"Felt good to get back on the kit today. Still sore but definitely getting stronger. Thanks 4 all the positive vibes, minus a few buttheads." Kings Of Leon drummer Nathan Followill is making steady progress in his recovery after injuring his ribs during a tourbus crash at the beginning of August (14).
Girls Gone Wild founder Joe Francis has become a wanted man after skipping a court date relating to a recent altercation at his former office in Los Angeles. The adult filmmaker and reality TV star was taken into custody in May (14) after fighting with a security guard and a member of staff at the Girls Gone Wild headquarters, which he is banned from entering due to a restraining order against him.
He was due to attend a hearing in a California court on Thursday (28Aug14), but he was a no-show, prompting the judge to issue a warrant for his arrest.
Francis is facing a slew of misdemeanour charges, including battery, making criminal threats, trespassing and disobeying a court order, reports TMZ.com.
Bosses at Francis' company filed for bankruptcy last year (13) and the soft porn business was reportedly taken over by a new owner.
R&B star Chris Brown's day in court to answer assault charges has been delayed again after travel issues prevented the singer from making it to Washington, D.C.
The Kiss Kiss hitmaker was due to appear in court on Friday (29Aug14) for what would have been the third attempt to resolve an assault case dating back to October, 2013. But, according to court filings, Brown was unable to make it to the hearing and it was rescheduled for Tuesday (02Sep14).
The singer and his bodyguard were charged with beating up a young man outside a Washington, D.C. hotel. The minder, Christopher Hollosy, was convicted earlier this year (14), while Brown has rejected plea deals in relation to the case.
At the time of the incident, Brown was on probation in California for the 2009 assault of his then-girlfriend Rihanna.
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt have been given a very special wedding present - a pair of rescued chinchillas.
The couple wed in secret in France at the weekend (23Aug14) and now activists at PETA have honoured the animal-loving pair by naming two newly-free pets after them. Brad and Angelina are up for adoption at PETA's Virginia headquarters after the organisation's leaders closed down one of the largest chinchilla ranches in California.
Announcing the furry wedding gift, PETA senior vice president Lisa Lange tells WENN, "Among Brad's and Angelina's kind acts are their animal rescues, as well as making their wardrobes fur-free, so naming two of PETA's rescued chinchillas in their honour seems an apt wedding present. "We can all follow this couple's great example, and help chinchillas like Brad and Angelina, by refusing to wear any real animal fur."
The pets are two of more than 400 chinchillas rescued from Valley View Chinchilla Ranch, where animals deemed not suitable as pets were electrocuted and skinned so their pelts could be made into bedspreads, coats and scarves. PETA bosses have sent the newlyweds a letter alerting them to their wedding present.
With such a hostile political climate existing beyond the scope of cinema, it takes a good deal of skill to keep the spy genre of today feeling exciting, original, and up-to-date. Director Roger Donaldson aims for this with The November Man, a film that draws from the best traditions of the genre — packing twists an employing none other than James Bond, Pierce Brosnan, to play the lead role — and employs new devices as well (this might be the first film we ever saw to use drone technology to catch a criminal). We chatted with Donaldson about the state of the genre, what role it plays in contemporary pop culture, and how films like November Man reach beyond the screen to contribute to the political scope.
Roger Donaldson: I’ve done a few films in the genre. I did No Way Out many years ago, I did The Recruit with Al Pacino and Colin Farrell. I think what I love about making these sort of films, as well as seeing them, is the suspense. I'm intrigued by characters [pretending to be] somebody other than they really are ... Espionage is very much a part of our world, the real world.
Where does the real world meet the world of the spy genre?
RD: I think the two are sort of intertwined. I was definitely intrigued by the idea of shooting this film in Serbia. Serbia having been at the crossroads of history, monumental moments of history, for many years. You know, the Ottoman Empire up against the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Now the influences of Russia South, various parts of Europe moving towards the East. Turkish influences. Muslims moving up from Albania, Turkey. It’s still right at the crosshairs of international politics as part of the world.
And yet I was sort of appalled at how ignorant I was about Serbia and Belgrade, having not been there. I’ve been to Croatia before, but my knowledge sort of came out of reporting that happened around the war 10 or 15 years ago. The reality now is very different. They’ve moved on, Croatia is now in the EU. Serbia will soon be, probably. There are still those underlying currents that are still working their way — Hungary is up against Serbia, and Austria, and Slovenia… so it’s still a fascinating part of the world.
Do these kinds of movies work to teach us anything about our political climate?
RD: Well, I think political thrillers often have a sense of irony, and they’re a little cynical about the goings on of how countries and interact with another. When we made this film, it was a year ago. Just in that last year, the geopolitical events that have been happening… while this movie is not ... 100 percent [reality, it] speaks to the monumental changes that are always ongoing in the world of politics.
Relativity Media via Everett Collection
Speaking of real world advancements, this might be the first movie I have ever seen to use drones.
RD: I know. As a matter of fact, when we decided to put drones into the film, it was stuff that wasn’t quite like it is right now. I anticipated, I guess, that this sort of technology was going to become more and more important. Both in filmmaking and in [politics]. That’s one of the reasons I put it in the film; I thought it was technology that we’d see more and more of.
That’s the challenge of making films about what’s happening right now. The technology is such a part of a spy story, one has to try and embrace it. You know that the technology is probably ahead of where we are already. Now, when I did No Way Out, we talked about a stealth submarine. That was just pure fiction that came out of writing the script. Some time later I was talking to somebody who was in the know, and he was like, ‘How did you know about this stealth submarine?’ Well… we didn’t! We just assumed that there would be that sort of technology and development, and that you’d try and keep things a secret. One tries to guess, sometimes, what’s out there, and sometimes when you think of the need, what technology could provide, you put it into the story… and suddenly, it does exist, because there is that need for it ... There was a period of time when military would talk to filmmakers and say, “Hey, what bright ideas have you got that could become of interest to us?”
You mentioned earlier your love of twists. Is it difficult to pull off movie twists when audiences are so savvy now, and are always expecting them?
RD: It is a challenge to surprise. When [people] sit down to watch a movie like this, they know there are twists in the story, and they know that twists can only come from characters that are in front of them. So they start to try and put together the scenarios of who’s going to do what to whom. So it’s a challenge as a filmmaker to keep the audience guessing, and part of the pleasure of watching a film like this is trying to be ahead of the story. “I know where it’s going to go,” and when it doesn’t go there that’s always a feeling of satisfaction from the audience, like, “I didn’t see that coming!” And yet, you also try to do it with logic, so that when it does happen, they don’t go, “Well, that was a load of bulls**t, wasn’t it?” It’s got to make sense as well as surprise them. How do you surprise the audience, how do you entertain them? And how do you, at the very end of a movie, keep it going right through?
Was there ever a twist that didn't work out for you?
RD: There was a twist in [No Way Out], after I had made the film, a studio executive said, “If you didn’t have that twist on the end I think you would have done more business.” And I was like, “But I wouldn’t have made the film!” That twist was what I was attracted to about doing the film. Maybe he just felt like it just didn’t need that extra twist on the end. But for me, that was the pleasure of that whole film. It surprised right up to the end.
Did you ever worry that a Pierce Brosnan spy thriller would suffer from the shadow of Bond?
RD: I hope it doesn’t. To me, this film has nothing to do with Bond. Pierce has real star attraction. I think there’s a side to Pierce that hasn’t been exposed in his work, and I think this film shows what an interesting, complicated character he can pull off onscreen. That was the appeal to me about working with him on this movie. Of course, that's why he's a star. Bond's one of those movies [that made him a star], and he was a spy in that movie. But the truth is, this is a very different sort of spy movie to a Bond movie.
He's playing a character who's got sort of a dark side to him, too. He's been through hell and seen all sorts of things. That sort of cynicism comes to the forefront. In the scene where he's confronting the [character] that he's got hostage, that's a very demanding scene to do as an actor. I think that scene really helps the movie [become such that] you don't really know where the movie's going to go.
The November Man is in theaters now.
Follow @Michael Arbeiter | Follow @Hollywood_com
Newlywed R&B star Kandi Burruss is determined to get pregnant this year (14).
The singer, who is also a cast member of hit U.S. reality TV show The Real Housewives of Atlanta, wed TV producer Todd Tucker in April (14) and she's already planning a family with her new husband.
She tells In Touch magazine, "I want to get pregnant this year! Knock it out by 39! I just don't want to keep waiting. At first, we thought it would just happen, but it hasn't yet. So now we're clocking days and making an effort. We really want to start a family together." Burruss, who is already mum to daughter, Riley, and stepmum to Tucker's daughter, Kaela, adds, "I always wanted to have a son! "We're even open to in vitro fertilisation. The cool part about that is we could guarantee a boy."
Friends stars Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox and Lisa Kudrow reunited for a sketch based on the hit sitcom for U.S. talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Wednesday (27Aug14). The chat show host surprised viewers during an interview with Aniston when he unveiled a replica set of Monica's kitchen from the comedy, which ran for ten years until 2004.
Kimmel presented Aniston with a script and the pair read a fake scene between her character Rachel and Ross, played by Kimmel, about "making love". The audience then erupted with screams and cheers as Cox and Kudrow walked through the set door.
All four then took part in the sketch, reading from Kimmel's script as their respective characters and criticising his storyline before reciting lines from the show's theme song, I'll Be There For You by the Rembrandts.
The sketch marked the 20th anniversary of the comedy. A replica of the show's Central Perk cafe will be recreated in Manhattan to celebrate the milestone next month (Sept14).
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images
Britney Spears has helped to make a terminally ill fan's dreams come true by flying him out to meet her during a Las Vegas concert last week (ends24Aug14).
Cory Moraw suffers from genetic disorder DiGeorge syndrome, diabetes and cirrhosis of the liver, and his health recently declined, prompting friends and family members to reach out to his favourite pop star.
They posted a message on a fundraising page in the hope of making Spears aware of her sick fan's dreams, and when they wrote, "There is only one thing in this world that Cory would feel like doing... that would be to see Britney Spears LIVE", she got in touch. The Toxic singer sent the 28 year old a first-class plane ticket to Las Vegas and arranged to meet him before her show on 19 August (14).
Moraw's mum, Janet Russom, says, "She just hugged him and she was like, 'Oh, Cory, thank you for letting me meet you'. I was like, 'That is just so cool that she said it that way...' "It was priceless. Getting to see him that happy was just priceless. You couldn't have asked for anything better than him meeting her."
"Some say I'm corrupt for making that, but I do records how I feel them now. I don't overthink it." Rapper Ice Cube is not bothered by the lukewarm reaction to his recent single with Redfoo and 2 Chainz, Drop Girl.
Singer Morrissey has detailed his fond memories of meeting Hollywood heavyweights Lord Richard Attenborough and Lauren Bacall as a tribute following the stars' deaths this month (Aug14). The former The Smiths frontman, who namechecked Attenborough's Brighton Rock character 'Pinkie' in his 1994 track Now My Heart Is Full, was saddened by the British actor's passing, aged 90, on Sunday (24Aug14).
He was earlier upset by Bacall's death at the age of 89 on 12 August (14), and he has penned a heartfelt tribute to both stars - while also making a controversial comment about Robin Williams, another actor who passed away this month.
Morrissey writes, "I was thrilled beyond words to have met Richard Attenborough, who, of course, played Pinkie in Brighton Rock (1947), a central theme of my song Now My Heart Is Full. When I met Sir Richard he was delightful, and I asked him if Brighton Rock seemed like a hundred years ago. He replied 'Oh, much more than that...'
"I also had the extraordinary pleasure of meeting the recently deceased Lauren Bacall... so beautiful, so cautious... and so sad that her death was overshadowed by that of Robin Williams. It was Lauren, not Robin, who changed motion picture history. Yet modern media has an odd way of forgetting the more senior servers of the arts."
The program explores the newsgathering process by examining the role of the network assignment desk, foreign bureaus, and the major changes in satellite technology that have revolutionized electronic journalism. The format includes questions posed to prominent journalists by a group of young people.