BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: ABC to mark 25th anniversary of iconic ‘Cinderella’

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By Bill Vaughan

Entertainment Writer

As part of Disney’s World Princess Week, ABC’s “20/20” is presenting a special edition celebrating the 25th anniversary of “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella” by reuniting original cast members Brandy, Whoopi Goldberg, Paolo Montalban, Victor Garber, Bernadette Peters, Jason Alexander and Veanne Cox.

Following “Cinderella: The Reunion” at 8 p.m. Aug. 23, “The Wonderful World of Disney” will air, for the first time on broadcast television in more than two decades, a presentation of the original film, which is available to stream on Disney+.

The classic Disney live-action film, from producers Debra Martin Chase, Craig Zaden, Neil Meron and associate producer Robyn Crawford, marked a groundbreaking moment in television history, introducing America’s first Black Cinderella (Brandy) and Fairy Godmother (Whitney Houston).

The ABC News Studios reunion special explores how the revolutionary made-for-television musical expanded society’s view of the term “princess” and includes interviews with original cast members, as well as rare behind-the-scenes footage with Houston.

The one-hour program also dives into the film’s positive impact on representation in Hollywood and features interviews with stars who share a connection to the project, including Tony, Grammy and Emmy Award-winning actor and singer Billy Porter, who played the gender-neutral fairy godmother, Fabulous Godmother, in the 2021 Amazon Original “Cinderella” reimagining; actress Jade Jones, who plays Belle in the off-Broadway tour of “Beauty and the Beast”; and singer-songwriter and choreographer Todrick Hall, a “Cinderella” superfan who has drawn inspiration from the film throughout his career.

Originally premiering on Nov. 2, 1997, to 60 million viewers on ABC’s “The Wonderful World of Disney,” “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella” became an instant fan favorite, acclaimed by critics and audiences alike and earning seven Emmy Award nominations.

It continued a tradition of hit broadcast presentations of the musical beginning in 1957 with star Julie Andrews and in 1965 starring Lesley Ann Warren.

OPENING DOORS: CBS Studios/NAACP Production Venture, run by Sheila Ducksworth and The Black List announced a new initiative to discover episodic writing talent whose work authentically represents the Black experience.

A Writers Guild minimum script deal will be offered to one of the writers identified by this initiative via submissions on blcklst.com through Nov. 16.

Writers of features, pilots, plays and musicals whose work can speak to the Black experience are encouraged to opt in for consideration on the Black List website.

The Black List will then use all available data related to script submissions to determine a shortlist to be shared with CBS Studios/NAACP. Shortlisted writers may be asked to provide additional materials, such as a professional resume and personal statement, as part of the consideration process.

“The NAACP’s response to the release of ‘Birth of a Nation’ remains a criminally underappreciated moment in the history of cinema,” said Franklin Leonard, founder and CEO of The Black List. “It’s a real joy to partner with them and CBS Studios to find exceptional writers writing about the Black experience.”

The Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival’s Inclusion Fellowship is back for a third year with increased support so that each of the 10 selected filmmakers (five Afro/Black Latino and five Indigenous Latino) will be receiving individualized industry mentorship and $30,000 for the production of their short film that will premiere at Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival in 2023.

“Last year, LALIFF and Netflix expanded the inclusion fellowship by adding the Indigenous Latino cohort to the existing Afro/Black Latino cohort with the goal of uplifting Latino voices and moving representation forward,” said Academy Award-nominated actor, founder of the Latino Film Institute (LFI) and co-founder of LALIFF, Edward James Olmos. “As we begin our third year, we are proud to announce the fellows will be receiving larger grants in order to bring their stories to life. It is fantastic to see Netflix realize the need to invest more in the Latino community and our stories.”

For the full requirements, visit: laliff.org/fellowship/2023_submissions/ before the Sept. 16 deadline.

CLIPPETTES: Viola Davis (of the upcoming “The Woman King”) will next portray Dr. Valumnia Gaul, the head gamemaker in the “Hunger Games” prequel “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” with Peter Dinklage and Rachel Zegler (“West Side Story”)

Amanda Seales brings Smart Funny & Black to The Novo on Aug. 19; with Boy George & Culture Club at the Microsoft Theater; Tedeschi Trucks Band at The Greek; and the start of a two-night stand at the Hollywood Bowl by The Gipsy Kings featuring Nicolas Reyes …

After seven seasons, bandleader Jon Batiste has left “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” to work on the follow-up to his 2022 Grammy Award-winning Album of the Year, “We Are,” and to pursue an acting career beyond his role in the upcoming musical film “The Color Purple”

Aug. 20 is all about the Freestyle Summer Festival 2022 at the Queen Mary with Lisa Lisa, Taylor Dayne, Exposé, Soul II Soul, The Cover Girls, Shannon, The Jets, Nice & Wild, Sweet Sensation, Ready for the World, Klymaxx, Sugar Hill Gang, Melle Mel & Scorpio from Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five, SNAP!, Tiffany, Pretty Poison and more followed by fireworks. For info/tix text Freestyle 562-755-9913

Deadline Hollywood was the first to report that Kenya Barris (“black-ish”) is reimagining “The Wizard of Oz” from a modern perspective for Warner Bros

Chris Brown and Lil Baby: One Of Them Ones Tour arrives Aug. 21 at Five Points Amphitheatre; while Flying Lotus and Hiatus Kaiyote perform with the orchestra at the Hollywood Bowl

2022’s box office champ “Top Gun: Maverick” starring Tom Cruise is headed to home screens digitally beginning Aug. 23

Reginald Hudlin, Marcus Miller and Craig Robinson are back to present Black Movie Soundtrack IV at the Hollywood Bowl on Aug. 24. This year’s line-up includes BeBe Winans, Eric Benét, Kid ’n Play, Jennifer Holliday, Lalah Hathaway, Warren G and Babyface. The evening also finds Kid Cudi’s To The Moon Tour at The Forum.

TASTY QUIP: “I didn’t realize it was a bigger deal until I was racially abused on social media.” – STEVE TOUSSAINT to the Hollywood Reporter on his casting as Lord Coryls Velaryon (who is white in the books) on HBO’s “Game of Thrones” prequel series “House of the Dragon” (premiering Aug. 21)

TC ON TV: Aug. 21 – “Never Would Have Made It: The Marvin Sapp Story” (TV1): Chaz Lamar Shepherd (“Marvel’s Luke Cage” “The Game”) stars as the gospel music artist, author, radio show host and pastor. Ambre Anderson (“Power Book II” “Manifest Evil”) is cast as Sapp’s wife, MaLinda Prince Sapp. “Celebrity Family Feud” (ABC): “Shark Tank” vs. “The Talk” “$100,000 Pyramid” (ABC): Yvette Nicole Brown vs. Pete Holmes and Jo Koy vs. Boyz II Men’s Wanya Morris “Autopsy: The Last Hours of …” (Reelz): Freddie Prinze “United Shades of America” (CNN): “Hawaii For Hawaiians” “Flatbush Misdemeanors” (SHO): Kirk “Sticky Fingaz” Jones joins the cast in the season finale.

Aug. 22 – “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” (NGC): “Anthony Anderson in the Sierra Nevada Mountains”

Aug. 23 – “Untold: The Rise and Fall of And1” (Netflix): Born out of the playgrounds of New York City, the “And 1 Mixtape Tour” took streetball to the masses, challenging convention and picking up a team of basketball misfits along the way. This is the story of the league that launched streetball legends The Professor, Hot Sauce and Skip 2 My Lou. “Password” (NBC): J.B. Smoove vs. Jimmy Fallon

Aug. 24 – “Lost Ollie” (Netflix): A toy searches the countryside for the young boy who lost him in this family series inspired by the book “Ollie’s Odyssey” with Gina Rodriguez, Mary J. Blige and Jake Johnson. “Music’s Greatest Mysteries” (AXS): “Stones Murder, Ghostbusters and Trump & Eminem” “Katrina Babies” (HBO): New Orleans native filmmaker Edward Buckles Jr.’s feature-length documentary debut premiering just days before the 17th anniversary of the hurricane. The film follows the lives of the young survivors. “Mike” (Hulu): Margot Robbie is an executive producer along with star Trevante Rhodes (“Moonlight”) of this eight-episode limited series exploring the controversial life of boxing champion Mike Tyson. With Harvey Keitel as Cus D’Amato, Laura Harrier as Robin Givens, and Russell Hornsby as Don King.

Aug. 25 – “Live with Kelly & Ryan” (ABC): Morris Chestnut “River’s Gold Mine” (AllBlk): From writer/director Brittani Nightengale. “Carl Weber’s The Black Hamptons” (BET+): Starring Lamman Rucker, Vanessa Bell Calloway, Elise Neal, Brian White and Blac Chyna.

END QUOTE: “When I hear season 15 of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race,’ I have to pinch myself — I just won’t tell you where.” — Host and Executive Producer RuPAUL 

As featured in the Los Angeles Wave and Independent, Tasty Clips is one of the leading entertainment columns in the nation, serving nearly one million weekly readers. Bill Vaughan may be reached at tastyclips@yahoo.com, via Twitter @tastyclips, or Instagram @tasty_clips.

 

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