A&E knew all about "Duck Dynasty" star Phil Robertson feelings toward gays when it hired him -- because the guy openly preached that gays were going to hell years before the series started.
Take a look at the video (above) of a 2010 sermon at Berean Bible Church in Pennsylvania ... it's pretty much your typical bible-thumping drill. Phil calls gay people shameful, perverse, heartless, faithless, senseless God haters ... destined for the burning pits of hell.
So with that backdrop ... A&E hired Robertson ... then allowed him to do an interview with GQ where it HAD to know the reporter would ask questions about his feelings toward gays ... and then when he answered honestly A&E punished Robertson.
Robertson may be misguided, but A&E is being dishonest for feigning shock about something it definitely knew all about.
Mega-Rich L.A. Artist
I Didn't Rape That Girl
I Got the Polygraph Test to Prove It
12/19/2013 10:26 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Mega-rich "Cosmic Artist" Jack Armstrong -- whose paintings go for as much as $6 million -- insists he did NOT drug and rape an unconscious woman in 2010 ... and he's got the lie detector test results to back his claim.
TMZ has obtained the results, and here are the questions Armstrong was asked during the test:
1) Did you give any drug to [the alleged victim], other than alcohol on March 4, 2010?
2) Did you have sex with [the alleged victim] against her will on March 4, 2010?
3) Did [the alleged victim] at any time on March 4, 2010 tell you she did not want to have sex with you?
Armstrong -- famous for his bright multicolored "cosmic extensionalism" paintings -- answered "NO" to each of the questions ... and according to the polygraph machine, it appears he was telling the truth.
It's worth noting, Armstrong hired the company that administered the test -- Jomac and Associates -- and polygraph results tend to hold little water in court.
Armstrong is currently facing a felony charge of "rape of unconscious person" after allegedly meeting the woman at a club in Beverly Hills. The woman claims Armstrong bought her beers, and next thing she knew she woke up naked in his bed.
He was arrested in November.
'Duck Dynasty' Sponsor
We Stand Behind Phil
12/19/2013 10:03 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
If "Duck Dynasty" network A&E feared advertisers would scatter like waterfowl after a shotgun blast because of Phil Robertson's anti-gay comments ... it's not happening.
A company called Skyjacker -- which builds truck suspensions -- tells us it stands solidly behind Phil and the show ... saying it's a matter of God and country -- it's a free country and Phil has a right to his opinions.
Company brass tells us it goes beyond the Constitution ... to the Creator: "We are a Christian- based company and actively share our faith so standing with Phil Robertson is an easy choice for us."
Robertson opened up a can of worms when he said homosexuality and bestiality were the same sin ... his church seems to back Phil up on that.
Officials at White's Ferry Road Church just told us, "We love him and support him."
'Duck Dynasty' Fans
BRING BACK PHIL
A&E's Denying Him Freedom of Speech
12/19/2013 9:29 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Thousands of "Duck Dynasty" fans are on a mission to end Phil Robertson's network suspension over his anti-gay comments -- 'cause they say A&E is denying him his human rights.
Over 35 THOUSAND people have signed a petition -- which fired up yesterday on Change.org -- demanding A&E end the suspension.
Even worse for the network ... it's being ROASTED on social media by DD fans -- hundreds of people are accusing A&E of not allowing Phil Robertson his basic right to freedom of speech.
One fan put the network on blast saying, "As a gay male, is what he said wrong and not educated about how gay people really are? Yes it was. Does he have the right to speak on what he thinks YES HE DOES!"
The fan adds, "Was I offended NO I WASN'T he is a smart man and could learn the truth about things he has no idea about. He's old school you can't hate on him for his beliefs DO NOT GET RID OF PHIL ON THIS SHOW! KEEP HIM!! I will no longer watch if he's gone!!!"
So, we gotta ask ...
FROM AROUND THE WEB
- You probably didn't know Sandra Bullock dated THIS guy (Fox 411)
- It's OVER. Cassie finally decided to ditch that shaved-head look (MTO)
- Miley Cyrus looks ridiculous leggy in these short shorts (Popoholic)
- WTF? Jennifer Lawrence admits embarrassing sex toy story (BroBible)
- Rachel McAdams is rumored to be back with Ryan Gosling (Lainey Gossip)
- Jenna Dewan gets her MILF on in pink bikini (Popoholic)
- Julianne Hough + Leather Pants = YES (Huff Post)
Shut Down in Court
Score one for Shaq
12/19/2013 9:14 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Shaunie O'Neal was unconvincing this morning in court ... a judge just rejected her bid for an order allowing her to put her kids on a new reality show ... something ex-hubby Shaquille O'Neal is vehemently against.
Shaunie wanted the judge to rule in her favor without a hearing, but Shaq's lawyer, disso-queen Laura Wasser convinced the judge there was no rush and a hearing was only fair ... but that takes time.
TMZ broke the story ... Shaq -- who has joint custody -- has been warring with Shaunie over the reality show, insisting ubiquitous cameras at home would be a terrible distraction for their 4 kids ... some of whom are already struggling in school. He's also worried the show will portray Shaunie and the kids in a negative light.
Shaunie has insisted the show will be wholesome family fun, but with scandal-hungry producers breathing down Shaunie's neck and her own cat-fighting track record on "Basketball Wives" ... Shaq isn't convinced.
Filming for the reality show is scheduled to begin in January ... so Shaunie's really under the gun.
'Duck Dynasty' Star
Over Homophobic Comments
12/19/2013 8:51 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
"Duck Dynasty" star Phil Robertson has been SUSPENDED INDEFINITELY by A&E after a series of homophobic comments he made in a recent GQ interview.
A rep for A&E released a statement, saying, "We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson’s comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series 'Duck Dynasty.'"
The rep added, "His personal views in no way reflect those of A&E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community."
A&E has suspended him indefinitely from the show. The rest of the "Duck Dynasty" family is expected to remain on the show.
As we reported, Phil told GQ about how a vagina is more desirable than a man's anus, and how homosexuality and bestiality are the same sin.
He'll Leave Lockdown Rehab
For Toy Drive
12/19/2013 8:40 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Chris Brown will spend Sunday on tragically-hip Melrose Ave. in L.A. ... curious indeed, since he's supposedly in lockdown rehab. But we've learned, the rehab joint gave him a day pass.
Chris won't be shopping in stores that sell overpriced, vintage gadgets. He's a featured celeb at the XMAS toy drive, where people come with unwrapped toys for underprivileged kids.
We're told Brown and his girlfriend Karrueche Tran will be front and center to mingle with everyone.
As for why Chris got a pass ... 2 reasons. It's a worthy event, and we're told the rehab folks actually think it will be good for Chris' treatment -- to show how satisfying it is to participate in non-violent activities.
Cops SHUT DOWN XMAS PARTY!
12/19/2013 8:36 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Adrienne Maloof is too popular for her own good -- she invited WAY too many people to her XMAS party last night and the cops put the kibosh on the shindig.
The line for the party inside Mulholland Estates -- an uber-exclusive gated community near Bev Hills -- snaked from one side of her block to the other. Among those stranded outside -- Seth MacFarlane and cast members from "Entourage."
Neighbors got really pissed off and at around 10 PM the cops knocked at Adrienne's imposing front door and schooled her on excessive noise and the out-of-control lines.
It took a while, but eventually the party abruptly ended.
Among the guests -- Vanna White, The Game, Fergie (the Dutchess) and Heather McDonald.
And there's this ... none of the Bev Hills Housewives were there.
After Winning Australian Trip On TV Show
12/19/2013 8:15 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
A Marine died in a parachute accident last weekend -- during a trip his wife won on the "Ellen" show.
Cherilyn McGraw won a trip to Australia on "Ellen" last January. Cherilyn and her husband, Gunnery Sgt. Brandon McGraw, took the trip last week. On Saturday, the two of them went skydiving in the same plane. Cherilyn made a tandem jump, but Brandon was experienced and followed by jumping solo.
An employee from the skydiving school tells TMZ ... approximately 300 feet from the ground, Brandon's parachute suddenly caused him to turn radically right and left and he crashed to the ground. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Cherilyn posted a message on Facebook with photos inside the plane before the jump, saying, "My hero. My angel. These are truly such symbolic photos. He was happy and doing what he loved."
Can't Tag with the Big Boys
Graffiti FAIL with Monopoly
12/19/2013 8:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Justin Bieber's attempt at tagging with a famous graffiti artist -- while on a red carpet -- turned out to be a COLOSSAL FAIL, and he damn near got paint splattered all over his fancy suit.
JB was supposed to team up with street artist supreme Alec Monopoly at last night's premiere of 'Justin Bieber's Believe.'
Biebs grabbed a spray paint can from Monopoly and started to tag the canvas next to the red carpet -- but the attempted masterpiece was never completed ... 'cause the can was drained.
But the best part comes when Justin realizes the last few drops of paint soiled his pretty little hands.
You gotta see his reaction, and who he beelines to for help.
Bodyguard Accused Of IHOP Brawl
12/19/2013 7:04 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
One of Justin Bieber's bodyguards roughed up a photog last night at an IHOP in Encino, CA ... and the pap has filed a battery report with cops ... according to law enforcement sources.
TMZ has learned ... the photog says he was trying to take pictures of Bieber in the pancake shop, but took a potty break, and that's where the alleged battery went down.
The photog says he was injured slightly.
Bieber's security guys have been getting increasingly physical ... his bodyguards have been accused of roughing up a photog who snapped Bieber surfing in Australia last month ... and another pap who shot Bieber cliff diving in Hawaii.
In other news...
Jennifer Lawrence is perfect as-is. She's comfortable with her body and we love it.
So why would anyone ruin it with photoshop?
I'm On the Hunt
... for a Big Ol' 'C**t'
12/19/2013 6:38 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Ke$ha tells TMZ ... there's one quality a man HAS to possess if he wants a shot at banging her -- he's got to be a "little bit of a c**t."
Ke$ha -- dressed like a 26-year-old Emperor Palpatine -- was rolling through LAX yesterday when our camera guy (a big fan of her reality show) asked why she's not drawn to nice guys.
Her answer was kind of like a Mounds commercial .... sometimes ya feel like a c**t, sometimes ya don't.
Races to Court Over Reality Show
Shaq Says No Way!
12/19/2013 1:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Shaunie O'Neal is rushing to court this morning for an emergency order allowing her to put her kids on her new reality show ... but ex-hubby, Shaquille O'Neal, is saying, "Over my dead body."
Shaunie has a deal for a new reality show for VH1 -- "The Shaunie Project." It's about life with her and her kids. But we've learned Shaq has put his big foot down, saying there's no way he'll allow their 4 kids to appear.
Sources familiar with the situation tell TMZ ... Shaunie has tried convincing Shaq that her show is just like "The Cosby Show" -- good, wholesome, family fun. She told him one of the episodes will focus on Shaunie's aversion to working out. The kids will convince her that working out is good and they'll all run a 5K together. Forgive our cynicism, but it sounds like this show may be scripted.
Shaq is not buying it and feels there are too many pressures imposed by producers -- to be able to keep the show wholesome. He's convinced the show will end up showcasing a dysfunctional family that will hurt his kids, some of whom are already struggling in school. Shaq believes no good can come from cameras in the home.
We're told Shaunie will tell the judge she needs an emergency order so she can meet her deadlines -- filming is scheduled to start the first week of January.
Shaq is also leery of Shaunie ... who once proclaimed she would no longer tolerate violence on her show, "Basketball Wives," because it damages the image of Black women ... yet she quickly changed her mind and the cat fights continued.
We'll be in court, so stay tuned.