After seeing a few photos and a video of the seating chart for this Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards, we couldn’t help but dream of the music-video awards show’s riff on a high school cafeteria. For one, dueling divas Lady Gaga and Katy Perry will sit in forced proximity throughout the three-hour event. Below, we consider five of the most potentially awkward-yet-entertaining possibilities.
Tag: Justin Timberlake (31-40 of 123)
That scream you heard this morning was the sound of millions of twenty-somethings realizing the power of never giving up on their dreams: Although unconfirmed, reports say NSYNC will be reuniting at the VMAs Sunday. That’s right, after years and years of Justin Timberlake personally tearing up your heart by refusing a reunion, it appears that all Timberlake was really waiting for was the moment he needed a serious boost of positive publicity. (The second half of his album The 20/20 Experience will be released in September.)
There are a lot of decisions to be made here: The New York Post says “reunion performance,” so it’s not clear if it’s going to be a quick “Bye Bye Bye” chorus while Justin gets his “Michael Jackson Video Vanguard” Award, or if they’re going to fully “Pop”-ify Barclays Center like it’s still 2001. Will the costumes be over-the-top? Will Timberlake don cornrows? Will more or less than three members appear on puppet strings? Will Chris Kirkpatrick crack under the pressure of performing complicated live choreography once again? So many questions!
From a fan perspective, I would hope that if all involved have agreed to finally do this, they do it right, which means giving the world the full (five minutes, minimum!) montage we’ve been waiting 10 years for. Lest you forget: NSYNC’s last televised performance was the 2003 Grammys, and then a charity performance or two a year later. Below, five things the show must include to be the reunion of our collective dreams. READ FULL STORY
Make a note: Summer 2013 was the time the biggest actors of the ’90s took a cue from the younger kiddos and started really promoting their summer films in a new way.
Call it part of the Timberlake effect. Justin Timberlake pulled out all the stops promoting his album The 20/20 Experience in March, memorably hosting Saturday Night Live, co-hosting a week of Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, heck, he even had a Target-sponsored release party that aired on The CW. Some people rolled their eyes, but the 24/7 attack paid off: The album opened at No. 1, moving 968,000 copies its first week.
Will Smith certainly seemed to be following Timberlake’s lead with his 100 percent all-in approach to getting people into theaters to see After Earth. This alone isn’t new: Smith has always been a good sport about promoting his movies, but this time around, he seemed to be really trying: He hit the talk show circuit hard by reuniting and performing the iconic Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song (with Alfonso Ribeiro!) and kissing his son during a televised chat that seemed designed as viral Internet bait. He might as well have gotten in the ring and shouted, “Are you not entertained?”
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You know it’s coming.
The moment you saw The Guardian‘s riveting video interview (below) with the 29-year-old kinda-hot globe-trotting NSA leaker, you knew: Sooner or later, there is going to be a movie about Edward Snowden.
It might be in theaters. It might be on HBO. It could be a Silkwood-like tragedy or an All the Presidents Men-style procedural drama. But there will be something. Because everything about this story, so far, is Hollywood-bait. There’s a timely controversial issue (digital privacy), real-life spy on the run, high-tech snooping and that classic based-on-a-true-story trope: One man — allegedly an idealist — battling the system.
Most of all, there’s Snowden himself — Hero? Traitor? Or just, as Snowden says, ‘an American’? Take any side you like, but there’s no denying Snowden has been a surprisingly articulate spokesperson for his own cause and has generated a flurry of “Team Edward” online admirers. Plus, how many real-life whistleblowers ditch a hot pole-dancing girlfriend?
So let’s cast this as-yet-nonexistent movie. Here’s some names we thought of: Daniel Radcliffe, Aaron Paul, Ryan Gosling, Tobey Maguire, Alexander Skarsgard, Jamie Bell, Eric Balfour, Elijah Wood, Josh Radnor and Justin Timberlake. Also, we should add Shia LaBeouf, since he apparently already revealed this surveillance program years ago. (One request to producers: Let Jesse Eisenberg sit this one out, okay?)
Vote in our poll below. You can also make your own suggestions by filling out our comment form … or just type it into Google or Facebook and we’ll ask the NSA what you searched for.
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This is how it generally works: Jay Pharoah or Jason Sudeikis screams “Live from New York, it’s Saturday Night!” The house band kicks in, the immortal Don Pardo announces the cast. And then, the stage door opens, and a smiling celebrity walks out towards the camera. You try and gauge her body language because what you really want to know is: Is this going to be funny? It’s late on Saturday night and you just need to know whether you’re going to watch this from start to finish right now… or whether you should go to bed and simply scan up through “Weekend Update” tomorrow on the DVR.
Like a football or basketball game, a host can’t “win” SNL with a great opening monologue, but he or she sure can screw it up. So it’s no surprise that the best hosts typically come out of the gate revving on all cylinders. Good jokes help, and so do pratfalls, but the best of the best remind us that this is live television. It can be messy, and it can even be a trainwreck. But whatever it is, it can’t be boring.
For the second straight year, EW.com readers have voted to determine who was SNL‘s best host. Throughout the show’s season, the most recent host was pitted against the four most popular previous hosts in a vote, and the one with the least number of voters was eliminated while the four survivors advanced to the next week. Like any democracy, it’s a system that’s not without its flaws. This year, we
rigged modified the system with what I call the Barabbas Addendum, which restored a previously eliminated host to the final vote. The electorate rescued Seth MacFarlane to join our final five: Martin Short, Justin Timberlake, Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, and Ben Affleck.
I’ve said before that there are very few happy accidents on Saturday Night Live. Comedy is precise. Live comedy is a gauntlet that can expose and undermine the proudest of entertainers. Each of our finalists, however, delivered monologues that set the tone for excellent shows that showcased the best of their abilities. More importantly for the success of the show, all of them also had a blast. I mean, it’s possible they were terrified underneath, but once the show began, all six of them were giggly and daring and totally committed. They’re good at hosting because they embrace the experience, trusting the writers and trusting their own talent.
Before we announce the winner of Mr. (or Mrs.) Saturday Night 2013, though, there are four other non-democratic awards to present. READ FULL STORY
When it comes to hosting Saturday Night Live, there are degrees of greatness. Sure, there’s the Five-Timers Club, that posh and exclusive club that meets every year in Gstaad to anoint late-night kings, plot ways to blackmail Bill Murray into making Ghostbusters III, and otherwise control the comedy world — except for NBC’s primetime lineup. But you can sneak into the Five-Timers with one great show and four B- performances. No need for names, but it’s possible to get by on reputation and before you know it, you’re exchanging the club’s secret handshake with Lorne Michaels.
To be named Mr. Saturday Night (or Ms. Saturday Night, of course), on the other hand, requires something special. Everything has to go right on a certain night of live television. It’s the equivalent of Wilt Chamberlain scoring 100 points in a basketball game or Don Larsen’s World Series perfect game. On one given night, they were simply unstoppable, and no matter whether they become all-time greats or shooting stars of momentary brilliance, there is nothing quite like watching a performer rise to the occasion.
Last year, EW crowned Jimmy Fallon as the first-ever Mr. Saturday Night, an appropriate recipient not just because Fallon killed it during the show’s Christmas episode, but because of his long history with the late-night institution. This year, the competition to succeed him has been fierce, and during weekly online polls, voters have eliminated 15 hosts, leaving us with six finalists. Finale host Ben Affleck had the easiest path to the final, and his show will be freshest in voters’ minds. But he faces a murderer’s row of entertainers: Martin Short, Justin Timberlake, 2012 runner-up Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, and Seth MacFarlane, who was rescued from elimination in our recent second-chance vote.
Timberlake is the favorite to take the crown, judging by recent polls, but anything can happen on the Internet. Before you vote, though, ask yourself three questions:
1. Which host’s sketches were you still watching days or weeks after the episode originally aired?
2. Which host could join the cast tomorrow and hold his or her own, week-in and week-out?
3. Which host do you most want to see on Saturday Night Live again?
Click below to see the tale of the tape for all six finalists, and cast your vote for a Mr. or Mrs. Saturday Night we can all be proud of. READ FULL STORY
After 20 episodes, the 38th season of Saturday Night Live comes to a close this weekend, with Ben Affleck as the finale’s guest host. The Oscar-winner will join the show’s Five-Timer’s Club, and even if the show doesn’t make a big deal out of it, like it recently did for Justin Timberlake, the episode has real promise. Affleck might not yet be on the level of Alec Baldwin or Jon Hamm, but he’s delivered some good yuks over the years, like when he responded to Matt Damon’s criticism and did a totally committed impression of Keith Olbermann whose co-op’s no-pet policy sent him into a rage.
Affleck enjoys a distinct advantage in our year-long contest to select Saturday Night Live‘s best host. By simply appearing last, he advances to our final vote. His performance will certainly be fresher in everyone’s minds on Monday, when the poll opens, but his competition is formidable, with Timberlake, Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, and Martin Short all advancing. Facing that quartet, Affleck will have to earn the right to succeed Mr. Saturday Night 2012 Jimmy Fallon.
But Affleck won’t only have to top the other four SNL survivors from a season’s worth of voting. There will be a sixth finalist, determined by you. Democracy can be a fickle beast, and online democracy… well, forget about it. During our weekly series of votes, many voters have expressed their dismay in the Comments that their favorite SNL host was no longer an option because they’d previously been eliminated. Last year, for example, there were screams that Maya Rudolph was not a finalist after she hosted one of the season’s best episodes. (Yes, those screams came from my office.)
This year, we’re giving you a mulligan — a second chance to correct an oversight or to restore a contender who simply had the misfortune of hosting in October. How is Louis CK not still in the mix, you might ask. Seth MacFarlane and Anne Hathaway were by far the best hosts of the year, you doofuses, insist others! Well, now is your time to be heard, to right a wrong. Vote below for the best SNL host who didn’t make the cut — but should’ve.
This shouldn’t be a popularity contest, and bless you, you’ve proven during the course of the contest to appreciate that. We all revere the institution of Saturday Night Live, so give new life to the host that did the show the most proud. READ FULL STORY
TIME magazine prefers to be diplomatic and doesn’t rank its list of the 100 Most Influential People in the World, which was announced today. But let’s be frank: in the world of entertainment, Jennifer Lawrence is nonpareil. The 22-year-old Oscar winner and star of the Hunger Games blockbuster franchise was lauded by none other than Jodie Foster, her director from The Beaver and one of the few actresses to attain Lawrence’s critical and popular success — and more importantly, know how to translate it into real influence.
“Sure, this girl can act. But, man, this girl can also just be,” Foster wrote, describing seeing early cuts of Lawrence’s Oscar-nominated performance in Winter’s Bone. “All of those painful secrets in her face, the feeling that there’s some terrible past that’s left impossibly angled bone and weariness in its wake. She’s worn from the pain of living — something none of her characters would ever have the energy to articulate. It’s just part of her, like skin and muscle. The good news is that Jen, her good-humored, ballsy, free-spirited alter ego with the husky voice and a propensity for junk food … Jen, the spritely tomboy from Kentucky — that Jen’s got it together. A hoot. A gem. A gem with a killer stare.”
Click below for a few of the other entertainment figures who made TIME’s list, with the tributes penned by admiring celebrities. READ FULL STORY
The last time Vince Vaughn hosted Saturday Night Live, he was plugging Gus Van Sant’s Psycho remake and the musical guest was Lauryn Hill. Old School was still five years away! But fans who still love him best for his role as Trent in Swingers and others who remember his improv chops from his 2006 comedy documentary, Wild West Comedy Show, had to appreciate his opening monologue on Saturday. He flirted with random-audience-member Paige like she was at the Derby lounge, and lectured nervous Eric about cell-phone etiquette like he was giving buddy Jon Favreau a pep-talk. In other words, it certainly played to his strengths, which wasn’t exactly the case for the rest of the show.
Last year, our inaugural best-host contest turned out to be a two-horse race between Jimmy Fallon and Melissa McCarthy, with Fallon ultimately taking home the prize. Vaughn has the unfortunate luck of stepping right into the wake of a similar situation, following well-received appearances from McCarthy and five-timer Justin Timberlake. Those two favorites are now dominating our recent poll — combining to win more than 90 percent of the vote — sending home Christoph Waltz and leaving Martin Short and Seth MacFarlane, who were hardly slouches, hanging on by a thread. With only four episodes of Saturday Night Live to go, and Zach Galifianakis scheduled to host next on May 4, the race has never been more competitive.
Remember, everyone: we’re trying to recognize the best SNL host, the funniest, most-memorable host who raised everyone’s game and put on a performance that would’ve been excellent in the greatest of classic SNL seasons. Were people in the office elevator still chuckling about the episode this morning? How many times have re-viewed a sketch online? Do you want to see this host back on the show next season? Just some things to consider.
Below, I’ve embedded one representative clip for each of the five hosts currently in the race. After the vote, the host with the least support will be escorted by Bobby Moynihan off the premises, and the other four will advance to compete against Galifianakis. After his effort, there will only be three episodes remaining until we crown a new Mr. or Ms. Saturday Night. Watch the clips, refresh your memories, and vote below. READ FULL STORY
Physical comedy is deceptively simple. Anyone can do a pratfall, but most couldn’t do one well — and the number of people who can actually make five minutes of nearly falling, falling, and slowly getting up seem entertaining is smaller still.
Enter Melissa McCarthy, a versatile comedic actor with top notch timing, great delivery, and a physicality that the Three Stooges would admire. Sure, she’s much more than a klutz — but for better or for worse, the physical stuff is what SNL likes to showcase whenever the Bridesmaids star appears on the series. And though surprise appearances from Dennis Rodman and Peter
Drunklage Dinklage threatened to steal focus from McCarthy herself, her physical presence helped her nail her second Saturday Night Live hosting gig.
But if McCarthy wants to win the title of Mr./Ms. Saturday Night, she’d better leave those sparkly red platform sandals at home — because beating Justin Timberlake will be an uphill battle. READ FULL STORY
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