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Tuesday, February 21, 2017


Angelina Jolie Opens Up About Her Divorce From Brad Pitt for the First Time: ''We Will Always Be a Family." Angelina Jolie struggled to hold back tears as she addressed her divorce from Brad Pitt for the first time publicly since their September split. In a sit-down interview with BBC World News that aired Sunday, the actress and human rights activist opened up about the "very difficult time" her family endured in the months following Brad and Angelina's highly-publicized (and ongoing) breakup. "I don't want to say very much about that, except to say it was a very difficult time," Jolie shared, visibly upset. "We are a family and we will always be a family, and we will get through this time and hopefully be a stronger family for it." The six Jolie-Pitt children joined their mother in Cambodia over the weekend as she premiered her latest film, First They Killed My Father. The event marked Angelina's first official appearance after going her separate ways from the Hollywood A-lister. When asked how she is coping with the divorce, Angelina responded, "Many, many people find themselves in this situation. My whole family, we've all being through a difficult time." "My focus is my children, our children, and my focus is finding this way through," Angelina added. "We are and forever will be a family. I am coping with finding a way through to make sure that this somehow makes us stronger and closer." For now, Angelina revealed, she is taking new challenges day by day, explaining, "It's been a difficult few months. Right now, I'm going through a moment when just everybody's in my room." "Two hamsters, two dogs and two children at the moment. It's wonderful," she added. "But, usually, I just wake up trying to figure out who's going to get [the] dog out, who's going to start the pancakes and did anybody brush their teeth." As for her future, Jolie admitted she hopes to "be traveling around the world visiting my children" in five years' time. She elaborated, "Everything I do I hope is that I represent something, and I represent the right things to my children and give them the right sense of what they're capable of, and the world as it should be seen." "Not through the prism of Hollywood or through a certain kind of life, but really take them into the world, where they have a really good sense and become rounded people," Angelina mentioned. Pitt had made his first celebrity appearance about two months after Jolie filed divorce papers. He attended a screening of the now Oscar-nominated film Moonlight, which he co-produced, and was later spotted at an event for his new movie Allied. (Eonline)

Rooney Mara and Joaquin Phoenix are "Madly in Love." Rooney Mara and Joaquin Phoenix are getting serious, sources say after Page Six reported the duo fell for each other while playing Mary Magdalene and Jesus Christ. "They are madly in love," says a source. "His friends are like, 'Forget it, it is on.'" Another source saw the pair recently looking very cozy on a flight together. Page Six first reported the pair were holed up at a desert spa together over Golden Globes weekend. This month they were also seen together grocery shopping in LA. (PageSix)

Paris Hilton and The Leftovers Star Chris Zylka Spark Romance Rumors. Looks like Paris Hilton has a new man in her life! The former reality TV star and socialite sure had fans talking when she called actor Chris Zylka her "valentine" in a series of love-dovey snapshots shared to Twitter on Sunday evening. Alongside another photo, which features Hilton and The Leftovers star dressed to the nines and gazing adorably into each other's eyes, she wrote, "The best feeling is when someone looks at you like you are magic..." A source tells E! News Paris and Chris are in fact dating, and "really like each other." "They are taking it slow," the insider adds. Earlier, Hilton and Zylka were spotted holding hands as they arrived into LAX from the Big Apple. Dressed in coordinating black ensembles, Paris flashed a smile at photographers while carrying her precious pooch, Diamond. It's unclear just when Paris and Chris might have taken their relationship to the next level, but they certainly didn't hold back during her 36th birthday bash last Thursday night in New York City. As seen on Snapchat and shared to fan sites, the birthday girl helped celebrate with Ashley Benson, Bethenny Frankel and Nicky Hilton Rothschild at a venue in the Greenwich Village. Chris presented his love interest with a massive cake, and after singing "Happy Birthday," the duo shared a passionate kiss. Zylka, 31, was previously engaged to model Hanna Beth, though the two called it quits over an alleged affair in 2015, 10 months after he popped the question. Chris also dated Pretty Little Liars' Hale in 2012. Paris was last linked to Thomas Gross, who she dated for a year up until April 2016. (Eonline)

Priscilla Presley has broken her silence over her daughter Lisa Marie Presley's bitter custody battle and confirmed she is caring for her twin granddaughters. In the wake of the shocking allegations that Lisa Marie's ex-husband Michael Lockwood is being investigated for alleged child abuse, the 71-year-old chose to speak out. The ex-wife of Elvis Presley took to Facebook on Sunday, February 19, to dismiss reports that 8-year-old sisters Finley and Harper had been taken into foster care while their father is accused of having "disturbing" videos and images of children on his computer. "Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all your positive support," she wrote above a photo of the sisters smiling and cuddling one another. She then posted a picture of her granddaughters playing in a pool and explained: "There is lots of confusion, commotion, and concern from all the talk circulating. Let me put this to rest... the girls have not been in foster care and never will be. The girls have been with me and will be until all this is sorted out." It was initially reported that the children were in protective care after Lisa Marie, 49, claimed in court papers related to the couple's bitter divorce that she had found "disturbing" photos of children on a computer belonging to Lockwood, 55. In the February 7 court documents, Elvis' only daughter said she was "shocked and horrified and sick to my stomach" when she discovered the alleged images on the device belonging to her fourth husband. His lawyer Jeff Sturman denied the claims in a statement to Us Weekly, calling the singer's filing "very unfortunate and inappropriate." Us also confirmed with the Beverly Hills Police Department on February 17, that Lockwood is being investigated for alleged child abuse. (US Weekly)

Tough night for Ronda Rousey's boyfriend -- first he gets the snot kicked out of him at UFC Fight Night 105 ... then his opponent hollers at Ronda right in the center of the Octagon!!! Derrick Lewis beat Travis Browne so badly Sunday night the guy was transported to the hospital immediately following the fight ... but Derrick really went in on the guy in the post-fight interview. First, he referenced the 2015 domestic violence investigation into Browne (we should note Browne was never charged with a crime) ... and then he called out Ronda. Judging from the past, Browne isn't one to go quietly ... so we're guessing we haven't heard the last of this one. (TMZ)

Ryan Seacrest's $50 million mansion caught fire Sunday night ... leaving some heavy damage. Ryan posted a pic of the aftermath showing some burned out structures, but he added, "Thank god everyone is ok." Our sources say it was an electrical fire off Seacrest's driveway ... which spread to nearby trash cans. Ryan bought the sprawling Bev Hills estate from Ellen DeGeneres back in 2012 for $49 mil. The 9,200 sq ft home sits on nearly 3 acres, and apparently ... it's mostly intact after the fire. (TMZ)

The estranged wife of Denver Broncos WR Emmanuel Sanders has declared WAR on the NFL star -- claiming he lied, cheated and spent THOUSANDS on chicks he was banging on the side. It's all in ANGRY court docs filed by Gabriella Sanders -- who blasts the father of her 2 children with a metaphorical bazooka right from the get go. "When he's not playing football on the field, he 'plays the field' with numerous women whom he is or has committed adultery." Gabby lays out multiple marital "atrocities" allegedly committed by her husband -- and claims he spent "thousands upon thousands of dollars on girlfriends and wasting the community estate, even purchasing a vehicle for one of his illicit affairs." The allegations are strikingly similar to those of Shelly Sterling -- who claimed her husband Donald Sterling had no right to give $2.6 mil in gifts to V. Stiviano. She sued V and won. V was ordered to reimburse the Sterling estate. Gabby filed for divorce from Sanders back in October and in the new court docs filed in Texas she says there is ZERO chance of a reconciliation. Emmanuel signed a $33 mil extension with the Broncos back in Sept. -- with $27 mil fully guaranteed. But there's more ... Gabby also claims Emmanuel lied to the Broncos -- claiming he told the team he needed to miss a practice in Nov. so he could be in Houston for the birth of their child ... which was a lie so he could go out partying. We reached out to Emmanuel's camp for comment -- so far, no word back. (TMZ)

Nick Cannon tried to sign a bunch of new talent -- outside of 'AGT' -- through a mobile app he created and allegedly stole ... according to the guy who's now suing Nick for BIG money. Nick launched his N'credible app to find amateur singers, comedians, rappers, models ... anyone entertaining. If they were good, Nick would sign on to be their manager -- but Enrico Taylor says the whole plan was his idea. Taylor says he met Nick in early 2015 to get him on board with HIS company, "I Discover Stars." Taylor says he told Nick how he'd already teamed with Birdman to run a digital talent search for Cash Money Records -- and Nick loved the idea because he was "growing tired of his 'America's Got Talent' job." But he claims Nick went radio silent and then 5 months later, BOOM ... N'credible launched. In his lawsuit, Taylor says it's no accident Nick's social media call for people to submit their talent videos sounds eerily similar to the one Birdman did in 2014. Not only is he accusing Nick of stealing the idea -- Taylor says the bigger problem is Nick's app was a total flop, and it's hurting his ability to get his own app off the ground. He's suing for damages of $1,750,000. (TMZ)

Crime scene photos of the Kim Kardashian Paris robbery have surfaced ... and some of the images are chilling. France's TF1 news channel released photos of the crime scene as well as surveillance video of several of the alleged robbers. The photos show Kim's bedroom and bathroom, the tape used to bind her hands and what appears to be the gag they used to silence her. The French report also shows surveillance footage of some of the suspects meeting at a cafe multiple times after the robbery. They also allegedly used code names and code words to discuss the crime over the phone. As we reported ... Kim went to NYC earlier this month to provide testimony to a French judge. Cops have nabbed 17 suspects in total, but have only charged a handful so far. (TMZ)

Scott Baio's not getting the justice he wanted -- the wife of the Red Hot Chili Peppers' drummer will not be charged for physically attacking him ... and Donald Trump may have played a factor in the decision. The Ventura County D.A.'s office rejected the case against Chad Smith's wife, Nancy Mack ... they say because the assault just wasn't that bad. TMZ broke the story ... Scott was at a school event for his daughter when Nancy confronted him over his vigorous support for Trump. Scott says she beat on him and then started berating him, screaming, "Grab 'em by the pussy!!!" Now, here's what's interesting. Prosecutors are not supposed to file cases when there's no reasonable chance of winning a conviction. With today's political climate and a Southern California jury pool that, at best, is deeply divided -- 42% of Ventura County residents are Hispanic -- getting 12 people to agree she was out of line might just be a pipe dream. (TMZ)


Real Housewives of Beverly Hills' Lisa Rinna Strips Down to Her Birthday Suit for Naked Selfie. Happy Sunday to you too, Lisa Rinna! The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star made quite the risque statement on Instagram as she shared a completely naked selfie to her nearly one million followers. Lisa quickly deleted the nude photo shortly thereafter, but not before Bravo nation received a candid look at Rinna in nothing but her birthday suit. In the snapshot, the 53-year-old mother of two poses in front of a mirror, a nearby desk chair and censored bar barely covering what would've made this picture completely NSFW. Lisa shared the photo in celebration of Playboy's recent return to nude pictorials, as she captioned it, "Cheers to @playboy for going back to nudes. #thefemalebodyisbeautiful" As E! News previously reported, Playboy recently unveiled the latest evolution of the brand with a new philosophy, which includes reinstating nudity starting with their March/April 2017 issue. In October 2015, the magazine announced its pledge to ban naked photographs from being published. "I'll be the first to admit that the way in which the magazine portrayed nudity was dated, but removing it entirely was a mistake," Hugh Hefner's son Cooper Hefner stated in a press release. "Nudity was never the problem because nudity isn't a problem. Today we're taking out identity back and reclaiming who we are." As for Lisa's connection to Playboy, she first posed for the mag in 1998 while six months pregnant with her now 18-year-old daughter Delilah Hamlin. Nearly a decade later, Rinna returned to Playboy once again as a cover model. Would Lisa ever revive her modeling career for a third shot at Playboy stardom? Seems as if she might be interested! (Eonline)

The Carters are courtside! Beyonce attended the 2017 NBA All-Star game in New Orleans on Sunday with her husband, Jay Z, daughter Blue Ivy -- and her sizeable baby bump. The 35-year-old expectant mom was all smiles as she enjoyed the game with her family while wearing a large, floral, robe-like garment over a t-shirt and a pair of jeans. As her parents enjoyed the famous game, little Blue, 5, seemed to give most of her attention to a cluster of cotton candy and one of the game's mascots. The little girl often smiled as Bey shared some laughs with Jay Z, 47. A video uploaded to Twitter showed the big-sister-to-be receiving a basketball jersey. Another video showed both Jay Z and Beyonce pinching their daughter's cheeks when the camera panned to the family. The sweet family outing comes just weeks after the "Hold Up" singer showed off her baby bump in a show-stopping performance at the 59th Annual Grammy Awards last Sunday. Weeks earlier, Beyonce announced that she and Jay Z would be welcoming twins. She broke the news in an Instagram photo, surprising unsuspecting fans with her already-sizeable pregnancy belly. "We would like to share our love and happiness. We have been blessed two times over," the 35-year-old singer captioned an Instagram photo of herself cradling her bump. "We are incredibly grateful that our family will be growing by two, and we thank you for your well wishes.-The Carters." Shortly after the announcement, a source told PEOPLE that Beyonce is on cloud nine about the pregnancy. "They wanted another child and after a few years of trying, it's a great feeling," a source close to the singer said. "Beyonce's very happy." (People)

Rocco Ritchie made his first public appearance with his girlfriend Kim Turnbull on Saturday, at the London Fashion Week AW17 Versus Versace show. The couple, who reportedly started dating last year, are both 16-years-old and looked seriously cute in their coordinating looks. Rocco dominated headlines in 2016 due to the custody battle between his parents, Madonna and Guy Richie. It was settled in September, with the decision that he would live with his dad in the UK permanently. The drama seems to have been resolved as Rocco and Kim joined Madonna on a skiing holiday to Verbier earlier this year. Kim was scouted on Instagram and is signed to London's Select Model Management. As the granddaughter of renowned British sculptor William Turnball, she's no stranger to famous relatives. We think we'll be seeing a lot more of these two on the FROW. (British Glamour)

Amber Rose and Wiz Khalifa Come Together to Throw Sebastian Star-Studded Birthday Party. Turning four certainly isn't a bore for Amber Rose and Wiz Khalifa's son. As Sebastian celebrated another birthday this President's Day weekend, both mom and dad decided to come together and throw a star-studded party. According to Amber's Instagram stories, guests were treated to an afternoon filled with bounce houses, face painting, dancing and Spiderman. "We love Sebastian. He's our beautiful child. He's super awesome," Amber shared with guests while delivering a toast in costume alongside Wiz. "Happy birthday pumpkin." Lamar Odom, Blac Chyna, Tom Arnold and Basketball Wives Los Angeles star Evelyn Lozada were just some of the familiar faces in attendance for the Sunday afternoon gathering. The celebration comes just a few days after reports circulated that Amber and Wiz could possibly be getting back together romantically. The pair stepped out over Grammys weekend to attend Clive Davis' annual party. Not only did they walk the red carpet together, but the exes also kissed for the cameras. Ultimately, the Amber Rose Show host set the record straight days later on Instagram. "Wiz and I are family and we will be family for the rest of our lives for Sebastian," she shared online. "We've been through hell and back so a kiss on the lips for a photo and a night out of fun is not a big deal for either of us, we are in a great place but we are very much still divorced and not together." That family unit was on full display over the weekend as Amber documented her son possibly following into dad's footsteps by grabbing the microphone and attempting to sing "Jingle Bell Rock" during the dance party. "It's your birthday," Amber shared on social media. "You having fun pumpkin? Show mommy your dance moves." Mission accomplished! (Eonline)

Khloe Kardashian's got Tristan Thompson's back AND his front ... she's now rocking his favorite gear, and further proving she always pledges allegiance to her man. The couple hit up a theme park while on vacay in Ocho Rios, Jamaica ... and as you can see, Khloe gives Nike prime real estate. She's also pimping the Swoosh with her kicks. Tristan's peeps at Nike gotta love seeing this ... since Khloe's got a much wider audience than her NBA bf -- she's got more than 60 million followers on Instagram to his 1.3 mil. You gotta wonder if Tristan's agent will try to squeeze some dough out of Nike. We've seen it before ... Khloe rocked Adidas when she was with James Harden. (TMZ)

Ashlee Simpson had a sweet message for her dad, Joe Simpson, who rang in his 59th birthday on Friday, February 17. The singer posted a photo cuddling with and kissing Joe, who has been battling prostate cancer since last year. "Happy Birthday Daddy ?????? your my sunshine ?? I love you sooooooo very much," she captioned the shot, in which Joe is pulling a goofy face, while his daughter plants a kiss on his cheek. Joe also shared the photo as well as another montage of snaps from what appeared to be a small gathering for his birthday. "Blessed to have these special people in my life," he wrote alongside the images of his daughters, Ashlee and Jessica, their husbands, Ross and Eric Johnson, and some friends too. As Us Weekly reported at the beginning of February, Joe is undergoing radiation treatment for the disease. A source confirmed to Us that: "He feels fine, he's getting through it and still working. It's all scheduled once a week. He's super optimistic. Doctors are hopeful that this will take care of it and be the last step, and he will hopefully then be in remission and cancer-free. Joe just says he feels like it's like going to get a checkup." Joe also underwent surgery for the disease in September, when an insider told Us it "went well" adding that his kids had been "super supportive." Ashlee Simpson had a sweet message for her dad, Joe Simpson, who rang in his 59th birthday on Friday, February 17. The singer posted a photo cuddling with and kissing Joe, who has been battling prostate cancer since last year. "Happy Birthday Daddy ?????? your my sunshine ?? I love you sooooooo very much," she captioned the shot, in which Joe is pulling a goofy face, while his daughter plants a kiss on his cheek. Joe also shared the photo as well as another montage of snaps from what appeared to be a small gathering for his birthday. "Blessed to have these special people in my life," he wrote alongside the images of his daughters, Ashlee and Jessica, their husbands, Ross and Eric Johnson, and some friends too. As Us Weekly reported at the beginning of February, Joe is undergoing radiation treatment for the disease. A source confirmed to Us that: "He feels fine, he's getting through it and still working. It's all scheduled once a week. He's super optimistic. Doctors are hopeful that this will take care of it and be the last step, and he will hopefully then be in remission and cancer-free. Joe just says he feels like it's like going to get a checkup." Joe also underwent surgery for the disease in September, when an insider told Us it "went well" adding that his kids had been "super supportive." (US Weekly)

Beyonce, Jay Z and Solange reunited in New Orleans -- Mardi Gras style -- and this time it was a family friendly affair. Jay and Bey were on Solange's home turf Sunday ... taking in a parade through the French Quarter. Beyonce showed off her belly full of twins from a balcony -- and although there were tons of Mardi Gras beads ... Blue Ivy and Solange's son, Julez, were also there. Translation: NO Bourbon Street bacchanalia ... or boobs. The whole fam gathered on an upper floor, and if they took an elevator ... it clearly went better this time around. (TMZ)

Child Support Drama Surrounds Tori Spelling's Baby Shower. In a drama worthy of an Aaron Spelling soap opera, tempers are running high over Tori Spelling's recent baby shower. Sources tell Page Six that Mary Jo Eustace, the ex-wife of Tori's husband, Dean McDermott, is furious because the reality stars celebrated their fifth pregnancy with a lavish party at the Hotel Bel-Air on Feb. 11 -- all while McDermott allegedly owes Eustace thousands in child support. In fact, we've learned that fed-up Eustace is taking McDermott to court next month to face allegations that he's in contempt of court for failure to pay the monthly child support payment for their son, Jack. We're told that Eustace -- who was married to McDermott from 1993 to 2006 -- was "livid" after reading headlines claiming that Tori's mom, Candy, spent $40,000 on the over-the-top fĂȘte. Candy -- the widow of Aaron Spelling, the TV mogul behind "Dynasty," "The Love Boat" and "Beverly Hills 90210" who was said to be worth $600 million at his death -- hired top Hollywood party planner Mindy Weiss to throw the party for more than 50 guests. According to court records, McDermott is due to appear in Los Angeles Superior Court at 8:30?a.m. March 9. Meanwhile, Tori and McDermott have seemed to be suffering with financial difficulties of late. In November 2016, American Express sued over an $87,595 credit card debt, according to "Entertainment Tonight." In July 2016, "ET" reported that they had been hit with a $259,108 lien for unpaid taxes from 2014. But in March 2016, Tori dismissed reports of financial woes to People, saying that rumors about money problem started after she wrote her 2013 book, "Spelling It Like It Is." "It was one chapter. I thought I was being relatable, talking about how celebrities go through financial struggles, too, we make mistakes, too," she told the magazine. Eustace and reps for the couple didn't get back to us. (PageSix)


Adele has revealed that George Michael's family only wanted her to perform a tribute to him at the year's Grammys. The news comes as star has just touched down in Australia in a private plane with son Angelo, as she gets ready to do the next leg of her world tour. Last weekend saw her perform a jazz version of "Fast Love" at the Grammys, in respect to the late singer, who passed away on Christmas Day. Adele told Sunday People : "I was devastated, I had to go for a walk on my own and on Boxing Day I said to Simon, my partner, I have to do that tribute." "They didn't want a tribute at first-his family and camp – and they came back and were very specific that it be me." "I said, 'Great, I have got something in the pipeline. If you want me to do it, I will do it.'" Adele, 28, added: "When the video came out, I was blown away by how f–king hot he was." "It is exceptional how good looking he was." She also said George, whose hits included "Faith" and "Father Figure," influenced her with his views on life and fame. She said: "I found him one of the -- truest icons, because when people are that famous there is not fakeness in a bad way but they put on an alter ego to protect themselves, and rightly so." "I understand and appreciate that." Adele became the first star to win best -- record, song and album twice at the Grammys in Los Angeles last Sunday. But now she is back to the day job and has arrived Down Under to perform to her Australian fans. Smiling happily, the singer was spotted exiting a huge private jet with her baby. The singer was seen arriving in Sydney ahead of the next gigs planned on her world tour. (Page Six)

Vin Diesel Muscles in on Kygo & Selena Gomez' 'It Ain't Me'. Vin Diesel hasn't given up on his dream of being a rock star. The Fast & Furious tough guy lends his vocals to a new mix of Kygo and Selena Gomez' collab "It Ain't Me," which dropped at the back end of last week. Kygo, the Norwegian artist and producer, has seamlessly reworked the track as a Diesel-meets-Gomez duet. "All love..." Diesel wrote as he posted the new version to his Facebook page. He went deeper with detail (and more love) on Instagram. "WOW!!!! The new Kygo mix is up on my Facebook page. I stepped out of my comfort zone for this one, haha. Let me know what you think," he wrote. "Thank you Kygo for producing this 2017 HIT! Thank you for believing in me enough to ask me to sing. Thank you Selena Gomez for bringing that beautiful and magical voice. Pained and celebratory simultaneously. I followed your lead when I went into the booth..." Diesel isn't short of confidence when there's a mic in front of him. Who could forget Vin tackling Maroon 5's "My Heart is Open" or his cover of Sam Smith's "Stay With Me" (the Internet sure hasn't forgotten). He's been working on his frontman chops with Nicky Jam and he recently told Late Late Show host James Corden he's keen to make a big reveal on Carpool Karaoke. (Billboard)

Russell Simmons Headlines NYC Rally Protesting Trump Immigration Policies. Russell Simmons headlined a rally Sunday in New York City in support of Muslim Americans and to protest President Donald Trump's immigration policies. More than a thousand people of various faiths attended the "I Am a Muslim Too" rally, which was held in Times Square on Sunday and was organized by several groups, including the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding. The protesters waved American flags, held signs saying "No Muslim Ban," and chanted "We are One." Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke at the peaceful rally, saying "we have to dispel the stereotypes" and that America is "a country founded to protect all faiths and all beliefs." Simmons said the Muslim community was being used as a scapegoat, but that "diversity will prevail." Trump has initiated a crackdown on illegal immigration. He has also called for a temporary ban on people entering the U.S. from seven Muslim-majority countries. (Billboard)

Beatles Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney Reunite in Studio. It's not every day two Beatles come together. But it happened Sunday (Feb. 19) when the surviving members of the Fab Four, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, connected in the studio. Ringo's publicist confirmed McCartney was there to contribute to Starr's forthcoming album. "Thanks for coming over and playing Great bass. I love you man peace and love," the Beatles drummer posted on Twitter with a picture of the pair at his home studio. He posted a separate picture of himself, Paul and Joe Walsh with the comment, "And look out Joe W came out to play. What a day I'm having. Peace and love." Bruce Sugar, who has engineered some of Ringo's recent albums, also posted a picture of himself and the Beatles' rhythm section on Facebook. "Magical day in the studio today with these two," he wrote. Ringo discussed with Billboard last June his follow-up to 2015's Postcard From Paradise." The album is due early this year, but no release date has been announced. McCartney and Starr last recorded together for the latter's Y Not album, released in 2010. McCartney played bass on the song "Peace Dream" and sang on "Walk With You." "It was weird the way that ("Walk With You") happened," engineer Bruce Sugar told this writer. Ringo initially asked Paul to come by and play bass on "Peace Dream." The drummer then asked McCartney for one more, time permitting. McCartney listened to "Walk With You," and Sugar recalls his response: "I don't know if I want to play bass on it, but I think I could sing a part on it." The producer and engineer adds, "I don't think Ringo would have asked him to sing on the album. But he just kind of offered up. Me and Ringo just looked at each other and offered up the mic. And he just came up with that part, which was just brilliant. It made the whole song, really. So the song was done, but his vocals were after the song was done. It was great." (Billboard)


Ralph Fiennes to Direct, David Hare to Write Biopic of Ballet Dancer Rudolf Nureyev. Two-time Oscar nominee Hare, known for 'The Hours' and 'The Reader,' will write 'The White Crow,' starring Russian dancer Oleg Ivenko and Adele Exarchopoulos. Ralph Fiennes will direct The White Crow, a biopic of Russian dancer Rudolf Nureyev. The new project by Fiennes, whose previous directorial efforts are Coriolanus and The Invisible Woman, will be based on Julie Kavanagh's book Rudolf Nureyev: The Life. David Hare, nominated for Oscars in the best screenplay category for The Hours and The Reader, will write the script. The White Crow is being developed by the BBC Films and produced by Oscar-nominated Gabrielle Tana through Magnolia Mae Productions, with Francois Ivernel through the French branch of his company Montebello Productions. "This is a story of an uncompromising spirit, of homeland and ideologies that restrict, and of friendship," said Fiennes. "It is equally, a tale about the life and ballet culture he left behind in Russia." Russian dancer Oleg Ivenko will play the lead alongside Adele Exarchopoulos (Blue Is the Warmest Color) as Clara Saint, a French woman who assisted Nureyev's defection from the Soviet Union. Russian dancer Sergei Polunin and actress Chulpan Khamatova are also joining the cast. Production is set to begin in the summer, with shooting on location in St. Petersburg and Paris. (Hollywood Reporter)

Lucca Film Festival to Honor Oliver Stone. Directors Aki Kaurismaki and Olivier Assayas also will be feted. Tuscany's Lucca Film Festival is expecting an international red carpet come April. Oliver Stone will receive the festival's main lifetime achievement award, which in previous years has honored directors including David Lynch and William Friedkin. And this year's festivities also will honor European directors Aki Kaurismaki and Olivier Assayas and actors Willem Dafoe and Valeria Golino. The festival will dedicate a complete retrospective of the works of three-time Oscar winner Stone, from Seizure (1974) to Snowden (2016). He'll be feted with the festival's spotlight prize and will be on hand to host a master class open to the public. Finnish director Kaurismaki and French director Assayas will be celebrated with career retrospectives and lifetime achievement awards. Kaurismaki will present the Italian premiere of his Berlinale-winning film The Other Side of Hope. Rome-based actors Golino and Dafoe will be on hand to meet with the public. They'll be celebrated with lifetime achievement awards for their long careers working across genres. Other retrospectives scheduled will honor the works of Cristi Puiu, Bruno Monsaingeon and Giada Colagrande. And the final lifetime achievement award will go to cult director Julien Temple (Absolute Beginners), who will inaugurate the festival's exhibition dedicated to punk in art and cinema in the '70s and '80s. Temple will meet with festivalgoers to discuss the relationship between image and music. This year's festival will once again host an international film contest with 14 films competing for the main prize, and an international short film competition. Lucca Film Festival takes place in Lucca and Viareggio, April 2-9. (Hollywood Reporter)

Following Chloe Moretz pulling out of her role in The Little Mermaid last September, Lindsay Lohan has now announced she'd like to step in as the lead. The 30-year-old actress took to Instagram at the weekend, posting a picture of herself and the character side-by-side, with the caption 'I will sing again, as #ariel #thelittlemermaid', which she has since changed to just '#thelittlemermaid'. Lindsay definitely has the hair, but Disney fans seem to be divided on this one. Could this mean the film finally goes ahead? (British Glamour)

Will La La Land Fatigue Keep the Musical From Dominating at the Oscars? There's a secret club operating under a cloak of darkness in Hollywood. A club whose members would do anything to keep their identities under wraps. A club that operates in back alleys and basements, conducting its business through caged whispers and hand signals. These are the People Who Don't Like La La Land. At first they were few and far between. When the movie stormed the scene, brimming with award season potential and the overwhelming charm of Ryan Gosling, it was pure industry blasphemy to even think that it might be a little bit over-the-top. No excuse was valid: Who cares if you hate musicals? This is a movie for people who don't like musicals! Who cares if you don't like jazz? This is a movie that brings jazz to a new audience! Prefer New York to Los Angeles? Just try and argue against those sunsets. And then there's the Prius bit -- this movie is so self-aware that even the Los Angeles love story doesn't have to be a Los Angeles love story. Then the Golden Globes happened, and anyone who was wondering whether they were alone in their suspicion of the film received an answer of a resounding yes. Yes, you are literally the only person who doesn't like La La Land. Gosling and his cronies-in-tap-dance Emma Stone and Damien Chazelle swept the event, winning all seven categories in which it was nominated. The event was all La La Land all the time, from the red carpet (Emma's star dress!) to their top-notch acceptance speeches (Ryan's tearjerker!) to the perfectly GIF-able three-way hug between Stone, Chazelle and his girlfriend. For days afterward, the musical was all anybody could talk about. That and the inner-costar love affair that went down, rivaling the great Leo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet. But all the while, the inner monologs of the silently suffering continued. Am I crazy? It feels like I'm crazy, they said. How could a person not be totally, head-over-heels in love with a movie that just managed to score 14 Oscar nominations? How could a person even question the excellence of a piece of art that just tied the record set by the G-D Titanic? Next came the SAG Awards, at which the movie went one-for-two on its nominations, with Stone winning and Gosling losing out to Denzel Washington. That was followed up by the BAFTAs, which approximately no one watched because of its unfortunate scheduling during Grammys weekend, but awarded La La Land with the accolades of Best Film, Best Leading Actress and the David Lean Award for Direction, among others. In other words, the flick is on an award show roll. It's cleaning up. It's in the zone. It's at the top of its game. But none of that really matters -- all anyone will remember is what happens this Sunday. La La Land is widely considered to be the front-runner for Best Picture at this weekend's Oscars. The odds are also ever in Ryan and Emma's favor. But it's hard to ignore the movies that are nipping at its heels. First and foremost is Moonlight. While La La Land is on Oscar voter's dream, all self-congratulation and beautiful camerawork and Ryan Freaking Gosling, Moonlight speaks to an issue and a zeitgeist that couldn't be more prudent and important today. It's a movie that means something, and combined with star Mahershala Ali's powerful and endearing speech at the SAG Awards, it's a force to be reckoned with. Special attention should also be paid to Hidden Figures, which won the top prize at the SAG Awards, and boasts awards darlings Taraji P. Henson and Octavia Spencer. And the team behind La La Land would be remiss if they didn't have their eyes on the diversity issue. Last year was a new low for the Academy Awards, with the lack of representation at an astonishing level. The 2017 nominations made big strides in actually looking somewhat like the makeup of the rest of America, and awarding a bulk of the Oscar statues to a movie that stars almost exclusively white actors could be seen as a big step backward. And then, of course, there are the naysayers. Thanks to the growing conversation around representation in Hollywood, the wins by La La Land's competitors and a very on-the-nose Saturday Night Live sketch, they're starting to come out of the woodwork. Even The New York Times, that great bastion of highbrow culture, recently went public with the concerns of a few staff members and arguments like "It doesn't understand musicals" and "man, does it annoy me" and "If playing an awesome synth solo is wrong, I don't want to be right." Bolstered by these rumblings, regular people have felt empowered to speak out. This writer, in particular, can attest being on the receiving end of several testimonies about acquaintance's inability to "get" the movie. Give a person a few glasses of wine and suddenly they've all sorts of questions about why Emma Stone's character is such a snob or why they constantly insist on tap dancing. Dare you inform the person that tap dancing is what they do in musicals. They have their opinion and they're sticking with it. Will the secret society unearth itself fully to topple La La Land's reign? Or will Old Hollywood dominated New Hollywood? We'll have to wait until Sunday to find out. (Eonline)

Oscars: Contenders Make Closing Arguments in Stressed-Out City of Stars. THR's awards analyst summarizes where and how nominees are courting votes in the final days before Oscar ballots are due. I keep above my desk an article with the headline: "Stars become cooperative as Oscar fever strikes." It was published in 1961, but it is truer than ever today, as I was reminded this weekend. The 89th Oscars ceremony still is a week away, but ballots are due by 5 p.m. PST on Tuesday, and several categories still are too close to call, all of which explains why some very big names are showing up in some unexpected places during this home stretch. Like many of his fellow nominees, La La Land's writer-director Damien Chazelle has been spending more time in his tux than out of it of late. On Saturday night, he attended the Cinema Audio Society Awards downtown at the Omni Hotel, not to present anything, but merely to support -- through a very long show -- his film's sound team, which ended up winning this strongest predictor of the best sound mixing Oscar category, in which musicals often do well. When Chazelle arrived at The Hollywood Reporter's offices on Sunday afternoon to record an episode of the "Awards Chatter" podcast with me, he was donning a monkey suit yet again, this time because he planned to head right from our meeting to the Beverly Hilton for the 69th Writers Guild of America Awards, at which his script was nominated for best original screenplay. It ended up losing to Barry Jenkins' for Moonlight in the best original screenplay category, while Arrival won the WGA's adapted screenplay award). Moonlight's win was an encouraging show of support for that film on the heels of its win at last weekend's USC Scripter Awards. The silver lining for team La La Land: Unlike at the WGA Awards Moonlight is Oscar-nominated in the best-adapted screenplay category screenplay at the Oscars, where it won't go head-to-head against La La Land, which is nominated for original screenplay. The Sunday before Oscars Sunday also brought, for the 12th consecutive year, the opening ceremony of the LA-Italia Film, Fashion, & Art Festival -- one of the more colorful award ceremonies -- to the TCL Chinese 6 Theatre. Every year, a bunch of nominees agree to accept a predetermined award in-person, not least because virtually every Italian and Italian-American in Hollywood turns up for Pascal Vicedomini's creation, including dozens of Academy members like actor Franco Nero, writer Bobby Moresco and songwriter Tony Renis. Among those lured to the event this year: Mel Gibson, who, for his work on Hacksaw Ridge, accepted the fest's Director of the Year Award from old pal Sylvester Stallone (who was given an award of his own, as well);Justin Hurwitz, this year's only triple Oscar nominee (he's up for La La Land's original score and original songs "City of Stars" and "Audition"), who accepted the Song of the Year Award for "City of Stars" from Academy members Renis, Mike Stoller, Charles Fox (one of the Academy's music branch governors) and William Goldstein, who heaped praise on Hurwitz before Vicedomini convinced him to play the tune on the piano; and, accepting the Film of the Year Award from Nero, Moresco and others, Lion distributor Harvey Weinstein (who said Italian neorealism greatly influenced the first hour of the film), child star Sunny Pawar (who received a Child Performer of the Year Award as well) and Oscar-nominated screenwriter Luke Davies and cinematographer Greig Fraser. Also on Sunday night, downtown at the Westin Bonaventure, the Motion Picture Sound Editors presented its 64th annual Golden Reel Awards. And on Monday night, just under the wire, the Costume Designers Guild will present its 19th CDG Awards. You can be sure that several Oscar nominees from higher-profile categories will show up to help in the celebration. (Hollywood Reporter)


The Walking Dead Finally Gave Us the Reunion We've Been Waiting For. After what felt like a lifetime, but was only really just about a full year, The Walking Dead finally reunited one of our favorite pair of characters and, well, we're having mixed feelings about it. Of course, we're talking about the long-awaited reconnection between Carol (Melissa McBride) and Daryl (Norman Reedus) after the latter arrived at the Kingdom for safeguarding against the Saviors in last week's midseason premiere. And it might have never happened if it weren't for Richard and his plot to lure the Saviors to Carol's cabin, sacrificing her in order to force King Ezekiel into joining the war against Negan and his crew. Naturally, Daryl was never going to let that bit of insanity happen. But it did alert him to Carol's whereabouts, no thanks to Morgan's lie last week about her leaving for parts unknown. And seeing the two share a hug, for the first time since they embraced after she and Maggie escaped from Paula's compound last season, filled us with all kinds of happiness. It's what happened after that we're still not sure how to feel about. As they sat down for a meal, Carol burst into tears and asked Daryl if the Saviors came to Alexandria, if they hurt anyone. And in that moment, Daryl made the decision to keep Carol in the dark about Glenn and Abraham's murders, telling her that Rick and the gang won. On the one hand, it's sweet that he's trying to protect his friend from the savagery that everyone else is still struggling to recover from. But on the other hand, is it really fair of him to make that choice for her? We all know she's going to find out anyway. Morgan knows what happened, after all. Something tells us she won't be too pleased with her pal when that time comes. What do you think about Daryl's lie? Did he do the right thing or is he in the wrong? The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on AMC. (Eonline)

Newest "Real Housewives of New York City" cast member Tinsley Mortimer is struggling to ingratiate herself with her newfound New York friends upon her return from exile in Palm Beach, Fla. Last month, Page Six reported that Mortimer, the top New York society swan, desperately wants to return to her throne as the town's No. 1 socialite and hoped that her role on Bravo's "Real Housewives" would help catapult her back to the top. It seems that things aren't off to a great start. We're told that the Tins has raised the ire of her fellow "Housewives" by failing to live up their lofty standards of proper etiquette. In particular, the erstwhile queen of high society has offended the group by accepting longtime cast member Sonja Morgan's hospitality -- Mortimer has been staying with Morgan while filming the show -- without coughing up a gift. "If you're a socialite -- never mind a 'socialite,' if you're a human -- if you're a guest at someone's home, you buy them a bottle of wine, or at least a card," said a source familiar with the brouhaha. Or as co-star and former countess LuAnn De Lesseps (now LuAnn D'Agostino after her recent wedding) so memorably noted in her 2010 single of the same name, "Money can't buy you class." We're told that Ramona Singer has boldly taken the matter in hand and confronted Mortimer -- who was once married to Topper Mortimer and was arrested for trespassing in Palm Beach last year during a dispute with her ex-boyfriend Nico Fanjul -- about the faux pas. Meanwhile, we're told that her presence on the show has yet to bring the new blush of energy to the action as had been hoped by its producers. Another source tells us that Mortimer continues to linger on-camera over her ill-fated romance with Fanjul, which has failed to set the screen alight. Page Six reported that her storyline would involve her search for love in New York, which has so far been fruitless. But Mortimer's rep sniffed, "There's no truth to these rumors." (Page Six)

No, The Arrangement Is Not About Scientology: See the Cast Respond to the Comparisons! "It's so not that story!" A lot of comparisons have been made between The Arrangement and Scientology, but the cast of E!'s new scripted series is here to tell you it's not what you think. On The Arrangement, movie star Kyle West (Josh Henderson) is a part of an organization called The Institute of the Higher Mind, which is run by his best friend Terence (Michael Vartan). But no, it's not based off of Scientology (or Tom Cruise as some have said). "You can see the comparisons considering Tom's an actor, Kyle West is an actor, they're both huge film stars... you know it's set in Hollywood, it's set in the entertainment industry, but at the end of the day we're really telling our own unique story," Henderson explained to E! News at the premiere of The Arrangement in Beverly Hills. "I think it's very natural for people to draw some sort of relation, to compare it to something... I think people just do that generally," Christine Evangelista, who plays Kyle's love interest Megan Morrison on the series, said. "And I think that's OK, but very soon early on you'll see that these people have their own history, their own relationship, and we're not deriving it from any actual people." Watch the series premiere of The Arrangement March 5 at 10 p.m., on E! (Eonline)

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