Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images

The Wendy Williams Show is forced to pay people to sit in the studio audience during her extended absence due to Covid-19 complications.

The show's producer is offering $75 cash to non-union, vaccinated people to sit in the studio audience next week when guest host Whitney Cummings fills in for Wendy, according to an email blast seen by Page Six.

The call for seat fillers states: "$75 CASH incentive, given same day (3 hrs)."

The desperate action was necessary because producers are having trouble filling studio seats during Wendy's absence.

Not only that, but producers can't seem to convince bold name celebrities to host the popular daytime talk show.

A handful of stars have declined to host the show, according to sources.

BlayzenPhotos / BACKGRID

Wendy, who is fully vaccinated, has taken an extended leave from her hosting duties while she battles complications from Covid-19. She was hospitalized last month after having difficulty breathing.

Wendy, 57, is expected to be off the air through at least early November, according to Page Six.

There was also rumors that the show may be canceled.

Jemal Countess/FilmMagic

Ted Sarandos apologized for internal memos to his staff about Dave Chappelle ahead of a planned walkout by 1,000 Netflix employees on Wednesday, Oct. 20.

Sarandos previously insisted he wouldn't remove Chappelle's hit comedy special, The Closer, despite outrage from transgender employees over Chappelle's transgender jokes.

"I can tell you I screwed up those two communications, but my stance hasn't changed," the Netflix co-CEO said in a phone interview with The Hollywood Reporter.

Sarandos said he should have acknowledged that "a group of our employees were in pain" and "hurt" by the company's decision to air the special.

Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

"I'd say those emails lacked humanity, in which I like to and I do generally communicate with our teams," said Sarandos who is married to Nicole Avant, former U.S. Ambassador to the Bahamas.

"...this is the problem when you have a leaked email out of context, is it's part of a conversation already in progress, and that line of causing harm in the real world was way over simplistic and talking about something very specific that we were talking about earlier that day."

Stacy Revere/Getty Images

Sarandos reiterated that Chappelle's comedy special - for which the comedian was paid $24.1 million - was in line with Netflix's stringent policy on harmful content.

Dave Benett/Getty Images

The Netflix chief (right) said he didn't think it would be "appropriate" for him to add a disclaimer about harmful content before airing Chappelle's special.

"The content is age restricted already for language, and Dave himself gives a very explicit warning at the beginning of the show, so I don't think it would be appropriate in this case."

He continued:

"But I do think that the inclusion of the special on Netflix is consistent with our comedy offering, it's consistent with Dave Chappelle's comedy brand and this is ... one of those times when there's something on Netflix that you're not going to like."

Prince Williams/Wireimage

Legendary Hip-Hop Artist Yolanda "Yo-Yo" Whitaker appears on ABC News Special "The Real Queens of Hip-Hop: The Women Who Changed the Game."

ABC News has announced a new special, The Real Queens of Hip-Hop: The Women Who Changed the Game, which takes an intimate look at the evolution and impact of women emcees and rappers.

This brand new special from ABC News features an all-female interview lineup including Yo-Yo, Monie Love, MC Lyte, Da Brat, Roxanne Shanté, Eve Cooper, and more.

The ABC News Special is narrated by Cheryl "Salt" James of the legendary hip-hop duo Salt-N-Pepa.

Yo-Yo is a Grammy-nominated hip hop entertainer, actress, educator, and philanthropist. The cast member of VH1's popular "Love & Hip Hop Hollywood" series is affectionately known as Auntie Yo-Yo.

The founder of the Intelligent Black Woman's Coalition (IBWC) is best known for her hit single "You Can't Play with My Yo-Yo", off her debut album, Make Way for the Motherlode (1991).

She is also known for her recurring role as Sheneneh Jenkins' rapping bestie, Keylolo, on the '90s sitcom Martin.

Al Pereira/Getty Images

Yo-Yo first appeared on the track "It's a Man's World" off Ice Cube's 1990 debut studio album AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted.

Yo-Yo, 50, is a proud grandmother and mother of two beautiful, intelligent daughters, Tiffany and Sanai.

The Real Queens of Hip-Hop: The Women Who Changed the Game airs on Monday, October 18, at 10/9c on ABC and can be viewed the next day On Demand and on Hulu.

Watch the trailer below.
 

 

Photo may have been deleted

ABC

Americans embraced 1980s TV series "The Wonder Years" featuring 12-year-old Kevin Arnold growing up during the late 60s and early 70s.

ABC's "woke" reboot of "Wonder Years" features a Black family savoring a slice of the American pie.

Photo may have been deleted

ABC

The original series ran from 1988 to 1993 and starred Fred Savage, Josh Saviano and Danica McKellar as Kevin, Paul and Winnie - best friends for life.

The "Wonder Years" reboot stars (L-R) Dulé Hill, Laura Kariuki, EJ Williams (as as 12-year-old Dean Williams), and Saycon Sengbloh.

Actor Don Cheadle narrates Dean's adult voice.

Like the original Arnold family, the new family lives in a suburban home with a white picket fence and white neighbors who watch what they say.

Twitter reacted to ABC's trailer for the 2021 "Wonder Years" reboot. Some thought the new series parodied "Everybody Hates Chris" about the life and times of comedian Chris Rock.


 

Photo may have been deleted

YouTube/PBS News Hour

TBSN: The Black Sports Network launched during Game 5 of the NBA Finals in Phoenix, Arizona. TBSN is the first Black-owned, woman-led sports network in the country.

It was a historic moment for DC Livers, a veteran sports reporter who stepped out on faith to launch the first woman-led sports network in America.

DC Livers, Founder & CEO of TBSN, said:

"There was no better way to launch a network than amid the backdrop of the NBA Finals while joining the nation cheering on two teams filled with competitors who have never won a championship. The hopefulness of the moment was too good to pass up. It was like we were all putting it all on the line with our eyes on the prize."

Photo may have been deleted

DC Livers

DC, pictured with Suns star Chris Paul, added:

"TBSN is aware that other networks aren't committed to racial diversity. It's no longer something that Gen Z and Millennials are willing to put up with. Hiring the same old people gets the same old boring shows and with predictable results, Gen Z and Millennials are demanding more. TBSN offers something no other network does: Quality content with a hip hop angle. We're newer. We're fresher. We're younger. It's the perfect combination for today's sports lover."

According to Eurweb.com, TBSN will merge hip hop and sports.

Rapper Yung Joc said of TBSN: "This is big. I feel like I just gave ya'll some exclusive information."

NBA coach and father Lavar Ball said he can't wait to be a part of it and others are heralding the move as "monumental" and "groundbreaking."

Marcus Ingram/Getty Images

Black Twitter has questions about Tyler Perry's script-writing skills after one of his actors made questionable remarks during a scene from Sistas.

Tyler admitted he doesn't have a writer's room and writes all of his show's scripts himself. Tyler is part of the industry-wide effort to increase visibility of LGBT+ characters in the media.

However, his writing efforts are not appreciated by his show's viewers.

Photo may have been deleted

Twitter

In the viral scene, Calvin (played by actor Anthony Dalton) breaks up with Sabrina (played by Novi Brown). As she pleads with him to stay, he lists the reasons why their relationship simply won't work.

"Let's just end this. I'm just too much for you. Me, my two dads, me being in touch with my feminine side, my lace underwear. Hell, even me liking my prostate tickled!"

The prostate, or male G spot, is a small organ that provides pleasure when stimulated by a penis, fingers or an object inserted into the rectum.

The scene raised eyebrows and drew scornful comments from men and women on social media.

Among the comments were demands for Tyler to hire writers and stick to what he does best -- directing.

"The thing [is] Tyler Perry could be giving young black talented writers opportunities but be rather recycle plots and story lines from 10 years ago and i like don't get it," wrote one Twitter user.

Another user tweeted, "Look, I appreciate what Tyler Perry has done for black people making movies, lifting up actors and workers, but I'mma need this n**** to uplift some writing talent."
 

Photo may have been deleted

YouTube

Rappers and other celebrities are scrambling to lease homes and rent cars now that "MTV Cribs" is returning more than 20 years after it was canceled.

The original series gave viewers a glimpse into the lifestyle of the rich and famous, including a tour of their homes and fully stocked garages.

Viewers tuned in to see how the other half lived and spent their hard earned millions.

Photo may have been deleted

YouTube

But the show lost some of its luster when it was revealed most of the mansions and cars were leased or rented just for the MTV Cribs cameras.

Word is that MTV did their due diligence to make sure the new season features homes celebrities actually live in.

The upcoming season will feature tours of homes owned or leased by Ashlee Simpson and Evan Ross, Big Sean, Christian Siriano, JoJo Siwa, Jordyn Woods, Kathy Griffin, Marsai Martin, Martha Stewart, Rick Ross, Tia Mowry, Tinashe, TJ Lavin and others.

Gregory Bojorquez/Getty Images

"'Cribs' didn't simply introduce the celeb-reality genre; it created a blueprint for how we engage on social media," said MTV's president of content and chief creative officer, Nina L. Diaz. "We are thrilled to usher in a new era of this iconic franchise for audiences around the world."

MTV Cribs is set to premiere on Aug. 11 on MTV. Check your local listings.
 

Photo may have been deleted

YouTube/HBO Max

HBO Max dropped the trailer for its new reality TV series "FBoy Island," hosted by comedian and actress Nikki Glaser, 37.

The series follows three sexy women - Nakia Renee, CJ Franco and Sarah Emig - who are joined by 24 men on a secluded island.

Photo may have been deleted

YouTube/HBO Max

Among the 24 men are 12 "nice guys" and 12 self-professed f**k boys. According to Urbandictionary.com, a "f**k boy" is a player who is only interested in a relationship for sex.

The women's mission is to attempt to find love on the island, preferably with one of the nice guys. But nice guys usually finish last because American women are only attracted to thugs and f**k boys -- despite what women say about wanting a "good man."

According to the NY Post, "By the episode 10 finale, it will be revealed to the audience and the women which men are the nice guys and which were the FBoys all along."

"FBOY Island" premieres July 29 on HBO Max.

Watch the trailer below.
 

Emma McIntyre /Getty Images

The long-awaited 'Empire' spin-off, featuring Taraji P. Henson, has been put on hold indefinitely and probably forever.

The hip-hop soap opera, which was canceled last year due to poor ratings and the Jussie Smollett scandal, was set to transform into a new spin-off series.

However, Taraji - who plays the part of Cookie Lyon - revealed that plans for the new show have been delayed again.

Taraji explained that the new series - which was originally due to air last year - was "put to rest".

ShotbyNYP / BACKGRID

"I think we're gonna put it to rest for a sec. For me, the script has to be right. It has to be worthy of the audience. We have to give the audience something incredible, and sometimes, I think you need time, time away. I think absence makes the heart grow fonder."

Maciel / BACKGRID

Jussie was let go from 'Empire' after he was arrested for perpetrating a hoax involving two friends who were paid to shout racial and homophobic slurs at him, pour bleach on the actor and tie a noose around his neck in January 2019.

Meanwhile, Taraji is preparing to host the BET Awards this weekend in Los Angeles.

She told 'Entertainment Tonight', "It's all about the fashion. I would have to say for this one, it's about the entrance. I'm always going to try to make you laugh and forget about the woes and the troubles of the world, so look forward to a lot of fun, a lot of laughter, because that's what I like to do."

Taraji also revealed that the upcoming show will focus on celebrating the influence and achievements of black women, like Queen Latifah.

She said: "What I love particularly about this year, is that we are celebrating the black woman. This is the year of the black woman because the black woman has made incredible strides in changing history, politics, music - you name it, we done it."

Photo may have been deleted

Omarion was revealed as Yeti on "The Masked Singer" talent show on Wednesday night. In the post-reveal interview, he said he was unable to perform his signature "chest pop" because of his heavy Yeti costume, which weighed 60 lbs.

Photo may have been deleted

Omarion spoke to Billboard after the show about his experience.

"It was a challenge. A lot of people don't know that that suit was about 60 extra pounds, so it was a challenge moving. And also, just to keep the character continuity, I didn't want to give myself away by doing too much movement or some of my signature movements, which I couldn't even do because the suit was so big. I couldn't do my signature chest pop because it was the Yeti chest! It was a challenge, but it was fun nonetheless."

Photo may have been deleted

The 36-year-old R&B star was one of two contestants voted off the TV talent show, hosted by Nick Cannon (right). New Kids on the Block singer Donnie Wahlberg was the other unmasked celebrity.

Omarion was thrilled to make history as the first singer to perform on the show in roller skates. He said the show made him feel validated as a performer.

"As long as I've had an audience, only through mediums like The Masked Singer do you actually get the opportunity to do things that can further your relationship with performing, and I felt like The Masked Singer was going to do that - and it did just that. Being in that suit and hearing the compliments from the judges and them not seeing me, that was dope."