Network bosses at BET have suspended the producer responsible for a bad joke about Beyonce and Jay Z's daughter, which aired on Monday's (25Aug14) 106 & Park. During her guest spot on the music show, model Karrueche Tran took part in a skit about Blue Ivy's hypothetical thoughts during Sunday's (24Aug14) MTV Video Music Awards, joking, "I really did wake up like this, because my parents never comb my hair." Stephen Hill, BET's president of music programming and specials, publicly apologised for the gag on Twitter.
Singer Michelle Williams has spoken out in defence of former Destiny'S Child bandmate Beyonce's decision not to tame her daughter Blue Ivy's wild hair, insisting cruel critics should focus on their own kids. Style critics and Internet trolls have taken aim at the Crazy In Love hitmaker and her rapper husband Jay Z in recent months over their choice to let two-year-old Blue Ivy's locks grow out naturally.
The haircare debate even led to a bizarre petition launched online, calling on the baby's superstar parents to comb her afro, but Williams is baffled by the unlikely hot topic.
She tells America's Sister 2 Sister magazine, "Let's worry about your own children and nieces and nephews and make sure they're getting good grades in school and not worry about somebody's hair."
And Williams is warning cyber bullies everywhere not to mess with her or her loved ones.
She says, "I think the cyber bullying is just stupid because the majority of the time most of the cyber bullies just type it (online), but when they see you on the street, they're not gonna say it to your face.
"Every now and then, depending on what day you catch me, if you say something out of line to me - because I don't want you to be ignorant, I want you to be knowledgeable - I will spit something back to you that's factual and I'll say 'God bless you' at the end."
Williams' comments emerge days after Blue Ivy's appearance with her famous parents at the MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday (24Aug14), when she helped her dad present Beyonce with the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award, prompted further haircare criticism from bloggers.
Chris Brown's on/off girlfriend Karrueche Tran also poked fun at the child's hair during a guest hosting stint on U.S. music video chart show 106 & Park on Monday (25Aug14), when she read from a script of jokes and quipped, as Blue Ivy, "I really did wake up like this because my parents never combed my hair."
The backlash she received prompted BET network boss Stephen G. Hill to apologise for the remark on behalf of his company.
One of U.S. TV network BET's top executives has reached out to apologise to Beyonce and Jay-Z after their young daughter became a butt of a terrible joke on Monday (25Aug14). During BET's 106 & Park show, guest Karrueche Tran poked fun at Blue Ivy's wild hair at Sunday's (24Aug14) MTV Video Music Awards, where Beyonce and her husband attempted to dismiss split reports by attending the event with their daughter.
Chris Brown's model girlfriend was asked to read from a script of jokes speculating what Blue Ivy was thinking while she watched her mother perform onstage, and when she said, "'I really did wake up like this because my parents never combed my hair", Tran immediately knew she had gone too far, adding, "Sorry, Blue! I love you!"
That apology didn't appease Beyonce fans who took to social media to attack the model, prompting Tran to tweet, "Now y'all know I LOVE me some Beyonce and Blue Ivy! I didn't write this script y'all lol (laugh out loud)."
The backlash finally prompted Stephen G. Hill, the president of music programming and specials for BET Networks, to apologise on behalf of his company.
In a series of tweets on Tuesday (26Aug14), he wrote, "Last night on 106 & Park there was a stupid, unthoughtful (sic) joke made about a young child... We apologize publically (sic) to the child’s parents (and have done so privately) and we have taken punitive actions with those responsible."
He added, "It was very bad judgment and we will serve you much better in the future. And please don’t hate on Karrueche; it was NOT her fault. We also apologize to her for putting her in that position."
Actors Mia Farrow and Dylan Mcdermott have led the tributes to their former co-star Lord Richard Attenborough, following the British movie icon's death on Sunday (24Aug14). The exact cause of death has yet to be revealed, but Attenborough had been living in a nursing home with his wife, Sheila Sim, and was confined to a wheelchair after suffering a serious fall in 2008.
McDermott, who starred alongside Attenborough in the 1994 reboot of Christmas film Miracle on 34th Street, took to Twitter.com to pay tribute to the man who played Kris Kringle, and wrote, "Rest in peace Richard Attenborough. U (sic) were the best Santa ever."
Their co-star and former child actress Mara Wilson also added, "Sir Richard Attenborough was the only Santa Claus I ever believed in. A wonderful man. Still in shock right now. May he rest in peace."
News of Attenborough's death comes almost two weeks after Wilson's Mrs. Doubtfire co-star, Robin Williams passed away after committing suicide.
Mia Farrow, who worked with Attenborough in 1964's Guns at Batasi, also added her own tribute to her friend, and wrote, "Richard Attenborough was the kindest man I have ever had the privilege of working with. A Prince. RIP 'Pa' - and thank you," as well as comedian Ricky Gervais, who added, "RIP Richard Attenborough. One of the true greats of the silver screen."
Other Twitter tributes have come from Edgar Wright, former 007 star Samantha Bond, Rob Schneider, Stephen Amell, and British Prime Minister David Cameron, who noted that Attenborough's "acting in 'Brighton Rock' was brilliant, his directing of 'Gandhi' was stunning," and adding, "Richard Attenborough was one of the greats of cinema."
Born in Cambridge, England, he studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and served in the Royal Air Force during World War II before pursuing an acting career.
He made his debut as a sailor in the 1942 film In Which We Serve and gained popular acclaim playing ruthless young thug Pinkie Brown in Brighton Rock in 1947, eventually becoming a staple of countless British films over the next 30 years.
An accomplished stage actor, Attenborough was one of the original cast members of The Mousetrap, which went on to become the longest-running play in London's West End.
In the 1960s, he expanded his range of acting, taking on a variety of roles that exposed him to a wider audience - most notably as Squadron Leader Roger Bartlett in 1963's The Great Escape.
Hitting his stride, Attenborough won back-to-back Golden Globe Awards for Best Supporting Actor in 1967 and 1968 - for The Sand Pebbles and Doctor Dolittle.
But he'll be most fondly remembered for his behind-the-camera skills. In the late 1950s, he formed a production company, Beaver Films, and directed his first picture, Oh! What A Lovely War, in 1969.
He later scooped the Best Director and Best Picture Oscars in 1982 for his epic Gandhi, which also won him another Golden Globe Award the following year.
Other directorial credits followed - notably the 1992 biopic Chaplin, and classic 1993 movie Shadowlands - before Attenborough made a welcome return to the screen in 1993 as eccentric John Hammond in Jurassic Park.
Attenborough won a total of eight Oscars during his career. He was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1967, and a knighthood came in 1976. In 1993, he was bestowed the honour of life peer, becoming Baron Attenborough, of Richmond upon Thames, London.
And in 2006, Attenborough and his brother David, a popular broadcaster and beloved nature expert, were awarded the title of Distinguished Honorary Fellows of the University of Leicester in recognition of their services to the university.
Attenborough was also later awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Drama from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow, and was an Honorary Fellow of Bangor University.
On Boxing Day 2004, tragedy struck Attenborough's family when his eldest daughter Jane, her daughter Lucy, and her mother-in-law, also named Jane, died in the devastating Asian tsunami.
His family is expected to make a full statement about his death on Monday (25Aug14).
Movie great Al Pacino is set to sit down for an interview with British actor Stephen Fry following a special double screening of his two films based on Oscar Wilde's controversial play Salome. The Scarface icon will be the guest of honour at the British Film Institute event in London, where his 2011 documentary-drama Wilde Salome, which explores Wilde's work, will be shown to the audience.
The screening will be followed by the 2013 drama Salome - Pacino's take on the tragic Biblical story - and a question and answer session with the actor/director.
The event will take place on 21 September (14) and the interview will be broadcast live via satellite into cinemas across the U.K. and Ireland, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Gosford Park star Fry has his own connection to Oscar Wilde - he portrayed the Irish writer in the 1997 biopic Wilde.
Veteran actress Kathleen Turner's new play Bakersfield Mist has been savaged by critics who branded it "implausible", "phoney", and "too pleased with itself". The new drama, which opened in the West End on Tuesday (27May14), stars Turner as Maude, a trailer park resident who believes she has unearthed a valuable Jackson Pollock painting. She enlists a New York art expert named Lionel, played by Scottish actor Ian McDiarmid, to verify it.
However, the culture-clash show, written by Stephen Sachs, has failed to impress many critics, who found the plot unconvincing and suggested the actors' performances are the only highlight.
Henry Hitching, of the London Evening Standard, writes, "Her (Turner) passionate performance and an enjoyably outrageous one from Ian McDiarmid can't redeem a play that turns a true story into something clunkingly implausible... There are flashes of humour, but despite the strong performances Bakersfield Mist feels very slight."
Charles Spencer, from the Daily Telegraph, echoes the criticism, adding, "Bakersfield Mist, neatly directed by Polly Teale and cleverly designed by Tom Piper, is too slight, and a touch too pleased with itself, to be fully satisfying. But, unlike the dubious picture at the play's heart, the performances are definitely the genuine article."
Mark Shenton, from The Stage, writes, "A play about trying to verify the authenticity of art falls at the first hurdle if it itself feels phoney... The situation here simply beggars belief... I suspect it will quickly fade into the mists of memory."
Bakersfield Mist will run until 30 August (14) at the Duchess Theatre in London.
Stars including Ellen Degeneres and Stephen Fry have backed a boycott of a hotel group owned by the Sultan of Brunei over a proposed new anti-gay law in the country. A number of fashion industry moguls, including shoe designer Brian Atwood, have urged both stars and members of the public to avoid staying in hotels which are part of the Dorchester group, which includes the Beverly Hills Hotel and the Hotel Bel-Air in California and the Dorchester in London.
The campaign is to protest against plans for a new law stating that anyone caught committing a homosexual act in Brunei should be stoned to death.
U.S. TV host Ellen DeGeneres, who is married to actress Portia de Rossi, has vowed to boycott both of the California hotels in future, writing in a post on her Twitter.com page, "I won't be visiting the Hotel Bel-Air or the Beverly Hills Hotel until this is resolved."
Openly gay British actor Stephen Fry has revealed he has cancelled an upcoming stay in one of the group's hotels, the Coworth Park Hotel in Berkshire, England, as part of the protest.
In a series of messages on Twitter.com, he writes, "Not that you were necessarily going to stay there, but time to boycott the Dorchester Group... Send them a message... Cancelled in nick of time: discovered (Coworth Park Hotel) that I was booked into is part of the Dorchester Collection."
A spokeswoman for the Dorchester Collection tells WWD.com, "We are sensitive to the fact that any such potential withdrawal of business directly impacts our employees, who represent the full diversity of society. We continue to abide by the laws of the countries we operate in and do not tolerate any form of discrimination of any kind."
The Book Of Mormon has officially been deemed a West End hit after winning four prizes, including Best New Musical, at the 2014 Olivier Awards in London. The Tony Award-winning stage show, from South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, opened in London last year (13) and it dominated the musical categories at the annual theatre prizegiving, taking home Best Actor in a Musical for Gavin Creel, Best Performance in a Supporting Role in a Musical for Stephen Ashfield and Best Theatre Choreographer for Casey Nicholaw.
The Best Actress in a Musical title went to Zrinka Cvitesic for Once.
Meanwhile, Lucy Kirkwood's thriller Chimerica was another big winner, being named Best New Play and earning Best Director for Lyndsey Turner, as Rory Kinnear walked away with Best Actor for Othello and Lesley Manville claimed the female equivalent for Ghosts.
Ghosts was also named Best Revival and landed Jack Lowden Best Actor in a Supporting Role. Sharon D Clarke was awarded the Best Actress in a Supporting Role prize for The Amen Corner.
Guests at the Royal Opera House event on Sunday (13Apr14) were treated to performances from Broadway regular Bernadette Peters and tenor Joseph Calleia, but the highlight of the night came when ABBA stars Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus joined the cast of Mamma Mia! to sing a medley of hits in celebration of the musical's 15th anniversary in the West End.
For the bulk of every Rocky and Bullwinkle episode, moose and squirrel would engage in high concept escapades that satirized geopolitics, contemporary cinema, and the very fabrics of the human condition. With all of that to work with, there's no excuse for why the pair and their Soviet nemeses haven't gotten a decent movie adaptation. But the ingenious Mr. Peabody and his faithful boy Sherman are another story, intercut between Rocky and Bullwinkle segments to teach kids brief history lessons and toss in a nearly lethal dose of puns. Their stories and relationship were much simpler, which means that bringing their shtick to the big screen would entail a lot more invention — always risky when you're dealing with precious material.
For the most part, Mr. Peabody & Sherman handles the regeneration of its heroes aptly, allowing for emotionally substance in their unique father-son relationship and all the difficulties inherent therein. The story is no subtle metaphor for the difficulties surrounding gay adoption, with society decreeing that a dog, no matter how hyper-intelligent, cannot be a suitable father. The central plot has Peabody hosting a party for a disapproving child services agent and the parents of a young girl with whom 7-year-old Sherman had a schoolyard spat, all in order to prove himself a suitable dad. Of course, the WABAC comes into play when the tots take it for a spin, forcing Peabody to rush to their rescue.
Getting down to personals, we also see the left brain-heavy Peabody struggle with being father Sherman deserves. The bulk of the emotional marks are hit as we learn just how much Peabody cares for Sherman, and just how hard it has been to accept that his only family is growing up and changing.
But more successful than the new is the film's handling of the old — the material that Peabody and Sherman purists will adore. They travel back in time via the WABAC Machine to Ancient Egypt, the Renaissance, and the Trojan War, and 18th Century France, explaining the cultural backdrop and historical significance of the settings and characters they happen upon, all with that irreverent (but no longer racist) flare that the old cartoons enjoyed. And oh... the puns.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman is a f**king treasure trove of some of the most amazingly bad puns in recent cinema. This effort alone will leave you in awe.
The film does unravel in its final act, bringing the science-fiction of time travel a little too close to the forefront and dropping the ball on a good deal of its emotional groundwork. What seemed to be substantial building blocks do not pay off in the way we might, as scholars of animated family cinema, have anticipated, leaving the movie with an unfinished feeling.
But all in all, it's a bright, compassionate, reasonably educational, and occasionally funny if not altogether worthy tribute to an old favorite. And since we don't have our own WABAC machine to return to a time of regularly scheduled Peabody and Sherman cartoons, this will do okay for now.
If nothing else, it's worth your time for the puns.
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