06-24-2018  12:27 am      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

On the hunt in Oregon for a rare Sierra Nevada red fox

BEND, Ore. (AP) — In a dense forest at the base of Mount Bachelor, two wildlife biologists slowly walked toward a small cage trap they hoped would contain a rare red fox species. Jamie Bowles, an Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife technician in Bend, and Tim Hiller, founder of the...

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Abuse survivor finds new life, success in Pacific Northwest

VANCOUVER, Wash. (AP) — Jonathan Dutson long dreamed of moving to the Pacific Northwest, where its lush greenery offered a respite from the scorching Arizona sun he grew up beneath. But Dutson was looking as much for a new home as he was looking for an escape.Dutson was one of 700 who walked...

Alaska city honors Guardsmen killed in crash after '64 quake

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A month after the second most powerful earthquake ever was recorded, the Alaska port community of Valdez remained in ruins.A hulking Alaska National Guard cargo plane's mission April 25, 1964, was to deliver Gov. William Egan to oversee efforts to rebuild the town on...

OPINION

How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Racist tropes in Ramadan TV satires anger black Arabs

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In an attempt to capitalize on what's become a ratings bonanza for Arabic satellite channels during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, two comedies struck the wrong chord with audiences when their lead actors appeared in blackface.Criticism was swift on...

Chaos on the border inflames GOP's split with Latinos

When more than 1,000 Latino officials __ a crop of up-and-coming representatives from a fast-growing demographic __ gathered in Phoenix last week, no one from the Trump administration was there to greet them.It marked the first time a presidential administration skipped the annual conference of the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Han Solo's Blaster from 'Return of the Jedi' tops auction

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Han Solo's Blaster from the "Return of the Jedi" has sold for 0,000 at a Las Vegas auction.Julien's Auctions says Ripley's Believe It or Not bought the item Saturday.The sci-fi weapon was the top-selling item at the Hollywood Legends auction.The blaster was part of a...

Ornate NYC theater, used for years as a gym, to be restored

NEW YORK (AP) — For years, Long Island University's basketball team played in a French Baroque movie palace in downtown Brooklyn.The gilded wall fountains, plastered statuettes and towering, one-of-a-kind Wurlitzer organ pipes of the historic Paramount Theater were preserved by the...

Vinnie Paul, co-founder, drummer of Pantera, dies at 54

Vinnie Paul, co-founder and drummer of metal band Pantera, has died at 54.Pantera's official Facebook page posted a statement early Saturday announcing his death. The label of Hellyeah, his most recent group, confirmed the death but neither statement mentioned Paul's cause of death.His real name...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

In about-face, Iraq's maverick al-Sadr moves closer to Iran

BAGHDAD (AP) — Muqtada al-Sadr, the maverick Shiite cleric who emerged as the main winner in Iraq's...

US moves 100 coffins to N. Korean border for war remains

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The U.S. military said it moved 100 wooden coffins to the inter-Korean border to...

New Zealand leader names daughter Neve, leaves hospital

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her partner Clarke Gayford...

AP PHOTOS: Germany salvages campaign on Day 10 of World Cup

MOSCOW (AP) — Germany midfielder Toni Kroos scored a dramatic late winner to come from behind and beat...

Beyond World Cup: Advocates call attention to Russian abuses

MOSCOW (AP) — Wrapped in national flags, jubilant fans dance at midnight in the streets of Moscow, smiling,...

In about-face, Iraq's maverick al-Sadr moves closer to Iran

BAGHDAD (AP) — Muqtada al-Sadr, the maverick Shiite cleric who emerged as the main winner in Iraq's...

Kam Williams Special to The Skanner News

Born in Chicago on Oct. 25, 1971, Craig Robinson is currently appearing in the final season of "The Office" on NBC, where he portrays acerbic Dunder-Mifflin employee Darryl Philbin. He is definitely a world away from his original career intentions; before deciding to pursue a comedy career full-time, Robinson was a K-8 teacher in the Chicago Public Schools.



He had earned his undergraduate degree from Illinois State University and a Master's in Education from St. Xavier University. It was while studying education that he discovered his love of acting and comedy upon joining the famed Second City Theatre.

Craig made his mark on the comedy circuit at the 1998 Montreal "Just For Laughs" Festival. That year, he also won the Oakland Comedy Festival Awards and the Miller Genuine Draft 1996 Comedy Search. He soon went on to perform his act on "The Jimmy Kimmel Show," and "Real Time with Bill Maher."

His rise to success with "The Office" and his stand-up prowess quickly brought him to the attention of comedy maven Judd Apatow. Robinson made audiences question their notions of vanity playing the sensitive bouncer in "Knocked Up." He then kept audiences glued to their seats as one of the henchman hunting Seth Rogen and James Franco's bumbling stoner characters in "Pineapple Express," and made fans squirm when he co-starred with Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks in "Zack and Miri Make a Porno."

In 2010, Craig starred alongside Rob Corddry and John Cusack in "Hot Tub Time Machine." The story follows three grown-up men (Robinson, Corddry, and Cusack) as they visit the hot tub where they once partied, accidentally discover it is now a time machine, and travel back to their raunchy heyday in the mid-1980s. Fans' voices spoke loudly, and early negotiations are currently in progress for a sequel.

Here, he talks about his first leading man role as Wade Walker in "Peeples," a comedy co-starring Kerry Washington.

Kam Williams: Hi Craig, thanks for the interview.
Craig Robinson: Thank you for getting the word out. I appreciate it, Kam.  

KW: What interested you in Peeples?
CR: When I met with [director] Tina Gordon Chism, I was impressed with her passion about the project. She had lived this experience of dating someone from a family with so many secrets, and watching them unravel. So, she knew what she was talking about. And when she let me know that Kerry Washington was playing the love interest, I went, "Okay, I'm in! Let's go ahead and do it."

KW: Harriet Pakula-Teweles says: You've done some great cameo and support roles, but now landed a lead role here. Congratulations! So, in Peeples, your fans will see more of you. How was it playing a main character and working with [producer] Tyler Perry?
CR: I worked with Tyler before on Daddy's Little Girls. He couldn't be smarter or more laid back and cool. He's always throwing out lines and is funny as hell. And he was shining his light on Peeples, too, lending his name to showcase Tina as a first-time director, and me as a first-time lead. I'm humbled and honored to work with him. He's great!

KW: Editor/Legist Patricia Turnier would like to know what was it like to on the set with legendary actors like Diahann Carroll and Melvin Van Peebles?
CR: Diahann Carroll delivered a very moving speech at the start of the whole project, and Melvin pulled me aside on the set and told me to, "Stay strong!" in a way that carried considerable heft. These people are legends, and we couldn't have been more thrilled about their participation in the movie and blessing it. It was superb.

KW: Patricia also says: Given that you are a singer, are you interested in recording an album one day?
CR: Yes I am. I have a sound. It's called funk mixed with stank. That's what I do.

KW: What's it like having the same name as First Lady Michelle Obama's brother?
CR: I was once dating a woman who got very upset after confusing the two of us when she found my picture next to his bio which indicated that he's divorced with kids, and remarried. So, if you can imagine, that's what it's like.

KW: Larry Greenberg says: I'm just crazy about films with time travel.  Where there any special issues or tricky scenes when you played Nick in Hot Tub Time Machine?
CR: Yes, there was a special issue. Her name was Jessica Paré. She was topless with me in the hot tub. So, yes, that was a very special moment, and I watch the movie every night because of that scene. 

KW: Dinesh Sharma asks: Do you think that your role describes a challenge most black men face today, of trying to fit into upper-class black society? Or was the movie just Meet the Parents with an African-American twist?
CR: Peeples is definitely not Meet the Parents. It's more a movie about family secrets. It does explore class issues somewhat, but it's mostly about living your own truth. 

KW: What is your favorite dish to cook?
CR: I can bake the hell out of some chicken, my friend.

KW: The bookworm Troy Johnson question: What was the last book you read?
CR: Celestine Prophecies.

KW: The music maven Heather Covington question: What was the last song you listened to?
CR: Butterflies by Michael Jackson.

KW: The Uduak Oduok question: Who is your favorite clothes designer?
CR: JSLV, Just Live, it's a company in California.

KW: When you look in the mirror, what do you see?
CR: Craig Robinson… I see growth.

KW: If you could have one wish instantly granted, what would that be for?
CR: To be able hug my deceased family members, friends and godfather.

KW: The Ling-Ju Yen question: What is your earliest childhood memory?
CR: Banging on the piano while my grandmother was watching me. I'd run up to her and ask: "How was that, Grandma?" And she'd say, "That was beautiful, baby!" And I'd run back to the piano and play some more. I'm sure that's why I still play today, because I was encouraged from such a young age, 2 or 3.

KW: The Judyth Piazza question: What key quality do you believe all successful people share?
CR: Determination!

KW: The Mike Pittman question" asks: What was your best career move?
CR: Choosing my manager, Mark Schulman.

KW: PBS President Neal Shapiro asks: If you could really time travel and live in another period, which one would you choose?
CR: The Sixties, because it was the beginning of Rock & Roll. All the songs sounded alike, since they were using the same three chords, which would make it easy to hop out and rock.  

KW: Is there any question no one ever asks you, that you wish someone would?
CR: That's a great question. I can't think of one.

KW: The Viola Davis question: Who do you really believe you are when you go home as opposed to the person you pretend to be on the red carpet?
CR: The red carpet is weird because, when they don't know who you are, you're standing there posing and nobody's taking pictures of you. And when they do know you, they're calling your name from every which way and you don't know in which direction to turn. For me, I'm more in control at home. On the carpet, I want to be in control, but it can be overwhelming.

KW: The Gabby Douglas question: If you had to choose another profession, what would it be?
CR: Rock star! Singing songs that the whole world knows, like my favorite band, Earth, Wind and Fire.

KW: The Anthony Mackie question: Is there something that you promised to do if you became famous, that you still haven't done yet?
CR: No, because I don't make promises unless I know I'm gonna keep 'em.

KW: The Anthony Anderson question: If you could have a superpower, which one would you choose?
CR: Invisibility!

KW: The Jamie Foxx question: If you only had 24 hours to live, what would you do? Would you do the bad stuff, you never got a chance to do, or would you do good stuff to make sure you make it into heaven?
CR: I would live like I'm already living. If I couldn't get to my family, I'd hit my favorite restaurant. I'd seize the moment.

KW: The Kerry Washington question: If you were an animal, what animal would you be?
CR: A whale.

KW: The Sanaa Lathan question: What excites you?
CR: The little things that let me know I'm on the right path, like running into an old friend, or getting into the car and catching an awesome song from the beginning.

KW: The Melissa Harris-Perry question: How did your first big heartbreak impact who you are as a person?
CR: I don't get too close in relationships. I kinda have my arm out, like the Heisman trophy, because I don't want to hurt somebody the way I was hurt.

KW: The Harriet Pakula-Teweles question: With so many classic films being redone, is there a remake you'd like to star in with an eye toward a particular role.
CR: Yeah, Cannonball Run.

KW: Attorney Bernadette Beekman asks: Do you have a favorite charity?
CR: No, I don't.

KW: The Nancy Lovell Question: Why do you love doing what you do?
CR: Because it brings me closer to people, and it lets me explore who I am. It's a chance for me to be connected. Whenever I'm performing live, the first thing I look for is to make a connection.

KW: What is your favorite way of performing?
CR: I'm in my element when I'm alone on stage with a microphone and a keyboard.

KW: What advice do you have for anyone who wants to follow in your footsteps?
CR: Be yourself, because you're special. There's only one of you. Second, be tenacious, visualize success, and them live it. And remember everything you learned in kindergarten.

KW: The Tavis Smiley question: How do you want to be remembered?
CR: As a joy!

KW: Thanks again, Craig. I really appreciate having this opportunity, brother, and best of luck with Peeples.
CR: Thank you. You are phenomenal, Kam.

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