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Recent Entertainment articles from Daily Dot

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    If you’ve never heard of YouTube star Austin Mahone, then chances are that after Sunday night’s Video Music Awards, you … probably still haven’t heard of him, as other performances—namely, the reunion of N*SYNC and the disaster that was Miley Cyrus grind-twerking against a Beetlejuiced Robin Thicke—overshadowed the youngster’s win for Artist to Watch.

    But to millions of Mahone fans—known as “Mahomies”—the up-and-coming star is more than just, as the New York Times put it, “a ninth-generation Xerox of Justin Bieber.” After all, his recent singles, which include a riff off the ’80s classic “Just a Friend” and “What About Love,” have gotten over 30 million YouTube views. Hey, that’s approaching K-pop levels of celebrity.

    The surprising thing about Mahone, who hails from San Antonio, is that even though he’s being billed as a newcomer, he’s been honing his craft for years online—often by any means necessary, including everything from UStream concerts to paid Skype calls with friends.

    Here’s the skinny on Austin Mahone, and his slow but steady, non-meteoric rise to fame.

    1) He has an adorable puppy.

    Photo via dudeitsmahone

    Angel and Mahone do everything together—including rack up the YouTube hits.

    2) One Direction's Harry Styles thinks Iggy Azalea should have won instead. 

    Them’s fighting words, Harry! Iggy Azalea is an Australian model-turned-vocalist, but she doesn’t have the advantage of having had a devoted fanbase since she was 14. Mahone first started posting YouTube videos back in 2010; now the 17-year-old has more than 941,000 subscribers.

    3) All kidding aside, he really is a Bieber clone.

    Not in terms of music. We’re talking style, dress sense, mannerisms … it’s kind of eerie

    Mahone is a devout Belieber, and says that one of his biggest dreams is to go on tour with the Biebs—a goal that’s looking more and more likely all the time. 

    4) He used to charge $50 to do 10-minute Skype calls with his fans.

    According to his mom, they had to raise the rate for his Skype calls because demand kept growing. But it wasn’t a money-grab, according to Mahone, who originally wanted to hang with fans on their birthdays. “I just hang out with them and play songs and stuff,” he told the HollywoodReporter last year.

    5) He rose to fame by making his videos very personal

    Take the cover he did of Bieber’s “Mistletoe.” While he was still an amateur, the video racked up millions of hits, in part thanks to winning moments like this one, and, “My mom shot the video (:"

    6) … And he did it all through social networking.

    Mahone told the HoustonChronicle two years ago that he had pounded the virtual pavement to get the word out about his music, covering every platform from YouTube, LiveStream, and UStream to Twitter, Facebook, and Skype.

    7) He was so good at it that he debuted on Billboard at No. 38 without ever having a record deal or a single.

    Now that take more than social media savvy. That takes talent.

    8) Mahone is a quadruple threat.

    As his latest single shows, he can dance almost as well as he sings. Plus, he plays the guitar and the piano.

    9) Oh, yeah, that’s what his actual bedroom looks like.

    The singer’s bedroom is literally a shrine to himself, wallpapered with letters, cards, and artwork from fans. And we have to give him credit—he seems totally chill with his pink walls. Rock on, Austin. 

    Photo via taylorluver1/deviantART

    10)He says music got him through being bullied.

    In an excerpt from a bedroom interview, Mahone says that he was “bullied” for going the old-school route of posting his videos on YouTube. But, he says, the music helped him cope.

    So maybe he’s not quite a Bieber clone after all. 

    Photo via Instagram


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    Once upon a time, “jumping the shark” meant introducing some ridiculous plot line or new gimmick. But for Teen Wolf fans, that was never a problem. Constant shirtlessness from all the male actors? Awesome. A pair of twin werewolves who glue their torsos together to become a giant, Megazord-like wolf monster? No problem. Half the scenes inexplicably taking place in the boys’ locker room of the local high school, even if the characters are girls, and it’s the middle of the night? Nobody cares.

    The real issue arose when Teen Wolf appeared to abandon its original message of feminism, LGBT visibility, and racial harmony. 

    When the show began in 2011, showrunner Jeff Davis said that if he could write a story about werewolves, then he could set it in a world without sexism, racism, or homophobia. And he got off to a good start. The main character is Latino, the leading lady comes from a matriarchal society of werewolf hunters (think Buffy, if vampire slayers were a creepy family cult, led by Saul Tigh from Battlestar Galactica), and there are several secondary gay or bisexual characters who are treated without a hint of homophobia by the main cast.

    However (and yes, you could probably tell there was a “however” coming up), this idea didn’t exactly pan out as expected. In the third season, several characters were killed off, and those deaths indicated a disturbing trend.

    The first to go were two of the teenage werewolves, Erica and Boyd. The girl and the black guy, to put it bluntly. At first this doesn’t seem like such a big deal, because a show like Teen Wolf is likely to have a pretty high mortality rate. But the demise of Erica and Boyd meant that of the three teen wolves introduced in season 2, the sole survivor was the white guy, Isaac. In fact, looking at the current remaining cast members, the best way to survive a perilous Teen Wolf lifestyle isn’t to have great fighting skills or even to be a popular character—you just have to be white and male.

    To illustrate this point, Tumblr user dudski created several graphs to break down the demographics of character death rates in the show. 


     

    Basically, men have an 79 percent survival rate, whereas half of the women on the show are now dead. Which is kind of impressive when you consider the fact that there were way more guys in the cast to begin with. The situation looks even worse when you consider the circumstances around those deaths: The three female villains (Kali, Jennifer, and Kate) were killed off, while the white male villains (Gerard, Peter, Deucalion, and the Twins), survive and often receive redemption arcs. One of the most baffling character deaths was Boyd, who was killed by the (white, male) twins Ethan and Aiden. After just one episode he was forgotten by the rest of the characters, and the twins went on to survive and be “redeemed” without any mention of the fact that they’d murdered a teenage boy in front of several of his friends.


     

    Of the new characters added this season, there is one surviving woman: Cora Hale. But just to add insult to injury, she’s one of the characters who received almost no character development in the 12 episodes so far. One Tumblr user even pointed out that we know less about her than we know about a joke character who never actually appears on screen. 

    In the world of Tumblr fandom, Teen Wolf was originally seen as a less sexist alternative to shows like Supernatural, where female characters are almost certainly doomed. Either they’d die tragically to give the male leads something to angst about, or they’d turn out to be a sexy evil villain. Supernatural did similarly badly in the racism and homophobia departments, making Teen Wolf seem like a utopia by comparison. So when Teen Wolf’s third season apparently transitioned into a show where white men receive dynamic storylines and everyone else shuts up or dies, fans were not pleased. Particularly once it was announced that the next major storyline on the show would feature a “heavy Asian influence” in the form of a kitsune, or Japanese werefox.

    In an email, Teen Wolf fan bacarat set down some of the reasons why she’s dubious about this idea.

    As an Asian American, I have grown up seeing my own experiences butchered and misrepresented by the media doing just that to my Asian parents' stories, or their parents'.

    That is why I was immediately wary when Jeff Davis announced the kitsune as a storyline, of which the ramifications are entirely different than what the show has done with Celtic and Norse myths. Even if the average Teen Wolf viewer was previously unaware of those mythologies, their pervasiveness in the Western canon can usually provide some frame of reference. The same cultural and historical context is completely lacking when it comes to interpreting Asian mythologies, often for both creator and audience, which makes it easy to cherry-pick facets convenient for the show or to misrepresent those inconvenient.

    That leads to representation by necessity—the need for Asian faces to sell those Asian myths, by capitalizing on their exoticism and categorizing them as distinct from white actors and their narratives—which can be just as bad as no representation.

    In the midst of all this criticism, it might seem like some fans (or former fans) are going out of their way to be overly negative this season. But Twitter user lurrel point out to us, much of this criticism ignores the fact that the lead character in the show is Latino.

    I see a disturbing pattern where meta discussing the race issues in Teen Wolf gloss over or completely ignore the fact that Scott McCall and his mother are both prominent, well-written characters of color. It really came to a head for me when I saw multiple outraged posts over casting a "white" (read: Anglo) man for Scott's father, who is played by Latino actor Matthew del Negro. 

    It seems that Scott's ethnicity is either ignored in favor of writing screeds about how Teen Wolf has never had a well written character of color, or his ethnicity is not textual enough—despite his existence as a white Latino with non-Spanish last name is the same existence for tons of Latin@s out there who have probably never gotten a heroic protagonist like Scott. I don't want to say that Scott's Latino identity gives the show a pass on racist writing and tropes—it absolutely doesn't. But it does make Teen Wolf more complicated than a show that can't handle race at all; it simultaneously has a great, fresh Latino protagonist while still indulging in problematic storylines that leave characters like Boyd underwritten, dead, and unmourned.

    The good news is that the people behind Teen Wolf are unusually involved with fandom and social media, meaning that they almost certainly know what fans have been complaining about this season. Also, Jeff Davis has already proven that he can take criticism and is very thoughtful when it comes to fandom’s opinions of the show. 

    When asked if she thought fans would stop watching the show, bacarat told us that most people would probably wait for season 3B before they made their decision. While fandom’s opinions can probably tracked with the rise of the “Jeff Davis is not a gift” tag (a reaction to an early fandom catchphrase, “Jeff Davis is a gift”), people are still hoping for improvement. As bacarat explained, Teen Wolf still has the potential to be great:

    I myself will continue watching to see if the show can draw upon its experience and improve, as well as for the development of the kitsune storyline. Teen Wolf is unique in how much world-building it does for the particular demographic it is aimed at; I hope they understand that responsibility applies not only to the show's magic and myth, but also to its society—and how it seems from the outside, looking in.

    Photo via hellotailor/Tumblr


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    Update: Reddit has now concluded that a third party, not Warner Bros., was behind the spamming. The site released this retraction: 

    After further investigation, we have found that neither Warner Bros. nor any of their employees was involved in this activity.  To be perfectly clear, the posts that we detected came from a third party who had no affiliation with Warner Bros.  This third party was not part of the marketing efforts of Warner Bros for the film.  

    We regret confusion about the source of these posts, and appreciate the cooperation and understanding of Warner Bros who has taken this as seriously as we do and has very strict policies on these matters.  

    Reddit moderators traced "suspicious" posts and comments about new movie Getaway back to Warner Bros. after volunteer r/movies moderator mi-16evil flagged the content on Monday.

    "What started off my investigation was a series of three reports on posts pertaining to The Getaway," mi-16evil wrote. "Usually this happens when the Reddit-wide spam filter has been set off, usually when a single person posts multiple items from a single site."

    But it wasn't just the quantity; the content of the posts was suspect. "The key thing that gave them away was just the weird unbridaled enthusiasm," he wrote:

    If there's a golden rule of the internet, somebody is going to not like your post. It always happens, so to see people talking about … Getaway … with such gleeful joy immediately made me suspicious.

    From there is was like a rope knot that just kept untangling. These people were so obvious. All their accounts ever talked about was … Getaway and they would comment on each other's posts.

    "The posts and comments were essentially ineffective and were actually all heavily downvoted," general manager Erik Martin wrote in an r/movies post Wednesday evening. "All accounts involved have been banned and we have spoken with Warner Brothers and let them know this is unacceptable."

    Reddit, as Martin points out, takes any manipulation of the site seriously. Good content is supposed to naturally bubble to the top in Reddit's meritocracy.

    The company has blocked a string of publications (at least temporarily)—from the Atlantic and Bloomberg Businessweek to meme-generating site Quickmeme—over vote manipulation geared to drive traffic to their websites. Reddit can alert users who try to share links to banned sites why blocks are in place. 

    In this case, spammers attempted to get people out to see the Ethan Hawke movie, which opens this weekend. Reddit doesn't have an "automatic way of alerting users" when movie studios and non-Internet-based companies try to game the site, Martin noted, hence his r/movies post.

    "All accounts involved have been banned and we have spoken with Warner Brothers and let them know this is unacceptable. This appears to be just a few employees and not some company wide or systematic thing," said Martin. "We checked other posts about this movie and there are plenty of posts that are 100% organic and have no signs of manipulation."

    Martin closed out his post by urging redditors to report any suspicious activity on the site. "It's important to prevent this type of activity, but it is also important that we not become overly cynical and assume everyone is a shill," he added. "99.9999% of posts and comments and votes here are because people sincerely love movies or hate movies or hate the movies that other people love, etc."

    The post landed on Reddit's front page, with users rushing to thank mi-16evil, the moderator who spotted the studio's attempts to illicitly promote the movie.

    "Honestly it was a really sad discovery. It was just robots talking to other robots," mi-16evil wrote in the thread. "I don't think I saw a comment from a real person on any of the posts."

    He elaborated in an email to the Daily Dot:

    I think this event shows that 99.9% of the time, spammers are terrible at their jobs. I did probably 20 minutes of research to discovered this whole affair and anyone else could have found it too if they knew where to start. Honestly, I believe that Reddit has one of the most impressive anti-spam systems in internet history and it shows. We've survived many spammers and even a 4chan raid because of the work Erik and the other admins do.

    Redditors shared links to alleged spam in Martin's thread:


     

    Someone with the same name as a user who posted one of the Reddit threads—Sara Howard—started a deleted Rotten Tomatoes thread about the movie back in February. 

    Incidentally, a Dana Lois, who shares a name with one of the other complicit redditors, commented on Howard's thread. 


     

    Another user in that Rotten Tomatoes thread, a Saul Dingler, talked about a "sick" Warner Bros. app allowing people to create their very own getaway car. Meanwhile, eight of Twitter user @SaulDingler's 11 tweets are about the movie. A redditor by the name of dinglersaul posted about the car app as well.

    Screenshot via mi-16evil

    Getaway, for the record, has exactly zero positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes from 17 critics at the time of this writing. We've reached out to Warner Bros. for comment and will update if we receive a response.

    The studio has kept a keen eye on Reddit for years. In 2011, it snapped up the movie rights to Rome Sweet Rome, a story crafted by redditor James Erwin. In January, the studio replaced Erwin as screenwriter on his story pitting modern U.S. Marines against Roman legions. Last year, Warner Bros. filed a copyright takedown request against Reddit after users of its most repulsive forum, r/spacedicks, used an image of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air star Alfonso Ribeiro in the header.

    If history is any indication, redditors won't soon forget this.

    They turned Rampart into a running joke after star Woody Harrelson refused to answer any questions unrelated to the movie in his February 2012 Ask Me Anything (AMA) live interview session. 

    Getaway director Courtney Solomon plans to hold an AMA Thursday afternoon. Get your popcorn ready.

    UPDATE: "We absolutely do not do business that way as part of our film marketing," a Warner Bros. spokesperson told the Daily Dot. "We are looking into this allegation as we take it very seriously."

    Fernando Alfonso III contributed to this report.

    An earlier version of this article appeared with the headline "Warner Bros. got caught spamming Reddit with 'Getaway' Promo."

    H/T Matt Ford | Screenshot via WarnerBrosPictures/YouTube


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    It’s the finals over at Grantland’s ill-advised “Best Song of the Millennium” voting bracket, but one of the two contenders almost didn’t make it to the championship. That’s because Outkast’s once-ubiquitous “Hey Ya!” appeared to have lost a prior matchup with that staple of crummy frat bars: “Mr. Brightside,” by the Killers.

    Indignation on all sides quickly reached a fever pitch. Shortly afterward, however, Grantland editors summarily reversed the result, writing that “our bracket got spammed by Killers fans.” Whether that means Killers fans actually used spam bots to artificially inflate their numbers or were just voting repeatedly in huge numbers as some kind of organized groundswell (and how Grantland staff judged the difference) is unclear.

    Though the band has given rise to several active forums and fansites—and boasts nearly 9 million likes on Facebook—no great call to arms among this legion of fans was apparent. Even so, commenters at Grantland suspected a coup, as the editors had been gnashing their teeth over “Mr. Brightside” beating out “Since U Been Gone,” “Paper Planes,” and “Yeah”  in previous rounds.

    “From the way they've been talking about this song all tournament I was waiting for them to pull something like this,” one reader wrote on Facebook. “I myself wouldn't be surprised in the slightest if I found out ‘spambots’ were ‘late voters we didn't want to advance the song.’” Another remarked: “Your hatred for the Killers probably drove a lot of the vote for Mr. Brightside. Hell, I revisited it just because you guys have been so mercilessly hating it.”

    In fairness, this bit of bracketology was no doubt doomed from the start, taking as its prime assumption that the best songs of the millenium are the most widely recognized chart-toppers; this then inevitably spilled into a savage war between rockists who disparaged the R&B “machine,” hip-hop aficionados miffed at the track selections, and other assorted poseurs looking to re-contextualize what we listened to in 2003.

    The Killers may have benefited from that ideological fracture, too, having quickly become the sole surviving rock band in a rap-heavy region. “Mr. Brightside making it this far was a reflection of how all genres that aren't hip-hop/rap/Adele were massively slighted in the bracket's construction,” one person commented, “and so plenty of people who preferred other songs voted for Mr. Brightside because it was basically the only option of its kind left.” I guess going down with the ship is a pretty rock ‘n’ roll move when you think about it.

    The adjusted vote stands at more than 31,000 for “Hey Ya!” and half that total for “Mr. Brightside.” But at the end of the day, whether you throw an asterisk on OutKast’s victory or not, there’s really just one lesson to be learned here: Democracy doesn’t work. Let’s shut it down, people.

    Photo by sophieatkinson/Flickr


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    PSY may have just solved the Middle East peace crisis.

    A group of Israeli soldiers are facing discipline for getting caught on camera dancing to “Gangnam Style” with Palestinian party guests during a patrol of a violent area. The soldiers stopped by to check on the dance hall in Hebron and ended up staying to boogie down to the South Korean rapper’s viral hit.

    In the video, taken on Monday, one of the uniformed soldiers is up on a Palestinian man’s shoulders and the rest dance in a circle, holding hands. They are in uniform and carrying automatic weapons. But still, it’s a happy, innocent rainbow of K-pop peace that Yitzhak Rabin couldn’t have dreamed of.

    But now the soldiers are facing criticism and punishment from the Israeli military for putting themselves in a dangerous situation, and getting distracted while patrolling the West Bank.

    Many, including Guardian columnist Seth Freedman, argued that the soldiers should not be disciplined for dancing because the act was a welcome reprieve from the constant killing on both sides, and because dance humanizes enemies, which could lead to more understanding and compassion.

    Just take this 2008 video of an Israeli soldier leading a dance with Palestinian children at a checkpoint.

    Or this "Call Me Maybe" Israeli soldier video:

    Or this one set to Ke$ha:

    It’s some optimism in a bleak situation, Freedman wrote. It shines a light on the absurdity of this conflict. But all the people in the videos above were reportedly punished.

    After Monday’s footage was shown on Israeli Channel 2 TV, the IDF said in a statement Thursday that "the soldiers exposed themselves to unnecessary danger and were disciplined accordingly," but did not say how.

    Possibly by having to listen to “Gangnam Style” on repeat.

    H/T The Guardian / Photo via IDF/Flickr


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    It’s been an emotional rollercoaster for those following the casting of Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel sequel. First, Ben Affleck was revealed as the new Batman, an announcement people genuinely liked and accepted without much fanfare (just kidding). But the wounds seemed to be salved by the news that Bryan Cranston would be playing villain Lex Luthor.

    Fans rejoiced! Cranston is beloved for his nuanced and harrowing portrayal of Breaking Bad’s anti-hero Walter White. He could make Lex Luthor into an awesome, sociopathic, multifaceted villain. Mr. White and Mr. Luthor are both bald. They’re both doomed by their hubris. This movie may not suck after all!

    An amazing fanmade trailer on YouTube, depicting Affleck as Batman and Cranston as Luthor, fueled the fire.

    Except Cranston isn’t actually signed on to play the bald baddie. What?!

    Everyone may have jumped the gun. Though news of Cranston’s casting made Rolling Stone, Daily Beast, BuzzFeed, io9, Perez Hilton, ABC News, and elsewhere (we were all over it) on Tuesday, turns out news outlets are now reporting that Cranston has not been hired.

    MSN Entertainment debunked the rumor yesterday, saying the idea came from a fan wishlist and not an actual casting announcement. The San Jose Mercury News also reported that the rumor originated on a fake comic book news site called Cosmic Book News. Cranston responded to the rumor by telling a Metro reporter, “Give me a call. I like Lex Luthor. I think he's misunderstood. He's a lovable, sweet man.”

    So. Welcome to square one. 

    H/T San Jose Mercury News | Photo via Gage Skidmore/Flickr


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    While Coffeemate's non-dairy creamer may make coffee taste great, nothing beats the meth lab drip.

    Just ask Breaking Badstar Bryan Cranston, who starred in a 1988 commercial for Carnation Coffeemate.

    The commercial should remind die hard Breaking Bad fans of the touching scene between Cranston's character Walter White and chemist Gale Boetticher in the beginning of season 3. When the two scientists meet for the first time, Boetticher is a bit nervous, rattling off his educational accomplishments before showing off his elaborate coffee setup. To help break the tension, he pours White a cup.

    "My God," White says. "That is the best coffee I have tasted."

    Cranston's commercial isn't bad, but co-star Aaron Paul definitely one-upped him with this 2000 Juicy Fruit spot.

    H/T Reddit | Screengrab via YouTube


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    Maybe Daigo Umehara just doesn't age like the rest of us.

    Known as the Beast, the 32-year-old Japanese Street Fighter phenom has been around the top of the game for almost two decades now. But he hasn't won a world championship since 2010, and the eSports world is unsure whether he still belongs in that very top tier.

    Last night, at an exhibition during PAX in Seattle, Umehara faced off in Street Fighter 4 against Xian, the reigning Evolution 2013 world champion. Before the match, bets overwhelmingly favored Xian.

    To everyone’s surprise but his own, Daigo unleashed hell on Xian, shutting out the champ with a stunning 10-0 performance. Fans went wild.

    The matches start about about 2:30:

    "He's a very special player that defies time," said commentator Zhi Liang Chew.

    As a post-script, Daigo played 15 more games versus fans from a rowdy Seattle crowd. The Beast didn't drop a single round, racking up a 25-0 record on an instantly classic night.

    The question is, can Daigo put on that kind of performance in a major tournament setting?

    Photo via Mad Catz


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    Gomez may have more on his hands than he originally bargained for.

    In 2011, Bryan Cranston stopped by Breaking Bad costar Steven Michael Quezada's talk show The After After Party for an interview. He had grown his hair back from Walter White's now iconic shaved head so that he was able to do other work as an actor during the show’s hiatus, but that didn’t stop Cranston from transforming into Heisenberg at a moment’s notice. 

    "I have a whole team of professionals with me that when I go to work, I mean, the transition happens and I instantly become Walter White," Cranston explained to Quezada. "Wanna see it?"

    With his team of professionals at his call, Cranston took a normally 45-minute process and crammed it into just a few minutes' time. He even shaved his head in front of an audience. He proved that he is the one who transforms, which freaked out Quezada a little bit. 

    The two-and-a-half year old video went viral on Reddit as fans impatiently wait for the next Breaking Bad episode. It’s just the latest in a series of behind-the-scenes clips (and just about anything the actors did before Breaking Bad) to resurface on the Internet.

    H/T Reddit | Photo via theafterafterparty/YouTube


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    Will man-child Jack Black ever grow up?

    The actor and musician reunited with the kids from School of Rock this week for the movie's 10-year anniversary. After a screening of the movie in Austin, Texas,  Black and his ragtag band played the movie's signature tune for fans.

    Footage from the gig cropped up on YouTube Friday night. The band sounds just as musically tight as it did in Richard Linklater's film.

    Meanwhile, iCarly star Miranda Cosgrove, who had some early success in the movie, shared someInstagrams from the screening.

     

    H/T Reddit | Photo by Miranda Cosgrove/Instagram


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    Controversial WikiLeaks founder and unlikely entertainment superstar Julian Assange has conquered the worlds of war documentaries, television talk shows, dating games, and power ballads. Now he faces his greatest (non-extradition-related) challenge: conquering the Hollywood box office. But this time, he's not alone—he has the world's worst director by his side.

    Uwe Boll is officially the worst movie director in the world. He won the Razzie for that coveted title, and no one who has sat through one of his movies would dispute his right to it. He once challenged his critics to go a few rounds with him in the boxing ring, and released the footage as Raging Boll. Now, taking a cue from Zach Braff, Spike Lee, and other millionaire misers, he's taken to Kickstarter in an effort to fund his latest tanker, Postal 2.

    Yes, a sequel to a terrible movie about a video game. 

    There's a minor industry in films about WikiLeaks, varying from the generally positive and well-received Underground to Alex Gibney's documentary We Steal Secrets (widely loathed by supporters) to the upcoming Benedict Cumberbatch–centric Fifth Estate. It should be noted that this movie has no input from Assange or Snowden, at least as far as either will admit in public.

    The premise of this clunker is, as with all Boll productions, simple, but it's perfectly straightforward once you've taken enough drugs. Of course it has nothing to do with the game. Or the first movie. Boll explained that the title was chosen arbitrarily, saying: "We could name the movie also HONEY BOOBOO must die … but so many people deserve to die." Hard to argue with that. He continued, "Our body count will be higher [than] Hiroshima and Dancing With the Stars combined." So it’s going to be a comedy-caper-slapstick-political-thriller schlockfest of beyond-epic proportions. Or, in Boll’s own words: 

    Postal 2 will be a controversial comedy in which we take up current political issues. We take the biggest scandals of our democracy, like the happenings about Julien Assange and Edward Snowdon [sic] and show that there is no difference between our democracy and the prison camps in Russia or China. We show that through this massive monitoring our communication data is not safe anymore! We want to make a movie which is totally uncensored, pointed against everything and everybody, against every political party and every religion. There will be no survivors.

    Or, presumably, any Oscars. 

    If the script is as amusing as the Kickstarter, he's off to a good start. "Where the money goes:

    The money goes all for cocaine for the stars down the nose." Well, at least you can't complain he's dishonest. So far, he's got $10,622 in the kitty, with another $489,378 to go. 

    "So just give me some money and we do it!"

    This has the potential to be the Big Trouble in Little China of geopolitical cinema. Get the popcorn ready. 

    Photo via newmediadaysdk/Flickr


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    It's impossible to share your life story in roughly 160 characters.

    Celebrities have it easier on Twitter. They're already established. They don't have to introduce themselves—you’re coming to them.

    Here are 25 of the very best Twitter bios. You'll laugh. You'll cry. You'll immediately follow them, if you're not already. 

    1) Hillary Clinton


     

    2) Shaquille O'Neal


     

    3) Andy Murray


     

    4) Amanda Bynes


     

    5) Tom Hanks


     

    6) Weird Al Yankovic


     

    7) Anna Kendrick


     

    8) Rainn Wilson


     

    9) Josh Groban


     

    10) Katy Perry


     

    11) Joel McHale


     

    12) Sarah Silverman


     

    13) Jimmy Fallon

     

    14) Jimmy Kimmel


     

    15) Ellen Page


     

    16) B.J. Novak


     

    17) Jennifer Love Hewitt


     

    18) Patton Oswalt


     

    19) Miley Cyrus


     

    20) Olivia Munn


     

    21) Zach Braff


     

    22) Jason Bateman


     

    23) Will Arnett


     

    24) Kevin Smith


     

    25) Rob Delaney


     

    Illustration by Jason Reed


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    Brooklyn animator Mickey Dwyer’s YouTube series, How to Draw, is as simple as it sounds.

    In three steps, he shows viewers how to illustrate characters and forms, based on Bing image searches, over a game-show muzak soundtrack. There are parallels with the My Damn Channel series You Suck at Photoshop, a basic design tutorial with a hint of suppressed rage. Each episode ends with host/teacher Donnie Hoyle’s near-breakdown, but you’re one step closer to knowing how to use the clone stamp tool.

    Dwyer’s way of teaching is a bit more laid back.

    There are plenty of bad jokes throughout the short tutorials, which Dwyer laughs at freely, like he’s both host and co-host of his own late-night talk show. The feel is appropriately low-budget—he uses graph paper to draw his crude forms, for instance—which adds to the charm. He says he just has a gift.

    “Everyone can learn to draw, not just supertalents like me,” he told the Daily Dot. “Simple things like using graph paper for proportions and using Bing image searches for reference can really take your drawing ability to the next level. Level 2. Or level 1 if you started at zero. Which means you probably draw like a baby or an elephant.”

    Yes, even beginners can learn how to draw a Friday Night Lights family portrait, Harry Potter, or the female form. Dwyer says he has a partial degree from Savannah College of Art and Design, but “they didn't let me technically graduate because I didn't take enough classes. Joke’s on them because I'm on YouTube now.”

    Dwyer’s a real stickler for details, too, which his Ryan Gosling tutorial affirms. “I don't think there are any other drawing series that really focus on detail as much as I do,” he added. “I really like to get in there and have fun with detail. It's what makes things look real, and if it looks real then it's good, and visa versa.”

    Earlier this summer, he did a tutorial on how to draw Justin Bieber. In the clip, he admits he doesn’t know much about him, except that he’s “an Australian boy, and he’s stealing our daughters’ hearts.” As is Dwyer’s trademark, he gets it all wrong, and draws his head on a beaver’s body. He does draw inspiration from what his daughters are into, though.

    “[They’re] constantly influencing my art,” he said. “They are always telling me what not to draw and what's stupid and what's embarrassing.”

    Embarrassment doesn’t really play a role in Dwyer’s art. He’s oblivious to rudimentary stylistic flaws, always proud of his mutant creations. He calls his fans “art lovers.” Yet there is a bit of satire to his method. “It’s easy to draw ugly,” he warns in the most recent episode, as he draws Vladimir Putin’s face on the young daughter of Friday Night Light’s Eric and Tami Taylor.  

    This penchant for parody extends to another project Dwyer does with friend Stanley Chase: a podcast called That American Life, which is their take on NPR’s This American Life, hosted by “Ira Class.” Dwyer said they cover “everything from small stories in Kentucky, to big stories in Indiana.” It’s where this commercial was born.

    As for future How to Draw episodes, Dwyer said he has a back pocket of ideas, but they’re not all be pop culture related.

    “Some of them are basic life-drawing instructions, like ‘How to draw feet of women on the train.’”

    Screengrab via mdwyer/YouTube


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    Just when you thought you'd heard every possible version of Daft Punk's "Get Lucky," some genius managed to completely transform the track into a chiptune banger. 

    YouTube user jeonghoon95 resurrected 1992's Mario Paint—an oft-overlooked game that allowed users to not only make pixelated stamps with a custom mouse—to turn looping animations into a chirpy beat. 

    The video of the cover reached the top of Reddit's r/videos forum Monday night and has since collected more than 484,000 views.

    "My wife was in the other room. First, she asks, 'Daft Punk?'" djtoell commented. "A few seconds later she asks, 'Mario Brothers?!'"

    "Daft Brothers," tashre responded.

    Since "Get Lucky" was released in April, its collected a piano cover, an Alan Partridge mashup, and inspired some college kids to frolic around in their underwear for an amateur music video.

    Photo by pg-rennes/Flickr


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    Brooklyn trio Hand Job Academy—comprised of emcees Ash Wednesday, Lil Thuggin’, and Clara Bizna$$—released the video for their latest jam, “Pop (Tumblr B*tches),” today. Its refrain, “Pop your bubble gum for these Tumblr bitches,” is directed at “the current Tumblrporn phenomenon/scandal” and attempts to “parody today's obsessive need for ‘friends’ on social media sites such as Tumblr, through parading around personal sexual content.”

    The content of the “Pop” video is safe for work, though there are several slow-motion shots of melting ice cream cones, knives, and women in animal masks eating containers of cheese balls. Towards the end of the song, Clara Bizna$$ puts a finer point on the issue: “Tumblr’s nasty, you know what I’m sayin’? All these little chicks, it’s like, respect yourself, lady.” (The “making of” video is pretty great too.)

    “Pop,” which was released in June on Tommy Boy Records, is the follow-up to singles “Pussy Chicken” and “U Mad.” Earlier this summer, HJA used Kickstarter for its “Turn Up Scholarship,” which raised money for a video and an upcoming tour. However, the Kickstarter page mentions they were going to film a video for the song “Shark Week,” a “rap about periods.” Fingers crossed that still happens.  

    Screengrab via HandJobAcademyVEVO/YouTube


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    Dancing is not just an art. It's a science.

    Dancing With the Stars (DWTS) announced the cast for its 17th season earlier today on Good Morning America, and one of the Internet's favorite scientists is competing for bragging rights and the mirrorball trophy: Bill Nye.

    Best known for making science fun for children on the PBS show Bill Nye the Science Guy (BNTSG), Nye will put on his signature bow tie and join dance partner Tyne Stecklein to go head-to-head with the likes of Snooki, Valerie Harper, and Glee's Amber Riley starting on Sept. 16.

    He's confident about his chances against the show's usual array of athletes, television legends, and reality stars, and after observing his online presence for years, it's easy to see why: He's been subtly hinting at his aptitude on the dance floor for years.

    And as the footage shows, not only is Nye a badass, he might just win the whole thing.

    1) He's already got some dance knowledge.

    While the idea of Nye hanging up his lab coat and donning a pair of dancing shoes may surprise many, the mechanical engineer is an avid swing dancer.

    "I love swing dancing," he told the New York Times in 2008. "I go two nights a week, often four."

    The practice has certainly paid off. He was captured doing the Lindy Hop in 2011 in San Francisco, and he seemed able to keep up with his partner just fine.

    2) He's been dancing for years—and it turned him into a meme.

    There's no denying that Nye has some moves. A photo of him dancing in the '80s made its rounds online last year and turned him into a dorky physicist pickup artist with physics-based lines such as "Your bosons are giving me a huge hadron."

    Rock on.

    Photo via Quickmeme

    3) He can still groove to his own tune.

    Nye was in the Colorado Springs area in 2012 when he heard that Colorado College band Bill Nye and the Science Guys were performing, so he asked if he could do a gig with them. He put on his dancing shoes yet again when the band performed the theme song to BNTSG, and joined in on a fitting rendition of "She Blinded Me With Science." Not only is this an indicator of how he might perform, it shows that he'll be able to charm hosts Tom Bergeron and Brooke Burke Charvet and handle the judges' blunt criticisms.

    4) In his downtime, Nye is a superhero.

    Nye has inspired and been a hero to thousands over the years, but in his downtime (and on Seattle's early-’90s variety show Almost Live) he's Speedwalker, a physically fit superhero who fights crime while maintaining the "heel, toe" regulations of the International Speedwalking Association. It's a perfect prerequisite for staying in step when dancing with Stecklein.

    5) He knows his science.

    Dancing is not just about natural talent or practice. It's also about the science involved.

    "It's all physics; it's all the study of motion," Nye toldGood Morning America.

    Even if you've never watched an episode of BNTSG, Nye's been an educator and outspoken advocate in the science community for years. He's the Executive Director of the Planetary Society, an organization which advocates space exploration, he's collaborated with fellow scientists AsapSCIENCE on YouTube, spoken out against climate change deniers, and even theorized on how the Man of Steel shaves his face.

    And last August he took to YouTube himself to warn that creationist views threaten science education and aren't appropriate for children—to the disdain of creationists. It's not directly related to his odds on DWTS, but it's still a must-watch.

    Photo via NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/Flickr


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    With Drunk History migrating to TV, the spot for a hilarious historical webseries was wide open—and luckily Ask A Slave is here to fill it.

    The YouTube show is a Q&A session with Lizzie Mae, a slave (“personal maid”) on President Washington’s plantation, Mount Vernon. Lizzie Mae is the brainchild of actress Azie Mira Dungey, who actually worked as a “living history character” at Mount Vernon in Virginia. Many of the questions she answers in her videos are real questions people asked her when touring the plantation.

    The show was crowdfunded by Dungey in April, reaching its meager goal of 3,000 dollars for five webisodes.

    Only two episodes, directed by Jordan Black, are up so far, and they’re both exceptional. It’s perfect satire.

    Example: “Where do your children go to school?”

    And then Lizzie Mae cracks up laughing.

    Oh boy, white people. Yikes.

    H/T Gawker | Photo via YouTube


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    Despite the bunks being well-built facades and the camera crews lurking, the makeshift set of Camp Takota feels like a real summer camp. Young girls in uniforms with the camp logo play together on the swingset, munch on granola and gummy snacks, and run around the wooded grounds.

    It's particularly hot in the Santa Clarita mountains where they've been shooting for the past two weeks at Stickleback River Ranch.

    The film's co-stars and close friends Hannah Hart and Grace Helbig, both of whom are making their big screen debut here, look the part of enthusiastic counselors in their green-and-white Camp Takota tees, cut-off sleeves decorated with glitter glue and safety pins. Hart’s wearing a green bandana to keep the sweat off her forehead.

    “We share a trailer, and we have become really close with each other,” Helbig says of her co-stars. “Hannah and Mamrie [Hart] shit in the trailer instantly and now it smells awful."

    “You pooped in the trailer today!” Hart counters.

    Yeah, because you already ruined it,” Helbig adds.  

    Hart takes a step back. “The only drama we’ve had on set is bathroom drama.”

    Obviously, the two YouTube stars share a unique bond and uncanny sense of humor. In fact, it’s probably the defining aspect of their many collaborations. Hart, creator of the cooking show My Drunk Kitchen, and Helbig, the star of comedy vlog DailyGrace, have long appeared on each other’s programs, and with Mamrie, successfully completed a comedy tour earlier this year.

    Now they’re in the final stages of shooting a feature-length film with producer Michael Goldine that will be released entertainment site Chill this winter. The Dot visited the set to learn more about the film and to see the ladies in action.

    Are you happy to get back to acting, Grace?

    Helbig: Yeah, I originally wanted to do TV and film, and YouTube kind of came up as a surprise wonderful thing. It was really great that this project made an appearance in my life because it wasn’t something I was actually seeking out, and I’ve had nothing but the best time. Except for that time that was awful.

    What happened?

    Helbig: Five minutes ago, I walked here with her (points to Hannah).

    Hart: Not often do you have to shoot movies with people that not only do you not like them but they’re just bad people. You just kind of wish not only that you’d never met, but that they never existed.

    How do you stand each other?

    Helbig: I just live in a constant bubble of repression, and then I go home at night and I shower-scream to get it all out.

    Hart: I haven’t stopped crying since we started shooting, but we can work around it.

    Helbig: Which has worked really well for a couple scenes, but other than that her character has taken a sad turn.

    Hart: Just crying into tater tots.

    Helbig: Spoiler! They don’t know about the tots yet!

    Hart: Shit!

    It’s strict here. I’m supposed to get all my pictures approved.

    Helbig: Oh yeah. Michael is very, very on us about not revealing stuff.

    Hart: I can say I was crying into tater tots.

    Does that actually happen? No one knows!

    Helbig: Maybe! Maybe it’s a baked potato or French fries.

    Goldfine: There’s spudded crying.

    Hart: They call me a spud muffin.

    Oh boy. This interview is done.

    Helbig: Can this audio hear my eyes rolling right now?

    Tell me a bit about your characters.

    Helbig: My character is an emotional mess, so it’s a documentary that we’re making (laughs). She’s a downtrodden women going through a tough time in her life, and she needs the help of some old friends to get her back on track.

    What’s happening?

    Helbig: All the good things have come and gone and now I’ve decided the woods are the best place to go to learn about myself.

    This is an adaptation of Walden?

    Hart: Yes. You don’t write poetry, though.

    Helbig: No, I don’t. My character is just such a lovable loser. It’s like when you see a deer in the woods, and the deer’s been shot, but it’s not dead. It’s struggling.

    Hart: And then you’re like, “Grace what are we going to do?” And then she walks up to the deer and shoots it.

    Helbig: Put it out of its misery. So my character dies at the end of this.

    Hart: Last weekend was rough for us with that deer.

    Helbig: It’s in my backyard still. What’s your character like?

    Hart: My character is…

    Helbig: Allergic to sleeves.

    Hart: Sleeve me alone! My character is the heartthrob of the film. Really the focal point of all virility and sexual prowess.

    Helbig: That’s right. All-gay camp.

    Hart: No, no it’s just an all Allison camp. They call it A-sexual.

    Helbig: Everything that is alive at camp is attracted to Allison.

    Hart: So it’s pretty hard for her. It’s not that she can’t wear sleeves it’s that they’re always getting ripped off.

    Helbig: It’s The Bachelorette but in a movie version.

    And in the end you find true love?

    Hart: No, god no. I mean, why limit this? Why find true love when you can give true love?

    Helbig: You’re into polygamy.

    Photo by Gaby Dunn


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    Hennessy Youngman is the alter ego of New York City artist Jayson Musson. His mixtape series, “CVS Bangers,” is an expertly woven tapestry of rap horn, gunshot samples, distracting mixtape shout-outs, and songs you might hear while shopping at CVS. (You haven’t lived until you’ve heard “Lady in Red” with rap horn.) Once upon a time, he also hosted an excellent YouTube series called Art Thoughtz.

    His latest mix takes on a timely topic: the National Security Agency. Over on his Soundcloud, he explains why the jam, titled “NSA Bangers,” is so necessary:

    “NSA BANGERS is an audio landscape full of paranoia, espionage, epic snooping, unhealthy obsession, and the stress of being a contemporary type human being. Basically, NSA BANGERS is the soundtrack of Freedom! And Freedom is expensive y'all! Apparently, it like, costs your Freedom!”

    This might be the first time J. Edgar Hoover and Eric Holder are both mentioned in a mixtape. “NSA Bangers” also samples Queen and David Bowie’s “Under Pressure,” Geto Boys’s “Mind Playing Tricks on Me,” and Hall & Oates’s “Private Eyes,” which is, amazingly, improved upon with a well-placed rap horn sample.

    Screengrab via HennessyYoungman/YouTube


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    In order to survive a zombie apocalypse, you'll need to know how to find supplies and fend off the undead. However, a new online class seems to miss some of the vital lessons required to stay alive.

    The course frames lessons on nutrition, social order, and the spread of infectious disease through the hit show The Walking Dead. But there doesn't seem to be any room for teaching students how to actually kill the undead.

    Starting the day after the season 4 premiere on Oct. 13, “Society, Science, Survival: Lessons from AMC’s The Walking Dead runs for eight weeks. University of California–Irvine faculty members will teach the AMC-licensed class, in which cast members will discuss their characters. 

    Here are 5 critical, spoilery lessons that need to be in the course.

    1) Aim for the head

    Forget this when battling the undead and you'll soon be lunch.

    2) Keep up with your cardio

    The 2009 film Zombieland has excellent advice for dealing with zombies. The most important of all is keeping fit.

    3) Be careful who you trust

    In season 3, we see a group taking refuge in a barricaded town. The trouble is, it's run by a sociopathic monster called The Governor who'd happy watch zombies tear apart his rivals. He even kills his own people. In a world populated by the undead, keep your friends close, and your enemies far away.

    4) Make friends with a survivalist

    Any hardy band of survivors needs someone resourceful enough to keep them alive. The Walking Dead gang has Daryl, a hunter and skilled tracker, to find supplies and quickly dispatch the undead. He is also a witty fan favorite.

    5) Be ruthless

    The core group spent much of season 2 hunting for a missing child in the woods. Of course, the little girl eventually reappeared as one of the infected. The best thing to do when a kid goes missing for more than a couple of days is to assume the worst and move on, as harsh as that may seem. 

    H/T TV Line | Screenshot via quietfireca/YouTube


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