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Tyson Beckford Is Turning 50, But This Game-Changing Skin Secret Keeps Him Glowing

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Tyson BeckfordGregory Pace/Shutterstock

If you flipped through magazines back in the ’90s, you might remember Tyson Beckford from those iconic Ralph Lauren Polo ads.

And, as it turns out, there are hundreds–yes, hundreds–more of those preppy, shirtless snaps you never got to thirst over. “The amount of pictures that have never been seen are incredible,” he recently told E! News’ Lilliana Vazquez. “Everything’s now digital. Those images are from film, which most photographers don’t usually do anymore. I would love to create a coffee table book of my photos that were shot on film. That’s such a monumental time in fashion history that we’ll never be able to see again.”

In the meantime, you can likely find Beckford and his photos popping up all over Pinterest. “Sometimes I go on there and it brings back to so many memories,” he added. “Some of them I don’t even remember shooting.”

Since the ’90s, he’s solidified himself as more than a model. The 49-year-old is an activist fighting for racial justice, an entrepreneur and, most recently, the mind behind the new cologne line Orion Skye. Read on for more form his interview with Vazquez for E!’s Style Collective.

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E! News: How did quarantine help inspire Orion Skye?

Tyson Beckford: There’s going to be two types of people that come out of this. There’s going to be the doers, the people that created and said, “I can’t work a regular job, but I can do this. What can I do?” Those are what I call super entrepreneurs. They create work for themselves from home. It’s people who are taking charge of their lives, whether it’s working out at home, educating your kids, making clothes, making masks, creating brands like [Orion Skye]. I think that it’s such an American thing for us to create a business when we don’t have one and to then propel that into something bigger than it is.

E!: How would you describe the scent?

TB: Fresh, invigorating and climatic. As soon as you spray it, let it sit for a while and then it builds up into a climax to the point where maybe an hour from now, it smells better than when you sprayed it. It propels you into another world. It continues to get better the longer that you wear it.

E!: Is it unisex?

TB: It’s just for men, but I’ve had female customers that buy for their brothers or their boyfriends and they’re like, “I’m just going keep one for myself!” I would love to try to make a women’s fragrance, if Naomi Campbell were to help me. You need it from a woman’s perspective.

E! How is your dating life in quarantine?

TB: Quarantine has really messed up the dating life. There’s no way to really date or see anybody. You can do the virtual thing. Anyone who’s locked down with a boyfriend or girlfriend is lucky right now. For the rest of us who don’t, we just keep creating things, reading books, and keeping ourselves busy.

E!: How do you keep busy?

TB: I’ve been working out, sometimes twice a day just to kill the boredom, making sure I’m on my meal plans and I’m eating correctly. I call to check on friends. I have a lot of friends who are veterans. I reach out to them making sure they’re alright. We go to the doctor all the time to check the rest of our body, but we never do a checkup from the neck up. I call it the spiritual check. I try to do that with everyone I know.

E!: How do you stay so positive and uplifting?

TB: I was always surrounded by loving friends and family. You grow different when there’s love and we see what happens when there’s hate. When there’s hate, people don’t grow and they don’t get to manifest into what they’re supposed to be and who they’re supposed to be. I feel like this pandemic is changing the world and how the world views each other because we’re all in it together. You can see who’s on the right side of history and who’s on the wrong side. I want people to always look at your surroundings and if you feel like you’re in some place that’s not good for you, get out of it. This is the time for change. This is the time for people to come out of this and become better.

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E!: How do you use your platform to educate?

TB: Whenever I post something, you then should take your time and research it yourself. Don’t just base everything off of my opinion. What I’m hoping is that I spark a nerve. Therefore, then you go and do the research. I always tell people, ‘Do your research. Find out what’s going on, what’s happening in your area, how can you assist, what changes you can make to make us have a better future?’ Right now, I just got all of my paperwork to do the absentee ballot. Because of coronavirus, I personally fear going to the polls. I recommend others who are like me, who don’t want to interact with a lot of people and who are worried about their health and this pandemic, to do the thing. Give yourself as much time as I’m giving myself.

E!: You have a big birthday coming up! What is your secret to great skin at almost 50?

TB: You need water for plants. You need water for trees. The human body is kind of the same thing. You need to water it, you need to keep it moisturized, especially like your skin. I would say it has done me a very good deed because at the age of 50, a lot of my friends are seeing wrinkles in their skin and they’re like “What are you doing?” I’m just drinking water, working out, eating clean. I’ve cut meats out. I love fish, I’m sort of like a vegetarian-pescatarian.

E!: What’s your birthday wish?

TB: Just being around family, continuous success, and longevity in life. I’ve had a good 49 years so far. Although a couple bad ones, but the funny thing is I don’t even remember them. I’ve always trained my mind to remember the good and also remember the good in people, but to not forget. I think just being alive, especially with what’s going on in the world, being able to have a roof over your head, having food on the table, and having people around you that care about you. That’s pretty much all I can ask for at 50.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

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Netflix is developing a live action ‘Assassin’s Creed’ show

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Netflix announced this morning that it’s partnering with Ubisoft to adapt the game publisher’s “Assassin’s Creed” franchise into a live action series.

The franchise jumps around in history, telling the story of a secret society of assassins with “genetic memory” and their centuries-long battle the knights templar. It has sold 155 million games worldwide and was also turned into a nearly incomprehensible 2016 film starring Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard, which underperformed at the box office.

The companies say that they’re currently looking for a showrunner. Jason Altman and Danielle Kreinik of Ubisoft’s film and television division will serve as executive producers. (In addition to working on adaptations of Ubisoft’s intellectual property, the publisher is also involved in the Apple TV+ industry comedy “Mythic Quest.”)

“We’re excited to partner with Ubisoft and bring to life the rich, multilayered storytelling that Assassin’s Creed is beloved for,” said Netflix’s vice president of original series Peter Friedlander in a statement. “From its breathtaking historical worlds and massive global appeal as one of the best selling video game franchises of all time, we are committed to carefully crafting epic and thrilling entertainment based on this distinct IP and provide a deeper dive for fans and our members around the world to enjoy.”

It sounds like there could be follow-up shows as well, with the announcement saying that Netflix and Ubisoft will “tap into the iconic video game’s trove of dynamic stories with global mass appeal for adaptations of live action, animated, and anime series.”

Netflix recently placed an eight-episode order for “Resident Evil,” another video game franchise that was previously adapted for the big screen. And it also had a big hit with its adaptation of “The Witcher,” which is based on a fantasy book series that was popularized via video games.

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Original Content podcast: ‘Lovecraft Country’ is gloriously bonkers

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As we tried to recap the first season of HBO’s “Lovecraft Country,” one thing became clear: The show is pretty nuts.

The story begins by sending Atticus “Tic” Freeman (Jonathan Majors), his friend Leti Lewis (Jurnee Smolett) and his uncle George (Courtney B. Vance) on a road trip across mid-’50s America in search of Tic’s missing father. You might assume that the search will occupy the entire season, or take even longer than that; instead, the initial storyline is wrapped up quickly.

And while there’s a story running through the whole season, most of the episodes are relatively self-contained, offering their own versions on various horror and science fiction tropes. There’s a haunted house episode, an Indiana Jones episode, a time travel episode and more.

The show isn’t perfect — the writing can be clunky, the special effects cheesy and cheap-looking. But at its best, it does an impressive job of mixing increasingly outlandish plots, creepy monsters (with plentiful gore) and a healthy dose of politics.

After all, “Lovecraft Country” (adapted form a book by Matt Ruff) is named after notoriously racist horror writer H.P. Lovecraft, but it focuses almost entirely on Black characters, making the case that old genres can be reinvigorated with diverse casts and a rethinking of political assumptions.

In addition to reviewing the show, the latest episode of the Original Content podcast also includes a discussion of Netflix earnings, the new season of “The Bachelorette” and the end of Quibi.

You can listen in the player below, subscribe using Apple Podcasts or find us in your podcast player of choice. If you like the show, please let us know by leaving a review on Apple. You can also follow us on Twitter or send us feedback directly. (Or suggest shows and movies for us to review!)

And if you’d like to skip ahead, here’s how the episode breaks down:
0:00 Intro
0:36 Netflix discussion
3:18 “The Bachelorette”
6:30 Quibi
14:35 “Lovecraft Country” review
31:32 “Lovecraft Country” spoiler discussion

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The short, strange life of Quibi

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“All that is left now is to offer a profound apology for disappointing you and, ultimately, for letting you down,” Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman wrote, closing out an open letter posted to Medium. “We cannot thank you enough for being there with us, and for us, every step of the way.”

With that, the founding executives confirmed the rumors and put Quibi to bed, a little more than six months after launching the service.

Starting a business is an impossibly difficult task under nearly any conditions, but even in a world that’s littered with high-profile failures, the streaming service’s swan song was remarkable for both its dramatically brief lifespan and the amount of money the company managed to raise (and spend) during that time.

A month ahead of its commercial launch, Quibi announced that it had raised another $750 million. That second round of funding brought the yet-to-launch streaming service’s funding up to $1.75 billion — roughly the same as the gross domestic product of Belize, give or take $100 million.

“We concluded a very successful second raise which will provide Quibi with a strong cash runway,” CFO Ambereen Toubassy told the press at the time. “This round of $750 million gives us tremendous flexibility and the financial wherewithal to build content and technology that consumers embrace.”

Quibi’s second funding round brought the yet-to-launch streaming service’s funding up to $1.75 billion — roughly the same as the gross domestic product of Belize, give or take $100 million.

From a financial perspective, Quibi had reason to be hopeful. Its fundraising ambitions were matched only by the aggressiveness with which it planned to spend that money. At the beginning of the year, Whitman touted the company’s plans to spend up to $100,000 per minute of programming — $6 million per hour. The executive proudly contrasted the jaw-dropping sum to the estimated $500 to $5,000 an hour spent by YouTube creators.

For Whitman and Katzenberg — best known for their respective reigns at HP and Disney — money was key to success in an already crowded marketplace. $1 billion was a drop in the bucket compared to the $17.3 billion Netflix was expected to spend on original content in 2020, but it was a start.

Following in the footsteps of Apple, who had also recently announced plans to spend $1 billion to launch its own fledgling streaming service, the company was enlisting A-List talent, from Steven Spielberg, Guillermo del Toro and Ridley Scott to Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Lopez and LeBron James. If your name carried any sort of clout in Hollywood boardrooms, Quibi would happily cut you a check, seemingly regardless of content specifics.

Quibi’s strategy primarily defined itself by itself by its constraints. In hopes of attracting younger millennial and Gen Z, the company’s content would be not just mobile-first, but mobile-only. There would be no smart TV app, no Chromecast or AirPlay compatibility. Pricing, while low compared to the competition, was similarly off-putting. After a 90-day free trial, $4.99 got you an ad-supported subscription. And boy howdy, were there ads. Ads upon ads. Ads all the way down. Paying another $3 a month would make them go away.

Technological constraints and Terms of Service fine print forbade screen shots — a fundamental understanding of how content goes viral in 2020 (though, to be fair, one shared with other competing streaming services). Amusingly, the inability to share content led to videos like this one of director Sam Raimi’s perplexingly earnest “The Golden Arm.”

It features a built-on laugh track from viewers as Emmy winner Rachel Brosnahan lies in a hospital bed after refusing to remove a golden prosthetic. It’s an allegory, surely, but not one intentionally played for laughs. Many of the videos that did ultimately make the rounds on social media were regarded as a curiosity — strange artifacts from a nascent streaming service that made little sense on paper.

Most notable of all, however, were the “quick bites” that gave the service its confusingly pronounced name. Each program would be served in 5-10 minute chunks. The list included films acquired by the service, sliced up into “chapters.” Notably, the service didn’t actually purchase the content outright; instead, rights were set to revert to their creators after seven years. Meanwhile, after two years, content partners were able to “reassemble” the chunks back into a movie for distribution.

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