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"Scandal?" Shonda Rhimes (@shondarhimes) Leaves ABC (@abc) for Netflix (@netflix)!

“ABC its not us, it’s you.” That’s probably what showrunner Shonda Rhimes probably said when she announced she was taking Shondaland to Netflix to create more original content for the streaming network!

Yep, you read right ABC and Shonda Rhimes have parted ways! This definitely comes as a shock, especially since Grey’s Anatomy is still the highest-rated show on the network.

via THR:

shondaland logo

Under the multiple-year deal, Rhimes and her Shondaland banner will create and produce new projects for the streaming giant. Rhimes’ longtime producing partner Betsy Beers will continue to head Shondaland in the move to Netflix. Under what is said to be a rich four-year pact, Rhimes is expected to score a percentage of the back-end on programming she creates for Netflix. 

“Shonda Rhimes is one of the greatest storytellers in the history of television,” Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said. “Her work is gripping, inventive, pulse-pounding, heart-stopping, taboo-breaking television at its best. I’ve gotten the chance to know Shonda and she’s a true Netflixer at heart — she loves TV and films, she cares passionately about her work, and she delivers for her audience. We’re so excited to welcome her to Netflix.”

The move further aligns Rhimes with Netflix, which has featured the Grey’s Anatomy library that has helped elevate the veteran ABC medical soap to become the network’s most-watched drama — a rare feat for a show in its 13th season. The series heads into season 14 in the fall as it sets its sights on being the longest-running medical drama on television alongside ER. 

“Shondaland’s move to Netflix is the result of a shared plan Ted Sarandos and I built based on my vision for myself as a storyteller and for the evolution of my company,” Rhimes said. “Ted provides a clear, fearless space for creators at Netflix. He understood what I was looking for — the opportunity to build a vibrant new storytelling home for writers with the unique creative freedom and instantaneous global reach provided by Netflix’s singular sense of innovation. The future of Shondaland at Netflix has limitless possibilities.”

abc logo

ABC will continue to remain home to Grey’s Anatomy and its upcoming spinoff as well as Scandal, How to Get Away With Murder as well as the forthcoming drama For the People. Rhimes had been with ABC Studios for 15 years.

“Our current shows will continue to thrive on ABC and Shondaland will be there every step of the way,” Rhimes said. “I could not have asked for a better home to begin my career. I continue to be grateful to work with so many talented people — especially our studio gladiator Patrick Moran and our most powerful and brilliant champion Channing Dungey. Starting today, we are thrilled to begin creating new Shondaland stories with Netflix. Everyone at Shondaland is honored to expand both our audience and our creative identity with Ted and the entire team at Netflix.”

ABC Studios will remain the home to Shondaland disciples Pete Nowalk (How to Get Away With Murder), Krista Vernoff (Grey’s Anatomy), Stacy McKee (the Grey’s spinoff), Don Todd and Paul William Davies (For the People), Mark Fish (Scandal), Mark Wilding (Grey’s spinoff), Bill Harper (Grey’s Anatomy) and Allan Heinberg.

“We’re so proud of the work we’ve done with Shonda and Betsy throughout our long and productive relationship. From the worldwide success of Grey’s Anatomy to today, with five series, a pilot from Allan Heinberg and a number of projects in development, we will continue to shepherd that success together,” ABC Studios president Moran said. “The Shondaland imprint will always be an important part of ABC Studios and we wish them all the best in this new endeavor.”

Added ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey, who previously headed drama at the network: “Shonda, Betsy and I started working together with the first episode of Grey’s Anatomy and those early days will forever remain one of the highlights of my professional life. We are happy to continue working with Shonda and her team at Shondaland on Grey’s, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and the upcoming For the People and Grey’s spinoff. I’m proud to have given a home to what have become some of the most celebrated and talked about shows on television. With the launch of a new season upon us, fans can rest assured that TGIT remains intact and will be as buzzed about as ever.”

Sources say Rhimes had been renegotiating her overall deal with ABC Studios for the past few months. That the prolific producer would exit the network’s studio sibling comes as a blow for broadcast and a hint of things to come in the arms race for talent. With more than 455 scripted originals, broadcast, cable and streaming platforms are turning to proven hit-makers like Rhimes for new material. Rhimes is the first African-American woman to notch the rare 100-episode milestone three times in her career (for Grey’s, Private Practice and Scandal). 

netflix logo

For Rhimes, it gives the star showrunner a new forum to tell richer stories that push the envelope as she has yet to explore the cable or streaming world. Scandal further solidified Rhimes as one of TV’s most powerful showrunners and helped ABC bolster its Thursday lineup. With the strength of Scandal and emergence of How to Get Away With Murder, the network moved Grey’s Anatomy to its formerly troubled 8 p.m. hour as it created a “TGIT”-branded night consisting of three Rhimes-produced dramas. Creatively, Scandal helped usher in a new era of diversity on the small screen when Rhimes cast Kerry Washington as fixer Olivia Pope. Washington picked up her first Emmy nomination in 2013 and became the first African American to be nominated for best drama actress in the past 18 years and fifth overal

The Rhimes deal — the streamer’s first overall — comes as free-spending Netflix has been aggressive when it comes to luring top talent. Last week, the streamer picked up a talk show hosted by David Letterman and acquired comic book publisher Millarworld as it pushes to own more of its content. (Last week, The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman moved from his home at AMC to Amazon under a rich overall deal as the streamer retail giant begins to do the same.)

I think I’ll be keeping my Netflix subscription now!

Written By: Michael “Hey Mikey” Fanning

[caption id="attachment_20040" align="aligncenter" width="225"]michael j. fanning owner of hey mikey atl Follow me on Twitter/IG @HeyMikeyATL[/caption]

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“ABC its not us, it’s you.” That’s probably what showrunner Shonda Rhimes probably said when she announced she was taking Shondaland to Netflix to create more original content for the streaming network!

Yep, you read right ABC and Shonda Rhimes have parted ways! This definitely comes as a shock, especially since Grey’s Anatomy is still the highest-rated show on the network.

via THR:

shondaland logo

Under the multiple-year deal, Rhimes and her Shondaland banner will create and produce new projects for the streaming giant. Rhimes’ longtime producing partner Betsy Beers will continue to head Shondaland in the move to Netflix. Under what is said to be a rich four-year pact, Rhimes is expected to score a percentage of the back-end on programming she creates for Netflix. 

“Shonda Rhimes is one of the greatest storytellers in the history of television,” Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said. “Her work is gripping, inventive, pulse-pounding, heart-stopping, taboo-breaking television at its best. I’ve gotten the chance to know Shonda and she’s a true Netflixer at heart — she loves TV and films, she cares passionately about her work, and she delivers for her audience. We’re so excited to welcome her to Netflix.”

The move further aligns Rhimes with Netflix, which has featured the Grey’s Anatomy library that has helped elevate the veteran ABC medical soap to become the network’s most-watched drama — a rare feat for a show in its 13th season. The series heads into season 14 in the fall as it sets its sights on being the longest-running medical drama on television alongside ER. 

“Shondaland’s move to Netflix is the result of a shared plan Ted Sarandos and I built based on my vision for myself as a storyteller and for the evolution of my company,” Rhimes said. “Ted provides a clear, fearless space for creators at Netflix. He understood what I was looking for — the opportunity to build a vibrant new storytelling home for writers with the unique creative freedom and instantaneous global reach provided by Netflix’s singular sense of innovation. The future of Shondaland at Netflix has limitless possibilities.”

abc logo

ABC will continue to remain home to Grey’s Anatomy and its upcoming spinoff as well as Scandal, How to Get Away With Murder as well as the forthcoming drama For the People. Rhimes had been with ABC Studios for 15 years.

“Our current shows will continue to thrive on ABC and Shondaland will be there every step of the way,” Rhimes said. “I could not have asked for a better home to begin my career. I continue to be grateful to work with so many talented people — especially our studio gladiator Patrick Moran and our most powerful and brilliant champion Channing Dungey. Starting today, we are thrilled to begin creating new Shondaland stories with Netflix. Everyone at Shondaland is honored to expand both our audience and our creative identity with Ted and the entire team at Netflix.”

ABC Studios will remain the home to Shondaland disciples Pete Nowalk (How to Get Away With Murder), Krista Vernoff (Grey’s Anatomy), Stacy McKee (the Grey’s spinoff), Don Todd and Paul William Davies (For the People), Mark Fish (Scandal), Mark Wilding (Grey’s spinoff), Bill Harper (Grey’s Anatomy) and Allan Heinberg.

“We’re so proud of the work we’ve done with Shonda and Betsy throughout our long and productive relationship. From the worldwide success of Grey’s Anatomy to today, with five series, a pilot from Allan Heinberg and a number of projects in development, we will continue to shepherd that success together,” ABC Studios president Moran said. “The Shondaland imprint will always be an important part of ABC Studios and we wish them all the best in this new endeavor.”

Added ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey, who previously headed drama at the network: “Shonda, Betsy and I started working together with the first episode of Grey’s Anatomy and those early days will forever remain one of the highlights of my professional life. We are happy to continue working with Shonda and her team at Shondaland on Grey’s, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and the upcoming For the People and Grey’s spinoff. I’m proud to have given a home to what have become some of the most celebrated and talked about shows on television. With the launch of a new season upon us, fans can rest assured that TGIT remains intact and will be as buzzed about as ever.”

Sources say Rhimes had been renegotiating her overall deal with ABC Studios for the past few months. That the prolific producer would exit the network’s studio sibling comes as a blow for broadcast and a hint of things to come in the arms race for talent. With more than 455 scripted originals, broadcast, cable and streaming platforms are turning to proven hit-makers like Rhimes for new material. Rhimes is the first African-American woman to notch the rare 100-episode milestone three times in her career (for Grey’s, Private Practice and Scandal). 

netflix logo

For Rhimes, it gives the star showrunner a new forum to tell richer stories that push the envelope as she has yet to explore the cable or streaming world. Scandal further solidified Rhimes as one of TV’s most powerful showrunners and helped ABC bolster its Thursday lineup. With the strength of Scandal and emergence of How to Get Away With Murder, the network moved Grey’s Anatomy to its formerly troubled 8 p.m. hour as it created a “TGIT”-branded night consisting of three Rhimes-produced dramas. Creatively, Scandal helped usher in a new era of diversity on the small screen when Rhimes cast Kerry Washington as fixer Olivia Pope. Washington picked up her first Emmy nomination in 2013 and became the first African American to be nominated for best drama actress in the past 18 years and fifth overal

The Rhimes deal — the streamer’s first overall — comes as free-spending Netflix has been aggressive when it comes to luring top talent. Last week, the streamer picked up a talk show hosted by David Letterman and acquired comic book publisher Millarworld as it pushes to own more of its content. (Last week, The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman moved from his home at AMC to Amazon under a rich overall deal as the streamer retail giant begins to do the same.)

I think I’ll be keeping my Netflix subscription now!

Written By: Michael “Hey Mikey” Fanning

michael j. fanning owner of hey mikey atl

Follow me on Twitter/IG @HeyMikeyATL

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Celebrity Interviews

To Tame A Lyon! Meet Toby Onwumere (@toby_onwumere), The Newest Addition to Empire!

Hollywood is here FOREVER! The stages and the names change, but one thing for sure is that Tinsel Town will always be looking for talented and fresh faces. When that face also happens to be tall, dark, and handsome, the look is all the more exciting and tantalizing. Meet Toby Onwumere, a rising star that just so happens to meet the criteria of “tall, dark, and handsome,” and most of all talented!

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toby onwumere kai empire

Written By: Michael “Hey Mikey” Fanning

Hollywood is here FOREVER! The stages and the names change, but one thing for sure is that Tinsel Town will always be looking for talented and fresh faces. When that face also happens to be tall, dark, and handsome, the look is all the more exciting and tantalizing. Meet Toby Onwumere, a rising star that just so happens to meet the criteria of “tall, dark, and handsome,” and most of all talented!

toby onwumere kai empire

Toby is taking hearts and Fox’s Empire by storm as “Kai,” Jamal Lyon’s (Jussie Smollett) love interest and now fiancé! As Kai, Toby is doing groundbreaking work, as he showcases the life and love of a Black, gay, and HIV positive man against the backdrop of family drama, corporate sabotage, and ignorance. “I feel honored to play him [Kai] and bring his story to the forefront…It’s time to really inform people and push forward with representation and inclusivity, all while delivering a really unforgettable story.”

Toby is a first generation Nigerian-American, hailing from Dayton, Ohio and has always dreamt of being an actor. He counts his parents, Fidelis and Prisca, as being the driving force behind his pursuit of the arts as they allowed and encouraged him to do what he loves. “My parents were traditional, but not in the sense of what they expected me to be…usually when you’re Nigerian you the career paths your parents want for you are pretty narrow, you have to be like a doctor or lawyer, for them to do that is really amazing.” Toby admits he is stoked to be on Empire, revealing he has been a fan of the show since its inception. “Man I love it [Empire] I would be in class and thinking to myself I’m gonna be on that show one day, and here we are [he laughs].”

jussie smollett and toby onwumere empire kai jamal

Empire continues to be a ratings giant with no sign of slowing down in its fifth season. However, in an interesting plot twist the series has flashed forwarded two years into the future and we find that The Lyons are mostly in shambles. Lucious and Cookie continue to fight to win Empire back, Andre is incarcerated for Anika’s death, and Hakeem is unable to perform after a grave injury. Jamal, however, has flourished in his self-imposed exile to London, finding new label and love with Kai. Their relationship stands to be the strongest one we have seen for Jamal as Kai is empathetic, intelligent, and compassionate. Toby admits he and Kai are very similar in those aspects, but fundamentally different in others. “Well for one I’m straight [he laughs] and then I’m way too silly! Kai is more straight-laced and serious. I like to laugh and joke and be goofy.” Kai’s storyline is definitely a serious one as no shows have really shown a relationship like he and Jamal’s. Although the Kai’s HIV status has been a topic on the show, the larger phenomenon of him being with a partner who is negative and on PREP (via whatisprep.org, PrEP means Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, and it’s the use of anti-HIV medications to keep HIV negative people from becoming infected. PrEP is approved by the FDA and has been shown to be safe and effective at preventing HIV infection.”) “The storyline was meant to be more informative than anything else. People still have these notions about HIV/AIDS from the eighties and so many advancements have been made since then…the love between the two of them [Jamal and Kai] shows that everyone deserves love and can be loved. Kai just so happens to be HIV positive, but he really loves Jamal and he’s a great person. That’s what counts here love…The scene when they proposed to each other was really just magical and powerful.  It’s why I’m honored to play this character…this is really encouraging dialogue and I think people just need to be more open minded and educated.”

toby onwumere kai empire

Toby continues to look forward to the rest of this season of Empire and hints he has some pretty amazing projects in the works that he is not ready to share. However, he did reveal his holiday season will be international as he travels to Europe to bring in Christmas and the New Year. If 2019 is any bigger than 2018 was for him then we know he is about to be a household name! He advises aspiring actors to “Really study the craft. Take the classes and remain diligent. If this is what you want stick with it and never give up!” Catch Toby every Wednesday night at 8 PM EST on Fox’s Empire!

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Fashion

F&W Style Launches at Macy’s Lenox Mall Atlanta!

F&W STYLE is excited to announce that our collection will be launching at Macy’s Lenox Mall Atlanta on November 4th 2018 as part of the Market at Macy’s Program. We first launched our collection at Macy’s Fort Lauder-dale Florida in August and we are excited to now be launching in our city of Atlanta.

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macy's f&w style

F&W STYLE is excited to announce that our collection will be launching at Macy’s Lenox Mall Atlanta on November 4th 2018 as part of the Market at Macy’s Program. We first launched our collection at Macy’s Fort Lauder-dale Florida in August and we are excited to now be launching in our city of Atlanta.

Being selected as one the brands to be sold at Macy’s Lenox has reinforced our belief in creating beautiful luxury leather handbags at an affordable price for busy women on the go! Our efforts are not only appreciated by our customers, but also by one of the world’s biggest department stores.

To feature F&W Style, or to get more information about our launch party later in November please contact Alexandria Alli at info@fwstyle.com.

About F&W Style

Alexandria started her passion for fashion at age ten, assisting her mom at her Fashion Design Studio in Nigeria. That is where she learned about design and running a fashion business.  At age thirteen her family moved from Nigeria to Atlanta and Alexandria started her modeling career.  Through modeling she fell in love with the glamour of the industry; but realized that most women including her could not afford the luxurious accessories that she modeled in magazines. She set out to change that, and F&W Style Handbags was born.

“In our 9years in business we have steadily grown our brand. We have been featured in magazines including Vogue and Essence, our handbags have been worn by celebrities including A-List star Gabrielle Union. We have also been able to build a large social media following that love our growing brand. We are so excited to continue our growth and become part of the Macy’s family”- Alexandria Alli

About Macy’s

Macy’s, the largest retail brand of Macy’s, Inc. delivers fashion and affordable luxury to customers at approximately 670 locations in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam, as well as to customers in the U.S. and more than 100 international destinations through its leading online store at macys.com. Via its stores, e-commerce site, mobile and social platforms, Macy’s offers distinctive assortments including the most desired family of exclusive and fashion brands for him, her and home. Macy’s is known for such epic events as Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, as well as spectacular fashion shows, culinary events, flower shows and celebrity appearances. Macy’s flagship stores – including Herald Square in New York City, Union Square in San Francisco, State Street in Chicago, Dadeland in Miami and South Coast Plaza in southern California – are known internationally and are leading destinations for visitors. Building on a more than 150-year tradition, and with the collective support of customers and employees, Macy’s helps strengthen communities by supporting local and national charities giving more than $54 million each year, plus 180,000 hours of volunteer service, to help make a difference in the lives of our customers.

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Celebrity Interviews

Young & Winning! Meet Xolo Maridueña (@Xolo_Mariduena)!

Young teen, Xolo Maridueña is making a name for himself in the acting world, and slowly but surely becoming a young star. Xolo is just 17 years old and already the lead for the hit YouTube Red series “Cobra Kai.” He’s been named Latina’s Magazine Hottest Youngest Stars Under 25, and even with all that success, Xolo is a normal teenager that attends a regular HS, and shares the same celebrity crushes as just about every young teen in America.

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xolo mariduena

Young teen, Xolo Maridueña is making a name for himself in the acting world, and slowly but surely becoming a young star. Xolo is just 17 years old and already the lead for the hit YouTube Red series “Cobra Kai.” He’s been named Latina’s Magazine Hottest Youngest Stars Under 25, and even with all that success, Xolo is a normal teenager that attends a regular HS, and shares the same celebrity crushes as just about every young teen in America.

Before starring in the hit show, “Cobra Kai,” he played in the NBC show, “Parenthood” as Victor Braverman, which he explains is his ‘first big break.’ Xolo also discussed how working on that show made him come to a realization that acting was his passion, “At the time, I had never worked with such talented people before in my life, the whole cast are really some of the most professional, astonishing actors I ever met. And working with them, solidified that I want to be an actor, as my career.”

xolo mariduena

Xolo currently plays Miguel Diaz on the “Karate Kid” sequel, “Cobra Kai,” where he’s a sophomore in high school, trying to find himself. Xolo describes his character saying, “He’s struggling with a lot of teen struggles, being a kid going to a new high school…he has to find where he fits in, through Cobra Kai, he really starts to figure what’s important to him.”

Because the show is centered around martial arts, Xolo had to do a lot of preparing for the role. He talked about how a month before filming the show, he would practice every day, which included stretching, choreographing fights, and just learning about martial arts/artists. There were also about 2 or 3 hours of training Xolo had to do a day; Xolo talks a little bit about his struggles in the early stages of training, “My body was telling me to quit because I wasn’t used to this type of exercise or training…my body wasn’t really conditioned to work that way.” But fortunately for us, he didn’t quit because he’s killing it on the show.

With some of the original actors from the original “Karate Kid” starring in the show (Ralph Macchio and William Zabka), and with the huge legacy of “Karate Kid”, Xolo said he definitely felt the pressure to do a great job playing his character, “It definitely was a lot of pressure, but not just because those guys were on there, this is what people have been waiting to see for 30 plus years…the fans are very passionate about “Karate Kid.”

Xolo, who’s Mexican, Cuban, and Ecuadorian expressed how important his Hispanic heritage is to him, “I try hard to represent the Latino culture I’m a part of, not just in a role, but in everyday life, that I’m not only embracing my heritage but actively finding ways to spend time in my communities to come together.” He mentioned how him and other Latinos in entertainment are beneficial to the youth, “In this industry, having representation is the biggest thing, for people of color especially.”

xolo mariduena

Although he’s a young star with his own TV show, Xolo describes himself as a regular teenager, who also attends a regular school, and gives all the props to his parents for keeping him grounded, “My parents helped mold me into the guy I am today, and because of that, I have to thank them… My parents were very admitted about me attending school, it’s not like I’m working everyday throughout the whole year, there’s not really a need to be home schooled.” Xolo also went to prom with one of his friends from school, but young ladies don’t worry…he is still single, but unfortunately, he’s not looking for a relationship right now, he’s focused on his craft. But if he was, it would wishfully be one of his celebrity crushes, Zendaya, Yara Shahidi, Amandla Stenberg, or Rihanna.

So, Xolo is currently on summer break from school, and is gearing up for season 2 of “Cobra Kai” and although we have no word on when season 2 will air, he mentioned how he himself isn’t too sure of what the fans can expect. He did say we will learn more about the characters from season 1 and that we will be introduced to some new faces.

Photo Credits

Photographer: Tim Schaeffer at Cellar Door Studios @cellardoorstudios.la

Grooming: Joseph Adivari @adivaribeauty

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