All Articles Tagged "OWN"

Holly Robinson Peete On New Show For Peete’s Sake  And Raising Kids In Today’s Social Climate

March 15th, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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OWN

Holly Robinson Peete became a household name in the ’90s due to her roles in 21 Jump Street and Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper, and although the actress’ hustle remains strong well into the new millennium, many have never seen what a day in the life of Robinson Peete is like, until now. Thanks to OWN, viewers will get to see just that in the new docu-series For Peete’s Sake giving viewers a peek inside how the actress and advocate has made her marriage with NFL retiree Rodney Peete last for more than 20 years, what it’s like to raise a son of color living with autism and the values she instills in her teen daughter.

We chatted with Robinson Peete about her newest TV endeavor ahead of its spring premiere. Check out what she had to say in our Q&A and be sure to watch For Peete’s Sake on March 19 at 9/8c on OWN.

MadameNoire (MN): What can you tell us about For Peete’s Sake?

Holly Robinson Peete (HRP): For about 10 years, we’ve been on the short list to do a show like this, but it was always all about timing and wanting to make sure the kids were ready and fully understood what it meant to be on TV in this capacity. It feels like the right time; timing is everything. Everyone is in a transitional period, right now. I just had a big milestone birthday and my husband is coming up on his big milestone. My mother is coming up on 80 and my daughter is applying to college. My son is getting a job and my middle child is being the middle child and my baby is my baby. It’s just a lot of transitioning going on in life and it feels like a good time to document it. And production-wise and network-wise, I just feel like all the pieces are right.

MN: How did your family’s experience on Wife Swap prepare you for your docu-series?

HRP: Wife Swap is more about comparing yourself to another family and drawing differences. For Peete’s Sake, it’s way more organic and authentic. Wife Swap was fun but you have to fit into a formula with that show. For Peete’s Sake, we were inventing our own formula. [For example,] I am a lot less structured in For Peete’s Sake than I was in Wife Swap.

MN: How have you rebranded yourself as a Black actress? And, do you think there is a lack of roles or content being created for Black women?

HRP: I think there is a lot of content right now! We have way more outlets than we had when I first started. We only had three networks and we were starting the fourth with 21 Jump Street on FOX. Today, we have cable, webisodes and there are so many more ways to get ourselves and our brands in front of consumers. The whole game has changed from when I started in the ’80s. I think where we are not seeing equity is in the celebration of what we do.

MN: What advice do you have for Black mothers raising black male children, especially those with special needs in a social climate where police brutality is prevalent?

HRP: I stay awake at night. I can’t relax as a mom of young Black boys. I just can’t ever relax. I worry about where they are; I worry about them getting singled out, wrong place, wrong time situation— with all three of my sons. But especially with my son with autism because he doesn’t always know how to navigate the social cues. We have drilled him and role played the situation. I say, “What would be the first thing to do?” and he [my son] would say “I would pull out my phone.” And I say, “Oh no!” We touch upon this in the show. I have a huge fear for any mom who has a boy of color in this funky climate. For those of us with special needs sons, we have that extra worry about if law enforcement [doesn’t] understand how to approach our sons, will they harm first and ask questions later? I thought of taking a proactive approach (at least in our neighborhood) where we took our sons to the local police department and introduced them [to the police officers]. As a special needs mom, you must advocate any way you can.

MN: Social media is so influential in how we view beauty standards, what conversations do you have with your daughter about her self-esteem and womanhood?

HPR: I constantly try to lift her self-esteem and tell her how beautiful she is. Ryan is a very natural girl. She has that kind of hippie flavor; she reminds me of a ’70s throwback type. But yet she does enjoy getting her hair and makeup done. But most of the time, [she wears] sweats, hair tied back. Most of the time I’m like “Can you put some lip gloss on?” She’s very, very bohemian. But she enjoys glamming it up. I always tell her to feel good about who she is. The best way I think I’ve been able to lift her self-esteem is by encouraging her to travel the world at a young age. And we’re blessed to be able to do that. But it’s very important for her to see other cultures and lift her CQ– cultural IQ.

MN: What have you learned from your mother that you’ve also instilled in your children?

HPR: [My mother has taught me to] be professional. Every time you do a project, the crew, the makeup, the hair, the [other] actors will all go on to other projects and [people will ask] “How was it working with such and such? Was she nice?” And my mom always used to tell me [that you] always want the crew to walk away and go, “Boy, she was fun to work with!” That’s what keeps you working in the business. Always be friendly and very affable and care about the crew because they are working longer hours for a lot less money. And [when you’re] working in this business you’ll see a lot of actors do themselves in [by behaving the opposite].

MN: You’ve been with your husband former NFL quarterback Rodney Peete for over 20 years, what makes a successful marriage, especially in the entertainment industry?

HPR: Scheduled “fun time.” You fill in the blank. [Laughs] You got to schedule “fun time” because if you don’t schedule fun, it ain’t going to happen. Whatever your fun is: play dates, hangouts, sex, whatever it is. And then [there is] same page love, that’s what I call it. You have to be on the same page because I know when Rodney and I are not on the same page, that’s when the conflict comes. Whether it’s a situation with the kids or an issue we are having with each other, we figure out how to get back on the same page. Rodney’s favorite thing to do is 20-second hugs—it sounds like a really stupid thing but instead of the little fake hugs you may do in passing, you have to hug each other for 20 full seconds. Sometimes you’ll be like, “I really want to let go at 10” but with 20, it takes you to another place of connection. And you let go of any little issues that you’re feeling. I feel like that works very well.

MN: What advice do you have for women who work with their husbands?

HPR: I don’t necessarily recommend it. I think you should have separate businesses or maybe do part-time work. The show was part-time for us and we only shot eight episodes. I liked it but I wouldn’t recommend it full time. Some people really make it work but I really like being a consultant for him and vice versa. We work better in moderation.

MN: Netflix recently debuted Fuller House, would you want there to be a reboot of Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper?

HPR: Yeah! Mr. Cooper’s (Mark Curry) daughter and my youngest son are in fifth grade together. So, I am still “hangin’ with Mr. Cooper,” 20 years later. I see him all the time and we are still great friends. We’ve been having this conversation for the last 10 years, so I would do it in a heartbeat.

Rutina Wesley To Star In OWN’s “Queen Sugar”

January 14th, 2016 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: AP Images

In the earlier part of last year, we brought you the exciting news that Oprah and Ava DuVernay were partnering once again (after they worked together in Selma) to bring Natalie Baszile’s Queen Sugar to OWN.

And today we learned that the role of Nova Bordelon will go to actress Rutina Wesley, best known for her role as Tara Thorton on HBO’s hit series “True Blood.”

Though in the book, Charley is the main character, a press release from OWN states that Wesley will play the lead as Nova.

In the series, Nova is a “formidable journalist and activist based in New Orleans. Her life, and that of her brother and their extended family, undergoes significant change when her sister Charley, returns to Louisiana from Los Angeles to help run the family sugarcane farm.”

Oprah who executive produces along with DuVernay, will also appear as a series regular.

Ava DuVernay developed Queen Sugar for television by writing the pilot episode. She is set to direct several episodes throughout the show’s first season.

According to the press release, Wesley also had a recurring role on the NBC drama “Hannibal” and recently guest starred in multiple episodes of The CW/Warner Bros. Television hit action-drama “Arrow.” Wesley co-starred in the hit 2015 Screen Gems film “The Perfect Guy” and previously appeared on Broadway in David Hare’s “The Vertical Hour,” opposite Julianne Moore. She began her career with a starring role in the independent feature film “How She Move,” which debuted at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. Wesley is a graduate of the drama division of the renowned Juilliard School.

OWN Network Hosts Music Icons At The Apollo Theater For Legendary Concert Series

October 25th, 2015 - By Ashley Monaé
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After banking a major stake in Weight Watchers, media maven Oprah Winfrey has rolled out yet another major power move from her well-cuffed sleeve.

If you haven’t already heard the good news, Winfrey’s OWN network is hosting a legendary music icons concert series, Legends: OWN at the Apollo.  Appropriately held at Harlem’s Apollo Theater, the place many legendary musicians got their start, the series premiered on OWN last night (Oct. 24) and will continue to air with iconic acts for the next three Saturdays. For the series kicker, Gladys Knight performed her six decades worth of hits.

“I’m always happy to do anything for OWN. That’s Oprah’s network and I love her,” the soulful chanteuse said. “They chose me and I’m flattered by that,” The Grio reported.

Knight also shared the stage with Yolanda Adams, Stevie Wonder and Dionne Warwick for a performance of “That’s What Friends Are For.”

Legends like Smokey Robinson (10/31), The Isley Brothers (11/7) and Earth, Wind & Fire (11/14) are all set to perform their catalogs of equal parts of extensive and influential for sold-out audiences.

Tune in to Legends: OWN at the Apollo on Saturdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on OWN.

 

Should Women Talk About Their Miscarriages?

July 22nd, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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In the first episode of her show, “Living Lozada,” Evelyn Lozada announced, much to our surprise, that she was expecting another child.

Sadly, the exuberant feelings didn’t last too long, in the promo clip for the next episode, her doctor told her that her hormone levels were so low, they seemed to suggest that the pregnancy wouldn’t come to term.

Later, in an interview with People, Lozada confirmed that she did indeed have a miscarriage.

“When I went to my first appointment, everything looked great. My progesterone levels were good.

My hormone levels were dropping. My doctor said, ‘Let’s just see what happens and if anything changes.’ ”

 “At my next appointment, my ultrasound went from looking really perfect and beautiful to looking pear-shaped,” says Lozada. “You could just tell, it didn’t look normal.”

Sadly, the process wasn’t a smooth one.

“for me the most heartbreaking thing was knowing that it could take up to a day to maybe a week for it to happen,” says Lozada. “I became so obsessed with it. I kept taking pregnancy tests and one would come out positive, then one would come out negative. It was so hard not knowing when I’d lose the baby.”

The miscarriage finally happened during a photo shoot her family had scheduled to help her feel better.

“I had to stop the photo shoot and just lay down. It was hard.”

Though Evelyn had the love and support of her family, she said it was mostly an experience  she endured alone.

“You have a million and one questions in your mind as to what happened. You just feel responsible. It’s your body. It’s a loss that only you can relate to.”

Evelyn questioned everything, from the things she ate during her pregnancy to her age.

“It’s nothing that you ate, or did; it’s not your age. One out of all four to five pregnancies end in miscarriage,” she explains. “I have three girlfriends and it’s literally happened to each and every one of them.”

I responded to the news that Evelyn was pregnant with joy. Yet, others thought she was too old to be having more children. As someone who comes from a family where women have babies into their forties, I didn’t see an issue with it. Particularly, at a time in her life when Evelyn is not only in a seemingly more stable relationship but she’s in a better emotional and psychological space. A better adjusted mother is an asset to a child.

Plus, I thorough enjoy women over thirty giving birth to children, defying the notion that we all need to rush to have children before we’re all “dried”and”shriveled.” We all have a different story. And they don’t have to include a husband and baby before 30. There is life after 35. You can even produce it.

And like the news that she was pregnant, people are equally disappointed with Evelyn’s decision to share her miscarriage story, claiming that she was using the tragic event to further promote her show.

That’s a given. All reality stars are profiting off the stories of the lives, good, bad and ugly. While many are tripped up over the method, I think the message is a pretty necessary one.

Like Evelyn said,  many women have suffered from miscarriage and many of them needlessly blame themselves for the loss. There’s a certain level of shame many women feel about having lost a child, so they keep the traumatic nature of their experiences to themselves.

My mother who had at least two, possibly three miscarriages, before I, her first child was born, describes that own period in her life as rather dark. She spoke about hearing a ripping sound and realizing she’d lost a child, trying to collect and save one of the embryos and feeling like everyone around her had a baby.

I don’t say that to be morbid, though it is. I say that because it’s such a common occurrence and women need to know that there is hope after this.

And that’s the message Evelyn was trying to spread in sharing her story.

She concluded her story with People saying, “This was just another tragic incident in my life that I had to deal with. But I say God doesn’t make mistakes. Women just need to hold out hope.”

Evelyn is taking her own advice and is still optimistic about the prospect of having a child. “I’m not checking for when I’m ovulating or anything. I’m like look, I’m pushing 40. I’m going to be 50 with a 10-year-old! If it happens again, that will probably be my last.” 

Will Evelyn gain further exposure from this story. Of course. You’re reading about her right now. But I’m also sure her words will help someone who believes their suffering through this alone.

“Flex & Shanice” Premieres Tonight on The OWN Network

July 11th, 2015 - By Rich
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“Flex & Shanice” premieres tonight on OWN at 10pm ET/PT and follows the lives of husband and wife duo, actor Flex Alexander (“One on One”), Grammy-nominated, ’90s pop singer Shanice (“I Love Your Smile”) and their extended family all living together under one roof. From the outside looking in, Flex and Shanice are living the dream – they are beautiful celebrities with a long-standing marriage, gorgeous kids and a lovely home in suburbia. But what this fairytale couple has been hiding from the world is that they have been struggling financially for the past five years.

So they moved their hilarious extended family in to help make ends meet, but nine people under one roof can add just as much stress as it relieves. While Flex hustles to support the family and kick-start his career, Shanice struggles to balance being a mom with her demanding new recording schedule. This family is just trying to hold it together for long enough to capture that one big break that could turn their luck around.

Oprah Winfrey Network is the first and only network named for, and inspired by, a single iconic leader. Oprah Winfrey’s heart and creative instincts inform the brand – and the magnetism of the channel.  Winfrey provides leadership in programming and attracts superstar talent to join her in primetime, building a global community of like-minded viewers and leading that community to connect on social media and beyond.

 

“Livin’ Lozada” Premieres on the OWN Network Tonight

July 11th, 2015 - By Rich
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OWN’s new docu-series “Livin’ Lozada” launches tonight on OWN at 9pm ET/PT and follows the lives of Evelyn Lozada, of “Basketball Wives” fame, and her 21-year-old daughter Shaniece. Evelyn is engaged to big league baseball player Carl Crawford and the couple just welcomed their first child, Carl Leo Jr., to the family last March. Between learning to be a mom all over again, setting up a new home in Los Angeles for her and her family, running several businesses as well as dealing with issues surrounding her family back East… Evelyn has a lot going on!
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Not to be outdone, her daughter Shaniece’s modeling career is taking off resulting in a flood of business opportunities with no clear choice of which to pursue, leaning on her mom for advice which she (sometimes) takes. Each episode is filled with close friends and relatives in the ladies’ lives who help round out a world filled with laughter, support, encouragement and tears as we follow Shaniece carving out the new life before her and Evelyn finally feeling like she has the life she deserves. The series is produced by Shed Media with Pam Healey, John Hesling, Lisa Shannon, Russ Heldt and Evelyn Lozada as executive producers.
Oprah Winfrey Network is the first and only network named for, and inspired by, a single iconic leader. Oprah Winfrey’s heart and creative instincts inform the brand – and the magnetism of the channel.  Winfrey provides leadership in programming and attracts superstar talent to join her in primetime, building a global community of like-minded viewers and leading that community to connect on social media and beyond.

First Look: Evelyn Lozada’s New Reality Show, “Livin’ Lozada” [Watch]

June 30th, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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OWN

OWN

Nearly two years after she chucked the deuces to VH1 and “Basketball Wives,” Evelyn Lozada is preparing to return to reality television. On Saturday, July 11, the mom and wife-to-be will be premiering her new docu-series, “Livin’ Lozada,” which is slated to air on OWN.

As previously reported, the series highlights Lozada’s new life with her fiance MLB star Carl Crawford, her 1-year-old son Carl Leo and her daughter Shaniece Hairston. Viewers will get to witness the 39-year-old learn to be a mom to a small child again, 20 years after the birth of Hairston, who recently celebrated her 22nd birthday.

In addition to gearing up for the premiere, Lozada and Hairston are also celebrating the launch of her #SippinBeauty challenge in conjunction with youthH2O age defying system and Vitamin World. The mother-daughter duo is inviting fans and beauty enthusiasts to partake in the 60-day challenge, which requires them to consume the daily supplement that is said to have hair, skin and nails benefits.

“youthH2O has so many endless age-defying benefits, it’s all natural and with their new delicious Blooming Apple flavor and improved formula for hair, skin and nails, I’m excited for everyone to experience healthy growing hair like mine,” said Lozada.

Over the next few weeks, participants are asked to document their progress with hair selfies on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram using the hashtag #SippinBeauty. Lucky entrants of the challenge will be awarded gifts and prizes.

“When it comes to hair and beauty treatments, today’s modern women need simple, easy to manage, healthy beauty regiments,” stated Sherry Zikria, Director of Marketing for Revival Labs. “The Summer #SippinBeauty challenge will reinforce our message for everyone to have a healthy lifestyle choice with youthH2O and Vitamin World.”

“Livin’ Lozada” debuts on OWN Saturday, July 11. Will you be tuning in?

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise

Prayers Answered: OWN Cancels Jay Williams Docu-Series

June 4th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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OWN

OWN

Jesus wept when we learned, earlier this year, that Jay Williams was coming back to OWN with a new docuseries.

But apparently, he may have heard some of your prayers about it not coming to pass. Because, midway through production, the OWN announced that they’ve decided to pull the plug on Jay, his 17 baby mamas and their 34 children.

The network released this statement:

OWN has decided not to move forward with the Jay Williams docu-series. The series aimed to follow Jay as he worked to put his life and fractured relationships in order and to hold him accountable every step of the way. The intention was to help Jay work to establish new connections with his family, his children and the mothers of his children. Production has ended and the series will not air.”

Sources told theGrio, that production for the docu-series wasn’t playing out the way the network had hoped.

When OWN made the announcement about the show, they said that cameras hoped to document Jay as he worked to heal and establish new connections with his fractured family.

This is certainly interesting to me. And actually, reminds me of the open letter his daughter Amina Mosley wrote, where she stated that her father had become a bit of an attention-seeker after the cameras started documenting his troubled relationships.

Perhaps OWN learned the same thing…or maybe things just got uglier. Either way, Jay Williams really didn’t need any more public exposure. And whether someone is broadcasting it or not, I would hope he and several of his family members get some professional or spiritual help so they can begin to clean all of this up.

Janet Mock Sits Down With Oprah For Super Soul Sunday

April 29th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: OWN

Bruce Jenner is not the person educating the world and giving voice to an often ignored and misunderstood community. Janet Mock, the former website editor for People turned author and activist, is sitting down with Oprah for an episode of Super Soul Sunday this weekend to talk about her own personal journey.

For those of you who may not know Mock’s story, she was living in New York City, working her dream job. She kept the truth of her past life private. Then in 2011, Mock shared her story with Marie Claire magazine. Though she later took issue with the piece, specifically the title “I Was Born A Boy,” the story opened up a world of possibilities for her.

She quickly became one of the most visible and influential trans women in the world. Today, she hosts a show on MSNBC and has written a memoir called Redefining Realness. 

During her sit down with Oprah, Mock will discuss knowing at as early as five-years-old, that she was a girl. She says:

“As a young person, you don’t have much agency or decision-making. And so you just go wherever people pick you up and take you, and say that this is the way the world is,” she says. “And something internal inside of me told me constantly that what they’re saying is wrong. And so it creates this dissonance with who can you trust if you know that inside, as a 5-year-old, that this is how you know yourself to be.”

Check out the clips from the upcoming interview in the videos below.


You can catch Mock’s interview on OWN at Sunday, May 3 at 11 am ET/PT.

Jay Williams, Man With 34 Kids, Is Coming Back To TV…With His Own Show

March 25th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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OWN

Oprah and OWN are determined to dominate the ratings this year. Now that the network has pinpointed exactly what it is viewers want to see, they’re on a roll.

This September the network is sticking to the formula and reuniting with Jay Williams. For those who don’t remember, Williams is the man with 34 children by 17 different women. Iyanla sat down with him and several mothers of his children for one of her “Fix My Life” shows.

According to Variety, this time around Jay, of Atlanta, will have his own show where he will try to mend the relationships with his family, children and mothers of his children. Iyanla will be helping to guide him along the way.

While Jay certainly needs to “do the work,” to borrow a phrase from Iyanla, I do wonder if all of this fame and recognition is going to his head.

At the same time, with his track record, full of irresponsibility,  it’s doubtful that Jay would attempt to repair these relationships without the cameras around.

Which might have been what his daughter was arguing all those months ago when she said she resented Iyanla for giving her father another way to dodge his issues. 

I still don’t believe Iyanla is to blame, particularly when Jay is ultimately the only person who can hold himself accountable. But I do get the sense that he’s more interested in being seen than he is in repairing and rebuilding the relationships he’s broken.

What do you think about Jay getting his own show? Is it more hurtful than helpful?