Latest Blog Posts

<p>Hailee Steinfeld at the 2010 Academy Awards.</p>

Hailee Steinfeld at the 2010 Academy Awards.

Credit: AP Photo/Matt Sayles

Hailee Steinfeld joins all-star cast of Tommy Lee Jones's 'The Homesman'

She joins Meryl Streep, Hilary Swank, James Spader and more

We haven't seen anything from Hailee Steinfeld since she scored a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination two years ago for her (leading) role in the Coen Brothers' "True Grit" -- but at just 16 years of age, she can afford to take her time. And whatever time she has lost, she's about to make up for in a big way.

Steinfeld is set to appear in no fewer than five films this year, including roles in "Ender's Game," John Carney's "Once" follow-up "Can a Song Save Your Life?" and the umpteenth redo of "Romeo and Juliet" -- every generation needs its own, after all. (Want to feel old? Steinfeld was born one month after Baz Luhrmann's MTV-chic adaptation of the Shakespeare standard opened in US theaters.)

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<p>Donald Glover as Troy (with guest Troy puppet pal)&nbsp;on &quot;Community.&quot;</p>

Donald Glover as Troy (with guest Troy puppet pal) on "Community."

Credit: NBC

Review: 'Community' - 'Intro to Felt Surrogacy'

Dean Pelton uses puppet therapy to help the study group confront a traumatic incident

A review of tonight's "Community" coming up just as soon as I grab this thing that's definitely not a whip...

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<p>Nick Offerman as Ron Swanson in &quot;Parks and Recreation.&quot;</p>

Nick Offerman as Ron Swanson in "Parks and Recreation."

Credit: NBC

Review: 'Parks and Recreation' - 'Animal Control'

Leslie tries to fix a broken department, Ann tries to nurse Ron and Ben tries to get a charitable donation

A review of tonight's "Parks and Recreation" coming up just as soon as I can hire a Mexican elf...

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<p>Candice Glover from Wednesday's &quot;American Idol&quot;</p>

Candice Glover from Wednesday's "American Idol"

Credit: FOX

Recap: 'American Idol' - Top 6: Results - Plus Kelly Clarkson and Scotty McCreery

Will Lazaro go home or will we see the Judges' Save?

I thought I had it all figured out last week. I assumed that unless Lazaro Arbos went home, anybody left would receive the Judges' Save and be kept around. What I didn't count on was Lazaro finishing so high -- Top 3 and the producers probably know exactly how far up -- that the judges couldn't afford to keep Burnell Taylor for another week for fear of losing one of the five women in a double-elimination this week.

Instead, Burnell went home and we were treated to Lazaro's cover of "Close To You," which stands as one of the worst performances ever by a Top 10 finalist on "American Idol." I guess we would have been treated to that performance either way, though. Never mind.

But anyway... I'm started tonight's episode with the exact same assumption as last week: The only person going home tonight will be Lazaro. Any of the five women would get the Save. 

Let's see how things play out...

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<p>I'm going to play a drinking game in 'Man&nbsp;Of Steel' where I take a shot every time there's an American flag somewhere in the frame, and I'm going to die 45 minutes into the film.</p>

I'm going to play a drinking game in 'Man Of Steel' where I take a shot every time there's an American flag somewhere in the frame, and I'm going to die 45 minutes into the film.

Credit: Warner Bros

Are we close to learning what plans Warner has for the DC universe?

It sounds like 'Man Of Steel' is a make-or-break moment for the studio

It's a big summer for superhero films. There is no film more important to the overall success of a studio's longterm plans than "Man Of Steel" is for Warner Bros, though. Marvel could survive it if "Iron Man 3" didn't work, and Fox has certainly weathered a terrible "Wolverine" movie already. For Warner, though, everything they have planned in the near-future depends on them proving that they can get their most significant icon right. Warner needs you to believe a man can fly.


The good news is that early buzz from people who have seen the film is very enthusiastic. It sounds like they've managed to ground Superman in the real world while also making sure that he does indeed feel… well, super. When we get 74 different superhero films every year, it's not easy to make us feel a sense of wonder anymore. It's a character thing more than it's about the effects at this point, and certainly everything we're hearing from Zack Snyder and David Goyer and Christopher Nolan sounds like they're at least starting with the right ideas.

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Credit: MTV

Listen: CulturePop Podcast No. 9 - 'Accidental Racist,' Luke Bryan, 'Dr. Who' and more

We discuss 'Buckwild''s cancelation and the return of 'Mad Men,' too

This week we had a lot to talk about -- the furor over Brad Paisley's "Accidental Racist," the cancelation of "Buckwild," Alec Baldwin potentially taking over Carson Daly's late night spot, the return of "Mad Men" and so much more. But go ahead and listen, why don't you? Here's the rundown: 

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Taylor Swift's new Diet Coke ad: Watch

Taylor Swift's new Diet Coke ad: Watch

You're never too old to feel 22

Beyonce has Pepsi, Taylor Swift has Diet Coke. Swift’s new commercial for Diet Coke premieres tonight on “American Idol.”

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Kelly Clarkson</p>

Kelly Clarkson

Credit: AP Photo

Kelly Clarkson decks the halls with new Christmas album

What's that about a 'From Justin to Kelly' sequel?

Kelly Clarkson will be rocking around the Christmas tree this holiday season.

Clarkson told CMT Radio Live with Cody Allan that she is cutting the Christmas set.  “I’ve been dying to make a Christmas record for more than a decade and I’m finally making one,” she says. She adds it will probably be her favorite record that she makes because she loves Christmas. No word on a release date yet.

In addition to producer Greg Kurstin, Clarkson will work with Brooks & Dunn’s Ronnie Dunn on the seasonal record, according to Idolator.  The album follows her current greatest hits set.

Clarkson also revealed that she didn’t want to do the “From Justin to Kelly” movie, but was “legally obligated....I think Jimmy Fallon and I should do” a sequel. Oh, from your lips to God’s ears...

Clarkson will hit the road with Maroon 5 on the Honda Civic Tour, which starts Aug. 1 at St. Louis’s Verizon Wireless Amphitheater.

If you need your daily dose of Clarkson, she will appear on tonight's "American Idol," the show where, as you know, it all began for the Season One winner in 2002.

And, in case you were wondering, she also plans to have yellow roses at her wedding. “I’ll be drunk at the end,” she also added.


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<p>Jamie Foxx at the 2006 MTV&nbsp;Movie&nbsp;Awards</p>

Jamie Foxx at the 2006 MTV Movie Awards

Credit: AP Photo

Jamie Foxx to receive the MTV Generation Award at the 2013 MTV Movie Awards

From 'In Living Color' to 'Any Given Sunday,' 'Ray' to 'Django Unchained'

Back when the MTV Movie Awards first started, they had a Lifetime Achievement prize. But it was sort of a joke. The winners were Jason Voorhees from the "Friday the 13th" franchise, The Three Stooges, "Shaft" star Richard Roundtree, Jackie Chan (those last two being the most "legitimate" winners, I suppose), Godzilla, Chewbacca from the "Star Wars" franchise and Ron Howard's brother, Clint (who appears in all of Howard's films). In 1999 they discontinued it, thank God.

In 2005, it was brought back around with an undercurrent of sincerity and dubbed the "MTV Generation Award." The inaugural recipient was Tom Cruise and the winners since have been Jim Carrey, Mike Myers, Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, Sandra Bullock (tied in nicely with her Oscar march in 2010), Reese Witherspoon and Johnny Depp. This year, the award goes to actor Jamie Foxx, nominated for his performance in "Django Unchained" and an honor nicely positioned as a boost to his upcoming summer blockbuster "White House Down."

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<p>Jeff Nichols (left)&nbsp;and Matthew McConaughey on the set of &quot;Mud&quot;</p>

Jeff Nichols (left) and Matthew McConaughey on the set of "Mud"

Credit: Roadside Attractions

Jeff Nichols on puppy love and writing 'Mud' for Matthew McConaughey over a decade ago

The film's roots stretch back farther than you might expect

"It's been a long wait," writer/director Jeff Nichols says about his upcoming film "Mud," and indeed it has, on so many levels.

The film first screened at the Cannes Film Festival nearly a year ago, where it was picked up by Roadside Attractions for domestic release. But rather than risk it being lost in the fray by trickling screenings throughout the fall festival circuit, the indie distributor held on to it. The film, which stars Matthew McConaughey (in the thick of a career renaissance), was brought back into the light at the Sundance Film Festival in January as Roadside primed it for a late-April release.

Its roots, however, stretch back so much farther, to Nichols' days as a film school student at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. It was a girl breaking up with him in high school that got him thinking on the film's themes of romance. "It's one of the lamest reasons that you sit and write a movie," he admits, "but that level of heartbreak from your first love, even if it is puppy love, is pretty intense. Just because you're young I think people dismiss those emotions and those feelings, but I think that might be unfair. Look at Romeo and Juliet. They were in their teens."

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<p>Jay-Z and Beyonce in Cuba.</p>

Jay-Z and Beyonce in Cuba.

Credit: AP Photo

Jay-Z strikes back at Cuba trip critics with new song 'Open Letter': Listen

Rapper also addresses recent brouhaha over the Brooklyn Nets

Sounds like vacation is over for Jay-Z.

The rapper recently took a much-publicized trip to Cuba with his wife Beyonce, but it didn't take long for him to churn out a new track -- with a surprising subject matter. 

Several Florida republicans (including Senator Marco Rubio) weren't too happy about music's No. 1 power couple breaking the U.S.A.'s longstanding tourism restriction of the Caribbean island, but Jay-Z isn't about to let their words keep him (and Bey) down. 

In just a matter of days, Jay recorded and released what can only be called a diss track entitled "Open Letter."

Short, stripped down and to the point, there's no mistaking to whom this "Letter" is addressed. And, to paraphrase an earlier Jay-Z track, he don't need no hook for this sh*t.

"They wanna give me jail time and a fine/Fine/let me commit a real crime," Jay-Z threat-raps, no doubt responding directly to Rubio and co.'s letter-wrting and Twitter campaigns decrying the duo's Cuban vacation. 

Later, "I'm in Cuba/I love Cubans" is followed by the sound of Jigga taking a puff on a cigar, "Scarface"-style. 

In the song, Jay-Z claims he got "White House clearance" from his pal the president. He raps, "Obama said, 'Chill you're goinna get me impeached'/You don't need this shit anyway/Chill with me on the beach."

Earlier this week, the U.S. Treasury Department stated that the couple's trip was indeed legit, having been previously authorized as an "educational and cultural exchange."

However, just hours after the song was released today, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney addressed the issue, saying that, while Jay-Z indeed followed proper protocol, he didn’t communicate directly with President Obama. Carney added, hilariously, "I guess nothing rhymes with Treasury. Because Treasury gives licenses for travel and the White House has nothing to do with it."

Hova also addresses the recent kerfuffle about the NBA team he co-owns, the Brooklyn Nets, saying "I would've moved the Nets to Brooklyn for free/Except I made millions off you f*cking dweebs/I still own the building/I'm still keeping my seats/You buy that bullshit/you'd better keep your receipts."

It's been a while since "dweeb" has been used with such venom, but somehow Jay-Z makes it work. 

Listen to "Open Letter" here:

What do you think of "Open Letter"? And Jay-Z and Beyonce's trip to Cuba?

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Exclusive: Sarah Brightman duets with Israel Kamakawiwo'ole on 'Hawaii '78'

Exclusive: Sarah Brightman duets with Israel Kamakawiwo'ole on 'Hawaii '78'

Late, great folk singer joins a famed soprano on space-bound song from 'Dreamchaser'

Sarah Brightman has an unusual and beautiful duet partner on the latest song to arrive from her new album. "Hawaii '78" features the late and great Hawaiian singer Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, who originally released "Hawai'i '78" for his 1993 album "Facing Future." That album also featured his most famous track, his cover of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," and coincidentally "Hawai'i '78" was another expression of hope and prayer.

Here, Brightman is joining in that vision with this interpretation, "Hawaii '78." A bonus track available only on Target's limited edition CD of "Dreamchaser," this version sends the roots-laden song space-bound, with the famed soprano's voice padded with harmony, synths and strings.

Listen to the exclusive premiere of "Hawaii '78" below, and then give a go at the original.

Brightman's interstellar sound here is part of the larger aesthetic on "Dreamchaser," which expresses the Broadway star's ultimate goal of traveling into space. And she may yet: last year, it was announced that Brightman is "anticipated to be the first musician to travel to the International Space Station." You can learn more about the voyage in the vid below.

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