Royal payday

How much is Netflix paying Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan?

On Sept. 2, The New York Times announced that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex had just signed a multi-year production deal with Netflix to produce documentaries, docu-series, feature films, scripted shows and children's programming.

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"Our focus will be on creating content that informs but also gives hope. As new parents, making inspirational family programming is also important to us," the couple said in a statement, adding that Netflix's "unprecedented reach will help us share impactful content that unlocks action."

Outlets immediately started speculating about the financial aspects of the deal, which were not shared publicly, with some estimating that it could be worth as much as $150 million.

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But a new report is pouring cold water on those claims. On Sept. 3, Page Six quoted a top Hollywood talent agent who said he'd be "shocked if [the ex-royals'] deal was worth more than $2 million per year."

Page Six spoke to other industry insiders who agreed, with one explaining, "They are going to be producers, not content creators."

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Those creatives are the ones who tend to make the truly big bucks. Page Six points out that Shonda Rhimes — the genius behind "Grey's Anatomy," "Scandal" and many, many more hits — has a reported $150 million deal with Netflix. "Glee" and "American Horror Story" producer Ryan Murphy also has a lucrative Netflix deal that's reportedly in the same ballpark as Shonda's payday. Page Six also notes that "Black-ish" creator Kenya Barris has a Netflix deal that's reportedly worth $100 million.

"Hollywood is all about 'comps' " — comparable salaries around the industry — an Oscar-nominated producer told Page Six, adding, "If I was their agent, I would've asked Netflix to give me the Obama money."

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That's a reference to former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama's 2018 Netflix production deal, the terms of which have not been shared publicly. Their Netflix documentary "American Factory" — the first film released under their production company, Higher Ground — won an Oscar for best documentary in 2020.

That's not to say the royals didn't do well for themselves. The couple reportedly met with Netflix, Disney, Apple and NBCUniversal too, giving Forbes magazine the impression that there might have been a bidding war for their foray into production.

GAF exit

Marvel actor leaves Great American Family after Candace Cameron Bure's anti-LGBTQ comments

Popular Christmas movie actor Neal Bledsoe is leaving the Great American Family network following Candace Cameron Bure's anti-LGBTQIA+ comments. 

"I hope GAF will change, but until everyone can be represented in their films with pride, my choice is clear. I look forward to working with creators who put no limits on the stories we tell and follow through on their message of values with open arms," he said in a statement given to Variety

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Last month, Candace made headlines after leaving the Hallmark Channel to become the chief creative officer for GAF. In speaking about the switch with the Wall Street Journal, the "Full House" actress said the network had no plans to feature same-sex couples. "I think that Great American Family will keep traditional marriage at the core," Candace told WSJ. The team at GAF, Candace said, are "Christians that love the Lord and wanted to promote faith programming and good family entertainment." 

The comments drew ire from many in Hollywood. Neal, who starred in "Christmas at the Drive-In," "Must Love Christmas" and "The Winter Palace" for GAF, is among them. 

"From my mentors in college, to the myriad of agents and managers, writers and directors, teachers and colleagues, and, of course, my dear friends and family, who have all touched my life, I owe them a great debt," he said. "As someone who struggled as a young man with our society's extremely narrow definition of masculinity, it was their community that provided me with refuge and a guiding light when my life felt lost."

"And now, if I cannot stand up for that community in their time of need, my debt to them means nothing. So, I want to be very clear: my support for the LGBTQIA+ community is unconditional – nothing is worth my silence or their ability to live and love freely in a world that we are lucky enough to share with them," he said.

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The actor, who appeared in multiple episodes of Marvel's "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.," acknowledged that Candace and GAF are entitled to exclude LGBTQIA+ storylines or characters, but he thinks it's "wrong" and he wants no part of it. 

"Everyone is entitled to their beliefs, and these are mine: the recent comments made by leadership at Great American Family are hurtful, wrong, and reflect an ideology that prioritizes judgment over love," he says. "I was raised as a Christian, and believe in the essential message of love and forgiveness. That said, I could never forgive myself for continuing my relationship with a network that actively chooses to exclude the LGBTQIA+ community."

In closing his statement, Neal noted that he was donating to an LGBTQ organization. 

Money matters

Cardi B just made $1M for 35 minutes of work

Cardi B just made a million dollars in a matter of minutes. 

Over the weekend of Dec. 2, a Twitter troll tried to take down the Grammy winner while accusing her of "performing in someone's backyard" during Miami Art Basel. It turns out that "backyard" was actually the SLS South Beach property in Miami Beach, one of ritzier hotels in South Florida. Cardi also shut down the Twitter user in revealing her paycheck from that evening. 

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"I got [paid] 1 million dollars to perform at this elite bankers event private event for 400 people and only for 35 minutes," she wrote in a since-deleted tweet. "Think about that when you type about this Grammy winner."

According to reports, the gig was for Chase Sapphire Reserve credit cardmembers. 

Dressed in a very risqué catsuit designed by Jean Paul Gaultier, Cardi surprised the Chase Sapphire Lounge audience by bringing Grammy nominee GloRilla onstage to perform their new song, "Tomorrow 2," DailyMail.com reported. 

"Last night performing for the best bank in America! Performing is my passion… #lovewhatyoudo," she tweeted on Saturday, Dec. 3. 

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Cardi has bragged about her wealth before, as she once claimed she made $1 million per concert during her 2019 tour, which consisted of just seven shows. Further, in 2019, she had a brief residency deal at a since-shuttered Las Vegas nightclub. She was paid $300,000 for a 15-minute performance there. Other one-off gigs, particularly those in Europe, paid her even more.  

Awful upbringing

Shania Twain would 'flatten' chest to avoid stepfather's abuse

Shania Twain went to deep lengths to conceal her body and avoid being a "girl" to escape her stepfather's abuse while growing up.

In a revealing chat with The Sunday Times, Shania detailed what it was like for her and her four siblings with Jerry Twain in their home.  

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"I hid myself and I would flatten my boobs," she said. "I would wear bras that were too small for me, and I'd wear two, play it down until there was nothing girl about me. Make it easier to go unnoticed. Because, oh my gosh, it was terrible — you didn't want to be a girl in my house… I was ashamed of being a girl."

One time, things got violent between the Grammy winner and Jerry, and she used a chair during a fight.

"I think a lot of that was anger, not courage. And it took a long time to manage that anger. You don't want to be somebody that attacks me on the street," she said, "because I will f****** rip your head off if I get the chance."

After Jerry died in a car accident when Shania was 22, she felt relief. Still, the scars from her childhood were there, as the "Up" singer's relationship with her body took years to improve.  

"I had to play the glamorous singer, had to wear my femininity more openly or more freely. And work out how I'm not gonna get groped, or raped by someone's eyes, you know, and feel so degraded," she explained.

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Eventually Shania was able to feel empowered, and she found her voice.

"By the time I had my record contracts I was the kind of woman that … when I walked in the room, it's like, don't even get any closer," she said. "It was clear in my body language. And I think maybe what young girls can learn too is to exude that confidence."

All these years later at the age of 57, Shania loves her body. 

"I am celebrating escaping this horrible state of not wanting to be who I am. And I'm so confident. Now that I discovered that it's OK to be a girl," she said. "The unapologetic woman is a very powerful person indeed."

Vocal rest

Adele is making 'quite a sacrifice' for Vegas show (but it's not what you think)

There are behind-the-scenes whispers at Adele's Las Vegas show.

After the residency show's false start earlier this year, Weekends With Adele finally kicked off last month, and it's been a rousing success by all accounts. Adele is even taking some fairly drastic personal measures to make sure her voice is strong, as she's forcing herself to refrain from screaming during World Cup matches, a new report states. 

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A source told U.K.-based The Sun that Adele is literally "whispering" when she's not on stage, which is difficult for her, as she's a rabid fan of England's soccer team.

"Usually she'd be screaming and shouting in support of the boys, but she is holding it in for the sake of her cords," the source said. "It's quite a sacrifice."

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During a recent "Weekends With Adele" show she even asked her largely-American audience if they were watching the World Cup. The Brit was pleased when the majority of the crowd applauded in the affirmative. 

"Adele has been keen to avoid excessive stress on her vocal cords," the source said. "One of the key features has been protecting her voice in between the Friday and Saturday nights. She wants it in top shape for each show and is going to extreme lengths."

The source added, "So before shows she rarely speaks to anyone, and if she does, then it's a whisper. People know she is not being rude, but looking after herself. It is about staying healthy and strong."

Custody fight

Mother of Todd Chrisley's granddaughter wants custody back amid prison sentence

The mother of Todd and Julie Chrisley's granddaughter, Chloe, is making moves to regain custody of the child now that the reality TV couple is prison bound

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Angela Johnson, the mother of the 10-year-old, to TMZ she's in the process of meeting with lawyers and filing paperwork get legal custody of the girl. 

Angela and Todd's son Kyle welcomed Chloe in 2012. Four years later, Kyle lost custody of Chloe because of his addiction issues, which meant Todd shared custody of Chloe with Angela. However, Angela was arrested later that year, which led to the "Chrisley Knows Best" star getting full custody. For the past six years, Todd and Julie have essentially raised Chloe as their own. 

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In her brief chat with TMZ, Angela insisted she's always wanted Chloe back but claims the process has been bogged down because of the Chrisleys' move from Atlanta to Nashville.  

"We were at a standstill because we were trying to figure out where we would actually end up in court," she said of the jurisdictional predicament. 

Chloe's custody situation could get messy, as Todd and Julie are set to begin a combined 19-year prison sentence for bank fraud and tax evasion. Savannah Chrisley, 25, has claimed she's getting custody of Chloe, but it certainly looks like Angela is preparing to challenge that. 

More accusations

Mel B says divisive late-night host is the worst celeb she's ever met

Mel B is the latest person to come down hard on James Corden, whom she dubbed the "biggest d*** head" in Hollywood.

The Spice Girl appeared on Britain's "The Big Narstie Show" on Friday, Dec. 2, and was asked to name the worst celebrities she's ever met. 

"So, there's a few. James Corden, Geri Halliwell, Jessie J and me," she said without hesitation.

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In detailing her answers, Mel said Geri, her former band mate, can be "really f****** annoying." She didn't describe her experience with Jessie J.

However, when it came to James, Mel didn't hold back, essentially alleging that he feels people are beneath him. 

"I think you always have to be nice to the people that you work with — whether it be production, camera guys, sound, lighting," she said. "We all work for the same thing, so you should always be nice, and he hasn't been very nice."

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Mel's disdain for James comes after a New York City restauranteur called the "Late Late Show" host the "most abusive customer" he's ever had. 

Balthazar owner Keith McNally took to Instagram on Oct. 17 to publicly ban James from the restaurant, calling him "a tiny Cretin of a man." He then went on to detail multiple incidents in which James was rude or dismissive to the restaurant's staff.

The banning didn't last long, though, as James supposedly apologized "profusely" to Keith. But James soon told The New York Times he hadn't "done anything wrong, on any level."

"I just think it's beneath all of us [to discuss this topic]. It's beneath you. It's certainly beneath your publication," he said. 

A few days later, James admitted he was wrong on his show, claiming he was "ungracious" to a server.

"Because I didn't shout or scream — like I didn't get up out of my seat, I didn't call anyone names or use derogatory language — I have been walking around thinking that I hadn't done anything wrong, right?" he said. "But the truth is I have. I made a rude comment, and it was wrong. It was an unnecessary comment. It was ungracious to the server."

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For years, there have been whispers online regarding James's allegedly rude behavior: He complained about his "Gavin & Stacey" show not getting a BAFTA Award nomination in 2008; In 2020, comedian Eric Andre said James was often rude; He was once accused of insulting Met Gala workers, though the rumor was never confirmed.

An awkward exchange with Sir Patrick Stewart from 2010 hasn't helped his reputation either. 

At the time, James was hosting the Glamour Woman of the Year Awards, and Patrick didn't feel he was doing the show justice. 

"When the presenters are up here and when the recipients are receiving their rewards," Patrick  said, "don't stand at the back of the stage with your hands in your pockets looking around as though you wished you were anywhere but here."

James, taken aback, said he was happy to be there and told Patrick to "just f****** get on with it" in presenting the award. 

The "Star Trek" actor then said, "From where I was sitting, I can see your belly, and that was there over at the back of the room." James retorted, "You can see my belly, and we can all see you dying [on stage] right now. Let's go for it."

Corpse ID'D

'Green Book' actor found dead, body dumped from car owned by brother

"Green Book" actor Frank Vallelonga Jr. was found dead on a New York City street, and it turns out his body was dumped there in a car owned by his brother. 

Police, however, are quick to point out that Frank's brother, Nick Vallelonga, is not suspected of any wrongdoing, as his car was being driven by someone without permission. 

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TMZ said police in the Bronx received a call about an unconscious body in the street on Monday, Nov. 28. They quickly determined the body was dumped there, and a suspect was found afterward. The suspect told police that Frank overdosed. 

How the suspect had access to Nick's car isn't known. 

Whereas Frank stared in the Oscar-winning "Green Book," Nick was the co-writer and producer of the film. The "Green Book" was actually about Frank's father, "Sopranos" star Tony Lip.

Mistakes made

Andy Cohen calls this the 'biggest blunder' in 'Watch What Happens Live' history

During the 13-year span of "Watch What Happens Live," the show has welcomed an untold number of guests, but there's one person that never sat down in "The Clubhouse": Meghan Markle.

The fact that the Duchess never got an invite to the show is "the biggest blunder" in the history of "WWHL," Andy Cohen admitted on his SiriusXM show "Andy Cohen Live." These days the Bravo scion would be "begging" her to make an appearance.

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Andy reflected on Meghan's absent-invite after appearing on her "Archetypes" podcast on Tuesday, Nov. 29. The episode began somewhat awkwardly after Andy told Prince Harry's wife that it nice to "meet" you. Meghan quickly told Andy that they've actually met several times before. 

"It's good to see you. I've met you before, [but] you'll never remember it," she told him.

Meghan and Andy first met at a joint USA-Bravo event when she was acting on "Suits." Their second meeting came in 2015 when she joined co-star Gabriel Macht on "WWHL," as he was a guest on the show, not her.

"I was so eager to be on your show, because I was such a 'Housewives' fan at the time, and I just couldn't get booked Andy!" she said told the Bravo host.

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Reflecting on the podcast conversation, the "Housewives" producer said Meghan was "gleeful" in reminding him they've met.

"I understand why she would want to throw that in my face, basically," he said. "I understand, you know, you never forget how you were treated. You're still the same person – she's still Meghan Markle."

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Andy went on to tell his listeners he didn't realize that Meghan would leave the uncomfortable exchange in the podcast, but he's glad she did "because it's compelling and awkward."

"I just have to say, I get why she left that in. I thought that was so interesting," he said on Wednesday, Nov. 30. "First of all, you never know who you meet in a day, but listen, I didn't become a duchess obviously, but I became an old queen talk show host."

He continued, "And when I was a young queen I remember meeting people who were whatever, so I just think it's interesting. It's really interesting."

Father-son dynamic

Brendan Fraser dishes on his 'happy' autistic son: 'He doesn't know what cynicism is'

Brendan Fraser is opening up about his 20-year-old autistic son, claiming he "understands" what it's like to live with someone obese.

"I have three kids of my own, my oldest son Griffin has special needs – he's autistic," the actor told Interview Magazine. "He just turned 20, he's a big kid, he's six foot five, he's got big hands and feet, a big body. I understand intimately what it is to be close to a person who lives with obesity."

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In his newest film, "The Whale," Brendan plays an overweight father. In his real life, Brendan shares three children with his ex-wife, Afton Smith, who he divorced in 2007.

Griffin, he said, is the "happiest person."

"And because of the beauty of his spectrum – call it a disorder if you will, I disagree with you – he knows nothing of irony," "The Mummy" star said. "He doesn't know what cynicism is. You can't insult him. He can't insult you. He's the happiest person and is, in my life and many others', also the manifestation of love."

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Brendan was able to tap into Charlie, his character in "The Whale," by looking at his own family. 

"Being with my kids and their mom and our family has given me such love that if ever I needed to hold something of value up to try and translate that to what was important to Charlie, I didn't have to look far," he said. 

As Charlie, Brendan donned prosthetics and 300-pound suit. The "Encino Man" star said it's the "hardest" role he's ever had.