HBO’s "His Dark Materials" Trailer Looks Like Another Fantasy Hit

Though Game Of Thrones may be coming to an end, HBO is looking to pick up with another fantasy series to sate the weeping masses. This time, they’re drawing from author Philip Pullman’s bestselling His Dark Materials novels, bringing forth a star-studded cast Dafne Keen (Logan), James McAvoy, Ruth Wilson, and Lin Manuel Miranda, among many familiar faces; even Game Of Thrones alumni James Cosmos appears to be involved in this one, which bodes well for those seeking a loose connective thread. In any case, the series appears to be ambitious in scope and scale, as those familiar with the source material can attest.

Today, the debut trailer has arrived, providing a first glimpse at both the tone and stylistic direction the upcoming series. For those unfamiliar with the plot, wondering why there’s a veritable zoo moving freely within society, rest assured all things will be answered with time – or a simple search. In the meantime, look to HBO’s press release for more details:

“The first season follows Lyra, a seemingly ordinary but brave young woman from another world. Her search for a kidnapped friend uncovers a sinister plot involving stolen children, and becomes a quest to understand a mysterious phenomenon called Dust. As she journeys through the worlds, including our own, Lyra meets Will, a determined and courageous boy. Together, they encounter extraordinary beings and dangerous secrets, with the fate both the living — and the dead — in their hands.” 

You might recall The Golden Compass, a 2007 film based on the same source material, in which an immensely badass polar bear is featured prominently. Fear not – the polar bear’s presence is certainly felt in this go-around, and we can only imagine His Dark Materials will be a visual feast whenever it ultimately airs. It’s already said that BBC – who is co-producing along with HBO – has deemed this their most expensive series thus far. Check out the trailer below, and sound f – will you be tuning in?

Deontay Wilder Delivers Epic Speech To Elementary School Kids: Watch

Deontay Wilder is one the best heavyweight fighters in the world with many people wanting to see him fight Anthony Joshua. Wilder is also known as the “Bronze Bomber” and has one the heaviest punches in the world right now. On Monday, Wilder was in New York City where he hit up the P.S. 288 Elementary School where he delivered a speech as part the “Game Life” program. Wilder brought a ton energy and spoke with the kind passion you would expect from a heavyweight champion.

“I’m here to say I was just like you young guys, just in a different state, in a different city, different environment. Every time I woke, there was negativity,” Wilder said. “But, with you guys, you guys are powerful. Your words are powerful. The things you speak, the things you think. Your surroundings that you surround yourself around every day is powerful. And, I want you guys to know that.”

In the footage obtained by TMZ, Wilder goes on to say “It took me 11 years to get here. Many people died near me. Many people labeled me as statistics to society. ‘You ain’t gonna do nothing, you’re bad.'”

It’s clear that Wilder has a future in motivational speaking once his boxing career comes to an end. You have to admit it’s pretty admirable that he would go down his road. He definitely delivered a great message to these kids.

Common Talks Love And Overcoming Sexual Abuse In New Breakfast Club Interview

Today, Chicago native Common sat down with The Breakfast Club to talk about issues that are brought up in his new memoir, Let Love Have The Last Word.

The interview touched upon a lot heavy issues concerning sexual abuse, love, forgiveness, relationships, and what it means to be a black man, and father in today’s society. 

The hosts and artist start by discussing the title the book, which Common explains as having come from all the recent politics in the world, the violence and the hate, and the importance love amidst all this. “Not love in like a mushy, lovey-dovey way,” he clarifies, “but love in action, respecting each other, loving each other, loving ourselves.” 

He goes on to talk about the importance communication in all aspects our lives, starting with the reason he wrote this novel, as a means to communicate to others his “daily practices” and “stories.” He continues, “I wanna tell those stories so people who go through it feel like, ‘man I understand, like I aint always gonna have it perfect, but love is a daily practice.” 

They then go on to discuss Common’s realization his sexual abuse as a child, and what inspired him to open up to others about it. He explained how he came about realizing his abuse whilst filming a movie where molestation was brought up, and how acknowledging this issue and talking about it gave him the sort release he needed to let go his resentments and trauma. “When you release that you just feel a certain peace. ..] I just wanna be at peace and I want people to be at peace,” he said.

Common continued to talk about the stigma addressing sexual abuse, especially as a black man. When asked about what gave him the courage to open up to the public he replied, “Faith in God and my spirituality, whatever happens on the outside, if I’m strong enough on the inside to know who I am then I’m good.” He added how he believed that with their platforms, they acted as leaders, or the voice the people, and that “sometimes leaders gotta step out there. As simple as that.”

The rapper and actor stressed the importance being able to admit things to yourself, and the first step that being, the ability to be vulnerable. “Being able to be open and express vulnerabilities. Express love for a woman, love for God. Man, I got courage in doing that, I got faith in doing that, I believe in doing that. And as black men, I feel like man we need that because we been taught it’s weak to go to therapy.”

In continuing the discussion about what it means to be black in today’s society, Common explains how “our culture, the way we grew up, we inherited a lot pain and suffering and that’s been passed down.”

“Our mentality was just to survive. The way society placed us, we came from a deficit, but I feel like we’re the ones who overcame a lot things and if we just focus on those things, and then working through the worst in us,” remarked Common.

Common Talks Love And Overcoming Sexual Abuse In New Breakfast Club Interview

Dia Dipasupil/Getty s

He talked about meeting prison inmates, and the courage they taught him in being vulnerable and honest with yourself, and the fact that many them resorted to violent acts because the trauma they had experience as children and the lack resources they had to deal with them properly.

The conversation then shifted to the lighter topic love and relationships as they talked and joked about a conversation Common had with Michelle Obama herself, on the importance compromise within a relationship. “She has given me a lot wisdom, one great thing she told me is that you have to understand you’re not going to get anyone that’s perfect because you’re not perfect; so understand that there’s some certain things you will compromise in choosing that partner, but as long as the core values that are most important to you marks f on that list, then you good.”

On the topic love, they spoke about the importance self-love in being able to fully love others. “Anytime I felt somebody was hating, it was because they was hating on themselves, they aint have that love for themselves. ..] When you start loving yourself in the greatest way, in the best way, you know that like, hey can’t nobody feel that slap. What’s for me is for me, and you start being like alright man good job, you did well, do your thing. It definitely has helped to be more secure, more confident, and just to be free.”

He also addressed some issues he had with his daughter in the past, and how communication helped to bring everything to the surface and worked out.He went on to discuss the parent-child dynamic that persists today with the one from a generation prior, and stressed that talking about everything with your children is essential in helping them grow up to be the best versions themselves. “Our parents raised us in the best way they could but the ‘you do it because I told u to do it,’ those things don’t work for our generation and all the way to the kids now,” he says. “They wanna know why and it’s okay for them to know why.”

Common Talks Love And Overcoming Sexual Abuse In New Breakfast Club Interview

Common (R) and daughter Omoye Assata Lynn – Phillip Faraone/Getty s

Finally, he discusses the school he will be opening in Chicago in September: AIM (Arts In Motion), which is aimed (no pun intended) at providing the youth with emotional and social intelligence, and the necessary tools and therapy, that will help them succeed in life. “That’s the main reason why people out here hurting each other: because they’re in pain. We gotta create jobs, we gotta give mental health support, we gotta give different ways expressing (yourself).”

If you’re interested in hearing wisdom about the issues covered on top, you should definitely watch the full video below. 

Jameela Jamil Says She Isn’t "Canceling" Cardi B Over Weight Loss Products

The Good Place actress, Jameela Jamil, has made headlines over the past few months after calling out some the biggest celebrities over their promotion weight loss products. In the past year, she’s called out the KardashiansCardi B and Iggy Azalea for promoting these type products, although none them have directly responded. 

Jameela Jamil Says She Isn't "Canceling" Cardi B Over Weight Loss Products
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic/Getty s

Jamil recently sat down with Charlamagne Tha God for his new series, Emerging Hollywoodwhere she got in-depth about the perception that she “canceled” Cardi B and the Kardashians. The actress discussed the oppressive beauty standards and explained her own struggles with dealing with her own body image. 

“I don’t cancel the Kardashians, or Iggy Azalea or Cardi B,” Jameela Jamil told Charlamagne tha God. “I’m not canceling them, I’m reprimanding them. It’s fine to call someone out. You’re fering them the opportunity changing.”

Jamil refers to it as, “oppressive beauty standards” which she admitted affected her when she was young. “I was fully anorexic by the time I was about thirteen. I wasn’t menstruating. My body was letting me know that I was dying from the inside,” Jamil explained.

Jamil later explained that she tries not to use her activism as a way to seem performative anyway, saying, “”I completely understand if people distrust me. I look like the enemy. I’m slim, I fit within society’s conventional attractiveness, and I am an actress. Why would anyone trust me?” She added, “I’m not going to stop because people doubt me, and most people support me.”

Chance The Rapper Succeeds In Bringing Back Wendy’s Spicy Chicken Nuggets

Chance The Rapper has once again used his celebrity platform for the greater good society. As he continues to tease his “owbum,” the rapper sent out some positive energy into the universe which came back to him in a matter moments. “Positive Affirmations for today: I WILL have a good day, I Will succeed today, Wendy’s WILL bring back spicy nuggets at some point please please Lord let it be today,” he wrote on Twitter. Wendy’s quickly replied to Chance, announcing that they’d bring back the Spicy Chicken Nuggets if they got one million likes on a tweet. In just a day and a half, they received double the number likes that they initially asked for and confirmed that the Nuggets would return.

“THIS IS NOT A DRILL! Spicy Chicken Nuggets are coming back!” The tweet reads, “That took like a day and a half! WHAT?! We don’t know when yet, gotta figure it out, but soon, and ok, LOSING IT RIGHT NOW THIS IS AMAZING!!”

They reiterated on their timeline that they’re working to bring them back ASAP. But Chance asked if maybe the launch the Spicy Chicken Nuggets could align with the release date his new project, which he recently revealed would arrive in July. “Can we drop them the same day as the album? I need them together,” he tweeted at Wendy’s. Keep your eyes peeled for more info on both Chance The Rapper’s album and Wendy’s Spicy Chicken Nuggets.

ASCAP Annual Collections Top $1 Billion Again — Up 7.26%

The American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) announced that annual collections from 2018 exceeded $1.227 billion.

ASCAP saw a 7.26% increase in performance rights collections, up from $1.144 billion in 2017. The PRO notes that total distribution to members and publishers have topped $1 billion for the second year in a row.

Looking into the breakdown of numbers behind that $1.227 billion figure, $906 million came from domestic receipts. That’s a 7.09% increase over 2017, which saw $846 million from US-based collections.  Foreign receipts for 2018 totaled $321 million, which is a 7.1% increase over $298 million collected in 2017.

ASCAP has traditionally been focused on in-venue royalties from businesses like restaurants, malls, and stadiums.  But a surge in streaming is also boosting performance royalties, thanks to an expansion in the conventional definition of what constitutes a ‘public performance’.  That’s also helping to boost collections by rival BMI, while also stimulating competition in the space.

ASCAP Artist & Publisher Distribution Breakdown

  • $1.109B paid to artists, authors, and publishers
    • $814M of that number paid out in domestic distributions
    • $295M of that number paid out in foreign distributions

Domestic distribution payments increased by $91 million in 2018, up 12.6% compared to the previous year. Foreign distributions saw a more modest 3.87% growth of $11 million over the prior year.

ASCAP CEO Elizabeth Matthews says the PRO owes its success “to the popularity of the ASCAP music repertory, which is beloved and enjoyed by listeners around the world on every platform.”

ASCAP says it has also improved a number of member services, including new interactive features that allow members to visualize earnings.  The PRO also overhauled the new member enrollment experience, making it easier to get accounts up and running.

ASCAP also launched a new downloadable Mobile Pass that allows members to share information with collaborators and register songs.

ASCAP reveals its financials every year alongside the ASCAP Create Music Expo.

The Los Angeles-based event is kicking off this Thursday.

ASCAP Annual Collections Top $1 Billion Again — Up 7.26%

ASCAP Annual Collections Top $1 Billion Again — Up 7.26%

The MMF and FAC Condemn PRS for Music's "Sudden and Dramatic" Increase in Administration Fees

The Music Managers Fund doesn’t exactly see eye-to-eye with PRS for Music’s new fees.

First, the good news.

Two days ago, British collecting society PRS for Music $946 million in annual collection revenue.  This figure marks a new record for the collecting society.

In addition, PRS collected £280.6 million ($362.7 million) through agreements with collecting societies around the world.  This figure represents a 9.1% increase over 2017, and a 42% growth rate over the last three years.

Royalty income also grew 17% to £145.7 million ($188.3 million).  Plus, the live sector grew 12.8%, climbing to £38.9 million ($50.3 million).

Now, the bad news.

Income from traditional broadcasters – the BBC, Sky, and Global Radio – declined 5.1% to £127.7 million ($165.1 million).

Royalty income from general business usage also decreased to £192 million ($248 million).  In addition, distribution to songwriter, composer, and music publisher members dropped 0.2% to £603.6 million ($800 million).

Plus, topline costs increased 8.8% to £93.8 million ($122.8 million).  PRS dismissed this notable increase to “planned strategic spend relating to restructuring the organization, and additional commission linked to the uplift in online revenue.”

Overall costs also grew 8.5% to £97 million ($126.9 million).  Dismissing the increase, PRS said this was due to “investment and transition costs.”

Now, with 2019 well underway, two major British music organizations have spoken out over PRS’ major fee increases.

The British music industry v. PRS for Music.

The Music Managers Forum (MMF) and the Featured Artists Coalition (FAC) have called for an open discussion with PRS.

The move follows the UK collecting society’s “sudden and dramatic” increases to PRS’ administration fees on multiple income streams.  This includes overseas collections.

Last week, the collecting society told its members about the new fees following the publication of its 2018 financials.  PRS has argued these costs – which have steadily increased – are merely part of the traditional fees needed to run the non-profit organization.

The MMF and FAC didn’t buy it.

Slamming PRS’ historic failures, the MMF wrote,

Apparently implemented to compensate for historic failures within PRS’s own distribution systems and pensions commitments, [the increases] will result in yet another levy on creators’ earnings – and at the very moment when, thanks to the monumental demand for audio streaming, their royalties should be increasing.

MMF also warned these fees will penalize new and upcoming writers for “the past business mistakes of others.”

Lambasting PRS’ “inefficient” and unnecessarily complex collection revenue process, the MMF continued,

In direct contrast to the artists who perform on recordings, who are increasingly compensated in a transparent and time-efficient fashion, those who write the songs frequently find their royalties shuttled through a network of overseas collecting societies and publishers.

Such inefficiencies result in less and less money finding its way to songwriters’ pockets.”

Thus, alongside FAC, MMF has demanded PRS explain its rationale for songwriters paying more in admin fees on both live and overseas income.

[We’re] calling on PRS to provide greater clarification.”

PRS for Music has yet to respond.

 


Featured image by stux (CC by 2.0).

"The Handmaid’s Tale" Season 3 Trailer Is Officially Here: Report

Earlier this week, we dropped a list the most anticipated television shows set to release this summer. Of the notable mentions was the dystopian television series, The Handmaid’s Tale. The show is based on the book the same name penned by Canadian author Margaret Atwood surrounds the chronicles a woman living in a totalitarian state where women are subjugated to the dire demands a hyper-patriarchal society. Since the series premiere in 2017, the television show was met with critical acclaim and received an array awards and nominations

Moreover, it’s now been roughly a year since the second season and fans are eager for the return the series. As such, Hulu has ficially released a trailer for the anticipated season 3. Herein, the visuals tease the aftermath Offred’s critical decision made in the previous season. Additionally, an allyship is hinted at with powerful figures the show along with a slew possibilities which may only be revealed upon watching the show. 

The chilling words actress Elisabeth Moss, who plays Offred on the show, rivet through as the trailer begins: “Heresy, that’s what you get punished for. Not for being part the resistance because, ficially, there is no resistance. Not for helping people escape because, ficially, there is no such thing as escape.” The new season starts on June 5th.

 

Black High School Student Scores $3.7 Million Dollars Worth Of Scholarships

In positive spirits today, we’re happy to report on a story Black excellence within academia. Lousiana-based high school senior, Antoinette Love, rose to spotlight recently after the graduate received over 115 university acceptances and an astounding $3.7 million dollars worth scholarships. The promising student told CNN, “I just kept applying. I wanted to see how many I could get into.”

Black High School Student Scores $3.7 Million Dollars Worth Of Scholarships

Christopher Furlong/Getty s

Clearly, Love must have underestimated her qualifications because she was surprised to be accepted everywhere. The 18-year-old girl holds a 3.7 GPA and takes part in several school organizations such as the anime and video game club, the English honor society as well as the Rho Kappa honor society–and it doesn’t end there. The extraordinary student also holds a part-time job in a shopping center outlet. Herein, the young woman sells ties, cuff links, and socks. Now, that is the embodiment  hard work and dedication. 

Love further encourages other students looking to achieve similar success to apply through the Common Application and the Common Black Application. Though she does not know as now where she’ll ficially attend, the prodigy is affirmed to be looking at Fisk University, Lousiana State University and Brandeis University amongst a few other choices.

LL Cool J & Wife Simone Share Details Of Her Fight With Rare Bone Cancer

Simone Smith is sharing her story her fight with cancer to help and inspire others who may be struggling through their battles. She’s been in remission for 14 years now, but the wife LL Cool J, real name Todd Smith, is partnering with her husband a few their famous friends for the American Cancer Society campaign, “Beat Cancer Like a Boss.” Celebrities including Mary J. Blige, Remy Ma, Salt-N-Pepa, Jhene Aiko, and Jordin Sparks have joined their fight.

In 2004, Simone was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer called chondrosarcoma. “I was working out with my trainer, walking, talking, not paying no mind, walked into the wastebasket and it hit that little knot,” she told ET. “That sent me to the doctor, and that’s when I found out I had a chondrosarcoma stage three tumor in my right tibia bone.” She had her right tibia removed during a 15-hour surgery and it was replaced with her left fibula, a still rod, screws, nails and micro veins from her other legs. “It was a two and a half year recovery, where I had to learn to walk again. I went from a wheelchair to two crutches, to one crutch to a cane.”

LL Cool J & Wife Simone Share Details Of Her Fight With Rare Bone Cancer
Frazer Harrison/Getty s

LL and Simone have been married for 23 years and he made sure that he did everything to help aid in her recovery, including keeping negative energy out their home and asking to give her one his bones. “I remember sitting in the doctor’s fice, and he wanted to give his fibula bone…because he felt that his fibula bone would be bigger and stronger,” she said.

“I learned that you got to be grateful, and you can’t take things for granted. I learned that left turns could come, right turns could come,” LL said. “You can’t always see around every corner, but you just have to have faith and you have to have gratitude, you got to roll with humility, you got to believe. I believe in God strongly, and you got to believe in yourself too.”

“Have faith,” Simone shared. “Find your inner strength. Be confident.”

Joaquin Phoenix Reveals Where He Draws The Line In Jesus Portrayal

Joaquin Phoenix is in the midst a creative renaissance. Not long after turning in an exceptional, introverted performance in You Were Never Really Here, Phoenix has lined up two major portrayals, though decidedly differing in moral alignment. While his turn as Joker is among the year’s most anticipated, he’ll soon be kicking things f by playing Jesus in the upcoming movie Mary Magdalene. Starring alongside Rooney Mara as the titular character, the film was originally slated for a 2017 release, only to be delayed due to its affiliation with the disgraced Weinstein Company. 

On Friday, Joaquin previously spoke about some the things he would simply not do, during his tenure as Jesus Christ. For the most part, he was open to many the challenges, save for one particular miracle: the healing a blind man (it’s a woman in the film), drawn from the Gospel John. “I knew about that scene from the Bible, but I guess I had never really considered it,” Joaquin tells CNN. “When I got there, I thought: I’m not going to rub dirt in her eyes. Who the fu*k would do that? It doesn’t make any sense. That is a horrible introduction to seeing.”

Instead, Joaquin opted to lick his finger, and go for the mud-free approach – a decision that left him satisfied. “It freed me up, in some ways, to discover what is truthful in the moment,” he explained. “That moment is not so much about a real miracle. It’s about someone who has been dismissed by society finally being seen, embraced and encouraged to join the broader community. To me, that is a miracle. There’s something proundly beautiful about that sentiment.”

Mary Magdalene arrives in theatres on Good Friday. Have you any interest in watching the biblical cinematic genre?

Robot Basketball Player Freaks Out Fans With Steph Curry Range

As the world evolves and technology begins to get better and better, we’re able to develop new things that are supposed to help our society in a variety different ways. If you’re the good people at Toyota though, you’re more focused on developing super humans that will quite literally make human basketball players extinct. If you’re confused as to what I’m talking about, you’ll soon find out and honestly, it’s only a little bit scary. Okay no, it’s very scary.

Yesterday, during a B-League basketball game in Japan, Toyota engineers strolled out CUE3, a basketball playing robot that has a pretty robotic jumper (Ha, see what I did there?). They set CUE3 up just ahead the halfcourt line and put a basketball in his hands. While it wasn’t pretty or fluid, CUE3 hit the shot with a perfect swish. The arena erupted in applause and quite honestly, we’re all doomed.

Just thinking about this robot should scare the likes Steph Curry. The robot can practically shoot from anywhere and make any shot with ease. While the technology isn’t perfect, just imagine what will exist in the next few years. If these sharpshooters aren’t careful, they’re going to be replaced.

For now, though, we should probably slow down and not jump to conclusions. I mean, it’s just a robot, right? It can’t hurt us…right?

PPL Reaches Record Q1 International Revenue Distribution

British collecting society PPL has reported its largest Q1 international revenue distribution.

For the first quarter of 2019, the company for performers and labels collected £16.1 million ($21 million) from over 50 global collective management organizations (CMOs).

Marking a record distribution of international revenue, PPL distributed the money to 40,000 performers and recording rightsholders.  This figure exceeds the previous record Q1 distribution, which took place in 2017.  The British collecting society had allocated £15.7 million ($22 million at the historic conversion rate) to 33,000 performers and recording rightsholders.

As the name suggests, PPL’s international collections service collects money from overseas CMOs for members’ music broadcasted and played publicly.  This includes recorded music played on TV, radio, several streaming services, and private copying.  The British collecting society stated this money remains “an increasingly important revenue stream” for performers and rightsholders.

Attributing its continued success to the “breadth” of its international relationships, PPL confirmed ten payments were over half a million pounds (more than $653,000) each.  Following a bilateral agreement between PPL and AKIE, an Albanian performers society, the company’s Q1 2019 distribution included a first-ever payment from Albania.

PPL now has 92 international collection agreements in place across Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America.

Speaking about the record distribution figure, Peter Leathem, PPL’s CEO, said,

Today’s record Q1 distribution comes off the back of our announcement in January that our international collections grew by 40%in 2018 to £70.9 million ($92.7 million).

These achievements are made possible by the expertise and hard work of the staff throughout the company and we will be working hard throughout 2019 to maximize revenue for those are entitled to receive payments from PPL.

Praising the company’s “position and specialist knowledge” in the global music industry, Lauren Oxenbury, Director of International, added,

We continue to invest, along with our fellow CMOs, in raising the quality of data and the efficiency with which it’s exchanged around the world.

This means we can be faster and more accurate in our identification of music use on a global scale, and therefore distribute more royalties to PPL performers and recording rightsholders.

 


 

Prince Harry Suggests Stopping "Fortnite" For The Good Of Humanity

Fortnite has become one today’s video game phenomenons, capturing the already-tenuous attention spans children and teenagers worldwide. Even NHL teams have banned the video game from locker rooms, citing the battle royale’s addictive nature. Though there’s much to appreciate about a free-to-play interactive experience, many parents have expressed concern about the perceived addictive nature a game, as if the product itself has agency. Still, Fortnite has likely consumed many a child, leading to high-pitched, rage-fuelled shrieks “MOM!!!” upon the slightest interruption. 

Prince Harry Suggests Stopping "Fortnite" For The Good Of Humanity

Bryan Bedder/Getty s

Enter Prince Harry, who has ficially spoken out against the dangers Fortnite poses on society. The Duke Sussex recently stopped by the YMCA to express his concerns, citing Epic Game’s creation as “created to addict, an addiction to keep you in front a computer for as long as possible.” Not only that, but he also pondered about why anyone would ever have Fortnite in their household to begin with. Aside from Fortnite concerns, Prince Harry also opened up about the dangers social media, raising a few interesting points:

 “It’s more dangerous because it’s normalized and there are no restrictions to it. We are in a mind-altering time. Without that human connection, when you do have a problem you have nowhere to go, the only place you might go is online and you will probably end up getting bullied.”

Lest we forget the war on gaming harkens back to the Jack Thompson era, where a vocal critic attempted to draw parallels between video game violence and real-world violence. Given the booming industry today, it’s fair to say his cause faltered in the end. Yet Prince Harry appears willing to pick up the sword, albeit it for less misguided reasons than the Thompsons yore. What do you think? Should Fortnite be taken more seriously, where matters youth development are concerned?

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Will.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the Holocaust

The fallout from the release of the Leaving Neverland documentary continues — but more celebrities are sticking up for Michael Jackson.

Worldwide, radio stations are pulling Jackson’s music.  Broadway shows are being shelved, and Jackson covers are being scratched from performance lists.

But Michael Jackson still has his defenders and apologists.  That slowly-growing list now includes rapper/entertainer Will.i.am, who has stated that playing Jackson’s music is no worse than patronizing a company with connections to the Holocaust.

The Black Eyed Peas frontman was speaking at a press conference promoting a new series of The Voice when he made the comments.

“We live in a very, very, very, very hypocritical, double-standard, fake society. I can name a thousand other products that we still buy, still use, that are owned by folks that have done the most horrendous things to people, millions of them, and we don’t take their products from the market. You’re not talking about banning Bayer that made the chemicals to kill all the Jews. You’re not talking about real shit and yet you want to flex on a song?”

When asked about his thoughts on the allegations contained in the documentary, Will.i.am says he’s conflicted. He says he is pulled between wanting to support victims of abuse and the memory of someone important to him.

“And for somebody that knows him, you’re torn. You have the doc. Your heart wants to believe them but they’re on record lying so how am I supposed to trust that?”

Bayer itself has not responded, and is likely choosing to remain quiet on the matter.  The German pharmaceutical and chemicals company had used slave labor in concentration camps during World War II.  Will.i.am’s comments are not entirely inaccurate, though Bayer did profit off of the atrocities of the Holocaust.

Will.i.am further commented, stating that he believes that whoever is behind the documentary is “probably motivated by the money.”

Others are also speaking out in favor of the late Michael Jackson.

Barbara Streisand also found herself in hot water when she said that Jackson’s abuse “didn’t kill them.” She also expressed sympathy for Michael, saying he was very sweet and childlike when she met him.

She added that she blamed the children’s parents more than anyone.

Michael Jackson’s for more than $100 million over the airing of the Leaving Neverland documentary.Will.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the Holocaust

Will.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the HolocaustWill.i.am Defends Michael Jackson, Saying He's No Worse Than Companies That Supported the Holocaust