Rocker Peter Gabriel has paid tribute to Bobby Womack following the soul legend's death on Friday (27Jun14). The Across 110th Street singer was billed to headline Gabriel's WOMAD festival in England at the end of the month (Jul14).
The former Genesis star, who co-founded the world music event, says, "I'm very sad to learn of Bobby Womack's death. We were very proud to be having him closing this year's WOMAD Charlton Park. His songs and his voice have been so much a part of the fabric of so many musical lives.
"He was a soul legend and will leave a big hole."
Other celebrity tributes to Womack have been posted by Ronnie Wood, Stevie Wonder, Justin Timberlake and Damon Albarn, who helped to revive the soul veteran's career by inviting him to join the Gorillaz in 2010.
Bobby Womack's friend and collaborator Damon Albarn has joined stars including Ronnie Wood, Justin Timberlake and Ronald Isley to pay tribute to the soul legend following his death on Friday (27Jun14). The music veteran, who had suffered from Alzheimer's disease and prostate cancer, passed away at the age of 70, but no further details were available as WENN went to press.
Womack's death sent the music world into mourning, prompting tributes from his famous friends and fans, including Blur star Albarn, who helped the music veteran achieve a career revival in recent years by collaborating with him on a Gorillaz track and inviting him on tour.
Albarn mourned his friend's loss in a post on Twitter.com, writing, "I will see my brother in church @RealBobbyWomack."
Rolling Stones star Ronnie Wood was among the first to pay tribute to Womack, tweeting, "I'm so sad to hear about my friend Bobby Womack - the man who could make you cry when he sang has brought tears to my eyes with his passing.
"My heart goes out to his family & friends and everyone who loved his music. Bobby you will be greatly missed."
The Rolling Stones recorded Womack's song It's All Over Now.
Pop star Justin Timberlake also marked the sad news by taking to Twitter to write, "One of THE BEST to ever do it. You've inspired so much out of me and will continue to do so... #RIPBobbyWomack," while CeeLo Green added, "RIP Bobby Womack... Heroes get remembered, but legends never die #RIPBobbyWomack."
Funk legend George Clinton offered up an online message to remember Womack, along with Anita Baker and Angie Stone and fellow soul icon Ronald Isley, of the Isley Brothers, who wrote, "I am sad to hear of the passing of my long time friend Bobby Womack. He was a special person with a special talent. I will truly miss him."
Rockers including Red Hot Chili Peppers star Flea, Matt Sorum and Gerard Way also joined the flood of tributes, along with stars from the hip-hop world, led by Wyclef Jean, OutKast's Big Boi, 50 Cent, Q-Tip and Public Enemy.
Womack was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2009, and his passing prompted a statement from organisation officials. The message reads, "Sad to learn that soul legend and 2009 Rock and Roll HOF Inductee Bobby Womack has passed away."
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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Here are this week's highlights from VH1, Celebuzz, Flavorwire, and Hollywood.com.
Are you loving the erotic tension in Sherlock? Homoeroticism actually has a rich tradition within the Sherlock Holmes stories. Read a thorough history of sex and Sherlock at Flavorwire.
Kanye discusses reverse cowgirl and oral sex in new verse on Beyoncé's "Drunk in Love." We're guessing he's talking about Kim because he says MILF a lot. Read the raunchy lyrics at Celebuzz.
Speaking of "Drunk in Love," what is with that surfboard? Beyoncé's video for the song prominently features some wood. See the most iconic surfboards in pop culture at VH1 Celebrity.
Is Justin Bieber just pulling an elaborate prank? Is he smart enough? Hollywood.com has eight reasons why he might be.
Actress Jennifer Lawrence has become the latest celebrity to pay tribute to tragic actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, who passed away from an apparent drug overdose on Sunday (02Feb14). The 46 year old's body was found in his New York apartment after a friend grew concerned following failed attempts to contact the star.
At the time of his death, Hoffman was filming The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 & 2 and now the franchise star is remembering her fallen castmate.
A statement from the actress, director Francis Lawrence and The Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins, reads, "Words cannot convey the devastating loss we are all feeling right now. Philip was a wonderful person and an exceptional talent, and our hearts are breaking. Our deepest condolences go out to his family."
Bosses from Lionsgate Films, the production company behind the movie, and franchise star Sam Claflin have also issued statements.
Other tributes have come from Steve Martin, Ricky Gervais, Aaron Paul, Rose McGowan, Justin Timberlake, Minnie Driver, Octavia Spencer, Anna Kendrick, Lena Dunham, Mia Farrow, Elijah Wood and Jim Carrey.
Mia Farrow, Jim Carrey and Elijah Wood are among the many stars who have paid tribute to actor Philip Seymour Hoffman following his death from an apparent drug overdose on Sunday (02Feb14). The Oscar-winning Capote star, who was found dead in his West Village, New York apartment, was one of Hollywood's most respected actors and celebrities were quick to pay their tributes on social media.
Mia Farrow writes, "OH NO!!!!! Philip Seymour Hoffman has died. A truly kind, wonderful man and one of our greatest actors - ever."
Jim Carrey adds, "Dear Philip, a beautiful beautiful soul. For the most sensitive among us the noise can be too much. Bless your heart."
Hoffman's Ides of March co-star Evan Rachel Wood, expressed her sadness on Twitter.com, writing, "I am sad on so many levels about the loss of Philip Seymour Hoffman. One of the greats. Losing him this way is absolutely tragic."
Shocked by the news, Elijah Wood adds, "heartbroken and shocked. what a true loss. rest in peace, Philip Seymour Hoffman".
And Whoopi Goldberg writes, "WTF (sic)!!!!philip-seymour-hoffman-found-dead-in-his-apartment, a truly great actor... Gone.. I hope someone says hey whoop it's a hoax..R.I.P".
She later added, "I see that it's not a hoax PSH is dead condolences to his family."
Other tributes have come from Steve Martin, Ricky Gervais, Aaron Paul, Rose McGowan, Justin Timberlake, Minnie Driver, Octavia Spencer, Anna Kendrick and Lena Dunham, who tweets, "Beautiful beautiful man. We have lost so much joy to something so joyless. RIP PSH."
Meanwhile, Val Kilmer adds, "Blu (sic) day, Philip Seymour Hoffman od'd (overdosed). Addiction comes fr (from) trying to escape the pain of living. We all struggle with this but Drugs never help.
"Because egging a house isnt news. Its like reporting that someone put a friends hand in warm water at a sleepover (sic)." Actress Evan Rachel Wood can't believe police officials in California and the media are making so much fuss over Justin Bieber's egging incident.
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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Actress Evan Rachel Wood has urged the public to go easy on troubled pop star Justin Bieber, insisting youngsters who grow up in the spotlight should not be criticised for making mistakes. The Wrestler star began acting when she was a child and found fame with her role in gritty teen drama Thirteen before making a successful transition to more adult roles.
Wood admits she struggled with life as a famous teenager and feels sorry for fellow former child star Bieber, whose bad behaviour has made him a regular in the headlines over the last few months.
She tells Thedailybeast.com, "I can't imagine what it's like to be him. When you're a teenager in an adult career, people expect you to be perfect and expect you to never make mistakes or to be a reckless teenager. And then when you are, they give you such a really hard time for it. You have to remind them that you're still a kid."
Wood goes on to reveal she was deeply hurt by the criticism she received over her relationship with former fiance Marilyn Manson after she began dating the 36-year-old rocker when she was just 19.
She adds, "I was never a Bieber or a (Miley) Cyrus, but I think the judgment was there, sure. People were pretty mean. At the time I hadn't yet been exposed to that kind of cruelty from strangers. If people were wondering why I was acting so-called crazy or like a teenager, it's because I was. People go through phases. People make mistakes. People go through life and don't get it right every time."
Wood and Manson ended their brief engagement in 2010. She is now married to actor Jamie Bell, the father of her infant son.
The Who, the Pixies and actress Evan Rachel Wood have led tributes to rock legend Lou Reed, who died on Sunday (27Oct13), aged 71. The former Velvet Underground frontman passed away five months after a liver transplant and the rock world has been stunned by the tragic news.
A post on The Who's official Twitter.com page reads: "R.I.P. Lou Reed. Walk on the peaceful side", while Frank Black and his Pixies bandmates add, "R.I.P. LOU REED....A LEGEND."
Kings of Leon star Nathan Followill, British rocker Carl Barat, Justin Timberlake, Ryan Adams, Nile Rodgers, former My Chemical Romance star Gerard Way, The Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney and Sonic Youth's Lee Ranaldo also marked the sad news by taking to Twitter, while new mum Wood stated, "I am really bummed out today. Lost one of the greats."
Weezer also offered up their thoughts about Reed's passing, tweeting, "R.I.P Lou Reed - VU (Velvet Underground) was a big influence when weezer was being formed, and (producer) Ric Ocasek told us cool stories of his friendship with him."
Meanwhile, rock historian Martin Lewis, who has produced an upcoming DVD box-set of Amnesty International concerts that feature Lou Reed prominently, performing alongside Sting, Bono, Bryan Adams, Jackson Browne, Bruce Springsteen and others, tells WENN, "Lou Reed was an exceptional pioneering musician who inspired both his contemporaries and those who followed after him.
"He generously supported Amnesty International from the very start of the Human Rights Concerts series, performing at all six concerts on Amnesty's A Conspiracy Of Hope U.S. tour in June, 1986. He recently very graciously gave his blessing for the release of those historic performances as part of Amnesty's DVD box-set of the concerts.
"He was a remarkable musician and humanitarian. He will be greatly missed by everyone - including the human rights movement that he was passionate in supporting."