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1) Tupac Shakur: His hologram steals the show at Coachella and makes plans to go on the road. Celebrities everywhere amend their wills to dictate post-death image usage and declare which is their best side.
2) Taylor Swift: So she didn’t end up playing Eponine in “Les Miserables,” but now comes word that she may play Joni Mitchell in the adaptation of “Girls Like Us.” I’ve looked at this from Both Sides Now and I just don’t see it.
3) Lionel Richie: He has to wait a few weeks, but justice is his as “Tuskegee” makes it to No. 1 on the Billboard 200 after Madonna’s crafty concert ticket tie in propels “MDNA” over him.
4) Dick Clark: The World’s Oldest Teenager is rating records in the sky. New Year’s Eve will never be the same
5) Colton Dixon: Fan fave on “American Idol” is voted off. Record label deal to come in 5...4...3...2...1 (or as soon as the season is over).
6) Ted Nugent: He hasn’t made a decent record since “Cat Scratch Fever” and now he may have a police record if he keeps up the trash talk about the president. Or as one of my friends joked, the secret service may have cleared him, but we bet he gets audited by the IRS for the next 20 years.
7) Bob Marley: The largest musical star in the world gets treated right in Kevin MacDonald’s documentary, “Marley.” Interesting factoid: Marley fathered 11 children with seven different women. That’s not “One Love,” that’s “Whole Lotta Love.”
8) Record Store Day: In five short years, it has become THE day for independent retailers. More than 400 artists are participating in this year’s April 21 extravaganza. Did you go hug your local retail store on Saturday?
9) Willie Nelson: At 4:20 p.m. on 4/20 (no kidding), an 8-foot tall bronze statue of Nelson was unveiled outside the W Hotel in Austin. That’s nice, but we think he belongs on Mt. Rushmore #sodoesjohnnycash
10) Levon Helm: The Weight is off the best drummer/singer ever. Take a load off, Levon and thank you.
James Cameron is not a man who believes in boundaries. He’s been pushing the edges of technology as well as his own creative limits (and those of his crew) for years. He recently returned from a journey to the Mariana Trench (a 7-mile-deep canyon and the ocean's deepest known point). He was in fact the first person in history to make it a solo trip.
Equally impressive is the fact that he helped to design the vessel that made the heretofore impossible journey.
I happen to love Cameron. For me, he is the best possible version of bonkers and gives "no limits" a very good name. Many of us spend our lives imagining the extraordinary. Cameron spends his in relentless pursuit of it. Amidst his other achievements, he is, of course, responsible for the top grossing film of all time: “Avatar.”
Predictions can be wildly uneven, as we saw last week when it looked like Adele’s “21” was a lock to go back to No. 1 on the Billboard 200, as of the Friday before the chart’s Sunday close.
However, Lionel Richie’s CBS special, which aired Friday night after Hits Daily Double had already run its predictions, propelling “Tuskegee” to the top spot.
So this week, it’s even more of a horserace to see who will snag the No. 1 spot when the chart is released on Wednesday. Right now, “Tuskegee” and “Love is a Four-Letter Word” from Jason Mraz are in a dead heat, with both targeted to sell between 100,000 and 110,000.
Mraz will be joined in the top 10 by two other debuts, Train’s “California 37,” which will likely bow at No. 4 and hip hop artist Future’s debut studio set, “Pluto,” looks strong for No. 7.
Adele’s “21” continues to be in the Top 5, and should easily claim the No. 3 spot with up to 90,000 copies sold. Nicki Minaj’s “Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded” rounds out the top 5 at No. 5 (although at this point, “Roman Reloaded” and One Direction’s “Up All Night” are too close to call, so she may be at No. 6 and the boy band at No. 5.
Top 10 veterans round out the rest of the top slots: Gotye, whose “Somebody That I Used To Know” is No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 this week, will likely be at No. 8 with “Making Mirrors,” Bonnie Raitt at No. 9 with “Slipstream” and Rascal Flatts at No. 10 with “Changed.”
You've got a lot of options for what to watch and how, and we want to help you plan your weekend with a new column where we'll highlight three things you can see in theaters, three things you'll find streaming, and three titles new to home video. Appropriately enough, we call this The Weekend Watch.
It's the calm before the storm.
Right around the corner now, summer gets started. There's something happening every weekend from now until September. This is it. For me, the summer started about a week ago when I saw "The Avengers," and I'm hoping to be able to write about that soon. I'm going to be writing up this summer's movies as they start screening, and I'm also planning to write about the Alamo Drafthouse "Summer Of 1982" films all summer long. Add that to the ongoing "James Bond Declassified" series, and you're going to have quite the reading list here this season.
So what's opening this weekend, when all the studios are just getting ready, revving up, preparing to unleash the things they've got planned for us? What's streaming? What should you be finding on Blu-ray or DVD?
And as expected, the Rich Ross era is quickly over.
It's always callous in these situations to say "I told you so," but when Bob Iger first announced that Rich Ross would be taking over as Chairman of Walt Disney Studios two and a half years ago there was a collective eyebrow raised across Hollywood. Ross had turned Disney Channel into a moneymaker for Disney and CEO Bob Iger saw him as "visionary" who could streamline the movie studios offerings while focusing more on cinematic brands that could have life across the entire corporation. It's a synergistic approach that all media companies try to achieve, but rarely succeed at (Fox and the old Viacom being the most successful). Even with a changing entertainment landscape where more television and movie talent jump between the small and big screen, Ross did not have the background or skills to handle a job of this magnitude. And, the industry experienced this same scenario only a few years ago when Brad Grey put former FOX executive Gail Berman in charge of production at Paramount Pictures. That also lasted just about two years and was pretty much a colossal failure.
Happy 420! Could the international day to hail all things pot have any better spokespeople than Willie Nelson and Snoop Dogg? The answer is resoundingly no. And just in case they haven’t made their love of the herb clear enough, they return today with “Roll Me Up & Smoke Me When I Die,” from Nelson’s forthcoming album, “Heroes.” Listen to it here.
If the song is new to you— it's a standard in Nelson's live show —the surprise is that this version is a rollicking, country tune that stands on its own merits as a truly enjoyable song, as opposed to some novelty. The musicianship is great, the outlaw country attitude is essential, the picking is delicious, guests Jamey Johnson and Kris Kristofferson add just the right amount of gravel, and, believe it or not, Snoop is totally convincing on a a country track.
[More after the jump...]
For all you fans of "Criminal Minds," quick: why would a dry cleaner murder the band Liars?
There are a few answers but mostly questions in the music video for Liars' "No.1 Against the Rush," as a killer finds a few ways to capture the three-piece band. It's not cute, though. It's all disturbed blue hues and everyday circumstances to the weird lyrical sibling "I want you." Tonight's an Ambien night.
I'm not sure I'm ready for it, but yesterday's full lineup announcement brought home the fact that this year's Cannes Film Festival is less than a month away. It scarcely feels like a year ago that the likes of "The Artist," "The Tree of Life" and "Drive" entered our lives, but here we are, ready to welcome next batch of potential crossover hits, treasured obscurities and inevitable disappointments.
With that, welcome to our Cannes Check series, in which I'll individually preview each of the 22 titles in Competition. (Much as I'd love to give similar treatment to Un Certain Regard and other festival strands, I am but one man.) Same as last year, I'll be covering one film a day, in alphabetical order of the director's surname. Tidily enough, that means we're kicking off with the film that itself will be raising the curtain on this year's festival -- Wes Anderson's "Moonrise Kingdom."
A quick review of last night's "Awake" coming up just as soon as I have a cassette player...