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Rob Lowe debuts as KFC’s newest colonel Sunday

Meet the new KFC colonel — actor Rob Lowe.

>> Read more trending news

The actor has played many roles through the years — as Sam Seaborn in “The West Wing” and Chris Traeger in “Parks and Recreation,” for example — but the former Brat Pack member who also starred in “St. Elmo’s Fire” is branching out into fast food.

Lowe will portray Colonel Harland Sanders beginning Sunday, donning the colonel’s white suit, black string tie and trademark goatee — but he also will be wearing a space suit, USA Today reported.

Lowe, 53, will be promoting KFC’s Zinger chicken sandwich, the restaurant chain announced Friday.

“My grandfather was the head of the Ohio chapter of the National Restaurant Association in the 1960s and took me to meet Colonel Harland Sanders when I was a kid,” Lowe told USA Today. “It was a big deal. I thought this would be a nice homage to both Colonel Sanders and to my grandfather.”

Among the other seven celebrities who have portrayed the founder of the Finger Lickin’ Good chicken are Darrell Hammond, Norm Macdonald, Jim Gaffigan and actors George Hamilton and Billy Zane.

Lowe, 53, has previously done commercials for DIRECTV.

The spicy Zinger sandwich will debut Monday in the United States after a 33-year stint overseas, KFC said. In a video promoting the sandwich, Lowe steps to the podium in his space suit and proclaims that “The time has come to explore beyond our known horizons.”

Lowe ends the video by asking, “Can you actually launch KFC’s world-famous Zinger chicken sandwich into space?”

His answer? “We certainly hope so. Our entire marketing campaign depends on it.

“But when we succeed, we will lick our fingers. We will lick our fingers good.”

Serena Williams shares another shot from Mexico vacation

Tennis star Serena Williams announced she was pregnant on Snapchat earlier this week as she shared — and then deleted — a photo of her baby bump with the cryptic caption “20 weeks” from her vacation in Mexico.

>> Read more trending news

The world’s top-ranked female player shared another shot from her getaway with fiancé and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian on Instagram, Today reported. The 35-year-old is looking out over the Caribbean Sea at the edge of Mayan ruins in Tulum. Earlier, Williams posted a photo of herself and Ohanian horsing around in New Zealand last January.

Williams has won 72 career WTA titles during her career. She has won 23 Grand Slams in singles competition and has 14 in women's doubles. She also won two Grand Slam events in mixed doubles.

Jennifer Hudson shares video of son singing ‘Hallelujah’

Everyone knows Jennifer Hudson has a powerhouse voice, but her son, David Otunga Jr., is a singer in his own right.

The “American Idol” alum on Wednesday shared a video of her son, whose father is her long-time fiance, lawyer David Otunga, on Instagram.

>> Read more trending news

David, 7, is seen shyly singing Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” as someone plays the piano. Once he’s finished, he breathes a sigh of relief and smiles at his mother.

Hudson’s caption definitely showed she was a proud mom.

“This is so precious to me , I can't even begin to describe how it melts my heart,” she wrote. “I did not want to shame my baby by shouting but ... look at him .. he so serious and focused ! A mothers dream ! My babies singing!”

Watch the video below: 

Ina Garten shares why she and her husband decided to not have children

Children aren’t for everybody, and that’s the case for Food Network star Ina Garten.

People reported that “The Barefoot Contessa” shared with with Katie Couric why she and her husband of 48 years, Jeffrey, decided  not to have children.

>> Read more trending news

“We decided not to have children,” she said on an episode of “The Katie Couric Podcast.” “I really appreciate that other people do and we will always have friends that have children that we are close to but it was a choice I made very early.”

“I really felt, I feel, that I would have never been able to have the life I’ve had,” she said. “So it’s a choice and that was the choice I made.”

Though there is sometimes a stigma surrounding couples that don’t have kids, Garten said she never felt judged by her peers for her decision.

“I never felt that people did,” she said. “I think the one thing that we miss is a lot of people’s friends are the parents of their kids’ friends. So we never had that connection with other people that I see, that network. But no I never felt judged by it. Maybe people did but I didn’t notice.”

Garten also shared her own piece of advice when it comes to a loving and long-lasting marriage.

“The secret is that you just take care of each other and admire each other and support each other and you get that back,” she said, adding, “If Jeffrey and I disagree on something — he always agrees with me!”

Paris Jackson shares a photo with godfather Macaulay Culkin

Paris Jackson, the only daughter of pop legend Michael Jackson, recently shared a photo of herself with her godfather, actor Macaulay Culkin.

>> Read more trending news

In the photo, posted Friday, Paris is wearing bunny hears and in a sweet embrace with her godfather. She captions the photo with a simple bunny emoji.

Culkin was close with her father Michael, and appeared in his music video “Black or White.” Despite having a controversial relationship, they remained close, and that bond seems to have extended to Jackson’s children.

Last December, Paris shared a photo of her painting Culkin’s toe nails.

“Model? Nah, I paint hipsters’ toenails for a living,” she wrote in the caption.

Culkin has also been seen on Jackson’s Instagram Stories.

Trump hosts Nugent, Kid Rock and Palin for dinner

As Ted Nugent might have sang, it was a free for all at the White House on Wednesday night.

>> Read more trending news 

The conservative rock ’n’ roll singer joined fellow musician Kid Rock and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin for dinner with President Donald Trump, NBC News reported.

In a Facebook post Thursday, Palin thanked the president for the invitation and shared photos of herself, Nugent, and Kid Rock around the desk with Trump in the Oval Office. Another photo shows Palin talking with Trump's son-in-law and senior advisor, Jared Kushner. The trio also posed with a portrait of Hillary Clinton, the former first lady and secretary of state who lost to Trump in last November’s election.

Nugent was not a fan of Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama. In 2014, he called Obama a “subhuman mongrel,” NBC News reported. Nugent later apologized, "not necessarily to the President — but on behalf of much better men than myself," according to NBC News.

 

Charlie Murphy remembered by fellow comedians at funeral service

Actors Neal Brennan, D.L. Hughley, Cedric The Entertainer, George Lopez, Eddie Griffin, Donnell Rawlings and David Chappelle attended funeral services for fellow comedian Charlie Murphy Wednesday, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

>> Read more trending news

Murphy, the older brother of comedian Eddie Murphy, died April 12 at 57 years old. He had been battling leukemia.

Cedric the Entertainer posted a photo to Instagram that showed him with the other comedians at what appeared to be a service for the late actor.

“Tonite (sic) we joined Family n Friends to pay tribute and lay to rest our brother the Legendary #charliemurphy,” the photo caption read.

Film producer Ray Murphy Jr., a cousin of Eddie and Charlie Murphy, thanked the actors for coming to the service in a tweet.

Katie Couric on ‘Today’ drama over Megyn Kelly’s debut and Tamron Hall’s exit

Former “Today” show host and news anchor Katie Couric weighed in on the recent anchor shake-up at the longtime NBC morning show.

The former “Today” anchor stopped by “Watch What Happens Live” and talked to Andy Cohen about her thoughts on Megyn Kelly’s upcoming debut and Tamron Hall’s sudden exit.

>> Read more trending news

Couric kept mum on a lot of the details and made it clear she isn’t taking sides after a caller asked about the shakeup.

“I haven’t talked to Tamron. I don’t know Tamron well. I do know Megyn a bit,” she said. 

“Unfortunately I think sometimes people turn morning shows into soap operas that they’re not. Because they feel so intimately connected to the people on the show, they feel like they’re members of their family. They get very territorial and proprietary about it. And they read things into relationships.”

Couric predicted the upheaval will settle down soon.

“I think it’ll all work out.”

“And I think the show is great. I wish Tamron well. But I’m just not getting involved in the drama of it.”

>> Related: ‘Today’ host Hoda Kotb announces adotion of baby girl

Hall announced her departure from the show in February just days after she learned she would lose her 9 a.m. time slot to newcomer Megyn Kelly, who will join the show in September. It’s rumored that Kelly will either take over Al Roker and Hall’s old spot at 9 a.m. or take on Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb’s 10 a.m. hour.

“The format is still in progress, but she will most likely be hosting the hour on her own,” a source told People.

Time reveals its 100 most influential people for 2017

What do President Donald Trump, John Legend, Emma Stone, LeBron James and U.S. Rep. John Lewis have in common? They're all on Time magazine's annual list of the 100 most influential people of 2017.

>> Check out the complete list here

This year's list includes "the titans, pioneers, artists, leaders and icons who are changing the world today," the publication said on its website.

>> Read more trending news

>> Click here or scroll down for more

Members of The Revolution reflect on Prince's death, talk tour

Throughout his genre-bending career, Prince worked with a dazzling array of musicians.

His New Power Generation rolled with him through the '90s and the female trio 3rdeyegirl shared his space in the most recent years of his musical creations.

But his 1980s-era crew The Revolution, their star cemented in 1984’s “Purple Rain,” remain the definitive Prince backing band.

>> For more Prince coverage, head to Ruggieri’s Atlanta Music Scene blog on AJC.com

Shortly after Prince’s death last year from an accidental opioid overdose, original band members Bobby Z (drums), “Doctor” Matt Fink (keyboards), Mark “BrownMark” Brown (bass), Lisa Coleman (keyboards) and Wendy Melvoin (guitar) convened in a Minneapolis hotel to share their grief with fans via a heartfelt video.

In September, The Revolution reunited for a trifecta of sold-out shows at the fabled First Avenue club in Minneapolis, and after their planned performance at this weekend’s Celebration 2017 at Prince’s Paisley Park compound, will embark on a tour of about two dozen dates through July.

>> Prince’s estate halts release of new EP, ‘Deliverance,’ report says

Atlanta – the new residence of bassist Brown – isn’t on the itinerary yet, but fans will likely be sated during a second run of shows this fall.

Earlier this week, Brown and Fink – clad in his trademark scrubs – sat inside the band’s rehearsal space near downtown Minneapolis to discuss the loss of their leader, as well as what can be expected on this Revolution return.

Their feelings about the one-year anniversary of Prince’s death

Matt Fink: The sting of that happening has not really left any of us. We still think about it a lot. Almost every day I’ve thought about it. The mourning process for him is still there. Who knows how long that will take before you really start to not think about it as much? But now that we’re doing this (tour), it’s there in your face no matter what you do. We’re just going to do our best to help the fans heal. ... I thought by now I’d be doing better, but it’s still very emotional. It’s like losing a family member, a parent, even.

>> PHOTOS: Prince’s Paisley Park prepares to celebrate a shining star

Mark Brown: We hit this jam the other night, and it was like, he’s not there. Emotionally, when we were finished I was like, (that was just) like the old days. Then you start reminiscing and a sadness comes over you. ... He lives inside of us now. He was our mentor, our leader, our purple funky Yoda. The force was with him.

Fink: He was such a spiritual person to begin with and believed in the afterlife. In our hearts we know that he’s watching over all of this.

On The Revolution’s decision to reunite after Prince’s death

Fink: Let’s go back to 2012 when we did the (American) Heart Association event for Bobby Z. He was working with the heart association (after surviving a heart attack the year before) and asked us to help him out. We hadn’t played together since 2003 with Sheila E. and (before that) show we hadn’t worked together in 17 years. ... When Prince passed, the immediate reaction is, we’ve got to get together. We made the decision to get together in L.A. because Wendy and Lisa were working on soundtrack work. It was at that time that we said maybe we should get out and play again just to keep the legacy alive and give fans something to hold onto as well.

>> PHOTOS: Prince through the years

Brown: When we came out to Minneapolis right after he died, we were in a hotel room and ... you could look in the streets and see the pain. We all just said, ‘We should make a video right now and let the fans know that we feel that pain, too, and we’re gonna play.’ I never felt it was impulsive or the wrong thing to do. Some of us have different opinions. For me, I felt like, I’m there with them, I feel their pain. I was there in the beginning when we created that stuff, (so) let me give some of that back. Then later on we decided at the right time, we need to get back on the road and start the healing process. By playing the music, it helped us. I know it helped me.

Fink: My last meeting with Prince (in fall 2014), he expressed quite a bit of interest in reuniting with the group. Who knows? It might have been coming, anyway. To me, that still made sense; he was wishing that to happen.

On whether they had witnessed Prince in any kind of pain or in the throes of addiction

Fink: No, not at all. During that meeting he seemed just fine. I had not hint of it at that time.

>> Honoring Prince: 6 memorable tributes

Brown: For me, I thought he was a little thin. I even said to him, ‘Losing a little weight there, bro?’ and he said, ‘You getting a little belly, bro?’ (laughs). But it was fun, so I didn’t sense anything. When it all went down, I was like, that just blew me away. But even the piano tour, I was watching some of the clips and I was like, hmmm, as well as we know him, something’s not right there.

On The Revolution playing Atlanta at some point on the tour

Brown: They’ll see us, that’s all I can say. This first leg, it’s set, but the second one is being worked on. We can’t say anything until it’s contracted, but we’re on the move.

>> Prince remembered throughout Minneapolis 1 year after death

Why Brown recently relocated to the Atlanta area

Brown: I got tired of the city life. San Francisco is a beautiful, lovely city, but I’ve always been a country boy. Always lived in the suburbs, I always liked the quietness. Atlanta always seemed like a spot that I’d like to check out. The music scene, it’s like a second Hollywood. I plan to tap big time into the scene once things start to settle. I know a few musicians down there already, but would love to tap into that scene and really be a part of it, like I was in the Minnesota scene.

>> New Prince music appears ahead of anniversary of death

On the Prince that the public didn’t always see

Fink: He was very gregarious. When he wasn’t embroiled in music creation, there were days he’d be very businesslike, but he’d interject funny things and quips. But then there were moments if you were just relaxing, everybody liked to be funny and use their own sense of humor. He had a very infectious laugh as well. He was very good at doing voices, too, and imitating people. Go on YouTube and watch his appearance on ‘Muppets Tonight’ (in 1997) – that’s the real Prince.

>> Purple reign: Remembering how world mourned Prince’s death

On what fans can expect from The Revolution’s live shows

Fink: There are songs from the catalog starting from ‘Dirty Mind’ through ‘Parade’ and a few numbers that they’ve never heard, things that have been sitting in the vault.

>> Read more trending news

Brown (laughs): We’ve got some junk up in there!

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