Comedian Norm Macdonald, known best for his role as Saturday Night Live’s (SNL) “Weekend Update” host from 1993-1998, has died of cancer. He was 61 years old. The deadpan Canadian comic’s demise was confirmed to Deadline by his management firm Brillstein Entertainment. Macdonald, known for edgy jokes and never pulling punches, had been fighting cancer privately for nine years. New York City comedy club audiences in the ’90s were frequently treated to Macdonald stopping by unannounced to do “guest spots,” where he would rehearse jokes for the upcoming “Weekend Update” on SNL. Macdonald’s friend, Lori Jo Hoekstra, was with him when he died. “He was most proud of his comedy,” Hoekstra, who was his friend as well as producing partner, stated. “He never wanted the diagnosis to affect the way the audience or any of his loved ones saw him. Norm was a pure comic. He once wrote that ‘a joke should catch someone by surprise, it should never pander.’ He certainly never pandered. Norm will be missed terribly.” Macdonald moved from Canada to Los Angeles, where he landed a gig writing for the Roseanne Barr Show.
Arts & Entertainment
Though critiquing movies is a highly subjective business, some are just so good that critics can’t help but agree about them—like 12 Angry Men (1957) and Toy Story (1995), both of which have 100 percent “fresh” ratings on Rotten Tomatoes. But it’s not only perfect films that foster unity among critics: Really awful ones can have the same effect. Ballistic: Ecks Vs. Sever, which Roger Ebert called “a chaotic mess,” is a prime example. The 2002 action film, starring Antonio Banderas and Lucy Liu, placed first on Rotten Tomatoes’ list of the worst movies of all time. A film had to have at least 20 reviews to qualify for the list at all, and those with the same score were then ranked by number of reviews. In other words, not only does Ballistic: Ecks Vs. Sever have a score of 0 percent, but more reviewers were compelled to vouch for how bad it was than they were for any other 0-percenter on the list—and there are quite a few of them. Of the top 25 worst films, all have 0 percent scores except the 1988 family film Mac and Me, which came in 22nd place with 4 percent.
“Gene Simmons has now tested positive and is experiencing mild symptoms,” the rockers shared in a statement on social media. “The band and crew will remain at home and isolate for the next 10 days and doctors have indicated the tour should be able to resume on September 9th at FivePoint Amphitheatre in Irvine, CA.” Just days earlier, on Aug. 26, Kiss announced that frontman Paul Stanley had tested positive, and canceled the evening’s show. That announcement also indicated that the entire band and crew was fully vaccinated. The vocalist tweeted Monday that he has since recovered. “My COVID symptoms were MILD compared to many others and let me tell you… It kicked my a–,” he shared. “It’s over now.”
Swedish pop group ABBA is expected to reunite for a comeback performance in London, where they will sing new songs for the first time in four decades. The band made the announcement in a vague tweet last Thursday, where they promised to give more details on Thursday. “Join us at ABBAVoyage.com,” said the Tweet. The link led to a website where people could register to “be the first in line to hear more about ABBA Voyage.” Three years ago, the band announced that they were working on two new songs that would be released later the same year. However, circumstances, like the COVID-19 pandemic, caused a delay and led to the band’s announcement that there would now be three new songs. The band was formed in 1972 by its four members: Agnetha Fältskog, Björn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson and Anni-Frid Lyngstad. ABBA gained fame in 1972 when they won the Eurovision competition with their hit, “Waterloo”.
Are you tired of the everyday hustle and bustle, and craving a holiday away from it all in the great outdoors? We’ve picked out 10 natural landscapes and national parks in Europe for you to explore.
This child star is growing up fast and shedding her girlhood identity. “My mama did not name me Honey Boo Boo. My name is Alana,” Alana Thompson, who will turn 16 Aug. 28, told Teen Vogue in a profile about how she’s changed since gaining international fame starring in TLC’s “Toddlers & Tiaras” in 2012. While the tot beauty queen once seemed to proudly embrace the nickname, she now filters out friends based on who still chooses to call her by it. “I feel like folks are so much like, ‘Oh, my God, I’m friends with Honey Boo Boo,’ ” she said, adding that she feels people still expect her to embrace and embody the rambunctious, Southern childhood identity for which she became famous. They also assume she’s become rich as a result of it. All of that makes it difficult to let classmates at her public high school — or anyone beyond family, really — get close to her. “To be honest, I do not have many friends. At all,” she candidly admitted. Not only has Thompson managed to remain strong in the face of child stardom and her mother’s addictions, but she’s also come away from the incessant fatphobia she’s dealt with for years with a deep sense of self-love.