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Murder she wrote- but “Gay Icon” she boasted

Angela Lansbury died Tuesday in LA at age 96. She enjoyed an eclectic, award-winning movie and stage career that spanned over 75 years

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Dame Angela Lansbury on stage singing her signature song from Disney's Beauty & the Beast (Screenshot/YouTube)

HOLLYWOOD – Celebrities with long successful careers often are labeled as icons and legends. Sometimes those terms are bestowed too generously. Unpacking the words, they usually end up meaning that the celebrity was popular, they had an eager fan base, and we can remember the roles they played, the awards they won, and the songs they sang.

This time those words are accurate and really mean something. We have just lost a true legend, a true icon, and possibly the biggest kick-ass diva of all time, Angela Lansbury.

Angela Lansbury brought a unique set of personas to many parts of American culture over her eight-decade long career. If you ask kids, they know her from her stand-out imprint across the Disney experience from Mrs. Potts in Beauty and the Beast, to Eglantine Price in Bed Knobs and Broomsticks to her small role in Mary Poppins Returns. In worldwide Theater, she owned some of the most unforgettable characters ever experienced including Mama Rose in Gypsy, Mame and Sweeney Todd’s Mrs. Lovett. For suspense buffs, she was as significant as Agatha Christie herself, not just for bringing a number of Chrsitie characters to life, but by invading American Television as its ultimate mystery writer, Mrs. Jessica Fletcher, of Murder, She Wrote.

Or, as RuPaul calls her, “Murder She Sat Down and She Wrote.”

Therein lies a clue to one of the most significant iconic sides to this multi-faceted cultural tsunami: the gay one.

“I am very proud of the fact that I am a gay icon,” she boasted at age 88 in an interview while staring in Blythe Spirit in London.

It was the only type of “icon” Lansbury ever bragged about publicly. She credited her notoriety with the gay community to her role as Mame. “Everything about Mame coincided with every young man’s idea of beauty and glory and it was lovely,” she said.

Her beauty and style were only parts of the glamorous magic she conjured, however. She lay the blueprint for the classic drag queen. She weaved her unique look into fabulosity and dared you to call her anything else but beautiful. She grabbed life by the balls and took you along for a ride whether you had your seat belts fastened or not. She made you love her whether she was a controlling stage mother, a murder obsessed writer, a human-meat baking cannibal or a soothing teapot.

She also had the other requisite for the ultimate drag queen: she created the shade-throwing mistress like none other. “Gaslighting” has become a popular diagnosis of the current political landscape. A major PR strategy is to attempt to re-write reality with what “gaslighter” mouthpieces themselves call “alternate facts.” This methodology to make sane people feel crazy and question their perceptions was typified in the 1944 movie “Gaslight” in which Charles Boyer enacted psychological torture on innocent Ingrid Bergman.

Who was the shady smart ass bitch maid helping along? It was Nancy, or Angela Lansbury in her first role.  She was an icon right out of the gate.

Her ultimate shady bitch, however, was likely a role she played in 1962 as The Manchurian Candidate’s Mrs. Eleanor Shaw Iselin, who demonstrated how politics could bring motherhood to a whole new level of evil.

Her characters were abashedly unafraid. They confronted everything from oppression, to poverty, to put-downs, to just sheer bad luck. She went elbow to elbow with murderers and people who would literally eat you alive. Much of the time, she played the deductress figuring out who had done the killing.

It the end, however, we are left with one ultimate truth, one for which, we are all the better for.

She was the one who slayed.

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

Rob Watson is the host of the popular Hollywood-based radio/podcast show RATED LGBT RADIO.

He is an established LGBTQ columnist and blogger having written for many top online publications including Parents Magazine, the Huffington Post, LGBTQ Nation, Gay Star News, the New Civil Rights Movement, and more.

He served as Executive Editor for The Good Man Project, has appeared on MSNBC and been quoted in Business Week and Forbes Magazine.

He is CEO of Watson Writes, a marketing communications agency, and can be reached at [email protected] .

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Legendary musician David Crosby dies at 81

In a career spanning six decades Crosby’s influence was felt by generations of Americans. He was also an ally to the LGBTQ community

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David Crosby (Screenshot/YouTube 2metersessions)

SANTA YNEZ, Calif. – David Crosby, arguably one of the most popular and enormously influential singer-songwriter-guitarists of the last century known for his folk ballads and rock standards, has died at the age of 81.

In a statement released by his wife Jan Dance and family to entertainment media outlet Variety Thursday afternoon the family said:

 “It is with great sadness after a long illness, that our beloved David (Croz) Crosby has passed away. He was lovingly surrounded by his wife and soulmate Jan and son Django. Although he is no longer here with us, his humanity and kind soul will continue to guide and inspire us. His legacy will continue to live on through his legendary music. Peace, love, and harmony to all who knew David and those he touched. We will miss him dearly. At this time, we respectfully and kindly ask for privacy as we grieve and try to deal with our profound loss. Thank you for the love and prayers.”

A founding member of the Byrds and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young and a two-time Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee, he was remembered in a Facebook post by former bandmate Graham Nash writing:

“David was fearless in life and in music,” Nash said. “He leaves behind a tremendous void as far as sheer personality and talent in this world. He spoke his mind, his heart, and his passion through his beautiful music and leaves an incredible legacy. These are the things that matter most.”

In a career spanning six decades Crosby’s influence was felt by generations of Americans. He was also an ally to the LGBTQ community. In a May 2020 article, Rolling Stone writer Althea Legaspi, writing about the opioid overdose death of pioneering out lesbian musician Melissa Etheridge’s son, Beckett Cypher, who died at 21 noted that Crosby was the sperm donor.

Etheridge and Cypher, who met in 1988 during a video shoot, have two children — daughter, Bailey, and son, Beckett. For several years after their births, people speculated about the identity of the sperm donor for the children. In 2000, the couple revealed it was fellow musician David Crosby.

While the then-couple were vacationing in Hawaii, they met up with Crosby and his wife, Jan, and began discussing their want to have children, but they had a dilemma as to whom to have as a sperm donor. “And Jan said, ‘What about David?’ ” Etheridge told Rolling Stone. “It came from her, which was the best, most perfect way.” They thought it over for a year before they made the call. “For one, he’s musical, which means a lot to me, you know, and I admire his work,” says Etheridge. “And he has his own life, has his own family.”

Crosby told Rolling Stone he didn’t hesitate at his wife’s proposition that he be the donor. “Melissa and Julie are good people,” he said. “Nice set of values, they’re funnier than shit, and they’ve got courage. All rare stuff. You could see that they were in love with each other.”

Etheridge and Cypher split up in 2000, but they continued to co-parent. Etheridge is also the mother of twins, son Miller and daughter Johnnie.

Crosby’s support of the LGBTQ community was also expressed on his Twitter account:

Crosby earned 10 Grammy nominations and one win in his lifetime leaving behind a formidable contribution to the American Songbook.

A look back at his career is here on Variety: (Link)

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Lisa Marie Presley has died at 54 after cardiac arrest

She recently attended the Golden Globes as actor Austin Butler won an award for his portrayal of her father in the movie ‘Elvis’

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Lisa Marie Presley being interviewed by ABC News Good Morning America in 2022 (Screenshot/YouTube GMA)

WEST HILLS, Calif. – Lisa Marie Presley — the only child of singer Elvis Presley — died Thursday after being hospitalized earlier in the day her family has confirmed in a statement.

Presley was transported by ambulance after being discovered by her housekeeper unresponsive at the Calabasas home she shared with her former husband Danny Keough, and her daughters from her marriage to music producer Michael Lockwood who she divorced in 2021, twins Harper and Finley Lockwood, 14.

Multiple media outlets reported that Keough had arrived home shortly after the housekeeper found her and began to perform CPR. A spokesperson for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said that deputies and paramedics from the LA County Fire Department were dispatched to the Presley home in the 5900 block of Normandy drive in Calabasas.

Upon arrival paramedics took over CPR, administered a dose of epinephrine and upon finding a pulse transported Presley to the West Hills Medical Center located near her home in the San Fernando Valley.

Presley’s mother Priscilla confirming her death released a statement saying, “It is with a heavy heart that I must share the devastating news that my beautiful daughter Lisa Marie has left us. She was the most passionate strong and loving woman I have ever known. We ask for privacy as we try to deal with this profound loss. Thank you for the love and prayers. At this time there will be no further comment.”

Lisa Marie Presley was born on Feb. 1, 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee to her father the late superstar musician Elvis Presley- dubbed the “King of Rock and Roll,” and her mother, actress and businesswoman Priscilla Presley. She was initially raised at the Presley family estate Graceland before moving to Los Angeles after her parents were divorced in 1973.

At age 9, Presley was at Graceland on August 16, 1977 when her father suffered a fatal heart attack and died at age 42. She became the joint heir to her father’s estate alongside grandfather Vernon Presley and great-grandmother Minnie Mae Hood Presley. Following their respective deaths in 1979 and 1980, she became the sole heir and also inherited her father’s Graceland mansion and grounds.

At age 20 Presley married Danny Keough, a musician, with whom she had two children, actress Riley Keough in 1989 and her son Benjamin in 1992. The couple divorced in May 1994, but were to remain close for the rest of Presley’s live suffering the loss also of son Benjamin, himself a musician, who died in 2020 at age 27, in a death ruled a suicide by the Los Angeles County coroner.

She went on to marry pop-superstar Michael Jackson in 1994, just 20 days after her divorce from Keough, later divorcing Jackson during the height of the child molestation allegations. She then married actor Nicholas Cage in 2002 although the actor filed for divorce four months later.

Presley married for a fourth time on Jan. 22, 2006 to Michael Lockwood, her guitarist, music producer and director. In 2008, they had twins, Harper and Finley Lockwood. Presley filed for filed for divorce in June 2016 and a nasty custody battle ensued. The two currently shared joint custody after an out-of-court settlement in 2022.

Like her father, Presley was also a musical artist, having released three albums: 2003’s To Whom It May Concern, which went on to become gold-certified as well as 2005’s So What and 2012’s Storm & Grace.

In addition to her music and raising a family, she was also a dedicated philanthropist, overseeing the Elvis Presley Charitable Foundation, which benefits homeless families and offers rent-free housing, daycare for children and other services to families in need.

Presley, a longtime friend of media mogul Oprah Winfrey, worked with Winfrey’s Angel Network to provide relief to those affected by Hurricane Katrina, as well as the Dream Factory to benefit children with life-threatening illnesses or disabilities.

Presley recently attended the Golden Globe Awards this past weekend as actor Austin Butler won an award for his portrayal of her father in the movie ‘Elvis’ released last year.

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18-year-old ‘Stranger Things’ star Noah Schnapp comes Out

Schnapp plays the closeted gay teenager Will Byers on Netflix’s smash science fiction series “Stranger Things

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Noah Schnapp chats with host Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show (Screenshot/YouTube Comcast NBC Universal)

NEW YORK – The 18-year-old actor Noah Schnapp, who plays the character of the closeted gay teenager Will Byers on Netflix’s smash science fiction series “Stranger Things,” has himself come out as gay.

In a video posted to his TikTok account on Thursday, Schnapp wrote, “When I finally told my friends and family I was gay after being scared in the closet for 18 years and all they said was ‘we know’”

In the caption to his TikTok video, Schnapp wrote, “I guess I’m more similar to Will than I thought.”

@noahschnapp

I guess I’m more similar to will than I thought

♬ original sound – princessazula0
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Legendary anchor and journalist Barbara Walters has died at 93

From American presidents to interviews with regular folks, Walters touched on the lives of diverse and dynamic cross-sections of humanity

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Screenshot/YouTube ABC News

NEW YORK – If ever there was a gold standard for American broadcast journalists the likely two top choices would be famed CBS reporter and anchor Walter Cronkite and the groundbreaking ABC News reporter and anchor Barbara Walters.

The news came late Friday that the latter, a legendary broadcast journalist had died peacefully surrounded by family and friends at her home in New York City at age 93. Walters shattered the glass ceiling in her profession and became a dominant force in an industry once dominated by men. Walters is survived by her adopted daughter Jacqueline. 

Without a doubt Walters likely holds a record for the shear number of interviews of the rich and famous, political leaders, as well as celebrities from every walk of life and endeavor. Walters, who won 12 Emmy awards, 11 of those while at ABC News was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1989.

In her fifty-plus year career as a broadcast journalist she had earned nearly universal acclaim, respect and admiration for her work.

At ABC News as the co-anchor of the network’s extremely successful award winning 20/20 televised news magazine, she interviewed the people who made history in the mid twentieth century into the early twenty-first century conducting her last interview, of then businessman and potential presidential candidate Donald Trump, in 2015.

Walters began her national broadcastcareer on NBC’s The Today Show as a reporter, writer and panel member before being promoted to co-host in 1974. Her rising popularity with viewers resulted in Walters receiving more airtime, and in 1974, NBC executives promoted her to be the co-host of the program, the first woman ever to hold such a title on an American news program

Walters joined ABC News in 1976 after , becoming the first female anchor on an evening news program. Three years later, she became a co-host of “20/20,” and in 1997, she launched “The View.”

Bob Iger, the CEO of The Walt Disney Company which is the parent company of ABC News, praised Walters as someone who broke down barriers.

“Barbara was a true legend, a pioneer not just for women in journalism but for journalism itself. She was a one-of-a-kind reporter who landed many of the most important interviews of our time, from heads of state to the biggest celebrities and sports icons. I had the pleasure of calling Barbara a colleague for more than three decades, but more importantly, I was able to call her a dear friend. She will be missed by all of us at The Walt Disney Company, and we send our deepest condolences to her daughter, Jacqueline,” Iger said in a statement Friday.

She made her final appearance as a co-host of “The View” in 2014, but remained an executive producer of the show and continued to do some interviews and specials for ABC News.

“I do not want to appear on another program or climb another mountain,” she said at the time. “I want instead to sit on a sunny field and admire the very gifted women — and OK, some men too — who will be taking my place.”

From American presidents to her famed interview with Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, along the way Walters touched on the lives of diverse and dynamic cross-section of humanity.

Her face to face conversations included face-to-face convos with folks like actors Katharine Hepburn, John Wayne, Patrick Swayze, Fred Astaire. She spoke with musicians such as Michael Jackson, Justin Bieber, Barbra Streisand, and without missing a beat the significant political figures of her day like Henry Kissinger, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Vladimir Putin and Fidel Castro. Her interviews with Oprah and Monica Lewinsky shot the network’s ratings audiences through the roof.

The New York Times reported in 1999 that Walters’ interview with Lewinsky, the former White House intern who was a key component in the impeachment trial of then President Bill Clinton, “attracted an average of 48.5 million viewers, and an estimated 70 million people watched all or part of the two-hour program, in about 33.2 million homes.”

Walters directly asked Lewinsky, “You showed the president your thong underwear. Where did you get the nerve? I mean — who does that?” she said. She also asked the 25-year-old: “Where was your self-respect, where was your self-esteem?”

The list of people in front of the camera with her on The Barbara Walters Specials was breathtaking. Yet the stories of everyday folks, their lives, and struggles were a staple of her work searching out stories that needed to be told.

For the LGBTQ+ community, Walters often told the stories that painted a picture that was critical in putting a human face on an oft times maligned community. Her ABC Documentary on transgender children originally broadcast in 2007, introduced the world to trans girl Jazz Jennings, who was at six years of age at the time, and her hugely supportive family.

The Hollywood Reporter noted in an honest interview, Ellen DeGeneres talked to Walters about everything from her movie career to her decision to come out as a lesbian. She also opened up about her stepfather sexually abusing her and how she broke through a window one night to get away. 

Walters in later years did have her share of detractors among younger journalists and writers including Alex Pareene, the former editor-in-chief of online news site Gawker and later a staff writer at The New Republic in 2019.

Pareene penned an unflattering profile of Walters on May 13, 2013 in Salon headlined Good riddance, Barbara Walters.

He noted: “[…] current co-host of “The View,” is a national icon and a pioneer, and probably as responsible as any other living person for the ridiculous and sorry state of American television journalism. She has announced her retirement a year in advance, so that a series of aggrandizing specials can be produced celebrating her long and storied career. So let’s get things started off right, by reminding everyone how her entire public life has been an extended exercise in sycophancy and unalloyed power worship.

Pareene also took aim at her relationship with ” Roy Cohn, the notorious scumbag McCarthyite mob attorney.”

Writing about the relationship between the two Pareene notes: […] she, legendarily, pretended to be seeing (romantically) Roy Cohn, the notorious scumbag McCarthyite mob attorney who was also, notoriously, a closeted gay man (who had persecuted closeted “deviants” while working with McCarthy). Cohn was one of the slimiest and most detestable characters of the entire 20th century.

He was finally disbarred, in part for his hospital visit to a dying and incapacitated millionaire in which Cohn held up the man’s hand and had him “sign” a codicil to his will naming Cohn the trustee of his estate. Despite his moral bankruptcy, Cohn remained a member of elite Washington and New York society his entire life.

Walters said she was and remained close to him because he helped her father with a legal matter when she was a girl. But this also seems to explain why they were “dating” in the 1950s:

Did Cohn have a secret “nice” side? She was asked.

“I would not use the word nice,” she laughs. “He was very smart. And funny. And, at the time, seemed to know everyone in New York. He was very friendly with the cardinal, he was very friendly with the most famous columnist in New York, Walter Winchell, he had a lot of extremely powerful friends.”

Barbara Walters dies at 93 l ABC News

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As Christmas 2022 arrives, NORAD is tracking Santa

It’s a tradition carried out for over 60 years that started accidentally in 1955. Since then, NORAD has continued its annual mission

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NORAD announced it is executing the annual mission of tracking Santa as he makes his rounds this Christmas, so lets hope you weren't naughty this year eh? (Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Blade contributor and YouTube creator StanChris)

COLORADO SPRINGS – With a little help from the U.S. North American Aerospace Defense Command, you can track Santa on his journey around the world.

NORAD, a joint organization between the U.S. and Canada, is responsible for tracking everything flying in and around the two countries.

At Christmastime, NORAD has a crucial mission: Track Santa.

Screenshot courtesy of NORAD

It’s a tradition NORAD has carried out for over 60 years that started accidentally in 1955. Since then, NORAD has continued its annual mission.

From the command’s website:

24 hours a day, 365 days a year, NORAD tracks everything that flies in and around North America in defense of our homelands. On Dec. 24, we have the very special mission of also tracking Santa.

NORAD has been tracking Santa since 1955 when a young child accidently dialed the unlisted phone number of the Continental Air Defense Command (CONAD) Operations Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, believing she was calling Santa Claus after seeing a promotion in a local newspaper.

Air Force Colonel Harry Shoup, the commander on duty that night, was quick to realize a mistake had been made, and assured the youngster that CONAD would guarantee Santa a safe journey from the North Pole.

Thus a tradition was born that rolled over to NORAD when it was formed in 1958. Each year since, NORAD has dutifully reported Santa’s location on Dec. 24 to millions across the globe.

Thanks to the services and resources generously provided by numerous corporate contributors and volunteers, NORAD Tracks Santa has persevered for more than 60 years. 

Though the program began due to a misdialed number, NORAD Tracks Santa has flourished and is recognized as one of the Department of Defense’s largest community outreach programs.

Each year, the NORAD Tracks Santa Web Site receives nearly fifteen million unique visitors from more than 200 countries and territories around the world. Volunteers receive more than 130,000 calls to the NORAD Tracks Santa hotline from children around the globe.

NORAD also offers a phone line that remains open for 23 hours starting on Christmas Eve. Last year, the call center fielded over 53,000 calls, according to Lt. Sean Carter, the NORAD Tracks Santa Program Manager.

Follow Santa’s progress here: https://www.noradsanta.org/en/

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Ellen Show’s DJ, Stephen “tWitch” Boss, dead at 40 from suicide

LAFD personnel responding to a call for a medical emergency found Boss dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound 

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Ellen and tWitch embrace during the final taping of the Ellen Show (Photo: Ellen DeGeneres/Twitter)

LOS ANGELES – Stephen ‘tWitch’ Boss, the famed DJ for Ellen Degeneres’ talk show, died Tuesday from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

A source with the Los Angeles Police Department said that his wife had appeared at an LAPD station to report him as person-in-need of assistance or in crisis Tuesday morning. Los Angeles Fire-Rescue personnel responding to a call for a medical emergency at a local hotel found Boss, 40, dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. His death has been confirmed by the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner. 

UPDATED DEC. 18 from KTLA:

Law enforcement sources revealed to TMZ that a note was left at the suicide scene of Boss and vaguely hinted at challenges he faced in the past. The site doesn’t go into detail on what was exactly said.

Investigators reportedly determined that the dancer took a rideshare from his home to a motel close to his home on Monday morning and switched his phone to airplane mode so no one could reach him or locate him.

The former “So You Think You Can Dance” contestant’s body was found by an employee of the motel.

In a statement, Boss’ wife, dancer Allison Holker Boss, announced his death, saying, “It is with the heaviest of hearts that I have to share my husband Stephen has left us. Stephen lit up every room he stepped into. He valued family, friends and community above all else and leading with love and light was everything to him. He was the backbone of our family, the best husband and father, and an inspiration to his fans.

“To say he left a legacy,” she continued, “would be an understatement, and his positive impact will continue to be felt. I am certain there won’t be a day that goes by that we won’t honor his memory. We ask for privacy during this difficult time for myself and especially for our three children. Stephen, we love you, we miss you, and I will always save the last dance for you.”

On Twitter, Ellen DeGeneres wrote: “I’m heartbroken. tWitch was pure love and light. He was my family, and I loved him with all my heart. I will miss him. Please send your love and support to Allison and his beautiful children – Weslie, Maddox, and Zaia.”

Boss, a dancer, choreographer and DJ, joined the Ellen show in 2014 and stayed until DeGeneres ended the talk show in 2022. Boss was made an Ellen executive producer in 2020.

Tributes to Boss are pouring in on Twitter and other social media.

If you or anyone you love is experiencing mental health issues or suicidal thoughts, please reach out for help. You can call or text the number 988, which will direct you to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

It is free and available 24 hours a day.

From KABC Eyewitness News 7 LA:

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David Archuleta tells Jennifer Hudson his experience of coming out

Archuleta opens up to his fellow “American Idol” alum about his experience growing up in the Mormon religious faith & his journey

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Screenshot/YouTube The Jennifer Hudson Show

BURBANK, Ca. – In a recent episode of the Jennifer Hudson show, David Archuleta opens up to his fellow “American Idol” alum about his experience growing up in the Mormon religious faith and his journey to coming out.

The 31-year-old-old singer tells JHud how he almost got married several times to different females and shares how he’s learning to love himself.

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“I just want the applause of my children saying I’m a good Dad…”

Sir Elton John, gearing up for his final show in the United States at Dodger Stadium, speaks with GMA anchor Robin Roberts

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Sir Elton John holds up a family photograph during an interview with GMA's Robin Roberts (Screenshot/YouTube GMA)

LOS ANGELES – This Sunday after his first memorable concert stage appearance in a sequin LA Dodger’s uniform-costume, Sir Elton John returns to end the North American leg of his global farewell tour at Dodger Stadium coming full circle fifty years later.

The 75-year-old entertainer in a recent interview with ABC News Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts says that after five decades on the stage, he’s looking forward to spending more time with family.

The dichotomy of Roberts, the first woman of color and first openly LGBTQ woman to anchor a prestigious television network morning show and the singer-musician, who is openly gay and married with two sons against that time period five decades ago in both of their lives and the society then versus now is stark.

Johns’ last concert at Dodger Stadium, which will also be live streamed on Disney+, marks a new beginning he tells Roberts. His focus now is on his sons Zachary, 11, and Elijah, nine, along with his husband David Furnish.

WATCH:

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Out voice actor Kevin Conroy, the voice of Batman has died

Conroy was able to use his theater background to manifest one of the most memorable voices in cartoon history

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Screenshot/YouTube

NEW YORK – Kevin Conroy had been the voice of (animated) Batman for nearly three decades, voicing almost every iteration of Batman in cartoons, animated movies or video games. In recent years he was a fan favorite on the Con circuit.

Conroy died Thursday after a short battle with cancer, his representative confirmed. He was 66.

Learning of his passage, actor Mark Hamill, known as the voice of the Joker appearing oft times opposite Conroy, released a statement saying:

“Kevin was perfection. He was one of my favorite people on the planet, and I loved him like a brother. He truly cared for the people around him – his decency shone through everything he did. Every time I saw him or spoke with him, my spirits were elevated.”

Conroy began his career as a theater actor, attending Julliard, a prestigious acting school in New York City. He studied alongside heavyweights Robin Williams, Kelsey Grammer and more.

Conroy would go on to perform on Broadway and off-Broadway when his agent called him about auditioning for the role of Batman in a new animated show. During the audition he was able to use his theater background to manifest one of the most memorable voices in cartoon history.

Conroy is survived by his husband Vaughn C. Williams, his sister Trisha Conroy, and his brother Tom Conroy.

Memorial services are pending.

In August of 2020, ‘Great Big Story’ on its YouTube channel profiled Conroy titled: Meet the Voice of Batman.

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Singer-Rapper Aaron Carter found dead at home Saturday morning

Representatives for Carter’s family confirmed the singer’s death but did not provide any immediate further comment

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Aaron Carter/Twitter

LANCASTER, Ca. – Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department homicide investigators are continuing their investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of singer-rapper Aaron Carter, 34, who was found unresponsive in his home.

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies and EMS from L.A. County Fire Department’s Fire station 129, responded to the Carter residence at 42502 Valley Vista Drive Saturday morning at approximately 11:00 a.m.

According to LASD spokesperson Deputy Alejandra Parra, the person making the 911 call, later identified as the house sitter, stated “she found a male unresponsive in the bath tub.” She was advised by the dispatcher to begin cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) prior to the deputies arrival. 

Shortly after the deputies arrived, LACD Fire department EMS personnel arrived and pronounced the male (Carter) deceased at the scene. Representatives for Carter’s family confirmed the singer’s death but did not provide any immediate further comment.

“We are still in the process of accepting this unfortunate reality,” Carter’s fiancé, Melanie Martin said in a statement Saturday afternoon. “Your thoughts and prayers are greatly appreciated.”

The singer’s publicist released a statement noting: “The family has been notified and will be flying out to Los Angeles. Aaron worked very hard towards the end of his life in recovery, to be a good father and to make amends with his family.”

The singer-rapper rose to fame as an adolescent star singing and acting. Carter, the younger brother of the Backstreet Boys’ Nick Carter was an actor in film and television shows like “Lizzie McGuire” and “7th Heaven.”

He opened for the Backstreet Boys on a 1997 tour, according to The Hollywood Reporter, and he did the same for Britney Spears, according to The Associated Press.

Carter is perhaps most well known, however, for his sophomore album “Aaron’s Party (Come Get It),” which was released in 2000 and has been certified triple platinum, KTLA reported.

It included the title track as its first single, as well as a cover of “I Want Candy” and a basketball-themed song “That’s How I Beat Shaq.” The parody song features an accompanying video with NBA icon Shaquille O’Neal in which the Hall of Famer loses a game of pickup to the scrawny preteen.

The teenage Carter was seen as a heartthrob who had several high-profile romances, including with fellow child stars Lindsay Lohan and Hilary Duff. In 2019, he publicly came out as bisexual, although he admitted he had only dated women.

Following his initial twitter post Carter appeared on an episode of The Doctors, during which he confirmed he was bisexual, and that he would be open to dating a man if one “comes into my life and sparks an interest.”

He later appeared to have partially walked back his coming Out as bisexual saying his remarks were misconstrued.

In a podcast for Hollywood Life, Carter was asked if he would ever date a man. The 30-year-old singer said no.

“It was more so just a story that happened when I was like 17 with somebody. And I can find men and women attractive, but when it comes down to it, I think it was a little misconstrued,” Carter said. “I see myself being with a woman and having kids. I want to have a family.”

“I keep telling people that. I don’t want it to be misconstrued too much just because I was open about a story,” he added.

He later seemed to reconsider claiming that he was ready to embrace his bisexuality and would be open to dating a man if one caught his interest. He also had plans to include his bisexuality in his upcoming music.

KTLA reported that the singer also had publicly battled addiction for many years, facing legal troubles and entering rehabilitation while continuing with his music career, according to E!.

In September of this year, he entered rehab for the fifth time so he could regain custody of his infant son, Prince, according to the Los Angeles Times.

He also publicly feuded with many, including his brother Nick, whom he accused of trying to put him under a conservatorship.

In 2019, he revealed on “The Doctors” that he was diagnosed with “multiple personality disorder, schizophrenia, acute anxiety and manic depression,” according to CNN.

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