NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Monday, October 5, 2015, 2:00 AM
Stephanie Mills, Broadway’s original Dorothy in “The Wiz,” begins rehearsals Monday NBC’s production of the musical.
Stephanie Mills, Broadway’s original Dorothy in “The Wiz,” begins rehearsals Monday for her role as Aunt Em in NBC’s production of the musical.
She tells [email protected] she’s blown away by the “girl power” on tap for TV audiences in “The Wiz Live!” airing Dec. 3.
Pop stars Queen Latifah (as the Wiz) and Mary J. Blige (as the nasty Evilene) are among the leads. Uzo Aduba, of “Orange is the New Black,” plays goody-goody Glinda. Amber Riley is the Good Witch of the North.
“I’m starstruck. I’ll think we’ll have a huge girl powwow,” Mills told theater critic Joe Dziemianowicz. Mills, a Grammy-winner for “Never Knew Love Like This Before,” was at the Majestic Theater, where “The Wiz” premiered in 1975, to talk about old times and to meet a new colleague.
Sting and wife Trudie Styler attended a shindig at the PH-D Terrace thrown by BAFTA New York and the Cinema Society.
On Friday, Mills was introduced to 19-year-old Shanice Williams, a bubbly unknown cast as NBC’s Dorothy in an open call. The emotional meeting was filmed for Peacock Production’s documentary about the making of the live telecast. The doc airs Thanksgiving eve.
“Shanice reminds me of me when I was her age,” says Mills, 58, who was filmed singing and chatting with the newcomer. “She’s a beautiful spirit.”
“The Wiz” is set to go Broadway after the TV one-off. Would Mills reprise Aunt Em on the Great White Way? “Yes,” she says, “in a heartbeat.”
TITILLATING GIFT FROM STING’S TRUDIE
[email protected] is pretty sure that Sting had a lovely birthday on Friday. The bearded rock star and wife Trudie Styler attended a shindig at the PH-D Terrace thrown by BAFTA New York and the Cinema Society. When we asked what Trudie could possibly get for her hubby, she chirply replied, “Women’s lingerie that I’m wearing now.” Fiji and St. Germain hosted the packed party, which also drew Uma Thurman, Hugh Dancy and Stella Schnabel.
Kelly Rutherford is choosing to stay optimistic despite being forced to return her kids to their father in Monaco.
EVEN WITHOUT KIDS, SHE’S A POSITIVE ‘GIRL’
Kelly Rutherford is choosing to stay optimistic despite the legal setbacks she’s endured over being forced to return her kids to their father in Monaco. “I’m doing great,” she told [email protected] “I’m staying very positive. I have an enormous amount of support … I think you have to keep a lot of love in your heart and stay positive.” The “Gossip Girl” actress mused that perhaps her kids will become activists for others in the same situation. “You never know, maybe these things happen for a reason,” she noted.
CAITLYN TAKES THE PLUNGE
Caitlyn Jenner wowed the crowd at the Point Foundation’s “Voices on Point Gala” with a plunging suit jacket that revealed a sexy red bra. The reality star was joined by another Olympic hero – diver and LGBT activist Greg Louganis. Jenner presented an award to producers of “Transparent” and “Becoming Us.”
Caitlyn Jenner wowed the crowd at the Point Foundation’s “Voices on Point Gala” with a plunging suit jacket that revealed a sexy red bra.
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Matthew McConaughey unveiled a softer, squishier version of himself.
MCCONAU-HEY! CHECK OUT THAT DAD BOD
Matthew McConaughey unveiled a softer, squishier version of himself on the New York set of his upcoming movie, “Gold,” in which he plays a struggling businessman. The Oscar-winner has been spotted around town dining with his missus, Camila Alves.
SIMON KEEPS HIS EYES ON THE PRIZE
Simon Cowell gave the paparazzi a cheeky snap when he jokingly ogled his lovely lady’s chest. Cowell and baby-mama Lauren Silverman were attending the Shooting Star Chase Ball in London. The couple have a 1-year-old son, named Eric after Cowell’s late father.
Simon Cowell gave the paparazzi a cheeky snap when he jokingly ogled his lovely lady’s chest.
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Lady Gaga got cute and cuddly with fiancée Taylor Kinney on the red carpet.
GAGA’S GAGA ABOUT HER FIANCÉE
Lady Gaga oozed some serious old-school Hollywood glamor for the premiere of “American Horror Story: Hotel” in Los Angeles. The pop star got cute and cuddly with fiancée Taylor Kinney on the red carpet.
Kanye West and a fuchsia-domed Jared Leto yukked it up at Vogue’s 95th Anniversary Party during Paris Fashion Week.
JARED’S IN THE PINK ON PARIS VISIT
Kanye West and a fuchsia-domed Jared Leto yukked it up at Vogue’s 95th Anniversary Party during Paris Fashion Week. The 43-year-old Leto thrilled fans earlier with posting a shirtless photo on Instagram. The snap shows the actor about to munch on a baguette and the Thirty Seconds to Mars front man cheekily captioned it, “Le Pink and Le Pain.” Leto will be seen next as the Joker in “Suicide Squad.”
Christie Brinkley and new beau John Mellencamp enjoyed a tasty meal at Locanda Verde in Tribeca.
CELEBS STYLIN’ SO KIDS CAN BE SMILIN’
Hollywood A-listers stepped out to support Operation Smile’s 2105 L.A. Smile Gala. Mark Wahlberg arrived with wife Rhea and daughter Ella. After hitting the red carpet, the “Ted” star topped to chat with Gavin Rossdale and Roma Downey. Honoree Selma Blair gave an impassioned speech urging the audience to use their fame for the betterment of “kids who need help” while Natasha Bedingfield closed out the evening with an acoustic version of her hit “Unwritten.”
HURTS SO GOOD FOR CHRISTIE
Christie Brinkley and new beau John Mellencamp enjoyed a tasty meal at Locanda Verde in Tribeca. At Billy Joel’s most recent MSG show, the Piano Man sang “The Longest Time” about his ex-wife Brinkley and added afterwards, “And now she’s dating John Mellencamp!” The Indiana rocker’s last relationship was with Meg Ryan.