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'Black Panther' Sits At The Top Of The Weekend Box Office Defeating 'Tomb Raider'

That 'Black Panther' reign just won't let up.

Unless Alicia Vikander's Tomb Raider unearths unexpected treasure, it's on course to lose the weekend box-office crown to ruling champ Black Panther, according to early Friday returns.

The female-led action-adventure won the Friday (March 16) race with $9.1 million from 3,980 theaters for a $24 million weekend, but Disney and Marvel's Black Panther is expected to pull ahead on Saturday (March 17) for a weekend haul of $29 million from 3,834 theaters as it races past the $600 million mark domestically.

Black Panther will be the first film since Avatar eight years ago to top the chart for five consecutive weekends. The history-making tentpole will finish Sunday (March 18) with a domestic total of nearly $610 million, and is only days away from overtaking fellow Marvel film The Avengers ($623 million) to become the top-grossing superhero film of all time in North America, unadjusted for inflation.

It remains to be seen whether Tomb Raider, from Warner Bros. and MGM, can restart the film series about an adventurous archeologist and action hero that's based on the video game. This time out, Lara Croft (Vikander) embarks on a dangerous journey to solve the mystery of her father's disappearance. Norwegian filmmaker Roar Uthaug (The Wave) directed the $90 million film, which co-stars Dominic West, Walton Goggins, Daniel Wu and Kristin Scott Thomas.

The movie's Friday gross included $2.1 million in Thursday night previews.

Tomb Raider, costing a net $90 million to produce before marketing, will need to be a strong performer overseas, where Warners says it is off to a strong start since landing in select Asian markets last weekend. On Friday, the movie continued to roll out internationally, earning $21 million for an early foreign total of $45.6 million. Tomb Raider is claiming the No. 1 spot in China, where it opened to $12.1 million on Friday and earned another $16 million-plus on Saturday.

In North America, Tomb Raider looks to come in at No. 2, followed by Ava DuVernay's A Wrinkle in Time, now in its second weekend. A Wrinkle in Time is expected to earn a decline of 47 percent or more to roughly $17 million.

The big surprise of the weekend is Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate's faith-based film I Can Only Imagine, which grossed $6.2 million on Friday from 1,628 cinemas for a projected $14 million debut — double what it was supposed to do.

The film stars J. Michael Finley as Bart Millard, the lead singer of the Christian band MercyMe, who wrote "I Can Only Imagine," considered to be the most popular song in Christian music history. Dennis Quaid and Cloris Leachman also star in the film, which cost $7 million to make.

I Can Only Imagine looks to come in ahead of Fox's YA adaptation Love, Simon, the first film from a major Hollywood studio featuring a gay teen protagonist. Love, Simon grossed $4.6 million on Friday from 2,402 theaters for a projected $12 million weekend, in line with expectations.

Greg Berlanti directed the Fox 2000 dramedy, which stars Nick Robinson as Simon Spier, a closeted high schooler who tries to find out the identity of an anonymous classmate he's fallen in love with online. Love, Simon cost $17 million to produce.

Both Love, Simon and I Can Only Imagine earned coveted A+ CinemaScores, while Tomb Raider earned a mediocre B.

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Singers Adrienne Bailon (L) and Kiely Williams of the 'Cheetah Girls' pose for photos around Mercedes Benz Fashion Week held at Smashbox Studios on October 18, 2007 in Culver City, California.
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Kiely Williams Explains Fallout With Adrienne Bailon Houghton And Alleged Fight With Raven-Symonè

Our current isolated way of life has given some plenty of time for reflection like Kiely Williams of the former girl group 3LW and The Cheetah Girls (ask your kids). The tales of both successful groups have been told time after time by fans in YouTube documentaries and members of each collective but Williams has decided to share her side of the story.

Williams hopped on Live Monday (March 30) where she discussed her former friendship with The Real co-host Adrienne Bailon Houghton and the infamous chicken throwing fight with actress/singer Naturi Naughton. The mother of one didn't pinpoint exactly why she fell out with Houghton but did point out how she wouldn't be interested in appearing on her talk show.

"I don't think Adrienne wants to have live TV with me," Williams said. "'Cause she's gon' have to say, 'Yes Kiely, I did pretend to be your best friend. Now, I am not.' You were either lying then or you're lying now. You either were my best friend and now you're just not claiming me or you were pretending [to be my best friend."

The two remained friends after Naughton was kicked out of 3LW, the platinum-selling group known for 2000s pop hits like "No More (Baby I'ma Do Right)" and "Playas Gon' Play." Williams and Houghton were eventually picked to be apart of The Cheetah Girls with then-Disney darling Raven-Symonè and dancer Sabrina Bryan.

Williams went on to discuss her fight with Naughton, which she denies had anything to do with her skin color. With her mother near, Williams claimed Naughton called her a b***h, leading to the fight. While she didn't clear up the chicken throwing, she stated how she was "going for her neck" and was holding food and her baby sister in the process.

Apologies aren't on the horizon either. “I don’t feel like I have anything to make amends for, especially as it relates to Adrienne,” Kiely said. “As far as Naturi goes, if there was ever a reason to apologize, all of that has kind of been overshadowed by the literal lies and really ugly stuff that she said about my mom and my sister. So, no. Not interested in that. I’m sorry.”

Moving onto The Cheetah Girls, Williams also denied claims she got into fights with Raven-Symonè on the set of The Cheetah Girls films and never outed her as a teen. The rumor about Symonè and Williams was reportedly started by Symonè's former co-star Orlando Brown.

Symonè has often shared positive memories about The Cheetah Girls and their reign but did imply during an episode of The View how co-star Lynn Whitfield kept her from losing her cool on set.

On a lighter note, Symonè, Houghton and Naughton have kept in contact with Naughton and Houghton putting their differences aside during an appearance on The Real. 

Symonè and Houghton also reunited at the Women's March in Los Angeles in January. During Bailon's performance at the event, the two briefly performed the Cheetah Girls' classic, "Together We Can."

Willaims also shared some stories about the making of the group's hits. Check out her Live below.

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Here Are All The Hits Played During Ne-Yo And Johntà Austin's Epic R&B Battle

Over the weekend, music aficionados were gifted producer battles from the best in the business. In addition to The Dream and Sean "The Pen" Garrett's wild head to head, Ne-Yo and Johntà Austin's standoff was one for the books.

The gentlemen squared up on Instagram Live Sunday (March 29) after much fanfare. The rules were simple–Show up sober, play 2. 25 songs apiece, no unreleased music, the songs can be from any genre and the time limit would be up to 90 seconds for each song.

Soon, the battle kicked off with sentimental tracks like "Unfaithful" by Rihanna and "I Miss You" by the late Aaliyah. As spectators like Usher, Tyrese, 9th Wonder, Diddy, Tinashe, Snoh Aalegra, Eric Bellinger, Brian Michael-Cox and more entered the chat, the songs got bigger and better.

Rounds 3 and 4 saw the big guns come out. Austin played tracks from Aaliyah and Chris Brown with Ne-Yo playing his own songs and hits from Beyonce. "When all else fails, you got to bet on yourself" he hilariously said before playing his 2008 hit, "Miss Independent."

The final round left fans in a frenzy as Austin played Mariah Carey's "We Belong Together" and Ne-Yo ending with "Irreplaceable" by Beyonce. The entire match was a delight as both men praised each other for their pen game.

Superproducers Swizz Beats and Timbaland helped kicked off the current trend last week when they gave fans part 2 of their 2018 match. We also got to see a match between Boi-1da and HitBoy over the weekend with an unleased track with Roddy Rich and Drake.

But Sunday's battle was all about R&B, specifically tracks from the aughts that are often sampled today. Most fans and spectators landed at a draw for the battle as it was just too hard to land on a winner.

See the full list of tracks dished out below.

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Round One

Johntà - "Get Gone" by Ideal (1999)

Ne-Yo- "That Girl" by Marques Houston (2003)

Johntà- "I Miss You" by Aaliyah (2002)

Ne-Yo- "Unfaithful" by Rihanna (2006)

Johntà- "Like That" by Mariah Carey, Fatman Scoop and Jermaine Dupri (2005)

Ne-Yo- "Knock You Down" by Keri Hilson featuring Ne-Yo (2009)

Johntà- "Don't" by Bryson Tiller (2014)

Ne-Yo- "She Got Her Own" by Jamie Foxx, Ne-Yo and Fabolous (2009)

Round Two

Johntà- "Stingy" by Ginuwine (2002)

Ne-Yo- "Own It" by Mack Wilds (2013)

Johntà- "Yo! (Excuse Me, Miss) by Chris Brown (2006)

Ne-Yo- "Stay" by Ne-Yo featuring Peedi Peedi (2006)

Johntà- "Don't Forget About Us" by Mariah Carey (2005)

Ne-Yo- "Spotlight" by Jennifer Hudson (2005)

Johntà- "Just Be A Man About It" by Toni Braxton (2000)

Ne-Yo- "Do You" by Ne-Yo (2007)

Round Three

Johntà- "Shortie Like Mine" by Bow Wow featuring Chris Brown and Johntà Austin (2006)

Ne-Yo- "Bust It Baby Pt. 2)" by Plies featuring Ne-Yo (2008)

Johntà- "Need A Girl" by Trey Songz (2009)

Ne-Yo- "Go On Girl" by Ne-Yo (2007)

Johntà- "Sweet Lady" by Tyrese (1998)

Ne-Yo- "Make Me Better" by Fabolous featuring Ne-Yo (2007)

Johntà- "Like You" by Bow Wow featuring Ciara (2005)

Ne-Yo- "Leave You Alone" Jeezy featuring Ne-Yo (2011)

Round Four

Johntà- "With You" by Chris Brown (2007)

Ne-Yo- "So Sick" by Ne-Yo (2005)

Johntà- "Shake It Off" by Mariah Carey (2005)

Ne-Yo- "Take A Bow" by Rihanna (2008)

Johntà- "Can't Help But Wait" (2007)

Ne-Yo- "Sexy Love" (2005)

Johntà- "I Don't Wanna" by Aaliyah (1999)

Ne-Yo- "Flaws and All" by Beyonce (2006)

Round Five

Johntà- "Come Over" by Aaliyah (2003)

Ne-Yo- "Miss Independent" (2008)

Johntà- "Poppin'" by Chris Brown (2007)

Ne-Yo- "Mirror" by Ne-Yo (2006)

Johntà- "Be Without You" by Mary J. Blige (2005)

Ne-Yo- "Let Me Love You" by Mario (2004)

Johntà- "We Belong Together" by Mariah Carey (2004)

Ne-Yo- "Irreplaceable" by Beyonce (2006)

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Michael Jackson announces plans for Summer residency at the O2 Arena at a press conference held at the O2 Arena on March 5, 2009 in London, England.
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Michael Jackson's Estate Donates $300,000 To Coronavirus Relief Efforts

Broadway Cares, Nevada’s Three Square Food Bank and MusiCares are receiving a big donation from the estate of Michael Jackson to help with those affected by the coronavirus. 

Rolling Stone reports each organization will receive $100,000. Comprised of entertainment and service workers, the donation will help with those who have been hit the hardest due to production and stores closing in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak in the United States. The move to issue relief was also inspired by the passing of Manu Dibango, the legendary Afro-jazz saxophonist who died earlier this week from the virus in Paris.

Dibango's career started in the 1950s, and he worked with the likes of Fela Kuti, Robbie Shakespeare, and others, but he's perhaps most known for "Soul Makossa" – which along with being popular in its own right, was sampled by Michael Jackson on the Thriller hit "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin.'"

“This virus strikes at the heart of the communities we are close to,” John Branca and John McClain, co-executors of the Estate of Michael Jackson, said in a statement. “We learned today that the legendary Manu Dibango passed away from the virus. Other performers and support staff in music and on Broadway are sick or have been left without work and are facing an uncertain future. And in Las Vegas, which has been so welcoming to Michael Jackson, the entire city has been shut down leaving thousands of workers and their families devastated and without an income.”

“MusiCares is very grateful for the outpouring of generosity we’ve seen from many in the music industry to grow the COVID-19 Relief Fund,” Steve Boom, MusiCares chair, said in a statement to the outlet. “The challenges that our industry is facing right now are enormous. It is contributions such as these that will help our community survive in this unprecedented time of tremendous need.”

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