Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Woody Allen's all white Harlem Cotton Club revue

"Harlem is all white?"
Woody Allen -- famed director who married his step-daughter (eww that's just flat-out nasty) -- is bringing his "Bullets over Broadway" to Broadway.

"Bullets" is a musical about Harlem's legendary Cotton Club.

But implausibly,  so-called liberal icon, Woody Allen refused to hire any black actors for his musical based on the most popular club in black Harlem.

As reported by the NY Daily News:

Woody Allen’s “Bullets Over Broadway,” which opens Thursday night at the St. James Theatre, offers a much blander perspective on the Cotton Club than “After Midnight,” now playing at Brooks Atkinson Theatre.

A source tells Confidenti@l that’s because Allen specifically requested there be no black gangsters in his musical, though it isn’t clear why Allen chose that route.

“Everyone’s white at Woody’s Cotton Club and in the gangster numbers,” says our well-placed Broadway insider. “Casting was considering a big-name African-American actor for the play, but Woody passed because he just got the idea that a black gangster wouldn’t be good. One man wasn’t asked back and then was told it was Woody who didn’t want any black gangsters.”

Our source adds that the casting team told Allen a scene re-creating the iconic Harlem club, which was popular with black clubgoers, should actually feature some.
It is odd for any big musical to not feature any African-Americans, especially when in the workshop production — a preshow period for producers and investors — a few black actors were featured and were phenomenal

This is not the first time Woody's been called out for his pigment challenged movies. The sultry actress  Angela Bassett has pointedly commented on Woody's casting tendencies:

"I mean, to have one black cast member for the whole film seems rather strange, and, oh yes, she's a prostitute, of course," said the actress who portrayed Tina Turner in the biopic What's Love Got to Do With it? "Don't get me wrong, I love Spain and it looked beautiful, but that part of the world is so diverse and, really, what is that about?"  source

Here's a who's who of Cotton Club headliners:

Lena Horne, Fletcher Henderson, Duke Ellington, Adelaide Hall,[1][2] Count Basie, Bessie Smith, Cab Calloway, The Nicholas Brothers, Lottie Gee, Ella Fitzgerald, Fats Waller, Louis Armstrong, Nat King Cole, Billie Holiday, and Ethel Waters.

The most famous Harlem gangsters at the time:

Ellsworth "Bumpy" Johnson and Queen Madame Stephanie St. Clair.

Original owner of the Club:

Famed black boxer Jack Johnson.

Mr. Woody Allen's historically incorrect depiction is from the same cloth of how Hollyweird transformed black pharaohs into white actors. It's one thing to film all whites for his downtown Manhattan movies but to go to uptown Harlem and not have any black characters is very suspect or should we say racist.


Thursday, April 10, 2014

Brandon Spikes: Playing with the Patriots was "4 years of slavery"

Brandon Spikes referring to his tenure as a New England Patriot:

"(it was like) 4 years of slave"

Call it a lay-up or free throw, but dissing the above Brandon Spikes' ignorance is a gimme.

And I say this as an Eagle fan that loathes Bill "the Borg" Belichik and the New England Cheaters (D-Nabb and I want our 2004 Super Bowl ring).

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Richest Black Woman in the World: Folorunsho Alakija

Folorunsho Alakija
The last HGP post profiled  Aliko Dangote -- the Nigerian mogul worth 25 billion dollars -- and in order to devote fair gender time, this post is on the richest black woman in the word -- and her name is not Oprah.

Once again, Nigerian nabs top honor:

With a net worth of over $3 billion dollars and climbing Folorunsho Alakija, with a background in oil and fashion, stands atop the black female billionaire club.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

The wealthest man in Africa: Aliko Dangote

Big Al with Big Bill
Word. Everybody and everybody's brother, sister, cousin etc. knows Oprah, richest black woman in the U.S., is worth a grip.

Not quite Bill Gates cheddar, but with a net worth an inch shy of three billion Oprah is paid.

But are you hip to Aliko Dangote? As Africa's richest man, this Nigerian tycoon is in the same billion zip code of Bill Gates.

His business in cement and he has cemented a net worth of over 25 billion dollars.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Analysis: Eagles fire and malign Desean Jackson

Last Friday, the Philadelphia Eagles unceremoniously severed all ties with all-pro WR Desean Jackson -- one of the most explosive players in the game.

As an Eagle homer -- my fandom dates back to Harold Carmichael, Wilbert Montgomery and Bill Bergey -- I have been torn by this announcement.

Yes, I recognized that D-Jax had diva tendencies (like most modern day receivers) that cried out "look at me."

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Piers Morgan's CNN goodbye: The America gun sickness is epidemic

This past Friday, Piers Morgan signed off  on his last CNN program with a scathing indictment of the American gun culture, violence and obsession.

As a Brit, the way Americans -- average citizens, voters, politicians, NRA lobbyist and gun manufacturers -- casually shake off one mass shooting after another seems beyond maddening.

Piers Morgan:

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

De Morgan press: The Obamas are from the "Planet of Apes."

Racism has no national borders, religion or party affiliation.

Racism, in a world created in the image of Eurocentric white supremacy, is embedded in the very DNA of our collective consciousness.

Hence, no institution or group of people -- there are many black, brown, yellow and red white supremacist -- is immune to this cancer.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Virginia KKK Leader: ‘We Don’t Hate People Because of Their Race’

"We are good fearing Christians"
This story fell into my lap by way of randomly perusing Huffingtonpost.com (big shout-out to Arianna):

The KKK:

"We are not a hate group, we are a Christian organization."

In their own words:

Friday, March 21, 2014

March Madness is Big Pimpin #Steve Fisher demands R-E-S-P-E-C-T

NCAA: got Mack Game
At the very moment San Diego State basketball coach Steve Fisher excoriated the NCAA for its shoddy treatment of student/athletes players during March Madness, I stood up and gave him an ovation.

His beef:

Friday, March 14, 2014

Middle class Africa: meet the new African consumer By Sulaiman Philip

Steve Forbes at the launch of new African TV channel
Editor's Note: HGP extends the invitation to come meet Africa all over again. We implore you to not rely on the misguided and short-sighted reporting in Western media.

The United States of Africa is the 10th largest economy in the world. It is ahead of China and India, countries with populations to match Africa's just over a billion people. Its booming consumer market is worth almost a trillion dollars a year but international companies struggle to tap into it.