Joan Rivers' daughter Melissa is "doing amazingly well" following the death of the legendary comedienne, according to a family friend. Melissa Rivers decided to take the funnywoman off life support at New York's Mount Sinai Hospital on Thursday (04Sep14), a week after the star suffered a cardiac and respiratory arrest during a routine throat operation at a nearby clinic.
She will be laid to rest in a funeral on Sunday (07Sep14) and despite the tough time, close friend Martin Fletcher reveals Melissa, who has called the outpouring of support "humbling", is showing incredible strength as she arranges her mum's final farewell.
He tells New York's CBS News, "She is doing amazingly well. She's her mother's daughter and she is rising to the occasion."
Fletcher spoke to the media outside Rivers' Manhattan apartment building on Friday (05Sep14), when he joined members of the late star's staff to hand out pizza and water to reporters, photographers and police officers.
Rivers' assistant, Graham Reed, said, "She would have wanted you to guys to have this because you're out here all day long, in the heat."
Comedienne Joan Rivers has reportedly been placed in a medically-induced coma after suffering cardiac and respiratory failure during a medical procedure on Thursday (28Aug14).
Rivers was getting her vocal cords checked at a clinic in New York when she started fighting for breath. She was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital and placed in a coma as members of her family were alerted to her condition.
The New York Daily News reports doctors will take the 81 year old out of the coma this weekend (30-31Aug14) and assess any damage.
Her aide Graham Reed told the Daily News, "She’s not conscious, but she’s stable." Initial reports suggested Rivers was in a critical condition. A spokesman for the hospital has released a brief statement, which reads: "Her family wants to thank everybody for their outpouring of love and support. We will provide an update on her condition as it becomes available."
The comedienne's daughter Melissa has reportedly flown to New York from her home in California to be at her mother's bedside.
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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For weeks now, the cast and crew of MTVs Teen Wolf have been warning audiences that a major character death would happen before the end of the third season. Although the show has never shied away from killing off characters — except for Jackson, who merely moved to London when Colton Haynes left the show — this one could be the last straw for fans.
In November, Teen Wolf creator Jeff Davis hinted that a core character would die in the second half of the third season: “Prepare to lose someone,” he said. “We will possibly be changing our main title sequence, so not everyone’s going to make it out of this season alive.”
For those of us who are still reeling from the traumatic deaths of Erica (Gage Golightly) and Boyd (Sinqua Walls) in 3A, this was particularly harsh.
So who could it be? If Davis is telling the truth and it’s someone in the main title sequence, then it could be Scott, Allison, Stiles, Derek, or Lydia — all of whom have been on Teen Wolf since the very first episode. If Davis is lying (a highly likely possibility) the victim could be Isaac, Danny, or one of the adults: Melissa McCall, Chris Argent, or Sheriff Stilinski. Any of these would tear out our hearts.
Since Teen Wolf is character driven — they keep the show grounded in reality while their lives are inundated with the supernatural — it’s hard to imagine the series without any of these characters. Then there’s the worry that the death won’t be given its due. If Teen Wolf kills off one of the main characters and the show does a poor job of it (like Erica in 3A) that could make the death even more heartbreaking... and infuriating.
We don’t know about you, but we’re very, very wary of the third season finale.
Lions Gate via Everett Collection
When we last left our heroes, they had conquered all opponents in the 74th Annual Hunger Games, returned home to their newly refurbished living quarters in District 12, and fallen haplessly to the cannibalism of PTSD. And now we're back! Hitching our wagons once again to laconic Katniss Everdeen and her sweet-natured, just-for-the-camera boyfriend Peeta Mellark as they gear up for a second go at the Capitol's killing fields.
But hold your horses — there's a good hour and a half before we step back into the arena. However, the time spent with Katniss and Peeta before the announcement that they'll be competing again for the ceremonial Quarter Quell does not drag. In fact, it's got some of the film franchise's most interesting commentary about celebrity, reality television, and the media so far, well outweighing the merit of The Hunger Games' satire on the subject matter by having Katniss struggle with her responsibilities as Panem's idol. Does she abide by the command of status quo, delighting in the public's applause for her and keeping them complacently saturated with her smiles and curtsies? Or does Katniss hold three fingers high in opposition to the machine into which she has been thrown? It's a quarrel that the real Jennifer Lawrence would handle with a castigation of the media and a joke about sandwiches, or something... but her stakes are, admittedly, much lower. Harvey Weinstein isn't threatening to kill her secret boyfriend.
Through this chapter, Katniss also grapples with a more personal warfare: her devotion to Gale (despite her inability to commit to the idea of love) and her family, her complicated, moralistic affection for Peeta, her remorse over losing Rue, and her agonizing desire to flee the eye of the public and the Capitol. Oftentimes, Katniss' depression and guilty conscience transcends the bounds of sappy. Her soap opera scenes with a soot-covered Gale really push the limits, saved if only by the undeniable grace and charisma of star Lawrence at every step along the way of this film. So it's sappy, but never too sappy.
In fact, Catching Fire is a masterpiece of pushing limits as far as they'll extend before the point of diminishing returns. Director Francis Lawrence maintains an ambiance that lends to emotional investment but never imposes too much realism as to drip into territories of grit. All of Catching Fire lives in a dreamlike state, a stark contrast to Hunger Games' guttural, grimacing quality that robbed it of the life force Suzanne Collins pumped into her first novel.
Once we get to the thunderdome, our engines are effectively revved for the "fun part." Katniss, Peeta, and their array of allies and enemies traverse a nightmare course that seems perfectly suited for a videogame spin-off. At this point, we've spent just enough time with the secondary characters to grow a bit fond of them — deliberately obnoxious Finnick, jarringly provocative Johanna, offbeat geeks Beedee and Wiress — but not quite enough to dissolve the mystery surrounding any of them or their true intentions (which become more and more enigmatic as the film progresses). We only need adhere to Katniss and Peeta once tossed in the pit of doom that is the 75th Hunger Games arena, but finding real characters in the other tributes makes for a far more fun round of extreme manhunt.
But Catching Fire doesn't vie for anything particularly grand. It entertains and engages, having fun with and anchoring weight to its characters and circumstances, but stays within the expected confines of what a Hunger Games movie can be. It's a good one, but without shooting for succinctly interesting or surprising work with Katniss and her relationships or taking a stab at anything but the obvious in terms of sending up the militant tyrannical autocracy, it never even closes in on the possibility of being a great one.
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Full-figured actress Melissa Mccarthy has brushed off cruel comments from a movie critic about her weight by refusing to let others sour her mood. While reviewing her comedy Identity Thief in February (13), Rex Reed of the New York Observer called the Bridesmaids star "tractor-sized" and "a gimmick comedian who has devoted her short career to being obese and obnoxious with equal success".
Curvy McCarthy never released a statement about the scathing piece, which caused many of her pals to jump to her defence, and now the 42 year old has broken her silence on Reed's review during an interview with The New York Times.
When asked about her initial reaction to the article, she said, "'Really? Why would someone (an editor) O.K. that?'"
But McCarthy insists she is not bothered by his words, even though they "may have crushed" her when she was younger.
She added, "I felt really bad for someone who is swimming in so much hate. I just thought, that's someone who's in a really bad spot, and I am in such a happy spot. I laugh my head off every day with my husband and my kids who are mooning me and singing me songs."
This is the latest drama surrounding McCarthy's weight - fans in the U.K. were recently outraged after film chiefs behind her upcoming movie The Heat appeared to digitally slim down the actress in a promotional poster for the comedy.
The back half of Saturday Night Live's Season 38 had hit a slump. Starting in January, the series booked promising host after promising host (Jennifer Lawrence, Adam Levine, and Christoph Waltz, to name a few), only to leave us wondering why we promised ourselves we'd stay home on Saturday night to watch them crash and burn.
The series, seemingly aware that their winter was becoming a bit too dead, got themselves back on track in early March when they recruited MVP Justin Timberlake to hit a comedic homerun. And it seems they intend on rounding the bases yet again with second-time host — and, let's face it, future five-timer — Melissa McCarthy, who returns to the series Saturday night with musical guest Phoenix.
RELATED: Melissa McCarthy's 'SNL' Promo Proves She's the Best
With both a sitcom (Mike & Molly) and a movie (June 28's The Heat) to promote, you'd best believe the comedienne will bring the same level of dedication that led to memorable SNL moments like these:
So, that's right: Do do do do do, we're gonna be lovin' McCarthy on SNL. But will you be tuning in this week? Talk about the episode here, and be sure to return Sunday morning for our full recap. There will be puppies. (No, there won't be. Sorry.)
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Melissa McCarthy: arguably one of the past few years' biggest comedic breakouts. A deft wielder of a highly-tuned comedy sword, McCarthy slayed folks in her 2011 breakout movie role as Megan in Bridesmaids. She endeared fans to her as Sookie St. James on the small screen in Gilmore Girls. So we all know that the potential for fabulousness is strong with this one — so why won't Hollywood give her something better to do?
Most likely? Because they're scared. Because people still don't seem to be comfortable with McCarthy, her body, and her steadfast commitment to comedy above all else. She's going to give it all to you — even if that means you might see a body you're uncomfortable with, audience. Just look at critic Rex Reed, whose commentary about McCarthy's "humongous" and "hippo"-esque stature (his awful words, not mine) sent a barrage of hate his way, sure, but speaks to a commonly-held belief. That fat and fat people should be shamed rather than accepted as the reality of a world with a veritable smorgasbord of body shapes, sizes, and types. And it's also sort of Hollywood's fault for perpetuating the insidious idea, but they have an opportunity to fix it if they stop underestimating the comedy audience.
Sure, her performance in Identity Thief was good — one that perhaps outshone the hokey and dated-feeling movie to which it was affixed — but it's so clear that she's capable of more. We, as consumers, are starting to get really sick of the ease with which fat jokes seem to be strewn into any film that has a woman of a larger size in it (the number of punchlines where McCarthy's own body is the implied point of humor throughout Identity Thief is frustratingly high — similar to Rebel Wilson's Fat Amy from Pitch Perfect). But we all know that ladies like McCarthy and Wilson are capable funny people, and deserve more. So give it to them. It's time.
RELATED: Melissa McCarthy, Jason Bateman Are Actin' A Fool in Identity Thief
It's time for Hollywood to nut up a bit and let McCarthy be McCarthy. Homegirl needs a role that will steer the conversation away from her weight and onto her very real talents. And yes, that does include her incredible capacity for physical humor, before anyone thinks otherwise. That's because McCarthy's slapstick is related not to the size of her body, but to her ability to be fearless when she performs. She is so comfortable in her own skin that she's not afraid to do things in a more human (and therefore, inherently goofy-at-times) way. She's got spunk and a little pizazz, that one. Plus: she's really f**king funny.
Just look back to McCarthy's monologue when hosting Saturday Night Live:
What makes the SNL monologue funny is not that McCarthy is a fat woman saying she's a dancer with any sort of talent. A fact that is made explicitly-clear by the inclusion of cast member Kristen Wiig in the number. It's a nod (in an almost vaudevillian manner) to old variety shows and their comedic stylings. It's also the commitment with which she carries out the moves that she does have (and, she does have some moves — don't forget her impressive leg-up on real-life husband Ben Falcone during the flight from Bridesmaids) and how both women were so obviously not the ones behind the screen. Not just McCarthy. The build-up, the other dancers, the accents, the glitter, the pa-pow and zig-zam of it all: it all contributed to a hilarious little nightclub number. A parody of so many on-stage entertainment events we've experienced on our own. Poking fun at the obviousness of smoke and mirrors is just a plus.
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McCarthy's comedy game is on-point. Her talent is undeniable: whether the role is worth of her talents — we're not naming any names, cough — or not, her ability consistently be the star of any scene she's in, says something. But we need more for Melissa McCarthy. She can do real, she can do honest, she can do charming. And she no doubt has a wealth of life experiences that speak to her time on this earth as a woman, a mother, and, yes, a person living in a fat body — though when she talks about it, it's not a bunch of predictable jokes about how terrible it is that she's the size she is — from which to pull from. This gives her a leg up on a lot of other people: dynamic enough to truly nail character depth, even in places where the comedy is lighter. In order to do this, we have to take the idea that McCarthy's body is a barrier to her or a thing worth mocking, and throw it out of the f**king window. You're better than that, Hollywood — so stop thinking that the audience won't like it. Because we'll like it. We'll really, really like it. Besides! Self-deprecating body humor is so passé.
RELATED: Film Critic Angers Fans By Calling Melissa McCarthy A 'Hippo'
But like all astute observers of Hollywood soon learn: sometimes you have to do it yourself. The work you want doesn't always just appear, so if you want something done, create it yourself. McCarthy recently launched a production company (On the Day), with three projects already in development at Universal and Fox. She's set to star in one, co-write and star in another, and the third is based on a book from a Girls co-executive producer. And as if that wasn't enough, her upcoming movie Tammy (which she also co-wrote and is starring in) just tapped her to take on a third hat: that of co-directing. So maybe there's hope for McCarthy's future roles yet.
It seems that today, after a whirlwind of controversy about Lena Dunham's body and what it "deserves," we should all agree that they're all different, and they all deserve more than society might try to dictate.
[Photo Credit: Universal Pictures]
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Melissa McCarthy is aware that she is not like other Hollywood leading ladies who can wear sample sizes and dress in the single digits. In fact, in an interview with Good Housekeeping, the Bridesmaids star even admitted that "sometimes I wish I were just magically a size 6 and I never had to give it a single thought."
So when film critic Rex Reed took the funny lady to task over her appearance in the new film Identity Theft, fans didn't take too kindly to his not-so-kind words.
RELATED: Melissa McCarthy, Jason Bateman Are Actin' a Fool in 'Identity Theft' — TRAILER
The New York Observer critic called McCarthy "a gimmick comedian who has devoted her short career to being obese and obnoxious with equal success." And as if that wasn't bad enough, he went on to call her a "hippo," a "humongous creep" and "tractor-sized."
Check out what fans (including Gilmore Girl actor Nick Holmes and McCarthy's Bridesmaids director Paul Feig) were saying on Twitter about the mean-spirited review. Sticks and stones, Rex Reed. Sticks and stones.
"For his catty and school bully name-calling of the supremely talented Melissa McCarthy, I cordially invite Mr. Rex Reed to go f**k himself."
— Paul Feig (@paulfeig) February 8, 2013
"Difference between @rexreed1 and #MelissaMcCarthy is she can lose weight but he'll never be able to acquire some class."
— Brian Milinsky (@cyclist1959) February 9, 2013
"i like #melissamccarthy but dont get the @rexreed1 rage. Her success is in no small part to her no small parts."
— anghus houvouras (@theanghus) February 9, 2013
"New York Observer film critic, Rex Reed, never graduated from the playground to put on his big boy pants of maturity. #melissamccarthy"
— Jill Henderlight (@Henderlightful) February 9, 2013
"#MelissaMcCarthy is undoubtably one of the most kind people in the business - and highly talented.Dick move Reed."
— Nick Holmes (@narcissusholmes) February 9, 2013
[Photo Credit: Universal Pictures]
With the end of The Twilight Saga comes the subsequent end of so much more than just the films (including the gratuitous, albeit increasingly creative methods to make Taylor Lautner take his shirt off). But it's the end of the Twilight soundtracks, those multi-platinum albums loved and respected by Twihards and Twihardlys alike, that may leave the biggest void. On Tuesday, November 13 the soundtrack for Breaking Dawn — Part 2 was released, featuring an eclectic array of artists like Green Day, St. Vincent, Passion Pit, Feist, and Twilight's own Nikki Reed.
It's that very M.O. — combining an unlikely group of bands and musicians, both from the Twilight world and beyond — and creating an unexpected, yet pitch-perfect compilation soundtracks that pleases fans of the series and fans of just plain great music.
The first Twilight soundtrack, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 back in November of 2008, and spent an astonishing 224 weeks on the charts and moved more than 3.5 million copies worldwide. In addition to commercial success, the album was loved by critics (Entertainment Weekly gave it an A-) and even earned Grammy nominations.
Since then, the four soundtracks to follow: New Moon, Eclipse, and both Breaking Dawns, have all followed suit and been chart-topping, must-have records. Many of the artists featured on the Twilight soundtracks were bona fide hit-makers and music superstars long before they contributed their exclusive tracks to the albums (including Muse, Linkin Park, Florence and the Machine, Radiohead's Thom Yorke, Cee Lo Green, The Killers, Bruno Mars, and The Black Keys), just as many up-and-coming indie artists were given a major platform to share their music with the masses.
So what's it like being part of the pop culture phenomenon and becoming a "Twilight band" alongside the likes of Muse and Death Cab For Cutie? Hollywood.com caught up with two of the bands featured on the Twilight soundtracks, how they got involved, the impact it has made on their careers, and the reception they're received since.
Melissa Dougherty, the lead guitarist of rock band Eastern Conference Champions, whose original song "A Million Miles An Hour" was featured on the Eclipse soundtrack, put it simply: "Being on the soundtrack definitely opened up a lot of doors for our band ... We saw it as a great opportunity to grow the band on a global level." While the band had already gained notoriety for appearing on shows like Friday Night Lights and Gossip Girl, the bass-heavy "A Million Miles An Hour" track clicked with the Twilight fan base. "The Twihards are a very loyal and supportive community, and they definitely embraced our band wholeheartedly, which we truly appreciate," Dougherty says
It probably didn't hurt that ECC's song started the first moment Lautner's Jacob appeared on screen in Eclipse. Dougherty recalled, "We didn’t know which scene the song was for ... We went to the premiere and heard the bass line start, but the audience went crazy screaming for Taylor Lautner, so we kind of missed hearing it." Of course, as much as a thrill the song provided for fans ("People always want to hear that tune as well, and it’s become a fun one to play," she says), being welcomed aboard the Twilight soundtrack lineage was just as much a thrill for the band back when they submitted their music for consideration.
"We’re very proud to have had our song picked out of 400 other artists. It’s a big honor and a big opportunity for an unsigned band to get. At the time we, had no label, no manager and no lawyer," Dougherty recalls, adding, "It was definitely one for the underdogs."
Like ECC, the eclectic Southern indie rock outfit The Features were approached to submit a song through their publishing company. If it hadn't been for the Breaking Dawn - Part 1 soundtrack, their track "From Now On" may have never heard the light of day. Singer/guitarist Matt Pelham recalls, "We were, at that time, in the studio finishing up a record, and had a few songs that were left over from the record. And we figured it couldn't hurt, so we submitted a couple of the songs we had left over. 'From Now On' was one of those, and it wound up on the soundtrack."
"From Now On", one of the more upbeat songs in the Twilight soundtrack catalog, plays during Edward (Robert Pattinson) and Bella's (Kristen Stewart) honeymoon sequence. While Pelham acknowledges that their appearance on the soundtrack has brought in some younger fans and a spike in YouTube awareness ("At one point the YouTube video that someone had posted had surpassed a million hits, which if you take every other YouTube video we have and combine them, it doesn't even come close to that") he and the band had their initial trepidations about appearing on the soundtrack.
"At first, when they asked, we thought it might be kinda weird," Pelham admits, "We didn't know how we'd fit into that soundtrack." Still, Pelham — who says he admires the "mix tape" approach of albums ("I really enjoy records that kind of move around and surprise you") — and the band were happy with how things turned out in the end. "I'm really glad we were part of it ... The music supervisor did a really good job of placing the music and with the music they chose. It comforted the band to know it wasn't just find the catchiest stuff and stick it in there."
That music supervisor is none other than Alexandra Patsavas, the woman worked on all five of the Twilight soundtracks and also put her magical musical touch on the likes of Grey's Anatomy, Mad Men, The O.C., and more recently, The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Pastavas, who says she's "always been interested in independent music," cites the combination of artists like ECC and The Features with "some of the most important alternative and indie rock bands" as "one of the most rewarding and interesting parts of the Twilight saga soundtracks."
In addition to using a variety of bands for the soundtracks, Pastavas, who worked closely with Stephenie Meyer and the various directors throughout the creation of the Twilight soundtracks ("It is a very analog process for this very sophisticated digital era we live in ... It's a collaborative effort in the artistic process,"), also credits the use of original, exclusive music for why these albums struck such a chord. "It was a special thing and something the fans really, really appreciated being able to forever associate the songs and bands with their favorite scenes in the film."
Pastavas, who says she received over 500 submissions for each album, perhaps summed the success of each of the wide-ranging soundtracks best: "Every single one has told a different story." Yet another reason we're sad to close the Twilight chapter.
[Photo credit: Atlantic Records]
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