"Tom is a great person to work with because he works so hard, and he just sort of inspires you to give as good as you possibly can get. He's also a lot more normal than I think everybody realises, and the closer you get to him, the more normal you realise he is." Simon Pegg on befriending the real Tom Cruise.
Stars including J.K. Rowling, Geri Halliwell, Laurence Fox, and Richard E. Grant are celebrating after Scotland voted to reject independence from the U.K.
Scots went to the polls on Thursday (18Sep14) for a ballot on whether to break away from the rest of Britain to become a self-governing nation. More than 55 per cent of voters chose to stay in the union, defeating the independence bid, and celebrities who had previously voiced their support for a 'No' vote took to Twitter.com on Friday (19Sep14) to share their delight after the result was announced.
Harry Potter author Rowling writes, "Been up all night watching Scotland make history. A huge turnout, a peaceful democratic process: we should be proud", Gosford Park star Fox writes, "Morning Scotland. Love you very much", and singer/songwriter Billy Bragg adds, "Referendum result: a new constitutional settlement for U.K. Big thank you to people of Scotland for putting devo (devolution) for England on the agenda."
Former Spice Girls star Halliwell writes, "Thank you Scotland - together we are Great Britain. X", actor Grant tweets, "Huge relief that we continue to be the United Kingdom", and True Blood star Robert Kazinsky adds, "Thank you Scotland, would be sad if one of (my) favorite places on earth was no longer part of my home. Back to the highlands I can go!"
Many of those who supported the 'Yes' campaign are trying to take some positives from the result - actor Alan Cumming writes, "Yes still means something. Please try to remember that. My YES friends", and Simon Pegg adds, "Feel sad for those who campaigned hard for a yes vote. Hopefully some meaningful change will come of this. It was by no means a landslide."
Other stars tweeting their surprise at how the campaign galvanised Scots into voting include Duran Duran singer Simon Le Bon, Muse frontman Matt Bellamy, and Harry Potter actor Matthew Lewis. However, one celebrity was left red-faced by the election result - Fast & Furious actress Michelle Rodriguez thought the country had voted for independence, tweeting, "And the Scot's vote... Was a Yes!!!"
Famous Scots including Annie Lennox, Alan Cumming and Kevin Mckidd have spoken out on the day of the country's crunch referendum to urge fans to vote on the country's future. Scotland goes to the polls on Thursday (18Sep14) to decide whether to break away from the United Kingdom, and a slew of high-profile stars have spoken out in a last-ditch bid to sway the votes.
Eurythmics star Lennox, who was born in Aberdeen, insists she does not have a personal preference which way the vote goes, but she has urged her fellow Scots to think carefully before casting their ballot.
In a post on her Facebook.com page, she writes, "I am 'agnostic' in this matter... Once the die is cast... It will be what it will be. As a Scot who has lived beyond the border for over two thirds of my lifetime, I have no right to vote, therefore my view is practically irrelevant. However - I would like to say this... Whichever way you cast your vote, please think long term. A pro independence vote will be absolutely irreversible... Be wise Scotia... The future is in your hands."
Grey's Anatomy star McKidd, who is backing the 'Yes' campaign, tells Britain's Daily Record newspaper, "I've always been a supporter of independence for Scotland... I don't live in Scotland so don't get a vote, but all my family are still here... Everybody is going to be relieved when Friday comes no matter what happens."
Social networking website Twitter.com has also been flooded with debate over the vote, and another 'Yes' campaigner, The Good Wife star Cumming, writes, "Scotland! Please! Dare to dream," while Icelandic singer Bjork adds, "Declare independence... Go Scotland go!!!!!!!!"
Actor/funnyman Russell Brand writes, "Scotland, be brave. Vote with your hearts. You can strike the first blow for us against Westminster," while Simon Pegg adds, "Thinking of you Scotland. Give it all you've got," before joking, "Apparently a number of impatient 'Yes' campaigners have unbuckled Scotland and are currently towing it into the North Sea."
Harry Potter author J. K. Rowling writes on Wednesday night (17Sep14), "Big day in Scotland tomorrow #indyref (sic). My head says no and my heart shouts it - but whatever happens, I hope we're all friends by Saturday."
Others stars campaigning online on Thursday included actors Ashley Judd, Luke Treadaway, and David Morrissey, filmmaker Michael Moore, rocker Tim Burgess, singer Alison Moyet and tennis ace Andy Murray.
Simon Cowell is donating $42,500 () to an animal shelter in Manchester, England after 60 dogs died in an arson attack.
The X Factor boss is a huge animal lover and owns two Yorkshire terriers himself so he wanted to help rebuild the centre following the devastating blaze last week (ends14Sep14) which gutted the building and left the surviving residents homeless. Cowell has also offered $17,000 () to two local men, Jason Dyer and Dean Rostock, who risked their lives to help save the dogs from the burning building.
He says, "For something like that to happen, is disgusting. I can't even think about it, so many dogs died. We are going to give them some money and take the guys who rescued some of the dogs on holiday because of what they did. I only got Jason and Dean's names today. I would just say both of them, they are true heroes and lots of respect from me for doing it. It was very upsetting."
Cowell also called for the perpetrator to be brought to justice and given a hefty sentence for the crime, adding, "It is unbelievable. Whatever the maximum sentence is I would double it, I really would. There is no justification for it, you can't just kill animals and get away with it."
English bassist John Gustafson has died at the age of 72. The rocker passed away on Friday (12Sep14).
Gustafson was a member of 1960s bands The Big Three and The Merseybeats.
He also appeared on the original Jesus Christ Superstar soundtrack, as Simon Zealotes.
The bassist also co-founded Quatermass with Mick Underwood and Peter Robinson and later played on four studio albums and two live records with the Ian Gillan Band.
Paying tribute to Gustafson on Facebook.com, Quatermass member Bernie Torme writes, "RIP to the great John Gustafson who did so much for music from The Big Three onwards. A true one off.
"Honoured to have met him and chatted back in the day. Here he is with my very good friend Mick Underwood, playing and singing with the fantastic Quatermass. RIP John."
TV shows Sherlock and Game Of Thrones were among the big winners at the U.K. TV Choice Awards on Monday (08Sep14).
The detective thriller was named Best Drama Series while its star Benedict Cumberbatch was named Best Actor. He could not attend the ceremony at London's Hilton Hotel so his parents accepted the accolade on his behalf.
Game of Thrones won the gong for Best International Show while British actor Danny Dyer scooped the Best Soap Actor prize for his role in long-running serial drama EastEnders. The show picked up a host of other prizes including Best Soap and Special Contribution to Television.
Simon Cowell's Britain's Got Talent won Best Talent Show.
The death of pop star Simone Battle has been ruled a suicide by hanging. The 25-year-old G.R.L. bandmember and former The X Factor U.S. contestant was found dead at her home in West Hollywood, California on Friday (05Sep14).
Lieutenant Fred Corral of the Los Angeles County Coroner's Department confirmed the cause of death on Sunday (07Sep14), and stated that no further details will be released.
Battle, a Los Angeles native, grew up doing part-time modeling and acting in small roles in television and movies.
She toured with the Black Eyed Peas after graduating high school and attended the University of Southern California before auditioning for Simon Cowell's first season of the TV talent show.
She joined Pussycat Dolls' creator Robin Antin's girl group in 2012, and Antin shared her sorrow of Battle's death by posting a photo collage of Battle on her Instagram.com page on Saturday (06Sep14).
Antin added the caption, "I'm so beyond devastated by the loss of our beautiful Simone ... Simone I will miss your smile, Your adorable laugh, Your loving spirit that you brought to all of us, The joy that you felt when you were singing, dancing, performing, laughing, and goofing around with your GRLs, and most of all the beautiful friendship and bond that tied us all together, that will forever be in my heart...
"How lucky we are to have had You in our lives Simone, you inspired us all, and touched fans all around the world with your sweet sweet voice and talent.... We will NEVER forget... I Love you sweet Simone Rest in Peace..."
G.R.L. was scheduled to play a gig at the Marquee nightclub in Las Vegas on Monday (08Sep14), but the concert has been cancelled.
Pop star Simone Battle has died, aged 25. The G.R.L. bandmember and former The X Factor U.S. contestant was found dead at her home in West Hollywood, California on Friday (05Sep14). Her death is reportedly being investigated as a suspected suicide.
The singer made it to the live show rounds of the reality TV show in 2011 and the following year (12), she joined five-piece girl group G.R.L. Their debut single Ugly Heart was released in the U.S. in June (14).
The X Factor judge Simon Cowell paid tribute to her on Twitter.com, writing, "I am so sad to hear about the news Simone Battle has passed away. She was such a fun nice person. It's such a loss. Rest in peace Simone."
Her four bandmembers wrote in a message posted on their official website, "Words cannot express the depth of our loss... Simone's incredible talent was only surpassed by the size of her heart."
Former That '70s Show star Wilmer Valderrama writes, "A very sad day 4 (for) all of us who had the blessing of knowing u @GRLSimone (sic). My heart & prayers are with my dear friends @GRL & Simone's family (sic)."
According to TMZ.com, an autopsy is scheduled for Sunday (07Sep14).
Actresses Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Tisdale reunited with their fellow High School Musical co-stars on Friday (29Aug14) as part of a contest to support a youth charity. It was a night to remember for superfan Camilla Simon, who won a Prizeo.com raffle to spend an evening with her favourite Disney stars.
Hudgens and Tisdale were joined by Corbin Bleu, Monique Coleman, choreographer Chucky Klapow and director Kenny Ortega for a dinner in Los Angeles, and they all took to social media to share photos of their night together.
Tisdale shared a photo of herself along with Hudgens, Ortega, Coleman and Simon on Instagram.com, and added the caption, "Had so much fun seeing everyone and hanging with the Prizeo winner!", while Hudgens shared a similar picture and wrote, "Such a wonderful little HSM reunion (last night). @Ashleytisdale and KO (Kenny Ortega) laughing our a**es off."
Noticeably absent from the event was Hudgens' ex-boyfriend Zac Efron, who stated he couldn't attend the dinner because he is currently filming his next movie, We Are Your Friends.
Proceeds from the contest benefited Coleman's GimmeMo' Foundation, which addresses pressing issues facing youth around the world.
British pop star Cheryl Cole was axed from The X Factor USA after a bust-up with boss Simon Cowell about a bizarre outfit she wore for her debut. The music mogul took his pal Cole with him when he launched his hit talent search in the States in 2011 and hoped she could repeat her U.K. role as a popular mentor and judge.
However, within three weeks, Cole's American dream had crumbled and she left the show amid fears she would not connect with U.S. viewers.
Now Cowell has admitted her departure was sparked by an argument over a weird purple and orange outfit the pop star wore for her U.S. X Factor debut.
In an interview with Radio Times, he says, "There was so much expectation on the show in America, and I definitely wasn't myself. I was uptight. When I saw her I didn't recognise her. Literally. The hair and outfit were crazy, just totally crazy.
"I asked her manager, 'What's she wearing, what's happened to her hair?' He was defensive about it. I haven't a clue why she turned up like that.
"We then did the first day of auditions, and she was nervous, shy, not in her comfort zone. She'd put on a bit of weight, but not loads. That wasn't the issue. The only way I can describe it is that it wasn't Cheryl sitting in that seat. She'd lost her confidence...
"(Later) I called her and said, 'Look, it's not going great, to be honest,' then I mentioned what she wore and she turned on me. If I could go back in time I would have kept her on the show. It was stupid doing what I did. I didn't sack her personally. That was the second biggest mistake I made."
Cowell and Cole have since made up and put the incident behind them, and the former Girls Aloud singer is even trying to convince him to marry Lauren Silverman, the mother of his son Eric.
Cole tells the publication, "I'm going to have a word with him about getting married. He jokes about being too tight (miserly) to get married but I don't think he is. He's very generous."
In 2012, Cole sued producers of The X Factor USA for $2.3 million (£1.3 million) over her sacking and received undisclosed damages as a settlement. She has since rejoined the U.K. version of the programme.