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Sex Pistols’ John Lydon on Russell Brand’s ‘Revolution’: ‘He’ll Make You All Homeless’

Actor, comedian and budding political commentator Russell Brand may have been surprised to hear that onetime Sex Pistol John Lydon, aka Johnny Rotten, is no fan of anarchism—or of Brand, for that matter. 

Posted on Oct 22, 2014 READ MORE



Angelina Jolie Imagines a World in Which Rape in War Zones Can Be Stopped

It all sounded very inspiring, the vision that actress Angelina Jolie presented during her opening speech in London on Tuesday at the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict.

Posted on Jun 10, 2014 READ MORE



‘American Idol’ Star Clay Aiken Shoots for Congress

It’s kind of appropriate, given how American politics and reality television are looking more than ever like the same beast, but here’s the latest sign of the coming celebpocalypse: Onetime “American Idol” cherub Clay Aiken is now running for public office in his home state of North Carolina.

Posted on Feb 5, 2014 READ MORE



AP/Peter Dejong

‘I Really Hope Malala Doesn’t Win the Nobel Peace Prize’

Though Malala Yousafzai has “stood up and given voice to a cause that needs it,” giving her the prize this early in her campaign to bring education to girls around the world may corrupt her attempts to do just that, Dhiya Kuriakose, a young woman from India, writes at The Guardian.

Posted on Oct 10, 2013 READ MORE



jcmedina (CC BY 2.0)

Unpacking Paula Deen

The “N-word” scandal that has embroiled TV cook Paula Deen has to do with much more than just her. Why does anyone care “about anything a celebrity chef has to say in the first place?” asks the Newsvandal, Joseph Sottile.

Posted on Jun 28, 2013 READ MORE



Paul McCartney: Free Pussy Riot

In a letter to Russian authorities this week, former Beatle Paul McCartney asked them to release the remaining members of Pussy Riot from prison. McCartney’s missive comes as the punk band’s Maria Alyokhina began a hunger strike after she was not allowed to attend her own parole hearing.

Posted on May 23, 2013 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons

Conservatives Upset Over Jim Carrey’s ‘Assault Rifle’ Tweet

The actor, who is mostly known for comedic roles, took on a serious tone when he used Twitter to focus on the gun debate that has emerged in the wake of the Newtown, Conn., school shootings.

Posted on Feb 6, 2013 READ MORE


Ishmael Reed

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Posted on Jan 21, 2013 READ MORE    



Illustration by Mr. Fish

The Idol Smasher

The multifaceted Ishmael Reed has spent half a century destroying myths of the American empire, especially those that cement racism in place.

Posted on Dec 30, 2012 READ MORE



Eva Rinaldi Celebrity and Live Music Photographer CC BY-SA 2.0

Psy Shames Himself With Unqualified Apology (Video)

By delivering a servile apology for singing lyrics that violently denounced the American military in 2004 at the height of its invasion of Iraq, South Korean rapper Psy has shown that, like many who enjoy fame and fortune, he has no backbone when it comes to criticizing American imperialism.

Posted on Dec 8, 2012 READ MORE



Screenshot via MotherJones.com

‘Game of Thrones’ Gets the Super PAC Treatment

The popular HBO series “Game of Thrones” is often considered nerd porn, and yet it is more than just about war, sex, dragons and other mythical creatures. At its core, the game alluded to is entirely based on politics and, in some ways, mimics our modern political system. So what would happen in the Seven Kingdoms if super PACs existed?

Posted on Jun 21, 2012 READ MORE



AP / Cliff Owen

George Clooney Cuffed at Sudanese Embassy Protest

Can’t say the guy doesn’t have range. On Friday, George Clooney put his actor/director/good-time-guy persona aside to get serious about what he warned could become a catastrophe of global proportions, the crisis in Sudan, and he went so far as to get arrested in front of the Sudanese Embassy in Washington, D.C., to make his point.

Posted on Mar 16, 2012 READ MORE


Springsteen
Wikimedia Commons/The Boss~Live!

Obama’s Celebrity Corps Smaller, Less Enthusiastic This Season

Matt Damon has spoken of his disappointment with Barack Obama, his favorite candidate from 2008, and other famous Obama boosters from the last election cycle are also less willing to lend their names to the president’s cause this time around.

Posted on Feb 28, 2012 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons / Angela George (CC-BY-SA)

And Now, This Presidential Appraisal From Scarlett Johansson

There may be untold millions of onetime Obama boosters whose feelings of hope have significantly diminished since, say, November 2008—and with good reason. But on Tuesday night, one of the president’s celebrity supporters, Scarlett Johansson, showed she’s still willing to stump for Obama at a gathering in New York that brought fashionistas and politicos together.

Posted on Feb 8, 2012 READ MORE



AP / Tony Gutierrez

Norris Throws Down for ‘Warrior’ Gingrich

Conservative power ranger Chuck Norris has come out swinging for the GOP once again—this time, he’s willing to lend his unique celebrity brand to give Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign a boost with a memorably worded endorsement only he could compose.

Posted on Feb 6, 2012 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons / Seher Sikandar for rehes creative (CC-BY-SA)

Sean Penn’s Diplomatic New Gig

He’s certainly been rehearsing for this role for years (remember his post-Katrina floating photo op?), and now Sean Penn has an honest-to-goodness new post as the ambassador at large to Haiti, as of a special ceremony held in his honor last weekend.

Posted on Jan 17, 2012 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons / dodge challenger1 (CC-BY-SA)

Snoop Dogg Has Some Ideas About Legalizing Marijuana

Snoop Dogg would like to speak to President Obama on behalf of a friend of his, and her name is Mary Jane. The pot-friendly rapper, né Calvin Broadus, also has visualized how this meeting would ideally take place at the White House.

Posted on Jan 9, 2012 READ MORE


Rupert Murdoch’s Cultural Revolution

It takes master documentarian Adam Curtis only five minutes to explain what Rupert Murdoch’s war on elitism (and taste) has to do with Google.

Posted on Jan 2, 2012 READ MORE


A Culturally Sensitive Teach-In With Victoria Jackson

Victoria Jackson, “SNL” throwback and low-rent Lady Gaga, took another big misstep in her troubling transition from comedy to punditry with this Shariah-themed episode of “PolitiChicks,” which would play like self-parody if Jackson had the capacity for critical self-reflection.

Posted on Jan 2, 2012 READ MORE



AP / Suzanne Plunkett

9/11 and the Damage Done

On the day the towers fell, furies flew out of the hole in the ground and like all restless spirits, they headed west. I did not realize it at the time, of course, but did have the sense a few days after the dust began to settle at Ground Zero that things had shifted, a feeling that we all had, as if the world itself had gone off its axis.

Posted on Sep 7, 2011 READ MORE



newsoftheworld.co.uk

Hacking Scandal Leads to British Tabloid’s Demise

There might have been a changing of the guard among the top editors at the News of the World in recent months, but the British tabloid, part of the Murdoch family media dynasty, is going off the presses for good this weekend after a hacking scandal ... (more)

Posted on Jul 7, 2011 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons

So Long, Columbo: Peter Falk Dies at 83

Another icon of the small screen has died, and with him goes a memorable role and a famous, if slightly bedraggled, khaki raincoat. On Friday, the news broke that “Columbo” star Peter Falk had died the day before at his home in Beverly Hills. He was 83.

Posted on Jun 24, 2011 READ MORE


Damon
Flickr / Siebbi

Damon No Longer an Obama Fan

Matt Damon was apparently paying attention as he narrated “Inside Job,” Charles Ferguson’s Oscar-winning documentary about the architects of the ongoing global economic catastrophe, as he’s broken with the cohort of celebrities who ...

Posted on Mar 8, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Jason DeCrow

Mixed Race Beauty Gets a Mainstream Makeover

We need to remember that beauty and race are both social constructions—concepts societies create that may not actually exist in nature. As a result, beauty and race are associated with and impacted by class, immigration, gender, sexuality and marketing.

Posted on Mar 7, 2011 READ MORE


Sheen Madness

If there is a better illustration of the decline of American culture, the triumph of technology over privacy, and the end of shame as a motivating force, I can’t think of one.

Posted on Mar 3, 2011 READ MORE


Celebrity Obsessed Culture

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Posted on Feb 25, 2011 READ MORE



YouTube / Christine4Senate

Fine, She’s Not a Witch, but Can She Cha-Cha?

As if schlocky TV and American politics weren’t harrowingly similar enough already, this week brings the word that onetime tea party Senate hopeful Christine O’Donnell of Delaware got the invite to join the prancing cohort of celebs on the next “Dancing With the Stars.”

Posted on Feb 24, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Koji Sasahara

Celebrity Endorsements: Money for Nothing?

In the world of advertising, celebrity always equals money, and anything that these luminaries—whether from entertainment, sports or even politics—touch (even by accident) is tantamount to tangible, profitable product placement, right?

Posted on Jan 13, 2011 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons / Colin Chou (CC-BY-SA)

Leo Ponies Up Big Bucks for Tigers

Having lived through a scary air travel incident last weekend, Leonardo DiCaprio is giving some big cats a shot at survival in the form of $1 million, which the actor donated Tuesday at the first-ever international tiger summit, in Moscow. 

Posted on Nov 23, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Koji Sasahara

The Big Business of Sex Addiction

Cast your mind back to a time before sex addiction qualified as a legitimate issue rather than a snarky euphemism (although for some that might still be the case). Hard to remember, what with the Bill Clintons and Tiger Woodses ... (continued)

Posted on Nov 15, 2010 READ MORE



Adam Block / Mount Lemmon SkyCenter / University of Arizona

Riding the Milky Way in Tucson

A couple of days after I arrived in Tucson, there came a party invitation. The public was invited to the top of Mount Lemmon for a viewing of the annual Perseid showers, a breathtaking display of shooting stars. While I generally brake for sand, I also hit the road for star parties.

Posted on Aug 26, 2010 READ MORE



AP / RIA-Novosti, Mikhail Klimentyev, Presidential Press Service

When Dmitry Met Bono

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev took some time away from the Kremlin on Tuesday to chill at his resort home by the Black Sea, sip tea and talk saving the world and whatnot with U2’s do-gooder frontman Bono.

Posted on Aug 25, 2010 READ MORE



Obama’s Absurd Gay Marriage Position

Why President Obama’s gay marriage position has gotten completely absurd, why the DEA is after ebonics linguists and why Jane Austen just couldn’t hack it in today’s publishing world.

Posted on Aug 23, 2010 READ MORE


Streisand
Wikimedia Commons / Library of Congress

Obama and the Stars: On the Outs?

What are we to make of the news that President Barack Obama swanned into Hollywood for a Democratic fundraiser this week and was not met by so-called event co-hosts Barbra Streisand and Jeffrey Katzenberg, although they ... (continued)

Posted on Aug 20, 2010 READ MORE


Tillman
tillmanstory.com

‘The Tillman Story’: Myth, Mystery and Celebrity

Thanks to the Establishment’s truly spectacular mishandling of this case—will they never learn, you can live with screw-ups, never coverups?—Pat Tillman left the country of celebrity and entered the land of myth, innocently, even perhaps tragically.

Posted on Aug 19, 2010 READ MORE


Palin in Homer

Angry Alaskan Confronts ‘Celebrity’ Palin

Here we have one Kathleen Gustafson, miffed resident of Homer, Alaska, making her displeasure with former Gov. Sarah Palin clear by invoking the Bible, calling Palin a “celebrity”—no, that’s not a compliment—and hoisting ... (continued)

Posted on Aug 9, 2010 READ MORE


Geena Davis
AP / Seth Wenig

Governator Picks Geena Davis for Women’s Rights Panel

She played a politician on TV, and now Geena Davis, who did a short stint as America’s first female president on “Commander in Chief,” is California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s appointee for the Golden State’s Commission on the Status of Women.

Posted on Jul 21, 2010 READ MORE


Celebrity Cures All

Sarah Palin’s failed candidacy and her ascendance to the ranks of political celebrity were, it turns out, the best thing that could have happened to Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston.

Posted on Jul 21, 2010 READ MORE


Cowell
Wikimedia Commons / Wiki edit Jonny

Simon Cowell Beckons Britons to the Polls

It’s hard to imagine that many British citizens will be moved to cast their ballots in Thursday’s general election because Simon Cowell, the curmudgeonly mastermind behind such showbiz gems as “Britain’s Got Talent” and “American Idol,” thinks they should.

Posted on May 5, 2010 READ MORE


Lopez
AP / Matt Sayles

Latinos in the Limelight Tweet About Arizona’s Immigration Law

George Lopez, Ricky Martin and Eva Longoria worked their Twitter platforms over the weekend to protest the passage of Arizona’s contested and detested new immigration law. For his part, comic Lopez cracked wise about racial profiling, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer and Taco Bell ... (continued)

Posted on Apr 26, 2010 READ MORE


Baldwin brothers

Website Compares Stephen Baldwin to Job, Asks for Money

Much like the biblical Job, the actor and official member of “the famous Baldwin brothers Hollywood clan” believes in God and has endured hardships. Now, although this particular Baldwin apparently hasn’t suffered from a plague of boils ... (continued)

Posted on Apr 23, 2010 READ MORE


Grammer

Kelsey Grammer Disses ‘Big Government,’ ‘Grown-Man Tickle Fights’

They’re rare, but there actually are a few Hollywood types out there who lean to the right, and even a couple who are willing to flex their conservatism in the public eye. Take Kelsey Grammer here, for example, who signals ... (continued)

Posted on Apr 19, 2010 READ MORE


The Politician
abcnews.go.com

When Politicians Have Way Too Much in Common With Paris Hilton

You know the drill: It all starts with the seductive glare of the klieg lights and the flashbulbs, followed by the ever-present entourage—stylists, publicists, various hangers-on—and the next thing you know, there’s a sex tape and someone’s career will never be the same ... as a politician, that is.

Posted on Jan 29, 2010 READ MORE


Franco

‘Howl’ Stars Franco, Hamm Slam Prop. 8

When you’re in a movie about a countercultural figure as big as Allen Ginsberg, it’s going to be hard to avoid the political questions, and “Howl” stars Jon Hamm and James Franco, who plays the Beat-era poet in the film, were ready to hold forth at the Sundance Film Festival about one prominent political topic of our time: California’s Proposition 8.

Posted on Jan 25, 2010 READ MORE


Clooney
Wikimedia Commons / Efloch

Clooney Comes to Haiti’s Aid

This is a time when celebrity can come in handy, and one star in particular, George Clooney, is lending his power to the cause of helping earthquake-ravaged Haiti. The actor-director is also rallying some of his famous friends to join him for a “mega-telethon” he’s planning, according to The Wrap.

Posted on Jan 14, 2010 READ MORE


Chris Hedges

Chris Hedges on Obama, Michael Jackson, ‘Empire of Illusion’

Never one to shrink from a strong debate, “Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle” author and Truthdig columnist Chris Hedges comes out swinging in this lecture recorded last month, giving his audience at the New School in New York City more than a few big ideas to grapple with about our current president, the state of our democracy and the cancer of celebrity culture in contemporary American society.

Posted on Jan 8, 2010 READ MORE


gossiping women
Flickr / soylentgreen23

Is Gossip Hazardous to Your Health?

Speculating and whispering about other people’s business is a time-honored (see: Ten Commandments), if tawdry, tradition, and gossip is also fueling quite a large international industry these days, in case you hadn’t noticed. But can its effects be deadly? A couple people quoted in this Wall Street Journal hearsay exposé seem to think it’s dangerous. But what’s to be done?

Posted on Jan 6, 2010 READ MORE


Thank You for Not Sharing

Tiger Woods’ determined silence in the aftermath of his wee-hours encounter with a fire hydrant is a timely antidote to the too-much-information celebrity culture.

Posted on Dec 1, 2009 READ MORE


Haggis
Flickr / gdcgraphics

Top Writer-Director Breaks With Scientology Over Proposition 8

The Church of Scientology counts several high-profile figures from the world of entertainment among its members—Tom Cruise, John Travolta and Kirstie Alley, to name a few—and they sometimes act as public advocates for their religion. However, one of their own, screenwriter and director Paul Haggis, has very publicly left the fold after taking issue with the church’s stance on Proposition 8.

Posted on Oct 26, 2009 READ MORE


Diaz
Flickr / Tony Shek

Studios to Stars: No Twitter for You

There was a time when Hollywood studios kept their stables of stars on a short leash, keeping close watch over their public personas and even arranging their marriages. Actors at least appear to have more leeway these days, but some studios are requiring that they refrain from broadcasting the minutiae of their daily lives via social media like Facebook and Twitter.

Posted on Oct 19, 2009 READ MORE


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