Lena Waithe reclaimed her identity by chopping hair off

Lena Waithe doesn’t care how society sees her shaved head.The openly gay actress and writer is taking the entertainment world by storm, especially her work with Aziz Ansari on Master of None, which bagged her an Emmy in 2017.Up until now she’s rocked h…

Lena Waithe doesn’t care how society sees her shaved head.

The openly gay actress and writer is taking the entertainment world by storm, especially her work with Aziz Ansari on Master of None, which bagged her an Emmy in 2017.

Up until now she’s rocked her trademark locs, but Lena decided to go for the chop after overcoming her worry of what others would think of a shaved hairstyle.

“I’ve gotten gayer, guys,” she joked to reporters at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s annual grants banquet Thursday (09Aug18), reports Variety.

“I felt like I was holding onto a piece of femininity that would make the world feel comfortable with who I am. I think I thought for a long time, ‘Oh, if I cut my hair, I’ll be a stud, I’ll be – in the gay world, there’s a lot of categories – I’ll be a stud or I’ll be a butch,’ and I’ve always thought, ‘Well, no, I’m not that, I’m still soft,’ and I said, ‘Oh, I gotta put that down ’cause that’s something that’s outside of me.'”

The 34-year-old, who was presented with the Trailblazer Award at the MTV Movie & TV Awards in June, has also made guest appearances in This Is Us and Dear White People and is making her mark on the big screen after appearing in Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One.

Adding that she’s fine being mistaken her for a man, Lena continued: “If people call me a butch or say ‘she’s stud’ or call me sir out in the world – so what? So be it. I’m here with a suit on, not a stitch of make-up, and a haircut – I feel like, ‘Why can’t I exist in the world in that way?'”

Lena is engaged to content executive Alana Mayo.

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Letitia Wright would love to be considered a Disney princess

Letitia Wright would be flattered if she were considered a Disney princess by Black Panther fans.The actress played Shuri, the sister of Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa / Black Panther, in the film by Disney and Marvel Studios, and quickly became a fan fav…

Letitia Wright would be flattered if she were considered a Disney princess by Black Panther fans.

The actress played Shuri, the sister of Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa / Black Panther, in the film by Disney and Marvel Studios, and quickly became a fan favourite thanks to the spunky character’s brains and drive. And though she played a very different kind of princess to those before her, Letitia would nevertheless love to join the ranks.

“I grew up watching Disney films, and they inspired me when I was a little kid. So now to be considered a Disney princess is just, wow, incredible,” the 24-year-old gushed in an interview with Liberti Magazine. “All in all, the entire experience has been a wonderful thing and I am incredibly grateful. Irrespective of critical reception, I think when you’ve done something good and worthwhile that almost feels enough in itself.”

Prior to her breakthrough Black Panther role, Letitia had parts in television programmes such as Top Boy, Doctor Who and Black Mirror. However, the British star has a particular fondness for her character within the Marvel Cinematic Universe and hopes that Shuri will inspire fans.

“She has good intentions and wants to use her mind to create technology to help her country to advance in a constructive way,” she considered. “And if that inspires someone in the real world to do something like that, then that’s a pretty good thing. So I hope that when a young aspiring actress sees this film she can see that it’s possible for women to create important technology.”

Letitia also starred in Ready Player One earlier this year (18) and was lucky enough to meet the film’s acclaimed director Steven Spielberg.

“He just came up to me and said: ‘Hi, I’m Steven.’ I was just blown away that someone like that could be so modest…that was a cool moment,” she smiled.

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Lena Waithe bringing sneaker obsession to big screen with shoe documentary

Actress Lena Waithe plans to roll out the red carpet for sneaker bloggers in a new feature documentary on the subject.The Ready Player One star has amassed at least 100 pairs of sports shoes in a prized collection over the years, and her sneaker obsess…

Actress Lena Waithe plans to roll out the red carpet for sneaker bloggers in a new feature documentary on the subject.

The Ready Player One star has amassed at least 100 pairs of sports shoes in a prized collection over the years, and her sneaker obsession only amplified when she was living in London while shooting the Steven Spielberg sci-fi film, revealing she watched video blogs, known as vlogs, about the shoes during her downtime.

“I really want to dive into these guys (sneaker vloggers and bloggers) and their psyche, because they spend their lives just going out to the mall every week to get the new shoes that just dropped,” she tells Variety. “It’s just very competitive.”

Lena made a sneaker vlog of her own by videotaping her recent shopping spree for Complex in May (18), and she also poked fun at her shoe obsession by playing a psychologist in a Nike commercial for the footwear brand’s recent ‘Shoe Therapy’ campaign.

“I’ve been collecting them ever since I started making some real money, which was around Master of None time,” she shares. “It’s crazy because it (sneaker collection) does not appreciate in value, but it’s something that I appreciate myself.”

Lena’s love for sneakers goes so deep, she even received a pair as an engagement gift instead of a ring from her wife-to-be after popping the question to fiancee Alano Mayo last year.

“We were in Tokyo,” she recalled to Complex. “We got engaged in Tokyo on Thanksgiving. That holiday has a very special place in my heart. But she said like, ‘Lena, I want to get you a ring.’ And it was like, ‘Uhh, that’s not really my vibe’ but of course, I was in Tokyo and I wanted to go shopping for sneakers, so while we were out shopping, there was a particular brand that is only available in Tokyo and they don’t sell anymore in the States. She was like, ‘I want to give you these pair of sneakers.’ And I was like, ‘OK, cool!’ They are my engagement sneakers and I only wear them on special occasions.”

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Steven Spielberg to direct his first comic book movie

Steven Spielberg is joining the world of comic book movies with new project Blackhawk.As such films continue to dominate cinema, Spielberg, who recently became the first filmmaker to gross $10 billion (£7 billion) at the global box office, is getting …

Steven Spielberg is joining the world of comic book movies with new project Blackhawk.

As such films continue to dominate cinema, Spielberg, who recently became the first filmmaker to gross $10 billion (£7 billion) at the global box office, is getting in on the action with DC Comics character Blackhawk, a World War II hero.

The 71-year-old is reteaming with Warner Bros. on the movie, the studio with whom he made his most recent success, Ready Player One – an adaptation of Ernest Cline’s award-winning novel of the same name.

“It was wonderful working with the team at Warner Bros. to bring Ready Player One to the screen,” Spielberg said in a statement. “They bring a blend of passion and professionalism to everything they do and have a tremendous history in this genre. I am excited to reunite with them on Blackhawk.”

David Koepp is penning the script. He’s previously worked with triple Oscar winner Spielberg on Jurassic Park, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, War of the Worlds and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, as well as the upcoming fifth Indiana Jones movie.

“We are so proud to be the studio behind Steven Spielberg’s latest hit, and are thrilled to be working with him again on this new action adventure,” said Warner Bros. Pictures Group chairman Toby Emmerich. “We can’t wait to see what new ground he will break in introducing Blackhawk to movie audiences worldwide.”

Blackhawk made his first appearance in 1941, while the Second World War was still raging, in the debut issue of Quality Comics’ anthology series Military Comics. The series told the story of an international squadron of heroic pilots, led by the mysterious Blackhawk, who fought the Nazis.

DC Comics acquired the character in 1957, and the series has spawned a film serial, a radio series and a novel.

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Steven Spielberg becomes $10 billion man

Steven Spielberg has become the first moviemaker in history to gross $10 billion at the global box office. His new release, Ready Player One, has taken the director past the milestone number, making him the most successful filmmaker ever, according to…

Steven Spielberg has become the first moviemaker in history to gross $10 billion at the global box office.

His new release, Ready Player One, has taken the director past the milestone number, making him the most successful filmmaker ever, according to Box Office Mojo.

What makes the feat even more amazing is the fact that his nearest competition is blockbuster king Michael Bay and Peter Jackson, the man behind the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies – and they are both at least $3.5 billion behind Spielberg, whose hits have included Jurassic Park, E.T., Schindler’s List, Jaws, and the Indiana Jones movies.

And the new figures are just based on the films Spielberg has directed. If you count in the projects he has produced as well, his movies have amassed an estimated $17.2 billion, according to the website.

Spielberg will soon be adding to his tally after announcing work has begun on a fifth Indiana Jones movie – the last to feature Harrison Ford as the adventurous professor of archaeology.

Meanwhile, the movie mogul recently revealed he doesn’t like watching his own films until years after they’re released.

“I’m always moving really fast, and I don’t look back a lot,” he told The New York Times. “That’s why I don’t sit down and look at my movies on a movie screen after I’ve made them. Sometimes it’s years before I will even dare look at a movie again, and sometimes I’ll shut it off after five minutes.”

And he’s no longer hooked on blockbusters and box office hits, insisting he prefers to create films with a deep social message, like Ready Player One – a dystopian vision of the future with overcrowded slum cities.

“I feel a deeper responsibility to tell stories that have some kind of social meaning,” he shared. “If I have a choice between a movie that is 100 per cent for the audience and a movie that says something about the past, I will always choose history over popular culture. Even with all the popcorn in a film like Ready Player One, it does still have social meaning.”

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Ben Mendelsohn got emotional over Steven Spielberg’s casting call

Ben Mendelsohn found it emotional working for movie legend Steven Spielberg on his new film Ready Player One.The Rogue One: A Star Wars Story actor plays villainous businessman Nolan Sorrento in the filmmaker’s new science-fiction spectacular. In fact,…

Ben Mendelsohn found it emotional working for movie legend Steven Spielberg on his new film Ready Player One.

The Rogue One: A Star Wars Story actor plays villainous businessman Nolan Sorrento in the filmmaker’s new science-fiction spectacular.

In fact, Ben is such a fan of Steven’s work, that after meeting with the director he didn’t care if he won the part or not.

“(Starring in Ready Player One) is emotional for me,” the Australian star told website Screen Rant. “It’s a big deal. I mean, you know, he kind of raised me. You know? He kind of raised us all in a lot of ways.

“I said to him when I got the meeting with him, I said, ‘Look. You use me in the movie. You don’t use me in the movie. This is kind of exciting anyway. Whatever. This will do me.'”

But Ben did impress Steven and landed the major role, with the movie following Sorrento’s attempts to gain control over the OASIS, a virtual reality role-playing game that has enchanted humanity to the extent that most people live their lives within it.

The character clashes with the movie’s hero, expert gamer Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan), who looks to advance his alter-ego Parzival through the game.

Although Ben said he would have been happy just to meet the man who made Jaws, Close Encounters of the Third Kind and E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, he is delighted he landed a role in Steven’s latest groundbreaking movie.

“I would have been happy if I had sat in the room with him one time in my life and have him have heard of me in that kind of sense,” the actor explained. “So, it keeps getting better, this experience, because now the way this film is hitting, it’s like wow. You’re in a Steven Spielberg movie. Not only that, but you’re in this Steven Spielberg movie. It’s really awesome.”

Ready Player One, which is based on Ernest Cline’s bestselling novel of the same name, is in cinemas now.

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Ready Player One tops North American box office

Ready Player One has shot to the top of the North American box office in its opening weekend. Steven Spielberg’s movie has earned $53 million (GBP37.8 million) over the Easter holiday weekend (30Mar18 – 01Apr18) to take the top spot. The sci-fi actio…

Ready Player One has shot to the top of the North American box office in its opening weekend.

Steven Spielberg’s movie has earned $53 million (GBP37.8 million) over the Easter holiday weekend (30Mar18 – 01Apr18) to take the top spot.

The sci-fi action film, which is based on Ernest Cline’s 2011 novel of the same name, is set in the near-future, when people spend most of their time in an virtual space called the OASIS to avoid the miseries of life. It follows the story of Wade Watts, as played by Tye Sheridan, and also features Black Panther’s Letitia Wright, Olivia Cooke, T.J. Miller, Simon Pegg, and Mark Rylance.

Last month (Mar18), Spielberg revealed Ready Player One is the third most challenging film he’s made.

“It’s the third most difficult I’ve made after Jaws and Saving Private Ryan,” he told Empire magazine. “I think there is a distinction between a physical challenge, which was both Jaws and Saving Private Ryan, and another kind of challenge, which is trying to do something technologically new that has never been done before… I had to learn how to film like this while I was making a film like this. And that means a lot of trial and error.”

Meanwhile, Tyler Perry’s Acrimony, which stars Taraji P. Henson, comes in second with $17 million (GBP12.1 million), while blockbuster film Black Panther takes the third spot with $11 million (GBP7.8 million). The superhero film, which stars Chadwick Boseman and Lupita Nyong’o, has crossed the $650 million (GBP463.9 million) mark at the North American box office and is now the fifth highest-grossing release ever in the U.S. This week it will reportedly pass Jurassic World and Titanic, which earned $659 million (GBP470.3 million), to become the third-highest release in the U.S.

I Can Only Imagine and Pacific Rim: Uprising round out the new top five with $10.5 million (GBP7.5 million) and $9.2 million (GBP6.5 million), respectively.

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Lena Waithe eager to make Mary Tyler Moore biopic

Actress/screenwriter Lena Waithe is eager to make a biopic about late TV star Mary Tyler Moore. The Ready Player One star has found success with TV shows including Master of None and The Chi, but she is hoping to expand her resume on the big screen by…

Actress/screenwriter Lena Waithe is eager to make a biopic about late TV star Mary Tyler Moore.

The Ready Player One star has found success with TV shows including Master of None and The Chi, but she is hoping to expand her resume on the big screen by developing a biopic about The Mary Tyler Moore Show actress.

Waithe knows the Moore project is not exactly what people would expect from “a black lesbian from the south side of Chicago”, but she has always had a huge interest in the actress.

“I read her autobiography more times than I can count,” she tells The Hollywood Reporter, “because I was obsessed with The Mary Tyler Moore Show. I was like, ‘Who is this woman? Who is this person that everybody is wanting to be, that everybody was so happy when she came on screen? Who was this woman who went from being Dick Van Dyke’s wife (on The Dick Van Dyke Show) to the first woman to wear pants on prime time television? The first real single girl that wasn’t focused on finding a man on prime time TV’.

“She was a feminist in every sense of the word, but she was also a functioning alcoholic. She was also extremely private… I feel like, I want to tell her story. That is what I want to do, I’m only concerned with doing what I want to do. I don’t want to follow a certain path. I just want to just make dope s**t.”

The 33-year-old admits she is not sure how she will bring her dream project to the screen, but she wants to continue to work on TV shows and movies that “surprise people.”

“I really want to… find a dope actress to come in and play her and figure it out,” she adds. “That’s the thing that’s on my radar that I want to figure out… I think the reason that people sometimes tend to be so fascinated about me is they’re always surprised by the things that come out of my mouth. I’m going to keep surprising people.”

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Simon Pegg wasn’t taking on new work when Steven Spielberg called

Simon Pegg was stunned when Steven Spielberg offered him a role in Ready Player One after jokingly telling his agent to hold all calls unless the filmmaker reached out. The Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation actor had decided to take a six-month break…

Simon Pegg was stunned when Steven Spielberg offered him a role in Ready Player One after jokingly telling his agent to hold all calls unless the filmmaker reached out.

The Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation actor had decided to take a six-month break to recover from the exhausting process of writing and starring in 2016’s Star Trek: Beyond, and had no intention of taking on any new projects during that time.

However, he cut short his vacation when the celebrated Jurassic Park director contacted him out of the blue.

“I finished Star Trek: Beyond, and that had been a huge experience because we wrote it and it was very intense, and it was wonderful, but afterwards I felt so tired, I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life,” he explained on breakfast show Today. “I thought, I’ve kinda done everything I want to do with my life, I just want to take six months off.

“I called my agent and said (in jest), ‘Don’t call me for six months unless Steven Spielberg calls’ – and he did!”

The British star didn’t have to think twice about the gig, quipping, “He said, ‘Hey, come out of retirement, you fool!’. No, he just said, ‘We’re doing Ready Player One, and we’d like you to do this role,’ and of course I said yes, because it’s Steven Spielberg.”

The sci-fi film is based on Ernest Cline’s 2011 novel of the same name, and is set in a near-future dystopian Earth where people spend most of their time in a virtual space called the OASIS. When the co-creator of OASIS dies, it’s revealed he’s left his vast fortune hidden in the virtual world for one lucky person to find.

Pegg, who portrays the surviving inventor, claims Ready Player One is a true filmmaking masterpiece, and there was so much to take in, he had to watch the movie twice.

“Half of the film is virtual, so it’s performance capture, half of it’s live action… and it’s extraordinary,” Simon gushed. “Visually, I had to see it twice.”

“I do find it hard to watch myself, but this film was so overwhelming,” he shared. “I watched it in London at the premiere and I watched it in L.A. (at that premiere), just so I could take it (all) in.”

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Olivia Cooke rocks bold red dress to Ready Player One L.A. premiere

Olivia Cooke wowed in a bold red dress at the Ready Player One premiere in Los Angeles on Monday night (26Mar18).The English actress walked the purple carpet at the Dolby Theatre prior to the screening of Steven Spielberg’s latest blockbuster, and pose…

Olivia Cooke wowed in a bold red dress at the Ready Player One premiere in Los Angeles on Monday night (26Mar18).

The English actress walked the purple carpet at the Dolby Theatre prior to the screening of Steven Spielberg’s latest blockbuster, and posed up a storm in an eye-catching halter dress made from a shiny crimson fabric which featured an elaborate neckline.

Olivia, who portrays lead character Art3mis in the sci-fi adventure flick, complemented her look with red Calvin Klein high heel sandals and had her hair styled into a chic low ponytail.

Co-star Hannah John-Kamen sported a strapless black gown with flowing train, while Lena Waithe opted for a black T-shirt, sporty jacket, black trousers and white sneakers.

The men of the film got dressed up for the night too; lead actor Tye Sheridan sported a navy suit with white shirt and plaid tie, Ben Mendelsohn wore a grey suit with tan accessories and Simon Pegg rocked a bright blue number which was paired with a floral print shirt and matching pocket square.

Aside from the key castmembers, a number of A-list celebrities turned out to show their support for the film.

Aisha Tyler turned up the glamour in an on-trend black suit, Jaime King wowed in an ice-blue gown which she paired with red satin high heels and Jenna Ortega donned a striped dress and platform heels.

And it was a date night for Sofia Vergara and Joe Manganiello – the Modern Family actress dazzled in a pretty strapless dress with floral print, while her handsome husband wore a blue suit.

Other guests at the premiere included Seth Green, Clare Grant and Christopher Lloyd.

Ready Player One hits cinemas from Wednesday.

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