Oprah Winfrey's been cast to play Richard Pryor's grandmother -- a cruel and abusive lady pimp -- in the upcoming biopic directed by O's pal Lee Daniels.
Pryor's widow, Jennifer, tells TMZ ... Oprah got hold of the script, and was desperate to play Marie Carter -- the woman who raised Pryor in her brothel in Peoria, Illinois ... and who was known to beat him. As we told you ... Mike Epps scored the Pryor role.
We're told Oprah really wanted to play Grandma Carter because she's anxious to show her gritty side -- after her 'Butler' performance -- and let's face it ... there's not much grittier than an abusive grandma running a whorehouse while raising a kid.
Avoids Serious Injury
in Terrible Crash
8/26/2014 10:50 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Conrad Hilton, the younger brother of Paris Hilton, was involved in a major car crash over the weekend ... but TMZ has learned he emerged without any major injuries.
According to the California Highway Patrol, Hilton was driving in Palm Springs Saturday afternoon when he clipped the back of another car while trying to change lanes. CHP says his car then hit the rear of a tractor trailer before coming to a rest on the side of the road.
Police say paramedics had to use the ol' jaws of life to free Hilton from his car. As bad as that sounds, ours sources say Hilton suffered a fracture in his hand, a few cuts and bruises, but no major injuries.
According to the CHP, drugs and alcohol were not a factor, but Hilton was observed to be speeding before the crash. Police say before the crash, another driver called 911 to report Hilton's reckless driving and an officer tried to pull Hilton over, but lost sight of him.
This isn't Hilton's first major crash. Back in 2011, he smashed his car into a parked car while speeding down a residential street in Brentwood.
Comforts 6-Year-old Boxing Stud
After Crushing Musical Chairs Defeat
8/26/2014 8:18 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Floyd Mayweather came to the rescue this weekend -- consoling a 6-year-old boxing phenom after the kid suffered a devastating defeat in a game of musical chairs ... and we've got the footage.
Floyd was sitting courtside at the 4th annual Ball Up Streetball Championship in Vegas on Saturday where a couple of kids participated in some musical chairs in between quarters.
The kid lost -- Floyd jumped out of his seat and gave the kid a hug. It was a very nice moment.
But get this ... the kid is a serious boxing prodigy!!! His name is Famous J and he trains with Floyd's uncle Roger Mayweather ... and he's QUICK!!!
Check out the clip -- the kid's got some serious potential (not in musical chairs tho).
NAPA WINERY REOPENS
After Earthquake Wreaks Havoc
8/25/2014 11:58 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Mario Andretti's Napa Valley winery was hit pretty hard by the 6.0 earthquake this weekend -- but TMZ Sports has learned the racing legend has already picked up the pieces and reopened his biz!
FYI -- The Andretti Winery is located just 6 miles from the epicenter ... and when the shaking began, hundreds of bottles went crashing to the floor. We're told the place lost about 30 cases in the quake.
But CEO Joe Antonini tells us ... they didn't sit around and feel sorry for themselves -- they cleaned up the winery and yesterday they reopened their doors -- "We're good to go!"
Other wineries in the area weren't so lucky -- with some businesses reporting HALF of their wine stock was lost in the quake.
As for Mario -- we're told in he was in the area during the shaking and later went to the winery to survey the damage ... but he's since returned home to Pennsylvania where the ground's a little more stable.
MMA Robbery Hero
In 1st Post-Robbery Fight!
8/25/2014 6:19 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
The gas station robbery fight was NO FLUKE -- Mayura Dissanyake has serious MMA skills and he proved it in the ring last night by destroying his opponent in less than 20 SECONDS!!!
Of course, Dissanyake shot to fame last month when he beat the living crap out of 3 men who were trying to rob his co-worker at a gas station in Houston. Even UFC boss Dana White said he was impressed with Mayura's heroic actions.
Well, last night in Houston ... Mayura got in the ring for the first time since the incident -- and dominated his opponent Jamie Garcia in an amateur welterweight bout at Bayou City Events Center in Houston.
18 seconds. That's all it took.
"Each time I was punching, I was thinking about kicking him (while he was down)," Mayura tells TMZ Sports ... "but I had to stop myself. This isn’t the parking lot! It’s not a street fight!”The 24-year-old -- who still works at the gas station -- says he's been in talks to train with Blackhouse MMA (Anderson Silva's gym) in California ... but so far no contract has been signed.
Still, Mayura tells us he expects to fight again next month. Stay tuned ...
Snake Gets Booted
Hours Before VMAs
8/24/2014 9:15 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Nicki Minaj's would be "Anaconda" co-star -- the snake that bit a dancer during Friday's rehearsal -- did not get the chance to strike a second time … and TMZ got the shot of the reptile getting 86'd just hours before the VMAs.
Sources at VMA rehearsals tell us the offending python was at the L.A. Forum today -- just in case Nicki, her team and MTV felt comfortable going forward with the performance as planned.
But we're told the final decision was made to cut the snake a few hours before show time, and handlers loaded the rejected serpent into a container and unceremoniously removed it from the premises.
Sometimes showbiz bites.
By the way, nobody was thinking about the snake once Nicki hit the stage.
Wears Fiancee's Name at Strip Club
8/22/2014 12:30 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Kevin Hart dispensed with the formality of introducing his fiancee to his ex-wife at the strip club Monday night ... because he had her name plastered on his body.
We got photos of Kevin at Magic City strip club in ATL ... where he and fiancee Eniko Parrish dropped $40K to celebrate their engagement. But check out Kevin's shirt ... with Eniko's name emblazoned on it.
As we reported ... Kev's ex, Torrei, was partying in the club that night with her "Atlanta Exes" co-stars ... and while she and Kevin never spoke, we're pretty sure she got his message.
Rapper Joe Budden
GF Says He Beat Me Rihanna Style (PHOTOS)
8/21/2014 2:55 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Rapper Joe Budden allegedly brutally beat his girlfriend the way Chris Brown brutalized Rihanna ... by slamming her head into the dashboard of a car.
We're told Budden saw pics of his GF with some men and flipped out. Sources connected with the woman tell us ... Budden found her at an NYC restaurant, dragged her out to his car and then allegedly choked her and slammed her head into the dash.
The sources say he then drove them to his New Jersey home where cops say the beating continued.
TMZ obtained photos of the GF's injuries ... they're pretty graphic.
Cops are currently investigating.
We've reached out to Budden ... so far, no response.
10:38 A.M. PDT -- Budden's attorney, Nima Ameri, tells TMZ Budden "looks forward to an opportunity to responsibly deal with and address the allegations so he may establish the actual facts." He say the rapper is cooperating with the investigation and the facts will "demonstrate the truth of Mr. Budden's involvement and the real events that transpired."
Banging Drake Again ...
She Really Wants You to Know It
8/20/2014 10:27 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Rihanna's antics at Tuesday night's Drake/Lil Wayne concert left little doubt ... she and Drake are banging again ... and she really, really wants people to know.
RiRi was front and center during the show and made quite a spectacle while Drake was on stage. You'd have to be blind to not spot her jamming in the crowd next to a few of Wayne's family members. Hasn't she ever heard of keeping things on the DL?
The concert wasn't the end of their night ... with sources telling us Drake and RiRi showed up to after parties at 1Oak and The Attic following the show. The flammable duo were both at a NYC nightclub Monday as well.
Justin and Selena, Chris and Karrueche ... guess reconciling is the new black.
'Million Dollar Listing' Star
They Call Me Flipper
8/20/2014 12:20 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
"Million Dollar Listing" star Josh Altman practices what he preaches ... he buys good real estate, sells it and makes a killing.
Altman just sold his house above the Sunset Strip for $3.58M. Truth be told ... it's not the prettiest house we've ever seen. Dare we say it's butt ugly. Nonetheless ... he bought it last year for $2.3 mil.
Josh only dumped $17K into the house and he didn't have to pay a real estate commission ... so he cleared well over a million bucks in 270 days.
Did we say the $17K was like putting lipstick on a pig.
Drake and Rihanna
Together and Very Possibly
8/19/2014 12:19 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
So Drake and Rihanna walk into a club ... which means they were banging, right?
The former couple hit up Griffin nightclub in NYC Monday night ... and according to photogs they were there for nearly 2 hours and left at around 3 AM -- 21 minutes apart.
Eyewitnesses inside the club tell TMZ ... Drake and Rihanna had tables next to each other and were deep in conversation, flirtatious and whispering in each other's ears.
Enough evidence for you?
WWE Superstar Titus O'Neil
Encounter With Homeless Man
Turns Into Full Blown Friendship
8/17/2014 4:45 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
WWE Superstar Titus O'Neil made friends with a homeless man on the streets of L.A. Saturday night ... and now, they're bffs.
O'Neil had some leftover food from dinner ... and decided to hit the streets around his hotel to find a homeless person -- when he ran into John from Detroit.
Titus says, "What was supposed to be a quick encounter turned into a few hours of learning and laughter with a complete stranger."
The 37-year-old wrestler introduced John to other wrestlers in town for Sunday's SummerSlam ... and hung out with him in the hotel.
Titus says the two met up again for breakfast this morning and swapped email addresses -- and he plans to stay in touch. O'Neil adds, "Don't look down on anyone and never judge a book by its cover, because you could be the cover one day."
I Eat, I Pay, I Tip
8/16/2014 10:27 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Kendall Jenner wants to prove she's no food bill scofflaw ... which is why she not only paid for an expensive meal Tuesday -- she also left the server a big fat tip.
Kendall hit up Pearl's liquor bar in West Hollywood with Stephen Baldwin and his daughter Hailey. We're told the tab came to $554 ... and Kendall covered the whole thing ... AND left a $160 tip.
No money was thrown.