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Will Smith sympathizes with his Aladdin co-star who complained that he has been ignored by Hollywood since the movie surpassed $1 billion in worldwide ticket sales.

Mena Massoud, an Egyptian-born actor, starred alongside Smith, who received praise as the blue genie.

Massoud told the Daily Beast his career has tanked since the movie's release. He says he is not getting calls from movie studio's offering roles.

"I haven't had a single audition since Aladdin came out," he said. "The big truth is I haven't really seen a big anything from [the film].

Photo by Adriana M. Barraza/WENN.com

"It's like, I'm sitting here being like, okay, Aladdin just hit $1 billion — can I at least get an audition? Like I'm not expecting you to be like, 'Here’s Batman.' But can I just get in the room?... Can you just give me a chance?"

Massoud, who is 28, believes his age might be hurting his chances to land a movie role in Hollywood.

"I feel like I'm going to be overlooked and underestimated for a long time because I am a young actor," he said.

Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Smith was asked to comment on his former co-star when he attended the Hollywood premiere of his new animated film Spies In Disguise on Wednesday.

Smith, 51, seemed surprised to learn that Massoud was an unemployed actor who is down on his luck.

"Uh I'm just hearing that right now so I haven't spoken to Mena," he told Variety.com.

"But he is a spectacular actor, and he has nothing to worry about," he added.

Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Star Wars actor Billy Dee Williams misspoke when he claimed to be "gender fluid." The senior citizen has backtracked on his comments, insisting he didn't fully understand what being gender fluid meant.

In an interview with Esquire magazine, the 82-year-old AARP cardholder explained that he uses both male and female pronouns when referring to himself.

Williams said, "I think of myself as a relatively colorful character who doesn't take himself or herself too seriously... And you see I say 'himself' and 'herself,' because I also see myself as feminine as well as masculine."

Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

There were reports of Williams' elderly female fans falling out over the news that he might be a cross-dresser or go both ways.

The LGBT+ community was ecstatic and praised Williams for being his authentic self. He was portrayed as an "elder gay" speaking his truth. Filmmaker and friend J.J. Abrams congratulated Williams for his "openness".

But, in a later interview with The Undefeated, Williams clarified his comments, insisting he was simply talking about "men getting in touch with their softer side of themselves".

"I was talking about men getting in touch with the female side of themselves. I wasn't talking about sex, I wasn't talking about being gay or straight," he said.

Many social media users suspect Williams trolled his fans to promote his news film, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, in which he reprises his role as Lando Calrissian.

The film opens in theaters in 2 weeks.

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Photos: Getty Images, Corbis

Michelle Obama has invited actress Julia Roberts to join her girls' empowerment trip to Vietnam and Malaysia. Roberts, 52, is best known for her role as a thoughtful hooker in the romantic comedy film Pretty Woman (1990).

The invitation raised eyebrows on Black Twitter where users are still angry that Roberts was being considered to play Harriet Tubman.

Photo by JIM YOUNG/AFP/Getty Images

The former First Lady previously teased special guests would join her for the overseas visits.

On Monday, Dec. 2, officials at The Obama Foundation announced that the actress and TV personality Jenna Bush Hager will join Mrs. Obama on the trips, according to WENN.com.

Bosses at the Girls Opportunity Alliance initiative, developed by the Obama Foundation, will join Obama, 55, and the stars when they meet with Vietnamese girls' education organizations beginning on Dec. 9.

Screenplay writer Gregory Allen Howard spent 10 years trying to get a Hollywood studio to green light his script about the famed abolitionist who led thousands of slaves to freedom.

After "Harriet" opened in theaters last month, Howard recalled his first meeting with a Hollywood bigwig about the script in 1994.

"This script is fantastic. Let's get Julia Roberts to play Harriet Tubman," an executive told Howard. But the lone Black producer in the room spoke up, reminding the others that Tubman was Black.

"That was so long ago," the executive responded. "No one is going to know the difference."

Howard did not publicly reveal the name of the studio or the executive.

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Photo: Universal Pictures

The NY Times contributor Carvell Wallace penned an emotional review of the new movie Queen & Slim, in theaters everywhere on Wednesday, Nov. 27.

Wallace, a Black father of two teenagers, urges moviegoers to give Queen & Slim a chance. He says they might be among "the great love stories of all time."

Queen & Slim is about a Black couple who meet on Tinder and go out to a Cleveland diner for their first date.

The man (Get Out star Daniel Kaluuya) is a minimum wage Costco cashier whose deep faith in God is reflected on his vanity license plate that reads: "TrustGod."

Queen (played by British newcomer Jodie Turner-Smith) is an uptight defense lawyer and atheist. The date is a disaster from the start. The only reason she went out with him, she says, is because he looked sad in his profile photo, and she felt sorry for him.

Queen has an attitude because one of her clients was sentenced to die on Ohio's death row.

"Was he innocent?" Slim asks. "Does it matter?" she snaps. "The state shouldn't decide who lives or dies."

The movie's flimsy plot line is based on that argument.

After dinner, Slim drives Queen home. On the way, his car is pulled over by an aggressive white cop.

Slim is polite and courteous at first. But Queen, the defense lawyer, knows her rights and just won't stop talking (the film's director, Melina Matsoukas, was "haunted" by the footage of Sandra Bland's arrest).

When Slim asks the cop to hurry it up because he's cold, the cop draws his weapon, because, you know, he fears for his life.

Queen reaches for her cell phone to record the encounter while Slim and the cop struggle over the gun. The gun discharges, grazing Queen on the thigh. Now fearing for his life, Slim kills the cop.

Slim wants to call his folks and turn himself in. He has a good case for self-defense. But Queen, the defense lawyer, decides to throw her law career away by ordering Slim to go on the lam with her.

Matsoukas, who directed Beyonce's music video "Lemonade", takes the couple on a meandering journey from the Midwest to the Deep South.

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Universal Pictures

Their first stop is the home of Queen's Uncle Earl in New Orleans. Uncle Earl (Bokeem Woodbine) is a war veteran and a pimp. Among his scantily clad hookers is Pose star Indya Moore, a cross-dresser who helps Queen remove her box braids so she will be less recognizable while on the run.

Of all the eccentric characters Queen & Slim encounter on their journey, Moore is the least memorable. Yet Wallace spends time describing the moments between the biological female Queen and the male-to-female trans Moore.

"The camera lingers on them in the intimate act of hairdressing; cool light fills the room. Queen breathes slowly, feeling protected for maybe the first time in the film."

It isn't hard to figure out where Wallace is going with this: Queen didn't feel protected when she was with Slim, a heterosexual male?

Wallace was physically and emotionally moved by Queen & Slim. After the film ended, he went into a bathroom for an ugly cry. "I put my sunglasses on because I was bawling, my whole torso heaving," he wrote.

Wallace goes overboard in his praise of the movie, over-exaggerating the "love story" between the two hapless fugitives.

Unlike the real Bonnie & Clyde, who were in a longterm relationship, Queen and Slim barely knew each other. They weren't even planning to go on a second date before the fateful encounter with the cop.

Their brief relationship is described by Wallace as "true, active, life-affirming love... He allows her anger, makes space for her hurt. Isn't this what love is?"

"If you allow it to be, Queen & Slim can be one of the great love stories of all time," Wallace writes.

If Queen & Slim is considered to be the standard for mature, life-affirming love, it is no wonder the divorce rate in America is over 70%.

Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage

Samuel L. Jackson's new movie The Banker is in jeopardy after allegations of molestation by the family of the main character's son, who produced the movie.

Jackson, 70, stars in a real-life story about Bernard Garrett, a Black businessman who hired a white man as the face of his financial business before the 1964 Civil Rights Act was passed. Garrett Sr. gave loans to Black Americans at a time when few banks would accept loan applications from Black people.

The Banker, which was filmed in Atlanta, also stars Anthony Mackie, Nicholas Hoult, Nia Long, and Jessie Usher. It was written and directed by George Nolfi.

The film was set to premiere at AFI Fest in Los Angeles, CA on November 21, but the premiere was abruptly canceled by Apple+ after family members of the main character's son made serious allegations against him.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Cynthia and Sheila Garrett accused one of their 8 siblings, half brother Bernard Garrett, Jr., of molesting them when they were young. Garrett Jr. is listed as a producer of the movie.

The sisters, who are about 15 years younger than their half brother, accused Garrett Jr. of sexually abusing them over the course of a few years when they were young.

Cynthia Garrett, formerly an interviewer on MTV and VH1, has since founded Cynthia Garrett Ministries and speaks to women's groups about the stigma surrounding molestation by family members.

Molestation is a serious problem in the Black community. It often goes unreported to protect the molester, who is typically a male relative.

Another sister, Grace Garett, was upset that Apple+ erased her and her mom from the film.

"Yes it's true. They omitted my mom and my siblings and I entirely. Stole our mom and our life story and did so with our abuser. It hurts. Deeply," she said.

Apple, which purchased the rights to The Banker in 2019, declined to comment on the specifics of Cynthia Garrett's allegations.

In a statement announcing the cancellation of the premiere on Wednesday, the company said:

"We purchased The Banker earlier this year as we were moved by the film's entertaining and educational story about social change and financial literacy. Last week some concerns surrounding the film were brought to our attention. We, along with the filmmakers, need some time to look into these matters and determine the best next steps."

THR reports Apple has a lot riding on The Banker, which is set for theatrical release domestically on Dec. 6. The film is getting an awards-season push.

Photo by John Sciulli/Getty Images

Idris Elba has signed on to star in Jay-Z's all-Black Western flick The Harder They Fall. Elba's fans can't wait to see the hunky British actor wearing leather chaps and riding horseback.

The Harder They Fall is no Brokeback Mountain. The all-black Western for Netflix is produced by rapper Jay-Z, James Lassiter and Lawrence Bender.

The Harder They Fall stars actor Jonathan Majors as an outlaw who finds out that the murderer who killed his parents (Elba) is being released from prison.

According to Deadline.com, Elba is also starring in another Western drama, Concrete Cowboys, which began filming this year.

The 47-year-old Virgo is best known as the sexy drug kingpin Stringer Bell on HBO's The Wire.

Photo by Paramount Pictures via Getty Images

The successful Beverly Hills Cop movie franchise is getting another remake. Netflix has secured the rights to a fourth Beverly Hills Cop sequel starring Eddie Murphy as wisecracking, street-smart Detroit officer Axel Foley.

Netflix has picked up the rights in a one-time licensing deal with Paramount Pictures, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The first three Beverly Hills Cop films were released in 1984, 1987 and 1994, respectively. The movie franchise shot Murphy to international stardom and cemented his reputation for striking box office gold in the '80s and '90s.

Beverly Hills Cop earned $234 million, making it the highest-grossing film in 1984. The three films grossed $736 million worldwide.

In addition to winning a Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture, Beverly Hills Cop also picked up an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay in 1985.

Photo by Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

Netflix breathed new life into Murphy's stalled career with the movie Dolemite Is My Name, which garnered strong reviews.

Murphy, 58, has no plans to slow down. Next year he will host Saturday Night Live for the first time in over 3 decades before heading out on the road for a sold out comedy tour.

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Photos: Splash News, WENN.com

Vivica A. Fox reacted angrily to the news that Issa Rae intends to remake the hit all-female bank heist movie Set It Off. Vivica, pictured left, told Issa to "create your own franchise" as she responded to the news that the Insecure star is working on a reboot of her 1996 crime drama.

Photo by New Line Cinema/Getty Images

A young Vivica, pictured 2nd from right, starred alongside Jada Pinkett Smith, far right, Queen Latifah, far left, and Kimberly Elise, 2nd from left, in the original film, about a group of female friends who use insider information to rob Los Angeles banks.

Despite the demand for a remake of the urban classic, a Set It Off sequel was never made.

According to WENN.com, Issa, 34, is in the early stages of developing a new version of the film but, when asked about the prospect by Entertainment Tonight, Vivica was less than enthusiastic of the remake plan.

"It's a classic, leave it alone," the 55-year-old actress responded, bluntly. "There's absolutely no reason to try to redo it. It's been done, and we did it so well, that people are absolutely going to compare it to that and I think that's her taking on a tremendous chore because that film has become a cult classic and some things are just better left."

Vivica said Issa will face a massive backlash if she gets the reboot wrong: "Like, create your own franchise. If you want to do a new film of girls robbing banks, create your own thing. You can make it up to date. We did that film in 1996. We are in 2019, going into 2020. So, create your own thing because people are absolutely going to compare it to it, and she'll probably, if it's not good, they're going to slay her for it."
 

Fernando Ramales / BACKGRID

Halle Berry nearly broke the Internet on Friday when she revealed her ripped abdominal muscles in a photo on Instagram.com.

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Photo: Instagram.com/@halleberry

The 53-year-old mother of two hit the gym several days a week to train for a role in her new movie Bruised, a MMA movie that she starred in and directed.

She captioned the image, "There's no better feeling than setting a goal and smashing it. One of my goals for the #BruisedTeMovie? Ripped Abs - and today? I finally got them and it feels unbelievable!"

Her followers agreed. The image was 'liked' over 250,000 times on Instagram. Young fans told Halle she was their body goals.

One IG user wrote: "In your 50’s and fabulous. You inspire me ! #itgetsgreaterlater".

Another user wrote, "Halle my goal is to get shredded. And to publish a novel. Send me your ripped abs vibes".

And a third wrote, "What do you want for Christmas ? Halle Berry's abs".
 

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Perfect World Pictures

Liberals hate it when Black people don't play along with their attempts to keep them "in a perpetual state of grievance in order to keep them as a one-party people in a two-party system," according to Walter E. Williams.

Online activist Tariq Nasheed was canceled by Kickstarter because, among other things, he bashed the Harriet Tubman film, starring British actress Cynthia Erivo, before the movie could earn back its production costs at the box office.

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YouTube.com

Liberals love their slavery movies - and that sticks in the craw of anti-racists like Nasheed, who railed against the movie for twisting the historical facts and for making the film's villain a Black man named "Bigger Long".

Tariq and his 266K followers on Twitter.com campaigned against the film, and they celebrated when the movie earned only $12 million on opening weekend - a flop by any other standards.

"Can anyone point to any other time in modern history where Hollywood & the mainstream media praised a movie and called it a 'success' for making just $12 million dollars on opening weekend?" Nasheed asked his followers on Twitter.

Nasheed blamed his Tubman movie critique as part of the reason for losing his Kickstarter crowdfunding to raise $200,000 for his Foundational Black American Conference 2020 in Atlanta.

Nasheed took to YouTube to lash out at Kickstarter for not giving him a clear reason why the crowdfunding was canceled.

Nasheed has since moved his crowdfunding efforts over to Indiegogo.com where he quickly raised $11,190 of his $200,000 goal.
 

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Photos: BrosNYC / BACKGRID

Aretha Franklin fans reacted with excitement to the first images of singer Jennifer Hudson portraying the Queen of Soul in the upcoming biopic titled RESPECT, filmed on location in Manhattan's Harlem Neighborhood.

Gilbert Carrasquillo/Getty Images

Jennifer, pictured at a July 4th concert in Philadelphia, was transformed into Aretha for a scene with costar Marlon Wayans, 47, who plays her onscreen husband Ted While. In the scene, which takes place in 1966, Marlon collects money from prostitutes while Jennifer looks on from a car.

BrosNYC / BACKGRID

Later Jennifer and Marlon share a passionate kiss in the car. The images were shot on November 2 by BACKGRID celebrity photo agency.

Ray Filmano / WENN

Aretha, who passed away on Aug. 16, 2018 at age 76, personally handpicked Jennifer to play her in the biopic.

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DreamWorks Pictures

The 38-year-old American Idol finalist is no stranger to big budget musicals. She played Effie Melody White in the 2006 movie, Dreamgirls, with Beyonce, left, and Anika Noni Rose, center. Jennifer notably sang "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going" in the film Dreamgirls.

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Paramount Pictures

Will Smith's new action thriller Gemini Man is a box office flop. The movie is about a retiring assassin, Henry Brogan (Smith), who finds himself battling a mysterious killer that turns out to be a younger clone of himself. Henry needs to find out why he's being targeted and who created his clone to kill him.

Directed by Ang Lee (Life of Pi, Brokeback Mountain), the action thriller opened with just $20 million in domestic ticket sales over the Oct. 11-13 weekend. Then the terrible reviews began rolling in.

Critics trashed the "groundbreaking" de-aging technology and the movie's high frame-rate that looked like the film was sped up in some places. The terrible reviews resulted in a career-worst Rotten Tomatoes score of 25 percent for Lee.

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Paramount Pictures

Paramount Pictures had hoped Gemini Man would pick up the slack in China, but it was upset by Angelina Jolie's fantasy flick Maleficent: Mistress of Evil ($22.4 million).

Gemini Man finished Sunday with an underwhelming $82.2 million in foreign box office receipts.

Gemini Man faces a $75 million loss, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The production cost for Gemini Man is a staggering $240 million - including $100 million in marketing costs alone. The film was heavily marketed in television commercials, print ads and online.

Gemini Man sparked free press around the world, thanks to the de-aging technology that rendered a barely recognizable younger version of Will Smith. Did they think we forgot what he looked like in Fresh Prince of Bel-Air?

The staggering marketing cost aside, Paramount and Skydance each ponied up 35 percent of the budget. The rest of the cost was split by 2 China-based companies, Alibaba and Fosun. All four companies will absorb the $75 million loss.

Amy Sussman/SHJ2019/WireImage

STXfilms' Hustlers is tracking for a big box office opening this weekend, after getting off to a great start with $2.5 million in ticket sales on Thursday.

According to Deadline.com, Hustlers is expected to rake in at least $20 million this weekend, with tracking indicating the film may debut with a $25 million-$30 million opening.

The stripper flick stars Constance Wu, Jennifer Lopez, Julia Stiles, Keke Palmer and former stripper Cardi B as a group of criminal minded former strip club employees who rob their wealthy Wall Street clients.

Hustlers is inspired by a viral New York Magazine article about a crew of former strippers who were arrested for credit card theft fraud.

Anything over $23.1 million is a win for Lopez, 50, besting her 2005 high Monster in Law, and anything over $23.8 million is a record opening for STXFilms, according to Deadline.

Hustlers is the first major motion picture for rapper Cardi B, 26, and singer Lizzo, 31.
 

Christopher Polk/Getty Images

Jennifer Lopez's new movie Hustlers opens in theaters everywhere this weekend.

The movie is about a group of criminal minded strippers who conspire to rob their customers by stealing their credit cards and running up massive bills.

The movie, which is based on a true story, also stars Keke Palmer, 26, Cardi B, 26, and Lizzo, 31.

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

But there is one fact in the movie that doesn't ring true in real life: Jennifer Lopez plays one of the strippers.

Lopez turned 50 in July.

J-Lo may be able to sell out arenas, but if all she did was take her clothes off (no singing), her arena tour would flop.

Lopez has the money and the resources to nip and tuck her body until the cows come home. But most 50-year-old women aren't as fortunate.

50-year-old women in menopause are not stripper material. 40-year-old strippers are rare. 50-year-old strippers in the club are unheard of.

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STX Films

There's a reason why age restrictions are in place at most strip clubs.

Men are the reason strip clubs exist. They drive the most revenue. Without men, strip clubs would be a thing of the past.

Men's brains are wired to be attracted to younger women of childbearing age. They pay to see firm perky breasts and a perfect round ass.

Watching a middle aged stripper is like watching your mom take her clothes off for money. Men do have some standards when it comes to strippers.

That's not to say that a young man won't date a woman old enough to be his mother. But the older woman is usually rich or willing to financially support a broke, lazy man.

When a man patronizes a strip club, he is there to fulfill a sexual fantasy and to fantasize about the women on stage.

It's kinda hard to fantasize about a 50-year-old stripper - even if she's drop dead gorgeous like Jennifer Lopez.

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Marvel Studios

Screenwriter and comedian Bisha K. Ali (inset) deleted her Twitter account and went into hiding after Disney announced she will serve as writer and showrunner for the studio's upcoming "Ms. Marvel" series. Ms. Marvel will be Disney's first Muslim superhero.

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(L-R) Actors Piper Perabo, Nick Nolte and Jada Pinkett Smith attended the Los Angeles premiere of their film Angel Has Fallen on Tuesday, Aug. 20. In the third installment of Angel Has Fallen, a Secret Service Agent Mike Banning (played by Gerard Butler) is framed for the attempted assassination of the President (Morgan Freeman) and must evade his own agency and the FBI as he tries to uncover the real threat.

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Sheri Determan/WENN.com

Tracy Morgan has joined the star-studded cast of Eddie Murphy’s comedy Coming to America 2. According to WENN.com via Deadline, the 50-year-old stand up comic signed up to star in the highly-anticipated sequel, which sees Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall reprise their iconic characters Prince Akeem Joffer and his faithful servant, Semmi.

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Universal Studios has cancelled its upcoming film 'The Hunt', in which "elite liberals" hunt down Trump supporters, aka "deplorables", for sport.

The film is from the producers of the social commentary thrillers Get Out and The Purge.

The term "deplorables" was used by Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton during a campaign fundraising event to degrade and demean Trump supporters.

Universal cancelled 'The Hunt' after two mass shootings in Texas and Ohio left 31 people dead last weekend.

After viewing the trailer, there was some confusion among the news media over whether the "hunted" or the "hunters" are the heroes of the film.

Calling their film a "satirical social thriller," Universal said, "We stand by our filmmakers and will continue to distribute films in partnership with bold and visionary creators, like those associated with this satirical social thriller, but we understand that now is not the right time to release this film.”
 

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Nate Parker's 'American Skin' has been added to the Venice Film Festival's lineup of independent films. Parker's promising directing career was derailed after news of rape allegations from his college days surfaced during the release of Birth Of A Nation in 2016. He hasn't been heard from since.

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