BOSSIP Exclusive: ‘Harriet’ Director Kasi Lemmons Addresses Slavery Fatigue And Cynthia Erivo Discusses Division In The Black Community [VIDEO]

Kasi Lemmons and Cynthia Erivo

Source: Courtesy / Courtesy

Kasi Lemmons And Cynthia Erivo Talk About Bringing Black Female Hero To Big Screen

The long anticipated story of Harriet Tubman, ‘Harriet’ lands in theatres Friday, November 1 and BOSSIP’s Senior Director of Content Janeé Bolden sat down with the film’s director Kasi Lemmons and leading lady Cynthia Erivo recently to discuss the film. The ladies talked about the importance of having strong black female character brought to life on the big screen, why the slavery fatigue argument should be moot for audiences when it comes to ‘Harriet’ and division in the black community check out the interview below:

What did you think? Was Cynthia’s answer enough to put to rest all the questions about her? Do you think people will come to theatres to see this movie despite the folks who like to cry slavery fatigue about any move set in the 1800’s?

Leslie Odom Jr. also addresses the question of slave fatigue as well as the importance of documenting the slavery experience. Hit the flip to see what he has to say.

Touché! Tip Talks Jay-Z, Jermaine Dupri NFL Dealings… Here’s His Professional, Positively Perspicacious Assessment [Video]

T.I. Talks Jay-Z and Jermaine Dupri Working With The NFL

Black folks have been side-eyeing the crap out of Jay-Z after he got in bed with the NFL for what felt like a shady (and pointless) partnership. Now, T.I. is weighing in on Hov’s decision, as well as Jermaine Dupri‘s choice to partner with the Super Bowl when it was in Atlanta.

But FIRST, in the exclusive Radio One clip the Rhythm + Flow host talks about becoming more involved with the community, saying he’s careful about categorizing himself as an activist … and here’s why:

“I’m active, but I’m not an activist. I feel like an activist is more philanthropic. I’m in the for-profit biz. Activists are boots on the ground, they out doing the work, mobilizing, organizing, and sacrificing luxuries for the purpose of the greater good…” he explained.

On Jay-Z and JD, he commented:

“You see, at the time, my reason for not rocking with the NFL was because of how I felt they were manipulating the culture. I felt that they knew that Black dollars were important. Therefore, they came to Atlanta and I felt like they went all the wrong places and did all the wrong things to encourage the Black dollar at that moment in time. I feel like it wasn’t enough fair representation. JD was a good go, but I felt like it came after the slight — after I feel like we’d already been slighted — so, you know, he took a hard stand at it. I didn’t condemn him or criticize him for it. I told him I couldn’t participate. But, I think now that the smoke has cleared, I feel like, for me having that gripe — not being fairly or properly represented — if they go out of their way to find somebody who has an ability to fairly and properly represent the culture in Jay-Z, I can’t complain about that.”

Check out the clip up top for his FULL thoughts, as he had a little bit MORE to say about JD, and let us know if you agree.

Fendi For Everybawwwwdy: Nicki Minaj Says Her Collection Is Made To Show Skin!

Nicki Minaj in Fendi

Source: SplashNews / Splash News

Floss Your Buns And Funbags In Fendi Prints On: Nicki Minaj Says Her Collection Is For Everyone Who Wants To Show Skin

Nicki Minaj is talking bawwwdy positivity as she prepares to launch Fendi Prints On, her 127-piece collection with the Fendi brand this October. Minaj’s brand offers a men’s, women’s and children’s collection and she said she made it with her own curves in mind.

Via Elle:

She knew, she says, that “everybody’s going to be like, ‘Where’s the pink, bi**h?’ ” She also wanted to make body-conscious pieces that showcase curves. “I want to make clothes that make girls with my body look sexy,” she says. “We’re in a new time, where you don’t have to feel bad if you’re not the tiniest you’ve ever been. Women, we struggle with that so much, because we’ll go back to old pictures of ourselves, and we’ll be like, ‘I used to be so skinny!,’ and we start making ourselves feel bad. What I want [to tell] girls is not necessarily, ‘Go and gain weight and have a big booty,’ but ‘If you do have curves, be proud of it, flaunt it—love the skin you’re in.’ As clichéd as that sounds, I’ve been really trying to teach myself that. ‘This is who I am; take me or leave me, bye!’ ” The collection, she says, is “for everyone who wants to show skin. We all go to the beach, we all get sexy, we all have sex, we all bust it open!”

Well busss it then baby…

While you can also expect to buss your piggy bank open for some items, Minaj also says she kept her roots in mind and has affordable pieces as well:

“If I’m going to do Fendi,” she says, “I want to feel like I’m back in Southside Jamaica, Queens, New York, wearing Fendi. I don’t only want to be front row rocking my Fendi; I want to be in the hood rocking my Fendi, too.” Thus the collection includes more approachable pieces like T-shirts and sneakers emblazoned with her face. Her fans, she says, “are going to be really surprised when they see that I did think of things for them. I totally know that there are a lot of people who think that they can’t afford Fendi, and those are going to be some of our new customers, because they’re going to go and get the sneaker, or the hat, or the T-shirt. If you love your fashion, then sometimes you save up for certain things that you really love.” Minaj famously worked as a waitress prior to her current galactic fame. “When I was doing my 9-to-5,” she says, “this is something that I would have saved up for.”

Will you be rocking Fendi Prints On?

Hit the flip to see some of the looks

Black Stories: Jazz At Lincoln Center’s Opening Night Pays Tribute To South Africa

Jazz at Lincoln Center Opening Weekend

Source: Photos by Frank Stewart / Photos by Frank Stewart

Jazz At Lincoln Center Perform From The South African Songbook

Jazz at Lincoln Center brought the music of South Africa to Manhattan for its opening night concert.

The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra featuring Wynton Marsalis opened its new season by paying tribute to South African jazz, performing “The South African Songbook, Celebrating 25 Years of Democracy.”

South African artists, including pianists Thandi Ntuli, Nduduso Makhathini and saxophonist McCoy Mrubata joined the orchestra at the Frederick P. Rose Hall for a selection of songs from the land of the Zulu and Xhosa.

Jazz at Lincoln Center Opening Night

Source: Frank Stewart / Photo by Frank Stewart

The concert gave the crowd a glimpse of the spectrum of South African Jazz. The orchestra performed interpretations of work from legends like Hugh Masekela’s “Send Me,” as well as the late pianist Winston Mankunku Ngozi’s musical tribute to Archbishop Desmond Tutu – each arranged by an orchestra member.

The evening came 25 years after the country’s racial caste system, Apartied, came to an end, and many of the songs reflected a sense of hope and reconciliation as well as a musical call to action to work towards a better society.

Jazz at Lincoln Center Opening Weekend

Source: Photos by Frank Stewart / Photos by Frank Stewart

The works infused South African culture and traditional music with improvisational jazz to the delight of the crowd, which later gave the orchestra a standing ovation.

Considered one of the nation’s premier music institutions, Jazz at Lincoln Center is a performance space, artist incubator, music education classroom and record label that hosts workshops, performances, and an annual high school jazz band competition and festival.

Werk, Play! RihRih Pops Up At Sold Out “SLAVE PLAY” Featuring Her Song “Work”

Rihanna at Slave Play with Jeremy O. Harris at Golden Theatre

Source: Photo courtesy of SLAVE PLAY on Broadway / Courtesy of SLAVE PLAY on Broadway

Rihanna Attends Broadway Show Featuring Her Hit “WORK”

Work hard, play harder? After an exciting week where she showcased her Savage X FENTY line and held her 5th Annual Diamond Ball, Rihanna’s weekend consisted of a cultural outing to see the Broadway show “Slave Play” by Jeremy O. Harris.

Page Six reports the singer stopped by the Golden Theatre on Saturday with her family for the sold-out preview night performance. The tabloid reports she texted with the show’s playwright after the show before heading backstage.

Rihanna at Slave Play with Jeremy O. Harris at Golden Theatre

Source: Photo courtesy of SLAVE PLAY on Broadway / Courtesy of SLAVE PLAY on Broadway

“He invited her to the show,” a source told Page Six of Harris, who clicked with Rihanna when he attended her Savage x Fenty fashion show and Diamond Ball gala.

Rihanna may not be acting in “SLAVE PLAY,” which critics have billed as provocative and explosive, but she does have a role in the show, sort of. RihRih’s hit song “Work” is featured in the show and her lyrics are also displayed on the set.

Doesn’t thinks have you soooo curious? A play about slavery, sort of, that features an international pop hit? Has to be pretty cheeky. A release for the production describes it thusly:

The old South lives on at the MacGregor Plantation—in the breeze, in the cotton fields…and in the crack of the whip. It’s an antebellum fever-dream, where fear and desire entwine in the looming shadow of the Master’s House. Jim trembles as Kaneisha handles melons in the cottage, Alana perspires in time with the plucking of Phillip’s fiddle in the boudoir, while Dustin cowers at the heel of Gary’s big, black boot in the barn. Nothing is as it seems, and yet everything is as it seems.

Sounds BEYOND creative. We can only imagine!

Rihanna wasn’t the only celebrity to see the show this weekend, Zendaya attended on Sunday.

Rihanna at Slave Play with Jeremy O. Harris at Golden Theatre

Source: Photo courtesy of SLAVE PLAY on Broadway / Courtesy of SLAVE PLAY on Broadway

By the way, for those who haven’t already guessed Jeremy O. Harris is a REALLY big deal, “SLAVE PLAY” won the Rosa Parks Playwrighting Award, the Lorraine Hansberry Playwriting Award, The Lotos Foundation Prize in the Arts and Sciences and the 2018 Paula Vogel Award. Robert O’Hara, who is an Obie winner, is the director.

Sounds like something we need some tickets for. Holla.

For Your Viewing Pleasure: Tracee Ellis Ross Talks “Mixed-ish” And Pattern Products On “Good Morning America” [VIDEO]

Tracee Ellis Ross on Good Morning America

Source: Courtesy Good Morning America / abc

Tracee Ellis Ross Introduces First Clip Of Her New Show “Mixed-ish”

We stan Tracee Ellis Ross… BIG TIME!!! This morning, Executive Producer of ABC’s, “Mixed-ish,” Tracee Ellis Ross joined Michael Strahan, Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America to discuss the upcoming Black-ish spin-off series and the launch of her new product joining the natural hair movement! Women with curls, coils and tightly textured hair around the country were excited, not only to hear about the launch of her new hair care brand, PATTERN but also to learn the importance of Mixed-ish to Tracee – as it offers “space where all of us can feel empowered to be our true selves in our own unique glory.”

Ross introduced a clip for the show saying, “the beauty of the tapestry of this country and the world that we live in is that there are so many different kinds of people, different cultures, different traditions and that’s what makes this world so beautiful. And then, the humanity that connects us.” “We all have that heart that is the same place.” Check out the clip below:

We’re excited for “Mixed-ish”! The show premieres Tuesday, September 24 At 9|8c on ABC

Will you be watching?

For Your Viewing Pleasure: Tracee Ellis Ross Talks “Mixed-ish” And Pattern Products On “Good Morning America” [VIDEO]

Tracee Ellis Ross on Good Morning America

Source: Courtesy Good Morning America / abc

Tracee Ellis Ross Introduces First Clip Of Her New Show “Mixed-ish”

We stan Tracee Ellis Ross… BIG TIME!!! This morning, Executive Producer of ABC’s, “Mixed-ish,” Tracee Ellis Ross joined Michael Strahan, Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America to discuss the upcoming Black-ish spin-off series and the launch of her new product joining the natural hair movement! Women with curls, coils and tightly textured hair around the country were excited, not only to hear about the launch of her new hair care brand, PATTERN but also to learn the importance of Mixed-ish to Tracee – as it offers “space where all of us can feel empowered to be our true selves in our own unique glory.”

Ross introduced a clip for the show saying, “the beauty of the tapestry of this country and the world that we live in is that there are so many different kinds of people, different cultures, different traditions and that’s what makes this world so beautiful. And then, the humanity that connects us.” “We all have that heart that is the same place.” Check out the clip below:

We’re excited for “Mixed-ish”! The show premieres Tuesday, September 24 At 9|8c on ABC

Will you be watching?