Singer/songwriter Morrissey has distanced himself from allegations he hired a South African bouncer to get "rid of" a website controller The Smiths star was feuding with. In a bizarre new lawsuit, Bradley Steyn claims he was working as the rocker's bodyguard in May (14) when he was asked by Morrissey and his tour manager to physically harm David Tseng, the webmaster of morrissey-solo.com - and when he turned down the violent request, he was fired.
The Suedehead singer has denied the allegations in a statement posted on True to You, a fansite he endorses, which reads: "I cannot admit to actually 'knowing' Bradley Steyn. Yes, I am aware that he is South African and that he lives in Los Angeles, and that he has 'walked off' three Morrissey tours - which really is his own business, not mine. My personal involvement with him has been zero."
The rocker adds: "I am aware of the false story he has placed on various news sites wherein he claims I asked him to 'hurt' (kill?) David Tseng. Although Steyn's story lends itself to its own ridicule, I feel I must say to those who have not yet worked it out, that the story is a vexatious lie.
"The shabby truth of this drama is that Bradley Steyn has been trying to extract money from what he terms 'The Morrissey tour', and he has failed. He is now desperate, and this story is his latest escapade to gain someone's attention.
"The very idea that I would ask a complete stranger (Bradley Steyn) to physically attack David Tseng surely cannot register with any sane person as being likely. As mildly irritating as David Tseng may be, he is not someone who troubles me enough to even bother with."
Morrissey ends his statement by assuring fans that the matter is now in the hands of the Los Angeles Police Department, and is "subject to both criminal and civil action".
Bryan Singer's sex abuse accuser Michael Egan has been dropped by his lawyer after changing his mind about accepting an out-of-court settlement from the director. The X-Men filmmaker became the first power player named by Egan in a series of lawsuits linked to "sordid" sexual exploits at a number of industry get togethers over a period of two years, when the plaintiff was aged between 15 and 17.
Singer's attorney Marty Singer, no relation, was quick to respond to the allegations, calling them "absurd" and "completely without merit", and he filed a motion for dismissal in May (14).
Egan subsequently withdrew his suits against Bryan Singer's co-accused, Hollywood executives Garth Ancier and David Neuman and Broadway producer Gary Goddard, last month (Jun14), but he is refusing to back down over allegations the director sexually abused him at a party in Hawaii in 1999.
According to TMZ.com, Egan's lawyer Jeff Herman negotiated a settlement deal worth $100,000 (£58,824) with Singer, but Egan had a change of heart after signing the agreement, stating, "This exact kind of take-it-and-shut-up deal is why I decided to stand up in the first place."
His decision has now cost him Herman's services.
The news emerges days after another teen sex abuse lawsuit against Singer, filed by an unidentified British actor, was dismissed on Friday (25Jul14).
The drummer for U.S. chat show David Letterman's house band was once a member of Kiss for a night. Revered session musician Anton Fig, who had played on two KISS albums as well as guitarist Ace Frehley's debut solo record, was initially drafted in to replace Peter Criss in 1980, but he was dismissed hours later when Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons decided to go in a different direction.
Frehley recalls, "We were looking for a new drummer and we auditioned about a dozen drummers, including Eric Carr. I called up Paul and Gene, because I had been working with Anton on my solo record, and I said, 'Why don't we get Anton Fig to play drums?' and they both agreed.
"So I called up Anton and said, 'You're in the band'. He was thrilled. He couldn't sleep all night. The next day, Paul and Gene calls (sic) me and says, 'You know what, I don't think Anton's a good choice'. So I had to do the dirty work and call Anton and say, 'Sorry, Anton, you're not in the band'. He was elated and then he was let down."
Criss officially left KISS in May, 1980, prompting the band to postpone a European tour. He was replaced by Eric Carr.
Friends of George Michael fear he is living as a hermit following his collapse earlier this year (14), according to a report. The former Wham! singer was hospitalised in May (14) after reportedly falling ill at his London home, and now several pals and neighbours are worried about his wellbeing.
He is reportedly rarely seen outside of his house and only one friend, record producer David Austen, is seen visiting, according to neighbours.
One friend tells Britain's Sunday People newspaper, "People are worried sick about him. He's just cut himself off from everyone."
Another adds, "He hasn't been seen out for months, he's self-conscious about the scars on his throat and head... and he's put on weight."
Michael was left with the scars from a near-fatal car accident last year (13), when he fell out of a moving vehicle on a highway.
United Artists via Everett Collection
The Beatles' influence has touched every inch of modern pop music, leaving an indelible mark on film and television... which is pretty good for four working-class mop tops from Liverpool. Director Ron Howard will be the next to immortalize the band onscreen, in a new documentary that will explore the group's early years, when they still toured their music across the globe. Surviving Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, as well as Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison will contribute to the feature, which will trace the band's humble beginnings at the Caven Club in Liverpool, their tours through Germany, all the way through the group's final public performance in San Francisco's Candlestick park. But before we get around to seeing Howard's tribute to the Beatles, we're inclined to look back upon some of the best musical contributions they made to movies and TV.
Bowling for ColumbineThe last half of the John Lennon-penned "Happiness Is a Warm Gun," which may or may not be about heroin, serves as the perfect soundtrack for Michael Moore's anti-gun manifesto Bowling for Columbine. It's used in a terrifying sequence that shows just how gun crazy some Americans are, and as the song ramps up, the sequence escalates to a violent and unnerving conclusion that still has us wincing all these years later.
"Baby, You're a Rich Man" in The Social NetworkWhat better way to end a biopic about one of the richest men in the universe than this cut from Magical Mystery Tour. It's so fitting, it's almost like it was made expressly to cap off David Fincher's tale of billion dollar grudges.
"You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" in HelpWe couldn't, in good faith, compile a list of the best Beatles moments in film and television without including a sequence from the Fab Four's own filmography. We chose "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" the film Help for sheer oddness of the sequence. Plus, it's just a great song in general.
"In My Life" in Little ManhattanThe best thing about the Beatles is how timeless their music is. "In My Life," a song about losing and gaining friendships through the slippage of time, is the perfect piece of music to accompany the story about a preteen losing his first love in modern day New York.
"A Little Help From My Friends" on The Wonder YearsJohn Cocker's throaty rendition of "A Little Help from My Friends" graces the title sequence of The Wonder Years, and it may be the best cover song ever recorded. It's even better than the original Beatles tune, and it just makes The Wonder Years a better show. Nowadays, we can't even look at Fred Savage without hearing Cocker's raspy croon blasting through our heads at full volume.
"Come Together" in A Bronx TaleIn a scene from Robert De Niro's directoral debut, a pair of Italian mafiosos rough up a couple of unruly bikers that stop into their bar while "Come Together" spills out of a jukebox. Thanks to the '60s aesthetic, the song is a perfect addition to the scene.
"Hey Jude" in The Royal TenenbaumsFilmmakers like Quentin Tarantino and Martin Scorsese are often celebrated for their use of pop music in film, but Wes Anderson's musical touches in his work are just as poignant. His use of a beautifully orchestrated version of "Hey Jude" in 2001's The Royal Tenanbaums is a perfect example of this.
"Twist and Shout" in Ferris Bueller's Day OffWe're still not sure if Ferris Bueller is really a wizard, or if it was just the power of music, but the teen somehow brings the entirety of downtown Chicago to a grinding halt for the musical number to end all musical numbers.
Singer Michael Buble has a dedicated dentist to thank for helping him perform at his concert in Manchester, New Hampshire last week (end11Jul14) after dislodging a crown on his tooth hours before showtime. The Home hitmaker's tour manager tracked down Dr. David Bloom on Friday morning (11Jul14) after the singer suffered the dental mishap while attempting to tear a ketchup packet with his teeth.
Bloom cleared his schedule for the emergency and Buble showed his gratitude to the medic by posing for photos with him and his staff, before gifting them with front row tickets for his gig at the Verizon Wireless Arena that night.
He even shared the news about his dental disaster with fans at the gig, before publicly thanking Bloom for taking care of him.
Dr. Bloom says, "(Buble) stopped the show and he said, 'Just want to tell you what happened today,' and he told everybody what happened. He said, 'This guy right down here took care of me.'
"It made for a very interesting Friday."
It's not the first time Buble has required emergency dental work while on tour - he knocked out a tooth with his microphone as he performed onstage in Sydney, Australia in May (14).
20th Century Fox Film via Everett Collection
Over the course of her career, Cameron Diaz has played everything from an ogre princess to a crime-fighting angel to the most irresponsible teacher of all time. But though she's best known for starring in goofy, raunchy comedies, Diaz's resume is filled with varied compelling roles that don't get talked about nearly as much as her underwear dance in Charlie's Angels. In fact, we'd go so far as to say that over the course of her career, Diaz has steadily delivered surprising, awards-worthy performances that often get overlooked by both the press and the public. In honor of her latest film, Sex Tape, arriving in theaters Friday, we've taken a look back at Diaz's life and career to pinpoint every single performance that shocked, moved, and impressed us... and, in a just world, would have impressed the Academy as well.
The CounselorLet’s get this out of the way: yes, Diaz’s character does have sex with a car. It’s a shame, though, that the hubbub surrounding that scene overshadowed everything else about her performance, which is insane in the best possible way. As Malkina, the calculating girlfriend/partner in crime to Javier Bardem’s Reiner, Diaz turned everything up to 11 to give an over-the-top, off-the-wall performance that is more entertaining than attempting to figure out what’s happening with Bardem’s hair. Despite a star-studded cast and a script by Cormac McCarthy, Diaz was easily the most memorable thing about The Counselor, as well as the most compelling.
ShrekOkay, so the Oscars don’t honor voice over work. That doesn’t mean that Diaz’s work as Princess Fiona isn’t worthy of praise. With anyone else voicing her, Fiona would probably turn out to be another cookie-cutter animated princess – kooky, sure but not downright weird, and probably not willing to convince a bird to sing itself to death or having a burping contest with an ogre. Diaz gives Fiona an absurd amount of personality, depth and fun, making her feel as alive as she would if it actually ere Diaz up on that screen.
My Best Friend’s Wedding Julia Roberts get all of the attention, but her Julianne Potter would be nothing without Diaz’s sweet, warm-hearted Kimmy Wallace. A character like Kimmy could have easily been one-dimensional: an unrealistic perfect girl meant to make the protagonist jealous. But Diaz’s Kimmy is a fully realized person; she’s not just sweet, she’s also naïve and awkward and genuinely open-hearted. And her ability to turn what would otherwise be a painfully embarrassing karaoke scene into an endearingly goofy moment deserves much more credit than Roberts letting Dermot Mulroney go.
USA Films via Everett Collection
Being John Malkovich And you thought The Counselor was a strange movie. In Being John Malkvoich, Diaz plays Lotte, the unhappy, pet-obsessed wife of John Cusack’s Craig, who enters into a relationship with Craig’s work crush Maxine (Catherine Keener) while inside the head of John Malkovich. It would be easy to let the craziness of the plot outshine the characters, but Diaz, wearing a horrendously frizzy wig and a series of unflattering outfits, uses the opportunity to give a weird, intense, complex performance that is, unfortunately, often forgotten in favor of her comedic ventures.
There’s Something About Mary The Mask may have put her on the map, but it was the Farrelly Brothers’ comedy that really made Diaz a star. The entire movie hinges on her being the most irresistible woman in the universe, so she needs to win over the audience in addition to the characters. Diaz does exactly that. Her performance is bright, charming and effortlessly funny, and it’s not hard to see why everyone fell in love with her hilarious and heartwarming character.
In Her Shoes In Her Shoes is a much better movie than it appears in its trailer, and much of that is due to Diaz’s performance as Maggie, the free-spirited wild child sister of Toni Collette’s Rose. It would be easy to turn Maggie into a flighty, one-dimensional character, but Diaz manages to turn a somewhat trite reveal – Maggie is dyslexic and has trouble reading and doing basic math – into an opportunity to showcase the insecurity, doubt, and hurt that has turned Maggie into the frivolous party girl that she is. It’s a surprisingly layered performance for a light-hearted movie about the relationship between sisters, and Diaz easily holds her own opposite Collette and Shirley MacLaine, both of whom received more attention.
Vanilla Sky Whether you loved Vanilla Sky or found it impossible to get past Tom Cruise’s melted face, there’s no denying that Diaz’s performance was the standout of the film. As Julie, the suicidal, jealous ex-girlfriend of Cruise’s David Aames, Diaz is simultaneously terrifying and heartbreaking, showcasing all of the hurt, anger, and instability that drive her to extreme measures. More than just the femme fatale or the vindictive ex, Diaz’s Julie is a tour de force performance that unfortunately got overshadowed by some terrible prosthetics.
Veteran rocker Rod Stewart is set to perform at the 2014 Commonwealth Games opening ceremony later this month (Jul14). The athletics competition will kick off in Glasgow, Scotland with a launch event at the city's Celtic Park football stadium on 23 July (14) and organisers expect as many as 40,000 sports fans to attend, with millions more watching on TV.
The event's bosses hope the Maggie May hitmaker's inclusion on the bill, which also features Scottish stars Susan Boyle and Amy MacDonald, will lift excitement ahead of the occasion.
Chief executive David Grevemberg says, "We have always said that the opening ceremony will present Glasgow and Scotland to a global audience. But when we got to welcome an iconic talent like Rod Stewart it takes the excitement and anticipation for the opening ceremony to a whole new level."
Australian pop star Kylie Minogue has reportedly signed on to perform at the Commonwealth Games closing ceremony, which will be held at Glasgow's Hampden Park football ground on 3 August (14).
British sportsman David Beckham will be presented with a special legends' honour at the inaugural Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Sports Awards later this month (Jul14).
Bosses at the children's TV network annually celebrate the year's best movies, television and music and are now branching into the world of sport with their new honours ceremony.
The former soccer star will pick up the first Legend Award and officials at the channel chose him for the honour because "he exemplifies the qualities every kid aspires to achieve and his name is the first that comes to mind when we think of his sport".
Pharrell Williams, Florida Georgia Line and Megan Fox are scheduled to appear at the ceremony, which will be hosted by U.S. TV presenter Michael Strahan on 17 July (14).
Queen star Brian May has paid tribute to the band's first manager following his death at the age of 74. Norman Sheffield, who managed the rockers during the early days of their career, passed away in Cornwall, England on 20 June (14) after a battle with cancer.
He began his career as a musician with his band The Hunters, performing with Sir Cliff Richard in the late 1950s, and he later opened the Trident recording studios in London where hits including David Bowie's Space Oddity and The Beatles' Hey Jude were brought to life.
Sheffield took on management duties for Queen in 1972 and remained with the band until 1975, but later reunited with them when one of his companies was asked to produce their iconic Bohemian Rhapsody video.
The band's guitarist May has now offered up a tribute in memory of the man who helped shape Queen's music career.
In a post on his website, May writes, "Sad to report the passing of Queen's first manager, Norman Sheffield. We had our differences of course, but, in the Grand Scheme of Things, all the water had long since flowed under the bridge. Our sincere condolences to his family. RIP Norman."