Brandy Rayana Norwood, known professionally by her mononym Brandy, is an American singer, record producer, actress. Born into a musical family in McComb and raised in Carson, she began her career as a child and performed as a backing vocalist for teen groups. In 1993, Norwood signed with Atlantic Records; the following year, she released her self-titled debut album, certified quadruple Platinum in the US, selling six million copies worldwide. Norwood starred in the UPN sitcom Moesha as the title character, which lasted six seasons and resulted in numerous other roles, she resumed her music career in 1998 with the wildly successful duet with fellow R&B contemporary Monica, "The Boy Is Mine", which went on to become the best selling female duet of all time, one of the longest running number one singles in history. Her second album, Never Say Never, sold 16 million copies worldwide, featured two number one singles, earned Norwood her first Grammy Award; this launched her into international stardom, with films, sold out concert tours, her own line of Barbie dolls.
Throughout the 2000s, Norwood held a precarious position in the pop industry. In 2002, she starred in the reality series Brandy: Special Delivery, documenting the birth of her daughter, her third and fourth albums, Full Moon and Afrodisiac, were released to critical and commercial success. She served as a judge on the first season of America's Got Talent before being involved in a publicized car accident in 2006. After several lawsuits stemming from the accident, Norwood's fifth album, was released to commercial failure. In the 2010s, Norwood received a commercial resurgence. In 2010, she returned to television as a contestant on the eleventh season of Dancing with the Stars and starred in the reality series Brandy & Ray J: A Family Business. In 2012 she became a series regular in the BET series The Game, released her sixth album Two Eleven to critical praise. In April 2015, Norwood made her Broadway debut in the musical Chicago, she starred in and executive produced a sitcom titled Zoe Ever After on BET which premiered in January 2016.
As of July 2018, she has sold over 40 million records worldwide, with over 8.62 million albums sold in the U. S. making her one of the best selling female artists of all time. The Recording Industry Association of America lists Norwood as one of the top-selling artists in the United States, with 10.5 million certified units in album sales. Her work has earned her numerous awards and accolades, including a Grammy Award, an American Music Award, seven Billboard Music Awards, she has become known for her distinctive sound, characterized by her peculiar timbre, voice-layering, intricate riffs, which has earned her the nickname "The Vocal Bible" from industry peers and critics. Norwood was born on February 11, 1979, in McComb, the daughter of Willie Norwood, a gospel singer and choir director, his wife, Sonja Norwood, a district manager for H&R Block. Brandy is the older sister of entertainer Ray J, as well as a cousin of rapper Snoop Dogg and WWE wrestler Sasha Banks. Raised in a Christian home, Norwood started singing through her father's work as part of the local church choir, performing her first gospel solo at the age of two.
In 1983, her parents relocated to Los Angeles, where Norwood was schooled at the Hollywood High Performing Arts Center. Norwood's interest in music and performing increased after becoming a fan of singer Whitney Houston at the age of seven, but at school, she experienced trouble with persuading teachers to send her on auditions as she found no support among the staff. Norwood began entering talent shows by the time she was eleven, and, as part of a youth singing group, performed at several public functions. In 1990, her talent led to a contract with Teaspoon Productions, headed by Chris Stokes and Earl Harris, who gave her work as a backing vocalist for their R&B boy band Immature, arranged the production of a demo tape. In 1993, amid ongoing negotiations with East West Records, Norwood's parents organized a recording contract with the Atlantic Recording Corporation after auditioning for the company's director of A&R Darryl Williams. To manage her daughter, Norwood's mother soon resigned from her job, while Norwood herself dropped out of Hollywood High School and was tutored from tenth grade on.
During the early production stages of her debut album, Norwood was selected for a role in the short-lived ABC sitcom Thea, portraying the daughter of a single mother played by comedian Thea Vidale. Broadcast to high ratings, the series' viewership dwindled and ended up running for only one season, but earned her a Young Artists Award nomination for Outstanding Youth Ensemble alongside her co-stars. Norwood recalled that she appreciated the cancellation of the show as she was unenthusiastic about acting at the time, the taping caused scheduling conflicts with the recording of her album, she stated, "I felt bad for everybody else but me. It was a good thing, because I could do what I had to do, because I wanted to sing." In 1993, Williams hired producer Keith Crouch and R&B group Somethin' for the People to work with Norwood, within eight months the team crafted Brandy. A collection of street-oriented rhythm-and-blues with a hip hop edge, whose lyrical content embraced her youthful and innocent image in public, Norwood summed up the songs on the album as young and vulnerable, stating, "I didn’t know a lot—all I wanted to do was sing.
You can just tell that it’s a person singing from a genuine place, a place of no experience. I was singing about being attracted to the opposite sex, but I had no experience
Perry K. Smith, known as P. K. Smith, was a businessman from Winnfield, who served a single term in the Louisiana House of Representatives from 1960 to 1964 during the administration of Governor Jimmie Davis. In 1974, Smith and his sons, Kenneth Michael "Mike" Smith and Perry Joe Smith, Sr. launched P. K. Smith Motors, which serves Winnfield and Jonesboro as the General Motors dealer, it was the Chrysler outlet until the company pulled out of Winnfield in 2009. Mike Smith co-owned P. K. Smith Motors with his brother. In 1995, Mike Smith was elected to the first of three four-year terms to the Louisiana State Senate. Perry Joe Smith was a former member of the Winn Parish Police Jury and operated several areas businesses; the Smith family over the years was involved in other businesses in Winnfield, including a motel, drive-in theater, dress shop, beauty shop, an outlet of the former Gibson Discount Company. Smith's wife, the former Marjorie McLamore, began the beauty shop from their home. Smith ran unsuccessfully in the 1940s for Winn Parish assessor.
A brother, Hardy "Junior" Smith, ran unsuccessfully for sheriff. One of Smith's sisters, Ruby Smith Long of Natchitoches, was the mother of Gerald Long, a Republican, elected to succeed Mike Smith in the state Senate in the nonpartisan blanket primary held on October 20, 2007. Mike Smith is therefore an extended member of the Long political family based in Winnfield
Redeemer is a 2014 Chilean action crime-thriller film directed by Ernesto Díaz Espinoza and co-written with Guillermo Prieto, Sanz Andrea and Gina Aguad. The film stars Noah Segan. Zaror plays a former hit man, it premiered in September 2014 at Fantastic Fest. Former hit man Nicky Pardo plays Russian roulette with a stylized pistol. Flashbacks reveal that, during a confrontation, he accidentally killed the son of a rival hit man known as the Scorpion. In revenge, the Scorpion tortures both Pardo and his pregnant wife, forces Pardo to kill his wife to end her suffering, leaves Pardo for dead in a desert; the Scorpion leaves behind his stylized pistol as a way to escape dehydration. Pardo survives. In the present, he targets the former drug gangs that he once served, giving them an ultimatum to either repent or die; as a result, he becomes known as the Redeemer. When the Scorpion discovered Pardo is still alive, he chases after him. Pardo comes upon a villager, menaced by thugs. After killing his attackers, they hide from the gang's retaliation in the house of Agustin's friend Antonia.
Agustin explains that he took it to a local church to donate. Pardo offers to trade the money back to the gang in return. Though they refuse to leave, they agree to bargain; when they realize that Pardo is the Redeemer, they keep him under heavy guard while several men fetch the money. They fail to find the money, Pardo kills all the men in the room before they can shoot him; the gang's boss, an American named Steve Bradock, dismisses his henchmen's fears and orders them to kill Pardo. Pardo returns to find. Pardo refuses to allow her to keep it, but he relents after she unknowingly reminds him of slaughtered family. Agustin and Antonia watch as Pardo engages in his ritualistic Russian roulette, Antonia tells him that he must accept his dark side and forgive himself rather than looking to God for a sign that he has been forgiven. Knowing that the entire gang must be killed if they allow Antonia to keep the money, Pardo researches the gang's next drug deal, where he defeats one of Bradock's assassins.
Meanwhile, the Scorpion kills anyone who gets in his way. Realizing that both the Redeemer and Scorpion are in town, Bradock's second-in-command urges him to flee. Instead, Bradock kills him, promotes underling Piedra, demands that his men come up with a cool-sounding nickname for him, too. After Pardo clears out a warehouse and Pardo engage in a duel. After Pardo wins, he learns from Piedra the location Bradock's headquarters. There, Pardo realizes the Scorpion has killed Bradock; the Scorpion knocks him out. When Pardo awakes, he sees that Antonia are both prisoners; the Scorpion reveals that he has been killing all the people that Pardo has helped, which he says proves the futility of Pardo's redemption. The Scorpion demands Agustin to play Russian roulette; the Scorpion demands Antonia play under threat of Pardo's death, but Pardo points out that the Scorpion would never kill him without making him suffer. Both Antonia and the Scorpion are disarmed, the two men face off. Pardo defeats the Scorpion, Antonia hands him the stylized pistol.
Instead of killing him, Pardo apologizes for killing his son and gives the Scorpion back his pistol, saying that it is all he can do to reunite the Scorpion with his son. A gunshot is heard as Antonia leave. Marko Zaror as Nicky Pardo Noah Segan as Bradock Jose Luis Mosca as the Scorpion Loreto Aravena as Antonia Mauricio Diocares as Agustin Smirnow Boris as Piedra On March 18, 2014, XYZ Films announced Redeemer, which Marko Zaror would star in and Ernesto Diaz Espinoza direct. On March 26, Noah Segan joined the cast of the film; the filming began on March 24, 2014, in Pichidangui and ended in the mid-May. Redeemer premiered in September 2014 at Fantastic Fest, it received a limited release in the US on 12 June 2015. Frank Scheck of The Hollywood Reporter called the action scenes "thrilling to watch" and singled out Zaror's performance as a breakout role. Ethan Alter of Film Journal International wrote that Redeemer updates vigilante films to adapt to popular superhero film tropes but lacks a timely statement to interest viewers.
Martin Tsai of the Los Angeles Times called it lame and derivative action film with contrived scenes that force the characters to resort to martial arts. Simon Abrams of The Village Voice wrote, "Redeemer may not be as good as its star, but it does give Zaror enough room to shine." Matt Donato of We Got This Covered rated it 2.5/5 stars and wrote that the film has "full-throttle action" but "feels a tad-bit undercooked". Redeemer on IMDb Redeemer at Rotten Tomatoes