Moonlighting In La La Land: A Blunder of Oscar Proportions

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This one takes the cake. I mean, REALLY?  How does a firm like PricewaterhouseCoopers manage to muff this one? And then how do you not READ what the dag gum card says? I mean the entire card, since you weren’t sure everything was kosher? And THEN, how do you, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, not take responsibility for the mishap and come on stage immediately and publicly apologize to the winners and — sorry La La Land – the losers – and to your audience? How do you not make an overt effort to clean up the mess? 

It’s called responsibility. It’s called accountability. It’s called taking ownership and showing leadership and bearing the burden of righting a wrong, regardless of how embarrassing it is. We’ve all been there, and we all know that a wrong un-righted will sink the ship. 

There’s plenty of blame to go around on this one. Let’s just hope that when we find ourselves in such a pickle, we don’t point fingers and pin blame, but we readily admit our participation in the predicament, and graciously, but not boorishly, acknowledge our part of the poop and apologize. In theological terms is called asking for forgiveness. Isn’t that what we as believers are supposed to do? 

Here is one spot on spin from a reporter at AZcentral.com: 

“The wildest screw-up in Oscar’s history couldn’t have been more metaphorically momentous for African-Americans who last year shamed the Academy’s lack of diversity. 

The crazy finale turned the entertainment world upside down when “La La Land,” which had mostly white leading actors, mistakenly received Best Picture. It turned out that “Moonlight,” with mostly black actors, had won. 

It wasn’t just the screw-up that stunned (us all). The moment embodied the #OscarSoWhite shaming campaign last year against the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The uncomfortable faces of white entertainers handing over the figurine to African-Africans was simply surreal.” Well said, even though everyone seemed to give the La La Land cast kudos for handing over the Oscar, and handling the awkward moment, graciously. 

Anyway, here’s what happened at the Oscars last night when the envelope for Best Picture was opened (as reported by thedailybeast.com and the inquisitor.com) in case you missed the play by play and the blow by blow: 

“Everybody is talking about that awkward moment at Oscar 2017 now. It’s being discussed above all the glory associated with winning the prestigious trophy. Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty, two Hollywood legends by their own merit, became the center of attraction for being responsible for the mix-up.”

To be sure, while Beatty opened and held the card, it was Faye Dunaway who actually announced that it was La La Land that won the Best Picture award.

“When the entire team went to the stage to celebrate the occasion at the Oscars, it was producer Adele Romanski who realized there was a mistake. He declared it was the Moonlight team that should come to the stage.” (http/:/www.inquisitr.com)

 “Beatty lost no opportunity to hammer home his case, telling DailyMail.com’s long time showbiz reporter Baz Bamigboye: “People thought I was being dramatic but I wasn’t. There was something wrong. I showed it to Faye and she said La La Land.” 

Hours after the blunder, accounting firm PwC, which collates votes and administers the awards, issued a statement saying: “We sincerely apologize to Moonlight, La La Land, Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, and Oscar viewers for the error that was made during the award announcement for Best Picture. 

The presenters had mistakenly been given the wrong category envelope and when discovered, was immediately corrected. 

“We are currently investigating how this could have happened, and deeply regret that this occurred. We appreciate the grace with which the nominees, the Academy, ABC, and Jimmy Kimmel handled the situation.” According to reports, Beatty’s wife Annette Bening phoned him as he was entering the ball and suggested he head home but the iconic actor refused, saying once again that he had done nothing wrong. 

According to USA Today, one of the accountants from PwC realized Beatty had been given the wrong envelope within seconds. The accountant jumped up, saying: “He took the wrong envelope!”  Oopps. Too Late? Or was it?

“Hidden Figures:” UNSUNG HEROES

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In just about every game, especially every “big” game, and every game of consequence, there is a player that turns into a hero in an instant. This player turned hero does not plan on it, but he or she ends up doing the unthinkable: they make the play of the game. The coach may not even know their full name; the other players don’t associate with them that much if at all; and most fans don’t even know they’re on the team. But this hero in hiding is about to go public. This hero may not be a starter or a star, but this average Joe will make a play, a game saving tackle, a field goal in overtime, a pick-six interception for a touchdown, a three pointer at the buzzer, or a walk-off home run, that wins the game and seals the victory.

The Film “Hidden Figures” is a must see. If you have not seen this film, stop reading – stop reading right now — and go and see this inspiring, stirring and stimulating historical narrative. There are outstanding, Oscar worthy performances in this Oscar worthy film that should be seen and appreciated by all. “Hidden Figures” is up for three Academy Awards at the Oscars Sunday night.

HIDDEN FIGURES is the incredible untold story of Katherine G. Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe)—brilliant African-American women working at NASA, who served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation’s confidence, turned around the Space Race, and galvanized the world. The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations to dream big.

Read more: http://www.denofgeek.com/uk/movies/hidden-figures/43036/hidden-figures-new-character-posters-trailer#ixzz4Zpam0Jq0

The movie, based on the book by Hampton native Margot Lee Shetterly, details the lives of three black women working at Hampton’s NASA Langley during the space race — in the height of the civil rights movement in the 1950s and ’60s. All three women have been hidden to many of us who did not know that African American women played a vital role in the space race. They did complex math calculations for NASA, and were called “computers” long before the term was applied to machines.

Shetterly’s book proposal was sent to 16 publishers. There were enough “nos,” that she submitted her research to a Ph. D program at the University of Virginia. She was accepted into the program about the same time she received an offer from publishing group William Morrow and Company.

In 2014, the same year her book received an offer, Shetterly’s proposal for the story was auctioned off to Levantine Films. Before Shetterly even had finished writing the book, she got a call from Donna Gigliotti, an Academy Award-winning producer. Gigliotti has producing credits for films including “Silver Linings Playbook” and “Shakespeare in Love.” She was hooked by Shetterly’s 55-page proposal.

“I was attracted to ‘Hidden Figures’ because it is an untold story; it’s authentic,” Gigliotti wrote to the Daily Press in September via email. “Also it has strong women characters at its center — all my movies share that quality.”

It soon had a screenwriter, Allison Schroder, who received an Oscar nomination for adapted screenplay along with the film’s director, Theodore Melfi. The script was delivered in May 2015 and casting began a month later. Taraji P. Henson (Katherine Johnson), Octavia Spencer (Dorothy Vaughan) and Janelle Monae (Mary Jackson) were brought on as leads.” Jonathan Black, Contact Reporter, joblack@dailypress.com

The three women portrayed in “Hidden Figures” are what we call in in sports “unsung heroines.”

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David was a “sung” hero. He defeated the giant Goliath with a sling and a stone. In so doing he defeated giant Goliath and the archrival Philistine army and won the victory for Israel. The eighth son of Jesse went on to be the sweet psalmist of Israel and the apple of God’s eye. After David’s unlikely but stirring victory, the women sang, “Saul has slain his thousands, but David his ten thousands” (1 Samuel 18:7). While there are many others like David, there are many more unsung heroes whose songs have yet to be sung.

Just like the women in “Hidden Figures,” the woman at the well was an unsung hero. The Samaritan woman from the town of Sychar was the first evangelist. But first she was a “only” woman, and a Samaritan woman at that. When the disciples returned from buying food in town, they were surprised to find Jesus talking with “a woman”.

Jesus came so that we would all be one big happy family. But before He came the status of women was, at best, the least of all. And it was a common fact that the Jews had no dealings with Samaritans. Worst still, this woman had a checkered past. She had been married five times, she was living with a man that was not her husband, and she went to the well alone in the heat of the day. No friends, no lasting companionship, no true loving relationships. Yet she is the first one to whom Christ revealed himself to outside of his inner circle. Heaven arranged for her to meet the True Prophet, the prophesied One, and the Savior of the World.

God has a way of choosing and using unlikely, unassuming underdogs to achieve his purposes. This teaches us that God is not looking for superstars, standouts, “phenoms”, or number one draft picks who are full of themselves. God is looking for those like this woman who met Jesus at the well, an unlikely, unsung heroine whose name we don’t even know. God is looking for those who like the woman of Samaria are thirsty for living water. God is looking for those who don’t mind leaving their water pots, for those who will run and tell the very people who may despise and disdain them that they have found the Christ.

She was the lone witness and a “hidden figure” that caused many of the Samaritans to believe that Jesus was the Messiah. And God is still looking for heroes and heroines whose songs have yet to be sung.

https://video.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?fr=yhs-Lkry-newtab&hsimp=yhs-newtab&hspart=Lkry&p=Hidden+figures+you+tube+movie+trailer#id=34&vid=3c7ff4296914be4780720654d9799f29&action=view

 

DeMarcus Cousins & The Sacramento Kings: “We Like Him But We Don’t Want Him”

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DeMarcus Cousins was traded from the Sacramento Kings to the New Orleans Pelicans. Sacramento is 24-33 and in ninth place in the Western Conference, one game behind the Denver Nuggets for the 8th and final playoff spot. The Pelicans are 23-34 and in 11 place in the West.

But Cousins is the Kings leading scorer, averaging 27.8 points and 10.6 rebounds this season. The three-time All-Star recently served a one-game suspension after accruing his 17th technical foul and will be forced to serve additional suspensions with every additional technical he incurs for the rest of the regular season.

So the question is this: will it work? Can Cousins calm down and settle down and simmer down and play basketball alongside one the NBA’s elite players, Antony Davis, the 2017 All Star Game MVP, who is also on a struggling team? The Pelicans sure hope so.

From the outside looking in, Cousins is a head case. After publicly saying that they would not trade Cousins, Vldae Divac and the Kings turned right around and traded him. On Feb. 6, Divac told ESPN, “We’re not trading DeMarcus … we hope he’s here for a long time.” Yeah, right.

Divac’s public statement, sources said, followed a face-to-face meeting days earlier in which he assured Cousins and his representatives that there would be no trade and that the sides were on track for the extension this summer.

So why was Cousins traded? Because he’s a hot head and everybody knows it. The Kings now have the chance to start over because there was growing internal concern about Cousins’ unpredictability and run-ins with referees, and these were chief among the lures that convinced Sacramento to go forward with the trade Sunday, rather than playing the process out until Thursday’s trade deadline.

So the lesson is this: what do people think and say about you? What do they say publicly, and does it match what they say privately? The Kings were willing to part with arguably one of the NBA’s best big men in order to get … Buddy Hield? It doesn’t make sense unless you understand why the Kings wanted to get as far away from Cousins as possible.

Our attitude determines our altitude.  Period. Those around us can see and sense our disposition a mile away. And because we are supposed to emulate and imitate and mimic and model Jesus Christ, let’s hope that this ironic, sarcastic and sardonic “we say we like him but we really can’t stand him” attitude can’t be pegged on and doesn’t apply to any one of us.

Charles Oakley and The Sad State of the New York Knicks

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It’s all so sad. It’s all so saddening. And it didn’t have to end this way. The removal and arrest of former New York Knicks star Charles Oakley on Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden didn’t sit well with fans in and outside of the arena and current and former NBA players alike, who were shocked at his treatment.

Oakley — a fan favorite known for his toughness, defense and rebounding alongside Patrick Ewing during the 1990s — was removed from MSG by security and then was charged with three misdemeanor counts of third-degree assault and another third-degree misdemeanor.

Oakley, the tough-as-nails big man who played 10 seasons in New York, got into a shoving match with security guards during the Knicks’ loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday. The 53-year-old was escorted from the World’s Most Famous Arena in handcuffs, according to another source, by the NYPD and he subsequently was charged with three counts of assault and one count of criminal trespass.

We don’t know what Oakley may have said, but we know what James Dolan and the Knicks organization did. And a handful of current and former NBA players reacted to the incident on social media, supporting Oakley.

There’s right and there’s wrong. There’s a right way and there’s a wrong way to do things. And this one smells really wrong. With something like this occurring just a few feet away and allegedly at the direction of James Dolan, the owner of the Kicks, it’s no wonder that this once proud and prestigious NBA franchise is stinking on and off of the court.

Dwyanewade
10years!!! 10 years Oak gave everything he had for this organization and the image everyone will be left with won’t be this picture. It will be the imagine of him being taken down to the ground last night in the same arena he gave his all 2 as a player by the guards! This Could happen to any of us!!! #StayWoke We are not above this treatment!

The Return of Kevin Durant: Why Oklahoma City Is Still Mad — And Why They Need to Get Over It

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We loved seeing them together, on the court, at the photoshoot, and everywhere in between. But now that’s over. That’s all over. And we may never see them together again. And that’s why OKC fans are so hurt and why they’re so mad.

IT’S BEEN SEVEN months and six days since Kevin Durant made his decision to leave town and to break camp and to get out of Dodge, err, I mean Oklahoma City. February 11, 2017 has been circled on the calendar for quite some, and for good reason.

“The Return” comes after Durant gave nine celebrated seasons to the fledgling NBA town called Oklahoma City. Before Durant, this was only college sports territory. Without objection, Durant single handedly put this franchise and this Midwestern urban oasis on the basketball map. But when free agency rolled around, he chose another suitor. So after all of the love and the laughter and the good times and the great games, he chose to ditch them for their hated and heated rival, the Golden State Warriors.

“The Oklahoma City Thunder have moved on, or so they say. Clearly, the city hasn’t moved on, at least not entirely, as aftershocks attest, like T-shirts that read like a math equation: “35-35=0”. Aka, Durant wore number 35 while playing for the Thunder, and his departure, meaning No. 35 – No. 35, equals Russell Westbrook’s Number: “0.”

In addition, the occasional No. 35 jersey with Durant’s name changed or crossed off — still reverberate around town from time to time. As much as there’s celebration and appreciation for Russell Westbrook’s historic run, a trail of smoke lingers.

The two haven’t spoken since Durant left, and probably won’t for some time. Betray Westbrook’s trust and you’re dead to him for a lifetime, whether you’re a reporter, a coach, a friend or a teammate.

Westbrook’s remarkable, historic season has transformed what was expected to be a year of mourning into one of excitement and passion. He has sopped up the sadness, keeping the words “Kevin Durant” mostly out of the mouths of Thunder fans.” Royce Young, ESPN Staff Writer

So what will the reception be like tonight at Chesapeake Arena when Durant steps onto the floor in the house that he built? People are human, and when we are let down and feel betrayed or begrudged, for whatever reason, we hold it against and hold fast onto hurt feelings and let go of any goodwill that may have been generated or said or done. 

So while I understand how OKC fans feel, I’m still a Durant fan. And if you’re a sports fan, you should be too. Durant’s leaving opened the door for Westbrook’s appearing. Westbrook’s wonderful, delightful, breathtaking season full of triple doubles and double downs (on him) and his single handedly picking up where Durant left off is a sports spectacle like none other. And they have an anticipated playoff run.

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So go ahead OKC fans; go ahead and boo KD tonight. Go ahead and get it out of your system. Any and all sports fans the world over were let down when the one we loved left town.  We’ve all been disappointed and disillusioned by a professional athlete or a sports team or two.

Sports are like life, and life is like sports. We’ve all be let down by a boyfriend or a girlfriend or a good friend or a relative or a boss or too. Welcome to club. Now all you have to do is get over it. The rest of us did, and you can too.

The Greatest Comeback in Super Bowl History

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What Happened to Atlanta?

What happened to Atlanta? Tom Brady happened to Atlanta, that’s what.

What happened? Thirty-One unanswered points happened. Overtime happened. And most of all, momentum happened. Atlanta was winning by double digits, but Atlanta lost momentum as they gave the game away. They had the Patriots down 21-3 at the half and 28-9 after three quarters. But it didn’t matter after they lost momentum.

Once Atlanta lost momentum, you had that sinking feeling that they were going to lose the game. The Atlanta Falcons and the NFL’s newly crowned MVP Matt Ryan LOST an epic Super Bowl to the greatest franchise in the NFL, simply because they lost momentum.

Brady and the Patriots won 34-28, in OT, and in the second half and in the extra period, the Pats outscored and outplayed the Falcons 31-0. MAN! Said Brady, “We all brought each other back. We never thought we were out of it.” How’s that for confidence?

Joe Buck and Troy Aikman called the game for Fox Sports.  After it was all over, they said that New England redefined the word Momentum. Atlanta had the game in the bag, up nineteen points, 28-9,  after three. But Lady Gaga laid a mojo on the Dirty Birds. Ryan and the Falcons went into the locker room and didn’t score enough again after Lady Gaga dove into NRG Stadium and danced away the hopes and dreams of the Falcons faithful. Those rooting for Atlanta watched in horror as Brady did his thing and came back to win a thrilling, exhilarating, breathtaking Super Bowl.

It was the greatest of comebacks. It was the grandest of turnarounds. And it’s everything every Brady hater had hoped not to see. You’ve gotta’ be so sorry for Matt Ryan, and you’ve gotta’ be so enthralled by Tom Brady. Like him or lump him, you gotta’ respect him.

And so the lesson is clear: don’t lose momentum. Do all you can to steal it and snatch it and grab it and get it anyway you can. But most of all, when you have it, keep it. Because a change in momentum is all you need to turn the tide and stem the flood. And momentum will carry you over and past and through anything; past a huge deficit and past a hot quarterback and past a great defense.

And past an almost sure loss to an even greater and ultimate win.

So never give up. Brady didn’t. And Brady did it. He overcame and overpowered and overawed the Football world. He’s a five-time Super Bowl winner and a four time MVP.

Well done, Tom Brady.