Hit series Breaking Bad went out with a big bang on Monday night (25Aug14) after dominating the drama categories at the 2014 Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles. Bryan Cranston earned his fourth Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series trophy for his portrayal of chemistry teacher-turned-drug lord Walter White, while his co-stars Aaron Paul and Anna Gunn were named Outstanding Supporting Actor and Actress in a Drama Series.
Creator Vince Gilligan also triumphed at the ceremony after Breaking Bad, which wrapped its fifth and final season last year (13), beat Mad Men, True Detective, Game of Thrones, House of Cards and Downton Abbey to take home the prestigious Outstanding Drama Series title. In addition, there was a writing honour for Moira Walley-Beckett for the episode Ozymandias.
Modern Family was another multiple winner - the show continued to reign over the Outstanding Comedy Series category for the fifth year in a row, while Ty Burrell walked away as the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, the first prize of the night, and Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series went to Gail Mancuso for her Las Vegas episode of the show.
BBC series Sherlock landed a trio of trophies for writer Steven Moffat and its stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman, while Jim Parsons (Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for The Big Bang Theory), Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series for Veep), Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife) and Allison Janney (Mom) scored big, too.
Singer Sara Bareilles performed a touching rendition of Nat King Cole classic Smile for the event's traditional In Memorium segment, which included nods to Philip Seymour Hoffman, Peter O'Toole, Lauren Bacall, Paul Walker, James Garner, Maya Angelou, Bob Hoskins, Mickey Rooney, Harold Ramis, Elaine Stritch and Shirley Temple, among others, before concluding with a snap of Robin Williams and a special honour from his close friend and fellow comedian, Billy Crystal.
The main list of winners at the 66th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, hosted by comedian Seth Meyers, is as follows:
Outstanding Drama Series - Breaking Bad
Outstanding Comedy Series - Modern Family
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series - Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series - Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series - Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series - Anna Gunn, Breaking Bad
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series - Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series - Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series - Ty Burrell, Modern Family
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series - Allison Janney, Mom
Outstanding Miniseries - Fargo
Outstanding Television Movie - The Normal Heart
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie - Benedict Cumberbatch for Sherlock episode His Last Vow
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie - Jessica Lange, American Horror Story: Coven
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie - Martin Freeman for Sherlock episode His Last Vow
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie - Kathy Bates, American Horror Story: Coven
Outstanding Variety Series - The Colbert Report
Outstanding Reality-Competition Program - The Amazing Race
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series - Joe Morton, Scandal
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series - Allison Janney, Masters of Sex
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series - Jimmy Fallon, Saturday Night Live
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series - Uzo Aduba, Orange Is the New Black
Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series - Moira Walley-Beckett for Breaking Bad episode Ozymandias
Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series - Louis C.K. for Louie episode So Did the Fat Lady
Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series - Cary Joji Fukunaga, True Detective
Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series - Gail Mancuso for Modern Family episode Las Vegas
Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special - Sarah Silverman, Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles
Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Dramatic Special - Steven Moffat for Sherlock episode His Last Vow
Outstanding Directing for a Variety Special - Glen Weiss, 67th Annual Tony Awards
Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Dramatic Special - Colin Bucksey for Fargo episode Buridan's A**.
Guns N' Roses spin-off supergroup Kings Of Chaos are swelling their ranks by recruiting Steven Tyler and Zz Top star Billy Gibbons for upcoming dates in South Africa. The part-time collective, which features Matt Sorum, Duff McKagan and Gilby Clarke, has lined up two shows in Sun City and Cape Town in November and December (14), and the core trio is taking some big names.
The Kings of Chaos evolved out of the Rock 'N' Roll Allstars, an 11-piece outfit that included Gene Simmons and Def Leppard frontman Joe Elliott.
The line-up for South Africa will also feature Cheap Trick's Robin Zander and Extreme star Nuno Bettencourt.
Sorum, who was also a member of McKagan and Slash's supergroup Velvet Revolver, recently told Blabbermouth.net that the Kings of Chaos could easily become a priority for him, stating, "I'm at that stage of my career where I haven't really got the energy to go and try and create a band. I mean, how many bands do I have in my back pocket? I'd rather just get a bunch of great guys together that everybody knows and go and play a bunch of shows to 60,000 people.
"Even Velvet Revolver, it took us 18 months to build that up, and we were on the road, like, 20-year-old kids... I don't really want to go on the road for 18 months anymore, which will basically kill you, unless you're doing hard drugs and I don't do hard drugs anymore, and I don't drink anymore, and the rest of it's just kind of boring.
"I'd rather go and do great festivals and do two or three-week tours - go out and just have a blast and then go home and then think about the next thing."
Fired frontman Scott Weiland recently joked about auditioning for the his own vacant spot in Velvet Revolver, leading fans to think the band was active again after six years, but bassist McKagan recently shot down the rumours, insisting there were no immediate plans to restart to hunt for a new singer.
British rocker Billy Bragg staged an impromptu concert in St. Louis, Missouri on Tuesday (19Aug14) amid escalating violence in nearby Ferguson. Tensions have been high in the area following the death of teenager Michael Brown, who was gunned down as he attempted to surrender to police investigating a robbery incident on 9 August (14). The incident has prompted violent clashes with protesters and local law enforcement officers, and a number of celebrities have offered up their thoughts on the issues facing the city.
But folk singer and political activist Bragg and touring partner Joe Purdy decided to actually go there to see them for themselves during their current American tour, and decided to take a detour to stage a spontaneous benefit concert.
Bragg tells Rolling Stone, "A number of people said to me on Twitter, 'If you’re going to go to St. Louis, are you going to go to Ferguson?' But we didn't want to just go there and walk through Ferguson and be tourists. We wanted to do something for the community."
Through local connections, Bragg was put in touch with Steven Fitzpatrick Smith, the owner of local St. Louis pub the Royale, who has been attending the protests. Smith not only offered up his venue for the gig, but also asked fans attending to collect food, funds, and medical and school school supplies for a food pantry at a Ferguson church.
During the gig, Bragg performed some of his own tracks such as I Keep Faith, and also covered tunes pointed towards the unrest happening nearby, singing protest songs like Woody Guthrie's Hangknot, Slipknot and George Perkins' Cryin' in the Streets, while Purdy joined him for Bob Dylan's The Times They Are a-Changin'.
Bragg called on the 200 fans at the gig to take action and change the way the troubled city is perceived, stating, "The true enemy of all of us who want to make the world a better place is not capitalism or conservatism, it's cynicism. You have the opportunity to show the world that St. Louis is not a cynical place."
Bragg and Purdy's activism began early on Tuesday, when they met with railroad workers on strike and picketing teachers in Illinois, and they also performed for inmates at the Iowa State Penitentiary.
Veteran R&B group New Edition's former managers are suing the singers for outstanding fees amounting to over $500,000 (£295,082). The founders of Benchmark Entertainment filed documents in Manhattan Supreme Court on Tuesday (29Jul14), alleging their former clients refused to pay up after firing them last month (Jun14), according to the New York Daily News.
Originally hired in 2012, Benchmark's founders Steven Greener, Kevin Gasser and John Hammond claim they masterminded a New Edition reunion tour, which is set to kick off later this year (14).
However, after band members Bobby Brown, Ronnie DeVoe, Johnny Gill, Ralph Tresvant, Ricky Bell and Michael Bivins cut ties with them, the Benchmark bosses claim the group refused to pay them for the work they did securing the upcoming tour.
The management company founders claim they are owed at least $500,000 for setting up radio interviews and photo shoots, organising merchandising deals, securing venues and hiring a publicist,.
Benchmark's founders have also served as managers for artists such as Will Smith, Erykah Badu, Green Day and Smashing Pumpkins.
The lawsuit is the latest blow for the band - Bobby Brown bowed out of an ongoing U.S. tour due to medical reasons earlier this month (Jun14).
The singer struggled to bounce back from "an intrusive medical procedure" and found himself exhausted and fatigued onstage. The 45 year old, who was placed under doctors' care, returned to the spotlight in Detroit, Michigan on Friday night (25Jul14) but still appeared to be struggling to keep up with his bandmates.
Reports suggest Brown had difficulty with the demanding choreography and frequently walked to the end of the stage to pause and break from dance routines.
New Edition's current tour wraps up in Los Angeles on 3 August (14).
Bruce Springsteen's long-suffering sideman Steven Van Zandt is helping soul legend Darlene Love stage a big career comeback by recruiting a gang of stars for her new album. The E Street Band guitarist hit his contacts book to call on famous friends to join longtime Phil Spector collaborator Love in the studio after promising to help the singer with her career over three decades ago.
He tells Rolling Stone magazine, "I'm writing, Elvis Costello's writing. I've talked to Bruce about a song."
He's also hoping to persuade singer/songwriter Carole King to pen a new track for Love, as well as Elvis Presley's hitmaker Mike Stoller.
Van Zandt adds, "Everybody I know that is a great songwriter, I'm talking to. We're hoping to have an all-star album for Darlene, which she deserves."
Love was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2011, three years before Van Zandt was added as a member of the E Street Band. Love recently returned to the spotlight as one of the featured artists in the documentary 20 Feet From Stardom, which centred on the careers of working backing singers.
Aerosmith rocker Steven Tyler has launched his own line of fashion spectacles. The Love in an Elevator singer has teamed up with designers at Modo Eyewear to create the official Steven Tyler glasses collection.
The Steven Tyler 401 Gunmetal eyeglasses boast a dark satin gunmetal frame, paired with distinguished rectangular-shaped lenses.
The collection costs $89 (£52.30) per item.
Hollywood action man Steven Seagal has been bumped from the bill of a blues festival in Estonia following an outcry over his recent comments in support of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The Under Siege star, who is also a keen musician, had been due to perform at the Augustibluus event in Haapsalu next month (Aug14), but his place on the bill sparked a major backlash.
Seagal has openly voiced his support for Putin, who he branded "one of the greatest world leaders alive today," and defended his invasion of the Ukraine's Crimea territory in March (14), calling the military action "very reasonable".
The actor's controversial comments infuriated many in Estonia, which borders Russia, and local rock singer Tonis Magi even led calls for a boycott of the festival over Seagal's inclusion in the line-up.
Now the event's organisers have confirmed the star is no longer on the bill.
Augustibluus festival director Indrek Ditman says in a statement, "We hoped the Estonian public would first and foremost see Steven Seagal as an actor and a musician. It turns out what they saw was rather a politician and a henchman. To many in Estonia, it came as a major surprise that the action movie hero is a blues musician. Likewise, the organisers and numerous others were unpleasantly surprised by his political views and public statements."
Putin is under increasing international pressure to act over widespread fears Russian-backed rebels in Ukraine shot down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 last week (ends20Jul14), killing all 298 passengers and crew.
Veteran rocker Sting took to the stage to sing with the cast on the opening night of his new musical The Last Ship in Chicago, Illinois. The Police star's show opened at the city's Bank of America Theatre on Wednesday (25Jun14) ahead of its planned Broadway debut in October (14), and the rocker was in the audience with his wife Trudie Styler.
At the end of the performance, Sting took to the stage for the curtain call and led the cast in a song, according to New York Post gossip column Page Six.
Other stars who turned out for the musical's opening included Paul Simon, James Taylor, Styx singer Dennis DeYoung and AC/DC's Brian Johnson.
The show received mixed reviews from critics, who questioned whether the production, set in a doomed shipyard in Sting's hometown in the north of England, could draw in audiences on Broadway.
Steven Oxman of variety writes, "Do you want to live for two-and-a-half hours in a beautifully sad song?... The show currently works as a collection of songs in search of a complete story, or perhaps as a concept album - filled with mood and emotion and character and sensibility, but swaying as it takes on specifics. What seems to be missing is a driving conflict."
The Chicago Tribune's Chris Jones adds, "(Many) scenes... still have the air of a semi-staged concept album... The Last Ship already is a worthy and earnest musical, but we know how Broadway loves to take those down. Just look at last season."
Lewis Lazare of the Chicago Business Journal concludes, "Most of the theatre crowds in the early going at least will probably have come to hear Sting's music for the show. Fans of his work may find that much of it sounds familiar and pleasant to hear performed in a theatrical setting. But hardcore theatre buffs will soon realise Sting's style of music - for the most part - simply doesn't sit comfortably in a big Broadway musical context."
Angelina Jolie and Daniel Day-Lewis have been recognised by Britain's Queen Elizabeth II in her Birthday Honours List. The actress has been named an honorary dame, while fellow Oscar winner Day-Lewis will be knighted.
Jolie learned of the honour in London this week (beg09Jun14), while she was co-hosting an international summit on sexual violence.
She won't be entitled to use her new royal title because she is not a British or Commonwealth citizen, but she joins fellow Americans Steven Spielberg, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and former President Ronald Reagan, who have previously received honorary titles from the Queen.
Among the soldiers, charity heroes, civil servants and entrepreneurs to receive honours, Day-Lewis will be able to add 'Sir' to his name after becoming a knight for "services to drama".
The Lincoln star admits he was, "entirely amazed and utterly delighted in equal measure" to discover he had made the list.
There were also damehoods for Booker Prize-winning novelist Hilary Mantel and fashion designer Zandra Rhodes, while beloved actress Dame Maggie Smith, who portrays the Dowager Countess of Grantham on TV's Downton Abbey, was made a Companion of Honor, and becomes one of only 65 people "of distinction" in the U.K., and Homeland star Damian Lewis has been named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE).
He says, "I decided to do the very un-British thing of accepting the compliment."
Author Hunter Davies, actress Phyllida Law and musician Talvin Singh also received OBEs, while physicist Thomas Kibble and pianist Andra Schiff have been honoured with knighthoods.
Also making the annual honours list is singer and DJ Cerys Matthews and actor John Barrowman, who have both been awarded Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire medals (CBEs).
Singer Wayne Coyne has joined forces with the four members of experimental rock band Linear Downfall to form a new group. The six-strong side project, named Electric Wurms, also features Coyne's Flaming Lips bandmate Steven Drozd and the new collaborators are set to release their debut album, Musik, Die Schwer Zu Twerk, in August (14).
A quirky statement released by Electric Wurms reads: "They are not a super-group. They are like Sherpas climbing with you. To help you. To love you. They have a message of hope and peace and chaos and violence. All the secrets that they know they tell you. That's what love is."