BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: ‘I’m a Virgo’s’ fanciful fable debuts on Prime

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By Bill Vaughan

Entertainment Writer

Critically acclaimed writer-director Boots Riley (“Sorry to Bother You”) is taking giant steps with his new project, the highly anticipated mythical, coming-of-age comedy “I’m a Virgo” premiering June 23 on Prime Video.

In the darkly comedic, fantastical joyride, Emmy-winning actor Jharrel Jerome (“When They See Us,” “Moonlight”) stars as Cootie, a 13-foot-tall, young, Black man in Oakland. Having grown up hidden away, passing time on a diet of comic books and TV shows, he escapes to experience the beauty and contradictions of the real world for the first time.

The outstanding cast also includes Walter Goggins (“The Hateful Eight,” “Justified”), Brett Gray (“Star Trek: Prodigy”), Tony-nominated, Obie-winning actress and daughter of a Belizean beauty queen, Kara Young (“The Punisher”), Allius Barnes (“PEN15”), whose cousin made the martial arts anthem “Kung Fu Fighting,” Olivia Washington (“Breaking”), Mike Epps (“The Upshaws,” “Dolemite is My Name,” a damn good dancer), and Carmen Ejogo (“True Detective,” “Fantastic Beasts,” Eric B. & Rakim’s “Paid in Full” music video).

STAGE LIGHTS: The new Broadway revival of “The Wiz” has found its titled star in Wayne Brady, who will join a cast including Deborah Cox in spring 2024. Before hitting New York City, the production will travel to Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Chicago, San Diego, San Francisco and the Hollywood Pantages Theatre.

Also headed to Broadway this September is our own Vanessa Bell Calloway. The actress with credits including “Dreamgirls” and “Coming To America” is in the cast of the revival of Ossie Davis’ “Purlie Victorious: A Non-Confederate Romp Through the Cotton Patch.” The production, directed by Kenny Leon, will star Tony- and Grammy Award-winner Leslie Odom Jr. 

TASTY QUIP: “There has never been anybody as electric, male or female, onstage as Tina Turner. You had James Brown. You’ve had Prince. You’ve got Mick Jagger. But no one came near Tina. She was unbelievable.” – ELTON JOHN to the Hollywood Reporter

CLIPPETTES: Former “The Daily Show” host Trevor Noah is planning a weekly podcast with Spotify, offering his signature humor, global perspective and in-depth conversations with influential figures …

Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey presents the traveling exhibition “Art, Beats & Lyrics” June 23 at the Shrine Expo Hall from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. in an evening also featuring The Wailers at The Bourbon Room …

“Back to Basics” with rappers Havoc of Mobb DeepPete Rock, Slum Village, Czarface and more is happening from 2 to 10 p.m. June 24 at the Garden Amphitheatre. Also that evening the Debbie Allen-directed “Fetch Clay, Make Man” has a Black Out Night ($29 tickets with the code FCMMBLACKOUT) at the Kirk Douglas Theatre …

Tamla Records, the iconic label founded by Berry Gordy nearly 65 years ago, before he transformed the start-up into Motown Records, is being re-launched as a mainstream imprint focusing on positive hip-hop and R&B music. Capitol Music Group and Capitol Christian Music Group oversee reviving the former home to legends Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye and Smokey Robinson & The Miracles

Eight-time Grammy-winning musician and producer Stephen Marley brings his “Babylon by Bus” tour back to Vina Robles Amphitheatre June 25; $1 of every ticket will benefit the mission of Ghetto Youths Foundation to provide aid and assistance, support and critical resources to people in need across the globe …

The Grammy Museum welcomes Ivan Neville to its Rooftop Terrace June 27 to celebrate his incredible career and the release of his first new solo album in almost 20 years, “Touch My Soul” (with Cyril Neville, Bonnie Raitt, Michael McDonald, Trombone Shorty and more on the record) …

Gospel star Jonathan McReynolds holds court at the Theatre at Ace Hotel June 28 as New Orleans funk outfit Dumpstaphunk is at The Venice West, and country rapper Yella Beezy is at The Observatory …

L.A. native Noah Haidu joins forces with jazz icons Buster Williams and Lenny White in support of his new album, “Standards,” which celebrates the 40th anniversary of Keith Jarrett’s “Standards Trio.” It takes place at Catalina Bar and Grill June 29, while hip hop’s Rich The Kid, Famous Dex, and Jay Critch are at Anaheim’s House of Blues.

TC ON TV: June 23 –- “Swagger” (AppleTV+): Another season of the hoops series from NBA star Kevin Durant, filmmaker Reggie Rock Bythewood and the team behind “Friday Night Lights.” With O’Shea Jackson Jr., Quvenzhané Wallis and Tristan Mack Wilds. “World’s Best” (Disney+): Utkarsh Ambudkar (“Ghosts”) is the writer and co-star of this film about a kid with hip-hop dreams. “The Perfect Find” (Netflix): Gabrielle Union stars in this movie about an older woman who falls for a younger man, who happens to be her boss’ son. With La La Anthony, D.B. Woodside, Gina Torres, Aisha Hinds and Janet Hubert. “Cinnamon” (Tubi): An original movie with Damon Wayans and Pam Grier. “Gridiron Grind” (Tubi): Naomi Grace and Sharon Leal are featured in this film about a high school female football player.

June 24 – “Keyshia Cole: This Is My Story” (Lifetime): The R&B singer executive produces and makes her acting debut in this biopic of her early days in Oakland, her rise to stardom and turbulent relationship with her mother (played by Debbi Morgan). D’Angela Proctor directs with Grammy Award-winner Warryn Campbell composing the original score.

June 25 – “The Freak Brothers” (Tubi): The weed-smoking bros and their outspoken cat are back for more bizarre, animated adventures voiced by Adam Devine, John Goodman, La La Anthony, Pete Davidson, ScHoolboy Q, Woody Harrelson and Tiffany Haddish. “2023 BET Awards” (BET/BET Her/VH1): Culture’s Biggest Night” will celebrate 50 years of hip-hop throughout the live telecast with sets by Big Daddy Kane, Chief Keef, E-40, Fat Joe, Ja Rule, Kid ‘N Play, Lil Uzi Vert, MC Lyte, Percy “Master P” Miller, Remy Ma, Soulja Boy, The Sugarhill Gang, Trick Daddy,Trina, Tyga, Uncle Luke, Warren G, Ying Yang Twins, and Yo-Yo. Coco Jones, Doecchii, and GloRilla will also perform. “The 2010s” (CNN): “2020: The Year That Changed Everything” concludes the first season. “From” (MGM+): “Average Joe” (BET/BET Her/VH1): Deon Cole stars in this darkly comedic, intense one-hour drama set in “The Hill” district of Pittsburgh, with Malcolm Barrett and Tammy Townsend.

June 26 – “Claim To Fame” (ABC): Hosts Kevin & Franklin Jonas return to introduce the 12 celebrity relatives living under one roof while concealing their lineage for the $100,000 prize. “Celebrity IOU” (HGTV): “Taraji P. Henson’s Garden Surprise” “POV” (PBS): The series’ 36th season premieres with “After Sherman,” director Jon-Sesrie Goff’s feature debut about inheritance and the tension that defines our collective American history. The film explores coastal South Carolina as a site of pride and racial trauma through Gullah cultural retention and land preservation.

June 28 – “Hijack” (AppleTV+): A new seven-part thriller starring and executive-produced by Idris Elba (“Luther”). The series also stars Emmy Award- and NAACP Image Award-winner Archie Panjabi (“The Good Wife,” “Blindspot”). “Anthem” (Hulu): From Ryan Coogler comes this doc centering on composers Kris Bowers and D.J. Dahi as they venture out on a musical journey across the U.S., experimenting to re-imagine the national anthem. “Big Freedia Means Business” (Fuse): “Welcome To Hollywood” “Grown-ish” (Freeform): The sixth and final season begins.

June 29 – “Lace” (AllBlk): A second season of the courtroom, boardroom and bedroom chess matches of Lacey McCullough (Maryam Basir) as she and her firm navigate clients, cases, exclusive call-girl (and boy) services, and their personal lives. With Kellita Smith and Leonard Roberts. “Murder City” (Tubi): Mike Colter, Jesse Garcia, Anderson Silva and Antonio Fargas are featured in this crime drama. “Warrior” (MAX): A concluding season of the martial arts series created from the notes of the late legend Bruce Lee. “The Witcher” (Netflix): The last episodes with star Henry Cavill begins. “Capitol One’s The Match” (TNT/HLN/TRU): Kansas City Chiefs teammates Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce take on Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson in a live, 12-hole event from the Wynn Golf Club in Las Vegas. “Trippin’ with Anthony Anderson Mama Doris” (E!): The pair visit Paris and La Ferme in France.

END QUOTE: “This is the voice of our generation. There’s a lot of things the world wouldn’t have known about if it weren’t for us talking about those things on our records. We needed to let them know what was happening. We were letting the world know that there’s something else going on, and everything is not necessarily sweet. In my era, we were fighting against crack, cocaine and HIV. We were trying to promote people wearing condoms. We had to make the things we said cool and clever and right for the clubs. I feel that we were so creative, being able to pull a lot of that stuff off, and still make you wanna dance at the same time.” – QUEEN LATIFAH to Ebony on how hip-hop changed the landscape of American culture

As featured in the Los Angeles Wave and Independent, Tasty Clips is one of the leading entertainment columns in the nation, serving nearly 1 million weekly readers. Bill Vaughan may be reached at, via Twitter @tastyclips, or Instagram @tasty_clips.

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