Fan Fare

Entertainment behind the scenes

Will Katie Price be missed in Celebrity jungle?

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jordanKatie Price, aka Jordan, has walked out of “I’m a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here!” after the glamour model, celebrity and author was nominated by the public for a seventh “Bushtucker” (read creepy-crawly munch) trial in a row.

It would appear that her recent acrimonious divorce from singer Peter Andre, whom, ironically, she met on an earlier series of the reality TV show, has done little for her standing in the eyes of the British public. Some commentators think the 31-year-old should have seen this coming.

Her departure leaves the show without its most high-profile and headline-generating contestant. That makes it two after Irish twins John and Edward Grimes were voted off the X Factor singing contest last night. ITV will be watching closely to see if the exits translate to lower viewing figures for two of its biggest shows.

With Jedward gone, has X Factor lost its X factor?

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BRITAIN/So, the “terrible twins” from Ireland, John and Edward Grimes, have been booted off the X Factor, ending their skin-of-the-teeth, tip-of-the-fingernail existence on the show.

 

Once again in the bottom two of a public vote, Jedward were up against Olly Murs, the singer from Essex who was many tipsters’ favourite to win the show … at least until last night.

Early UK reviews suggest Twilight sequel lacks bite

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The Daily Mail calls the eagetwilightrly anticipated second instalment in the Twilight franchise “disastrous” and “one long pain in the neck“, and gives it just one star out of five compared with four stars for the first film. The Daily Mirror is kinder, saying the movie “effortlessly sweeps you along in a swirl of intoxicating passion.” It goes on to say the film, which hits US and UK theatres on Friday, works better as a love story than as a supernatural adventure.Whoever you believe in the coming days, when the already speeding Twilight hype machine goes into overdrive, critics’ opinions are likely to have little impact on how the film fares at the ticket booths. The Twilight franchise based on the hugely popular novels by U.S. author Stephenie Meyer is being touted as the next Harry Potter, i.e. billions of box office bucks in the next few days.As in the original, British actor Robert Pattinson plays Edward, the brooding bloodsucker who befriends Bella, played by Kristen Stewart. And Taylor Lautner is set to become the next heartthrob for his portrayal of American werewolf Jacob Black.Catherine Hardwicke’s original Twilight movie made $384 million at the global box office. Few would bet against the sequel beating that tally, no matter what the critics think.

Robbie on course for another No.1 album

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robbie1Robbie Williams looks set to maintain his impressive UK chart record this weekend, with his latest album “Reality Killed the Video Star” on course for the number one slot come Sunday which would make it eight chart-topping studio albums out of eight since he went solo after leaving Take That in the mid-1990s.

It hasn’t all been plain sailing for the 35-year-old, whose previous album “Rudebox” was poorly received and recorded sharply lower sales than his previous efforts. He failed to make it big in the key U.S. market and has said he suffered from chronic stage fright — a surprising admission from someone renowned for his cheeky grin and apparently indomitable character.

Robbie wins over doubters with comeback gig

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robbie1Robbie Williams did himself few favours when he sang his new single on the X Factor TV show, with the former Take That star clearly nervous, some would say positively wired.

But the 35-year-old put that setback behind him on Tuesday night with his first full concert in three years at the Roundhouse in London which scored well with the critics. Both the Guardian and Telegraph broadsheets gave Williams four stars out of five, quite an achievement for someone who says he suffers from stage fright.

Directors direct via email and iChat

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foxTwo movies — one complete and one in the works — have underlined how technology is changing the way films are made.

Wes Anderson partly directed his animated “Fantastic Mr. Fox” using a computer, streaming images from multiple animation sets live on to a screen in front of him, allowing him to guide animators from another room, town, or, more often, country. That guidance often came in the form of emails, something which did not endear the film maker to some of the animators, according to a recent piece in the L.A. Times. George Clooney provided the voice of Mr. Fox, and London’s Three Mills Studios carried out the paintstaking, old-fashioned stop-motion animation.

Dark days for Damien Hirst

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Critics have united in their condemnation of British artist Damien Hirst’s latest works – a series of paintings thathirst are on show at the Wallace Collection in London.

At times it seems the 44-year-old, famous for his pickled animals, pill cabinets and spot paintings, can do no wrong. Just over a year ago he made 111 million pounds at a sale of new works, confirming his status as the most sought-after living artist.

Oz on yellow brick road to Nobel glory?

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dorisIt’s that time of year again. Although we don’t yet know the exact date of the announcement, in the next few weeks the Swedish Academy will decide on the 2009 winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, probably the writing world’s biggest award.

The bookies are already out of the blocks, and it is Israeli writer and professor Amos Oz, regularly considered a favourite in recent years, who is tipped for glory this time around. Ladbrokes in Britain make him the 4/1 frontrunner, ahead of Algeria’s Assia Djebar (5/1), Spain’s Luis Goytisolo (6/1), America’s Joyce Carol Oates and her compatriot (and perennial Nobel Prize also-ran) Philip Roth, both on 7/1.amos

Chavez brings chaos to Venice

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chavezThe biggest star at this year’s Venice film festival has arguably been Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. Sure, George Clooney and Matt Damon have got the crowds going and can cause a minor media scrum with little effort, but Chavez and his large entourage of aides and guards is another matter altogether.

In town for the world premiere of Oliver Stone’s documentary “South of the Border”, Chavez looked the part on the red carpet and giving interviews at a swanky hotel on the Lido waterfront. Spare a thought for the handful of reporters given a coveted slot with the leader, though. We were originally down to speak to Chavez and Stone at around 5:30 p.m., but, after a series of false alarms, we were moved to a different venue and eventually ended up speaking to them well after 10 p.m.

Another embarrassing press conference moment

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clooneySeeing reporters humiliate themselves in front of major Hollywood stars is nothing new at film festivals around the world. The appearance of an A-lister, male or female, tends to bring out the worst in journalists who variously express their undying love or ask for hands in marriage. Usually the star in question laughs off the comments, and tries to turn the conversation back to the film he or she is in town to promote.

Today’s press conference involving George Clooney and Ewan McGregor, who star together in the comedy “The Men Who Stare at Goats” was more embarrassing than usual, however. After tactfully avoiding a question about his sexuality, Clooney then looked on while a man, announcing he was gay, proceeded to take of his shirt and trousers while declaring his love for the actor and asking him for a kiss. To make matters worse, he had not even seen the film.

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