Marvel Studios Black Panther Welcome To Wakanda New York Fashion Week Showcase
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Lupita Nyong'o Brings #BlackPantherChallenge To Kenya

Looks like 'Nakia' is continuing her good deeds off-screen. 

Since its creation in January, the #BlackPantherChallenge raised enough money to send 47,000 eager children to see the Marvel film. The initiative not only hit home for kids and their guardians who've yet to experience this magnitude of representation, but the moment has come full circle for one of its stars.

Lupita Nyong'o, who plays the fan-favorite Nakia, gave back to her parents' homeland of Kenya by sending 600 school children to witness her and her co-stars in action.

“I wanted kids from my hometown to see the positive images reflected in the film and superheroes that they can relate to on the big screen," Nyong'o said. "No matter where you live, you can help make this happen for more children who can’t afford to see the movie.”

Echoing Nyong'o's mission, Frederick Joseph, creator of the viral challenge, wanted to "provide an opportunity for young people to see themselves in a story."

"To me, representation is one of the most important things that there is," he told BuzzFeed News. "When I was growing up, the archetype, the stereotypes in the media of black people were typically negative, or if they weren’t negative, we had to exist in this realm of athletics or in this realm of, like, our historical figures, but when does that lend to other experiences?"

The film reportedly grossed $427 million globally since its debut Feb. 16.

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Trailblazers Portrayed In 'Hidden Figures' To Receive Congressional Gold Medals

Engineers Mary Jackson and Christine Darden, mathematician Katherine Johnson and computer programmer Dorothy Vaughn are being honored with the highest U.S. civilian award.

The four trailblazers, three of whom were depicted in the film Hidden Figures, will receive Congressional Gold Medal, ABC News reports. U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) helped introduce the Hidden Figures Congressional Gold Medal Act, a bipartisan bill signed by President Donald Trump last Friday (Nov. 8).

As the highest civilian award in the U.S., the Congressional Gold Medal recognizes those who have performed an achievement that has had a lasting impact on American history and culture.

Johnson, who celebrated her 101st birthday last summer, calculated trajectories for numerous NASA space missions beginning in the early 1950s. Vaughn, who died in 2008, led the West Area Computing unit for nine years, and was the first black supervisors at the national Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, which later became NASA.

Jackson, who died in 2005, was NASA’s first black engineer. Darden became an engineer at NASA 16 years after Jackson and went on to “revolutionize aeronautic design.” She was also the first black person to be promoted to Senior Executive at NASA's Langley Research Center, and has also authored more than 50 articles on aeronautics design.

“Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and Dr. Christine Darden made monumental contributions to science and our nation,” said Senator Harris. “The groundbreaking accomplishments of these four women, and all of the women who contributed to the success of NASA, helped us win the space race but remained in the dark far too long. I am proud our bill to honor these remarkable women has passed Congress. These pioneers remain a beacon for Black women across the country, both young and old.”

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Authorities Release Grisly Details Of Alexis Crawford’s Murder

Alexis Crawford was strangled to death before her body was thrown in a trash bin, the Fulton Country Superior Court revealed in court documents released on Tuesday (Nov. 12).

Crawford died on Oct. 31, reports the Atlanta-Journal Constitution. Four days earlier, the 21-year-old Clark Atlanta University senior filed a police report against her roommate, Jordyn Jones's boyfriend, Barron Bentley, accusing him of sexual assault. Crawford had a rape kit performed on her at a local hospital. Crawford's decision to go to police caused tension between her and Jones, which erupted in a physical fight.

“As a result of the physical altercation, Barron Brantley choked the victim until she was deceased,” the Atlanta Police Department said.

After killing Crawford, Jones and Brantley, both age 21, stuffed her body into a “plastic bin” and transported it to Exchange Park in Decatur, Ga., where they left her remains.

Crawford and Jones knew each other for at least two years, and became close while studying at Clark Atlanta. The Michigan native even visited Crawford’s family’s home during the holidays.

Brantley confessed to Crawford's murder and led police to her body last Friday (Nov. 7). Jones was arrested the following day.

Brantley and Jones are both charged with felony murder and are being held without bond.

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Actor John Witherspoon arrives to "Late Show with David Letterman" at Ed Sullivan Theater on February 22, 2012 in New York City.
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John Witherspoon's Cause Of Death Revealed

John Witherspoon died of a heart attack, TMZ reports. The online news outlet gained access to the late comedian's death certificate, which states that Witherspoon had several cardiac illnesses. The revered Friday actor was battling coronary artery disease and hypertension.

Witherspoon passed away on October 29th at his California home. He is mostly known for playing Ice Cube’s father in his directorial debut Friday, as well as its sequels, Next Friday and Friday After Next. Witherspoon also played John “Pops” Williams on the sitcom The Wayans Bros, portrayed the character Spoon on NBC’s The Tracey Morgan Show, and had roles alongside Eddie Murphy in Boomerang and Vampire in Brooklyn. He contributed voice acting to The Boondocks, where he played Granddad alongside Regina King, who voiced the two children, Riley, and Huey Freeman.

Most recently, Witherspoon received television credits on The First Family, black-ish, and the Adult Swim series Black Jesus.

 

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