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Brad Barket/Comedy Central(NEW YORK) -- Daily Show host Trevor Noah had a quick and clever response to the U.S. French ambassador who slammed the comedian on Wednesday for saying Africa deserved credit for France's 2018 World Cup victory due to the large number of black players on the team.

Gerard Araud wrote a scathing letter, posted on Facebook and addressed to Noah, accusing him of "legitimizing" racist ideologies and denying the players' "Frenchness" with his comments about their race and backgrounds.

"I get it, they have to say it's the French team," Noah had said on Monday. "But look at those guys. You don't get that tan by hanging out in the south of France, my friends."

Araud said he was watching "with great attention" on Monday, but he wasn't laughing.

"They were educated in France, they learned to play soccer in France, and they are French citizens," Araud said. "They are proud of their country, France."

After Araud's letter became viral, Noah was quick to respond.

"When I'm saying 'African,' I'm not saying it to exclude them from their French-ness -- I'm saying it to include them in my African-ness. I'm saying, 'I see you, my French brother of African descent," Noah said, later captured on video.

"I will continue to praise them for being African because I believe they are of Africa -- their parents are from Africa -- and they can be French, because I believe they can both at the same time," Noah explained. "And if French people are saying they can't be, then I think they have a problem and not me."

"America's not a perfect place," he added, "but what I love about this country is that people can still celebrate their identity in their American-ness."

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Photo: An Rong Xu/HISTORY(NEW YORK) -- Actor Zachary Quinto became "dear" friends with the late Leonard Nimoy when the former succeeded the latter in the role of Mr. Spock in the big-screen reboot of Star Trek.

"We were really close, really good friends in the last decade of his life," Quinto told Good Morning America recently, adding his relationship with the actor and director is one of the reasons he wanted to step into Nimoy's shoes once again.

Starting Friday, Quinto can be seen hosting HISTORY's documentary-style show In Search Of, which Nimoy hosted decades ago. Now, as then, the show purports to shed light on some of the world's most enduring mysteries and memorable spectacles.

"When they approached me about doing the show, I was really interested in carrying on his legacy as I always am," Quinto said, noting, "I wanted to be more involved in the show. When Leonard did the original, he was the host in a traditional way with a turtleneck and blazer and studio introducing segments pre-taped in the field." 

Quinto explained to ABC Radio that he got his wish.  "Part of that for me was about actually being on the ground and conducting these interviews and traveling around and exploring some of these things myself...So when they approached me about it, I said, 'Yeah, you know, I’m interested in the idea of this, but if I’m going to do it, I want to be on the ground." 

And that Quinto did -- though he was in the air, too, skydiving for one segment, and below the ground, exploring massive sinkholes in another.  The latter phenomenon proved to be the most surprising for the actor, he tells us, thanks to the human toll sinkholes leave in their wake. 

In Search Of debuts Friday, at 10 p.m. on HISTORY.

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Photo by Mike Coppola/WireImage(LOS ANGELES) -- (NOTE LANGUAGE) Roseanne Barr promised to tell her side of the story regarding the racist tweet about President Obama's longtime confidante Valerie Jarrett that got Barr fired from her then red-hot Roseanne reboot, and now she has. Sort of.

In a short video on her YouTube page, the entry, described as "Roseanne, like always, cuts through the bulls*** and gets to the heart of the matter," a disheveled-looking Barr does just that. While an off-camera voice complains about multiple wardrobe changes she apparently went through during the shoot, Barr nervously drags on a cigarette, and tousles her hair.

"I'm trying to talk about Iran, I'm trying to talk about Valerie Jarrett running the Iran deal!" Barr suddenly screams, impatiently. "That's what my tweet was about!"

The unseen voice says, "I know, you've told me 300 times already..." before Barr looks into camera and screams even louder about Jarrett, "I thought the b**** was white! G**dammit!," then repeats, "I thought the b**** was white!" before dropping the "F-bomb."

It doesn't appear that she's joking at all, it must be said, though voices off-camera can be heard laughing as the bizarre video abruptly ends.

In a wide-ranging interview with spiritual adviser Rabbi Shmuley Boteach [SCHMOO-lee boh-TAY-ack] released in June -- and recorded after ABC's cancellation of the Roseanne reboot nearly a month before --  Barr gave an emotional apology for the remark, which compared Iranian-born, African American Jarrett's appearance to a character in Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes reboot.

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Marvel Studios(NEW YORK) -- The success of Marvel's Black Panther and its characters is officially spilling back over into its comic books.

Marvel has announced that award-winning Nigerian-American writer, Nnedi Okorafor, will write a new standalone comic book series about Shuri, the genius younger sister of Wakanda's King T'Challa/Black Panther.

As you may recall, she was portrayed by Leticia Wright in Black Panther, and proved so popular she was immediately brought back to the big screen in Avengers: Infinity War.

According to an official release by Marvel, the new series, tilted Shuri, will throw the princess into a demanding journey as Black Panther disappears in space. As next in line to take the throne of Wakanda, Shuri steps out of her comfort zone and into a much bigger role.

In an interview with Bustle, Okorafor explains a bit more about Shuri's character.

“[Shuri is] an African young woman of genius level intelligence who is obsessed with technology and has traveled spiritually so far into the past that she’s seen Wakanda before it was Wakanda,” Okorafor explained. “The Ancestors call her Ancient Future. And she’s super ambitious. What do I love about her? Alllll that and more. She’s a character in the Marvel Universe who really sings to me.”

Shuri is set for an October 2018 release.

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Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty ImagesOne of the most highly anticipated panels of this year's San Diego Comic-Con took place Thursday: the Breaking Bad reunion, celebrating 10 years since the show's debut.

The panel included show creator Vince Gilligan; Bryan Cranston, who played high school chemistry teacher turned meth kingpin Walter White; and Aaron Paul, who played White's former student turned fellow meth cook, Jesse Pinkman.

Cranston told the crowd early in that he's hesitant to revisit the critically acclaimed series, which ended in September 2013 after five seasons and a truckload of Emmys and other awards.

"We're all very proud of our show and I think in some ways it's best to leave it alone," he said. "You want to think back on it favorably and say I don't want to mess with it."

In fact, when asked if they would ever consider a Breaking Bad movie, Cranston had a firm answer: "No." But Gilligan didn't shut the idea down completely, saying "Anything is possible."

Fans can get their fix when Breaking Bad's prequel spinoff, Better Call Saul, begins its fourth season.  At a separate Comic-Con panel, Gilligan and the cast explained the world of Breaking Bad will appear in the show.

"If you love Breaking Bad, you're going to get to see that world expand a bit," star Bob Odenkirk said at the panel. "You're gonna meet people who were referenced in Breaking Bad who you've never met, but you heard their name."

But don't expect to see Walter and Jesse make an appearance this season.

"Not to be a downer. We just hate jerking folks around," Gilligan said. "But I would suspect that we would be sorely remiss if these character didn't appear on the show before it ended."

Better Call Saul returns to AMC August 6th.

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Sony Pictures(NEW YORK) -- Denzel Washington returns as retired CIA agent Robert McCall in the Antoine Fuqua-directed action thriller The Equalizer 2.

The film, which also stars Moonlight standout Ashton Sanders as Miles -- a young man McCall takes under his wing -- shows a strong father-son connection between Washington and the young actor. Washington tells ABC Radio their relationship is authentic.

"It's a natural extension," he says. "Because he's asking me questions between takes about the business... He's a very intelligent and curious young man."

Like 2014's The Equalizer, Washington's character once again seeks justice for those close to him. This time around, Washington says, the film delves a little deeper into McCall's character.

"The first film you had to establish who he was," Washington says. "Now the audiences that saw it knows who he is. So more time was spent on establishing [his] relationships."

Washington's also making personal history with this role: It's the first time the Oscar-winner's done a sequel. Though Washington explains that's because no one had ever asked him to do a sequel, he also notes he doesn't really consider The Equalizer 2 to be a sequel.

"The sequel is something people call it," he explains. "I never heard the word sequel while we were making it and all through the process. Now I hear "sequel" and "What do you think about sequels?" I didn't look at it that way. It was a character I thought was interesting. And...the writer, wrote a good script. ...It's another chapter. I look at it that way."

But don't expect Washington to do more sequels.

"Well, I don't need to," he says, laughing. "I got Equalizer." 

The Equalizer 2, also starring Melissa Leo, Bill Pullman and Pedro Pascal, is now in theaters.

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AMC/Gene Page(SAN DIEGO) -- Rick Grimes will soon fight his last battle. The Walking Dead's leading man, Andrew Lincoln, will be leaving the series after its upcoming ninth season, according to series creator Robert Kirkman.

In an IMDB interview, Kirkman -- who also created the comic book series that the television show is based off of -- addresses the rumors that the upcoming ninth season will be Lincoln's last. "It's looking that way," Kirkman said reluctantly.

"He cares about the fans," Kirkman continues. "He cares about the show deeply. He wants to do something special on the way out. We have something amazing planned. I wouldn't want to spoil anything, but anybody who has been a fan of his journey, who loves Rick Grimes, who loves the world of The Walking Dead, you're going to want to see what we do.

Kirkman also explains that it will be difficult to lose Lincoln's character -- Rick, who's the series' hero -- because he doesn't die in the comic books on which the series is based. 

"It does make the differences between the comic and the show more pronounced," Kirkman explains. "But at the end of the day, it's all about Andrew Lincoln. This is a human being. This is someone I have known for almost a decade, somebody that I love. He's been sweating in Georgia, away from his family, for so long."

Us Weekly reported back in May that Lincoln's co-star, Norman Reedus, negotiated a $20 million contract to stay on and have his character Daryl Dixon take on a leading role in Lincoln's absence. 

AMC, which airs The Walking Dead, hasn't commented on any of the news. 

The Walking Dead's ninth season premieres this fall. 

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Denzel Washington in "The Equalizer 2"; Glen Wilson/Columbia Pictures(NEW YORK) -- Here are the movies opening nationwide Friday:

* The Equalizer 2 -- Denzel Washington returns in this sequel to the 2014 action thriller The Equalizer as Robert McCall, a mysterious man who's not afraid to deliver some vigilante justice when its needed. This time, he's out to avenge the death of his former friend and colleague, Susan Plummer, played by Melissa Leo. Bill Pullman, Game of Thrones and Narcos' Pedro Pascal and Moonlight's Ashton Sanders also star, and Antoine Fuqua returns as director.  Rated R.

* Mama Mia! Here We Go Again -- The follow-up to the 2008 blockbuster Mama Mia! -- featuring returning cast members Meryl Streep, Amanda Seyfried, Christine Baranski, Julie Walters, Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth, Stellan Skarsgård and Dominic Cooper -- serves as both prequel and sequel, telling the story of how Streep's Donna made her way onto the island of Kalokairi, as they try and solve the mystery of who fathered her daughter, Sophie, played by Seyfried. Lily James joins the cast, along with Cher, who plays Sophie's grandmother. Rated PG-13.

* Unfriended: Dark Web -- This stand-alone sequel to 2014's Unfriended follows a group of teenagers who come into possession of a new laptop with access to the dark web, and discover the original owner is watching and will stop at nothing to get the computer it back. Starring Colin Woodell, Rebecca Rittenhouse, Betty Gabriel and Andrew Lees. Rated R.

Opening in limited release Friday:

* Blindspotting -- Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal co-wrote and star in the comedy-drama that explores race, class, police violence, and gentrification. Rated R.

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(NEW YORK) -- It's apparently been a tough week for Leslie Jones.

After calling out Jessica Alba's Honest Company for "not doing good" business earlier, the Saturday Night Live star went on Twitter with another grievance.

"When young men especially black men (yea I said it) talk to me like I’m some dumb B***!" Jones wrote. "It makes me want to stomp a mudhole in they a**. That is all. #imabouttoshowthesefoolsthecomptoninmyheart."

After sharing her apparent frustrations with men, Jones told her fans and followers she's decided to take a much needed mental break.

"This week has been f***ed up and emotional angering and just plain exhausting," she tweeted. "I disappear now into my tv programs. F*** the world for a minute!!Goodbye! #b****ineedabrainbreak."

No word on how long Jones' break will last.

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(L-R) Ledger, Lee, Gyllenhaal - Photo by Eric CATARINA/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- It's hard to picture anyone in the leading roles for 2005's Brokeback Mountain besides Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal, but one director had other plans.

Before the film came to Ang Lee to direct, Gus Van Sant said he was working on the project.

In his vision, Van Sant wanted bigger stars. Ledger and Gyllenhaal weren't quite as bankable back then, but would receive acclaim and prestige for their work on this groundbreaking film.

 "I felt like we needed a really strong cast, like a famous cast," he added. "That wasn’t working out. I asked the usual suspects: Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Ryan Phillippe. They all said no.”

Ledger would go on to earn an Oscar nod for his work in the film, but Van Sant said all the other names on his dream list "turned down the project, for various reasons."

Brokeback Mountain famously broke down barriers for the LGBTQ community by following the lives and forbidden love of two gay cowboys, played by Ledger and Gyllenhaal.

The film's producer and screenwriter Diana Ossana told Indie Wire that Van Sant was thrilled to join the project.

"Gus arrived at our door five days after we sent the script out into the world," she said. "He was eager and passionate about it."

After taking over the project, Lee won a Best Director Oscar that year.

"What I could have done, and what I probably should have done, was cast more unknowns -- not worried about who were the lead actors," Van Sant said. "I was not ready. I’m not sure why."

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ABC Image Group LA(LOS ANGELES) -- Racecar driver Danica Patrick became the first female host of the ESPYs Wednesday night. But that achievement wasn't the only moment that will have people talking tomorrow, later this week -- and even for years to come.

The "hero" Parkland coaches, an embattled Hall of Fame football player and 141 sexual abuse survivors all were honored in a very heartfelt, empowering awards show.

Here are the top highlights:

Danica's big night

"It's true the ESPYs have never had a host like me before," she said. "For the last 25 years, the ESPYs have been about celebrating the magic of sports."

But Patrick didn't shy away from telling her fair share of jokes, some of which were aimed at sports icons in the room.

She made fun of Cleveland, Odell Beckham Jr.'s hairstyle, and more.

"Speaking of other countries, congrats to France on winning the World cup," she said. "I'd make a joke about the U.S. soccer team, but they didn't qualify for this monologue."

The NBA's elite weren't safe either, as Patrick joked about King LeBron James himself, going below the belt when she made fun of his losing his hair. She then explained when James hosted in the past, he picked on her, too.

Pat Tillman Award For Service

Funnyman Jon Stewart took the stage to present a very serious award.

Former Marine and college football star Jake Wood, who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, was honored for organizing veterans and first responders to Haiti to help in 2010 after a severe earthquake rocked the island.

That led to his starting his nonprofit Team Rubicon, which, years later, has thousands of veterans and volunteers around the globe.

The organization doesn't just save lives in disaster zones, including Houston and Puerto Rico, but it also gives veterans purpose and meaning and saves their lives as well.

"Being able to share our stories and know you're not alone ... we couldn't do it without each other," one veteran said during a special clip.

The Jimmy V Award for Perseverance goes to Jim Kelly

Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly, who's battled cancer several times over the past five years, was honored with the award named after the legendary late basketball coach.

There wasn't a dry eye in the room as Kelly spoke about his late son, Hunter, and his battle with cancer.

"My faith [is] in the good lord that he has plans for my life," Kelly said. "My wife, Jill, you are my heart, you are my soul, you are my everything."

He also inspired the room about "being a difference-maker," adding: "If you have somebody out there suffering, it doesn't have to be cancer ... the smile on your face, that can be the difference ... like Jimmy V said, 'Don't ever give up!'"

Stoneman Douglas High School honors coaches

Another somber yet inspiring moment came later in the evening, when the three coaches killed during the Feb. 14 shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, were honored with the Best Coach Award.

Aaron Feis, Scott Beigel and Chris Hixon all gave their lives to save students earlier this year.

Former high school athletes and students talked about how these coaches "changed lives" and later died saving them.

Student after student talked about the mentors, heroes and friends they knew in these three amazing men.

Abuse survivors stand strong

The big moment of the night came when 141 abuse victims of disgraced doctor Larry Nassar took the stage after sharing their powerful and empowering stories.

After a powerful video detailing the abuse they all suffered, the 141 woman all took the stage to receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. It was a moment that likely will be talked about for decades.

"It is a privilege to stand up here with my sister survivors, as we represent hundreds more that are not with us tonight," said Sarah Klein, who was victimized by Nassar 30 years ago.

Klein called tonight "a portrait of survival, a new vision of courage."

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Photo by: Sergei Bachlakov/Warner Bros/NBCSherri Shepherd makes her return tonight on NBC's crime mockumentary, Trial & Error, where she will once again play researcher and paralegal Anne Flatch, a woman who suffers from various disorders.

During the first season, Shepherd's character took on a new affliction each week, like such real-life disorders as randomly speaking with a British accent, walking backwards, and being diagnosed with alien hand syndrome--where your hand essentially tries to kill you. Going into this season-- with a new murder mystery to solve-- Shepherd tells ABC Radio, they'll be plenty more disorders for her to take on.

"Second season, I've Jumping Frenchman of Maine syndrome," she says. "If I'm startled I will jump ten feet in the air. I have random dog hearing so I can hear things that bats hear. If I drink too much I'm a human combustible. So I will set myself on fire involuntarily."

She continues, "It's so many disorders. I go temporarily blind. Every time I look at the script, I go, "OK here's something new."

Although her quirky character seems very much unlike the bubbly comedian, Shepherd says she and Anne actually do have a lot in common.

"The part of me that's Anne is the joyful person," Shepherd says. "The person who is always smiling. I'm the person on set... [that] organizes the karaoke parties. I get to give the gifts that we give the crew...I'm that person that if anybody's going through anything, I go, "What do you need me to pray about?" I'm the person that comes in the training and goes, "Good morning everybody!" I get everybody to do pushups, we dance with wild abandon, and I'm a hugger. 

Trial & Error airs tonight at 9 p.m. ET.

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Getty Images/Bettmann(VIRGINIA) -- Adrian Cronauer, the disc jockey whose military stint became the inspiration for Robin Williams in Good Morning Vietnam, has died at 79 years old.

Jeff Hunt, who hired Cronauer at Roanoke FM station WPVR, confirmed the DJ's Wednesday passing to the Roanoke Times. Hunt explained Cronauer had been living in a nursing home in Troutville, Virginia.

"Goooooooood morning, Vietnam!" was Cronauer's signature sign-on for his morning show Dawn Buster, which he hosted from Siagon from 1965 to 1966. Williams portrayal of the real-life DJ earned him an Oscar nomination and a Golden Globe win. 

According to USA Today, the real Cronauer insisted that the hit 1987 Barry Levinson-directed movie took some real liberties with his life story. In 2008, according to the Military Times, he told a group of veterans that if he'd done half the things Robin Williams did in that movie, "I'd still be in Leavenworth [prison]."

Still, Cronauer was happy with the movie, especially its respectful portrayal of Americans who were sent overseas.  He and Williams became friends after the film was completed, and he was reportedly "gobsmacked" by Williams' death by suicide in 2014, according to the Military Times.

But Cronauer was a Renaissance man and in addition to his radio work, he ran a law practice, "owned his own advertising agency, managed a radio station, was program director of a television station, and was a TV news anchorman."

His official obituary on Legacy.com added that he later "served as a confidential advisor to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense from 2001 through 2009," where "He represented the POW/MIA Office at meetings within the Office of the Secretary of Defense and at various outside functions including liaison with the leadership of veteran's service organizations as well as family and activist groups."

Cronauer also earned the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service.

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ABC RadioLOS ANGELES -- Sony Pictures has moved Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood up a couple of weeks, from August 9, 2019 to July 26, 2019, according to Variety.

The trade speculates the change was made to avoid controversy over the release coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the Charles Manson murders, on which the film is based.

Once again, Oscar winner Tarantino has assembled a galaxy of stars for his latest feature, including his Django Unchained co-star Leonardo DiCaprio, and his Inglorious Basterd lead Brad Pitt, as well as Margot Robbie, Timothy Olyphant, Luke Perry, Damian Lewis, Dakota Fanning and Al Pacino.

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Warner Bros.(LOS ANGELES) -- Warner Bothers is marking the 10th anniversary of Christopher Nolan's groundbreaking film, The Dark Knight, by bringing it to four select IMAX locations for an exclusive, one-week engagement, beginning August 24, it was announced Wednesday.

The movie, led by the late Heath Ledger's Oscar-winning turn as the Joker, opened in the U.S. on July 18, 2008 and made $158.4 million in its debut weekend, on its way to earning $534.8 million stateside and $1 billion globally. Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Morgan Freeman also starred.

Tickets for the IMAX re-release opening day go on sale this Friday.

Theater locations can be found on IMAX's website.

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