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Tag: Things That Are Australian (1-6 of 6)

5 Australian pop-culture imports you should know

Sick of explosion-filled blockbusters and snoozy summer reality TV? Here’s a solution: Try looking to the Southern Hemisphere to fill your entertainment needs. Several EW staffers have fallen under the spell of Australian TV and music, especially Josh Thomas’s charming comedy Please Like Me (which returns to Pivot on Friday at 10:30 p.m. ET).

And it’s not just people who write about this stuff for a living: A friend of mine is obsessed with Dance Academy, a teen drama that’s exactly what it sounds like (and is available for streaming on Netflix). Another swears by Australia’s Next Top Model, which has supposedly produced more successful models than its American counterpart. And then there’s Iggy Azalea, the New South Wales-born rapper whose music has been inescapable for months (even if plenty of writers refuse to admit that “Fancy” is 2014’s Song of the Summer).

Want to jump on the bandwagon, or however they say that expression in Australia? Here are some of the best wonders Down Under has to offer right now: READ FULL STORY

Watch a 16-year-old Keith Urban sing Air Supply on Aussie TV talent show -- VIDEO

Keith-Urban.jpg

A video of a young Keith Urban competing on the Aussie TV talent show New Faces in 1983 was uploaded to YouTube last month. While a few country music and radio station blogs spotted it, it needs to be adored by the masses. The future American Idol judge performs his countrymen’s song “All Out of Love” and gets mixed reviews from the panel, which could foresee his bright future.  READ FULL STORY

James Franco defends explicit banned film 'I Want Your Love' -- VIDEO

James Franco, actor, director, student, soap star, writer, artist, musician, and Oscars-ruiner, can now add another title to his ever-expanding resume: pro-sex crusader.

The multifaceted multihyphenate has made a video defending his friend Travis Matthews’s film I Want Your Love, which has been banned in Australia due to its graphic scenes of  gay male coupling. As Franco explains in the video, Matthews was “using sex in a very sophisticated way” in the film — the director “wants to explore story and character and nuances that sex contains,” he says. Franco also points out that the film probably wouldn’t be banned if it featured explicit violence — though curiously, he ignores the fact that censors likely wouldn’t mind I Want Your Love‘s sex scenes if they featured men and women instead of men alone.

READ FULL STORY

Australian 'King Kong' musical will roar to the stage in 2013

“Seasons of Ape-Human Love”? “Seventy-Six Fighter Planes”? “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going (to Climb Down the Empire State Building)”? These made-up songs will not appear in a new musical based on the classic 1933 film King Kong — but the show itself is very much real. According to a press release, Kong is set to premiere in June 2013 at Melbourne’s Regent Theatre.

The musical’s book was written by Tony Award nominee Craig Lucas, who also penned the script for The Light in the Piazza. Its score is studded with both refurbished Depression-era tunes and original material by contemporary artists including Sarah McLachlan, Justice, Massive Attack’s Robert del Naja, and The Avalanches’ Guy Garvey. Producer Marius deVries will oversee Kong‘s music; he’s being credited as the show’s “composer and arranger.”

READ FULL STORY

Julian Assange granted asylum by Ecuador

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been holed up in London’s Ecuadorean Embassy since June, waiting for the South American nation to respond to his request for asylum. Today, Ecuador came through: It granted Assange asylum, guaranteeing him protection from arrest as long as he’s on Ecuadorean territory, writes the New York Times.

Of course, in order to get to Ecuador, Assange will have to leave the embassy — and Britain has no intention of letting him. Britain’s highest court ruled last year that Assange must be extradited back to Sweden, where he will be questioned about an alleged rape and an alleged molestation.

READ FULL STORY

Meet Chris and Liam Hemsworth's big brother, Luke

You already know Chris Hemsworth from movies like The Avengers and Snow White and the Huntsman. You know Liam Hemsworth from The Hunger Games and upcoming The Expendables 2. But there’s a third Hemsworth, too. His name is Luke, he got into acting long before either of his brothers, and in case you didn’t know, he’s planning on joining them in Hollywood later this year. He has signed on with ROAR Management, the same team that handles his brothers.

The 31-year-old started acting ten years ago on the Australian soap opera Neighbours, but after years of chasing roles, he tells EW that he became “disillusioned” with the field and decided to open up his own timber-flooring business. While the flooring company (where both Liam and Chris have worked) has supported his family — which includes his wife Samantha and three daughters, ages 4, 2, and a new arrival who’s only a few weeks old — he decided about a year ago to get back into acting. His comeback role arrived quickly in the gritty motorcycle miniseries Bikie Wars: Brothers in Arms, which debuted on Australian TV in May.

We chatted with the eldest Hemsworth brother about growing up with Thor and Gale. Here’s what the affable Aussie had to say:

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What were you all like as kids?
LUKE HEMSWORTH: We were crazy. We would spend time in the bush. Mom would say get out of the house, and we would just go. We had all sorts of large swings, and flying foxes, and various death traps throughout the forest that we’d try and do our best to hurt ourselves on. It was a great childhood in terms of being creative, I think. Getting outside, getting out of the house. Mom would put the TV in the cupboard. She’d say, “That’s it. I’ve had enough. The TV is going in the wardrobe,” and she’d lock it up for three months. READ FULL STORY

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