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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to wed at Windsor Castle in May



Prince Harry and his American fiancée Meghan Markle will marry in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle.  The couple, who are also planning the wedding, said it’s going to be a “small” wedding compared to the usual royal extravaganza.

The palace announced the news via a tweet, on Tuesday after Monday’s announcement that Harry, 33, and Meghan, 36, were engaged and will be married sometime in the spring.

“Her Majesty the Queen has granted permission for the wedding to take place in the Chapel,” the palace statement said. “The Royal Family will pay for the wedding.”

The palace statement ended with the usual palace advice to await for further details.

Ms. Markle, a protestant who attended a Catholic high school, will baptised and confirmed before the wedding. Markle intends to become a UK citizen after she marries Prince Harry.

The Royal family will pay for the wedding—including the church service, the music, the flowers and the reception. Despite planning on a smaller, less extravagant wedding, the couple want a “fun” wedding to hopefully make each person feel involved in a ceremony that is likely to be televised.

Prince Harry and Ms. Markle will carry out their first official engagement together at an Aids charity in Nottingham on Friday according to reports. The couple are reportedly planning as many engagements around the UK as possible before the wedding.

This wedding, like all weddings, will be a moment of fun and joy that will reflect the characters of the bride and groom according to Jason Knauf, Prince Harry’s communication’s secretary.

Knauf said Windsor was a “very special place” for Harry, and that he and Ms. Markle had spent time there together during their 16-month romance. He said the couple were delighted to be holding the wedding on the “beautiful grounds of Windsor, especially grateful for the warm wishes from the public.

“They also want the day to be shaped so as to allow members of the public to feel part of the celebrations too and are currently working through ideas for how this might be achieved.

The couple also professed to Knauf that they want the day to be a special, celebratory moment for their friends and family. Mr Knauf added: “We look forward to sharing these details with you in the months ahead as decisions are made.”

Inside St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle Credit: PA

While its original building dates back to the 13th century, the chapel as seen today began with King Edward IV in 1483, who started the building works before being buried with his wife, Elizabeth Woodville, in the north east corner.

The building program was continued by King Henry VI, who is also buried there.

The chapel was finally completed in 1528 during the reign of King Henry VIII, another incumbent. His sixth wife Catherine Parr is said to have watched his funeral from a wooden oriel window build on his instructions.

Other monarchs buried there are Charles I, George III, George IV, William IV, Edward VII, George V and George VI.

Meghan Markle shows off her engagement ring as she poses with Prince Harry in the grounds of Kensington Palace Credit: Karwai Tang

Prince Harry and Ms Markle received more well wishes on Tuesday from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

On a visit to the Foundling Museum in central London, the Duchess said she and William were “absolutely thrilled”, adding: “We wish them all the best and hope they enjoy this happy moment.”

Harry revealed on Monday in a television interview to celebrate their engagement how “the stars were aligned” when he fell for the American actress.

The couple, who have been dating for just 16 months, told how they met on a blind date set up by a mutual friend.

Former Suits star Ms Markle told how she could not wait to say “yes” to the Prince when Harry got down on one knee a few weeks ago as they cooked a roast chicken dinner at his home, Nottingham Cottage at Kensington Palace.

Indicating the depths of his feeling for his bride-to-be, the prince said: “The fact that I fell in love with Meghan so incredibly quickly was sort of confirmation to me that everything, all the stars were aligned, everything was just perfect.”

“It was this beautiful woman just sort of literally tripped and fell into my life, I fell into her life.”

A few months into the relationship, Harry said he had to have “some pretty frank conversations” with his girlfriend about how her life may change when she entered the royal family.”

He added: “But I know that at the end of the day she chooses me, and I choose her, and therefore whatever we have to tackle together or individually we’ll always be us together as a team, so I think she’s capable … she’s capable of anything.”

The couple told the BBC’s Mishal Husain how Ms Markle had met the Queen twice, an individual she described as an “incredible woman”.

Ms Markle was also a big hit with the Queen’s beloved corgis, with the prince joking: “I’ve spent the last 33 years being barked at; this one walks in, absolutely nothing …”

Harry praised the support of the pair’s families and said he believed his bride-to be and mother Diana, Princess of Wales would have been “thick as thieves, without question.”

Ms Markle’s engagement ring features diamonds from Diana’s personal collection, and a stone from one of their favourite places, Botswana.

Meghan Markle’s ring was designed by Harry and includes two diamonds from Princess Diana’s jewelry collection.  (Reuters)

Ms Markle will become an HRH and a senior royal after marrying Harry and joining the Windsors. She is expected to become a duchess, as Kate Middleton did when she became the Duchess of Cambridge after saying her vows in 2011.

When asked about having children, Prince Harry said: “One step at a time and hopefully we’ll start a family in the near future.”

Ms. Markle grew up in Los Angeles and attended a private primary school before studying at a girls’ Roman Catholic college. She graduated from Northwestern University School of Communication in Illinois, as her acting career was beginning.

The Archbishop of Canterbury said he was “absolutely delighted” at the engagement announcement and indicated the couple would have a church wedding.

Ms. Markle was previously married, but the Church of England agreed in 2002 that divorced people could be allowed to remarry in church.

By LeNora Millen    11-28-17

The Telegraph (UK) and the BBC (UK) contributed to this report


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TV One Cancels Roland Martin’s Morning Show ‘News One Now’



TV One is canceling Roland Martin’s morning show “News One Now,” Roland made the announcement in a tweet Wednesday.

“Fam, the sad news is true. The staff of @tvonetv #NewsnewOneNow was informed this afternoon that after four years of doing groundbreaking and award-winning work, the show will cease production at the end of the year,” Martin tweeted.

Martin, who thanked audiences for their support, said the last episode will air on Dec. 21.

Roland Martin’s morning show “NewsOne Now” was cancelled due to budget cuts according to various reports from reliable sources.

“They called a meeting on Wednesday and told the staff they were canceling the show. They’re having significant financial problems and they have to scale back,” a source said. “After four years of award-winning programming and distinguished service to our viewers as the only black daily newscast on television, the network has made the difficult decision to suspend the production of NewsOne Now as a daily morning news show. The last live show is scheduled [Dec. 21],” TV One’s interim GM, Michelle Rice wrote in a memo.

Host of “News One Now” Roland Martin speaks on stage during 10 Year Anniversary Gala. (Rob Kim/Getty Images for ColorOfChange)

The news of “NewsOne Now” cancellation shocked Martin and staffers according to sources. The network had recently expanded the morning show to two hours in September.

The memo added: “While we will continue our long-standing partnership with Roland Martin to ensure his important voice can be heard across all Urban One platforms examining issues of importance to the black community, we regret this decision adversely affects several of our valued colleagues whose positions will be eliminated with the suspension of the show.”

The network issued a statement on Twitter that read, “We are committed to providing quality news to our viewers and to our long-standing relationship with @rolandsmartin #NewsOneNow who will continue to have a voice on #TVOne.”

LeNora Millen         12-07-17


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Time 2017 Person of the Year: #MeToo ‘The Silence Breakers’



Time magazine named “The Silence Breakers” — women who triggered a #MeToo national outcry over sexual harassment — as the 2017 “Person of the Year.”

President Trump was runner-up for the top title, while Chinese President Xi Jinping was third on the list according to sources at Time.

The magazine’s editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal revealed the cover  announcement on Wednesday morning’s  NBC’s Today show.  The cover features Ashley Judd, Taylor Swift, former Uber engineer Susan Fowler and a woman whose face is obscured, intended to represent the women who haven’t yet come forward.

In a statement, Felsenthal also honored the courage of “hundreds of others, and of many men as well, [who] have unleashed one of the highest-velocity shifts in our culture since the 1960s.”

This is the fastest-moving social change we’ve seen in decades, and it began with individual acts of courage by hundreds of women, and some men, who came forward to tell their own stories of sexual harassment and assault,” Felsenthal said. “The image you see partially on the cover is of a woman we talked to, a hospital worker in the middle of the country who shared her story with us and some others but doesn’t feel like she can come forward without threatening her livelihood.”

The Today show, which recently experienced its own harassment scandal that ousted former anchor Matt Lauer, also hosted actress Alyssa Milano and #MeToo creator Tarana Burke to talk about the cover, both of whom have spoken out about their own experiences with sexual misconduct

“This is the just the start, and I’ve been saying from the beginning that it’s not just a moment, it’s a movement,” Burke said.

Harvey Weinstein, whose scandal jump-started 2017’s months of reckoning over sexual harassment, looms large over the Time list, with Judd, one of the more than 80 women who have accused him of assault and sexual harassment, featured in the story. Also included is Selma Blair, who accused director James Toback of misconduct, with Swift speaking out against Denver radio DJ David Mueller whom she prevailed over in court this summer.

“When the jury found in my favor, the man who sexually assaulted me was court-ordered to give me a symbolic $1,” Swift told Time in an emailed interview, “To this day he has not paid me that dollar, and I think that act of defiance is symbolic in itself.”

Judd was one of the first women to come forward with allegations against the embittered movie mogul Harvey Weinstein in early October. Swift made headlines in a court case against former radio DJ David Mueller, whom she alleged groped her while taking a picture; Swift won her lawsuit against him for $1. Fowler spoke out about Uber’s culture of sexual harassment, and Iwu spearheaded a campaign to expose sexual misconduct in California politics. “Isabel Pascual” is a pseudonym for a woman from Mexico who works picking strawberries who was harassed, and was part of the 700,000 female farmworkers who marched in solidarity with Hollywood actors against sexual assault in November.

The woman featured to the right of the cover whose face cannot be seen represents the unnamed women — and men — who have come forward anonymously with reports.

It is perhaps ironic that Time’s big reveal took place on Today, which just last week fired longtime host Matt Lauer over allegations of sexual harassment. Multiple women have come forward, and accounts of Lauer’s alleged misconduct have been published by Variety and the New York Times.

Prior to Time’s announcement, Today viewers had selected the #MeToo movement the winner in an online poll of Person of the Year finalists

Time’s list cuts across the entertainment, media, tech and service industries, including an unnamed housekeeper at the Plaza hotel.

It was the 91st year that the magazine has recognized the person or group of people who most influenced the news during the past year.

The shortlist included Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, the Dreamers,  Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, Colin Kaepernick, the former NFL quarterback who launched a national protest against racism and police brutality, special prosecutor Robert Mueller, and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Trump caused a stir in the run-up to the selection when he tweeted last month that he turned down a potential offer to be the “person of the Year” after he was told only that he would “probably” be given the title.

“Time Magazine called to say that I was PROBABLY going to be named “Man (Person) of the Year” like last year, but I would have to agree to an interview and a major photo shoot,” Trump tweeted from his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida.

The magazine disputed the account, saying that the president is “incorrect about how we choose Person of the year.”

Time does not comment on our choice until publication,” a spokeswoman told CNN.


LeNora Millen           12-06-17

Time Magazine, NBC News and CNN contributed to this report

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Russell Simmons Steps Down From His Businesses Following a New Sexual Assault Claim



Music mogul Russell Simmons said in a statement Thursday that he is stepping down from his various businesses following a new accusation of sexual misconduct against him, according to a statement he provided to The Hollywood Reporter.

Lumet accuses the Def Jam co-founder of forcing her to have sex in 1991. In a statement, Simmons said he had a different recollection of their encounter, but said Lumet’s “feelings of fear and intimidation are real.” He apologized to Lumet, who is the daughter of director Sidney Lumet and the screenwriter behind “Rachel Getting Married.”

Photo Credit: Bryan Steffy/Getty Images for Diamond Empowerment Fund, Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Fest

Writer Jenny Lumet said in a Hollywood Reporter column published Thursday that Simmons sexually violated her in 1991. In her detailed account, Lumet said Simmons offered her a ride home from a New York City restaurant, but took her to his apartment instead.

The music mogul made the decision after new accuser, writer Jenny Lumet (Rachel Getting Married), came forward in a guest column with the entertainment magazine, accusing the Def Jam co-founder of forcing her to have sex in 1991.

“This is a time of great transition… I don’t want to be a distraction so I am removing myself from the businesses that I founded,” he wrote. ” As for me, I will step aside and commit myself to continuing my personal growth, spiritual learning and above all to listening.”

He added the companies will now be run by a “new and diverse generation of extraordinary executives” and that he is converting his studio for yogic science into a not-for-profit center of “learning and healing.”

Lumet, the daughter of director Sidney Lumet and granddaughter of singer/activist Lena Horne, said the incident occurred when she was 24 after she was trapped in Simmons’ car and taken to his apartment.

Russell Simmons is stepping down from his various businesses after a new accusation of sexual misconduct against him, according to a statement he provided to The Hollywood Reporter on Nov. 30, 2017. Simmons credits include the co-founder of Def Jam Records, manager for Run DMC, Public Enemy and the Beastie Boys, founder of the clothing line Phat Farm and Baby Phat, and the mind behind several non-profit organizations that are part of Rush Philanthropic. Seen here,Russell Simmons speaks onstage at the Environmental Media Association’s 27th Annual EMA Awards at Barkar Hangar on Sept. 23, 2017 in Santa Monica, Calif.  Phillip Faraone, Getty Images for Environmental Media Association

“I gave the driver my address on 19th Street and 2nd Avenue. You said to the driver: ‘No.'” she wrote. “Then, the car doors locked. I couldn’t open the doors. I couldn’t open the windows. The car was moving. The driver did not stop. He did not take me to 19th Street. He took me to your apartment.”

Lumet said she felt “afraid,” and noted there was penetration.

“At no time that night did I say: ‘Russell, I will go home with you.’  Or, ‘Come home with me.’ Or ‘I will have sex with you.’  Or ‘I have the desire to have sex with you.'” she wrote.

Simmons was previously accused of sexual assault by model Keri Claussen Khalighi in a detailed report published by The Los Angeles Times Nov. 19. In a statement to USA TODAY, Simmons “completely and unequivocally” denied the allegations.

Khalighi disputed Russell Simmons’ denials that he assaulted her when she was 17 during an interview on Megyn Kelly Today Nov. 22. She told Kelly that she engaged in multiple conversations with Simmons about the assault and he privately apologized to her for it.

In addition to his music work, Simmons is a successful film and television producer and the founder of such clothing fashion lines as Phat Farm and Tantris. This isn’t the first time he has been accused of harassment or assault. Earlier this month, model Keri Claussen Khalighi accused Simmons of forcing her to have sex. She said the businessman worked in conjunction with director Brett Ratner to lure her to his apartment. Another woman, Tanya Reid, also accused Simmons of pressuring her to perform oral sex on Ratner. Both men deny the allegations

Simmons did say the culture is going through “a time of great transition,” and said he did not want to be a distraction from the work of his companies. He also plans to convert a studio he founded for yogic science into a not-for-profit center of learning and healing.

“The companies will now be run by a new and diverse generation of extraordinary executives who are moving the culture and consciousness forward,” said Simmons, adding, “As for me, I will step aside and commit myself to continuing my personal growth, spiritual learning, and, above all, to listening.”

Simmons is the latest high profile figure to become engulfed in a sexual harassment or assault scandal. In recent weeks, Kevin Spacey, Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, Charlie Rose, and John Lasseter have all been dogged by claims of sexual misdeeds or crimes

By LeNora Millen    11-30-17

The Hollywood Reporter, Variety, and USA Today contributed to this report.

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