R&B legend Babyface met Michael Jackson for the first time as a child after tricking a concert promoter in his native Indiana into allowing him to meet and interview the young superstar. The songwriter/producer reveals he was just a kid with dreams of making it in the music industry when he learned his pop idol would be performing in his hometown - so he concocted a plan to meet The Jackson 5 and land a chat with Michael.
Babyface tells U.S. TV presenter Oprah Winfrey, "The Jackson 5 came to town and I figured out how to interview them. I lied and said I was a news reporter and got in to interview the Jackson 5... at 12, 13 years old.
"I looked up the promoter (in the phonebook)... and when I got him, I had to put on my grown voice (sic). I had a Jimmy Stewart (classic actor known for his distinctive drawl) impression, that I did back then, so I talked like Jimmy Stewart and said, 'Hello can I speak to Charles Williams (promoter) please...? I hear that you've got these kids called The Jacksons and they're coming to town and I thought it would be a great idea if I could get my kids to talk to your kids. That'd be swell, what do you think?' And he goes, 'I think it's a great idea...!' He took my number down and he called me 10 minutes later...
"I walked in the (hotel) room (for the interview)... there were two beds there: Jackie and Jermaine were on one bed, Marlon and Tito were on the other bed, and Michael was sitting at the table at the end. I walked in and just ignored them (older brothers) and walked straight to Michael and Michael said, 'Hey, how you doing?' I said, 'It's an honour to meet you' and he said, 'It's an honour to meet you, sit down, have a seat.'
"It was unbelievable. They let me stay in there about 30 minutes."
Michael Jackson's ex-wife Debbie Rowe has threatened to help a fan of the King of Pop kill his disgraced physician. Dr. Conrad Murray was convicted of administering the propofol dose that killed Jackson in 2009 and he has spent the past two years behind bars. He was released earlier this month (Nov13).
And after the medic revealed in a recent interview that he and his former boss would joke about Rowe's looks, the former nurse, who is the mother of the late pop star's two eldest children, has hit back.
She tells TMZ.com that Murray should watch what he says and look out, because within 18 months "a Jackson fan will shoot him dead, and I'd buy the bullet. I wouldn't shoot him but I'd buy the bullet."
Commenting on Murray's remarks about her looks, she adds, "If I had a dog as ugly as him, I'd shave its a**, make it walk backwards and put a wig on it... At least I can breed. He can't even write prescriptions anymore."
Michael Jackson's personal doctor Conrad Murray has sensationally alleged the pop icon overdosed on drugs by secretly injecting himself. The medic was sentenced to four years for the involuntary manslaughter of the King of Pop, and he was released from prison last month (Oct13) after serving half his sentence.
Jackson died in June, 2009 from an overdose of anaesthetic Propofol and Murray was convicted of administering the fatal dose - but in his first interview since being freed, Murray insists Jackson was responsible for the tragedy.
Murray, who did not testify in his criminal trial, alleges the singer was already addicted to painkiller Demerol when they met, and believes on the night of his death Jackson gave himself a second injection after his personal physician had left his bedroom.
Murray tells British newspaper The Mail on Sunday, "I never gave Michael anything that would kill him. I loved him. I still do. I always will... I did not kill Michael Jackson. He was a drug addict. Michael Jackson accidentally killed Michael Jackson...
"I had no idea Michael was getting Demerol, which he had grown to love over several decades. I've used Demerol in the emergency room. The maximum is 75mg that I would use. Michael was receiving as much as 300mg several times a week.
"That night he just couldn't sleep. I prescribed him drugs to help, including Valium and Lorazepam, but he was begging, pleading, close to tears... I told him, 'This is not normal. What I've given you would put an elephant to sleep'.
"In the other bedroom, the police found an open bottle of Lorazepam. They found tablets in his stomach. I didn't give him those. Michael took extra tablets. And he injected himself...
"I believe he woke up (after I left the room), got hold of his own stash of Propofol and injected himself. He did it too quickly and went into cardiac arrest."
Murray also supports rumours Jackson was exhausted by rehearsals for his doomed This Is It comeback shows in the weeks before his death and was too frail to perform.
He adds, "Michael was a decrepit man. He was frail. I had to force him to eat, to drink fluids... He was under enormous pressure... By the end, Michael Jackson was a broken man. I tried to protect him but instead I was brought down with him."
Moviemakers Ethan and Joel Coen had to hire a private detective to track down one of the performers on their smash-hit O Brother, Where Art Thou soundtrack - so they could give him a large royalty cheque. James Carter & the Prisoners' Po Lazarus track became a big hit thanks to the 2000 film and the Coens were determined to pay the songwriter what he was due.
They eventually tracked him down to a nursing home in Chicago, Illinois.
Joel Coen tells Rolling Stone, "They said to him, 'This year you've made more from your record than Michael Jackson'. I mean, that's great. He gave all the money to the church."
Carter died in 2003, aged 77.
Daft Punk bassist Nathan East has recruited pals Stevie Wonder, Sara Bareilles and Michael Mcdonald to work on his first solo album. The acclaimed musician has worked with popular artists such as Michael Jackson, Beyonce and Andrea Bocelli during his 30 years in the music industry, and now he's heading into the studio for an album of his own.
East will be releasing a yet-to-be-titled record next year (14), which will contain both original songs and covers.
He has already tapped Wonder, McDonald and Bareilles for the record, but is still hoping to enlist Eric Clapton and Anita Baker, who he's also worked with in the past.
East is also in talks for creating an accompanying documentary about the process of making the album.
Veteran British actress Barbara Windsor has thrown her support behind a campaign to honour theatre great Joan Littlewood with a statue in London. The Carry On star is backing a drive which asks fans to help fund a bronze sculpture of the late theatre director, which will be placed outside the Theatre Royal Stratford East in Stratford, London.
Theatre bosses have commissioned artist Philip Jackson to create the piece, but need donations from the public.
Artistic director Kerry Michael says, "Joan Littlewood... was an inspiration to many and it's important that we recognise the significance of her work and build upon her success to inspire future generations.
"We're delighted to have raised more than 50 per cent of the funds required to commemorate her with a statue and urge the public to get behind this important campaign."
Windsor worked with Littlewood in the Broadway production of Oh, What a Lovely War! in 1964. The director died in 2002 aged 87.
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Somewhere tucked behind all of those new circuits and transistors, there’s still a human heart beating inside of Robocop’s chest, and given the newest trailer, there's also a human heart beating inside the new Robocop remake, even under all the flash and spectacle of dystopian robot action. While the previous trailers might have led you to believe that director José Padilha left all of the story's human drama on the operating table, this international trailer spends a lot of time examining the emotional and existential weight involved with saving a human life by stripping away most of his human parts, before letting Robocop get down to the gun-toting business of doling out justice.
In the trailer, we get some new scenes featuring Abbie Cornish being promised that her husband's life can be saved and Joel Kinnamann waking up from his procedure, still unaware that he has been transformed into the world's most immoral science fair project. We also get shots of Samuel L. Jackson as Omnicorp's company mouthpiece, while a slimy Michael Keaton impresses into the heads of the American people that putting robotic drones on the street will make everyone safer.
It's worth noting that all of the action in the trailers so far have showcased Robocop fighting other robots. Does that mean his primary villain will be synthetic enemies, or is the studio just holding back it's more gruesome violence for the actual film? We may be in need of a good ol' red band trailer to really show us what this Robocop really has up its metal sleeves.
The hat worn by Michael Jackson during the most-watched TV special in history has sold at auction for $5,760 (£3,840). The late King of Pop sported the black fedora while he performed his hit track Billie Jean on a televised show to celebrate his 30th anniversary as a solo performer in New York in 2001. The programme pulled in 450 million viewers worldwide.
The item was one of 17 items put up for sale by the Thriller hitmaker's friend, producer David Gest, at Fieldings auction house in England on Saturday (16Nov13). The sale raised a total of $45,000 (£30,000).
Illusionist David Blaine and his late pal Michael Jackson once slipped into Britain's Parliament building, much to the surprise of unsuspecting tourists. The American magician and the King of Pop became unlikely friends and admits he'll never forget the reaction they received during a day out together in London.
In an interview with The Huffington Post, he explains, "I got to spend a lot of time with Michael Jackson. One time we snuck into the Parliament building. And we walked in, but he wasn't in disguise. And it was so strange, because the whole place was full.
"We went into the part where tourists go. And all of a sudden you heard this hush - like people start whispering. And it got louder and louder, and then it became really loud, and then everything went silent.
"And I was like, 'Whoa. This is really unbelievable.' He had this thing where people reacted in a way that I've never, ever seen anything like. So it was pretty extraordinary."
Before all of you devoted to the glory that is Adam Levine attempt to claw my eyes out, let me say that I also believe that the Maroon 5 frontman is a godly male specimen. However, when Gossip Cop reported that Levine would be named Sexiest Man Alive this year, we were quite shocked. Usually, People picks the year's biggest star or breakout performer for this honor. Sure, Levine is a judge on the popular show The Voice, and he recently made headlines for getting engaged to a Victoria's Secret model (yes, it's okay to hate her), but other than that, Levine hasn't really done a whole lot lately in the way of, ya know, anything. The choice to name him Sexiest Man Alive would have made more sense back in 2012 when Maroon 5's album Overexposed was released... or even one year into the future, when Levine makes his film debut in Can a Song Save Your Life? ... So, since we don't completely understand how the the reported choice of Levine for the cover came to be, we've come up with five other studs that would have made more sense this year.
1. Chris Hemsworth. If we were to choose based on who is the sexiest man that also had a hugely successful year, we would have gone with Hemsworth. Lately, Hemsworth has become a household name due to his starring roles in crazy successful films like Rush and Thor: The Dark World, as well as his small but memorable cameo in this summer's blockbuster hit Star Trek Into Darkness. In addition, he's got the next installments of Snow White and the Huntsman and The Avengers on the horizon. Simply put, Hemworth would have been the most logical choice to be put on the cover this year. His overall perfectness – which comes complete with an Australian accent and a six-pack – is made even better by his insanely successful film career that is spawning franchises as well as making him one of the most sought after actors in Hollywood.
2. Benedict Cumberbatch. Sure, Cumberbach may not be considered traditionally sexy, but honestly, we're all in love with him anyway. This year alone, Cumberbatch stared or will star in Star Trek Into Darkness, 12 Years a Slave, The Fifth Estate, August: Osage County, Little Favour, and will showcase his dragoning skills in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. That's six projects for Cumberbatch this year alone, not to mention the new season of Sherlock that's on the horizon for early 2014. If we were to name the breakout star of the year right now, it would be Cumberbatch. Plus, with his adorable English accent and his huge following of Cumberbitches, Cumberbatch would have been a perfect choice, after all, success is sexy.
3. Aaron Paul. With Breaking Bad ending this year, it would have been the perfect time to put Paul on the cover of People as the Sexiest Man. Paul's portrayal of the flawed but loveable Jesse Pinkman made the entire world fall in love with him, and with his great smile, bad-boy edge, and amazing acting skills he is the one of the sexiest actors around right now. Plus, it would have been a nice change to see an actor who is predominately on TV be featured.
4. Ryan Gosling. While Gosling has not been in a huge, money-making blockbuster since 2011's Crazy, Stupid, Love, he is... well, Ryan Gosling! He should have been named years ago, probably back in 2004 when the world fell in love with his performance in The Notebook. Every year since, it has been predicted that he will be named, and every year we are disappointed. Just from our crushed expectations standpoint, Gosling should have been featured on the cover. Plus, it's not like he has been doing nothing this year. He did star in the critically acclaimed film A Place Beyond the Pines as well as the moderate hit, The Gangster Squad. So, come on People, please, please, please pick Gosling at some point in the near future.
5. Justin Timberlake. Finally, if People wanted to go with a musician, Timberlake would have been a better choice this year. In 2013, Timberlake released The 20/20 Experience which shot to number one on the album charts. Then, he released the follow-up The 20/20 Experience – 2 of 2, while also collaborating on four major hit singles including "Suit & Tie," "Mirrors," "Holy Grail" and "Take Back the Night." While accomplishing all this, Timberlake was also named GQ's Man of the Year and won the VMA's Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award to celebrate his achievement and impact in music. Plus, he got 'NSYNC to have a reunion, which is basically qualification enough for him to be named as The Sexiest Man Alive. His overall hotness doesn't hurt either.
What do you guys think? Does is make sense for Adam Levine to be on the cover, or should someone else have been chosen? Let us know in the comments!
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