Thank Goodness Elizabeth Warren Won’t Have To Go Without ‘Ballers’ Now

Phew! The Writers Guild of America members negotiated the terms of their contracts with Hollywood’s major studios, which means Elizabeth Warren no longer has to worry about missing her favorite show, “Ballers.”

Warren posted a Facebook note Monday in support of the WGA’s bargaining, which had a midnight deadline in order to avoid a strike. The organization, which represents thousands of entertainment writers, worked up a new contract that would broaden health care and increase residuals. As a result, Warren can rest assured that Dwayne Johnson’s NFL comedy will not be affected. (In other news: She and her husband love “Big Little Lies.” Do we think Warren is a Madeline or a Renata?)

Heading into Monday night, with the WGA’s contracts set to expire, a strike seemed imminent. Talks lingered throughout the weekend, making it likely the writers wouldn’t reach a deal with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers in time. They pulled it off at the last minute, circumventing a repeat of the 2007–08 writers’ strike, during which reruns and inexpensive reality programming caused TV viewership to plummet and the entertainment economy to lose millions of dollars. 

But back to the real heart of it all: Elizabeth Warren can still enjoy what The Rock is cooking for the third season of “Ballers.” All is well.

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J.K. Rowling Finally Apologized For Killing Off Severus Snape

Is there a character from J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world as divisive as Severus Snape?

Throughout much of the series, the Hogwarts professor seemed to make it his project to accost Harry and his friends. But, later, we of course learn that there’s more to the prototypical Slytherin than meets the eye. His cruel-seeming actions were actually efforts to protect Harry ― the son of Snape’s eternal crush, Lily Potter ― not harm him.

Subsequently, in a 2011 poll featured in The Guardian, Snape was voted the favorite character of the “Harry Potter” series.

Today, Rowling finally issued an apology for killing the beloved former potions master in the series’ final novel.

“OK, here it is,” the author tweeted. “Please don’t start flame wars over it, but this year I’d like to apologise for killing (whispers)… Snape. *runs for cover*”.

The tweet is part of what’s become an annual tradition; each year Rowling apologizes for a different character who “died” at her hand. She does this annually on May 2 as a kind of memorial, commemorating characters who fought in the series’ final battle, a standoff between Voldemort’s Death Eaters and Harry and friends’ Order of the Phoenix.

Last year, the author apologized to fans for “killing” Professor Remus Lupin. The year before, her apology was on behalf of Fred Weasley.

But Snape seems to have a special place in the author’s heart, in part due to his complexity. J.K. Rowling said at the Edinburgh Book Festival back in 2004, “You always see a lot of Snape, because he is a gift of a character. I hesitate to say that I love him.”

Still, in the tweet’s replies, fans chimed in on which characters they thought were worthier of memorializing, including Dobby, Hedwig and Lily Evans Potter.

Almost certainly, Rowling will commemorate them each on May 2’s to come. 

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Sarah Paulson Lost Her Mind When She Saw Madonna At The Met Gala

Everyone who’s anyone attends fashion’s biggest night on the first day of May in New York City.

And, you know, Madonna is someone. 

So, obviously she’d be climbing the grand staircase at the Metropolitan Museum of Art for the 2017 Met Gala. Sarah Paulson was, clearly, just unaware of that fact. 

Hahaahhahahhaahahha Love you Sarah! ♥️

A post shared by Madonna (@madonna) on

The Emmy-winning actress fangirled out when she spotted a camouflaged Madge on the carpet, pointing at the singer with her mouth agape.

Luckily, Madonna loved it. 

Following the photobomb, Madonna enthusiastically took to Instagram to share the image, writing, “Love you Sarah!”

These two shared the moment of the night.

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Here Are The 2017 Tony Award Nominations

The 2017 Tony Award nominations are here!

On Tuesday morning, original “Hamilton” cast member Christopher Jackson announced the nominations along with Tony-winner and “30 Rock” alumna Jane Krakowski.

The nominees include the sold-out musical “Dear Evan Hansen”, the musical revival “Hello, Dolly!” featuring Bette Midler, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Sweat.”

You’ll have to wait until June 11 to watch the 71st Tony Awards ceremony ― which will be hosted by Kevin Spacey, of “House of Cards” and Bobby Darin-impersonating fame. Until then, you can relive the best moments of last year’s festivities here.

Best Play:

“Sweat”
”Indecent”
”A Doll’s House, Part 2”
”Oslo”

Best Musical:

“Dear Evan Hansen” 
“Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812”
“Come From Away” 
“Groundhog Day”

Best Revival of a Play:

“Jitney” 
“Six Degrees of Separation”
“The Little Foxes” 
“Present Laughter”

Best Revival of a Musical:

“Hello, Dolly!” 
“Falsettos” 
“Miss Saigon”  

Best Actor in a Play:

Denis Arndt, “Heisenberg”  
Chris Cooper, “A Doll’s House Part 2”
Cory Hawkins, “Six Degrees of Separation”
Kevin Kline, “Present Laughter”
Jefferson Mays, “Oslo” 

Best Actress in a Play:

Cate Blanchett, “The Present” 
Jennifer Ehle, “Oslo”
Sally Field, “The Glass Menagerie”  
Laura Linney, “The Little Foxes”
Laurie Metcalf, “A Doll’s House Part 2”

Best Actor in a Musical:

Christian Borle, “Falsettos”  
Josh Groban, “Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812”
David Hyde Pierce, “Hello, Dolly!”
Andy Karl, “Groundhog Day” 
Ben Platt, “Dear Evan Hansen” 

Best Actress in a Musical: 

Christine Ebersole, “War Paint”
Denee Benton, “Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812” 
Patti LuPone, “War Paint” 
Bette Midler, “Hello, Dolly!”
Eva Noblezada, “Miss Saigon”

Best Director of a Play:

 

Best Director of a Musical:

 

Best Book of a Musical:

 

Best Original Score:

 

Best Featured Actor in a Play:

 

Best Featured Actress in a Play:

 

Best Featured Actor in a Musical:

 

Best Featured Actress in a Musical:

 

Best Scenic Design of a Play: 

 

Best Scenic Design of a Musical: 

 

Best Costume Design of a Play:

 

Best Costume Design of a Musical:

 

Best Choreography:  

 

Best Lighting Design of a Play: 

 

Best Lighting Design of a Musical: 

 

Best Orchestrations:

 

See the 2016 Tony Award winners here.

Watch the 71st Tony Awards, hosted by Kevin Spacey, on June 11 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS. 

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Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s Daughter Continues Her Late Mother’s Last Project

Amy Krouse Rosenthal was a beloved author, wife and mother of three, who died on March 31 of this year from ovarian cancer.

About a month before her death, she published a heartbreaking essay for the Modern Love series in The New York Times titled “You May Want to Marry My Husband,” expressing hope that her partner would begin a new love story after she passed away. Thousands of people commented on and shared the piece, prompting it to go viral.

Rosenthal had started another project before she died called “Project 1,2,3,” for which she would post a list of new ideas, observations, or random ideas ― that could be expressed in a group of three ― every day at 1:23 p.m. The goal was to continue the endeavor for 123 days, yet she was forced to stop at Day 61. 

Rosenthal bid an early farewell to the project, recognizing there were other things and people she’d prefer to focus on given her limited time. 

“I have loved this project so much,” Rosenthal wrote in her final list, shared on Feb. 1. “For nearly two months now, I’ve woken up each morning excited about what I would/could create … But in the last few days, this cancer — oh, did I mention I have cancer? ― has increasingly (and rudely) robbed me of my normal energy and focus.”

Following Amy’s death, however, her daughter Paris Rosenthal took to Instagram and announced her plan to pick up where Amy left off, finishing the remaining 62 days of “Project 1,2,3” as a tribute to her mom.

“Many of you know that my Mom had an Instagram project called ‘Project 1,2,3’ where she posted a new 1,2,3 list daily at 1:23pm,” Paris began in a photo caption.

“Her goal was 123 days. She made it to day 61. For the next 62 days, to complete the 123 days, I will take my own variation on this project of hers. Everyday at 1:23pm, I will post a photo that represents something about Amy Krouse Rosenthal. I will acknowledge AKR in some way everyday for the rest of my life, and this is the first step of my journey in doing so.”

In an essay featured on Today, Paris recalled the two months she spent with her mother while she was in hospice care, while “Project 1,2,3” was still taking shape. As Rosenthal’s health declined, Paris took on more responsibilities, formulating the writing, photos and ideas. 

Now “Project 1,2,3” offers Paris a way to connect with her mother’s ideas while honoring her legacy of creativity and love.

On Day 63, Paris shared a photo of her mother’s black clog alongside her childhood black clog, both accentuated with a matching silver buckle. On Day 92, she shared a photo of her mom saying “I love you” in sign language. On Day 104, she shared a screenshot of an old text from Amy, featuring her signature good morning greeting: “Welcome to the day.”

My project is about sharing our relationship with the world,” Paris wrote. “It’s about letting everyone know how I feel about her. It’s about representing all that encompasses the Rosenthal family. And it’s about tangibly acknowledging my mom in some way everyday. It’s the only way I know how to get through this.”

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Aziz Ansari’s Tinder Pickup Line Is So Good, You’ll Want To Steal It

At this point, Aziz Ansari is basically a sage on modern love. He wrote a research-heavy book on the subject in 2015, and his character on “Master of None,” Dev, is almost studious in his search for true, lasting love.

Given all that, we’re not surprised the guy knows some pretty decent pickup lines, one of which he shared with Vogue in a recent “73 Questions” interview.

His best Tinder pickup line? “Dev’s is: ‘Going to Whole Foods. Want me to pick you up anything?’” Ansari says, referencing his character on the popular Netflix show.

Really, who wouldn’t be won over by that? 

Watch the clip above for Ansari’s advice on making a woman laugh, getting roles in Hollywood as an Asian American, and his favorite friendship moment with Kanye West.

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Victoria Justice Says New Meme Is ‘Dredging Up Non-Existent Drama’

I think we ALL know about the Victoria Justice/Ariana Grande meme, but just in case you don’t, here’s a refresher.

Last week, an intrepid Twitter user unearthed an old video of Victoria Justice and Ariana Grande from their time on the Nickelodeon show “Victorious.” In the clip, actress Elizabeth Gillies heaps praise upon Grande for her “beautiful” singing voice, at which point Justice adds, “I think we ALL sing.” 

The video became an instant sensation, sparking a viral meme in honor of Justice’s comment. 

You may have thought the meme was just a bit of lighthearted fun, but Justice feels differently. The actress addressed the hubbub on Twitter Friday, saying the meme was “dredging up” old rumors.

“I think we ALL have better things 2 do than dredging up 7 yr old non-existent drama,” Justice wrote. “That said, I’m kind of excited to finally be a meme.”

We’re glad to see Justice has a sense of humor about the whole thing, especially since her response seems to have only added fuel to the fire. Fans replied to her tweet with their own hilarious versions of the meme:

No word yet from Grande about the controversy, but we can wager a guess as to how she’s feeling about all this.

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Expert Baker Trolls Donald Trump With Cakes That Use His Own Words

Brooklyn baker Kat Thek is the brainchild behind Troll Cakes, a new bakery/detective agency that specializes in turning trolls’ mean internet comments into delicious cakes.

But it’s Thek’s “Tiny Hands Special” ― meant for President Trump ― that’s got our attention. This “bigly satisfying” deal means that for only $30, you can get one of Trump’s tweets or comments printed on a cake and sent straight to the White House. 

Below is an example of some of Trump’s comments paraphrased from an Associated Press interview on a Troll Cake: 

“It would be a tremendous, terrific mistake to deprive our nation’s noisiest troll of his incredibly deserved Troll Cakes,” Thek told HuffPost via email last week. “Our ‘Tiny Hands Special’ has been well received but it’s also gotten us asked if we’re skirting the line of terrorism. Here’s where we land on that: if putting the president’s exact words into icing on a cake is considered an act of terror, the problem is not the cake.” 

She added, “However, if the White House no longer wishes to receive Troll Cakes, we’re ready to reroute shipments to Mar-a-Lago. We are hopeful that the State Department will include Troll Cakes as a dining option in their next Mar-a-Lago ad.” 

“We’d also like to note that Trump’s decision to incorporate a cake description into his account of the recent Syrian missile strike (it was chocolate and ‘the most beautiful’) was not a sponsored Troll Cakes promotion,” Thek said jokingly. 

If you’d like to just take on a regular troll, there’s a $35 option in which the company will bake chocolate chip brownie cake, decorate it with frosting, sprinkles and the comment and then ship it to the troll’s home or work address. If you don’t know where the troll lives, the price goes up to $60. 

That means someone’s hateful comment like “Crash in a plane” would be turned into a yummy masterpiece like this. Eat it and weep, trolls: 

Internet comment –> Troll Cake Delivery included @ trollcakes.com #trollcakes

A post shared by Kat Thek (@kat_thek) on

Thek also told HuffPost about coming up with the concept of Troll Cakes and revealed the cake she recently made for one of Amy Schumer’s trolls. 

When did you start Troll Cakes? How did you come up with the concept? 

The troll that really sparked the whole enterprise was on Dolly Parton’s Facebook page. There was something simultaneously infuriating and hilarious about seeing somebody try to bully Dolly Parton. I mean, who would do that? And is the goal to hurt Dolly’s feelings? She’s a 71-year-old millionaire who grew up in a one-room cabin and now wears sequined jumpsuits — a poorly spelled Facebook post isn’t going to take the spring out of her step one bit.

Trolling anyone, especially Dolly Parton, is like aggressively giving the finger to a sunset or a panda or bag of craisins. You’re just letting everybody around you know that you’re a grumpy idiot. It’s fun to maintain that idiocy but then flip the grumpy into something obnoxiously cheerful, like a surprise cake in the mail. 

What do you like most about Troll Cakes? 

Troll Cakes combines our deep interest in cake, catty comments, the mail, being nosy, and having a reason to speak like Julia Child. Putting all of those things together saves a lot of time. 

Why do you call yourselves a detective agency as well? 

We’re a full service operation ― if you don’t know your troll’s home or work address, we’ll track ‘em down.  

What else should we know about Troll Cakes? 

We love sending Troll Cakes between friends ― some of our favorite deliveries have been one friend trolling another for oversharing on Facebook. 

We made the attached “You Donkey Witch” Troll Cake from a comment on Amy Schumer’s instagram and then made a Twitter account to holler at Amy to see if she’d like us to send. No news yet: 

We’re going to start taking Thek’s message to heart ― if you see something, cake something: 

See something? Cake something. #trollcakes

A post shared by Kat Thek (@kat_thek) on

This interview has been edited and condensed for space. 

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Nick Offerman Shoots Down ‘Parks And Rec’ Theory About Leslie Knope

Is she president? Knope.

Following the “Parks and Recreation” finale in 2015, the popular thought on everyone’s mind was that Leslie Knope (played by Amy Poehler) became president. 

It seemed like a perfect ending. Leslie said her goal was to become president of the United States. Then, in the series finale we see a brief scene with Leslie, her husband Ben Wyatt (Adam Scott) and some people who appear to be their Secret Service agents. 

It’s never explicitly stated, but it seemed like Leslie achieved her goal. That is, until we chatted with Ron Swanson about it.

Nick Offerman spoke recently with HuffPost about his movie “The Founder,” and we asked if he thought Leslie became president on “Parks and Rec.”

His response to a possible President Knope? Nope.

“I would be dubious. I feel like it takes a very special personality to actually want to become president of the United States. In show business … to me, the president is more like an A-list movie star and there is a lot about that lifestyle that is not attractive to most people, and I think Leslie would be one of those people,” said Offerman. “I feel like she might become governor at most.”

Governor? You mean like Rick Perry from “Dancing with the Stars?” 

Oh, please no … (Li’l Sebastian is rolling in his grave.)

With the show hinting so heavily that Leslie would be president, what gives?

In our opinion, Donald Trump is what gives.

Offerman is very vocal in his opposition of the new president, and his “Parks and Rec” character is, too. On Swanson’s position, Offerman told HuffPost:

I can’t fully speak for Ron Swanson because smarter people than me were writing that role to which I was but a contributor, so I asked Mike Schur, our head writer, what the answer to the question was, and he said that Ron would think very little of anybody that made the transition from business to politics. That would be his main vote against the orange one. But also, Ron was a great respecter of all people … especially women, so he would really think Trump was shameful because his behavior is so demonstrably disrespectful of women.

If “the orange one” has soiled the office for Offerman, it makes sense that he wouldn’t see Leslie in that position. 

Actually, following Trump’s election, Poehler even wrote a letter as Knope, which was published by Vox, expressing her surprise and anger over the outcome:

I reject out of hand the notion that we have thrown up our hands and succumbed to racism, xenophobia, misogyny, and crypto-fascism. I do not accept that. I reject that. I fight that. Today, and tomorrow, and every day until the next election, I reject and fight that story.

She apologized to young girls on behalf of the “grown-ups of America” who screwed up the election, and encouraged them not to be disheartened:

He is the present, sadly, but he is not the future. You are the future. Your strength is a million times his. Your power is a billion times his. We will acknowledge this result, but we will not accept it. We will overcome it, and we will defeat it.

Whether Trump has soured Leslie’s chances as president for Offerman, or if she would really just voluntarily stop at governor, Knope still has our vote.

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This Graduate Creatively Pays Tribute To The Hip-Hop Legends Who Inspire Him

For University of North Texas graduate Mark Phillips, traditional graduation pictures were lacking in a little musical appreciation. 

So he decided to put together a series of photos that would recreate some of his favorite hip-hop album covers, including Kendrick Lamar’s “DAMN,” J. Cole’s “4 Your Eyez Only,” Chance the Rapper’s “Coloring Book” and, of course, “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.”

He posted the below photos to his Instagram page on Saturday. 

Phillips told Complex that the artists’ music helped him to remain motivated throughout college.

“Their music really has kept me inspired to keep pushing towards my goals,” he told Complex. 

In April, Eastern Michigan University graduate DeAnn also got the internet’s attention when she made a black feminist statement with her graduation cap design

While Phillips may have been more interested in the hip-hop theme for his graduation pictures, he also made sure to keep mama happy by getting regular photos taken as well. 

“I didn’t tell my mom about these pictures at first,” he said. “I knew she’d be happy, but secretly she would want some regular ones to send to my family. So I took some regular ones for my family and these for my creative side/for the artists.”

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