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While accepting an award on June 14, Elizabeth Banks had a gutsy message for Hollywood powerhouse Steven Spielberg.

Banks was on stage at the Women in Film Crystal + Lucy Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel when she brought up a sad truth about one of the world's most celebrated directors:

“I went to 'Indiana Jones’ and ‘Jaws’ and every movie Steven Spielberg ever made," Banks said. "And by the way, he’s never made a movie with a female lead. Sorry, Steven. I don’t mean to call your ass out, but it’s true.”

OK, so it's not entirely true. But it's almost true.


Of the 30 films Spielberg's directed, just three have featured female leads (a fourth is in production now), The Wrap reported. Most notably, Banks failed to remember Spielberg was behind the iconic and consequential "The Color Purple" (Twitter users were quick to remind her). He also directed 1974's "The Sugarland Express" and "The BFG," released last year, both of which featured female leads.

The sentiment behind Banks' comment was spot on, however. Spielberg's preference for male-led films isn't unique to him — it's reflective of an industry-wide problem.

Most popular Hollywood films are dominated by male characters, The Washington Post reported in April. It's an issue that'd surely get much better if more women were directing films (men run the show behind the vast majority of movies being made), but women are continuously struggling to be taken seriously as the one helming the ship. The problem is demonstrably worse if you zero in on women of color.

For Banks — who directed "Pitch Perfect 2" and is working on 2019's "Charlie's Angels" — part of the solution starts at home, with the audience.

“Buy a fucking ticket to a movie with a woman," she told parents in the crowd while accepting her award. "Take them, give them the experience of seeing amazing women on film."

True

The last thing children should have to worry about is where their next meal will come from. But the unfortunate reality is food insecurity is all too common in this country.

In an effort to help combat this pressing issue, KFC is teaming up with Blessings in a Backpack to provide nearly 70,000 meals to families in need and spread holiday cheer along the way.

The KFC Sharemobile, a holiday-edition charitable food truck, will be making stops at schools in Chicago, Orlando, and Houston in December to share KFC family meals and special gifts for a few select families to address specific needs identified by their respective schools.

These cities were chosen based on the high level of food insecurity present in their communities and hardships they’ve faced, such as a devastating hurricane season in Florida and an unprecedented winter storm in Houston. In 2021, five million children across the US lived in food-insecure households, according to the USDA.

“Sharing a meal with family or friends is a special part of the holidays,” said Nick Chavez, CMO of KFC U.S. “Alongside our franchisees, we wanted to make that possible for even more families this holiday season.”

KFC will also be making a donation to Blessings in a Backpack, a nonprofit that works to provide weekend meals to school-aged children across America who might otherwise go hungry.

“The generous donations from KFC could not have come at a better time, as these communities have been particularly hard-hit this year with rising food costs, inflation and various natural disasters,” Erin Kerr, the CEO of Blessings in a Backpack, told Upworthy. “Because of KFC’s support, we’re able to spread holiday cheer by donating meals for hunger-free weekends and meet each community’s needs,” Kerr said.

This isn’t the first time KFC has worked with Blessings in a Backpack. The fried chicken chain has partnered with the nonprofit for the last six years, donating nearly $1 million dollars. KFC employees also volunteer weekly to package and provide meals to students in Louisville, Kentucky who need food over the weekend.

KFC franchisees are also bringing the Sharemobile concept to life in markets across the country through local food donations and other holiday giveback moments. Ampex Brands, a KFC franchisee based in Dallas, recently held its annual Day of Giving event and donated 11,000 meals to school children in economically disadvantaged neighborhoods.

If you’d like to get involved, you can make a donation to help feed students in need at kfc.com/kfcsharemobile. Every bit helps, but a donation of $150 helps feed a student on the weekends for an entire 38-week school year, and a donation as low as $4 will feed a child for a whole weekend.

Celine Dion spoke directly to her fans on social media.

Celine Dion has shared the devastating news that she has been diagnosed with a rare neurological disorder called stiff person syndrome.

In an emotional video to her fans, the 54-year-old French-Canadian singer apologized for taking so long to reach out and explained that her health struggles have been difficult to talk about.

"As you know, I have always been an open book, and I wasn't ready to say anything before. But I'm ready now."

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Joy

13 strangers became stranded at an airport, so they set off on a road trip together

The unlikely friends went viral online after documenting their 10+ hour journey.

@alanahsotry21/TikTok

From strangers to friends in one night.

Sometimes the greatest friendships are born out of the most unlikely circumstances.

Thanks to a canceled flight, 13 complete strangers found themselves stuck at Orlando International Airport on their way to Knoxville, Tennessee, with no way to get to their destination.

What started off as a disaster quickly turned around into an impromptu adventure, as the determined group banded together to rent a minivan and drive more than 500 miles from Orlando to Knoxville. Along the way they documented their travels, and the story was quickly picked up by news outlets like CNN, spreading like wholesome viral wildfire online.


The band of merry travelers hailed from different parts of the U.S. and Mexico, and didn’t all speak the same language. Plus each had their own reason for wanting to get to Knoxville. One college student was trying to make it back in time for her final. Another was hoping to tour her dream college with her mom and dad. A well-known farming influencer was set to deliver a keynote speech at a conference. A mother wanted to go fight for custody of her son, while another woman wanted to meet a friend to help her move. Others were just there to have fun.

Regardless of their differences, their road trip created unexpected community and a memory they won't soon forget.

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Tenacious D performs at the Rock in Pott festival.

The medley that closes out the second side of the Beatles’ “Abbey Road” album is one of the most impressive displays of musicianship in the band’s storied career. It also provided the perfect send-off before the band’s official breakup months later, ending with the lyrics, “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.”

In 1969, “Abbey Road” was the last record the group made together, although “Let it Be,” recorded earlier that year, was released in 1970.

At first, the medley was just a clever way for the band to use a handful of half-finished tunes, but when it came together it was a rousing, grandiose affair.

Arranged by Paul McCartney and producer George Martin, the medley weaves together five songs written by McCartney, "You Never Give Me Your Money," "She Came in Through the Bathroom Window," "Golden Slumbers," "Carry That Weight” and "The End," and three by John Lennon, “Sun King," "Mean Mr. Mustard" and "Polythene Pam."

Fifteen seconds after the medley and the album’s conclusion, there is a surprise treat, McCartney’s 22-second “Her Majesty,” which wound up on the record as an accident.

Jack Black and Kyle Gass, collectively known as Tenacious D, recently reimagined two of the songs in the medley, "You Never Give Me Your Money" and "The End," for acoustic guitars for a performance on SiriusXM's Octane Channel. Like everything with Tenacious D, it showed off the duo’s impressive musical chops as well as their fantastic sense of humor.

The truncated version of the medley was also a wonderful tribute to the incredible work the Beatles did 53 years ago.

Warning: This video contains NSFW language.

Jeremy Floyd and the note written by his girlfriend.

If you or someone you know is the victim of domestic abuse, call the National Domestic Abuse Hotline at 800-799-7233.


A disturbing story that happened four years ago in DeLand, Florida, shows how brave workers at an animal hospital were able to free an abused woman from her deranged and violent abuser.

According to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Department, on Wednesday, May 23, 2018, Carolyn Reichle was beaten, held hostage and threatened at gunpoint by her boyfriend, Jeremy Floyd. During the incident, two rounds were fired, which passed through drywall and were later found in another room.

The next day, Thursday, May 24, Reichle spent in bed with a head injury.

That Friday, Reichle felt well enough to get out of bed and concocted a plan to get away from her abusive boyfriend. She convinced him that they should take their dog to the veterinarian’s office. She was worried that the dog’s ear had been grazed by a stray bullet but told the animal hospital that she thought it had an ear infection.

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