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<p>Justin Timberlake</p>

Justin Timberlake

Credit: NBC

Music Power Rankings: Justin Timberlake narrowly tops David Bowie

Pink and Dave Grohl also make the list

1. Justin Timberlake: First he conquers “Saturday Night Live,” then he slays it on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” for five nights in a row. #EGOTby35

2. Luke Bryan: The country star lands his first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 with “Spring Break...Here to Party.” Are we the only ones that find it a little creepy that at 36 he’s still celebrating Spring Break?

3. David Bowie: His first album in 10 years, “The Next Day” looks like it will enter at the top of the charts next week. Not bad for someone who did absolutely nothing to help promote the set.

4. SXSW: Hipsters decry the annual music convention in Austin is so over as they simultaneously whine that they can’t get into the Prince or “Sound City” shows.

5. Dave Grohl:
His status as most-beloved rock star remains intact after a passionate, soul-stirring keynote at SXSW.

6. Quincy Jones:
The legend turned 80 this week and he’s still more active than four 20 -year olds combined.

7. Pink: It’s looking like the biggest hit from “The Truth About Love” is still to come as “Just Give Me A Reason,” featuring fun’s Nate Ruess  soars 47-18 on the Billboard Hot 100.

8. The Grammys: NARAS will produce a Grammy-themed cruise with Norwegian Cruise Lines. Grammy winners and nominees will perform and there will be more than 4,000 Grammy artifacts on board.

9. AEG: In quite the surprise move, the concert promotion/live venue company is taken off the market (after not getting the $8 million it was asking for) and longterm majordomo Tim Leiweke departs. Is that just the start of the changes?

10. Yahoo: Because the world needs another festival, Yahoo announces “Yahoo on the Road,” a 21-date summer outing featuring such acts as Fun., The Lumineers, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Kendrick Lamar and Imagine Dragons.

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<p>Freddie Highmore as Norman Bates in &quot;Bates Motel.&quot;</p>

Freddie Highmore as Norman Bates in "Bates Motel."

Credit: A&E

'Bates Motel' producers Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin on bringing 'Psycho' into the present

How will the A&E drama about young Norman Bates work on a weekly basis?
Carlton Cuse and Kerry Ehrin both have experiencing handling material created by others. Cuse became co-showrunner on “Lost” midway through the series’ first season after it had been created by J.J. Abrams and Damon Lindelof, and Ehrin was one of the original staff writers on “Friday Night Lights,” which had been adapted from the movie (and before that from the non-fiction book). But neither has been given control of a property quite as famous as the one they have in “Bates Motel,” the new A&E drama that debuts on Monday night at 10.
 
Though Cuse has stressed that “Bates Motel” is not a direct prequel to “Psycho” — it takes place in the present, and the writers aren’t married to the idea of taking the characters down the same path we see in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 classic — it still involves the teenage years of Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) and his disturbingly close relationship with his mother Norma (Vera Farmiga).
 
At press tour in January, I spoke with Cuse and Ehrin about the challenges of working with one of the most notorious killers in screen history, how they see the Bates family’s story working as a weekly series, and more.
 
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<p>Uh-oh.</p>

Uh-oh.

Credit: A24

Tell us what you thought of 'Spring Breakers'

Harmony Korine's new spin on disenchantment opens in limited release this weekend

I've offered up my defense of Harmony Korine's "Spring Breakers," a hypnotic depiction of the disenchantment of youth and a state-of-mind film that gets more right than it doesn't. Pity, though, that there are those seemingly willing to make an opinion without diving into the film. But I guess from the outside, I can understand why this one smells a certain way to a certain type.

"It's a rather potent study of 'spring break' as a state of mind, the desperate race for greener pastures that grows like a fungus in small town America," I wrote of the film on Thursday before planting a flag for James Franco's awards hopes. But whether this one finds that kind of rhythm at the end of the year or not (likely not), I'm happy with considering it one of the year's best films so far. But I want to know what everyone else thinks, because I anticipate even more varied reactions as it makes its way to the public. So when and if you get the chance to see the film this weekend or when it expands wider next week, give us your thoughts in the comments section, and feel free to vote in the poll below.

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<p>&quot;The Incredible Burt Wonderstone&quot;</p>

"The Incredible Burt Wonderstone"

Credit: Warner Bros.

Tell us what you thought of 'The Incredible Burt Wonderstone'

The Steve Carell/Jim Carrey magician comedy hits theaters this weekend

Despite the lows of late, I'm a big Jim Carrey fan. So I'll probably go see "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone" at some point this week, even if the reviews are pretty dreadful. "The good things in the film are more frustrating because the film never finds a way to tie it all together, thematically or tonally, " HitFix's Drew McWeeny wrote in his review. "That would have been a magic trick worth applauding if they had."

I imagine a fair amount of the readership is going to give it a whirl this weekend, so as always, we have a space for you to tell us what you thought. Is it a nice dose of comedy abracadabra or a total con? Rifle off your take in the comments section, and feel free to vote in our poll below.

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<p>Jeff Probst and Brandon Hantz of &quot;Survivor: Caramoan&quot;</p>

Jeff Probst and Brandon Hantz of "Survivor: Caramoan"

Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Interview: Brandon Hantz talks 'Survivor: Caramoan'

Don't expect any apologies from the latest 'Survivor' bootee
You probably aren't expecting any apologies from "Survivor: Caramoan" castmember Brandon Hantz after the events featured on Wednesday's (March 13) episode. 
 
And you won't get any in this exit interview. 
 
On Wednesday's episode, after threatening all season long to raise ruckus at camp if things went against him, Brandon poured out his tribe's beans and rice, upended furniture and got into several shouting matches with Phillip Shepard. This led the Favorites tribe to decide to forfeit the next Immunity challenge in an effort to get out from under Brandon's dark cloud, which prompted an unprecedented battlefield Tribal Council moderated by host Jeff Probst and devolving into another Brandon-Phillip shouting match.
 
In his exit interview, I asked Brandon if he felt regret or the need to apologize. He does not. I asked if he felt any concern about making his teammates including Andrea and Dawn cry. Half-and-half. I asked if he felt the other castaways were in any danger. He does not.
 
Anyway, you can judge Brandon's words for yourself.
 
Full Q&A after the break...
 
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"American Horror Story"

 "American Horror Story"

Credit: FX

Ryan Murphy reveals the witchy new title for 'American Horror Story'

Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Lily Rabe take the stage with a surprise guest

Joining some of the stars of "American Horror Story: Asylum" at PaleyFest in Beverly Hills, Ryan Murphy gave the audience a tantalizing hint of what's to come in season three. "I can't tell you what it's about," he admitted, before revealing the new title: "Coven." "It's a really cool idea we've been talking about for a couple of years," he added. 

He also revealed that the show, which has been heavily reliant on sound stages in the first two seasons, will be hitting the road this time around, shooting in New Orleans and "a couple of different cities." 

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<p>The cover of Bon Jovi's &quot;What About Now&quot;</p>

The cover of Bon Jovi's "What About Now"

It's David Bowie vs. Bon Jovi for No. 1 on next week's Billboard 200

Which one of the veterans will come out on top? Six new entries slated for Top 10

It’s a battle of the veterans on the Billboard 200 next week as Bon Jovi and David Bowie duke it out for the top spot. They are far from the only entries in the top 10: potentially six new titles come on the chart.

With two days left in the chart week, Bon Jovi’s “What About Now” is slightly ahead of David Bowie’s first new album in 10 years, “The Next Day,” for No. 1. “Now” will sell up to 90,000, while it looks like “Next” will top out around 80,000.

Also looking good for Top 10 debuts are Christian Contemporary group Passion’s “Let The Future Begin” coming in at No. 5, Eric Clapton’s covers album, “Old Sock” (and the first on his own label, Bushbranch,” entering at No. 6, Dave Grohl’s “Sound City Soundtrack” at No. 7, and boy R&B group Mindless Behavior’s  “All Around The World” at No. 8.

Rounding out the Top 10 will be this week’s No. 1 set, Luke Bryan’s “Spring Break: Here To Party,” at No. 3, Bruno Mars’ “Unorthodox Jukebox,” at No. 4, Mumford & Sons’ “Babel” at No. 9 and Jimi Hendrix’s “People, Hell and Angels” at No. 10, according to Hits Daily Double.

 

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<p>A scene from &quot;Driving Miss Daisy,&quot; for which Richard D. Zanuck won the Best Picture Oscar.</p>

A scene from "Driving Miss Daisy," for which Richard D. Zanuck won the Best Picture Oscar.

Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

Oscar-winning producer Richard D. Zanuck to be celebrated in TCM doc

'Don't Say No Until I Finish Talking' will have its TV premiere on May 8.

When veteran producer Richard D. Zanuck passed away last year at the age of 77, Hollywood lost a long-serving mover and shaker. In a career spanning over half a decade, he headed 20th Century-Fox in the 1960s (greenlighting "The Sound of Music," among others), shepherded Steven Spielberg's first features to the screen (including "Jaws," for which Zanuck received his first Oscar nod), won the Oscar for "Driving Miss Daisy," produced the Academy Awards himself and collaborated with directors including Tim Burton, Ron Howard, Clint Eastwood, Sidney Lumet and William Friedkin. 

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Watch: The Strokes take you on tour in new 'All The Time' music video

Watch: The Strokes take you on tour in new 'All The Time' music video

The band revisits concerts of yore for new clip

“Who the hell are the Strokes?”  The New York band tries to answer that question posed in their video for the spiky, upbeat “All The Time.”

[More after the jump...]

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<p>R.J. Cutler and Dick Cheney</p>

R.J. Cutler and Dick Cheney

Credit: Showtime

Interview: R.J. Cutler discusses Showtime's 'The World According to Dick Cheney'

Sundance doc really shouldn't be compared to 'Fog of War'
When I reviewed "The World According to Dick Cheney" at the Sundance Film Festival after my second viewing of the Showtime documentary, I mentioned the conversation I'd had at the TCA Press Tour with director R.J. Cutler and how out-of-synch our perceptions of the movie -- a film I really like -- seemed. 
 
At Sundance, I bumped into Cutler and while he was [mostly] pleased with my [mostly] positive review, he didn't remember our chat as being so fueled by disagreement. 
 
Going back over the interview transcript in advance of the Friday, March 15 premiere of the very intriguing "The World According To Dick Cheney," I take the blame for most of the head-butting. I had two pages full of questions and the one I led with was built around a personal assumption and, perhaps as a result, I didn't get past that first question on my sheet. 
 
In setting me straight, Cutler discusses what drew him to Cheney and what fascinated him about the exhaustive interviews the former Vice President sat for. He also discusses why "The World According To Dick Cheney" is absolutely, positively not "Fog of War."
 
Click through for the full Q&A...
 
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Album Review: Justin Timberlake's 'The 20/20 Experience'

Album Review: Justin Timberlake's 'The 20/20 Experience'

Does he have perfect vision?

With "The 20/20 Experience," Justin Timberlake has made a work that is a complete anathema in Pop World 2013: an album that is meant to be listened to from start to finish.

As a whole, “The 20/20 Experience,” out March 19, is a deeply retro effort that pays homage to Marvin Gaye, Donny Hathaway, and Frank Sinatra in both music and sentiment. However, Timberlake and producer Timbaland don’t get stuck in the past and, as much as the album is influenced by musical icons of yore, it is determined to look to the future as well.

If Timberlake is feeling the hot breath of newer, fresher artists like Bruno Mars —his most obvious heir apparent— or Frank Ocean breathing down his neck, he doesn’t show it. Quite the opposite: Timberlake infuses “The 20/20 Experience” with a disarming, radiant confidence that occasionally surpasses the material. He’s a one-man charm offensive and an electrifying performer, as his most recent stint on “Saturday Night Live” showed.

At its best, “The 20/20 Experience” feels like its own invention: an exploration into what it means to take the traditional confines of pop and then see how far those boundaries can be pushed. It’s not a new idea for Timberlake: on 2006’s “FutureSex/LoveSounds,” he and Timbaland set about deconstructing pop, only to construct a new monster, filled with shape-shifting songs and musical interludes. To keep with that theme, at its worst, “The 20/20 Experience”  feel like sets of unfinished lab experiments stretched far too thin. Every one of the 10 tunes here creeps up to or surpasses the seven-minute mark, often to their own detriment.

The album opens with “Pusher Love Girl,”  a sultry, slinky stunner that finds Timberlake breaking out his clarion clear falsetto early. Over hand claps and horns, he pays homage to the female that means more to him than any drug. She’s his “hydroponic jelly bean.” Is there anyone else on God’s green earth that could pull off calling someone that? Like many of the songs on “20/20,” about five minutes in, “Pusher Love Girl” morphs into a swirling interlude as he chants, “I’m just a junkie, a junkie for your love.”

Other highlights include first single, the mood-setting, Jay-Z-starring “Suit & Tie"; and the delicious “Strawberry Bubblegum,” a Prince-inspired pop confection laced with plenty of innuendo. He’ll be your blueberry lollipop, baby, and he’s going to love you till “we make it pop."  Current single, “Mirrors,"  is a pop marvel, and, as he’s shown by his television performances with his band, JT and the Tennessee Kids, it only gets better as it is performed live. The gorgeous melody features layer upon layer of Timberlake’s vocals stacked upon each other until it feels like they can reach the heavens.

“Mirrors,” and possibly every song on here,  is an ode to Timberlake’s wife, Jessica Biel. The album is a veritable love letter to her, but an honest one: one that combines carnal urges with the fears and tribulations of what it means to be a man in a serious, committed relationship. On the soulful slow jam “Spaceship Coupe,”  he’s ready to get his groove on in their “space lover cocoon” as they trip the galactic light fantastic.  On  the horn-drenched, old-style “That Girl,” introduced by an emcee as if he and his band are playing in a club in the ‘60s, Timberlake sells every note of devotion. The album closes with the underwater, dreamy, sound-effect laden kaleidoscope of “Blue Ocean Floor,” which sounds like something from Frank Ocean’s “Channel Orange.” The song is a druggy, slo-mo, strange slice.

While there are some gems on “The 20/20 Experience,” the listeners’ reactions will depend largely on how big a journey they are willing to take. Too often, Timberlake--and Timbaland-- forego any semblance of a hook or a catchy chorus (in fact there’s nary one to be found on the album) for experimental sonic landscapes.  They confuse repetition with creating an actual song. On “Let the Groove Get In,” which will make an incredible dance remix, the African and Latin rhythms enchant and captivate, but they never go anywhere or actually do anything.


It’s a trippy record and a daring one, but very few of the songs deserve the over-extended treatment they receive. Most of the tunes would have greatly benefitted from some trimming, even if that meant delivering a 40-minute album instead of a 70-minute one.

The consistent thread is, of course, Timberlake’s self-assured vocals. Whether he’s singing in falsetto or in a lower register or rapping or vocalizing non-sensical words, his delivery sounds never less than inspired. In a way that few contemporary artists have, Timberlake has a clear command of what works for him and he’s a thrilling vocalist. But in hindsight, “The 20/20 Experience” could have used a little more focus.

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<p>Some of &quot;When Angles Sing's&quot; singers</p>

Some of "When Angles Sing's" singers

Credit: When Angels Sing

SXSW: 'When Angels Sing' stuns with soundtrack

Willie Nelson, Lyle Lovett, Kris Kristofferson and Austinites galore

AUSTIN --  The Christmas film "When Angels Sing" boasts Willie Nelson as Santa Claus; Lyle Lovett as a holiday-happy neighbor to Harry Connick, Jr.'s Scrooge, due to his unhappy Christmas past; and Kris Kristofferson as his dad, and his heart if full of the season's joy.

So, of course, the soundtrack is X-mas excellence.

The film -- shot in Austin and premiered at South By Southwest -- is as family-friendly as they come, with Connick's usual charm and easiness oozing from in between the green and red trim. The trademark seems to be Hallmark, though the film has yet to get picked up. The music won't hurt its chances: Family singalongs, a stumble into a church, caroling and a gander through Austin's hot spots (including Salt Lick, nom) provide ample opportunities for originals and Christmas classics.

Lovett has an extended acoustic jam with Kat Edmonson and Nelson gets a solo on "Amazing Grace." Connick refrains from singing in the film until a duet with Nelson on the closing credits. I especially loved the cameos from the Trishas and from Dale Watson, who give this film a particular Austin glaze that could help sell music, if not the film itself.

"Kris and Harry are great," Nelson told me of his co-stars and collaborators before the premiere. "I like good writers, good singers and good people. They don’t get any better than those guys."

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