Movies

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When Animal Activists Attack J.Lo

Jlo_furJennifer Lopez is said to have added two off-duty cops to her security team, following a string of death threats she’s received over her flagrant fur wearing. The letters, believed to be sent from the same person, threaten to: "kill her in public, just like the slaughtered animals whose fur she wears."

Jen’s rep denies the security beef-up. While animal-rights extremist organization PETA hasn’t admitted to sending the threats, a representative did respond to them: "All violence is wrong. But J.Lo needs to stop the real violence she promotes and subsidizes rather than give herself extra protection she doesn’t need." Way to eliminate suspicion, guys!

The thing is that extreme endeavors like death threats or even throwing paint on fur-wearers do nothing to convert people to your side — if anything, aggressive action just pushes them away and makes them less likely to listen to your stance. Attacking a mega-star is foolish anyway: someone like Jennifer Lopez has more than enough money to protect her hide, as it were. [New York Daily News / Image credit: Getty]

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Fathers’ Day Comes Early for Baldwin, Spears

Alec_ireland The day’s hot new accessory is a blow-hard dad, if recent rumbling from Alec Baldwin and Britney Spears‘ father are any indication. In a leaked voice mail to his daughter, Ireland, left earlier this month, Alec rants for two minutes after his daughter failed to pick up the phone for a scheduled call. He says, among other things, that Ireland is a "rude, thoughtless little pig" (which makes him what? A boar?), that he doesn’t know her age ("I don’t give a damn that you’re 12-years-old, or 11-years-old…") and that he will "straighten [her] ass out" on a trip he sets for April 20 (today). Not likely: the leaked message so alarmed a judge that she banned contact between Alec and Ireland. Nice try, though, Al.

The grievances of Britney’s daddy Jamie were also aired in public, but this time on purpose: he went right to the New York Post
to insure Brit got the flogging that was coming to her.

Read more…

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Scarlett Finds the Heart of Saturday Night

73295354 This spring, Scarlett Johansson is putting out a record of Tom Waits covers. That?s right: You might get to hear The Nanny Diaries star singing ?Jockey Full of Bourbon.? OK, haters, before you invoke the ill-conceived albums of such non-singers as Eddie Murphy – or, perhaps more appropriately, ill-conceived Tom Waits covers, including Rod Stewart?s execrable version of ?Downtown Train? – consider Johansson?s voice. She?s not all Vuitton ads and lounging around naked on the cover of Vanity Fair, you know. The 22-year-old?s husky pipes lend her a maturity that?s beyond her years. But does she have the skid-row gravitas to pull this off?

And, tell everyone, which Waits songs would you like to hear her cover?

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Not an Eazy Role

070327_eazyeHow does a daughter of a late hip-hop legend honor a father’s legacy? Well, if you’re Erin "E.B." Wright, daughter of Eazy-E, maybe playing dad in a biopic is the answer.

In an interview with AllHipHop to help mark the 12th anniversary of her NWA MC’s death, E.B. suggested that she would like to cross genders and play the hard-core gangsta rapper who died of AIDS. "I think it was cool how Hilary Swank played that role as a boy in ‘Boys Don’t Cry,’" said E.B. "That movie was great! I would love to do something like that in my father’s movie."

Considering that E.B. has only starred on MTV’s "My Super Sweet 16," it’s hard to imagine she has Swank-sized chops. But if the acting thing doesn’t pan out, she can still try to cut it as a rapper — yup, E.B. has an album coming out later this year. (Listen to one of her songs here.)

You interested in seeing an Eazy-E movie?

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Box Set: Eazy-E

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Wait for It – Interpol, Daniel Craig

[Wait for It is our regular roundup of things to look forward to in
pop culture.
]

Music

Interpol_waitMope-rockers Interpol have wrapped recording on their third album, due out early this summer on Capitol – their first for their major label. The foursome, the rightful heirs to the suicide sounds of Joy Division and New Order, told NME about a couple of songs (?Mammoth? and ?The Heimlich Manoeuvre?), explained that they?d used more keyboards this time and announced tour dates – in Canada. The reason? Speculation has it that Interpol goes down better in wintry weather, and it stays cold up north at least until August. At least. [NME.com]

– Jonathan Durbin

Movies

Dcraig_waitDaniel Craig‘s ice-blue eyes may be of little use to him in an upcoming role. The man best known as Bond is eying a role in the big-screen adaptation of Blindness, the book that helped nab its author Jos? Saramago the Nobel Prize for literature. The story concerns a town whose citizens mysteriously go blind. Julianne Moore is attached, which is good because she’s awesome and bad because her hotness is totally going to waste on a bunch of blind people. [Hollywood Reporter/Reuters]

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Wait for It – Gerard’s Snake, Rick’s Wake

[Wait for It is our regular roundup of things to look forward to in
pop culture.
]

Movies

Butler_wait
Thanks to 300‘s ballistic opening-weekend box office, star Gerard Butler suddenly is hot property and so is the upcoming remake of John Carpenter‘s 1981 cult flick Escape From New York that the actor’s attached to. A bidding war has launched for the remake, which is to be written by Ken Nolan (Black Hawk Down). Gerard will be filling Kurt Russell‘s decidedly big shoes in this decidedly risky venture, considering how beloved Carpenter’s flick is to many. "A man should remember his past," says Kurt’s character Snake in the original movie. If he’s smart, Gerard will live by those words. [Variety.com]

Music

Rickjames_waitAn onslaught of new Rick James related material is on its way, including an autobiography (Memoirs of a Superfreak, due April 15) and possibly a biopic. Not the least of it all is the inevitable posthumously released music, which the world just got its first taste of via the new single "Deeper Still." That cut is due off an as-yet-untitled album due this spring, which collaborator Danny LeMelle says will show off Rick’s rock and roll and Americana tendencies. There are at least three other Rick records in the can, which means that if you miss him now, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll be sick of him. [USA Today]

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Wait for It – Buckley Exhumed, Disney Enlightened

[Wait for It is our regular roundup of things to look forward to in
pop culture. The future is so bright.
]

Music

Jeffbuckley_waitSure, it’s emotionally confusing to look forward to the anniversary of the day original emo heartthrob Jeff Buckley died.  But that’s precisely what I’m doing. A collection of the more famous-in-death Buckley’s work, So Real: Songs From Jeff Buckley, will be released on May 22, marking a decade since the singer drowned in the Mississippi. This is the third posthumous release of the singer’s work, culling material from his albums Grace, Sketches for My Sweetheart the Drunk and Live at Sine. In addition to the audio component, the hour-long doc on the singer’s career Amazing Grace will be included in the package. [Billboard.com]

–Lauren Harris

Movies

Disney_waitDisney announced at its annual shareholder meeting Thursday that it will produce a hand-drawn movie called The Frog Princess, which will feature "the very first African-American Disney princess." Gee, it only took the company, what, 70 years? Welcome to post-Jim Crow America, Disney! The flick will be set in New Orleans and should be out in 2009. So it’ll still be a while before you can say, in good faith a la Kanye West, "Disney does care about black people." [Hollywood Reporter]

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Wait for It – Rachel’s War, Swizz’s Choice

[Wait for It is our regular roundup of things to look forward to in
pop culture. The future, it turns out, isn't really that futuristic.
]

Movies

Rachelmc_waitRachel McAdams has signed on for a role in the Iraq war drama The Return. It’s about time Rachel chose a potentially heavy-hitting project: she’s got major ground to cover if she wants to live up to her reputation as the "next Julia Roberts."  The Return will concern three injured soldiers who are faced with harsh realities upon returning to the U.S. As exciting as Rachel’s involvement is, it doesn’t really hold a candle to co-star Michael Pena‘s plotline, which is set to involve post-war impotence. That is what you call drama on top of drama. [Hollywood Reporter/Reuters]

Music

Swizz_wait
Hip-hop producer Swizz Beatz has fashioned a career out of outfitting others with his work, and it seems only appropriate that his upcoming album, One Man Band, will be a multi-guest affair. The disc, which is set to drop May 15, will feature the likes of Kanye West, Just Blaze (both on production) and Coldplay, whose contribution, "Part of the Plan," may be brought to the small screen with a video helmed by Crash director Paul Haggis. All that sounds great, but one question: why does a producer need to enlist other producers for his album? Getting lazy there, Swizz? [Billboard.com]

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Wait for It – Fountains of Wayne, Boys of Beastie, Actors of Woody

[Wait for It is our regular roundup of things to look forward to in
pop culture. Whatever gets you through the week...
]

Music

Fow_waitWhen you write a psych-pop ditty called "Revolving Dora" about a dervish chick ("there’s something blurry about that girl, oh yeahhhh") you deserve a high-five for wit. Cue applause, then: Fountains of Wayne return to action on April 3 with the rather remarkable Traffic and Weather. After a weekend’s-worth of in-home spinning (or is that revolving?) I’m here to say it sounds great. You know how catchy their stuff is. You know how poignant their barbs can be. Yep, they’ve got it going on again. Heads up to hackysack fiends; one tune’s called "Planet of Weed."

– Jim Macnie

Beastie_wait
Graying rappers the Beastie Boys are putting the final touches on their upcoming album. Nothing is known about the release aside from Adam Yauch’s suggestion that it may be out this summer (to coincide with a smattering of concert dates the Beasties have set). It’s hard to predict how this record’s sound will go, without even so much as a title at this point. Might we suggest Hip-Hop’s Not Dead, It’s Just Kind of Tired Because Now It Has Kids To Feed? [Billboard.com]

Movies

Penelope_waitWoody Allen soon may be spicing things up. Javier Bardem (Collateral, Before Night Falls) told reporters Monday that he and Penelope Cruz are set to appear in a Woody flick that’s set to film this summer in Barcelona. Penelope has the most to gain: if this is good, it can continue the career upswing she’s experiencing, thanks to Volver. But who knows what this project will even be about? Again, we don’t have so much as a title. Might we suggest Anything Else But Another Unfunny Dramedy About White People? [AP/washingtonpost.com]

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Wait for It: Bjork and Harry Potter, Sitting in a Tree

[Wait for It is our regular roundup of things to look forward to in
pop culture. Viva la future!
]

Music

Bjork_wait_1Bjork has announced the title of her next album, which means one thing: it’s time to bust out the dictionary. Volta, whose title comes from a musical term for "turn" or "time" (as in "the first time"), is set to drop May 7. Though the Icelandic oddball wrote and produced the record, as usual, she had plenty of help: Timbaland worked on three of the 10 tracks’ beats, Antony and the JohnsonsAntony Hegarty sings on two, Lightning Bolt‘s Brian Chippendale and freelance drummer Chris Corsano take turns hitting skins, African musicians Toumani Diabate and Konono No1 dropped by, and a 10-piece female Icelandic brass section rounds out the list of cooks in the kitchen. Maybe most exciting is the contribution from Mark Bell, who helped make Bjork’s Homogenic the classic that it is. We could be looking at the avant-hop-Afro-noise-techno-big-band album of the year here. [bjork.com/unity]

Movies

Danielr_wait_1

It’s now carved in stone (or, really, etched in forehead) that Daniel Radcliffe will play Harry Potter through the rest of the series’ run. Daniel recently signed on for the final two Potter flicks — the first of which, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, begins shooting in September. By the time the seventh film rolls around, the 17-year-old Daniel will be legal, which begs the question: with his recent racy role in the UK stage production of Equus, can we expect a decidedly grown up Harry? Harry Potter and the Fan-Alienating Nude Scene, anyone? [Reuters]