2017 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Graydon Carter - Arrivals
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'Game Of Thrones' Casting Director Questions Why She Passed On Mahershala Ali

To get loyal viewers ready, a few gems have made a home on the Internet thanks to a profile on casting director Nina Gold for Vanity Fair.

Game of Thrones season has commenced now that we're days away from the seventh installment's premiere (July 16). To get loyal viewers ready, a few gems have made a home on the Internet, thanks to a profile on casting director Nina Gold in Vanity Fair.

Within the feature, Gold dishes on behind-the-scenes moments of selecting the actors that played an integral role in the HBO series' success. However, Gold wished that she had given award-winning actor Mahershala Ali the chance to join the Seven Kingdoms.

"Wow, how could I have ever turned down Mahershala Ali?" Gold admitted. At the top of 2017, Ali revealed on Jimmy Kimmel Live that he auditioned for the role of Xaro Xhoan Daxos, but said that his moment fell flat.

"I think my audition guaranteed that I wasn't almost on Game of Thrones. That was one of the worst auditions of my life...I'd gone in for this casting director before and I felt like I had like two other wonky auditions with her, but I was really prepared this time around. Totally off book, had all of my lines memorized, had this whole thing worked out with this chair. I was doing all of these power moves and stances and what not, had my stuff all worked out and then I go in for the audition and I walk in there, to the HBO offices, and there are these two stools that are this high in the air with no back behind them. So I'm sitting there with feet halfway off the ground, a little bit stiff during the audition. Then she goes, 'Wow, you have to loosen that up, that was really stiff, that was a problem.'"

Nonetheless, Ali is probably at home polishing his Oscar trophy. Game of Thrones premieres Sunday (July 16) at 9 p.m. EST on HBO.

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'Black Panther' Sequel Gets A 2022 Release Date

Chadwick Boseman and company are set to return to Wakanda for a second installment of the blockbuster action film Black Panther.

Director Ryan Coogler made the announcement Saturday (Aug. 24)  at D23 in Anaheim, California. Kevin Feige, Marvel's president, said Coogler provided a treatment with a new villain and title but nothing is set in stone.

BLACK PANTHER 2 CONFIRMED pic.twitter.com/AEFWrItOho

— the eternals love bot 7 (@buckyverses) August 24, 2019

The May 2022 sequel of Black Panther is the farthest release date for any of the Marvel franchises. Thor: Love and Thunder is set for a Nov. 5, 2021 release date, while an as-yet-untitled Marvel film will make its way to theaters July 29, 2022.

Black Panther premiered in the U.S. in February 2018 and instantly became a massive success earning $700 million in the box office, and $1.3 billion globally. The earnings made the film Marvel's second-highest-grossing film of all time domestically. Avengers: Endgame, however, holds the title.

The film was not only an economic cultural success with its leading black cast, which included Boseman in the principle role starring alongside Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong'o, Angela Bassett, Danai Gurira, Forrest Whitaker and Letitia Wright who played loveable and brilliant Princess Shuri.

May 2022 can't get here fast enough, but until then we'll just rewatch Black Panther every day until then.

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Exclusive: Omari Hardwick Believes Jay-Z's NFL Deal Can Take Kaepernick's Mission To New Heights

The conversation around Jay-Z's NFL deal has been heard from newsrooms to barbershops. While there are many perspectives to take into consideration, Omari Hardwick believes we should consider what Mr. Shawn Carter's move can do to bring Colin Kaepernick's mission to the next level.

Speaking Swaggy Sie's SiriusXM show The Heat Wave on SiriusXM's The Heat this week, the Power star opened up about the parallels of activism and where Jay stands with his decision to partner with the organization.

"Jay-Z's point which I really understand is that of 'How how long do we simply pledge in a hazing way of taking a knee and there not being necessary productivity from it or not a conclusion from it (when is there ever conclusion from it) or steps to be closer to a conclusion?'" Hardwick said. The actor, who is a friend of the rap icon, says Jay's deal can help broker new opportunities for people of color.

As previously reported, Jay's deal with the NFL provides him with the title of "live music entertainment strategist" which includes a partnership with Roc Nation and the businessman consulting on entertainment, specifically the Super Bowl halftime show, and contributing to the league’s activism campaign, Inspire Change. Other social-justice efforts were left unspecified but as mixed reviews rolled in, it was later rumored that Jay was also looking to take ownership of an NFL team.

Supporters of Kaepernick have slammed Jay for his decision but Hardwick believes there's more to be discovered.

"With Jay-Z, with all of his power, all of that with it (50 would be the same way) to not act on it and go, 'Listen Goddell, listen, Commissioner and team, being from the hood and now going to the heights of life that I made it to, these are some steps I think could activate that which Kaepernick and others like him want to activate as opposed to simply going, 'I'm protesting.'"

"My father says this, 'When the gun sounded, we of brown color knew what direction to run. If the gun sounds now, we'd be running into each other,'" he added.

"If [Jay's] view is of that, it is arrogant to assume people without that view would understand what Jay-Z is always doing. Jay-Z's view and his description of being past that don't necessarily mean that it's understandable by the people who are not at the same of view of that, but he's not forgetting them. His objective is to get the lowest common denominator of those who are brown to a better place. Half the league if not more than half the league is brown."

When it comes to Kaepernick, the actor says it's time for the athlete to play football again. "I feel like Kaepernick has to be given some sunshine in terms of playing ball," he said. "He's still young. You're telling me someone who is second or third-string player out there that shouldn't be second or third-string? Definitely not over Kaepernick."

Watch the interview below.

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VIBE 'Power' Cover Shoot Photos: Lala Anthony, Naturi Naughton And Lela Loren

Read the 2019 August cover story here.

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