by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"
ENTERTAINMENT AND CULTURE NEWS:
SPORTS - From CNN: Zaila Avant-garde, a 14-year-old from New Orleans, Louisiana, won the 2021 Scripps National Spelling Bee on Thursday, becoming the first African American contestant to win in 93 editions of the competition. Zaila is also a basketball prodigy who owns some Guinness world records.
MOVIES - From Deadline: Henry Cavill, Sam Rockwell, Bryce Dallas Howard, Bryan Cranston, Catherine O’Hara, John Cena and Samuel L. Jackson will star in director Matthew Vaughn's spy film, "Argylle."
TELEVISION - From YahooEntertainment: Veteran television music composer, Jonathan Wolff, talks about composing the music for the iconic late NBC TV series, "Seinfeld," and about the soundtrack album of music from the series.
BOX OFFICE - From Variety: The winner of the 7/2 to 7/4/21 weekend box office is "F9" with an estimated take of 24 million dollars.
TELEVISION - From Variety: HBO Max's "Pretty Little Liars" reboot has its first two cast members, Chandler Kinney and Maia Reficco. The original series ran from 2010 to 2017 on ABC Family/Freeform.
TELEVISION - From Deadline: "Lovecraft Country," one of HBO's most celebrated and inventive recent TV series will not return for a second season.
MOVIES - From Deadline: The second "Downton Abbey" film to open in theaters in March 18, 2022, moved from its planned December 22, 2021 opening date.
TELEVISION - From Deadline: Superstar television showrunner, Noah Hawley, talks about his FX series based on the "Alien" film series. Hawley says that it is not about signature "Alien" character, Ellen Ripley, and that it will start shooting next spring.
ACADEMY AWARDS - From Deadline: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the organization which hands out the Oscars, have invited 395 new members.
ANIMATION/LGBTQ - From Insider: Animation's queer women, trans, and nonbinary creatives are pushing gender boundaries in kid's cartoons their counterparts couldn't — or wouldn't dare
BILL COSBY - From Deadline: Television icon Bill Cosby has been released from prison after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned his 2018 sexual assault conviction, finding fault with the way prosecutors pursued a case against him after earlier declining to file charges.
From Deadline: Hollywood reacts to Bill Cosby being released from prison.
TELEVISION - From Deadline: Emmy-winning actor John Lithgow is joining Michael C. Hall in Showtime's revival of its hit drama, "Dexter." Lithgow's character in the original run was bumped off...
From THR: The actor, William Smith, has died at the age of 88, Monday, July 5, 2021. Smith was a legendary Hollywood tough guy and action star. He was a lead character in NBC's short-lived Western TV series, "Laredo" (1965-67), and he was a main cast member on the final season of CBS cop drama, "Hawaii Five-O" (1979-80). Other memorable roles includes playing Conan's father in "Conan the Barbarian" (1982), playing Clint Eastwood's nemesis in "Any Which Way You Can" (1980), and the 1976 ABC miniseries, "Rich Man, Poor Man."
From Variety: Actor and filmmaker, Robert Downey, Sr., had died at the age of 85, Wednesday, July 7, 2021. Downey, Sr. is best known for the writing and directing the 1969 underground film, "Putney Swope." He is also known as the father of Oscar-nominated actor, Robert Downey, Jr.
From Essence: The actress Suzzanne Douglas, has died at the age of 64, Tuesday, July 6, 2021. She was best known for the role of "Jerri Peterson" on The WB sitcom, "The Parent 'Hood." She won acclaim for her supporting role in the 1989 dance-drama film, "Tap." She also appeared in a number of acclaimed African-American films of the 1990s, including "The Inkwell" (1994), "Jason's Lyric" (1994), and "How Stella Got Her Groove Back" (1998). She most recently appeared in Ava DuVerany's Netflix miniseries, "When They See Us."
From Deadline: Beloved director and producer of films and television, Richard Donner, has died at the age of 91, Monday, July 5, 2021. Donner's long career included directing "The Omen" (1976), "Superman: The Movie" (1978), "The Goonies" (1985), and "Lethal Weapon" (1987), and its three sequels, to name a few. Donner also started work on what would be "Superman II" (1980) before he was replaced on the film. His version of the film would eventually arrive in 2006. Before he directed films, Donner directed episodes of such television series as "Wanted: Dead or Alive," "Wagon Train," "The Rifleman," "The Twilight Zone," "Perry Mason," and "Gilligan's Island," to name a few. Donner's widow is film producer, Lauren Shuler Donner.
From APNews: Latvian professional ice hockey player, Matiss Kivlenieks, has died at the age of 24, Sunday, July 4, 2021. Matiss apparently died of chest trauma from "an errant fireworks mortar blast." Matiss was currently the goalie for the "Columbia Blue Jackets" of the National Hockey League (NHL).