Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Photographers at the star-studded Kobe Bryant memorial service in Los Angeles were reportedly banned from taking pictures of Beyonce Knowles-Carter.

Beyonce (right) is pictured at the memorial service with her longtime publicist, Yvette Noel-Schure, before departing the arena.

20,000 fans and hordes of stars flocked to the Staples Center for the live-streamed memorial to basketball legend Kobe, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Bryant, who were killed along with seven others in a helicopter crash last month.

Beyonce, 39, opened the memorial with stirring performances of her hit songs "XO" and "Halo," which Kobe's wife Vanessa Bryant says were among his favorite tunes.

But photographers from the Associated Press and Getty Images told the New York Post that organizers of the event banned them from taking pictures of the singer or Kobe's children.

"A Staples Center staffer was dispatched to make sure not a single camera was focused on the stage," a source told gossip column Page Six.

"The photographers couldn't believe it. This doesn't help Beyonce's image at all, it hurts her. It makes her look like a diva. The memorial wasn't about her. The only shots of Bey that did emerge were screen grabs from TV. None of the other artists at the memorial asked for this, not Christina Aguilera, not Alicia Keys."

Representatives for the semi-retired cabana singer have yet to respond to the claims.

It's widely known that the mother-of-three only releases pictures she approves of, taken at certain at angles, and Photoshopped to perfection by an official photographer after the Internet made a mockery of her 2013 Super Bowl performance when news outlets publishing "unflattering" images of her.

Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Image

Thousands attended the star-studded memorial service for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna Bryant, at the Staples Center on Monday, Feb. 24.

Bryant, 41, and Gianna, 13, were killed in a helicopter crash along with seven others last month.

Photo by Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images

The memorial service, which started at 10 a.m. local time, drew fans from around the country, some of whom paid up to $250 for a ticket.

Organizers urged people without tickets to stay away from the arena. LAPD reported no disturbances, according to NBC New York.

Bryant's wife Vanessa Bryant gave a tearful speech after an introduction by Jimmy Kimmel.

"I'd like to thank everyone for coming today," she said. "The outpouring of love and support that my family has felt from around the world has been so uplifting."

She was joined by her daughters Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and 7-month-old Capri They were surrounded by family and friends on stage.

Photo by WENN.com

"She was daddy's girl but I know she loved her mama," Vanessa said of Gianna. "She was one of my very best friends."

Semi-retired singer Beyonce Knowles-Carter, 39, performed one of Kobe's favorite songs at the service.

"I'm here because I love Kobe and this was one of his favorite songs," said Beyonce before performing her hit single "Halo" along with a live orchestra.

Alicia Keys also performed one of Kobe and Vanessa's favorite musical sonatas by Beethoven on a purple piano. Kobe learned how to play the piece by ear.

NBA legends Michael Jordan and Shaquille O'Neal made stirring speeches.
 


 


 


 

Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Kobe Bryant and 13-year-old Gianna Bryant were laid to rest two weeks after the tragic helicopter crash that claimed the lives of the NBA legend, his daughter and seven others.

A private funeral for Kobe, 41, and Gianna was held in Corona Del Mar, California on Friday, Friday 7, according to multiple reports.

Kobe and his daughter were laid to rest near each other at Pacific View Memorial Park, according to published reports.

The Los Angeles Times cited death certificates released by the county which gives the date of internment as Feb. 7.

Sources tell Entertainment Tonight Kobe's wife, Vanessa Bryant, 37, and the family "wanted a private service to mourn their loss".

A planned memorial will be held for the public at Los Angeles' Staples Center on Feb. 24. It is not clear if Kobe's family will attend the public memorial.

Photo by David Livingston / WENN

Vanessa and Kobe are pictured in 2005, a year before daughter Gigi was born. They are pictured below in 2007 with daughters Gigi and Natalia Bryant at Disneyland.

Photo by Adriana M. Barraza / WENN

On Monday, over 1,000 people attended a memorial service for three members of the Altobelli family, who also died in the crash. 4,000 people were expected to attend the service for John, Kelly and Alyssa Altobelli at Angel Stadium.

Photo by Adriana M. Barraza/WENN.com

Vanessa Bryant opened up about her grieving process, saying her "brain refuses to accept" both her husband Kobe Bryant, 41, and 13-year-old daughter Gianna Bryant are gone.

Kobe and Gianna, along with seven others, died in a tragic helicopter crash in Calabasas, California 2 weeks ago.

Photo by Adriana M. Barraza/WENN.com

In an emotional Instagram post alongside video of Gigi and her teammates Payton Chester, 13, and Allysa Altobelli, 14, who also died in the crash, Vanessa, 37, wrote the "nightmare" just feels "wrong."

"I've been reluctant to put my feelings into words," she said. "My brain refuses to accept that both Kobe and Gigi are gone. I can't process both at the same time."

She continued: "It's like I'm trying to process Kobe being gone but my body refuses to accept my Gigi will never come back to me. It feels wrong.

"Why should I be able to have that opportunity?! I'm so mad. She had so much life to live. Then I realize I need to be strong and be here for my 3 daughters. Mad I'm not with Kobe and Gigi but thankful I'm here with Natalia, Bianka and Capri."

Photo by WENN.com

Vanessa said she is sharing her thought process with her followers "in case there's anyone out there that's experienced a loss like this. God I wish they were here and this nightmare would be over. Praying for all of the victims of this horrible tragedy. Please continue to pray for all."

Vanessa shared the post hours before a stadium memorial for the three members of the Altobeli family who died in the crash. 4,000 mourners are expected to attend the memorial.

It is not clear if Vanessa will be in attendance.
 

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I’ve been reluctant to put my feelings into words. My brain refuses to accept that both Kobe and Gigi are gone. I can’t process both at the same time. It’s like I’m trying to process Kobe being gone but my body refuses to accept my Gigi will never come back to me. It feels wrong. Why should I be able to wake up another day when my baby girl isn’t being able to have that opportunity?! I’m so mad. She had so much life to live. Then I realize I need to be strong and be here for my 3 daughters. Mad I’m not with Kobe and Gigi but thankful I’m here with Natalia, Bianka and Capri. I know what I’m feeling is normal. It’s part of the grieving process. I just wanted to share in case there’s anyone out there that’s experienced a loss like this. God I wish they were here and this nightmare would be over. Praying for all of the victims of this horrible tragedy. Please continue to pray for all.

A post shared by Vanessa Bryant ? (@vanessabryant) on

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Thousands of mourners queued for blocks to view Aretha in repose in a gold-plated casket inside the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit. Her body will be on view for four days leading up to Friday's funeral.

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The royal family including Prince William, his wife Kate and brother Prince Harry joined the survivors and rescue workers at the memorial.

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Obama Sign Language Interpreter

The Johannesburg man accused of faking sign language interpretation for President Obama and other world leaders was part of a mob who burned 2 thieves to death in 2003, the Associated Press reports.

Jantjie stood less than 3 feet away from President Obama, and other world leaders, who spoke at Nelson Mandela's memorial service last week.

One of Jantjie's cousins and three of his friends told the AP he was among a group of men who accosted two television thieves and placed tires around their necks before setting them on fire.

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Michelle Obama

The Getty Images photographer who snapped the selfie seen around the world says First Lady Michelle Obama was not upset with President Barack Obama.

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Many critics slammed Obama for not maintaining decorum and dignity at such a solemn occasion.

Others assumed Mrs. Obama's pinched facial expression indicated disapproval of the president's childish behavior.

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Obama Sign Language Interpreter

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Three sign language interpreters say the man was not signing in any known language. They accused the man of "making up his own signs".

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Obama snapped the 'selfie' with Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt -- while First Lady Michelle Obama sat next to him looking pissed.

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Kanye West

Troubled music producer and rapper Kanye West took to his Twitter account yesterday to clear up rumors that he compared himself to the late, great Nelson Mandela.

In a series of tweets, Kanye lauded Mandela for serving "as a guiding light to illuminate our future," and he chastised the media for engineering "false stories and noise" about him.

"I've never said anything to dishonor or trivialize the life or transition of one of the most inspiring leaders," West tweeted.

Kanye West tweets

It isn't clear how the rumor got started, but it's not a stretch to believe the egotistic producer said those things about himself. Anyway, thanks to Kanye for clearing that up.

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