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Young, Black, and Fabulous

TV ROYALTY: "Empire" Celebrates An UNPRECEDENTED 7th Week Ratings Rise! + Lee Daniels TALKS Bill Cosby, Monique & More On CNN

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"Empire" continues its rating juggernaut, climbing in total viewers for the 7th week in a row.  Get morning deets on the show's unprecedented success inside and see what director/creator Lee Daniels had to say about Bill Cosby, Mo'Nique and more... 

 

We've talked about "EMPIRE" and ratings before...and we MUST talk about them again. It's a big deal.  A really big deal.  Last week, 13.8 million viewers tuned into the all the drama unfold.  And you know who else is watching....Hollywood.  DEADLINE broke it down for us...

Since its debut January 7th, "Empire" has grown 39% in total viewers.  Every week, more and more viewers are tuning into the show.  Not since the dawn of television (back when it black and white) has that ever happened.   Not the Cosbys, not "Friends" not "Cheers" - NO tv show grows EVERY week.  Until now. 

For the seventh week straight (and with four episodes to go) the show has steadily increased.  Yes....Taraji and Terrence (and the rest of the cast) have ARRIVED.  See the chart below.

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In related "Empire" news...

 

Empire creator/director Lee Daniels sat down with CNN's Don Lemon for a captivating interview that covered a wide range of issues including homophobia in the Black community to racism in America (he says he still gets pulled over in Beverly Hills).  And he also opened up about two hot button issues, the media's treatment of Bill Cosby and whether or not Mo'Nique was blackballed.  Check the highlights and clips below:

On Bill Cosby: “He is one of the reasons that I am here today.  It is very, very hard, and what bothers me most is if there is an iota of truth to this… the one person of color that means the most to me is pulled down. If he is guilty then it says that we are human, which is what I like to examine with every character that I breathe life to. We are not black, it is not white, we are not grey, we are all complicated. We all like to point fingers and drag people down through the mud. I pray for him. I am wrecked by it, I am gutted by it.” 

On Monique being blackballed: “I didn’t say that exactly. During the [Oscar] campaign, she was making unreasonable demands, and I remember thinking ‘this is when reverse racism happens'. You have to thank the producers of the film, you have to thank the studio, and she didn’t understand that. People aren’t going to respond well. I love her, I’ve spoken to her. She’s brilliant, and I love working with brilliant people......Sometimes artists get in their own way — I know I certainly do often, I have my own demons."

Photo via EW/Taraji P Henson's Instagram

CAUGHT ON TAPE? Will NFL Star Dez Bryant's ALLEGED Off-Field Behavior DESTROY His Career?

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Nope, this time it isn't Ray Rice. There's supposedly a new "tape" in town....and it's explosive (at least that's what 's being alleged).  Get the latest on the Dez Bryant tape speculations inside...

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Dez.....what happened?

If you're a football fan, you know that there's huge scandal brewing around Dallas Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant.  While most scandals stem from rumor and speculation, the Dez Bryant saga is interesting because of the whole "If....when" aspect.  Here's what we can decipher: There might be a tape of Dez Bryant.  And on said probable tape, he MAY be doing something "5 times worse than Ray Rice."  If there is a tape...when will it drop?

News of an alleged tape of Dez Bryant ALLEGEDLY doing something burnt up the net when well-respected ESPN sports reporter Adam Schefter revealed that he's been working on something for months.  But he can't talk about it.

"Well listen, whatever we’ve been working on is not ready and maybe it never will be. Who knows? You’ve got to be very careful on these things. People can talk about videos, they can talk about this they can talk about that. The fact of the matter is, it doesn’t mean anything and it’s really not fair to him right now until you have all your facts in line. Which we spent a long time trying to do."

For those wondering why a tape would be surfacing now, one NFL insider links it to Dez switching agencies.  Allegedly, Dez's former agency paid off a blackmailer to keep "the tape" out of the public eye.  Oops.....nobody told that to Dez's new representation over at Roc Nation.  Once the checks stopped for whoever was being paid to keep quiet....rumors of a tape began to surface. 

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Again....no one has seen the video.  No one can confirm what's on it.  And we're a bit baffled on how one can confirm a video even exists if it has never been seen.

Now that Dez's contract is up for negotiation....folks are talking even more.  Many are pissed that the Cowboys organization is so gung-ho about putting a franchise tag on him, despite his off-field behavior.  In 2011 alone, he had 6 incidents of police being called to his home in Desoto, TX.  No arrests took place. 

But, this new alleged video in question is supposedly the newest incident to be discovered from 2011.  According to NFL.com:

A report filed by the Lancaster (Texas) Police Department described the response by an officer to "an unknown disturbance" in a Walmart parking lot during the early morning of July 11. Vehicles registered to Bryant were at the scene in the parking lot, and Bryant later arrived in another car, when he was spoken to by a Lancaster PD officer. Upon further investigation, "it was determined that there was no offense" and "all parties were advised they were free to go."

Over on Dez's Twitter timeline, he wrote this cryptic statement this week:

"Just quit with the b.s. … It’s clear as day what's going on… I might need to do a exclusive interview about my life these past 5 years since the world is destined to know.  "I use to let people take advantage of my life now that I’m no longer allowing that to happen it seems to be a problem… I’m not ashamed of none of my past incidents because that’s what made me who I am today."

 

Something happened....we just don't know what it was.  But if/when Dez is ready to do that "exclusive" interview, we'll be twiddling our thumbs waiting...

 

EXTRAS:

1.  Judge sides with Adrian Peterson, lifts suspension.  Story

 

Photo via cwp twitter

Kanye & Kim West Dress Up & Strike A Pose At London's Abbey Road Studios, Grab Dinner After The Brits

 

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After rocking the stage at the 2015 BRIT Awards, Kanye West and his wife Kim Kardashian West hit up the famous Abbey Road Studios today. See their coupledom flicks inside....

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Kanye West and his wife Kim K got dressed up in their favorite hue to hit up the famous Abbey Road Studios in London today. And it was quite a scene as fans swarmed them to catch pics of the fashion loving couple.

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Before making their way inside, they stopped to pose it up for a few flicks.

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And they were ushered in with security close behind.

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Yesterday, Kanye West took over the stage Awards at the O2 arena in London for his performance during the 2015 Brit Awards. Ye and a slew of his homies packed the stage for a debut performance of “All Day.”

After dropping the N-bomb throughout his set, he and his wife Kim K caught up with Taylor Swift (whose face was priceless during his performance) and Grammy winning singer Sam Smith for a photo-op.
 

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After the show, it’s the after party! Well, an after party for two that is. Rather than hit the party scene after last night's awards show, Kanye and Kim trekked it to Hakkasan Restaurant to dine on modern Cantonese cuisine.

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Ye was all smiles as he and his wife made their way inside. Opting to wear something other than her husband's clothing creations, Kim rocked a knitted Julien Macdonald jumpsuit that she paired with Alaia boots.

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After dinner....

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The Wests hit up a recording studio in West London for a late night session. Looks like Kanye was on double duty--cranking out hits and keeping his wife happy.

Photos: Splash

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