Pop stars Erasure have booked a New Year's Eve (31Dec14) gig at New York's Terminal 5 venue, which will end a major tour that begins at the beginning of next month (Aug14). Vince Clarke and Andy Bell are hitting the road to promote their 16th studio album, The Violent Flame, which will be released in September (14) - and they've lined up a 60-date European and North American tour, which begins with a pre-tour set at the CarFest event in Cheshire, England on 1 August (14).
The official dates begin in Miami, Florida on 12 September (14) and include a Halloween (31Oct14) concert in Las Vegas and Christmas shows in London.
The tour will wrap up with two dates at Terminal 5 in New York on 30 and 31 December (14).
Justin Timberlake gave his blessing to a group of Broadway stars who covered his songs in a special cabaret show on Monday night (14Jul14).
The Mirrors hitmaker is currently in the middle of his own The 20/20 Experience World Tour, but took time to send a special delivery to the cast of Broadway Sings Justin Timberlake in New York City.
A post from the official Broadway Sings Twitter.com account featured a photo of a bouquet of four dozen white roses, along with a handwritten note which read, "Break legs! I am very honored (sic). Best, JT."
Broadway stars including Tony Award winner Lena Hall and former Smash actor Andy Mientus were part of the showcase, which included covers of Timberlake's hits such as Cry Me a River, Suit & Tie and a number of 'N Sync tracks.
The concert was sold out, but the cast will take to the stage again next Monday (21Jul14).
Broadway's Tupac Shakur musical Holler If Ya Hear Me is to close early due to disappointing ticket sales.
The stage show, based on the music of the late rapper, officially opened at New York City's Palace Theatre on 19 June (14) and less than two months after its debut, the curtain will come down for the last time on Sunday (20Jul14).
Producer Eric L. Gold made the announcement on Monday night (14Jul14), attributing declining sales to the show's ultimate demise. He says, "We are so proud to be a part of this ground breaking production... My hope is that a production of this calibre, powerful in its story telling, filled with great performances and exciting contemporary dance and music will eventually receive the recognition it deserves."
"It saddens me that due to the financial burdens of Broadway, I was unable to sustain this production longer in order to give it time to bloom on Broadway. Tupac's urgent socially important insights and the audiences' nightly rousing standing ovations deserve to be experienced by the world."
The production reportedly cost $8 million (£4.7 million) to stage, and, after receiving mixed reviews from critics, box office figures have been declining ever since the show began previews on 2 June (14).
Jennifer Lopez made a special trip from Paris, France to New York City to support her best friend Leah Remini during her appearance on U.S. late night show Watch What Happens Live on Wednesday (09Jul14). The singer/actress even served as a bartender by handing Remini and host Andy Cohen shots of tequila.
20th Century Fox Film via Everett Collection
Even more impressive than what Dawn of the Planet of the Apes has to say is how it goes about saying it. But what's the most impressive of all is the fact that the movie is having its conversation in the first place. The fact that a science-fiction blockbuster plopped right in the heat of a Marvel Comics- and Michael Bay-stocked summer, composed of computer generated super-apes and post-apocalyptic San Franciscos, is speaking unabashedly about the futility of war, the corrosivity of guns, the corruptibility of man (and ape), and the intense fallibility of any singular ideology.
So astounding is it that Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is delivering these principles that you'll watch with the constant apprehension of a thematic undercut — that a movie like this couldn't possibly carry forth with its desolation of the cells that constitute its summer picture brethren's lifeblood. But the film stays true, never for a moment working to glorify its illustration of violence and hate. Dawn has a lot of ugly things to show us about its world and our own, and it pulls no punches in its presentation.
20th Century Fox Film via Everett Collection
That's not to say the movie is at all a chore to watch. Though its mission may be grim, Dawn drives us through a story about the impending war between hyper-intelligent simians and what's left of mankind with an effervescent pulse and rich character. On one side, we have Caesar (mo-capped Andy Serkis) struggling to maintain a just and orderly society of his ape brethren in a swanky little set-up in the woods, hoping principally for communal isolation. On the other, Gary Oldman strives for the very same harmony with his slum of Simian Flu-resistant humans, eyeing the power plant on the apes' turf as the source of a basic human necessity. Neither side wants war, and yet neither side is incapable of seeing the other as a threat to what it wants and needs.
We delight in our time in Ape Kingdom, finding a special fascination in watching Caesar play father to his eldest son Blue Eyes (who endures his own coming-of-age crisis of faith), in clever orangutan Maurice pioneering primate academia, and in battered chimp Koba fostering that Macchiavellian drive the old world knew too well. When the story slips into the inevitable nightmare that spawns between two parties, we have as vivid an idea of who's fighting who as any adventure, sci-fi, or war film has given us in recent years.
20th Century Fox Film via Everett Collection
So who do we root for? That's just one of the many blockbuster conventions that Dawn not only avoids but abjectly annihilates. This isn't a story about good versus bad, right versus wrong, or even man versus ape. This is a story where the act is the enemy. Where war, guns, and hate are the criminal, where trust and love are the unfortunate victim. Dawn is outstandingly impressive in its delivery of these ideas: in the construction of a race of post-human apes, its coloring of archetypal characters (like top billing human Jason Clarke and a simple but substantial Keri Russell) as fluorescent, and its unique understanding and adherence to its message's gravity. But, to reiterate, what's even more unique, outstanding, and impressive is the fact that a movie like this is saying these things at all.
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Director Joel Schumacher was among the mourners at the funeral of Andy Warhol's former muse Isabelle Collin Dufresne in New York on Wednesday (18Jun14). The Catholic artist and actress, also known as Ultra Violet, was remembered at a service at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, where she had sought solace after converting to Mormonism in 1981.
The French star lost her battle with cancer on 14 June (14), aged 78.
Things have not gone well for humanity since James Franco decided to help a chimpanzee get better at puzzles. In the new trailer for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, hitting theaters July 11 — three years after the surprising success of Rupert Wyatt's Rise (which, logistically, really seems like it should follow "Dawn") of the Planet of the Apes — we see that mankind has dwindled to to the likes of Jason Clarke (ape-friendly), Gary Oldman (anti-ape), a couple of dunderheaded drunks who still don't seem to have understand that apes are smart now, and a campfire resident who prophecizes about how apes have the upper hand — opposable thumbs and all — in that they don't need fancy things like electricity or heat.
20th Century Fox
But apes don't want war, so insists Caesar, Andy Serkis' top banana chimp who led the '11 picture and incited a revolution with the simple act of cookieing Rocket (and oh what a mistake that seems to have been... like Franco-father, like monkey-son). Caesar wants to live in harmony with the few remaining humans, but his fur-laden brethren don't seem to be on the same page.
Meanwhile, we can only assume that somewhere in the mix, a kindly, well-educated bonobo is developing a serum to boost the intellectual capacity of the horses that the apes have been using as transport, thus leading to a follow-up series in which horse trounces primate-kind.
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Andy Warhol's former colleague Isabelle Collin Dufresne has lost her battle with cancer at the age of 78. Dufresne passed away in Manhattan on Saturday (14Jun14), according to the New York Times.
The artist met Warhol in the 1960s and subsequently starred in his two films, The Life of Juanita Castro and I, a Man.
She also appeared in small roles in Midnight Cowboy, Taking Off and An Unmarried Woman.
In addition to her film work, Dufresne also worked as an artist under the name Ultra Violet and hosted her last exhibit three weeks before her death.
When drag queens, rock and roll legends, murderous social climbers and tap dancing gangsters come together, it can only mean one thing: the Tony Awards. The biggest night on Broadway made its way to Radio City Music Hall Sunday night to celebrate the best and most unforgettable performances of the season, and while the show had its fair share of historical moments, show-stopping numbers and mind-blowing spectacle, the 2014 Tonys stood out for another reason – they were just plain weird.
From the moment that host Hugh Jackman hopped his way across the screen as part of the opening number it was clear that this year’s awards were going to be a memorable event, and between the impromptu rap numbers, the countless teleprompter issues and Neil Patrick Harris giving everyone a lap dance, the night only got stranger and stranger. It might be hard to believe that there's anything stranger than the idea of Barney Stinson in heels and a miniskirt or Rocky becoming a hit musical, but this year's Tonys managed to make both of those things seem downright normal with all of the confusing moments and odd numbers they unveiled, starting with that opening bit...
Hugh Jackman Bounces Back to Broadway After handing over hosting duties to Harris for the last several years, everyone was expecting Jackman to go big for his return to the Tonys stage. Instead, he went old-school, and spent four minutes hopping around Radio City Music Hall, meeting with all of the actors and checking out all of the shows, in an homage to Bobby Van’s “Take Me to Broadway.” It was a nice tribute to his love of the theater, but for an award show that prides itself on big production numbers and a host who loves a great song-and-dance moment, it was a slightly confusing, slightly underwhelming choice.
Clint Eastwood Loses the Teleprompter We’re not sure if the teleprompters weren’t working or if the champagne was just flowing a little too freely backstage, but almost every presenter struggled to get their words out (or, in Fran Drescher’s case, to read the names in the right order). However, no mispronunciations or flubbed cues held a candle to the rambling, confusing speech that Eastwood gave before giving out the directing awards. We think it had something to do with directing, the theater and the importance of remembering your glasses before you head out onstage, but we’d be lying if we said we could follow any of the nonsense he mumbled.
Neil Patrick Harris Licks Samuel L. Jackson’s Glasses Well, technically Hedwig did. During his raucous performance with the rest of the cast of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Harris took to the audience to make Orlando Bloom take part in a “car wash,” give Sting a lap dance, and make out with his husband David Burtka. Somewhere in there, he decided to steal the glasses of the most intimidating man in the audience, thoroughly clean them with his tongue and the place them delicately back on his face. See that mix of bewilderment, fear, and excitement on Jackson’s face? That’s the only appropriate reaction to have in a situation like that.
Jackman, T.I. and LL Cool J Rap The Music Man If you’ve ever listened to a recording of The Music Man and thought that what Harold Hill really needed were some sick beats, we have some good news for you. Over a beat from Questlove, Jackman, T.I. and LL Cool J (because the Tonys air on CBS) freestyled about the hardships of making a living by selling trombones, while the older members of the audience stood there uncomfortably, looking confused and terrified.
Rocky: The Musical Is All Scrap, No Song Look, when your whole show builds to an elaborate, full-contact boxing match complete with an announcer, jumbotron and full-scale ring, you want to show off all of the hard work and preparation that went into putting that number together. Still, would it have killed the Rocky producers to have their leading man Andy Karl sing a few bars? This is the Tony Awards, after all; if we wanted to watch people fight without bursting into song, we’d switch over to Game of Thrones.
Jennifer Hudson Gets an 11 O’Clock Number (Literally) We’re all for producers using the Tonys to preview some of the shows headed to the Great White Way in the upcoming season, but that doesn’t explain why the number promoting Finding Neverland – a show that won’t open for another year, featuring a performer who isn’t even part of the cast – interrupted the biggest awards of the night and forced the producers of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder to rush through their Best Musical acceptance speech. Maybe if someone had kept Eastwood on script, Hudson’s diva moment could have come at a more appropriate point in the show. Like as a replacement for whatever dreary song Sting broke out.
Sting is Writing a Musical This one’s self-explanatory.
Who Wrote Jackman’s Bits? If nothing else, this year’s Tony Awards were an experiment to see whether a three-hour show could be carried on nothing but Hugh Jackman’s charisma. Most of his bits were a little odd, relying on his good looks and smooth voice to carry him through to the next introduction, as if the whole show were thrown together during his downtime on the X-Men press tour. The fact that everything still worked is a testament to the sheer force of Jackman’s charm, and our willingness to forgive a great deal for a well-executed soft shoe.
Fox Searchlight via Everett Collection
Back when Star Wars VII announced its first rally of official players, we tackled each name on the list with a brief bit of professional history and our hopes and expectations for that with which he or she might be tasked for the upcoming film. You can check out our rundown here, which enveloped the Star Wars vets as well as franchise newcomers Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Andy Serkis, Max von Sydow, Domhnall Gleeson, John Boyega, and Daisy Ridley. But today's news, via StarWars.com, about Lupita Nyong'o and Gwendoline Christie (oh yeah, and a leaked set photo, via TMZ, revealing a practical monster) calls for another round of introductions.
Lupita Nyong'oBest known as: Patsey, the tortured slave of psychopathic plantation owner Edwin Epps (Michael Fassbender) in 12 Years a Slave. The role won her an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.Age: 31.In the new movie: Nyong'o's Star Wars character is anyone's guess at this point, but her tremendous command of scene-stealing gravity should land her a pretty meaty role. Perhaps a tad too old (even with the practice of actors playing years below their age) to portray a classmate of presumed central characters, the offspring of Han and Leia, and we'd guess too high profile a figure to take on a tertiary role like teacher or soldier. So we're leaning towards high-ranking officer in the plight against... whatever they're dealing with this time. As long as she has plenty of convicted diatribes and steady close-ups.
Gwendoline ChristieBest known as: Brienne of Tarth, swordsmith and Stark loyalist on Game of Thrones.Age: 35 or 36.In the new movie: Lightsabers. It's practically a given. Knowing how handy she is with a weapon on Game of Thrones, J.J. Abrams couldn't pass up the opportunity to give Christie Star Wars' answer to the sword. As such, this would land her in the Jedi Knight camp, though be she one of pure motive or corrupted soul is another question yet unanswered.
This ThingBest known as: The weird picture you saw a bunch of people sharing on Twitter on Monday morning, worrying that another experiment from Long Island's animal testing facility had washed up on shore.Age: Mid 40s?In the new movie: The suggestion that Star Wars VII will be heavy with practical effects is an encouraging one. Our friend here will probably be relegated to transporting a hero or two (or maybe just cargo), but he likely won't be the film's lone hand-crafted creature.
Keep watch for more additions to the cast!
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