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‘Law & Order: SVU’ star running for New York Congress

Actress Diane Neal played a district attorney for over 100 episodes of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Now she wants to be come a lawmaker in real life.

Neal, who played Assistant District Attorney Casey Novak on Law & Order: SVU, took to Twitter on Tuesday to announce her independent run for New York’s 19th Congressional District seat.

“Ok, so it’s ON!!! But I’m doing with nearly no staff, no donations (yet), with no party,” Neal tweeted. “Website will be up later today (fingers crossed) and all ready to go. But goal is bigger than parties. Goal is no negativity. Goal is HIGH ROAD all the way.”

The 42-year-old is running for the congressional seat currently held by Rep. John Faso (R) who was elected in 2016. Neal’s own political beliefs are a mix, she told The Daily Freeman.

“I’m a little Libertarian, I’m a lot liberal, mostly progressive, but I have this amazing ability to be able to take really complicated policy and break it down into edible sound bites, which is something most progressive liberals cannot do,” she said.

Neal needs 3,500 signatures in order to secure a spot as independent on the November ballot.

Six Democratic candidates have already announced their intention to against Faso run for the congressional seat, according to The Daily Freeman. A Democratic will take place June 26th.

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Mitzi Shore, owner, founder of the Comedy Store, dead at 87

Comedy Store founder and owner, Mitzi Shore died in Los Angeles Wednesday morning. She was 87.

The Comedy Store, which helped launch the careers of many famous comedians, will be closed Wednesday in her honor.

Shore founded the club in 1972 with her husband at the time, Sammy Shore, and fellow comedian Rudy DeLuca. Two years later she became the owner, and is credited with boosting the careers of comedy greats such as Robin Williams, Jay Leno, David Letterman, Chevy Chase, Jim Carrey, Chris Rock and Richard Pryor.

She is survived by her four children Peter, Scott, Sandy, and Pauly Shore.

Actor and comedian Pauly Shore had openly discussed in the past his mother’s battle with Parkinson’s disease. He took to Twitter to pay her tribute.

“Mom/Mitzi passed Early in the morning at 4.42 am she was 87 years old my heart lays heavy,” he wrote.

The comedy club released the following statement:

“It is with great sadness and very heavy hearts that we report the passing of Mitzi Shore, the legendary Godmother of the world famous Comedy Store. Mitzi was an extraordinary businesswoman and decades ahead of her time who cultivated and celebrated the artistry of stand-up comedy. She was also a loving mother, not only to her own four children, but to the myriad of comedians who adored her. She leaves behind an indelible mark and legacy and has helped change the face of comedy. We will all miss her dearly.”

Pauly shared that Shore was not in pain during her final days, and on Monday had the chance to say her final goodbyes to the Comedy Store.

“Alfred, Mom’s caregiver, and I took Mom/Mitzi to @TheComedyStore this afternoon for her last time. Our maintenance man of 20 years Juan Carlos had the neon lights on for her, and her music playing,” Pauly wrote Monday night.

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Brooke Burke opens up about divorce from David Charvet

Brooke Burke revealed this Friday, that she and David Charvet decided to split after six years of marriage. Now the former Dancing With The Stars host and mother of four, has taken to her blog to reveal why the couple made the decision to separate.

Charvet, 45, has yet to publicly comment on their secret split, but on Monday Burke shared her side of the situation in a lengthy post written on Modern Mom.

“I have struggled with trying to find worthy words to speak to this life change my family is going through but I do want to share my personal thoughts,” the 46-year-old actress wrote. “You may have heard that David and I are divorcing. We have tried to keep our separation private for some time out of respect for our children and family. Although I believe this is a positive change, I am deeply saddened because I loved being married.”

Burke and Charvet share two children together– son, Shaya, 10, and daughter, Heaven, 11. Burke also has two daughters from her previous marriage to Garth Fisher.

“It took me a long time to differentiate between giving up and letting go, and even longer to recognize when it was time to do so,” she added. “We are still a family full of love, simply redefining our dynamics. I believe this is a necessary decision for my entire family unit.”

The actress official filed for separation Jan. 23, 2018, citing “irreconcilable differences” and proposed that the two share joint and legal custody of their children.

“There was nothing sensational that caused this divorce and nothing scandalous will surface,” she explained. “Big life decisions are hardest when made for the right reasons. It is sometimes painful to be strong and embrace change. I believe in letting go of ideas and dreams when the time is right. I am in that space right now as a woman and a mother, listening to my heart. I am approaching this with gratitude and unconditional love.”

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Fifth Harmony announces indefinite hiatus to focus on solo careers

Fifth Harmony has decided to call it quits after six years of performing together in the pop, girl group formed during The X Factor’s second season.

The group released a statement on their official Twitter account on Monday, Mar. 19 to explain their decision.

“Reflecting on the past six years since we started on X-Factor, we’ve realized just how far we’ve come and we appreciate everything so much, more now than ever. We’ve really had one hell of a memorable journey together and can’t begin to express our gratitude to y’all for coming along with us on this wild ride!”

They continued, “After six years going hard, non stop, we also realized that in order to stay authentic to ourselves and to you, we do need to take some time for now to go on a hiatus from Fifth Harmony in order to pursue solo endeavors.”

In 2016, Camilla Cabello left the group to pursue a solo career and found success with hit singles such as Havana and Never Be the Same.

Other members of the group have also embarked on solo ventures during their time with the group. Dinah Jane worked with RedOne, Daddy Yankee and French Montana for Boom Boom. Lauren Jauregui teamed up with Steve Aoki on All Night.

Normai Kordei made an impressive showing on Dancing with the Stars in 2017, and also collaborated with Khalid in Love Lies. Ally Brooke lent her voice to the electronic music ballad Perfect by Topic.

In Monday’s statement, Jane, Jauregui, Kordei, and Brooke thanked their fans for their support, promising that this decision wouldn’t affect tour dates through the end of 2018.

“To our Harmonizers, thank you for everything we have been able to build as Fifty Harmony. With your love and encouragement we will continue to build on ourselves, support one another in everything we do, and keep making you proud, each other proud and ourselves proud.”

They concluded, “We do have some upcoming shows through the end of the year which will still happen as planned, and we can’t wait! All our love, from the bottom of our hearts, Dinah Jane, Lauren, Normani and Ally xoxoxo.”

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Selma Blair clears up Cameron Diaz retirement rumors

Word spreads fast. Actress Selma Blair took to Twitter on Monday to clear up the rumors that her good friend Cameron Diaz was retiring from acting.

In an interview published by  Metro News UK on Sunday, the 45-year-old recounted her latest get together with her The Sweetest Thing (2002) costar that sent Diaz fans into a frenzy.

“I had lunch with Cameron the other day,” Blair told the news outlet. “We were reminiscing about the film. I would have liked to do a sequel but Cameron’s retired from acting. She’s like ‘I’m done.'”

She added, “I mean, she doesn’t need to make any more films. She has a pretty great life, I don’t know what it would take to bring her back. She’s happy.”

But after gossip spread about Diaz retiring at the age of 45, Blair quickly made it clear that she was only joking.

“BREAKING NEWS,” she wrote, “Guys please, I was making a joke in an interview. CAMERON DIAZ is NOT retiring from ANYTHING.”

Jokingly, she also added, “And for more breaking news: I am NOW retiring from being Cameron Diaz’s spokesperson.”

Diaz has not appeared in a movie since her 2014 performance in the Annie remake. In 2015, she married Good Charlotte’s Benji Madden. The actress’ career has shifted to more focus on being a wellness ambassador.  In 2013, she released The Body Book, and followed it with The Longevity Book in 2016.

Insider sources told Us Weekly in January that “Cameron hasn’t wanted to work” and is focusing on expanding her family. “She is enjoying being at home and being a housewife. She would love more than anything to be a mom.”

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Chrissy Teigen joins other celebrities in Snapchat ‘boycott’

Chrissy Teigen has had it with Snapchat.

The model and cookbook author announced over Twitter on Saturday that she had stopped using the social media platform because of several factors– including the controversial advertisement Snapchat ran earlier this month, that alluded to the 2009 domestic violence incident between Rihanna and Chris Brown.

The advertisement was for a game of “Would You Rather,” which in turn asked users if they would rather slap Rihanna or punch Brown.

“I stopped using snap,” Teigen, 32, tweeted. “The update, the constant complaints of people not being able to find me, plus the Rihanna poll…no bueno.”

The Lip Sync Battle host’s complaints come two weeks after Rihanna took to Instagram to give a heated statement about the incident.

“Now SNAPCHAT I know you already know you ain’t my fav app out there!” She posted to her Instagram story,”But I’m just trying to figure out what the point was with this mess! I’d love to call it ignorance, but I know you ain’t that dumb! You spent money to animate something that would intentionally bring shame to DV victims and made a joke of it!!!”

CNN reports that the platform lost $800 million in stock market value after the pop star’s statement.

“This isn’t about my personal feelings, cause I don’t have much of them…but all the women, children and men that have been victims of DV in the past and especially the ones who haven’t made it out yet…you let us down!” Rihanna, 30, continued.
“Shame on you. Throw the whole app-oligy away.”

This all comes less than a month after Kylie Jenner criticized the app’s new design, tweeting, “Sooo does anyone else not open Snapchat anymore? Or is it just me… ugh this is so sad.” Jenner’s tweet resulted in a reported $1.3 billion loss in market value for the company.

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Kelly Clarkson defends herself after eliminated ‘Voice’ contestant calls her ‘small minded’

Kelly Clarkson took to Twitter to defend herself after eliminated contestant Molly Stevens, who is openly gay, called the original American Idol winner ‘small minded’ for comparing Stevens to fellow gay artists.

“One other thing. @kellyclarkson compared me to @melissa_etheridge and the @indigogirlsmusic,” Stevens said in a now deleted Instagram post, “While I’m extremely honored to be in that category of talent I do believe that comment did us all a disservice and only threw us into a labeling trap. It felt small minded to me and exactly what I feel we need to bring attention to the world.”

Stevens tagged both Clarkson, 35, and The Voice in her original post, and the three-time Grammy award winner and LGBTQ advocate didn’t take the criticism lightly– pointing out that her comments had nothing to do with sexuality.

“Wow. This really bums me out. I need everyone 2 hear me & hear ALL OF THE WORDS I SAY,” the Love So Soft singer tweeted, “I compared Molly to Melissa Etheridge, Patty Griffin (a name that was left out conveniently), & the Indigo Girls purely because of the rasp in her voice & that she’s an amazing storyteller.”

Stevens later took to Twitter to apologize to her former coach.

“I sincerely apologize for any hurt I may have caused with my words,” she wrote. “This was not my intention at all. For the people who know me well, you know my heart well too. I strive to live in truth and light. @kelly_clarkson I truly apologize for thinking differently. I look up to you.”

The Voice airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on NBC.

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Joaquin Phoenix on the fence to play Joker in new stand-alone film

Oscar-nominated actor Joaquin Phoenix is in talks to play Gotham villain the Joker in the Warner Bros’ new origins tale produced by Martin Scorsese. The film is yet to be titled, and will be directed by the Hangover’s Todd Phillips.

While studio negotiations have yet to be made, sources told Variety magazine that Phoenix was the top-choice actor and has agreed to take on the role.

Phillips is co-writing the screen-play with 8-Mile’s Scott Silver. While many of the plot details are not solidified yet, this standalone will take place in an early 1980s Gotham City. The film will explore the character’s development into the iconic DC villain, and will have a grittier, crime drama tone than recent films in the DC universe.

This isn’t Phoenix’s first time being offered a role in a superhero movie. He previously passed up offers for the role of DC villain Lex Luthor in Batman v. Superman, and as the titular character in Marvel’s Doctor Strange.

“I’ve flirted with several of those films, having meetings and getting close, but ultimately it never felt like they’d really be fulfilling,” Phoenix told Time Out in 2015. “There were too many requirements that went against my instincts for character.”

Jared Leto most recently played the Joker in Suicide Squad and is likely to reprise that role in Suicide Squad 2, but will not be featured in this film.

This year, Phoenix can be seen in Gus Van Sant’s Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot, which recently premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.

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Tom Hanks to star in Mr. Rogers biopic “You Are My friend”

Tom Hanks has signed on to play Mister Rogers in the film You Are My Friend, a biopic about the children’s television pioneer and personality behind Mister Rogers Neighborhood.

The film is inspired by the unlikely, real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and award-winning journalist Tom Junod.

TriStar Pictures, which announced the movie Monday, describes it as a heart-warmer in which “a cynical journalist begrudgingly accepts an assignment to write a profile piece on the beloved icon and finds his perspective on life transformed.”

Diary of Teenage Girl filmmaker Marielle Heller will direct based on the screenplay written by Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster.

“The script knocked me out with its message of kindness and its exploration of the human spirit,” Heller said. “As a mother, I am so inspired by the teachings of Fred Rogers and as a human I am in awe of his life’s work. I can’t wait to bring his story to the public and be a part of such a thoughtful, smart group of people who are all coming together to make this film, which truly feels to me like an antidote to our very fractured culture.”

Rogers was recently the subject of the documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor that premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and is set to be released by Focus Features. He died in 2003.

Production for You Are My Friend is set to begin in September. A release date has not be announced yet.

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Jessica Chastain in talks to star as Beverly in ‘It’ sequel

Jessica Chastain is in negotiations to star as the grown-up version of Beverly Marsh in part two of New Line Cinema’s adaptation of Stephen King’s It.

The sequel will picks back up 27 years later with the members of The Losers Club all grown up and moved apart. The characters will return to their hometown to face Pennywise once again.

Gary Dauberman (Conjuring; The Nun) is currently working on the script. Andy Muschietti will return to direct, and Bill Skarsgård will return as Pennywise.

Rumors have swirled linking Chastain to the sequel since the opening weekend of the first installment. In an interview with Variety, Muschietti mentioned her as a top choice to play Beverly. Chastain has worked with Muschietti and his screen-writing, producer sister, Barbara, before. She starred in his first big studio release Mama.

“I love Andy and Barbara,” she told ScreenRant. “I worked with them on Andy’s directorial debut, you know, his film ‘Mama’. His first film. And you know, Barbara is one of my best friends so… They’re like my family. Anything that they’re doing, I want to be a part of, so I hope we can make it.”

The Golden-Globe winner is expected to star in “X-Men: Dark Phoenix” later this year. She also recently became attached to a Universal comedy opposite Octavia Spencer.

It: Chapter 2 is set to be released Sept. 6, 2019.