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Reagan Gomez On Black Hollywood's Decline: 'Bootleg 'Avatar,' Not Our Films'

Who hasn’t seen a Judd Apatow or Seth Rogen film? They are working the hell out of Hollywood. And who can be mad? What I respect the most about their whole team is that they hire unknown actors… and turn them into stars.

McLovin anyone?

They hire their friends, turn them into stars, and rehire them. Talk about keeping all of the money in the family. This is genius. This is power. This… DOES NOT HAPPEN IN BLACK HOLLYWOOD.

There’s enough blame to go around as to why Black Hollywood is hanging on by a thread.


#1 - Black Hollywood

When will we get tired of singing for our supper? If Drew Barrymore can hire Cameron Diaz, Demi Moore, and Ellen Page (one of my fav movies of 2009 was Whip It), and Adam Sandler can work with Chris Rock, Seth Rogen  …the list goes on; why can’t we pick up the phone, hire who we want, and make our own films without being told to? So yes WE, Black/Latino Hollywood are at fault.

 

#2 - Black/Latino People

Yes I said it. Here’s my reasoning. For every 20 black films presented to the studio only 1 will be greenlit (made). So, when a film with a cast of color comes to the theaters opening weekend is critical. A great opening weekend tells the studios that there is an audience who’s willing to pay money to see films like these. In turn, the studios are willing to make more of them. Tyler Perry anyone?

So, if a movie with a black cast comes out and the movie tanks, this tells the studio that the target audience (us) won’t even pay money to see their own movies. So why should we make more?  If we don’t show up, that means we won’t pay to see them and the studios will make no more of them.

Money is the name of the game. The only color that matters in Hollywood is green.

So if you want to see more films with actors and actresses of color, go out and support the films that are already out. Period.

 

#3 - The Studios

It’s not up to Hollywood to tell our stories. They make billions of dollars a year not telling our stories. Think they give a damn? No. Studios already think black and Latino films don’t sell overseas, so if those movies don’t even make a profit here with their target audience…get the point?

You ever heard the saying “You do better when you know better?’ Now you know better. So how do we change this? We all have to do our part. I just wrote and produced my first short, and God Willing, it will be turned into a full feature. So the first solution is more of us getting behind the camera creating more opportunities for us. The second solution is black and Latino Hollywood reaching out to each other and working with each other. The third solution is YOU GUYS supporting films of color opening weekend. Does that mean you may have to see some films you don’t like? Of course. But look at the big picture.

Again... Tyler Perry, anyone?

I hate to keep using his name but his films gross $50 million opening weekend. So, he makes more films. Say what you want about Tyler and his films, but the strategy works. Don’t like his films, or you want more variety, then help other films of color gross 50 million dollars opening weekend. Then watch the studios flood the theaters with more films. No excuses. 

Do Black and Latino actresses have it harder? Yes. It’s always been this way. But instead of complaining, we need to take control and fix it. There’s a movement going on in Black Hollywood. We know that we need to create our own projects. But we need your help and support. And by support, I mean your money at the theaters and buying DVDs. Fuck bootlegging! 

Money counts.  Only a handful of our films make it into the theaters in the first place, so every penny counts. Bootleg Avatar… not our films. It’s a common sense chain reaction. If you spend your money… they will come.

God Bless. Reagan Gomez

 

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Fred The Godson Tests Positive For COVID-19

It was all good two weeks ago. That's when the Bronx-bred Fred The Godson released his Big Payback mixtape. But today (April 6), the Fat Boy Fresh rapper announced on social media that he tested positive for COVID-19.

"I’m in here with this Covid-19 shit! Please keep me in y’all prayers!!! #GodIsGreat," Fred said in Tweet.

I’m in here with this Covid-19 shit! Please keep me in y’all prayers!!! #GodIsGreat pic.twitter.com/e6xRM3OSWb

— FRED THE GODSON (@FREDTHEGODSON) April 6, 2020

FTG isn't the only rapper to be hit with Coronavirus. Houston rapper Slim Thug recently tested positive for COVID-19.

"I was definitely surprised because I was trying to be precautious way earlier than a lot of people," the "I Ain't Heard Of That" rapper said during an interview with VIBE. "I started to feel a headache and a fever and I've never had those symptoms so I thought, 'Man this Corona time, it's got to be something.' But at the end of the day, I haven't felt severe sickness or nothing."

"I have high blood pressure, I already do this. I run three miles at the park and go to the gym every day, so I'm pretty healthy," Thug continued." You know, I never felt like I wouldn't be able to fight this off, I never really felt really sick or crazy sick, just kind of felt like a sinus infection."

Also, YMW Melly recently tested positive for the virus while in jail awaiting trial for double murder. The "Suicidal" rapper has plans to file a motion for his release.

Also, Yo Gotti and Team Roc filed a motion demanding that inmates in Parchman Penitentiary receive testing for COVID-19.

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Rita Wilson Remixes Naughty by Nature's "Hip Hop Hooray"

Many artists are coming together to raise funds for the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund. Today (April 6), actress and singer Rita Wilson joined forces with Naughty by Nature for the "Hip-Hop Hooray (Remix)."

While recovering from COVID-19, Wilson posted an Instagram video of her rapping the classic record. She also sent it to the New Jersey rap group. Impressed with Wilson's microphone skills, and inspired by her recovery, Naughty reached out to Wilson for the remix.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

See it to believe it

A post shared by Rita Wilson (@ritawilson) on Mar 21, 2020 at 11:31pm PDT

“We were totally shocked she could rap the verses so well,”  the rap group said via press release.

“’Hip Hop Hooray’ is like modern-day Shakespeare,” Wilson adds. “It took me a month to learn because it’s so complex and nuanced; it was like training for a marathon. The rhythms and tempos are so unique and creative. When I was quarantined and recovering from COVID-19 I wanted to see if I still remembered it, kind of like a brain exercise. To my surprise I did. I thought it would be fun to put it on my Instagram to show people I was doing OK and to make them smile. When Naughty by Nature commented about it, I couldn’t believe it,” she continued.

Back in March,  actor Tom Hanks, Wilson's husband, released a statement saying that he and his wife tested positive for COVID-19 while in Australia.

Listen to the Wilson remix above.

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Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson attends a ceremony honoring him with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on January 30, 2020 in Hollywood, California.
Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic

50 Cent's Big Meech-Inspired 'Black Mafia Family' Series Heading To Starz

Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson is heading back to Starz with another television series.

After the success of Power, the hip-hop icon-turned-entrepreneur-turned television executive producer is set to have a hand in Black Mafia Family. The crime series is inspired by the true-life story of Detroit drug lord Demetrius "Big Meech" Flenory and his brother Terry "Southwest T," who rose from the decaying streets of southwest Detroit in the late '80s and gave birth to one of the most influential crime families in the country." According to Starz, the series will touch on the subjects of “love, family, and capitalism in the pursuit of the American dream.”

"I told you Black Mafia Family was coming and it’s going to be the biggest show on television," said Jackson in the announcement. "Meech and Terry are legends and I am excited to bring their story to Starz."

Starz president and CEO Jeffrey Hirsch added: “This is a project Curtis has always been incredibly passionate about and we are excited to have him as our partner in bringing it to life.

“Black Mafia Family has all the hallmarks of a great drama, from the larger-than-life Flenory brothers to the deadly, high-stakes world they inhabited. This series is going to be an incredible ride for audiences around the world.”

No word on who will star in the series or when it will premiere. 50 Cent's current ABC drama, For Life—about former-inmate-turned-lawyer Isaac Wright Jr.—reportedly tallied the "biggest playback increase for any new broadcast midseason debut — scripted or unscripted."

Jackson's multi-million dollar deal with Starz includes another series titled, Vanguard, as well as other upcoming Power sequels: Powerbook II: Ghost, Power Book III: Raising Kanan, Power Book IV: Influence, and Power Book V: Force.

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