José Moreno Brooks will soon be in the presence of royalty…
The 36-year-old half-Mexican American actor and former Telenovelascene stealer has landed a key recurring role opposite Brandy, Eve, Naturi Naughton and Nadine Velazquez on ABC’s new musical drama series Queens.
From Zahir McGhee, Sabrina Wind and ABC Signature, the series centers on four estranged and out-of-touch women in their 40s — Naomi (Brandy), Jill (Naughton), Brianna (Eve) and Valeria (Velazquez), who reunite for a chance to recapture their fame and regain the swagger they had as their ’90s group that made them legends in the hip-hop world.
Brooks will play Rodrigo, gorgeous, sexy, and the most in-demand music video director currently working.
The series is written by McGhee and directed by Tim Story.
Brooks’ previous credits include Telenovela opposite Eva Longoria and 9-1-1.
ABC has released a full-length trailer for its upcoming musical drama series Queens, starring the 42-year-old Puerto Rican actress, Eve, Brandy and Naturi Naughton.
Velazquez and her co-leads star as members of the former ‘90s girl group the Nasty B—-es.
Queens tells the story of four former bandmates who decide to reunite in their 40s after a major, public breakup on stage 20 years prior.
“The dumbest thing we ever did was throw away friendships that most people never have. Let’s get this group back together,” Naomi (Brandy) aka Xplicit Lyrics tells the other three members. But stepping back into the spotlight is not going to be easy as each member is tackling problems in their personal lives. The trailer shows Brianna (Eve) aka Professor Sex trying to raise five children while dealing with marriage struggles.
“Don’t let the fame define you because when it’s all gone you won’t know who you are,” Jill (Naughton) aka Da Thrill warns. The clip also includes scenes of the ladies performing, looking caught off guard on the red carpet, and Valeria (Velazquez) aka Butter Pecan having an outburst in a car.
The hip-hop series was ordered to series in May. Zahir McGhee wrote the script for the show and serves as executive producer.
This Memorial Day weekend, the 42-year-old half Puerto Rican recording artist, music producer and entrepreneur and his Verzuz co-creator Timbaland will show off their producing skills as they face off in a battle once again for their hit web series.
The pair first dueled onstage in 2018 at the Hot 97 Summer Jam in East Rutherford, N.J., as part of a producer clash battle — long before Verzuz premiered virtually in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a post shared on the official Verzuz Instagram on Tuesday (May 25), the showdown was announced. “Did y’all guess who the rematch was going to be!? @THEREALSWIZZZ vs @TIMBALAND THIS SUNDAY ‼️ LIVE from @LIVMIAMI Celebrating Memorial Day Weekend with our new #VERZUZLive .”
Beatz, né Kasseem Dean, 42, commented the post, “Let’s go then .” Timbaland, born Timothy Mosley, 49, wrote, “Alrite [sic] now .”
With Timbaland’s extensive history of producing megahits for fan-favorites including JAY-Z, Lenny Kravitz, Missy Elliott, Kanye West, Aaliyah, Cher and Madonna, Beatz — who has produced for Eve, Diddy, Lil’ Wayne, The Weeknd, Drake, the late DMX, among many more — is in for a tough rematch.
Since its inception, Verzuz has featured friendly competitions between Monica and Brandy, Gladys Knight and Patti LaBelle, Erykah Badu and Jill Scott, Alicia Keys and John Legend, and the late DMX, who faced off against Snoop Dogg in July. DMX, né Earl Simmons, died on April 9.
Tune in on Sunday (May 30) at 8 p.m. ET to catch the Verzuz battle between Timbaland and Swizz Beatz, streaming on Instagram Live via the VerzuzTV account or Triller. It will also air on TV via FITE.
ABC has picked up the music-themed drama Queens, starring the 42-year-old Puerto Rican actress, to series for the 2021-22 season.
The series is headlined by Brandy, Eve, Naturi Naughton, Velazquez and Pepi Sonuga.
Estranged and out-of-touch, four women in their 40s reunite for a chance to recapture their fame and regain the swagger they had as the Nasty Bitches—their ‘90s group that made them legends in the hip-hop world.
Queens stars Eve as Brianna aka Professor Sex, Naturi Naughton as Jill aka Da Thrill, Velazquez as Valeria aka Butter Pecan, Taylor Selé as Eric Jones, Pepi Sonuga as Lil Muffin and Brandy as Naomi aka Xplicit Lyrics.
Zahir McGhee, Sabrina Wind and Tim Story are executive producers.
The series is produced by ABC Signature, a part of Disney Television Studios. The pilot episode is written by McGhee and directed by Tim Story.
Nadine Velazquez is hoping to become television royalty…
The 42-year-old Puerto Rican actress will star opposite Brandy, Eve and Naturi Naughton in ABC’s hour-long pilot Queens, from Zahir McGhee, Sabrina Wind and ABC Signature.
In Queens, written by McGhee and directed by Tim Story, four estranged and out-of-touch women in their 40s — Naomi (Brandy), Jill (Naughton), Brianna (Eve) and Valeria (Velazquez) — reunite for a chance to recapture their fame and regain the swagger they had as the Nasty Bitches – their ’90s group that made them legends in the hip-hop world.
Velazquez plays Valeria, aka Butter Pecan. Better known in the 90s as Puerto Rican rapper, Butter Pecan, Valeria is the fourth member of the hip-hop group, the Nasty Bitches. Valeria wasn’t an original member, added by the groups’ manager, Eric, for her effortless star quality. It worked. The ladies catapulted into superstardom with a number-one record and iconic video. Valeria quickly became the face of the group, ruffling the other members’ feathers along the way. But she could care less. She’s not here for friends, she’s here to win. Valeria is an ambitious and ruthless hustler with cunning charm born out of a difficult childhood. When we catch up with her twenty years later, she’s the only member of the group still in the limelight. Valeria hosts The Shade — America’s top-rated morning talk show. So, Valeria has no reason to reunite with the group when the opportunity arises. However, when her blind ambition trips her up, Valeria considers turning back to the only family she’s ever had: the Nasty Bitches.
Pepi Sonuga co-stars in the pilot. ABC Signature, part of Disney Television Studios, is the studio.
Velazquez wrote and is set to star/produceLa’Tina, a series in the works at Showtime from Will Smith’s Westbrook Studios and Frankie Shaw’s Our Lady Productions.
She’s best known for her breakout lead role as Catalina on NBC’s My Name Is Earl. She co-starred in the History seriesSixand in Universal’s Ride Along 2.
Her series credits also include major roles on FX’s The League, the CW’s Hart of Dixie and TNT’s Major Crimes.
The 57-year-old Salvadorian and Nicaraguan American actor and General Hospital star is set to appear on the 47th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards this Friday on CBS.
Benard, who has portrayed Sonny Corinthos on General Hospital since 1993, is a two-time Daytime Emmy Award winner, including a win last year in the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series category.
Bernard joins a presenters and performers roster that includes Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest, Kelsey Grammer, Gayle King, Melody Scott Thomas, Kathie Lee Gifford, Cookie Monster, Scott Evans, Patrika Darbo, Kevin Frazier, Wayne Brady, Michael Strahan, James Reynolds, Jacqueline MacInnes Wood, Nate Burleson, Sunny Hostin and Eric Braeden.
The event’s hosts will be Sharon Osbourne, Sheryl Underwood, Eve, Carrie Ann Inaba and Marie Osmond.
This year, awards in the leading categories will be presented virtually, with recipients and other guests appearing from home. Additional categories will be announced on the Daytime Emmys’ social media accounts simultaneously with the CBS broadcast, with some immediately following the broadcast and others streamed in separate virtual ceremonies on July 19 and July 26.
The 47th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards will be broadcast Friday, June 26, 8:00 – 10:00 pm ET/PT) on CBS.
Categories scheduled for the CBS broadcast include:
Outstanding Drama Series Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actress in a Drama Series Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor in a Drama Series Outstanding Entertainment News Show Outstanding Writing Team for a Drama Series Outstanding Digital Drama Series Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Host Outstanding Game Show Host Outstanding Game Show Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Outstanding Informative Talk Show Outstanding Younger Performer in a Drama Series Outstanding Legal/Courtroom Program Outstanding Special Class Special Outstanding Culinary Series Outstanding Morning Show Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
The 41-year-old Puerto Rican and Cuban American actress and activist will co-host Rock the Vote’s Democracy Summer campaign kick-off on Thursday, June 18, a two-hour virtual concert co-headlined by Katy Perry and Black Eyed Peas.
Co-hosted by Dawson and Logan Browning with Chuck D and Eve, the event will stream live beginning at 8:00 pm ET/5:00 pm PT on democracysummer.org, and Democracy Summer’s Facebook and YouTube pages.
Ne-Yo, Big Freedia, Lucy Hale, Amara La Negra, Saweetie, Sklyar Astin, Max, Leslie Grace, Dove Cameron, Sofia Carson, Rich Brian and Michael K. Williams are among those slated to appear remotely.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro will make appearances.
“I’m excited to be a part of this kickoff to Democracy Summer 2020 with so many amazing talents, activists and speakers,” says Perry. “The young people of America are speaking loud and clear on the streets and online, and come November, it will be more important than ever to fight for justice and equality, and against systemic racism, with our ballots.”
“The young people are engaged. Their voices are loud and getting louder. The world is watching. And we need to vote,” agrees Chuck D, an early and consistent supporter of Rock the Vote, which was founded in 1990 by Virgin Records America co-chairman Jeff Ayeroff primarily to increase voter turnout among young adults.
“We are seeing the urgency for change in America happening in real time. This is the moment for us to use the most important tool on the planet to fight for that change…our right to vote,” says Ne-Yo. “Our democracy needs our voices. Voting is the moment to be the voice for injustice and for equality. But most importantly, to be the voice for humanity. We cannot let each other down in the local elections or on Nov. 3.”
Produced by BWG Live and in partnership with Voto Latino Foundation, When We All Vote and March For Our Lives, the concert marks not only the first live-streamed event for the Rock the Vote, but also its first large-scale summer activation.
In previous years the organization amped up in the fall before a Presidential election and typically staged a live event. Both pivots are a direct result of Covid-19.
“One of the realities is coronavirus derailed the momentum that is required in a major election cycle,” Rock the Vote president Carolyn DeWitt tells Billboard. “A few months ago we began seeing how the restrictions were affecting young people in particular, by moving them off college campuses and disrupting graduations and proms,” she says. “Our effort is really about building that momentum back up.”
With some 4 million young people turning 18 this year and innumerable issues at stake, the goal of Democracy Summer is to bring 200,000 new voters to the polls in November when Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden challenges Donald Trump, as well as myriad primary and local elections throughout the summer and fall. Those interested in the event are encouraged to register at the Democracy Summer web site to get the latest details and lineup updates, although preregistration isn’t required to tune in. Viewers can go to Rock the Vote’s website to register to vote.
The murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer and the swell of support around the Black Lives Matter movement also has catalyzed Thursday’s event. As protesters around the country have taken to the streets, Rock the Vote registered 107,000 new voters through its platforms and gained more than 25,000 new Instagram followers during the week of June 1, DeWitt says—numbers that dwarf those of a typical week.
“With what we’ve seen over the last couple weeks, the effort around Democracy Summer has become even more important. It’s not just the virus, it’s bigger than the economy standing still. The world feels like it’s on the brink of chaos and yet this moment around Black Lives Matter is bigger than that,” DeWitt says. “Frankly speaking, a big part of that is people are exercising their rights in a democracy. Young people are looking for things they can do and actions they can take in order to create change. We want to make sure we’re continuing to sustain that fire and passion into November, and make sure young people know the power of their votes and create the change they want to see.”
The live stream will include opportunities for viewers to donate to black-led and -focused organizations including the Community Justice Action Fund and National Action Network.
“Now, more than ever, voting is key for long-term change,” Black Eyed Peas said in a statement. “The youth vote is going to decide the future of America. It’s not just our duty but our honor to spread the word in an election year.”
“The diversity of America is what makes it great, and it is also what makes it our country,” says La Negra. “I am Dominican proudly, yet I am a black woman always. I matter. You matter. And together, we will always matter!”
“The need for young people to get out and vote has never been more important,” says Participant CEO David Linde. “We are proud to be working with Rock the Vote in making that need a reality and by using the inspiring, powerful message of Rep. John Lewis to make good trouble.”
Rock the Vote is planning additional Democracy Summer activations throughout the summer including on the Fourth of July and on August 6, the anniversary of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
“The couple chose to tie the knot in the gardens of the historical St. Nicholas Abbey plantation,” a rep tells Us Weekly of the nuptials. “Fetherston wore a gown of her own design, and Saporta wore a custom Gieves & Hawkes suit. Images of the wedding will be featured in Martha Stewart Weddings‘ September issue.”
“I woke up at dawn to go collect coral and flowers from the beach next to our cottage,” he told People. “I used them to write out my proposal on our patio and then I woke Erin up in a frenzy to come see a ‘monkey’ that had appeared in our backyard. My sleepy-eyed bride quickly realized the only monkey that morning was me … and of course, she said, ‘Yes!’ “
The 33-year-old Uruguayan singer and Cobra Starship front man appears in the official clip for the rap superstar’s song “Make It Out This Town.”
The music video aims to inspire today’s youth with empowering visuals and a positive message.
The track is the first official offering from Eve’s long-delayed fourth studio album “Lip Lock,” which is scheduled to go on sale on May 14. The accompanying music video features high school students dealing with their problems and overcoming them with assistance from the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization, of which Eve is an ambassador.
“I am releasing ‘Make It Out This Town’ as my first single from Lip Lock because I wanted to share the positive place I have come into,” said Eve. “I went through obstacles to get my music and message out and nothing embodies this more than this song, which also mirrors my recent honor and connection that comes with my role as an ambassador for Big Brothers Big Sisters. The song is dedicated to them.”