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Bill Bellamy White Guy as a Black Kid?? C'mon, 'Spy Kids' ... Do Better!!!

4/20/2018 7:29 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Bill Bellamy isn't hating on the white guy voicing a black character on Netflix's new animated 'Spy Kids,' but he's got a major bone to pick with the show's "lazy" casting directors.

We got Bill at LAX and he told us the show should absolutely recast Travis Turner, the white actor voicing a black kid on the show. When we got Travis, he insisted he was "urban" enough for the gig ... partly because he grew up in motels. Seriously. 

Bill thinks Travis was screwed from the moment he was casted since a white kid doing a black voice is controversial no matter what. In fact, Bill gave us the perfect example of why it's messed up. It definitely wasn't a PC example ... but pretty on point.

'Spy Kids: Mission Critical' Star I Voice a Black Character But It's All Good, I'm Super Urban!

4/18/2018 7:01 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

One of the stars of Netflix's new animated 'Spy Kids' show says it's fine that he's a white dude voicing a black character ... in part because he's lived in motels and raps a lot.

We got Travis Turner Tuesday night at Craig's in WeHo and asked if he was worried about backlash from the African-American community over him playing a black character named PSI in "Spy Kids: Mission Critical," which officially debuts this Friday. 

HELL TO THE NO, DAWG ... is pretty much Travis' response here, as he explains how he grew up "urban" by living in motels -- plus he says he makes music with black artists, including Snoop, apparently ... and even sponsors black kids. So it's all good, according to him. 

Travis goes on to blame social media for so much division when it comes to race ... and then gives us a taste of his rapping and voice from the show. Brace yourselves.

Jerry Seinfeld Idea of 'Comedians in Cars' Ain't Yours ... It's Nobody's, Really

4/5/2018 11:10 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Jerry Seinfeld isn't laughing over a claim he stole the idea for his hit Netflix show, "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee" -- instead, he says the guy suing him doesn't have a leg to stand on.

In the docs Jerry filed, he lays out 3 reasons why Christian Charles' lawsuit should be dismissed. Christian claims Jerry ripped off his original concept of 'CICGC.' First, Jerry says Christian missed his chance to sue over a copyright claim -- pointing out the first episode aired in 2012, and it's now 2018. The statute of limitations for copyright claims is 3 years. 

Jerry also claims the idea of comedians in cars getting coffee is too generic to claim ownership over. He points to "Carpool Karoake," "Jay Leno's Garage" and something called ... "Cougars in Cars Getting Cosmos" ... as examples in the genre. 

Finally, Jerry says he filed a copyright for his pilot episode of 'CICGC' ... just the episode, not the concept. But in the docs, obtained by TMZ, Jerry says Christian filed his own copyright 10 days later for "Comedians in Cars Going for Coffee." Jerry thinks Christian was trying to be sneaky by slightly tweaking the title.

Jerry admits in his response that Charles did, in fact, direct the pilot episode in 2011 ... but denies stealing anything.

'Stranger Things' Casting Call Supports Claim Duffer Bros. Stole the Show

4/4/2018 12:50 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

10:45 AM PT -- The attorney for the Duffer Brothers tells TMZ, "Mr. Kessler's claim is completely meritless. He had no connection to the creation or development of 'Stranger Things.' The Duffer Brothers have neither seen Mr. Kessler's short nor discussed any project with him. This is just an attempt to profit from other people's creativity and hard work."

A "Stranger Things" casting call looks like a smoking gun in the lawsuit accusing show creators, the Duffer brothers, of ripping off a short film -- because it's black and white proof they jacked the film's title.

We've obtained the casting call, from Aug. 2015, for the role of "Barbara." It includes the following, "You have a self tape request for the Netflix series 'Montauk' starring Winona Ryder." The references to Barb (the description's hilarious and dead-on) and Winona make it clear this was "Stranger Things."

The document also lists Matt and Ross Duffer as writers and directors of the series. TMZ broke the story, the bros were sued by Charlie Kessler, who says he not only made a short film about top secret government experiments entitled "Montauk" ... but he pitched the Duffers a project based on his film.

The timing of the casting call is also super suspect. Kessler says his pitch meeting with the Duffers went down in April 2014. They did NOT strike a deal, but lo and behold, in August 2015 the Duffers were casting for their series, "Montauk."

Netflix had even proudly announced in April 2015 they were buying the series WITH that title.

So, neither the Duffers nor Netflix was bashful about copying Kessler's title ... at the very least. Whether they copied his script could fall to a jury, with the casting call being exhibit A. 

'Stranger Things' Directors Apologize to Females on Set Sometimes Tempers get Frayed

3/11/2018 7:32 AM PDT

"Stranger Things" writers and directors Matt and Ross Duffer are speaking out about claims they verbally abused multiple women on the set.

The Duffer Bros issued a statement ... "We are deeply upset to learn that someone felt uncomfortable on our set.  Due to the high-stress nature of production, tempers occasionally get frayed, and for that, we apologize."

The statement, which was posted on E!, included a caveat ... "However, we think it is important not to mischaracterize our set, where we believe strongly in treating everyone fairly regardless of gender, orientation, race, religion, or anything else."

Netflix, which carries the hit show investigated the complaints and found no wrongdoing on the part of the brothers. 

The investigation was triggered by Peyton Brown, a former grip on the show, who targeted the Duffers, saying, "I will not be a part of the filming of Season 3 of Stranger Things.  Why, you ask?  Because I stand with my sisters."  

   

The Obamas Next Up for Us ... Netflix?!

3/8/2018 6:49 PM PST
Breaking News

Barack and Michelle Obama are reportedly saying screw politics and are joining an increasingly popular trend -- getting their own show on Netflix!

The 44th President and former First Lady are in talks with the streaming service to "produce a series of high-profile shows" and provide exclusive content on a global level ... according to the NY Times.

The focus of the shows will apparently be on highlighting inspirational stories, but there are other ideas as well. One is having Barack moderate conversations about topics that dominated his time in the White House ... like health care and climate change.

The terms of the deal are reportedly in advanced stages, but one thing seems clear -- the Obamas' content will not be used to bash President Trump or their critics.

That might be a bummer for a large portion of Neflix's 118 million subscribers.

Adam Sandler NYC Subway Busking With Raunchy New Songs

3/1/2018 9:37 AM PST
Exclusive Details

If you ever wanted to see Adam Sandler sing about his daddy f****ng his eye with his penis ... ya shoulda been riding the subway Wednesday night in NYC. Also, you're a little twisted.

TMZ got this video of Sandler doing his thing, kinda incognito in a hoodie and looking like your everyday subway tunnel busker. People clearly recognized his voice though as he busted out some new songs, including one about walking in on his parents having sex -- hence the penis in the eye thing.

The subway performance came right after he shot at Comic Strip Live ... part of his lucrative Netflix deal.

At one point he warned the gathered crowd -- "Scary s**t is coming." They stuck around anyway, even though it doesn't seem like they tipped him much.

We think he'll be alright with a reported $340 mil in the bank.

Louis C.K. Not All Women Hate Me

2/28/2018 2:41 PM PST

Louis C.K. is out of hiding, and he's getting public support from a famous friend ... a female famous friend, mind you, in the wake of his sexual harassment scandal. 

Parker Posey and Louis were out for a stroll Wednesday in NYC. Parker had a guest spot on his show, "Louie" ... and it appears she's sticking by her friend through his tough times. It's been about 4 months since Louis stepped up and apologized for sexually harassing multiple women with whom he'd worked.

The women coming forward prompted Netflix, HBO and FX to cancel all their C.K. productions, and his movie, "I Love You, Daddy," was shelved. No word on if he's attempting to get back to work.

That old "a friend in need" saying comes to mind.

Sam Smith & Brandon Flynn Smokin' Smooch Always Before a Stoge

2/25/2018 11:24 AM PST

Sam Smith and his boyfriend, Brandon Flynn, were burning up the UK this weekend in more ways than one ... but it was mostly by (tongue in) mouth.

Sam and Brandon were spotted out in London Saturday night with Sam's sister, Lily, taggin' along. As any couple would, the 2 lovers stopped for a peck in the street. Kidding ... it was more like a full-blown movie make-out sesh, actually. Awww, young love!

At some point, Brandon was seen with a lit cigarette in hand -- as was Lily. Can't blame 'em -- something this hot is often followed up by some tobacco and nicotine ... even though smoking is awful.

One thing's for sure -- these two aren't shy about showing affection in public ... as seen here, here and here

'Seven Seconds' Star Race Relations More Tense in U.S. than England

2/25/2018 12:20 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

Clare-Hope Ashitey -- star of the new Netflix drama "Seven Seconds" -- is addressing the issue of race in America ... by pointing out the vast differences between the U.S. and her homeland.

We got the English actress at LAX Friday, and she tells us the racial atmosphere here makes her feel more uncomfortable and tense than she does back home ... and she has a few ideas why.

Clare admits things are far from perfect across the pond, but she thinks her people have more empathy and, more significantly, she claims they aren't still recovering from the "gaping wound" that is America's history of slavery.

The actress also brings up another hot-button issue -- guns -- specifically regarding police, as another key factor.

The good news -- Ashitey thinks the addition of Meghan Markle to the Royal Family will do some good for race relations both in England and here ... seriously.

Btw ... "Seven Seconds" is available now on Netflix, and also deals with these same topics.

Claire Foy Separates From Husband ... Divorce Looms

2/22/2018 5:50 PM PST
Breaking News

"The Crown" star Claire Foy has separated from her husband, actor Stephen Campbell Moore.

Foy said in a statement that this was by no means a recent event ... "We have separated and have been for some time."

Although the statement says nothing about divorce, the words she uses loom large for an end to her 4-year marriage ... "We do however continue as great friends with the utmost respect for one another."

Foy's husband had a major health scare last year when he was diagnosed with a tumor on his pituitary gland. Fortunately, it was benign.

33-year-old Claire herself had a similar scare at age 17, when she was diagnosed with a tumor in her eye. Again, benign.

The couple has 1 child ... a 3-year-old daughter.  

Chris Rock Won't Engage His Haters ... On White Kids Getting Shot Joke

2/22/2018 6:55 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

Chris Rock offered our camera guy a peace sign, but made it pretty clear -- and fast -- he was in no mood to laugh or talk.

We got the comedian at LAX Wednesday and first asked him about picking up the tab at Mastro's Steakhouse after dining with comedy legends Eddie MurphyDave ChappelleKevin Hart and Chris Tucker.

Rock wasn't having it ... just like he wasn't having it when our guy wanted to know if one of his jokes in his new Netflix special was untimely and insensitive. If you haven't heard ... Rock had joked, "I want to live in a world with real equality. I want to live in a world where an equal amount of white kids are shot every month. I want to see white mothers on TV crying."

Jerry Seinfeld Sued I Helped You Put Comedians in Cars ... Time to Pay Up, Jerry!

2/12/2018 3:11 PM PST
EXCLUSIVE

4:30 PM PT -- Jerry's attorney, Orin Snyder, said in a statement, "This lawsuit is delusional. Jerry independently created 'Comedians in Cars' and Mr. Charles only concocted this claim after the show became a commercial success. We are confident that this shakedown lawsuit will go nowhere."

Jerry Seinfeld's hit show about comedians, coffee and cars wasn't his idea at all ... according to the producer who's now suing.

Christian Charles says he pitched a show idea to Jerry in 2002, and claims it's the basis for "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee." In his lawsuit, Charles says Jerry turned him down, initially, saying he wasn't interested in doing the show.

Charles claims Seinfeld called him back in 2011, and asked about the original concept -- and they went on to shoot a pilot with Jerry in the driver's seat. According to the docs, obtained by TMZ, Jerry and his team were totally into it, and came up with production budgets and marketing plans.

Now the plot twist -- according to the suit, Seinfeld got pissed Charles was claiming ownership interest in the show, and wanted to be paid like it. Charles says Jerry ditched him, and went on to produce the show without him.

He claims Jerry's earning $750k per episode of the Netflix hit, and he wants a "created by" credit and financial compensation.

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