Celebrities including Eva Longoria, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Christina Milian celebrated America's Independence Day on Friday (04Jul14) by posting snaps online of their beach and pool parties. Former Desperate Housewives star Longoria uploaded an image to Twitter.com while sunning herself on the sand, and Gellar shared a snap of herself playing in the ocean with her daughter, adding, "Hope everyone's holiday is as relaxing and as full of love as mine."
Singer Milian, who split from fiance Jas Prince in June (14), posted a picture of herself in a revealing cut-out bikini and wrote, "Have a great weekend! 4th of July was by far the best I've had in years."
Also attending socialite Paris Hilton's beach party in Malibu, California was actor Ryan Phillippe and Wiz Khalifa's wife Amber Rose.
Justin Bieber and Ashley Tisdale both relaxed on luxury yachts, while Taylor Swift had a pool party. She posted a video of her and TV star Jaime King diving into the water on inflatable animals. They later baked a cake and decorated it with the American flag.
Fireworks were a hot talking point on Twitter.com. TV stars including Lena Dunham and Pretty Little Liars actress Lucy Hale uploaded pictures of themselves playing with sparklers, while Chloe Grace Moretz shared a video on Instagram.com of her setting off a rocket on the corner of a street.
However, Rebel Wilson suffered a minor injury during her celebrations, writing, "Only burnt 1 t*t with our illegal fireworks display."
Punk icon John Lydon is disappointed and shocked following the cancellation of his touring Jesus Christ Superstar musical. The former Sex Pistols star was in rehearsals as King Herod when he learned the show had been cancelled last week (ends30May14).
Reports suggest poor ticket sales were to blame, but a representative for Lydon admits he and castmates Michelle Williams, rocker Brandon Boyd and ex-'N SYNC star J.C. Chasez are still baffled by the news.
In a tweet on Lydon's official Twitter.com page, the rep writes, "Sorry for the delay updating people. We are in as much shock over the cancellation of Jesus Christ Superstar as everyone else.
"Rehearsals had been going extremely well. John was looking forward to being King Herod & working with such a great bunch of people.
"We are all bitterly disappointed. We hope people were not too inconvenienced. We know flights and hotels were booked... We feel for everyone from the fans to the cast and crew who were a joy to work with. If we knew more we would tell you."
The musical was just two weeks from opening night when producers cancelled the tour.
A Jesus Christ Superstar tour starring punk icon John Lydon has been cancelled less than two weeks before its first performance due to poor ticket sales. The former Sex Pistols star was set to hit the stage to play Biblical villain King Herod on the North American tour of the hit musical, which was due to kick off a 50-city trek in New Orleans, Louisiana on 9 June (14).
Also starring in the new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's stage show was Incubus frontman Brandon Boyd, former Destiny's Child singer Michelle Williams, and ex-'NSYNC star JC Chasez. Newcomer Ben Forster was set to play the lead role after starring in the London revival.
The cancellation was announced on the show's official website on Friday (30May14), and promoter Michael Cohl reveals it didn't make "business sense" to go ahead with a tour that wasn't selling.
He tells the New York Times, "It became obvious the shows were in trouble but we tried until the last moment to give it every chance to turn around. In the end it just did not make business sense to continue and we didn't want the cast to endure playing to disappointing audiences."
After the news broke, Boyd expressed his sadness on Twitter.com, writing, "I got fired from #JesusChristSuperstar today... but so did the rest of the cast so we're all sad together. Yeah, it's true. Tour cancelled."
Forster poured his emotions into a message, writing, "My heart is broken. My beautiful talented cast and company I adore. This wonderful show & opportunity is over. I'm so sorry. I am devastated... I am in New Orleans. I was mid rehearsal with JC Chasez on the floor. Going they (through) the end of the show. U (sic) guys must know we were ready for this (show)... I am so devastated. I'm sorry to everyone who got tickets and flights. Whoever f**ked it up I hate u (sic). But I forgive you, I'm Jesus... well was."
Oprah Winfrey and U.S. President Barack Obama have joined stars including Bette Midler, Tony Bennett, Rihanna and Pharrell Williams to pay tribute to celebrated writer/poet Maya Angelou following her death on Wednesday (28May14). The influential author passed away at her home in North Carolina, just days after ill health prompted her to cancel an appearance at a prizegiving this Friday (30May14), and celebrities took to their Twitter.com blogs to celebrate her life within minutes of the tragic announcement.
Veteran entertainer Midler became one of the first stars to comment on the 86 year old's passing, writing, "The beautiful Maya Angelou died this morning. A big and radiant soul, at rest at last", while crooner Bennett posted, "Maya Angelou was an exceptional writer and human being and her inspiration will continue to enrich us all."
Rihanna praised Angelou as an "angel" and revealed, "The first book I read as a teenager, 'I know why the caged bird sings'. Felt like we knew her", and singer and superproducer Williams mused, "Her light will be sorely missed".
TV titan Winfrey paid a touching tribute to her longtime "mentor, mother/sister, and friend", adding, "She was there for me always, guiding me through some of the most important years of my life. The world knows her as a poet but at the heart of her, she was a teacher. 'When you learn, teach. When you get, give,' is one of my best lessons from her... "She moved through the world with unshakeable calm, confidence and a fierce grace. I loved her and I know she loved me. I will profoundly miss her. She will always be the rainbow in my clouds."
President Obama, who awarded Angelou the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011, also issued a statement about Angelou's passing, writing in part, "(Wife) Michelle and I join millions around the world in remembering one of the brightest lights of our time: a brilliant writer, a fierce friend and a truly phenomenal woman."
A slew of other tributes have also been posted online from the likes of Olivia Wilde, Kerry Washington, Beyonce, William Shatner, Kelly Rowland, Lena Dunham, Olivia Munn, Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, rapper Nas, and revered U.S. broadcaster Larry King.
True Detective creator Nic Pizzolato spent his Memorial Day weekend bequeathing listeners of the To the Best of Our Knowledge radio program with new information about the upcoming second season of his celebrated HBO series. While we still have no word on who'll star in the sophomore round of philosophically dense, delightfully grim hours of criminal investigation (Brad Pitt is up in the air and Jessica Chastain broke our hearts with a resounding "no"), we are now privy to some interesting details about the characters, setting, and plot. And it all sounds a little bit... familiar.
Courtesy of Uproxx, we have Pizzolato's quotes about the next story he plans to tell: "Right now, we’re working with three leads. It takes place in California. Not Los Angeles, but some of the lesser known venues of California and we’re going to try to capture a certain psychosphere ambience of the place, much like we did with season one ..." Tacking this onto the last batch of info we heard about True Detective (via EW), things get somewhat eerie: "The basic idea: Hard women, bad men, and the secret occult history of the U.S. transportation system."
Taken independently, each one of these elements sounds none too suspicious. But when you slap 'em all together, you can't help but wonder if Pizzolato is upping the ante on his devotion to source material since Season 1's adherence to the Robert W. Chambers short story "The King in Yellow." This time around, it doesn't seem like True Detective is looking to literature to guide its story, but to another show. A show we all know, all love. A show that still exists. In our minds, our hearts. All around us. Everywhere we look.
That's right. True Detective Season 2 sounds exactly like Full House.
Think about it:
It's bumping up to three leads...
ABC Television Network
Takes place in California, but not Los Angeles...
ABC Television Network
And focusing on the secret occult history of the U.S. transportation system (you know, like a bridge)...
As Pizzolato puts it, the season is about bad men...
ABC Television Network/Getty Images
And hard women...
ABC Television Network/Getty Images
And will really delve into the psychosphere ambiance...
ABC Television Network/Getty Images
That's right. So don't worry if the milkman, the paperboy, evening TV, and all the other tenets of predictability seem to have faded away. Because time is a flat circle.
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Actress sisters Dakota and Elle Fanning are direct descendants of England's King Edward III and relatives of British princess Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge, according to genealogy experts. Historians at Ancestry.com have traced the Fanning family history back hundreds of years and discovered Super 8 star Elle is the 22nd great-granddaughter of England's King Edward III, who ruled from 1330 to 1376.
That means Dakota is also a descendant of Edward III through their mother, Heather Joy Arrington.
Ancestry.com's Michelle Ercanbrack tells People.com, "Generation after generation, the lines we looked at pieced back directly to King Edward III proving that Elle is a direct descendant of royalty.
"You can consider her a long lost princess. This connection is so unique and rare."
Website experts have also established the Fannings are distant cousins of Prince William's wife, Catherine, as the Duchess' mother Carole Goldsmith is also a descendant of King Edward III.
Ironically, Elle Fanning plays Disney princess Aurora in new movie Maleficent.
A nasty note found in late Nirvana star Kurt Cobain's wallet for the attention of his wife Courtney Love has been released by police in Seattle, Washington. Detectives found the communication while investigating Cobain's death 20 years ago, but have never released it until now.
The note suggests Cobain and the Hole star had fallen out, but it isn't clear if the All Apologies singer had presented it to his wife or not.
It reads: "Do you Kurt Cobain take Courtney Michelle Love to be your lawful shredded wife. even when she's a b**ch with zits (acne) and siphoning all yr (your) money for doping and whoring..."
The note, written on stationery from a San Francisco-area hotel, has a completely different tone to Cobain's suicide note, in which he calls Love a "goddess of a wife" who "sweats ambition and empathy".
A recent review of the case led lawmakers to rule that the King County Medical Examiner's original determination that Cobain's death was a suicide was correct. The rocker shot himself after taking a lethal dose of heroin.
Columbia Pictures via Everett Collection
As grand as the themes of good and evil, needs and deservings, power and responsibility and such forth are, superhero movies are generally pretty straightforward in premise: hero stops villain from wreaking havoc. As off-putting as this kind of simplicity might sound, it's usually the right way to go. If you pack enough substance into your characters and adhere your plot to these linear margins, you can actually wind up saying a healthy amount (and having a lot of fun). The Amazing Spider-Man 2 gets half of this formula down pat. Although Andrew Garfield's Peter Parker is still a moreover undistinguished identity, his emotional magnitude (re: his relationship with Gwen Stacy) is enough to keep him valid through the storm of lunacy that is his second feature. And it's not even that lunacy that holds him back. The problem isn't how wild his conquests are, how silly some of the action sequences feel, or how absolutely bonkers his villains turn out to be. It's all the other stuff (and yes, if you can believe it, there's a ton more going on in this movie than what I've already mentioned — that's the issue). All the plot twists, tertiary mysteries, ominous flashbacks, abject reveals, and weightlessly sinister pawns in this brooding game that, save for its fun with the baddies, takes itself way too seriously. All that stuff that The Amazing Spider-Man 2 thinks is necessary to make Peter Parker matter? It actually does just the opposite.
Peter is at his best when he's playing Tracy and Hepburn with the girlfriend he's perpetually disappointing (the eternally charming Emma Stone), or trying to win back the favor of the only remaining parental figure from whom he's rapidly slipping away (Sally Field, reminding us why she's a household name), or angling to connect with the mentally unstable engineer who just wants people to notice him (Jamie Foxx working his comic shtick with a frightening zest). We have the most fun with Peter when he's playing the simplest games, and we connect best with him on similar ground. But Peter and company, at the behest of The Amazing Spider-Man franchise's Sandman-sized aspirations, spend so much time exploring new avenues: the secrets surrounding the death and work of Richard Parker, the behind-the-curtains operations of OsCorp, the nefarious goings on in the waterside penitentiary Ravencroft.
Columbia Pictures via Everett Collection
As a result of the grand stab at world building, there is just so much stuff that Peter has to wade through in this movie, dragging the likes of Gwen and his boyhood friend Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan, mastering angst, menace, and upper-class privilege all at once) into the dark crevasses of narrative waste. With so many diversions into the emotionally vacant, deliberately joyless explorations of Parker family origin stories, secret brief cases, and underground subways — The Amazing Spider-Man 2 rivals Captain America: The Winter Soldier in complexity, but forgets the necessary ingredient of fun — we barely have enough energy left when the good stuff hits.
And in truth, the good stuff isn't really good enough to sustain us through all the duller periods. Garfield and Stone do have laudable chemistry. Foxx is a hoot as Peter's maniacal new foe, especially when paired with the grimacing DeHaan. And the action, while often straying from any aesthetic authenticity, is nothing shy of neat-o. It's all passable, occasionally worthy of a hearty smile, but rarely anything you'll be definitively pleased you took the time to see.
But beyond coming up short in the micro, the film's regal downfall is its scope. With so much to do, both in accomplishing its own necessary plot points and setting up for those to come in future films, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 doesn't seem to take time to make sure it's having fun with its own premise. And if it isn't having fun, we won't be either.
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Punk icon John Lydon is set to hit the stage again as biblical villain King Herod in a North American arena tour of hit musical Jesus Christ Superstar. The former Sex Pistols star will join Incubus frontman Brandon Boyd and ex-Destiny's Child singer Michelle Williams for the new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's stage spectacular, which will begin a 50-city trek in New Orleans, Louisiana on 9 June (14).
The show will also feature former 'NSYNC star JC Chasez as Pontius Pilate and Ben Forster, who won his role as Jesus in the London revival of the musical on British TV talent show Superstar.
Announcing the news of the tour on U.S. TV show Good Morning America on Friday (04Apr14), Boyd said, "It's an incredible show. I'm so excited to be part of it."
Confirming his part in the show, Lydon took to his website and wrote: "I'm here to sing with the King of the Jews, who could ask for anything more?"
Captain America: The Winter Soldier is filled — and I mean jam-packed — with genre-bending, action-heavy, sportily tense and relentlessly sinuous, sky-high-concept and maniacally bonkers stuff. Polygonal mayhem that aims, and impressively so, to top the Marvel lot in ideas, deconstructing every thriller staple from government corruption to talking computers to odd couple agents gone rogue. But oddly enough, the moment in the Cap sequel that I find most arresting several weeks after seeing the film is our peaceful reunion with Steve Rogers, trotting merrily around the Washington Monument as the sun rises on our nation's capital.
The scene is shot from far overhead, a low pulse/high spirits Chris Evans reduced to a shapeless blur as he repeatedly (but politely!) laps fellow jogger and veteran Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie)... and yet it might be the closest we feel to Cap throughout the movie.
The Winter Soldier has a lot to worry about in the delivery of its content. Managing a plot as ambitious and multifaceted as its own, with themes as grand as the scope of the American mentality — as represented by Steve Rogers, raised in the good old days of gee-golly-jingoism — it doesn't always have the faculties to devote to humanizing its central troupe. Cap isn't left hollow, but his battles with the dark cloud of contemporary skepticism play more like an intriguing Socratic discussion than an emotional arc. Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow, a character who ran circles around her Avengers co-players in flavor, feels a bit shortchanged in that department here (in her closest thing to a starring role yet, no less).
Mackie's Falcon, a regular joe who is roped into the calamity thanks largely to his willingness to chat with a fellow runner — a rare skill, honestly — is less of a problem. He doesn't have much to do, but he does it all well enough. Dynamic though he may be, Mackie keeps things bridled as Cap's ad-hoc sidekick, playing up the along-for-the-ride shtick rather than going full (or even half) superhero. We might want more from him, knowing just how fun he can be, but it's a sating dose. The real hunger is for more in the way of Black Widow, Cap, and — perhaps most of all — the titular villain.
Still, these palpable holes pierce through a film that gets plenty right. As elegantly as Joe Johnston did the Spielberg thing back in 2011, Joe and Anthony Russo take on the ballots of post-innocence. They aren't afraid to get wild and weird, taking The Winter Soldier through valleys that feel unprecedented in superhero cinema. We're grateful for the invention here — for Robert Redford's buttoned-up Tom Clancy villain, for the directors' aggressive tunneling through a wide underworld of subterranean corruption, and especially for one scene in an army bunker that amounts to the most charmingly bats**t crazy reveal in any Marvel movie yet. We might be most grateful, though, for a new take on Nick Fury; here, the franchise gives Samuel L. Jackson his best material by a mile.
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But in the absence of definitive work done in our heroing couple, a pair rich in fibers but relegated to broad strokes and easy quips in this turn, most of it amounts to a fairly good spy thriller, not an ace-in-the-whole neo-superhero masterpiece... which, justly or otherwise, is what we've come to expect and demand from these things.
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