All Articles Tagged "mary j. blige"

Pass The Popcorn: Our Vote For Lifetime’s Next Biopics

January 27th, 2016 - By Nneka Samuel
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Splash News

Toni Braxton’s Unbreak My Heart Lifetime biopic drew 3.6 million viewers, becoming the network’s most-watched film in a year.  Did you enjoy it? Because we sure did. Narrated and executive produced by Toni Braxton (who sang her own music in the movie), Unbreak My Heart followed the success of Lifetime’s much talked about Aaliyah and Whitney Houston biopics.  Whose life story would you love to see on screen next? From Missy Elliott’s comeback to Brandy’s interesting career and love live and Jennifer Hudson’s incredible story, here are some candidates we think Lifetime should consider.

Image Source: WENN

Image Source: WENN

Vanessa Williams

Vanessa Williams made headlines as the first Black winner of Miss America, a title that she would later relinquish after a Penthouse scandal threatened her burgeoning career.  But Williams bounced back and conquered virtually every sector of entertainment: the musical charts, Broadway, film, and television.  If that doesn’t scream biopic, I don’t know what does.

Watch Mary J. Blige And Lil’ Kim Reunite For “I Can Love You” At ‘Hot For The Holidays’

December 6th, 2015 - By Ashley Monaé
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Last night (Dec. 5), Newark, New Jersey’s Prudential Center was turned all the way up for Hot 97’s “Hot for the Holidays” concert presented by none of other than master of ceremony, Busta Rhymes.

The lyricist brought a number of artists out to celebrate like Puff Daddy, Lil Wayne, Mariah Carey, Fetty Wap, French Montana, Rick Ross, and more. However, the highlight of the night was truly Mary J. Blige’s set when she surprised all and reunited with Lil’ Kim for their 1997 hit “I Can Love You.”

Of course, probably have not seeing the two perform this classic jam together for some decades now, the crowd went absolutely wild when the beat dropped on the smooth, mid-tempo joint. In all of her braggadocios bravado, a pint-sized Kim strutted out on stage in a mink shrug, leather thigh high boots, and a pair of black hip-hugging shorts, as she spit her verse.

The surprise set ended with the two divas embracing each other and leaving the crowd up on their feet applauding.

Check out the performance above.

“It’s A Part Of Who I Am, It’s A Part Of Why I Am”: “The Wiz Live” Cast Share What The Story Means To Them

December 1st, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: NBC

Source: NBC

Just when I thought I couldn’t be any more invested in “The Wiz Live,” we had an opportunity to speak with the cast members about their experience rehearsing for this live, televised event on Thursday, December 3. We interviewed some of the biggest names in entertainment and they had a lot to say about this project. But more than anything, the cast members kept reiterating how important The Wiz, both the play and the feature film, were to not only themselves but to the African American community as a whole.

Check out some of the thoughts, memories and passion shared by both the on-stage talent as well as the folks behind the curtain.

Source: NBC

Source: NBC

Stephanie Mills, Auntie Em

I knew of Shanice (who plays Dorothy) before they actually cast her because Kenny and I were having a talk and he said, ‘There’s this girl and I know she’s Dorothy, I know she’s Dorothy.’

I’ve given her love. I told her you can’t–I don’t want you to try to do what I did. She’s her Dorothy, the 2015 Dorothy. It’s her. I did my part 40 years ago.

It’s emotional because I see myself in her. I see the innocence, how young I was doing it and how afraid I was at that time. It brings back all those memories.

Executive producer, Craig Zadan: I don’t think we had any pressure. We took it on because we love it and we thought it would make a great show for us to do. What we were surprised at was the amount of people who called us. I would say this was the first time in our lives that very prominent African American artists, actors, directors, producers called us to say ‘Do you know how important this is to the community? Don’t blow it.’ And we realized at that moment that there’s a reverence for this material. We didn’t take it on for the reverence. We took it on because we loved it. But then you realize that there is that added responsibility of making sure that it’s done correctly. And we’ve done it correctly. We hope. We hope when you all see that you feel it’s done correctly too.

MN: Was there a moment when you felt like ‘ok, this is right’?

Executive producer, Neil Meron: Yeah. At the table read when it was all the talent in one room and we heard how much they collectively felt the same way about the material and what we were about to do. It felt good.

(Photo by: Paul Gilmore/NBC)

(Photo by: Paul Gilmore/NBC)

Amber Riley, Addaperle (Good Witch of the North)

I don’t know how old I was but I remember watching [The Wiz] and rewinding it over and over again. And I remember trying to do “Ease on Down The Road.” I remember the music, I specifically remember the music.

Before even hearing what names were going to be a part of [this production], I wanted to be a part of it anyway. I didn’t really care who was going to be in it. You know, this is iconic. The fact that my mom has seen it and that was her first Broadway show and then I saw it in the movie and now my niece is four is going to be able to watch it. Anything that can withstand generations has to be amazing. There’s something special about it and I really wanted to be a part of that.

Mary J. Blige Wants To Take Life Story To Broadway

November 9th, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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WENN

WENN

At 44 years old, Mary J. Blige can say that she kicked drug and alcohol addictions, escaped abusive relationships, and beat the odds by rising to R&B stardom after dropping out of high school at 17 years old. She has quite the story—one that the New York City native would like to see come to life on a Broadway stage.

“I definitely want to see the Mary J. Blige story — or just one of the album cycles — on Broadway,” Blige, who is set to star in NBC’s The Wiz! Live, told Playbill.com. “To just have one of those albums, turns or times on Broadway would be crazy.”

In a 2008 interview with The Guardian, Blige described hitting rock bottom and realizing that she had to turn her life around if she wanted to survive.

“I saw my life going down a drain. One of my real close girlfriends died; I thought I was next. And then Aaliyah died, and then New York just blew up completely – like POW! – I thought I was next. And I realized I didn’t want to die like this, not tragic like this.”

She’d certainly have a lot of material to work with. That’s for sure.

Would you be here for a Mary J. Blige musical?

Mary J. Blige Joins Beats 1 With “Real Talk” Show

November 7th, 2015 - By Ashley Monaé
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Image Source: WENN

Image Source: WENN

Just last month Apple Music premiered a dope commercial with Mary J. Blige, Taraji P. Henson and Kerry Washington, as the gal pals gave us all the feels of nostalgia with their throwback dance moves.

On Thursday (Nov. 5), clear the queen of R&B and soul excitedly announced that she now is a part of the brands popular Beats1 Radio. With he very own showed titled “Real Talk,” Mary kept the deets about her new show fairly low-key.

However, knowing Mary’s extensive musical background that includes several critically acclaimed albums and chart-topping hits, we’re sure she’s going to bring nothing but sonically pleasing vibes to Beats1.

MJB’s “Real Talk” premieres Sunday, Nov. 8 at 2 p.m. ET. Will you be tuned in for Mary’s takeover?

Werk: Ava DuVernay Directs Apple Music Ad Starring Kerry, Taraji And MJB

September 21st, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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turnup

In case you missed it, the theme for last night was #BlackGirlMagic. From the Emmy red carpet slayage, to the awards, the speeches and even the show of sisterhood it was good to watch us win last night.

And in addition to the actual award show itself, even a commercial was telling of our brilliance.

Apple Music tapped the immensely talented Ava DuVernay to direct a commercial advertising their playlist function with Mary J. Blige, Taraji P. Henson and Kerry Washington.

The women have what looks like a real girlfriend moment as they vibe out to some of their favorite songs from back in the day. There’s dancing, laughter and all around fabulousness.

Check it out below.

Apparently, there is more where this comes from. Ava told her Twitter followers that this ad is just one of three.

Squee We wait with baited breath.

Mary J. Blige Announces The ‘MJB Live!’ Tour With Tamar Braxton

September 19th, 2015 - By Ashley Monaé
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If you love real R&B music, then you’ll be in for a treat with this newest tour announcement.

Mary J. Blige a.k.a the Queen of Hip Hop Soul has called on soulful chanteuse Tamar Braxton to join her on her “MJB Live!” North American tour this fall.

The recently announced 12-date tour will start in Augusta, Ga. on Oct. 30 and stop through North Carolina, Florida, New Jersey and more.

Mary’s classic catalog and funky dances moves paired with Braxton’s new hits, is bound to be a major success for both women and sounds like a show you won’t want to miss.

MJB Live! tickets are now on sale.

Queen Latifah And Mary J Blige Are Coming To “The Wiz” Find Out Who They’ll Play

July 28th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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queen latifah and mary j blige feat

WENN.com

We’ve been telling you for months about NBC’s production of the Broadway classic, “The Wiz.” Now, as the December air date nears, we’ve got some casting information to share with you.

According to Varietyone of the upcoming show’s executive producers Craig Zadan, made the announcement today. Latifah will play the role of the mysterious and powerful wizard in the Emerald City.

And Mary J. Blige will play Eveillene better known as the Wicked Witch of the West, who rules over the Winkies and Winged Monkeys.

As for Dorothy, NBC is still holding a nationwide search to find a new, fresh-faced talent.

Latifah and Blige join Stephanie Mills, the former Dorothy, who will play Auntie Em in this version.

The show will premiere on December 3 and later, a Cirque du Soleil stage version of the production will air on Broadway.

WCW: 15 Hauttest Mary J. Blige Moments

April 22nd, 2015 - By Rich
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We love us some Mary J Blige — always and forever! This R&B diva has been sharing her pain way before there was a Social Media network to blather too and we love her for it. Her upcoming documentary, The London Sessions follows the making of her 13th album and we’re already lining up behind our computers ready to cop it! Take a second and check out her flyest glam moments on and off the carpet.

All images courtesy of WENN

 

 WCW: 15 Hauttest Mary J. Blige Moments

Mary J. Blige Talks Money Woes & Professional Missteps: “A Lot Of It Came From Not Paying Attention”

April 21st, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Mary J. Blige Talks Money Woes & Professional Missteps: "A Lot Of It Came From Not Paying Attention"

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A couple of years ago, it seemed that every other day Mary J. Blige was making headlines for not having her business affairs in order. In 2013, she was hit with tax liens by both the IRS and the state of New Jersey. The very same year, the singer also made the news after being served with eviction papers—not to mention that she was sued by both Bank of America and Signature Bank for defaulting on loans. And then of course, it was that “crispy chicken” song scandal with Burger King.

In a recent interview with NBC BLK, the 44-year-old explained that going overseas to record her most recent album The London Sessions, helped her to overcome all of the turmoil she was experiencing here in the States.

“Well, I don’t really know why a lot of it was happening,” she shared, “it was just time for it to happen and it was time for it to happen to me, so it could push me to another level and another place.”

As for what went wrong, Mary insists that she trusted the wrong people to take care of her business. She also blamed herself for not paying close enough attention to what was happening.

“It was a disastrous,” she confessed. “And a lot of it came from not paying attention; a lot of it came from just trusting the wrong people. And it was a wakeup call, it was a huge humongous wakeup call for me to say ‘Look, you don’t need any of these people around and I’m going to make sure that you see how fast they run when this happens.’ And it was just the biggest wakeup call ever.”

Of course, this wasn’t the first time the singer has endured hardship, but she admits that living in the age of social media and blogs made the trial a lot more difficult. At the same time, Mary says that she can look back and appreciate the experience.

“I’m grateful for it though and it hurt like hell because it was public and it all over and I was like ‘good Lord.’ It was very, very painful because back in the day, I’ve been through hell but with today’s social media and the news and it was something so big and disastrous it had to be for something good.”

She continued:

“I’m not going to sit here and say I’m Hercules. When you have so much negativity at one time over something that didn’t even have to do with anything, it’s a lot to take in because it’s all energy.”

“And when you see the amount of it, you get to see exactly who you are. And it’s how you respond to it or react. And what I learned is that I really respond well because I don’t pay it any mind but the fact is that a lot of it hurt. But at the end of the day, you won’t know it hurts. So, I just learned my strength in that. I learned my weaknesses and it’s a whole other level from back in the days. I’m somewhere else in my life. It’s a whole other strength that I learned that I had.”

It’s always great when you can emerge from a storm better and more enlightened than you were when you went in. Definitely wishing Miss Mary the best!

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise