'Bachelor' Contestant Victoria F Sorry for 'White Lives Matter' Shoot ... It Was to Support Fish!!!

'Bachelor' contestant Victoria F is finally addressing a controversy that's been dogging her for a minute now -- issuing a mea culpa for being part of a 'White Lives Matter' campaign.

The model -- who's currently still in the running for Peter Weber's final rose -- took to social media Saturday with a Notes-written apology for her eyebrow-raising shoot, which she posted on her Instagram story. It says, "I would like to sincerely apologize for my involvement with We Love Marlins. My intention was only to support an endangered species."

She continues in her post, "I want to say that I unequivocally reject the beliefs of the white lives matter movement or any propaganda that supports racism of any kind. I would like to specifically apologize to people of color that are affected by racism daily."

VF finished by saying, "It was never my intention to add fuel to the racial fire in this country. This has truly been an educational moment for me and I hope to be a voice against racism moving forward. I hope I can be shown grace as I navigate through this process."

The timing of her apology is interesting ... as we reported and as 'Bachelor' nation now knows, Victoria is in the final four group of girls who are taking Pete to their hometown.

HOMETOWN HANGIN'
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We knew about the 'WLM' campaign -- which was meant to be a 'BLM' pun to raise awareness about over-fishing white Marlin -- but it went unaddressed as the show continued. About a week ago, however, Cosmo scrapped Victoria from their digital cover because of it.

No word if she ends up going the distance with Pete -- rumor has it he doesn't choose any of the remaining girls -- but it seems her post-'Bachelor' life demanded she speak on this.

Keanu Reeves Playing John Wick as Neo for 'Matrix 4' ... Trinity There Too!!!

Keanu Reeves is back as The One for the upcoming 'Matrix' movie -- but oddly enough ... his new Neo looks a lot like another action hero he's been playing lately, to much acclaim.

TMZ obtained new photos of Keanu, Carrie-Anne Moss (who played Trinity) and director Lana Wachowski on the set of "The Matrix 4," which has been filming in San Francisco these past couple weeks or so. These latest pics were shot Friday in the Financial District.

You can see Keanu here, and it looks like Lana and co. have Mr. Anderson rocking a fresh look we're not used to when it comes to Neo -- who was clean-cut in the OG flicks. Now, The One has a striking resemblance to the widowed hitman John Wick. Like, to a T.

He's got the same shoulder-length hair JW has, and the same messy beard too. Shoot, Neo's even got the same dark outfits John wears -- although, Neo did it first, technically.

Other shots of Keanu on set have surfaced lately, and it seems to confirm Lana's got Neo in a bummy state within the Matrix. Who knows what his "real-world" appearance will be.

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Even cooler than seeing Keanu back in action ... getting a glimpse of Carrie-Anne on set, who's reprising her role as Neo's love interest. We're told she too was on set Friday, and we got a shot of her with her back to the camera, sporting her signature short hair.

Oh, and Keanu's girlfriend, Alexandra Grant, was spotted hanging around as well. Supporting her man, it seems.

Now, we're told this latest scene consisted of a SWAT team going in and out of a building -- with a black SUV parked out front under green neon lighting. Very 'Matrix'-esque, right?!

Still no sign of any of the other stars who've been tied to the project, including Jada Pinkett, Neil Patrick Harris, Priyanka Chopra, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II ... or Laurence Fishburne.

The latter hasn't been announced as being involved yet, but ya gotta imagine Morpheus will be back. He better be, anyway!

Barack Obama Kind Words to Remember Kobe ... At NBA All-Star Brunch

Barack Obama says the loss of Kobe Bryant and his daughter hit extra-close to home because he himself, as a father, has been a champion of his own kids in and out of sports.

44 spoke Saturday at a brunch hosted by the NBA for All-Star weekend, and while talking to a room full of journalists ... BO said he knew Kobe's death was still fresh on the minds of several people in the NBA family -- and rightly so, as he too seemed stunned by it.

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In a video posted by CNN's Wolf Blitzer, Barack says ... "That loss is something that I know many are still grappling with -- particularly, Kobe because he was with his daughter and those families and those children. And, those of us who have had the joy and privilege of being parents, and taking our kids to ball games, and rooting for our children and then seeing our dreams and hopes passed on to them ... nothing is more heartbreaking."

He goes on to offer his and Michelle's condolences to the NBA family, not just over Kobe but also for former NBA commissioner David Stern -- who died of a stroke earlier this year.

At the time of Kobe's death, Obama remembered him with kind words too ... writing, "Kobe was a legend on the court and just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act. To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us as parents. Michelle and I send love and prayers to Vanessa and the entire Bryant family on an unthinkable day."

Kobe was 41. His daughter, Gianna, was just 13.

RIP

American Airlines Passenger Threatens Defamation Lawsuit Against AA

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Wendi Williams, the woman whose reclined seat was repeatedly punched by a passenger on an American Airlines flight, is ready to pick another fight ... this time with the airline!!!

Wendi tells us she met with an attorney Friday to discuss legal options she can take against AA ... and she's threatening the airline with a defamation lawsuit!

Williams is bristling over what an American Airlines rep told TMZ -- that the whole seat-reclining incident started when she first reclined and knocked over the other passenger's drink. Wendi claims it never happened. BTW, even if she did, it would have been an accident and no big deal.

She believes she was slandered when AA accused her of being disruptive, spilling a drink and also all the things that the flight attendant said to her on the plane -- that she was the bad person in the dispute -- all defamatory, Williams says. BUT ... she's not interested in suing the passenger, although she's told us she'd like to see him prosecuted for assault.

Wendi also claims she was respectful to everyone else on the plane and didn't make a scene. Remember, she previously told us a flight attendant handed her a passenger disturbance notice for refusing to delete her video of the man behind her punching her chair.

PUNCHY PASSENGER
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As for the reclining-seat debate ... Wendi says the airlines should be the ones determining if it's an issue, not fellow passengers.

Wendi's also got another threat for AA ... telling us, "They have pushed me way too far, literally and figuratively." Them's fighting words ... as in lawsuit.

AA's drawing its own line in the sand ... a source at the airline tells us Wendi reached out Tuesday asking for compensation, but she won't see any money because AA sees this as a passenger vs. passenger dispute.

We're also told AA won't be referring the incident to authorities, and it's up to Wendi if she wants to go down that road.

PUNISH HIM!!!
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As we previously reported ... Wendi is worried the repeated whiplash from the seat punches may have damaged her vertebrae -- she says she has a medical history -- and she wants AA to fork over some money to pay for an MRI and possible medical bills.

Boxer Ryan Garcia Prayed for Fonseca Before KO'ing Him ... Please God, Wake Him Up!!!

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THE BEST IS YET TO COME
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Ryan Garcia says he knew he was going to knock out his opponent on Friday night -- which he did, BTW -- so he sent a little prayer up to the man upstairs on behalf of the guy.

We talked to the lightweight boxing sensation Friday at an after-party following his vicious one-punch, first-round knock out of Francisco Fonseca -- and Ryan tells us point blank ... he knew it would happen, and actually asked God to wake the dude up sooner than later.

ICYMI, it was a spectacular hit, and now Ryan's the talk of the town in boxing. People are calling him a phenom, and also the new poster boy of the sport. You can see why.

Word around the ring is ... Floyd Mayweather's protege, Gervonta 'Tank' Davis, took about 8 rounds or so put down Fonseca not too long ago -- and Ryan did it in a matter of seconds.

Obviously, the chatter about a potential matchup here is in full swing -- but Ryan doesn't wanna rush things, and actually wants to prove himself first with other opponents. Check it out ... he gives a list of names of guys he'd like to see first before Tank.

Spoiler ... sounds like he's confident he can take all of them down, and has a message for Floyd too.

WINNER'S MENTALITY
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BTW, Ryan had a subtle tribute to the late Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, on his trunks during the Valentine's Day bout -- and he broke it down for us here too.

Turns out, the dude's a big fan of Mamba ... and wanted to make sure he represented his winning mentality as early and often as he possibly could. He certainly did that!

Kandi Burruss 3 Shot at Her Restaurant ... She Responds

Breaking News

5:32 PM PT -- Kandi Burrus has spoken out about the shooting at her restaurant, and it sounds like she's pretty devastated about it.

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She says she sends her thoughts and prayers to the individuals affected, going on to say ... "As African-American business owners, it has been our goal to invest in our community by bringing jobs, quality dining, and a positive experience to the greater Atlanta area; we hope that you know and understand that the acts of violence that occurred yesterday evening do not, in any way, serve as a reflection of OLG or its values."

Kandi ended her post by encouraging anyone with relevant information to reach out to law enforcement.

Three people were shot outside Kandi Burruss' Georgia restaurant, and it appears cops know the identity of the culprit.

It happened Friday night at around 8 PM. A man walked into the Old Lady Gang restaurant in East Point and began firing.

A police official said the shooting was not random. Based on the police statement, it appears a man who was shot inside was the target, and then 2 other people with no connection were also hit.

Police are on the hunt for the suspect, but they say they don't have a motive.

Chaos erupted at the restaurant, which is just outside Atlanta. Kandi and her husband, Todd Tucker, own Old Lady Gang ... a popular eatery that features Southern cuisine.

Originally Published -- 6:56 AM PT

J.J. Watt and Fiancee Kealia Ohai We're Hitched!!!

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5:48 PM PT -- Looks like J.J. Watt has officially tied the knot. Again ... congrats!

J.J. Watt is preparing to be a married man today!!!

J.J. and fiancee Kealia Ohai are getting hitched Saturday at a fancy hotel in the Bahamas, and lots of family and friends are on hand for the nuptials.

The couple was hanging at the hotel all week with their broods, hanging by the pool and celebrating during meals.

A big tent was erected Friday for the ceremony ... it's pretty extravagant -- a tent with chandeliers.

As TMZ Sports reported, J.J. and Kealia took out a marriage license this week in Harris County, Texas. They have exactly 90 days to seal the deal, but we're told that all goes down this evening.

J.J. and Kealia got engaged 9 months ago. They started dating 2 years ago.  BTW, Kealia is a soccer star who plays for the Chicago Red Stars.

Congrats!!!

Originally Published -- 7:31 AM PT

Jonah Hill Kills It Shredding the Gnar!!!

Jonah Hill has mad skills in the water, which is incredible ... considering it was a great fear of his until just last year.

Jonah hit the sand with his surfboard just before 10 AM Friday in Malibu.

Pretty impressive ... considering the waves off PCH can be pretty intense.

He joined around 20 people who were catching waves as they enjoyed the sunny SoCal weather. Sorry Chicago, sorry New York, sorry New Hampshire, sorry Vermont, sorry South Dakota ... and especially sorry North Dakota.

After surfing for an hour, Jonah mugged with some of his fellow surfers before braving Pacific Coast Highway for the ride home.

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Back in August, when Jonah started surfing, he said, "Been terrified to surf my whole life. Totally random fear and at the same time always been a secret dream of mine."

Fear conquered.

Kendall, Bella and Justine Grocery Run for Galentine's Day!!!

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Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid and Justine Skye grabbed some grub Friday ... presumably to celebrate Galentine's Day.

The famous trio hit up Whole Foods in the Big Apple. Judging from the shopping cart, it doesn't exactly look like a feast, but not everyone has to gorge on V-Day ... or G-Day.

They were all in NYC for Fashion Week, which ended Wednesday. Unclear whether Kendall hooked up with Ben Simmons at some point Friday. It seems pretty clear they're back together.

Anyway ... they looked great traversing the aisles of Jeff Bezos' pricey store.

Happy Valentine's Day -- belatedly -- ladies.

Celebs Cuddling Furry Friends ... Pawesome!

It's snuggle season and these famous faces have recruited their four-legged friends to join in on the festivities!

From celebs such as Zendaya and Hailey Bieber to Eric Decker and Sean Gunn it seems like everyone could use some love and affection ... and maybe a lint roller too!

These fur babies sure are getting spoiled by their parents, and it seems like they have no shame in sharing their connection!

Join in on some of the lovin' yourself by scrolling through our gallery of stars cuddling their furry friends! Get a good look at whose all nuzzled up!

Fur-tastic!

J.J. Watt & Kealia Ohai Wedding Bells Ringing Soon??? ... Applied for Marriage License

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J.J. Watt and his fiancee, Kealia Ohai, are planning to say their "I Dos" soon ... like, possibly this weekend soon.

The Houston Texans star and the Chicago Red Stars soccer star applied for their marriage license this week in Harris County, Texas ... which means they have 90 days from the date they filed for the license to tie the knot.

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What's interesting ... Watt's been posting on his social media the past few days from an undisclosed tropical-looking location. You know, the type of spot perfect for a wedding ... especially right around Valentine's Day.

If they do end up getting hitched this weekend, it will be almost 9 months after they got engaged -- J.J. popped the question back in May 2019.

Of course, this came more than 2 years after the couple became Instagram official in early 2017.

Like we said, they still have 90 days before they have to do the whole wedding ceremony thing to make their marriage official, so whether it happens in the next couple days or not ... congrats!!!

Stars and Scars You Be the Judge

Jussie Smollett is facing a new round of criminal charges in Chicago, and AA seat-gate has polarized the flying public. So we gotta ask ...

Jussie Smollett ...

American Airlines Seat-Gate ...

Harriet Tubman Debit Card ...

Jessica Simpson Fur Protest ...

Stripper Who Fell Off Pole ...

Whose Side You On?

Whose Side You On?

Jenelle And David Living Together Again

Trump Says He's Cool With LGBTQ Candidates

Machine Gun Kelly 2 Crew Members Indicted ... For Beatdown of Actor

Exclusive 9/15/18
BEATDOWN FOOTAGE
ATL Police Department

Two members of Machine Gun Kelly's crew are still feeling the sting over their involvement in a 2018 brawl ... 'cause they just got indicted by a grand jury.

MGK crew members Brandon Allen and John Cappelletty have each been slapped with 2 counts of felony aggravated battery for unleashing a can of whoop-ass on the actor Gabriel "G-Rod" Rodriguez ... this according to the Fulton County D.A.'s Office.

The case had been under misdemeanor review by the Fulton County Solicitor General's Office but it got kicked up to the D.A.'s Office for felony review ... and clearly the D.A. felt felony charges could be warranted and got the case to a grand jury.

If convicted, the crew members face up to 20 years in prison.

TMZ broke the story ... Allen and Cappelletty were busted back in October but G-Rod didn't just want justice against them. He also sued MGK claiming the rapper's the one who ordered the attack.

As we've reported ... G-Rod confronted MGK at an Atlanta joint in September 2018 and called him a "p***sy" because he was pissed about Kelly's beef with Eminem. The brutal beatdown went down later that evening in the lobby of a Hampton Inn.

Rudy Giuliani Prez Trump's Right ... Put Pete Rose In Hall of Fame!!!

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LET HIM IN ALREADY
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Pete Rose belongs in the Hall of Fame 'cause he's one of the greatest baseball players ever, and Cooperstown ain't the morality police ... so says Rudy Giuliani.

TMZ Sports talked to the former NYC mayor (and Donald Trump's attorney) in the city on Sunday ... and asked him about the president's Tweet imploring baseball to put Rose in the HOF.

Giuliani doubled down on Trump's message ... saying "Charlie Hustle" has more than paid the price for betting on baseball -- a cardinal sin in MLB -- over 30 years ago.

"I've long believed that Pete Rose has been left out long enough to make up for whatever he did wrong. It is a Hall that's supposed to recognize baseball accomplishments. He's one of the best of his era."

FYI -- Rose was a 17x All-Star, NL MVP, 3x World Series champ and has 4,256 hits -- more than any other MLB'er.

Giuliani went on to say the National Baseball Hall of Fame is full of guys who weren't the best people off the field ... but the HOF is about playing ball, and nothing else.

"I would say the Hall of Fame is to recognize great baseball players. Some of them may be moral, some may be average, some may be immoral. I don't think we're telling children to copy their behavior if we say they're great baseball players."

"So, it gets a little silly when we use it as a justice system."

It's a long shot, but Rose's standing within baseball could be changing ... 'cause just last week, he petitioned MLB commish Rob Manfred and requested reinstatement.

Major League Baseball has not yet ruled on Rose's petition.

What's The Big Frigin' Difference?

Don't let these two almost identical images of Justin Bieber distract you from the task at hand ... keep your focus as you try and find the sneaky switches that have been made to this yummy, yummy pic!

The singer was spotted out in New York City, just before the release of his new album, "Changes" ... and we have made a few of our own changes to this picture! Now it is up to you to see if you can figure out the differences between these two super-similar snaps!

**HINT -- there are THREE differences in the above photographs!**

Kobe & Gigi Bryant 88,000 People Already Registered For Staples Center Memorial

Exclusive

4:10 PM PT -- A source with knowledge tells us more than 88,000 people have already registered for memorial tickets in the first 5 hours. We're told that number is expected to grow to several hundred thousand by Monday's deadline.

Staples Center has a capacity of around 20,000 people -- with many of those tickets to be claimed by friends, family, NBA officials and others -- so there will be a limited number of seats and a lottery to land one.

11:15 AM PT -- The L.A. Lakers just released ticket info for the Kobe/Gigi Celebration of Life. People who want tickets can register online right now at Ticketmaster. The tickets are going for 3 different prices -- $224, 2 for $224, and as we told you, the upper deck seats will go for $24.02. The 24, of course, is Kobe's number, and 2 is Gigi's.

People who register will receive a code Tuesday and on Wednesday at 10 AM the tickets will be released for sale. If the demand exceeds the number of tickets -- which is almost certain -- fans will be selected at random to participate in the sale.

Proceeds will go to Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation.

The event will not be shown on the big screens outside Staples and law enforcement has told us they will block the streets off, but people will be able to watch online and on TV. The Lakers are urging fans not to go to the Staples Center if they don't have a ticket for the event, on Feb. 24.

The plans for Kobe and Gigi Bryant's Staples Center memorial are getting locked down and details for the service will be unveiled Friday.

Sources familiar with the planning tell us event organizers are working closely with Kobe's family to finalize who will speak at the service, and which singers and entertainers will take part.

We're told tickets will be available to the general public, although there will be a number of invited guests who get tickets first, including family, friends, players, NBA officials and, we're told, season ticket holders.

We're told the seats that remain will be sold to the public at a price that reflects the memories of Kobe and Gigi. We're told one of the options being discussed was to sell the upper bowl seats at $24.02 -- 24 representing Kobe's number and 2 representing Gigi's. The net proceeds will go to a charity selected by the family. Whatever the price ends up being, our sources say it will reflect and honor Kobe and Gigi.

We don't know which charity will be the beneficiary, but the Mamba Sports Academy was recently renamed Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation. As we reported ... Vanessa Bryant says the decision for the name change -- "Because there is no #24 without #2."

Our sources say there will be extra precautions taken in printing the tickets to make sure they can't be scalped.

The memorial is set to be televised live on multiple networks, and as we told you ... the streets around Staples will be closed for security and traffic control, so law enforcement is encouraging people who don't get tickets to stay home and watch it on TV.

Though the memorial is being held Feb. 24, Kobe and Gigi were buried in a private family service near the family’s Orange County home last week.

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Days later, Vanessa opened up about losing both her husband and her 13-year-old daughter, saying ... "I can’t process both at the same time. It’s like I’m trying to process Kobe being gone but my body refuses to accept my Gigi will never come back to me."

She added ... "It feels wrong. Why should I be able to wake up another day when my baby girl isn’t being able to have that opportunity?! I’m so mad. She had so much life to live."

She concluded by saying ... "God I wish they were here and this nightmare would be over. Praying for all of the victims of this horrible tragedy. Please continue to pray for all."

Originally Published -- 1:00 AM PT

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