All Articles Tagged "Zoe Saldana"

Black Women Unite: Alfre Woodard Hosts Annual Oscar’s Sistahs Soiree

February 23rd, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Alfre Woodard Hosts Annual Oscar's Sistahs Soiree feat

Source: Getty Images

 

Just because a whole lot of people of color weren’t nominated for Academy Awards this year, it certainly didn’t stop the party.

Every year, for the past six years, Alfre Woodard hosts the Oscars’s Sistah Soiree. And the name tells it all. Woodard invites Black actresses to gather together and celebrate their accomplishments throughout the years.

Variety reports that she started hosting this party because she was tired of feeling like there was so much competition and animosity between Black actresses.

During the cocktail party before the dinner, held at the Beverly Hills Wilshire, Woodard said: “Every time we hear each others’ names, it felt like it was on of our reps going, ‘If that b-tch turns it down, then you can have it! I was like, wait a minute. When I hear my sister’s names, I want to have a joyful feeling in my heart about it.” 

During the party, sponsored by Elizabeth Taylor’s White Diamonds Lustre fragrance, Woodard struggled to find a quiet space to complete the interview.

“You see how loud it gets! It’s always like this, because all the women in this room have more in common with each other than anyone else in the professional world. We’ve all been on the same journey- we speak a common language.” 

While I’m sure quite a few of us would have loved to be in that room, the invitees can’t even bring their significant others to the party. “From the first time, everyone just fell into each others’ arms. it was immediate bonding.” 

The idea to host the gathering had been on her mind for years but 2009 just so happened to be the year both Viola Davis and Taraji P. Henson were nominated for Doubt and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. But she didn’t just want to honor the nominees.

“It’s to honor the women who are nominated and the women who, in a perfect world, should have been. I wasn’t going to have a gathering of women actors and not have CCH Pounder or Lorraine Toussaint here!”

The event also serves as a means to show support.

“We know the ones nominated will be out and (are) being celebrated. But when they’re on the carpet, when they’re walking onstage, there are people like them wishing them well. The women who know exactly what you’re doing, actors of quality, saying good on you. We got your back.”

British actresses Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Carmen Ejogo, who plays Coretta in Selma, shared a moment Ejogo was a support for Mbatha-Raw when she first moved to the United States for the short-lived television show “Undercovers.” Mbatha-Raw recalled feeling lost.

“I actually asked Carmen for advice.” 

And Ejogo responded, “You clearly found your way, babe.” 

Later, Ejogo for continued, expounding on her excitement for Mbatha-Raw and explaining how event like this “remind you we’re all in this together and we have to support each other. I feel like I’m celebrating everyone. It’s a wonderful moment.”

 

Source: Getty Images

Source: Getty Images

I cannot tell you how much I love these images!

Style To Steal Or Girl, Stop? Black Folks Doing It Big, And Bad, At The 2015 Academy Awards

February 22nd, 2015 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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It’s Hollywood’s biggest night, and while black folks might not have picked up many nominations (Selma is nominated in the Best Picture category, and “Glory” is nominated for Best Original Song), I was quite surprised to see how many of our stars showed up for the the big ceremony. What are they looking like? I have all their looks for you to see, and talk about, here. So who looked amazing and who didn’t? Let’s chat!

 

2015 Academy Awards

Getty

Lupita Nyong’o

In a custom Calvin Klein gown, Lupita returned to the Academy Awards red carpet a year after winning. Her heavily adorned pearl dress with its open back and keyhole detail is one-of-a-kind, and she definitely looks one-of-a-kind on the carpet. And while I like what they’ve tried to with her hair recently, I actually prefer this close, cropped and curled look. Steal!

10 Biggest Box Office Winners Of 2014

December 31st, 2014 - By Tanvier Peart
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PNP/WENN.com

PNP/WENN.com

Now that 2014 is just about over, the time has come to take a look at films that entertained us throughout the year. Yes there were some slow periods, but that doesn’t take away from the millions of dollars different films racked up at the box office. Here’s a look at the 10 biggest movies of the year.

Year Of The Mama For Real: 2014 Celebrity Baby Boom

December 15th, 2014 - By Tanvier Peart
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WENN

WENN

The year hasn’t even ended and folks are already marking their calendars for celebrities who will give birth in the new year. Something must be in the water as there are tons of stars who welcomed bundles of joy into their lives. In fact, there are probably way too many to list here—but let’s give it a go. Here’s a look at celebrities who had a baby this year.

Congrats! Zoe Saldana Welcome Twin Boys!

December 14th, 2014 - By Courtney Whitaker
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Zoe Saldana pregnancy rumors swirl after questionable photos find their way to the Internet.

WENN

Zoe Saldana is officially a mommy! 

The gorgeous actress welcomed twins with her husband Marco Perego. According to E! News, Zoe gave birth to a beautiful set of twin boys earlier this week. 

“She had her twins” and she and Marco “are both so excited,” a source told E! News. “They are surrounded by family and friends. All that matters now to Zoe and her husband is that the babies are healthy.”

Zoe and Marco got married in England in the summer of 2013. The super private actress, didn’t reveal her marriage or her pregnancy for some time. However, multiple sources are confirming the birth of her twin boys! 

The twins are the first for Zoe and Marco. 

Congratulations! 

That Was You?! Black Stars We Didn’t Realize Started On “Law & Order” Back In The Day

November 5th, 2014 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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As many episodes of “Law & Order” as there have been, along with the spin-offs over the years, I can understand why trying to get a role on the shows was and still is the thing to do as a burgeoning actor. Even if you’re not a major character (aka, victim, criminal or attorney), you can still get a check from playing something small (a witness, someone who knows the whereabouts of a criminal, the dead body found in the beginning of the show). So many actors and actresses got their start on the show, along with “Criminal Intent” and “Special Victims Unit,” or appeared on it before hitting it big, and we’ve found some of the black ones here:

Samuel Jackson

Samuel L. Jackson

By 1991, Samuel L. Jackson had been in quite a few movies already, even if his parts were small (including Do The Right Thing and Coming To America). In an attempt to build up his resume, Jackson nabbed a role on “Law & Order” in season one as attorney Louis Taggert. He represented a young man (Phillip Seymour Hoffman in his first on-screen role) accused of participating in the gang rape of a TV reporter.

Zoe Saldana (And Her Baby Bump) Grace The Cover Of Elle For Their ‘Women In Hollywood’ Issue

October 10th, 2014 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Zoe Saldana graces the cover of Elle with her baby bump. Inside, she discusses accepting the role of Nina Simone and "making it" in Hollywood.

 

Zoe Saldana and her huge baby bump graced the cover of Elle magazine’s November issue, which serves as a nod to their annual Women In Hollywood Awards. Actresses Jennifer Garner and Tina Fey, who are Zoe’s fellow honorees for the awards, also appear on alternate covers. The other women being honored by the publication are Elizabeth Banks, Brie Larson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Annette Bening and Jessica Lange.  Inside of the issue, Zoe discussed her reluctance to accept the role of Nina Simone in a biopic about the late singer’s life and how her Dominican upbringing altered her perception of “making it” in Hollywood.

On being reluctant about playing Nina Simone:

“I actually encouraged Cynthia to cast someone else. But she came to me and said that everybody was afraid, and I thought, ‘S–t, then how can we complain that there aren’t enough films about African-American iconic figures?’”

On never striving to “make it” in Hollywood:

“That’s how those seven years my sisters and I spent on a bohemian island played very well. We’re not American in terms of feeding into that machine that you have to be somebody. We were somebody the moment we were born.”

Speaking of “making it,” Gugu also seemed to brush off the concept.

“It’s funny—I never feel like, ‘Oh, wow, I’ve made it.’ I’m interested in the journey,” she told Elle. “I’m interested in the adventure of working with different people, and I guess as soon as you sit on your laurels and can go, ‘Well, aren’t I great?’—that’s just the beginning of the end.”

She also dished on her role in Beyond The Lights.

“One of the things that drew me to the project was the relationship between mother and daughter— that ‘mom-ager’ dynamic—because I grew up with a single mom, though my dad has definitely been in my life a lot. But my mom couldn’t be more different from Minnie Driver’s character. I was the pushy child, the one who wanted to be doing ballet and jazz and tap and everything.”

Elle’s November issue hits stands Oct. 14.

Zoe Saldana Finally Confirms She’s Having Twins

October 2nd, 2014 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Source: GSI Images

Source: GSI Images

Last June, rumors that newlywed Zoe Saldana is with child began circulating. Eventually, Zoe confirmed her pregnancy in an angry tweet about respecting people’s privacy.

Source: GSI Images

Source: GSI Images

Then, a new rumor began to circulate once reports that Zoe is carrying twins got out. Those reports have been floating around since July and finally, the “Guardians of the Galaxy” actress is confirming that she is pregnant with multiples. She dropped the bomb while on the red carpet at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’Halloween Costume exhibit in Los Angeles. When asked what she’ll be dressing up as for Halloween, Zoe looked down at her baby bump and told E! News:

“I might. I might need three costumes. I might have to make some adjustments, but it would be nice.”

She also joked about dressing up as a bride.

“It would be a shotgun wedding,” she laughed.

Source: Splash News

Source: Splash News

Zoe and hubby Marco Perego secretly married in September of 2013 during a private ceremony. So far, the sex of the babies haven’t been revealed.

Zoe Saldana Shows Off Her Growing Baby Bump

September 6th, 2014 - By Courtney Whitaker
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Zoe Saldana Shows Off her Growing Baby Bump

IMG SRC: WENN

The gorgeous mom-to-be Zoe Saldana and her growing baby bump were both spotted at In-N-Out Burger in Hollywood on Friday. According to various rumors, the 36-year-old actress is expecting twins with her husband Marco Perego.

Zoe Saldana and her growing baby bump.

IMG SRC:WENN

Over the past few months, Saldana has remained relatively quiet about her pregnancy. She has only referenced her new bundle of joy once, in a Youtube video where she opted out of the ALS ice bucket challenge. She stated, “I obviously can’t do it myself” in the video.

Zoe Saldana & her Growing baby bump

IMG SRC: WENN

We have yet to hear of a due date and we doubt we will. Zoe is definitely one of the more private celebrities we love to follow. Either way, the actress wears her pregnancy very well.

 

Colorism In Casting: Is Skin Complexion Important To You When It Comes To Casting For Biopics?

August 19th, 2014 - By Madame Noire
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WENN/Shutterstock/Corbis

WENN/Shutterstock/Corbis/Facebook

By Asha Boston

“So I’m not even being considered to audition for a role because I am ‘too dark’,” tweeted actress Imani Hakim. The former “Everybody Hates Chris” star took to Twitter in mid-July to express her disappointment with the entertainment industry, and to put a spotlight on the issue of colorism in casting. “To think I am almost a perfect match for this role but the slight difference in skin complexion is holding me back I AM mind blown!”

Colorism itself is definitely a mind-blowing concept that continuously shows itself in pop culture. We’ve seen this troubling issue play out in the recent casting controversy for the NWA biopic.  Black women and women in general were ranked in alphabetical order based on their features. Women of a lighter complexion were given a B rating while “poor, not in good shape” African-American women of a “medium to dark skin tone” were ranked with a D in the search for extras for the biopic.

Just earlier this month we saw a plethora of Aaliyah and Missy Elliot fans speak out on their disappointment with the casting of Chattrisse Dolabaille (who is of a lighter complexion with curly hair) as Missy Elliott in the upcoming Aaliyah biopic. While there wasn’t much research done or commentary shared on her acting ability, the public made it clear that it will take more than a garbage bag jumpsuit and some finger waves to get Dolabaille anywhere near the likeness of Elliott. It took Black Twitter no time to conjure up the hashtag #LifetimeCastings, which poked fun at the idea of actors being cast as notable figures they look nothing like. As ridiculous of an idea as it may seem for Justin Bieber to play R. Kelly or Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen to play Mary Mary, the trending topic proved that Elliott fans felt somewhat slighted, and moviegoers in general found the casting choice to be a highly questionable one. What’s the excuse for not being able to find an equally talented actress of a darker complexion to take on the role?

This same question was asked in 2012 with the casting of Zoe Saldana as Nina Simone in the biopic Nina. Lisa Simone Kelly, daughter of the late singer/songwriter/pianist expressed her disapproval with Saldana’s casting in an article published for the New York Times:

“My mother was raised at a time when she was told her nose was too wide, her skin was too dark…Appearance-wise this is not the best choice.”

After a slew of criticism came her way and was aimed at the production as a whole, Saldana opened up about her commitment to the role.

“Just like everybody else I feel very strongly about Nina Simone, and that (this) was a story that needed to be told.

I do believe that if everybody had more information about how this all came to be, it might help. But then again, I’m not here to get the acceptance of people. I’m here to be an artist first.”

A similar criticism about colorism and the importance of skin complexion in casting occurred when Christian Bale was chosen to play Moses, and Joel Edgerton to play Rhamses in the upcoming film, Exodus: Gods and Kings. It popped up again when Jacqueline Fleming was chosen to play Harriet Tubman, and side-eyes were given when Aurora Perrineau was pegged to play Shana in new Jem and the Holograms film. But sometimes in casting, especially for men, complexion differences between an actor and the public figure they are portraying don’t hurt a film. Think of the casting of Idris Elba as Nelson Mandela in A Long Walk to Freedom. While his casting raised eyebrows because of his lack of physical similarities with Mandela, his portrayal of the man was applauded, and earned him a Golden Globe nomination. But for the most part, such casting choices aren’t applauded, but rather, balked at. It’s clear that many casting decisions are made in the best interest of helping a film make money, but in the process of doing that, the image of iconic figures are being carelessly altered for a studio’s convenience.

But what are your thoughts? Do you think that it’s important to give roles to people who actually look like the person they’re hoping to portray when it comes to skin complexion?