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$750 million lawsuit filed against Travis Scott, Drake on behalf of Astroworld victims

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A lawsuit seeking more than $750 million was filed Tuesday on behalf of at least 125 victims of the audience crush at the Astroworld music festival, including Axel Acosta, 21, who was killed.

The crowd surge at rapper Travis Scott’s festival in Houston left 10 people dead and many more injured. Dozens of lawsuits have been filed against Scott and Live Nation Entertainment Inc.

The suit, filed by Buzbee Law Firm, also list the rapper Drake, who joined Scott halfway through his Astroworld set, Apple Music, which was streaming the festival, and others as defendants.

“The victims on that night went to Astroworld for fun,” the suit says. “Neither they nor their families were ever warned that they were walking into an extremely dangerous situation.”

Acosta “was crushed by the incited, unruly and out-of-control crowd with such force that he could no longer breathe,” according to the suit. He went into cardiac arrest and was then trampled, it says.

“As he lay there under a mass of humanity, dying, the music played and streamed on — for almost forty minutes,” the suit says. Acosta died at the scene.

The suit accuses Scott, whose real name is Jacques Bermon Webster II, of keeping the concert going even after authorities had announced a mass casualty event. Other suits have alleged the same, and Houston Fire Chief Samuel Peña said Scott “absolutely” should have stopped the show once he saw what was taking place.

“Look: We all have a responsibility. Everybody at that event has a responsibility, starting from the artist on down,” he said last week.

Scott’s litigation attorney, Edwin McPherson, has said Scott “didn’t know that there was a mass casualty event that was called.”

“Nobody told him. Nobody told his crew. When finally somebody communicated something to his crew that this was the last song, that was about 10:10, Travis said, ‘OK, last song,’ and he stopped it when he was told to stop it,” McPherson said.

Scott said in an Instagram story the day after that he was “devastated.” He has offered to pay for the funerals of the 10 people who died and to refund tickets for all attendees.

“Such [an] offer is a transparent and grotesque effort of the Defendants to limit their liability, after the fact, to the families of those killed or injured,” the Buzbee lawsuit says. “The Acosta family would rather Webster have privately spent money on proper planning, adequate security and medical staff before the concert, instead of publicly stating that he would pay for the funerals of those that were crushed and killed.”

The suit, like many that came before it, also alleges that Scott has a history of encouraging violence at his shows through his lyrics and his habit of encouraging crowds to ignore security and rush the stage. It pointed out that Scott told GQ that he wants his concerts to feel like pro wrestling matches.

The suit also recounts the case of Kyle Green, who was paralyzed at a Scott concert in New York City in 2017. Scott can be heard on video encouraging fans to jump from a third-floor balcony, reassuring them that other fans would catch them. Green has said he did not jump but was pushed and landed on the floor.

Scott did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the new suit. Live Nation, Drake, Apple and other defendants also did not respond.

SOURCE: NBC NEWS

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Brent Faiyaz follows Drake, Tyler, Keem, Meek collaborations with new single

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Grammy-nominated singer and producer Brent Faiyaz caps another stratospheric year with new single “Mercedes.” With Faiyaz’s idiosyncratic falsetto, “Mercedes” showcases Brent’s distinct musical identity that oscillates between hero and villain while being reminiscent of ‘90s R&B. 2021 saw Brent collaborate with the likes of Drake, Tyler, The Creator, Baby Keem, Meek Mill and Tems, release smash solo tracks, and surpass 8.5 BILLION streams for his catalog that includes 2 Certified Platinum and 5 Certified Gold singles.

 

Listen to “Mercedes” here: https://album.link/MERCEDES

 

In 2016, Faiyaz formed his own independent record label, Lost Kids and released his Fuck The World EP in 2020, which debuted at #20 on the Billboard 200 charts. To give back to his fans he started the Show U Off Grant Program for Black women entrepreneurs in 2021, with more

details on the 2022 program to follow and he will celebrate the 4th annual Lost Kids Benefit this month in support of youths in his hometown of Baltimore, MD.

 

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‘Wu-Tang: An American Saga’ star, Johnell Young set to lead in ‘New Jack City’ remake

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Johnell Young, best known for his role as GZA on Hulu’s ‘Wu-Tang: An American Saga’ is rumoured to be starring in Warner Bros’ ‘New Jack City’ remake, written by Barry Michael Cooper.

According to sources, Young will play the lead role in the remake of the 90’s classic.
On November 27, Barry Michael Cooper took to Twitter to announce the working title for a prequel to his 1991 crack cocaine-laced classic New Jack City. “The Diary of NIno Brown: The Monster Reagan Created.” Prequel. Sequel. Work In Progress. Soon. GOD Willing. #NewJackCity,” Cooper tweeted.

New Jack City released in 1991 was an American crime thriller directed by Mario Van Peebles, who also co-starred in the film. The film stars Wesley Snipes, Ice-T, Allen Payne, Chris Rock, Mario Van Peebles, Judd Nelson, and Bill Cobbs.

 

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Kanye West, 21 Savage, Kid Cudi, Lil Baby, others honour Virgil Abloh at Louis Vuitton Show

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Two days after his shocking death, Virgil Abloh’s friends from music and fashion came together to honor him at Louis Vuitton’s “Virgil Was Here” show in Miami on Tuesday. (more…)

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The Lost Daughter, Squid Game others win at 31st Annual Gotham Awards

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The Gotham Film & Media Institute (The Gotham) has announced the winners of the 31st Annual Gotham Awards at a ceremony held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City.

 

Winning Best Feature and three additional awards was The Lost Daughter, director and screenwriter Maggie Gyllenhaal’s assured screen adaptation of Elena Ferrante’s novel about a solitary vacationing professor and mother of two grown daughters whose encounters with a different young mother provoke haunting memories of her own past. Maggie Gyllenhaal also scored two additional individual awards for Best Screenplay and the Bingham Ray Breakthrough Director award given to a director for their first fiction feature film. Gyllenhaal had previously won a Gotham Award nineteen years ago in 2002 as Breakthrough Actor for her performance in Secretary. And for her performance as Leda, the complex central character of The Lost Daughter, Olivia Colman received the Outstanding Lead Performance award, having previously received a special Ensemble Performance award in 2018 as part of the lead trio of The Favourite.

 

Also receiving an Outstanding Lead Performance award was Frankie Faison for his brilliantly varied and devastating performance in The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain, based on the true story of the resulting tragedy when police were sent to check on an elderly veteran with physical and mental health issues after his medical alert link was accidentally triggered.

 

Receiving the Breakthrough Performer award was Emilia Jones for her sensitive–and musical –lead role as a child of Deaf parents torn between her responsibility to her family and the possibility of a future of her own in CODA, for which actor Troy Katsur won the Outstanding Supporting Performance award for playing her funny, opinionated dad who is fearful of losing her but yearning to connect and understand her.

The award for Best Documentary Feature was presented to Flee, the stirring, mostly animated documentary by Danish filmmaker Jonas Poher Rasmussen which recounts the multi-year history from childhood until now of Amin Nawabi (a pseudonym), who with his mother and siblings became refugees fleeing the Taliban in Afghanistan, through Russia, and eventually to Denmark where, despite trauma and a hidden past, there’s possibility for Nawabi of a new home and lasting love.

Winning the award for Best International Feature was Drive My Car, directed by Ryûsuke Hamaguchi, adapted from a short story by Haruki Murakami into a gently emotional epic in which an actor/director harboring an unspoken grief and anger embarks on directing a multi-language production of Uncle Vanya in another city and gradually opens to his assigned driver, who has losses of her own.

 

With the awards for television the Gotham Awards for debut series are given annually to those that “enrich the landscape or push the boundaries of television.” Winning the award for Breakthrough Series (Over 40 minutes) was Squid Game, the late-breaking global sensation from Korean writer/director Hwang Dong-hyuk and Netflix that weaves themes of universal economic and social divide and aggressive capitalism with dazzling set pieces, ultra-violence, and even tender moments.

 

Breakthrough Series (Under 40 minutes) was awarded to Reservation Dogs, created by Sterlin Harjo and Taika Waititi, which follows a group of teens living on a reservation in Oklahoma and whose petty crimes fuel dreams of escaping to a new life in California. The comedy series is a first to be majority written, directed, acted, and crewed by people of Indigenous descent.

Newly created this year was the first Gotham Award category for series acting – Outstanding Performance in a New Series. Following the Gotham Awards guidelines for gender neutral categorization, there were ten nominees. The jury chose to award two performances “equally undeniable in their craft and staying power” – to Thuso Mbedu, transcendent in the frequently silent central role of Cora in The Underground Railroad and Ethan Hawke in a possible career-best performance as abolitionist John Brown in The Good Lord Bird.

Also added as a new standalone category this year was Breakthrough Nonfiction Series. The winning series was Philly D.A., the propulsive, narratively driven, verité-shot series, created by filmmakers Ted Passon, Yoni Brook, and Nicole Salazar, that follows the first term of crusading Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner, elected in 2017 determined to reform the system from within and with the goal of ending mass incarceration.

Career Tributes were also given during the ceremony to performers Kristen Stewart (presented by Julianne Moore and Pablo Larraín) and Peter Dinklage (presented by Ethan Hawke), director Jane Campion (presented by Mark Ruffalo), and the Industry Tribute to Eamonn Bowles (presented by Alex Gibney).

 

The inaugural Icon Tribute (presented by Kia Brooks, Deputy Director of The Gotham and Seret Scott) was awarded posthumously to poet, playwright, writer, filmmaker, director, civil rights activist, and educator Kathleen Collins and was accepted by her daughter, Nina Lorez Collins. Kathleen Collins’ most known film work is Losing Ground, one of the very first fictional features by an African-American woman filmmaker. The Icon Tribute has been created to call attention to the boldness, artistry, and impact of a filmmaker from a marginalized community whose work has not been previously recognized by the organization in its previous awards history.

An Ensemble Tribute (presented by Jeymes Samuel) was given to the cast of The Harder They Fall, including Jonathan Majors, Zazie Beetz, Delroy Lindo, LaKeith Stanfield, Danielle Deadwyler, Edi Gathegi, R.J. Cyler, Damon Wayans Jr., Deon Cole with Regina King and Idris Elba.

An Impact Salute (presented by Michael Bloomberg) was given to The Actors Fund in recognition of their leadership role in providing resources, care and financial support to members of the entertainment community during the COVID-19 pandemic. Founded in 1882, the nonprofit serves all professionals—and not just actors—in film, theater, television, music, opera, radio and dance through programs that address the community’s unique and essential needs. Brian Stokes Mitchell accepted on behalf of The Actors Fund.

 

Additionally announced during the ceremony:

 

The Questlove Gotham EDU Scholarship

Questlove announced the creation of a $150,000 scholarship fund earmarked for HBCU students’ tuition and to allow participation in the Gotham EDU suite of programs and mentor support. The award is supported by iHeartMedia.

Focus Features & JetBlue Student Short Film Showcase

Tessa Thompson announced the winners of the third annual showcase supported by sponsoring partners Focus Features and JetBlue. The program is designed to discover and empower a diverse group of emerging filmmakers and foster multi-platform distribution of their work. Each winner receives a $10,000 grant and have their films shown for twelve months on JetBlue’s seatback entertainment systems under the “Gotham Selects” movie category and on Focus Features digital streaming platforms. Throughout 2022, winning filmmakers will also receive ongoing mentorship and workshopping opportunities from The Gotham.

 

The winning filmmakers and shorts were:

 

·      Evan Bode, Thine Own Self, Syracuse University

·      Jorge G. Camarena, Spaceship, American Film Institute

·      Akanksha Chawla, Close Ties to Home Country, Columbia College

·      Jun Hee Han, Uncle, University of California, Los Angeles

·      J. Sean Smith, #Whitina, University of Southern California

 

 

The Gotham Awards ceremony was streamed on Facebook Live and on The Gotham’s YouTube channel.

For photo selects from the event, visit

https://dam.gettyimages.com/assignments/2021-gotham-awards

 

The 31st Annual Gotham Award recipients are:

For Best Feature, presented by Dakota Johnson

The Lost Daughter

Directed by Maggie Gyllenhaal

Produced by Osnat Handelsman Keren, Talia Kleinhendler, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Charles Dorfman

Released by Netflix

The Best Feature jury included Jason Mitchell, Lydia Dean Pilcher, Adele Romanski, Peter Saraf, and Cathy Yan.

 

 

For Best Documentary, presented by Devery Jacobs and Michael Greyeyes

Flee

Directed Jonas Poher Rasmussen

Produced Monica Hellström, Signe Byrge Sørensen, and Charlotte De La Gournerie

Released by NEON

The Best Documentary jury included Bonni Cohen, Ramona Diaz, Kirsten Johnson, Roger Ross Williams, and Hao Wu.

For Best International Feature, presented Thandiwe Newton

Drive My Car

Directed by Ryûsuke Hamaguchi

Produced by Teruhisa Yamamoto

Released by Sideshow and Janus Films

 

The Best International Feature jury included Jimmie Fails, Eliza Hittman, Orion Lee, Jonathan Raymond, and Catalina Sandino Moreno.

For Outstanding Lead Performance, presented by Dan Levy

To two performers:

Olivia Colman in The Lost Daughter

Released by Netflix

 

and

 

Frankie Faison in The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain

Released by Gravitas Ventures

The Outstanding Lead Performance jury included Aldis Hodge, Tamara Jenkins, Avy Kaufman, Lisa Kjerulff, and KiKi Layne.

For Outstanding Supporting Performance, presented by Daveed Diggs

Troy Kotsur in CODA

Released by Apple TV+

The Outstanding Supporting Performance jury included Michael Beach, M. Blair Breard, Blythe Danner, Rob Morgan, and Crystal Moselle.

 

 

For Breakthrough Performer, presented by Moses Ingram

Emilia Jones in CODA

Released by Apple TV+

The Breakthrough Performer jury included Matt Bomer, Yolonda Ross, Isabel Sandoval, Shari Springer Berman, and Katherine Waterston.

For Bingham Ray Breakthrough Director, presented by Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson

Maggie Gyllenhaal for The Lost Daughter

Released by Netflix

The Bingham Ray Breakthrough Director jury included Anne Carey, Helena Howard, Famke Janssen, John Turturro, and Phillip Youmans.

For Best Screenplay, presented by Joe Wright

Maggie Gyllenhaal for The Lost Daughter

Released by Netflix

For Breakthrough Series (Over 40 Minutes), presented by Marlee Matlin and Troy Kotsur

Squid Game

Executive Produced by Kim Ji-yeon and Hwang Dong-hyuk

Netflix

The Breakthrough Series (Over 40 Minutes) jury included Jasmine Batchelor, Eli Goree, Mike Harrop, Amy Koppelman, and Paul Mezey.

For Breakthrough Series (Under 40 Minutes), presented by Marlee Matlin and Troy Kotsur

Reservation Dogs

Created by Sterlin Harjo and Taika Waititi

Executive Produced by Taika Waititi, Sterlin Harjo, and Garrett Basch

FX

The Breakthrough Series (Under 40 Minutes) jury included Adam Goldman, Anna Konkle, Jenni Konner, Victoria Mahoney, and Jonathan Majors

 

 

For Breakthrough Nonfiction Series, presented by Jung Ho-yeun

Philly D.A.

Created by Ted Passon, Yoni Brook, and Nicole Salazar

Executive Produced by Dawn Porter, Sally Jo Fifer, Lois Vossen, Ryan Chanatry, Gena Konstantinakos, Jeff Seelbach, and Patty Quillin

Topic, Independent Lens, PBS

The Breakthrough Nonfiction Series jury included Andrew Jarecki, Laura Ricciardi, Bernardo Ruiz, Elyse Steinberg, and Tracy Heather Strain.

 

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Tiffany Haddish and Common break up after one year together

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Common and Tiffany Haddish are leaving their romance in 2021. (more…)

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Rihanna declared a ‘national hero’ as Barbados celebrates becoming a republic

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Rihanna has been declared a national hero of Barbados by Prime Minister Mia Mottley. (more…)

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