Julia Roberts’ children are massive fans of Taylor Swift.
The 48-year-old actress was one of a huge number of stars to take to the stage with Taylor during her 1989 tour last year (15). Her cameo appearance was out of character for the star, but Julia admits she was encouraged to do it by her children, and specifically her sons, 11-year-old Phinneaus and eight-year-old Henry.
“I will say this, when she very sweetly asked if I would go on stage, my oldest son said, because I of course went ‘ugh’ my oldest son said ‘Mommy You have to do it’ and my youngest son said ‘Mommy only do it if you feel comfortable,’” Julia smiled during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, to air on Thursday (28Apr16).
“They all love Taylor Swift and she is just number one in our house and that was their first concert ever and we took a bunch of friends and had a great time.”
Julia can now count Taylor as one of her celebrity friends, of which she certainly has many. George Clooney is another close pal, and the pair can be seen starring together in upcoming film Money Monster.
However, Julia revealed that when they hung out together away from the set, the Hollywood heartthrob’s profile made it difficult to enjoy time with him.
“We did go out to dinner. George is so enormously popular that I don’t always enjoy going out to dinner with him,” Julia admitted. “Because everybody wants to talk to George.”
And the mother-of-three’s desire for sleep also caused issues on the pair’s dinner meetings, as George is apparently a fan of late nights.
“I have a tendency when a bunch of us go out to dinner to go home early,” Julia laughed. “I also like to go to bed early. And he always shouts “Quitter” as I am leaving the restaurant’.”
James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult and John Boyega are set to voice rabbits in a TV remake of Watership Down.
The actors will voice bunnies Hazel, Fiver and Bigwig alongside Sir Ben Kingsley as cruel General Woundwort in the four-part miniseries remake of the 1978 animated film, which was based on Richard Adams’ 1972 novel of the same name.
Executive producer Rory Aitken said the animation, about a group of rabbits who try to find a safe new home after their warren is destroyed, will be toned down compared to the 1978 film, which featured shocking animal deaths.
“The thing about Watership Down is that it’s an epic adventure story,” he told Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper. “It’s not a terrifying, brutal story. I think that in a way we want to restore the reputation that the book should have as one of the great adventure stories of all time.
“It’s grown this reputation for being scarring and horrific and brutal, and actually that’s not what the essence of the story is… While we won’t shy away from the darkness in the book, visually it won’t be as brutal and scarring.”
The female characters Clover, Strawberry and Hyzenthlay, have also been given bigger roles and will be voiced by Gemma Arterton, Olivia Colman and McAvoy’s wife Anne-Marie Duff respectively. Freddie Fox and The Thick of It’s Miles Jupp also have voice parts.
Watership Down is a joint venture between the BBC and streaming service Netflix and has been written by TV screenwriter Tom Bidwell.
The miniseries, which will be computer animated, is set to air over four one-hour parts at the end of 2017.
Melanie Chisholm has reportedly pulled out of the Spice Girls’ reunion.
The five-piece girl band celebrate the 20th anniversary of their debut single Wannabe this year (16) and had been discussing potentially teaming up once again to mark the occasion.
Following claims that Posh Spice Victoria Beckham had refused to take part in the reunion due to her fashion career taking priority, now Britain’s The Sun newspaper has reported that Chisholm, aka Mel ‘Sporty Spice’ C, has thrown a spanner in the plans.
“Mel C is out of the reunion for now,” a source told the publication. “She has essentially left the band to focus on a more serious music career. She loves the girls but it just didn’t feel right for her to reunite with them at the moment. She has other priorities and obviously it was a bit of a problem that Victoria made it clear she wasn’t going to be part of the reunion.”
“At the end of the day, Geri left the group in 1998 and they were able to continue with the four of them, which is why they could accept Victoria’s decision, but losing Mel C might be a bridge too far.”
Despite Chisholm’s decision coming as a disappointment to bandmates Ginger Spice Geri Horner, Scary Spice Melanie Brown and Baby Spice Emma Bunton, the trio are said to still be determined to mark the anniversary in some way. They are apparently discussing either touring as a three-piece or enlisting the help of some other singers.
“Mel B and Geri in particular are still determined to mark their anniversary in some way,” the source added. “They are arranging a number of meetings which include the option for a tour, possibly with just the three of them or with other singers.”
In fact, there have even been talks of a Spice Girls talent show, the source added. The programme would give the public the chance to audition for a place in the band – in a similar format to The X Factor.
“It would be an absolute TV sensation,” the source said. “Could you imagine the opportunity for a member of the public to become a Spice Girl?”
Lenny Kravitz was “falling apart” after Prince kept him up for two days straight to work on a project.
The Fly Away singer has penned a touching tribute to the late star, following his sudden death aged 57 last week (21Apr16). They shared a close friendship over the years, often playing music together, but one occasion in particular stands out for Lenny – recording their Rave Un2 the Year 2000 concert back in December, 1999.
While holidaying in the Bahamas over Christmas that year, Lenny received a call from Prince inviting him to his Paisley Park estate in Minneapolis. Despite the sub zero temperatures, Lenny agreed to fly out with his guitar and team in tow.
“I checked into the hotel and went over to Paisley Park,” Lenny recalled to Rolling Stone magazine. “I said, ‘Okay, let’s do this. What time tonight?’ Prince said, ‘I don’t know. Let’s play it by ear.’ His band is on call. There’s a soundstage and a film crew. We hung around the studio for a while and his apartment there. I kept thinking, ‘When are we gonna do this?’
“Cut to two days later. He’s kept me awake the whole time. Man, I’m starting to fade and I’m still waiting to go do these songs. I’m just falling apart, ready to crash. At the exact moment where I’m starting to fall asleep he goes, ‘C’mon man, we gotta do it now.’ I was like, ‘Now?’ He’s like, ‘Yeah, right now. Grab your guitar. We gotta do it now!'”
Lenny pointed out that anyone watching the video may notice he appears “a little out of it” and low-energy. His voice wasn’t in great form either having stayed up for so long without sleep, whereas Prince was full of life.
Spending several days at Paisley Park was an “incredible” experience for Lenny, who likens the stay to something out of a fairytale.
“It was like Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, or the Wizard of Oz,” he gushed. “It’s this larger than life compound that is just his world. The minute you walk through the door you’re in Prince’s world. It’s all about being creative. It’s all about music. Everything you did there was recorded.”
Kesha has recorded a song with EDM star Zedd which will be released Friday (28Apr16).
Zedd, real name Anton Zaslavski, teased the release in a post on Instagram in which he shared a photo of the artwork for True Colors, a new version of a song on his 2015 album of the same name.
The cover, which looks like a wooden plaque with ornate gold detailing and a large Z in the middle, has Zedd & Kesha written above and True Colors written at the bottom.
An excited Zedd wrote in the caption: “ZEDD & KESHA – TRUE COLORS OFFICIALLY OUT: 4/29. Music can be freedom”.
In February the Grammy award-winning, electro-house music producer – was one of many stars who tweeted support for Kesha as she sought to break ties with the record label run by producer Dr Luke, who she has accused of sexually assaulting her.
The Russian-German musician also offered to produce a song for the singer – an offer which was preceded by a performance on stage at the opening weekend of the Coachella festival in California.
Although she was unsuccessful in her effort to end her recording deal with Sony imprint Kemosabe, a spokesperson for Dr Luke previously told Billboard: “The court repeatedly stated Kesha is already free to record without Dr Luke.”
Confirming this, Zedd explained to his Twitter followers: “Just to clarify: We didn’t use any loop holes. Kemosabe / RCA gave us permission to release this song!”
Soon after Dr. Luke responded, “Thanks for the clarification @Zedd …”
During the Coachella performance, the Los Angeles Times reported, Kesha didn’t address the crowd, instead, choosing to let the powerful lyrics of True Colors speak as she sang: “I won’t apologise for the fire in my eyes, Let me show you my true colors.”
This week (beg25Apr16) Kesha posted images on Instagram showing her in the studio.
“It’s a miracle when someone gives you a chance at finding your voice again with no reason other than that he is a f**king beautiful person with a heart of gold,” she wrote in the accompanying caption.