Here's everything that's been happening in the world of Pop Culture this past week... in case you missed it! Feel free to comment on any of the stories and info shared here, add any news bits that you caught going on that may have been missed, or at least show us some love if you read the post but have nothing to comment on by clicking on that little heart icon at the bottom of the post...
GENERAL POP CULTURE NEWS:
- Twitter may soon remove links and photos from the 140-character limit imposed on tweets.
- After running an online poll that drew 4.3 million voters from 146 countries to decide what player pieces future versions of the game Monopoly should contain, the game’s maker Hasbro announced that classic game pieces the Wheelbarrow and the Boot will no longer pass “GO” along with the Thimble, which was previously announced to be discontinued as a player piece. The three classic pieces will be replaced by a penguin, a rubber ducky, and a Tyrannosaurus Rex. The three new pieces were chosen via the online poll which gave voters the option to keep any of the classic pieces or replace them with any of over 50 options. Monopoly games featuring the three new player pieces will hit stores in the fall.
- YouTube has issued an apology to LGBTQ users of the website for hiding their videos in its restricted mode. In related news, AT&T and Verizon have both suspended YouTube ads over their placement next to hate-speech videos.
- Payless Shoes will reportedly file for bankruptcy as soon as next week.
- Mars Chocolate Company announced that White Chocolate M&M’s will no longer be produced seasonally, but rather, will become a regular M&M flavor option starting this May. The candies will be available in 1.5 ounce Singles packs and will feature the brand’s iconic colorful candy shells. It will be the first time the white chocolate flavor will be available in the standard M&M color scheme as opposed to pastel colors, as the flavor usually would for Easter and spring.
- NAMES, HASHTAGS, MEMES, AND TRENDS FROM THIS PAST WEEK -
#Northwesternkid; Code name “Blueberry”, #JustAddZebras; crotch grab aka “handgate”; “Wheel of Fortune” fail
- THIS WEEK IN SPORTS -
- USA defeated PUERTO RICO 8-0 to win the World Baseball Classic. It is the first WBC title for the USA since its inception (this was the fourth iteration of the tournament).
- Former NFL quarterback TIM TEBOW, who is now trying his hand at becoming a professional baseball player and has a minor league contract with the New York Mets, has been officially assigned to the team’s Single-A affiliate team, bringing his time in spring training with the major league club to an end.
- AWARDS UPDATE -
- “The Young and the Restless” leads the field with 25 nominations for the 2017 Daytime Emmy Awards. The show is followed in nominations by fellow daytime dramas “The Bold and the Beautiful” and “General Hospital” which received 23 each. For a complete list of nominations for the 2017 Daytime Emmys, check out the following link: https://www.tvinsider.com/143776/2017-daytime-emmy-awards-nominations-revealed/
- POLITICS-R-US -
- UK Prime Minister THERESA MAY announced the country will begin the process of leaving the European Union on March 29th.
- Conservative pundit TOMI LAHREN has been suspended for a week from GLENN BECK’s The Blaze after she stated in an interview on “The View” that she is pro-choice, stating “I’m for limited government, so I can’t sit here and be a hypocrite and say I’m for limited government but I think the government should decide what women do with their bodies. Stay out of my guns, and you can stay out of my body as well.” Since the suspension, Lahren has tweeted she “will never apologize, to anyone, for being an independent thinker,” despite those on the far right attacking her for admitting she supports a woman’s right to choose.
- Fox News has decided senior judicial analyst ANDREW NAPOLITANO will not appear on air again anytime soon following backlash over his unfounded and now-discredited claims that British intelligence helped former President BARACK OBAMA wiretap conversations from Trump Tower. President DONALD TRUMP had recently cited Napolitano’s claims to defend his own unsubstantiated allegations against Obama regarding wire-tapping.
- Time Inc. announced it will not host the annual Time/People party the night before the White House Correspondents’ Dinner this year. Time will still participate in the dinner while People will be making a donation to the Correspondents’ Association in lieu of tables at the dinner. The company joins Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, and Bloomberg in calling off their yearly celebrations that coincide with the White House Correspondents’ Dinner.
- Ukraine, the host country for this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, has decided to block the Russian Eurovision entry from competing in the contest this year citing political reasons. Russia had chosen disabled singer JULIA SAMOILOVA to represent the country at the annual music event; Samoilova has admitted to performing in the Crimea since it was annexed by Russia in 2014 which is a violation of laws of Ukraine. The Security Service of Ukraine issued a statement saying they have “banned from entering Ukraine citizen of the Russian Federation Julia Samoilova for three years.” The European Broadcasting Union confirmed the decision but expressed disappointment in the ruling, stating they “feel it goes against the spirit of the contest and the notion of inclusivity that lies at the heart of its values.” Contest organizers are trying to find a way to allow Samoilova to perform without entering Ukraine so as to keep the contest free of politics, offering Channel One Russia the opportunity to for her to perform live via satellite in the semi-finals (and finals, should she advance that far). It is unclear at the moment whether Russia will accept the “via satellite” performance option or not.
- THE ROYAL REPORT -
- UK’s QUEEN ELIZABETH II has postponed a visit to the New Scotland Yard following a car and knife attack that occurred outside the UK Parliament this week. According to Buckingham Palace, the Queen’s visit will be rescheduled for a later date.
- BROADWAY BOUND -
- A stage adaptation of the film “Mean Girls” is set to debut at the National Theatre in Washington, DC. The new musical based on the 2004 film will run from October 31st to December3rd. The story was written by TINA FEY, based off her screenplay for the film.
- “Beauty and the Beast” broke the US box office record for the month of March, taking in $170 million in its first weekend in wide release. The previous high water mark was set last year by “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice”. The film has also already earned more than the 1991 animated film did.
- Disney’s live-action remake of “Mulan” may not wind up being a musical. According to the film’s director, NIKI CARO, the live-action version is not expected to contain any of the songs the animated film did nor any new songs, at least not at this time.
- Singer MARIAH CAREY announced her 1994 hit single “All I Want for Christmas Is You” is being turned into an animated film. The movie is currently slated for the 2017 holiday season.
- TOP 5 LAST WEEKEND AT THE U.S. BOX OFFICE (NEW RELEASES IN BOLD) -
1. “Beauty and the Beast” – $170.0M
2. “Kong: Skull Island” - $28.9M
3. “Logan” - $17.5M
4. “Get Out” - $13.2M
5. “The Shack” - $6.1M
- FILMS OPENING THIS WEEKEND (US Releases) -
* Sci-fi/Action/ Adventure “Power Rangers” starring NAOMI SCOTT and RJ CYLER
* Sci-fi/Horror/Thriller “Life” starring RYAN REYNOLDS and JAKE GYLLENHAAL
* Action/Crime/Comedy “CHIPS” starring DAX SHEPARD and MICHAEL PENA
- MOVIE CASTING UPDATE -
- Actresses KATE MCKINNON and MILA KUNIS are set to star in the action comedy “The Spy Who Dumped Me” for Lionsgate.
- Actor ROBERT DOWNEY JR. will star in “The Voyage of Doctor Dolittle”, a new take on the classic character.
- Actress BRIE LARSON is set to play the first female US presidential candidate in the biopic “Victoria Woodhull” for Amazon Studios.
- Actress/comedian AMY SCHUMER has dropped out of Sony’s live-action “Barbie” movie due to scheduling conflicts.
- NBC has announced their schedule for the summer of 2017. The network will have as much as 9 ½ hours of original programming on per week at its peak and will include new and returning scripted series as well as new and original reality competition shows and games shows. For a complete look at NBC’s original (read: not reruns) summer programming, check out the following link: http://tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com/more-tv-news/nbc-summer-2017-schedule-loads-up-americas-got-talent-carmichael-show-world-of-dance-and-more/
- BBC America has ordered 8 hour-long episodes of “Top Gear America”, a “reimagined” spinoff of the BBC series, which also is aired on BBC America. “Top Gear America” will be hosted by actor/competitive car racer WILLIAM FITCHNER among others.
- Actor ROB LOWE is getting his own docuseries on A&E. “The Lowe Files” will follow Lowe and his two sons, Matthew and John Owen, as they travel across the US “investigating unsolved legends and eerie old-age tales”. The network has ordered nine episodes and it will premiere this summer.
- NBC summer comedy series “The Carmichael Show” will reportedly air an episode during the upcoming third season during which a racial slur will be uttered uncensored about 6 times.
- PBS/HBO children’s series “Sesame Street” announced the addition of a new muppet to the show’s cast of characters; Julia, the first autistic muppet.
- HGTV announced plans for a spinoff of their most-popular series, “Fixer Upper”. The spinoff will feature “Fixer Upper” star JOANNA GAINES and highlight her decorating techniques further than the main show.
- CBS announced they will be turning the mobile game “Candy Crush” into a tv game show. The live-action hour-long game show will premiere on July 9th and will be hosted by actor/tv host MARIO LOPEZ.
- Fox announced that the second season of drama series “Lucifer” will only air 18 episodes as opposed to a full 22 as was ordered. The 4 episodes that will not air in season 2 are being held for season 3. According to showrunner JOE HENDERSON, the 4 moved episodes are “standalone” from the narrative of the series as a whole and will have no impact on the ending of season 2.
- TV CASTING UPDATE -
- Actor COLIN FARRELL is set to star as OLIVER NORTH in a new limited series for Amazon about the Iran-Contra Affair. No word yet on the limited series’ title.
- Actress PENELOPE CRUZ will play DONATELLA VERSACE in FX’s anthology series “Versace: American Crime Story”.
- Actress KATIE MCGRATH has been upped to a series regular on the CW superhero drama series “Supergirl”. McGrath joined the series as Lena Luthor as a recurring character earlier this season.
- Actor JOHN CHO will join the season 3 cast of Hulu comedy series “Difficult People” in the recurring role of Todd, the “first real boyfriend” of series’ star BILLY EICHNER’s character.
- Actor ADRIEN BRODY is joining the season 4 cast of BBC/Netflix drama series “Peaky Blinders” in an unknown role.
- Actress ELIZA DUSHKU is joining the cast of CBS drama series “Bull”.
- Actress TALULAH RILEY has been upped to a series regular for season 2 of HBO drama series “Westworld”.
- TV RENEWALS* AND PICKUPS** -
* “Shades of Blue”, NBC, renewed for season 3
* “The Vet Life”, Animal Planet, renewed for season 2
* “The Big Bang Theory”, CBS, renewed for seasons 11 and 12
* “Bull”, CBS, renewed for season 2
* “Kevin Can Wait”, CBS, renewed for season 2
* “MacGyver”, CBS, renewed for season 2
* “Man with a Plan”, CBS, renewed for season 2
* “Superior Donuts”, CBS, renewed for season 2
* “48 Hours”, CBS, renewed
* “60 Minutes”, CBS, renewed
* “Blue Bloods”, CBS, renewed
* “Hawaii Five-0”, CBS, renewed for season 8
* “Life in Pieces”, CBS, renewed
* “Madam Secretary”, CBS, renewed
* “Mom”, CBS, renewed
* “NCIS: Los Angeles”, CBS, renewed
* “NCIS: New Orleans”, CBS, renewed
* “Scorpion”, CBS, renewed
* “Survivor”, CBS, renewed
* “Shut Eye”, Hulu, renewed for season 2
- TV CANCELLATIONS AND TRIMMED/NOT EXTENDED SEASON ORDERS** -
* “The Knick”, Cinemax, cancelled after 2 seasons
- Country music superstar couple FAITH HILL and TIM MCGRAW announced they plan to record a joint album. The as-yet-untitled album is set to be released later this year by Sony.
- Late rock and roll legend CHUCK BERRY’s final studio album will be released this week. In related news, sales for Berry’s back catalog of songs have spiked 11,684% since his death.
- A Grammy special has been announced to honor the music of harmonic pop/disco trio the BEE GEES. “Stayin’ Alive: A Grammy Salute to the Music of the Bee Gees” is set to air April 16th and feature performances by KATHERINE MCPHEE, PENTATONIX, TORI KELLY, and more.
- Rapper NICKI MINAJ has passed r&b singer ARETHA FRANKLIN for the most Billboard Hot 100 hits by a female artist. Minaj debuted three tracks this week that entered the Hot 100 charts, giving her 76 career Hot 100 entries topping Franklin’s 73 career Hot 100 entries. Franklin held the record for female artists for nearly 40 years.
- MUSIC CHARTS – LAST WEEK’S #1 SINGLES AND ALBUMS AROUND THE WORLD -
Australia: Song – “Shape of You” by ED SHEERAN; Album – “÷” by ED SHEERAN
Canada: Song – “Shape of You” by ED SHEERAN; Album – “÷” by ED SHEERAN
Germany: Song – “Shape of You” by ED SHEERAN; Album – “÷” by ED SHEERAN
Ireland: Song – “Galway Girl” by ED SHEERAN; Album – “÷” by ED SHEERAN
US: Song – “Shape of You” by ED SHEERAN; Album – “÷” by ED SHEERAN
UK: Song – “Shape of You” by ED SHEERAN; Album – “÷” by ED SHEERAN
...Based on two props given that connect to the plot and/or characters in a given film (each question has choices, so even if you aren't immediately sure, you might be able to figure it out just looking at the choices given).https://www.buzzfeed.com/gretaalvarez/that-two-prop-challenge-do
Here's everything that's been happening in the world of Pop Culture this past week... in case you missed it! Feel free to comment on any of the stories and info shared here, add any news bits that you caught going on that may have been missed, or at least show us some love if you read the post but have nothing to comment on by clicking on that little heart icon at the bottom of the post...GENERAL...