Is it just me, or does Jared Leto seem absolutely insufferable to work with? Actually, it’s not just me, because Leto’s notorious antics often make the news, and the latest on the long list entails odd gifts he gave his ‘Suicide Squad’ cast-mates in an attempt to set the tone for their shoot. Sources reveal Leto sent anal beads, used condoms, a live rat, a dead hog, and bullets to various co-stars. And though his fellow actors insist the antics aided their process, I smell a rat (pun intended). In fact, even the infamously strange Matthew McConaughey alluded to oddities during an interview for ‘Dallas Buyers Club,’ revealing that Leto never broke character, so it became impossible to establish any kind of personal friendship. And although one might suggest that a deep-dive into character development is a sign of a true actor, isn’t it far more impressive to easily step in and out of a character, absent any party tricks? Also, when YOUR process begins to involve overt interference on your co-stars, it begins to become narcissistic. If you want to act like a lunatic to play a lunatic, keep your shovel in your own sandbox.
When Jennifer Lopez’s marriage to Marc Anthony ended, many assumed it was Anthony’s indiscretions that tanked their union. Though Lopez has remained relatively quiet about the cause, the writing has finally moved from the wall to W Magazine, where she spilled some secrets. The brunette beauty said that it was “not easy to find forgiveness,” after their divorce because “it wasn’t the dream that I had hoped for,” and although “it would have been easier to fan the flames of resentment, disappointment and anger,” she has since worked hard at creating a successful co-parenting relationship with her ex. For more, head on over to W Magazine.
Though there’s a very public push to move away from the fame game’s absurd portrayal of an unobtainable life, I personally like my celebrities with a side of fantasy. After all, isn’t there enough reality in our dull day-to-day? So when a group of very beautiful models and actresses took to Instagram to look pregnant and happy with their beautiful body intact, I figured I’d celebrate it with a re-post.
When actresses land in hot water for ill-received interviews, they often scream “misquote” or insist they were “taken out of context.” So when the public predictably pounced on Charlize Theron for claiming she’s simply too pretty to land Tinseltown’s top roles, she immediately backtracked, and her subsequent statement somewhat infringed on British GQ’s integrity. Theron is quoted as saying “Jobs with real gravitas go to people that are physically right for them and that’s the end of the story. How many roles are out there for the gorgeous, f**king, gown-wearing eight-foot model? When meaty roles come through, I’ve been in the room and pretty people get turned away first.” Since there’s no evidence that her words were fabricated or in fact part of a larger paragraph that would make it more pleasing, it’s probably more proper to say, “Hey, I sounded like a jerk. I read it back and I’m not sure what I was thinking.” Don’t feel too bad for GQ though, because they knew exactly what would gain traction, and they strategically placed that quote at the top of their article. And as far as her actual point goes, just about every major role in Hollywood is granted to a glamorous, beautiful leading lady. So no — she doesn’t make sense.
At just 19 years old, Aurora Aksnes is making waves in the music industry, and it’s just a matter of time before the unforgettable Norwegian singer’s synth-pop portfolio conquers the cross-continent charts, and the entire planet is singing her tunes. Now known only by her first name, AURORA began playing piano at age six due to an attraction to classical music’s emotional, relaxed undertones. She started to write original songs as early as age nine, but she only chose to share her music with the world when her mother suggested that her gift could help others process their own emotional journey. Despite initial fears of performing in public, she sang at her high school, which peaked her now-manager’s interest after a fellow student uploaded her performance online. Her subsequent ascent has been swift, daunting, and perhaps a tad overwhelming for the singer who once claimed to relish in solitude. But her climb is coupled with a slow comfort, and as the public becomes more aware of her prowess, she is ever-the-more fearless, and it shows.
I had the pleasure of watching AURORA perform for a sold-out crowd at The Troubadour, and I’ll be talking about it for years to come. Her on-stage oddities are refreshing, with a quirky amalgam of authenticity, fun, and a bit of endearing discomfort. And given today’s penchant for over-produced auto-tuning and her stunning album vocals, it shocked me to discover her live vocals are on par, if not superior to her recording. It’s clear she’s been polishing her craft for much of her life, because her youthful exuberance is met with what I perceive to be a polished, shrewd performer who is clear about the direction of her career. According to AURORA, “there’s something inside her that needs to make music and to play the music she makes.” For that, we should all feel lucky. Read my interview with singer/songwriter below.
You’ve mentioned that songwriting provides an emotional release. When you sing a song written from a place of pain or sadness, is it difficult to sing it again each time you perform because you relive that emotion?
I’ve never found that to be difficult. Reminders of pain can be difficult if you haven’t spent enough time processing what happened when you needed it the most! When I write, it helps me to accept, understand and sometimes move on from pain. And singing songs about darker times makes me both sad and happy! I like to remember, and I like to cry.
I know you wrote “Runaway” at a very young age, which is incredibly impressive. When you listen to “Runaway” now in relation to your more recent songs, how do you feel your sound has evolved?
My sound will evolve and change as I change! As I grow, I learn more about producing and how to get my sound just right. I also learn to listen more to my own opinions. There are many voices around me, and I’m learning to not listen to them too much. I can always learn, but it’s important to go with what your belly tells you to do once in a while.
Is it scary to share such deeply personal music with others? I would imagine it feels as if someone is reading your journal.
I don’t find it scary. I’m definitely not the only one who have felt the things that I’ve felt through my life. What is personal, is also at many occasions not special. It’s important to share your experiences and feeling with people around you. We all have them, it’s perfectly normal.
You’ve mentioned how much you enjoy the solitude of songwriting. How are you coping with the attention that comes along with fame?
I’m not a fan of attention. My listeners seem to be very lovely people that love my music, but I don’t think I like the idea of having fans either. It’s strange being someone to so many people. You loose your freedom the minute everyone wants a piece of you. But I love people who appreciate what I do. I just don’t like the limelight.
Because you were signed at such a young age, did anyone try to change your sound or influence your art in a way that you did not expect?
I don’t think people try deliberately to change me just to be mean! But people have different opinions, and everyone just wants me to succeed. And to get listed on radios. I find it hard but also…educational to try to make so many people happy – at the same time as I’m happy. And sometimes I win the battles and sometimes I lose. I know that’s how it is, but still it’s very difficult. Many things would have been different if I was the only one to decide. For me music is not about business, and it never will be! I think I would tell the younger me to slow a bit down, and wait if I could go back in time. But I am also happy to be where I am now.
Is it possible to take me a little bit inside your songwriting process? Do you start with the lyrics or the melody, for example?
It usually starts with a lyric line, or a melody line that makes me jump up and run to the piano and start making that idea into a whole song. Those small lightnings sometimes appear in dreams, and sometimes when I see something peculiar, or sad or lovely. Everything is quite inspiring when you’re in an inspiring mood.
Have you ever been surprised by which songs the audience responds the most to when you perform live?
No, people are quite predictable. We create magic moments together as well. If people are paying attention and the light is right, I can feel tension and energy fill the room, which makes me perform with so much energy that I almost explode. Then they react to it with great energy afterwords. You get back what you give, and when the audience is great, it’s inspiring for me and my band as well.
What instrument do you use to write your music with?
Mostly piano and sometimes guitar if I want to write outside. I’m learning how to play a harp now, so maybe I’ll write more on harp in the future.
You’ve said your mother encouraged you to share your work with the world. How does she feel about your current success?
Well, she wants me to be happy and follow my dreams. This is all getting much bigger than we thought it would get, so she’s worried and thrilled at the same time for obvious reasons I think!
Do you have a favorite country you’ve performed in?
It’s more about the room and the energy of the people than the country. Countries don’t really define the people that live in them. Everywhere people are very lovely and give a lot of energy back to us!
Your rendition of David Bowie’s “Life on Mars” is absolutely stunning. Was there something about that song that spoke to you specifically?
Thank you so much!!! I’ve loved that song for a long time. I love looking at the sky at night time, and where I live you can see the stars very clearly when it’s dark. And I understand the need to escape this world, and the question about a greater more pure life somewhere out there. A more fantastic place. Like, Is there a life on Mars.
You can purchase AURORA’s debut album, ‘All My Demons Greeting Me As a Friend’ HERE. When you begin to listen, you’ll discover that the title personifies the entire album, which beautifully blends both light and shade, wavering between “Broken mornings, broken nights and broken days in between” and “feel[ing] the light for the very first time.” Watch some performances below.
When country singer Jason Aldean was busted at a bar with kissing American Idol alum Brittany Kerr, fans were quick to expose his indiscretion, and Aldean and his wife tried to mend their marriage. They later divorced, and Aldean is now married to Kerr.
4. JUDE LAW AND SIENNA MILLER
Jude Law and Sienna Miller attend the Costume Institute Gala Benefit to celebrate the opening of the “American Woman: Fashioning a National Identity” exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 3, 2010 in New York City.
In one of the first big nanny scandals of note, Jude Law stepped out on his then-girlfriend Sienna Miller, and London’s viscous rag mag market blasted the news everywhere. The couple tried to work it out, but that all ended with Miller’s retaliatory romance with Daniel Craig, who was Law’s friend at the time. Craig also had a long-term girlfriend, and when Law learned of their liason, he predictably gave Craig a piece of his mind.
3. KRISTEN STEWART AND ROBERT PATTINSON
While in the throws of her much-publicized romance with ‘Twilight’ co-star Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart got caught in a roadside rendezvous with her ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’ director Rupert Sanders. The only issue? Sanders was also attached, and when his wife got wind, she filed for divorce. And though Pattinson and Stewart gave it another go, they too called it quits. Don’t feel bad for Rupert’s ex-wife, though. She’s now married to music mogul Jimmy Iovine.
2. JESSE JAMES & SANDRA BULLOCK
When America’s sweetheart fell in love with bad boy biker Jesse James, the public pounced on the strange choice, but quickly came around when Bullock seemed blissfully happy. So when word broke after she won her first Oscar that he cheated, the reaction was swift. They since divorced, and James has remarried. Sandra has found love with a very hot photographer.
ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER & HIS HOUSEKEEPER
If Hollywood heavyweight Arnold Schwarzenegger was to ever be unfaithful, many assumed it would be some sort of supermodel. But Arnold didn’t step too far from the nest when he opted for his housekeeper instead. He hid her pregnancy and subsequent love child, but when Maria Shriver noticed the startling physical similarities, Arnold finally admitted it.
Though it might drastically derail the feminist movement to say this, there’s something about a haughty man forcefully getting another man under control that strikes my fancy. That is of course unless the two men in question are Nic Cage and Vince Neil, the latter of which allegedly used force on a woman and is now under a criminal investigation. But in case you ever crushed on the Nic Cage, the video below might kill it. Perhaps it’s the blue suit?
If I were advising Iggy Azalea in any PR related capacity, I’d tell her to only do interviews, because she is far more likable on television than she is on twitter, which has landed her in some serious hot water in rant-related posts of the past. While recently visiting Ellen, Azalea addressed the buzz about her relationship with Nick Young, who is rumored to have cheated on her after a video came to light of an alleged confession via his disloyal teammate. I saw said video (yes, I’m ashamed), and it’s not quite clear from its content that it’s an admission of guilt. Furthermore, when a private video becomes public, it’s no one’s business, and Azalea should not be forced to comment in any capacity. Having said that, she handled the inquiry with grace and just the right amount of evasion. And kudos to the singer for copping to her plastic surgery. As for Ellen, it’s time for the host to drop the “I don’t read the tabloids, but I’m going to ask you a tabloid-related question that my team reluctantly fed to me” act. If you’re against rag mags, then don’t ask rag-mag related questions. Because that means you’re either unprepared for your job or a gigantic hypocrite.