Miley Cyrus performs with giant virtual cat.
If you put on the American Music Awards Sunday night and saw a giant virtual cat wink at you, you were not imagining things. That really happened during Miley Cyrus’s performance of “Wrecking Ball.” In other, actual awards news, Taylor Swift took home the top prize, Artist of the Year—and she cleaned up with wins in Favorite Country Album, Favorite Female Country Artist, and Favorite Female Pop/Rock Artist. And she got to hold Justin Timberlake’s arm, so an all-around banner night for her. Timberlake took home three awards. Rihanna won the Icon Award, which was presented by her mother, Monica Fenty. As for performances, aside from Cyrus, R. Kelly and Lady Gaga sang “Do What U Want,” in homage to JFK and Marilyn Monroe.
Who needs Pixar? ‘Frozen’ confirms that the House of Mouse is capable of melting hearts again.
There's a special place in the heart reserved for wisecracking candlesticks, singing crustaceans, and lion cubs growing up to be mighty kings. It's a place where nostalgia is kept, where a warm feeling swells at the thought of things that we used to love, that used to be great.
Teenage Elsa the Snow Queen, voiced by Maia Mitchell, in a scene from the animated feature "Frozen." (Disney, Via Ap)
For the better part of this new century, Disney's animated features resided there.
The MTV reality show ‘Generation Cyro’ follows teenagers conceived via sperm donor as they search for half-siblings and donor parents. The show’s stars talk about life as donor children.
Sperm donors are all the rage lately. There’s Delivery Man, a Disney film starring Vince Vaughn as a Joe Schmo who learns he’s fathered 533 children with his donated seed, and now, Generation Cryo, a new MTV series that follows a 17-year-old girl conceived by an anonymous sperm donor. With the help of the Donor Sibling Registry (DSR), she sets out to meet her 15 half-siblings, all of whom were fathered by the same fella: donor #1096. It’s a far more didactic show than, say, MTV’s one-two punch of adolescent cautionary tales, 16 and Pregnant and Teen Mom.
“With Delivery Man, everyone laughs and goes, ‘A donor with 500 kids!’ but that’s not funny,” says Wendy Kramer, founder of the DSR. “Our website is voluntary, but we have a lot of large groups. The largest group we have is the one that was reported in The New York Times in 2011, and at that point it was 150 [donor children], and now, it’s up to about 200. The donor is nowhere to be found on our site since it would be tough to connect with so many people. He’d have to rent a convention hall, or something.”
Generation Cryo was green-lit two years ago in the wake of the great sperm donor craze of 2010, which saw films like The Kids Are All Right, The Switch, and The Backup Plan tackle the topic of donor insemination, which in turn led to a bevy of media coverage. And, as LGBT equality becomes increasingly the cultural norm, we’ll be seeing more and more families with same-sex parents, and more and more of these same-sex families turning to donor insemination. According to recent studies, 40 percent of same sex couples between the ages of 22 and 55 are raising children, but only about 5 percent of those kids are adopted.
The pop album’s not great. It’s not meant to be. ‘Midnight Memories’ is a bunch of aspiring singles jumbled together, jostling for attention.
My colleagues thought this would be funny. "Romano, I've got an idea for you," one of them said on a conference call. "You should review Midnight Memories, the new One Direction album." I could barely understand him because he was laughing so hard.
My colleague was laughing, I suppose, because I do not seem like the sort of person who would like One Direction. In fact, I'm pretty sure I seem like the sort of person who would hate One Direction. I'm 31 years old. I'm male. I once lived down the street from an artisanal mayonnaise shop in Brooklyn. My last music story was an admiring profile of Jake Bugg, the young, rootsy British singer-songwriter who recently said that One Direction "must know they're terrible" because they "sing meaningless tunes." I don't know what a Harry Styles is. And I don't think I've ever heard a single One Direction song in the wild.
If all of that doesn't qualify me to review One Direction's latest LP, I don't know what does. So here we are.
The comingling of the art and pop music worlds is pointless and pretentious. And it’s destroying otherwise talented musicians.
It’s a tough time to be a superstar musician. It’s too late in your life cycle to cash in on a high-publicity transition from kid star to sex object. Popular taste is so fragmented, you have to enlist an army of co-writers to craft songs that can rule the Top 40 day in and day out. Popular attention is so scattered, if you’re not topping yourself, you’re bottoming out.
Sculpture of Lady Gaga that Jeff Koons created for the ARTPOP album cover in a exhibition at artRave, the official album release party for Lady Gaga's fourth studio album at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. (Robert Pitts/Landov)
Your one certainty in life? You’re losing your edge. While your label is shelling out millions and you’re singing in space, random teenagers from New Zealand are making mega-hits in their bedrooms.
From Ron Burgundy singing about Rob Ford to Harvard students taking over Yale tours, WATCH our countdown of this week’s buzziest videos.
5. Jiggle Your Bells
Who knew Joe Boxer male models could be great musicians? Watch them move their hips to the tune of “Jingle Bells” in this ad for Kmart.
Narcocorridos sound like a cross between mariachi and polka, but the singers carry AK-47s and bazookas and brazenly glorify violence. Are these Mexican drug ballads really that bad?
Americans listen to gangster rap and love to watch mob flicks. We relish crime depicted well and expect a level of authenticity in the portrayal. It’s nothing out of the ordinary to hire mafia members as movie consultants. We might even prefer musicians with street cred. It seems that as consumers we demand the real thing, not some impostor.
Los BuKnas de Culiacan. (Shaul Schwarz Courtesyof Cinedigm)
Why, then, might we have a problem with Mexicans enjoying narcocorridos, or drug ballads?
What’s it take to play Macbeth? Ethan Hawke on the seductive darkness of the mad Scotsman, the Shakespeare mania in New York , and why he loves the theater versus movies.
New York is currently giddy with Shakespeare. Tony and Oliver-winning actor Mark Rylance is going the distance in a Bard biathlon on Broadway, starring in both Twelfth Night (as Olivia) and Richard III (as the king). Orlando Bloom has been mooning under a balcony as Romeo, and Ethan Hawke brings a bold and modern interpretation to the murderous Macbeth. Hawke may be best known for movies, including Before Midnight which opened this summer to rave reviews. But he’s proudest of his position as an accomplished stage actor, and he spoke to me the morning after his Broadway premiere as the Scottish king.
This image released by Lincoln Center Theater shows Ethan Hawke and Anne-Marie Duff during a performance of "Macbeth, in New York. (T Charles Erickson/Lincoln Center Theater via AP)
Congratulations on the show which is gripping. But you’re awake early for a man playing Macbeth.
The left-leaning cable channel’s bad boys, Alec Baldwin and Martin Bashir, are drawing unprecedented scorn for some ugly public comments. Still, they don’t deserve to be fired.
Let’s stipulate at the outset that MSNBC’s resident potty-mouths, Martin Bashir and Alec Baldwin, ought to have their tongues scoured. The ugly things they said—Bashir on the air about Sarah Palin, and Baldwin in the street to a pesky paparazzo—were shameful and repulsive; both, quite rightly, have apologized.
The Daily Beast
Yet Bashir’s future as an afternoon anchor on the left-leaning cable network is suddenly up for grabs, and Phil Griffin, MSNBC’s president, has suspended Baldwin from his Friday night show for two weeks, with the possibility that Up Late With Alec Baldwin—which, after all, has hardly been crushing it critically or ratings-wise since its Oct. 11 launch—may be canceled altogether.
The rise of Internet porn has really put a dampener on the adult industry. Your favorite porn star might be doing it for a lot less than you think.
No one makes a fortune in porn. Despite the misleading publicity surrounding Jenna Jameson and Teen Mom’s Farrah Abraham, the hundreds of girls who enter the industry every year may never see six figures. Your favorite porn star might be doing it for a lot less than you think.
How much an adult star makes is something of a secret not just outside the industry, but within it as well. Few girls will admit to doing a sex scene for $500, but it happens. Performers and production companies have been raking in significantly less dough since the rise of Internet porn. Piracy means less money for the industry. That means tougher negotiations all around.
A new documentary narrated by the pinup icon sheds new light on her through a bevy of her lovers and confidantes—and what happened to her after her disappearance at the height of her career.
It was a time completely anathema to today. A time when the class freak was the one who’d had sex, not the one abstaining. A time when anything remotely resembling pornography warranted censure and possible imprisonment, as opposed to a $13 billion industry. A time when the Postmaster General had the authority to open and confiscate your mail, and even raid your home in search of “lewd material” (paging Edward Snowden!).
Pin-up model and cultural icon Bettie Page poses for photographer and silent movie star Harold Lloyd using his Sterio Realist 3D camera, at his home 'Greenacres' circa 1955 in Beverly Hills, California. (Harold Lloyd Trust/Getty)
And then there was Bettie Page. With her striking blue eyes, black bangs, voluptuous figure, and thousand-watt smile, Page was the living embodiment of a lady on the streets and a freak in the sheets, the original good girl gone bad. She was the world’s greatest pinup model, a sexual Sherpa guiding a generation of men and women through the repressive landscape of 1950s America.
The BBC is simulcasting the 50th anniversary special 'The Day of the Doctor' worldwide. Here's five things you should know about the milestone episode. Warning: it’s pretty confusing.
Doctor Who is 50 this Saturday. To commemorate the milestone, BBC is simulcasting the 50th anniversary special “The Day of the Doctor” worldwide. Here we present five things you should know going into the episode.
1. What happened in the seventh series finale:
‘Frozen’ Wins Weekend Box Office
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The Daily Beast goes backstage at the 2013 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, seeing how models like Doutzen Kroes and Lily Aldridge get ready for the runway.