Ice Cube clarifies that both parties contacted him before he helped the Trump administration with its new package
Ice Cube is taking some serious heat from fans after Katrina Pierson, senior adviser to Donald Trump's re-election campaign, thanked him on Twitter for teaming up with the president's administration on a $500 billion "Platinum Plan" package to support Black communities. According to Complex, the administration claims the package will "create 3 million new jobs, push for criminal justice reform, improve access to better education and job opportunities, reduce health care costs, and designate Juneteenth as a national holiday." Amid negative feedback on social media and from multiple news outlets, Cube clarified that both parties reached out to him for help. "Facts: I put out the CWBA [Contract With Black America]," he tweeted Wednesday. "Both parties contacted me. Dems said we'll address the CWBA after the election. Trump campaign made some adjustments to their plan after talking to us about the CWBA." The rapper and actor has long maintained neither major party has the best interests of Black America in mind. So it's not a huge surprise he shrugged off a fan who posted: "My Hip-Hop HERO @icecube is working with the Darkside. I haven't felt this low since Kobe passed. HEARTBREAKING. Cube, I'm not sure you understand how much we value your voice. And when we see you 'jumping the shark,' it KILLS us. Especially in 2020." Cube retweeted the post, adding this comment: "Every side is the Darkside for us here in America. They're all the same until something changes for us. They all lie and they all cheat but we can't afford not to negotiate with whoever is in power or our condition in this country will never change. Our justice is bipartisan."
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Demi Lovato has a few questions for Donald Trump and she doesn't care if he attacks for asking them
This year, Demi Lovato's repeatedly used her social media platforms to speak out about racial injustice, mental health issues and the importance of voting. Now, she's using her music, too — and she's direct taking aim at the president. Demi's slated to perform her new track, "Commander in Chief" at the Billboard Music Awards Wednesday. The song, which tackles Donald Trump's response to the coronavirus crisis, racial injustice and police brutality and more, features lyrics like: "Do you even know the truth/ We're in a state of crisis/ People are dying/ While you line your pockets deep/ Commander in Chief/ How does it feel/ To still be able to breathe?" Speaking to CNN, Demi explained the message behind the music. "There's been so many times that I've wanted to write the President a letter or sit down with him and ask him these questions," she said. "And then I thought, I don't really actually want to do that and I thought one way that I could do that is writing a song and releasing it for the whole world to hear and then he has to answer those questions to everyone and not just me." She added that she doesn't care which party listeners side with, saying all that matters to her now is that Americans vote in the Nov. 3 election so that "our voices are heard." Asked how she'll respond if the president goes after her on Twitter, as he's often done to critics, Demi said, "Bring it on … Prove to them you're exactly who I said you are in the song. Just do it, go for it."
Kristen Bell praises Dax Shepard for coming clean about his relapse: 'He's addicted to evolving'
"Everybody is up against their own demons" when it comes to the personal obstacles holding them back. That's according to Kristen Bell, who Zoomed in to "Ellen" Wednesday, where she opened up about her husband Dax Shepard's recent relapse with pills after 16 years of sobriety. "Sometimes it's anxiety and depression," Kristen continued (via People). "Sometimes it's substance abuse." Of course, it's often all three, which might help explain why, after coming clean with his wife, Dax told her, "I have to do some sort of emotional work to figure out why I wanted to use again,'" Kristen recalled on the show. She also said he's "doing really great" now. Dax, 45, told listeners on his "Armchair Expert" podcast last month that he was seven days sober after having slipped into a habit of taking more pain pills than his prescription called for — and more than his wife and kids knew about — following a motorcycle accident. "The thing I love most about Dax is … that he was able to tell me and tell us and say, 'We need a different plan,'" explained Kristen, 40. "We have a plan — if he has to take medication for any reason, I have to administer it. But he was like, 'We need a stronger plan.'" She said they came up with one and decided to go back to therapy together. "He's addicted to evolving," the "Good Place" star said. "He was like, 'I don't want to risk this family and I did, so let's put new things in place to make sure it doesn't happen again.'" In the meantime, he has Kristen's full support. "I will continue to stand by him," she said,"… because he's very, very worth it."
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Gwyneth Paltrow and Kate Hudson dish on their worst onscreen kisses
Turns out kissing some of Hollywood's loveliest leading men can be kind of a let-down. At least, according to Gwyneth Paltrow and Kate Hudson. On Tuesday's "Goop" podcast, the longtime pals looked back on their least appealing onscreen smooch experiences, sharing a few of the decidedly unglamorous things that can ruin what looks like a super romantic lip lock. "I feel like I kind of haven't had the best kissers. I feel like I should have had better ones," Kate admitted at one point, according to Page Six. In particular, she was less than impressed with the kissing skills of Matthew McConaughey, her co-star in "Fool's Gold" and "How To Los a Guy in 10 Days." "The thing is, every time I kiss McConaughey, it's like there's just something happening and there's like snot or wind," she told Gwyneth. "When we were kissing in the end of 'Fool's Gold,' we're like in the ocean, we had the plane crash. He just had snot all over his face." She added that Billy Crudup, who played Russell Hammond to Kate's Penny Lane in "Almost Famous," was a "good kisser," but said the scene she was referring to was cut. Gwyneth then chimed in to reveal there was zero hotness involved in locking lips with her longtime close friend, Robert Downey Jr. in the "Iron Man" and "Avengers" films: "When I kissed him and I was like, 'You've got to be kidding me, this is literally like kissing my brother," she said.
Britney Spears granted small win in conservatorship battle
Britney Spears will be allowed to expand her legal team after all. The singer recently filed a petition in her conservatorship battle against her dad, Jamie Spears asking the court to allow her to add legal help to her side of the matter. Jamie opposed it, saying it would cost too much money. But on Wednesday, a judge gave the singer a green-light on her request, JustJared reports. Britney's been fighting her to remove her father from his role as her sole conservator, a possition he's held since 2008.
Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford reveal their 'least favorite '['Today'] guest of all time'
Tuesday's "Watch What Happens Live" featured a special guest "interrogator" for the "Plead the Fifth" segment with Hoda Kotb — it was her friend and former "Today" co-host, Kathie Lee Gifford, who started off with what was apparently a no-brainer question. "Who do you think was my least favorite guest of all time?" Kathie asked, adding, "And I bet it was yours too." Hoda wasted no time answering. "I know exactly who that is. It's Frank Sinatra Jr.," she replied. "It was the worst guest we've ever had, bar none," Hoda explained, recalling the 2015 interview with Frank Sinatra's late son. "He came for a book, he had a book he was promoting, and he didn't want to talk about it, so he didn't say anything." According to the Daily Mail, Frank was joined by his "Sinatra 100" co-author, Charles Pignone, who did what he could to save the interview, though the whole thing was still painfully awkward. Hoda apparently stumbled a bit with her opening question, but Frank didn't give her juch time to recover. "So Frank what make you decide that this was the right time to… obviously it's his 100th anniversary….," she said before he cut her off. "I didn't decide," he said flatly. "Oh, you didn't?" Hoda asked. "No, that was done by a committee," he said without elaborating. Kathie then jumped in to fill space. "Oh, a committee, Ok …" she offered. Frank deflected Hoda's next question completely, telling her to "ask Charles" instead. After he answered, Kathie tried one more approach. "You [once] said … the best memories were at home during the holiday times. That's what somebody told us," Kathie said to Frank, hoping to coax out a response. She got silence, then joked that she'd probably heard about the holidays from "the committee."
Billie Eilish responds to body-shaming trolls (again)
COVID-19 has killed 216,000 Americans and wildfires are still ravaging our Western states amid social justice protests and an ugly lead-up to a historically important election. And yet, somehow, social media trolls managed to focus instead on the tank top and shorts worn by a certain five-time Grammy-winning teenager on a hot day in Los Angeles this week. After paparazzi pics showed Billie Eilish minding her own business in public in what looked like a totally comfortable and appropriate outfit for the weather, one troll slammed her by saying she has "a mid-30s wine mom body," while various tabloids featured headlines about her "curves" and "skin." Billie's fans quickly came to her defense, however. "It's disgusting to see the comments on billie eilish's body, she's literally 18, the amount of people body shaming her makes me wanna puke," one griped. "Its not her fault there is an unrealistic beauty standard [sic] out there that dictates you need to be size 4 or less," posted another. "She makes music. Her body has nothing to do with the angelic voice she has. Billie, who has talked publicly about her struggle with body image issues, came to her own defense, too, sharing a video to her Instagram Stories from Chizi Duru that asks the world to "normalize real bodies," according to Bustle. In the caption, Billie simply wrote, "Instagram has warped a lot of y'all into thinking NORMAL bodies are abnormal. NO."
Ariana Grande surprises fans with new album announcement
A week after she tweeted about "turning in … final mixes," Ariana Grande confirmed she's releasing a new album — and soon. "I can't wait to give u my album this month," the singer tweeted Thursday, much to her fans' delight ("Ariana saves 2020," the account for Spotify responded.) The recording will be her sixth studio album, following 2019's "thank u, next." No word yet on whether her 2020 collaborations with Justin Bieber and Lady Gaga will be included.
Organizers of crowded July Chainsmokers concert fined $20k
New York's Gov. Andrew Cuomo was quite serious when he warned there would be consequences for the lack of masks and social distancing at a July charity "drive-in" concert featuring the Chainsmokers. On Wednesday, the governor announced the event's organizers, "In the Know Experiences," will face a $20,000 fine for going against an executive order banning non-essential gatherings and failing to enforce safety protocols. "As I said immediately following reports of this event, it was an egregious violation of the critical public health measures we have had in place since the beginning of this pandemic to protect New Yorkers from COVID-19," the governor said in a statement, according to NBC News. Because local officials reportedly OK'd the concert, the Hamptons town of Southampton, where the concert is held, will also no longer be allowed to "approve permits for group gatherings without State approval," Cuomo said. Despite social media video and photos from the event that showed people crammed up against one another without masks on, the organizers previously told TMZ they did enforce safety measures including temperature checks and distancing reminders. According to NBC, the event also went over the venue's capacity.
Matthew McConaughey gushes about being a dad: It was 'my only dream'
In his new memoir, "Greenlights," out Oct. 20, Matthew McConaughey devotes a good portion of the story to his father, Jim, and Jim's relationship with his mom, Kay, and their kids. Now a dad himself — the 50-year-old star shares Levi, 12, Vida, 10, and Livingston, 8, with his wife Camila Alves — Matthew's happily living out what he tells People was his lifelong "dream" of being a dad. He's also proud to see the kids' creativity thriving as the pandemic continues to keep them away from their usual activities at school and with friends. "They have doubled down on their hobbies, creative things and parts of themselves I don't think they would have leaned into if they were back in school," he marvels. "One of the assets of this COVID quarantine is they've been forced to be more self-reliant. They've been forced to create their way out of their boredom." All three kids are into photography, he says, boasting that "they're becoming a production crew." (They even shot their dad for People's cover spread.) Not that it much matters what, exactly, they're into, as long as they understand how much love is involved in their family, which the actor says "they do not question." "The only thing I ever knew I wanted to be was a father," Matthew admits. "And it's remained the pinnacle for me. Being a dad was always my only dream. … I can't think of anything being more important."