Lin-Manuel Miranda to Serve as a Presenter at This Weekend’s Tony Awards Show

Lin-Manuel Miranda has a date with Tony

This Sunday’s 75th Annual Tony Awards will feature a line-up of all-star presenters from the stage and screen, including the 42-year-old Puerto Rican actor, rapper, composer, playwright and filmmaker.

Lin-Manuel MirandaMiranda, a multiple Tony Award winner, is among a roster of presenters that includes Andrew Garfield, Laurence Fishburne, Nathan Lane, Bowen Yang and both Paris and Prince Jackson, the children of MJ subject Michael Jackson.

The roster of presenters was announced by Tony Awards producers, and also includes Josh Lucas, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Skylar Astin, Zach Braff, Danielle Brooks, Danny Burstein, Len Cariou, RuPaul Charles, Jessica Chastain, Lilli Cooper, Bryan Cranston, Wilson Cruz, Colman Domingo, Anthony Edwards, Cynthia Erivo, Raúl Esparza, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Tony Goldwyn, David Alan Grier, Vanessa Hudgens, Jennifer Hudson, Bebe Neuwirth, Kelli O’Hara, Sarah Paulson, Bernadette Peters, Jeremy Pope, Billy Porter, LaTanya Richardson, Chita Rivera, Tony Shalhoub, Phillipa Soo, Sarah Silverman and George Takei,

The four-hour June 12 Tony evening begins at 7:00 pm ET/4:00 pm PT with The Tony Awards: Act One, a one-hour streaming event of exclusive content live on Paramount+ hosted by Darren Criss and Julianne Hough.

The 75th Tony Awards, hosted by Oscar-winning actress and singer Ariana DeBose, follows at 8:00 pm ET/5:00 pm PT on CBS and Paramount+. The awards will be presented live coast-to-coast from Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

Last night, DeBose confirmed that the Tony Awards also will pay respect to the swings and understudies who made this Covid-plagued Broadway season possible. In response to a tweet from Actors’ Equity president Kate Shindle dismissing social media rumors that swings and understudies would be ignored during the ceremony,

DeBose reiterated Shindle’s assurances, writing, “To all concerned, all I can ask is that you keep the faith & trust. I am working round the clock to bring you all a beautiful celebration of everyone’s hard work…”

Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “Freestyle Love Supreme” Returning to Broadway in October

Lin-Manuel Miranda is bringing the (freestyle) Love to Great White Way…

Freestyle Love Supreme, the improvisational rap musical revue co-created by the 41-year-old Puerto Rican actor, singer, songwriter, rapper, producer, and playwright, is returning to Broadway’s Booth Theatre for a strictly limited three-month engagement in October, producers announced today.

Lin-Manuel Miranda

“If live theater is coming back, so is FLS,” said Miranda, who co-created the show with Thomas Kail and Anthony Veneziale. “Our most important collaborator is the audience, and we can’t wait to get back in the Booth.”

The limited engagement begins Thursday, October 7, and runs through Sunday, January 2, 2022.

“We are thrilled to be back on Broadway and part of this theatrical community we love so much,” said Kail, who directs. “The immediacy of our show, with its content driven by audience suggestion, makes it one of the rare shows that can speak to whatever is happening in the moment.”

The production’s core performers will include Andrew Bancroft AKA Jelly Donut, Tarik Davis AKA Tardis Hardaway, Aneesa Folds AKA Young Nees, Arthur Lewis AKA Arthur the Geniuses, Kaila Mullady AKA Kaiser Rözé, Chris Sullivan AKA Shockwave and Anthony Veneziale AKA Two-Touch.

As with the original 2019-2020 Broadway production, the revival will include spontaneous, unannounced special guests which “may include” Miranda, Christopher Jackson, Daveed Diggs, James Monroe Iglehart, Wayne Brady, Ashley Pérez Flanagan, Bill Sherman, Utkarsh Ambudkar and others.

Hamilton creator Miranda has been much in the spotlight lately, with the film adaptation of his In The Heights opening last week, his feature directorial debut tick, tick… Boom! arriving this Fall and his partly-owned The Drama Bookshop bookstore opening earlier this month in Manhattan’s theater district.

Prior to its purchase by Miranda, Kail and producers Jeffrey Seller and James L. Nederlander, the Book Shop, in a nearby location, had long been theater district institution and gathering place but was threatened with closure by rising rents and financial difficulties. Miranda, Kail and Veneziale began writing Freestyle Love Supreme more than 17 years ago in the basement of the old Book Shop, a history chronicled in the 2020 documentary We Are Freestyle Love Supreme.

Freestyle Love Supreme is produced on Broadway by Kail, Miranda, Jenny and Jon Steingart, and Jill Furman.

Ana Ortiz to Appear on Second Season of Netflix’s Comedy Series “Special”

It’s a special time for Ana Ortiz

The 50-year-old half-Puerto Rican actress has landed a recurring role on the second season of Netflix’s Emmy-nominated comedy series Special, created by and starring Ryan O’Connell.

Ana Ortiz

Ortiz joins a roster of cast newcomers that includes Charlie Barnett, Max Jenkins, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Lauren Weedman, newcomer Buck Andrews, Anjali Bhimani, Ajay Mehta and Karan Soni.

Additionally, Leslie Jordan (Will & Grace) will appear in a guest-starring role.

Based on O’Connell’s part-memoir, part-manifesto I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves, Special hails from Warner Bros. Television, Jim Parsons and Todd Spiewak’s That’s Wonderful Productions, Campfire and Stage 13.

The semi-autobiographical centers on a gay man with mild cerebral palsy, played by O’Connell, who decides to rewrite his identity as an accident victim and finally go after the life he wants. O’Connell also writes the series and executive produces.

The Season 2 logline: “Ryan really needs to get his shit together. It’s been two months and he still hasn’t spoken to Karen since their fight and he has a gnarly case of writer’s block that’s getting him in hot water with Olivia. Enter Tanner, a fun, flirty dance instructor who charms Ryan despite not being totally available. When his writer’s block eventually lifts, he’s inspired to write a longform piece about disability. From there, he begins a journey of self-discovery that creates unexpected complications in his relationship with Tanner. Meanwhile, Kim lets her guard down when she meets Harrison, a sensitive tech mogul with a humble background – but her insecurities and jealous tendencies continue to hamper her personal life and threaten to push Harrison away. With her spiraling credit card debt driving Kim even further towards rock bottom, she makes a hard choice to regain control of her finances and personal life. Since taking care of Ryan was her life’s purpose until their fight, Karen realizes that she needs to take an active approach to create a fulfilling life for herself – beyond just taking care of her ailing mother. Will she be content with continuing to clean up everyone else’s messes, or will Karen be able to lean into her newfound independence and create a life that centers around her own desires for once? This season is about our primary characters—Ryan, Karen and Kim—coming into their power and realizing they all deserve big gorgeous lives—whether society agrees or not, bitch!”

Ortiz plays Susan, Phil’s new girlfriend. Charming and outgoing, she empathizes with Karen’s struggle to parent Ryan, as she also has a strained relationship with her child.

In addition to O’Connell, Jessica Hecht and Punam Patel return as series regulars. Marla Mindelle, Gina Hughes and Patrick Fabian return as guest stars this season.

Special is created, written and executive produced by O’Connell.

Craig Johnson will direct episodes 205-208.

Gabriel Iglesias to Host Nickelodeon’s New Pet Competition Series “Unleashed”

Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias is learning the truth about cats and dogs…

The 44-year-old Mexican American stand up comedian/actor will serve as the host of Nickelodeon new competition show Unleashed, which seeks to find the most entertaining pet in America.

Gabriel Iglesias

The first two episodes of 10 will premiere back-to-back on October 22 at 7:00 pm ET/PT.

The comedic competition series will corral the most impressive animal acts together to compete for the title of “Most Entertaining Pet” of the night in front of a jury comprised of kids and celebrity judges including Peyton List, Preacher Lawson and Utkarsh Ambudkar.

“We have a squirrel that can water ski, enough said! You have to watch Nickelodeon’s Unleashed!” said Iglesias.

Each episode of Unleashed will feature three animal-loving pet owners and their loyal companions as they take the stage to showcase their pet’s extraordinary talents. From jaw-dropping tricks to hilarious skills, the pet contestants demonstrate their unique abilities — but anything can happen once the cameras start rolling. Acts throughout the season include the aforementioned water-skiing squirrel, a cheerleading goat, a hedgehog with a knack for agility tricks and a soccer-playing horse.

Unleashed is produced by Fremantle, with Jayson Dinsmore and Joni Day serving as executive producers.

The series is directed by Ivan Dudynsky.

Sony Pictures to Release Arturo Castro’s “The Broken Hearts Gallery” One Week Later

Arturo Castro’s broken heart will have to wait a week…

Sony Pictures has pushed the release of the 34-year-old Guatemalan actor’s romantic comedy “The Broken Hearts Gallery” back a week.

Arturo Castro

Instead of opening on Friday, July 10, the film will now be released on Friday, July 17.

Sony Pictures says the movie will still be the first wide release of the summer. 

In addition to Castro, The Broken Hearts Galleryalso stars Geraldine ViswanathanDacre MontgomeryUtkarsh AmbudkarMolly GordonPhillipa SooSuki WaterhouseEgo NwodimTaylor Hill and Bernadette Peters.

Castro’s previous film credits include The Informer,Lady and the Tramp and Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk.

Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “We Are Freestyle Love Supreme” Headed to Hulu in June

Lin-Manuel Miranda love supreme is headed to Hulu

The Andrew Fried-directed documentary We Are Freestyle Love Supreme produced by the 40-year-old Hamiltoncreator and Broadway star has found a home at Hulu and will hit the streamer on June 5.

Lin-Manuel Miranda 

The documentary made its premiere at the Sundance Film Festivalearlier this year and highlights the 15-year journey of the hip-hop improvisational group founded by Miranda, Thomas Kail and Anthony Veneziale

The group called Freestyle Love Supreme was formed long before Miranda’s Hamiltonand In The Heightsmusicals hit Broadway

Fried began chronicling the group in the summer of 2005, documenting the early days of Freestyle Love Supreme beatboxing and rapping on the sidewalks. 

Fast forward 14 years later and Fried brings us to a reunion with a series of shows in New York City that led to a triumphant run on Broadway.

In addition to Miranda, Kail and Veneziale, the doc features Arthur LewisChristopher JacksonUtkarsh AmbudkarChris SullivanBill Sherman,James Monroe Iglehartand Andrew Bancroft.

Salma Hayek to Present at This Year’s Oscars

Salma Hayekwill be taking the Oscarsstage…

The 53-year-old Mexican actress and producer has been added to the list of presenters for the 92nd annual Academy Awards telecast on Sunday.

Salma Hayek

In addition to Hayek, who earned an Oscar nod for her portrayal of iconic Mexican painter Frida Kahlo in the 2002 film Frida, the new additions include Utkarsh AmbudkarBrie LarsonSpike LeeRay Romano, and Rebel Wilson

Previously announced presenters include James CordenPenélope CruzBeanie FeldsteinZack GottsagenDiane KeatonShia LaBeouf, George MacKaySteve MartinKeanu Reeves, Maya Rudolph, Zazie BeetzTimothée ChalametWill FerrellGal GadotMindy KalingJulia Louis-Dreyfus, Lin-Manuel MirandaAnthony RamosMark RuffaloKelly Marie Tran, Kristen Wiig and Sigourney Weaver.

The 92nd annual Academy Awards will be broadcast live on ABC on February 9 from the Dolby Theatre