68 Cheap Things to Make Your Home Look More Expensive
E-comm: Cheap Ways to make your home look expensive We independently selected these deals and products because we love them, and we think you might like them at these prices. E! has affiliate relationships, so we may get a commission if you...

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Proof Kourtney Kardashian's Vibe Right Now Is Just Living Family Life
Kourtney Kardashian, Travis Barker, Oscars 2022 Kourtney Kardashian may argue that her latest era is the most interesting to look at.  After all, The Kardashians star is entering her 45th year with plenty of reasons to celebrate. Not only are...

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Megan Fox's Makeup-Free Selfie Proves She Really Is God's Favorite
Megan Fox This is 40 Megan Fox.  The Jennifer's Body star gave fans a rare glimpse at her face sans makeup when she shared a stunning selfie to show how she's recuperating from her weekend at Coachella...

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House of Horror's Jordan Turpin Debuts Romance With Boyfriend
Jordan Turpin, Matt Ryan Jordan Turpin has found a happily ever after. Jordan—who escaped from her parents' "House of Horror" in 2018—has hit a new milestone in her personal life: She's in a relationship. The 23-year-old...

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YouTuber Abhradeep "Angry Rantman" Saha Dead at 27 After Major Surgery
Abhradeep Saha, Angry Rantman The YouTube community has lost a star. Abhradeep Saha—known as "Angry Rantman" on the video platform—died on the morning of April 17, his family shared. He was 27. "With profound grief and sorrow,...

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The Office Star's Masked Singer Reveal Will Make You LOL
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Harry Potter's Warwick Davis Mourns Death of Wife Samantha
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All The Internet Stars Seen in Abbott Elementary

The latest season of Abbott Elementary is filled with guest appearances from internet stars. Since it premiered in 2021, the Emmy-winning workplace sitcom, set at an underfunded Philadelphia public school, has consistently woven internet culture into its plots—and the show’s lightning-fast, blink-or-you’ll-miss-it jokes routinely go viral online. It makes sense given that Abbott Elementary creator and star Quinta Brunson got her start in comedy making videos online, producing series for BuzzFeed and other platforms that are now cemented in internet culture lexicon.

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Now, familiar faces from TikTok and YouTube videos are getting their moment to shine on a traditional sitcom. See the viral stars who have made appearances on Abbott Elementary below.

Quinta Brunson

Quinta Brunson was regularly featured in videos across BuzzFeed’s different channels before breaking off to work on her own projects that she pitched to digital networks.

In 2019, after a few of her videos went viral, Brunson broke into the mainstream as a cast member and writer on HBO’s A Black Lady Sketch Show in the show’s first season—her only season because she ended up selling her show to ABC. She got Abbott Elementary picked up and currently serves as the show’s creator, writer, and executive producer. She also stars as the bubbly, optimistic teacher Janine Teagues.

Zack Fox

Zack Fox made a name for himself on social media as a professional troll on X and rapper. Both of those talents came to use when he made an appearance on producer Kenny Beats’ YouTube series “The Cave.” In the show, he invites well-known rappers to his studio where he makes them a beat and they freestyle over his new creation. Rappers like Vince Staples, Doja Cat, Lil Yatchy, and Rico Nasty have all stopped by his studio for an episode of “The Cave.”

Read More: Abbott Elementary Gave Me My Greatest Success, Four Decades Into My Career

Fox joined Kenny and did what he does best: cause a ruckus. He got in the booth and they made “Jesus is The One (I Got Depression),” a deeply unserious song that took off on social media, giving way for the song to reach No. 1 on Spotify’s U.S. Viral charts, became Kenny’s most popular video with over 9 million views and they made a Genius “Verified” video where they broke down the lyrics.

On Abbott, he plays Janine’s deadbeat ex-boyfriend and burgeoning rapper in the drug prevention space, Tariq. After they break up, Tariq goes from being a starving artist, mooching off of Janine to a grade school touring rapper with F.A.D.E. (this show’s version of the D.A.R.E. program). He pops in throughout the series, mostly recently moderating a panel as the president of the PTA.

Sabrina Brier

Most people have a friend like Sabrina Brier—or all the characters she plays in her painfully honest skits about friendships and relationships. Many of her skits have a moment where she’s speaking to someone and they say something either a little too real or a little too honest and it catches her off guard, to which she says “OH!” It’s become ubiquitous on TikTok.

🤪 pic.twitter.com/tDIjRRlvUi

— Sabrina Brier (@sabrinabrier) February 22, 2024

Brier made an appearance in episode four of season three as Jessca, a substitute teacher for Janine’s class. She took her pseudo Valley girl accent and vocal fry to the halls of Abbott Elementary in just one episode.

Casey Frey

Casey Frey’s appearance in Abbott is a welcome surprise. He got his start on the now-defunct short form video platform, Vine, with a few viral moments—most notably, his “Get TF Out of My Way Type Way” video. Since his Vine days, he’s moved over to TikTok, where he’s amassed a following of over one million people, with many of his videos getting over a million views. In Abbott, audiences seem him play a F.A.D.E. rapper in the same vein as Tariq—a nonsensical rhymer warning elementary school students about the dangers of drugs. He fully embodies the character and quite honestly, his character needs a larger arc.

JaBria McCullum

Jabria is an ACTRESS, okay! #AbbottElementary pic.twitter.com/CEquNyQoir

— 🐝 (@beydisciple) April 11, 2024

Abbott’s child actors, who make up the titular school’s students, are highly regarded excellent comedic timing. As the show grew in popularity, so did calls for seven-year-old TikTok star JaBria McCullum to join the cast. She’s one of the many characters on her godbrother’s TikTok series, “Are You Smarter Than a Preschooler?” where he asks children questions like “Who fought in World War 2?” and “Spell Mississippi,” the results of which are utterly adorable.

@laronhinesofficial

are you smarter than a preschooler? pt 91

♬ original sound – La’Ron®🎤

The internet’s calls were finally answered in episode nine this season where she played one of Gregory’s students asking what she should do if one of her teeth falls out. Just like the other young actors on the show, she knows how to steal a scene.

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 17 Apr 2024 | 5:24 pm

The True Story Behind the Surprise Netflix Hit Baby Reindeer
Baby Reindeer

Warning: This post contains spoilers for the Netflix series Baby Reindeer.

In his one-man play-turned-hit Netflix series Baby Reindeer, Scottish comedian Richard Gadd recounts the harrowing true story of how his experience with being stalked forced him to confront a buried trauma.

Playing a fictionalized version of himself named Donny Dunn, Gadd unpacks the years-long stalking and harassment campaign he endured at the hands of a middle-aged woman he refers to by the pseudonym Martha (played with a chilling intensity by Jessica Gunning) while struggling to make it as a stand-up and writer in London. As is depicted in the show, the stalking began in the wake of Gadd being groomed, repeatedly sexually assaulted, and raped by an older male TV industry mentor (named Darrien in the show and played by Tom Goodman-Hill)—an ordeal that left him reeling emotionally, questioning his sexuality, and wrestling with extreme self-loathing. Still, Gadd doesn’t shy away from his own complicity in what transpired with Martha, frequently painting himself in a negative light as the story unfolds over the course of seven episodes.

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“It would be unfair to say she was an awful person and I was a victim. That didn’t feel true,” he told The Guardian in 2019 following the sold-out inaugural run of the Baby Reindeer play. “I did loads of things wrong and made the situation worse. I wasn’t a perfect person [back then], so there’s no point saying I was.”

When Gadd debuted his one-man show at the 2019 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, it had been two years since he had seen or heard from Martha. Three years earlier, while the stalking was still in full swing, he had won the festival’s top prize for his comedy show Monkey See, Monkey Do, which explored his experience as a survivor of sexual violence. The Baby Reindeer Netflix series, which is currently at number two on the streamer’s most-watched charts following its release last week, is an amalgam of the two stage shows.

“It felt like a risky thing—to do a ‘warts and all’ version of the story where I held my hands up to the mistakes I had made with Martha,” Gadd wrote in a piece that accompanied the show’s debut. “The foolish flirting. The cowardly excuses as to why we could not be together. Not to mention the themes of internalized prejudice and sexual shame that underpinned it all. The graphic details of the drugging and grooming and sexual violence I had experienced only a few years before…But equally I could not shy away from the truth of what had happened to me. This was a messy, complicated situation. But one that needed to be told, regardless.”

Here’s what to know about the true story behind Baby Reindeer.

What happened with Martha?

Jessica Gunning as Martha in Baby Reindeer

Similar to how the show begins, Gadd has said that the stalking started after he gave Martha a free cup of tea when she came into the London pub where he was working in 2015. “At first everyone at the pub thought it was funny that I had an admirer,” he told The Times. “Then she started to invade my life, following me, turning up at my gigs, waiting outside my house, sending thousands of voicemails and emails.”

Over the next four and a half years, Gadd recounts that Martha sent him 41,071 emails, 350 hours’ worth of voicemails, 744 tweets, 46 Facebook messages, 106 pages of letters, and a variety of strange gifts. Every email that appears in the Netflix series is a message that Gaad received in real life. She also harassed a number of people who were close to Gaad, including his parents and a trans woman (named Teri in the show and played by Nava Mau) whom he had begun dating shortly before the stalking began.

When Gadd tried to go to the police, he discovered that the laws surrounding harassment and abuse are, in his own words, “so stupid.” Despite the fact that the show presents Martha as having been previously convicted on similar charges, Gadd was told he needed concrete evidence of direct threats for authorities to take any action.

“They look for black and white, good and evil, and that’s not how it works,” he told The Independent. “You can really affect someone’s life within the parameters of legality, and that is sort of mad.”

How do things stand today?

Richard Gaad as Donny Dunn in Baby Reindeer

In the show, Martha ultimately receives a nine-month prison sentence and five-year restraining order for stalking Donny. In real life, Gaad has never disclosed the details of how the situation was resolved beyond the fact that he had “mixed feelings” about it.

“I can’t emphasize enough how much of a victim she is in all this,” he told The Independent. “Stalking and harassment is a form of mental illness. It would have been wrong to paint her as a monster, because she’s unwell, and the system’s failed her.”

As for how Gaad’s sexual assault has continued to impact his life, the finale culminates in a closing sequence in which Donny shows up at Darrien’s home to confront him only to accept an offer to work on his new show instead. A distressed Donny then finds himself at a bar where he is offered a drink on the house in a moment that flips his first interaction with Martha on its head.

“I think that was almost the most truthful scene of the entire show. What abuse does is it creates psychological damage as well as physical damage,” Gadd told GQ. “There’s a pattern where a lot of people who have been abused feel like they need their abusers. I don’t think it was a cynical ending, it was showing an element of abuse that hadn’t been seen on television before, which is, unfortunately, the deeply entrenched, negative, psychological effects of attachment you can sometimes have with your abuser.”

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 17 Apr 2024 | 9:46 am

Everything You Need to Know About the 2024 Met Gala

Fashion designers and their muses, art enthusiasts, and some of the world’s most influential celebrities will all gather at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City in three weeks for fashion’s biggest night: the Met Gala.

The exclusive annual soirée is the primary source of funding for the museum’s Costume Institute, which is home to nearly 33,000 fashion objects from the past seven centuries. The event has also become a destination for fashion insiders and pop culture power players alike, with its red carpet watched eagerly by viewers around the world.

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Read more: How Anna Wintour Wields Her Power

Famously hosted every year on the first Monday in May, this year’s Met Gala will take place May 6 and its suggested theme is “The Garden of Time.” The dress code is inspired by the 2024 Costume Institute exhibit, “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion,” which will open on May 10 and features 250 items from the department’s permanent collection.

Here’s everything you need to know about the event.

When is the 2024 Met Gala?

This year’s Costume Institute Benefit will take place on Monday, May 6, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The red carpet ahead of the event will start at 6 pm ET and will be streamed on Vogue‘s website and social media channels, as well as broadcasted on E!

What is the theme and who decides it?

The Costume Institute’s chief curator, Andrew Bolton is responsible for curating the museum’s annual spring fashion exhibit, which often inspires the dress code and theme for the Met Gala. This year’s exhibit is “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion,” which reimagines how museum visitors can interact and experience historical garments and fashion objects that may no longer be worn or touched. According to Vogue, the exhibit will feature 250 pieces from the Costume Institute’s permanent collection that span over 400 years of fashion history, including designs by Schiaparelli, Givenchy, and Dior. Because some garments, like a Charles Frederick Worth ball gown from 1877, are too delicate to be worn, the exhibit will use a diverse range of technologies and activations to create a sensory experience for all the garments, invoking senses from smell and sound to texture and motion.

“By appealing to the widest possible range of human senses, the show aims to reconnect with the works on display as they were originally intended—with vibrancy, with dynamism, and ultimately with life,” Bolton said in a press release about the exhibit.

What does that mean for the dress code?

The dress code for the night is “The Garden of Time,” seemingly drawing inspiration from the exhibit’s tension between fashion history and the ephemeral nature of physical garments. The evocative theme leaves plenty of room for guests’ interpretations—although it would be a good bet that florals will be a mainstay of this year’s Met Gala red carpet.

Who are co-chairs hosting this year’s gala?

Vogue editor-in-chief and Costume Institute trustee Anna Wintour has been a co-chair of the Met Gala since 1995 (excluding 1996 and 1998,) and in the nearly three decades since she joined, she’s helped to make the annual museum benefit a star-studded affair by championing the celebrity co-chair. The high-profile figures who co-chair the event share hosting duties, like helping create the guest list, curating the menu for the evening, and offering insight on the decor. Past co-chairs include Rihanna, Serena Williams, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Amal Clooney. This year’s co-chairs are Zendaya, Jennifer Lopez, Bad Bunny, and Chris Hemsworth, while Jonathan Anderson, creative director of the fashion label Loewe, and TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew will serve as honorary chairs.

Who is expected to attend?

While the guest list for the Met Gala is never disclosed before the event, it’s become a coveted invite for celebrities, fashion houses and powerful figures alike, who must be personally approved by Wintour before they can purchase their $50,000 ticket to the event or a $300,000 table. The gala’s attendance is limited to about 450 guests.

What happens at the Met Gala?

Because phones— and therefore cameras—aren’t allowed at the actual Met Gala, there are no social media posts revealing what happens once guests enter the museum. But the New York Times reports that upon arrival, guests are greeted by the evening’s chairs, and they can preview the exhibit during the cocktail hour. The main event of the night is the seated dinner, which usually includes a performance or some form of entertainment. Past performers have included Madonna, Rihanna and Katy Perry.

Where can you watch the Met Gala and its red carpet?

While securing an invite to the actual Met Gala may be a tough feat, everyone can join in the night’s action by watching the live stream of the event on Vogue‘s social media pages and website.

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 16 Apr 2024 | 5:43 pm

Taylor Swift’s Best Bridges, Ranked
Best Taylor Swift Bridges

A Taylor Swift song is nothing without its bridge. The star’s strongest skills as a storyteller and lyricist are on full display in that critical moment, which marks a noticeable shift in the song, whether it’s in the narrative, tone, tempo, or a combination of the three. And for Swift, the bridge is often what elevates a good song to a truly great one. Over the course of her career, she’s introduced songs with bridges that run the emotional spectrum—some are meant to be screamed at the top of your lungs, while others can be quietly sung through tears.

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With over 240 songs across 10 original studio and 4 re-recorded albums, Swift has a bridge for just about every type of emotional catharsis. We decided to go through her discography to decide on the very best. To determine what makes for a bridge of superior caliber, we each compiled our own individual rankings, taking into account how the bridge fits in with each song, and then we added up those results.

25. “Love Story”

“Love Story,” the lead single off 2008’s Fearless, put Swift in the mainstream. It shot to the top of different Billboard charts and solidified her status as a crossover artist. In the song, Swift invokes Romeo and Juliet to tell the story of a seemingly doomed young couple with the bridge bringing down the tempo to signify her growing apprehension—that is, until Romeo gets down on one knee and the fairytale ends happily.—Moises Mendez II

Best line: “My faith in you was fading, when I met you on the outskirts of town”

24. “right where you left me”

The “evermore” bonus track feels more like a Gothic short story than a song. It tells the story of a woman frozen in time, haunting the restaurant where she had her heart broken. In the bridge, Swift shares what the rumor mill is saying about the “woman who lives in delusion” before changing the pronouns to reveal she’s talking about herself. “Time went on for everybody else, she won’t know it,” she sings, perfectly encapsulating the shame that comes from living in the past while everyone around you moves on.—Samantha Cooney

Best line: “She’s still 23 inside her fantasy, how it was supposed to be”

23. “Mr. Perfectly Fine”

Every major pop star needs a f-ck you anthem dedicated to someone who has done them wrong. When “Mr. Perfectly Fine,” rumored to be about Joe Jonas, reaches the bridge, it sounds like Swift is kicking a door open to a new phase of her life without her Perfectly Fine man.—MM

Best line: “Now I’m Miss Gonna Be Alright Someday, and someday, maybe you’ll miss me, but by then, you’ll be Mr. Too Late”

22. “Back to December”

Closing a chapter with someone you care about deeply is one of the most heartbreaking things anyone can go through, and Swift expertly details that pain in “Back to December,” singing, “It turns out freedom ain’t nothing but missin’ you, wishin’ I’d realized what I had when you were mine”—some of the most tragic lyrics in her entire discography. The bridge only twists the knife even deeper as she sings about how she’d do everything differently if she were given a second chance.—MM

Best line: I’d go back in time and change it, but I can’t. So, if the chain is on your door, I understand”

21. “You’re On Your Own, Kid”

Though this Midnights track is carried by a fast and light beat, the heart of the song, about yearning for and experiencing fame, is quite devastating. The price of celebrity is summed up in the haunting lines of its bridge: “The jokes weren’t funny, I took the money. My friends from home don’t know what to say.”—Annabel Gutterman

Best line: “So make the friendship bracelets, take the moment and taste it. You’ve got no reason to be afraid”

20. “Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve”

Even though it was a bonus track, “Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve” quickly became a standout (if not the best song) of Midnights. Feverish and wild, the song unravels like a thunderstorm, as Swift wades through a toxic relationship over pulsing drums and haunting synths. In the eye of the storm is the bridge—a pleading call to a higher power for rest, followed by an earth-shattering line that further cements Swift’s lyrical genius: “I regret you all the time.”—Rachel Sonis

Best line: “I regret you all the time”

19. “betty”

At the center of the Betty/James/Inez teenage love triangle drawn out in the folklore standout “betty” is the question: “What if?” What if James wasn’t such a boy about things? What if he told Betty how he really felt? What if Inez never spread those “rumors” about James cheating with her on Betty? But in the bridge, where Swift often makes her biggest revelations, the “what if’s” give way to the truth about James’ restless summer spent with Inez, when he was really thinking about Betty. A moment of unbearable release—and of stinging regret.—RS

Best line: “I dreamt of you all summer long”

18. “Enchanted”

This Speak Now song had a resurgence on TikTok last year, with the bridge appearing everywhere, bringing everyone back to 2010. In the bridge, Swift blissfully blends the confidence in her feelings of falling for someone with the insecurity of not knowing if that person is in love with someone else. She perfectly describes meeting someone for the first time and instantly feeling enchanted. That someone is said to be Adam Young, the frontman of Owl City. Swift said an interview around the time the album came out that she wrote the song about a guy she was emailing and when they met, he mentioned being “wonderstruck,” which she incorporated into the tune. In a 2011 interview with Us Weekly, Young said the song is about him and responded to it with a song of his own.—MM

Best line: “Please, don’t be in love with someone else. Please, don’t have somebody waiting on you”

17. “Out of the Woods”

1989—Swift’s first full-on foray into pop music—is surprisingly sparse when it comes to soul-bearing bridges. (Case in point: “Style,” my all-time favorite Swift song, has a lyrically thin bridge). The one exception is “Out of the Woods,” with a bridge that serves as the song’s emotional and musical highpoint. Swift’s voice explodes as she describes a crash, and a snowmobile accident serves as a metaphor for the breakdown of a relationship. Despite the chaos and comedowns (“Remember when you said you couldn’t take the heat?”), the bridge ends with the hope that the relationship can make it, even if only for another day (“When the sun came up, you were looking at me.”)—SC

Best line: “Remember when you hit the brakes too soon? Twenty stitches in a hospital room”

16. “Treacherous”

This song from Red starts off soft and slow with lyrics that point to how easy it is to be consumed by the promise of love, even if that love is risky. The plucky chorus gives way to a powerful bridge that is most definitely meant to be screamed: “Two headlights shine through the sleepless night. And I will get you, get you alone.”—AG

Best line: “That nothing safe is worth the drive”

15. “You’re Losing Me”

“You’re Losing Me” was released as a vault song off Midnights just a month after it was reported Swift and her longtime boyfriend had split. While the bulk of the song is underwhelming, the bridge ranks among her best-ever, with some of her most emotionally raw songwriting. The lyrics balance righteous anger about not being given attention by a partner (“I’m the best thing at this party”) with anxious resignation about why it ended. It all builds up to the barnburner of a lyric: “And I wouldn’t marry me either.”—SC 

Best line: “And I wouldn’t marry me either. A pathological people pleaser. Who only wanted you to see her”

14. “Dress”

“Dress” is Swift’s most outwardly sexy song: the chorus is anchored around the line, “Only bought this dress so you could take it off.” But the bridge reveals the bluff: this is really a song about revealing the worst parts of yourself to someone and still having them want you. It’s all incredibly romantic and intimate.—SC 

Best line: “Even in my worst lies you saw the truth in me”

13. “Long Live”

Originally written as a love letter to Swift’s band and fans, the lyrics in this Speak Now song remind us all that there is so much beauty in living in the present, and even more beauty in being able to look back and remember how that present felt. Though much of “Long Live” is a celebration of memories, the bridge coalesces into a striking direct plea from Swift to protect and honor how the past interacts with the future.—AG 

Best line: “If you have children someday, when they point to the pictures, please, tell ‘em my name”

12. “champagne problems”

Swift tells the audience at the Eras Tour that she wrote one particular song during the pandemic with the hopes she’d one day hear fans scream its bridge in a stadium. That song is called “champagne problems”—and boy did I have fun screaming “what a shame she’s f-cked in the head” in Philadelphia last May. The song is a soft piano ballad about turning down a marriage proposal, and the bridge swells with scenes of devastation. The bridge’s bittersweet end promises the heartbroken ex will “find the real thing instead.” It’s a cathartic moment in the song—and at the show.—SC

Best line: “She would’ve made such a lovely bride. What a shame she’s fucked in the head, they said”

11. “You Belong With Me”

“You Belong With Me” is the quintessential country-pop song of 2009. It’s the type of song that gets you out of your seat. It begs to be scream-sung at the top of your lungs with your best friends by your side, especially the bridge, which captures the yearning of wanting your crush to see that you’re perfect for him.—MM

Best line: “I know your favorite songs, and you tell me ’bout your dreams. Think I know where you belong, think I know it’s with me”

10. “Death By A Thousand Cuts”

A Taylor Swift bridge ranking would not be complete without one that kind of feels like a rant—and “Death By a Thousand Cuts” is it. A song about an agonizing death of a relationship, what’s most interesting about this bridge is that it’s a stream of consciousness, with every line as cutting as the next, as Swift’s staccato delivery accentuates every dig. While her lover might’ve fired the first shot, Swift is here to deliver the final blow.—RS 

Best Line: “Paper cut stings from our paper thin plans”

9. “illicit affairs”

Most of this folklore song is a slow and often unsettling dissection of the true cost of infidelity. But Swift’s crooning turns much louder as she cries out in the bridge how, exactly, this relationship has broken her apart (she literally references needing to scream). It’s these lyrics that really crystallize how confusing it is to love a person who never really belonged to you.—AG 

Best line: “You showed me colors you know I can’t see with anyone else”

8. “Fifteen”

When Swift set to write the devastatingly vulnerable ballad “Fifteen,” she started with the bridge. “I started everything with the line ‘Abigail gave everything she had to a boy who changed his mind’ and wrote everything else from that point, almost backwards,” Swift said of the song in her track-by-track explanation of the album on Big Machine Records’ website. That line makes not only the bridge, but the entire song—honest and searing, yet overflowing with sisterly love and empathy for her childhood best friend Abigail Anderson, as she goes through a brutal breakup.—RS 

Best Line: “Abigail gave everything she had to a boy who changed his mind. And we both cried”

7. “the last great american dynasty

Of all the “mad” characters that exist in the folklore universe, Swift’s sharp retelling of American heiress and socialite Rebekah Harkness’ story and her notorious parties at the “Holiday House” mansion in Rhode Island takes the cake. Steeped in fascinating tidbits about her life, Swift recounts how Harkness, who inherited the riches from her oil tycoon husband’s untimely death and even became the richest woman in America at one point, was considered an outcast and a madwoman for her unconventional choices and lavish lifestyle. Swift, of course, is not-so-subtly making connections to her own life here—and really lays it bare in the bridge: Swift bought Holiday House (now called “High Watch”) in 2013, a place where many of her own dalliances have resulted in serious drama, too. A kiss-off to the haters, Swift is the new madwoman in town, and she doesn’t really care what anyone thinks. Rebekah would, no doubt, be proud.—RS

Best line: “Free of women with madness, their men in bad habits. And then it was bought by me”

6. “Last Kiss”

Talk about emotional catharsis! This Speak Now song describes a terrible, consuming breakup, and what it feels like to obsess over the final moments of a relationship. The steady beat swells up at the bridge and suddenly the full intensity of the track emerges as Swift’s voice explodes. The desperation and yearning is palpable—and so is the belief that one day those memories won’t feel so crushing.—AG  

Best line: “So I’ll watch your life in pictures like I used to watch you sleep. And I feel you forget me like I used to feel you breathe”

5. “Getaway Car”

There’s a reason the behind-the-scenes video of Swift and Jack Antonoff writing the “Getaway Car” bridge has become Swiftie lore. It’s exhilarating to watch Swift and Antonoff compose a cinematic bridge with strong storytelling in real time. The song turns Swift into an outlaw running from the heart she broke. In the bridge, Swift takes some responsibility—but also tells her partner he shouldn’t be surprised she ditched him in a motel bar. Try not to have fun belting this (especially when Swift goes full Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan on “when I switch to the other si-i-i-i-ide).—SC 

Best line: “It’s no surprise I turned you in. ‘Cause us traitors never win”

4. “Dear John”

The blueprint for Taylor Swift’s best bridge (more on that later) is all over this Speak Now song, one of Swift’s best breakup anthems, ever. As she unpacks a relationship with an older man (famously rumored to be John Mayer), Swift takes aim at how it feels to be taken advantage of by someone so manipulative and deceitful. In the bridge, Swift crucially reclaims the power she lost, directly calling out this toxic behavior, and rising above it. This is a moment of supreme clarity—impressive for anyone to capture so acutely, let alone from someone so young (Swift was just 21 when this album was released).—AG

Best line: “You are an expert at sorry and keeping lines blurry”

3. “august”

By the time “august” gets to the bridge, there’s an explosion of emotions. It’s the part of the song where, if you’re listening in the car, no matter who you’re with, you turn the volume up to scream, “Back when we were still changing for the better!” The song sounds like a balmy summer day, capturing exactly how it feels to fall in love with someone who makes you feel warm inside, but ends up breaking your heart by slipping away.—MM

Best line: “So much for summer love and saying us, ’cause you weren’t mine to lose”

2. “Cruel Summer”

Is there anything better than screaming the bridge “Cruel Summer” at the top of your lungs? Screaming the bridge while you have a new crush for the summer, maybe. “Cruel Summer” is definitely one of Swift’s sweatiest numbers—a song that is best played on a hot July day as the sun sets and the night has promise of meeting up with someone you’re “just texting,” but that no one knows about yet. The hushed secrets and that hurts-so-good feeling at the start of a relationship is what she’s getting at—that is, until she blurts out her biggest secret of all in the bridge: “I love you, ain’t that the worst thing you’ve ever heard?” Truly, the Queen of Catharsis.—RS

Best line: “I scream, ‘For whatever it’s worth, I love you, ain’t that the worst thing you’ve ever heard?’”

1. “All Too Well”

It should come as no surprise that Swift’s magnum opus contains her best bridge (and we’re not talking about the 10 minute version). All Too Well is not so much a breakup song as it is an in-depth postmortem on a past relationship. In cutting specificities, Swift holds to the light the seemingly small, everyday moments that come from sharing a life with someone else, revealing how much love can be derived there. While much of the song focuses on these little flashes of memory (the scarf, the twin sized-bed, the refrigerator light), the bridge takes stock of the damage that’s been inflicted in the aftermath. It’s her best bridge because it’s so vulnerable. Her rage and confusion are crystal clear as she questions how everything came crashing down.—AG

Best line: “And you call me up again, just to break me like a promise. So casually cruel in the name of being honest”

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Source: Entertainment – TIME | 16 Apr 2024 | 1:20 pm

Lily Gladstone, Riley Keough, and a Stellar Young Cast Make Under the Bridge More Than Just Another ‘Dead-Girl Show’
Under The Bridge

There are so many cop shows. So many murder shows. So many shows about innocent dead girls who turn out to be less innocent than they looked. Most are pointless wallows in the suffering of others, real or fictional. A precious few—Twin Peaks, Sharp Objects—transcend the clichés of an overplayed genre through artful storytelling and thematic depth. Hulu’s Under the Bridge, premiering April 17, doesn’t reach the latter series’ heights. But thoughtful, empathetic writing and excellent performances make it more than just another dead-girl show.

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On the evening of Nov. 14, 1997, 14-year-old Reena Virk joined a gathering of teens near a bridge in Saanich, British Columbia and never came home. Under the Bridge adapts, with some creative license, the true-crime book about Reena’s case by Rebecca Godfrey, played in the series by executive producer Riley Keough. A writer who grew up in the area but hasn’t visited in years, for reasons that seem related to her brother’s death when they were kids, Rebecca is here to research a book she’s calling Victoria Girls. She starts poking around the local girls’ group home, Seven Oaks, just in time to get the scoop on Reena’s (Vritika Gupta) disappearance.

Under The Bridge

Hers is just one of many perspectives through which the show filters the crime. Killers of the Flower Moon Oscar nominee Lily Gladstone co-stars as Cam Bentland, a young cop working the case alongside her adoptive father, Roy Bentland (Matt Craven), a police chief with a habit of cutting corners and intimidating witnesses in order to achieve his desired results. Cam, who is Indigenous and spent part of her childhood at Seven Oaks, dreams of escaping this insular community through a transfer to Vancouver—one she’d be more likely to receive after cracking a high-profile case like Reena’s. Two of the frenemies Reena met up with at the bridge, Josephine Bell (Chloe Guidry) and Dusty Pace (Aiyana Goodfellow), live at Seven Oaks. Jo is the charismatic, mercurial queen bee, a girl obsessed with John Gotti and gangsta rap. Her best friend Kelly Ellard (Izzy G.) rounds out the pseudo-gang they’ve dubbed “Crip Mafia Cartel.”

Under the Bridge also spends plenty of time with the Virks, Jehovah’s Witnesses of Indian descent who are rocked by their daughter’s rebellion long before she vanishes. Reena fights constantly with her austere, religious mother, Suman (Archie Panjabi). After girls at school bully Reena for having hairy legs, Suman walks in on her shaving and declares that caring about something as worldly as what other kids think amounts to “paganism.” Under the Bridge creator Quinn Shephard (Not Okay) makes nuanced use of the Virks’ hybrid identities, contrasting the specific tensions within the household with the blunt prejudices they face in the community where Suman’s side of the family has lived for three generations. The series so effectively establishes this dynamic in the present that an episode devoted largely to tracing Reena’s roots, from her grandparents’ arrival in British Columbia to her parents’ courtship, feels redundant.

Under The Bridge

It isn’t the only instance where the show gives viewers too much information—perhaps in a well-intentioned attempt to do justice to the true story or the book by Godfrey, who died in 2022. It makes sense, for example, that Cam and Rebecca, who must now collaborate to uncover the truth, grew up together and have a complicated history. But Cam’s own backstory, with her father, has enough details and twists to fuel a miniseries of its own. And the timing of Rebecca’s return to her hometown, with a manuscript that couldn’t be more relevant to Reena’s case, reads as contrived. Under the Bridge can get goofy, too, in its depictions of the author at work. Watching her speak full paragraphs of grandiose prose into a recorder, it’s hard not to cringe.

Fortunately, the show is compelling enough to overcome an occasional silly moment. So many crime dramas from the past decade repeat the same pat takeaways about how race and class intersect with criminal justice systems, but Shephard avoids broad generalizations. She is alert to the specificity of not just Reena’s background, but also the diverse experiences of every other character caught up in her story. Stereotypes turn out to be red herrings, for investigators as well as viewers. Shephard is perceptive, too, about the way discrete social groups interact among themselves: small-town police, parents of various racial and socioeconomic statuses, teenage girls who think they’re tougher and meaner and more gangster than they really are.

Under The Bridge

The acting is even better than the writing. Gladstone’s Cam conceals a lifetime’s worth of anger—about her own upbringing, about her perennial outsider status—beneath an impassive exterior. Keough makes a wonderful morally questionable journalist, who manipulates Jo and drops acid with teen burnouts, in part because she still has yet to get over her own sullen goth phase but also because she convinced herself, back when she was the suspects’ age, that she is a bad person. The younger actors are just as remarkable. Guidry’s Jo is the kind of girl everyone has met, magnetic and terrifying at once. She’s the sun that Reena, Dusty, and Kelly revolve around, each in her own utterly convincing way. Euphoria’s Javon “Wanna” Walton brings empathy to the difficult role of their friend Warren Glowatski. Through these performances, Under the Bridge subverts our assumptions to make a powerful distinction between what people say, what they do, how they’re perceived, and who they really are.

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 16 Apr 2024 | 12:00 pm

How Shōgun‘s Depiction of Seppuku Compares to Real History
Tokuma Nishioka as Toda Hiromatsu in episode 8 of Shogun.

Warning: This post contains spoilers for episode 9 of Shōgun.

With just one episode to go in the sprawling, action-packed, emotional journey that is FX’s Shōgun—loosely inspired by real events that took place in turn-of-the-17th-century feudal Japan—the miniseries has reached one of the most devastating and pivotal moments in the best-selling 1975 James Clavell novel on which it’s based: the death of Mariko (Anna Sawei).

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In the run-up to the penultimate episode, we saw Toranaga (Hiroyuki Sanada) lose the trust of a number of allies, including Blackthorne (Cosmo Jarvis) and Yabu (Tadanobu Asano), by feigning as though he truly meant to surrender to Ishido (Takehiro Hira) in Osaka. Mariko, on the other hand, remained staunchly loyal to Toranaga as his plan unfolded—even going so far as to profess that she would take her own life over the offense of not being allowed to do her duty to her liege lord.

How does Shōgun portray ritual suicide?

Episode 9 spends much of its runtime leading viewers to believe that Mariko will commit ritual suicide—a practice that was different for samurai women than it was for men—as an act of protest against the dishonor of being kept from obeying Toranaga by escorting his wife Kiri (Yoriko Dôguchi) and consort Shizu (Mako Fujimoto) out of Osaka and back to his camp at Edo.

The custom known as “seppuku,” which specifically refers to ritual suicide by disembowelment, was reserved for men of the samurai class in feudal Japan. Samurai women had different methods, which traditionally involved either slashing their own throat or stabbing themselves in the heart. The show seems to suggest Mariko intends to do the latter.

Anna Sawai as Toda Mariko in episode 8 of Shogun.

To spare Mariko the horror of believing that, as a Christian, she will go to hell for committing suicide, Blackthorne is compelled to stand as her second—the person who beheads the samurai after they’ve begun the ritual, thus killing them. But just as Mariko is about to cut into herself, Ishido arrives with a permit approving her departure from Osaka.

Unfortunately, after Mariko is spared, Yabu’s betrayal leads to her being killed later that night in the assault by Ishido’s ninja assassins on Toranaga’s compound. In her final moments, Mariko proclaims that she is sacrificing herself in protest of the “shameful attack” by Ishido, just as she had planned to do earlier that day.

Mariko’s seemingly impending suicide is by no means the series’ first depiction of that type of ritual, as a number of characters throughout the season have either volunteered or threatened to commit suicide—and a few have actually gone through with it.

In the previous two episodes, we’ve seen a flashback in which the first general defeated by Toranaga committed seppuku followed by a harrowing scene in which Hiromatsu (Tokuma Nishioka), Toranaga’s most trusted general and closest friend, committed seppuku in order to save Toranaga’s other three generals from the same fate.

Is the show’s depiction of seppuku historically accurate?

The concept of seppuku originated from the belief in traditional Japanese culture that the soul resides in the abdomen, according to Thomas Conlan, a professor of East Asian studies and history at Princeton University and the editor and translator of the sourcebook Samurai and the Warrior Culture of Japan, 471–1877. “In Europe, the idea of someone’s soul, their center, is usually linked to the heart. In Japan, it’s the stomach,” he says. “So the idea that [samurai] would disembowel themselves was a brave statement that would earn the respect of their enemies.”

But while the historical practice was prevalent among the samurai class during the period in which Shōgun is set, the show’s use of the word seppuku is a “slight anachronism,” Conlan says.

“[A samurai] wouldn’t have said, ‘I’m going to commit seppuku.’ They wouldn’t have referred to it that way,” he says, noting that “seppuku” is a Chinese reading of the same two characters used for the word “hara-kari,” a colloquial term that literally translates to “belly-cutting” and was more common at the time. However, the two words essentially mean the same thing.

Hiroyuki Sanada as Toranaga in episode 7 of Shogun.

The tendency of characters in Shōgun to readily volunteer to commit seppuku is also a bit exaggerated, according to Conlan. “The idea of remonstrating [by committing seppuku] was extremely rare,” he says. “There are a handful of reliable cases where it happened, but it was more often a way out for someone who had committed a major infraction and was going to be executed anyway.”

In Hiromatsu’s case, Conlan says allowing someone who didn’t commit a crime to do that as part of a ploy would have been highly unlikely. “Most good commanders don’t force their generals to kill themselves. It’s bad for morale,” he says. “[Seppuku] was usually associated with some kind of major treason. So in that case, everyone would assume [Hiromatsu] was engaged in a plot to overthrow Toranaga. That’s how it would’ve been read.”

However, during a recent episode of the show’s official podcast, Shōgun co-creator Justin Marks explained that while Toranaga did not mean for Hiromatsu to commit seppuku, his sacrifice made Toranaga’s ruse of accepting defeat truly believable. “There’s a great moment in the scene between Toranaga and Hiromatsu where Toranaga turns to Hiromatsu in shock because he did not intend for Hiromatsu to do this,” Marks said. “And I don’t think Hiromatsu knew that Toranaga wanted these generals to commit seppuku in order to show his enemies that he had surrendered and truly given up and that he has no hope. But in order for that narrative to be perfect, his most treasured general really has to do it. And that’s something that I don’t think even Toranaga wanted to do.”

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 16 Apr 2024 | 1:00 am

Coachella Was Filled With Surprise Guest Performances. Here’s Everyone Who Showed Up
Kesha with Renée Rapp; Olivia Rodrigo with Gwen Stefani; and Shakira, performing at Coachella

Coachella kicked off over the weekend in Indio, Calif., with some of the biggest acts in music hitting the stage in the desert. Despite a lackluster lead up to the festival—as evidenced by lower ticket sales, taking a whole month for the tickets to sell out, and a 14-17% dip in sales this year, Billboard reported—this year’s sets have so far drummed up lots of enthusiasm ahead of Coachella Weekend Two. The headliners and performers have brought out a range of surprise guests, building anticipation over who might come out next weekend.

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Lana Del Rey took the stage on Friday and brought Billie Eilish out to perform two songs together. Tyler, the Creator invited four people to join him on stage on Saturday, including Childish Gambino and A$AP Rocky. Doja Cat closed out the weekend on Sunday, where she, too, had A$AP Rocky and 21 Savage come out. But the headliners weren’t the only ones who brought out guests. Reneé Rapp, No Doubt, and J Balvin all brought out guests to surprise their fans.

Here are all the surprise guests who showed up at Coachella this year.

Billie Eilish, Jack Antonoff, and Jon Batiste join Lana Del Rey

The sultry balladeer arrived to her set standing on the back of a motorcycle. Jack Antonoff played piano while a hologram of Del Rey performed “Hope is a Dangerous Thing for a Woman Like Me to Have—But I Have It.” Jon Batiste joined her on stage to play the piano for her while she sang “Candy Necklace.”

billie eilish and lana del rey performing together is what I wanted to see today. pic.twitter.com/Y66p286r4c

— Ramen (@CoconutShawarma) April 13, 2024

Billie Eilish, who has previously called Del Rey an inspiration and idol, made a surprise appearance at the end of the set. In a full circle moment, after the pair talked to each other for Interview Magazine last year, Eilish and Del Rey performed duets of each other’s debut singles, Del Rey’s “Video Games” and Eilish’s “Ocean Eyes.” The two singers showered each other with praise. Del Rey called Eilish “the voice of our generation, the voice of your generation” and Eilish said Del Rey is “the reason for half of you b-tches existence, including mine.”

Tyler, the Creator brings out Childish Gambino, A$AP Rocky, Charlie Wilson, and Kali Uchis

2024 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival - Weekend 1 - Day 2

Tyler, the Creator’s electrifying set began with him getting catapulted out of a fake RV and bouncing around a lush Grand Canyon-esque backdrop. He performed songs from all his albums, including his breakout hits “Yonkers” and “She” featuring Frank Ocean (sans Ocean, whose set last year divided fans. Tyler first surprised the audience with an appearance from Childish Gambino, who sang “Running Out of Time” with him. When Gambino walked off the stage, Tyler said he used to “hate” him. Then, he brought out A$AP Rocky to perform two songs, their 2018 duet, “Potato Salad” and the Flower Boy cut, “Who Dat Boy.”

Charlie Wilson, the former lead vocalist for the Gap Band, joined Tyler onstage at a piano to sing a stripped-down version of “Earfquake,” which features background vocals from Wilson. The last guest to take the stage with Tyler was Kali Uchis, with whom he’s collaborated on multiple songs. She came out to do a bit of their song, “See You Again,” toward the end of his set. Tyler never lets the opportunity for theatrics go to waste—he performed“New Magic Wand” while strapped to a harness and defied gravity, scaling rocks and trying not to get “blown away” by the monstrous winds.

Doja Cat invited A$AP Rocky, Teezo Touchdown, and 21 Savage to her set

Doja Cat’s set—choreographed by Parris Goebel, the mastermind behind two Super Bowl performances, Rihanna in the 2023 set and Jennifer Lopez and Shakira in 2020—did not disappoint. Doja’s exhilarating performance is amongst the best-reviewed of Weekend One, thanks in part to her not being afraid to get a bit weird. She heavily leaned on her latest album, Scarlet, for the setlist—performing songs like “Demons,” “Gun,” and “Attention,”—as well as fan favorites like “Need To Know,” “Tia Tamaera,” and “Agora Hills.” There were also exciting surprise guests, including 21 Savage, who performed “n.h.i.e” with her; A$AP Rocky joined her to do “URRRGE!!!!!!!!!” and rising star Teezo Touchdown made an appearance to do “MASC.”

No Doubt duetted with Olivia Rodrigo

@billboard

#NoDoubt reunited at #Coachella for their first performance in nearly 10 years, and @Olivia Rodrigo got to join them for one of her favorite songs, “Bathwater” 🎸 #oliviarodrigo #gwenstefani #coachella2024

♬ original sound – billboard

No Doubt reunited for the first time in close to a decade. The band ran through their expansive list of hits, including “Don’t Speak,” “I’m Just a Girl,” and “Sunday Morning.” To help them sing their turn-of-the-millennium hit, “Bathwater,” Gwen Stefani and the band brought out Gen Z’s favorite rocker chick, Olivia Rodrigo. The 21-year-old singer is currently on her GUTS world tour and made a stop in the desert to perform with the recently reunited band. She uploaded a post to Instagram with a caption saying, “I remember hearing ‘bathwater’ for the first time when I had just started writing songs. It totally turned my world on its head and inspires me to this day.”

Peso Pluma, Becky G, Santa Fe Klan, Junior H, and Arcángel

2024 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival - Weekend 1 - Day 1

Mexican artist Peso Pluma took the stage to hundreds of adoring fans, excited to see him represent his country. He performed his hits and was joined by other popular Latin music acts including Becky G, who brought him out during her set in 2023. He returned the favor to “the first woman who helped me in this industry,” he said during the set, and they performed their collaboration, “Chanel.” The set continued, and he invited Junior H to perform their corrido tumbado collaboration, “El Azul.” Other guests included Santa Fe Klan, who did “No Son Klle,” with him and the last surprise guest was Arcángel, the Puerto Rican reggaeton artist, who performed “Peso Completo” with him on stage.

Shakira joined Bizarrap for two songs

Argentinian producer and DJ Bizarrap quickly rose to fame for his insanely viral video series on YouTube, where he’d invite popular Latin artists to film music videos for a new song they’d create together. In January last year, Shakira joined the series and caused a ruckus, addressing her ex-husband’s alleged infidelity through a scathing track that was widely discussed. As a surprise, Shakira joined Bizarrap and performed their two songs, “BZRP Music Sessions, Vol. 53” and their new track, “La Fuerte,” off Shakira’s new album. She also used the set as an opportunity to announce her “Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran World Tour.”

Reneé Rapp brought out The Cast of The L Word, and Kesha

Reneé Rapp’s star has only reached new heights since the 24-year-old singer released her debut album Snow Angel in August 2023, played a stunning set at Saturday Night Live, and led a sold-out tour. She made her Coachella debut in the most iconic way, with the cast of The L Word, introducing her, before she brought out Kesha to perform “TikTok.” In this new rendition, though, they changed the lyrics that reference Sean “Diddy” Combs from “Wake up in the morning feeling like P. Diddy” to “Wake up in the morning, feeling like f-ck P. Diddy,” and the two put their middle fingers in the air. Multiple sexual assault lawsuits have been filed against Combs since November 2023.

Paris Hilton played cornhole with Vampire Weekend

Paris Hilton is known to enjoy a Coachella here and there but has more recently taken up performing as a DJ. However, she did not join to perform. Instead, she took the stage to play a game of cornhole with the band. “I haven’t played this game since The Simple Life, so…,” Hilton said to the crowd before hugging Ezra Koenig and leaving.

Kevin Abstract and Sky Ferreira do a cover of a country-pop classic

In a turn of events that truly no one was expecting, Kevin Abstract—former member of the boy band BROCKHAMPTON—brought out Sky Ferreira to open the set with him, and they performed a rendition of Lady A’s “Need You Now.” This was a surprise, given that the last project Ferreira released was her debut album Night Time, My Time, in 2013. She gave her fans two singles, one in 2019 and another in 2022, but she hasn’t been able to put out anymore because of her “f–ked up” situation with her record label.

YG Marley had a mini Fugees reunion during his set, bringing out his mom, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Wyclef Jean, and Busta Rhymes

During his set, rapper and singer YG Marley invited his mother, Ms. Lauryn Hill, on stage to perform with him and her former Fugees bandmate, Wyclef Jean. His mother started out with a performance of her song, “Ex-Factor,” from The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, with Marley chiming in with some ad-libs here and there. She and Wyclef then did a few Fugees songs, including “Killing Me Softly,” “Ready or Not,” and “Fu-Gee-La.” There was also a section for a Bob Marley tribute where they performed “One Love” and “Exodus.” The surprise guests didn’t stop there as Marley brought out rapper Busta Rhymes to do “Put Your Hand Where My Eyes Could See” and his verse on “Look At Me Now” by Chris Brown.

WizKid and Justin Bieber joined Tems to perform their 2021 hit

Nigerian superstar Tems made her Coachella debut this year and delivered a stunning performance, showcasing her equally impressive vocals. Before her set, she teased a surprise in a post on X, saying she was excited to share it. She shocked her fans with appearances from WizKid and Justin Bieber, her collaborators on their 2020 song, “Essence.” Bieber’s been laying particularly low after his 2022 diagnosis with Ramsay Hunt syndrome, so it was a nice surprise to see him on stage.

Nelly Furtado took a spill

Nelly Furtado falling at Coachella but not missing a verse. A performer 👏 pic.twitter.com/zu1eyxipVf

— T E O // europapi 🇮🇹 La Noia (@BejbaLasagna) April 14, 2024

Nelly Furtado’s comeback has been in full swing as the singer gets back into releasing new music. In 2023, Dom Dolla and Furtado released a song called “Eat Your Man,” and she was brought out as a surprise guest. The crowd was excited to see her, but in the middle of her performance, she fell face forward—but she didn’t let that ruin her set. She stayed on track and performed the rest of the song without any hiccups. After she got off stage, she took to Instagram to poke fun at herself and posted a photo of her bloody finger with the caption, “Literally left it all on the stage… including my blood.”

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 15 Apr 2024 | 5:08 pm

Rust Armorer Sentenced to 18 Months for Involuntary Manslaughter
"Rust" Armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed Appears In Court For Sentencing

Rust film armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed was sentenced to the maximum penalty of 18 months in prison Monday afternoon in New Mexico after the fatal on-set shooting of Halyna Hutchins nearly three years ago. She could also face a $5,000 fine.

Gutierrez-Reed, 27, who was responsible for handling and storing the firearms on set, was convicted on March 6 of involuntary manslaughter. She was the first person to stand trial and be convicted in the case; actor Alec Baldwin will stand trial this summer. 

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“Someone died,” juror Alberto Sanchez said in early March after the sentencing. “You gotta take responsibility. Especially when you’re handling weapons and you’re in charge of those. That’s your job.” The director of the film, Joel Souza, was also wounded in the shooting. 

A live bullet was put into the pistol on set, instead of the dummy rounds that were supposed to go in the revolver. “She could have paused work, stopped, and cleared it all up, and just never did,” Sanchez said. “That was her job to check those rounds — those firearms. No one wanted to pay attention or do that sort of stuff and stop work.”

Gutierrez-Reed was found not guilty of a separate charge of tampering with evidence.

During the trial, prosecutors said that she continually violated safety protocols, which led to Hutchins’ death.

On Monday, Gutierrez-Reed said that her “heart aches for Hutchins and her friends and family” while asking for probation. “I beg you, please don’t give me more time.” Gutierrez-Reed’s defense attorney Jason Bowles told CNN that they plan to appeal the decision.

New Mexico special prosecutor Kari T. Morrisey said that she had reviewed Gutierrez-Reed’s phone calls from jail to decide her sentence, adding that the defendant did not take responsibility for her role in Hutchins’ death. “Your attorney had to tell the court you were remorseful,” the judge said at the sentencing hearing. “You were the armorer who stood between a safe weapon and a weapon that could kill someone. [But] for you, she would be alive.”

Other members of the film set, including Baldwin, are also facing charges. Baldwin, who has been charged with involuntary manslaughter, was pointing the gun at Hutchins during rehearsal for the film. Baldwin has maintained that he didn’t pull the trigger on the gun and that the weapon was said to have no live ammunition, according to NBC News. He pleaded not guilty to the charge on Jan. 31 but could face up to 18 months in prison if convicted. Jury selection for Baldwin’s trial is due to start on July 9.

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 15 Apr 2024 | 2:53 pm

Dua Lipa
Dua Lipa

She moves with a lightness in a heavy world—bold, playful, and self-aware. 

She is thoughtfully outspoken for the oppressed and displaced. She founded an influential editorial platform, Service95, to cover cultural topics and address humanitarian concerns. She believes in family, is grateful to her parents and supportive of her siblings.

She left home at 15 to propel her musical dreams into action. She is driven, independent, and possesses a desire for knowledge. She appeals to future artists to be mindful of the world around them.

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She is herself, striving to redefine the pop-genre cosmos. She is Dua Lipa. Dua—Albanian for love.

She introduced her song “Houdini” with an image of a small key on the tip of her tongue. One can easily imagine her holding a ring of such keys, the master of her ever evolving kingdom.

Smith is a singer, songwriter, and author

TIME 100 Dua Lipa Cover

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Set design by Michael Avina; styling by Lorenzo Posocco; hair by Peter Lux; make-up by Sam Visser; production by T Creative

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 15 Apr 2024 | 8:00 am

Dua Lipa Manifested All of This
Dua Lipa

Dua Lipa is a master escape artist. In her nu-disco bop “Houdini,” she sings about someone with so little patience for superficial gestures that she’ll vanish if a potential suitor doesn’t go above and beyond. In the cavernous LA studio where we met in February, Lipa performs a different sort of disappearing act — which is to say, she materializes very suddenly when it’s time for us to chat, and, 45 minutes later, is gone just as abruptly.

Her swift appearance and retreat shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who has followed her frenetic pace over the past few years. Yes, Lipa is a global superstar who has had five Top 10 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 and appeared in last year’s most successful movie, but her output has only been possible because she makes use of every minute. The human being behind the hype seems to have a plan for everything — since the beginning of her career, she has taken a 24-hour day and stretched it out like taffy, carefully examining next steps and turning ideas into action.

Lipa’s deliberate approach to her work tracks with what she told TIME with a grin in 2017: “I’d like to take over the world… If I could.” The Dua Lipa from that interview is noticeably younger and more eager — an early 20-something on the verge of massive commercial success, thanks in part to her hooks-packed self-titled debut album, which housed gleaming electro-pop tracks such as “IDGAF,” “New Rules,” and “Be the One.” Lipa, now 28, is more composed but no less enthusiastic about the year ahead, which includes the May 3 release of Radical Optimism, her much-hyped third studio album. After all, she’s been manifesting it for seven years — perhaps even longer.

[time-brightcove not-tgx=”true”] TIME 100 Dua Lipa Cover

“Since I was very little, I’ve jotted down things I dreamt for myself,” the English-Albanian singer and songwriter says in an interview after her TIME100 cover shoot. “I’ve always planned ahead. Although surprises arise that I evaluate in the moment, there’s always a long-term goal.”

Sitting with her legs crossed in a black Jacquemus minidress, her red-tinted hair falling in loose waves around her face, Lipa speaks precisely, carefully considering each question before answering. Pop stars, especially those with incredibly successful careers, are often accused of being calculating. But in person, Lipa comes across as intensely thoughtful, whether she’s revealing what’s in store on Radical Optimism or sharing travel tips (pack light, bring books) and, in keeping with her one-time modeling career, poised. “It’s important to just write things down,” she says. “You never know what could come true.”

Does Lipa believe in the power of manifestation? Absolutely. “Manifesting is a big thing for me,” she admits. “I stand very firmly in the belief of putting things into the world. Subconsciously, you just work towards them. Nothing’s ever too big.”

[video id=g5HYpJHO autostart="viewable"]

Though Lipa chuckles at her younger self declaring her plans to take over the world, it’s hard to deny her stratospheric rise. Lipa was born in London in 1995 to Kosovo-Albanian parents Anesa and Dukagjin Lipa, who left Pristina as refugees in the early ‘90s. When Lipa was 11, her family moved back to Kosovo — a few years later, Lipa would persuade her parents to allow her to return to London to pursue a career in music.

While attending theater school as a teenager, Lipa started uploading covers to YouTube and SoundCloud, juggled restaurant and nightclub server gigs, and signed with a modeling agency. In 2013, Lipa got her first job singing — a version of Sister Sledge’s “Lost in Music” for a televised X Factor ad — which led to a publishing deal with TaP Music, and later, a record deal with Warner Bros. (Lipa left TaP’s artist roster in 2022, and bought her publishing rights back last fall.)

Lipa’s glimmering debut single, “New Love,” dropped in 2015, and was quickly followed up by the rhythmic “Be the One.” She rolled out more singles — “Hotter Than Hell” and “Blow Your Mind (Mwah)” — plus a dynamic collaboration with Sean Paul (“No Lie”) in 2016. By summer 2017, Lipa would finally unveil her self-titled studio debut.

Following the success of Dua Lipa, which earned her five nominations at the 2018 Brit Awards (she won British Breakthrough Act and British Female Solo Artist), Lipa unleashed her critically acclaimed 2020 homage to disco, Future Nostalgia, a shimmering, modernist take on the ‘70s genre which won her the Brit Award for British Album of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Album at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards.

Dua Lipa

Lipa’s success led to her involvement in Barbie. Her jubilant “Dance the Night,” which she co-wrote with Mark Ronson, soundtracks a pivotal scene in Greta Gerwig’s box-office smash. (The film also features a cameo from the pop singer as mermaid Barbie.) Earlier this year, Lipa appeared in the spy thriller Argylle, where she plays a Bond-esque villain named LaGrange. “I loved being on set,” Lipa says. “I love the idea of embodying a different character and having an assignment. I also love when I go to a photo shoot, and I can completely change up my look. It gives me like a different persona.”

To be a pop star — or any famous person in 2024 — requires diversification. On top of music and “little baby roles,” as she calls them, Lipa also moonlights as a journalist; Dua Lipa: At Your Service was named one of the Best Podcasts of 2022 by Spotify and features a who’s-who of celebrity guests from a variety of fields, from pop contemporary Billie Eilish to relationship guru Esther Perel. Meanwhile, Lipa launched a book club and lifestyle newsletter, Service95, in early 2022. (She name-checks Patrick Radden Keefe’s Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland as a recent favorite.)

Read More: The Most Anticipated Albums of 2024

Lipa, who was granted Albanian citizenship in 2022, also speaks passionately about her dual heritage, as well as the importance of Kosovo getting its visa liberalization, which allows nationals to travel freely around Europe’s borderless zone. “I’m from two places at the same time,” she says. “Being from Kosovo is just such a big part of who I am, and getting my Albanian citizenship was really exciting.”

“For a population in Kosovo, where over 50% is under 25 years old, it’s one of the youngest populations in Europe,” Lipa continues. “The opportunity to be able to travel freely is really important. There are all these kids who have big dreams and hopes and want to be able to move around, travel, and explore. They want to evolve and grow and hope that maybe they can be heard and seen in a different way. Now that their passports mean something, it feels really good.”

To honor her roots, Lipa is equally committed to shifting how her Western fanbase might perceive countries like Kosovo and Albania. “When people think about Kosovo, I don’t want them to be like, ‘Oh, war-torn Kosovo.’ There’s so much more to it,” she says. “We do a festival in Pristina, me and my dad, that’s about getting people from all over the world to come down and see how different it is to what they expect — whether that’s artists from all around the world, or fans that come in to see artists they love from neighboring countries. I know when I was living in Kosovo, none of my favorite artists were coming there. It is my biggest dream to be able to bring that to the kids there.”

Dua Lipa


For the time being, however, Lipa’s primary focus is getting her third album out the door. Naturally, she envisioned what it would sound like years in advance. “I remember when I was working on my first album, I was making notes on what my third album was going to be,” Lipa says. “It’s mad to think about, but I remember speaking to my close friend and A&R Joe [Kentish], ‘Maybe album three, I could work with [Tame Impala’s] Kevin Parker,’ and he was like, ‘Alright, hold your horses, let’s take baby steps.’”

Lipa’s theory at the time was that if her first two albums were well received, “maybe I’d be deserving to be in a room with an artist I so deeply admire and look up to.” Not only is Tame Impala’s Parker a producer on the 11-track project, but Lipa assembled a tight-knit team of alt/indie-pop luminaries, including longtime co-writer Caroline Ailin, Danny L Harle, and Tobias Jesso Jr., to be in the studio with her.

“The record as a whole is more mature,” Lipa shares of her latest work, which features the singles “Houdini,” “Training Season,” and “Illusion.” Describing the album as being heavily inspired by ‘80s Scottish rockers Primal Scream and famed English trip-hop collective Massive Attack (a noted divergence from the mirrorball-spinning Future Nostalgia), she continues: “I’m definitely not the same person I was when I wrote my first album. I’ve evolved and learned so much… taking it as it comes, not seeing anything as bad or something as a setback. That involves a lot of growing and understanding myself, knowing my worth, whether it be in business, love, or friendship.

Dua Lipa


“I’m just a different person, so of course this record is going to be different,” Lipa muses on leaning into new sonic territory. “I have different thoughts, wants, needs, and perspectives. I’ve done a 180 on myself… I feel the most confident at this point in my life.”

The confidence is paying off, especially as she’s recently launched Radical22, an independent media and management company, which signed a global publishing administration deal with Warner Chappell Music. “I’ve been planting seeds for my other endeavors my whole life,” Lipa says. “It’s a way for me to be able to show everyone other sides to who I am. I love my music career and the fact that it gives me so much opportunity for expression. But it’s not the only thing I am.”

Set design by Michael Avina; styling by Lorenzo Posocco; hair by Peter Lux; make-up by Sam Visser; production by T Creative

Correction, April 15

The original version of the story misstated the year Lipa left TaP’s artist roster. It was 2022, not 2023.

Source: Entertainment – TIME | 15 Apr 2024 | 8:00 am

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