Daily Archive: August 4, 2018

If You Love Crazy Rich Asians, You’ll Devour These 8 Incredible Books

We’re calling it now: Crazy Rich Asians is going to be the wildest movie of the Summer. If you haven’t already read Kevin Kwan’s hilarious trilogy (seriously, what are you waiting for?), the international bestselling novels tell the story of a New Yorker who agrees to spend the Summer in Singapore with her boyfriend’s family, only to learn that the man she hopes to marry is filthy-, lavishly, crazy-rich – and also the most eligible bachelor in the country.

Even though Crazy Rich Asians is a true original (and now a provider of desperately needed Asian representation in Hollywood), we think that Kevin Kwan fans will also love these eight novels about old money, new money, intergenerational conflict, and ruthless social climbing.

Michelle Obama’s Birthday Tribute For Barack Will Make You Miss Them Even More

Happy birthday @BarackObama! The view is always better with you.

A post shared by Michelle Obama (@michelleobama) on Aug 4, 2018 at 7:25am PDT

Happy birthday, Barack Obama! Our beloved former president turned 57 on Saturday, and Michelle made sure to give her husband a sweet shout-out on Instagram. Along with an artsy photo of Barack looking out into the distance, Michelle wrote, “Happy birthday @BarackObama! The view is always better with you.” Aw!

But Barack isn’t the only one celebrating a birthday; Meghan Markle rang in her 37th birthday on Aug. 4, too! The Duchess of Sussex celebrated by accompanying Prince Harry to pals Charlie Van Straubenzee and Daisy Jenks’s wedding in Surrey, England. What a special day to be born on!

Princess Eugenie Has Selected Her Maid of Honor, and Her Choice Should Come as No Surprise

Princess Eugenie has officially selected her maid of honor, and her choice should come as no surprise. The 28-year-old royal has chosen her older sister, 29-year-old Princess Beatrice, to stand by her side when she ties the knot with Jack Brooksbank on Oct. 12. Eugenie confirmed the exciting news in the September 2018 issue of British Vogue and also revealed that she is “not stressed at all” with the wedding planning.

“It’s nerve-racking because you want it to be perfect, but then you realize that you’re going to be with the person you love forever and nothing else really matters,” she told the magazine. “Euge is amazing,” Beatrice added. “She’s a very modern bride.” Hmm . . . perhaps Eugenie and Jack’s recent Italian getaway gave the couple the perfect amount of rest and relaxation they were likely craving.

Whoa! Reese Witherspoon’s Son Is Basically a Young Ryan Gosling in This New Snap

Lunch with my boy, @deaconphillippe ! 💕 #TGIF #SummerFun

A post shared by Reese Witherspoon (@reesewitherspoon) on Aug 3, 2018 at 12:00pm PDT

We absolutely love when Reese Witherspoon shares photos of her kids on Instagram, but her latest snap just made us do a double take. On Friday, Reese posted a cute selfie of her and her 14-year-old son Deacon (whom she shares with ex Ryan Phillippe) and we can’t get over how much he looks like a young Ryan Gosling. Yep, we’re talking about Ryan from his Mickey Mouse Club days. Not only do they have similar hairstyles, but they even have that same too-cool-for-school look going on. Check out the video below to see what we mean.

100+ Times Beyoncé Was Too Fierce For This World

What did we do to deserve a queen like BeyoncĂ©? You don’t have to be a member of the Beyhive (although you should be) to admire her two-decade-long career and otherworldly talent, but as her gorgeous family grows, she’s also continued to be one of the sexiest celebrities of all time and easily the most influential woman in music. We’ve seen BeyoncĂ© go from Destiny’s Child to standout solo artist to forming a duo with hubby JAY-Z, and while we simply don’t deserve BeyoncĂ© and her timeless sexiness, these 102 pictures from throughout her career are a reminder of just how lucky we are to have her.

The Upcoming Charlie’s Angels Reboot Has 1 Powerful Cast – Find Out Who’s Starring!

Are you ready to hear “Good morning, angels” again and watch badass women go on outrageous missions? We hope so, because fans are getting an entirely new reboot 14 years after the last installment from the Charlie’s Angels franchise debuted. In 2017, rumors that Lupita Nyong’o and Kristen Stewart were being considered for two of the leading roles began swirling, and now we know one of these is true. Stewart is set to be one of the three angels along with Naomi Scott and newcomer Ella Balinska while Elizabeth Banks directs and produces the film (and that’s not all she’s doing, if you can believe it).

Charlie’s Angels, for me, is one of the original brands to celebrate the empowered woman since its debut in the ’70s,” Banks said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter. “This film honors the legacy of Charles Townsend and his agency while introducing a new era of modern and global Angels. I couldn’t be more excited to work with Kristen, Naomi, and Ella to bring this chapter to fans around the world.”

Keep reading to see all the details we have about the new movie so far!

Ramin Djawadi Watches Game of Thrones Before Anyone Else – Here’s What He Thinks About Season 8

Over the last seven years, it’s become clear that the Game of Thrones theme song is on track to become as iconic as John Williams’s highly recognizable themes for Star Wars or Jurassic Park. It’s not uncommon to be walking through a grocery store when all of a sudden someone’s ringtone blasts the sounds of Westeros through the aisles, or you find yourself absentmindedly humming the opening notes as you drive along the highway. In fact, it’s in exactly the latter scenario where composer Ramin Djawadi – who has worked on everything from shows like Game of Thrones and Westworld to blockbusters like A Wrinkle in Time – first came up with the song, a theme that will play for the last six times when GOT airs its eighth and final season next year.

But in the meantime, the German-Iranian musician is keeping busy. The score for the HBO series has become so popular that he tours the country with a full orchestra for Game of Thrones Live, a sensory concert experience that brings many of the show’s most exciting scenes to life with the help of colorful smoke, blasts of fire, and elaborate costumes. Getting to play his songs on stage himself, as green flames explode around him in front of thousands of screaming fans, has become just as normal for him as, say, figuring out how to play a Shamisen in hopes of giving a well-known modern song a brand-new spin for his other big HBO project, Westworld.

When I hopped on the phone with Djawadi recently, it was clear that though his career has split into what seems like a thousand different directions, it all boils down to one thing: sharing his passion for music with the world. Ahead, see what he had to say about everything from those wildly popular Westworld covers to his thoughts on Game of Thrones season eight.

POPSUGAR: So I wanted to start off by talking a little bit about Westworld, since the finale was a few weeks ago. Your music has kind of become a character in and of itself within the show, especially with elements like the player piano. Was that something that you anticipated when you started composing for it?

Ramin Djawadi: Not at all, actually. And I think that’s probably . . . most of the things that I do when I’m writing, I never really anticipate anything or think about what it is that music will trigger. And this one definitely, for sure, was a pleasant surprise. I always looked at it like, “Oh, this is going to be a little subconscious Easter egg that people maybe might not notice.” And then when the episodes started airing, I saw how excited people got about it. It was mind-blowing. It was absolutely incredible.

PS: And kind of similar to that, every time that there’s been a cover of a modern song that you’ve slipped in there, fans kind of freak out about it. In a good way, obviously. Can you tell me a little bit about your process for how you narrow down which modern covers to mix in with the classical music?

RD: I have to give full credit to Jonathan Nolan, our showrunner, actually. He’s the one who usually comes up with the songs and placement. And then he sends me off and says, “OK. Do an arrangement and play around with it.” Then I get to be creative with it. And especially, the second season now, it’s been a lot of fun with pushing the season further. Not only having the player piano, but doing the Indian version, or being in Shogun World using shamisen and shakuhachi, just even different instrumentation. I feel like we really pushed it further this season. It’s been a lot of fun doing it.

PS: For the different worlds the show dove into this season, did you have a personal favorite to write for?

RD: They’re all fun, but I really had fun with the Shogun World. I’ve never used the shamisen. It’s almost like a banjo-type instrument, I guess you could say. I’ve never used that, ever before. I actually got one for myself, and just started exploring the instrument. That’s something that’s exciting as a film composer, when you get to use new instruments and learn about new instruments. I love that process.

PS: I mean, all of the instruments that you’ve used over the years, including in Game of Thrones – I think there was one song that used a didgeridoo, no?

RD: Yeah, a didgeridoo.

PS: At this point, is there any instrument out there that you haven’t used thus far that you would like to give a try in upcoming episodes?

RD: That’s a good question, actually. The instrumentation has definitely become very wide over the years now. I’m sure there is something that I have not used yet. A lot of it is also triggered by when I actually have the visuals in front of me. And then I can assess what I actually need or what’s the new thing to do. Yeah, let’s see what’s next.

PS: So when you’re approaching doing the score for a show like Westworld versus Game of Thrones, is the process relatively the same?

RD: I would say they’re pretty much the same. In terms of my approach, I like to talk to the showrunners. Sit in a room with them. It’s really a lot of just talking and conversations, first off. What is it they envision with their show, and musically what do they want? Many times they have ideas of what they want to incorporate. And I feel like it’s my job to put that into music. So, I really treat every project the same that way. And then actually once you conceptually talk about it, then it really gets into the, “Okay, now what are the notes I’m actually going to write? What instrumentation?” And then you get into that whole part. And yeah, Game of Thrones and Westworld, they couldn’t be more different in that field, musically. But that’s also something I enjoy when you have projects that are really quite different from another.

PS: I imagine for these high-profile shows, which are so secret to the point that scripts supposedly self-destruct now, that getting the chance to actually watch these scenes before they premiere is pretty cool. Do you watch the footage before you start composing, or is it more of conversations with the showrunner to get the feel for things, and then later on tweaking after you see it?

RD: I actually get the episodes, so I can really write specifically to the scene and to the picture. And we do what’s called a spotting session, where they come in and we sit down and actually watch it together. That’s really when a lot of the conversation starts. It’s very detail-oriented, where we even decide where music should start and stop. That all gets discussed. And then I get to write all the music, they’ll come back, and then I play them all the music again. Then we tweak it together. So, it’s a big process for all the episodes we do. But yeah, I definitely get to see it early.

PS: You’ve done such iconic work for Game of Thrones thus far, so was there any stress on your part about how you were going to elevate the score for the final season? I don’t know if you’ve started writing the music yet or not . . .

RD: Actually, I haven’t started yet. I haven’t seen anything yet, either. No, it’s . . . I’m still in the dark about how it’s going to end. I’m honestly also super excited about it. I’m super pumped about writing. Musically, obviously, this is it now, right? So I have to see how . . . I’m curious to see what the story will tell me of how I’m going to write the music, and how I will put the final touches on it. This amazing eighth season run. I’m very, very curious.

PS: Personally, the Game of Thrones season six finale score, “Light of the Seven,” is one of my favorite television scores in recent memory. I was just wondering if you had your own personal favorite, from either Westworld or Game of Thrones? Whether that’s writing or performing it.

RD: That’s definitely one of them. I think that one just also stands out because it is so, so different from the rest of the scores. So automatically, it really is like a stand-alone piece. I would say the main title is also one of them. Same in Westworld. The main title is very close to my heart.

PS: For the Games of Thrones live show, one of the things that I think is so incredible about it is that it brings in people who might not have considered themselves fans of classical or orchestral music, necessarily. Has that been exciting to see for you as a composer?

RD: Yeah, I think that was always part of my intention. I’m glad to see it working, actually, because I always wanted a little bit of a hybrid show. It is orchestral instrumental music, but we kind of beast it up a bit, I feel. We put pyro in and lighting, and all kinds of things happen on stage. I was hoping that that would get people excited and come in and see a great summary of their favorite show.

PS: I was blown away seeing all of the pyro, especially the green smoke effect that happens for “Light of the Seven.” I know you actually get to perform for that one, which must be special for you.

RD: “Light of the Seven” is definitely one of my favorites. The rest of the show, most of the show, I conduct. But this one I actually get to play myself. When the smoke starts and that whole stage blows up, I’m actually right in the center of it. That’s fun to do every night. And, yeah again, the intention of the show was always to get this immersive experience. Really make the fans feel like they’re there, and make the scenes and the moments really come alive. So with these effects, like blowing up the stage like that, even for myself it really puts me right in it. I get to enjoy it every night, too. It brings a kind of contemporary element, I think, to a live show like that.

PS: So with Game of Thrones ending – I know that you’ve done scores for everything, TV, movies, and you’re doing the live show – but when Game of Thrones ends, do you have any plans for your next project? Maybe something totally different?

RD: Well, I always try to do different projects. I really like to jump around, stylistically quite a bit. We’ll see what comes next, if there’s another tour. I mean, a lot of people actually have asked me, “Hey, the Game of Thrones tour is so much fun. It’s so cool. You should do a Westworld tour.” So that’s definitely been something on my mind, because performing live is something I usually don’t really do, but it’s been so much fun. Being out there and being with the audience, it’s something I really enjoy. Westworld season three’s coming up, so there’s definitely something that comes after Game of Thrones. Let’s see what the future brings.

You’ll Never Repeat the Lizzie Borden Rhyme After Seeing ChloĂ« Sevigny in the Lizzie Trailer

There is so much to unpack in the trailer for Lizzie, you may need to watch it a few times. ChloĂ« Sevigny and Kristen Stewart star in this big-screen retelling of the infamous Lizzie Borden case, in which Borden was accused of killing her father and stepmother in 1892 in Fall River, MA. Lizzie was acquitted of the murders, but there’s always been speculation about whether she actually did it. The film highlights the tension between Lizzie (Sevigny), her domineering father, Andrew (Jeff Perry), and his wife, Abby (Fiona Shaw). Stewart plays the Borden family’s housemaid Bridget, whom Lizzie enters into a romantic affair with and whose testimony was pivotal during the real-life trial. The trailer hints that their affair is the catalyst to several events that lead to the bloody act that has left so many questions decades later. See the full trailer above, and watch out for Lizzie in theaters Sept. 14.

Stop Right Now and Look at These 45 Throwback Pictures of the Spice Girls

Those of us who remember buying the single may have a hard time stomaching the fact that it’s been 22 years since The Spice Girls released their first hit, “Wannabe.” After ruling the charts for a number of years, the girls moved on to new lives: raising families, hosting radio shows, judging TV talent shows, and ruling the runway. But we’ll always have a big place in our hearts for Sporty, Scary, Baby, Ginger, and Posh.

Though those rumors about a reunion tour seem to have quieted down, Spice fever shows no signs of abating. All our Spice Girls dreams came true recently when SpiceUp, a touring exhibition of Spice Girls memorabilia, opened in London. It showcases costumes and merchandise from the band’s heyday, and they’ve even got the Spice Bus from Spiceworld! If you can’t make it to the UK to enjoy the festivities, we’ve got the next best thing: take a ride in the Spice Girls time machine, and enjoy look back at the band over the last two decades.