It’s been said before, but it’s worth reiterating, especially in consideration of “Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded”: Nicki Minaj is a rapper, a better rapper than she is a singer. Let the rapper rap.
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"Mad Men" season means the Firewall & Iceberg Podcast will continue running long for a while, especially when we have a week filled with so many premieres, from shows we both like ("Scandal," "Nurse Jackie" season 4) to shows we're both apathetic about ("Best Friends Forever") to shows we're very much split on ("Magic City"). Plus, we delve into all the recent reports of a "Community" feud between Dan Harmon and Chevy Chase.
One of the great traditions of Hammer Studios is that when you have a hit, you make a follow-up. As a result, I'm not shocked to hear that they announced today that Hammer is going to begin development on "The Woman In Black: Angels Of Death," the next installment in the story begun in their hit spring movie, "The Woman In Black."
Daniel Radcliffe's first major post-"Harry Potter" performance may have had something to do with the film's international success, but before there was a film, there was a book, and then there was a stage show, both of which were also very successful. There was meat on the bones to begin with, and this wasn't just some cheap cash-in horror film. Hammer's approach to film series has never been to just make the typical sequels, either, so it makes sense that they'd push the definition with this series as well.
For horror fans, the return of Hammer to the world of international production is a welcome event, and even if they did release the risible "The Resident," they also were part of the very well-made "Let Me In" and "Wake Wood," which both signaled that there were people involved in this new version of the veteran British company that were determined to try harder, who respected the legacy that their company represents.
While most of the action took place on the stage for the Academy of Country Music Awards last night, there were some backstage moments that gave some insight into the artists’ off-stage life, including how reigning male and female vocalists of the year, Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert, plan to spend their one-year anniversary. (Relive the ACMs with our live blog)
*Taylor Swift, who snared the fan-voted Entertainer of the Year award, contemplated how to reward her adorable Scottish Fold cat, Meredith, who appeared in this video Swift made soliciting votes. “What should I give her? Milk or something to celebrate? Is that what they do?,” she asked reporters in the press room. Someone smartly suggested tuna, which seemed like a winner to Swift. “We should celebrate. The cat definitely helped with the viral video. I don’t think she knows that she helped, but I’m excited about it.” Swift added she is “intensely” writing the new record now, her follow-up to “Speak Now.” “I hope it’s good. Keep your fingers crossed.. I would love it if it was good.”
Music from the first season of “Smash” will come out May 1. Columbia Records, the same label that handles “Glee’s” audio output and has been putting the songs from each “Smash”episode on iTunes, will put out “The Music of ‘Smash:’ Season 1.”
The soundtrack, track listing below, will include many of the originals, penned for the show by Grammy winners Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, and “Touch Me,” which OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder wrote specifically for Katharine McPhee’s character, Karen Cartwright. There are also covers of Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful,” Colbie Caillat’s “Brighter Than The Sun,” and Florence + the Machine’s “Shake It Out.”
In my interview with Whitney Houston last fall, she spoke much of the themes of motherhood in her forthcoming remake of the 1976 film "Sparkle." In the first look at the film in the newly released trailer, it seems to feature a lot of that, and what it is to be a teenager and a rising star.
The film clip debuted this morning, featuring its namesake played by Jordin Sparks, plus other top cast like Mike Epps, Carmen Ejogo, Tike Sumpter, Derek Luke and -- yup! -- Cee Lo Green. Houston appears as the Williams sisters' sassy mom, who considers her past as a rising star that never reached her potential.
The film promises to integrate music from the Motown era, plus new compositions from R. Kelly with input from executive producer Whitney Houston herself. The trailer doesn't indicate yet what the late singer's big number in the film will look like, but with all that talent, it's not a question "what" song, but just how many.
The season's penultimate episode isn't very eventful, but nearly all the ladies are working it. Phaedra's getting closer to her dreams of big time funeral business. Cynthia's almost ready to launch her modeling school. Kandi's still prepping her sex toy line. Nene contemplates moving to LA and looking for someone crazy enough to cast her alongside professional actors. (Hello, Ryan Murphy!) And Kim gets engaged (and a spin-off!)...
A review of tonight's "Mad Men" coming up just as soon as I have a resume up my sleeve...
I would not call myself Seth Macfarlane's biggest fan.
I'm not going to waste time beating up on "Family Guy," because at this point, either you like its scattershot approach to pop culture comedy, or you don't, and there's not really much of a chance someone's going to convince you to laugh or convince you not to laugh. I think the show has settled into its own weird, icky groove, and I think it's a little funnier now than it was in the early days. Part of that is that Seth Macfarlane has become more and more comfortable with the voice of the show, and at this point, it's carved out its own weird corner of the comedy world.
My favorite moment of his so far is his work in "Hellboy: The Golden Army," where I think he gives a genuinely great vocal performance. His choices there make me laugh out loud, and I think he also finds some great strange notes to play in the film that are unexpected and wonderful. That was the moment that convinced me not to underestimate Macfarlane, and over time, I think he's proven himself to be a very sharp wit when he's appearing as himself.
Also, he could buy and sell me a zillion times over. So he's got that going for him.