<![CDATA[NBC Chicago - TV, movies, music and celebrity news]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcchicago.com/entertainment/entertainment-news http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/5-Chicago-Blue.png NBC Chicago http://www.nbcchicago.comen-usSun, 11 Dec 2016 08:03:00 -0600Sun, 11 Dec 2016 08:03:00 -0600NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA['They're Alt-Good': 'SNL' Takes on Trump Cabinet Picks]]> Sun, 11 Dec 2016 04:34:06 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/217*120/Screen+Shot+2016-12-11+at+12_opt.png

This week’s (Baldwin-less) "Saturday Night Live" continued its satirical coverage of Donald Trump’s march to the White House with a surprise appearance from “Breaking Bad” drug kingpin Walter White — Trump’s pick to run the Drug Enforcement Administration.

"Trust me, I know the DEA better than anyone — inside and out," says Bryan Cranston, reprising his role as a chemistry teacher-turned methamphetamine producer.

His introduction comes during a CNN sit-down with Trump aide Kellyanne Conway (Kate McKinnon) in which they dissect the president elect's cabinet picks.

CNN host Jake Tapper (Beck Bennett) begins with the PEOTUS’ appointee to head the Environmental Protection Agency, Republican Oklahoma Attorney General and climate change skeptic Scott Pruitt.

“Scott Pruitt is excited for the job, and he is ready to protect us all from the environment,” Conway responds.

“Not sure that’s how it works,” Tapper says.

Also under fire were Labor pick Andy Puzder (CEO of Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr.) and Exxon-Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson, who’s said to have close ties with Russia and is Trump's reported pick for Secretary of State

“It’s almost like Mr. Trump appoints these people specifically to destroy the very agencies they head. Are these bad picks?” Tapper asks.

“No, Jake, they are not bad; they are ‘alt-good.’”

To further drive the point of Trump’s questionable choices home, news breaks during the segment of another new appointment: Meth king Walter White for head of the DEA.

White explains that while he doesn't know Trump personally (he says Steve Bannon, Trump's top strategist, found him "in the comments section at 'Breitbart,'") he admires his plans to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. 

"Nothing comes in from Mexico, meaning a lot less competition for the rest of us," he explains. 

"You mean jobs?" Tapper asks.

"Sure," White replies.

The Trump skewering continues in "Weekend Update" where host Colin Jost asks German Chancellor Angela Merkel (Kate McKinnon) how she feels about her 2015 Time Magazine Person of the Year title being handed to Trump.

"It kind of undermines the honor for me," she says. "It’s like winning the Nobel Prize for physics and then the next year they give it to Hoobastank." 

McKinnon's Merkel also explains that the term "alt-right" goes by another name in Germany.

"In Germany we call it 'why Grand Papa lives in Argentina now,'" she says.

WWE star John Cena hosted the show, kicking it off with an attempt at singing a Christmas song that was repeatedly interrupted by 'SNL' stars attempting to fight him.

Cena also appeared in sketches as a muscular man-servant and a muscular dating show host.

Musical guest Maren Morris performed "My Church."

Photo Credit: Saturday Night Live
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<![CDATA['Days of Our Lives' Actor Joseph Mascolo Dies]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 16:19:44 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-496330636.jpg

Longtime "Days of Our Lives" actor Joseph Mascolo has died at the age of 87, the show announced on Twitter.

Mascolo played the villain, Stefano DiMera, an international businessman.


Remembered Friday by some entertainment bloggers as possibly "the" most memorable villain of daytime television, Mascolo was mourned by fans on social media.


A Connecticut native, Mascolo attended West Point Academy and dabbled in the study of opera before beginning his acting career in off-Broadway productions.

Based primarily in Los Angeles while he was on the show, Mascolo also had a home in Lake Arrowhead, California.

Photo Credit: Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Days Of Our Lives
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<![CDATA[Late at Night on NBC]]> Mon, 15 Aug 2016 13:13:59 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP24762024125.jpg

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Blake Shelton Offers Tix to Fan Who Missed Show After Crash]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 13:56:22 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/blake-shelton-1209.jpg

Country star Blake Shelton is saving a set of tickets for a Westchester County fan who attempted to reach out to the "Voice" judge on Facebook after a life-threatening motorcycle accident kept him and his girlfriend from attending a show in Brooklyn earlier this year.

Shelton sent a video to Jonathan Daniels and Lindsay Baker Thursday offering to hook them up with tickets to a show in 2017 to make up for the Oct. 8 show the couple missed because Daniels was recovering from a crash that left him with broken bones, collapsed and punctured lungs, brain bleeding and a lacerated kidney, spleen and liver.

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"I'm very sorry about the accident, and hope you recover soon and obviously I'm totally ready to give you tickets to whatever show you can make it to," Shelton said in the video. "And for God's sake, don't rush. Take your time getting well."

Shelton even upped the ante on Daniels' original request -- saying "for sure, I gotta' meet you guys."

Daniels, of Peekskill, addressed Shelton in a Facebook post on Nov. 7, saying that it he knew it "was a long shot but worth a try" to reach the "Sangria" singer. The post quickly went viral and was shared more than 400,000 times. 

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In the post, he said he bought tickets to a show at Barclays Center as a present for Baker's 23rd birthday. But on Sept. 15, the day after Baker's birthday, his motorcycle hit a car that pulled out in front of him and flung him into a telephone pole.

Due to his hospital stay, Daniels said that he and Baker weren't able to make it to the concert. He said in the post that he hasn't fully recovered from his injuries, and Baker is taking him on trips to the doctor and has to help him shower, eat and walk. 

"I was just hoping maybe you would see this letter and help me give her the birthday present she deserves," he said in the post. "All she wants is to see you in concert. It would just make her day and make her smile which is all I want to do!"

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In the post Thursday showing Shelton's video, Daniels said he was "beyond grateful for everyone who helped us share this and get it to Blake!!"

"He is such an amazing man with a huge heart! Thank you everyone!!!" he said. 

Photo Credit: Jonathan Daniels / Getty Images for NBCUniversal
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<![CDATA[Actor T.J. Miller Charged With Battery in Calif.]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 13:54:48 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/187*120/T.J.-Miller-Getty.jpg

Actor T.J. Miller, known for the HBO series "Silicon Valley" and the movie "Deadpool," was arrested on a battery charge Friday after a driver for a car company demanded his arrest, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

Police received a call around 1 a.m. Friday and responded to the 6900 block of Camrose Drive in the Hollywood Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles, said Officer Drake Madison of the LAPD.

The victim was a driver for an unnamed car company, who demanded a citizen's arrest, Madison said.

The LAPD's Hollywood Division arrested Miller, whose full name is Todd Joseph Miller, for battery, Madison said. His bail was set at $20,000, but he was released on his own recognizance.

Miller is in the movie "Office Christmas Party," which was released Friday.

Photo Credit: Jamie McCarthy / Staff]]>
<![CDATA[New 'Spider-Man: Homecoming' Trailer Includes Downey, Keaton]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 12:54:09 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/spideyweb.jpg

The wait is almost over.

The first full-length trailer for 2017's "Spider-man: Homecoming" debuted during "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" Thursday night. And if the two minute sneak peek is any indication, fans of the rebooted series are in for a fun ride.

Twenty-year-old Tom Holland takes over the titular role last occupied by Andrew Garfield in 2014's "The Amazing Spider-Man 2." Fans got a small dose of Holland in 2016's "Captain America: Civil War," when the new character was introduced while being recruited by Robert Downey Jr. The "Iron Man" star also appears in the trailer, along with co-stars Marisa Tomei and Michael Keaton.

Infused with a good dose of humor, the re-invented series has Holland's Peter Parker back in high school as he works at proving himself worthy enough to Downey to be invited into The Avengers. 

The film hits the theaters on July 7, 2017.

Photo Credit: Getty Images for Disney
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<![CDATA[Facebook 2016 'Year in Review']]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 12:05:26 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_16193386624382-Candace-Payne-CMT-Awards.jpg

If you're feeling nostalgic, and maybe a bit brave, Facebook is ready to shed light on your most memorable posts of 2016, and remind you of the biggest stories of the year.

The social media hub is continuing its traditional "Year in Review" video for 2016, compiling all your likes, check-ins and new friends into roughly one minute's worth of video.

Now, some online are suggesting that the feature may be the scariest movie of the year, but you might see it and realize the year wasn't all that bad.

The data miners at Facebook HQ have also been busy tracking the "most talked about global topics" of 2016. The U.S. presidential election ranks at the top of the list; legendary boxer Muhammad Ali's rounded out the 10.


And for the first time, Facebook compiled a list of the top 10 global live videos of the year. And it's not all light-hearted.

  1. Candace Payne: Chewbacca Mom
  2. Ted Yoder: Soundscapes
  3. Buzzfeed: Countdown to the next presidential election
  4. Atlanta Buzz: People lining up to hug police officers in Dallas
  5. NBC News: Election results
  6. Under the Hood: Video of a truck completely carved out of wood
  7. Viral Thread: Population count from US to CA
  8. CNN: Election Results on Empire State building
  9. Dena Blizzard: "Pokemon Go" for moms: "Chardonnay Go"
  10. Super Deluxe: Election map

Click here to create your own Facebook Year in Review.

Photo Credit: AP, File]]>
<![CDATA[Blond Kanye Makes First Appearance Since Hospitalization]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 12:11:34 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Kanye_West1.jpg

Kanye West made his first public appearance since his hospitalization on Thursday, Dec. 8.

West reportedly visited the “Rick Owens: Furniture” exhibition at the MOCA Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, California. Italian artist Giovanni Leonardo Bassan shared a photo of the rapper on his Instagram account which was picked up by Kanye West fan page, “kanyewest_daily.”

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In the picture, West is sporting blond hair as he sits on a chair at the exhibit.

West spent more than a week at UCLA Medical Center for sleep deprivation and exhaustion. He was admitted on Nov. 21 following an erratic rant at his last show before abruptly ending the concert and the rest of his tour. West has kept a low profile since his hospital release on Nov 30.

Photo Credit: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Happy 100th! Acclaimed Actor Kirk Douglas Hits Century Mark]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 09:19:58 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/KirkDouglas.jpg Kirk Douglas celebrates his 100th birthday on Dec. 9, 2016. His long career started in 1946 with his role in "The Strange Love of Martha Ivers" and included over 91 acting credits in television and film.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA['Today's' Savannah Guthrie Welcomes 2nd Baby]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 06:47:02 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/today-savannah-guthrie-mike-charles-baby-inline-002-161209.jpg

The "Today" show family just got a new, little member. 

Savannah Guthrie, co-anchor of NBC's "Today" show, gave birth to her second child. She and husband Michael Feldman welcomed a son, Charles Max Feldman on Thursday evening.

Known as "Charley," the baby weighed in at 9 lbs. 8 oz. and measured 21.5 inches long, according to Today.com. He's named after Guthrie's late father and Feldman's grandfather. He is joining 2-year-old big sister, Vale.

Guthrie's last day before her maternity leave was Dec. 2. 

"I'm going to go on my maternity leave after tomorrow," Guthrie, 44, told co-stars Willie Geist, Al Roker and Carson Daly on the "Today" show on Dec. 1. "And so all of you who have been saying, 'Please stop...we've seen enough,' there will be no live birth on the 'Today' show. Tomorrow's my last day."

"I can't believe you've made it this far," Daly said. "You've been working so much...my family sees Savannah and is like, 'How much longer is she gonna work?'"

In September, Guthrie revealed her new baby's gender on-air with the help of blue milkshakes. 

Photo Credit: Savannah Guthrie, "Today"]]>
<![CDATA['Late Night': Taraji P. Henson Accepts the Actathalon]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 03:25:15 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/nbc_myr_hlt_s4e039_459_actathalon_20161208_1200x675_828857411570.jpg Actress Taraji P. Henson completes an acting obstacle course to receive a prestigious prize from host Seth Meyers.]]> <![CDATA['Late Night': A Closer Look at Trump's Carrier Deal]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 06:12:26 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/nbc_myr_hlt_s4e039_459_closerlook_20161208_1200x675_828856899527.jpg Host Seth Meyers breaks down what President-elect Donald Trump has said and done about saving American jobs.]]> <![CDATA['Tonight Show': #TextFail Hashtags]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 09:21:58 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/nbc_tjf_hlt_s4e052_587_hashtags_20161208_1200x675_828856899511.jpg Host Jimmy Fallon reads some of his favorite tweets about texting mishaps.]]> <![CDATA[Moore Tweets Inauguration Protest Petition to 3.4M Followers]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 13:27:20 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/miketrump.jpg

Michael Moore doesn't plan on taking Donald Trump's upcoming inauguration sitting down... or quietly.

The outspoken film director tweeted to his followers an online petition encouraging critics of the president-elect to gather in Washington D.C. on Jan 20th and disrupt the Inauguration.

"Disrupt the Inauguration. The Majority have spoken - by nearly 2.7 million votes and counting!" Moore wrote. "Silence is not an option."

It is unclear if Moore is involved in the actual planning of the inauguration protests, or if he's simply forwarding the information to his 3.4M Twitter followers. Calls to Moore's representatives were not returned. 

Appearing on Late Night with Seth Myers Wednesday, Moore made a direct appeal to Trump following reports the President-elect had turned away some opportunities to receive intelligence briefings.

"With all due respect, Mr. President-elect. On our behalf, you have to pay attention. You have to attend these briefings. This is our country. This is our security. This is our safety. You're horsing around with all this nonsense. And you're not doing your no. 1 job, and the no. 1 job of the president is to make sure that the country is safe."

Moore added, "And I beg you, seriously, there's not right or left, Republican-Democrat going on here. I'm asking you to do your job for the sake of the people who may end up dead because you didn't do you job. "

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Judge Reinhold Apologizes After Dallas Airport Arrest]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 14:35:54 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/judge-reinhold-love.jpg

Actor Judge Reinhold apologized to the Dallas police for "wasting their time" following an arrest at Dallas Love Field Thursday afternoon for disorderly conduct.

Dallas police said they were called to the airport by the Transportation Security Administration "regarding an individual causing a disturbance by refusing to submit to a screening at the appropriate checkpoint area."

The 59-year-old actor’s lawyer, Dallas attorney Steve Stodghill, told The Dallas Morning News Reinhold passed through security but was stopped when his bag set off an alarm. Stodghill told DallasNews.com that when TSA agents asked to pat Reinhold down again, he questioned the procedure since he had already cleared the scanner without incident.

Reinhold was transported to Lew Sterrett Justice Center and charged with the class C misdemeanor.

Reinhold's attorney released a statement Friday on behalf of the actor.

"I have to say that the past 48 hours have been the most unusual, hair-raising and regrettable two days of my life. At best, it's a cautionary tale.

No matter how seemingly harmless a medication can be, don't ever introduce anything into your body chemistry when you're about to travel. I was prescribed the antibiotic Cipro for a respiratory infection the night before a flight.

Within 20 minutes of taking it I looked like I'd been bitten by Spiderman and blew up like the Macy's day parade. Thankfully, against my protest, my wife called 9-1-1. Paramedics arrived with epinephrine and super-Benadryl and took me to the hospital for observation. They gave me Zantax and Prednisone to ward off any recurrence of the reaction while in flight.

I was calmly told that if my wife had not called 9-1-1 there was a good chance I may not have made it there.

Rescheduled flights for the next morning. Successfully walked through the TSA scanner only to be told by a trainee that it looked like I had a mysterious shape in by backpack. This turned out to be a dense stack of DVD and CDs I ALWAYS carry without incident.

Because of my bag I was told I had to get the pat down.

It was then I started to argue with TSA over something I had no control over. Never a good idea.

Two Dallas police officers came over and gave me every opportunity to keep my mouth shut. I didn't comply with the pat down or their suggestions. This led to my arrest. I knew better, I just didn't do the right thing.

I feel especially embarrassed about self righteous indignation when I've enjoyed 30 years of support and camaraderie with law enforcement.

I want to apologize to the Dallas police for wasting their time today. I want to acknowledge TSA's experienced agents as well as the recent influx of trainees that seem unprepared to detain people."

Reinhold is best known for his roles in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High," "Gremlins," the "Beverly Hills Cop" series and "Ruthless People." He is also known for his role as the "close-talker" Aaron on NBC's hit series "Seinfeld."

Photo Credit: Dallas Police Department | NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Jimmy Fallon's 'Golden' Opportunity]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 11:16:51 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/fallonglobe.jpg

The tapping this week of ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel as a first-time Oscars host come February kicked off a sub-competition amid the usual show businesss awards scramble. 

The announcement sets a prime time stage for the late night comedy battles: Jimmy Fallon is slated to host the Golden Globes next month, while CBS’ James Corden will helm the Grammys in February and appears likely to return to the Tonys in June. It's a good bet that CBS will turn to Stephen Colbert for the Emmys in the summer.

Fallon enters the game with a big advantage: He gets to go first. The Jan. 8 Globes broadcast offers the NBC "Tonight Show" host a golden opportunity to set the tone – and the bar – for the major awards show season.

Fallon gets to try to build on the work of Ricky Gervais and Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who transformed the once-sleepy Globes into a must-see event over the last six years.

Their edgy performances gave the Globes a running start on the Academy Awards. Sure, the Oscars still pull in a bigger crowd, but the Globes get the host buzz. Academy Awards bids to grab back some luster by recruiting relatively youthful hosts James Franco and Anne Hathaway, "Family Guy" creator Seth MacFarlane and Neil Patrick Harris largely failed.

ABC apparently hopes that Kimmel, whose fun post-Oscars specials sometimes outshine the show, can successfully transport his smart-and-smart-aleck persona to the three-hour-plus main event.

While Fallon's "Tonight Show" remains late night ratings champ, he lands at the Globes as an underdog. The informal format won't allow for the kind of spectacle that made his 2010 Emmys gig a star-enhancing turn (remember his epic “Born to Run” opener?).

Perhaps more challenging will be inevitable comparisons to the sharp elbows thrown by Gervais, who mercilessly poked the likes of Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson, and Fey and Poehler, who memorably targeted Bill Cosby. Viewers also may tune in expecting pointed post-election political jibes.

That's not Fallon's style. But he's armed a quick wit and enjoys a strong rapport with celebrities that lets him get away with mocking at will, sans the animus generated by Gervais.

Fallon's humor is no less funny for its gentle delivery, as seen in his recent promo airing ahead of Monday’s Globes nominations announcement. He’s off to a good head start, but his hosting stint will test whether being first will be enough to last through a long awards season.


Jere Hester is Director of News Products and Projects at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. He is also the author of "Raising a Beatle Baby: How John, Paul, George and Ringo Helped us Come Together as a Family." Follow him on Twitter.

Photo Credit: NBC via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[X-Wing Fighter Lands in LA for 'Rogue One' Premiere]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 11:04:50 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/628379988-X-Wing-Rogue-One-Hollywood-Thumb.jpg An X-Wing fighter lands on Hollywood Boulevard for the Saturday Dec. 10, 2016, premiere of "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story" at the Pantages Theatre.

Photo Credit: Gabriel Olsen/GC Images]]>
<![CDATA['Hairspray Live!' Makes a Big Splash on Social Media ]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 11:16:10 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/hairhairsprayhair.jpg

Welcome to the '60s! Last night, NBC’s “Hairspray Live!” took audiences on a wild ride through Baltimore, Maryland, as Tracy Turnblad and her gang navigated young love, race relations, and celebrity in one of the most turbulent decades in American history.

The 2002 musical received a reboot for the holiday season, combining feel good, upbeat tunes with meaningful, deep commentary about prejudice and defying expectations. Bolstered by a cast of prominent vocal artists like Kristin Chenoweth, Jennifer Hudson, and Ariana Grande, and with former “Glee” star Darren Criss as host, the production was touted as NBC musical’s “best, most entertaining work yet” by USA Today.

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The show also made splashes on social media, where cast members tweeted from the set. Criss shared photos with original Tracy Turnblads Ricki Lake and Marissa J. Winokur, who made cameos during the shoot. Criss also posed with his former Warblers, Re’Sean Pates and Mason Trueblood, who were in the ensemble.

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The day before the premiere, Grande posted a photo with choreographer Jerry Mitchell beside the caption, “What an honor and a dream come true this has been. i wish we could do this forever.”

Stars at home weighed in on the production via Twitter. Laverne Cox, who was recently featured in “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” live on Fox, wrote a message praising Hudson’s performance: “@IAMJHUD and that voice are truly a national treasure. That was a show stopper.”

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After some wine, Broadway superfan Anna Kendrick live-tweeted her experience. When one fan clapped back at a tweet that made little to no sense, Kendrick blamed it on the alcohol. “It made sense when I typed it. Hush!” she replied.

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Meanwhile, music icon Jennifer Lopez teased her future appearance on the NBC musical stage. Lopez has been cast as Rosie in NBC’s 2017 holiday show. “I am SO excited to be a part of NBC's next live musical #ByeByeBirdieLive!” the actress tweeted. 

“Loving #hairspraylive,” she added.

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<![CDATA[DiCaprio Meets With Trump on Green Jobs to Boost Economy ]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 10:04:27 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/leotrump.jpg

Leonardo DiCaprio and the head of his foundation met Wednesday with President-elect Donald Trump to discuss how jobs centered on preserving the environment can boost the economy.

In a statement to The Associated Press, Terry Tamminen, the CEO of the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, confirmed the meeting at Trump Tower in New York City. Tamminen said the pair gave a presentation to Trump, daughter Ivanka, and other members of Trump's team on how focusing on renewable, clean energy could create millions of jobs.

"Today, we presented the President-elect and his advisors with a framework — which LDF developed in consultation with leading voices in the fields of economics and environmentalism — that details how to unleash a major economic revival across the United States that is centered on investments in sustainable infrastructure," Tamminen said. "Our conversation focused on how to create millions of secure, American jobs in the construction and operation of commercial and residential clean, renewable energy generation."

The Oscar-winning actor has been a strong advocate of fighting climate change and preserving wildlife, and his recent documentary, "Before the Flood," addresses the peril that the world faces because of climate change.

DiCaprio previously met with Ivanka Trump and presented her with a copy of the film.

The meeting with Trump's team lasted for about 90 minutes. The actor also gave the president-elect a copy of the documentary, and Trump promised to watch it, according to a person who was familiar with the meeting but not authorized to speak publicly.

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Tamminen, who was secretary of California's Environmental Protection Agency under former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, said Trump was receptive and suggested they meet again next month.

"We look forward to continuing the conversation with the incoming administration as we work to stop the dangerous march of climate change, while putting millions of people to work at the same time," said Tamminen.

The meeting came after word got out Wednesday that Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, a climate-change denier whose policies have helped fossil fuel companies, is expected to be announced as Trump's pick to lead the Environmental Protection Agency.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sofia Vergara Sued by Group Representing Her Frozen Embryos]]> Fri, 09 Dec 2016 13:19:04 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/sofiasofia.jpg

"Modern Family" star Sofia Vergara is being sued by a Louisiana pro-life group representing two frozen "pre-embryos," or fertilized eggs that have not been implanted, she created via IVF with her former fiancé, businessman Nick Loeb. 

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The frozen fertilized eggs, which are stored in an Los Angeles facility have been the center of a long legal battle, resulting in this week's lawsuit.

The bizarre lawsuit demands that Loeb, whom Vergara split from in 2014 amid abuse allegations, be given sole custody of the pre-embryos, which he's named "Emma" and "Isabella." The suit says a trust was created for the embryos in Louisiana, which has laws that allows an embryo to sue a person.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Celeb Breakups: Sia Furler and Erik Anders Lang]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 09:23:36 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_16342810070165sia-erik-anders-lang.jpg Nothing lasts forever, especially when you're a celebrity. See whose relationships have hit the rocks.

Photo Credit: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP]]>
<![CDATA[Yoko Ono Calls for Peace on Anniversary of Lennon's Death]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 07:20:38 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/yokoonoIII.jpg

Yoko Ono offered a heartfelt appeal for peace in a Facebook post on the 36th anniversary of the murder of her former husband, John Lennon. 

"Dear Friends,
Every day, 91 Americans are killed with guns.
We are turning this beautiful country into a War Zone.
Together, let's bring back America, the green land of Peace.
The death of a loved one is a hollowing experience.
After 36 years, our son Sean and I still miss him," Ono wrote. 

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Lennon, a founding member of the Beatles, was shot to death by Mark David Chapman on Dec. 8, 1980, as he and Ono were entering their apartment building on Manhattan's Upper West Side. 

Ono's Facebook page is filled with other homages to her late husband and his anti-war convictions. 

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Her profile picture shows Lennon and her huddled behind a poster emblazoned with the words "War is Over!" Her cover photo is also a picture of the phrase, which Lennon put on billboards in cities around the world to protest the Vietnam war in the 1970s. 

Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[John Waters on 'Hairspray' and Christmas Gifts]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 06:53:33 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000016995723_1200x675_827434563977.jpg Mark Segraves spoke with John Waters, who wrote and directed a 1988 movie “Hairspray," at his home in Baltimore about everything from what makes a good Christmas gift to what Baltimore thinks of D.C. ]]> <![CDATA['Late Night': A Message to Media Normalizing Alt-Right]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 06:30:16 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/nbc_myr_hlt_s4e038_458_hey_20161207_1200x675_827860035917.jpg In his segment "Hey!", host Seth Meyers delivers special words for anyone casually covering the Alt-Right, which are groups whose core belief is that “white identity” is under attack by multicultural forces, as defined by the Southern Poverty Law Center.]]> <![CDATA['Tonight Show': Raiders and Chiefs Superlatives]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 03:44:53 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/nbc_tjf_hlt_s4e051_586_superlatives_20161207_1200x675_827849795730.jpg Host Jimmy Fallon hands out special accolades to 2016 Oakland Raiders and Kansas City Chiefs NFL players.]]> <![CDATA['Tonight Show': Nintendo Switch Debut]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 06:26:14 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/nbc_tjf_hlt_s4e051_586_nintendoswitch_20161207_1200x675_827847235839.jpg President of Nintendo of America Reggie Fils-Aimé guides host Jimmy Fallon through Super Mario Run before debuting the Nintendo Switch game system by playing The Legend of Zelda in front of creator Shigeru Miyamoto.]]> <![CDATA['Late Night': Moore Wants Trump to Have More Briefings]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 06:26:52 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/nbc_myr_hlt_s4e038_458_michaelmoore_briefings_20161207_1200x675_827847747980.jpg Academy Award-winning filmmaker Michael Moore talks to host Seth Meyers about how important it is for President-elect Donald Trump to keep America safe.]]> <![CDATA['Royal Family' Sports Ugly Christmas Sweaters for Charity]]> Thu, 08 Dec 2016 06:15:22 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_16341348957554-royal-family-ugly-sweaters.jpg

Even a family as regal as the British Royals is not exempt from humiliating holiday traditions.

Madame Tussauds London has outfitted the royal family's wax figures with ugly Christmas sweaters. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are wearing a conjoined couples' sweater and Queen Elizabeth is donning a corgi-themed sweater. Four real corgi dogs were present for the official photo shoot as an homage to the queens’ own famous corgis.

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The sweaters, according to the museum's Instagram, were designed in aid of Christmas Jumper Day 2016. The U.K. holiday, sponsored by the global charity organization Save the Children, is an annual fundraising campaign dedicated to giving back to children in need. This year, it will be celebrated on Dec. 16.

According to the organization's website, participants are asked to get together with anyone, from their teachers to their butchers, to dress in festive, holiday garb and to donate to the charity.

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Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[New 'Fifty Shades Darker' Trailer is Full of Suspense]]> Wed, 07 Dec 2016 20:42:22 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP524283624435.jpg

Fans got another taste of what's to come in "Fifty Shades Darker" with the release of a new trailer Wednesday. 

Set to Miguel's cover of Beyoncé's "Crazy in Love" rendition from the first movie, the steamy trailer is full of suspense, intrigue, mystery, and excitement that the first one, released in September, lacked.

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The "Fifty Shades of Grey" sequel finds Christian Grey, played by Jamie Dornan, and Anastasia Steele, played by Dakota Johnson, reunited after some time apart — with more erotic PDA and happier than ever. But their journey to coupledom appears to face obstacles in the form of Steele's creepy boss and Grey's stalker former girlfriend, Leila.

The clip ends on a dark note, with "If something were to happen to you, I could never forgive myself."

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The movie is the second installment in E.L. James' erotic book trilogy. Users on social media had mixed responses to the new trailer, with some voicing excitement for the film. Others, however, condemned the film and the relationship between its main characters, Christian and Anastasia. 

The movie hits theaters on Feb. 10, 2017.

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<![CDATA[A 'South Park' Season to Re-'Member']]> Wed, 07 Dec 2016 16:02:25 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/sp15.jpg

The latest season of "South Park" includes a bunch of new characters: "Member Berries" – cute, talking fruit that ease anxiety by referencing past pop culture.

With phrases like "'member 'Bionic Man?'" and "'member Chewbacca?" delivered in child-like tones, the literal comfort food provide a seemingly innocent respite from election-generated stress. Yet, the deceivingly ominous 'Member Berries, like the presidential vote they influenced in the parallel world of "South Park," upended expectations. 

As Wednesday’s 20th season finale approaches, series creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker keep raising expectations, two decades into their crude Comedy Central cartoon about a “quiet, little mountain town.”

Credit Parker and Stone with some smart zeitgeist tapping, via inter-linked plot lines tying the election, online trolling, misplaced nostalgia, misogyny and the meaning of patriotism into one exhilarating, messy package.

More kudos are due to them for pulling off their most ambitious run yet on the fly, responding to extraordinary currents events with speed more associated with a late night comedy show than an animated program.

This season gave us schoolteacher Mr. Garrison as a Donald Trump stand-in, whose plot to alienate voters backfires and gets him the job he never wanted.

The only thing more shocking than Garrison's ascension is mega-hater Eric Cartman's conversion to a sensitive feminist who dotes on his "smart and funny" fourth-grade girlfriend, Heidi.

He's terrified she'll find his misogynistic online rant about the women-dominated “Ghostbusters” remake if Denmark makes good on its threat to reveal everybody’s Internet history. The “Troll Trace” effort, which has already snagged Kyle’s secretly sleazy dad, Gerald (a.k.a. Skank Hunt) – seems to have folks more shaken than the prospect of the Garrison presidency.

Trump goes unmentioned, but the show targets inventor Elon Musk, who can't make those SpaceX rockets to Mars fast enough to help us escape the mess we've made of Earth.  San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s National Anthem kneel-out gets skewered – but not as harshly as J.J. Abrams, whose 2015 retro-“Star Wars” reboot apparently rankled fanboys Parker and Stone.

The duo proved at their best this season best mocking soft-minded nostalgia, reminding us that at a time when cries of "Make America great again" triumphed at the polls, the good old days were an illusion.

Still, even in this brave new world, you won't need soma-like ‘Member Berries to one day fondly look back on “South Park” as great show that somehow got better with age.


Jere Hester is Director of News Products and Projects at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. He is also the author of "Raising a Beatle Baby: How John, Paul, George and Ringo Helped us Come Together as a Family." Follow him on Twitter.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[No Charges Filed Against Crowe in Hotel Dispute With Banks]]> Wed, 07 Dec 2016 14:05:26 -0600 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/222*120/12-7-16-Crowe-no-charges-filed.jpg

A Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney has determined no charges will be filed against actor Russell Crowe over a hotel dispute with rapper and singer Azealia Banks in October.

Banks charged Crowe had physically assaulted and hurled racial slurs at her during a weekend dinner party in Beverly Hills on Oct. 15. Banks had attended the gathering in Crowe's Room at the Beverly Hills Hotel before the confrontation occurred, documents from the prosecutor noted.

She told Beverly Hills police that Crowe had "grabbed her by the neck, used a racial epithet, and threw her out of the room," adding that he spat on her hand while she was standing by the door, court documents stated.

However, several guests at the party told authorities that Banks was the aggressor, stating that she used a racial epithet repeatedly, was verbally aggressive to partygoers, and "threatened to break a glass to cut the throat of a female guest and/or Crowe," read documents from the prosecutor.

According to guests, Crowe struggled with Banks after partygoers saw her pick up a glass in the room, and then led Banks out of the hotel room. The Deputy District Attorney determined Crowe took her out of the room to prevent the violence she had threatened.

Rapper and actor RZA, who brought Banks as a guest to the party, described his account of the confrontation in a Facebook post days after the incident. He described Banks' behavior that night, and wrote the verbal abuse escalated when Banks made the threat before she grabbed and attacked another guest.

"Russell blocked the attack and expelled her from the suite," wrote RZA on Facebook. "Seeing is believing and I saw her behave as an obnoxious erratic individual and in the circles I frequent this was unprecedented....THIS IS NOT A RACE OR GENDER ISSUE. I did not hear Russell call her a N::gg:::: I'm not trying to protect Russell from anything he is a man of his own Caliber."

The Deputy District Attorney also determined Crowe would not be held "criminally accountable for the minor battery of spitting on Banks' gloved hand," since the act was "incidental" to preventing the violent behavior she threatened.

Court documents also noted one guest said the spit did not touch her hand.

Banks admitted to insulting Crowe before she was escorted out of the room. She did not have any injuries when she reported the confrontation to police about 12 hours after it happened, and documents from the prosecutor added there was no known video in the area of the hotel room.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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