Bruce Springsteen Signs School Absence Note

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“The Boss” took time out from promoting his new autobiography, ‘Born to Run,’ to authorize a Philadelphia student missing school to attend his meet-and-greet.

A Philadelphia fifth-grader ditched school for the chance to meet rock legend Bruce Springsteen and “The Boss” gladly played along by signing the boy’s absence excuse note.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Michael Fenerty attended a meet-and-greet with the New Jersey native Thursday at the Free Library of Philadelphia with his dad.
Springsteen was in town for a book signing to promote his new autobiography, Born to Run. Wanting to follow school procedure, the boy’s father brought along a pre-typed note that Springsteen signed to excuse his son’s absence. Springsteen told the boy that he would have to read the note first because that’s how he got in trouble with his first contract.

The school’s principal only received a photocopy of the note.
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Lorne Michaels On 40 Years Of ‘SNL’

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screen-shot-2015-02-05-at-1-56-42-pmAs part of THR’s special issue on NBC’s comedy series, the comedy kingpin reflects on the show’s success, passing on Stephen Colbert, the season he’d do over and what kind of boss he really is: “Beloved,” he jokes.

When Saturday Night Live launched on Oct. 11, 1975, its producer, Lorne Michaels, was a 30-year-old Canadian with no live TV experience. Four decades later, he’s an institution, having outlasted multiple NBC owners and grown his creation — a 90-minute live sketch-comedy show with a new host and musical guest each week — from a counterculture upstart to a mainstream touchstone. In that time, Michaels’ imprint has stretched far beyond SNL, too, with a comedy empire that currently includes The Tonight Show, Late Night and PortlandiaLorne Michaels and the ‘SNL’ Cast Through the Years (Photos).Lorne Michaels and the ‘SNL’ Cast Through the Years (Photos)by THR Staff – 2/4/2015 9:24am PST1 / 11 Tina Fey, Lorne Michaels and Dennis McNicholasMichaels, who has personally won 13 Emmys, flanked by Tina Fey and writer Dennis McNicholas, at the 2002 awards show.

Tina Fey, Lorne Michaels and Dennis McNicholas

Michaels, who has personally won 13 Emmys, flanked by Tina Fey and writer Dennis McNicholas, at the 2002 awards show.

With SNL‘s star-studded 40th anniversary live special set to air on Feb. 15 on NBC, Michaels, 70, reflects on the highs and the lows, his late-night legacy and the ways in which he booked an unprecedented batch of vets, including Eddie Murphy, Will Ferrell and Dana Carvey.

How did you pick the guest list and audience for the 40th anniversary show?

The rules we used were these: Every host was invited. Every musical guest was invited. Any castmember and writer who had been here longer than a year was invited. Not everybody is going to come. The other rule we used, which was just the simplest way to go, was if people sent back their RSVP, they were in the mix of people we could write for. On the 25th anniversary — which turned out remarkably well and was the first time I thought, “I could stop now and be good” — we did mostly live moments with tape and clips. This time, we have some of that, but we’re doing more performances.

What advice would present-day you give to Lorne of season one?

Work expands to the amount of time that’s available.

NBC used to give heavy notes, including “Fire Adam Sandler!” What’s the last meaningful note you got?

There was a period under Warren Littlefield that they did a lot of testing and found that music didn’t test as well as comedy. I’d say music was for pace, and it gave us a level of coolness and relevance. So, first it was, “Could you get rid of it?” When we disagreed, it was, “Could you move it later in the show?” There was a two- or three-show period where they prevailed and it had to come after “[Weekend] Update,” which threw off the rhythm of the show. When things are going really, really well in Burbank, they tend to have more confidence in terms of making suggestions. They’re on a streak, so they want to fix us.

You said the 25th anniversary show was the first time you felt proud of the show. What took so long?

Yeah. I used to say that on my tombstone would be the word ‘uneven’ because [the show has] never been described any other way in a review. It’s only cumulatively that you sort of go, “Oh yeah, that.” You can’t be perfect for 90 minutes. We don’t do spectacle and don’t have much of a wide shot, so when you see somebody going into lens and taking it to some level that you hadn’t seen even at dress rehearsal, it’s a magical thing. I believe there’s at least one or two of those in almost every show. But I tend to leave only seeing the mistakes or the things that didn’t quite work. Fortunately, at the end of the night, there is alcohol, and that takes away a lot of the mistakes, or at least makes you focus less on them. Then on Monday, you do it all again.

Have you given any more thought to your succession plan? Should the show go on without you?

I don’t know. I’m going to keep doing it as long as I possibly can because I love it and because it’s what I do. But there is more niche stuff [now]. Us doing “Update” and giving it 10 minutes in a 90-minute show was a big deal, but Comedy Central and Jon Stewart, none of that existed then. So things have fragmented. The thing that I always find difficult about criticism of the show is that we’re broadcast, which means there are people who like us in all 50 states. I’m incredibly proud of the show Portlandia that I do, but it’s designed for an audience that just wants that and loves that. So I don’t know how long.

What’s the sketch that made you most nervous?

Some time in the ’90s, I was overseas and there was a bunch of people who had kids there. I didn’t have kids then, but they talked about watching the show — they were baby boomers — with their kids, and I went, “Really?” I got back from the trip and we were doing a “Wayne’s World” truth-or-dare skit with Madonna, and I watched it at dress and I went, “That’s going to be a real squirm moment for parents and kids, so let’s pull that back a little bit,” which we did. So it morphed into a family show, without having to compromise that much, frankly.


Is there any sketch that you regret doing because it did push those boundaries?

We did a sketch which used the word “penis” about 60 times, and we were boycotted by the Reverend [Donald] Wildmon, and that caused a lot of sponsors to flee and all that. I don’t regret having done it, but I wish it had worked better.

Who’s the host who made you most nervous because he or she wanted to push it further than you did?

The thing about hosts is that the smart ones, and there are mostly those, know that we know this room better. Sometimes somebody is determined to do something because they feel it’s bold or it goes after something that they really feel should be dealt with, and you’ll say, “I’m not sure it will play. We can still do it if you like, but you’ll see how you feel at dress.” Things can feel wrong or inappropriate, not because they’re shocking but because they’re not for this room. There’s a formality to the show, weirdly, and when people betray that in some way or turn it into something that it’s not, the audience reaction is not good.

Any examples come to mind?

When Sinead O’Connor tore up the picture of the Pope, you could hear a pin drop. I didn’t know it was coming, obviously, because at dress, she had held up a picture of Balkan orphans, which I thought was really meaningful and what she wanted to do. I’m sort of all right with people taking chances and risks and all that, but I think everybody from the beginning has known that we were on the honor system, we went live and there was an understanding of trust that we had built up at the network that we would play by the rules, which we have. So I think most people don’t want to be the person [who defies that trust]. They had that unfortunate thing with [castmember] Charlie Rocket [who got fired for saying “f—” on the show], which was during the period I wasn’t there. It wasn’t like it was bold or it wasn’t like there was any shortage of places that you couldn’t hear that language.

If you could get a do-over on any one season, which would you choose?

1985 [Michaels’ first year back after a five-year hiatus]. I wanted to recapture what [we had had]. Dan Aykroyd was 22 [in 1975], I believe, and so was Laraine Newman. I think Bill Murray was, too. Gilda [Radner] and John [Belushi] were like 24. I was 30, Chevy [Chase] was 31. … We were just younger, and so I wanted to get back to that and I maybe went too young. I think it wasn’t thought through as much as I would have liked it to have been. But good things came out of that season, and then we adjusted the following year.

Even the best guts in the business can miss. Whom did you overlook that you kicked yourself over later?

Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell auditioned. There were lots of people who you’d see how brilliant they were, but you knew on some level that it wasn’t going to work. Lisa Kudrow gave a brilliant audition, but it was at the time when it was Jan Hooks and Nora [Dunn]. I wasn’t at the Jim Carrey audition, but somebody who was there said, “I don’t think Lorne would like it,” and they were probably wrong, but it doesn’t matter. Or maybe they were right — who knows? No one gets it all right.

You’re in a tricky spot: The better your castmembers do, the more likely you are to lose them. How do you advise people on the right time to leave?

The clumsy metaphor I like to use is you build a bridge to the next thing, and when it’s solid enough, you walk across. You can’t just react to the first thing, because it’s not solid enough yet. So, for someone like Kristen [Wiig], God bless her, she did Bridesmaids, which was a huge hit, and then she came back and did another season. Will Ferrell did the same. They also have a pact with the people who watch the show: They were there, they loved you at the beginning, they told everyone else about you and they showed up for everything you did. So you have to make sure that you honor that because if you don’t, you look as if you’re just about ambition, which there is more than enough of in the real world. And we don’t represent only the real world; we represent some level of what you hope people would be like.

What about you as a boss?

Beloved. (Laughs.) No, I can be unbelievably rough on people, which sometimes is just the pressure spilling over. Everybody works so hard and nobody wants to let down everyone else.

Some of the cast has said you’ve mellowed. Fair?

It would depend on who you ask. (Laughs.) For some people, I realize that that’s not the most effective way to encourage. I’m not quite like J.K. [Simmons] is in Whiplash, but I can be direct. Sometimes people don’t hear it unless you’re more blunt. But just because you’re rough on yourself doesn’t mean you can be rough on others, so I’m much more aware of that than I was when I was very young.

Which surprises you more: that presidential candidates come on or that Al Franken is a senator?

It is stunning that Al is there, but he’s certainly smart enough and certainly cared enough about it and was passionate enough about it when he was here. I think the times have changed for the better. When you see even Sarah [Palin] … It’s one of the things that we’re proudest of: that this is a country that allows that level of disrespect and that people accept it as part of what we do. The Charlie Hebdo thing brought it into clearer relief, where you went, “Oh, right.” And not to get into the issue of whether or not people should portray this or that … but people just accept that that’s part of what running for anything in America is. I think it probably was always there, but we amplify it a little bit.

There are people who would call you one of the most feared men in Hollywood.

“Feared” was never my goal. “Funny” might have been. But I think you get wise, and I think you also get way more forgiving.

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Johnny Depp To Star In ‘Murder On The Orient Express’

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ffsfUPDATE: Studio has announced that Michelle Pfeiffer, Daisy Ridley, Michael Pena and Judi Dench will join the picture in supporting roles. Studio’s release is included under Deadline’s original scoop on Johnny Depp.

EXCLUSIVE: Johnny Depp is in talks to star for director Kenneth Branagh in the Murder On The Orient Express remake. This comes after Angelina Jolie stepped out. The pic is moving fast: Depp will star with Branagh, who’ll play detective Hercule Poirot in a script that Blade Runner 2 scribe Michael Green adapted from Agatha Christie’s novel. Steve Asbell overseeing the production for Fox.

The film is based on one of Christie’s best-known books. First published in 1934, the novel tells of the intrigue that begins after an American businessman is murdered aboard the famed train. Poirot tries to unravel the whodunit. Branagh will produce with Ridley Scott, Simon Kinberg and Mark Gordon. Michael Schaefer and Aditya Sood will also produce in some capacity. James Prichard, the author’s great grandson and chairman of Agatha Christie Ltd., and Hilary Strong, CEO at Agatha Christie Ltd., will executive produce.

An all-star cast, led by Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer and Daisy Ridley, is joining director Kenneth Branagh on 20th Century Fox’s new feature film adaptation of Agatha Christie’s acclaimed mystery Murder on the Orient Express, it was announced today by TCF president Emma Watts.

In addition to directing the film, Branagh, a five-time Academy Award®-nominee, will star as detective Hercule Poirot. Depp portrays Ratchett; Pfeiffer is Mrs. Hubbard and Ridley plays Mary Debenham.

Oscar winner Judi Dench portrays Princess Dragomiroff, while Lucy Boynton is Countess Andrenyi. Tom Bateman plays Bouc, acclaimed stage actor and Tony winner Derek Jacobi portrays Masterman, Michael Peņa is Marquez, and Hamilton star Leslie Odom Jr. plays Doctor Arbuthnot. The ensemble is nearly complete, but there are still a few key roles left to cast.

Murder on the Orient Express begins production in November, in London.

Commented Kenneth Branagh: “Christie’s ‘Murder’ is mysterious, compelling and unsettling. I’m honoured to have this fantastic group of actors bring these dark materials to life for a new audience”.

Ridley Scott (The Martian), Simon Kinberg (The Martian, X-Men: Days of Future Past), Mark Gordon (Steve Jobs) and Branagh will produce the film. Michael Schaefer, Aditya Sood and Judy Hofflund will also produce. Michael Green (Blade Runner 2) wrote the screenplay, with Steve Asbell overseeing the production for Fox.

Agatha Christie’s novel, published in 1934, is considered one of the most ingenious stories ever devised. It revolves around a murder onboard the famous train, and Belgian detective Hercule Poirot must solve the case – but there are a number of passengers who could potentially be the murderer.

James Prichard and Hilary Strong, both of Agatha Christie Ltd., will executive produce.

Prichard commented: “It is always thrilling for us to see the stellar casting that Agatha Christie film adaptations attract. It is fantastic to have Kenneth Branagh at the helm of this new adaptation of Murder On The Orient Express and we are extremely excited about the cast he is bringing aboard”

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‘SNL’ Taps Alec Baldwin To Play Trump

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gggAs Jack Donaghy once said, “There are no bad ideas … only good ideas that go horribly wrong.” Let’s hope “Saturday Night Live” heeds this “30 Rock” philosophical nugget, because the late-night sketch series will once again look outside its stable of regular comedians to bring Donald Trump to life.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, veteran comedian Alec Baldwin will play Trump in the upcoming 42nd season debuting this weekend.

On Wednesday, “SNL” shared a promo for the season premiere, which will apparently find its inspiration from the first presidential debate, as Kate McKinnon’s Hillary Clinton and Baldwin’s Trump face off in a slightly underwhelming battle of wits and sniffles.

Last season, the Republican presidential nominee was played by “SNL” favorite Darrell Hammond, who according to the Hollywood Reporter, will continue to act as the series’ announcer, as well as make an appearance every now and again.

Baldwin has hosted 16 times over the course of his career, bringing many a celebrity impression to the “SNL” stage like that of Al Pacino, Bono and Harvey Fierstein.

The season premiere, which airs Oct. 1, will be hosted by Margot Robbie with musical guest The Weeknd.

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Kiefer Sutherland Says Julia Roberts’ Fame Got In The Way Of Their Engagement

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ddddIn today’s edition of couples we forgot were once together, Kiefer Sutherland opens up about his one-time engagement to America’s Sweetheart Julia Roberts.

The two met on the set of 1990’s “Flatliners” movie and, not long after Sutherland divorced his first wife, the two became engaged. But in a real-life “Runaway Bride” scenario, Roberts called off their engagement just days before their June 1991 wedding.

Sutherland spoke about his former fiancée in a new interview with Entertainment Weekly and People’s Jess Cagle and explained why he was “grateful” that the actress ended their relationship.

Kiefer Sutherland and Julia Roberts attend the “Flatliners” Hollywood Premiere on Aug. 6, 1990, in Hollywood, California.

“I think she was being realistic for herself and I think that’s much better,” Sutherland said, before pausing. “I think it’s hard to explain the pressure. We were young and we were both very much in love and we had decided that we wanted to get married.”

But after Robert’s fame continued to soar, their future as husband and wife became unclear.

“She was arguably the most famous woman in the world and this wedding that was supposed to be something between the two of us became something so big,” Sutherland said. “And then in the middle of that I think she had the courage ― it wasn’t what she wanted to do in the end. And I think it took a lot of courage, in amongst all that other stuff, to be able to say, ‘I can’t do this.’ And I’m gonna leave it at that.”

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Wayne Gretzky Joining NHL For Centennial Celebration

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wgGretzky and the NHL are joining together to celebrate the League’s 100th anniversary with a year-long Centennial Celebration in 2017.

Gretzky will serve as the official ambassador to the Centennial Celebration, which begins Jan. 1 in Toronto with the NHL Centennial Classic outdoor game between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs at BMO Field.

“A century of great players, great plays and great moments deserves a year-long celebration, and we invite everyone to join our party in 2017,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. “We are delighted that Wayne Gretzky — whose spectacular contributions on the ice matched his immeasurable graciousness and popularity off the ice — will serve as our Centennial’s official ambassador as we honor all the drama, suspense, excitement and memories that have thrilled the best fans in sports for generations.”

Gretzky, the NHL’s all-time leading scorer with 2,857 points, a nine-time Hart Trophy winner and four-time Stanley Cup champion, will make appearances at various events throughout the calendar year.

As great a player as he was during his 20 NHL seasons, Gretzky considers himself an even greater fan of the game and its history. That’s why he’s so excited to join forces with the League to celebrate 100 years of the NHL.

“It’s a tremendous honor,” Gretzky said. “I’ve said this a million times that everything I have in my life is because of hockey and because of the National Hockey League. I happen to think it’s the greatest game in the world. It was kind to me my whole life. The game just gets better every year, so for me to be involved in just trying to help promote and sell our sport even more it’s a great thrill for me and an honor to be part of it.”

The Centennial Celebration will feature the unveiling of the all-time top 100 players in League history during All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles from Jan. 27-29. The players on the all-time top 100 list who played all or most of their careers from 1917-67 will be honored at the Centennial Classic game.

The lists were voted on by members of the hockey community, including former and current executives, media members and NHL alumni.

“It’s like when you’re a kid and you collect hockey cards, you want to trade this guy for that guy, and everybody wanted to have the right cards,” Gretzky said. “Here we are now, we’re going to pick the top 100 players and it’s not going to be easy because there has been so many great players all the way back to the 30s and 40s and 50s. So obviously it’s a tough task for everyone. There are so many great young players today, there were great players when I played and before I played. So picking this is going to be difficult, but it’ll be a thrill for anyone who is part of that top 100.”

A Centennial Truck Tour, launching Jan. 1 in Toronto, will bring the celebration to every NHL market and many other local hockey communities during 2017. It will feature a 53-foot interactive museum truck, another 53-foot trailer with a giant video screen and stage and a pop-up synthetic rink for youth games and clinics.

The NHL with the Los Angeles Kings, who are celebrating their 50th anniversary, will have a hockey-themed float in the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade on Jan. 2 in Pasadena, Calif. The parade will air on NBC prior to the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic between the St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks at Busch Stadium.

Gretzky said having a float in the Tournament of Roses Parade is yet another indication of how far hockey has come in California and the southwestern part of the United States.

“Let me tell you something: If you would have said to me 25 years ago that we’d have three teams in California and they’d all sell out and they’d all be the top four or five teams in the National Hockey League I would have said, ‘No, you’re crazy,’ ” Gretzky said. “Hockey has come so far and has done so well in the southwest — in Dallas, Vegas, Phoenix, the three teams in California. Kids more and more are gravitating to our sport as youngsters and wanting to participate and wanting to play and have this dream of growing up and being in the National Hockey League. So to be part of the Rose Bowl parade will be pretty special. I think it’s a pretty nice honor.”

The League will celebrate the 125th anniversary of the donation of the Stanley Cup by Lord Stanley of Preston from March 15-18 in Ottawa. A documentary chronically the history of the Stanley Cup will be released during the celebration in Ottawa.

A celebration of the 100th anniversary of the League’s founding will take place in Montreal on Nov. 26. In addition, a celebration of the 100th anniversary of the first NHL games will take place in Ottawa on Dec. 19.

The League will unveil its most 100 most iconic moments in the fall, and each day during the calendar year the NHL will share various milestones of its 100 years online, in broadcasts and through social media as part of an NHL Time Capsule.

“I gravitate to the players themselves, the Rocket Richards, the [Jean] Beliveaus, the [Gordie] Howes, the [Bobby] Orrs, the [Guy] Lafleurs,” Gretzky said. “And then the arenas; the old Montreal Forum, Maple Leaf Gardens, the old Chicago Stadium. I was lucky enough as a kid, I played one time in the Olympia. For me, the history of our sport is so dynamic. That’s one great thing we have. And the tradition, not only the Stanley Cup, but the Art Ross Trophy, the Hart Trophy, the Norris Trophy; those trophies are really amazing. If you get your name on that that’s pretty special. One thing we have in our sport is a tremendous foundation of history and that’s wonderful.”
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Jan. – Dec. NHL Centennial Truck Tour

Jan. – Dec. NHL Time Capsule

Jan. 1 NHL Centennial Classic™ (Toronto)

Jan. 2 Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade (Pasadena, CA)

Jan. 2 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® (St. Louis, MO)

Jan. 27-29 2017 NHL® All-Star (Los Angeles, CA)

Feb. 25 2017 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series™ (Pittsburgh, PA)

Mar. 15-18 Stanley Cup® 125th Anniversary Celebrations (Ottawa, Ont.)

June 2017 NHL Awards™ (Las Vegas, NV)

Jun. 23-24 2017 NHL Draft™ (Chicago, IL)

Nov. 26 NHL 100th Anniversary of the Founding of the League

Dec. 19 NHL 100th Anniversary of the First Games Played

Julian Lennon Shares Insight Into ‘Cycle’ Photography Exhibit

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kkJulian Lennon may have been born into a house of music but his branches of interest spread much further out. In fact, his passions for photography and philanthropy are so deep in his soul that they are what fuel his fires today. So much so, that when creativity is sparking he charges full-speed ahead. “Sometimes when there’s such a lot of work I suffer from insomnia. So I’m exhausted going to bed and then I start thinking about the next day/week/month and the mind doesn’t turn off,” Lennon told me during our recent interview.

On September 9th, Lennon’s latest photography exhibition opened at the Leica Gallery in Los Angeles. Titled , it explores the cycle of life along the South China Seas. Faces emerge from the canvases like bolts of lightning while a temple stands strong against a backdrop of clouds in turmoil. Striking images that tell stories that may be different for each viewer. And Lennon likes it that way.

The first son of John Lennon and first wife Cynthia, Julian was born in the early, crazy days of Beatlemania, he was a cherubic face hidden away from the insanity. Of course later ”Hey Jude” evolved from “Hey Jules”, a song Paul McCartney wrote to comfort Julian, during his parents’ divorce. In his twenties, Julian made some records and had two big singles himself with “Valotte” and “Too Late For Goodbyes.” But other interests began to tug at him stronger – film, documentaries, photography, all highly stimulating visual arts, music for a different sense.

In 2009, Julian Lennon started the White Feather Foundation to “do good and give back,” to make the world a better place, provide clean water, teach others how to take care of the planet and all the people on it.

The following year, Lennon had his first photographic exhibit featuring U2 and landscapes that were like watercolor paintings. He thrived in post-production editing, allowing the photograph to dictate the enhancements. The more he traveled, the more he shot, the more his eye picked up on the symphonies of everyday life – the people, their work, their love, their struggles. And that is what we focused on during my interview with Lennon – what he sees, what he feels, behind the camera. With Cycle running till October 17th, there is plenty of time to stop by the gallery and spend a few hours absorbing his stories and how he chooses to tell them.
Hi Julian, how are you today?

I’m okay, thank you very much. Just my usual tired self but apart from that I’m all good.

You have something really wonderful going on right now in your life so why don’t you please tell us more about your exhibit and how it all came together.

Well, the Cycle exhibit, it’s been six months in the making. It was around the same time as my birthday and the first year anniversary of my mother’s passing, and I thought, well, I didn’t want to stay at home and be miserable. I’d had this peculiar invitation to go and join some friends, and the few people I didn’t know, on a trip, on this little cruise, around the South China Seas. And I thought, well, why not. Let me push myself. I’ve never been to that part of the world really. I’ve flown around and nearby with work but never just to experience it. And I was there for ten days, visiting countries like Vietnam, Malaysia and Borneo. Then on the way home I stopped by in Bali, cause I had a friend there. I took my camera, and the thing was, that just previous to that I’d been offered a gig to do a show, an exhibition with Leica. So I thought this could be the perfect opportunity. I wasn’t entirely sure what I was going to shoot because I didn’t know what to expect (laughs).

In fact, the problem was, I overshot the whole thing. So I ended up taking four thousand pictures, which I literally had spent the last six months editing down to a show of fifty or fifty-one, because there was a deadline so the pressure was on and that’s a heck of a lot of pictures to edit (laughs). It was literally day and night, night and day. I’d see all my friends having a lovely summer. I’d see people going out for the weekends, my friends coming and going, and I’m going, “I can’t, I just can’t do it. If I go out, I’m screwed. That would be another day off work that I can be doing.” So it was a long, long process but the journey itself was something I can’t even tell you how much I enjoyed it and the new friends that I made. It just makes me want to get out there and do more.

I finished a show, the previous show of mine was called Horizon, which was about previous trips I’d made out to Ethiopia and Kenya and on another occasion, down to Columbia to work with indigenous tribes, because I have a foundation called The White Feather Foundation and what we do is partner with local NGO’s and try and help the people there, the locals and their country, who don’t have either clean water or don’t have health and education, and we try and raise funds and donations so we can do all of those things. And what that enables me to do is visit these places for the first time in my life and experience things one on one, hand to hand, which is what happened this time round too. Because there was no specific idea of what the exhibition was to be, it was only through the process of editing that I actually found what I was looking for, which for me, was that this was about the cycle of life of people that live on the border of the South China Seas. And that’s from the good, the bad to the ugly, and a few things in-between. So basically that’s the backstory to the Leica exhibition and we’re in talks about the exhibition traveling to some of their other galleries and locations. I couldn’t be more than happy with how things have been going.
To you, why do the black & white tones capture what you’re trying to say better than color?

I guess I find that color sometimes is more distracting. I find black & white draws you in with a more empathetic view to the world. It’s more textured to me, there’s more depth to it to me, it’s more emotive to me. I actually only have a number of photographs from other artists in my home and 90% of them are all black & white. It’s just what draws me in, more than a color picture. So for me, I feel that that’s what translates what I’m seeing better for the viewer.

What speaks to you louder – faces or the spirit of an inanimate object or a landscape?

I don’t think you can have a favorite. I think that’s almost an impossible question to answer because there’s certain beauty and culture and history within a landscape just as much as a face. A face can be war torn and ragged and you can see their love and their life in their eyes; as you can with the landscape, with what’s happened to the world that we live in. So I think they are equally as important.

You said about a photo you took of Bono that it changed your way of thinking as a photographer – how so, what were you thinking before?

You know, I never really considered myself a photographer and I still don’t really. I use the apparatus to capture an image. But let me tell you, I couldn’t tell you what goes on inside of those bloody machines (laughs). It’s the same with music for me. I play music by ear and I have no technical ability but I go with what I feel and what makes sense to me, organically and naturally. So the same thing happens with me with the camera.

And what happened was, when I first started taking pictures, I looked at them and I went, “These are terrible! They look like holiday snaps (laughs).” I’m shooting U2 and Bono and they look like crap to me.
I’m sure they weren’t

They were, they were! They looked terrible! They looked just like holiday snaps and I’m going, “This is no good!” I was actually laying on the floor while Bono was sitting there, that one main shot that I love, one of my favorites of him, which is called “Someone To Look Up To,” which has a picture of my dad in the background, who is someone that he admired, and I admired too. But I was laying on the floor and I just saw the angle was different and the angle created the picture more than I can even tell you. I can’t even describe it but it just gave me another perspective to view life from, to view this image from. So I never wanted to take another picture sort of head-on again as such. I always wanted to find something a little more quirky or interesting about an image. So that’s kind of where I’ve gone with this. Again, it’s having the camera to be able to translate what I’m seeing onto a piece of photographic paper.

But I guess my forte, if anything at all, is that I’m also a self-taught editor. So a lot of my work, 90% in fact, probably comes in post, post-production, post-editing. Even though I’ve taken a picture, I will edit that picture, I will possibly crop it, I will desaturate it. Each collection has it’s own look as well for everything I’ve ever done. So the pictures kind of tell me what to do in the weirdest of ways.

It’s like when I did the collection of Princess Charlene, just before she was getting married [2011]. Now, they were originally all color pictures and I just wasn’t seeing it. And I came back just before the wedding to look at the edits and I said, “I don’t think I’ve got anything here. I really don’t.” And I was cursing myself. Then there was this one picture where she was smiling and laughing and she had a glass of champagne in her hand. But she said, “Jules, whatever you do, don’t show people that I’m having a cigarette or having a glass of champagne.” I said, “Well, how am I going to deal with this?” So I edited out any cigarettes and of course I made this shot with her with her champagne into a black & white and thought, “Oh my God, this has been talking to me all along. How come I didn’t realize I should have been thinking Grace Kelly, black & white, 1950’s.” So from that point, I edited the whole collection of her with that in mind so that it looked like it was a classic 1950’s photo shoot. And that was all created back at my home in front of my computer after the fact. And that’s generally what happens. I take what I see, I take it home, I work on it, it speaks to me and then I find what I’m looking for. It’s all a bit mad really but it seems to work.

What is your next photography challenge?

Oh God, I have no idea (laughs). There’s a few things lined up. In fact, I was supposed to be going to Nepal because my foundation worked with another organization called Music For Relief with the Linkin Park boys and when the earthquake hit a year ago we managed to raise a hundred thousand for that, for them, and we were going to go there next month but unfortunately that’s been postponed till next year. That was on the cards but now I may actually get a few weeks off. Who knows – HA HA (laughs). We’ll see.
Getting back to your exhibit, there is a photograph where it looks like you’re on a cliff and there’re clouds and there looks to be a little pagoda. It’s beautiful and I wanted to ask you about that one in particular.

Oh yeah, that’s called “Endless Love” and that was a temple in Bali and that was facing me facing East, facing the sun. It is a very famous, old, old, old, old temple. I don’t even know when it dates back to, just centuries upon centuries. But if you had actually seen what was behind me when I took that shot, it was about a thousand tourists. It’s become a tourist destination, sadly, like most landmarks in Bali, which is a really, really sad state of affairs. I was there twenty years ago and I was performing, I was on tour, and it’s now turned into a commercial zoo on crack, which I find is really sad. I mean, there are still elements to the north, east and west but the main areas in some of those beautiful, beautiful temples are now literally just tourist spots with coaches of hundreds and hundreds, if not thousands and thousands, every day trampling all over that stuff. I’m sad to say I was one of them but at least I managed to capture a moment in time that will forever live with me, especially in the photograph.

How high up were you?

That’s pretty high up, a couple hundred feet at least, minimum; maybe a thousand feet up. I’m not sure.

So what happens next for you?

Well, there are projects on the horizon but it will all depend on how they organically and time-wise come together. That’s how it works with me these days. I did everything by the clock way too much in the past (laughs) and I’m a slightly older gentleman now and I’d like to try, if I can, to enjoy the process of work as much as I can. It’s still work, no question about it. So the idea is to go with my heart and my gut on projects that are presented to me in the future. And literally I could be offered one thing one day and that’ll change within two days and I’ll be going to Moscow or I’ll be going to Africa again or South America. It literally is sometimes a drop of a hat.
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Donald Trump, Rosie O’Donnell Rekindle Feud

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rosie3The decade-old war of words between Donald Trump and Rosie O’Donnell erupted again during the presidential debate Monday evening when Trump said that O’Donnell was deserving of the criticisms he’d made of her in the past.

“Somebody who’s been very vicious to me, Rosie O’Donnell, I said very tough things to her, and I think everybody would agree that she deserves it and nobody feels sorry for her,” Trump said Monday night.

Rosie didn’t waste time coming up with a response, calling Trump an “orange anus” on Twitter and posting her comments from a 2006 episode of ABC’s The View that first ignited the feud.

“He annoys me on a multitude of levels,” O’Donnell said in 2006. “He’s the moral authority? Left the first wife, had an affair. Left the second wife, had an affair. Had kids both times, but he’s the moral compass.”

Trump has gone after O’Donnell several times during his run for the presidency, calling her “a total train wreck” and “a loser” in 2015.

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Why Zach Galifianakis Won’t Have Trump On ‘Between Two Ferns’

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fffffTens of millions of people have watched Zach Galifianakis interview Hillary Clinton for “Between Two Ferns,” but the comedian has no time for Donald Trump.

Galifianakis spoke with the Los Angeles Times about his viral interview with the Democratic presidential hopeful, which hit on everything from sexism to pantsuits to her losing Scott Baio’s vote. While the Trump campaign might be interested in jumping on the bandwagon, Galifianakis is not interested. Mainly because of Trump’s “psychosis.”

“No. That doesn’t interest me. Doing it the other way doesn’t interest me,” he said. “He’s the kind of guy who likes attention — bad attention or good attention. So you’re dealing with a psychosis there that’s a little weird. I wouldn’t have somebody on that’s so mentally challenged. I feel like I’d be taking advantage of him. And you can print that.”

Apparently, much of his skit with Clinton was improvised, and it was the former Secretary of State’s idea to go on the show in the first place.

“A lot of times with ‘Between Two Ferns’ if it’s someone in entertainment, their publicist will reach out,” director Scott Aukerman told the Daily Beast. “Or in the case of Obama, the White House reached out, and you never quite know if the person knows that their people are reaching out about it. But in this case, Mrs. Clinton is the one who reached out about doing it, as she was a big fan of the Obama one.”

Doesn’t look like Trump’s political aspirations will land him any Funny or Die airtime.

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Don Henley Says The Eagles Could Reunite Under One Condition

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jhjAfter rock legend Glenn Frey died earlier this year, his longtime bandmate, Don Henley, announced that their band, The Eagles, will never perform together again. But now, Henley may be changing his tune about the future of the Grammy Award-winning band that gave us the rock hits “Hotel California,” “One of These Nights,” and “New Kid in Town.”
In a new interview with the Montreal Gazette, Don Henley did not rule out the possibility of doing another performance with his surviving bandmates. While Henley made it clear that in no way have any talks been started, he didn’t rule out some sort of one-off tribute performance down the line—but with one very big caveat.
“At some point in the future, we might work our way around to that,” Henley said of the possibility of a reunion. “You know, Glenn has a son who can sing and play quite well. And one of the only things that would make sense to me is if it were his son. With Jackson [Browne], of course, we could do ‘Take It Easy’ and a couple other things, but the only way I would consider any kind of reunion, I think, would be with Glenn’s son, Deacon.”
While Henley’s new comments give hope to diehard Eagles fans, he stressed that the band is “still going through the healing process” as they cope with Frey’s death. In addition, several Eagles alums are working on solo projects, and Joe Walsh is currently on the road with Bad Company.
Henley and the Eagles paid tribute to Glenn Frey at the Grammy Awards earlier this year, with longtime friend Jackson Browne taking over the vocals for the hit “Take It Easy,” which he initially penned. At the time, Henley described the headline-making tribute performance as the band’s “final farewell.” The rock legend called the performance an appropriate ending to the band he co-founded more than 40 years ago, but his latest comments give fans a glimmer of hope that The Eagles could fly one more time.
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