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‘American Idol’ judges call Caleb Kennedy’s exit ‘unfortunate’

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'American Idol' judges call Caleb Kennedy's exit 'unfortunate'

“American Idol” judges have weighed in on the abrupt departure of contestant Caleb Kennedy — calling his exit “unfortunate” — after a controversial video from his past resurfaced last week.

After Sunday’s Season 19 semifinal episode, judge Lionel Richie told People magazine that the decision to remove him from the competition “had to be made and we move on,” while also recognizing the 16-year-old singer’s talent.

“A lot of times, we think about it, we grow up and we make mistakes and we look at our life behind us many times and we say, ‘God, what was I thinking about when I did that?’ ” Richie said of the young singer, who left the program when a video surfaced depicting him next to someone wearing what appeared to be a Ku Klux Klan hood. “This was one of those situations where we kind of give him a big hug from the three of us.

“He has definitely has a talent,” continued the “All Night Long” hitmaker. “The problem is, this is one of those unfortunate decisions that had to be made and we move on. But this will be remembered in his lifetime and he’ll know what it’s all about.”

Meanwhile, fellow judge Luke Bryan, 44, told the publication that the decision was an “upsetting” one and wished Kennedy well.

“First and foremost, as judges, we love these kids,” Bryan said. “We get emotionally involved in these kids. We want the best for Caleb. As far as the nuances on how ABC gets viewed, either way, decisions got made and it’s our job as judges to show up and do our best job and comment on the kids who are in front of us. But we wish nothing but the best for Caleb. It does make for a very, very challenging and upsetting week.”

Representatives for “American Idol” did not immediately respond to a request for further comment from The Post.

Last Wednesday, Kennedy headed to Instagram to apologize for the compromising clip — which was reportedly recorded when he was 12, according to his mother, Anita Guy — in which he acknowledged that being “younger” was no excuse for the video.

“Hey y’all, this is gonna be a bit of a surprise but I am no longer gonna be on ‘American Idol,’” he said on social media. “There was a video that surfaced on the internet and it displayed actions that were not meant to be taken in that way. I was younger and did not think about the actions, but that’s not an excuse. I wanna say sorry to all my fans and everyone who I have let down. I’ll be taking a little time off social media to better myself, but saying that, I know this has hurt and disappointed a lot of people and made people lose respect for me. I’m so sorry! I pray that I can one day regain your trust in who I am and have your respect! Thank you for supporting me.”

Kennedy’s mother further said that the offending video was taken after he and a friend watched a movie, “The Strangers: Prey at Night,” and that they were simply mimicking characters from the film. “It had nothing to do with the Ku Klux Klan, but I know that’s how it looks,” she said. “Caleb doesn’t have a racist bone in his body. He loves everyone and has friends of all races.”

With Sunday’s episode, three contestants remained — Willie Spence, Grace Kinstler and Chayce Beckham — after Casey Bishop was ousted from the competition. In a post-show tweet, judge Bryan called her “a true rockstar.”

Kennedy wasn’t the only contestant to make an unexpected exit this season. Wyatt Pike, 20, left the show while in the top 12, citing “personal reasons.”

The season finale of “American Idol” will be at 8 p.m. Sunday, May 23, on ABC.

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Kevin Sorbo’s $5M Hamptons digs transformed into art house

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Kevin Sorbo's $5M Hamptons digs transformed into art house

Talk about a home fit for the gods — or at least a demigod.

Kevin Sorbo, who played Hercules on the TV show, “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys,” sold his traditional shingle-styled Sag Harbor home to Robert B. Cohen, of Hudson Capital Properties, for $5.35 million earlier this year.

(Sorbo is also the author of the inspiring, triumph-over-tragedy story, “True Strength: My Journey from Hercules to Mere Mortal — And How Nearly Dying Saved My Life.”)

Now Cohen’s art collecting parents, Jimmy Cohen, CEO of Hudson News Group, and Lisa Fayne Cohen — who also happen to be the founders of Galerie magazine, published by Hudson News — have turned it into Galerie’s first annual art and design showhouse, which launches with a VIP event on Aug. 5. (Jimmy is the brother of the late Page Six editor, Claudia Cohen.)

The 12,500-square-foot home, at 772 Middle Line Highway in between Sag Harbor and Bridgehampton, is being renovated by Michael Derrig.

It sits on 5.27 acres and includes a 3-acre pond.

This is also the first show house to pair interior design and art, says Fayne Cohen, Galerie’s editorial director, adding that it will feature 22 top interior designers like Nicole Fuller, and several art galleries, including Perrotin, Kasmin and Nara Roesler.

Some artists have even created site-specific installations.

Proceeds will benefit Stony Brook Southampton Hospital’s East Hampton Emergency Department.

The listing brokers were Danielle Wilson and Gary DePersia, of Corcoran. 

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Trailer for Lifetime’s ‘Harry & Meghan: Escaping the Palace’ drops

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Trailer for Lifetime’s ‘Harry & Meghan: Escaping the Palace’ drops

The first trailer for Lifetime’s “Harry & Meghan: Escaping the Palace” has been released and it teases that “not all fairytales have the perfect ending.”

The movie is set to air in the fall on the channel known for its incredibly cheesy and dramatic movies.

“Escaping the Palace” is the third Lifetime film retelling the story of the former royals, this time focusing on their highly publicized exit from the British royal family, dubbed “Megxit.”

And as with most of its movies, Lifetime’s iteration of the story spares no drama.

The trailer begins with Jordan Dean as Prince Harry vowing to protect Sydney Morton as Meghan Markle. “I see you literally being hounded to death and I’m helpless to stop it,” he says in the teaser.

“I am the person who is strong and gets things right,” the fictional Meghan responds as she looks over the film’s baby Archie.

The couple then tells each other, “I can’t lose you.”

Jordan Whalen will return as Prince William, Laura Mitchell as Kate Middleton, Steve Coulter as Prince Charles and Maggie Sullivan as Queen Elizabeth II, according to Entertainment Tonight.

The official logline of the movie informs viewers that the film will recount “what really happened inside the palace that drove Harry and Meghan to leave everything behind in order to make a future for themselves and their son Archie.”

Lifetime also promises that it will “detail Meghan’s growing isolation and sadness, their disappointment that ‘The Firm’ was not defending them against the press’s attacks and Harry’s fear that history would repeat itself and he would not be able to protect his wife and son from the same forces that caused his mother’s untimely death.”

The movie is also set to delve into the private feud between Harry and his brother Prince William and their father Prince Charles, as well the conflict between Meghan and her sister-in-law, Duchess Kate.

Lifetime previously released films about the royal couple in 2018 (“Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance”) and 2019 (“Harry & Meghan: Becoming Royal”).

The latest iteration will also re-create Harry and Meghan’s bombshell interview with Oprah in March, in which they were open about their struggles and decision to leave the royal family. Queen Elizabeth II has reportedly been “deeply upset” by Prince Harry’s oversharing.

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My boobs keep growing ‘a lot’ — but they’re natural

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My boobs keep growing 'a lot' — but they're natural

When life gives you melons, you may have to explain to the public that they’re not fake.

Salma Hayek has gone on the record to say that yes, her breasts are real — but she can understand why fans might think otherwise.

“A lot of people said that I had breast augmentation. I don’t blame them! My boobs were smaller! So was the rest of my body,” the 54-year-old actress said Wednesday on “Red Table Talk,” the Facebook Watch series Jada Pinkett Smith co-hosts with her daughter, Willow Smith, and mother, Adrienne Banfield-Norris. 

Her growth, however, is all natural. Hayek explained that it happened significantly during life changes like pregnancy, menopause and periods of weight gain. 

“For some women, they get smaller. But there are some women that when you gain weight, your boobs grow, and other women that when you have children and you breastfeed your boobs grow and they don’t go back down, and then in some of the cases when you are in menopause, they grow again,” she said. “I just happen to be one of those women that it happened in every single step! When I gain weight, when I got pregnant and when I am in menopause.”

While her breasts “just kept growing,” she said it’s been a pain.

“Many, many sizes. And my back has been really suffering from it,” she said. “And not a lot of people talk about this.”

While the hot flashes and emotional intensity of menopause are often talked about, Hayek noted that the breast growth came as a surprise.

“I’ll tell you what they don’t tell you. The boobs grow — a lot,” said Hayek, who recently announced an HBO Max project about talking menopausal boobs.

Getting older, though, has also taught the entertainer that stereotypes about women expiring when they hit a certain age are a completely, destructive narrative.

“There’s no expiration dates for women. That has to go. Because you can kick ass at any age. You can hold your own at any age, you can dream at any age, you can be romantic at any age,” she said. “We have the right to be loved for who we are at the place that we are. We’re not just here to make babies, we’re not just here to baby the men. We’re not just here to service everything and everyone around us.”

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