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Celebrity news and blog articles from The Huffington Post

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    White hot for summer. 


    Jessica Simpson shared a snapshot from her recent getaway, looking gorgeous in a white swimsuit, retro sunglasses and platform sandals. She captioned the shot simply "Vacation Vibes." 



    The 35-year-old headed to St. Bart's with family and friends to celebrate her birthday, which was on July 10, Us Weekly reported. Simpson shared another swimsuit photo over the weekend, in which she wore a black ensemble and looked equally as chic while beachside with her girlfriends. 




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    "Jeopardy!" host Alex Trebek reminded us of his premium rapping skills last month when he covered the theme song of "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air." On Tuesday, he took on a Rihanna song.


    The game show host covered the chorus to Rihanna's "Umbrella" as a clue during the episode. Things started out just fine, but then Trebek kind of butchered the "eh, eh, eh" part. Oh well, he tried!


    Also on HuffPost:



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    Salma Hayek looks stunning in the August 2015 issue of Allure. 


    The 45-year-0ld actress goes topless in the summer issue, marking her second time covering the beauty magazine. Inside the cover story, she talks about everything from her high school style ("I was punk for a little bit") to her nearly nude shoot ("[It's] very elegant; it doesn't look vulgar") to her marriage to billionaire François-Henri Pinault, who she wed in 2009. 


    "I wish I knew [when I was younger] that I was going to fall crazy in love with the perfect man," she said. "I was so worried, and I dated some people I shouldn't have dated. You get desperate, and you start seeing wonderful things in, like, the wrong guys."


    Pinault was the one who encouraged her to go back to work after giving birth to their daughter, Valentina, born in 2007. 


    "I said, 'I don't think I want to work anymore,'" she told Allure. "And it was François who said, 'Oh, no, you're going back to work.' And I said, 'I don't want to.' 'Well, you have to. We're not putting up with some lazy girl in the house. That's not who I married.'"


    Hayek continued. "And then he said something so beautiful. 'I don't want to be deprived of your work. I want to watch it, too. And the world has not seen the best of you yet. So you cannot stop until some of that is put out.' So he sort of really pushed me, like, 'Get up on your feet and get out there.' And he was right."


    Check out photos from the shoot: 





    Also on HuffPost:



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    Oberyn Martell may be gone from Westeros, but he's about to hunt down one of the most notorious drug lords in history.


    In Netflix's latest original series, "Narcos," Pedro Pascal of "Game of Thrones" portrays real-life Mexican DEA agent Javier Peña. In the first full trailer for the 10-episode drama, we see Peña and his partner Steve Murphy (Boyd Holbrook) head to Colombia to capture Pablo Escobar (Wagner Moura) during the rise of his cocaine cartel. Created and executive produced by "Elite Squad" director José Padilha, "Narcos" premieres on Netflix on Aug. 28.


    Also on HuffPost: 



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    Like Tyrese and Erykah Badu before her, Brandy brought her talent directly to New York City fans.  Except, no one recognized her. 


    Recently, the Grammy Award-winning singer rode the city’s subway after a trip to the gym and performed a rendition of “Home” from the Broadway musical “The Wiz.”  She belted her heart out as train passengers ignored her completely. (You can watch the whole thing in the video above.)


     On Monday, the 36-year-old detailed her experience in a blog post titled “#aMomentinNY - Can A Sistah Get One Fan?”  


     “I've hung out in Central Park, Times Square, ridden the bus, and I've gotten accustomed to taking the subway too,” she wrote. “I feel like a real New Yorker. I'm learning the streets and everything, y'all!”


    “I decided to hit the subway and sing my little heart out,” she continued. “You've gotta check out this video and see why this fun-filled morning left me asking: Can a Sistah get one fan?!”


     We have your back, Brandy -- we're HUGE fans over here!


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    Spike Lee has drawn criticism since he announced his forthcoming Chicago-based film, “Chi-Raq.”


    The film, which reflects a popular nickname coined by local rappers who compare the city’s crime rates to an Iraqi warzone, has been criticized for its name by Chicago city officials including Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who "was not happy" about the project's title.


    The film -- which will highlight black-on-black gun violence in the city's Englewood neighborhood --  reportedly wrapped up filming last weekend. Shortly after, Lee took to his Instagram account to post a photo of the project’s production slate along with a caption directed towards critics who bashed the film due to its title and content.



     


     “To the misinformed critics of Chi-Raq during the principle photography June 1st-July 9th there were 331 people shot and wounded plus 69 Murdered,” Lee wrote to his 130k followers. “May God bless them, their families and friends.”


    Earlier this month, the city made national headlines for the high number of shootings that occurred over the 4th of July weekend. According to reports, more than 80 people were shot, 15 of whom were killed. 


    The film will be produced by the newly launched Amazon Studios. 


    “Spike Lee is one of the most distinct and visionary filmmakers of our time,” Ted Hope, Head of Motion Picture Production at Amazon Studios, said in a press release.“It would be impossible to find a better filmmaker with whom to launch our studio. He has a unique voice, a distinct eye, and he tackles important subjects with humor and heart, pointing to solutions and not exploiting the problems. Chi-Raq may be his greatest, and definitely his boldest film yet—everything about it is distinctive.”


    Lee also went on to add his enthusiasm for partnering with Amazon Studios and assured fans that the film will be very special. 


    “I’m honored to be part of the film that will launch Amazon Studios and to tell a story that is so important,” Lee said. “Please don’t be fooled by the title of Chi-Raq, this new Spike Lee joint will be something very special. We have assembled a stellar cast.”


    “Spike Lee’s Chi-Raq” is set to hit theaters and Amazon Prime in December.


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    Kendall and Kylie Jenner sparkled on the red carpet at the 2015 ESPY Awards on Wednesday night, but the evening was not about them. 


    The Jenner sisters attended the award show to support and celebrate their parent Caitlyn Jenner, who is set to receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award, which is given to those "possessing strength in the face of adversity, courage in the face of peril and the willingness to stand up for their beliefs no matter what the cost."


    The 65-year-old former Olympian opted not to walk the red carpet, as a rep for the star explained to Gossip Cop, "It’s not about the press coverage. It’s an award for courage.”


    Also in attendance and showing their support for Jenner, were stepdaughters Kim, Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian, who made the very uncharacteristic decision not to walk the red carpet, either. However, Kim's hairstylist, Chris McMillan shared a sneak peek photo of the reality star's look for the evening on Instagram. 




    A photo posted by King Kylie (@kyliejenner) on




    Jenner's sons Burt, Brandon, Brody and daughter Casey from her previous marriages also showed up in celebration of Jenner's award: 




    A photo posted by King Kylie (@kyliejenner) on



    It was truly a family affair, as Jenner's 88-year-old mother Esther sat next to the star before she accepted her award.







    The former athlete first came out as transgender in an interview with Diane Sawyer in April and formally introduced herself as Caitlyn to the world this past June with with a 22-page Vanity Fair cover story. Since that glamorous and inspiration introduction, Jenner has started her foray into advocacy work in the transgender community


     


    Also on Huffpost:


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    In her first public appearance since announcing her decision to transition, Caitlyn Jenner mesmerized the crowd at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles on Wednesday as she accepted the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the 2015 ESPY Awards.




    Jenner spoke about her own personal experience so far as a transgender woman. But she also dedicated a significant percentage of her speech to a thoughtful and touching discussion of the vast number of issues facing the larger transgender community. 


    "Trans people deserve something vital. They deserve your respect," she said. "And from that respect comes a more compassionate community, a more empathetic society and a better world for all of us."


    "At this very moment there are young people coming to terms with being transgender," she added at another moment, noting the high levels of bullying, homicide and suicide the transgender community must grapple with still today.  The trans community, she said, needs the American community's empathy and understanding.



    Jenner admitted she had never talked with another transgender person up until very recently, in what she said was a truly educational experience. "It's been eye-opening inspiring but also frightening," she said of her overall experience since she told ABC's Diane Sawyer in April that she would be transitioning from male to female.


    In a video about her experience preceding the speech, Jenner discussed about what she has learned about trans-related issues since then and how she decided over time she would become not just a trans woman, but a trans advocate.


    "I came to kind of a revelation that out of all the things I have done in my life, that maybe this is my calling," she said. "To take my struggle, throw it out in front of the world, maybe I can bring understanding on this subject. It’s time that I do my best. This is an issue we can deal with. This is not something people have to die over."


    Maura Mandt, the ESPYs co-executive producer, told Sports Illustrated's Richard Deitsch in the lead up to the show that Jenner's decision to transition in such a public forum "displayed enormous courage and self-acceptance."


    "Bruce Jenner could have easily gone off into the sunset as this American hero and never have dealt with this publicly. Doing so took enormous courage," Mandt told Deitsch. "He was one of the greatest athletes of our time. That is what the Arthur Ashe Courage Award is about, somebody from the athletic community who has done something that transcends sport."


    Jenner became a household name in 1976 when she won the men's decathlon at the 1976 Summer Olympics. But after ESPN announced the selection of Jenner in June, the network faced large amounts of backlash from those who believed there were more deserving candidates. Bob Costas called the decision "a crass exploitation play" and criticism became so loud that ESPN issued a follow-up statement several days after the initial announcement:



     The Arthur Ashe Courage Award is meant to honor individuals whose contributions transcend sports through courageous action. Sometimes that courage is demonstrated over the course of a lifetime and sometimes it is demonstrated in a single act that shines a light on an important contemporary issue. At all times, there are many worthy candidates. This year, we are proud to honor Caitlyn Jenner embracing her identity and doing so in a public way to help move forward a constructive dialogue about progress and acceptance.



    The award is given to those "possessing strength in the face of adversity, courage in the face of peril and the willingness to stand up for their beliefs no matter what the cost."


     ESPN's Ramona Shelburne summed up the feelings of many on Wednesday:










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    Days before kicking off his U.S. tour, singer Sam Smith told fans that his throat is “looking bloody fantastic."


    Smith underwent surgery in May to treat a hemorrhage on his vocal cords. The “Stay With Me” singer was forced to cancel all tour dates through June.


    “I have been in Boston the last few days to have a check up on my throat, before I embark on my American tour,” Smith wrote on Instagram on Wednesday. “MY THROAT IS LOOKING BLOODY FANTASTIC. So it’s amazing news. So happy. It’s going to be a really tough month of shows but I can’t wait to see you all, and pray it’s going to be a smooth ride. LET’S GO.”



    A photo posted by Sam Smith (@samsmithworld) on



     


    Smith is slated to return to the stage on Friday at the Forecastle Festival in Louisville, Kentucky.  


    Last month, Smith told fans that he “cannot wait to return to performing live.”


    “Thank you all for waiting for me,” he wrote on Twitter on June 9. He also posted a video showing him speaking aloud publicly for the first time since his operation


    Watch it below:





     


    Related on HuffPost: 


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    Who knew Sir Ian McKellen was a Taylor Swift fan? 


    While promoting his new film, "Mr. Holmes," the 76-year-old actor lent his voice and incredible acting chops to the folks at Yahoo! for what might be the best dramatic-reading video of all time. 


    In the clip, Gandolph McKellen sits down to share "some of my favorite lyrics" -- Swift's "Bad Blood" and Bruno Mars' "Uptown Funk" -- and the results are amazing. Instead of just singing the catchy tunes (like we all do in front of our mirrors while alone in our rooms), the Hollywood legend took them to a very serious place. Watch as the actor turns these songs into dramatic monologues in a performance worthy of an Oscar. 




    Also on HuffPost:



     


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    Bless you, Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, for making the merciful decision to announce to the 2015 Emmy Award nominations at a reasonable hour this year.


    On Thursday, Cat Deeley and Uzo Aduba had the honor of announcing the nominees for the 67th Primetime Emmy Awards live from the SilverScreen Theater in the Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles.


    And the nominees are...


    Outstanding Drama Series
    “Better Call Saul”
    “Game of Thrones”
    “Downton Abbey”
    “Homeland”
    “House of Cards”
    “Mad Men”
    “Orange is the New Black” 


     Outstanding Comedy Series
    “Louie”
    “Modern Family”
    “Parks and Recreation”
    “Silicon Valley”
    “Transparent”
    “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
    “Veep”


    Outstanding Lead Actor Drama Series
    Kyle Chandler, "Bloodline"
    Jeff Daniels, "Newsroom"
    Jon Hamm, "Mad Men"
    Bob Odenkirk, "Better Call Saul"
    Liev Schreiber, "Ray Donovan"
    Kevin Spacey, "House of Cards"


    Outstanding Lead Actress Drama Series
    Claire Danes,”Homeland”
    Viola Davis,”How To Get Away With Murder”
    Taraji P. Henson, “Empire”
    Tatiana Maslany, “Orphan Black”
    Elisabeth Moss, “Mad Men”
    Robin Wright, “House of Cards”


    Outstanding Lead Actor Comedy
    Anthony Anderson,”Black-ish”
    Louie C.K.,”Louie”
    Don Cheadle,”House of Lies”
    Matt LeBlanc,”Episodes”
    Will Forte,”Last Man on Earth”
    Jeffrey Tambor, “Transparent”
    William H. Macy, “Shameless”


    Outstanding Lead Actress Comedy Series
    Edie Falco, “Nurse Jackie”
    Lisa Kudrow, “The Comeback”
    Julia Louis Dreyfus, “Veep”
    Amy Poehler, “Parks & Recreation”
    Amy Schumer, “Inside Amy Schumer”
    Lily Tomlin, “Grace and Frankie”


    Outstanding Limited Series
    “American Crime”
    “American Horror Story: Freak Show”
    “Olive Kitteridge”
    "The Honorable Woman”
    “Wolf Hall”


    Outstanding TV Movie
    “Agatha Christie’s Poirot — Curtain: Poirot’s Last Case”
    “Bessie”
    “Grace of Monaco”
    “Hello Ladies: The Movie”
    “Killing Jesus”
    “Nightingale”


    Outstanding Variety Talk Series
    “Colbert Report”
    “The Daily Show”
    “Jimmy Kimmel Live”
    “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”
    “Late Show with Letterman”
    “Tonight Show starring Fallon”


    Outstanding Variety Sketch Series
    “Drunk History”
    “Inside Amy Schumer”
    “Key & Peele”
    “Portlandia
    “Saturday Night Live”


    Outstanding Reality Show Competition
    “The Amazing Race”
    “Dancing with the Stars”
    “Project Runway”
    “So You Think You Can Dance”
    “Top Chef”
    “The Voice” 


    Outstanding Host For A Reality Or Reality-Competition
    Tom Bergeron, “Dancing With The Stars”
    Jane Lynch, “Hollywood Game Night”
    Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn, “Project Runway”
    Cat Deeley, “So You Think You Can Dance”
    Anthony Bourdain, “The Taste”


    Outstanding Supporting Actor Drama
    Jonathan Banks, “Better Call Saul”
    Jim Carter, “Downton Abbey”
    Alan Cumming, “The Good Wife”
    Peter Dinklage, “Game of Thrones”
    Michael Kelly, “House of Cards”
    Ben Mendelsohn, “Bloodline”


    Outstanding Supporting Actress Drama
    Uzo Aduba, “Orange Is the New Black”
    Christine Baranski, “The Good Wife”
    Emilia Clarke, “Game of Thrones”
    Joanne Froggatt, “Downton Abbey”
    Lena Headey, “Game of Thrones”
    Christina Hendricks, “Mad Men”


    Outstanding Supporting Actor Comedy
    Tituss Burgess, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
    Ty Burrell, “Modern Family”
    Andre Braugher, “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”
    Adam Driver, “Girls”
    Keegan-Michael Key, “Key & Peele”
    Tony Hale, “Veep”


    Outstanding Supporting Actress Comedy
    Julie Bowen, “Modern Family”
    Anna Chlumsky, “Veep”
    Allison Janney, “Mom”
    Jane Krakowski, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
    Kate McKinnon, “Saturday Night Live”
    Niecy Nash, “Getting On”
    Gaby Hoffmann, “Transparent”


    Outstanding Guest Actress Drama Series
    Khandi Alexander, “Scandal”
    Rachel Brosnahan, “House of Cards”
    Allison Janney, “Masters of Sex”
    Margo Martindale, “The Americans”
    Diana Rigg, “Game of Thrones”
    Cicely Tyson, “How To Get Away With Murder”


    Outstanding Guest Actor  Comedy Series
    Mel Brooks, “The Comedians”
    Louis C.K., “Saturday Night Live” Host
    Paul Giamatti, “Inside Amy Schumer”
    Bill Hader, “Saturday Night Live” Host
    Jon Hamm, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmit”
    Bradley Whitford, “Transparent”


    Outstanding Guest Actor In A Drama Series
    Alan Alda, “The Blacklist”
    Michael J. Fox, “The Good Wife”
    F. Murray Abraham, “Homeland”
    Reg E. Cathey, “House Of Cards”
    Beau Bridges, “Masters Of Sex”
    Pablo Schreiber, “Orange Is The New Black”


    Outstanding Guest Actress Comedy Series
    Pamela Adlon, “Louie”
    Elizabeth Banks, “Modern Family”
    Christine Baranski, “The Big Bang Theory”
    Joan Cusack, “Shameless”
    Tina Fey, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
    Gaby Hoffmann, “Girls”


    Outstanding Lead Actor Limited Series Or Movie
    Adrien Brody, “Houdini”
    Ricky Gervais, “Derek” Special
    Timothy Hutton, “American Crime”
    Richard Jenkins, “Olive Kitteridge”
    David Oyelowo, “Nightingale”
    Mark Rylance, “Wolf Hall”


    Outstanding Lead Actress Limited Series Or Movie
    Maggie Gyllenhaal, “The Honorable Woman”
    Felicity Huffman, “American Crime”
    Jessica Lange, “American Horror Story: Freak Show”
    Queen Latifah, “Bessie”
    Frances McDormand, “Oliver Kitteridge”
    Emma Thompson, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (Live from Lincoln Center)”


    Outstanding Supporting Actor Limited Series Or A Movie
    Richard Cabral, “American Crime”
    Denis O'Hare, “American Horror Story: Freak Show”
    Finn Wittrock, “American Horror Story: Freak Show”
    Michael Kenneth, “Bessie”
    Bill Murray, “Olive Kitteridge”
    Damian Lewis, “Wolf Hall”


    Outstanding Supporting Actress Limited Series Or A Movie
    Regina King, “American Crime”
    Sarah Paulson, “American Horror Story: Freak Show”
    Angela Bassett, “American Horror Story: Freak Show”
    Kathy Bates, “American Horror Story: Freak Show”
    Mo'Nique, “Bessie”
    Zoe Kazan, “Olive Kitteridge” 


    Head over to the TV Academy's website to see the full list of nominees.


    The 67th Primetime Emmy Awards will air Sept. 20 at 8 p.m. ET on FOX


     



    CORRECTION: A previous version of this post stated that Joanne Froggatt was nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actress Drama for "Game of Thrones," when she was nominated for her role on "Downton Abbey," We are way too obsessed with "Game of Thrones." 

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    Carli Lloyd may be the best soccer player in the world, but as it turns out, she's just like us.


    The U.S. Women's National Team player and World Cup champion was spotted leaving an ESPYs after-party Wednesday night in a much more casual look than she wore on the red carpet. Lloyd ditched her black Matthew Christopher gown and strappy black heels for a form-fitting red dress ... and bare feet.


    Plenty of other celebrities have foregone shoes on the red carpet before, but when someone whose feet are so important to her job is willing to walk barefoot on the streets of Los Angeles, it's official -- heels are the worst


    Check out the video above. 



    Also on HuffPost Style:


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    This is bananas


    Celebrity stylist, reality star and catchphrase queen Rachel Zoe has landed her very own TV show. "Fashionably Late With Rachel Zoe" will premiere Sept. 24 at 10 p.m. ET on Lifetime, following "Project Runway" (duh).


    Zoe, along with co-hosts Derek Blasberg (Harper's Bazaar editor-at-large,) husband Rodger Berman (Rodg) and various celebrity guests will talk current events in fashion from the penthouse of her corporate headquarters in Los Angeles, according to Women's Wear Daily.


    In a blog post on her site The Zoe Report,  she broke down what the show will look like.  "It’s basically like the most glamorous cocktail party with the chicest guests ever—and we’ll be looking to you to join in on the excitement," she said.


    As for for those who have waited years to include some new Zoe lingo into their vocabulary, fear not. "There is no predicting what will come out of my mouth," she told WWD.


    Also on HuffPost Style:


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    This post was co-authored by Bryan S. Rosenberg, a doctoral student in the Sociology of Education at NYU Steinhardt.

    "You guys didn't think I was going to be this smart, did you?" was one of the first things the ridiculously talented, warm and generous actor, comedian and singer/musician Lea DeLaria said to us when we met last fall in a Brooklyn diner to interview her for our book on the connection between pop culture and LGBTQ social change. Our response: Actually, we were certain you would be!

    DeLaria's entire career is dedicated to social change. Her commitment plays out first and primarily through her comedy. She confronts language, taboo and politics in her standup. Also, as an actor, DeLaria chooses roles that challenge stereotypes and raise visibility. On the activist front -- to give just a few of many examples -- Lea was arrested at the 1993 March on Washington for LGBTQ social change, she has been an outspoken advocate for marriage equality and, most recently, she and some of her cast mates from Orange Is the New Black joined New York's Pride parade last month. DeLaria is an inspired artist, and the powerful connection between her artistic expression and her political sensibility commands attention.

    We had a chance to catch up with DeLaria again last week to talk with her about the third season of Orange Is the New Black, her new jazz album House of David, and her sense of hope for the modern queer movement. (Our conversation has been condensed and edited a bit for flow here.)

    Bryan and Lisa: Congratulations on everything this year! On the new season of Orange Is the New Black, Big Boo got her backstory (in episode 4) and it was incredible. We'd love to hear you talk about the reaction to the show this season and the reaction to Big Boo's story.

    Lea: It's been kind of amazing, frankly. I'm a tad shocked by it because I'm used to being punched in the face for being a butch dyke. So I'm a tad shocked, and also joyous that people's concepts of what it is to be a butch dyke have changed so much. People are hugging me on the street now. I hope this episode will do for the butch world what episode 3, season 1 did for the transgender community: Maybe help people understand a little bit how difficult it is to grow up butch in this society, ostracized not only by society at large but our own community.

    The tweets I get from all the young butches, the tweets and the Instagram messages from all over world, just saying, "Thank you, I've seen myself on television." I've never seen myself on television before. I've never seen a really positive portrayal of a butch dyke. And here it is.

    It's been a complete party for two weeks since the SCOTUS [marriage equality] decision. Between the stuff with Orange and the SCOTUS decision -- as a queer person, I'm jumping up and down. And hoping to get laid. Hoping to get laid.

    lea

    We don't know how we can follow that up, but we're going to try! How do you explain the artistic and the political space that has been created for these Orange episodes?

    Well, first of all we've been fighting the good fight for many years and we've made progress. You can see that we have. You know at first we were just politically trying to gain our rights, but recently I feel that we've turned our attention towards winning the hearts and minds of people. And the show that I'm on, Orange Is the New Black, I believe has done more for that than my entire life's work. And that comes from the writers room, it comes from Jenji Kohan, and it comes from the commitment to what they're trying to do in creating an interesting piece of art and media that we want to watch.

    So, personally, besides the big long fight that we've been fighting politically, I think there's been a cultural movement that seems to have changed the hearts and minds of people, and I think that's what creates that space.

    I hope that it also does that with our own community, too. Once again, I gotta say, I still feel like Boo feels in that episode: that I'm kind of the dirty secret of the queer community. They would rather not see me as visible as I am. So I'm hoping that that episode will do even more than changing the hearts and minds of the heterosexist society at large but will also deal within our own LGBT community.

    How does the rejection from within get communicated to you?

    From moment one as a performer and just as a human being on the street. I mean there's this great line said to Big Boo in episode 4: "Well, what do you expect when you're the poster child for everything butch?" That's kind of what the community is like.

    This is the most distinct way that I can put it: I remember being on stage talking about being butch at a show in Provincetown, and at the end of the show this big monster dyke -- she made me look like a little girl with a pink dress -- walked up to me and she goes, "Goddammit, DeLaria! Why do you gotta portray all lesbians as butch?!" And I looked at her and went, "Do you own a mirror?!" The whole line of other people that were buying CDs and t-shirts burst out laughing when I said it, and she got really horribly offended. But the reality is: Why have such self-loathing for yourself?

    It comes from the fact that people in our community are telling you: "Listen, if you could just make yourself more palatable to the masses, you know, it might be easier for us to gain our rights." That's been something that's been going on for a long time. So I always say, it's the middle class, mainstreaming, assimilationist people that are involved with this movement that tend to think that way and portray us in a negative light. You know the ones I'm talking about: The ones that always go to every Gay Pride and talk about how we're like everybody else. Really annoys the shit out me. I love when they say that and then a six-and-a-half foot tall drag queen walks by and opens their butterfly wings.

    In episode 4, Boo has the conversation with her dad about refusing to be invisible and that's the hashtag that you've taken up recently: #refusetobeinvisible. Can cultural visibility help make these changes within the community?

    Yes, absolutely. I think it is happening. As we accept transgender people and nelly queens, we're starting to turn that around. I really believe that. There's still a lot of those kind of conservative queer people out there, right? But, I personally have felt a renaissance for being butch and nelly. It's happening especially in the younger generation, which I love. I find our youth incredibly active and political and not as complacent as they used to be. Back in the '90s somewhere along the line there was this attitude that kids adopted that was like, "Oh, I'm over everything. Been there done that." This generation out there now, they're fighters, they're warriors, and I take great heart in that.

    So there's another line in the episode, where Boo says that her mother used to say that she shouldn't be a salmon, shouldn't always swim upstream. That really resonated with us. Have you ever gotten that message in your career?

    Absolutely! Every step of the way in my career. Every step of the way in my career from every individual, be they agents, managers, other performers, producers. Every step of the way in my career I've been told not to be who I am. There was a time where I tried to wear lipstick, because lipstick lesbians were like the thing. And I just thought, you know, "Will it kill me?" And for about maybe a month, if I went on TV or something, I wore lipstick. And I looked at myself one day and I said, "What the fuck is this? Where the fuck did this come from? Why am I giving in on this? It's stupid!" It just felt so false. It felt so false for me to do that. I don't know what else to say. They slap me down and I get back up. That's why Orange Is the New Black is so refreshing. Not only did they not want me to change who I am, they want me to be way more than I am.

    You must have heard that salmon message from people that cared deeply about you.

    Oh yeah. Well, I definitely heard that from my parents. But here's the thing, and I think it's really important to say this because I think that episode 4 dramatizes a common occurrence in our community: People who are ostracized from their families and never make it up. It is a common occurrence. But let me tell you the other common occurrence that is my experience. At first there was great tension with me and my parents. But my parents listened to me. They didn't want me out of their lives and I didn't want to be out of their lives. And, they learned. They changed their minds and they grew to accept who I was.

    I knew not to cross certain lines with them. For example, my mother hated the word "fuck." You could never say it around her. When she passed away I would say it in front of my dad all the time. But there were certain things like that. Like that's a no-brainer: I'm not going to swear around my mom if she doesn't want me to swear around her. But, I'm also not going to wear a dress because she wants me to wear a dress. I'm also not going to wear makeup because she wants me to wear makeup. I'm also not going to come home with the man of my dreams. It's not going to happen, right?

    I get that I'm one of the lucky ones. But I just want to let people know, the kids out there, especially, that are dealing with the crap. I know, I dealt with it. But, just to let them know: Things can change, this can work out for you.

    In the episode, sadly, Boo's story with her parents doesn't really have a resolution.

    I think that's probably the basic difference between Lea DeLaria and Big Boo. Lea DeLaria would have gone into the room, dressed as she was, to say goodbye to her mother. And even Boo says that at the end: "I should have said goodbye to her."

    Let's talk a little bit about your new album, House of David, which is such an amazing tribute to David Bowie. What has David Bowie meant to you?

    I've had a connection with David Bowie my whole life. To grow up in the '70s like I did in the Midwest, you know, to turn on my television and see David Bowie in a skirt singing "TVC 15." Are you fucking kidding me? It was like heaven! Just the avant-gardeness of it combined with the punkiness of it combined with the, you know, guy in a dress queer thing that was going on. All of that. He completely spoke to me. In fact, he probably was one of the first people to teach me to be exactly who I am and not to change for anybody, including people in the industry. He was one of the first examples of that, I think, creating what you want to create and following your own path. So he's always spoken to me in that respect. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that I grew up in this tiny little town in the Midwest. We'd never seen anything like that, and it was awesome!

    This particular project of mine has been a pet project for about four years. I've been working on the arrangements for a very long time, choosing exactly what tunes to do, which ones spoke to me. You can do almost every one of his tunes in the language of jazz. Finally we whittled it down to the twelve that we ended up. I'm incredibly pleased with the results. I think the record itself looks amazing. The design, photography, the art direction -- it looks amazing. Without a doubt, the sound of it, it's the best CD I've ever put out. This'll be now my sixth CD. I'm just really excited that people seem to be downloading it. And, I've got my record release concert on the 18th of July at The Cutting Room. It's going to be a big show. So I hope people show up.

    Can you talk a little bit more about how you think about the connection between artistic work and social change? It's something that's so central to you and your career.

    Every major political movement always had a kind of cultural component. You can talk about comedy here. It's one of the reasons why I love comedy so much. We can go back in time and, you know, the feminist movement had Lily Tomlin and many others. Before that we have the hippie movement that gave us people like George Carlin and Lenny Bruce (although Lenny is more of a Beatnik). And, you know, what happened in World War Two to Jews gave us the rise of the Borscht Belt comics. And then we have to think about the acoustic guitar playing with the folk movement craze and again the hippie thing and the psychedelic music that came out this is as all part of the cultural movements involved with political concepts that have literally changed the world. So why wouldn't we as gay people have this, right? That sort of artistic endeavor with a minds eye towards creating change has proven to work very well. And that's why we look to our "dykons." There's a difference between a "dykon" and a "celesbian." I always tell my fiancée that I'm the dykon and she's the celesbian!

    In other news of this busy past month: Pride and the SCOTUS marriage equality decision!

    Two things that happened at Gay Pride spoke volumes to me. So I'm in my Gay Pride cart and we turn on to 8th Street there on our way down to Christopher Street and we go by a balcony and Larry Kramer is standing in the balcony. I was doing the Huff Post Instagram, so I took a picture of me pointing at him. But you know when I saw him I waved to him because Larry Kramer and I have known each other for a ridiculous amount of years -- since the late '80s. I waved to him and he waved back and honestly we both started to tear up, because it was such a big thing. I can assure you that neither Larry nor I ever thought that we would achieve what we've achieved in our lifetimes.

    I never thought I'd see it in my lifetime. I never thought that what has happened in the last month would happen. And by that I mean everything I'm talking about Orange Is the New Black, I'm talking about the SCOTUS decision. I'm looking at a SAG award. I'm sitting here looking at a SAG award on my mantel, you know, and I'm me! Do you know what I mean? There has been terrific change in people, in the way people view us.

    But then, on the same token, when I look at my posts on Huffington Post when I took over their Instagram, the hatred that was spewed at me and at gay people in general.

    What did the SCOTUS decision mean to you?


    I think we're incredibly empowered by the SCOTUS decision. Even the most apathetic gay, queer person out there feels empowered by this decision. I mean look at the attendance at Gay Pride in New York City. Look at what happened as soon as the decision came down. Look what happened on Christopher Street. Every gay person within a 300-mile radius came to Christopher Street at eleven o'clock in the morning. They left their jobs. They left, you know, because everybody just needed to be by Stonewall. We all just needed to be by Stonewall. I did it too. That decision has empowered us in a humongous way.

    I had no expectation of gay marriage. I didn't expect that at all to happen in my lifetime. It wasn't until the last few years that I realized it was achievable. But I always envisioned that for us.

    Unfortunately, humans are an enigma. You know you're never quite sure what a human's going to do. It's our job to remain close and tight as a community and stick together. If we do that, we win. We beat them every time.

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    Nary a day goes by when Elaine Hendrix isn't approached on the street for her performance as Meredith Blake in the 1998 remake of the "The Parent Trap." And while the actress was once "very close" with the film's lead actress -- a then-unknown Lindsay Lohan -- there's an unexpected star from the film with whom Hendrix remains best friends today.


    "Lisa Ann Walter, who played Chessy, is still one of my best girlfriends in the whole wide world," Hendrix revealed in a conversation with HuffPost Live on Wednesday. "So I got some great friendships out of that [film]."


    For those struggling to remember, Chessy was the quirky babysitter of Hallie Parker, the laid-back twin who lived with her father, Nick Parker, in Napa.


    Hendrix's friendship with Lohan was harder to maintain, the "Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll" actress recounted, as the two's schedules never overlapped once filming wrapped.


    "Lindsay and I were very close and had a great time with each other, [but] our paths have just never crossed again," she explained. "That's one of the bittersweet things about working in the film industry: you become this really tight family and you love each other and you work and you're so close, and then you go apart and sometimes you stay in touch ... and sometimes you don't."


    Watch more from Elaine Hendrix's conversation with HuffPost Live here.


    Sign up here for Live Today, HuffPost Live's new morning email that will let you know the newsmakers, celebrities and politicians joining us that day and give you the best clips from the day before!


     Also on HuffPost:


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    2015-07-16-1437061867-6412492-woody_allen_yellow.jpg

    Has Woody Allen been falling asleep watching How to Get Away With Murder?


    Seems so. At a New York press conference for his new movie Irrational Man, where Van Winkle’s was in attendance, the 79-year-old director admitted that he thinks about killing people while laying in bed.


    “I’ve never murdered anybody or really thought of murdering,” Allen said. “I mean, I’ve thought of murdering people. Nothing seriously, you know, but every once in a while if you can’t sleep at night and you’re lying awake at 3:00 in the morning and you want to get back to sleep, there are various things you think of. One thing some people think of, at least I have, is a perfect murder. So, you know, it puts you to sleep.”


    Allen was responding to a question about his research process, specifically about the murders he’s portrayed in his films. In his newest, Joaquin Phoenix stars as a college professor in an existential crisis; he comes to believe that killing another person may snap him out of it.


    “Everything I knew about crime and murder [I learned] as a boy growing up,” Allen said. “For some reason, as a little kid, I was very preoccupied with a few subjects. One was magic tricks, another one was baseball, another one was crime, and I knew all the gangsters and all the criminals and all the murderers.


    “I knew everything about them, their nicknames, what they were in for… Where he grew up and what he had done. It was a real fascinating interest of mine.”


    Irrational Man is out in theaters this weekend.



    -- Jeremy Grossman

    Read more at Van Winkle's

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    Looks like Balenciaga wants to stay with Sam Smith


    The "I'm Not The Only One" singer announced Wednesday on Instagram that he has teamed up with the fashion house on a creative collaboration, which Balenciaga confirmed Thursday morning. 



    The brand, known for its sexy campaigns, teamed up with Smith on a series of black-and-white photos along with a full length video. 


    In a statement from the brand, creative director Alexander Wang explained in a release why the sultry singer was chosen this time around. "Sam Smith conveys a quiet elegance and a subtle sensuality that are perfect for Balenciaga. He represents both sensitivity and power -- the dualities of the Balenciaga man."



    We're more used to seeing the likes of Gisele and Kate Moss star in Balenciaga's campaigns, so seeing Smith is certainly a refreshing surprise. Apparently, Smith was equally as excited. "I never in my wildest dreams thought I'd be wearing these clothes let alone modelling them. So this is a dream come true, and I hope the beginning of a lovely long relationship with Alexander and the House," he said in a release. 


     



     Head to Balenciaga to see the images and video.  


    Also on HuffPost Style:


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    The TV Academy is a notoriously redundant bunch, often honoring the same shows and performers year in and year out. But with this year's Emmy rule changes and a slate of excellent television to cherry-pick, it turns out a lot of our favorites made the ballot. In fact, the nominations are pretty swell. (Congrats, Tatiana Maslany! We were rooting for you, Lisa Kudrow! Didn't expect to see you there, Keegan-Michael Key!)


    Still, there are plenty of omissions to gripe about. Some of these snubs are more heinous than others, but here's a roundup of names left off this year's Emmy shortlist:



     Also on HuffPost:



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    Fanboys (and girls), rejoice! The first image of Olivia Munn in her Psylocke human condom costume is here. 


    The actress, along with her "X-Men: Apocalypse" co-stars Oscar Isaac and Michael Fassbender, stars on the latest cover of Entertainment Weekly decked out in her full mutant ensemble. And as she told Conan O'Brien last weekend, the costume is pretty much an exact replica of the character's in the actual comics


    Entertainment Weekly shared the image on Thursday morning (along with some exclusive on-set snaps). Check it out for yourself: 



    Munn, who recently showed off some impressive sword wielding skills with boyfriend Aaron Rodgers, also got some purple hair streaks for her role. 


    And can we just take a moment to discuss how much more badass Magneto's costume has gotten. It's come a long way since 2000. Then, of course, we have to talk about Apocalypse. That is a serious costume. We can't wait to see it in action. 


    "X-Men: Apocalypse" is set to be released May 27, 2016. 


    Also on HuffPost:



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    Christie Rampone is the captain of the Women's World Cup-winning U.S. Women's National Team. She is also a mother of two, a five-time World Cup participant (not to mention a two-time tournament champion) and a three-time Olympic gold medalist. When she's not busy winning or parenting, the Florida native helps raise money for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and promotes a youth soccer program called Kick It Soccer.

    Fresh off earning her second World Cup gold, Rampone -- who just became the oldest woman to ever play in a FIFA Women's World Cup -- caught up with The Huffington Post to discuss why this year's team might be the best ever, why Hope Solo deserves recognition and why female soccer players need to be compensated more fairly.

    This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

    You're 40 years old. What is your next move?

    [Giving back] will be fun, because that’s the next step for me. Obviously playing for so many years and having those under my belt, I’m so excited to give back to the youth and to be there for them.

    I’m glad you said that, "the next step." Are you going to go into coaching? Or more specifically getting involved with youth soccer?

    Personally I would love to stick with youth soccer. I feel like kids are sponges and I’ve been through it. I know what it takes in order to be the best individual you can be. Not saying that everybody wants to play at the highest level, but [I'll be] teaching kids how to be a bit more technical with the ball, and their vision, and their tactics. I hope with this World Cup victory that more kids will get outside and start kicking soccer balls.

    christie rampone

    I’m glad you brought up the technical stuff, because from everything I’ve read, it seems like everybody now is talking about the game in a much more technical element. Whereas in the late '90s and early 2000s, that wasn’t the case with women’s soccer.

    Agreed. I’ve been on both sides of it. Back in '99 it wasn’t about the speed or endurance or athleticism -- it all just came along. I don’t think we were educated as much as we are now about how technical you have to be, because other countries are playing great soccer and catching up. [Americans] embrace it but we definitely have to get better on the technical side, and once we master that I think you’ll see our team explode again to another level.

    Your teammate Megan Rapinoe said this might be the best team of all time. Have you heard that, and would you agree with her assessment?

    If we weren’t growing, I’d be sad. Like, this team is definitely a phenomenal team and as you could see, we had 23 players who could have started in this tournament and done well. Our starting team did awesome. The depth of this team is the best it ever has been, and it’s going to make it harder and harder in the future for the coaches to pick the roster.

    What is it about Coach Jill Ellis? I know everybody talks about how she comes in and she’s so positive -- but is there one thing that you could point out about her?

    I think she embraces the fact that we’re going into a seven-game tournament. We had amazing game plans going in, and some of them weren’t working out in the beginning or we weren’t playing our best soccer. But when it started to count, I think the team really locked in and bought into game plans. This World Cup for us was all about set pieces and realizing that was our strength, and we executed from the delivery to the finishes. It was fun to be a part of. The world doesn’t know what’s going on, but we know what’s going on, and when you score a goal it means more to us.

    Women’s soccer has come very far, but the way you are being compensated moves at a glacial pace. How frustrating is it knowing how much more money the men are making?

    We’ve been fighting since 1999 for salaries and bonuses and continuing to get paid more, but now with the fan support and the sponsors, that’s where it all comes together. So we’re hoping that U.S. Soccer re-evaluates and sees how powerful this team is -- not just for us but for other women’s sports. When you put the money behind it with the marketing and the media, good things can happen. I think a lot of people witnessed in this last month now that women can play, and seeing the slow-mo and the retakes of certain tackles, that it’s a powerful sport, a powerful game. Yes, we’re women, but we’re playing at an amazing level.

    What allowed you, at 40, to play this long, especially after having had kids?

    It’s knowing my body. Knowing when to push it and when I could go after it, and knowing when I needed to back off a little bit. But I’ve been a multiple-sport athlete, and I talk about it all the time because I think that cross-training really helped me. I was a late bloomer with soccer, and granted, I’m not the most technical player but I really know the game of soccer. When I’m home, my training is all cross-training and making sure I’m not pounding the same muscles by doing the same thing over and over again. I trick my body with different types of workouts, and really, I’m on a health kick with what I put into my body. As I’ve gotten older, I got more educated with blood type, [became] gluten free, just so that I can manage the complete package, from the mental and the physical side of it.

    christie rampone

    When you look at your daughters or other young women, would you recommend that they find their one sport and play it? Or do you like the fact that you can play other sports as a kid and not burn out, necessarily?

    What I’m doing with my children is [having them play] multiple sports as long as they can. And I get it: Different generations are more and more focusing on one sport and there are a tremendous amount of practices and it’s hard to mix. If you’re playing five days a week and then games on the weekend, that’s too much on your body. They need something for fun, they need that outlet, because if it is something that’s going to be career-oriented and they want to play in college, you’re going to need that balance and to not just focus on one sport. So I encourage it if they love one, but try to have another one so you can get a release from it.

    Abby Wambach did not have a classic tournament for her standards. What is her legacy at this point?

    Abby’s been brilliant. She has been a tremendous teammate, friend, leader on this team. Her energy on the field and how loud she is and how emotional she is -- I think brings so much to our team. She’s always the one who knows what to say at the right time. She’s a gamer. No one understands, in those big moments throughout her career, she’s always done something brilliant. Obviously in this World Cup she had a bit of a different role but she still brought it. She still had that energy and passion for the game. She’ll go down in my eyes as the best player who has come out for the U.S. team. She’s proven it over and over again.

    What about Alex Morgan's future as a marquee face of the game?

    Alex has got a big career ahead of her. She started getting a name for herself with the types of goals that she was scoring. She’s so strong and so gifted. Her release when she strikes the ball is so quick and tough for defenders, and she causes havoc out there on the field. It’s just pacing herself. I think that’s what Abby was very good at -- she wasn’t just going to go 100 percent her entire career. I don’t think people really understand how much we’re away from home. I think [Alex] just needs to manage herself and look at her body.

    alex morgan

    Finally, let’s look at Hope Solo. Obviously she has become a highly controversial figure, but it seems like she figured it all out in this World Cup?

    Yeah, off-the-field stuff happens. It was just trying to not make it a distraction, because at the end of the day she has to take control of that. She is the best keeper in the world. She’s by far the most athletic, she has a knack for being able to focus on the ball and follow the ball. You have to credit her.

    Email me at jordan.schultz@huffingtonpost.com or ask me questions about anything sports-related at @Schultz_Report, and follow me on Instagram @Schultz_Report.

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