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Exclusive: Essence’s ‘A Toast To Prime Time’ With Laverne Cox And Danai Gurira



Essence magazine celebrated their October issue on Thursday with a special soiree celebrating Black women on prime time television.

Some of Hollywood’s leading women have broken barriers and have led the way to what is now being called the golden era. From Kerry Washington to Laverne Cox, there has been a seismic shift in programming and the publication is acknowledging the women in their latest issue.

For the cover page, Cox, who is known for her role on Netflix’s original series, Orange is the New Black poses alongside the stunning Alfre Woodard (NBC’s State of Affairs), Nicole Beharie (FOX’s Sleepy Hollow) and Danai Gurira (The Walking Dead).

“There’s a cover of Essence magazine that I’m on that I still can’t believe it. It’s so weird. I just take these kind of moments in,” Cox told us while on the red carpet for the “A Toast To Prime Time” celebration.

Gurira also expressed her excitement with HipHollywood about the gorgeous cover. “It was such a beautiful experience,” she explained. “It was just us saying ‘we are going to feel each other out and just enjoy each other.'”

While on the red carpet, we also talked with some of the attendees about the New York Times article that called How To Get Away With Murder’s Viola Davis “less classically beautiful than Mrs. [Kerry] Washington, or for that matter Halle Berry.”

“I think we are always going to have people who don’t get it and don’t get it quick enough,” Danai said. “We always rise above it and that’s the beauty of it all. We rise above it, we keep striving and we keep doing amazing things.”

Essence Atkins, who recently officiated Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union’s wedding, also chimed in. “We need to stop waiting for other people to validate us. We need to start a movement amongst ourselves,” she said.

Be sure to pic up the latest issue on news stands now.


It’s Litty! Migos, Jaden Smith & More Turn Up At ‘Bright’ World Premiere



Netflix definitely made sure the world premiere for their new flick Bright was lit!

Before the films stars including Will Smith, Joel Edgerton, Edgar Ramierez and Noomi Rapace hit the black carpet, Migos surprised fans with a pop-up performance.

 (L-R)Quavo, Offset and Takeoff perform at the Premiere Of Netflix’s “Bright” at Regency Village Theatre on December 13, 2017 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Smith’s son Jaden also rocked the packed crowd at the Regency Village Theatre in Westwood.

 Jaden Smith performs at the Premiere Of Netflix’s “Bright” at Regency Village Theatre on December 13, 2017 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Artists featured on the soundtrack BRIGHT: THE ALBUM including Portugal The Man, Machine Gun Kelly, Ty Dolla $ign, Kiiara, Slushie, Grey, Dram, and Bebe Rexha also hit up the premiere.

Bebe Rexha and Machine Gun Kelly arrive at the Premiere Of Netflix’s “Bright” at Regency Village Theatre on December 13, 2017 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Will also snapped some fun flicks with his son Jaden before greeting fans and speaking with reporters including HipHollywood.

He told HipHollywood that he was super excited to reunite with his Suicide Squad director David Ayer for the film, and would “work with him whenever he wants to.

“I love his madness how he creates,” gushes Smith. “How he thinks about scenes, the way he works with actors, it’s some of the best psychological work of any director I’ve ever worked with.”

In the film Smith plays an LAPD cop in a mythical world of orcs, elves and fairies … and Ayer told us, he couldn’t think of anyone better for the role.

“We had such a good time on Suicide Squad together and this role is kind of perfect for him, it’s an edgy movie, buts it’s funny. He’s got the best sense of humor of anybody I know.”

BRIGHT debuts on Netflix December 22. Peep the newest trailer below.

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