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Jennifer Hudson is Here to Give You The Pep Talk You Need

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Jennifer Hudson is Here to Give You The Pep Talk You Need

It’s a breezy Monday afternoon in October, and I’ve already got Jennifer Hudson riled up. Hudson is speaking with as much passion as her Dreamgirls character Effie telling—er, sangin’ to—her lover that, hell or high water, she’s staying with him. Given the tense political climate at the time, you’d be forgiven if you eavesdropped on our conversation and assumed it was related to that. But, it was quite the opposite.

Hudson and I are at the part of our discussion where she’s explaining what Olay’s newest campaign—Maximize, Don’t Minimize Me—and the message about “maximizing” women means to her. “I’ve had a lot of strong women in my life, from my grandmother to my mother and sister. They made me strong. I don’t believe in being minimized,” Hudson says in the accompanying campaign video. “You know, when we walk in the room, it’s nothing but power.” The campaign continues the affordable beauty giant’s mission to champion women in any capacity, an offshoot of its 2018 Face Anything movement.

This time around, Olay recruited Hudson and astrobiologist Alyssa Carson, poet Amina Brown, actress Busy Phillips, All Worthy designer Hunter McGrady, Girls Who Code founder Reshema Saujani, and more to spread the messaging with her.

Below, ELLE.com speaks to the multi-hyphenate about positive affirmations, uplifting the women in her life, and how portraying such powerful women maximized her confidence.

2020 hasn’t been the easiest year. What positive affirmations do you find yourself returning each day?

I’m always looking for those positive affirmations coffee mugs. Yesterday, I woke up and I saw this coffee mug that said, “Thankful,” and I had to stop and think about what am I thankful for today? A simple word like “thankful” allows me to start the day on a positive note, in a positive tone. Or I’ll be in the tub and read a positive message or inspirational messages to trigger my brain to start the day off positively. I guess I’m trying to find the positives in the day and embracing the time that I have to reconnect with myself and enjoy regular everyday life, whether it be bike riding, working out, sleeping in, taking care of myself, stuff like that.

How has this moment of stillness allowed you to reconnect with yourself? What new things have you discovered?

It has given me time to reconnect with what my idea of beauty is. What is it that makes me feel beautiful? I’ll admit I get so busy doing so many things that I sometimes forget about myself. So this time has allowed me to reconnect, refresh, and create a routine outside of work and the world and everything else that takes me away from me. With this quarantine, I was able to have what I call my “golden time.” I love playing in the mirror. When I was in college, I would do my little makeup at any hour of the day. [My friends would] be like, Where are you going? I would be just going to bed. And so to be able to play like that again has been fun. And as women, we rarely get time to ourselves because we do run the world. Do you know how empowering that is? Do you know how necessary it is? How needed it is?

Regenerist Retinol24 MAX Night Face Moisturizer Fragrance Free

What’s the one beauty rule you live by?

Invest in the Olay Regenerist Retinol24 Max Night Face Moisturizer. You’ve got to get you some. [laughs] But seriously, having consistency is important to me. And what I mean by that is everybody’s lifestyle is different. Everybody’s perspective is different. Being someone who’s life is constantly moving and using all these different products, this moisturizer gives me a base. I’m sensitive about my skin. So I’m particular about how I care for it. And this gives me that structure and does what it needs to do.

How did Olay’s ‘Maximize, Don’t Minimize Me’ message align with your own? What does this partnership mean to you?

I’m a Black woman, and I love that Olay wants to maximize us and empower us and unify us, and that’s everything that I live by. When they came to me, I knew it was the perfect fit and the ideal message that is needed and necessary.

How do you “maximize” the women in your own life?

I think for me maximize means coming together. Too often, women are put against each other. We need to know how to flip it and make it about each other and know it’s okay to compliment my sister and her greatness and her beauty and her strength. You can walk out confidently because you know who you are and maximize your sister or your friend as well. Be like, “You got this, you sharp.” The more confident you are in yourself, then the more you can give to others. It wouldn’t hurt to change the approach of what we’re so used to. [Women are] used to being treated like, Who wore it better? Who was more of this? But she’s great, and I’m great, and we can be great together. So I maximize by highlighting and supporting my fellow women.

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Speaking of uplifting and empowering women, you’re known for some potent and unforgettable roles where you’re always celebrating Black women. How have these roles and the women that you’re representing maximized your confidence and strength?

I wouldn’t be here without those ladies. I’m in love with acknowledging greatness. That’s what inspires me. One of my favorite things about what I do is being surrounded by great people who are great at what they do, so I love to honor the greats. The Jennifer Holidays, the Aretha Franklins, the Whitney Houstons, because those are the people that inspired me. I am confident in myself because of their confidence and the greatness they left us with or and are still giving us. Acknowledging each other and lifting each other in that way helped a great deal.

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Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker Spark Dating Rumors

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kourtney kardashian travis barker

Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker are rumored to be dating, especially after they both posted photos from Kris Kardashian’s pool at her Palm Springs home.

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Kourtney Kardashian

travis barker kourtney kardashian

Travis Barker

When Kardashian posted this mirror selfie last week, fans noticed that Barker commented with a single rose emoji.

kourtney kardashian travis barker

Kourtney KardashianInstagram

Earlier this month, Kardashian posted an image of herself stepping into the ocean with the caption, “sweet, sweet fate,” and the Blink-182 drummer commented with a mermaid emoji.

kourtney kardashian travis barker

Kourtney KardashianInstagram

Per Us Weekly, the two have been hanging out long before they spent the day poolside in Palm Springs. They were seen together last February in Malibu and were at a vegan restaurant in September 2018.

The magazine noted that Barker’s kids Alabama and Landon are friends with Kardashian’s older son, Mason, and her daughter, Penelope. It seems that Barker and Kardashian have a long-standing friendship, too.

When Barker was at the iHeartRadio Music Awards in 2019, People asked him about his relationship with Kardashian. He was quick to put out the rumors: “Kourtney’s like a dear friend,” he said. “That’s it. I mean, I love her to death. I love her family to death. But yeah, just friends.”

Kardashian shares Mason (11), Penelope (8), and Reign (6) with her longtime, on-again-off-again boyfriend, Scott Disick. Last year, Disick broke up with his girlfriend of three years, Sofia Richie. A source told Us then that Disick will always be in love with the mother of his children.

“Scott is always going to be in love with Kourtney, and that’s something Sofia has had to face since even before she got serious with him,” the source said. “It’s been an ongoing thing. It just became more apparent that his family was more of a priority than she was, and his family would be his main priority over anything and anyone.”

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Hilary Duff Bundles Up in A Pretty Pink Tweed Coat

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celebrity sightings in new york   january 22, 2021

Hilary Duff is in New York City right now, filming her TV Land show, Younger. She was photographed in a cozy-looking pink tweed coat with a hot-pink blouse and pussy bow underneath.

Jose Perez/Bauer-GriffinGetty Images

celebrity sightings in new york   january 22, 2021

Jose Perez/Bauer-GriffinGetty Images

Duff is expecting her third child and her second with her husband, Matthew Koma. In an Instagram post on October 24, she posted a video on her of Koma rubbing her stomach on her Instagram story. “We are growing!!! Mostly me…,” she wrote. She and Koma, who married in late 2019, share a daughter, Banks Violet, who was born in October 2018.

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Duff also has an 8-year-old son, Luca Cruz, with her ex-husband, Mike Comrie.

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This past week, Duff shared on Instagram that she is seven months pregnant:
“Worked till midnightWoke up took Banks to gymnasticsHoused an empanada….and a 1/2 OK. …BACK to work.Repeat.Still hanging on to some fashion 7 months pregnant. love you @zara for these stretch pants. Anyone tried that PISTACHIOOOOO drink @Starbucks. Heavy on my mind rn…. I got a lot more thoughts right now but these were the important ones.”

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In December, Duff shared another update with her fans—this time about her long-beloved Disney Channel character, Lizzie McGuire. Initially, a reboot of the early aughts show had been in the works, but after show-runner Terri Minksy left the project, it was up in the air.

“I’ve been so honored to have the character of Lizzie in my life,” Duff wrote in December, confirming the project was officially off. “She has made such a lasting impact on many, including myself. To see the fans’ loyalty and love for her, to this day, means so much to me. I know the efforts and conversations have been everywhere trying to make a reboot work but, sadly & despite everyone’s best efforts, it isn’t going to happen.”

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Who Are Wanda and Vision’s Twins, Billy and Tommy, in WandaVision?

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vision paul bettany holding his baby in wandavision

At the end of Wanda Maximoff’s so-fast-it-makes-my-heart-palpitate pregnancy in WandaVision, she gives birth to twin boys named Billy and Tommy. By the looks of it, they’re about 2-3 months old when they’re born. That could be because Hollywood almost never makes newborns actually look like newborns. Alternatively, it could be a sign of Wanda’s sitcom-verse reality moving so quickly it begins to crumble around her. We just don’t know!

Here’s what we do know: The Marvel Cinematic Universe is bringing Billy and Tommy into the fray for a reason. They’re well-known, well-liked characters in the Marvel comics, and their existence in the MCU opens up enormous questions about the future of the franchise. Before we start speculating, here’s what’s important to understand about the Maximoff kiddos.

Billy and Tommy have superpowers.

Marvel Studios/Disney+

Like their mother and father, Billy and Tommy have superhuman skills, which could make raising them in the “normal” suburb of Westview a challenge. (It’s safe to guess that will factor into the Brady Bunch-esque humor of the next few episodes.) In the comics, Billy Maximoff has reality-warping abilities à la his mother, Scarlet Witch, while Tommy can run as fast as his deceased uncle Pietro. Notably, neither of them seem to share any abilities with their father, Vision.

Which makes us wonder if…

They might’ve been crafted from shards of a demon’s soul.

Concerning, I know!

So far, the MCU hasn’t dipped its toe too deep into the mythological components of the Marvel comics universe, apart from its Thor- and Loki-centric storyline. But Marvel has long loved creating larger-than-life villains that take the form of demons, gods, and goddesses (and cosmic entities that like to eat planets whole). So it’s not a stretch to think WandaVision might shepherd in some new, more otherworldly villains. Which brings us to the demonic Mephisto.

Many fans believe Mephisto will be WandaVision’s ultimate big bad. In the comics, Wanda is so desperate to have children with her android husband Vision that she creates a false pregnancy, then uses her magic to conjure her two twins into existence. What she doesn’t learn until later is that she pulled Billy and Tommy’s souls from shards of Mephisto’s soul, imbuing them with something evil. When Mephisto comes to reclaim those soul shards, the twins disappear, effectively “dying” and sending Wanda spiraling into grief.

I’d be surprised if WandaVision follows this exact arc: A) because it’s predictable and B) because it’s extremely dark—but it would be the perfect opportunity to reveal Mephisto’s clutching the show’s strings.

We might see a different version of them in the upcoming MCU films.

What makes Billy and Tommy’s appearance in WandaVision so earth-shattering is not necessarily how they’ll affect the show itself (though those implications could be huge). It’s how they could impact all the upcoming MCU films.

You see, in the comics, Billy and Tommy are reincarnated as Billy Kaplan and Tommy Shepherd, two super-teens who eventually go by Wiccan and Speed. At the time, they don’t know they’re brothers, and they don’t understand their connection to Scarlet Witch and Vision. Eventually, Billy fits the pieces together: When he starts telling people he’s Scarlet Witch’s reincarnated son, they sort of imply he’s a crazy super-fan and urge him to, er, stop being a weirdo. But Billy—ever a darling—persists, and eventually it’s revealed he’s telling the truth: Billy and Tommy have, indeed, returned from beyond the grave!

At this point, Billy and Tommy are leading members of the Young Avengers. Billy is one of the first gay characters in the Marvel universe, deeply in love with his team member Teddy Altman, aka the shape-shifting Hulkling. We know from previous casting announcements that other Young Avengers are headed to the MCU screen: Hailee Steinfeld will play Kate Bishop in the upcoming Disney+ show Hawkeye; Kathryn Newton will play an older Cassie Lang in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania; and Xochitl Gomez will play America Chavez in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. These news nuggets are almost a dead giveaway that a Young Avengers franchise is on the horizon, and Billy and Tommy could be its next heroes.

Watch WandaVision on Disney+

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