What’s all this about milkshakes? Over the weekend, milkshakes became the subject of ire and protest in Bahrain. But the protesters weren’t a gaggle of lactose intolerant consumers worried that the effect of the delicious treat (something some folks might call Sweet Mucus) would disrupt their constitutions. They were actually protesting the celebrity paid to promote the milkshakes in question: Kim Kardashian, according to CNN. The star arrived in the city as part of a tour of the Middle East in an effort to promote the food chain Millions of Milkshakes. Kardashian was greeted by a large band of protesters; a local paper reported that it got so bad, the Kardashian-detractors were allegedly tear-gassed. However, the owner of Millions of Milkshakes, Sheeraz Hasan, tweeted his denial of the described opposition: “WHAT PROTESTS?? Kim Kardashian loved by the people of Bahrain & wants to return!!” No proof of the gassing has emerged, but the protesters have been photographed. Clearly, Kardashian’s presence was not a welcome one, at least to a few folks, in Bahrain. Yes, Kim K may be able to bridge the gap between rap music lovers and celebrity gossip fiends, thanks to her hallowed union with Kanye West, but she can’t win everyoneover. But she shouldn’t worry. There are plenty of other celebs who have outworn their welcome all over the world. You’re in good company, Kimmie. Sienna Miller, Exiled from Sh**sburgh When working on a film in Pittsburgh, back in 2006, the actress told Rolling Stone, “Can you believe this is my life? Will you pity me when you're back in your funky New York apartment and I'm still in Pittsburgh? I need to get more glamorous films.” Needless to say, the people of Pittsburgh were doing their best, premonitory McKayla Maroney impressions. UK to Chris Brown: Go Ahead, Try and Sell Your Albums Here In September, Chris Brown’s album was found with a rather pointed warning label: “WARNING/DO NOT BUY THIS ALBUM/THIS MAN BEATS WOMEN.” Leave it to the Brits not to mince words. Of course, the stickers were likely placed on the CDs by activists, because you'd be hard pressed to find a music merchant actively try not to sell those piles of CDs in this digital-music-dominated world. Rosie O’Donnell Has to Cruise Right Around Bermuda In 2007, Rosie O’Donnell organized a cruise for gay and lesbian families, but was forced to quickly change course when the threat of religious protests in Bermuda arose. In an effort to continue the tone of acceptance, O’Donnell and the cruise line wisely decided to change course for friendlier ports. Kelly Clarkson’s Smoke Ignites a Fire in Indonesia Jakarta was the site of protest when singer Kelly Clarkson scheduled a concert sponsored by a cigarette company. Fans and anti-tobacco activists protested the show, but Clarkson still managed to deliver a show for her fans. But no matter how hard she sang the hits, she undoubtedly angered a few could-be fans. Amanda Bynes, Please Leave Us Alone - Love, the Roads of America After Bynes went on a mind-boggling auto-mishap spree in September, the DMV finally did drivers and pedestrians everywhere a solid: they suspended her driver’s license. Consider yourself ex-communicated from the driving community, Miss Bynes. Jeremy Renner, You Should Probably Stay Out of Phuket This wasn’t exactly Renner’s fault, but it couldn’t hurt for him to steer clear of the famed Thailand playground. He was present during a bloody, vicious fight at the Thai resort in Phuket. His publicist denied his involvement, but while the manager of the resort was stabbed, Renner was the one making headlines. Perhaps he should try somewhere a little less traumatic for his next vacation. I hear Disney World has great vacation packages this time of year… Celebs Who Like to Toke, Avoid West Texas, Please When someone like Willie Nelson, one of the most famous stoners alive, gets picked up for marijuana possession, you take notice. When Armie Hammer, a man who’s so well-kempt you’d think he’d get drunk off of whiskey fumes faster than Mitt Romney, gets picked up for the same thing, you start to wonder what’s going on in West Texas. And when Fiona Apple gets nabbed in the same region for a little hash, you throw your hands up and wonder just how bored those West Texas cops are. Celebs, if you must toke, don’t do it in West Texas anymore. Deal? Your Wares Are Not Wanted in Mecca, Paris When Paris Hilton opened a boutique in the Mecca Mall in Saudi Arabia, many Muslims took to Twitter, expressing issue with a woman who became famous from a sex tape selling her goods (purses and accessories, not thosegoods) in the holy city. Hilton clearly didn’t understand or feel the heat. She promptly tweeted that Mecca was “loving my beautiful new store.” Madonna’s Self-Loving Dance Moves Incur Rare Canadian Rage When Madonna added a performance element to her Blond Ambition tour in 1990, she actually angered Canadians. The notoriously easygoing country was in a bit of a tizzy over Madonna’s performance of “Like a Virgin,” which included the simulation of masturbation. Luckily for Madonna, she refused to cut the number and the Canadian police were just like, “Oh, okay then.” Follow Kelsea on Twitter @KelseaStahler [Photo Illustration by Hollywood.com; Photo Credits: WENN (3); Merino/INFphoto; Hudspeth County Sheriff] More: Kim Kardashian Pulls a Sarah Palin, Poses With Gun Kim Kardashian Prepares for Motherhood by Freezing Her Eggs Kim Kardashian Plays Dress Up as Sophia Loren — PICS
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David Mitchell's novel Cloud Atlas consists of six stories set in various periods between 1850 and a time far into Earth's post-apocalyptic future. Each segment lives on its own the previous first person account picked up and read by a character in its successor creating connective tissue between each moment in time. The various stories remain intact for Tom Tykwer's (Run Lola Run) Lana Wachowski's and Andy Wachowski's (The Matrix) film adaptation which debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival. The massive change comes from the interweaving of the book's parts into one three-hour saga — a move that elevates the material and transforms Cloud Atlas in to a work of epic proportions.
Don't be turned off by the runtime — Cloud Atlas moves at lightning pace as it cuts back and forth between its various threads: an American notary sailing the Pacific; a budding musician tasked with transcribing the hummings of an accomplished 1930's composer; a '70s-era investigatory journalist who uncovers a nefarious plot tied to the local nuclear power plant; a book publisher in 2012 who goes on the run from gangsters only to be incarcerated in a nursing home; Sonmi~451 a clone in Neo Seoul who takes on the oppressive government that enslaves her; and a primitive human from the future who teams with one of the few remaining technologically-advanced Earthlings in order to survive. Dense but so was the unfamiliar world of The Matrix. Cloud Atlas has more moving parts than the Wachowskis' seminal sci-fi flick but with additional ambition to boot. Every second is a sight to behold.
The members of the directing trio are known for their visual prowess but Cloud Atlas is a movie about juxtaposition. The art of editing is normally a seamless one — unless someone is really into the craft the cutting of a film is rarely a post-viewing talking point — but Cloud Atlas turns the editor into one of the cast members an obvious player who ties the film together with brilliant cross-cutting and overlapping dialogue. Timothy Cavendish the elderly publisher could be musing on his need to escape and the film will wander to the events of Sonmi~451 or the tortured music apprentice Robert Frobisher also feeling the impulse to run. The details of each world seep into one another but the real joy comes from watching each carefully selected scene fall into place. You never feel lost in Cloud Atlas even when Tykwer and the Wachowskis have infused three action sequences — a gritty car chase in the '70s a kinetic chase through Neo Seoul and a foot race through the forests of future millennia — into one extended set piece. This is a unified film with distinct parts echoing the themes of human interconnectivity.
The biggest treat is watching Cloud Atlas' ensemble tackle the diverse array of characters sprinkled into the stories. No film in recent memory has afforded a cast this type of opportunity yet another form of juxtaposition that wows. Within a few seconds Tom Hanks will go from near-neanderthal to British gangster to wily 19th century doctor. Halle Berry Hugh Grant Jim Sturgess Jim Broadbent Ben Whishaw Hugo Weaving and Susan Sarandon play the same game taking on roles of different sexes races and the like. (Weaving as an evil nurse returning to his Priscilla Queen of the Desert cross-dressing roots is mind-blowing.) The cast's dedication to inhabiting their roles on every level helps us quickly understand the worlds. We know it's Halle Berry behind the fair skinned wife of the lunatic composer but she's never playing Halle Berry. Even when the actors are playing variations on themselves they're glowing with the film's overall epic feel. Jim Broadbent's wickedly funny modern segment a Tykwer creation that packs a particularly German sense of humor is on a smaller scale than the rest of the film but the actor never dials it down. Every story character and scene in Cloud Atlas commits to a style. That diversity keeps the swirling maelstrom of a movie in check.
Cloud Atlas poses big questions without losing track of its human element the characters at the heart of each story. A slower moment or two may have helped the Wachowskis' and Tykwer's film to hit a powerful emotional chord but the finished product still proves mainstream movies can ask questions while laying over explosive action scenes. This year there won't be a bigger movie in terms of scope in terms of ideas and in terms of heart than Cloud Atlas.
It’s Wednesday! Do you know what that means? It’s the day to spoil yourself with some TV scoop! Leanne Fun-Fact: I like to motivate myself to do work with little treats. (And yes I do realize that makes me sound like a malti-poo trying to learn new tricks.) Six amazingly awesome spoilers got me two bowls of Special K, 3 pieces of turkey bacon, a handful of popcorn, 5 peanut butter M&M’s and, like, 3 pieces of licorice. (Name it.) So what’s on the menu list today? I’ve got scoop on everything you can expect from Sunday’s sinfully sweet Revenge premiere, a Glee shipper-update from a yummy new cast member, and delicious details on the new season of Mad Men. Plus some exclusive bites from Family Guy, Scandal, and The Mindy Project! Oh and you get 27 brownie points if you can find the Mean Girls reference I’ve Easter egged in here. So go ahead, treat yo’ self! 1. Revenge: Girl, Look at that Body!
I chatted with the wonderful Christa B. Allen Tuesday afternoon about what to expect during the Season 2 premiere. And, basically, I learned that this Sunday’s episode is filled to the brim with all kinds of crazy. When we last saw Charlotte, she was lying unconscious on her bed after having about 15 pills too many, so many fans are dying to know when the fate of their favorite Grayson (or should I say Clarke?) will be revealed. Allen was quick answers, “We’ll know the outcome in episode one. We’ll know this Sunday.” Although many cliffhangers will be tackled during the one-hour drama, viewers can expect to be left with at least twice as many questions. “Season 2 picks up pretty much right where we left off, but it sets it up the same way as in Season 1,” Allen says. “We sort of show you how things end up and then throughout the season we’ll kind of explain how we got there. Not as vague as we did in Season 1, but there is a very important tidbit that you see in episode one that we’ll have to explain.”
Luckily I am really good at these guessing games, because when I suggested a funeral, Allen confirmed, “Oh yes, you do see a body.” Keeping consistent with last year, creator Mike Kelley is keeping things secret but hopefully the explanation behind this “tidbit” is revealed by the season’s half-way point (episode 13) and we won’t have to wait until May. The 20-year-old agrees: “Mike Kelley might drag it out to the end of the season. I’m not sure. This one is too big of a reveal in the first episode, [but] I feel like we have to explain it in the first 13.” Check back at Hollywood.com this Friday for more details on what’s coming up this season on Revenge, including answers on Amanda’s (hopefully fake) baby bump, scoop on Emily’s (Emily VanCamp), mother and whether or not Charlotte will learn who her real half-sister is!
2. Family Guy: May The Odds be Ever in Your Favor!
Season 11 of Family Guy premieres this Sunday and to help get you excited for a brand new year of Peter’s (Seth MacFarlane) shenanigans, I reached out to Executive Producer/Head Honcho Steve Callaghan for some scoop. He reveals, “One of my favorite highlights from the episode involves two of our characters momentarily swapping voices.” Although we’ve seen voice-swapping moments like this in Family Guy’s past, I’ve seen the episode and believe me when I say, this cutaway hits it out of the park! (Ahem, that was a hint.)
Callaghan explains that the episode centers on a quest to climb Mount Everest and, once again, the plot is predictably unpredictable. “During the Griffins' Everest trek, they fall victim to a storm which forces them to takes some very extreme measures to survive.” How extreme? So extreme, that Callaghan says the moment marks “possibly a first for a network sitcom.” Boom! Gauntlet thrown! Your move, ABC. The showrunner also teased that the premiere spotlights one of my favorite Hunger Games stars. Callaghan says, “This episode also features a guest role played by Elizabeth Banks, who plays the uber-competitive wife of Lois' ex-boyfriend.” And after seeing it, I can safely say that she and Effie Trinket would definitely not get along.
3. Glee: Team Finchel or Team Brodchel?!
A few weeks ago, (before I started