Stars Shine, Shade, and Flub Their Way Through Night 3 of the DNC

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Angela Bassett delivers remarks on the third day of the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center, July 27, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton received the number of votes needed to secure the party's nomination. An estimated 50,000 people are expected in Philadelphia, including hundreds of protesters and members of the media. The four-day Democratic National Convention kicked off July 25. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images) Lenny Kravitz performs during the third day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia , Wednesday, July 27, 2016. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) Sigourney Weaver delivers remarks on the third day of the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center, July 27, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton received the number of votes needed to secure the party's nomination. An estimated 50,000 people are expected in Philadelphia, including hundreds of protesters and members of the media. The four-day Democratic National Convention kicked off July 25. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Angela Bassett, Lenny Kravitz, and Sigourney Weaver brought the star power on night 3 of the DNC. (Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

We thought it was going to be hard to follow the historical and emotional second night of the DNC, but the third night had plenty of heart and soul of its own, inspired by the theme of “Working Together.” With moments dedicated to climate change, environmental awareness, gun control, and sobering stories shared by family members of mass shooting victims, the message was clear: It’s time for the country to come together to help create change.

Of course, there were a cadre of stars to lend their support to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. Here are the best celebrity moments from night three of the DNC:

Actress Star Jones speaks during the third day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia , Wednesday, July 27, 2016. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Star Jones added a dash of sass to the DNC. (Photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo)

Star Jones throws some shade at the right

Lawyer, journalist, and TV host Star Jones left The View years ago, but she hasn’t forgotten the art of throwing some good old-fashioned caustic shade. But first she shed some light on her relationship with Clinton.

“’I will fight for you. No matter how long it takes,” Jones told the assembled crowd. “I have known Hillary Rodham Clinton for over two decades now. And years ago, when she visited us on The View, I told her, ‘When you decide that you are ready to be the first woman president of the United States, I’ll be there to help.’”

And help she did, sharing her support for Clinton amid cheers from the crowd, telling them that even President Obama has said no one has ever been more qualified to take on this office — ever. Jones also lauded Clinton for her support of issues of concern to women and children, mirroring last night’s focus.

“And that’s very different from some very loud, obnoxious, race-baiting folk on the other side who I also know,” Jones said dryly, holding up her hand. “Shade. Boy, bye!”

As Jones’s expression dared you to cross her, the crowd burst into hoots of approval, leading Jones to introduce a short video about the Flint water crisis, explaining how it came to pass, detailing the fight the residents have been engaged in with local government, and sharing personal stories, like the woman who was told she shouldn’t have been drinking the water after miscarrying her twins.

“We all know there’s nowhere that needs a president that cares about all Americans more than in the place we’re about to visit — Flint, Michigan,” Jones said. Ain’t that the truth!

Sigourney Weaver gets awestruck, serious, and cut off

“Wow. You guys are a dazzling sight,” actress Sigourney Weaver told the crowd as she reached the podium, looking out into the audience with awe, a beaming smile on her face. And then she got down to business, addressing the issue of climate change and its impact on our collective future.

“When we talk about greenhouse gasses and warming temperatures, deadlier droughts, even more destructive storms, what we’re really talking about is people,” Weaver shared. “They’re the people you’re going to see in a few moments, people whose lives are affected by climate change right here in America, right now.

“Like a rancher in Texas, who is losing his herd of cattle because there’s no grass for them to eat,” she continued. “Or a farmer in Kansas whose crops are dying because there’s no rain. Or, my fellow New Yorker, a mom in New York City, a mom who lost her young daughter in Sandy, in a flood made far worse by rising sea levels. Can Donald Trump look these people in the eye and tell them climate change is a hoax and that there’s nothing we can do? That he doesn’t care about their pain?”

With the declaration that there’s nothing America can’t do when it comes together, Weaver encouraged everyone to stop ignoring the facts and make change — just like Clinton.

“Hillary Clinton? She gets it,” Weaver said. “She cares. She is committed. She understands that taking a stand against climate change, it’s not about politics. It is about our moral obligation to one another. And to our children. And to our generations that will one day inherit this beautiful earth.”

Weaver looked like she had more to say, and we were ready to listen — until she got cut off in favor of…

James Cameron’s short film about climate change (with assists from Don Cheadle and Jack Black)

“We all know it’s real. It’s happening. It’s happening now,” came Weaver’s voiceover on a video presentation directed by James Cameron. Even the camera guy seemed confused as to what was going on, as the camera pulled back from the video to show Weaver exiting the stage. Direction snafu! But not by Cameron, whose short film on climate change was beautifully shot, but hard to watch.

Juxtaposing breathtaking scenery with moments of destruction and desolation, Cameron effectively drove home the point Weaver was making: Climate change isn’t something we have the luxury of ignoring anymore. Even actors Don Cheadle and Jack Black got in the mix, talking with Americans affected by the change, and with scientists who describe just how bad it will get. For example? When Black asks about rising sea levels, he’s told, “Sea levels are rising, and Miami will not be here.” Oof.

Lee Daniels gets real (and flubs his lines)

Oscar-nominated director and Empire creator Lee Daniels, a Philly native, took to the stage to talk about a subject that’s been on everyone’s minds for what feels like forever: gun violence. Looking stylish in a black suit and matching sneakers, Daniels was passionate and eloquent — and charmingly nervous.

“I’m here because the next president of the United States invited me,” Daniels told the crowd, and then his voice wavered as he launched into an incredibly revealing declaration.

“I was a little scared at first. I wondered if Hillary really knew who I was. Not just the work I do in entertainment, but who I really am,” he continued. “Who is Lee Daniels? Does she know that my sister is under house arrest? Does she know that my brother Maynard is in jail? Does she know that my nephew is in jail? That my cousins are in and out of jail? That my father was a police officer, shot and murdered right here in Philadelphia when I was 15? Does she even know that I’ve been to jail? That’s the America I know. And still I rise.”

The audience applauded appreciatively, bringing a smile to Daniels’s face and prompting him to encourage a vote for Clinton because of her dedication to and focus on supporting families who have dealt with losses through gun violence. As the crowd cheered, Daniels said, “Hillary understands our right to bear guns, but wants to stop guns from getting into the wrong hands. You guys, 33,000 Americans each year die from gun violence. That’s 90 people a day. Enough.”

As he delivered an impassioned plea for everyone to take action, Daniels made a sweet slip in his speech and admitted with a laugh, “I’m bad at this teleprompter stuff.” But what he’s not bad at is inspiring others.

“And to that millennial who comes from where I come from, who doesn’t think that you have a voice, you do,” Daniels said. “And there ain’t no choice. This is the most important election of our lifetime. Come November, vote for her.”

We’re on our way to the polls right now. (What do you mean, it’s too early?!)

Angela Bassett powerfully tells a vivid story about gun violence

If Oscar-nominated actress Angela Bassett ever wanted to run for office, she’d get our vote. Her introduction to the survivors of the Charleston Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church was poignant, powerful, vivid, and heartbreaking.

“They were gathered to pray,” she said. “He walked in an outsider, a stranger, but they welcomed him. Then he opened fire. He stole their lives.” Bassett went on to state each of the victim’s names, finishing with, “We say their names. But that is not enough, is it?” She was met with a huge chorus of “NO!” from the crowd.

Bassett then discussed how since the Charleston, S.C., shootings, more shootings have continued to claim lives , but even though we feel powerless, we have to persevere and make change, as encouraged by Clinton.

“Still there are days where it feels like our bodies and our minds are under too much pressure,” Bassett empathized. “Then I remember that we have souls too, and I thank God that our souls are on fire. I visited Charleston this year, and I can tell you that that city’s soul is on fire. That soul burns with resilience. It fuels the resistance. It brought down the Confederate flag.”

Interrupted by cheers, Bassett gave the crowd a moment to celebrate that victory before introducing us to the two lone adult survivors of the Charleston church shootings, Felicia Sanders and Polly Sheppard. It was definitely a moment.

Broadways biggest stars gather for a sing-along of “What the World Needs Now”

Take last night’s celebrity sing-along, music video take on “Fight Song,” change the tune to “What the World Needs Now,” then make it live … and you’ve got Wednesday’s star-studded highlight of the DNC. As the camera pulled wide and the band played the song’s refrain, the stage slowly filled with people.

Introduced as the Voices of Broadway, Idina Menzel started things off by crooning the opening lines, then passed the mic down the line. Others getting into the act included Audra McDonald, Kristen Bell, Sharon Gless, Tyne Daly, Eve Plumb, Ben Vereen, B.D. Wong, Darren Criss, Debra Messing, Wilson Cruz, and Rosie Perez, to name a few. The moment was so touching that audience member Lance Bass was busy capturing it on camera from the crowd.

And as the song reached its end, the entire convention audience was on its feet and holding hands, singing along. This inspired everyone on stage to start chanting, “Love! Love! Love!” at the crowd, who chanted it right back and threw heart signs up in the air. It was — dare we say? — lovely.

Lenny Kravitz lets love rule

Sadly, Lenny Kravitz didn’t wear the red, white, and blue leather pants we were hoping for (didn’t he get the memo from Meryl Streep?). But he did kick off his set with a powerful rendition of his hit song “Let Love Rule,” backed by a gospel choir. Putting down his guitar, he urged the crowd to sing along and clap, and finished his performance by declaring, “We’ve got to let love rule. One God, one planet, one people, and love is the only solution!”

It was the perfect leadup to the big finish with the introduction of Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine, and the incredible closing speech by President Obama.

Three down, one more to go…