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H.E.R. to Star as Belle in ABC’s ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Special in Historic Casting

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H.E.R. is now a Disney princess. The GRAMMY and Oscar-winning singer and songwriter will take on the role of Belle in ABC’s forthcoming live-action/animated Beauty and the Beast special celebrating the movie’s 30th anniversary, the network announced Wednesday. Her casting marks the first time an Afro Filipina woman will step into the shoes of the iconic character onscreen.

According to ABC, H.E.R. will take part in “never-before-seen musical performances celebrating and paying homage to the beloved tale” in the two-hour Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration, which will be recorded in front of a live audience at Disney Studios and air Thursday, Dec. 15 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

The 25-year-old will join previously announced executive producer Jon M. Chu and director Hamish Hamilton on the special. Additional castings will be announced at a later date.

“I can’t believe I get to be a part of the Beauty and the Beast legacy. The world will see a Black and Filipino Belle!” said H.E.R. in a statement. “I have always wanted to be a Disney princess, and I get to work with two wonderful directors Hamish Hamilton and my favorite, Jon M. Chu. It is very surreal and I couldn’t be more grateful.”

“With her obvious extraordinary talent and stage presence, H.E.R. is the perfect embodiment of our Belle and we are thrilled for audiences to see her in this celebration of creativity,” Chu said. “We were both influenced as storytellers by the original animated movie, so it’s very exciting to collaborate together to honor the artistry of that timeless classic while also inspiring a whole new generation of creators.”

This year marks 30 years since Beauty and the Beast earned a Best Picture nomination and won for Best Original Song at the Academy Awards in 1992.

H.E.R. will also serve as a producer on the special. The Beauty and the Beast casting comes on the heels of the singer making her acting debut in the 2023 movie musical, The Color Purple, opposite Fantasia Barrino, Taraji P. Henson, Corey Hawkins, Danielle Brooks, Colman Domingo, Ciara and Aunjanue Ellis.

ABC last produced a similar live-action/animated special for The Little Mermaid on Nov. 5, 2019, which featured performances from Auli’i Cravalho as Ariel, Graham Phillips as Prince Eric, Queen Latifah as Ursula, Shaggy as Sebastian, John Stamos as Chef Louis and Amber Riley as original character Emcee.

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Ozzy Osbourne Returns To the Stage, Reunites with Black Sabbath Member Following Surgery

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The Prince of Darkness is back! Ozzy Osbourne took the stage during the closing ceremony of the 2022 Commonwealth Games on Monday. The 73-year-old rocker and Black Sabbath guitarist, Tommy Iommi, surprised the crowd in Birmingham, England, when they performed the legendary rock band’s hit, “Paranoid.”  

Ozzy’s son, Jack Osbourne, celebrated the performance on Instagram. “Dad and @tonyiommi closed out the #commonwealthgames2022🇬🇧 tonight! 🤘👊,” the 36-year-old wrote alongside photos of his father rocking out.  

The performance marked Ozzy’s first return to the stage since undergoing surgery in June. That month, his wife, Sharon Osbourne, revealed that the “Iron Man” singer would undergo a procedure that would “determine the rest of his life.”  

Sharon added that she would be flying to Los Angeles to be by her husband’s side.  

Following his surgery, Ozzy took to his Instagram to give his fans an update. “I am now home from the hospital recuperating comfortably,” the rocker announced a week after the surgery.  “I am definitely feeling the love and support from all my fans and send everyone a big thank you for their thoughts, prayers and well wishes during my recovery.” 

ET caught up with Ozzy at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, where he dished about his recovery, and excitement to see his fans in person. 

“I like to see people,” he told ET. “That’s been the hardest thing over the past three years, because I’ve been trying to recover from my surgery. I’m getting there. A bit slow, but I’m back.”

 

 



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Powered by Publishing, Warner Music Posts $1.42 Billion in Revenue for Third Quarter

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Despite some “headwinds” including an unusually strong dollar, a lighter-than-usual release schedule and several short-term expenses, Warner Music posted a solid third quarter of 2022, with a strong showing from its publishing division and 12% revenue growth that the company stressed would have been closer to 15% if not for the above factors. The company also announced a new deal with Meta (formerly Facebook) and several upcoming legal settlements that it says will bring in $25 million in OBITDA, both of which will have a strong impact on Q4.

“We delivered solid double-digit growth on a constant-currency basis, even against the backdrop of a slowdown in the advertising market and some one-time items affecting year-over-year comparisons,” said Steve Cooper, CEO, Warner Music Group. “In June, we saw the beginning of a new wave of amazing releases and we’re looking forward to a strong end to our fiscal year. Long term, we have the scale to best capitalize on trends in artist development, and the agility and resources to continue to propel the globalization and diversification of our business.”

The company also pointed to forthcoming releases expected from Cardi B, Panic at the Disco, Megan Thee Stallion and Argentine rapper Paulo Londra.

Revenue was up 6.9% (or 12.1% in constant currency), which the company says was driven by continued recovery of recorded-music artist services and expanded-rights revenue, which was impacted by COVID in the prior-year quarter and increased 42.9% (or 55.7% in constant currency).

This was despite streaming revenue growth of just 2.7% (or 6.5% in constant currency), primarily driven by growth in publishing streaming revenue of 29.6% (or 34.6% in constant currency), which includes a benefit of $17 million resulting from a July 1 remand ruling by the Copyright Royalty Board in Phonorecords III upholding higher percentage of revenue U.S. mechanical royalty rates for 2018 to 2022. Streaming revenue continues to be affected by “the impact of a new deal with one of our [unspecified] digital partners affecting recorded music streaming revenue,” as noted in the announcement. During the earnings call, CFO Eric Levin noted in last quarter’s call that “We fully expect to see a normalization in streaming revenue in the first quarter of 2023.”

Recorded music streaming revenue decreased by 1.0% (or increased by 2.7% in constant currency) primarily due to the impact of that deal and an $11 million catch-up payment from one of the Company’s digital partners that benefited the prior-year quarter. Digital revenue represented 65.9% of total revenue in the quarter, compared to 69.3% in the prior-year quarter.

Operating income was $146 million compared to $162 million in the prior-year quarter. OIBDA was $233 million, compared to $241 million in the prior-year quarter, a decrease of 3.3% (or an increase of 2.6% in constant currency), and OIBDA margin decreased 1.7 percentage points to 16.3% from 18.0% in the prior-year quarter.

Recorded Music revenue was up 3.2% (or 8.5% in constant currency) due to artist services and expanded-rights revenue growth of 42.9% (or 55.7% in constant currency), reflecting an increase in concert promotion revenue, which was disrupted by COVID in the prior-year quarter, according to the announcement. Licensing revenue increased 1.4% (or 8.7% in constant currency), mainly due to higher synchronization and other activity, partially offset by the unfavorable impact of exchange rates. Digital revenue was down 1.7% (or up 2.2% in constant currency) and streaming revenue was down 1.0% (or up 2.7% in constant currency).

Recorded Music operating income was $166 million, down from $197 million in the prior-year quarter and operating margin was down 3.1 percentage points to 14.0% versus 17.1% in the prior-year quarter. OIBDA decreased 10.4% to $224 million from $250 million (or 5.5% in constant currency) in the prior-year quarter and OIBDA margin decreased 2.9 percentage points to 18.8%. Adjusted OIBDA decreased 9.1% from $254 million to $231 million (or 4.1% in constant currency) with Adjusted OIBDA margin down 2.6 percentage points to 19.4%.

Music publishing revenue increased 29.6% (or 34.6% in constant currency). The revenue increase was driven by growth in digital, performance and synchronization revenue, partially offset by a decline in mechanical revenue. Digital revenue increased 27.4% (or 32.1% in constant currency) and streaming revenue increased 29.6% (or 34.6% in constant currency), reflecting the continued growth in streaming, the CRB Rate Benefit and timing of new digital deals. Adjusted for the CRB Rate Benefit, streaming revenue increased 13.9% (or 18.3% in constant currency). Digital revenue represented 58.8% of total Music Publishing revenue versus 59.8% in the prior-year quarter. The slight decrease in digital revenue as a percentage of total Music Publishing revenue is due to an increase in performance revenue as bars, restaurants, concerts and live events continued to recover from COVID disruption. Synchronization revenue increased due to higher television and commercial licensing activity. Mechanical revenue decreased primarily due to the unfavorable impact of exchange rates, all according to the announcement. Music publishing operating income was $33 million compared to $21 million in the prior-year quarter, largely driven by increased revenue.

 



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100 Weeks of the Billboard Global Charts: The Songs That Never Left

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The latest Billboard Global 200 and Billboard Global Excl. U.S. charts, dated Aug. 13, 2022, mark 100 weeks since the worldwide song lists launched in September 2020. This week, we’re celebrating the hits that topped, lingered on, and shaped the surveys throughout their first 100 weeks. Today, we continue with the enduring songs that have lasted all 100 weeks.

Becoming a member of the 100-week club on Billboard‘s global charts does not simply require longevity – timing matters, too. Some of the longest running No. 1s that we covered yesterday – “Drivers License,” “Stay” and “As It Was,” among them – do not qualify since they were released after the charts launched. Despite never falling off, they have each tallied fewer than 100 weeks (so far …).

The songs on the triple-digit-weeks list were released in 2017, 2018, 2019 and, in one case, 2020. These are some of the most popular songs of the last half decade, those that have lingered on playlists and spread around the world.

Here’s a look at the 14 songs. ordered alphabetically, that have been here the whole time – plus a bonus track that falls one week short – with their ranks on the inaugural global charts and the current editions.

And take a listen to the biggest global hits of the last 100 weeks. We’ll be updating the playlist throughout the week as we highlight more of the charts’ most definitive hits.



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