Sunday, April 26, 2009

"Golden Girl" Bea Arthur Dies At Age 86

(CNN) -- Bea Arthur, the actress best known for her roles as television's "Maude" and the sardonic Dorothy on "The Golden Girls," has died of cancer, a family spokesman said Saturday.
She was 86.
Spokesman Dan Watt said that Arthur died Saturday morning at her home in Los Angeles, her family by her side.
She is survived by her sons Matthew and Daniel and grandchildren Kyra and Violet, he said.
No funeral services are currently planned, Watt said, adding that the family asked that donations be made to either the Art Attack Foundation or PETA in lieu of flowers.
Arthur's opinionated Maude first appeared on Norman Lear's "All in the Family" as Edith Bunker's cousin, and was so popular that Lear created a spin-off series.
In the '70s, "Maude" was ahead of the social curve, tackling hot topics not usually mentioned on situation comedies -- pornography, race relations and, in an episode titled "Maude's Dilemma," abortion.
That episode spawned demonstrations and generated hate mail for Arthur -- when Maude and husband Walter (Bill Macy) decided on that episode they were too old to raise a child.

But many saw Maude as an enduring icon for women's liberation -- a big deal for the shy, Jewish girl born Bernice Frankel in New York City.
During the Depression, Arthur's family left the Big Apple and opened a clothing store in Cambridge, Maryland. By the time she was 12, Arthur was nearly 5 feet, 10 inches tall, and self-conscious about her height.
But she masked her insecurity with comedy and eventually returned to New York to study acting. Along the way, she had a short-lived marriage she never spoke about, but she kept the last name -- Arthur.
The young Bea Arthur earned a living singing and doing stage work on Broadway and off-Broadway. Critics delighted in her haughty, serpent-tongued deliveries.
Her first television appearance came in 1951 in a long-forgotten series called "Once Upon a Tune," but she quickly made a name for herself with appearances on "Studio One," "Kraft Television Theatre" and "The Sid Caesar Show."
Arthur drew attention in "Threepenny Opera" on Broadway with Lotte Lenya, but she really turned heads in 1964 originating the role of Yente the Matchmaker in "Fiddler on the Roof."
In 1966, Arthur won a Tony Award for the caustic Vera Charles in the play "Mame," playing opposite Angela Lansbury in the title role. Eight years later, she reprised the role in the film version opposite Lucille Ball, but by then she was already well-established as Maude.
Arthur left "Maude" in 1978, making television and some film appearances afterward. She starred in a short-lived series, "Amanda's," in 1983 and then joined the cast of "The Golden Girls" in 1985 with Betty White, Rue McClanahan and Estelle Getty.
Her role as Dorothy Zbornak gave Arthur her other major television success as one of four older women living together in Florida. (Getty, the youngest of the four, played Arthur's mother). The role earned Arthur a second Emmy -- the first was for "Maude."
Arthur left the show after Dorothy remarried at the end of the 1991-92 season. White, McClanahan and Getty continued for another season on the show, renamed "The Golden Palace," but the show lasted only one season without Arthur.
Arthur entered semi-retirement after the show ended in 1992, returning to television in sporadic guest appearances and appearing at several celebrity roasts. In the early part of this decade, Arthur appeared in several one-woman shows.
Her last stage appearance was in 2006. Her last television appearance was on "The View" in 2007.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Miss USA 2009 Kristen Dalton

Miss USA 2009 is Miss North Carolina Kristen Dalton !
LAS VEGAS – Miss North Carolina USA Kristen Dalton was crowned Miss USA 2009 on Sunday, beating out 50 other beauty queens in the live pageant televised from Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. The 22-year-old aspiring motivational speaker and entertainer from Wilmington edged out first runner-up Miss California USA Carrie Prejean, of San Diego, and second runner-up Miss Arizona USA Alicia-Monique Blanco, of Phoenix."It feels really natural," Dalton said of her win. "I've worked so be here and this has been my lifelong dream and it's finally here. And whoever knew you could win in a turquoise gown?"Contestants from all 50 states and the District of Columbia competed in the pageant, aired live on NBC. Contestants were judged by their performance in swimsuit and evening gown modeling contests and their responses to a question asked onstage; unlike the rival Miss America pageant, Miss USA contestants do not perform a talent.The top 15 contestants worked the stage in white string bikinis designed by pop star Jessica Simpson's swimwear line. Rocker Kevin Rudolf performed his song "Let it Rock," followed by The Veronicas, who performed their single "Untouched" as the top 10 beauties showed off their choice of evening gowns. Dalton's was a flowing, blue Grecian number that stood out among a series of white gowns. Her title comes with a year's use of a New York apartment, a public relations team, a two-year scholarship at the New York Film Academy and an undisclosed salary. She also will go to the Bahamas in August to compete in the Miss Universe pageant, where American beauties haven't been lucky in recent years. Both Miss USA 2008 Crystle Stewart and her predecessor, Rachel Smith, wiped out on stage during the evening gown competition, becoming accidental YouTube stars.Asked about the tumble during the show on Sunday, Stewart said it was a lesson in bouncing back from defeat."I think it was a true test of my character," said the 27-year-old Texan, who worked to raise awareness for breast cancer as she traveled the globe promoting the beauty contest.If there is a YouTube moment from Sunday's show, it may be Miss California's answer to a question about legalizing same-sex marriage. The tall blonde stumbled some before giving an answer that appeared to please the pageant audience."We live in a land where you can choose same-sex marriage or opposite marriage," Prejean said. "And you know what, I think in my country, in my family, I think that I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there, but that's how I was raised."Some in the audience cheered, others booed. The answer sparked a shouting match in the lobby after the show."It's ugly," said Scott Ihrig, a gay man, who attended the pageant with his partner. "I think it's ridiculous that she got first runner-up. That is not the value of 95 percent of the people in this audience. Look around this audience and tell me how many gay men there are."Charmaine Koonce, the mother of Miss New Mexico USA Bianca Carla, argued back."In the Bible it says marriage is between Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve!"The pageant had enjoyed a scandal-free year until earlier this month, when Miss Universe 2008 Dayana Mendoza was skewered for a blog posting from a trip to Guantanamo Bay. The entry described having "aloooot of fun" at a base that houses the notorious military prison; it was later deleted from the pageant's Web site.The contest, which is owned by NBC and reality TV mogul Donald Trump, was hosted by "Access Hollywood" co-anchor Billy Bush and Nadine Velazquez of the NBC sitcom "My Name is Earl." This year's judges included "Saturday Night Live" cast member Kenan Thompson, "Dancing with the Stars" winner Kelly Monaco and gossip blogger Perez Hilton. Miss Wyoming USA Cynthia Pate, of Casper, Wyo., was voted Miss Congeniality by her fellow contestants. Jessi Pierson, of Milton, W.Va., was voted Miss Photogenic through an online contest on the Miss Universe Web site. Organizers said Sunday's show kicks off "Green Week" at NBC. As part of the environmental awareness campaign, the Miss USA crown was designed by a jeweler that specializes in conflict-free and eco-friendly jewels. The crown from Diamond Nexus Labs of Franklin, Wis., is worth $202,000.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Miss USA 2009 Preliminary Night Evening Gown Competition (Colorado,Connecticut,Delaware, D.C., Florida, Georgia, Hawaii)

Miss Colorado

Miss Connecticut

Miss Delaware

Miss District of Columbia

Miss Florida

Miss Georgia

Miss Hawaii

Miss USA 2009 Preliminary Night Evening Gown Competition (Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, California)

Miss Alabama

Miss Alaska

Miss Arizona

Miss Arkansas

Miss California
The Miss USA 2009 pageant is underway in Las Vegas. Here are a few of the photos from the prelininary night evening gown competition. I will be adding all of them very soon. The pageant final will be Sunday night on NBC. (To see the large version of any photo, just click on the photo)

Luther Vandross "A House Is Not A Home"

Luther Vandross "A House Is Not A Home"

One of the greatest singers ever. Hearing his voice brings back memories of some great times. Luther died a few years ago and is so very missed....

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Miss Continental Elite 2009 Michelle Fighter

Miss Continental Elite 2009 Michelle Fighter
1st Alternate : Tiffany McCray
2nd Alternate :Amanda Roberts

Top 6

Tiffany McCray

Deshea Richards

Jodie Santana

Amanda Roberts

Ginger Manchester

Michelle Fighter

Preliminary Night Category Winners :

Interview - Amanda Roberts

Swimwear - Tiffany McCray

Talent and Gown - Michelle Fighter

Monday, April 13, 2009

Miss Continental Plus 2009 CoCo Van Cartier

Miss Continental Plus 2009 CoCo Van Cartier
1st Alternate : Amaila Black
2nd Alternate : Kofi
*Final Night Recap*
Opening production was "Dancing with the Stars"
Formers In Attendance :Tajma Hall, Desiree DeMournay, Amaya, Chevelle Brooks, Dena Cass, Angel Sheridan, Terri Williams, Victoria Parker, Tamara Mahourning, Victoria LePaige
#1--September Murphy - Swimsuit: Black & White flowered suit with a red waist (Same as Prelim) / Talent: Cinderella with 5 backups(Same as Prelim) / Gown: Black Velvet gown with beaded and stoned lace on the left side with black foxtails (Same as Prelim)
#2--Kitty Litter - Swimsuit: Black suit with a rhinestone clip at the waist /Talent: EOY "The Wiz Talent" / Gown: Turquoise JD Martin gown with stonework across the bodice ,chiffon scarves hanging from her arms.
#3--Farra N Hyte - Swimsuit: Nude suit with purple rectangles across the bodice, stone work on the bodice / Talent: Can Can Talent from prelim night / Gown: Top portion was nude illusion with stoned flowers that came from the shoulder in a line down to the waist, the bottom of the gown was done in a light mint green fabric.
#4--Whitney Paige - Swimsuit: Halter suit done in different shades of brown rectanglles / Talent: I was born for this into "Good Luck" / Gown: Blue and brown gown with stone work on the top with a ruffled bottom
#5--Kofi - Swimsuit: Hot Pink wrap style suit with a pink and yellow coverup / Talent: "Part of your World" into Linda Eders I want more / Gown: Red Gown with bead/stone work around the neck then trailed down the left side of the gown in the elongated harlequin patter (The stones were Red, Pink, Yellow & Orange.
#6--CoCo Van Cartier - Swimsuit: White Suit with an "Aztec" print on the breasts with a matching belt (The aztec print was done in brown & turquoise) / Talent: "Don't Leave Me This Way" / Gown: Emerald green fabric gown form fitted to about the knee, trumpet bottom
#7--Summer Breeze - Swimsuit: ? Talent: Sang "I Will Always Love You" / Gown: Red beaded and stoned lace gown, with a red chiffon train.
#8--Noel Leon - Swimsuit: White suit with a white chiffon wrap / Talent: "Push the Buttons" (Same as prelim night) / Gown: Canary yellow gown that was beaded & stoned, bottom of the gown had a single "wrap" of yellow chiffon (about at the knee).
#9--Amelia Black - Swimsuit: Simple black suit / Talent: ? / Gown: Pink beaded and stoned gown with large pink and white ruffles that went from the bottom of the gown, up the front and wrapped around her neck.
#10--Allison Knight -Swimsuit: Turquoise suit with a matching waist wrap, stone work on the bottom of the wrap / Talent: "Love Dominates" with 2 dancers / Gown: Black gown with beautiful stoned flowers along the trumpeted bottom of the gown.
#11--Terry DeMour - Swimsuit: Black suit with tan "Arrows" on the left side of the suit, also had a "scarf" that was built onto the suit that wrapped around her neck / Talent: live stand up comedy / Gown: Baby blue empire waist gown with stonework under the breast (Same gown as prelims)
#12--Roxxxy Andrews - Swimsuit: Leopard print swimsuit / Talent: "Crazy" solo talent number / Gown: She had on a white coat with stone work around the breast area, an escort removed the coat and Roxxy walked out in a white liquid beaded gown with an ostrich feather bottom.

Miss Continental Plus 2009 Finals

The Miss Continnetal Plus 2009 pageant finals are now under way tonight in Chicago.
Top 5 Announced :
Kitty Litter
Roxy Andrews
Coco Van Cartier
Amalia Black

Final Question:

"Is it more important to be liked or be respected?"

Preliminary Awards were :

Interview Winner - Kofi
Swimsuit Winner - CoCo
Evening Gown Winner - CoCo
Talent Winner -Summer Breeze

Amailia Black


CoCo Van Cartier

Farra N. Hyte

Top 12 Finalists :
CoCo Van Cartier
Summer Breeze
Amalia Black
Roxy Andrews
Kitty Litter
Noel Lione
Alison Knight
Farra N Hyte
Whitney Paige
Terry Damore
September Murphy

Whitney Paige

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Miss Continental Plus 2009

The Miss Continental Plus 2009 & Miss Continental Elite 2009 pageant's are being held this weekend in Chicago. Tomorrow is the preliminary night.

Here is a partial list of the registered contestants for Miss Continental Plus :

#1--September Murphy (Gown: Black w/ stone work on left side/Swimsuit: Black & White w/ red belt across mid/Talent: Cinderella w/ 5 back-up dancers)

#2--Brianna Nicole Cartier (Withdrew for family issues)

#3--Kitty Litter (Gown : Yellow & Black butterfly gown/Swimsuit: Basic Red swimsuit/ Talent : Get On Up)

#4--Farra N Hyte (Purple lace gown stoned and beaded with foxtails/Swimsuit: Leopard print/ Talent : Can Can number 16 back-up dancers)

#5--Whitney Paige (Gown: Red fabric gown ftted to the knee, huge bottome with large bow/Swimsuit: Black swimsuit w/ white bow across top/ Talent : Dance number)

#6--Opal Vanderhurst

#7--Kofi (Gown : White stoned gown with white overlay)

#8--Nikki Simon

#9-- Britney Taylor

#10--Summer Breeze

#11--Coco Van Cartier

#12--Kelly Klien


#14-- Lady Deception

#15-- Ginger Minj

#16-- Noel Leone

#17--Adrianna Fuentes

#18--Betty Boop

#19--Amelia Black

#20--Regina Aigneir




#24--Roxxxy Andrews

Miss Continental Elite 2009 Contestants
1. Charisse
2. Asia Black
3. Daesha Richards
4. Leigh Shannon
5. Jaime Perry
6. Evelyn Thomas
7. Amanda Roberts
8. Tiffany McCray
9. Chris Edwards
10. Ginger Manchester
11. Jodie Santana
12. Michelle Fighter

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Miss USA 2009 Contestants

Miss North Carolina & Miss New Jersey

Miss Nebraska & Miss Mississippi

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

'Project Runway' Season 6 Returns This Summer !

'Project Runway' lawsuit settled; season 6 to air this summer on Lifetime

After being orphaned for almost a year due to legal deadlock, the sixth season of Project Runway has finally found a home: on Lifetime, where it will air this summer. "NBC Universal, The Weinstein Company and Lifetime have resolved their disputes," read a statement released today by NBC Universal, which owns Bravo, Runway's home for five seasons. "The Weinstein Company will pay NBCU for the right to move Project Runway to Lifetime. All of the parties are pleased with the outcome." (When The Weinstein Co. announced last April that Runway would be moving to Lifetime, NBC Universal sued for breach of contract. Eventually, The Weinstein Co. countersued NBC Universal for allegedly failing to properly promote season 5, and Lifetime then sued both parties.)
Also in a statement, Lifetime Networks President and CEO Andrea Wong said: "I couldn’t be more excited that Lifetime will bring its viewers an amazing, all-new season of Project Runway this summer. As the highest-rated cable network for women, Lifetime is the perfect home for this outstanding program as well as its companion series, Models of the Runway. All of us at Lifetime are thrilled to move forward with Heidi, Tim, Nina, Michael, The Weinstein Company and the entire Project Runway team."
As for Harvey Weinstein, the Bravo statement quoted him as saying, "'I want to personally congratulate [President and Chief Executive Officer of NBC Universal] Jeff Zucker and NBCU on their success in the litigation and thank Jeff for resolving this in a professional manner. We look forward to working together on our ongoing projects.'" And in a statement of his own, Weinstein looked forward to not only the next five seasons of Runway (on Lifetime), but also spin-off shows Models of the Runway and Project Pygmalion. "With these upcoming shows and the success of our new series The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency on HBO, we are very excited about the continued growth of The Weinstein Co’s television division," Weinstein said. "We are also looking forward to working with NBC Universal on the upcoming theatrical release of Inglourious Basterds and the continued development of other projects together."