You're probably watching the Grammys to see Rihanna strut around in a sequined bustier or Mumford & Sons strum along in their flannel shirts — and fans of one don't necessarily know who the heck the other is. So don't sound like a jerk who hates fun (or fun.) by yelling, "Who the hell is that? I don't even know who that person is!" when some band you don't recognizecomes on stage; I'm here to tell you who is who and why you should care. You're welcome.
Dierks Bentley and Miranda Lambert
Who They Are: Dierks Bentley is a sort of hot blond guy who has won a bunch of CMA awards but has never won a Grammy. Miranda Lambert is a sort of hot blonde lady who was first on the reality show Nashville Star but now has become an actual a Nashville star. She has an album called Crazy Ex-Girlfriend that is somehow not about Taylor Swift. She is married to Blake Shelton, a revolving chair salesman who works on NBC's The Voice. Bentley and Lambert are currently on tour together, so their joint performance is something of a commecial.
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The Black Keys
Who They Are: After years of working the indie circuit harder than Lindsay Lohan works her assistants, the Black Keys produced a breakthrough album in 2010 and won three Grammys. The two core members, Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney, look like they're from Brooklyn, but they're really from Akron. Go figure. Their 2011 album El Camino was also a big smash thanks to the band's hard-driving but easily accessible sound.
Who Is She: You might remember her from winning the first season of American Idol or from, you know, the 7 quadrillion hits she has had since then, like "Since U Been Gone," "My Life Would Suck Without You," and "Stronger." She sang "My Country, 'Tis of Thee" at Obama's inauguration last month and definitely did not lip sync.
Who They Are: One hit wonder or the next big thing? Who knows. We're going to have to figure that out once we get "We Are Young" out of our heads — it's been lodged somewhere near our cerebellum for like a year, ever since hearing it in every single bar in the whole universe. But FunPeriod will not be singing it at the Grammys (hello, that's what a one-hit wonder does). Maybe they should do a duet with Carly Rae Jepson. Haha. Just kidding. Oh and Lena Dunham dates fun.'s guitarist.
Elton John and Ed Sheeran
Who They Are: If I have to tell you who Elton John is, I'm going to get Benny and the Jetts to come crocodile rock your ass and they will not be feeling the love tonight. Hell no. John has been a huge champion of Sheeran, another British singer/songwriter who has been getting tons of attention lately. He did a song with Taylor Swift and is opening for her on her current tour. He wrote a bunch of songs for teen dreams One Direction. He is a ginger and does charity work to get hookers off the street, so he's gotta be kinda cool.
Who He Is: This 22-year-old dream machine is like the Justin Bieber of the torch and twang set. This is his first album and he's had a few hits and is up for the Milli Vanilli Best New Artist Grammy. He likes planes and is from Louisiana. If there is a teenage girl in your home, there will be lots of screeching when he comes on stage. You have been warned.
Who They Are: You know how all the hip music these days sounds like a bunch of guys wearing faux-vintage work clothes sitting in a Cracker Barrel churning out tunes on washboards like it's Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas or something? Well, that's The Lumineers. They have a cello. They might win Best New Artist and then everyone in American will be like, "Huh?" and the folks at The Jim Henson Company will get that otter muppet out of storage and that will be the end of it all.
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Maroon 5 and Alicia Keys
Genre: Rock and Piano
Who They Are: Maroon 5 is fronted by Adam Levine, the reanimated ghost of Mick Jagger who recently attempted to break into acting, as they say, by appearking on American Horror Story. Alicia Keys is from a concrete jungle where dreams are made of and no one teaches grammer. She was in cinematic classics The Secret Life of Bees and Smokin' Aces. Do these people even make music? Why are they at the Grammys?
Bruno Mars, Rihanna, and Sting
Genre: Crazy, Pop, and Things Your Mom Listens to While Drinking Wine
Who They Are: OK, this is sort of like having a bacon and banana burrito. These things just do not seem to go together at all, which is either totally stupid or totally genius. We'll have to see. Bruno Mars sings that "Just the Way You Are" song you've heard in the CVS and on Glee, Rihanna is the best pop diva next to Beyoncé (even though she dates the loathesome Chris Brown), and Sting used to be in a band called The Police which sang the most popular song of all time but now just has tantric sex and sings songs that sound like glasses of chablis.
Miguel and Wiz Khalifa
Genre: R&B, Hip-Hop
Who They Are: Miguel, a difficult name to have in the Google age, is an R&B singer whose first album was a bit of a sleeper hit but whose recent eclectic croony album is doing much better. Wiz Khalifa is a rapper. You've probably heard his song "Black and Yellow" but attributed it to Kanye West instead. They're going to be performing together on Miguel's single "Adorned," which is below.
Mumford & Sons
Who They Are: No, this is not where you get your car repaired. Mumford & Sons is a band with a mandolin that sounds like it's from the deepest darkest mountains of Missouri (but they're really from England). Or maybe they sound more like the language of Zooey Deschanel's dreams. They lost six Grammys in 2011 and 2012 and they are nominated for as many this year for their second album Babel, which everyone you probably know already owns. Where have you been?!
Who He Is: A member of the buzzy (and crazy) hip-hop collective Odd Future, Frank Ocean ghost wrote songs for a bunch of artist (like Justin Bieber) before launching his own album. Right before it dropped, he came out of the closet on his website and was launched into at torrent of media coverage. All the critics love his album even though his songs have fewer hooks than a desolated brothel. He has since been punched in the face by Chris Brown. He's up for six Grammys, including Best New Artist.
Who She Is: Taylor Swift is America's premiere author of blind items masquerading as songs. She's a young pop-country princess who writes her own music (commendable) mostly about her failed love life (not so commendable) with a string of famous boyfriends that includes Jake Gyllenhaal, Taylor Lautner, and one of the Kennedy clan. At the time, she bought a summer home across the street from the Kennedys so she could be close to them. Yeah, she's a little bit nuts, but the kids love her.
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Who He Is: He brought sexy back. Then got a movie career.
Who She Is: After Kelly Clarkson, she is the second American Idol winner on this list (and one of only four female winners on the show). She is now a gigantic superstar and if you haven't heard of her, you need to go to Wal-Mart more often (please pick me up some place mats). She might even be bigger than Clarkson for songs like "Inside Your Heaven." She has been nominated for five Grammys and never won one.
Who He Is: Jack White has been in more rock bands than apples have been in pies. He started with the White Stripes and moved on to The Raconteurs and The Dead Weather. He also has released solo albums and produced records for everyone from Beck and Bob Dylan to Insane Klown Posse and Loretta Lynn. He is nominated for a Grammy for Most Going On in the Whole World.
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If there's a cinematic alchemy award to be given this year director Bill Condon deserves to take it home after magically turning the tedious Twilight franchise into entertainment gold. 2011's Part 1 was a horror camp romp that turned the supernatural love triangle — the naval gazing trio of Bella Edward and Jacob — on its head. Breaking Dawn - Part 2 continues the madcap exploration of a world populated by vampires and werewolves mining even more comedy thrills and genuine character moments out of conceit than ever before. The film occasionally sidesteps back into Edward and Bella's meandering romance (an evident hurdle of author Stephenie Meyer's source material) but the duller moments are overshadowed by the movie's nimble pace and playful attitude. Breaking Dawn - Part 2 will elicit laughs aplenty — but thankfully they're all on purpose.
Part 2 picks up immediately following the events of the first film Bella (Kristen Stewart) having been turned into a vampire by Edward (Robert Pattinson) to save her life after the torturous delivery of her half-human half-vampire child Renesmee. She awakes to discover super senses heightened agility increased strength… and a thirst for blood. One dead cougar later Bella and the gang are able to focus on the real troubles ahead: Renesmee is rapidly growing (think Jack) and vampiric overlords The Volturi perceive her a threat to vampiric secrecy. Knowing the Volturi will travel to Forks WA to kill the young girl (a 10-year-old just a month after being born) The Cullens amass an army of bloodsucking friends to end the oppression once and for all.
Packed with an absurd amount of backstory and mythology-twisting plot points (some vampires can shoot lightning now?) Condon and series screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg mine revel in the beefed up ensemble of Breaking Dawn - Part 2 and thanks to a wildly funny cast it never feels like pointless deviation. Along with the usual suspects Lee Pace adds swagger to the series as a grungy alt-rock vampire Noel Fisher appears as a hilarious over-the-top battle-ready Russian coven member and Michael Sheen returns has Volturi head honcho Aro and steels the show. Flamboyant diabolical and a steady stream of maniacal laughter Sheen owns Condon's high camp vision for Twilight and he lights up the screen. There are a few throw away nations of vampires — the oddly stereotypical Egyptian and Amazonians sects are there mostly there to off-set the extreme whiteness — but the actors involved bring liveliness to a franchise known for being soulless. Even Stewart Pattinson and Taylor Lautner give personal bests in this installment — a scene between Bella and her dad Charlie (Billy Burke) is genuinely heartfelt while Jacob's overprotective hero schtick finally lands.
Whereas Breaking Dawn - Part 1 stuck mostly to the personal story relying on the intimate moments as Bella and Edward took the big plunge into marriage and sex Part 2 paints with broader strokes and Condon has a ball. Delving into the history of the vampires and the vampire world outside Forks is Pandora's Box for the director. One scene where we learn why kids scare the heck of the Volturi captures a scope of medieval epics — along with the bloodshed. Twilight might be known for its sexual moments but Breaking Dawn - Part 2 will go down for its abundance of decapitations. The big set piece in the finale is something to behold both in the craftsmanship of the spectacle and in its bizarre nature.
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 had the audience hooting hollering and even gasping as it twisted and turned to the final moments. There's little doubt that even the biggest naysayer of the franchise would do the same. No irony here: the conclusion of Twilight is a blast.
If Kevin Costner is back in the news one more time this week, he'll tie Charlie Sheen's record for most nauseating headlines in a five-day period. The first story focused on the Oscar winner's possible involvement in Warner Bros. high-priority reboot of its treasured Superman property, but today's news is about one of the studio's (and Costner's) biggest and most unlikely hits of the 1990s: The Bodyguard.
According to Deadline, WB is ready to revisit the romantic thriller that grossed over $400 million at the worldwide box office and sold a ton of records featuring the music of the film's co-star Whitney Houston. Dan Lin (Sherlock Holmes), a Warner-based producer with shepherd the project while Mark Bauch serves as co-producer. They've already hired Jeremiah Friedman and Nick Palmer, whose action comedy script Family Getaway made the 2010 Black List and is a priority project at Warner Bros, to adapt the screenplay (the original was written by the great Lawrence Kasdan).
The new version will skew close to the original. The male lead will play an Iraq War veteran (instead of a former Secret Service agent) who returns home and takes a job protecting a young star as his first gig after leaving the Army. Twitter, Google Maps, TMZ and various technological advances will play a significant role in the plot as they are used by obsessive fans to stalk the singer. The goal is to take a young female singer with global appeal and give her the platform that the original did Houston (sounds like a job for Rihanna).
From a qualitative perspective, this sounds awful. The 1992 original is far from good, but in the age remakes I don't see a reason why a company wouldn't redo one of its most successful financial hits, especially since this won't be a film with a particularly exuberant negative cost. If Warner's can nab someone like Rihanna, a Grammy winning globally recognized star who happens to be already making her film debut in a much bigger picture (2012's Battleship), and pair her with a young heartthrob from the cover of Teen Beat (sounds like a job for Taylor Lautner) there's great potential for major box office. However, I know I won't be buying a ticket.
Moms everywhere, set the DVR. It's time for some life lessons!
ABC Family just announced it's bringing three new pilots to its lineup this fall, and they're all very ABC Family-esque -- a teen superhero fantasy, a mistaken identity drama, and a cheerleading drama.
Network president Michael Riley announced the plans yesterday, saying the initiative was part of ABC Family's effort to create more original series like Pretty Little Liars and The Secret Life of the American Teenager, both of which have enjoyed lucrative ratings.
"ABC Family is coming off another summer of record ratings ... Adding depth to the network's original programming slate is one of our biggest priorities going into next year," he said.
The Nine Lives of Chloe King is based on the young-adult novel by Celia Thompson and will be written and produced by Dan Berendsen. It's about a girl who realizes she's part of an ancient race with super powers. (Half human and half cat?)
Switched at Birth is an hourlong drama about just that -- getting switched at birth. And more specifically -- two teens who were swapped at the maternity board. Lizzy Weiss serves as executive producer and writer.
The third is called Strut -- another hourlong drama about a former showgirl who works with a high school dance team in Texas. Lamar Damon is head writer.
Each show should will probably last a season, but the one with most promise is definitely Chloe King. Superpowers? Teenage drama? Moral problems? It's everything any ABC Family enthusiast could ever want. Switched at Birth treads territory previously explored by the Olsen twins and Taylor Lautner is shooting his similarly themed film Abduction as we speak, which could make the drama seem awfully stale by the time the show hits American homes. Strut sounds like it could be worthwhile but it needs an edge and I doubt that it'll find it on ABC Family. But it'll still be better than Showgirls...
Source: The Wrap
Lionsgate has won the bidding for Shawn Christensen's script Abduction, which has Taylor Lautner attached.
Deadline.com reports the screenplay sold for nearly $1 million in a sluggish spec script market. Lautner's Tailor Made production company is producing as an equal partner with Vertigo Entertainment's Roy Lee and The Gotham Group.
The project was developed on spec by Gotham and Vertigo.
Lionsgate will reportedly hurry to select a director and get a script polish in order to meet Lautner's July availability, or Tailor Made will still produce but hire another actor for the lead.
The script has Lautner playing a teen who has long felt disconnected from his parents. When he figures out why, it unleashes a chain of violent events and enters Bourne territory.
Producers include Gotham Group's Ellen Goldsmith-Vein and Lee Stollman, Lee and Doug Davison and Tailor Made's Dan Lautner. Gotham Group's Bell and Vertigo's Gabriel Mason are exec producing, says Variety.
Summit has picked up Cancun, an action spec from Eric Champnella and Grant Thompson that will serve as a star vehicle for the studio's werewolf-in-residence Taylor Lautner.
Lautner's father, Dan Lautner, is in discussions to produce the film with Temple Hill's Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen.
The story, according to The Hollywood Reporter, follows an out-of-place college kid who travels with a girl to Cancun on a break. While there, the girl and her friends are taken hostage by a drug cartel and he is forced to save them.
Variety reports that the hope is to get the project into production by June.
This would be the first project from Taylor and Dan Lautner's recently formed Tailor Made Entertainment, and it would serve to highlight the actor's martial-arts skills. He is also attached to Max Steel at Paramount.
Champnella co-wrote Disney's Mr. 3000 and worked on Warners' DC Comics project Metal Men.
The second film in the series, The Twilight Saga: New Moon, hit cinemas this week (20Nov09) and the movie's stars, Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner, have been travelling the world to promote the release.
But the worldwide hype, along with masses of hysterical teenage fans, has drawn criticism from the Vatican, with officials urging parents to be more vigilant about the type of films their children are watching.
Monsignor Franco Perazzolo, of the Pontifical Council of Culture, says, "The theme of vampires in Twilight combines a mixture of excesses that as ever is aimed at young people and gives a heavy esoteric element. It is once again that age-old trick or ideal formula of using extremes to make an impact at the box office. This film is nothing more than a moral vacuum with a deviant message and as such should be of concern."
Vatican officials previously criticised the Harry Potter film franchise for its themes of magic and wizardry, as well as Dan Brown adaptations The Da Vinci Code, and Angels and Demons for their depiction of the Catholic Church.