Ricky Martin to Serve as Guest Judge on Season Five of “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars”

Life’s a drag for Ricky Martin

The 48-year-old Puerto Rican superstar will serve as a guest judge on the fifth season of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars.

Ricky Martin

The “Livin’ La Vida Loca” singer kick things off as a guest judge for the premiere episode of the reality drag race competition, which will premiere on Friday, June 5 at 8:oo pm ET/PT on VH1.

In addition to Martin, the star-studded lineup of guest judges includes Tessa Thompson, Jane KrakowskiNicole ByerBebe Rexha, Jeffrey Bowyer-ChapmanSam RichardsonMadison BeerSarah Hyland, Martyn Lawrence BullardTommy Dorfman and Drag Race regular Todrick Hall

In the premiere, Martin will help judge the all-star queens from seasons’ past as they take part in a reading mini-challenge and hit the runway for a “Werq the World” variety extravaganza.

T fifth season has thrown the traditional elimination rules out the window. RuPaul has shaken things up and has “Ru-vealed” that each week she’ll name a top all-star and that queen will lip sync for her legacy against a mysterious lip sync assassin, chosen from the most iconic performers in Drag Race“herstory.” 

If the top all-star of the week wins the lip sync, she wins a $10,000 tip and the power to eliminate the bottom queen of her choice. 

If the lip sync assassin wins, a bottom queen selected from a secret group vote gets the chop, and the money rolls over until a top all-star wins.

The 10 queens competing for a spot in the “Drag Race Hall of Fame” and a grand prize of $100,000 are Alexis Mateo (Season 3, All Stars 1), Blair St. Clair (Season 10), Derrick Barry (Season 8), India Ferrah (Season 3), Jujubee (Season 2, All Stars 1), Mariah Paris Balenciaga (Season 3), Mayhem Miller (Season 10), Miz Cracker (Season 10), Ongina (Season 1) and Shea Couleé (Season 9).

Josh Segarra to Star in NBC’s Comedy Pilot “Night School”

Josh Segarra is heading to night school…

The 33-year-old Puerto Rican actor will star as the male lead opposite Shanola Hampton in NBC’s multi-camera comedy pilot Night School, based on the hit 2018 Universal movie. 

Josh Segarra

The project hails from Marlonco-creator Christopher Moynihanand the film’s star-producer Kevin Hart, producer Will Packerand director Malcolm D. Lee.

Segarra was tapped for Night School as he just became available when Netflix canceled the RuPaul-starring dramedy series AJ and the Queen after one season.

Penned by Moynihan and directed by Phill Lewis, NBC’s Night School revolves around a unique mix of adults at a night school GEDprep class who unexpectedly bond over their shared experience and find themselves helping one another both inside and outside of the classroom.

Segarra will play Teddy Walker, a charming salesman. The role was played by Hart in the movie. Hampton plays the teacher, Carrie Dawes, portrayed by Tiffany Haddishin the film.

In addition to Hampton, Segarra joins previously cast Ian GomezCollette WolfeJames Earland Joe Massingill.

This marks Segarra’s return to NBC and Universal Televisionafter recurring on the network and studio’s drama series Chicago P.D. several years ago. The Orange Is the New Blackalum has been recurring on CW’s Arrow as Adrian Chase/Prometheus; on Comedy Central’s The Other Two as Lance, Brooke’s simple-minded ex-boyfriend; and on Fox’s holiday event series The Moodys

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to Serve as a Judge on VH1’s “RuPaul’s Drag Race”

Life’s a drag (race)for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

The 30-year-old Puerto Rican politician and activist and the U.S. Representative for New York’s 14th congressional district (D-NY)will serve as a guest judge for the 12th season of VH1’s hit reality television show RuPaul’s Drag Race.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

AOC, as she’s popularly known, fits in with the political theme of this season of the series, which will see RuPaul reigning over the “Ru-nited States of America.” 

In the trailer with Ocasio-Cortez, RuPaul declares that “the time has come for the first drag queen president.”

AOC is shown in the trailer pledging her devotion to the catchphrase of the season: “Join the Ru-volution,” she says. “I’m Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and I pledge allegiance to the drag.”

In a tweet, AOC said her appearance was “a peak experience.”

Others guest judge this season include Nicki MinajLeslie JonesJeff Goldblum,Whoopi GoldbergChaka KhanDaisy RidleyRobynNormaniThandie NewtonOlivia Munn, Rachel BloomDaniel FranzeseJonathan Bennett and Winnie Harlow.

The 13 queens competing for the coveted title of  “America’s Next Drag Superstar” and a $100,000 prize include three Latinx contestants… Crystal Methyd (Springfield, MO), Dahlia Sin (Los Angeles, CA) and Jan (New York, NY).

The other contestants are Aiden Zhane (Acworth, GA), Brita (New York, NY), Gigi Goode (Los Angeles, CA), Heidi N Closet (Ramseur, NC), Jackie Cox (New York, NY), Jaida Essence Hall (Milwaukee, WI), Nicky Doll (New York, NY), Rock M. Sakura (San Francisco, CA), Sherry Pie (New York, NY), and Widow Von’Du (Kansas City, MO).

RuPaul’s Drag Race and RuPaul’s Drag Race: Untuckedare produced by World of Wonder Productions.

The new season premieres on Friday, February 28.

Valentina to Compete on the Fourth Season of “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars”

An (all-) star is born, and her name is Valentina

The 27-year-old Mexican American drag performer and television personality, whose real name is James Andrew Leyva,will compete on the fourth seasonof RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars.

Valentina

Valentina competed on the ninth season of RuPaul’s Drag Race.She placed seventh overall, and her elimination sparked some controversy online as she was popular with fans. She was later awarded the title of Miss Congenialityin the show’s reunion episode by vote, and titled “Fan Favorite” by her fellow castmates.

Outside of the show, Valentina appeared in the sixth episode of the twenty-fourth season of America’s Next Top Model.

In addition to Valentina, the lone Latina competitor, the new cast includes Monét X Change, Trinity Taylor, Farrah Moan,Monique Heart, Jasmine Masters, Naomi Smalls, and Gia Gunn, as well as Manila Luzon and Latrice Royale, who both competed on the first All Starsseason.

RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars will have its big premiere on December 14 at 8:00 pm ET on VH1.

Also on tap to make spirits bright is RuPaul’s Drag Race Holi-slay Spectacular, which features a gaggle of drag sensations competing for the title of  Xmas Queen.

It airs on December 7 at 8:00 pm ET on VH1, and features Eureka O’Hara, Jasmine Masters, Kim Chi, Latrice Royale, Mayhem Miller, Shangela, Sonique and Trixie Mattel.

Josh Segarra to Star in Netflix’s Comedy Series “AJ and the Queen” with RuPaul

Josh Segarra has landed a royalproject…

The 32-year-old Puerto Rican actor has joined the cast of AJ and the Queen, Netflix’s upcoming comedy series starring RuPaul Charles.

Josh Segarra

Written by Sex and the City creator Michael Patrick King and RuPaul, the series stars RuPaul as Ruby Red, a bigger-than-life but down-on-her-luck drag queen who travels across America from club to club in a rundown 1990s R/V with her unlikely sidekick AJ, a recently orphaned, tough-talking, scrappy 11-year-old stowaway. As these two misfits, one tall, one small, travel from city to city, Ruby’s message of love and acceptance winds up touching people and changing their lives for the better. And RuPaul performs a killer musical number in every drag club.

Segarra will play Hector in the series.

He can be seen as Jason in the feature remake of Overboard for MGM, as Adrian Chase/Prometheus on the CW’s Arrow and ‘C.O’ Stefanovic on Netflix’s Orange is the New Black.

His other recent credits include Judd Apatow’s feature film Trainwreck and USA comedy series Sirens.

Morales to Compete on NBC’s “Hollywood Game Night”

It’s game on for Natalie Morales

The 44-year-old Puerto Rican and Brazilian American broadcast journalist, the Today Show West Coast anchor and an NBC News correspondent, will appear on this season of NBC’s Hollywood Game Night.

Natalie Morales

Hosted by Glee star Jane Lynch, this game night show brings regular people face-to-face with celebrities.

In addition to Morales, this season’s famous contestants include Sterling K. Brown, Chrissy Metz, Justin Hartley from This Is Us, Ben Feldman from Superstore, plus Michael Bolton, NE-YO, Mike Colter, Margaret Cho, Gabby Douglas, Taye Diggs, and RuPaul.

Hollywood Game Night will premiere on Monday, August 7 at 10 pm ET.

Gomez Among 24 Artists Featured on Orlando Shooting Charity Single “Hands”

Selena Gomez is lending her hands to help the victims of the Orlando Shooting.

The 23-year-old half-Mexican American singer/actress is among 24 artists featured on a new recording to raise money for the victims of the Pulse nightclub massacre.

Selena Gomez

The all-star release, entitled “Hands” — a charity single from Interscope Records with support from GLAAD — was conceived by hit songwriter Justin Tranter, co-writer of Justin Bieber’sSorry” and hits for Gomez, DNCE, Fall Out Boy and Gwen Stefani.

In addition to Gomez, the single also features Jennifer Lopez, who has worked on her own charity single with Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, Stefani, Jason Derulo, Meghan Trainor, Juanes, Pink, Mary J. Blige and Britney Spears.

The June 12 shooting at the gay nightclub in Orlando, which killed 49 people and injured 53, is the most deadly mass shooting in American history and the deadliest act of violence against the LGBT community.

Funds from the song will aid families with medical care, counseling and will also be used for education.

“Like the rest of the world I woke up to the news that morning and was horrified and sad and scared,” says Tranter, who has raised money and awareness for LGBT causes since coming out at age 14.

“Hands” is available on iTunes.

Proceeds will be distributed by Equality Florida Pulse Victims Fund, the GLBT Community Center of Central Florida and GLAAD.

The idea for the all-star project came together one day after the shooting.

L.A.-based Tranter and songwriting partner Julia Michaels had been on the road with Gomez writing songs aboard her tour bus in Miami the weekend of June 11 when news of the bloodshed prompted Tranter to switch course. That afternoon he signed on as a volunteer at The Center Orlando, the region’s chief LGBT community center.

“I called them and said, ‘If I fly up is there something for me to help with?'” he tells Billboard. “They say, ‘We need as many hands as we can possibly get.'”

“Hands” took hold the next day when Tranter met GLAAD CEO Sarah Kate Ellis who had arrived at the center from New York.

Beyond their immediate efforts — distributing food and water and GLAAD’s work with media — both were looking to make contributions that would have ongoing benefits. They point out that the massacre was also a profound attack on people of color, as that Saturday evening had been a popular “Latin Night” at Pulse. Most of the victims were of Latin heritage and Ellis says she does not want that point forgotten.

“When you hear the song it talks about hate being the driver here,” she says, “and that’s important because we have to be able to identify what’s driving these cruel acts in order to stop them. Artists using their platforms to accelerate acceptance is very powerful.”

Aligning with Interscope for the release, Tranter, GLAAD and Interscope president of A&R Aaron Bay-Schuck put the word out that a fundraiser was in the works. Within days artists from all spheres of the business had lined up — also among them Halsey, Ty Herndon, Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons, Adam Lambert, The Trans Chorus of Los Angeles, MNEK, Alex Newell, Mary Lambert, Prince Royce, Jussie Smollett, Nate Ruess and RuPaul — all recording separately from their homes, local studios, touring locations or wherever they happened to be at that moment.

“We assigned everybody what we thought would be the best part for their voice,” Tranter says, “and we asked them all to sing an additional part, just in case. But everybody got it done in time so we ended up with extra vocals.”

In Los Angeles “Interscope let us use their studio,” he notes. “Mary J. Blige recorded in New Orleans. Britney Spears in Thousand Oaks, I think. Pink in Santa Barbara. MNEK recorded at home in London. Selena recorded in her studio bus. Dan Reynolds recorded in his home. Adam Lambert was in Luxembourg. Ty Herndon the country star was in Spain. Kacey Musgraves, Nashville. Everyone just got it done.”

Another goal of the record, according to GLAAD, is to fund educational programs.

“This was an American guy who was born in Queens,” Ellis says of the gunman, Omar Mateen, 29, who was killed by police after a three hour stand-off. “He learned that hate here in America. This happened on American soil, against a particular community.”

While politicians and lobbyists have focused in recent weeks on Islamic terror and familiar narratives about gun ownership, Ellis, Tranter and others in the LGBT community want people to remember that this was a hate crime.

“I’m not educated enough to speak on the political details,” Tranter says. I’m a songwriter, not a politician. It could have been a million things but clearly, 100 percent, this was an attack on the LGBT community and people of color.”

“Hands” grew out of an unfinished piece that Tranter, Michaels and co-writer and producer BloodPop (formerly known as Blood Diamonds) had been working on and then shelved.

“The song didn’t ever finish itself and it didn’t ever feel right,” Tranter says of their initial efforts. “Now we know why.”

Mark Ronson also co-produced, while vocal engineer Benjamin Rice finessed the disparate tracks: “He helped us find the structure and make sense of it all.”

Warner/Chappell publishing executive Katie Vinten brought in numerous artists, among them P!nk, whom Tranter calls “a lifesaver,” adding, “Her vocal on the chorus is like from heaven directly.”

Spears opens the song with the plaintive line, “Can hold a gun or a hold a heart.” RuPaul is heard quietly toward the end, saying “take my hand baby.”

The songwriters had no specific plan as they entered the studio — only that they didn’t want the piece “to ever sound dated.”

“We didn’t want to have any trendy electronic elements,” Tranter notes. “We wanted it to sound classic, timeless and human. We want this anthem of positivity to be played for years to come.”

Download “Hands” here at iTunes.

Alba to Serve as a Guest Judge on Logo TV’s “RuPaul’s Drag Race”

Life’s a drag for Jessica Alba

The 33-year-old half-Mexican American actress will serve as a celebrity guest judge on the seventh season of Logo TV’s hit reality television competition series RuPaul’s Drag Race.

Jessica Alba

RuPaul plays the roles of host, mentor, and source of inspiration for the series, which details RuPaul’s search for “America’s next drag superstar.”

Alba has previously served as a guest judge on Cupcake Wars and Project Runway.

In addition to Alba, this season’s celebrity guest judges include Ariana Grande, Demi Lovato, John Waters, Kathy Griffin, Olivia Newton-John, Alyssa Milano, Kat Dennings, Jordin Sparks, Mel B, Tamar Braxton, Rebecca Romijn, Santino Rice, Isaac Mizrahi, Michael Urie, Rachael Harris, Lucian Piane and Merle Ginsberg.

RuPaul’s Drag Race is also adding two new permanent judges to the mix. Carson Kressley (Queer Eye For The Straight Guy) and Ross Mathews (Chelsea Lately) will join returning judge Michelle Visage as they decide who will stay, lip-synch for their life or “Sashay Away.”

RuPaul’s Drag Race is slated to premiere at 9:00 pm ET on March 2 on Logo TV.

Del Rio Declared the Winner on “RuPaul’s Drag Race”

Life’s a drag (race) for Bianca Del Rio

The 38-year-old Cuban and Honduran American drag queen has been named the Season 6 winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race.

Bianca Del Rio

Del Rio, born Roy Haylock, beat out Adore Delano and Courtney Act for the title.

“Bianca is my kind of entertainer,” RuPaul said in a statement. “She is totally fearless, bust-a-gut hilarious, and yet she’s still managed to touch the hearts of Drag Race fans around the world.”

Del Rio posted a picture on Facebook following her win with the hashtags #amazinglife, #thankyoueveryone and #honored.

“I feel like I am the luckiest entertainer in the world right now,” she said during the finale. “It’s an incredibly rewarding experience to have this honor, and I’m proof that anything is possible.”

BenDeLaCreme, who finished fifth, won the Miss Congeniality award, as voted on by fans. The finale also included a surprise wedding between sixth-place finisher Joslyn Fox and her fiancé Andre, which was officiated by RuPaul.

Bianca also got a congratulatory message from Judge Judy, whom she channeled in an early round of competition.

Before appearing on RuPaul’s Drag Race, Del Riowas a fixture in the New Orleans and New York City club scenes, often working with Lady Bunny.