It's almost become a game — how many things can be blamed on Miley Cyrus? When she went out on her Bangerz tour, mothers — none of whom had apparently been paying attention to what the singer's been up to since Hannah Montana — took to the web to complain about her antics, comparing the stage show to porn and lamenting the fact that their children had been exposed to it. Joe Jonas wrote a tell-all essay for New York Magazine, where he revealed that it was peer-pressure from Cyrus and Demi Lovato that got him to smoke pot for the first time. When she subsequently lit up a joint on stage in Amsterdam, she was labeled out of control. Months after, she caught a ton of flak for her "twerking" at the MTV Video Music Awards, the Internet exploded with rumors that Cyrus was the real reason behind the break-up of Robin Thicke and his wife, Paula Patton.
Now, Katy Perry is taking shots at the singer after Cyrus tried to kiss her at a concert, telling an Australian television show that she backed away from the smooch because, "God knows where that tongue has been." Even something as simple as being photographed using a teleprompter during a concert in Denver — a practice that did not originate with Cyrus — becomes national tabloid fodder. All that's missing at this point is Vladimir Putin issuing a statement saying that Cyrus is the real cause behind the unrest in the Ukraine.
Do a search for Cyrus' name and you'll return a lot of self-righteous posturing about her habit of not wearing clothes and her professed love of marijuana. The problem with all of this is that when you boil it all down, there's absolutely nothing wrong with what Cyrus is doing. In fact, if anything, it's a savvy career move.
Cyrus' image make-over isn't the first of its kind. When Drew Barrymore wanted to be seen as something more than the girl from E.T., she posed for Playboy and flashed David Letterman on national television. Within the music industry, Cyrus still has a ways to go before she tops the dual masters of self-promotion, Madonna and Lady Gaga. Heck, Madonna was kissing Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera years before Cyrus thought of it, and Gaga has been naked (or nearly) so often that it doesn't even register anymore.
So, why does what Cyrus is doing bother so many people? Is it because there's a segment of the audience that feels like they've watched her grow up on her Disney Channel show? Is it because she comes from a country music background with its more "traditional" values and with none other than Dolly Parton as her godmother? Or is it just that even now, people have difficulty with a young woman flaunting her sexuality?
The truth is that as a culture there are continuous mixed messages about female sexuality. Being sexy is valued, but being overtly sexual can go either way. When Jennifer Lawrence goes on Conan and tells a story about sex aides, it gets treated as something cute. If Kim Kardashian does the same thing, the nicest label that gets attached to her is "vapid." Madonna and Gaga are hailed as smart business women for parlaying an image based largely on sex into millions of dollars, but Spears is continuously portrayed disparagingly for doing the same thing. Cyrus was bashed for the tone of her concerts, but mothers routinely take their daughters to Perry's shows that feature skimpy costumes, stripper poles and a variety of accoutrements tied to her breasts. How does any young female performer that's coming up know what's over the line, when the line isn't the same for any two women?
To her credit, Cyrus does not take the criticism without hitting back. When Jonas made his comments, she responded to the New York Times that, "If you want to smoke weed, you're going to smoke weed. There's nothing that two little girls are going to get you to do that you don't want to do." When Perry called her out, she took to Twitter to shoot back about Perry's ex-boyfriend John Mayer, "Girl if ur worried abt where tongues have been good thing ur ex boo is ur EX BOO cause we all know where THAT (tongue) been."
She also has a sense of humor about it, appearing on Saturday Night Live two different times in the fall to make fun of the furor over her behavior. Parton, who was never shy about using her own sexuality to gain notice, has defended her goddaughter as well, telling a London newspaper, "It's not easy being young. You almost have to sacrifice your damn soul to get anything done."
Unlike Justin Bieber and Lindsay Lohan, Cyrus appears to know exactly what she's doing. If she's to blame for anything, it's for showcasing again the double-standards that get applied to strong, young women.
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Is a Full House reunion in the works? It certainly came together for an episode of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Check out the throwback reunion that had everyone talking, plus lots of puppies! Remember to come back to Hollywood.com every week to catch up on all the late night talk show highlights.
Three Men and a Jimmy FallonWe've all been there – waking up to a cold sweat, panicking about hosting The Tonight Show. Thank the heavens there's always Daddy, Uncle Jesse, and Uncle Joey to help put us back to sleep! While it's great to see Bob Saget, John Stamos, and Dave Coulier back together again, we don't miss the mullets and the ugly sweaters.
Dude DuetPolitical comedian Bill Maher and Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane do their best Rat Pack impression by singing a farewell to Jay Leno.
"Katy Perry Finger-banged my Cleavage"Now that's an image that guys will certainly want etched in their minds! In her interview with Conan O'Brien, Anna Kendrick told the world just how intimate she and Katy Perry became on Grammy night.
Don't SpeakThe week's most painful interview to watch goes to former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, who just couldn't keep up with Jon Stewart's questions about the healthcare.gov website.
Missed ConnectionsEvery guy's feeling a missed connection with Alison Brie's sultry reading of people's desperate pleas of romance from Craigslist.
The Boy Who Never AgedIt looks like Peter Pan spent too much time away from Neverland! Bill Murray made another impressive entrance on Late Show with David Letterman when he literally swooped in for his interview.
Prepping for the Puppy BowlFamed football coach Joe Gibbs trains Stephen Colbert for the biggest and cuddliest game of his life.
Puppy ConanDue to popular demand, Conan O'Brien brought back the canine version of his show, "Puppy Conan."
Puppy PredictorsThis is the last clip featuring puppies, we swear! Jimmy Fallon unleashed the hounds to see who's their pick to win Sunday night's big game. And the winner will be ...
Peer AdviceWhere's the proof that Justin Bieber is sinking faster than mercury during a polar vortex? Miley Cyrus is giving him advince on how to keep things on the DL on The Tonight Show.
Funnyman David Spade feels a little cheated after spending $125,000 (£78,000) on special access to a Sir Paul McCartney concert at a charity auction - because he has yet to see the former Beatle perform live. The Joe Dirt star had saved up $30,000 (£18,750) for the Haiti benefit in 2012 and was determined to snag backstage and soundcheck tickets to a Paul McCartney show - but when bidding started at $50,000 (£31,000), the actor knew he was in over his head.
However, the auction bosses knew he was interested and when the bidding stalled at $80,000 (£50,000), they called out Spade.
Peer pressure and the need to impress a beautiful date got the better of Spade and he started bidding.
He says, "They go, '90!', back to me, '100?' I'm like, 'Why don't you relax for a second...' I'm like, 'If I sell that...'
"The grossest part was like, he went, '110 anyone...?' and I said to my date, 'Don't f**king move...' and then they go, '125 Spade?' and I go, 'No, no, wait! What just happened?'
"You see (Leonardo) DiCaprio craning, going, 'Who's the cheapskate?' and I go, '125!' They go, 'Sold!'"
But Spade has yet to cash in his big win: "It's so hilarious because Paul McCartney didn't even go on tour this year, so I didn't get anything. It all went to Haiti."
Miley Cyrus has hit back at Joe Jonas after he blamed her for introducing him to marijuana when they were teenagers. Jonas opened up about his past in a revealing article for Vulture Magazine in December (13) and claimed Cyrus and fellow Disney star Demi Lovato had urged him to try weed.
But the Wrecking Ball singer tells the New York Times she did not force the drug on Jonas, insisting everyone is responsible for their own choices.
She says, "If you want to smoke weed, you're going to smoke weed. There's nothing that two little girls are going to get you to do that you don't want to do. I thought maybe he (Jonas) was saying that like it was going to make him look bada**... We were so young that it's actually like 'How did you get peer pressured by me?'"
Dear Joseph Gordon-Levitt:
I'm a little worried about your career. It seems these days that all the actors in Hollywood are willing to do something that you're not. I would hate to see you bow down to peer pressure, but I don't want you to start losing out on the plum roles because you're not willing to do it. After all, you're competing with the Channing Tatums of this world, and that guy seems like he has a biological imperative to show off his pecs to the world at every given opportunity. Yes, Joe, it's time to start taking your shirt off in movies.
Last night I saw your newest flick, the bike messengers in peril thriller Premium Rush, and I got a little rush when you got injured and diagnosed with bruised ribs. "Finally," I and every admirer of the male form in the theater thought, "They're going to have to cut his shirt off!" Yes, we wanted to glimpse those sweat-drenched muscles that had been straining the cotton of that too-tight tee for the past 60 minutes. But no. It didn't happen! Instead they put the bandages over the shirt. How ridiculous is that? It's like the pudgy kid who wears a shirt to go swimming at camp, which only draws even more attention to what lies beneath.
We should have known that you would disappoint us. You have been everywhere, Joey. Four movies just this year. You're like the new Jessica Chastain or Jude Law before he started sleeping with the nanny and everyone hated him. Every time we see a new trailer, you're somehow magically in it. But each time you deny us what we want the most. You remain fully clothed not only in this film, but in The Dark Knight Rises (is there no locker room in the Bat Cave?) and Looper (is nudity not allowed in the future?). Sure, cancer isn't very sexy so we understand about 50/50 and it must have been intimidating standing next to Tom Hardy's abs in Inception, so we get that. But you've had plenty of other chances that you haven't taken!
I know you've gone Half Monty before in little indies like Mysterious Skin (where those with a quick finger on the DVD remote can even pause on the frames where you show off your bum) and in Hesher but that's not nearly enough. I mean, in the Hesher scenes (picture above) you're not even at your fittest and we can't even adequately admire your body because we're distracted by the drawing on your chest and that awful quasi-mullet that you're rocking. That's like giving someone an ice cream cone with gravel sprinkled all over it. No one wants to eat that.
This is the post Magic Mike age where our male actors are as objectified as the female ones have been since the dawn of celluloid. It's practically a requirement that the A-list stars of super hero movies show us the bulging torsos under their spandex. A star's ability to sport a full set of abdominal muscles is as important as his attention to his "craft," because it is not "craft" that is landing him on the cover of Men's Health to publicize his latest project.
It's not a question of being taken seriously either. Matthew McConaughey hasn't worn a shirt since some time in the late '90s and he's hotter than ever (in terms both of career and physique). Daniel Radcliffe stayed in a Griffindor uniform during the Harry Potter movies but showed his wand and two magic spells on stage every night for months in Equus. Most people wouldn't even recognize Ryan Reynolds if he ever managed to some wrangle what is above his waist into some sort of cover up. Even Shia LaBeouf got naked in that music video, and no one even wanted to see that! But the best example is Ryan Gosling. Not only is he lauded as one of the best actors of his generation (and that's your generation too, mister), but he has ridden his sculpted lumps of man meat to the meme-tastic love of all of the Internet. He's almost more important to the web than kittens!
JGL, we want that for you too. We know that we're not going to see anything but your stovepipe hat in this fall's Lincoln, but what about your movie after that? Don Jon's Addiction has seXXXy written all over it. Is that going to be it? Are we finally going to get our payoff? It better be soon, mister, because there are Pattinsons and Efrons and Garfields and Pettyfers and Kitsches and Lautners just waiting in the wings and none of them are afraid to proudly point their man nipples at a camera and flash us a smile.
Joseph, it's time to go shirtless. We demand it.
Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan
[Photo credit: Wrekin Hill Entertainment]
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A kids’ movie without the cheeky jokes for adults is like a big juicy BLT without the B… or the T. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted may have a title that sounds like it was made up in a cartoon sequel laboratory but when it comes to serving up laughs just think of the film as a BLT with enough extra bacon to satisfy even the wildest of animals — or even a parent with a gaggle of tots in tow. Yes even with that whole "Afro Circus" nonsense.
It’s not often that we find exhaustively franchised films like the Madagascar set that still work after almost seven years. Despite being spun off into TV shows and Christmas specials in addition to its big screen adventures the series has not only maintained its momentum it has maintained the part we were pleasantly surprised by the first time around: great jokes.
In this third installment of the series – the trilogy-maker if you will – directing duo Eric Darnell and Tom McGrath add Conrad Vernon (director Monsters Vs. Aliens) to the helm as our trusty gang swings back into action. Alex the lion (Ben Stiller) Marty the zebra (Chris Rock) Gloria the hippo (Jada Pinkett Smith) and Melman the giraffe (David Schwimmer) are stuck in Africa after the hullaballoo of Madagascar 2 and they’ll do anything to get back to their beloved New York. Just a hop skip and a jump away in Monte Carlo the penguins are doing their usual greedy schtick but the zoo animals catch up with them just in time to catch the eye of the sinister animal control stickler Captain Dubois (Frances McDormand). And just like that the practically super human captain is chasing them through Monte Carlo and the rest of Europe in hopes of planting Alex’s perfectly coifed lion head on her wall of prized animals.
Luckily for pint-sized viewers Dubois’ terrifying presence is balanced out by her sheer inhuman strength uncanny guiles and Stretch Armstrong flexibility (ah the wonder of cartoons) as well as Alex’s escape plan: the New Yorkers run away with the European circus. While Dubois’ terrifying Doberman-like presence looms over the entire film a sense of levity (which is a word the kiddies might learn from Stiller’s eloquent lion) comes from the plan for salvation in which the circus animals and the zoo animals band together to revamp the circus and catch the eye of a big-time American agent. Sure the pacing throughout the first act is practically nonexistent running like a stampede through the jungle but by the time we're palling around under the big top the film finds its footing.
The visual splendor of the film (and man is there a champion size serving of it) the magnificent danger and suspense is enhanced to great effect by the addition of 3D technology – and not once is there a gratuitous beverage or desperate Crocodile Dundee knife waved in our faces to prove its worth. The caveat is that the soundtrack employs a certain infectious Katy Perry ditty at the height of the 3D spectacular so parents get ready to hear that on repeat until the leaves turn yellow.
But visual delights and adventurous zoo animals aside Madagascar 3’s real strength is in its script. With the addition of Noah Baumbach (Greenberg The Squid and the Whale) to the screenwriting team the script is infused with a heightened level of almost sarcastic gravitas – a welcome addition to the characteristically adult-friendly reference-heavy humor of the other Madagascar films. To bring the script to life Paramount enlisted three more than able actors: Vitaly the Siberian tiger (Bryan Cranston) Gia the Leopard (Jessica Chastain) and Stefano the Italian Sealion (Martin Short). With all three actors draped in European accents it might take viewers a minute to realize that the cantankerous tiger is one and the same as the man who plays an Albuquerque drug lord on Breaking Bad but that makes it that much sweeter to hear him utter slant-curse words like “Bolshevik” with his usual gusto.
Between the laughs the terror of McDormand’s Captain Dubois and the breathtaking virtual European tour the Zoosters’ accidental vacation is one worth taking. Madagascar 3 is by no means an insta-classic but it’s a perfectly suited for your Summer-at-the-movies oasis.
ABC has canceled Jason Alexander's new sitcom, Bob Patterson, for its inability to spark Nielsen ratings before completing its initial 13-episode run, according to the Hollywood Reporter. After a rough start in the competitive Tuesday 9 p.m. slot against NBC's Frasier, Patterson, in which Alexander plays a motivational speaker with a messed-up personal life, was moved to the 9:30 p.m. slot in hopes to increase ratings, but it still flopped. Patterson is the second comedy series built around a former Seinfeld sidekick to be canceled. NBC dropped The Michael Richards Show in early December. Next at the bat is Julia Louis-Dreyfus, whose comedy series 23:12 is set to launch on NBC in March.
Bruce Springsteen won a legal battle in a London court on Tuesday against the British company Masquerade Music, which was appealing an earlier ruling that blocked the unauthorized use of his music, Reuters reports. It was argued that Springsteen's copyright was breached after the company expressed interest in releasing the album Before the Fame, which contained over two dozen songs composed by Springsteen between 1970 and 1972. Springsteen said he was defending the ownership of his music.
Leonardo DiCaprio has signed on to star as a twin in the upcoming drama Johnny Eck, Reuters reports. The film relates the story of twins Robert and Johnny Eckardt, who are identical in every way except that Johnny was born without the lower half of his body and learned to walk on his hands. When Johnny becomes a world famous sideshow performer called "the Half Boy," Robert becomes his manager. Caroline Thompson (Edward Scissorhands) will write the screenplay for the film that is being produced by Pelagius Entertainment's Joe Fries and Mark Gordon.
Tom Cruise will narrate the new Imax film Space Station, taking viewers on a cinematic journey shot by 25 astronauts and cosmonauts from Florida's Kennedy Space Center to the International Space Station. "Tom Cruise brings a special dimension to this exciting project, which takes the Imax 3D experience to even more spectacular heights," Greg Foster, president of filmed entertainment for Imax, told Reuters. The film is scheduled to debut early next spring.
Paul McCartney released his second charity single, "Freedom," on Monday after a huge public demand, his publicist told Reuters. Money raised by the new single will go to the Robin Hood Foundation, which helps the families of the victims of Sept. 11 and New York firemen and police. His previous charity single, "From a Lover to a Friend," entered the UK chart at number 45 on Sunday.
Kathleen Turner will play the seductive older woman Mrs. Robinson in the stage version of the 1967 film The Graduate. Jason Biggs of American Pie will portray Benjamin Braddock, the young man she seduces, and Alicia Silverstone will co-star as her daughter, Elaine. According to The Associated Press, the stage production will begin a pre-Broadway tour in January with shows in Baltimore, Toronto, Ontario and Boston. It will then begin preview performances in New York on March 15 with an April 4 opening at a theater yet to be announced.
Web research firm Webnoize confirmed that online music service use has risen since the shut own of Napster earlier this year. According to the report, users swapped a whopping 1.81 billion media files on alternative online services like Kaaza, MusicCity and Grosker in the month of October, Reuters reports. All three applications use software licensed from FastTrack, an Amsterdam-based peer-to-peer technology, and share the same network.
HBO has decided to pick up their Emmy-winning show Sex and the City for a fifth season, Reuters reports. The six remaining episodes from season four are set to bow Jan. 6 though Feb. 10. The cable network plans to premiere season five in June.
Public Broadcasting Corp. announced Monday that it will reduce its 565-person workforce by 10% and close its Midwest programming office due to tough economic times, Reuters reports. PBS president-CEO Pat Mitchell said the network regretted having to cut jobs, but that the move was necessary to preserve programming integrity.
Retiring SAG president Bill Daniels urged its members on Sunday to try to work with the newly elected president, Melissa Gilbert, rather than battling her, or she would face the same massive divisiveness that dogged him during his two-year term, Reuters reports. The controversy stems from the 25,000 New York ballots lacking a signature line and the discrepancies of making New York voters' deadline two days later then the rest of the country. Gilbert was elected president of the Screen Actors Guild on Nov. 2, beating veteran television star Valerie Harper in a bitter contest.
A Happy Place, the 11-month-old production company founded by 'N Sync's Lance Bass, producers Rich Hull and Wendy Thorlakson, music manager Johnny Wright and attorney Joe Anderson, has acquired the romantic comedy Mamma's Boy as their next project. Bass is also taking the starring role for the second time on the big screen. Written by first-time scribe Mark Hatmaker, the film follows the story and misadventures of a young professional who still lives at home with his mother while she attempts to find him a wife.