Tag Archives Gabrielle Union

Gabrielle Union & Dwyane Wade To Star In OWN Special With Newborn Daughter

By Posted on 56 1 m read

If you follow Gabrielle Union and Dwayne Wade on social media then you know the couple has been in a state of bliss since welcoming their beautiful baby girl Kaavia James Union Wade earlier this month.

Kaavia (pronounced Kah-Vee-Uh) was born via surrogate after Gabrielle opened up about her struggle with infertility. In her book, We’re Going To Need More Wine, Gabrielle revealed that she’d suffered multiple miscarriages in an attempt to have a child with her husband and NBA star Dwayne Wade.

“I have had eight or nine miscarriages,” Union writes. “For three years, my body has been a prisoner of trying to get pregnant — I’ve either been about to go into an IVF cycle, in the middle of an IVF cycle, or coming out of an IVF cycle.”

Baby Kaavia will be making her first guest appearance on the OWN network for a televised special with Union and Wade airing Saturday, Dec. 8 at 8 p.m. Oprah at Home with Gabrielle Union, Dwyane Wade & Their New Baby will be about the couple’s path to parenthood. Oprah describes the conversation as one “for every parent and anyone who became a family in their own way.”

Breaking down the meaning of their daughter’s name, which means “work of art” in the Sanskrit language, Gabrielle also says:

“We wanted to include my family in her name, so the ‘James’ is from my uncle James Francis Glass who is also my godfather.”

Congratulations to both Gabrielle and Dwayne.

Shonda Rhimes, Gabrielle Union, And Jada Pinkett Smith Set To Produce Kerry Washington’s New Broadway Play

By Posted on 0 1 m read

Former Scandal Star Kerry Washington prepares for her new role in “American Son,” a broadway drama written by award winning playwright, Christopher Demos Brown, and directed by Tony award winner Kenny Leon.

Joining the producing team are Shonda Rhimes, who previously worked with Washington on seven seasons of Scandal,  Jada Pinkett Smith, Gabrielle Union-Wade, Dwyane Wade, Steve Stoute, and Nnamdi Asomugha, who is married to Washington.

In the play, both Washington and Steven Pasquale play the estranged parents of a missing teenage boy. Set in a Florida police station, the parents are forced to come together when their sons empty car is found during a traffic stop.

We’re not going to spoil it for those eager to watch the live show, but performances will begin October 6th and run till January 27, 2019 at the Booth Theatre in New York City.

Washington praises Brown for telling a story that “dives deep” into topics of racism and law enforcement in America. “After reading the script I was immediately enthralled by the world of play and the gripping circumstances” — referring to the situations that the characters in the play are facing.

The official opening night is set for November 4th.

Gabrielle Union Says She’s “Been The One Chip In The Cookie Long Enough” And Inks First-Look Deal With Sony Pictures TV

By Posted on 61 4 m read

Gabrielle Union recalls a time when she was one of the few token Black girls in Hollywood. If a movie was in need of an actress of color, Gabrielle was one of the few that they kept in rotation. 

“I’ve been the one chip in the cookie long enough. I don’t want to be the magical Negro,” she explained to Ebony magazine. “I don’t feel extra special when the White gaze is upon me. I don’t feel invincible,” added Gabby who appears on the cover of the mag’s April/May issue.

Over the years there have been several African American actresses to come to front including Kerry Washington, Viola Davis, Taraji P. Henson, Regina King, and even Gabrielle Union herself with ‘Being Mary Jane’. With Scandal and Being Mary Jane come to an end this year, she fears that the gap will widen again. 

 “I don’t want to be there by myself; in fact, I don’t want there to be two or three people in the room and have someone shout, ‘We’ve achieved diversity!’ No, there’s three. It’s like we’re supposed to be a microcosm of the world. I don’t want to be a part of the hoodwinking of America, of our global community.”

The star is in luck, because Gabrielle Union who is set to star and executive producer of NBC’s drama pilot L.A.’s Finest, has signed a first look deal with Sony Pictures TV, the studio behind the offshoot from the Bad Boys movie franchise.

Under the two-year pact, Union’s production company, I’ll Have Another – named as a nod to her best-selling book, We’re Going to Need More Wine – will develop broadcast, cable and digital projects for Sony TV.

The L.A.’s Finest pilot hails from Bad Boys movies’ producer Jerry Bruckheimer, Doug Belgrad and Primary Wave Entertainment. Written by Brandon Margolis and Brandon Sonnier and directed by Anton Cropper, it follows the free-spirited Special Agent Syd Burnett character played by Union in 2003’s Bad Boys II movie as she moves to Los Angeles and joins the LAPD. She’s partnered with Nancy McKenna (Jessica Alba), a working mom who can’t help but look at Syd’s freedom with some grass-is-greener envy. Union and Alba executive produce alongside Sonnier Margolis, Bruckheimer, Belgrad, Jonathan Littman, KristieAnne Reed, Jeff Gaspin and Jeff Morrone.

“I am so excited to be back in business with my old Bad Boys family and to have the opportunity to take it a step further and develop projects under the Sony Pictures Television banner is truly an honor,” said Union. “There is an obvious feeling of change happening in Hollywood and I feel very fortunate to now have the opportunity to create necessary projects that are reflective of those changes.”

As part of her deal, Union has named her longtime publicist, Holly Shakoor Fleishcher as Head of Development.

“Holly is someone whose opinions and taste I trust implicitly,” Union said. “Our collaboration has always been extremely positive and together we have the ability to tell honest stories that are relatable, inclusive and above all, entertaining. “

Union made her producing debut as executive producer of the Lifetime movie With This Ring, in which she also starred, and followed that up by executive producing two other starring vehicles, the Universal feature comedy Almost Christmas and BET’s drama series Being Mary Jane, which will be ending its run with a two-hour movie this summer. Later this month, Union will receive the CinemaCon Breakthrough Producer of the Year Award, as she attends the convention with her upcoming Universal thriller Breaking In, which she produced and stars in.

Fleischer started her career in 2002 at BWR Public Relations and then went on to 42West Public Relations in 2009 and remained there for nearly a decade. Union has been a client of Fleischer for her entire 16-year career in publicity.

“I have been extremely fortunate in my career as a talent publicist and am grateful to have worked alongside my colleagues at 42West who I consider the best players in the game,” Fleischer said. “I’m excited to take the next step of my career in the creative space and get to join forces with Gabrielle. We have worked together for a long time and not only do I respect her hard work, sincere passion and unique talent, but we both have similar creative goals, visions and a shorthand that will help us execute our collective vision as a production company.”


‘Being Mary Jane’ Begins Production On Two-Hour Series Finale

By Posted on 63 1 m read

Fans of BET’s hit drama Being Mary Jane were dissapointed when it was announced that the show would be cancelled.  The Gabrielle Union lead series followed the life of Mary Jane as she navigated her personal and professional worlds which often collided. Although a series ending may not be what viewers want, there is light at the end of the tunnel.

View this post on Instagram

To Every Fan of Being Mary Jane, We have all worked so tirelessly to bring you a show that we could be proud to be a part of. Mary Jane has become my favorite character. We've screwed up together, laughed together, evolved together, and raised hell together. I love all her imperfections, and through playing her I became more forgiving of others who are imperfect and on the journey of self discovery and improvement. We watched her struggle with relationships with both men and women, and we watched her finally start to get her shit together. But the journey isn't over yet. We, as a Being Mary Jane family, cannot wait to bring you this final 2 hour series finale movie that will answer all your questions about each and every character. More than anything, however, we want to thank you with every fiber of our being for faithfully watching the show and supporting our work… from the actors, writers, producers, directors and enormous crew over the years, we are humbled and we remain grateful. Thank you!

A post shared by Gabrielle Union-Wade (@gabunion) on

Being Mary Jane will end with a two hour long finale and production is underway.  The finale, filmed in Atlanta, GA. is projected to air, Fall 2018. Gabrielle Union, Michael Ealy, Lisa Vidal, Richard Roundtree and the remainder of the Being Mary Jane will be joined by Morris Chesnut for the series ending.

Executively produced by Gabrielle Union, Mara Brock Akil, Salim Akil and Jeff Morrone, the finale is being written by Patrik-Ian Polk, Devon K. Shepard and Alyson Fouse. Directed by Adam Shankman, the movie finale is also co-executive produced by Polk and Alexander A. Motlagh.

For updates on the series finale, fans are instructed to visit the official page at BET.com/beingmaryjane, Facebook.com/beingmaryjane and following the show @BeingMaryJane on Twitter.

Gabrielle Union to Star In Upcoming Thriller ‘Breaking In’

By Posted on 59 1 m read

Actress Gabrielle Union takes the silver screen in upcoming film Breaking In, the tale of a woman faced with the challenge of rescuing her two children being held hostage in a house with every security measure imaginable. The thriller set to release May 11, 2018, also Mothers Day, shares the power of a mother with a mission.

Photo by Paul Sarkis – © Universal Pictures

Producer Will Packer and Will Packer Productions, behind films Obsessed and Girls Trip joins Union on the production team for this original film. Directed by  James McTeigue  whose work includes V For Vendetta, co-stars include Billy Burke,  Richard Cabral and Aijona Alexus of Empire. 


Breaking In will be released by Universal Pictures. Watch the trailer below.

#LiveCivilInterview: Ryan Destiny Talks STAR, Colorism, Gabrielle Union, & The Secret To Her Glowing Skin

If you’re a fan of EMPIRE and STAR Wednesdays like we are over here at Live Civil than you are very familiar with Ryan Destiny. Ryan plays Alexandra Crane, an aspiring singer/songwriter/dancer who left her lavish life with her celebrity parents played by the legendary Lenny Kravitz and Naomi Campbell to thug it out in Atlanta with her super talented girl group in hopes to “make it big”.

Before her role on Empire and Star, Ryan was apart of Russell Simmon’s All Def label’s R&B girl group Love DollHouse. She has been compared to the likes of actress and author, Gabrielle Union. Union says in her book “We’re going to need more wine” that not only can Ryan act but, “she can sing and dance!”.

Ryan Destiny is just getting started, outside of STAR she is planning to release a solo EP and has signed with Capitol Records. We wanted to get to know the beautiful brown skin girl that immediately caught our eyeso we decided to catch up with her and indulge in some girl talk.

In this interview, we discuss the struggles and revelations of being a woman of darker skin, the main components that every musical girl group needs to truly survive, her relationship with Gabrielle Union, her up and coming EP, and of course BOYS, and more. Grab a glass of wine or cup of tea and a notepad because sis is about to drop some serious gems!


For those who don’t know…who is Ryan Destiny?

I am somebody that want’s to make a mark as somebody that just loves people and broke boundaries and was just themselves all the time. That is me in a nutshell.

Most people know you from Empire and Star on FOX, how did the role of Star come about after things ended for you with Empire?

The role came from the casting director Leah Daniels, she was just such a big believer in me thankfully and supporter. So when things in Empire fell through she really wanted me to audition for STAR and at first I wasn’t really about it because it was about a girl group and I had just gotten out of a real girl group a few months before. So, I was just like yea, I don’t really think that this is for me but I did it anyway. I auditioned for it and I got it, and now I’m here.

What do you love/respect most about Lee Daniels and his work?

The thing I respect the most about him is that he is very vulnerable with his work and telling stories. He is living his truth in his work and the way that he tells stories is really based off of the things that he has gone through. I really respect that about him because that’s not easy to do, it’s not easy to let people into your life that much even if it is a movie or a show. It is important to do and I think it speaks volumes and really opens people’s minds. If the topic or story being highlighted is something that people are not used to or don’t necessarily know too much about Lee Daniels is really big on showing a whole different perspective on that certain topic. I love that about him and his work.

What new dynamic does Star bring to television and entertainment, why should everybody be tuning in?

STAR is so dynamic to me, it really is a rich show. I’m somebody who is very honest with my work and stuff that I do. If it’s trash and I’m on it, I’m going to say that it is trash but I really think that it is something that is not on television right now. We are singing and dancing and it’s so many beautiful types of people in this cast that are so different. We have a transgender (Amiyah Scott) and the group is made up of 3 different girls that come from different places (Jude Demorest, Brittany O’ Grady, and Ryan Destiny), and are white, mixed, and black.

I just think that is very different, simply, it’s a very different show than anything else that’s on right now. It’s very cool for people to watch and learn different things too because it touches on a lot of hard topics.

The diversity of the girl group in the show truly stands out to viewers, it highlights the differences in women from personality to style and even to skin tone. Growing up with darker skin and as a brown skin girl, did you experience any colorism? 

I have definitely experienced it in my personal life while growing up and in the industry, it’s just in the society period. Different things that I would go through would just be simply people not thinking that I am beautiful. People literally not liking me, whether it be a guy that I like or just anybody not liking me because of my skin color, being embarrassed by it and you know, not thinking it’s beautiful because they see a lighter skin tone on television being praised or they hear it in a song by one of their favorite rappers. It’s just always been a thing that even I at a certain point thought was right. I would think, “Oh yeah, you’re right. I’m not beautiful because I’m this color like I want to be lighter”, that would literally go through my mind. That’s a terrible space to be in, especially when you don’t even realize it. When I finally did realize it, and it finally clicked for me, it really truly was a complete shift in my life and it was a genuine shift.

When I realized it, it wasn’t in a time when social media was in this great space where we are showing so much love to one another and so much support of all of our skin tones and diversity. Being loved now I think more than ever really still has such a far way to go because it’s still such a huge issue that’s happening. When I realized it, it’s something that I literally had to pull from myself, I was like, “WOAH! It clicked like I am so beautiful and my skin color is so great and grand and I should not feel like I want to have my skin lightened.”. It also wasn’t a thing where I felt like I had to put down a lighter skin girl, I feel like that’s another huge issue that we have to. Because of jealousy and the way people are brought up, they like to put down a lighter skin person and I think a lot of times is happening to now where darker skin girls are being praised so much, now people are kind of going down this other road where they don’t really like light skin girls, and it just doesn’t make any sense to me.

It’s almost a trend now and I feel like now some dark skin girls aren’t truly loving themselves, they’re loving themselves because it’s what’s hot right now. It should not matter if it’s hot or not, you should love yourself regardless. I just want to really express that and let people know how real that is, and how important it is to really mentally have a shift in your mind. Screw society, screw what is in front of me right now, I am beautiful regardless and I’m going to do this and succeed in this regardless. It’s very important to me and it’s definitely something that I am forever going to speak on because it’s very very real.

As a platform that highlights everything that deals with black women and their magic, we have been dying to find out what your skin care regimen is. What foundation do you use because we all know that Fenty beauty just came out with the perfect matches for all of us. You’re known for glowing and having that melanin poppin’ skin, what’s been your secret? 

Honestly, I went through a whole thing with my skin where I was breaking out really bad, so it’s just crazy now how people are like, “What do you do with your skin?!” and I’m just like, “wow this has been a long time comin'”.

I use a lot of products that don’t have a lot of extra stuff in there. Vanicreme is one of the products that I use, but mainly their face washes because it’s very simple. Some of the stuff that I used to use had a lot of acid and extra chemicals that would dry my skin out and that would not help me at all, I would actually break out even more. So, gentle and simple products are very helpful and aloe vera gel has been the best to me ever!

Whenever I do break out, because I still do, I want people to know that I use a product by Mario Badescu. It’s a spa treatment that you use it’s in a little pink bottle and it’s drying lotion, that I’m telling you will save your life when you’re breaking out I promise!

As far as cosmetics, I use Giorgio Armani, that foundation goes on like silk and it’s not very heavy and that’s the best part. It is important to not use heavy makeup, that’s very crucial to skin care period. Now as far as how long that list is of darker colors, they need to step that up because Fenty just blew everybody out the water for that. Another brand that’s good with skin color for darker women to is AJ Crimson, they truly have a variety as well.

You’ve been compared to the likes of actresses like Gabrielle Union. In her book, “We’re Going To Need More Wine”, she talks about competition and how when she first met you she thought to herself:

“Bitch, fuck you. You want me to mentor you? The press is literally calling you the next Gabrielle Union….”except she can sing and dance!”

How do you feel about the statement that was made and what is your relationship like with her now?  

That was very weird to me, weird in a good way because I didn’t expect her to put me in her book period. I remember the time that we did meet, which is the situation she was addressing in her book and she was very nice. I wouldn’t have known that she was thinking any of the stuff that she said she was thinking in her head at all. It’s interesting because she was just talking to me and we were just chopping it up about what I was filming at the time and I was just struggling mentally with stuff within the show because there is always some drama and she was just being supportive of that and she told me to push through it.

Our relationship is great right now, we’re very supportive of each other. She’s supportive of me, thankfully and I appreciate her vulnerability in the book and how she expressed how she felt truly about it all and overcoming certain things within that. So it’s cool, and I really do think that there is room for all of us and she’s Gabrielle Union so I think she definitely is so good on me and I am no threat. I think that we have a great future ahead as far as our relationship and what could happen because doing a movie with her would be amazing or any type of project would be really cool.

You’re a triple threat, you dance, sing, and act. Star has given you the opportunity to do all of that on what platform. Can you talk to us more about your musical career outside of Star?

Yes, I’ve been recording my own solo music for the past 2 years now. I am in the process of putting out an EP, entitled On One’s Own and I’m really excited about it because it will really just be me. People will really see the difference between the songs on the show vs. who I actually am and what I can create and what I make. I take a lot of different elements but for this project, you can say that it is R&B based and it’s just chill. I’m a dancer too so it’s going to be a lot of that as well, it’s going to be fun, I’m excited.

You are in a girl group on the set of Star and have actually been in one in real life, Doll House. What do you believe are the main components that every girl group needs to thrive and be successfully happy has a group and as individuals?

It’s a very difficult thing and I think the main downfall that I had in my experience was simply and truly be friends. There is a lot of people in the industry that think that you can throw girls together and they think that you can just say, “Okay, be friends now” and it will be fake at that point, it’s very forced and that will never resonate. Sometimes it happens that way and thank God it can, but it will only happen if they truly connect. If they don’t and they are like faking it in interviews and faking it in the public, it will always end badly. Somebody is going to leave, somebody is going to be replaced. People are able to see that, and that’s not what girls want to see, they want to see girls that are true friends and once they see that they are not, it’s like, “Oh, this is going to end”. So I think that is a huge part of being a girl group, you really have to love each other.

Individually it’s the same thing, you’re going to have to be your authentic self with anything. Whether you’re in a group or not so as long as you keep those things in mind and you know what audience you’re speaking to and why you’re doing it, then that can really help along the way.

You’re dating a fine young man by the name of Keith Powers. What do you look for in a guy and what is your outtake on dating as a millennial and especially in the industry?

What I look for in a guy is everything that Keith is. It’s very very hard to please me, especially now because I’ve seen a lot of different people and it’s hard to get me and it’s hard to play me. It’s just tricky, especially in the space that I’m in, I’m very career based and that’s always first for me. So to be in the industry it’s very tricky and as long as you both realize where you’re at in life and you realize that certain things are going to have to be sacrificed but you still respect them and love them and you guys have an understanding then things will be easier. It helps me having somebody who is in the industry because you guys understand each other on a different level. You’re busy, they’re busy so that helps and I know people think that it may be a thing like we don’t get to talk as much or there’s no time but it helps because we’re young, we’re living our lives. The number one thing that’s been important to me not having any pressure, there’s no pressure on it things go a lot smoother. When you feel like there’s something weighing down on you and you feel like you have to please them or please everybody else. Being in the public eye in a relationship can get tough too which is why we’re pretty low key but a lot of opinions can come into play and that’s pressure within itself, so you really have to keep that out. The pressure sucks.

Out of all of your female peers in the industry who is inspiring you the most right now and why?

I have always been influenced especially by entertainers, people like Michael Jackson, Aaliyah, and Prince. I’m huge on singers like Brandy, Lauryn Hill, and India Arie. As far as acting goes, ugh it’s always so hard choosing people because I love my people so anybody that’s going hard right now really. It’s so many young aspiring actors that are really killing it and I’m just a fan, I’m a fan of all of us right now that are just pushing these boundaries and going in these different directions that people don’t usually see us in, whether black or another race. I really do love every actor that’s coming up right now and I think we’re really doing different things with how much we can do too, we’re not just actors and we’re not just singers we can do a lot more and we can make a change in the industry and the world.

What’s next for Ryan Destiny and what do you want the world to know about you?

I will just say, you will see. I am always and forever evolving and my journey I feel like is going to be a long one. I’m definitely always going to keep people updated but there are a lot of things that people don’t know and I’m excited about the future and I just want everybody to know that I’m a lover and an entertainer.

Gabrielle Union Laces Up News Anchor Who Was Told Her Dresses Were Too Tight For Her Pregnant Body

By Posted on 58 2 m read


Gabrielle Union who recently played a news anchor and journalist on her hit show ‘Being Mary Jane’ recently sent some of her pieces from her New York and Company Collection to Demetria Obilor. Demetria, a 26-year-old reporter for ABC affiliate WFAA was body shamed for wearing dresses that showed her beautiful curves on the air.  “YOU are the real-life Mary Jane… A go-getter news anchor who dresses DOPE and doesn’t give a s*** what everyone else thinks,” Union wrote to Demetria on Instagram. “Keep on kicking a– and taking names queen. We love you just the way you are! And since you slay everything you wear, I’m sending you a bunch of pieces from my @nyandcompany collection and some credit for extra pieces!”

There are many “Demetria’s” on television who go through public ridicule every day because they aren’t fitting into “society” standards of what women should look like on TV. On Wednesday, Union spotlighted Laura Warren,  a news anchor for NBC affiliate WRDW in Augusta, Georgia. Warren was criticized while she was pregnant. A voicemail was left by a viewer saying, that they were “disgusted” and that she was wearing “too right outfits” that showed too much of her growing stomach.

“I consider myself a confident, pretty secure, independent, woman,” Warren wrote on her personal blog. “Why was I letting this one ridiculous, negative comment ruin my whole day? I’ve gotten dozens of compliments from viewers saying nice things about my pregnancy, why was this the one that stuck?”

Warren plans to focus on the positive like Demetria and they both will forever be an example for future news anchors.

“I’m going to say as many nice things as I can to as many people as I can, and I’m going to do it in a dress that fits these beautiful new curves with my ‘watermelon’ stomach showing.” – Laura Warren

Rock the hell out of those curves and those dresses ladies!



Gabrielle Union Lands ‘Bad Boys’ Spinoff Series at NBC


“Bad Boys”, a classic action series starring Will Smith and Martin Lawerence as two Miami detectives also featured the talents of Gabrielle Union who will bring the franchise to the silver screen. Variety reports NBC has committed to bringing a spin-off featuing Union’s character “Syd Burnett” to life.

Deadline reports the “Bad Boys” television spin-off was presented by producer Jerry Bruckheimer through Jerry Bruckheimer TV and Doug Belgrad through 2.0 Entertainment and Primary Wave Entertainment.

Gabrielle Union who recently relayed the news that her hit show “Being Mary Jane” would soon be ending will not be off the screen for long. The series will take Gabrielle Union’s character from investigating the drug cartels in Miami to an living as a detective for the LAPD.

The show which does not yet have a title will chronical Syd Burnett’s new scene as an LAPD detective while living an unapologetic lifestyle.  This show sounds like a winner!  Stay tuned for more details on this upcoming series.

Gabrielle Union Opens Up About Infertility Struggles In Hopes to Change Dialogue Around The Issue

By Posted on 0 1 m read

In her new book, We’re Going to Need More Wine, Gabrielle Union reveals her painful experiences with infertility. In an excerpt from the book shared with People magazine, the start of BET’s Being Mary Jane says that she’s had “eight or nine miscarriages.”

“For three years, my body has been a prisoner of trying to get pregnant,” Union writes in her book. “I’ve either been about to go into an IVF cycle, in the middle of an IVF cycle, or coming out of an IVF cycle.”

 The 44-year-old actress said that she wanted to be frank about her fertility issues because she hopes to change the way people broach the topic. Union says that she is constantly being asked about whether she wants to start a family—and not just from the media.

From People:

“For so many women, and not just women in the spotlight, people feel very entitled to know, ‘Do you want kids?’ A lot of people, especially people that have fertility issues, just say ‘no’ because that’s a lot easier than being honest about whatever is actually going on. People mean so well, but they have no idea the harm or frustration it can cause.”

Still, Union is hopeful that she and husband Dwyane Wade will one day bring a child into the world. Union writes that they “remain bursting with love and ready to do anything to meet the child we’ve both dreamed of.”

Will “Being Mary Jane” and Gabrielle Union Bring Some Credibility To BET Drama’s?

By Posted on 0 2 m read

We’ve ALL clowned BET and all but written them off, for the lack in follow-through on great television concepts or questionable decisions when it comes to their programming (see Can We Please Have Nice Things, BET?). But it appears that the tides may be turning with their new show Being Mary Jane.

Being Mary Jane stars award winning actress Gabrielle UnionRichard Roundtree, and Tika Sumpter, and is crafted by the same hands of The Game and Girlfriends, Mara Bock Akil and Salim Akil. Mary Jane Paul is a beautiful, successful and independent (we love those adjectives) news anchor who battles with the conflicting pull of being good at your job and having a family that lacks her same motivation. Mix that with her less than spectacular love life and her struggle to find a balance between all facets and it seems like things could be possibly headed in the right direction for this show. The thing about it is, BET has had all the fitting pieces before, Reed Between The Lines and that show that used to come on after The Game? Right. So, like you, I was a little skeptical about this new scripted drama until I saw the clips below!


At first glance and without any supporting context this already seems leaps and bounds above any of the other shows Bet has put onto the airwaves, I just hope that the follow-through is there to support what this seems to be. Being Mary Jane debuts Tuesday July 2nd on BET at 10:30pm ET/PT. We’re kinda excited, shhh!

Oprah, Gabrielle Union & More Honored at Essence’s Black Women in Hollywood

A few weeks ago we posted about this year’s Black Women in Music banquet hosted by ESSENCE Magazine. In similar fashion, yesterday was ESSENCE Magazine’s Black Women in Hollywood luncheon also featuring the Lincoln MKZ as the official automobile for the event. This event however, was not only attended by our front woman and leading lady Karen Civil, but also by other female ultra celebs and power players such as Jill Scott, Naomi Campbell, Michelle Ebanks, Wendell Pierce and Kelly Rowland

The Honorees of this event were Oprah Winfrey, Naomi Harris of Skyfall , Gabrielle Union, Alfre Woodard, Mara Brock Akil and Quvenzhane Wallis, the 9-year breakout star who’s Oscar nominated for her role in the film Beasts of the Southern Wild. This event was definitely one for the books as all of the ladies took the stage with speeches that were powerful and moving individually and collectively. Proud moments were had by all as Oprah was introduced by the graduating class of her school Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa, Gabrielle and Naomi shared a touching moment over similar experiences in their careers, and Alfre Woodard and Mara Brock Akil spoke of the progress that’s been made just over the span of THEIR careers. ESSENCE Magazine has been doing an outstanding job with these awards and choosing really impactful honorees, we’re glad to see great talent receiving the proper recognition they deserve. Check out pics from the event below!


Skyfall starlet, Naomi Harris, poses in front of the Lincoln MKZ

Best Actress Nominee Quvenzhane Wallis arrives at the ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon in the 2013 Lincoln MKZ


Michelle Ebanks (President, Essence Communications), Actor Michael Ealy and Shawn Thompson (Multicultural Marketing Manager, Ford Motor Company)