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Archive for January, 2012

Comic Tracy Morgan’s mom complains he won’t help her

AP photo

AP photo

Comic Tracy Morgan, who once joked during a stand-up routine that he’d stab his son if the youngster acted gay, is back in the news with more family-related drama.

Morgan issued an apology for his gay joke but is not responding to claims by his mother that he will not help her financially.

Alicia Warden of Ohio, who discussed her plight with the New York Daily News on the condition that her address was not revealed, said she faces foreclosure and is about to have her utilities disconnected because she cannot pay. She told the NYDN that she owes less $25,000 on her home, but that her son would only offer a gift of $2,000 when she requested financial assistance after her unemployment benefits ran out.

“My mom’s house isn’t extravagant, but it’s her home. Her health is failing. She has diabetes, and her legs are giving out on her,” his sister Asia Morgan said. “This would be a drop in the bucket for Tracy. She has a son that can do, and she’s done …

Continue reading Comic Tracy Morgan’s mom complains he won’t help her »

Planning a Valentine’s Girls Night Out?

...and what are her friends doing this Valentine's Day?

…and what are her friends doing this Valentine's Day?

Suzanne Kirkland has big plans for Valentine’s Day this year.

She’s going to dress up in a 20s inspired frock, indulge in few glam nibbles at  Cupz & Cake at 1171 LaVista Rd., then head across the street to see “The Artist” at the UA Tara Cinemas 4 at 2345 Cheshire Bridge Rd.

All with a group of girlfriends.

“It’s a Tuesday. People still have to go to work the next day,” she reasoned.

Indeed, Valentine’s falls rather nonromantically mid-week this year, so instead of aiming for a lovey dovey couples night, how about getting the girls together for a fun outing that’s more “Bridesmaids” and less “The Notebook?”

The Ritz-Carlton Buckhead is featuring seasonal delicacies at tea time.

The Ritz-Carlton Buckhead is featuring seasonal delicacies at tea time.

If you and your lady friends want to go all Downton Abbey this Valentine’s Day season, consider taking tea at the Ritz-Carlton in Buckhead.

On Thursdays through Sundays through the big day, afternoon tea takes on a choc-tacular spirit with …

Continue reading Planning a Valentine’s Girls Night Out? »

Battle of the crooning presidential candidates?

Gov. Mitt Romney sings "America The Beautiful" at a campaign stop. AP photo

Gov. Mitt Romney sings "America The Beautiful" at a campaign stop. AP photo

Enough with the high-minded oratory and cerebral discussion. It’s time to knock the heretofore erudite presidential campaign down a notch.

To the “American Idol” level.

President Barack Obama thrilled a fundraising audience not long ago by breaking into song. The president did a nice rendition of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” during an appearance at Harlem’s Apollo Theater, although left-leaning New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd lamented that it was all too brief. “For eight seconds, we saw the president we had craved for three years: cool, joyous, funny, connected,” she wrote in this column.

Here is a link to the video.

President Barack Obama sings a few bars of "Let's Stay Together" at a fundraiser. AP photo

President Barack Obama sings a few bars of "Let's Stay Together" at a fundraiser. AP photo

Not to be outdone, here comes Gov. Mitt Romney, hoping to replace Obama as Crooner in Chief. He performed an entire verse of “America the Beautiful” during a campaign stop in Florida.

Here …

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“Real Housewives of Atlanta” personality to appear at Fulton County health event

dwight_eubanks-300x200The Fulton County Department of Health Services and the CDC have a couple of experts lined up for an upcoming health session.

Past “Real Housewives of Atlanta” personality Dwight Eubanks will be joining them.

The event is called “Testing Makes Us Stronger,” an initiative to encourage black gay and bisexual men in Atlanta to be tested for HIV.

“Using bold messaging and iconic, diverse images of black gay and bisexual men, the campaign highlights the power and importance of knowing your HIV status,” organizers said in a statement.

(So Eubanks is bold and iconic?)

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The event begins at 1 p.m. Wednesday at the Auburn Avenue Research Library, 101 Auburn Ave.

The non reality show panelists include Dr. Kevin Fenton, director of the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention at the CDC; and Dr. Patrice A. Harris, director of Fulton County Health …

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Outwrite bookstore has closed for good

A long line formed outside Outwrite Bookstore when RuPaul visited. AJC file photo

A long line formed outside Outwrite Bookstore when RuPaul visited. AJC file photo

The final chapter has ended at Outwrite Bookstore & Coffeehouse. It’s not a happy ending.

“We regret to inform you that effective January 26, 2012, Outwrite Bookstore and Coffeehouse is closed for business,” owner Philip Rafshoon said in an email. “For over 18 years, we have been privileged to serve Atlanta residents and welcome visitors from across America and around the world. We sincerely thank you for your patronage.”

The Midtown landmark sounded the alarm some time ago, alerting patrons to its financial woes and asking for help. While many people responded, even volunteering at the store to help keep its doors open, the efforts were unable to surmount Outwrite’s predicament.

“Unfortunately, we have run out of time and money to make that transformation,” Rafshoon wrote.

The store has hosted numerous author signings and other events through the years. Appearances by authors including RuPaul, …

Continue reading Outwrite bookstore has closed for good »

Billy Bob Thorton’s made-in-Atlanta to debut in Berlin

jmBilly Bob Thornton spent a good bit of time in Atlanta last year filming “Jayne Mansfield’s Car.”

The movie is set to premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival next month, according to this article in the Hollywood Reporter.

The project also stars Kevin Bacon, John Hurt, Robert Patrick and Robert Duvall and was filmed in Atlanta and beyond. (The actors seemed to enjoy their time here. In this photo, Thornton, from left, Duvall and Bacon are seen with Chops assistant manager Lambro Mitsilenkas after a dinner there with friends.)

If you happen to be in Berlin during the festival, planned for Feb. 9-19, keep an eye out for Oakhurst Church in Decatur, which was redone to look like an old hardware store for the movie. Other scenes were filmed in LaGrange and Cedartown.

Another little tidbit: Sam Huff’s east Cobb County restaurant, BBQ1, provided the vittles for a backyard barbecue scene filmed in LaGrange. The props director for “Jayne Mansfield’s Car,” visited …

Continue reading Billy Bob Thorton’s made-in-Atlanta to debut in Berlin »

Casting call: “Single Ladies” needs formally attired extras

AP photo

AP photo

“Single Ladies” needs a ballroom full of formally clad extras for a big scene coming up.

They’re basically looking for anyone in a tux or ball gown. The casting call says they need “men and women, ages 25-75, all ethnicities.”

The only specific requirement is that you come dressed formally – long gowns for women, tuxedos or nice suits for guys. The scene will be shooting next week, from Jan. 31 to Feb. 3.

If you’re interested e-mail CLCformal@gmail.com with GOWNS, TUX or SUIT in the subject line. They ask that you include at least three photos of yourself in your formal gear, and include your age, height, weight and dress/bra/ size (women) and waist/jacket/neck/sleeve sizes (men) and shoe sizes (everybody).

Good luck!

Jennifer Brett/The Buzz/jbrett@ajc.com

Continue reading Casting call: “Single Ladies” needs formally attired extras »

Pat Sajak: I used to host “Wheel of Fortune” drunk

120125wheel-of-fortune-pat1Longtime “Wheel of Fortune” star Pat Sajak said he used to host the show when he was D-R-_-N-K.

(Feel like buying a vowel? Try a U).

The game show’s host since 1981, Sajak told Dan Le Batard of “Dan Le Batard is Highly Questionable” that he and trusty letter flipper Vanna White used to knock back margaritas at a Mexican restaurant before showtime back in the day, “and then come and do the last shows and have trouble recognizing the alphabet.”

Here’s a link to a story and video of the interview posted by TV Guide.

Happily, Sajak long ago gave up the pre-show cocktails and sounded relieved that he never lapsed into a stupor while the cameras were rolling. (Today, he joked during the lighthearted interview, he’d probably keel over if he merely sniffed a wine cork.)

“I had a great time,” he said. “I have no idea if the shows were any good, but no one said anything, so I guess I did OK.”

- Jennifer Brett/The …

Continue reading Pat Sajak: I used to host “Wheel of Fortune” drunk »

John Travolta spotted dining in Buckhead

AP photo

AP photo

John Travolta, who has come South to film a movie co-starring  Robert De Niro, was spotted dining in Buckhead Tuesday night.

We’re told he and three friends dined at The Palm, where he already has a signed caricature on the wall. Folks recognized him, of course, but let him enjoy his lobster and flourless chocolate cake in peace. He was gracious and friendly to those who did stop by to say hello.

Oh, just coincidentally, former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin happened to be dining at The Palm at the same time. A happening place!

The Travolta-DeNiro movie is called “Killing Season,” which Variety sums up thusly: “De Niro will play an American military veteran who has retreated to a remote cabin in the Appalachian Mountains, where he strikes up an unlikely friendship with a European tourist (Travolta) who’s actually a former Serbian soldier bent on revenge.”

The thriller will be filming mostly north of here, in Rabun County and thereabouts.

- Jennifer …

Continue reading John Travolta spotted dining in Buckhead »

“Housewife” Phaedra Parks on the Georgia Grammy red carpet

Phaedra Parks and husband Apollo Nida on the red carpet.

Phaedra Parks and husband Apollo Nida on the red carpet.

“Real Housewives of Atlanta” cast member Phaedra Parks was the very last to stroll the red carpet Tuesday night at the Georgia Grammy nominee party, held at the downtown W hotel. Once she got there, she enjoyed herself.

“Hey!” she squealed as she and husband Apollo Nida arrived. (Fellow cast member Kim Zolciak and new husband, Falcons player Kroy Biermann, were also supposed to be there. They didn’t show up, and also didn’t bother telling organizers, who had to learn second-hand, from a text Kim sent a friend, that they’d decided to skip it.)

Parks wasn’t able to drop any details about future shows, but did talk a little bit about why she joined the Bravo crew.

“The show came at a good time,” she said. “It was a great opportunity.”

She had previously enjoyed success as an entertainment lawyer and said most people who knew her privately knew the more serious, businesslike side of her.

Phaedra Parks with WXIA's Evelyn Mims

Phaedra Parks with WXIA's Evelyn …

Continue reading “Housewife” Phaedra Parks on the Georgia Grammy red carpet »