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Coffee Talk: Magic Johnson Launches Program for At-Risk Youth

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The Good
Magic Johnson

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• Earvin "Magic" Johnson teamed up with rapper Common to launch of his new initiative to assist at-risk children. The "Friends of Magic" program, which Johnson launched Wednesday, is geared towards assisting Chicago's students and dropouts in graduating from high school. Johnson's endeavor is being backed by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, who attended the kick-off event yesterday. The former NBA star took to the podium in tears following a touching speech from a student who had successfully completed the education program. Johnson said he was proud of his organization's work and that he hopes his efforts will continue to see success in fighting against the national high school dropout rate. [The Grio]

• Rihanna shares a piece of herself with fans in her new documentary, Half of Me. The short film is narrated by Rihanna and several of her fans, who share how the singer has changed their lives. "Everything that I have acquired, everything that I have accomplished, I really owe it to my fans," Rihanna says in the 11-minute video. "It's really them that made this happen, so my fans, they mean everything to me." RiRi credits much of her success not only to her fan's support, but also to their criticism. "I love getting feedback from my fans. They're honest and I want to hear what they're thinking, what they think about my stuff." Rihanna has been very busy lately as she just wrapped up shooting for her new video for the next track off her Unapologetic album entitled "What Now." [Rap-Up]

• Don Cheadle will host a segment at the 65th Emmy Awards this Sunday that will honor the media's coverage of the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The tribute will continue with a salute to the Beatles' performance on Ed Sullivan's show in 1964. Cheadle, who has had five prior Emmy nominations, is once again up for for Lead Actor In A Comedy Series. See if he takes home the gold this Sunday at 8 p.m. on CBS. [Huffinton Post]

•Spike Lee will be awarded with the 20th annual Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize for his lengthy career. Selection committee chairman Darren Walker said Lee will be given the $300,000 award "for his brilliance and unwavering courage in using film to challenge conventional thinking." The director will be presented with the award on October 30th at the Museum of Modern Art and can use it in anyway he wishes. Although Lee is not yet sure how he will put the money to use, he does say that it will be spent on something worthwhile. "This is something I did not ask for, even know about, and thank God I got it," he said. "I will promise you this: I will make good use of it." [USA Today]

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