Entertainment

Cuban Gossip Blogger Perez Hilton Says He ‘Regrets’ the Cruel Way He Used to Write About Britney Spears

Photos via Getty Images

Recently, there has been quite the reckoning over how the media and society treated Britney Spears in the early 2000s. A scandalous New York Times documentary premiered earlier this month that gave a new perspective on the media’s treatment of Britney Spears.

The documentary, entitled “Framing Britney Spears”, chronicles the media’s inhumane and unethical coverage of the fragile popstar in her darkest moments.

And one media figure in particular is catching a lot of heat for his past behavior: Cuban-American gossip blogger Perez Hilton.

At one point in the documentary, viewers see a 2005 clip of Perez Hilton (born Mario Armando Lavandeira Jr.) seemingly taking delight in Britney’s pain. “Thank you, Britney Spears,” he says while appearing on a talk show. “Being bad is good for my business.”

The clip seemed to spark the public’s collective memory of Perez’s excessive cruelty towards Spears in the glory days of his blog.

Many recognized Perez as the symbol of the 2000s culture of cruelty that drove Britney Spears towards her breaking point.

At the peak of his popularity, Perez would publish blog posts accusing Britney of being an “unfit mother”. Right after Heath Ledger died he sold t-shirts that read: “Why couldn’t have it been Britney?” He would criticize her body, her looks, her mental health, her music, and her parenting skills ad nauseum.

As Wesley Morris, a culture critic from the New York Times and someone who was interviewed in the documentary, put it: “There was too much money to be made off of her suffering.”

Both viewers of the documentary and Britney fans alike took to Twitter to denounce Perez and demand he apologize.

Perez appeared on “Good Morning Britain” on Monday to express his “regret” for his actions, while also seeming to defend his past behavior.

via Good Morning Britain

Having the audacity to wear a Britney Spears t-shirt, Perez said: “I regret a lot or most of what I said about Britney as I’m sure Piers [Morgan] would if he were here, the things he’s said in the past. Thankfully, hopefully, many of us get older, we get wiser.”

Perez then went on to compare his experience to that of Diane Sawyer’s–someone who also caught flack for her disrespectful interview tactics with a young Spears. “You know, somebody that was talked about in this documentary briefly, Diane Sawyer–respected journalist, a good woman–but many people were painting her out to be a villain,” he said.

“I think a lot of fans and folks just want to blame this person and that person and…it’s not as simple as that. There are real mental health issues at play with Britney Spears.”

Possibly. But it’s also possible that her mental health issues might not have spiraled so out of control if vicious bloggers like Perez Hilton would’ve just left her alone.

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J Balvin Opens Up About Concert Nerves And Social Responsibility In New Trailer For ‘The Boy From Medellín’

Entertainment

J Balvin Opens Up About Concert Nerves And Social Responsibility In New Trailer For ‘The Boy From Medellín’

Amazon Prime Video

We’ve been waiting for what seems like an eternity since the project was first announced, but we’re finally getting a first look at the upcoming J Balvin documentary, The Boy From Medellín.

J Balvin is arguably one of the world’s biggest stars and so many of his fans have been dying to get a look behind the scenes and into the life of the Colombian superstar. And following the release of the trailer, we won’t have to wait much longer to get the full film.

The Boy From Medellín is almost here and we’re finally getting a sneak peek!

Colombian superstar J Balvin has released the trailer for his upcoming documentary set to debut on Amazon Prime on May 7. The documentary follows J Balvin throughout the week leading up to a massive homecoming show at the Estadio Atanasio Girardot in Medellín, Colombia, in December 2019. 

But what should have been a time of unadulterated joy for the performer becomes something much more complex.

The film is from Academy Award-nominated and Emmy-winning filmmaker Matthew Heineman (Cartel LandCity of GhostsA Private War), and is is an intimate portrait of J Balvin.

The film shows the real life drama and tumult leading up to one of Balvin’s biggest performances of his life.

Shot entirely in the dramatic week leading up to the concert, The Boy from Medellín offers unprecedented access to “Reggaeton’s Global Ambassador” as he returns to the city of his childhood and struggles to reconcile his personal identity as José Álvaro Osorio Balvín with his celebrity persona.

As the pressure of the approaching concert heightens, he also continues to wrestle with the anxiety and depression that has plagued him for years. At the same time, Colombia itself is in the grips of widespread political upheaval, with thousands of protesters taking to the streets in demonstrations against right-wing president Iván Duque.

Despite his desire to focus on “giving light to the world,” Balvin soon finds himself pressured on social media to take a stand. As the concert grows ever closer and tensions mount around him on all sides, Balvin soon begins to reconsider his responsibilities to his community and redefines his voice as an artist.

Watch the full trailer below:

Watch The Boy From Medellín on Amazon Prime Video May 7th.

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The Rita Moreno Documentary, ‘Just a Girl Who Decided to Go for It’ Will Cover the Icon’s 70-Year Career

Entertainment

The Rita Moreno Documentary, ‘Just a Girl Who Decided to Go for It’ Will Cover the Icon’s 70-Year Career

Courtesy of MGM

The documentary “Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go for It”, will hit theaters on June 18th. As you can probably guess, the film focuses on the indomitable EGOT-winning icon Boricua.

Director, fellow Boricua Mariem Pérez Riera, says the movie will offer a stripped-down, intimate portrait of the real Rita Moreno.

“We always knew that we wanted this documentary to not be just a showreel of her career and how great she is,” Pérez Riera told NBC News.

“When I make or watch a documentary, I want to be able to know that person more than just what I already know, so it was very important for me to go deeper and to understand her as a human being.”

Courtesy of Roadside Attractions

Pérez Riera explained that she wanted to make a Rita Moreno documentary because she related to Moreno. Especially to Moreno’s struggles with discrimination and insecurity.

“I related to all she was saying, her stories about discrimination, the insecurities she felt because of the way others perceived her, the complicated love relationships, and the constant need to work three times harder to prove to others that she is worthy,” said Pérez Riera.

Much of the Rita Moreno documentary focuses on Moreno’s struggle against a racist and sexist industry. Hollywood repeatedly pigeonholed and underestimated her.

At the start of her career, Moreno was only cast in roles of ambiguously brown characters. She played Native American, Filipino, Hawaiian, and Thai roles.

“I wanted to turn the parts down, but that’s all that was offered and I had to make a living,” Moreno reveals in the film. “I was kind of stuck.”

The Rita Moreno documentary also features dozens of interviews of Moreno’s friends, fans, and previous co-workers. The list includes Morgan Freeman, Gloria Estefan, Eva Longoria, Justina Machado, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and her “West Side Story” co-star, George Chakiris. Many of them reflect on the impact Moreno made on Hollywood.

Although Moreno has always been proud of her Puerto Rican heritage, she struggled with her sense of self-worth in Hollywood.

“When I went to Hollywood, I really learned where I stood in the world, and it was so sad and frustrating,” Moreno explained in an interview with the LA Times while promoting the documentary.

“There is something so awful about, if you were a performer, asking your agent to submit you for something and the people won’t even see you because they think you’re too Spanish or something. It’s so frustrating and you want to run and knock their door down and say: ‘Look, let me read this scene for you. I’m good. I’m really good. Let me. Watch me. Listen to me.'”

The documentary “Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go for It” will hit theaters on June 18th. So mark your calendars!

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