Billy Porter Reveals How Charity Saved Him “From The Precipice Of Obscurity” For “Giving Tuesday”

“Pose” Actor & Director Promotes PayPal’s ‘Give Better’ Campaign

Billy Porter is encouraging everyone to embrace the spirit of giving during the holiday season.

“You can give in all different kinds of ways,” Porter told us by phone from Los Angeles. “It’s not just money. You can volunteer your time. You can be a mentor for a young child. You can stop by a food bank and donate some cans. You can donate some of them clothes you ain’t wearing no more.”

The actor and singer partnered with PayPal’s “Give Better” campaign, an initiative urging the public to donate, volunteer and support small businesses. We spoke to the veteran thespian about his favorite charities and what it was like becoming a leading man at the tender age of 50:

BOSSIP: What inspired you to partner with PayPal for “Giving Tuesday”?
Billy Porter: “PayPal reached out and asked me to be part of this initiative. I’d never heard of it before. They’ve been involved since about 2012, and this year, it was one Tuesday, and now we’re trying to spark every Tuesday of the giving season. And also use this moment as a springboard to ignite the spirit of giving inside each of us year-round. We have to start thinking about giving year-round. And giving isn’t just about money – although PayPal will match every donation you make by 10 percent. That is not the only way to give.”

Billy Porter

Source: Courtesy of KEF Media / KEF Media

BOSSIP: Are there charities that you are particularly passionate about?
Billy Porter: “There are two that I’m deeply connected to. When I came out in 1985, and we went straight to the front lines to fight for our lives and I went to Broadway and was introduced to Broadway Cares Equity Fights AIDS and The Actors Fund of America, and those two organizations really taught me what activism really meant and how to get involved and how to make it a daily walk of life. The Actors Fund, in particular, they’ve been around for 137 years and their mission is to make sure artists are taken care of for the entirety of their lives. And as you know we’re freelance people, and it can be tenuous sometimes. They really came through for me in my low times. I had a good decade or more where I wasn’t really working, and I was on the precipice of obscurity. It wasn’t good, bankruptcy and all of those things and they stepped in and helped with rent, they helped with utility bills and medical bills and social services. They really really helped me. And fast forward to a couple of years ago, my mother, who is disabled, is living in The Actor’s Fund nursing home in New Jersey. They’re really dear to my heart.”

BOSSIP: Tells us about your thought process in shooting the intimate scenes between Ricky and Pray Tell in “Pose.”
Billy Porter: “I’ve been a character actor all my life, and I’ve never been the object of anyone’s affections in anything ever in my 30-year career until last year. It blew my mind. It shocked me. I signed my nudity clause as a character actor – and I came out on the other side as a leading man!”

Check out the video above for the entire interview.

Billy Porter Reveals How Charity Saved Him “From The Precipice Of Obscurity” For “Giving Tuesday”

“Pose” Actor & Director Promotes PayPal’s ‘Give Better’ Campaign

Billy Porter is encouraging everyone to embrace the spirit of giving during the holiday season.

“You can give in all different kinds of ways,” Porter told us by phone from Los Angeles. “It’s not just money. You can volunteer your time. You can be a mentor for a young child. You can stop by a food bank and donate some cans. You can donate some of them clothes you ain’t wearing no more.”

The actor and singer partnered with PayPal’s “Give Better” campaign, an initiative urging the public to donate, volunteer and support small businesses. We spoke to the veteran thespian about his favorite charities and what it was like becoming a leading man at the tender age of 50:

BOSSIP: What inspired you to partner with PayPal for “Giving Tuesday”?
Billy Porter: “PayPal reached out and asked me to be part of this initiative. I’d never heard of it before. They’ve been involved since about 2012, and this year, it was one Tuesday, and now we’re trying to spark every Tuesday of the giving season. And also use this moment as a springboard to ignite the spirit of giving inside each of us year-round. We have to start thinking about giving year-round. And giving isn’t just about money – although PayPal will match every donation you make by 10 percent. That is not the only way to give.”

Billy Porter

Source: Courtesy of KEF Media / KEF Media

BOSSIP: Are there charities that you are particularly passionate about?
Billy Porter: “There are two that I’m deeply connected to. When I came out in 1985, and we went straight to the front lines to fight for our lives and I went to Broadway and was introduced to Broadway Cares Equity Fights AIDS and The Actors Fund of America, and those two organizations really taught me what activism really meant and how to get involved and how to make it a daily walk of life. The Actors Fund, in particular, they’ve been around for 137 years and their mission is to make sure artists are taken care of for the entirety of their lives. And as you know we’re freelance people, and it can be tenuous sometimes. They really came through for me in my low times. I had a good decade or more where I wasn’t really working, and I was on the precipice of obscurity. It wasn’t good, bankruptcy and all of those things and they stepped in and helped with rent, they helped with utility bills and medical bills and social services. They really really helped me. And fast forward to a couple of years ago, my mother, who is disabled, is living in The Actor’s Fund nursing home in New Jersey. They’re really dear to my heart.”

BOSSIP: Tells us about your thought process in shooting the intimate scenes between Ricky and Pray Tell in “Pose.”
Billy Porter: “I’ve been a character actor all my life, and I’ve never been the object of anyone’s affections in anything ever in my 30-year career until last year. It blew my mind. It shocked me. I signed my nudity clause as a character actor – and I came out on the other side as a leading man!”

Check out the video above for the entire interview.

“Harriet” Costume Designer Paul Tazewell Talks Creating Her “Power Icon” Looks For Feature Film

SAG-AFTRA Foundation Conversations With "Harriet"

Source: Amanda Edwards / Getty

“Harriet” Recounts Harriet Tubman’s Life’s Work To Abolish Slavery

The costume designer charged with envisioning Harriet Tubman’s clothing when she was a young woman said he wanted to steer clear of the austere public image she had in old age.

Paul Tazewell said he took inspiration from daguerreotypes from the 1800s for lead actress Cynthia Erivo’s custom made period costumes for the biopic “Harriet,” but also wanted the clothes to convey her superhero status in both American history and the Black Experience.

Tazewell – who also served as the costume designer for “Hamilton” on Broadway – said he came across one little known image of Tubman dressed elegantly in her younger years, the opposite of the widely disseminated image of her as a headscarf clad somber-looking senior citizen.

Harriet

Source: The Washington Post / Getty

“You get a broader sense of who Harriet might have been and what her influences were,” Tazewell said. “I think that set me off on the idea of how we can create a visual arc for Harriet that stays broader than what we might assume from those more well-known photographs.

Harriet’s clothes have their own story arc: the tattered old dress she wore when she was enslaved gave way to refined frocks and menswear, with a revolver slung at her hip, Tazewell said.

“I think what became important for Kasi (Lemmons, the director) was to help to envision Harriet Tubman as a power icon, as a woman who was capable of huge things,” Tazewell said. “And in doing that, I hope that the clothes, the color, and the texture, as we see her evolve, that it moves the audience to get a sense of the intensity of what she was facing and what she overcame.”

RHOA’s Eva Marcille Says Ex-Kevin McCall Is Using Custody Suit To Harass & Stalk Her (Exclusive Details)

The Reed For Hope Foundation's 11th Annual "Sunshine Beyond Summer" Celebration

Source: David Livingston / Getty

Eva Marcille Says Kevin McCall Is Unfit To Parent Five-Year-Old Daughter

“Real Housewives of Atlanta’s,” Eva Marcille said her baby daddy Kevin McCall’s custody case against her over their daughter Marley Rae is his latest attempt to harass and stalk her.

The “America’s Top Model” winner filed a response to McCall’s suit Oct. 29, saying that McCall has been a violent, deadbeat father from the beginning and called his suit just another way for him to abuse her and use her celebrity for a come up.

Marcille said in court papers that McCall was physically abusive to her and has boasted that he “could do worse damage” than mass shooter Chris Dorner. She said he’s publically praised the man who murdered Marcille’s best friend before killing himself and is currently facing domestic violence charges in California.

Last month McCall sued Marcille for joint physical custody of Marley Rae, five, and asked the judge to force Sterling to pay him child support when the girl is in his care, the suit, obtained by BOSSIP, states.

Marcille said that McCall never financially supported Marley or took the court-ordered parenting classes that he was required to as part of their Los Angeles case. She said the judge, in that case, issued a permanent restraining order that bars contact between him, her and the child – and it should stay that way.

The Reed For Hope Foundation's 11th Annual "Sunshine Beyond Summer" Celebration

Source: Paul Archuleta / Getty

The mom of three asked the courts to throw the case out because she contends that the Los Angeles courts actually have jurisdiction and not in Atlanta, where the suit was filed.

Marcille said granting McCall joint custody would do nothing but frighten Marley and disrupt her stable life with her, her husband, attorney Michael Sterling and her two baby brothers. She also included some of McCall’s bizarre social media posts where he refers to himself as a “ticking time bomb” and threatening texts she said were from him.

McCall had not responded to Marcille’s answer as of Oct. 30.

Michael Ealy Says New Show “Stumptown” Is TV Escapism At Its Best (Exclusive)

ABC's "Stumptown" - Season One

Source: Kelsey McNeal / Getty

Actor Plays Detective In New ABC Dramedy “Stumptown”

Michael Ealy said he hopes his new primetime dramedy “Stumptown” will help viewers take their focus off of the country’s current strife and onto some good TV.

“The show itself is a nice respite from reality,” Ealy told us in a recent interview. “We just live in such interesting times where we are just inundated with scandal. The political world is the highest-rated reality series right now.”

Ealy plays Portland, Or. Det. Miles Hoffman in the graphic novel adaptation, and has an unlikely run-in with show star Dex Parios (Cobie Smulders) a down on her luck former Marine.

In the show’s pilot episode, Parios helps Hoffman save a woman who has been kidnapped, but Hoffman ends up arresting her for several unpaid parking tickets. But after her help with his kidnapping case, Ealy’s character suggests that she consider becoming a private investigator.

Ealy said “Stumptown” is escapist entertainment at a time when the public really needs it.

“I found that our show is a nice break from that,” he said. “We try to keep a quirky light time to the subject matter. And obviously, Portland is a quirky town, so it comes together in that kind of way.”

“Stumptown” airs Wednesday nights at 10 P.M EST On ABC.

Phylicia Rashad Recalls Big Lesson From 40 Year Career On Broadway Ahead Of Directorial Debut (Exclusive)

Let's Do Broadway

Source: Jeremy Daniel / Jeremy Daniel

Stage & Screen Veteran Spoke On Panel About Diversity On Broadway

Phylicia Rashad reflected on her more than 40-year career on Broadway at a panel on the importance of inclusion on The Great White Way.

The actress, beloved for her role as Claire Huxtable on “The Cosby Show,” has been performing on Broadway since the 1970s and is now set to make her Broadway directorial debut in Charles Randolph Wright’s “Blue” in 2020. And she revealed her biggest lesson from being on the stage.

“It’s storytelling,” Rashad said. “It’s important to tell a good story. There’s that that’s on the page, but the playwright never writes everything, and you must find what’s beneath the surface of that page. That’s the joy. That’s the greatest thrill of all.”

Let's Do Broadway

Source: Jeremy Daniel / Jeremy Daniel

Rashad spoke on a panel Monday at “Let’s Do Broadway!” event at the National Geographic Center in New York City’s Times Square.

The evening, hosted by “Tina-The Tina Turner Musical,” Aladdin,” “Frozen,” “MJ The Musical,” “Ain’t Too Proud” and the Roundabout Theater Company highlighted highlight the importance of representation on stage and in the audience and aimed to spur more minority engagement on Broadway.

Let's Do Broadway

Source: Jeremy Daniel / Jeremy Daniel

Rashad said she got her start in the theater and recalled her first stint on Broadway as an understudy for Melvin Van Peebles’ “Ain’t Supposed To Die A Natural Death.”

“It was luxurious,” Rashad recalled, “it was right, it was powerful, it was raw. And I was just this little child just come out of Howard University.”

The Houston, TX native joked that her acting role led to some diva demands with her sister, Debbie, who lived with her at the time on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.

“I would tell her every day, ‘don’t talk to me, please, because I have to get ready,” Rashad said. “Don’t talk to me, I have to have quiet.’ I was ridiculous!”

Dick Wolf Breaks Down “One Chicago’s” Battle Against Superbug In Crossover Episodes (Exclusive)

NBCUniversal Events - Season 2019

Source: NBC / Getty

“One Chicago” Crossover Episodes Airs Oct. 16 At 8 P.M. EST On NBC

The creator behind the TV shows “Chicago Med,” Chicago Fire” and Chicago P.D.” said this week’s crossover episodes have a “really scary” storyline that could happen in real life.

“One Chicago” creator Dick Wolf said Wednesday night’s three-hour event about a flesh-eating virus plaguing the Windy City would shock viewers because it’s a crisis that’s within the realm of possibility.

“It’s basically the same primal fear as “Jaws” or “The Birds” – it’s nature run amok,” Wolf said. “It’s scary.”

Wolf said flesh-eating bacteria are in nature and recalled last summer’s spate of cases involving people who caught it after swimming at the beach.

NBCUniversal Events - Season 2019

Source: NBC / Getty

The executive producer also revealed his own brush with superbugs: last year he said doctors swabbed a spot he thought was infected for strep and MRSA viruses.

“I said I haven’t been in a hospital,” Wolf told BOSSIP. (The doctor) “said, ‘It’s out.’”

This week’s episode sees the casts of “One Chicago” franchises “Chicago Fire,” “Chicago P.D.,” and “Chicago Med” join forces to save the city from the potential pandemic.

“All I can say is stay tuned,” Wolf added. “There’s really good stuff coming up. The crossover, I think, will scare a lot of people.”

Wolf, whose other primetime series “Law & Order: SVU” is the longest-running TV show in U.S. history, also revealed what he believes has helped his shows’ longevity: “The writing,” he said. “It’s always the writing.”

Kevin McCall Sues Ex Eva Marcille For Custody Of Daughter & Demands Child Support!! (Exclusive Details)

The Reed For Hope Foundation's 11th Annual "Sunshine Beyond Summer" Celebration

Source: David Livingston / Getty

Kevin McCall Says He Hasn’t Seen Daughter In Four Years; Wants Shared Custody With Eva Marcille Sterling

Actor Kevin McCall Jr. has launched a legal bid to wrest custody of his daughter from ex-partner Eva Marcille Sterling and force her to pay him child support for the girl.

McCall sued the “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star for joint physical custody of their daughter, Marley Rae Sterling, five, and wants a judge to force Sterling to pay him child support when the girl is in his care, the suit, obtained by BOSSIP, states.

McCall said he hasn’t seen the girl since 2015 when he said Sterling abruptly left the state with her. He accused Sterling of purposely erasing him out of her daughter’s life and alienating him as a parent. He said in his complaint that he “believes” he’s Marley’s dad and requested that the girl’s last name be changed from Sterling to McCall.

In the suit, filed earlier this month, McCall also wants the judge to appoint a “guardian ad litem” for Marley, whose job is to represent her best interests and eventually report their findings to the judge.

Sterling Shephard, Queer Eye’s Karamo Brown & Ashley Benson Launch McDonald’s “McDelivery Night In” With Uber Eats

McDelivery Night In

Source: Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for McDonald’s / Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for McDonald’s

McDonald’s & Uber Eats Launch “McDelivery Night In” Event Across Six Continents

Sterling Shephard said he’s looking forward to sharing his love of Mickey D’s with his one-year-old daughter.

“I grew up on McDonald’s,” he told BOSSIP. “I used to eat McDonald’s after every single football game. So Cali’s going to be eating McDonald’s all the time.”

McDelivery Night In

Source: Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for McDonald’s / Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for McDonald’s

The New York Giants wide receiver and husband of supermodel Chanel Iman was one of the celebs on hand to launch the global “McDelivery Night In” at Chelsea Market Sept. 17.

Also in the crowd was actress Ashley Benson – without partner Cara Delevingne – “Queer Eye’s” Karamo Brown and “The Bachelor’s” JoJo Fletcher and Becca Tilley.

McDelivery Night In

Source: Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for McDonald’s / Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for McDonald’s

Customers who order McDonald’s through the Uber Eats app after 5 p.m. on Sept 19th are automatically eligible to win an item from the line. There were similar events across the globe.

The fast-food brand also unveiled its “McDelivery Night In” line of merchandise for nights on the sofa – like pajama pants, sweatshirts and socks.

“They have a blanket with a hoodie on it, which is my favorite,” Shepherd said, “some T-shirts and shorts as well.”

Hit the flip for more pics from the launch:

Karrueche, Offset, & More Watch Pyer Moss Salute Blackness At NYFW Runway Show

FASHION-US-PYER MOSS

Source: KENA BETANCUR / Getty

Celebs & Fashionistas Packed Brooklyn’s Kings Theater For Pyer Moss’ Highly-Anticipated Third Collection Debut

Pyer Moss’s third collection runway debut reveled in the beautiful struggle of the Black Experience at New York Fashion Week.

Throngs of fashionistas packed the Kings Theater in Brooklyn Sunday night for the unveiling of the third installment of Pyer Moss’ “American, Also” collection, “Sister.” The brand, headed by creative director Kerby Jean-Raymond, turned the show into an almost spiritual experience: the evening began with a rousing speech telling guests to throw off the psychological shackles of slavery and oppression and declare themselves free.

Pyer Moss - Front Row - September 2019 - New York Fashion Week: The Shows

Source: Dominik Bindl / Getty

Then a band, clad in all white, took the stage to accompany a full gospel choir, that sang everything from Donny Hathaway’s “Little Ghetto Boy,” to Anita Baker’s “Sweet Love” to Adina Howard’s “Freak Like Me” as the models hit the catwalk.

Pyer Moss - Runway - September 2019 - New York Fashion Week: The Shows

Source: Fernanda Calfat / Getty

The celebration of blackness was everywhere – and especially in the clothes. All of the models were black and brown and their outfits bore touches like Sankofa bird patterns, abstract prints of black life, and satin finishes and bell-bottom designs that were reminiscent of 1970s Blaxploitation movies. One standout was a billowing canary yellow satin gown with a deep v-neckline with cape-esque sleeves and an open back detail.

Pyer Moss - Runway - September 2019 - New York Fashion Week: The Shows

Source: Fernanda Calfat / Getty

Pyer Moss also collaborated on some of the looks with American designers including the black-owned Sean John and Richard Phillips.

The fashion show brought out the likes of Karrueche Tran and Victor Cruz, Chris Bosh and his wife, Adrienne, Offset (in a lime green suit), Saweetie accompanied by an iced out Quavo, Terrence J and a white Du-Rag clad Jidenna. Singers Justine Skye and Normani Hamilton sat front row, while ASAP Ferg mugged for the cameras and a shirtless Slick Woods and Joey Badass shared a laugh.

Pyer Moss - Front Row - September 2019 - New York Fashion Week: The Shows

Source: Dominik Bindl / Getty

After the show, Shannon Claremont and Mack Wilds were among the guests to hit the after-party, where the Hennessy cocktails flowed.

Hit the flip for more pics from the show:

Scene On The Scene: Ashanti, Angela Simmons & More Watch Saweetie Take The Stage At Cheeto’s House Of Flamin’ Haute During NYFW

Cheetos House of Flamin' Haute

Source: Getty Images for Frito-Lay / Getty Images for Frito-Lay

Cheeto’s Hosted The House Of Flamin’ Haute At NYFW

Rapper Saweetie closed the show Thursday in the first-ever runway show inspired by Flamin’ Hot Cheetos.

The “Icy Grl” artist took to the runway Thursday at Cheeto’s House of Flamin’ Haute fashion show to perform her hits in front of an audience that included “Power’s” Lela Loren, Ashanti and Angela Simmons.

Cheetos House of Flamin' Haute

Source: Getty Images for Frito-Lay / Getty Images for Frito-Lay

Saweetie, who just arrived in NYC from Vegas with her boo Quavo, sashayed up and down the catwalk as she performed her songs, “My Type” and “Icy Grl.”

The Bay Area rapper’s performance capped Cheetos’ first foray at New York Fashion Week, which included a runway show inspired by the orange-colored snacks and a styling lounge where guests got Cheeto-fied hair and makeup looks.

Cheetos House of Flamin' Haute

Source: Getty Images for Frito-Lay / Getty Images for Frito-Lay

Before the show, Saweetie revealed that headlining later that evening meant she’d come a long way from her time at the Fashion Weeks of yesteryear.

“My first fashion week was just kind of like sneaking me into fashion events,” Saweetie told us. “So I know and I appreciate being in attendance and being a performer because I know how hard it is to get into these fashion events, because (it) wasn’t always ‘Hey Saweetie come on in.’ It was kind of like, where the back door at?”

Saweetie said she’d be rounding out her time at New York Fashion Week with sitting at The Blondes and the Moschino shows. She said she’s also launching her collection with PrettyLittleThing.

“It’s something I worked really hard on,” she said. “The theme is a bougie, rich woman enjoying the pleasures in life and the fruits of her labor.”

Asked about her own style, Saweetie said “It’s bipolar – you never know what you’re gonna get from me!”

Hit the flip for more pics from the show:

Cuba Gooding Jr.’s Lawyer Blasts NYC DA As Sex Pest Trial Delayed Until October

US-Entertainment-film-assault-Gooding

Source: ANGELA WEISS / Getty

“Jerry McGuire” Star In Court Tuesday For Allegedly Groping Club Goer

The lawyer representing Cuba Gooding Jr. in his sex abuse case blasted prosecutors for delaying his trial and questioned whether the actor’s accuser had stopped cooperating.

The “Boyz In The Hood” star was in a Manhattan courtroom Tuesday for what was supposed to be the start of his trial for forcible touching and sex abuse. Instead, Assistant District Attorney Amanda Long asked that the trial be delayed a month so that her office could hand over additional security footage from the night of the alleged incident to the defense. Long also announced that the Chief Medical Examiner had also completed a DNA report, but did not reveal the results.

Gooding Jr., sporting a grey suit, a faux hawk and heavy bags under his eyes, said nothing during the hearing. But his lawyer Peter Toumbekis complained that the DA’s Office was dragging its heels when it came to prosecuting the nearly three-month-old case.

“We stand prepared to move forward with the trial today,” Toumbekis said.

Cops arrested the veteran thespian back in June after a woman told police that an inebriated Gooding Jr. grabbed her breast during a night out at a Manhattan club. Gooding Jr. has denied the woman’s allegations.

US-Entertainment-film-assault-Gooding

Source: ANGELA WEISS / Getty

Outside the court, Gooding’s other lawyer Mark Heller speculated that the DA’s office was buying time because his client’s accuser had stopped working with authorities on the case.

“It’s our perception that they are not getting the cooperation of the complaining witness, who was not present today in court,” Heller told reporters. “We believe that the District Attorney is trying to procrastinate and coax the complaining witness to be more compliant with them.”

Heller said that Gooding’s alleged victim’s version of what went down doesn’t jibe with security footage of the alleged incident.

“If this does forward to a trial, I think it will be very clear that she contradicts what the video and the true facts really are,” he said, “and I think that will obviously, no doubt, result in the jury seeing that there’s no case here.”

Gooding Jr.’s trial is now set to start on Oct. 10.