Entertainment

Disney’s First Black Live-Action Prince Is Here To Be Our Saving Grace

Fans of “This Is Us” rejoice! 2020 has finally delivered our first Black Disney prince and we are here to praise the Imagineers. According to Entertainment Weekly, actor Niles Fitch, best known for his role as junior Randall on the hit show This Is Us, is set to play a character named Prince Tuma in a new Disney+ movie.

Secret Society of Second-Born Royals is a new film by Disney + that will bring on the Black Boy Magic.

The sci-fi fantasy is about second-born royals gifted with special powers and follows them as they learn to use their powers inorder to save the world. Prince Tuma, played by Fitch will be vital to the team’s success according to his bio by Disney+.

In an Instagram post about the ground-breaking news, Fitch expressed his excitement.

“Welcome Disney’s first Black prince,” he captioned the post.  

Fortunately Entertainment Weekly as released first-look photos of the entire cast. You can check it out here.

According to Entertainment Weekly, Secret Society of Second-Born Royals hits the streaming site Disney+, this summer. News of Fitch’s casting comes on the heels of a true shake up in the world of Disney casting. of

Late last year, actor Christian Navarro called the company out for casting a white Prince Eric in the upcoming live-action adaptation of The Little Mermaid.

Lately, we’ve seen a resurgence in film and television remakes that are particularly less white than the originals.

Those projects include the remake of “West Side Story,” “The Craft,” “Party Of Five,” and “The Lion King.” The latest retelling of an animation classic has some people up in arms for the most ridiculous of reasons.

Disney is producing a live-action/CGI version of “The Little Mermaid” starring 19-year-old Halle Bailey.

Bailey is one-half of the singing group Chloe and Halle, and also stars in “Grown-ish.” Rob Marshall is set to direct and also stars Melissa McCarthy, Awkwafina, and Jacob Tremblay. Lin-Manuel Miranda has also been pinned to co-produce the film for Disney.

“After an extensive search, it was abundantly clear that Halle possesses that rare combination of spirit, heart, youth, innocence, and substance — plus a glorious singing voice — all intrinsic qualities necessary to play this iconic role,” Rob Marshall, said in a statement according to People magazine.

Critics are lashing out at the casting and say Ariel should not be Black.

Those that are against the casting of “The Little Mermaid” say the actress needs to be white, as the original character was Danish. People are taking to social media to air their grievances. Some are using the hashtag #NotMyAriel while others started a Facebook group under the name, “Christian’s Against the Little Mermaid (Boycott Halle Bailey),” which has been deleted, albeit after attracting 50,000 members.

“Disney has been ruining our childhood classics for the past several years. Their live-action adaptations have been abysmal but now they have gone too far!!!” reads the group’s welcome message according to Slate. “Disney has jumped on the bandwagon of turning prominent red-headed, fair skinned characters into POC. Why not just create a new character? Why is Hollywood trying to wipe out gingers???”

Now Freeform, the network that airs Bailey’s show “Grown-ish” is firing back and supporting their actress.

“Yes. The original author of The Little Mermaid was Danish. Ariel…is a mermaid,” Freeform said in an Instagram post. “She lives in an underwater kingdom in international waters and can legit swim wherever she wants (even though that often upsets King Triton, absolute zaddy). But for the sake of argument, let’s say that Ariel, too, is Danish. Danish mermaids can be black because Danish *people* can be black. Ariel can sneak up to the surface at any time with her pals Scuttle and the *ahem* Jamaican crab Sebastian (sorry, Flounder!) and keep that bronze base tight. Black Danish people and this mer-folk can also *genetically* (!!!) have red hair.”

They go on to say, “But spoiler alert – bring it back to the top – the character of Ariel is a work of fiction. So after all this is said and done, and you still cannot get past the idea that choosing the incredible, sensational, highly-talented, gorgeous Halle Bailey is anything other than the INSPIRED casting that it is because she ‘doesn’t look like the cartoon one,’ oh boy, do I have some news for you…about you.”

The post has been liked more than 50,000 times.

Fans — celebrities as well — are voicing their support for this awesome casting call.

It’s kind of funny how savage people are over who can play a mermaid.

Also, red-headed people are not just white.

Gingers come in every color.

Bailey got a shout out from Halle Berry

This is legendary especially coming from an Academy Award winner. By the way, people on social media actually thought that Halley Berry — not Hailey Bailey — was cast in the film. Okay, we can see why people would make that mistake, but we love the fact that Berry gave her a shoutout.

Janelle Monáe is praising her new role.

It is indeed a perfect choice! Have you heard her sing? She sounds like an angel.

Mariah Carey sent her a congratulatory tweet.

So many young kids will experience Ariel for the very first time.

Lin-Manuel Miranda also celebrated this casting, that we’re sure he had a say in.

He is co-producing the film after all.

As we previously mentioned Jacob Tremblay will star in the film, as Flounder, Awkwafina will be Scuttle, Melissa McCarthy will play Ursula. Although people are livid about that as well. They’re saying a black person should play the role, Ursula. But as one person pointed out, Ursula was neither white or black.

“I see a ton of people debating on if Ursula is white or black, and I have a definitive answer,” a person on Twitter said. “You’re all color blind, she is quite clearly purple – with some grayish or teal-ish tint, depending on the ambient light,” another Twitter user who got in on the debate declared.”

All Of Your Favorites Telenovelas Are Coming Back With NBC Universo’s ‘Retro Jueves’

Entertainment

All Of Your Favorites Telenovelas Are Coming Back With NBC Universo’s ‘Retro Jueves’

Telemundo

So many us are already glued to our screen right now, binge watching far too much television, if you ask me. But – and it’s a very valid but – a throwback series consisting of our favorite and iconic Latino television shows would be a very valid excuse to continue racking up that screen time.

And guess what? NBC’s Universo is delivering exactly that with the launch of their new prime time lineup called ‘Retro Jueves.’ Consider it a chance to rewatch some of your favorite TV shows and realize just how fast time passes.

‘Retro Jueves’ will be full of iconic Latino TV shows – bringing us some much-needed content during this quarantine.

With the slogan “Remembering is Living” – so true! – Universo is launching “Retro Thursdays”, a new programming block that will be broadcast every Thursday in prime time from April 30 (that’s tonight!) at 7 p.m. ET.

The new programming block will bring back some of the most iconic U.S. Spanish-language TV programs from the early 2000s and let us remember the good ol’ days as we get a chance to look back at the beginnings of some of our favorite TV celebs.

Consider this a golden opportunity to revisit some of these classic shows that so many of us grew up watching as kids. Or, if you’re in quarantine with your mamá or tías – get them in front of that TV with you for a trip down memory lane.

Some of the classics I’ll be watching include, Caso Cerrado.

Few shows are as iconic and over-the-top genius as Caso Cerrado. The super dramatic court TV program is hosted by the beloved Dr. Ana María Polo and includes some seriously scene-stealing guests.

Though the show has come under fire for allegedly creating fake court cases – I don’t care. It’s great entertainment.

Caso Cerrado will kick off the programming with some of it’s very first episodes at 7pm ET.

Then it’s on to Protagonistas de Novela 2.

Protagonistas de Novela 2 follows at 9 p.m./8 p.m. central. This 2003 reality show guaranteed the winner a spot in a future telenovela, and this particular season became crucial for current stars like William Levy and Ximena Duque. Relive the drama and excitement that divided a nation: were you team Erick Elías or Alfredo de Quesada? Maybe your opinion will change if you rewatch it, or maybe it’ll remain unchanged.

Then things get hot at steamy with episodes from the super intense show, Decisiones.

At 10 p.m./9 p.m. central, we’ll dive into the true stories of people thrust into amorous adventures and pushed to their breaking points. Decisiones brings steamy melodramas about passion and sex in the modern world of 2005, featuring unique standalone stories in each episode.

Then it’s way back to Dr. Ana María Polo’s OG days with her original court program – Sala de Parejas.

This was the very court program that quickly had Dr. Ana María Polo stealing the hearts of viewers. The show centers on marital problems – which made for some seriously great TV. The success of Sala de Parejas enabled Dr. Ana María Polo to take the idea further and launch Caso Cerrado, where she was able to show other disputes not related to relationships.

With such a promising lineup of classic, iconic TV shows – I now have my Thursday night plans and I’m beyond excited.

Eva Longoria Joins The Chorus Of Celebrities Standing Up With Gabrielle Union Against ‘AGT’

Entertainment

Eva Longoria Joins The Chorus Of Celebrities Standing Up With Gabrielle Union Against ‘AGT’

evalongoria / gabunion / Instagram

Eva Longoria joined the rallying call to demand NBC address its toxic workplace culture for women after Gabrielle Union shared her experience on set and her firing from NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.” Since AGT announced that Union would be leaving the show, the truth of the circumstances surrounding Union’s firing has come out and people are upset with the network. Union allegedly went to HR for a racist joke that was later edited out of Jay Leno’s act and was repeatedly told that her hairstyles were “too black,” according to a report by Variety. Now, Union has an advocate in Eva Longoria, who shared a Time’s Up petition to her 7.7 million Twitter followers Monday to demand that NBCUniversal “take concrete steps to foster a safe and equitable workplace.”

“What @gabunion experienced on set at @NBC’s #AmericasGotTalent is unacceptable,” Longoria also wrote on Instagram. Longoria is blasting NBCUniversal on all platforms to encourage fans to demand that the network begin dismantling the imbalance of power between genders.

Time’s Up, the organization birthed by the #MeToo movement, is using its platform to petition NBCUniversal, and Longoria wants you to know about it.

CREDIT: @EVALONGORIA / TWITTER

“It’s time for @NBCUniversal to commit to long-term, concrete action to fix its toxic workplace culture and ensure safety and equity for all its workers. Add your name through @timesupnow Instagram story. #TimeUp on the imbalance of power. ✊????,” Longoria continued on Instagram. Longoria also publicly thanked Union on Twitter, posting, “Thank you @itsgabrielleu for speaking up about the toxic culture at @NBC‘s #AmericasGotTalent. It’s time for NBC to take these allegations seriously. Join me & @TIMESUPNOW in calling for accountability & concrete action from @NBCUniversal leadership.”

Time’s Up alleges that NBC retaliated against Union for speaking out against racial discrimination and harassment in the workplace.

CREDIT: @SHADOWANDACT / TWITTER

AGT is filmed in front of a live audience, but by the time its millions of American fans watch it on their television screens, it has been highly edited, including for the racist material that was allowed to be performed in front of the live audience. An insider told Variety that Jay Leno made a joke about a painting of Simon Cowell surrounded by his dogs on display in the executive producer’s hallway. According to four witnesses present for the taping made in front of the judges, including Union, Leno joked that “the dogs looked like something one would find ‘on the menu at a Korean restaurant,'” Variety reported. Several employees felt the joke was racist and only sought to perpetuate stereotypes that don’t actually exist at Asian-American restaurants, the outlet said. Union sought to bring the joke to the attention of Human Resources, as one might do at many other professional companies, but Variety’s whistleblowers said that it never made it to HR, though her concerns did allow for the joke to be censored in the final episode, aired on August 6.

Union’s hairstyles were also reportedly criticized as “too black.”

CREDIT: @KERRYWASHINGTON / TWITTER

Later, a white man tried to portray Beyoncé, but his hands were guised to look black, the insiders told the entertainment outlet. Union continuously asked producers to remove him from the stage, but they allowed him to give his performance to the live audience and removed the audition from the edited version. Union was also personally subjected to excessive notes on her physical appearance, specifically that her hairstyles were “too black” for their audience, something that Variety’s four inside sources said she was criticized for at least half a dozen times. News of the discrimination has prompted a #BlackHairChallenge viral hashtag in support of Union.

Longoria’s fans are taking it a step further and calling for a boycott of NBC.

CREDIT: @ZOOT16 / TWITTER

“People need to boycott the network. When it hurts their bottom line, they will change,” commented one fan. Change is already happening, thanks to the press generated from the likes of Longoria and those who signed the Time’s Up petition, which “applauds Union for her courage and once again calls on NBC to take these allegations seriously and take concrete steps to foster a safe and equitable workplace.” Already, NBC and its production companies have released a joint statement to PEOPLE to confirm they are “working with Ms. Union through her representatives to hear more about her concerns, following which we will take whatever next steps may be appropriate.”

“So many tears, so much gratitude,” Union tweeted, the day after Variety’s report came out. “THANK YOU! Just when you feel lost, adrift, alone… you got me up off the ground. Humbled and thankful, forever.”

READ: Ariana Grande And Ellen Pompeo Break Their Silence Over Gabrielle Union’s Firing From ‘America’s Got Talent’