• George Napolitano/Getty

    STAND BY ME

    Why Didn’t Camille Dump Bill Cosby?

    Despite a dizzying number of women coming forward against her husband, Camille Cosby refuses to sharpen her blade of vengeance. Is this another case of cognitive dissonance?

    As the number of women accusing Bill Cosby of sexual assault and other misbehavior grows dizzyingly high, it is becoming increasingly hard for all but the most devoted rape denialist to wave the accusations away as baseless. It’s also been hard for many, particularly women, not to wonder how Cosby’s wife, Camille Cosby, must be reacting to this. Many women like to think that if they were in her shoes, they’d be throwing the bastard on his ass with one hand while calling their divorce lawyer with another, a pleasing fantasy of righteous anger unleashed.

    Camille Cosby didn’t do that. Instead, she released an incredibly manipulative statement trying to link Rolling Stone’s questionable story about rape at UVA to the stories about her husband, even though the two situations have nothing to do with each other. She complained that there “appears to be no vetting of my husband’s accusers,” an accusation that falls flat when you look at how thorough much of the reporting has been on this.

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  • Singer/rapper Nicki Minaj performs onstage during the BET Awards '14 at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on June 29, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Allen Berezovsky/WireImage, Getty)

    SHE CAN DO IT ALL

    Nicki Minaj Bares Her Own Vulnerability

    The Pinkprint holds the weight of watching a relationship crumble; where some have public meltdowns and volleys of badmouthing, Nicki Minaj has her punchlines, flows, and ‘an empire also.’

    In early November, Nicki Minaj took a bat to a Mercedes Benz that she had lent to Safaree “SB” Samuels, her simultaneous hypeman, pseudo-assistant, and boyfriend of 12 years. Earlier in the year, TMZ alleged, citing a police report, that a hotel room spat between the two left Nicki with a busted lip. She and Samuels disputed the account, but rumors of the fight coupled with images that showed Samuels had covered up at least two of his Nicki tattoos, seemed to suggest that, after a turbulent year, the two had split.

    In other words, Nicki Minaj suffered possibly the greatest heartbreak of her life during the biggest, most closely scrutinized phase of her career. But, under the hawkish eye of the media and through a heavily active social media presence, she carried on as usual. For months, I’ve wondered how. Now I know: Her unusually open third album, The Pinkprint, holds the weight of watching the relationship crumble; where some have public meltdowns and engage in volleys of badmouthing, Nicki has her punchlines, flows, and “an empire also.”

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  • DC Comics

    But Can She Cook?

    Wonder Woman Takes a Big Step Back

    Now a husband-and-wife team is in charge of Wonder Woman’s image and her story line, and the first comic they produced is both leering and condescending.

    For months now, I’ve been worried about Wonder Woman, ever since I learned that husband-and-wife team David and Meredith Finch were chosen to write the newest run of the most iconic female superhero of all time.

    David is familiar to comic book readers for his award-winning illustrations of such characters as Batman, Superman, and the X-Men—and his nearly pornographic versions of every woman he’s ever drawn (just one example: in 2011, he faced criticism for his sexist drawings of Wonder Woman in the Justice League). Meredith, if she is known to comic aficionados at all, is known for being David’s wife, though she has in fact written comics before—a few issues of a highly-sexualized Wizard of Oz spin-off from a minor publisher, all of which happened after she was announced as the new writer for Wonder Woman.

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  • Amy Dickerson/The New York Times

    I HAVE A DREAM

    Ava DuVernay On ‘Selma,’ Sony, and Race

    The director of the powerful Martin Luther King Jr. film Selma sat down to discuss the film, as well as race in America and Hollywood.

    The road to Selma, the first studio biopic of legendary Civil Rights Movement leader Martin Luther King Jr., was a bumpy one.

    Once British screenwriter Paul Webb finished his first draft of the screenplay in 2007, it passed through the hands of filmmakers Michael Mann and Stephen Frears, before landing on the lap of Lee Daniels. So, Daniels cast his Paperboy co-star David Oyelowo as Dr. King, and surrounded him with A-listers like Robert De Niro and Hugh Jackman. Then, in 2010, Daniels opted to helm The Butler instead and most of the supporting cast dropped out, leaving Selma on life support. In stepped Oyelowo, who handwrote a letter to the film’s financiers at Pathé begging them to consider an up-and-coming filmmaker by the name of Ava DuVernay for the director’s chair. DuVernay had worked with Oyelowo on Middle of Nowhere, a gripping drama about a woman struggling to come to terms with her husband’s pending eight-year prison stint. But that film was made for just $200,000, half of which came from the personal savings of DuVernay (a former publicist and Hollywood crisis consultant).

    Oyelowo nonetheless sold the film’s French backers on the idea, and Tom Wilkinson (Lyndon B. Johnson), Carmen Ejogo (Coretta Scott King), Tim Roth (George Wallace), and a host of others joined the cast. Earlier this year, Oprah Winfrey joined Brad Pitt as a producer on the film, and also stepped into the role of activist Annie Lee Cooper.

    “He’s my muse,” DuVernay says of Oyelowo. “Usually muses are hot, young things for some old-man director, so he’s my hot blond. He inspires my imagination because I know he can do anything I can think of.”

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  • Eric Thayer/ Reuters

    GENDER PAY GAP

    J. Law Paid Less Than Male Co-Stars

    Email correspondences from the Sony hack reveal that Jennifer Lawrence was compensated less than her male co-stars, compounding the studio’s gender pay gap problems.

    One of the most prominent A-list presences in the emails ripped from Sony’s servers by the hacking collective Guardians of Peace is none other than Jennifer Lawrence (who is, sadly, no stranger to hacking herself).

    Lawrence and her fabulous email handle (peanutbutt) make several cameos in the leak, including numerous pleasant exchanges with Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment, over her dazzling turn in American Hustle, which was co-financed by Sony arm Columbia Pictures. There’s also an interesting email exchange between Pascal and Brian Helgeland, screenwriter of the planned Cleopatra biopic, with Pascal suggesting that Helgeland dump Angelina Jolie in favor of Lawrence—an idea Helgeland says he’s given some thought to.

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  • The Garage PR

    Liberte, Egalite, Nudity

    Fight for Your Right to Go Topless

    A new film blurs the lines of art and real life as it follows the social-media fight for women’s right to go topless.

    In a world where the genitalia of millions of women are mutilated every year to discourage premarital sex, the double standard that men can be topless where women can’t—on beaches, television, and Instagram—seems a mild injustice.

    But in many Western countries, that injustice has sparked a popular movement called Free the Nipple, with celebrities like Miley Cyrus and Cara Delevingne raising awareness on social media about breast censorship and the greater issue of gender inequality.

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  • Phil McCarten/Reuters

    Political Interest

    Sarah Silverman’s Sex Change Activism

    ‘I don’t wanna be scared out of doing [political] junk like this,’ she says. ‘Especially not by the faceless bogeymen that spew threats with no accountability. Pussies, I think.’

    Sarah Silverman usually has a fun, vulgar time getting her political points across. On Wednesday, the comedian dropped her latest video, titled, “Sarah Silverman Closes Her Gap.” The NSFW video shows Silverman solving the gender pay gap by “becoming a dude” and getting a sex change. The project, mounted by Manhattan-based ad agency Droga5, raises money for the National Women’s Law Center to help close the combined gap of “30 TRILLION FRICKIN DOLLARS.”

    “Hey, could you give me two really big balls?” Silverman asks the doctor. “Or make it three. It’s gonna take a lot of balls to tell women that the wage gap is fair.”

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  • Eva Longoria addresses delegates during the final session of Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, September 6, 2012. (Jason Reed/Reuters)

    Actress-Activist

    Eva: The Democrats’ Secret Power Player

    From working behind the scenes in the midterms to making a new farm labor documentary, actress Eva Longoria has emerged as a force to be reckoned with in liberal politics.

    These days, if you’re a rising star in Democratic politics, it is downright weird if you don’t have Eva Longoria in your corner.

    The 39-year-old actress starred on the long-running ABC satire Desperate Housewives and in more lackluster theatrical fare such as Harsh Times and Over Her Dead Body. She’s done commercials for L’Oréal, and hosted Saturday Night Live. But her work as an entertainer isn’t what’s earning her the biggest headlines these days—it’s her role as a serious political activist and powerhouse in Democratic politics.

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  • via Facebook

    Interviewed

    From ‘True Detective’ To ‘Fort Bliss’

    The actress sat down to discuss her award-worthy performance as an Army veteran and single mother in Fort Bliss and the difficulties of being a woman in Hollywood.

    There is, rather unfortunately, a preponderance of evidence that numerous Hollywood stars were generated in a farcical, fame-seeking incubator buried beneath Mount Lee. When you speak to them, they speak at you, regurgitating vacuous mini-monologues about, say, “the great script” or “the amazing time” they had making their latest pile of processed, gold-plated dung. Michelle Monaghan is, thankfully, not one of those people.

    Perhaps it’s her small-town Midwest upbringing, emerging from the cornfields of Winthrop, Iowa—population 850—or the knowledge imparted by her blue-collar parents (her mother ran a day care center out of the family home and her father was a factory worker), but Monaghan feels, well, real. And not in the J. Lo featuring Ja Rule sense. She also, as The New York Times’ Manohla Dargis recently put it, is “one of those performers you’re always happy to see” who “radiates intelligence.” For all these reasons and more, the 38-year-old actress has become one of the premier portrayers of working-class women onscreen. Take her first big role as Kimberly Woods, a “Teach For America” instructor in over her head on the Fox drama Boston Public; or as a miner opposite Charlize Theron in North Country; her Bahstin private investigator in search of a missing girl in Gone Baby Gone; the vodka-swilling long-haul truck driver in Trucker.

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  • Serena Williams of the U.S. walks on the court during her women's singles match against Ana Ivanovic of Serbia at the Australian Open 2014 tennis tournament in Melbourne January 19, 2014. (Jason Reed/Reuters)

    Last Stand

    Serena & the Decline of American Tennis

    With no obvious successor in place, 32-year-old Serena Williams, the oldest woman to ever hold the No. 1 world ranking, is one of the lone links to America's past dominance.

    The parking lots are full, but there’s only a sparse crowd this afternoon in Center Court of the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio, when the chair umpire of this Cincinnati Open semifinal calls time. Serena Williams, wearing a violet sleeveless top and black miniskirt, with a bright yellow headband over her flowing, highlighted hair, moseys to the right baseline, settles atop it, and begins to sway back and forth awaiting the first serve of the match.

    The tournament is one of the last hard-court warm-ups for the upcoming U.S. Open, the latter of which Williams is the back-to-back defending champ. Like many of her compatriots, she’s in the Cincinnati suburb prepping for the final Grand Slam of the season. In what has increasingly become the norm through the years no matter the event, however, Williams is the only American singles player, male or female, to advance beyond the round of 16.

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  • The Daily Beast

    #NeverForget

    Beyoncé Is Our Indigo Girl

    The R&B diva’s ‘feminist’ proclamation at the VMAs recalls feminism’s all-important ’90s—a decade filled with strong, outspoken female musicians.

    In a heart-stopping moment during her 16-minute performance at Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards, Beyoncé made a bold political statement: Projecting a quote from Nigerian feminist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie onto a gigantic, glowing screen while standing triumphantly in front of the word “feminist.” Bold, but it also felt right after a night of watching female performers dominate the telecast, often with anthems about power and liberation. Feminism is definitely having a moment in pop music.

    Of course, this isn’t really the first time that it’s happened. Twenty years ago, in fact, feminism was also having a big moment in pop music. Granted, no one was flashing the word “feminist” at the VMAs—leave it to Queen B to take it to the next level—but the ’90s, particularly the early to mid-’90s, was a banner time for women in music who wanted to be more than just objects for men to ogle, and to sing about something more than just wanting the pretty boys to like you. Back then, fans could be forgiven for thinking women’s power in the music world was just going to keep growing, but by the late ’90s and early 2000s, the moment had passed and music was deep into a backlash phase.

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  • NBC

    Emmys 2014

    Kate McKinnon: SNL’s New Superstar

    The ‘SNL’ scene-stealer nabbed an Emmy nod for singing about penises and her impression of Angela Merkel. Now she’s on the hit Hulu series ‘The Awesomes.’

    Every actor knows that there are tricks to landing an Emmy nomination. If a pregnancy storyline is written for your character, the birth episode is Emmy gold. A bout with a life-threatening—though not life-ending—illness is always good awards bait. When all that fails, ask the writers to pen you a scene where your meth-dealing former teacher suffers a psychological breakdown.

    Or, if you’re Saturday Night Live’s newest breakout star, you sing a song about traveling the world in pursuit of penises and do an impression of a German chancellor who most of mainstream America has never heard of. Unconventional? Sure. But that’s why we love Kate McKinnon.

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  • Todd Oren/Getty

    Keeping It Real

    Anne Archer: Hollywood Women Are Doomed

    While the Oscar-nominated actress is starring as Jane Fonda, the most outspoken woman’s rights campaigner in Hollywood history, she says the film industry will never change.

    EDINBURGH — Half a century after Hollywood’s liberal revolution, Oscar-nominated leading lady Anne Archer says she has never been more depressed about the prospects for women in the movie industry.

    The 1960s and ’70s were supposed to have been a watershed for equality, but Archer feels there is absolutely no prospect of women gaining equal status in the movie world. “People have been asking that question for 40, 50 years and I haven’t seen it happen,” she said. “Ten years ago I probably thought it would change, but now I’m more realistic.”

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