Ben Affleck's 'love letters' to J.Lo, more celeb news ICYMI

Bennifer’s “love letters”

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez’s rekindled romance can be attributed to the power of the pen (electronically speaking), according to TMZ. The webloid reported on May 11 that Ben began emailing Jennifer what it describes as “love letters” several months ago, around early February, while she was in the Dominican Republic filming “Shotgun Wedding” — and while her four-year relationship with Alex Rodriguez was in its final weeks in the wake of his January cheating scandal involving “Southern Charm” star Madison LeCroy. Ben was “loving and longing for Jen” in the messages, TMZ reported. In early May — days after it was reported they were spending time together again at J.Lo’s Los Angeles home — Bennifer were photographed on vacation in Montana, where Ben owns a home.

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Embracing his rant

Tom Cruise isn’t ashamed of his COVID-related rant that went viral last year. In a chat with Empire, that action star was asked about his on-set tirade, which was leaked by The Sun in December 2020. In the audio, Tom lambasted crew members on the set of “Mission: Impossible 7” for violating COVID-19 protocols. “I said what I said,” Tom told Empire. “There was a lot at stake at that point … But it wasn’t my entire crew. I had the crew leave the set, and it was just select people.” Filming “never shut down again” after his rant, Tom said. “And here we are, continuing to film.” Like all movies, “Mission: Impossible 7” filming was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic, but it was also one of the first movies to return to production. “All those emotions were going through my mind,” he recalled of returning to set. “And for the whole crew to know that we’d started rolling on a movie was just a huge relief … It was very emotional.”

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The show’s over

After more than 3,000 episodes and 19 seasons, Ellen DeGeneres is ending her talk show once her contact finishes in 2022. “When you’re a creative person, you constantly need to be challenged — and as great as this show is, and as fun as it is, it’s just not a challenge anymore,” she told The Hollywood Reporter on May 12. Ellen, 63, said her plan all along was to end the show after 19 seasons and even claimed she wanted to end it after 16 seasons, but she got “push back” from affiliates and TV stations. Although there is suspicion that the comedian is wrapping because of last year’s toxic workplace allegations and dipping ratings, she said those things had nothing to do with the decision. “If I was quitting the show because of that, I wouldn’t have come back this season,” she said. “So it’s not why I’m stopping.” “Ellen” began airing in 2003. 

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The Golden Globes and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association are persona non grata at NBC this year. On May 10, the network announced that it wouldn’t air the 2022 Golden Globe Awards due to the lack of diversity within the HFPA, the organization that votes on and produces the awards. The network also has concerns about the organization’s ethics including issues surrounding alleged financial benefits given to some members. Prior to NBC’s decision, a chorus of celebrities spoke out against the HFPA’s struggle to reform. 

Conservatorship request

Colin Farrell and his ex-girlfriend filed to lead a conservatorship for their son, James, who has Angelman Syndrome. Legal documents obtained by The Blast on May 11 show that the actor and model Kim Bordenave filed a joint petition for a conservatorship that would give them the ability to make medical decisions and care for James after he turns 18 and becomes an adult in September. Angelman Syndrome causes developmental delays and disabilities and affects the nervous system, according to the Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics. Colin and Kim claim that James needs assistance for daily activities, such as getting dressed and making meals. The ex-couple is lockstep in their request to be able to give medical consent for James, find him proper housing and have access to the teen’s confidential records. They claim they need to be able to continue to care for James as if he were a minor. 

Twitter issue

Chrissy Teigen is feeling the effects of some vile decade-old messages she sent to Courtney Stodden. In March, Courtney, who identifies as non-binary, recalled how the model and cookbook author would send mean-spirited direct messages to them in 2011 and 2012. On May 12, Chrissy owned up to her past behavior and publicly apologized. “Not a lot of people are lucky enough to be held accountable for all their past bulls*** in front of the entire world. I’m mortified and sad at who I used to be I was an insecure, attention seeking troll,” she tweeted. “I am ashamed and completely embarrassed at my behavior but that is nothing compared to how I made Courtney feel.” She also told her fans, “And I am so sorry I let you guys down. I will forever work on being better than I was 10 years ago, 1 year ago, 6 months ago.”

Coming out story

Colton Underwood didn’t necessarily want to publicly come out as a gay man the way that he did in April. The former “The Bachelor” star was apparently blackmailed after someone claimed to have snapped naked pictures of him at a Los Angeles spa known to cater to gay clientele. “I’ll just say it,” he told Variety for a May 12 cover story. “I, at one point, during my rock bottom and spiral, was getting blackmailed. Nobody knows I was blackmailed.” The reality TV star explained that his spa visit was “just to look” around but he later felt he “should have never been there.” After the visit, Colton said, he got an anonymous email about his spa day in which the sender threatened to “out” him. In the chat, Colton also noted that he had a secret Grindr profile and experimented with men prior to joining Bachelor Nation. He was always worried one of the men would come forward. “I remember feeling so guilty, like, ‘What the hell am I doing?'” he said of his hookups. “It was my first time letting myself even go there, so much so that I was like, ‘I need ‘The Bachelorette’ in my life, so I could be straight.'”

Personal reveal

Andra Day revealed that she had a sex and pornography addiction just prior to filming “The United States vs. Billie Holiday” — a performance that earned her a best actress Oscar nomination earlier this year. In a chat with InStyle for its June cover story that hit the internet on May 11, the singer-actress said she was hoping the film wouldn’t focus on Billie’s “hyper-sexualized” image. “I didn’t want any element of sexualization,” Andra said. “I had come out of something in my own life — dealing with porn addiction, sex addiction.” She continued, “I’m being very, very candid with you because I’m not the only one. But I knew I wanted all of that very much gone.” She’s in a better place now, somewhat thanks to the role. “I feel now, after playing Billie, that I’m honoring her and the strength that is femininity,” she said. “I’m definitely in a healthier place to enjoy that because I’m outside of the addiction, if you will. So, yeah, it’s been really fun, because it’s been very new for me.”

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