News Round-Up: April 29, 2021

Ewan McGregor as Halston
Ewan McGregor as Halston
Ewan McGregor as Halston (via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

LGBTQ Nation: 17-year-old Jace King has become the first out transgender Eagle Scout in his small town of Splendora, Texas, and may be one of the first in the country. King had always dreamed of becoming an Eagle Scout like his brother, but due to the scouts’ ban on transgender boys, he was not allowed to join until 2019.

The Daily Beast: Podcast host Joe Rogan walked back a statement he made on his podcast last week that young, healthy people shouldn’t get the COVID-19 vaccine. Rogan conceded, “I’m not a doctor, I’m a fucking moron. There’s some legitimate science behind this…I believe [the vaccines] are safe.”

Instinct Magazine: Actor Ewan McGregor (above) is defending his decision to take on the role of gay fashion design icon Halston in the upcoming Netflix mini-series.

New York Times: Three Georgia men were indicted on federal hate crime and attempted kidnapping charges in connection with the death of Ahmaud Arbery, a 25-year-old Black man who was shot to death while jogging through a South Georgia neighborhood last year

American Greatness: Conservative author Peter D’Abrosca is refusing to get a COVID vaccine in an effort to ‘own the libs.’ “It makes them mad when they hear about my refusal. That, in turn, makes me happy.”

Out: The Tennessee CEO of a telehealth technology firm was fired after he was captured on video harassing a teen who was wearing a dress for prom. Sam Johnson, 46, was fired from his position at VisuWell after video of his exchange with Dalton Stevens, 18, at the Harpeth Hotel last Saturday went viral.

Podcast: UNSAD Podcast, Ohio Teacher Fired For Having Husband, Ryan Murphy’s ‘Hollywood’

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

In this week’s podcast:

• A former police officer will receive a settlement after being denied a job because he is HIV positive

• Ohio teacher fired for having a husband

• Small steps forward for LGBTQ rights in Morocco

• The Trump administration is close to removing important anti-discrimination protections for LGBTQs from the Affordable Care Act

• Ryan Murphy’s new Netflix series Hollywood is a progressive, pro-LGBTQ reimagining of post-World War II Tinseltown

• New ‘good news’ podcast to help you sleep at night – UNSAD Podcast www.unsadpodcast.com

All that and more in this episode of The Randy Report podcast

Ryan Murphy’s Latest Is Love Letter To Golden Age Of Tinseltown ‘Hollywood’

Check out the trailer for Ryan Murphy’s latest binge-worthy limited series for Netflix – Hollywood – a show he has called a “love letter to the Golden Age of Tinseltown.”

The official synopsis reads, “Hollywood follows a group of aspiring actors and filmmakers in post-World War II Hollywood as they try to make it in Tinseltown — no matter the cost. Each character offers a unique glimpse behind the gilded curtain of Hollywood’s Golden Age, spotlighting the unfair systems and biases across race, gender and sexuality that continue to this day.

“Provocative and incisive, Hollywood exposes and examines decades-old power dynamics, and what the entertainment landscape might look like if they had been dismantled.”

“With the present so fraught and the future uncertain, we turned to the past for direction, uncovering buried history to spin an aspirational tale of what ifs,” executive producer, writer and director Janet Mock said in a statement. “What if a band of outsiders were given a chance to tell their own story?”

“What if the person with greenlight power was a woman? The screenwriter a black man? What if the heroine was a woman of color? The matinee idol openly gay? And what if they were all invited into the room where the decisions are made, entering fully and unapologetically themselves to leave victorious and vaunted, their place in history cemented?”

Mock concluded saying, “Hollywood is a love letter to our little industry town where dreamers dwell, stars are born and magic transcends reality.”

The new limited-series debuts on Netflix on May 1.

L-R Darren Criss, Jeremy Pope, David Corenswet and Jake Picking in ‘Hollywood’

Ryan Murphy Donates ‘POSE’ Medical Props To Help Fight COVID-19

Writer/producer Ryan Murphy has announced the medical props used on the hit FX show Pose (featured in scenes related to the AIDS epidemic) are being donated to Mount Sinai Hospital to help fight the COVID-19 health threat.

Murphy shared on his Instagram:

“On my FX series POSE, one of our regular sets and locations is a hospital where in season 3 (spoiler) Blanca works as an AIDS/hiv counselor. Today we donated all our prop supplies to Mount Sinai hospital to help nurses and doctors battling the Covid outbreak. Let’s all keep giving when and where and how we can. More to come…”

News Round-Up: June 27, 2019

Nick Jonas (via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

• Nick Jonas is giving you seriously ‘daddy’ grown-up goodness in this promo pic introducing his character “Bruno Gaido” from his upcoming movie, Midway, due out November 8. #Dang

• A gay couple were the target of homophobic insults before being spat on, clawed and physically attacked in an unprovoked attack in Essex in southeast England.

• Senate Democrats have introduced a resolution recognizing the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall uprising, the first time Congress has formally acknowledged the event that led to the modern LGBTQ rights movement.

• Alphonso David has been named the next president of the Human Rights Campaign. He is the first civil rights lawyer and the first person of color to lead the LGBTQ advocacy organization.

• Prince William says it would be “absolutely fine” if one of his children came out as gay.

Deadline reports that Oscar winners Meryl Streep and Nicole Kidman, along with James Corden, Andrew Rannells, and Keegan-Michael Key, have all been tapped by Ryan Murphy for the Netflix adaptation of the LGBTQ-themed Broadway musical, The Prom.

• As WorldPride gets underway in New York City today, just a reminder of how a leader CAN relate to his LGBTQ constituents. Folks, I give you Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at Toronto’s Pride event this past weekend.

Ryan Murphy Will Bring Broadway’s ‘Boys In The Band’ To Netflix

Super producer/director Ryan Murphy announced today he will produce the acclaimed Broadway revival of The Boys in the Band for Netflix as a 'movie event.'

Super producer/director Ryan Murphy announced today he will produce the acclaimed Broadway revival of The Boys in the Band for Netflix as a ‘movie event.’

Last summer, THE BOYS IN THE BAND were on Broadway, breaking house records at The Booth. THIS summer, The Boys In the Band will be filming a Netflix movie event.


The incomparable Joe Mantello, who directed the Broadway revival, will direct the film adaptation. 
The Broadway cast of BOYS was so important to me, and as equally groundbreaking as Mart Crowley’s seminal work. Everyone in the cast was out and proud…and feeling so blessed to mark the 50th anniversary of Mart’s landmark play. 
The entire Broadway cast will reprise their roles in the film. 
I can’t wait to be on set with Joe and Jim Parsons, Zachary Quinto, Andrew Rannells, Matt Bomer, Charlie Carver, Robin de Jesus, Tuc Watkins, Michael Benjamin Washington and Brian Hutchison. 
I will be producing the film with David Stone and Ned Martel. 
Look for THE BOYS on Netflix in 2020.

The cast of the Broadway revival of ‘The Boys in the Band’

Last week, I reported that Murphy will also produce a ‘movie event’ adaptation of Broadway’s The Prom for Netflix. That project, like Boys in the Band, is LGBTQ-themed.

It all makes me uber-happy. More Broadway, more gay… more, more, more!

Last summer, THE BOYS IN THE BAND were on Broadway, breaking house records at The Booth. THIS summer, The Boys In the Band will be filming a Netflix movie event. The incomparable Joe Mantello, who directed the Broadway revival, will direct the film adaptation. The Broadway cast of BOYS was so important to me, and as equally groundbreaking as Mart Crowley’s seminal work. Everyone in the cast was out and proud…and feeling so blessed to mark the 50th anniversary of Mart’s landmark play. The entire Broadway cast will reprise their roles in the film. I can’t wait to be on set with Joe and Jim Parsons, Zachary Quinto, Andrew Rannells, Matt Bomer, Charlie Carver, Robin de Jesus, Tuc Watkins, Michael Benjamin Washington and Brian Hutchison. I will be producing the film with David Stone and Ned Martel. Look for THE BOYS on Netflix in 2020.
A post shared by Ryan Murphy (@mrrpmurphy) on Apr 17, 2019 at 10:46am PDT

Ryan Murphy Will Turn Broadway’s THE PROM Into A Netflix Movie Event

Hollywood super-producer/director Ryan Murphy (Pose, American Horror Story, GLEE) has announced he’s bringing another queer story to the small screen.  Murphy announced on his Instagram Wednesday that he will turn the new Broadway musical, The Prom, into a Netflix “movie event.”
Ryan Murphy will bring Broadway musical The Prom to Netflix

Hollywood super-producer/director Ryan Murphy (Pose, American Horror Story, GLEE) has announced he’s bringing another queer story to the small screen.

Murphy announced on his Instagram Wednesday that he will turn the new Broadway musical, The Prom, into a Netflix “movie event.”

“THE PROM is one of the most uplifting, heartfelt and special musicals I have ever seen on Broadway,” wrote Murphy. “It’s truly an original that celebrates the underdog and says in a loving spectacular way that LGBTQ rights are human rights.”

Citing a “special connection” to the piece due to the location of the musical, Indiana, which happens to be where Murphy hails from, he told his followers, “I’m thrilled to announce I’m turning it into a MOVIE EVENT for Netflix.”

THE PROM is one of the most uplifting, heartfelt and special musicals I have ever seen on Broadway. It’s truly an original that celebrates the underdog and says in a loving spectacular way that LGBTQ rights are human rights. I feel a special connection to it because it’s set in Indiana, and that’s where I grew up, too. I’m thrilled to announce I’m turning it into a MOVIE EVENT for Netflix, and I’m bringing producers @billdamaschke and @dori.berinstein and the amazing creative team with me — Tony Award winner Casey Nicholaw, Tony Award winner Bob Martin, Tony award nominee @sklarbar73 and Tony Award nominee @Chadbeg. See it first at the Longacre Theatre. It has a musical score that will leave you singing for days, a hilarious and moving book and some of the most showstopping direction, choreography and performances I’ve ever seen on Broadway. @theprommusical
A post shared by Ryan Murphy (@mrrpmurphy) on Apr 9, 2019 at 5:32pm PDT

In adapting the material for TV, the 6-time Emmy Award winner shared that the Broadway creative team – including Tony Award winning director/choreographer Casey Nickolaw – will come along for the ride, as well as the stage producers.

The show, which follows the story of a high school student in a small Indiana town who is banned from bringing her girlfriend to the prom, opened at the Longacre Theater on Broadway last fall to rave reviews.

“So full of happiness you think your heart is about to burst!” – Variety

“Comic gold!” – The Hollywood Reporter

“Broadway Comedy Razzle Dazzles Small Town Bigotry” – Deadline

You may recall the splash the show made when the cast performed the number “Build A Prom” on the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in November.

Upbeat, lively and full of energy, the musical number closes with the two female leading characters kissing.

I’m pretty sure that was the first same-sex kiss to be televised on the long-running parade.

News Round-Up: April 10, 2019

Some news items you might have missed:

• InstaHunk Dan Tai gets up close to a mama elephant. If that’s not enough elephant action for you, check this baby elephant pretending to be brave. #ElephantsRock

• Following an overall trend of increased hate crimes since Donald Trump took office, a Colorado transgender man was attacked on his own front porch for “acting gay.”

• It’s National Siblings Day, so here’s a shout out to my brother, Gary, who I fought with throughout my childhood. But, as adults, we found common ground – wonder what that was…? #MoreWine

Happy Siblings Day to my big bro, Gary

• A gay guy wrote an essay titled, “Why Pete Buttigieg Is Bad For Gays,” and he’s wrong.

• Hollywood powerhouse producer/director Ryan Murphy announced he will make the hit Broadway musical The Prom (about a high school girl asking another girl to the prom) into a Netflix movie.

• Testifying before Congress today, Education Secretary Betsy Devos admitted she knew rolling back Obama-era guidance that protected trans students would lead to lower attendance and depression for those students.

Broadway Diva Patti LuPone Set To Join Cast Of FX’s ‘Pose”

Producer/director Ryan Murphy made news Saturday night at PaleyFest in Los Angeles when he announced a new diva would be joining the cast of FX’s Pose.  While moderating a panel with cast members of the ground-breaking series, Murphy surprised the audience - and cast - that Broadway icon, Patti LuPone, will be joining the show for season two.
Tony & Grammy Award winner Patti LuPone

Producer/director Ryan Murphy made news Saturday night at PaleyFest in Los Angeles when he announced a new diva would be joining the cast of FX’s Pose.

While moderating a panel with cast members of the ground-breaking series, Murphy surprised the audience – and cast – that Broadway icon, Patti LuPone, will be joining the show for season two.

According to Deadline, Murphy told cast members MJ Rodriguez and Billy Porter they would be sharing plenty of scenes with the two-time Tony Award winner.

LuPone is currently appearing in the gender-bending revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Company in London, where she has been nominated for an Olivier Award for “Best Actress in a Supporting Role.”

Murphy also told the crowd that the series will time-jump from the late 1980s to the year 1990. The first episode of the new season will take place on the day Madonna’s mega-hit “Vogue” was released.

Expect to hear about Madge’s co-opting of the vogueing/ ball culture of New York City for her now-iconic music video. Plus, since LuPone has been an outspoken critic of Madonna in the past, we’ll be curious to see if any of that animosity surfaces in the diva’s scenes.

The talk-back took place after a screening of episode six from season one of the series, “Love is the Message,” which was written and directed by acclaimed transgender activist Janet Mock. The episode, the first in television history to be directed by a transgender woman, was also Mock’s directorial debut.

And speaking of directing, Murphy announced during the panel that Mock, Porter and producer Our Lady J would all be helming episodes in the upcoming season.

Season two of Pose begins shooting next week and will premiere in June.

(cropped image via Flickr/Etro053 – CC license)

Ryan Murphy Plans To Give Millions To Help Elect Pro-LGBTQ Politicians

Ryan Murphy (Credit: Getty on behalf of The Trevor Project)

Out producer/director/writer Ryan Murphy announced at The Trevor Project’s annual gala on Sunday night that he is on a mission to vote out of office anti-LGBTQ lawmakers.

The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25.

Janet Mock presented the Hero Award to Ryan Murphy and the cast of POSE.

Murphy accepted the award and shared, “When I was 19, in Indiana, I myself called a suicide hotline. Overwhelmed by the AIDS crisis, by the fact that I was the only ‘out’ person in my friend group, the only ‘out’ person I knew at the time, and alienated from my family, I felt profound despair. I made a call one late night in November. I made a connection, got some hope, and carried on. It’s powerful life saving work this organization does. In my roundabout way, I know this first hand.”

Murphy also told the audience he will launch a multi-million dollar initiative in 2020, “Pose Gives Back,” to target those legislators in Congress who work against the rights of LGBTQ Americans, according to Variety.

“Why don’t we consider ever targeting the people who are causing the problem here?,” the TV guru asked the crowd. “The homophobes, the trans naysayers, and the small restricted and dangerous minds who are causing so many young people to needlessly hate themselves and doubt themselves…”

Noting the results of this year’s midterm elections which saw over 20 anti-LGBTQ politicians defeated in a single night, Murphy says he felt inspired.

“We are going to send a message which says you cannot make discrimination against us a political virtue anymore,” said the 54-year-old producer of Pose and American Horror Story. “You can’t keep killing our vulnerable young people by promoting and nationalizing your rural, close-minded anti-constitutional viewpoints.”

Calling out some lawmakers by name, including Senators Susan Collins, Lindsey Graham, Mike Lee and Congressman Steve King, Murphy said, “I want these hateful and wrong politicians to go, and to stop polluting our moral and ethical ether.”

According to Murphy, “Pose Gives Back” will provide financial support to at least 20 pro-LGBTQ candidates in 2020 in conjunction with corporate sponsors.

He ended his speech announcing a $50,000 donation to The Trevor Project.

You can watch Murphy’s acceptance speech and announcement below from The Trevor Project’s livestream below. Trans activist/writer Janet Mock introduces Murphy at the 124:00 mark.

The gala evening raised over $1.5 million Sunday night for The Trevor Project’s mission to help LGBTQ teens in crisis.

On a lighter note, Pose stars MJ Rodriguez and Billy Porter thrilled the gala audience with a reprise of their duet of “Home” from The Wiz. Watch below.

MJ Rodriguez and Billy Porter (Credit: Getty on behalf of The Trevor Project)