James Franco scandal: Sexual misconduct allegations spark controversy

January 11, 2018

by Colleen McGregor

James Franco in W’s August 2017 issue (Photo by Alasdair McLellan)

James Franco is on a long and growing list of famous and influential men accused of sexual misconduct. In a Los Angeles Times article published  on January 11, 2018, five women came forward to report that Franco abused his power by pressuring them to get naked and/or perform sexual acts. Franco, 39, is a highly educated actor, filmmaker, TV producer, poet, painter and teacher, with post-graduate degrees from several schools, including New York University, Columbia University and the Rhode Island School of Design. He described the sexual misconduct claims against him as “not accurate” in separate interviews on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” (on January 9) and “Late Night With Seth Meyers” (on January 10). In the interview with Colbert, Franco said he would refrain from telling his side of the story because he believes in the movement for “under-represented” alleged harassment and abuse victims to tell their stories.

The controversy began during the 2018 Golden Globe Awards ceremony on January 7, when Franco wore black and a Time’s Up pin to show his support for the Time’s Up movement and legal defense fund, which are aimed at helping victims of sexism and sexual misconduct.  At the Golden Globes, Franco won the award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical, for his starring role in “The Disaster Artist,” a movie he also directed.

Tommy Wiseau, James Franco, and Dave Franco with award presenters Shirley MacLaine and Emma Stone at the 75th Annual Golden Globe Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, on January 7, 2018. (Photo by: Paul Drinkwater/NBC)

During the award show, several people (including actress Ally Sheedy, whom he directed in the 2014 off-Broadway play “The Long Shrift”) went on Twitter and other social media to express their outrage at Franco, and accused him of being someone who committed sexual misconduct against women. Sheedy’s comments (which were later taken down) hinted that she left the entertainment business because of Franco. She has not publicly elaborated on went wrong with Franco to cause her to make those statements.

In his interviews with Colbert and Seth Meyers, Franco said that he had a “great time” working with Sheedy, and claimed to have no idea why she is upset with him. When Meyers asked Franco if he had contacted Sheedy to find out why she posted those tweets, Franco said he did not contact her and wanted to let the matter be. In the interview with Colbert, Franco said that he wanted to “fix” any problems he may have caused with anyone accusing him of mistreatment. Some of Franco’s accusers told the Los Angeles Times that Franco had contacted them by phone to make awkward apologies.

Most of the sexual misconduct that Franco is accused of committing has to do with his role as a teacher or mentor for Playhouse West (where Franco was previously a student) and his now-defunct acting school Studio 4, which he co-founded in 2014. Studio 4, which had locations in Los Angeles and New York, abruptly closed in late September 2017, not long before the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke.

The Los Angeles Times reported that although several of Franco’s former students said that Franco was a helpful teacher and it was a positive experience for them, four of the five women (Sarah Tither-Kaplan, Hilary Dusome, Natalie Chmiel, Katie Ryan) who told their stories to the Los Angeles Times said they had negative experiences with Franco. The four women are former Playhouse West or Studio 4 students who described Franco as someone who frequently pressured young women to get naked and sometimes do sex scenes for student acting projects, with the implied promise that they would get roles in Franco’s movies if they complied with the demands.

The women said that Franco would make an excessive amount of requests for his female students to portray roles as strippers or prostitutes. And on at least one occasion, he got very angry and stormed off when none of the female students volunteered to go topless to film a scene in a student project. One of the classes that Franco taught at Studio 4 was about how to film sex scenes. While filming an orgy scene with several women for a  student project, Franco allegedly removed the required plastic covering over their vaginas, and simulated oral sex on them. He and Studio 4 were also accused of uploading women’s nude scenes on the Internet without their consent. Franco’s attorneys have denied those allegations.

Tither-Kaplan and Violet Paley (an aspiring filmmaker) were among the people who posted anti-Franco comments on Twitter during the Golden Globes ceremony. Paley told the Los Angeles Times that although she had a consensual affair with Franco in 2016, the relationship started off with him pressuring her to perform oral sex on him by pushing her head down toward his exposed penis while they were in a car. Because she also considered Franco to be her mentor, Paley said that “The power dynamic was really off.”

The Franco controversy led to the New York Times cancelling its TimesTalks “Disaster Artist” interview panel with Franco that would have taken place on January 10. It remains to be seen if Franco will have significant career damage due to the scandal.

Franco also taught classes at the University of Southern California, California Institute of the Arts, New York University, UCLA, Playhouse West and Palo Alto High School. Franco is an alum of the latter four schools. None of the schools has reported any sexual misconduct complaints about Franco. So far, HBO plans to move forward with the second season of “The Deuce,” a TV series about the 1970s rise of the porn industry in New York City. In addition to starring in “The Deuce,” Franco is also one of the show’s executive producers and directors. Representatives for “The Deuce” told the Los Angeles Times that they had not received any complaints about Franco from people involved with the show.

While opinions on the Internet seem to be divided over whether or not Franco is guilty of sexual misconduct, Franco’s famous friends such as Seth Rogen and Judd Apatow (who has been an actively vocal crusader against alleged sexual harassers) have neither publicly defended nor condemned Franco. Their public silence about Franco’s situation could be interpreted in different ways.

This isn’t the first time that Franco has been accused of acting inappropriately with a female. In 2014, he admitted to trying to get a 17-year-old fan named Lucy Clode to meet him for a tryst in a hotel room, even after she told him her age. The incident took place in New York, where the legal age of consent at the time was 17. Clode posted screen shots of the Instagram conversation that she had with Franco, who later went on the talk show “Live” to say he was embarrassed and sorry that the incident happened. Franco quit social media in 2017. He has since proclaimed in several interviews that social media is one of the non-substance-abuse “addictions” that he has worked to overcome in the past year.

James Franco in "The Disaster Artist" (Photo by Justina Mintz)
James Franco in “The Disaster Artist” (Photo by Justina Mintz)

Aside from the possibility that Franco might lose business deals if the scandal gets worse, he is also faced with the humiliation of going from being an award-show darling to being an award-show outcast. Franco previously had a major award-show run for his Oscar-nominated role in the 2010 survival drama “127 Hours,” which garnered him some prizes, such as an Independent Spirit Award. “The Disaster Artist” was expected to be his next big shot at getting nominated for an Oscar. In “The Disaster Artist,” Franco plays Tommy Wiseau, the filmmaker behind the famously bad cult-classic movie “The Room.” Franco has won a Golden Globe, Critics’ Choice Award and Gotham Independent Film Award for his role in the movie.

Nominations for the 2018 Annual Academy Awards will be announced on January 23. The voting to decide who will be nominated ends on January 12. Even if Franco’s name ends up on the nominees list, there seems to enough damage done to his reputation that major influencers might not want to associate with him at an award show or in future projects.

The distancing has apparently started. During the pre-telecast portion of the 2018 Critics’ Choice Awards on January 11, when Franco was announced as the winner of Best Actor in a Comedy, the room reportedly went silent before some people applauded hesitantly. Franco did not attend the ceremony. According to People, he is laying low, has cut off communication with most people in his inner circle, and appears to be showing signs of depression, a condition he has admitted to having in recent interviews.

Franco is nominated for Best Actor in a Motion Picture at the 2018 Screen Actors Guild Awards, which takes place in Los Angeles on January 21. (It’s the only SAG Award nomination for “The Disaster Artist.”) Most people are not expecting Franco to attend the show. And if he did, it’s highly unlikely that he will be doing interviews there. Several industry insiders have hinted on the Internet that Franco will be hit with more accusations, so the scandal is apparently going to have a long-lasting impact, and will serve as a cautionary tale in the Times Up movement.

January 21, 2018 UPDATE: Franco attended the 2018 Screen Actors Guild Awards. He did not win the prize he was nominated for, and he did not do interviews at the event.

January 25, 2018 UPDATE: Franco did not receive an Oscar nomination for “The Disaster Artist.” In addition, Vanity Fair announced that Franco was removed from the group photo on the cover of the magazine’s March 2018 “Oscar” issue because of the allegations against him.

October 3, 2019 UPDATE: Franco has been hit with a sexual-exploitation lawsuit by former students Sarah Tither-Kaplan and Toni Gaal. Variety’s report on the lawsuit has more detail.

2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards: Luis Fonsi, Daddy Yankee lead with 7 nominations each

January 10, 2018

by Carla Hay

iHeartMedia and Turner the nominees have announced the nominations for the Fifth Annual iHeartRadio Music Awards, which will be held on March 11, 2018. at the Forum in Los Angeles. The award show gives prizes based on work released by the artists in the previous year. Thanks in large part to their smash hit “Despacito,” Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee are the leading nominees, with seven nominations each. The 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards will be simulcast live on TBS, TNT and truTV at 8 p.m. Eastern Time/5 p.m. Pacific Time; on iHeartMedia radio stations nationwide; and the iHeartRadio app, the free all-in-one digital music, podcasting and live streaming radio service. TV subscribers can also watch the iHeartRadio Music Awards on the truTV, TNT and TBS Apps.

Artists receiving five nominations include Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran, Bruno Mars, Camila Cabello, Justin Bieber, the Chainsmokers and DJ Khaled.  Performers at the show are to be announced.

[February 1, 2018 UPDATE: Rihanna, Ed Sheeran and Camila Cabello have been announced as performers on the show.]

For the first time ever, this year iHeartRadio will present seven awards in the seven nights leading up to the Sunday, March 11 telecast. Each night at 8 p.m. ET, an artist will be presented their award and give an acceptance speech.

Fan voting will determine this year’s Best Fan Army presented by Taco Bell, Best Lyrics, Best Cover Song, Best Music Video, the Social Star Award, Best Solo Breakout and the first-ever Cutest Musician’s Pet, Best Boy Band and Best Remix awards. In addition, fans will get to vote on social media during the show for winners of the Best Performance and Best Dressed awards, which will be announced immediately after the event.

Social voting for the Social Star Award and Best Fan Army presented by Taco Bell award began through iHeartRadio’s social sites and in the iHeartRadio app on January 9. Social voting for all other categories begin January 10 and will close on March 4, with voting for the Social Star Award and the Best Fan Army presented by Taco Bell award continuing through the evening of the awards on March 11. Fans can vote by visiting iHeartRadio.com/awards.

For the second year, the 2018 Best New Artist awards will be grouped by music format and format winners will then become finalists for the top title of Best New Artist.

Tickets for the 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards go on sale to the general public on January 12 at 10 a.m. Pacific Time at ticketmaster.com. Partners of the 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards include Taco Bell and Bioré Skincare, with more to be announced. The awards are produced by iHeartMedia and Den of Thieves. Executive Producers for iHeartMedia are John Sykes, Tom Poleman and Lee Rolontz.

Here are the nominations for the 2018 iHeartRadio Music AwardsL

Song of the Year:

  • “Despacito” – Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber
  • “Shape Of You” – Ed Sheeran
  • “Something Just Like This” – The Chainsmokers and Coldplay
  • “That’s What I Like” – Bruno Mars
  • “Wild Thoughts” – DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna and Bryson Tiller

Female Artist of the Year: 

  • Alessia Cara
  • Halsey
  • P!NK
  • Rihanna
  • Taylor Swift

Male Artist of the Year: 

  • Bruno Mars
  • Charlie Puth
  • Ed Sheeran
  • Shawn Mendes
  • The Weeknd

Best Duo/Group of the Year: 

  • Imagine Dragons
  • Maroon 5
  • Migos
  • Portugal. The Man
  • The Chainsmokers

Best Collaboration:

  • “Despacito” – Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber
  • “Don’t Wanna Know” – Maroon 5 featuring Kendrick Lamar
  • “Something Just Like This” – The Chainsmokers and Coldplay
  • “Stay” – Zedd and Alessia Cara
  • “Wild Thoughts” – DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna and Bryson Tiller

Best New Pop Artist: 

  • Camila Cabello
  • Julia Michaels
  • Liam Payne
  • Logic
  • Niall Horan

Alternative Rock Song of the Year:

  • “Believer”  – Imagine Dragons
  • “Feel It Still” – Portugal. The Man
  • “Thunder” – Imagine Dragons
  • “Walk On Water” – Thirty Seconds To Mars
  • “Wish I Knew You” – The Revivalists

Alternative Rock Artist of the Year:

  • Cage The Elephant
  • Imagine Dragons
  • Judah & The Lion
  • Kings Of Leon
  • Portugal. The Man

Best New Rock/Alternative Rock Artist:

  • Greta Van Fleet
  • Judah & The Lion
  • K.Flay
  • Rag’n’Bone Man
  • The Revivalists

Rock Song of the Year:

  • “Go To War” – Nothing More
  • “Help” – Papa Roach
  • “Run” – Foo Fighters
  • “Rx (Medicate)”” – Theory of a Deadman
  • “Song #3” – Stone Sour

Rock Artist of the Year:

  • Foo Fighters
  • Highly Suspect
  • Metallica
  • Papa Roach
  • Royal Blood

Country Song of the Year:

  • “Body Like A Back Road” – Sam Hunt
  • “Dirt On My Boots” – Jon Pardi
  • “Hurricane” – Luke Combs
  • “Small Town Boy” – Dustin Lynch
  • “Unforgettable” – Thomas Rhett

Country Artist of the Year:

  • Blake Shelton
  • Jason Aldean
  • Luke Bryan
  • Sam Hunt
  • Thomas Rhett

Best New Country Artist:

  • Brett Young
  • Jon Pardi
  • Kane Brown
  • Lauren Alaina
  • Luke Combs

Dance Song of the Year:

  • “It Ain’t Me” – Kygo and Selena Gomez
  • “No Promises” – Cheat Codes featuring Demi Lovato
  • “Rockabye” – Clean Bandit and Anne-Marie featuring Sean Paul
  • “Something Just Like This” – The Chainsmokers and Coldplay
  • “Stay” – Zedd and Alessia Cara

Dance Artist of the Year: 

  • Calvin Harris
  • Cheat Codes
  • Kygo
  • The Chainsmokers
  • Zedd

Hip-Hop Song of the Year: 

  • “Bad and Boujee” – Migos featuring Lil Uzi Vert
  • “Bodak Yellow” – Cardi B
  • “HUMBLE.” – Kendrick Lamar
  • “Rockstar” – Post Malone
  • “Wild Thoughts” – DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna and Bryson Tiller

Hip-Hop Artist of the Year:

  • DJ Khaled
  • Drake
  • Future
  • Kendrick Lamar
  • Migos

Best New Hip-Hop Artist:

  • 21 Savage
  • Cardi B
  • GoldLink
  • Lil Uzi Vert
  • Playboi Carti

R&B Song of the Year:

  • “B.E.D.” – Jacquees
  • “Location” – Khalid
  • “Love Galore” – SZA featuring Travis Scott
  • “Redbone” – Childish Gambino
  • “That’s What I Like” – Bruno Mars

R&B Artist of the Year: 

  • Bruno Mars
  • Childish Gambino
  • Khalid
  • Rihanna
  • The Weeknd

Best New R&B Artist:

  • 6LACK
  • Kehlani
  • Kevin Ross
  • Khalid
  • SZA

Latin Song of the Year: 

  • “Despacito” – Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee
  • “El Amante” – Nicky Jam
  • “Hey DJ” – CNCO
  • “Mi Gente” – J Balvin featuring Willy William
  • “Súbeme La Radio” –  Enrique Iglesias

Latin Artist of the Year: 

  • CNCO
  • J Balvin
  • Luis Fonsi
  • Nicky Jam
  • Shakira

Best New Latin Artist: 

  • Abraham Mateo
  • Bad Bunny
  • Danny Ocean
  • Karol G
  • Ozuna

Regional Mexican Song of the Year:

  • “Adios Amor” – Christian Nodal
  • “Ella Es Mi Mujer” – Banda Carnaval
  • “Las Ultras” – Calibre 50
  • “Regresa Hermosa” – Gerardo Ortiz
  • “Siempre Te Voy A Querer” – Calibre 50

Regional Mexican Artist of the Year: 

  • Banda Carnaval
  • Banda Los Recoditos
  • Banda Sinaloense MS de Sergio Lizarraga
  • Calibre 50
  • Gerardo Ortiz

Best New Regional Mexican Artist:

  • Christian Nodal
  • Edwin Luna y La Trakalosa de Monterrey
  • El Fantasma
  • Ulices Chaidez y Sus Plebes

Producer of the Year:

  • Andrew “Pop” Wansel and Warren “Oak” Felder
  • Andrew Watt
  • Benny Blanco
  • Justin Tranter
  • Steve Mac

Best Lyrics: *Socially Voted Category

  • “Bodak Yellow” – Cardi B
  • “Despacito” – Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee
  • “There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back” – Shawn Mendes
  • “Look What You Made Me Do” – Taylor Swift
  • “Perfect” – Ed Sheeran
  • “Slow Hands” – Niall Horan

Best Cover Song: *Socially Voted Category

  • “All We Got” – Shawn Mendes
  • “Bad Liar” – HAIM
  • “Issues” – Niall Horan
  • “Lost” – Khalid
  • “Say You Won’t Let Go” – Camila Cabello and Machine Gun Kelly
  • “The Chain” – Harry Styles
  • “Touch” – Ed Sheeran
  • “The Tribute Song” – Thirty Seconds To Mars

Best Fan Army presented by Taco Bell: *Socially Voted Category

  • Arianators – Ariana Grande
  • Beliebers – Justin Bieber
  • BTS Army – BTS
  • Camilizers – Camila Cabello
  • EXO-L – EXO
  • Harmonizers – Fifth Harmony
  • Lovatics – Demi Lovato
  • Mendes Army – Shawn Mendes
  • Mixers – Little Mix
  • Selenators – Selena Gomez
  • Smilers – Miley Cyrus
  • Swifties – Taylor Swift

Best Music Video:*Socially Voted Category

  • “Bad Liar” – Selena Gomez
  • “Bodak Yellow” – Cardi B
  • “Despacito” –  Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee
  • “I’m The One” – DJ Khaled
  • “Look What You Made Me Do” – Taylor Swift
  • “Malibu” – Miley Cyrus
  • “New Rules” – Dua Lipa
  • “Shape Of You” – Ed Sheeran
  • “Sign Of The Times” – Harry Styles
  • “Sorry Not Sorry” – Demi Lovato
  • “Swish Swish” – Katy Perry
  • “That’s What I Like” – Bruno Mars
  • “There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back” – Shawn Mendes

Social Star Award:*Socially Voted Category

  • Andrew Huang
  • Anitta
  • Christian Collins
  • Conor Maynard
  • dodie
  • Gabbie Hanna
  • JoJo Siwa
  • Mariah Belgrod
  • Max & Harvey
  • RoomieOfficial

Cutest Musician’s Pet: (New Category) *Socially Voted Category

  • Batman – Demi Lovato
  • Bear Rexha – Bebe Rexha
  • Nugget – Katy Perry
  • Olivia – Taylor Swift
  • Pig Pig – Miley Cyrus
  • Toulouse – Ariana Grande

Best Boy Band: (New Category) *Socially Voted Category

  • AJR
  • BTS
  • CNCO
  • In Real Life
  • The Vamps
  • Why Don’t We

Best Solo Breakout:*Socially Voted Category

  • Camila Cabello
  • Harry Styles
  • Liam Payne
  • Louis Tomlinson
  • Niall Horan

Best Remix: (New Category) *Socially Voted Category

  • “Bon Appétit”  – Katy Perry, Migos and 3LAU
  • “Despacito” –  Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber
  • “do re mi” ” – blackbear featuring Gucci Mane
  • “Friends” – Justin Bieber and BloodPop with Julia Michaels
  • “Havana” – Camila Cabello and Daddy Yankee
  • “Homemade Dynamite” – Lorde, Khalid, Post Malone and SZA
  • “May I Have This Dance” – Francis & The Lights featuring Chance The Rapper
  • “Mi Gente” – J Balvin and Willy William featuring Beyoncé
  • “Reggaetón Lento” – CNCO and Little Mix

Additional categories include Biggest Triple Threat, Best Tour, Label of the Year, Most Thumbed Up Artist of the Year and Most Thumbed Up Song of the Year. For a full list of categories visit iHeartRadio.com/awards.

2018 Bonnaroo Festival: Eminem, the Killers, Muse are headliners; ticket sales announced

January 9, 2018

Bonnaroo 2018

The following is a press release from Superfly and A.C. Entertainment:

Superfly and A.C. Entertainment are proud to unveil the initial artist lineup for the 2018 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. This year’s edition of the world-renowned four-day multi-stage camping festival will showcase over 150 artists, Bonnaroo will take place June 7 – 10, on “The Farm” at Great Stage Park, the spectacular 700-acre event space located 60 miles southeast of Nashville in Manchester, TN. All tickets go on sale this Friday, January 12 at 10 a.m. ET, exclusively via www.bonnaroo.com.

The 2018 lineup features a remarkably deep roster of talent that includes: Eminem, The Killers, Muse, Future, Bassnectar, Sturgill Simpson, Bon Iver performing two unique sets, Khalid, Kaskade, Paramore, Alt-J, Dua Lipa, Sheryl Crow, Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals, Sylvan Esso, Rebelution, The Revivalists, Virtual Self, Nile Rodgers & Chic, Rufus Du Sol, Chromeo, STS9, Alison Wonderland, Moon Taxi, Carnage, BROCKHAMPTON, Old Crow Medicine Show, Playboi Carti, The Glitch Mob, Broken Social Scene, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Thundercat, Mavis Staples, Amadou & Mariam, Midland, SuperJam, Grand Ole Opry, T-Pain and much much more. The complete lineup is below.

Hailed by Rolling Stone as one of the “50 Moments That Changed The History of Rock ‘n’ Roll,” and by the New York Times as the summer event that “revolutionized the modern rock festival,” the 2018 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival will, as always, feature the comprehensive span of boundary busting diversity fans have come to expect, with an extraordinary array of artists performing around the clock across 10-plus unique stages over the four-day event.

Constantly looking for ways to enhance the fans’ experience onsite, Bonnaroo has several exciting new improvements, both structural and experiential, to announce for the 2018 event. For the first time, this year the communal areas, formerly known as pods, will be called Plazas. The Plazas are strategically located and well-lit public places throughout the campgrounds that will include: shade, free public WiFi, showers, fun activities and art, charging stations, Clean Vibes Trading Post redemption centers, misting stations, medical, safety stations, information and portable restrooms. Several permanent “Barns” are being installed in various locations onsite including VIP that are being designed to create more vibrant scenes in the campgrounds similar to the legendary ones at The Grind and The Garage. Another pristine wooded hangout similar to The Grove is also being installed.

The tie that binds all of these innovations together is the unmatched spirit and vision of the incomparable Bonnaroo community, shared by anyone who has been to the festival in the past or anyone who dreams of being there in order to become part of its magical legacy. In 2018, Bonnaroo plans to pioneer new ways of enriching the bonds that last long after the festival weekend is over. To do so, the organizers are creating new experiences to bring fans together, including Droolworthy Food with Celebrity Chef Tim Love, set to be a special community-focused area based on all things culinary, as well as House of Yes, Little Cinema, The Well, Tonalism by DUBLAB and The B-Hive Under the Tower. For more information on these uniquely designed experiences and the Plazas, visit: https://www.bonnaroo.com/experience/camping-plazas/. Bonnaroo’s Groop Camping experiences will also be taken to the next level with Themed Community Camps, including a Communal Campground created by festival veteran and superfan Matt Shultz of Cage the Elephant.

As in past years, Groop Camping in the GA campground is available to ensure that all fans get to camp with their friends no matter when they arrive onsite. Not only can old friends camp as one, but those who share a passion, identity or favorite way to express oneself can as well. The themed camps are similar to the groop camp except that the “groop leaders” are festival staff and guests who are dedicated to helping everyone have the best weekend of their lives. In addition to Shult’z campground, some other themed camps are: “Solo Roo’ers Camp” for fans attending alone who want to seek new relationships; “SheROO by MOTHERSHIP” for female-identified Bonnaroovian friends (a portion of this camp’s proceeds are going to benefit the Tegan and Sara Foundation.); “Fun SuperJam Camp” for musicians looking to share, learn and collaborate; as well as “Family Camping” and “Soberoo Camping.” For more information on Groop Camping, visit: https://www.bonnaroo.com/on-site-accommodations/.

Bonnaroo is also excited to announce the return of the beloved Kalliope stage this year. A staple of the Bonnaroo late night experience, Kalliope’s fires burn bright with nonstop DJ bliss into the early morning hours.

Bonnaroo is a truly global event, with tickets purchased in all 50 states and over 40 countries around the world. As one of the planet’s foremost musical events, it is proud to be one of America’s most environmentally friendly festivals, the only major event in the world with its own permanent solar array and compost waste on site. The festival also works with a team of 100% volunteers who collect food from its vendors and on-site caterers to donate over 20,000 LBS of food to a local food bank who feeds families in need, senior citizens and other members of the local community. Since its very first day, Bonnaroo has been diligent in its pursuit of true sustainability. The festival has twice been recognized by the state of Tennessee, winning the Governor’s Environmental Stewardship Award as well as the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation’s Pursuit of Excellence Award. Complete details, as well as Bonnaroo’s annual report to the fans, can be found at www.bonnaroo.com/experience/sustainability.

In addition, 2009 saw the formal establishment of the Bonnaroo Works Fund, a 501c3 nonprofit organization, serving as the philanthropic division of Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival. The mission of the Bonnaroo Works Fund (BWF) is to support local, regional and national organizations that advance arts, education, and environmental sustainability. Since the inception of the festival in 2002, more than $7 million in support has been generated, largely benefiting Manchester, TN, Coffee County and surrounding areas. A few of the national organizations that have provided local and regional support include First Book, Notes For Notes, Little Kids Rock and  Music For Relief – along with nearly 100 others. For more, info,, visit: http://www.bonnarooworksfund.org. Bonnaroo Works Fund is administered by the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.





The Killers




Sturgill Simpson

Bon Iver (playing 2 unique sets)




Dua Lipa

Sheryl Crow

Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals

Sylvan Esso


The Revivalists

Virtual Self

Nile Rodgers & CHIC

Rufus Du Sol



Alison Wonderland

Moon Taxi



Old Crow Medicine Show

Playboi Carti

The Glitch Mob

Rag’N’Bone Man

Broken Social Scene


Grand Ole Opry

First Aid Kit


Tash Sultana


Manchester Orchestra

Brothers Osborne


What So Not

Rich Brian

Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue

Billie Ellish

Daniel Caesar

Kali Uchis




St. Paul & The Broken Bones



Mavis Staples

Hippie Sabotage

Big Wild

Shiba San

Sir Sly

Denzel Curry

Moses Sumney


Tyler Childers

Mr. Carmack

Valentino Khan

Amadou & Mariam



Japanese Breakfast

Jessie Reyez



Noura Mint Semali

Gogo Penguin


Chris Lake

Billy Kenny b2b Mija

Durand Jones & The Indications

Space Jesus

Manic Focus

Boogie T b2b Squnto

Ikebe Shakedown

Pigeons Playing Ping Pong


Said the Sky



Alex Lahey

Knox Fortune

Lewis Capaldi

Ron Gallo



Conway + Westside Gunn


Chase Atlantic

Leven Kali


Everything Everything



Taska Black

Mikky Ekko

The Spencer Lee Band

Justin Jay’s Fantastic Voyage

Blank Range


Bruno Major


The War and Treaty




Spencer Ludwig

The Brummies

Jalen N’Gonda

Jaira Burns


Zeshan B

The Regrettes

Tobi Lou

Shey Baba

Chastity Brown

Topaz Jones

Kyle Dion

The Texas Gentlemen

Michael Blume

Post Animal

Southern Avenue

Larkin Poe

Colin Elmore & The Danville Train

The Blue Stones

Michigan Rattlers

Matt Maeson


Matt Holubowski

Victory Boyd



Oliver Hazard

Jade Bird

John Splithoff

Colin MacLeod

*repeat repeat

Low Cut Connie




Hundred Handed

2018 BAFTA Awards: ‘The Shape of Water’ leads with 12 nominations

January 9, 2018

by Carla Hay


Octavia Spencer and Sally Hawkins in “The Shape of Water” (Photo by Kerry Hayes)

With 12 nominations, Guillermo del Toro’s fantasy film “The Shape of Water” is the leading contender for the 71st Annual British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Film Awards. The ceremony will take place February 18, 2018,  at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Joanna Lumley will host the show. Meanwhile, the Winston Churchill drama “Darkest Hour” and the crime drama “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (written and directed by British filmmaker/playwright Martin McDonagh) earned nine nominations each. All three movies are up for the Best Film prize, along with “Call Me By Your Name” and “Dunkirk.”

Snubs and Surprises

“Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool” and “Paddington 2” garnered three nominations each, despite being snubbed by the Golden Globe Awards and the Screen Actors Guild Awards this year. The two movies’ British pedigree no doubt helped their chances of getting BAFTA nominations. Meanwhile, “The Post” (based on the true story of the Washington Post’s reporting of the Pentagon Papers) was completely shut out of getting any BAFTA nominations, despite getting four Golden Globe nominations and nominations at other movie-related award shows. “The Post” (directed by Steven Spielberg, and starring Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep) was also snubbed by the Screen Actors Guild Awards. This BAFTA snub appears to have also hurt the movie’s chances of being a leading Oscar contender, since several members of BAFTA and SAG are also members of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, the organization behind the Oscars. Also shut out of the 2018 BAFTAs was “The Disaster Artist” (directed by and starring James Franco), despite the film getting nominations and some awards at several U.S. award shows that honor movies.

Here is the complete list of nominations for the 2018 BAFTA Film Awards:

Best Film

Call Me by Your Name
Darkest Hour
The Shape of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Outstanding British Film

Darkest Hour
The Death of Stalin
God’s Own Country
Lady Macbeth
Paddington 2
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer

The Ghoul – Gareth Tunley (writer/director/producer), Jack Healy Guttman & Tom Meeten (producers)

I Am Not a Witch – Rungano Nyoni (writer/director), Emily Morgan (producer)

Jawbone – Johnny Harris (writer/producer), Thomas Napper (director)

Kingdom of Us – Lucy Cohen (director)

Lady Macbeth – Alice Birch (writer), William Oldroyd (director), Fodhla Cronin O’Reilly (producer)

Best Film Not in the English Language

First They Killed My Father
The Handmaiden
The Salesman

Best Documentary

City of Ghosts
I Am Not Your Negro
An Inconvenient Sequel

Best Animated Film

Loving Vincent
My Life as a Courgette

Best Director

Denis Villeneuve, Blade Runner 2049
Luca Guadagnino, Call Me by Your Name
Christopher Nolan, Dunkirk
Guillermo Del Toro, The Shape of Water
Martin McDonagh, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Original Screenplay

Get Out
I, Tonya
Lady Bird
The Shape of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Adapted Screenplay

Call Me by Your Name
The Death of Stalin
Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool
Molly’s Game
Paddington 2

Best Actress

Annette Bening, Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool
Frances McDormand, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Margot Robbie, I, Tonya
Sally Hawkins, The Shape of Water
Saoirse Ronan, Lady Bird

Best Actor

Daniel Day-Lewis, Phantom Thread
Daniel Kaluuya, Get Out
Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour
Jamie Bell, Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool
Timothée Chalamet, Call Me by Your Name

Best Supporting Actress

Allison Janney, I, Tonya
Kristin Scott Thomas, Darkest Hour
Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird
Lesley Manville, Phantom Thread
Octavia Spencer, The Shape of Water

Best Supporting Actor

Christopher Plummer, All the Money in the World
Hugh Grant, Paddington 2
Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project
Woody Harrelson, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Original Music

Blade Runner 2049
Darkest Hour
Phantom Thread
The Shape of Water

Best Cinematography

Blade Runner 2049
Darkest Hour
The Shape of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Editing

Baby Driver
Blade Runner 2049
The Shape of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Production Design

Beauty and the Beast
Blade Runner 2049
Darkest Hour
The Shape of Water

Best Costume Design

Beauty and the Beast
Darkest Hour
I, Tonya
Phantom Thread
The Shape of Water

Best Make-up and Hair

Blade Runner 2049
Darkest Hour
I, Tonya
Victoria & Abdul

Best Sound

Baby Driver
Blade Runner 2049
The Shape of Water
Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Best Special Visual Effects

Blade Runner 2049
The Shape of Water
Star Wars: The Last Jedi
War for the Planet of the Apes

Best British Short Animation

Have Heart
Poles Apart

Best British Short Film

Cowboy Dave
A Drowning Man
Wren Boys

EE Rising Star Award (voted for by the public)

Daniel Kaluuya
Florence Pugh
Josh O’Connor
Tessa Thompson
Timothée Chalamet

2018 Golden Globe Awards: ‘Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,’ ‘Big Little Lies’ are the top winners

January 7, 2018

by Carla Hay

Big Little Lies
Members of the “Big Little Lies” team at the 2018 Golden Globe Awards. (Photo by Paul Drinkwater/NBC)

With four awards each, the darkly humorous drama “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” and the limited TV series “Big Little Lies” were the big winners at the 75th annual Golden Globe Awards, which took place at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, California, on January 7, 2017. “Three Billboards” and “Big Little Lies” both examine violence and abuse in society, as well as how victims fight back. So it’s perhaps not a coincidence that this year’s Golden Globes will also be remembered as the year that attendees took  a very loud and visible stand against sexism, sexual harassment and abuse. Almost all the celebrities wore black in a show of support for Time’s Up, a new coalition aimed at fighting and preventing sexism, sexual harassment and abuse worldwide. Many of the attendees also worn a Time’s Up pin in support of the cause. And speaking out against sexism, harassment and abuse was at heart of speeches by several celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey (recipient of the Golden Globes’ Cecil B. deMille Award), Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, Elisabeth Moss and Frances McDormand.

The 2018 Golden Globe Awards ceremony (which was telecast in the U.S. on NBC) was the first major televised award show for the entertainment industry since the wave of sexual harassment scandals that hit the industry in late 2017. Seth Meyers, who hosted the show, predictably made insulting jokes about Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey, two former Hollywood heavyweights who were among those who had epic falls from grace because of sexual misconduct accusations made against them.

The Golden Globe Awards are presented and voted by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA). Dick Clark Productions (DCP) produces the telecast.

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri” won Golden Globes for Best Motion Picture – Drama; Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama (for McDormand); Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture (for Sam Rockwell) and Best Screenplay (for writer/director Martin McDonaugh). “The Shape of Water” went into the award show with the most nominations (seven) and ended up winning two: Best Director (for Guillermo del Toro) and Best Original Score (for Alexandre Desplat). “Lady Bird”  also won two awards: Best Motion Picture  – Musical or Comedy and Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy (for Saoirse Ronan).

In the TV categories, many of the winners were those who also won Emmys in September 2017, such as “Big Little Lies” and the series’ cast members Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern and Alexander Skarsgård; “The Handmaid’s Tale” and its lead actress Elisabeth Moss; Sterling K. Brown from “This Is Us”; and “Master of None” creator Aziz Ansari, who won an Emmy for writing and a Golden Globe for starring in the series. Meanwhile, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” and the show’s star Rachel Brosnahan won Golden Globes on their first nominations.

Presenters at 2018 Golden Globe Awards included Jennifer Aniston, Roseanne Barr, Halle Berry, Carol Burnett, Mariah Carey, Jessica Chastain, Emilia Clarke, Kelly Clarkson, Common, Darren Criss, Penelope Cruz, Viola Davis, Geena Davis, Kirk Douglas, Zac Efron, Gal Gadot, Greta Gerwig, John Goodman, Hugh Grant, Kit Harington, Neil Patrick Harris, Salma Hayek, Garrett Hedlund, Chris Hemsworth, Christina Hendricks, Ron Howard, Kate Hudson, Isabelle Huppert, Allison Janney, Dakota Johnson, Dwayne Johnson, Angelina Jolie, Michael Keaton, Shirley MacLaine, Ricky Martin, Helen Mirren, Sarah Jessica Parker, Robert Pattinson, Sarah Paulson, Amy Poehler, Natalie Portman, Edgar Ramirez, Seth Rogen, Andy Samberg, Susan Sarandon, J.K. Simmons, Octavia Spencer, Sebastian Stan, Sharon Stone, Emma Stone, Barbra Streisand, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Keith Urban, Alicia Vikander, Kerry Washington, Emma Watson, Reese Witherspoon and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

The following are the nominees and winners of the 2018 Golden Globe Awards:

*= winner


a. Call Me By Your Name
Frenesy Film / La Cinéfacture Productions / Water’s End Productions;  Sony Pictures Classics
b. Dunkirk
Warner Bros. Pictures / Syncopy; Warner Bros. Pictures
c. The Post
DreamWorks Pictures, Twentieth Century Fox
d. The Shape of Water
Double Dare You; Fox Searchlight Pictures
e. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri*
  Blueprint Pictures; Fox Searchlight Pictures


a. Jessica Chastain Molly’s Game
b. Sally Hawkins The Shape of Water
c. Frances McDormand Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri*
d. Meryl Streep The Post
e. Michelle Williams All the Money in the World


a. Timothée Chalamet Call Me By Your Name
b. Daniel Day-Lewis Phantom Thread
c. Tom Hanks The Post
d. Gary Oldman Darkest Hour*
e. Denzel Washington Roman J. Israel, Esq.


a. The Disaster Artist
Good Universe / Point Grey / Ratpac-Dune / WB/New Line Pictures; A24
b. Get Out
Blumhouse / QC Entertainment / Monkeypaw Productions; Universal Pictures
c. The Greatest Showman
Twentieth Century Fox; Twentieth Century Fox
d. I, Tonya
Clubhouse Pictures / LuckyChap Entertainment; NEON
e. Lady Bird*
  IAC Films; A24


a. Judi Dench Victoria & Abdul
b. Helen Mirren The Leisure Seeker
c. Margot Robbie I, Tonya
d. Saoirse Ronan Lady Bird*
e. Emma Stone Battle of the Sexes


a. Steve Carell Battle of the Sexes
b. Ansel Elgort Baby Driver
c. James Franco The Disaster Artist*
d. Hugh Jackman The Greatest Showman
e. Daniel Kaluuya Get Out


a. The Boss Baby
DreamWorks Animation LLC; Twentieth Century Fox
b. The Breadwinner
Cartoon Saloon / Aircraft Pictures / Melusine Productions; GKIDS
c. Coco*
  Pixar Animation Studios; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
d. Ferdinand
Blue Sky Studios; Twentieth Century Fox
e. Loving Vincent
Breakthru Films / Trademark Films; Good Deed Entertainment


a. A Fantastic Woman (Chile)
Fabula, Participant Media, Komplizen Film, Muchas Gracias, Setembro Cine; Sony Pictures Classics
b. First They Killed My Father (Cambodia)
Bophana; Netflix
c. In the Fade* (Germany / France)
  Bombero International / Macassar Productions; Magnolia Pictures
d. Loveless (Russia)
Non-Stop Productions, Fetisoff Illusion, Why Not Productions, Arte France Cinema, Les Films du Fleuve, Senator Film; Sony Pictures Classics
e. The Square (Sweden / Germany / France)
Plattform Produktion / Arte France Cinéma / Coproduction Office / Det Danske Filminstitut / Essential Filmproduktion GmbH / Film i Väst; Magnolia Pictures


a. Mary J. Blige Mudbound
b. Hong Chau Downsizing
c. Allison Janney I, Tonya*
d. Laurie Metcalf Lady Bird
e. Octavia Spencer The Shape of Water


a. Willem Dafoe The Florida Project
b. Armie Hammer Call Me By Your Name
c. Richard Jenkins The Shape of Water
d. Christopher Plummer All the Money in the World
e. Sam Rockwell Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri*


a. Guillermo del Toro The Shape of Water*
b. Martin McDonagh Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
c. Christopher Nolan Dunkirk
d. Ridley Scott All the Money in the World
e. Steven Spielberg The Post


a. Guillermo del Toro, Vanessa Taylor The Shape of Water
b. Greta Gerwig Lady Bird
c. Liz Hannah, Josh Singer The Post
d. Martin McDonagh Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri*
e. Aaron Sorkin Molly’s Game


a. Carter Burwell Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
b. Alexandre Desplat The Shape of Water*
c. Jonny Greenwood Phantom Thread
d. John Williams The Post
e. Hans Zimmer Dunkirk


a. “Home” — Ferdinand
Music by: Nick Jonas, Justin Tranter, Nick Monson
Lyrics by: Nick Jonas, Justin Tranter
b. “Mighty River” — Mudbound
Music by: Raphael Saadiq
Lyrics by: Mary J. Blige, Raphael Saadiq, Taura Stinson
c. “Remember Me” — Coco
Music by: Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
Lyrics by: Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
d. “The Star” — The Star
Music by: Mariah Carey, Marc Shaiman
Lyrics by: Mariah Carey, Marc Shaiman
e. “This Is Me” — The Greatest Showman*
  Music by: Benj Pasek, Justin Paul
  Lyrics by: Benj Pasek, Justin Paul


a. The Crown Netflix
Left Bank Pictures / Sony Pictures Television
b. Game of Thrones HBO
HBO Entertainment / Bighead, Littlehead / Television 360 / Startling Television
c. The Handmaid’s Tale* Hulu
d. Stranger Things Netflix
e. This Is Us NBC
20th Century Fox Television


a. Caitriona Balfe Outlander
b. Claire Foy The Crown
c. Maggie Gyllenhaal The Deuce
d. Katherine Langford 13 Reasons Why
e. Elisabeth Moss The Handmaid’s Tale*


a. Jason Bateman Ozark
b. Sterling K. Brown This Is Us*
c. Freddie Highmore The Good Doctor
d. Bob Odenkirk Better Call Saul
e. Liev Schreiber Ray Donovan


a. Black-ish ABC
ABC Studios
b. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel* Amazon
  Amazon Studios
c. Master of None Netflix
Universal Television / Oh Brudder Productions / Alan Yang Productions / Fremulon Productions / 3 Arts Entertainment
d. SMILF Showtime
ABC Signature Studios / SupahSmaht, Inc / Quantity Entertainment / Groundswell Productions
e. Will & Grace NBC
Universal Television


a. Pamela Adlon Better Things
b. Alison Brie GLOW
c. Rachel Brosnahan The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel*
d. Issa Rae Insecure
e. Frankie Shaw SMILF


a. Anthony Anderson Black-ish
b. Aziz Ansari Master of None*
c. Kevin Bacon I Love Dick
d. William H. Macy Shameless
e. Eric McCormack Will & Grace


a. Big Little Lies* HBO
  HBO Entertainment / David E. Kelly Productions / Pacific Standard / Blossom Films
b. Fargo FX
MGM Television / FX Productions
c. Feud: Bette and Joan FX
Fox 21 Television Studios
d. The Sinner USA NETWORK
Universal Cable Productions
e. Top Of The Lake: China Girl SUNDANCETV
SeeSaw Films


a. Jessica Biel The Sinner
b. Nicole Kidman Big Little Lies*
c. Jessica Lange Feud: Bette and Joan
d. Susan Sarandon Feud: Bette and Joan
e. Reese Witherspoon Big Little Lies


a. Robert De Niro The Wizard of Lies
b. Jude Law The Young Pope
c. Kyle McLachlan Twin Peaks
d. Ewan McGregor Fargo*
e. Geoffrey Rush Genius


a. Laura Dern Big Little Lies*
b. Ann Dowd The Handmaid’s Tale
c. Chrissy Metz This Is Us
d. Michelle Pfeiffer The Wizard of Lies
e. Shailene Woodley Big Little Lies


a. David Harbour Stranger Things
b. Alfred Molina Feud: Bette and Joan
c. Christian Slater Mr. Robot
d. Alexander Skarsgård Big Little Lies*
e. David Thewlis Fargo

2018 Puppy Bowl: new Geico stadium, debut of first Dog Bowl

January 5, 2018

Puppy Bowl XIV
(Photo courtesy of Animal Planet)

The following is a press release from Animal Planet:

PUPPY BOWL, the cutest competition in sports history, returns to Animal Planet on Feb. 4 for an epic matchup between adoptable puppy players from #TeamRuff and #TeamFluff who go paw to paw and nose to nose to win the CHEWY.COM “Lombarky” PUPPY BOWL XIV trophy. PUPPY BOWL XIV will air simultaneously on both coasts when it premieres Sunday, Feb. 4 at 3PM/ET 12PM/PT featuring two hours of fuzzy faces, sloppy kisses, incredible interceptions, puppy penalties and hard-won touchdowns. After the pup-tastic game of ear pulls and tail tugs is over, all the PUPPY BOWL puppy players end up as winners when they find their forever homes.

PUPPY BOWL XIV will be played at the all-new bone-shaped GEICO® stadium which features more than a dozen cameras, including those embedded in the end zone pylons, to help get audiences closer to the PUPPY BOWL action than ever before. The game kicks off with Jokgu the piano playing chicken from Season 12 of America’s Got Talent pecking out “The Star-Spangled Banner” on the keyboard as an adorable blended bunch of baby barnyard cheerleaders, including ducklings, piglets and baby bunnies, help excite fans on the sidelines throughout the game.

The tail-gating starts with the PUPPY BOWL Pre-Game Show at 2PM ET/11AM PT, featuring aww-nalysis and cuddly commentary from sports anchor James Hound with Rodt Weiler and Sheena Inu serving as pregame show analysts. The competitive canines will conduct their pre-game rituals from the PUPPY BOWL locker room, which includes an all-new locker room webcam. Additionally, Gordon Setter and Greta Dane will serve as pre-game field correspondents.

This year’s PEDIGREE® Starting Lineup will compete for the individual BISSELL® MVP (Most Valuable Puppy) award by scoring the most touchdowns with dog-approved toys by CHEWY.COM. And for the seventh consecutive year, America’s favorite rufferee, Dan Schachner, returns to call the puppy penalties, furry fumbles and terrier touchdowns, as his assistant referee this year, Shirley the rescue sloth, will assist him on the field.

Award-winning animal advocate Jill Rappaport introduces the Subaru of America, Inc. Pup Close and Personal segments that highlight heartwarming stories of the adorable athletes. The in-depth Pup Close and Personal profiles this season include Puppy adoption advocate and The Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise alum Wells Adams and his continuing efforts to promote puppy adoption; Mango, the first-ever international PUPPY BOWL player who was rescued from Mexico by the family team behind Compassion Without Borders;  the incredible relationship between BFF pups Buttons, a sight-impaired and deaf Cocker Spaniel and Sophie, a three-legged Goldendoodle; and Tyler, a loveable pup player rescued from the flood waters of Houston during Hurricane Harvey who made his way to PUPPY BOWL XIV via a road trip with Greg Mahle of Rescue Road Trips.

As always, fans will witness PUPPY BOWL’s iconic water bowl cam, instant replays and the fan-favorite kiss cam. Animal Planet audiences won’t miss a moment of the excitement with aerial shots of the field from the SHEBA® Sky Box and the Puppy Bowl Blimp as Surge the hamster is back on his wheel powering the PUPPY BOWL scoreboard.

For PUPPY BOWL XIV, Animal Planet worked with 48 different animal shelters and rescue organizations from 25 U.S. states and territories, to fill the rosters of #TeamRuff and #TeamFluff with 90 adoptable players for this puppy pile-up – the most puppies and shelters in PUPPY BOWL history. With the help of DNA testing conducted by WISDOM PANEL™, these puppy athletes go beyond fur-deep to find out what they’re really made of and use it to their advantage.

PUPPY BOWL XIV features pups rescued from areas that were devastated by natural disasters in 2017, including Houston, Puerto Rico and Florida. A Pit Bull puppy player from Villalobos Rescue Center, the largest Pit Bull rescue in the U.S., is also featured in PUPPY BOWL XIV with Marcel from Pit Bulls & Parolees. Other special needs puppy players this year include, among other players, Ryder (a sight-impaired Husky), Chance (a deaf Dalmatian), Moonshine (a sight-impaired and deaf Border Collie) and Luna (a Pomeranian mix with a cleft palate), who won’t let anything stop them from trying to score the winning touchdown and a loving forever home.

Meep the Bird, a rescue African Gray Parrot, returns to talk sports and live tweet updates throughout the game from his iPhone and iPad. Fans can follow @MeepTheBird on Twitter and Instagram to catch the latest news, puppy drama and locker room moments from inside the stadium.

While the puppy players break for a cat nap, the ARM & HAMMER™ SLIDE™ Cat Litter KITTY HALF-TIME SHOW gets underway with viral video sensation Prince Michael and Phil the cat from Aaron’s Animals. These popular purrformers take to the stage as Kitt-ENSYNC sings “Meow Meow Meow” to the tune of *NSYNC’s 2000 hit “Bye Bye Bye.” All adoptable kittens on stage with Kitt-ENSYNC are provided by ASPCA NY.

And these aren’t the only cats who need to be rescued. Wild tigers are in trouble due to habitat loss and poaching, which is pushing them to extinction. Discovery Communications is working with World Wildlife Fund and others to support Project C.A.T., a worldwide effort to double the number of tigers in the wild by 2022. By conserving nearly two million acres of protected land in India and Bhutan, this collaboration aims to ensure a healthy habitat for future generations of tigers. To join and support Project C.A.T., please visit discovery.com/ProjectCAT. If you are in the U.S., simply text TIGER to 707070.

PUPPY BOWL digital audiences can point their paws to AnimalPlanet.com/PuppyBowl to view the roster of the PUPPY BOWL XIV starting lineup. For the first time, fans can create their very own digital PUPPY BOWL trading cards, using their own beloved animal as the star! Just upload your pet’s photo, choose one of 10 different frames – including the option to choose #TeamRuff or #TeamFluff – and add fun stats like “Pawsome Talent,” “Favorite TV Show” and “Naughtiest Habit.” On game day,  Sunday, Feb. 4, PUPPY BOWL XIV fans are invited to vote in the Most Valuable Puppy poll at AnimalPlanet.com/PuppyBowlMVP. The viewer votes determine which puppy player gets barking rights and the title of MVP, which will be revealed during PUPPY BOWL XIV.

Leading up to the game, social media users are encouraged to keep an eye out for a very special PUPPY BOWL Instagram Story that will provide an insider’s look at PUPPY BOWL – the only way to see it is by following @AnimalPlanet on Instagram. PUPPY BOWL fans can also follow all the PUPPY BOWL action in real time on Twitter via @animalplanet. Fans looking for the Puppy Bowl news and opinion that truly matter can keep an eye out for “Spot Center” and “Around the Bowl” on the Animal Planet and Puppy Bowl Facebook  pages.

PUPPY BOWL VIRTUAL REALITY gives viewers a pup’s eye view of the action, taking them inside Puppy Bowl Training Camp, where puppy trainer Mike turns our rookie players from fluff to buff! The two-part PUPPY BOWL VIRTUAL REALITY series will be available at AnimalPlanet.com/PuppyBowlVR, through the Discovery VR iOS and Android apps, Samsung VR and the Animal Planet YouTube channel.

Last year, PUPPY BOWL XIII dominated a field of imitators with the #1 cable telecast across the day. It was the second-highest-rated PUPPY BOWL in the history of the event, dogging all competition on cable. The single telecast averaged 2.5 million total viewers P2+, a double-digit increase (+12%) in viewers vs. the PUPPY BOWL XII telecast. PUPPY BOWL XIII also ranked #2 in ALL OF TELEVISION in its timeslot among Women 25-54 and Women 18-49 for the fifth consecutive year, no exclusions, behind only FOX and its Super Bowl coverage. PUPPY BOWL XIV will repeat all day and night for a total of 10 hours on game day.

PUPPY BOWL XIV official sponsors are PEDIGREE®, CHEWY.COM, Subaru of America, Inc., BISSELL®, ARM & HAMMER™ SLIDE™ Cat Litter, WISDOM PANEL™, GEICO® and SHEBA®.

Animal Planet will premiere the first-ever Puppy Bowl Presents: The Dog Bowl, a newly added furry football competition for adult dogs living in rescues and shelters, frequently passed over for their younger counterparts. As a companion to PUPPY BOWL, The Dog Bowl works with shelters and rescues to fill the rosters of two teams of players, Team Wags and Team Tails, for what will be a full-scale matchup. The Subaru of America, Inc. “Dogs Life” in-depth profiles of individual dog players will include NFL player Eric Decker and Jessie James Decker who run Deckers Dogs, a non-profit that trains rescue dogs to be to be service dogs for disabled vets; NFL player and animal advocate Logan Ryan; Tia Torres from Pit Bulls & Parolees; and Steve Greig aka @Wolfgang2242 on Instagram who has dedicated his life to caring for and helping to rescue senior dogs in need.

The Dog Bowl also features celebrity dogs from Instagram, including, among other celebs, Mannie the Frenchie (@mannie_the_frenchie), Chloe Kardoggian (@chloekardoggian), EllaBean (@ellabeanthedog), Rufus the Pug (@realrufuspug), and Hamilton the Pug (@hamiltonpug) who show support and cheer for players. The Dog Bowl Half Time “Pet-A-Palooza” adoption event takes place at Little Shelter in Long Island, NY. Other The Dog Bowl sponsors include SOUTHWEST, MILK-BONE, PURINA and ALLSTATE.

Animal Planet audiences can learn more about the shelters, rescues and organizations that participated in PUPPY BOWL XIV by visiting https://www.animalplanet.com/tv-shows/puppy-bowl/.

PUPPY BOWL XIV is produced for Animal Planet by Discovery Studios where Simon Morris is executive producer and showrunner and Cindy Kain is vice president of current production. For Animal Planet, Dawn Sinsel serves as executive producer and Pat Dempsey is producer.

2018 Grammy Awards: Lady Gaga, Childish Gambino, Pink, Little Big Town announced as performers

January 4, 2018

Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga (Photo by Phil McCarten/CBS)

The following is a press release from the Recording Academy:

The Recording Academy has announced the first group of artists to perform on this year’s milestone 60th Annual Grammy Awards. Taking the stage on Music’s Biggest Night® will be current nominee Childish Gambino; Grammy winner and current nominee Lady Gaga; Grammy winners and current nominees Little Big Town; Grammy winner and current nominee P!nk; and, in celebration of the show’s return to New York after 15 years, two-time Grammy winner Patti LuPone, who will reprise her 1981 Grammy performance of “Don’t Cry For Me Argentina,” and “Dear Evan Hansen’s” currently nominated Ben Platt, performing a classic from “West Side Story” in a special Broadway tribute honoring the music of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Leonard Bernstein. Live from Madison Square Garden in New York City, and hosted by award-winning television personality and performer James Corden, the 60th Annual Grammy Awards will be broadcast live in HDTV and 5.1 surround sound on the CBS Television Network, Sunday, January 28, 2018, at 7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT.

Making his Grammy stage debut, Childish Gambino is currently nominated for five Grammy Awards: Album Of The Year and Best Urban Contemporary Album (Awaken, My Love!); and Record Of The Year, Best R&B Song, and Best Traditional R&B Performance (“Redbone”).

Set to perform a track from her Grammy-nominated album, Joanne (Best Pop Vocal Album), six-time Grammy winner Lady Gaga is also nominated for Best Pop Solo Performance (“Million Reasons”).

Two-time Grammy winners Little Big Town are nominated for Best Country Album (The Breaker) and Best Country Duo/Group Performance (“Better Man”).

Three-time Grammy winner P!nk is nominated in the Best Pop Solo Performance category for “What About Us.”

First-time nominee Ben Platt is up for Best Musical Theater Album (Dear Evan Hansen)

The 60th Annual Grammy Awards are produced by AEG Ehrlich Ventures for the Recording Academy. Ken Ehrlich is executive producer, Louis J. Horvitz is director, Ben Winston is a producer, Chantal Sausedo is the Talent Producer and David Wild and Ehrlich are the writers.

About the Recording Academy

The Recording Academy represents the voices of performers, songwriters, producers, engineers, and all music professionals. Dedicated to ensuring the recording arts remain a thriving part of our shared cultural heritage, the Academy honors music’s history while investing in its future through the Grammy Museum®, advocates on behalf of music creators, supports music people in times of need through MusiCares®, and celebrates artistic excellence through the Grammy Awards—music’s only peer-recognized accolade and highest achievement. As the world’s leading society of music professionals, we work year-round to foster a more inspiring world for creators.

For more information about the Academy, please visit www.grammy.com. For breaking news and exclusive content, follow @RecordingAcad on Twitter, “like” Recording Academy on Facebook, and join the Recording Academy’s social communities on Instagram, Tumblr, and YouTube.

January 17, 2018 UPDATE: The following artists have been added as performers at the 2018 Grammy Award: seven-time Grammy winner and current nominee Kendrick Lamar; four-time Grammy winner Sam Smith; and a special performance by 22-time Grammy winners U2. In addition, in what is sure to become a memorable Grammy moment, previous Grammy nominee Miley Cyrus will take the stage with five-time Grammy winner Elton John to perform one of John’s classic hits just two days ahead of “Elton John: I’m Still Standing—A Grammy Salute,” a tribute concert where John and his longtime writing partner, Bernie Taupin, will receive the Recording Academy President’s Merit Award. Previously announced GRAMMY performers include Alessia Cara, Cardi B, Childish Gambino, Daddy Yankee, Luis Fonsi, Kesha, Khalid, Lady Gaga, Little Big Town, Logic, Patti LuPone, Bruno Mars, P!nk, Ben Platt, and SZA.

2018 Governors Ball Music Festival: Eminem, Jack White, Travis Scott among the announced performers

January 3, 2018

Governors Ball 2018

The following is a press release from Founders Entertainment:

Founders Entertainment is proud to announce the lineup for the 2018 Governors Ball Music Festival. The eighth annual edition of New York City’s very own homegrown fest will take place from Friday, June 1st through Sunday, June 3rd on beautiful Randall’s Island Park. Featuring performances from Eminem (his first headline show in NYC since 2010), Jack White, Travis Scott, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Halsey, N.E.R.D. (first NYC show since 2010), Khalid, the worldwide debut of Silk City (a new project from Diplo and Mark Ronson), a reunited The Gaslight Anthem performing their breakout album The ‘59 Sound, and many more, Governors Ball will showcase over 65 artists throughout the weekend. 3-day GA and VIP tickets (including payment plan options) are available now via GovBall.com at special “Announce Day” pricing until 11:59:59 PM EST. Regular pricing begins January 4th at 12:00 AM EST. Full festival lineup and poster below.  For full pricing breakdown including VIP packages and payment plan options visit: GovBall.com

This June, Governors Ball will celebrate its eighth consecutive year as New York City’s premiere live music event, and by acclamation, one of the top music festivals in North America. “Governors Ball is New York City’s festival,” wrote Nylon following last year’s stellar event, which featured many show stopping performances including a memorable set from Childish Gambino, his only North American performance that year. “It combines the best of what this sleepless city has to offer, from food vendors to talent and downtown style.”

The 2017 festival also left performers enamored as well, with Lorde proclaiming that that Governors Ball was “on some magical spiritual shit.”   This summer, Founders Entertainment will continue working overtime to bring that “magical spiritual” vibe to Governors Ball patrons at the festival grounds on Randall’s Island Park (supported, maintained and programmed by the Randall’s Island Park Alliance www.randallsisland.org). The 2018 festival will feature a signature lineup of the best food NYC has to offer, craft beer and cocktail options, and the lawn games, mini golf (two unique 18 hole courses), street art, After Dark concert series, and the “only in New York” experiences “Gov Ball” has become known and loved for. The festival will also add two new 21+ areas, building upon last year’s introduction of the popular “Best Kept Secret” 21+ oasis.

Governors Ball has focused on giving back to the greater New York City community since inception, and will continue that trend with the 2018 festival. Helmed by born and bred New Yorkers, Founders Entertainment will look to build upon their efforts surrounding last year’s event. In 2017, Governors Ball pumped a record-breaking $62.4 million into New York City’s economy, bringing the past four years cumulative total (2014-2017) to $185+ million dollars. The festival also created more than 430 jobs and generated $31 million in wages. Governors Ball continued its long track record of giving back to the community by working with and donating to local organizations, non-profits, and community groups as well.

In addition to being accessible by MTA bus, bike, cab, and ferry service from Mid-Town Manhattan to and from the festival grounds, the festival is accessible to pedestrians via the RFK Bridge, the 103rd street footbridge, and Bronx Randall’s Island Connector.





2018 Coachella Festival: The Weeknd, Beyonce, Eminem announced as headliners

January 2, 2017

Coachella 2018

The Weeknd, Beyoncé and Eminem are headlining the 19th Coachella Music and Arts Festival, which will take place April 13 to April 15 and April 20 to April 22 at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California. (Beyoncé was set to headline the event in 2017, but she cancelled due to her pregnancy. Lady Gaga replaced her at Coachella that year.)

Other artists announced as Coachella 2018 performers include SZA, HAIM, ODESZA, Kygo Jamiroquai, Tyler the Creator, David Byrne, Portgual. The Man, Migos,  Cardi B, A Perfect Circle, Miguel, alt-J, the War on Drugs, Post Malone and Fleet Foxes. Passes go on sale at 12 p.m. Pacific Time on January 5, 2018.

Coachella, which is produced by Goldenvoice, is the world’s biggest annual music festival, in terms of revenue from ticket sales. According to Billboard, the 2017 Coachella festival had $114.6 million in ticket sales, making it not only the highest-grossing annual music festival but also the highest-grossing music festival of all time.

David Duchovny speaks his truth about the latest chapter of ‘The X-Files’ revival

January 2, 2018

by Carla Hay

David Duchovny at 2017 New York Comic Con in New York City
David Duchovny at 2017 New York Comic Con in New York City (Photo by Carla Hay)

The next mind-bending chapter of “The X-Files” is a thrilling, 10-episode event series from creator/executive producer Chris Carter, with stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson re-inhabiting their roles as iconic FBI Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully. Mitch Pileggi also returns as FBI assistant director Walter Skinner, Mulder and Scully’s boss, who walks a fine line between loyalty to these investigators and accountability to his superiors.

This marks the momentous return of the Emmy-winning pop-culture phenomenon, which remains one of the longest-running sci-fi series in network television history. In the U.S., “The X-Files” revival (the show’s 11th season) premieres on Fox on January 3, 2018. The upcoming event series will encompass a mixture of stand-alone episodes and those that further the original show’s seminal mythology. Picking up after the last event series’ cliffhanger, Mulder and Scully learn that they aren’t the only ones desperately searching for their long-lost son, William. The very fate of the world may depend on it.

“The X-Files” originally premiered in September 1993. Over the course of its original nine-season run, the influential series went from breakout sci-fi favorite to massive global hit, and became one of the most successful television dramas of all time. The show—which earned 16 Emmy Awards, five Golden Globes and a Peabody Award—follows FBI special agents Scully and Mulder as they investigate unexplained cases—“X-Files —for which the only answers involve paranormal phenomena. The show was revived for a 10th season, which aired in 2016. The all-new episodes for 2018 will feature appearances by guest stars, including Joel McHale, Lauren Ambrose, Haley Joel Osment and Robbie Amell. This what Duchovny said in a roundtable interview that he did with me and other journalists at 2017 New York Comic Con.

What can you say about the relationship between Mulder and Scully in this new season of “The X-Files”?

I don’t know what I’m allowed to tell. It’s as it was. Chris [Carter] was smart from the very beginning. When you have a serialized television show that’s had well over 200 episodes, you’ve got to parcel the goodness little by little. As much as fans think they want this or that, once you cross the line, it’s hard to go back over to the other side.

I think what’s interesting about the relationship is their working partnership. They’re quite reliant on one another. They [the viewers] may want a sex scene, but they really don’t, especially at the age we are at right now.

Does all this fan expectation of a Mulder/Scully romance inform how you play your role?

Absolutely not. I don’t mean to be disrespectful to the fans, but that’s not the way I approach my job. If I was to write [an “X-Files” episode], I might think of the relationship. In fact, the ones that I’ve written, I’m kind of comfortable loosening them up outside of the work. But as an actor, if I start thinking about that kind of crap, then I’m lost. When you see your [significant other], do you think, “How is this being perceived by others?”

As an actor, you’re constantly guarding against any kind of self-consciousness. That’s the death of acting: somebody watching themselves. If you start thinking about people watching you, it’s a back door to your own self-consciousness. [He says jokingly] I have to forget this conversation by the time I get back on set.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned from Chris Carter that’s helped you understand the Mulder character over the years?

I don’t know. I’m kind of headstrong about it. At some point, I do the lines as they’re written. But at some point, I decided I knew who this guy was, and this was my character. I was playing it, and I owned it. And that could to be to the detriment of my work. I don’t know.

In retrospect, the characters I’m attracted to playing seem to be people who speak the truth, no matter what the consequences. The first time I did that was probably with Mulder. So I think that I learned something about what I’m drawn to as a performer.

To me, that was the inherent basis of the character: He was a guy who didn’t mind being a fool. I could trace that back to Chris, for sure.

What can you share about Season 11 of “The X-Files”?

The last time we did [a season of “The X-Files”] it was six episodes, and the last time we did an “X-Files” movie was in 2008. We had a lot of exposition to cover. That took two episodes. And then in the end, we had to wrap it up. That took an episode. So that left us with three episodes, which is not enough.

So now, we have 10 episodes. We do have some [things] that get us out of the mess we got ourselves into at the end [of Season 10, but that’s dispensed with rather quickly, so that we can do the show we always did, which was less self-consciously about the show itself, which is unfortunately what those episodes tend to be.

Even if they’re interesting mythology, they’re about the show. It was tough getting everyone on the same page in the same city. This time around [the season’s film took] four months. It’s tough, but we pulled it off, and here we are.

How do you think Mulder has evolved over the years?

I don’t know. He might be a little “anti-scientist.” He might be a little bit like a guy who says, “Fake news,” which is unsettling to me. I think it’s interesting to think about the show in this political climate.

In terms of how a character has evolved over the years, it’s an interesting question for an actor to approach. I did it slightly with “Twin Peaks.”

If you could give any advice to Mulder from the first season of “The X-Files,” what would it be?

“Wear comfortable shoes. It’s hard to run in dress shoes.” Maybe Mulder has changed. There’s a certain kind of fearlessness to the guy. We have more than 200 episodes that we’ve done, and he’s solved zero cases, so he’s the worst FBI agent of all time. If he was on “Law & Order,” there’d be no order.

I feel like his resilience is great. I feel like he can believe what he believes, even though he’s never gotten the truth. It’s kind of phenomenal, when you think about it.

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