Miranda Lambert steps up to help music industry workers with vet bills as the pandemic drags on
The coronavirus pandemic has already wreaked financial havoc on the music industry and the families of those who work in the field. As animal lover Miranda Lambert knows all too well, many of those families include pets. And just like their owners, those fur-babies will continue to need medical care as the pandemic continues. That's why the singer's launched the MuttNation Fund, a new service she established with the Waggle Foundation to help music industry employees pay for their pets' medical needs. People reports it was Miranda's backup singer Gwen Sebastian, whose dog, Earl, inspired the idea. It seems Earl got sick early on in the pandemic, just as the spread of COVID-19 forced Miranda to cancel the rest of her tour. Meanwhile, Earl was hospitalized repeatedly with a rare liver disorder. He relapsed repeatedly as well and, according to People, will continue needing special vet treatments for the remainder of his days. "It was such an unexpected major expense at an already tough time," Miranda explained in a press release. "So, it got me thinking that there must be a lot more people whose careers in the music industry have been on pause due to lack of live performance opportunities, and who are struggling with their pets' vet bills." She went on to say: "Because music and mutts are my two passions, I knew I had to do something and thought that starting this fund would help both the music community that's been so supportive of me, and their pets." A dog mom to nine little ones herself, Miranda previously set up a pet rescue nonprofit back in 2009 called MuttNation Foundation. The foundation is offering a matching grant donation to the MuttNation Fund, which has earmarked all money raised to go directly to the vet of any accepted applicant.
Keep reading to see which major 'Scream' star is returning for 'Scream 5' …
Neve Campbell confirms her return to the 'Scream' franchise
It's happening! Neve Campbell confirmed Thursday that she'll return to the town of Woodsboro Sidney Prescott in the next edition of the "Scream" franchise. "Hello again, Sidney… #ImBack," the actress, 46, teased on social media. The news comes months after Neve began talks with the producers of what's currently being dubbed, "Scream 5." As she told Rotten Tomatoes earlier this year, she was initially not into participating in any more of the comedy-horror movies without Wes Craven, who died in 2015. She said a heartfelt letter from the new edition's directors, Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, went a long way in changing her mind. In an official statement this week, she name-checked the late director again, praising the "love, respect and admiration for Wes Craven and all that he's created in the 'Scream' franchise" shown by Radio Silence, which is producing the film, per the Daily Mail. Original cast members David Arquette and Courteney Cox are also set to return as Dewey Riley and Gale Weathers. Thanks to a deleted comment from Courteney on Selena Gomez's Instagram, fans suspect Selena could also end up joining the cast.
Ann Curry reflects on her 'Today' ouster and Matt Lauer's rumored involvement
It's been eight years since Ann Curry was let go from "Today," following an Emmy and journalism award-laden 15 years at NBC. At the time, media insiders whispered that her lack of strong chemistry with Matt Lauer was to blame. As Lauer's sexual misconduct scandals began to surface a few years later, though, it was revealed Curry had never tried to protect him while she was at NBC, unlike many if not most of her peers there, a fact that raised new questions about her exit and the network's rumored favoritism. So why was she fired? "I still don't really understand," she says in an extensive new interview with Elle. "I know I did nothing wrong. I know I was good at my job." Ann, 62, continues: "They say where there's smoke, there's fire," she continues. "You can read the tea leaves. But you know, I'm a fact-based reporter, so it's hard for me to go out there, with something so close to the vest. I don't know. I don't know." As Elle reminds is in its retelling of Curry's departure from NBC and, largely, from news media in general, she revealed to the Washington Post in 2018 that shortly before she was ousted, one of Lauer's accusers told Curry Lauer had exposed himself to her. She eventually reported the incident to NBC brass, without identifying her colleague, and soon found herself out of a job. "There has been more than one [woman] who's come to me now [about Lauer]," Curry tells Elle. "I hope they've come to me because they know that I'll be empathetic and compassionate. I'm a right-and-a-wrong girl. And I'm happy to be their friend. This is a deep level of suffering, from what I've learned. They're dealing with trauma that threatens to be lifelong." Asked how she sees her tenure at "Today" now, she initially struggles to answer, saying, "I feel like I've done everything I should have done." Later, she says she "skirted" the question because she was "feeling deeply." Then she tries again: "The bottom line is that it still hurts," she says. "It honestly hurts really deeply, because I really think I did nothing wrong. But in spite of the pain of it, which still lingers, I know that I contributed to some people suffering less. But I tell you, it was tough." As for Lauer, she also remains unclear as to his role in her firing. "If I had known what was happening in the back rooms of power, then I would know. I obviously was not in those rooms. ..I've asked people why, and I haven't gotten a good answer," she says. Still, she says she has "no regrets" about her choices and actions and remains "very proud, in spite of everything, of all the work I was able to achieve." She also admits that when she thinks back to the experience, "… it does hurt still, because it takes time to heal. But what I've learned is that you rise stronger."
Megyn Kelly to make her media comeback with a podcast later this month
Nearly two years after Megyn Kelly's now infamous remarks about Blackface and Halloween costumes — which ultimately got her ousted from NBC — the Fox News alum is making her media comeback. Variety reports Megyn's set to launch a new production company, Devil May Care Media, that will support podcasts and shows focused on news and current events and issues related to culture and law. The company's first project is a podcast, "The Megyn Kelly Show," set to go live the last week of September. "With Devil May Care Media, I answer only to my audience and my conscience," Megyn said in a statement. "Those who like what I have to say will find the experience deeply rewarding. Those who don't can look elsewhere. The point is to give the audience authentic content that goes places where traditional media can't or — more often — won't. It's a great challenge that will reconnect me with my audience and I'm excited to get started."
Ryan Seacrest on whether more spinoffs are in the works as 'KUWTK' comes to a close
Over the course of its 20 seasons, "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" generated 12 spinoff shows — and maybe that was enough. Because according to "KUWTK" executive producer Ryan Seacrest, there's been no discussion, as of yet, about a possible follow-up or new spinoff, now that the Kardashian-Jenner family announced the show's 2021 season will be its last. "I don't know the answer to that," he told ET this week. "We have not crossed that bridge yet. I mean it's pretty cool to see that they have been so vulnerable and open and people have ridden along." Ryan also shared his take on why the family was ready to call it quits. "In talking to the family, this was a very, very hard decision for them to make. I know, even before and after the announcement came out, they were emotional," he said. "We were trading texts and emails after the announcement, and you look back at 14 years and 20 seasons of a camera in your life and think about that, at some point you're gonna say, 'You know, we did it. We had a great run. We're gonna live with a little more privacy in our lives.' And I think they just felt like now is the time to do it." "KUWTK" premiered its first episode on Oct. 14, 2007. Its slated to return for Season 19 on Sept. 17. The final season will air next year.
Reese Witherspoon praises daughter Ava Phillippe on her 21st birthday
Reese Witherspoon's feeling more than a little emotional this week as her daughter, Ava Phillippe, celebrates her 21st trip around the sun. "Wow! How is it possible that this little girl is now 21 years old?" the actress marveled on Instagram Wednesday. "Happy Birthday to my sweet girl who has become the most incredible young woman. 💫 Her kindness, her compassion, and her huge heart never cease to amaze me," the proud mom continued. "Ava, there aren't enough words to describe how proud I am of everything you've already accomplished. I cannot wait to see ALL the Good you will put into this world. I love you so much @avaphillippe 💗." Ava, whose dad is actor Ryan Phillippe, also got some love in the comments from her mom's famous friends, including Octavia Spencer, Julianne Moore and Meghan Trainor. But it was Molly Sims who had perhaps the most apropos reaction to Reese's post, which also featured a photo of the actress with her lookalike daughter: "Cannot believe😂," Molly wrote of the would-be twins. "Happy 21st to you both ❤️💋👏🏻."
Hilary Swank sues the SAG-AFTRA health plan for refusing to cover treatment of ovarian cysts
Since the #MeToo movement came to Hollywood, demands for change have focused largely on hiring practices and workplace behavior standards. But a new lawsuit filed Tuesday by Hilary Swank shines a light on gender discrimination at another level of the industry — its healthcare. Swank, 46, filed suit this week against the board of trustees of the SAG-AFTRA health plan, claiming she was unfairly denied insurance coverage "for the treatment of malignant ovarian cysts," People reports. According to Swank's filing, her problems began around 2008, when her "left ovary was destroyed and removed during emergency surgery." She was diagnosed with ovarian cysts and apparently was approved to have them treated for years until 2015, when she started getting unrelated fertility treatments. At that point, it seems the insurer began refusing Swank's claim the treatment was medically necessary, claiming the only value in treating the cysts would be to "prevent infertility.'" "Through the action," Swank's documents state (via THR), "Swank seeks coverage of ovarian cysts, which she says has caused her to suffer from extreme degrees of acid reflux, pelvic pain, cramping and fatigue." Other complications from recurring cysts that are left untreated range from internal bleeding to the development of cancerous cysts. In a statement, Swank said she's, "truly exhausted by the way women's ovarian and cyclical health issues continue to be treated by healthcare insurance companies." She continued: "Their policies are antiquated, barbaric and primarily view the role of women's organs solely as a means for procreation. … My hope is to create change for all woman suffering from women's health issues that have to battle with insurance companies who diminish the significance of their problems, don't believe the patient (or their doctor's) explanations surrounding their suffering, and severely preclude coverage to only incredibly limited services and procedures." She went on to note, "… most women can't afford the medical treatments necessary to cover simple female health issues," saying she assumes they then either, "financially deplete their resources, or they forgo the treatments, quietly suffering in pain and risking their lives. She added: "My hope is to be a voice for them. SAG/AFTRA Healthplan claim they treat and protect all their members equally. I don't believe this is true. If you're a woman suffering from female health issues, I have no doubt you'll agree with me. If you're a man, ask your mother, your daughter, your sister, or a girlfriend. … It's time we are treated fairly."
Paris Hilton weighs in on longtime friend, Britney Spears' conservatorship
You can count Paris Hilton as a member of the #FreeBritney movement. In a recent chat with Andy Cohen for his SiriusXM Radio show, Paris revealed her stance on the conservatorship that's put others in charge of much of Britney's life for the past 12 years and, thanks to a new extension ruling, will continue to do so until at least February. "I saw her this summer. We've had dinners. I saw her in Malibu," Paris said when asked about the pair's post-party days friendship, according to the Daily Mail. "I just love her so much and I just feel if you're an adult you should be able to live your life and not be controlled," Paris asserted. "And I think maybe that stems from me being controlled so much, so I can understand how that would feel. And I can't imagine, right now, if that was still happening to me." She added that, "after working your whole life and working so hard," Britney's become an "icon" who nonetheless can't act on her own volition. "I feel like she has no control over her life whatsoever," Paris said, "and I don't think that's fair." She later cautioned that she's never brought up the conservatorship or other legal matters with the singer.
Is NeNe Leakes involved in rumored discrimination suit against Bravo?
Amid rumors about an allegedly impending discrimination lawsuit against Bravo, NeNe Leakes has been picked out by fans and by her former costar, Eva Marcille, as a potential plaintiff. An insider tells TMZ, however, that's far from the truth. Rather, NeNe is "focused on herself and her own career right now," according to the outlet, which points to her new "Glamsquad Showdown" show on E!. She's also reportedly in talks with Bravo about returning to "RHOA" for another season and, possibly for another role at NBCUniversal TV. A rep for Bravo denied knowing anything about a planned lawsuit.
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson couldn't be happier to celebrate his wife Lauren Hashjian's birthday this year, as the couple and their young daughters, Jasmine, 4, and Tiana, 2, are all OK following a family-wide battle with COVID-19. "HAPPIEST OF BIRTHDAYS to my one of a kind woman @laurenhashianofficial who holds it all down and makes our 'big engine' run – with a beautiful and inspiring quality, a sweet harmony & a lotta love 💯🎶❤️" The Rock wrote alongside a photo of the couple on Instagram Wednesday. "I'm a grateful man. Happy Birthday, baby and tequila's on me 😉🥃," he added, before tossing in a line from AC/DC's "You Shook Me All Night Long." The Rock, 48, told fans last week that he and his family had tested positive for the coronavirus. "This has been one of the most challenging and difficult things we have ever had to endure as a family," he said in the Instagram post. "We're on the other end of it, we're on the other side. We're no longer contagious, and we are — thank God — we are healthy."