Sharpton, on ‘Meet the Press’ talks fiscal cliff, Obama’s second term agenda

Rev. Al Sharpton joined the roundtable on Meet the Press on Sunday to discuss the “fiscal cliff,” and the anticipated second term agenda for President Barack Obama.

Sharpton, along with fellow guests MSNBC anchor and senior Washington correspondent Andrea Mitchell, New York Times columnist David Brooks, documentary filmmaker Ken Burns and former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina discussed what Americans can expect in a second Obama term, and in upcoming fiscal cliff negotiations.

Sharpton said there is no question “we are gonna have to deal with the question of where the tax rates go,” and noted that during a meeting the president held with progressive leaders including himself, Obama pledged to uphold his campaign pledge to raise taxes on the rich. After that, Sharpton said the priorities of jobs and unemployment “will be dealt with.”

Brooks said that if the U.S. can prove that it is “governable” in the coming months, “we have the potential to be the hotspot of the world,” noting that Europe, the Middle East and other regions around the globe are stagnating.

Burns, who said he recently emerged from “witness protection, along with Big Bird,” joking about the threats to cut PBS by the Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, said that people understand that the pain of budget cuts will be felt by everyone. And Mitchell added that the president will need to show a different brand of leadership in the second term than he did in the first.

The roundtable was joined by Honeywell CEO David Cote, who concurred with Brooks on the idea that the U.S.needs to prove it is “governable,” in order for business leaders to invest.And the group discussed the leadership lessons to be learned from the movie, “Lincoln,” and the ongoing role race plays in our politics


Filming underway in Atlanta for Tyler Perry’s new movie ‘Single Mom’s Club

Atlanta, GA — Media mogul Tyler Perry has begun shooting his upcoming flick, Single Mom’s Club, at various locations across metropolitan Atlanta.

Early Monday morning his production crew descended on East College Avenue in Dekalb County for scenes at a Waffle House. One of the restaurant’s employees told CBS Atlanta he drove across three states at short notice just to be a part of the production.

“I cleaned a store just last night (in Mississippi), and I drove straight here, trying to get ready for this movie,” said Wayne Winstead.

The movie centers on four very different single mothers who cross paths after a crisis at their children’s school. The women come together to form an alliance, where they help each other cope with life’s challenges.

Nia Long will play one of the mothers, Lydia, alongside Wendi McLendon-Covey (Bridesmaids) as Jan and Colombian-American actress Zulay Henao as Esperanza. The fourth lead has yet to be announced in this multiracial cast.

The film is written, produced and directed by Perry. He will also star in an unspecified role. The film is scheduled to hit theaters on May 9, 2014 and be distributed by Lionsgate

Black stars nominated for 2013 Independent Spirit Awards

Several African-American actors and filmmakers have been nominated for the 2013 Independent Spirit Awards.

Among those being recognized for the top honors was Wendell Pierce, who has been nominated for best male lead for the movie Four, and the pint-size star of Beasts of the Southern Wild, Quvenzhané Wallis, was nominated for best female lead.

Director Ana DuVernay‘s acclaimed Middle of Nowhere also scored multiple nominations, including one for best feature film.

The Spirit Awards are an annual event out of Santa Monica, that brings Hollywood and talented low-budget filmmakers together to honor the talents of the independent film community.

The film War Witch from the Democratic Republic of Congo is in contention for best international film, while the racially charged The Central Park Five is up for the best documentary award.

Halle Barry Launches New Fragrance ‘Closer’

Actress, model, mom Halle Barry can do no wrong. With lots of successful films under her belt, she still takes time to develop and launch new businesses. Her perfumes are doing very well and her being a classic beauty makes it even easier to sell. She now has launched her third fragrance, Closer.

“I wanted to create a unique fragrance for women that would also appeal to men, ”Scent is very closely linked with desire and attraction and I love the idea that a fragrance can bring a man and a woman together. Closer creates a new level of intimacy through the power of scent,” says Berry.

This particular fragrance is designed to provoke and sustain attraction between both men and women. She wanted t to be very unique, irresistible, and have a great aura. It has a mix of floral, woody, raspberry, cedar tones with fougere accord, vanilla pod, cashmere and  musk. Sounds lovely and is in stores now. Closer would make a great holiday gift.

Chris Tucker in ‘Silver Linings Playbook’: Comedian returns to film in over a decade

Chris Tucker has been one of the most popular, highest paid comedians in Hollywood for the last decade — but he’s only made three films.

After the massive success of 1998′s Rush Hour, his breakout action-comedy hit alongside Jackie Chan, Tucker had his pick of any number of major film roles. But instead he chose to lay low, pal around with Michael Jackson, and get paid $2o million-plus to star in two Rush Hour sequels.

Outside of his recurring Detective James Carter role, Tucker’s most memorable performance was arguably his dumbstruck look on live television following Kanye West’s “George Bush doesn’t care about black people.” In recent years he’s made headlines mostly for his tax troubles and the plethora of roles he missed out on, including lead parts in Any Given Sunday, The Pink Panther, Tower Heist and Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming Django Unchained.

But now Tucker seems poised for a much-deserved comeback, with a supporting role in the Oscar-worthynew film Silver Linings Playbook, which opens in select cities this weekend. Film critics and fans have been constantly asking: ‘What took you so long?’ “The break wasn’t planned—it just happened that way,” said Tucker in an interview with the Daily Beast. “I waited a long time and the right things were not coming to me—the roles I was offered were not that challenging—so I started trying to develop a bunch of projects for myself.” 

It appears that Tucker has chosen wisely, his part in Silver Linings Playbook, his first in five years, is earning some of the best reviews of his career. For instance, Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times called him “irresistible” and the Wall Street Journal‘s review says he’s “memorably funny” in the movie.

What’s next for Chris Tucker? Believe it or not, he hasn’t ruled out a Rush Hour 4. But he’s also looking to keep stretching as an actor. Tucker recently said in an interview with The Guardian, “I would love to do more serious movies. Because people haven’t seen me do a lot of that.”

Walmart Walkout: Black Friday Strike to Fight ‘Silence’ of Workers

Walmart workers are planning a massive, nationwide walk off of work ahead of Black Friday, the shopping mania day after Thanksgiving, to pressure the world’s largest retailer to improve its pay, hours, and health benefits.

Even with a week to go, the protest has already started. On Wednesday and Thursday, employees walked off the job in Southern California and Seattle, according to Common Dreams news site. Organizers say that there will be some 1,000-store protests leading up to Black Friday. Protests will include more walk offs, rallies and online actions. Some of the cities where this will occur include: Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami,Milwaukee, Washington, D.C., and in the states of Oklahoma, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Minnesota.

“No matter how hard we work, my husband and I can’t catch up on our bills,” said Charlene Fletcher, an OUR Walmart leader from Duarte, California, in a statement.

Both Charlene and her husband, Greg, work at Walmart. Greg has worked at Walmart for six years, while Charlene has been an employee for 2 ½ years. This Thanksgiving, they were both scheduled to work, which means they won’t be with their two children, aged two and five.

“It’s heartbreaking to miss the holiday with them, and it’s just one more way that Walmart is showing its disregard for our families. But when our co-workers speak out about problems like these, Walmart turns their schedules upside down, cuts their hours and even fires people,” Charlene said in a statement. “We’re going on strike for an end to Walmart’s attempts to silence its workers.”

This is not the first time workers have protested Walmart. Just last October, workers in Los Angles went on strike and soon employees in 12 other cities followed suit. The workers are protesting this year for the same thing as the strike in October: better pay, fairer schedules and more affordable healthcare.

In a statement to, Walmart said that employees who work on Thanksgiving will receive holiday pay.

And Sarah Spence, director of Corporate Communications for Wal-Mart, also told, “This year, we’re also providing them an additional 10 percent discount on one basket of goods. Additionally, we are providing three hot meals during the day on Thanksgiving for associates who will be working.”

Fortune Magazine ranks Walmart as number two in its Fortune 500 list. The company earned $446 billion in 2011.