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ALICIA KEYS TO PLAY LENA HORNE
Alicia Keys has officially been cast as the legendary singer/actress Lena Horne in a biopic about Horne's life.
Oprah Winfrey has taken over the project and revealed that although she [Winfrey] would never act again, she's taken to producing like a billionaire fish to water. “We're going to start filming next year, and we've got Alicia,” Oprah reportedly told the New York Post column during an interview for her film "The Great Debaters."
When this project was initially planned to be a TV movie at ABC, Janet Jackson had expressed interest in playing Horne and was a front runner for the part. Horne asked Jackson to remove herself from consideration after the wardrobe malfunction at the Super Bowl.
Horne and Keys not only resemble each other and have made a mark in the entertainment industry, but were both born in New York and are known to be activists for issues they believe in.
R. KELLY IN “HOT WATER” FOR MISSING COURT DATE
Kelly was in court December 20 after missing his December 19 court date. The 40-year old singer, who is now on a 45-city tour, missed the court date due to weather conditions and the bus being delayed by Sacramento police while traveling from Sacramento to Chicago.
If Kelly did not show up December 20 the warrant Judge Vincent Gaughan issued would be enforced and Kelly would be arrested. The Cook Prosecutors pushed for the warrant since the court had been generous by allowing Kelly to tour.
"This is just an abuse of the process. It's disrespectful of your honor," said Assistant State's Attorney Shauna Bolicker. In regards to the court date being rescheduled Bolicker stated asked the judge to revoke Kelly’s $750,000 bail and wanted him jailed for not missing the court date.
The judge also voiced his concern over Kelly missing the court date since it was set up to accommodate Kelly’s schedule. The judge was considering canceling Kelly’s December 21 show in Chicago as punishment. "These are extraordinary matters to have these breaks given to you and then nobody shows up," Judge Gaughan said. "I don't know what I am going to do. I have to consider it."
Kelly’s attorney, Edward Genson, reminded the court that until this incident, Kelly had not missed a court date.
Judge Gaughan did not make Kelly cancel his Chicago concert or send him to jail. He did however order Kelly to cancel his January 13 show in Hampton, VA., to allow time for him to get back to Chicago for his next court appearance on January 14.
Kelly commented to the court, "I'm sorry for this whole incident, and the next time I would be on a plane if it came down to it."
This court date is from the pending 2002 child pornography charges against Kelly. The singer has pleaded not guilty to the charges of allegedly videotaping sex acts with teenage girls. If convicted, Kelly could face up to 15 years in jail. The judge set a May 9 trial date.