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Celebritology 2.0: June 20, 2010 - June 26, 2010

Celebritology Weekend: A 'Twilight' night in the D.C. area; addressing rumors about Justin Bieber's mom posing for Playboy

Three celeb-centric stories that are particularly on our radar this weekend: “Twilight” fever, breaking out at home: If you’re within a 20-mile radius of National Harbor Plaza on Saturday night and happen to hear the sound of females screaming, do not panic. It’s just a mass of overexcited Twi-hards, attending a meet-and-greet with “Twilight Saga: Eclipse” co-star Alex Meraz, the actor who plays one of the muscle-bound werewolves in the movie series. Meraz, 25, will participate in a Q&A as part of the promotion for the film’s release midnight Tuesday, then take a quick cruise around the Potomac with 100 randomly selected fans. He’ll also sign autographs and take photos. Just don’t expect the guy to pucker up. “The first time I had done a fan meet-9and-9greet, I was just wanting so desperately to be loved by the fans. ..... I ended up kissing a girl for a photo,” he...

By Jen Chaney  | June 26, 2010; 6:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Celebritology Weekend  
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The anniversary of Michael Jackson's death: not much of a trending topic?

It's the anniversary of the death of Michael Jackson. And while the somber significance of the date is undoubtedly a major topic of conversation among the singer's ardent fans, it doesn't seem to be an overwhelmingly popular one on the Internet.

By Jen Chaney  | June 25, 2010; 3:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (28)
Categories:  Celebrities, Michael Jackson  
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Friday list: On the eve of 'Eclipse,' a rundown of vampires who just want to have fun

On this Friday before the release of "Eclipse," a list of vampires from various corners of the pop culture world who might be more fun than Edward Cullen.

By Jen Chaney  | June 25, 2010; 1:10 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Friday Lists, Movies, Pop Culture  | Tags:  Twilight  
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Talking with John Hawkes, star of 'Winter's Bone'

John Hawkes is one of those actors who looks familiar, but that moviegoers and TV viewers can't always place. That's because -- after 20-plus years in the business -- he's played so many roles that it's almost impossible to tie him to just one. A self-described character actor with a pretty vast range, he's appeared in studio pictures ("The Perfect Storm," "Identity," "Miami Vice"), indie films ("Me and You and Everyone We Know," "Wristcutters: A Love Story") and on numerous television series, including "Deadwood," "Eastbound and Down" and "Lost." John Hawkes in "Winter's Bone." (Roadside Attractions) Most recently, he's been winning strong notices for his role in one of the summer's most well-received indie films, "Winter's Bone," a film that serves as a chilling, immersive antidote to the fantasy land of the summer movie season. Hawkes, 50, recently called from Manhattan -- where he was taking a brief break from...

By Jen Chaney  | June 25, 2010; 10:50 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Lost, Movies, Pop Culture  | Tags:  Q&As  
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Fans pay tribute to Michael Jackson on anniversary of his death; fandemonium at 'Twilight: Eclipse' premiere

Fans begin paying tribute to Michael Jackson on the anniversary of his death.

By Jen Chaney  | June 25, 2010; 7:42 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Daily Mix  
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Tiffany, Debbie Gibson to swamp-brawl in 'Mega Python vs. Gatoroid'

Posted by Guest Celebritologist Sarah Anne Hughes The "rivalry" between ‘80s pop stars Tiffany and Deborah “not Debbie” Gibson will finally come to a glorious, epic head in the just-announced Syfy movie “Mega Python Vs. Gatoroid." While the musical superiority of “I Think We’re Alone Now” vs. “Shake Your Love” could be debated for the rest of eternity, the film will at least give fans a chance to argue about the acting abilities of the former teen-pop rivals. Gibson will play a snake-rights activist – the kind, it seems, that protects even the “Mega” variety -- and Tiffany will tackle the role of an alligator-defending park ranger. The two characters will reportedly “brawl at a party, then take matters outside into the swamp.” It's unclear whether they will duet as they did in this video, but for now, let's dare to dream. In 2009, Gibson starred in SyFy’s “Mega Shark...

By Sarah Anne Hughes  | June 24, 2010; 3:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Celebrities, Movies  
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Michael Jackson tribute preview: What to expect on the anniversary of his death

Friday, June 25th, the one-year anniversary of Michael Jackson's death, may as well be called International Michael Jackson Day. No matter where one turns tomorrow -- to the television, the Internet, down an unassuming block in their own neigborhood -- there is a good chance reminders of the Gloved One will await. What can you expect to see, besides the very predictable image of at least one person wearing that red leather "Beat It" jacket or a few zombies recreating the "Thriller" dance? Your Browser DoesNot Support IFrames. Here's a quick list of some of the more notable items on the MJ tribute agenda....

By Jen Chaney  | June 24, 2010; 1:41 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  Celebrities, Michael Jackson  
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Robert Pattinson defends Kristen Stewart; Islam could have saved Michael, says brother

Helen Mirren and Bai Ling pose at the Wednesday premiere of their new movie 'Love Ranch.' (Getty Images) Celebrity Beat: Ridiculous headlines of the day involving Jackson siblings (so far): Michael Jackson would still be alive if he'd embraced Islam, says brother Jermaine... Jackson was murdered for his back catalog, says sister LaToya... Robert Pattinson defends Kristen Stewart's comparison of paparazzi encounters to being raped... Lindsay Lohan claims reality show exploited her for ratings... Val Kilmer apologizes to New Mexico neighbors for calling the state the "homicide capital of the Southwest"... Ellen DeGeneres inks deal to write memoir... Cyndi Lauper reality show in the works... Jon Voight criticizes President Obama's handling of Israeli relations, immigration... Who knew? Ozzy Osbourne likes to shower at least twice a day... Greg Allman recovering from liver transplant... Mariah Carey owes $30K in bills, says vet... Joan Rivers sued by former manager for defamation,...

By Liz Kelly and Jen Chaney  | June 24, 2010; 7:33 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (43)
Categories:  Daily Mix  
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La Toya Jackson and the Bubbles reunion

As Liz and I both made clear in our Michael Jackson post Tuesday, we feel a measure of sadness about the upcoming anniversary of the pop singer's death. And our hearts certainly go out to his family members as they revisit their undoubtedly still profound grief. But I'm sorry, this video -- the one you are about to see below, of La Toya Jackson reconnecting with Michael's former pet chimpanzee -- is just ridiculous. As part of an Animal Planet special that apparently aired Tuesday night -- "Michael Jackson and Bubbles: The Untold Story" -- video footage was captured of La Toya Jackson reuniting with her late brother's dear chimpanzee pal, who now lives in a sanctuary in Florida. The clip is very emotional. In fact, I am quite sure I would have been moved if I had been able to stop laughing while I was watching it. I'm not...

By Jen Chaney  | June 23, 2010; 5:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Celebrities, Michael Jackson  
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Should the Academy Awards move to January?

As first reported by Deadline.com -- and noted in this morning's mix -- the Academy Awards could move to January next year.

By Jen Chaney  | June 23, 2010; 2:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Awards Season, Movies  | Tags:  Academy Awards  
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With 'Knight and Day' in theaters, it's time for ... Tom Cruise Court

Welcome to Tom Cruise Court, a proceeding that allows us to finally decide whether Tom Cruise is a dangerously judgmental man who does not deserve our attention nor our box office dollars, or a charismatic movie star whose sometimes unconventional behavior is outweighed by his charms

By Jen Chaney and Liz Kelly  | June 23, 2010; 11:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (28)
Categories:  Celebrities, Movies, TomKat  | Tags:  Movies, Tom Cruise  
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Jerry Seinfeld calls Lady Gaga a 'jerk'; Nicole Richie's DUI probation extended; Oscars could move to January

UPDATE: Monaco's Prince Albert engaged... ditto for country crooner/'Idol" alumna Kellie Pickler. -- 9:29 a.m. ET --- Celebrity Beat: Jerry Seinfeld calls Lady Gaga a "jerk" for behavior at Mets game... Kal Penn leaves the White House to return to showbiz... Jeremy London insists kidnapping was real... Reuters accused of distributing revealing Miley Cyrus photo... Daniel Radcliffe thought Justin Bieber "was a woman singing"... Katy Perry gets 17 stitches for mystery injury... Just because: Suri Cruise + blue marker = four-year-old fun. Crime Watch: Nicole Richie's DUI probation extended one more year... Man charged with stalking "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" star Kathryn Erbe. Rumor Mill: Joe Jackson set to file wrongful death suit against Dr. Conrad Murray... Chelsea Clinton to marry on July 31... Jennifer Garner not pregnant, says rep... Did Betty White accidentally out Cary Grant?... Mel Gibson learning hypnotism? Pop Culture Mix: Could the Academy Awards move...

By Jen Chaney and Liz Kelly  | June 23, 2010; 7:20 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
Categories:  Daily Mix  
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Parsing our feelings about Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson performs at Super Bowl XXVII in 1993. (AP) A year after his death, Jen and Liz consider how to feel -- as individuals, fans and celebrity observers -- about Michael Jackson. Liz's take A year later, with scads of tributes planned for this weekend's one-year anniversary of Michael Jackson's death and gushing praise already starting to clog up the Web, I'm finding myself still conflicted about Jackson's scandal-plagued (though that seems to have been pretty much forgotten) legacy. Last year, on the day Michael Jackson died, I wrote a piece asking if we could separate the man's art from the artist; meaning could we really let go of the controversy and eccentricity that dogged Wacko Jacko's private life and celebrate the King of Pop's almost magical impact on the music industry? We had an answer within days, if not hours. By the time a cavalcade of stars...

By Jen Chaney and Liz Kelly  | June 22, 2010; 11:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (51)
Categories:  Michael Jackson  | Tags:  Michael Jackson  
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Assessing the 'Green Hornet' trailer

The first trailer for "The Green Hornet" -- a movie that the fan community already has expressed grave concerns about -- has been released. And after watching it, I think it's safe to say that it's going to change ... absolutely nothing. I am still not sure if Seth Rogen is quite the right fit for the wealthy, suave, hard-partying guy who takes on the role of stealth crime-fighter. And absolutely nothing about the directorial choices I can see in the trailer tells me this is a Michel Gondry movie. A commenter on YouTube -- one of the ones who wasn't dropping an f-bomb or talking about how awesome Christoph Waltz will surely be in this comic book movie extravaganza ("CHRISTOPH FRIGGIN WALTZ MAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) -- described this "Green Hornet" as a cross between "Iron Man" and "Kick-Ass." That sounds about right to me. But take a look for yourself, then...

By Jen Chaney  | June 22, 2010; 11:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  Movies, Pop Culture  | Tags:  Movie Trailers, Movies  
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Forget the bikini shots, Helen Mirren goes topless in new photo spread

"What I really fancy is getting a bit notorious..." -- Helen Mirren in 1974. It may have taken Helen Mirren 34 years, but the Ocar-winning actress cemented that notoriety in 2008 when -- at age 63 -- she was snapped sporting a saucy red bikini while vacationing. And now she's topped herself. Or un-topped herself, depending on how you look at it. In the latest issue of New York Magazine, Mirren ditched the bikini to go topless in a new photo spread. Mirren photographed by Juergen Teller. (Courtesy New York Magazine) (Well, kind of. Mirren is indeed sans top unless you happen to count cloudy bathwater as clothing. Though some of the pix are still slightly NSFW -- so be guarded if you decide to click in from the office.) It probably isn't coincidental that Mirren is reminding us of her wild side just days before her new movie, "Love...

By Liz Kelly  | June 22, 2010; 10:33 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  Celebrities  | Tags:  Helen Mirren  
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Michael Jackson estate made $1 billion in last year; 'Bachelor' Jake Pavelka single again

Celebrity Beat: Michael Jackson estate has made $1 billion since star's death a year ago... Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr engaged... Kathie Lee Gifford's son gets a summer job reviewing movies for "Today"... Anna Nicole Smith judge Larry Seidlin (who coincidentally has a new book on the topic coming out today) wants the case reopened... Celebs help Larry King raise $1 million in Gulf Coast telethon... Ex-"90210" stars "hate me," says Tori Spelling... To coincide with his "General Hospital" return, James Franco visits "The View" next week... Chris Klein checks into Utah rehab... Jewelry given to Anne Hathaway by now-imprisoned former boyfriend set to be auctioned... Slipknot bassist Paul Gray died of morphine overdose. Crime Watch: Lil Wayne makes plea deal on Arizona drug charge... Fat Joe investigated for sexual assault... Accused Audrina Patridge stalker pleads no contest. Rumor Mill: Lindsay Lohan (and SCRAM bracelet?) to pose nude... Madonna...

By Liz Kelly and Jen Chaney  | June 22, 2010; 7:47 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Daily Mix  
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Five perfect movies to watch on the first day of summer

It's the first day of summer, even if it seems like the season of extreme humidity got underway, oh, back when "Iron Man 2" came out. (Remember all that hype and hope about how massive this summer movie season was going to be? Man, those were the days.) In honor of the summer solstice -- the official kick-off to two months filled with complaints about the heat registered by people who spend their days inside air-conditioned offices --here are five films that are perfect for a first-day-of-summer movie marathon. Feel free to watch them on your computers while sitting inside those air-conditioned offices. Your boss won't notice -- he's totally on vacation. "Dazed and Confused" I rarely need an excuse to watch a movie -- set on the last day of school in a Texas town circa 1976 -- that I have been quoting incessantly since the mid-1990s. ("I want...

By Jen Chaney  | June 21, 2010; 2:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (13)
Categories:  Movies, Pop Culture  | Tags:  Movies, Summer Movies  
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A year later, Michael Jackson's kids still isolated, grieving

Additional coverage: Video archive | Celebritology on Michael Jackson Paris (left) and Blanket with aunts Janet (left) and LaToya Jackson at last year's memorial service. (AP) Gallery: Jackson's death, a year later Like their father's own upbringing, the young lives of Prince Michael (13), Paris (12) and Prince Michael II (aka Blanket, 8) have been anything but normal. And a year after their father's death, Jackson's three children are still having a hard time processing their grief and adjusting to life without dad. In the wake of Jackson's public memorial in July 2009, at which then 12-year-old Paris made a poignant speech about her father, speculation was rampant that a battle could loom for custody of the three children. But two months after Jackson's death grandmother Katherine Jackson was awarded custody and any rumored challenges to the ruling have long since dissipated. Though the kids' home life has hardly settled...

By Liz Kelly  | June 21, 2010; 12:52 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Michael Jackson  
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Amanda Bynes: Is her retirement real?

Amanda Bynes last year, clearly looking much like a retiree. (AP) Amanda Bynes is retiring. That's right, she's cashing in her 401(k) and getting ready to move to a lovely planned community in Palm Springs, where she'll spend the rest of her days collecting Social Security payments, getting daily pedicures and playing mahjong with other former cast members of Nickelodeon shows. Actually, the actress -- who is only 24, and will probably never see a Social Security payment in her life since the whole system will be defunct by the time she really hits retirement age -- is merely retiring from acting. She made the announcement over the weekend on Twitter, via a series of several appropriately succinct Tweets. If I don't love something anymore I stop doing it 7:47 AM Jun 19th via web I don't love acting anymore so I've stopped doing it 7:48 AM Jun 19th...

By Jen Chaney  | June 21, 2010; 12:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (19)
Categories:  Celebrities, Movies  | Tags:  Celebrities, Celebrity tweets  
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Weekend box office: Big win for 'Toy Story 3'

You've got a friend -- and a box office winner -- in "Toy Story 3." (Pixar) "Toy Story 3" not only won the weekend box office, the Woody-goes-to-daycare sequel marked a milestone for Pixar and helped boost the overall movie business for the second weekend in a row. Much kudos for Buzz Lightyear -- plus good news fo"The Karate Kid" and nothing but bad news for "Jonah Hex" -- follows. It's no surprise that "Toy Story 3" a long-awaited installment in a beloved franchise, made by a studio that can do no wrong, landed in the top spot. But the fact that the movie made $109 million, making it Pixar's highest grossing launch ever, is a triumph that the people at CGI-animation headquarters are undoubtedly celebrating in their ultra-colorful, creativity-fostering pseudo-cubicles. Its success also meant that ticket revenues were up 29 percent over the same time period last year....

By Jen Chaney  | June 21, 2010; 9:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Movies, Pop Culture  | Tags:  Box Office, Movies, Summer Movies  
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Amanda Bynes quits acting at 24; Lady Gaga banned from Yankees' clubhouse?

Miley Cyrus performas at Canada's 2010 MuchMusic Video Awards on Sunday. (Reuters) Celebrity Beat: Amanda Bynes retires from acting at the age of 24 (Update: Is Bynes's retirement real? We weigh in with a new post)... Jude Law tops hottest film fathers poll... Angelina Jolie makes low-key visit to Haiti... Jesse James moving to Texas so kids can be closer to Sandra Bullock... New Mexico neighbors not on board with Val Kilmer's bed and breakfast plans... Breaking News! Kristen Stewart smiles!... Stella McCartney expecting fourth child... Ted Koppel's son died from combination of alcohol, heroin, cocaine and valium... Heather Mills trying out for British paralympic skiing team... Simon and Garfunkel cancel North American tour... LeAnn Rimes and Dean Sheremet's divorce finalized... Voting open in PETA's sexiest vegetarian celebrity poll. Rumor Mill: Lady Gaga banned from Yankees' clubhouse after allegedly lewd behavior (not so, says Yankees spokesperson)... Kidnapper gave Jeremy...

By Liz Kelly and Jen Chaney  | June 21, 2010; 8:16 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (20)
Categories:  Daily Mix  
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