self esteem,” she further explained. “Note of A will support release of nightmares and learning difficulties and strengthen high intuition and charisma. Note of high C connects to the cosmos, to the quantum field in the vibrational frequency of love. Super powerful notes, voicings and Alchemies.”

Aiko understands the need to take a step back and relax, as she’s been working on a follow-up to her 2017 album Trip, which will consist of all freestyles.

Amanda Nunes Bares All for ESPN The Magazine’s “The Body Issue”

Amanda Nunesis celebrating her right to bare arms… and more.

The 31-year-old Brazilian mixed martial artist andUltimate Fighting Championship (UFC) star is one of the featured athletes in this year’s edition of ESPN The Magazine’s The Body Issue, in which the world’s top athletes shed their clothes and pose for photographs that help celebrate the athletic form.

Amanda Nunes

Nunes, the reigning UFC women’s bantamweight and featherweight champion, was selected to be one of the cover stars for the ninth-annual edition, which will also be ESPN The Magazine’s last print version of The Body Issue.

Amanda Nunes

“Everything that I wanted to do, I did it. Now I enjoy this moment because I work hard for these moments,” says Nunes of her successful MMA career. “Now I really can look in the mirror and say, ‘We did it. I did it.’”

Amanda Nunes

In July, she was named “Female Fighter of the Year” at the World MMA Awards. That same month, she defeated ex-champ Holly Holm for the135-pound title. Nunes will now return to bantamweight for a rematch against Germaine de Randamie, a championship title fight that co-headlines the UFC 245 event in December.

Amanda Nunes

Nunes joins a long roster of Latino athletes to be featured in The Body Issue, including baseball stars Jake Arrieta and Giancarlo Stanton, footballers Omar Gonzalez and Carlos Bocanegra, Olympic boxer Marlen Esparza and Olympic gymnast Danell Leyva.

The magazine hits newsstands this Friday, September 6, ESPN The Magazine released a digital edition two days earlier.

Click here to see the full collection of images and videos from Nunes’ shoot.