Rapper Drake is on the look out for new investment opportunities so he can become the next big hip-hop mogul and bank $250 million (£161 million) by the time he turns 29. The Best I Ever Had hitmaker has set himself the lofty goal after achieving his dream of making $25 million (£16 million) by his 25th birthday, and he is confident he will soon be joining the ranks of Jay-Z, Dr. Dre and Sean 'Diddy' Combs, who have all established themselves in the business world.
The 26 year old tells GQ magazine, "Rappers aren't the really rich ones. We all have nice houses with studios and cars, but you need a piece of someone's business to be super wealthy.
"I feel this great responsibility to see how far we (rappers) can take it, how out of reach can I set the bar for whoever comes after. While I'm here, I'm gonna keep pushing that bar higher up and make you really work for it."
Hip-hop mogul Jay-Z completed the bulk of his new album Magna Carta Holy Grail within two weeks, according to producer The-Dream. The hitmaker reveals he was in the studio working on new music with the rapper's wife Beyonce and fellow producer Timbaland in 2011 when he came up with the beat for what would become Jay-Z's title track, Holy Grail.
The song inspired the superstar, who had just completed his Watch The Throne collaborative project with Kanye West, to begin the creative process for his new album - and it all came together within a matter of days.
During an interview with Sean 'Diddy' Combs' Revolt.tv network, The-Dream says, "We wasn't even there to make a Jay album, we was there f**king with B (sic). He was just chilling. (He) heard that one f**king record and was like, 'Oh s**t. N**ga, let's go.' And the s**t took off. It was literally, the body (of the album), two weeks. Two weeks of work, easily."
Singer-turned-reality TV star Melanie Brown spent America's Independence Day (04Jul13) partying with fellow Brit Jay Sean at his home in New Jersey. The former Spice Girl and her family were invited to join the Down hitmaker and his friends and relatives to mark the holiday and Brown reveals his luxury pad had a great view of the New York fireworks across the Hudson River.
During a guest co-hosting appearance on U.S. breakfast show Today on Friday (05Jul13), she said, "I was in New Jersey yesterday for July 4th. The fireworks were incredible. I was at my friend's house, Jay Sean - gorgeous guy, gorgeous wife, gorgeous family, gorgeous food; I loved it. It (the fireworks) was incredible."
The spectacle was curated by Usher for the annual Macy's Fourth of July show.
Hip-hop superproducer Timbaland almost missed out on the chance to work with his longtime collaborator Jay-Z on his new album after the old pals fell out. The Way I Are beatmaker features in new TV advertisements for Magna Carta Holy Grail, with the commercials depicting him in the studio with Jay-Z, Rick Rubin, Swizz Beatz and Pharrell Williams as they discuss their ideas and tracks for the project.
However, Timbaland reveals Jay-Z almost didn't invite him to take part in the hitmaking process due to a personal slight following their last collaboration on The Blueprint 3 in 2009.
The producer refuses to go into detail about the issue, but suggests all was resolved between the two friends after he apologised.
During an interview on rap mogul Sean 'Diddy' Combs' new RevoltTV network, he says, "Jay and I fell out; I missed his 40th (birthday)... It was over petty stuff. It was more personal stuff and disagreements. It was not industry-related. It was personal and I was wrong...
"It (the fall-out) was low key, nobody know about this (sic)... But when you're real friends, you will disagree and not speak and come back together and realise that you're better together than apart."
You don’t have to be a Shakespeare buff to enjoy Joss Whedon's modern adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing. Filmed at Whedon’s house in only 12 days with a cast of his friends from various past projects, the movie stays true to the playwright's comedy, but places his prose in a more relatable setting. Unlike another Shakespeare adaptation that keeps the original language but uses a modern setting, Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet, Whedon's black-and-white interpretation is more casual and subtle.
Although the dialogue may be a bit hard to follow for those who aren't familiar with the play, the actors deliver their lines in such a way that makes their intent clear. You can understand when they are teasing, when they are fighting, and when they are being sarcastic (and there is a lot of sarcasm). They aren't giving dramatic performances on a stage; they are having normal conversations with each other that just happen to be spoken in flowery language.
As it turns out, many of today's romantic comedy tropes are found in the 400-year-old text. Full-of-himself playboy Benedick (Alexis Denisof) and independent, quick-witted Beatrice (Amy Acker) despise each other and are constantly bickering. Even if you haven’t read the play, I think you can guess what happens between them. The plot also includes a called-off wedding between Beatrice's cousin Hero (Jillian Morgese) and Claudio (Fran Kranz). Of course, there are elements of the story that wouldn't make sense in contemporary society, like Hero faking her death due to some big blow-up that arose because she might not be a virgin. But while there isn't always a happy ending in Shakespeare, for this rom-com, it's basically a given.
Much of the cast was already quite familiar with Shakespeare, because Whedon has hosted many readings of his plays over the years (one of which inspired this version of Much Ado). It's as though the audience was invited to one of Whedon's get-togethers... only there are also trapeze artists there for some reason. For Whedon fanatics, it's fun to see who the director rounded up to star in the film. (Look, it's Wesley! And Mal! And Agent Coulson!) Denisof and Acker pull off some physical comedy as they eavesdrop on conversations about each other, and Nathan Fillion is great in a small part as police officer Dogberry. It's obvious that the cast, as well as Whedon, have a sincere appreciation for Shakespeare's original work, but also had a fun time giving it their own twist.
Follow Mary Oates on Twitter @mary_oates | Follow Hollywood.com on Twitter @hollywood_com
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Funk legend George Clinton has asked U.S. President Barack Obama to order a federal probe into music copyright laws after alleging he has been cheated out of millions of dollars. The Parliament star is currently embroiled in several lawsuits over the rights to his songs, and earlier this year (13) he was even told to hand ownership of four of his classic tracks to his former lawyers to help settle a $1.5 million (£967,000) debt.
Clinton is adamant dozens of songs by modern-day hip-hop artists including Jay-Z and Sean 'Diddy' Combs - formerly known as Puff Daddy - have contained samples from his back catalogue but he has not been paid for their use.
Now he has written to Obama asking for a federal investigation as he alleges some record label bosses band together to win lawsuits.
He tells Uncut magazine, "We just sent a request to the President of the United States to save the funk. We got a list of names, my entire family, to BMI (Broadcast Music, Inc.) requesting all our cheques. Other artists are involved in it, too. We gonna have us a Twitter army!...
"All the record companies (are) banding together, because all of them have samples. It's a cartel, and its long arms reach the copyright office, BMI, ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers), all of them, so we have no choice but to go straight to the President. Hopefully the President danced to the music at one time. We've seen him singing Al Green, we know he has some funk!...
"We're trying to keep it isolated to one record, but I'm really talking about all of them: Snoop Dogg, Puffy, Dre, Jay-Z, Public Enemy, Eminem, Michael Jackson. I'm talking about all these records for the past 25 years, we had samples on all of that, and we don't get a penny from any of it... We're asking for a federal investigation into the whole thing, because (the record labels) are effectively a monopoly, they back each other up on all these court documents and s**t."
R&B superstar Usher will be the toast of the music industry next month (Jun13) when he is presented with the Golden Note Award at the 26th Annual Rhythm & Soul Awards in Los Angeles. The Yeah! hitmaker has been selected to receive the esteemed honour by officials at the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) in celebration of his career success.
The flattered singer says, "I take the art of songwriting and music-making very seriously, so to be given the ASCAP Golden Note Award from an organisation of my fellow music creators is a huge honour."
Previous recipients of the top prize include Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys, Quincy Jones, Jay-Z and Sean 'Diddy' Combs.
The ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards will take place at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on 27 June (13).
The frigid months to come will see our friends at NBC spending a good amount of time overseas — before trekking over to Russia for the 2014 Winter Olympics, the Peacock is making a quick stop in the Swiss Alps (or, at the very least, a network studio designed to look like the Swiss Alps) for a live production of The Sound of Music. But team figure skating (the Olympics' newest event) and singing convents will take a backseat to NBC's most anticipated addition: Jimmy Fallon as the host of The Tonight Show.
During its upfront presentation on Monday, NBC informed attendees that Fallon would be taking Jay Leno's seat during revealed the date during the network's broadcast of the Winter Olympics, stepping in during the second week of the international games (the Olympics kick off on Feb. 7; Fallon should take the reigns on Feb. 14). Following the conclusion of the dynamic tradition, Fallon will assume the regular 11:35 PM time slot permanently — as the Olympics is often cause for schedule shifting, leaving the Tonight Show broadcast times for the week rather nebulous at this time — on Monday, Feb 24, 2014. At this time, Fallon's fellow Saturday Night Live alum Seth Meyers will also step in as the official host of Late Night, airing at 12:35 AM.
NBC also revealed the planned broadcast date of its previously announced live production of The Sound of Music, a performance of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical (first immortalized on the big screen by Julie Andrews) starring Carrie Underwood as Maria von Trapp. The 3-hour special will air Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013.
Alongside talks of Fallon's and Meyers' promotions, and the musical production, NBC also shared a handful of comedic and dramatic trailers for upcoming programs. Check them out here.
Follow Michael Arbeiter on Twitter @MichaelArbeiter
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Sunday night marked the 2013 Academy Awards, when the best and the brightest in Hollywood gathered to celebrate the best and the brightest filmmaking of the year. And the ceremony came complete with a few surprises. Not only did Life of Pi walk away with the most wins of the evening — four Oscars — but the film's Ang Lee eked out David O. Russell and Steven Spielberg for Best Director. But there were some expected finishes as well: Jennifer Lawrence won Best Actress, Daniel Day-Lewis took Best Actor, and Adele even scored Best Original Song for "Skyfall."
But who else picked up awards? Check out the full list of winners below!
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The 2013 Academy Award Winners:
Best Picture:Beasts Of The Southern WildSilver Lingings PlaybookZero Dark ThirtyLincolnLes MiserablesLife Of PiDjango UnchainedWinner: ArgoAmour
Best Actor:Winner: Daniel Day-Lewis, LincolnDenzel Washington, FlightHugh Jackman, Les MiserablesBradley Cooper, Silver Linings PlaybookJoaquin Phoenix, The Master
Best Actress:Naomi Watts, The ImpossibleJessica Chastain, Zero Dark ThirtyWinner: Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings PlaybookEmmanuelle Riva, AmourQuvenzhane Wallis, Beasts Of The Southern Wild
The 2013 Academy Award Winners:Best Director:David O. Russell, Silver Linings PlaybookWinner: Ang Lee, Life Of PiSteven Spielberg, LincolnMichael Haneke, AmourBenh Zeitlin,Beasts Of The Southern Wild
Best Writing, Original Screenplay:Flight, Written by John GatinsZero Dark Thirty, Written by Mark BoalWinner: Django Unchained, Written by Quentin TarantinoAmour, Written by Michael HanekeMoonrise Kingdom, Written by West Anderson and Roman Coppola
Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay:Beasts Of The Southern Wild, Screenplay by Lucy Alibar and Benh ZeitlinWinner: Argo, Written by Chris TerrioLincoln, Written by Tony KushnerSilver Linings Playbook, Written by David O. RussellLife Of Pi, Written by David Magee
Best Original Song:"Before My Time," Chasing Ice, Music and Lyric from J. Ralph"Pi Lullaby," Life Of Pi, Music by Mychael Danna; Lyric by Bombay Jayashri"Suddenly," Les Miserables, Music by Claude-Michel Schonberg; Lyric by Herbert Kretzmer and Alain Boubill"Everybody Needs a Best Friend," Ted, Music by Walter Murphy; Lyric by Seth MacFarlaneWinner: "Skyfall," Skyfall, Music and Lyric by Adele Adkins and Paul Epworth
Best Original Score:Anna Karenina, Dario MarianelliArgo, Alexandre DesplatWinner: Life Of Pi, Mychael DannaLincoln, John WilliamsSkyfall, Thomas Newman
Best Production Design:Anna Karenina, Sarah Greenwood (Production Design); Katie Spencer (Set Decoration)The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Dan Hennah (Production Design); Ra Vincent and Simon Bright (Set Decoration)Les Miserables, Eve Stewart (Production Design); Anna Lynch-Robinson (Set Design)Life Of Pi, David Gropman (Production Design); Anna Pinnock (Set Decoration)Winner: Lincoln, Rick Carter (Production Design); Jim Erickson (Set Decoration)
Best Achievement in Film Editing:Winner: Argo, William GoldenbergLife Of Pi, Tim SquyresLincoln, Michael KahnSilver Linings Playbook, Jay Cassidy and Crispin StruthersZero Dark Thirty, Dylan Tichenor and William Goldenberg
Best Supporting Actress:Sally Field, LincolnWinner: Anne Hathaway, Les MiserablesJacki Weaver, Silver Linings PlaybookHelen Hunt, The SessionsAmy Adams, The Master
Best Achievement in Sound Editing:Argo, Erik Aadahl and Ethan Van der RynDjango Unchained, Wylie StatemanLife Of Pi, Eugene Gearty and Philip StocktonWinner: Skyfall, Per Hallberg and Karen Baker LandersWinner: Zero Dark Thirty, Paul N.J. Ottosson
Best Achievement in Sound Mixing:Argo, John Reitz, Gregg Rudloff, and Jose Antonio GarciaWinner: Les Miserables, Andy Nelson, Mark Peterson, and Simon HayesLife Of Pi, Rob Bartlett, D.M. Hemphill and Drew KuninLincoln, Andy Nelson, Gary Rydstrom, and Ronald JudkinsSkyfall, Scott Millan, Greg P. Russell, and Stuart Wilson
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Best Foreign Language Film of the Year:Winner: Amour, AustriaNo, ChileWar Witch, CanadaA Royal Affair, DenmarkKon-Tiki, Norway
Best Documentary Feature:5 Broken CamerasThe GatekeepersHow To Survive A PlagueThe Invisible WarWinner: Searching For Sugar Man
Best Documentary Short:Winner: Inocente, Sean Fine and Andrea Nix FineKings Point, Sari Gilman and Jedd WiderMondays At Racine, Cynthia Wade and Robin HonanOpen Heart, Kief Davidson and Cori Shepherd SternRedemption, Jon Alpert and Matthew O'Neill
Best Live Action Short Film:Asad, Bryan Buckley and Mino JarjouraBuzkashi Boys, Sam French and Ariel NasrWinner: Curfew, Shawn ChristensenDeath Of A Shadow (Dood Van Een Schadow), Tom Van Avermaet and Ellen De WaeleHenry, Yan England
Best Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling:Hitchcock, Howard Berger, Peter Montagna, and Martin SamuelThe Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Peter Swords King, Rick Findlater, and Tami LaneWinner: Les Miserables, Lisa Westcott and Julie Dartnell
Best Achievement in Costume Design:Winner: Anna Karenina, Jacqueline DurranLes Miserables, Paco DelgadoLincoln, Joanna JohnstonMirror Mirror, Eiko IshiokaSnow White And The Huntsman, Colleen Atwood
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Best Achievement in Visual Effects:The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Joe Letteri, Eric Saindon, David Clayton, and R. Christopher WhiteWinner: Life Of Pi, Bill Westenhofer, Guillaume Rocheron, Erik-Jan De Boer and Donald R. ElliottMarvel's The Avengers, Janek Sirrs, Jeff White, Guy Williams and Dan SudickPrometheus, Richard Stammers, Trevor Wood, Charley Henley and Martin HillSnow White And The Huntsman, Cedric Nicolas-Troyan, Philip Brennan, Neil Corbould and Michael Dawson
Best Achievement in Cinematography:Anna Karenina, Seamus McGarveyDjango Unchained, Robert RichardsonWinner: Life Of Pi, Claudio MirandaLincoln, Janusz KaminskiSkyfall, Roger Deakins
Best Animated Feature:FrankenweenieThe Pirates! Band Of MisfitsWreck It RalphParaNormanWinner: Brave
Best Animated Short Film:Adam And Dog, Minkyu LeeFresh Guacamole, PESHead Over Heels, Timothy Reckart and Fodhla Cronin O'ReillyMaggie Simpson In "The Longest Daycare," David SilvermanWinner: Paperman, John Kahrs
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Best Supporting Actor:Winner: Christoph Waltz, Django UnchainedPhilip Seymour Hoffman, The MasterRobert De Niro, Silver Linings PlaybookAlan Arkin, ArgoTommy Lee Jones, Lincoln
Follow Lindsey on Twitter @LDiMat.
[Photo Credit: Joe Klamar/Getty Images]
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It looks like Daddy Warbucks has found his Annie in Beasts Of The Southern Wild star Quvenzhané Wallis. The girl with enough poodle purposes to stitch together a life-sized Sandy of her very own, the Oscar-nominated Wallis has been confirmed to Hollywood.com as the new leading lady to tackle the little orphan in Will Smith's remake of the classic. Previously, Smith's daughter Willow was set to take on the golden-hearted inhabitant of Miss Hannigan's home for girls, but departed from the project earlier this year (presumably to whip her hair back and forth a bit longer).
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But it wouldn't be a big-time remake without some other major names attached. Jada Pinkett-Smith is also on-hand to produce, alongside Sean (better known as Jay-Z) Carter. It seems only fitting Jay-Z would hop on board — given his own hard knock life and previously-confirmed affinity for the song with the same name.
The film's director Will Gluck (Easy A) has taken another stab at screenplay re-writes after Emma Thompson and The Devil Wears Prada screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna took a first and second stab at it, respectively.
According to the official statement from Sony's President of Production Hannah Minghella, we're in for a real treat (times three): "Quvenzhané Wallis is a true star and we believe her portrayal as Annie will make her a true worldwide star. She is an extraordinary young talent with an amazing range, not only as an actress but as a singer and dancer, and we can’t wait for audiences to further discover her."
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That's right, Wallis is one of those child stars who can act, sing, and dance! You can really learn it all in the Bathtub. Hushpuppy is a veritable force to be reckoned with. And if that wasn't enough, Wallis' bio proves further proof that she's both a child and a crazy-serious and impressive actress with the greatest of ease. Her bio from the press release lets us know that her "favorite pastimes are reading, singing, dancing, acting, and playing her iPod and Nintendo DS. Her favorite TV stars/singers are China McClain, Selena Gomez, and Miley Cyrus. Her favorite sports are basketball, volleyball, dance and cheerleading. Her upcoming films include a role in Twelve Years a Slave with Brad Pitt, Michael Fassbender and director Steve McQueen." Oh, that's all? Annie is set to be released during the 2014 holiday movie season because of course it will.
What do you think of Wallis' casting as Annie? Let us know in the comments!
Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutes
[Photo Credit: WENN]
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