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OSCARS 2018: Empire’s Taraji P. Henson Clarifies She Was Not Dissing Ryan Seacrest On The Red Carpet!

Photo: RSeacrestTwitter

When Empire star, Taraji P. Henson (Cookie) took to the 90th Oscars Red Carpet on Sunday, and chatted with E’s Ryan Seacrest, the Twitterverse assumed she had dissed him during their on-camera conversation given the allegations that surfaced from his ex-stylist claiming he subjected her to “years of unwanted sexual aggression.”

E! previously announced that after an independent investigator was hired to look into her claims that they found “insufficient evidence” of any wrongdoing by Seacrest.  The usual Oscars red carpet coverage by Seacrest seemed to be hindered where he was only able to chat with over a dozen people.

When Henson talked with Seacrest she touched him under his chin and said, “You know what? The universe has a way of taking care of the good people. You know what I mean?””  Later Henson clarified that she was actually telling Ryan to keep his chin up when she spoke with PEOPLE.

Taraji revealed she “absolutely” supports Seacrest, adding the touch on the chin was done because: “I did it to keep his chin up. It’s an awkward position to be in. He’s been cleared, but anyone can say anything.”  There was more to the Seacrest and Henson exchange that people didn’t initially see, which ended in a hug.

Adding fuel to the original diss was following her conversation with Seacrest, Henson told ABC’ s Wendi McLendon-Covey, “I’m great now that I’m in your company,” 

So, what do you think of Henson’s comments? How Seacrest has been judged thus far on the accusations against him?  Comment below!

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Carol
Carol

It seems people have to go to great lengths to explain their every word and action nowadays.

Jimh
Jimh

So true…

su0000
su0000

I am totally opposed to radical political correctness..
The liberals take it way way way too far.
Political correctness is not needed what is needed is for parents to teach their children kindness and manners , how to carry ‘mouth’ dignity…

Anyways; I tuned in for about 15mins.. yuck.. it was not the oscars of prestige as it once was it was a platform for their grievances …………………
Instead of graciously accepting their awards they had need to junk it with their causes.
The oscars is not the place for stump speeches.. It was a bit radical lol

I am all for the cause/movement but not for them to be the platform of the Oscar ceremony.

So– I quickly tunes out ..

dmr
dmr

I agree, su0000. Yet, Liberals still hold their beloved Bill Clinton near and dear to their hearts….

me
me

Stereotyping entire groups of people (“the liberals”) as if they all act the same is ignorant.

Fanny
Fanny

@su0000, totally agree with you Su.

rose
rose

suoooo…Don’t know what you consider “radical” political correctness, even though I do admit to getting tired of hearing about all the abuse allegations everyday, no matter where they are coming from.

It’s one of reasons I didn’t watch the Academy Awards anymore. I just want to be entertained in the same way I want my soaps to be love and adventure in the afternoon. (And I can handle some Corrintos, just not soooo much.)

Do remember what may have been the first “protest”…Marlon Brando had a Native American woman pick up his award for best actor. Plus another reason I don’t watch is that I haven’t seen all of the movies, or know all of the actors, etc. And it goes on too long.

But I am concerned about those being branded guilty until really proven they have committed what they are accused of. I’m sure this has happened to some in the long list of abuse and power-trippers. But glad the Olympic gymnastics coach was convicted.

As for parents teaching kindness, etc, totally agree. But not all parents will, are doing this, or know all of “the secret lives of teens” or we wouldn’t see all of the bullying we are seeing. Also everyone, not just parents are up against what seems a new-low-norm in political un-correctness being accepted from campaign language, to D.C., to social media.

Celia
Celia

Amazing post, SuzieQ…..I am as open-minded as one can be ( liberal in theory; practical at heart), but unprincipled ‘ideals’ brought on stage is uncalled for…..especially for those who have no education or a clue about politics and what makes it tick. Most, as Jennifer Lawrence, or even Barbra Streisand, spew nonsense, which only manifests their ignorance.
Being a celebrity does not a genius make.
I used to love the Oscars….my siblings and I would get all our snacks together ( started as kids) awaiting THE OSCARS with excitement….now, these “stars’ ( who don’t shine), are a kill-joy!!
Do they honestly think this unwanted venom serves them well? Personalities and politics do not mix. They should adhere to their profession. If they want to indulge and dive, headlong, into the political forum, then they should remove themselves from the entertainment business and run for a seat in Congress.
We get enough news EVERYWHERE….some of us want to escape the overwheming fodder thrown at us, and THE OSCARS once fulfilled that ….no more….nowhere to run…

rose
rose

I don’t like any awards or soaps being a place to do more than just entertain. But as some would say “that ship has sailed.” Especially with social media and the number of media outlets and “experts.”

So to those who would discount the opinions of celebrities, or maybe even the Florida kids, or anyone one else because to some they may have “unprincipled ideals, or no experience, or no clue about politics” in some eyes is almost funny.

Look at who some voted into office this last election…known by many from a tv show with no political experience. And if I remember right some voted for this person because they didn’t want a “professional politician.” But for many others is known for stories of unprincipled business deals, not paying bills, negative words and actions during the campaign you wouldn’t want to teach your kids that haven’t stopped, and possible other ladies.

Big time difference about leadership from the bio movie from the entertainment industry that did win the Academy Award…Churchill.

So I guess it’s a new world in reaching people with a message. Personally I am not on social media sites for reasons of my own. But when you have the podium at a once-a-year event like awards ceremonies you take advantage of it to counter numerous of what many consider questionable tweets everyday that get picked up and replayed all day long in the media…until some are “revised.”

Ray
Ray

I couldn’t help but feel this was a media-fueled issue. I am for EVERY Harvey Weinstein-type out there to get their punishment. There have been times I question whether the media dn Hollywood are picking/choosing their targets.

Billy Bush has to be the most bitter human being on the planet. All he did was conduct an interview and was associated with a story from more than 10 years ago. Next, he loses his job at NBC, while his subject went on to become President of the US.

Al Franken admitted his wrong-doings, resigned from his position, yet he still had supporters from “SNL.”

With Ryan Seacrest, I think he seems like a great guy, but that is all I know. We do not know these people away from their public persona. I hope it is not true because he has built a great empire. I do not think Taraji would make a nasty comment about him because I believe she is close friends with Kelly Ripa. I am glad Kelly has been so supportive. It had to be incredibly hurtful to be on the carpet and be avoided by celebrities that he will have to face again on “Live with Kelly and Ryan.”

Thumbs up to Taraji. Chin up to Ryan. If you are innocent, the people who avoided you last night are the losers.

Celia
Celia

I did not watch, Ray…..just the odd ad; news etc…..but, I appreciate your honest appraisal of what is what. No frills, no bias…just the facts. TY.

brian
brian

I have always thought Taraji P. Henson is one CLASS ACT ! and the would not diss anyone !

brian
brian

typo ! I meant to say “and that she would not diss anyone !”

Timmm
Timmm

Everyone who talked to Ryan, coffee is on me. BECAUSE, until there is proof that he misbehaved inappropriately, to me, its just another BIMBO trying to get 15 minutes and a payout! God Bless you Ryan Seacrest!

k/kay
k/kay

Well it killed one of the best actors in daytime’s career all they had to do was throw the rumor out there and poof he was gone. I have a friend who has a successful radio show he will not step on a elevator alone with a woman

k/kay
k/kay

I think it has happened it has been going on for years I also think we have false accusations thrown around and Hollywood is the last place you look for answers.

Timmm
Timmm

kay, women are wonderful BUT today it just seems like there is no energy in the room anymore to meet and mingle. I just go about my business, enjoy my job and keep my mouth shut!

jeffrie
jeffrie

exactly!!!

dmr
dmr

Exactly. It’s an easy way to make a buck these days, cry sexual harassment. You don’t need proof, just an allegation, and you receive a hefty settlement to go away. It’s sad because these women take away from those that have been brutally abused, assaulted, attacked and no longer have a voice or platform. In today’s world, you are guilty until proven innocent.

Timmm
Timmm

Thats so true, this finger pointing has watered down what was once major compassion towards abuse. Now, we all wonder unless the abuse is obvious.

rebecca1
rebecca1

well then there’s also the case of Bill Cosby who, even though, scores of women have accused him still went on to a successful career! It’s because of attitudes of people who don’t believe women, even when they’re in numbers, that people are afraid to speak out. As for Muhney, if he were innocent there’d be many of his co-workers rushing to his defense and he would have sued for defamation.

As for Seacrest? I always liked him. He’s likeable, charming, attractive. But then again I always liked Mel Gibson until I heard the anti-semitic garbage that came out of his mouth.

I don’t think we should assume we know a public figure because we “like” him or her. Unless the accuser is proved to be a liar I accept that she could be telling the truth.

rebecca1
rebecca1

Or, to be more accurate, I accept that I don’t KNOW the truth and therefore don’t take sides…(and, of course, if I like the actor I’d prefer it to be proven false).

dmr
dmr

rebecca1-There are cases like that of Cosby or Weinstein (and many, many more) that are legitimate. I don’t have any bias towards Ryan Seacrest, or really, any male figure in Hollywood. It just grows tiresome that you can’t turn on the television these days without a new allegation from 5, 10, 15-plus years ago without any substantial proof. It just seems that with the on-slaught of allegations, some (not all) of the allegations are questionable. Again, I think it takes away from those women who have been severely abused, assaulted, brutalized, and harassed. You know who I was really disappointed in, Matt Lauer. I always felt as though I was having breakfast with Matt and Savannah each morning. Just goes to show you, you never know what happens behind closed doors (literally). Awful.

Celia
Celia

Yes, dmr….lest we forget the young men who, also, are victims to sexual harrassment….straight and gay.
My very ‘bestest’ friend, and Godfather to my son, ( who is gay) had his ups and downs, as did some of my straight friends.
I think many of us experienced sexual harassment in some form or another.
As far as I am concerned, lewd comments about one’s body, specifically the bosom ( I simply did not tolerste that—sick, especially for those men who have daughters) is not only sexual harassment, but also sexist. No touching necessary…words are just as bad.

rebecca1
rebecca1

Hi dmr…I think that’s the problem. Unless people have witnesses it’s a he said/she said and that’s very unfortunate; regardless if its’ the woman who was really abused or the man falsely accused. However, the reason allegations are coming out as you say, “5, 10, 15 plus” years later (or from ago as you said) is BECAUSE women weren’t believed, their careers were ruined if they dared speak out; their reputations sullied. Even in today’s day and age fans of Michael Muhney couldn’t believe that he could possibly do what the actress accused him of. Why? Because he’s a fan favorite on their soap? I think it took great courage for a young actress to come out and speak her truth (which was backed up by several co-workers if I remember correctly). With that said it was left ambiguous but it must have been serious enough for the network to side with her rather than fire her instead of him. It IS crazy the amount of allegations that are coming out…and disheartening. I, too,was shocked about Matt Lauer. Ryan Seacrest, too. But there were accusations and denials regarding Michael Jackson and so many others going way back (what really shocked me? Stephen Collins who played many a Lifetime movie and played a pedophile priest in one and then confessed he had sex with underage girls in real life and was a sex addict!!!!)…it’s all over the place!! And it’s not just Hollywood. It’s in corporate America, it’s in government, from Bill Clinton to pedophile Moore to the “wife-beater” Rob Porter. Physical sexual abuse seems to abound. So, maybe Ryan is innocent. I truly hope so. But we really can’t be sure. I wouldn’t jump to call women “bimbos” as was posted above or assume that each time a favorite celeb is accused that the woman is lying. Not saying she isn’t, but until/if we know it’s problematic. When its’ SO obvious like the Cosby, O’Reilly or Weinstein case when several to many women speak out against the same man there’s obviously some truth to it. ( which is why it ASTOUNDS me that Cosby got away with it…so many women!!!!!) I had an “experience” myself. Haven’t thought of it in years but it did freak me out at the time. I was in my 20s and working in the theatre district in NY. I was in a producer’s office (who was in his 50s) and asking him about some assignment I had and he backed me against the desk and tried to stick his tongue down my throat! I must’ve ducked to the side…can’t even remember but I kinda laughed it off and must have “lectured” him in my way (LOL) and we were “cool.” But I NEVER would have thought of telling someone or starting anything because I was young and just starting out in the creative realm (going on to publishing) and he was well-known and very respected. Just wouldn’t/didn’t do anything about it. But it was awkward… Read more »

Scott
Scott

I find this really hard to believe..Ryan Seacrest??? he couldn’t hold on to Julianne Hough….isn’t he gay???? Just amazes me, how some men lost their jobs and livelihood over allegations, but Seacrest was cleared in, what? a day? I’m not saying the men guilty didn’t deserve what they got, but he must have forked over a lot of money to kill this story….maybe he had help from Simon Cowell or Randy Jackson….just sayin!!!!

Steve
Steve

Ryan could easily clear this up with a frank conversation about who he is. This is 2018 after all.

Celia
Celia

You really think Seacrest is gay, Steve? I don’t know….this is one guy who has me baffled. If he is, why is he fighting it? As you say, this is 2018…. a new world….
I, also, wanted to point out that there are lascivious perverts—-usually older men; just as there are women who tell untruths and cry rape.
As dmr states; it’s easy money, while someone’s reputation is shot to death.
….or, they do it for attention, while those who are truly victims may not be believed because of women who are mendacious.
I know doctors ( male and female) who always make sure there’s an assistant in the exam room with them….whether it’s a male or female patient. It’s scary, when you think about it.

Celia
Celia

You make a good, sound argument, Scott…..Not to speak ill of the dead, but so did Michael J…..the payoff was astronomical.

Ravello
Ravello

I have never been a fan but think Ryan is being framed, by an accuser looking for a payday. Me too has jumped the shark. It is the new version of a staged slip and fall. Some people will lie, cheat, fabricate a story with no regard for the individual being accused.
I’m also pretty sure Ryan is gay.
I fear this won’t end well for him.

I’m sick to death of the Hollywood award shows. I no longer watch, cannot stand celebrities pontificating and preaching. Ratings continue to fall, more and more viewers are just turned off.

Charday
Charday

This is the first year since I was a wee little one that I haven’t watched the Oscars or the red carpet. I just wasn’t feeling it….at all! And I don’t regret it.

Karen R
Karen R

I didn’t watch it either. I always looked forward to it, to see what the women were wearing and have a few laughs. I stopped last year, they have got way to political and it is no longer enjoyable. If I want to watch politics I’ll watch a news channel.

diane
diane

That’s what I took away from that exchange. She was trying to give him some encouragement and people have to make into what they want it to be about!! I loved her on Person of Interest. She is one classy lady!!

JONNYSBRO
JONNYSBRO

What kills me are people are lambasting Seacrest with zero proof but they cheered Kobe who is a convicted rapist.

fginaspypy
fginaspypy

Michael Fairman I am surprised you did not post an article about Alison Janney’s Oscar win for supporting actress. You usually give such big love to former day timers’ acknowledgement in film, primetime and theatre.

Breaking News

All Charges Dropped In Criminal Case Against ‘Empire’ Star Jussie Smollett

This morning, all 16 felony charges facing Empire star Jussie Smollett (Jamal Lyon) were dropped.  It all occurred when Smollett and his attorneys went to court this morning in Chicago.  The actor/singer was accused of lying to the police in the alleged racial and homophobic attack perpetrated against him.

Jussie will now surrender his $10,000 bond, and that is all.

State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s office says, “After reviewing all of the facts and circumstances of the case, including Mr. Smollett’s volunteer service in the community and agreement to forfeit his bond to the City of Chicago, we believe this outcome is a just disposition and appropriate resolution to this case.”

Jussie and his lawyer, Patricia Holmes, addressed the media, saying that he’s happy and wants to get on with his life.  Smollett thanked everyone who supported him through this case, and maintained he’d been truthful and consistent throughout it. He also pointed out that would never put the LGBTQ movement “through a fire like this.”  Finally, Jussie thanked the Empire cast for their support.

The decision is not sitting well with the Chicago Police Department and Mayor Rahm Emanuel who has been strongly hinting at corruption in the State’s Attorney’s Office, calling the decision a “whitewash of justice.”

What do you think of the latest developments in Jussie’s case … that he has been cleared of all charges?  Share your thoughts and theories via the comment section below

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Breaking News

Jussie Smollett Charged With 16 Felony Counts; His Lawyer Mark Geragos Cites:”Redundant & Vindictive Indictment” By Grand Jury

A grand jury in Chicago on Friday returned with 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct and a false report of offence against actor/singer and Empire star, Jussie Smollett (Jamal Lyon).  As previously reported, the final few episodes of this season of the music biz soap opera have removed Smollett and his character when they air on Fox.  These new charges come on top of the state charges Smollett receive last month were he could face up to three years in jail.

According to the grand jury, the new counts are based on false statements Jussie allegedly made to Chicago PD officers and detectives while they were investigating the alleged hate crime and attack levied on Smollett which included; racist and homophobic remarks, bleach being thrown at him and a rope ending up around this neck, back on January 29th of this year.  The Chicago PD have provided evidence that Smollett allegedly orchestrated his own attack.

Each of the new charges carries a potential sentence of up to three years , though they are usually bundled together as one upon convictions. However, iu cases where there is Class 4 felonies, usually this is revolved through a plea bargain and probation then long jail time.  But that could turn on its ear, if Smollett decides to fight the charges at trial.

Following the indictment on Friday, Smollett’s defense attorney, high=powered lawyer Mark Geragos came down on the charges stating: “The fact of an indictment was not unexpected  We knew that there is no way they would expose their evidence to a public airing and subject their witnesses to cross-examination.  What is unexpected, however, is the prosecutorial overkill in charging 16 separate counts against Jussie.  This redundant and vindictive indictment is nothing more than a desperate attempt to make headlines in order to distract from the internal investigation launched to investigate the outrageous leaking of false information by the Chicago Police Department and the shameless and illegal invasion of Jussie’s privacy in tampering with his medical records. Jussie adamantly maintains his innocence even if law enforcement has robbed him of that presumption”

Empire is back for the remainder of their 5th season next week on Wednesday March 13th, where some of the earlier episodes of the back-half of the season will feature Smolett, according to reports.

Smollett is due for hisarraignment on Thursday March 14th.

So, what do you think of the latest legal trouble for Smollett? Is it over-the- top as his lawyer, Mark Geragos says? What do you think will end up happening next? Will Smollett end up with jail time? Probation? Or, will somehow his defense team get him off on the counts or a lesser degree of counts, or prove that he is somehow innocent? Share your theories via the comment section below.

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Breaking News

Jussie Smollett Cut From Rest Of Season Of EMPIRE; Tells Cast He’s Innocent Of Charges

Following the turn of events for Jussie Smollett (Jamal Lyon, Empire) where he was arrested and charged on multiple felony counts and then posted bail, the producers of Fox’s sudsy primetime drama have decided to pull him from the remaining two episodes of the season.

“The events of the past few weeks have been incredibly emotional for all of us,” executive producers Lee Daniels, Danny Strong, Brett Mahoney, Brian Grazer, Sanaa Hamri, Francie Calfo, and Dennis Hammer said in a statement this morning following the legal fallout for Jussie Smollett and his arrest stemming from an alleged hate crime reported on January 29th that he staged on himself.

The producers went on to say: “Jussie has been an important member of our Empire family for the past five years and we care about him deeply. While these allegations are very disturbing, we are placing our trust in the legal system as the process plays out. We are also aware of the effects of this process on the cast and crew members who work on our show and to avoid further disruption on set, we have decided to remove the role of ‘Jamal’ from the final two episodes of the season.”

This happened even after Smollett returned to work on Thursday, and even after the actor/singer reportedly apologized to the cast and crew of Empire for any embarrassment the recent allegations may have caused, but at the same time, sources reported, that he maintained that he was innocent,

According to CNN: “The person at the meeting said they were shocked and dismayed that Smollett stuck to his story of innocence. For the most part, the source said, Smollett paraphrased what was in the statement that his attorney put out that afternoon, blaming the legal system and the media for his woes.”

So, what do you think of the Empire producers decision to cut Smollett from the last two shows of the season? What do you think of Jussie still maintaining his innocence to the cast? Comment below.

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