Hollywood Live: The axe is falling at the Grio | Will Smith refuses publicity campaign for new movie

Members of the podcast and video teams have been laid off at the Grio. Plus, Will Smith refuses publicity tour for his the "Bad Boys" movie.


Byron Allen arrives at theGrio’s Washington D.C. Gala presented by Byron Allen on Saturday, April 29, 2023, at The Smithsonian National Museum of African-American History and Culture in Washington. (Photo by Kevin Wolf/Invision/AP)
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It seems like the axe is falling over at the Grio. Of course, I’m talking about Byron Allen’s media conglomerate. Well, an individual with knowledge of the situation did tell TheWrap.com that members of the podcast and video teams have been laid off, along with managing editor Christy Oglesby.

The individual also told TheWrap that Allen Media Group is making strategic changes to better position the company for growth, but it does result in expense and workforce reductions across all divisions. The company did come out with their own statement but the spokesperson declined to talk about the specifics regarding the layoffs.

The Grio was acquired by Byron Allen Media Group in 2016. They also own 27 network affiliate broadcast television stations in 21 U.S. markets. Byron has done very well. And I’ll tell you one thing I know to be true of him: he always has a plan and he usually lands on his feet. So I’m sure that he’ll be okay. We do know that. And hopefully all of the other layoffs will find other jobs.

Looks like we will not be seeing Will Smith on the red carpet

Co-stars Will Smith, left, and Martin Lawrence appear at a photo call for their film “Bad Boys for Life”, in Paris on Jan. 6, 2020. Smith and Lawrence are teaming up for a fourth “Bad Boys” movie, in one of Smith’s most high-profile new projects since he slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus, File)

Will is refusing to take part in the publicity campaign for his new movie, “Bad Boys: Ride or Die.” We all know he does not want to talk about the infamous 2020 Oscar slap and the state of his marriage with Jada Pinkett Smith.

You know, he really doesn’t do interviews anymore, but I do have to say that he showed up and showed out at Coachella recently. Will popped up on stage at the end of Colombian singer J Balvin’s set. He rapped the lyrics to his smash hit, “Single Men in Black,” while dressed in his 1997 character Agent J’s trademark black suit. Yep. It still fits. Go Will.

And for all these stories and a whole lot more, don’t forget to follow Tanya Hart on social media @tanyahollywood and @aurnonline, and also check out our video interview with Quvenzhané Wallis about her new thriller, “Breathe.” You don’t want to miss that one.

Click play to hear the Hollywood Live report from Tanya Hart:

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