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Let It Go

The Birth of Adele Dazeem

As he took the stage on Sunday night, John Travolta probably had no idea that he was about to launch an entire career (of a fictional person).

The biggest star of this year's Oscars wasn't Jared Leto's ombré or Lupita Nyong'o's ribcage. Rather, it was a newcomer on the Hollywood scene: Adele Dazeem. Never heard of her? That's because she doesn't exist.

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Kevin Winter/Getty

John Travolta’s role at the Academy Awards was to introduce singer Idina Menzel’s performance of Frozen’s “Let It Go.” As he took the stage on Sunday night, he probably had no idea that he was about to launch an entire career (of a fictional person). The actor, who appeared to be suffering from a serious case of too-tight toupee, struggled with Menzel's name, eventually landing on the comically mispronounced Adele Dazeem. 

Club Mix

Techno-Trolling with Jazz Flute

We track down the secretive DJ who’s created a new remix phenomenon where the chorus to a song like Miley Cyrus’s ‘Wrecking Ball’ is replaced by off-tune recorders.

Everyone who has been patiently awaiting a recorder remix of Miley Cyrus’s “Wrecking Ball” can finally rejoice. There is a majestically captivating and atrocious version of the song where Cyrus’s vocals are replaced by what sounds like elementary school students learning to play a screeching plastic pipe.

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Dan Steinberg/Invision/AP

This newly-minted variety of music, a series of remixes where off-tune recorders replace popular bass drops, is called FluteDrop and its mastermind is a man named D.J. Detweiler.

Everybody’s a Critic

Yelp's Now on TV & It’s Hilarious

On the new Comedy Central series 'Review,' Andy Daly judges not movies but real life experiences: addiction, racism, even armed robbery.

You know the type. Actually, maybe you don’t, because who are these people?

The people who review.

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Andy Daly and Fred Willard (Michael Yarish/Comedy Central)

Business Time

A Dark and Stylish Legal Drama

It’s one of the most pirated television shows that you probably don’t watch. As USA darkens its palette of dramas, ‘Suits’ is poised to take over as the network’s flagship series.

Vince, Turtle and Johnny Drama as…investment bankers? That was Aaron Korsh’s initial idea when he sat down to write the show that would eventually become Suits. As he struggled during the 2007-2008 writers strike to get out of a professional rut, “My agent said, ‘You're always telling me these Wall Street stories, why don't you write about that?’” recalls Korsh, who had graduated from Wharton and worked as a Manhattan investment banker in the late ’80s/early ’90s before turning to writing. “So I set out to write a half-hour, Entourage-type show about investment banking.”

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Patrick J. Adams as Michael Ross, Gabriel Macht as Harvey Specter (Ian Watson/USA Network)

Instead, he ended up with something “much weightier,” which has since become one of USA network’s most popular shows. Suits tells the story of brilliant-but-troubled Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams), who has a photographic memory and was once Harvard Law School-bound, but was instead expelled from college for selling the answers to a math test. In the pilot, Mike crosses paths with Harvey Spector (Gabriel Macht), a headstrong senior partner at Pearson Hardman tasked with hiring an associate from Harvard Law. Instead, Harvey offers the position to Mike, despite the fact that he does not have a law—or even a college—degree.

Pulp Friction

Women Who Read Until Orgasm

She reads aloud while simultaneously masturbating with a Hitachi Magic Wand. ‘Hysterical Literature’ creator Clayton Cubitt on the high price of filthy business.

Conventional wisdom says that sex sells and the best way to keep a secret is to put it in a book.

“I like fucking with people,” Clayton Cubitt says. “I like subverting expectations.”

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Clayton Cubitt

The End

Craziest 'Detective' Theories

With the series finale airing on Sunday night, here are the wackiest—and most logical—theories of how HBO’s addictive potboiler will come to an end. [Warning: Major Spoilers!]

On Sunday night, the saga of True Detective will come to an end. Over seven episodes, creator Nic Pizzolatto’s series has mesmerized audiences with the tale of Rust Cohle (Matthew McConaughey) and Marty Hart (Woody Harrelson), two Louisiana State Police homicide detectives on the hunt for a serial killer responsible for a string of sadistic, ritualistic murders. The series, directed by Cary Fukunaga, is set in three time periods and spans seventeen years.

The show has also, with its myriad references to the occult, recurring imagery, elliptical-philosophical dialogue, and general weirdness, prompted viewer's imaginations to run wild, cooking up far-fetched (and not-so-far-fetched) theories of how the show will wrap things up.

According to HBO, the final episode airing March 9 will be titled “Form And Void,” and comes with the following logline: “An overlooked detail provides Hart and Cohle with an important new lead in their 17-year-old case.”

Steve McQueen's acclaimed film is the new target of right-wingers who hate "white guilt" and love racial resentment.

If “Best Picture” is supposed to award the film that excels in all categories, then 12 Years a Slave was a worthy choice. From its performances to its cinematography and music direction, Steve McQueen’s story of Solomon Northup—and his journey through the antebellum South—is a tremendous accomplishment. By any measure, it deserves its award.

Unless, that is, you’re a little critic named Rush Limbaugh. Then, the success of the film is just further evidence for your resentment and paranoia. To wit, here’s what he had to say about it on his radio show: “If it was the only thing that movie won, it was gonna win Best Picture. There was no way. It didn’t matter if it was good or bad. I haven’t seen it. It was going to win. It had the magic word in the title, ‘slave.’”

Limbaugh believes 12 Years won because of the power of liberal guilt. But if there’s anything to take away from Hollywood’s history with race, it’s that the industry is far more likely to award films that highlight liberal virtue. As Adam Serwer notes for MSNBC, “The film industry is a place where the stories of people of color are still rarely told through narratives they themselves create.” Indeed, if 12 Years had fit the mold of films like The HelpCrash, and Driving Ms. Daisy—that is, if it were about the redemption of a sympathetic white protaganist—then Limbaugh would have a point.

In a bi-partisan effort to bring Oscar-winning attention to patients who require additional treatment, Dems and GOPs lobby to pass a possible life-saving legislation.

In the much-acclaimed movie Dallas Buyers Club, a man dying of AIDS smuggles illegal drugs from Mexico, defies the Federal Drug Administration and its jackbooted agents, and succeeds in prolonging his life, and the lives of others. The Hollywood screenplay is based on the true story of an AIDS patient who created and carried out the audacious scheme in the 1980’s, when the virus was ravaging the gay community and people were desperate for access to life-saving drugs.

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The Daily Beast

Thirty years later, medication to treat AIDS is legal and widely available, but there are many other drugs that people suffering from all kinds of terminal illnesses would like to gain access to but are being denied by an FDA bound to federal guidelines about health and safety. Enter the Goldwater Institute, a think tank devoted to the free market and libertarian principles of its namesake, the GOP’s 1964 presidential candidate, Barry Goldwater, and its “Right to Try” bill.

Interview

Wes Anderson’s Hotel Party

The acclaimed auteur discusses the making of his wacky, delightful comedy-caper, from his detailed filmmaking process—storyboarding the whole film through animatics—to grand feasts with his A-list cast in Görlitz.

Wes Anderson is alert. We’re seated across from one another in the bowels of a hotel in Downtown Manhattan, and the twee Texan is delicately balancing an espresso. He’s fresh off a plane from Paris—the self-admitted Francophile divides his time between the City of Lights and the Big Apple—and is talking a mile a minute, like an excitable kid bursting with ideas.

He has reason to be jazzed. Anderson’s latest film, The Grand Budapest Hotel, is his most intoxicating confection to date; a gleeful meld of his sardonic wit, pastel-infused palette, and polite brand of anarchy. Set in the fictional Republic of Zubrowska, an eastern European nation torn apart by war and oppression, the story-within-a-story-within-a-story begins in 1932, and follows the gonzo travails of Gustave H. (Ralph Fiennes), dashing concierge of the titular hotel. He’s a dandy—a cross between Peter O’Toole and Zsa Zsa Gabor—who, in addition to being “the most liberally-perfumed” man ever, has a penchant for bedding octogenarians.

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Wesley Wales "Wes" Anderson is an American film director, screenwriter, actor, and producer of features, short films and commercials. (Gareth McConnell/eyevine/Redux)

When one of his elderly squeezes, Madame D (Tilda Swinton, in heavy aging makeup), croaks, it sets off a series of crazy events involving his new lobby boy, Zero (newcomer Tony Revolori), a priceless stolen painting called “Boy with Apple,” prison breaks, an SS-like squadron, shoot-outs, murderous henchman, and more. Or, in the words of SNL’s Stefon: “This film has everything.”

The ‘Trophy Wife’

A Trophy Wife’s Life After ‘SNL’

Could getting fired from ‘SNL’ boost an actress’s career? That seems to be the case for the Trophy Wife star who’s quickly become Hollywood’s most in-demand scene-stealer.

“I do like to play people I wouldn’t want to spend five minutes in a room with,” says Trophy Wife star Michaela Watkins.

It’s a good thing, too, considering the treasure trove of hilarious scene-stealing—and wacky blunt, and sometimes maddeningly annoying—characters the actress has unleashed on us since breaking out in 2008 during her infamously (and unjustly) short year on Saturday Night Live. (Remember those “Bitch, pleeeze” sketches?)

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Vivian ZInk/ABC via Getty

Temptation

The Problem with Sexy Jesus

Hollywood gives the son of god chiseled cheekbones and buns of steel. But what if—based on anthropological study of first-century Galilean males—Jesus had the build of a teenage girl?

How many new and different versions of the Jesus story can the medium of film accommodate? Judging by Mark Burnett and Roma Downey’s new film Son of God, not too many: this is the traditional, predictable, stripped-down niceness taught in Sunday schools and nativity plays. But for a bare-bones presentation of Jesus, there sure seems to be a lot of flesh on screen—and what attractive flesh it is. With carefully styled hair, omnipresent smile, and sparkly eyes that say, “I see into your soul,” Diogo Morgado’s Jesus really puts the carnal in incarnate.

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Casey Crafford

It’s not just me, I assure you: the Portuguese actor playing the Son of God has inspired the twitter hashtag #HotJesus. CNN anchor Carol Costello confessed to “gawking” at the actor. When CNN is getting hot and bothered for Jesus, that in itself is newsworthy.

When Stars Party

The Best Photos From the Oscars

Cumberbatch photobombs! Leto photobombs! And many, many selfies.

‘Adele Dazim?’ Yeah…not even close, John. From Elizabeth Taylor to James Franco, see more award show fails.

John Travolta butchered the Frozen singer’s name so badly. “Adele Dazim?” Yeah…not even close, John. He was actually going for Idina Menzel. Don’t they have teleprompters?!

This, of course, isn’t the first time a presenter has flubbed.  Zac Efron fumbled through the words “inspiring” and “aspirational” when introducing “The Moon Song,” and Kim Novak had a bit of a, err, odd presentation with Matthew McConaughey. We all can’t be perfect.  

When Matthew McConaughey thanked God above family and loved ones at the Oscars last night, he delighted Conservatives and made the Hollywood liberal glitterati shift uncomfortably in their seats. But he may well be Divinely on trend.

There was one person who Matthew McConaughey wanted to thank after collecting his Best Actor Oscar last night, above wife, children, parents—and, most shockingly for a Hollywood star—his agent.

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Kevin Winter/Getty

“First off,” said McConaughey, who won the award for his role in Dallas Buyers Club, “I want to thank God, because that’s who I look up to. He has graced my life with opportunities that I know are not of my hand or of any other human hand. He has shown me that it’s a scientific fact that gratitude reciprocates … When you’ve got God, you’ve got a friend, and that friend is you.”

Burning Questions

Was the Oscars Pizza Any Good?

We all watched the ceremony. And we all have questions.

Was that pizza they ate at the Oscars any good?

Apparently it’s just OK. Slate (quite geniusly) looked up Yelp reviews for the Hollywood location of Big Mama’s and Papa’s pizza that Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence, and company were chowing down on. It’s got a three-and-a-half star rating on Yelp, and reviews that range, in the Yelp-ian way, from “literally the worst pizza ever” to “always the best pizza ever.” So the answer to whether it was any good is absolutely no and also yes very much so.

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Kevin Winter/Getty

Why the GOP Is Angry About Colbert

When Stephen Colbert was announced as David Letterman's successor, Rush Limbaugh and company both criticized and politicized the move. Keli Goff discusses whether they're actually mad.

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