Lauren Kim

Lauren Kim

Oscars class photo: Seven things we spotted

Oscars class photo: Seven things we spotted

Oscars luncheon photoImage copyright
Image Group LA

This year’s Oscars “class photo” has been released – and as usual there are several quirks and questionable outfits.

The picture sees 163 of this year’s nominees gathered together and smiling away, but zoom in and there is a whole lot more going on.

Here are just seven of the things we spotted in this year’s photo.


1. Pharrell Williams didn’t exactly dress for the occasion

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All of this year’s male nominees are dressed smartly in tuxes and suits. Well, almost all.

The “dress code” memo must have gone into Pharrell’s junk email inbox, because he turned up wearing a green baseball cap and grey sweater.

To be fair – the sweater does have the Nasa logo on it, a reference to best picture nominee Hidden Figures.

Pharrell wrote several songs for the soundtrack to the film, which tells the story of three African-American women who worked behind the scenes at the space agency in the 1960s.


2. Michelle Williams is upstaged by Casey Affleck’s facial hair

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Casey Affleck’s facial hair is fast becoming the eighth wonder of the world. It gets longer with every awards ceremony he appears at this season.

It’s now on the verge of totally eclipsing poor Michelle Williams, Affleck’s co-star in Manchester by the Sea, who has to peep out from behind his mane.

She must be used to Affleck stealing her limelight.

Affleck appears in nearly every scene in the 137-minute movie, while Williams’s screen time clocks in at 11 minutes.


3. The writer of Moonlight wants you to know how many nominations it has

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Tarell Alvin McCraney brightens up the back row of the photograph with his winning smile.

He’s the man behind the stage play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue – which went on to become Moonlight, one of this year’s most hotly-tipped Oscars contenders.

McCraney is so pleased with the film’s success he wants to let you know just how many Oscar nominations the film has received, and he is seen here holding up eight fingers.

Also – hats off to Shawn Levy (who’s standing next to Tarell), who wins the award for the most delightfully bright smile of the whole photo. He is the producer of Arrival, which is nominated for best picture.


4. Justin Timberlake needs to sack his tailor

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Image Group LA

“What’s your inside leg measurement, Justin?”

“I don’t know, maybe 32 inches?”

“Hmmm, I don’t have enough material for that. Have a 28-inch pair of trousers instead.”

“Great, that’ll do, thanks Derek.”


5. The front row is so where we wanna be

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Image Group LA

Emma Stone, Matt Damon, Natalie Portman, Octavia Spencer are all sitting together in the front row.

Can someone please organise for us to join this BFF group, that’d be great, thanks.

Extra respect for Octavia Spencer for wearing a pair of white trousers while so many of the other female nominees are in a dress or skirt, and for Natalie Portman, who manages to create the illusion she’s impressively wearing high heels even while pregnant with twins.

(She is actually wearing her flat shoes and tipping her heels up. Crafty.)

Also – Manchester by the Sea producer Kimberly Steward (far right) is that sweet kid in your class who was accidentally never looking at the camera in the school photo every single year.


6. Ryan Gosling needs to cheer up

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Image Group LA

You’re the lead actor in the jointly most-nominated film of all time, pal. Uncross your arms for goodness sake.

Slightly happier to be there is the lovely Dev Patel, in the row in front, looking every inch the Hollywood star.

He’s come a long way from how he looked at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2009 when he was starring in Slumdog Millionaire.

He told the BBC: “I first came to Toronto in my school shoes and I had a blazer and I was with Frida [Pinto, his co-star] and they said ‘You can’t put this guy next to her because he looks so terrible’. I think I got a free penguin suit that didn’t quite fit me and they gave me shoes.”

This year, he’s nominated for best supporting actor and is seen wearing a burgundy Valentino suit. Nice.


7. Is this gap for Meryl Streep?

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Image Group LA

Missing nominees from the photo include Michael Shannon (nominated for best supporting actor for Nocturnal Animals) and Andrew Garfield (best actor, Hacksaw Ridge).

But of course, the most notable absentee is Her Royal Acting Highness, Meryl Streep – who is up for best actress this year for her role in Florence Foster Jenkins.

Perhaps this gap in the back row behind Denzel Washington was intended for her, and she got held up in traffic.

Alternatively, perhaps she’s been to so many of these things she’s just had enough. Either way, we’re pretty sure she’ll be at the ceremony.

This year’s Oscars, which will be hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, will take place in Hollywood, Los Angeles on 26 February.


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Amy Adams gets Empire best actress nod after Oscars snub

Amy Adams gets Empire best actress nod after Oscars snub

Amy AdamsImage copyright
PA

Image caption

Adams also received a Bafta nod for her role in Arrival

Amy Adams may have missed out on an Oscar nod for her critically acclaimed turn in Arrival but the Empire awards have come good for the Hollywood star.

Adams is up against Natalie Portman, Ruth Negga, Emma Stone and Felicity Jones in the best actress category.

Jones’ nomination is one of nine for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, while Arrival picked up seven nods.

The winners, voted for by the public, will be announced at a ceremony in London next month.

The Star Wars spin-off film is also in the running for best male newcomer (Riz Ahmed), best film, best sci-fi/fantasy film and best director (Gareth Edwards) along with several technical categories.

Up for best actor are Ryan Gosling for La La Land, Ryan Reynolds for Deadpool, Casey Affleck for Manchester by the Sea, Eddie Redmayne for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Benedict Cumberbatch for Doctor Strange.

Portman is recognised for Jackie, Negga for Loving and Stone for La La Land.

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AP

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Hayley Squires is up for best newcomer

While there was an absence of female filmmakers in the best director Oscar nominations, Andrea Arnold (American Honey) found herself a place among a field of male competitors in the Empire nominations.

She will take on Taika Waititi, Denis Villeneuve, Ken Loach and Edwards.

Competing against Rogue One for best film are Hunt for the Wilderpeople, La La Land, Arrival and Deadpool.

I, Daniel Blake’s Hayley Squires is up for best female newcomer.

Empire’s editor-in-chief Terri White said: “This year has once again seen the fans out in force to vote for their favourite films in the Empire Awards. Which is why we are the only awards ceremony in the world to recognise Hunt For The Wilderpeople, Deadpool, Captain America: Civil War and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story alongside La La Land and Arrival!”

The Three Empire Awards will take place at The Roundhouse in Camden, north London, on 19 March.


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Meltdown: Five times MIA challenged the status quo

Meltdown: Five times MIA challenged the status quo

MIAImage copyright
Getty Images

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The star is known for her genre-bending brand of hip-hop, and her outspoken political views

One of pop’s true originals, MIA, has been handed the keys to this year’s Meltdown festival in London.

The musician said she would “bring together music’s best forward thinkers” for the week-long event.

Although the programme is yet to be announced, it is bound to combine her revolutionary politics with a restless passion for new music.

Created in 1993, Meltdown is curated by a different cultural figure every year, from David Bowie to Yoko Ono.

MIA said she intended to showcase “different types of music which have inspired each other to exist” on London’s South Bank.

The singer, whose biggest hits is the Clash-sampling Paper Planes, is known for pitting hip-hop beats against world music.

Her lyrics address oppressed peoples around the world, including Tamils, Palestinians, and African-Americans.

Often outrageous, always outspoken, her songs and videos have angered the US government, Super Bowl fans, and an entire French football team.

Here are five times she stood up to the status quo.

CHALLENGING SAUDI ARABIA OVER WOMEN’S RIGHTS

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Interscope

The video for Bad Girls finds MIA perched atop a car as it races through the Moroccan desert on two wheels.

It was inspired by YouTube videos of “drifting culture” – a Saudi phenomenon, where daredevil drivers nonchalantly sip tea or smoke hookahs while their vehicle is tipped up on the passenger-side tires.

By putting herself in the driving seat, MIA was openly supporting the “Women to drive” movement in Saudi Arabia, which is (still) seeking to allow females the right to drive in public.

ACCUSING THE SUPER BOWL OF EXPLOITING GIRLS

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Getty Images

When MIA appeared as Madonna’s guest at the 2012 Super Bowl, she was instructed to censor a lyric during the song Give Me All Your Luvin’. She responded by raising her middle finger to the camera – and America went apoplectic.

“I literally had to make out of there like a diamond robber,” she told the BBC of the aftermath. “There was so much press. I was like, ‘I can’t believe this, it’s insane.'”

The National Football League attempted to sue her for $16 million, saying the singer broke a pre-show agreement to maintain its “reputation for wholesomeness”.

MIA responded with a feisty YouTube statement, protesting that at “the precise moment in question” you could see 15 dancers behind her, all of them under 16.

“They’re all wearing cheerleader outfits, hips thrusted in the air, legs wide open, in this very sexually provocative position,” she said. “Is my finger offensive, or is the underage black girl with her legs wide open more offensive to the family audience?”

The dispute was eventually settled in private.

#MUSLIMLIVESMATTER

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Getty Images

As recently as last year, the star courted controversy by appearing to criticise the Black Lives Matter movement.

Asked about the upsurge in politically-motivated music by London’s Evening Standard, she said: “It’s interesting that in America the problem you’re allowed to talk about is Black Lives Matter. It’s not a new thing to me – it’s what Lauryn Hill was saying in the 1990s, or Public Enemy in the 1980s.

“Is Beyonce or Kendrick Lamar going to say Muslim Lives Matter? Or Syrian Lives Matter? Or this kid in Pakistan matters? That’s a more interesting question.

“And you cannot ask it on a song that’s on Apple, you cannot ask it on an American TV programme, you cannot create that tag on Twitter, Michelle Obama is not going to hump you back.”

The quotes were characterised as an attack on Black Lives Matter – an accusation the star angrily denied. Nonetheless, the controversy led to her being dropped as the headliner of the Afropunk Festival in London.

HIGHLIGHTING THE PLIGHT OF REFUGEES

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Interscope

As a former refugee, who escaped the violent civil war in Sri Lanka to come to London as a child, MIA has written about the refugee experience since her first album, 12 years ago.

But the self-directed video for Borders was her boldest statement to date, featuring boatloads of refugees, and people desperately climbing barbed wire fences in an attempt to flee tyranny.

She said it was inspired by an aerial photograph of “1,000 people in one boat” printed by Time Magazine, which pressed home the urgency of the topic.

“We’re at some sort of turning point,” she said. “Society was gearing up to become more closed off than it has been.”

Bizarrely, the biggest protest against the video came from the Paris Saint-Germain football team, who objected to MIA wearing a bootlegged version of the club’s shirt (it read “fly pirates” rather than “fly Emirates”).

An exasperated MIA said the team has missed the “bigger picture and the bigger message”.

“It’s gone over their head.”

PREDICTING WIKILEAKS

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Interscope

MIA’s fourth album opened with a track called The Message – riffing on the spiritual song Dem Bones, with a lyric about government surveillance.

“Headbone connects to the headphones / Headphones connect to the iPhone / iPhone connected to the internet / Connected to the Google / Connected to the government.”

Back in 2010, critics derided the song as naive – but three years later, Edward Snowden leaked details of a massive global surveillance programme by the US National Security Agency.

MIA responded by posting a collage of those negative reviews on Tumblr, asking “Who said this three years ago?”

Her actions earned the praise of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who later helped her write lyrics on her fourth album, Matangi.

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Kanye West deletes tweets about meeting Donald Trump

Cast your mind back to Trump Tower on 13 December 13 2016 – Donald Trump emerges in his lobby with Kanye West.

The then president-elect told reporters they were meeting as “just friends” – but the rapper was less chatty.

In a series of tweets Kanye then explained they had met to “discuss multicultural issues” – but those posts have now been deleted.

He faced criticism for the meet, including from John Legend who described it as a “publicity stunt”.

Kanye tweet
Kanye tweet

West has previously said he would run for president in 2020 and told an audience that if he had voted in November’s election he would have picked Donald Trump.

At the gig in San Jose, some fans booed him and threw items on stage.

He also asked for people to “stop focusing on racism”, saying: “This world is racist, ok. Let’s stop being distracted to focus on that as much. We are in a racist country – period.”

Donald Trump and Kanye West smiling

Image caption A happier time?

Meanwhile King Myers, who’s signed to West’s music label, has released Propaganda, an anti-Trump anthem.

https://twitter.com/RealKingMyers/status/828270479991521281?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

Kanye produced it, and it calls for the president to be impeached…how times have changed.

A Women’s Strike Is Happening What You Need to Know

On Monday afternoon, the organizers behind January’s worldwide Women’s March took to Twitter to announce their next course of action: a women’s strike.

The Women’s March Twitter account has kept mum on most of the information surrounding the strike, and didn’t provide much detail other than that the strike will be happening. The Tweet’s caption read, “The will of the people will stand,” over an image graphic that said, “General Strike: A Day Without a Woman; Date to Be Announced.”

The announcement comes on the heels of a few other strikes planning on taking place this month, such as the general workers strike on Feb. 17 to protest the Trump administration’s policies, the Yemeni bodega strike to protest the immigration ban, as well as the hour-long New York Taxi Workers Alliance strike in support of the immigration ban protests at J.F.K. airport in New York City. 

VIDEO: 11 Famous Women on Female Empowerment

RELATED: The Women’s March in Photos

We’re sure the Twitter account will post more details as the day intended for the strike nears, so keep your eyes peeled for dates, times, and general information on the event. 

Mandy Moore and Shane West Had a Walk to Remember Reunion and We’re Already Crying

Years before we were shedding tears over Noah and Ali’s love story in The Notebook, A Walk to Remember was our number one flick to cry over with our girls and a tub of ice cream. Mandy Moore was the perfect Little Goody Two-Shoes, and Shane West was the bad boy with a soft spot. Their love was “like the wind, you can’t see but you can feel it.” And yes, I’m already getting choked up, because this love story doesn’t have a happy ending.

But it does in Hollywood, because Moore and West are still very much alive and here to make your teenage dreams become a reality. The two reunited on Sunday night over dinner with their Walk to Remember director Adam Shankman and to quote Moore, our hearts are full again.

VIDEO: Inside Mandy Moore’s $2.95 Million Los Feliz Home

“Welp. These 2 gentlemen are still some of the best around. Loved catching up with ya, @theshanewest and @adamshankman,” the This Is Us star captioned this adorable selfie.

West reposted the same photo. “Last night after the SuperBowl, I got to see these two wonderful people,” he wrote. “Had to steal the pic, Hun,” he added to Moore.

But Shankman’s message is the one that will send you over the edge. The director posted a brighter shot of the gang, saying, “Over 3 hour catch up dinner with @mandymooremm and @theshanewest . After 15 years their love is still like the wind: i cant see it but I will always feel it. Love u guys soooo much.”

RELATED: Mandy Moore’s A Walk to Remember 15th Anniversary Tribute Is Giving Us All the Feels

And now we’re crying at our desks.

The Kylie Minogue vs Kylie Jenner trademark battle

The Kylie Minogue vs Kylie Jenner trademark battle

File photo dated 17 February 2016 of Kylie Minogue.Image copyright
Press Association

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Kylie Minogue has released fragrances, furniture and clothes with her trademarks on them

A trademark battle between Kylie Minogue and Kylie Jenner appears to have come to an end.

Jenner, who first shot to fame in the US reality TV show Keeping Up With the Kardashians, has been trying to trademark the name Kylie in the US.

But she has been blocked by the veteran Australian pop star Minogue, best known for hits such as I Should Be So Lucky and Can’t Get You Out Of My Head.

After a long and heated battle, the Kylies may have reached a settlement.

How did this all begin?

According to papers filed with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), in April 2015 Jenner attempted to register the mark “KYLIE” in the US for “advertising services” and “endorsement services”.

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Getty Images

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Ms Jenner is the younger half-sister of Kim Kardashian

In response, Minogue’s team filed their opposition in February 2016, citing possible confusion and “damage” to Minogue’s branding.

They noted Minogue was an “internationally renowned performing artist, humanitarian and breast cancer activist” who already owns Kylie-related trademarks in the US in several industries, as well as the website www.kylie.com.

Jenner, on the other hand, was dismissed as a “secondary reality television personality” who had drawn criticism for her “photographic exhibitionism and controversial posts” on social media.

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Twitter / @kylieminogue

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In February 2016 Minogue tweeted this message, shortly after her team filed its opposition

The case was suspended at least twice in 2016 for settlement negotiations.

So which Kylie came out on top?

On 19 January Minogue’s team withdrew its opposition, which means Jenner’s application could proceed.

This raises the possibility that they agreed to a settlement.

The BBC approached both sides, but Jenner’s lawyers declined comment, and Minogue’s team did not respond. The USPTO does not comment on individual cases.

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Kyliecosmetics.com

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Kylie Jenner, who is known for her full-looking lips, released a range of lip glosses last year

But meanwhile Jenner appears to have conclusively lost another battle – to trademark her full name.

In November 2015, Jenner’s lawyers separately tried to trademark the name “KYLIE JENNER” for a long list of clothing and accessories. But this was rejected in July last year.

On 23 January, Jenner’s team appealed against this decision.


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What is at stake in this battle?

Last year, Jenner launched a line of cosmetics called KYLIE.

According to her latest appeal, she wants to eventually have “KYLIE JENNER” branded clothing as well as loungewear, swimwear, and underwear.

Meanwhile, Minogue owns “KYLIE” and other similar trademarks in perfumes and toiletries, music and sound recordings, live entertainment, jewellery, dolls and toys, and printed matter such as magazines and books.

So far, Minogue has released fragrances, furniture and clothes with her trademarks on them.

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Getty Images

Image caption

In 2007 Minogue launched her fragrance line which is registered in the US as Kylie Minogue Darling

She also had previously said in interviews she intends to one day produce a musical featuring her greatest hits, and owns the US trademark for “Lucky: The Kylie Minogue Musical”.

But it’s more than that. Since the 1980s, Kylie Minogue has never had to go by any other name but Kylie, and her team has argued it’s a fundamental part of the pop diva’s identity.

Even with a possible settlement, what the battle shows is that at the very least brand KYLIE is not won without a fight.

Reporting by the BBC’s Tessa Wong, Kevin Ponniah and Jay Savage.

Rio Ferdinand ‘yet to grieve properly’ for late wife

Rio Ferdinand ‘yet to grieve properly’ for late wife

Rio Ferdinand

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Ferdinand is now a TV pundit and restaurant owner

Former footballer Rio Ferdinand will be shown discussing the death of his wife in a BBC One documentary about parents who lose their partners.

In Rio Ferdinand: Being Mum and Dad, to be shown this spring, the father of three will open up about losing wife Rebecca to breast cancer in 2015.

“I don’t think I’ve grieved properly,” the former England captain will be heard saying in the programme.

“I’ve not given myself that time to sit down and really flush everything out.”

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PA

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The former footballer married Rebecca Ellison in 2009

Alison Kirkham, controller of factual commissioning and events, praised the 38-year-old for participating in a “revealing and immensely personal documentary exploring the complexities of grief”.

She said the “candid” hour-long film would offer audiences “an intimate exploration of the ways in which men similarly bereaved cope with their loss.”

Ferdinand, who retired in 2015, spent 12 years at Manchester United and won 81 caps for his country.

He and Rebecca Ellison married in 2009 and had three children together.


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Chas & Dave singer Chas Hodges diagnosed with cancer

Chas & Dave singer Chas Hodges diagnosed with cancer

  • 6 February 2017
  • From the section UK

Chas Hodges from Chas and DaveImage copyright
PA

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The 73-year-old will start treatment immediately

Chas Hodges – lead singer of “rockney” duo Chas & Dave – has been diagnosed with cancer of the oesophagus.

The 73-year-old is starting treatment immediately, meaning a number of the act’s upcoming shows will be cancelled.

A statement on Facebook said the illness had been caught “at an early stage”, so the pair hoped to be “back out on the road” soon.

Chas & Dave enjoyed the height of their fame in the 1970s and 80s with hits including Rabbit and Snooker Loopy.

They also performed two FA Cup final songs with Tottenham Hotspur FC, including Ossie’s Dream in 1981, which reached number five in the charts.

Concerts postponed

“Chas recently underwent hospital tests which revealed cancer of the oesophagus,” the Facebook statement read.

“Luckily this has been spotted at an early stage and he’ll be undergoing treatment immediately.

“Apologies to ticket holders for the inconvenience. The venues themselves will advise regarding rescheduling/refunds.”

Performances at Potters Bar, Norwich and in Milton Keynes on February 17, 18 and 19 will need to be rescheduled, the statement said.

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Hodges and Peacock opened for Led Zeppelin in 1979

Chas Hodges and Dave Peacock both grew up in north London and have been performing together since the 1970s.

Before forming their act, Peacock had played in a number of bands, backing Jerry Lee Lewis and opening for the Beatles.

Together they became famous in their own right, with a number of top 20 hits.

They have also played Glastonbury and opened for Led Zeppelin at Knebworth in 1979.

They took a brief hiatus in 2009 following the death of Peacock’s wife of 36 years, Sue, from lung cancer.