Billy Porter Scores 2nd Golden Globe Nomination

The nominations for the 77th Golden Globe Awards were announced this morning, and Billy Porter received a nod for his star turn as Pray Tell in the groundbreaking FX series, Pose.

Porter was nominated for the same role last year but lost the trophy to Bodyguard’s Richard Madden.

He may have lost out on the GG, but he did take home the 2019 Primetime Emmy Award for ‘Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series,’ becoming the first openly gay black man to be nominated and win in any lead acting category at the Primetime Emmys.

Porter also received a nomination for Best Actor in a Drama Series from the Critic’s Choice Awards over the weekend. Pose picked up additional noms in the Best Drama Series and Best Actress in a Drama Series (MJ Rodriguez).

Plus, TV Guide declared Porter’s turn on Pose as the #1 performance on television this year.

Other LGBTQ-centric nominations for the 2020 Golden Globes include Taron Egerton for the Elton John musical fantasy biopic Rocketman, Ben Platt’s ambitious high school student in Netflix’s The Politician, and Jodie Comer homicidal Russian assassin in the BBC’s Killing Eve.

For those who like to count, the Hollywood Reporter writes that Marriage Story leads the film nominees with six nominations, followed by The Irishman and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood with five nods each. Joker and The Two Popes scored four noms each.

On the television side, Chernobyl, The Crown and Unbelievable received four nominations, while Barry, Big Little Lies, Fleabag, Fosse/Verdon, The Kominsky Method, The Morning Show and Succession all garnered three nominations each.

Don’t miss the 77th annual Golden Globes on January 5, 2020, with host Ricky Gervais. 

You can find the full list of nominees below:

Best Motion Picture — Drama
1917
The Irishman
Joker
Marriage Story
The Two Popes

Best Motion Picture — Musical or Comedy
Dolemite Is My Name
Jojo Rabbit
Knives Out
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Rocketman

Best Foreign-Language Motion Picture
The Farewell
Les Misérables
Pain and Glory
Parasite
Portrait of a Lady on Fire

Best Limited Series or TV Movie
Catch-22
Chernobyl
Fosse/Verdon
The Loudest Voice
Unbelievable

Best Television Series — Drama
Big Little Lies
The Crown
Killing Eve
The Morning Show
Succession

Best Comedy Series
Fleabag
Barry
The Kominsky Method
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
The Politician

Best Motion Picture — Animated
Frozen II
How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
Missing Link
Toy Story 4
The Lion King

Best Director — Motion Picture
Bong Joon-ho, Parasite
Sam Mendes, 1917
Todd Phillips, Joker
Martin Scorsese, The Irishman
Quentin Tarantino, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Best Performance by an Actor in a Limited Series or Movie
Christopher Abbott, Catch-22
Sacha Baron Cohen, The Spy
Russell Crowe, The Loudest Voice
Jared Harris, Chernobyl
Sam Rockwell, Fosse/Verdon

Best Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series or Movie
Kaitlyn Dever, Unbelievable
Joey King, The Act
Helen Mirren, Catherine the Great
Merritt Wever, Unbelievable
Michelle Williams, Fosse/Verdon

Best Performance by a Supporting Actor in a Series, Limited Series, or TV Movie
Alan Arkin, The Kominsky Method
Kieran Culkin, Succession
Andrew Scott, Fleabag
Stellan Skarsgård, Chernobyl
Henry Winkler, Barry

Best Performance by a Supporting Actress in a Series, Limited Series, or TV Movie
Patricia Arquette, The Act
Helena Bonham Carter, The Crown
Toni Collette, Unbelievable
Meryl Streep, Big Little Lies
Emily Watson, Chernobyl

Best Score for a Motion Picture
Little Women
Joker
Marriage Story
1917
Motherless Brooklyn

Best Original Song
“Beautiful Ghosts,” Cats
“(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again,” Rocketman
“Into the Unknown,” Frozen II
“Spirit,” The Lion King
“Stand Up,” Harriet

Best Performance by an Actor in a Comedy Series
Michael Douglas, The Kominsky Method
Bill Hader, Barry
Ben Platt, The Politician
Paul Rudd, Living With Yourself
Ramy Youssef, Ramy

Best Performance by an Actress in a Comedy Series
Christina Applegate, Dead to Me
Kirsten Dunst, On Becoming a God in Central Florida
Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Natasha Lyonne, Russian Doll
Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Fleabag

Best Performance by an Actor in a Drama Series
Brian Cox, Succession
Kit Harington, Game of Thrones
Rami Malek, Mr. Robot
Tobias Menzies, The Crown
Billy Porter, Pose

Best Performance by an Actress in a Drama Series
Jennifer Aniston, The Morning Show
Jodie Comer, Killing Eve
Olivia Colman, The Crown
Nicole Kidman, Big Little Lies
Reese Witherspoon, The Morning Show

Best Performance by a Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture
Tom Hanks, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
Anthony Hopkins, The Two Popes
Al Pacino, The Irishman
Joe Pesci, The Irishman
Brad Pitt, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Best Screenplay
Marriage Story
Parasite
The Two Popes
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
The Irishman

Best Performance by a Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture
Kathy Bates, Richard Jewell
Annette Bening, The Report
Laura Dern, Marriage Story
Jennifer Lopez, Hustlers
Margot Robbie, Bombshell

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture — Musical or Comedy
Daniel Craig, Knives Out
Taron Egerton, Rocketman
Roman Griffin Davis, Jojo Rabbit
Eddie Murphy, Dolemite Is My Name
Leonardo DiCaprio, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture — Drama
Christian Bale, Ford v Ferrari
Antonio Banderas, Pain and Glory
Adam Driver, Marriage Story
Joaquin Phoenix, Joker
Jonathan Pryce, The Two Popes

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture — Musical or Comedy
Ana de Armas, Knives Out
Cate Blanchett, Where’d You Go, Bernadette
Beanie Feldstein, Booksmart
Emma Thompson, Late Night
Awkwafina, The Farewell

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture — Drama
Cynthia Erivo, Harriet
Scarlett Johansson, Marriage Story
Saoirse Ronan, Little Women
Charlize Theron, Bombshell
Renée Zellweger, Judy

Movie Review: ‘Rocketman Soars’

Taron Egerton as Elton John in ‘Rocketman’

My buddy over at theOUTfront.com, Lawrence Pfeil, Jr., shares his review of the new Elton John ‘musical fantasy biopic,’ Rocketman, which opens in theaters nationwide today.

**************************************

Elton John entering rehab as a winged demon is more than intentional, so are the heart shaped glasses through which his life has been spent looking to “be loved, properly.” If those images aren’t symbolic enough, the next one raises goosebumps and that’s only the first two minutes of the enthusiastically anticipated, Reginald Dwight, musical biopic, ROCKETMAN.

With a flamboyant and heightened sense of reality equal to Elton John himself, it’s difficult to imagine his life being told any other way than a movie musical. What’s difficult to achieve is repurposing his songs in a successful way that tell the story, not merely are the story. In Rocketman, both genre and material are stunningly reimagined into the life of a man adored by millions the world over, but never so alone.

It is rapturous and heartbreaking.

As the iconic Captain Fantastic, Taron Egerton delivers a sparkling and faceted performance to rival Sir Elton’s diamond stud earring. Every note sung, is Egerton possessing a vocal quality most like the mega-star mid-career. While embodying every chameleon change demanded by Elton John’s fans, he never loses Reggie’s human need for love. When success transforms the musician into a monster, Egerton finds the pain feeding it and the pathos giving it breath.

Traced the trajectory of Rocketman is a singular partnership in the music industry between the musician and equally brilliant lyricist, Bernie Taupin, played with unconditional compassion by Jaime Bell. Millions of record sales and countless awards and accolades aside, the flamboyant extrovert composer and notoriously private lyricist’s greatest claim to fame is never having had a fight, ever.

John and Taupin have an innate chemistry and understanding of one another, personally and professionally, which Egerton and Bell instinctively capture on screen. When their first hit “Your Song” comes to life, it’s like witnessing the wonder of creative genius in person. And those moments of revelation keep coming throughout the film.

Directed by Dexter Fletcher, whose prior film credits are surprisingly short (but include finishing Bohemian Rhapsody), Rocketman is stunning visual poetry start to finish. With brilliant attention to detail ala Baz Luhrmann, Fletcher makes Elton John’s most personal, private, and iconic moments vibrant and visceral. Musical production numbers leap off the screen to grab the audience and pull them into the rawest, heart wrenching moments of Reggie’s life.

Every choice made in telling this story was a risk, any one of which could have easily caused Rocketman to be a catastrophic disaster upon liftoff. But fortune favors the bold, and if Elton John is anything, it’s bold.

 Most people tell their story from the top, so it takes a kind of courage, acceptance, and self-deprecation to tell Rocketman from the rock bottom of rehab. But, as anyone who’s been their knows, hitting rock bottom is necessary to relaunch. A constellation of superb performances, super nova production numbers, and unexpected moments like meteors out the darkness of space make Rocketman stellar.

ROCKETMAN

Starring Taron Egerton, Jamie Bell, Richard Madden, and Bryce Dallas Howard

121 minutes

Directed by Dexter Fletcher

Screenplay by Lee Hall

New Republic Pictures and Paramount Pictures

Lawrence Pfeil, Jr., is a freelance writer/playwright and has reviewed film and theatre, both on and off Broadway, for media outlets including the New York Blade and Edge Publications.

Podcast: Equality Act, Gay Panic Defense Banned, Rocketman Premieres At Cannes

In this week’s podcast:  • The Equality Act passes in the House of Representatives  • Nevada bans the gay panic defense  • An Australian rugby player loses his $4 million contract thanks to homophobic social media posts  • FX's groundbreaking series POSE honored at the Peabody Awards  • The Elton John ‘musical fantasy biopic’ Rocketman premieres at the Cannes Film Festival  All that and more in this episode of The Randy Report

In this week’s podcast:

• The Equality Act passes in the House of Representatives

• Nevada bans the gay panic defense

• An Australian rugby player loses his $4 million contract thanks to homophobic social media posts

• FX’s groundbreaking series POSE honored at the Peabody Awards

• The Elton John ‘musical fantasy biopic’ Rocketman premieres at the Cannes Film Festival

All that and more in this episode of The Randy Report

Elton John Musical Fantasy Biopic ‘Rocketman’ Premieres At Cannes Film Fest

The upcoming ‘musical fantasy biopic,’ Rocketman, based on the life and career of pop music superstar Elton John, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival to rave reviews this past Thursday.

At the end of the screening, the audience – with John, star Taron Egerton and director Dexter Fletcher — reportedly burst into applause.

Egerton was seen tearing up at the response:

The reviews so far have been strong, especially for Egerton:

“He (Egerton) doesn’t disappear into the role, exactly, but he accomplishes something nearly as remarkable, which is to locate subtle depths of feeling in a character we first see wearing a devil-horned chicken costume.” – Los Angeles Times

“It’s a biopic and a jukebox musical and a romance, and also a movie about addiction, all crammed into a frenetic, jewel-studded ecstasy of a movie.” – Vox

“All white men fortunate enough to commission big-screen versions of their own life stories should be so lucky as to have someone as casually adorable as Egerton play them on screen — not because he’s an especially strong actor but because even with various unflattering wigs and a gap-toothed bridge … Egerton has a hard time looking dumpy.” – Variety

And, of course, there are the inevitable comparisons to last year’s box office smash Bohemian Rhapsody, which focused on the life of Queen frontman Freddy Mercury, which many felt was straight-washed in terms of Mercury’s homosexuality.

“If Bohemian Rhapsody were the cheeseburger of music icon biopics, then Rocketman is the sirloin steak – with lobster on the side.” – The Sun

For those who can’t wait until May 31, there are special, limited Early Access screenings beginning today via Fandango.

The producers have also released a new song penned by Elton and partner Bernie Taupin for the end credits titled, “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again,” performed as a duet between John and Egerton.

In addition to creative expression, I’m sure it’s also Elton’s bid for another Oscar for “Best Original Song,” as catalog tunes don’t make the cut at the Academy Awards.

Check it out below.

News Round-Up: May 2, 2019

• InstaHunk JW says, "Be thankful for the hard times - they can only make you stronger."

Some news items you might have missed:

InstaHunk JW says, “Be thankful for the hard times – they can only make you stronger.”

• Jake Bain, the Indiana State football player who came out while still in high school, has announced he will “step away from football and focus on academics.”

• In anticipation of the upcoming Rocketman, chronicling the life of music superstar Elton John, the producers have released an official music video of the title song sung by film’s star, Taron Egerton. The musical fantasy biopic lands in US theaters May 31.

• Out producer/director Greg Berlanti (Love, Simon; Riverdale; Supergirl) says the most egregious example of anti-LGBTQ bias he’s seen in Hollywood was “gay executives and gay casting people who were the least likely to let me cast an actor they knew was gay in a straight part. These were the individuals who knew how important it would be.”

• Far-right loons like Alex Jones and Milo Yiannopolous have been banned from Facebook and Instagram (finally) in an effort to reduce hate speech.

• When Channing Tatum loses, we all win. The ‘Magic Mike’ star lost a game of Jenga, and so he had to post a photo of girlfriend Jessie J’s choosing. She has good taste.

News Round-Up: April 19, 2019

I hear MTV Jersey Shore star Vinny Guadagnino, who joins the Chippendales here in Las Vegas as Celebrity Guest Host April 26 through May 26, is selling a LOT of tickets. And yes, men are always welcome at Chippendales.

Some news items you might have missed:

• I hear MTV Jersey Shore star Vinny Guadagnino, who joins the Chippendales here in Las Vegas as Celebrity Guest Host April 26 through May 26, is selling a LOT of tickets. And yes, men are always welcome at Chippendales.

• A new Rasmussen Reports national survey finds that 59% of likely U.S. voters say they would personally be willing to vote for an openly gay president; 30% would not, 12% are not sure.

• It’s not just adults Donald Trump’s transgender military ban is affecting. This college student lost his 3-year ROTC scholarship because of the new policy.

• A 28-year-old man in Mississippi was beaten so severely – his jaw was shattered in two places – because his assailants thought he was gay.

• 1995 drag classic To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar is being re-released for Pride Month on Blu-Ray with special features including deleted scenes.

• Christian home schooling parents, David and Louise Turpin, who beat, starved and held 12 of their children captive inside their home, were sentenced Friday to life in prison.

• The music and the magic of Elton John’s incredible life comes to the big screen in upcoming musical fantasy biopic, Rocketman.

Watch as the team behind the film discusses Elton John’s journey from prodigy to icon in this special look at Rocketman, in theatres May 31.

Hunky Taron Egerton Covers GQ Magazine UK

As Kingsman star Taron Egerton prepares for the release of his latest cinematic adventure - playing Elton John in the upcoming musical fantasy biopic Rocketman - the handsome actor makes an unexpected admission.
Taron Egerton (screen capture via YouTube)

As Kingsman star Taron Egerton prepares for the release of his latest cinematic adventure – playing Elton John in the upcoming musical fantasy biopic Rocketman – the handsome actor makes an unexpected admission.

“Without ever wishing to seem ungrateful for the Kingsmanthing,” he tells GQ UK’s Chris Mandle for this month’s cover story, “as much as I love the films, especially the first, I will always feel like something of an imposter in that world.”

Imposter? What you talking about, Taron?

“The ‘guy’, the ‘bro’, the ‘stunt guy’,” says the 29-year-old actor, highlighting the phrases with air quotes. “I’ve never been that guy. I’m just not. I’m the guy who was playing Seymour in Little Shop Of Horrors when he was 17.”

When Mandle points out that it’s all acting anyway, Egerton conceded – a bit.

“Maybe,” said the handsome actor. “But I always felt more at home in a gay club than at a football match, far more at home.”

(photo: Gavin Bond)

And speaking of “gay,” Egerton addresses the reports about a certain sex scene that was rumored to have been excised from the film, but then wasn’t.

“Well, the stuff we shot was pretty explicit,” Egerton shares. “I mean, that’s why I made the film. Those scenes are desperately -important when you have an icon of that magnitude, who means so much to one community.”

Calling Elton John “a standard bearer” for the LGBTQ community, Egerton felt it his responsibility to live up to that.

“For me, especially as a heterosexual actor, not to push the envelope as far as I can or try to make it a wholehearted celebration of being a gay man would be wrong,” he told GQ.

The Welsh actor has heard the stories about Bohemian Rhapsody being “straight-washed” for other countries where overt gay-isms don’t go over so well. He says banking box office bucks shouldn’t trump a film’s cinematic integrity.

“It’s a studio movie. It’s Elton John. We’ve got to own that. I don’t care how well the film does in Russia. It doesn’t matter. It can’t matter. What’s an extra $25 million at the box office? What are you willing to do for that? Sacrifice sleeping at night because you watered the whole thing down?”

What Egerton won’t ‘water down’ is the small amount of his life he shares on social media. Taron is going to be Taron.

Still somewhat new to Instagram, he posted a photo of a longtime friend last October, with the caption “Cutie. My boy.” Egerton learned how quickly people will read into a post and assume he was attempting to come out.

He clarified the situation in an interview, saying he’s straight, but shares the background of the post with GQ UK.

“I’ve known that guy since I was eleven,” he explained. “And he is a cutie. I call all my friend stuff like that. Anyone can tell you. [But] it doesn’t mean I want to f*ck any of them.”

In fact, Egerton isn’t all that fond of labels when it comes to how we view each other.

“I’m not someone who really subscribes to this binary view of male and female archetypes or ways of behaving,” he says. “And it’s only going to happen more and more. The lines are blurring. People are identifying and expressing themselves more fluidly. Our concept of what a straight man or gay man looks like or is expected to behave in 20 years will be nothing like it is now.”

Egerton’s GQ UK cover story (with gorgeous photography by Gavin Bond) is on newsstands now.

Rocketman hits theaters May 31.

(h/t GQ UK)

Taron Egerton Duets With Elton John Raising Millions For AIDS Efforts

Elton John & Taron Egerton sing 'Tiny Dancer' raising millions for AIDS efforts around the world
Elton John & Taron Egerton perform ‘Tiny Dancer’

Since 1993, the Elton John AIDS Foundation Academy Award Party has been one of the most high-profile post-Oscar events in the Hollywood film industry.

In addition to the expensive ticket sales (which are given on a invitation-only basis), there’s a celebrity auction that helps raise funds for the foundation.

At last night’s event, one item up for bid was a trip to the London premiere of the upcoming Elton John musical biopic, Rocketman, starring Taron Egerton.

During the auction, Egerton was asked if he’d sing one of Elton’s songs, reports EW. The handsome Kingsman star agreed to an impromptu performance (he does his own singing in the upcoming film) but only if Elton would accompany him on the piano.

And the music legend sat right down and began to pluck out the notes to “Tiny Dancer.”

As the introduction played, Egerton (who was clearly thrilled) turned to the audience and said with a smile, “It’s funny how life turns out, isn’t it?”

Taron Egerton “Funny how life turns out, isn’t it?”

Rocketman, which chronicles the early years of Elton’s legendary career, also stars Jamie Bell as longtime writing partner Bernie Taupin, Richard Madden as his manager, and Bryce Dallas Howard as Elton’s mother.

I recently shared the trailer for the epic musical fantasy here.

Hit the play button below for Egerton and Elton performing “Tiny Dancer” at the gala event (which raised over $6.3 million for AIDS efforts around the world).

Rocketman lands in theaters May 31.

New Trailer For Elton John Movie Musical Fantasy ‘Rocketman’

The producers of the upcoming Elton John biopic, Rocketman, released a new trailer and movie poster in anticipation of the May 31 premiere.

The creators describe the film as “an epic musical fantasy about the uncensored human story of Elton John’s breakthrough years.”

The film stars Taron Egerton as Elton, along with Jamie Bell, Richard Madden and Bryce Dallas Howard.

Taron Egerton Shows He Can SANG In Elton John Biopic ‘Rocketman’

Taron Egerton sings in ‘Rocketman’

Taron Egerton (Kingsman: The Secret Service) and the creative team behind the upcoming Elton John biopic, Rocketman, share this behind-the-scenes peek into bringing the music of Elton John to the big screen.

Egerton does his own (very) impressive singing in the movie, and according to music producer Giles Martin, Elton himself said, “I don’t think I’ve heard anyone sing my songs better than Taron.”

Paramount has described the film as an “epic musical fantasy about the uncensored human story of Sir Elton John’s breakthrough years.”

In this new featurette, Egerton gushes, “This has been the greatest joy of my professional life making this film.”

In addition to Egerton, the flick stars Jamie Bell (Fantastic Four) as Elton’s longtime writing partner Bernie Taupin, Richard Madden (Game of Thrones) as the singer’s first manager John Reid, and Bryce Dallas Howard (Jurassic World) portrays Elton’s mum.

Dexter Fletcher, who was the uncredited director who took over on Bohemian Rhapsody in the wake of Bryan Singer being sacked, handles the directing duties here as well.

Rocketman lands in theaters May 31. Watch the behind-the-scenes featurette below.