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3/29/2022: Academy Condemns Will Smith
PLUS: Biden’s Spending Spree Continues, Kanye Stays Quiet and Final Four Predictions
Today is Tuesday, March 29, 2022.
It is the 88th day of the year.
277 days remain.
In response to Will Smith’s assault on Chris Rock at Sunday night’s Oscars, on Monday Twitter was lit up with all things Smith vs. Rock. Trending topics included, Will Smith, Jada, #WillandChris, GI Jane, Alopecia and #whatjusthappened.
Hard Knocks was trending after HBO revealed that the Detroit Lions training camp has been selected to be featured in this year’s edition of the series. More on the show in Casting Call.
Don’t Say Gay landed in Twitter’s Top 10 Trends after Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed the leftist-dubbed “Don’t Say Gay” bill into law. More in Swamp.
BATTLE OF THE BILLIONAIRES: In a Washington Post story covering Tesla’s move to Texas, the report suggested that Elon Musk’s lieutenants are weary about pushing back on his vision and leadership. The story also suggests he’s spread too thin.
When asked for comment in the story, Musk said, “For the 100th time, please give my regards to your puppetmaster” – likely referring to Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos who also owns space exploration company Blue Origin, a rival to Musk’s SpaceX.
BUT WAIT: After the story was published, Musk noted on Twitter that they didn’t publish the full comment. According to Musk, he also said, “The Washington Post should change its tagline to ‘democracy dies behind our paywall.’ If you’re so concerned about democracy, stop forcing people to pay for (allegedly) important news! Your boss Besos [sic] can certainly afford it, even after buying a support yacht for his yacht.”
WORTH NOTING: Musk may have intentionally misspelled Bezos’ last name as B-E-S-O-S, which in Spanish means “kisses.”
MEANWHILE: Joe Rogan said on his podcast he wants to help facilitate the wrestling match that Musk has proposed between him and Vladimir Putin to settle the war in Ukraine.
Rogan said he texted Musk that he would arrange all of the training to prepare for an MMA style fight.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Walmart is discontinuing tobacco sales in some of its stores.
The report suggests stores in California, Florida, Arkansas, and New Mexico would discontinue the offering some time this year.
A late-season snowstorm in Pennsylvania triggered a massive pileup Monday on I-81.
The crashes included at least 40 vehicles and sent at least 20 to the hospital.
Astronomers have captured a celestial photo of an asteroid on its way to a relatively close encounter with Earth.
The asteroid will pass by Earth later this week at a distance of 4.6 million miles, which is nearly 20 times the distance between Earth and the Moon – but is a near miss by cosmic standards.
Dubbed 2007 FF1, the asteroid is between 300 and 600 feet wide.
BY THE WAY: NASA says an asteroid would need to be at least 2,952 feet wide to have global consequences.
Stocks finished flat Monday. The Dow ticked up 94 points while the S&P was up 32.
Oil prices continue to stabilize. West Texas Intermediate fell nearly 10% Monday.
Top 5 Songs on iTunes:
HANDSOMER, “Russ (ft. Ktlyn)”
Elton John & Dua Lipa, “Cold Heart (PNAU Remix)”
Brantley Gilbert, “Rolex On A Redneck (ft. Jason Aldean)”
Walker Hayes, “AA”
Cody Johnson, “‘Til You Can’t”
Top 5 Songs on Spotify:
Justin Bieber, “Ghost”
Glass Animals, “Heat Waves”
Camila Cabello, “Bam Bam (ft. Ed Sheeran)”
Imagine Dragons, JID, Arcane, League of Legends, “Enemy”
JEFF CARSON has died.
The country singer passed away Saturday after suffering a heart attack, according to 2911 Media.
He was 58.
ANTHONY ANDERSON, 51, and ALVINA STEWART, also 51, are calling it quits after 22 years of marriage.
Stewart recently filed for divorce, citing irreconcilable differences, according to legal docs obtained by The Blast.
The relationship has been “on the rocks” for some time, an insider told the outlet.
Actor MATT LANTER is recovering from emergency surgery.
His wife ANGELA LANTER revealed on Instagram that following the surgery last week, Matt has “started to turn the corner and is slowly getting on the road to recovery.”
While she did not get into specifics, she did tell her followers that they still have “an uphill battle.”
President JOE BIDEN rolled out a new, insane, expansive, $5.8 trillion budget proposal for the next budget. In an announcement Monday, Biden said it can be paid for if rich people just pay more in taxes.
In comparison, total tax revenue to the feds between 2017 and 2021 ranged between $3.3 trillion and $4 trillion. In fact, total tax revenue increased each year, even after the sweeping tax cuts championed by former PRESIDENT TRUMP went into effect in 2018.
WORTH NOTING: The enormous spending package is unlikely to get through Congress as-is, but Democrats need a bloated wish list to run on during midterms.
MEANWHILE: Following his budget announcement, Biden answered questions about his weekend gaffe that appeared to call for regime change in Russia.
A photographer managed to snap a photo of Biden’s notecard with talking points. They were pretty basic:
“I was expressing the moral outrage I felt toward the actions of this man.”
“I was not articulating a change in policy.”
“NATO has never been more united.”
WORTH ASKING: If the man needs notes to manage these rudimentary, simplistic talking points, how in the hell can he manage a country? And if he can’t, who’s running the country?
Florida Gov. RON DESANTIS signed a bill into law Monday that forbids instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through third grade.
The bill — dubbed by critics as the Don’t Say Gay bill — has drawn intense scrutiny nationwide.
WORTH NOTING: Nowhere in the bill is the word “gay” mentioned.
ALSO: The bill is simply stating that young children do not need to learn about such an adult concept.
WORTH ASKING: Isn’t school about reading, writing and ‘rithmatic?
AND: For the critics saying that the bill is so kids can be more inclusive…aren’t kids already inclusive? It isn’t until adults with agendas start putting ideas in their heads that they start noticing differences among their peers.
LASTLY: When did it become such an issue for parents to parent their children?
No winner for Friday night’s Mega Millions drawing. Tonight’s drawing will be for a $60 million jackpot or a $37.9 million cash payout.
CHRIS ROCK declined to file a police report after being assaulted by WILL SMITH on stage at the Academy Awards.
Per multiple outlets, LAPD officers at the event spoke with Rock after the incident, during which he stated he did not want to press charges.
If Rock had filed a report, and Smith was charged with assault, he could have faced up to six months behind bars and a fine up to $10,000.
WORTH NOTING: California law classifies simple assault as a misdemeanor.
ALSO: Rock has up to six month to file a report.
CELEBS REACT: Radio host HOWARD STERN said he was “disturbed” by Smith’s assault on Rock.
Sports journalist STEPHEN A. SMITH blasted the actor on Twitter, calling his actions “shameful” and “straight [bs].”
CRAIG MELVIN, host of the “Today” show, said that Smith’s slap “aided this long-held perception…that men of color can’t control their rage and anger.”
WHOOPI GOLDBERG told her fellow “View” co-hosts that Smith “just snapped.” She also commended Rock for not “taking it to that other place it could have gone.”
Director JUDD APATOW told Variety that Smith “could have killed [Rock].”
Actress TIFFANY HADDISH said seeing “a black man stand up for his wife” is the “most beautiful thing [she’s] ever seen.”
NO HARD FEELINGS: According to SEAN “Diddy” COMBS the two actors made up at the Vanity Fair after party. “It’s all love,” he explained. “They’re brothers.”
BUT WAIT: TMZ says Will and Chris only talked through Diddy, and haven’t yet spoken directly.
THE ACADEMY REACTS: On Monday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences released a statement on the incident.
"The Academy condemns the actions of Mr. Smith at last night's show. We have officially started a formal review around the incident and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct and California law."
WILL APOLOGIZES: Monday evening, Smith took to Instagram to issue an apology. He started out the post writing, “Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive,” and called his behavior “unacceptable” and “inexcusable.”
To Rock he wrote: “I would like to publicly apologize to you Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness.”
He also apologized to the Academy, producers, attendees, viewers, the Williams Family and his “King Richard” family.
MEANWHILE: What appeared to be an apology from Chris Rock started circulating online Monday evening, but that was eventually debunked to be phony.
TAYLOR SWIFT will receive a Doctor of Fine Arts, honoris causa, from New York University in May, after addressing the school’s class of 2022 graduates as a commencement speaker.
When making the announcement, the prestigious university called Swift “one of the most prolific and celebrated artists of her generation.”
According to early numbers from Nielsen, the 94th annual Academy Awards pulled in 13.7 million viewers on Sunday night.
This is the second lowest Oscars results ever — besting only last year’s dismal data.
MICHEAL CHE is NOT leaving “SNL” segment “Weekend Update,” despite multiple outlets reporting otherwise.
Che took to Instagram to respond to the rumors. “I’m not leaving SNL,” he captioned a screenshot of an article detailing his alleged departure.
Rumors of his exit started after he joked about leaving during a recent set in Minneapolis.
BRANTLEY GILBERT and JESSIE JAMES DECKER will sing “America the Beautiful” at WrestleMania 38.
Gilbert will belt out the tune on April 2, while Decker gets her turn on April 3.
WrestleMania 38 is set to take place at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
LEANN RIMES will headline an upcoming episode of “CMT Crossroads!”
Joining her will be fellow country singers, ASHLEY MCBRYDE, BRANDY CLARK, CARLY PEARCE and MICKEY GUYTON.
Rimes is celebrating the 25th anniversary of her 1996 debut album, “Blue,” which came out when she was just 13-years-old.
The 90-minute special will air during CMT Music Awards Week on April 14.
HBO has selected the Detroit Lions to star in this year’s season of “Hard Knocks.”
The award-winning series focuses on an NFL training camp every season.
The first five episodes will air on HBO Max on August 9, with the finale set for September 6.
WORTH NOTING: Teams that didn’t change coaches and haven’t made the playoffs in the last two seasons cannot turn down the show.
THIS MEANS: The Carolina Panthers and New York Jets were also in consideration.
HGTV star CHRISTINA HAACK and her fiancé, realtor JOSHUA HALL are starting their own production company together, called Unbroken Productions.
In the announcement, Haack said that the two are “looking forward” to co-producing Season 4 of her show “Christina on the Coast,” in addition to other new shows.
The news comes shortly after it was revealed that Haack’s show, “Flip or Flop,” which she co-starred in with her ex-husband TAREK EL MOUSSA, is coming to an end.
PETER GADIOT is joining the cast of Netflix’s upcoming series, “One Piece.”
He will play Shanks, the legendary captain of the red-haired pirate crew.
The live-action series follows the adventures of Monkey D. Luffy and his pirate crew as they explore a fantastical world of endless oceans and exotic islands in search of the world’s ultimate treasure known as “One Piece” to become the next Pirate King, per the official description.
CBS News and The Weather Channel are joining forces.
The latter’s daily reports will be featured during the network’s morning and evening newscasts, including “CBS Mornings” and “CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell.”
It will also appear on the CBS News Streaming Network.
THE DAILY KARDASHOPUS
KANYE WEST has been eerily quiet on social media since getting a 24 hour ban on Instagram.
For KIM KARDASHIAN, the silence comes as a “breath of fresh air,” an insider told HollywoodLife.
The source also told the outlet that Kim and PETE DAVIDSON are “relieved” to not have to “check their phones every two minutes to see what Kanye has said.”
WE’LL NEVER BE ROYALS
Things are pointing toward QUEEN ELIZABETH taking a step back from royal duties.
Multiple insiders told the Daily Mirror that PRINCE CHARLES has started increasing his royal duties — including potentially taking over at the Opening of Parliament in May, should the need arise.
PRINCE WILLIAM also seems to be making plans for the future.
Insiders told the outlet that William and his aides have a “blueprint” drawn up for the future of the Commonwealth. Details were not shared.
All of these moves appear to be happening out of an abundance of caution, as the 95-year-old monarch has had her fair share of health issues in recent months. In October she spent a night in the hospital for “precautionary checks” and last month she caught COVID-19. Prior to that she was seen hobbling about with a walking stick.
Who will win the Final Four NCAA Tournament?
Duke (2) vs. North Carolina (8) — Duke is a 3.5-point favorite to win the game.
Final Score Predictions:
Sporting News: Duke 86, NC 80
College Football News: Duke 82, NC 77
Top Bet: Duke 80, NC 74
ESPN: Duke has 68.2% chance to win
Villanova (2) vs. Kansas (1) — Kansas is a 4.5-point favorite to win the game.
Final Score Predictions:
Sporting News: Kansas 74, Villanova 69
College Football News: Kansas 71, Villanova 65
Top Bet: Kansas 61, Villanova 69
ESPN: Villanova has a 51.3% chance to win
Both games are set for next Saturday and can be seen on TBS.
DAY OF THE YEAR
National Lemon Chiffon Cake Day
National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day
National Nevada Day
National Vietnam War Veterans Day
ON THIS DATE
1806 - Congress approves the construction of the Cumberland Road.
The route would connect Cumberland, Maryland and Wheeling, Virginia through the Appalachian Mountains.
The bill was approved only after the government had accumulated enough funds for the entire project. This is even before a federal income tax.
1951 - Julius and Ethel Rosenberg are convicted of spying on America, on behalf of the Soviet Union.
The trial was short, lasting only 23 days.
The most damning evidence came from David Greenglass, Ethel's brother. He testified that Julius had set up a meeting to pass along information to another Soviet informant about the American nuclear weapons program.
Little evidence ever surfaced against Ethel, but prosecutors convinced the jury she was pulling the strings of the whole operation.
The couple was later executed.
1961 - After a 4.5 year trial — known as the Treason Trial — Nelson Mandela is acquitted of treason in Pretoria.
Mandel and 139 other anti-apartheid leaders were arrested and charged with treason in December of 1956
He would be arrested again the following year for his involvement in the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa. He would be imprisoned for 27 years.
1973 - The last American troops leave Vietnam, two months after the signing of the Vietnam Peace Agreement.
Meanwhile, some 7,000 bureaucrats stayed behind as South Vietnam continued fighting with the North.
The American withdrawal ended more than a decade of fighting. John Kennedy sent the first troops in 1961.
Four years later, Saigon fell to the communists in the North.
1989 - I. M. Pei’s pyramidal entrance to the Louvre opens in Paris.
The pyramid, which stands 70 feet tall, took four years to construct.
At the time, the structure was not well-received, with many calling it “an annex to Disneyland.”
Today, it is a well-known symbol of Paris.
2019 - Joe Biden is accused of inappropriately kissing and touching fellow Democrat Lucy Flores.
The Nevada lawmaker called the 2014 encounter “awkward and disturbing.”
Biden, who was Vice President at the time of the incident, said that it was never his “intention” to make Flores feel uncomfortable.
2020 - Infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci warns that America may see between 100,000 and 200,000 deaths from COVID-19.
Ysa Penarejo - actress, “McKenna Shoots for the Stars” - 22
Ariana De La Hoya - reality star, “Growing Up Supermodel” - 23
Aron Piper - actor, “Elite” - 25
Fredo Bang - rapper - 26
Jazz Thornton - non-fiction author - 27
N’Golo Kante - soccer player - 31
Fivio Foreign - rapper - 32
Tess Daly - TV Show Host, “Almost Never” - 53
Lucy Lawless - actress, “Xena: Warrior Princess” - 54
Elle Macpherson - model - 58
Maggie Baird - actress, “Bones” & “The West Wing” - 63
Born On This Date
Scott Wilson - actor, “The Walking Dead” - 1942 (d. 2018)
Sam Walton - founder of Sam’s Club & Walmart - 1918 (d. 1992)
John Tyler - 10th President - 1790 (d. 1862)