Shaquille O’Neal Becomes Papa John’s First African American Board Member

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Shaquille O’Neal is expanding his business portfolio by joining the Papa John’s team, the company announced on Friday.

The Basketball Hall of Famer and TNT analyst signed an $8.25 million three-year endorsement deal with the scandal-plagued pizza chain, according to Reuters.

O’Neal also joined Papa John’s board of directors and is the first African American to do so. Last year, founder John Schnatter was accused of using a racial slur during a role-playing call between Papa John’s executives and marketing agency Laundry Service.

Also Read: Papa John’s Founder to Resign From Board, End Legal Battle With Pizza Chain

The move had an immediate impact on Wall Street, with the company’s shares rising nearly 6 percent in early morning trading, Reuters reported.

“This is a triple threat opportunity for me. I am excited to join the Board and to help lead from the top, while also investing in nine stores in my home town of Atlanta and being an ambassador for the brand,” O’Neal said in a statement.

Earlier this month, Schnattner agreed to step down from the company’s board of directors and drop two outstanding lawsuits against the company he started in 1984. Schnattner will resign from the board if the independent director is named by the end of April when Papa John’s annual stockholder meeting is scheduled.

Also Read: Papa John’s Founder John Schnatter Denies Using N-Word in New Lawsuit

Schnatter, who still owns about 30 percent of the company, has been locked in a bitter legal battle with Papa John’s since he stepped down as chief executive in 2017 after months of turmoil following his criticism of the NFL over the player protests, blaming them for low pizza sales.

Shaq will be an investor in nine Papa John’s restaurants in Atlanta. He currently owns a Krispy Kreme Doughnuts franchise in Atlanta and previously owned 27 Five Guys Burgers and Fries franchises.

He also recently opened his self-named restaurant Shaquille’s at L.A. Live in Los Angeles,  across the street from where he used to play for the Lakers at Staples Center.

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How Doing Things Media Laughed It Up to 30 Million Instagram Followers and a TV Show in 2 Years

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

The key to a booming network of Instagram accounts? Making people laugh, according to Doing Things Media co-founders Reid Hailey and Derek Lucas.

Two years after launching, Doing Things Media now has more than 30 million people following its array of social media accounts, combining for 500 million views each month. On Instagram, where the lion’s share of its fans are, you can find a small army of “Doing Things” accounts — “Animals Doing Things,” “Drunk People Doing Things” — dedicated to finding and posting funny videos. Staples include dogs wearing sunglasses and looking cute on boats and drunk people doing, well, stupid stuff.

Doing Things Media is also leveraging its library of 100,000 clips, partnering with Netflix, Tinder and MTV’s “Ridiculousness” to share content. It’s also brought a TV show, “Howie Mandel’s Animals Doing Things,” to Nat Geo Wild, where the comedian narrates the funniest and quirkiest videos from the “Animals Doing Things” Instagram account. The show’s second season will air this summer.

“Everything is lighthearted and fun on all of our brands,” 28-year-old Hailey told TheWrap. “We come from a place where we started in memes, where if it isn’t funny it doesn’t work. All of our pages have that theme to it.”

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But how do you know which videos will and will not rack up the likes, follows and views on Instagram? It’s an inexact science, but one they’ve “definitely learned over time,” Hailey said, after going through “hundreds of thousands of videos” in the last few years.

The most important thing to their millennial and Gen-Z audience is the internal urge to share a video to someone else after first seeing it. “If you want to show it to someone else, if you think it’s funny or interesting, then other people are going to want to show it to other people, too,” Hailey said.

That’s the mantra Hailey and Lucas have passed on to their Atlanta-based team of 20- to 30-year-old employees who are now charged with going through thousands of video submissions each month.

Also Read: How Instagram Has Given Classic Shows Like ‘Seinfeld’ and ‘The Simpsons’ a Second Life

Still, when pressed on what it takes to make videos really pop on Instagram, Lucas said it takes more than just a good clip. Instagram, after an early-2017 algorithm shift placed an increased emphasis on video, is now flooded with an endless stream of clips. Lucas said it’s critical to “create a narrative” around clips — even if it doesn’t necessarily fit the video’s original theme — that will resonate with Instagram’s young audience. Sometimes, finding that narrative can take months.

“We [received] a video where a mom and a dad, probably middle-aged, and some 20-year-olds were all drunk eating fast food. And one kid had food spilled all over himself. And the description that got sent to us what they were bar-hopping. I tested that video out on ‘Drunk People Doing Things’ and it did mediocre,” Lucas, 29, recounted.

“I came back to it about six months later and decided to put a caption on it that they ate edibles with their parents and we tried it out with that, a totally different narrative, and it went super-viral.”

Also Read: Instagram Stories Just Passed 500 Million Daily Users

Doing Things Media, like many other media companies, has grown in large part thanks to repurposing content generated by everyday users of the internet. This budding industry has recently been in the spotlight, with F—Jerry, the wildly popular Instagram account, skewered in the last month for taking jokes and memes and failing to acknowledge their original creators. Barstool Sports was also roundly criticized last week for the same transgression.

Lucas said Doing Things Media doesn’t want to make the same mistake as F—Jerry, where it’s essentially stealing other people’s work. Instead, Lucas and Hailey credit creators for their video and give a “submitted by” shout-out on all Doing Things” Instagram posts.

“We’re definitely well aware of what’s happening with F—Jerry,” Lucas said. “We want people to have an incentive to submit videos to us. That’s kind of what powers the business, and we also want to help them out.

“We grew our whole business with originals memes and content and crediting people, and I think that’s what kind of makes us different from some of the other people in this space,” he added. “We really respect creative voices.”

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Gavin Arvizo, Michael Jackson’s 2003 Accuser, Is Considering Law School, Family Friend Says

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Gavin Arvizo spent his early teens accusing Michael Jackson of molesting him — and trying to refute defense attorneys who said he, his brother and his mother were liars. But the experience may not have soured him on the legal system.

Arvizo, now in his late 20s, is thinking about going to law school, said Louise Palanker, who has known him since childhood. She says the HBO documentary “Leaving Neverland” won’t lure him out of the private life he has sought since the 2005 trial. He has eschewed countless requests for interviews, and the money that would no doubt come from speaking out.

“He doesn’t really want to talk about it right now,” Palanker said. “He just wants to become a man and have a family and a career and not have this be the standout portion of who he is.”

Also Read: ‘A Bargain’: Trump Ally Seeks $31 Million for Neverland as Michael Jackson Doc Drops

Arvizo has pondered a legal career at least since his wedding in 2013, when the Daily Beast that he was working as a paralegal and preparing to take the LSAT.

“He works in sales right now, he has been a teacher in a Catholic school for a while,” Palanker said. “But he’s very interested in business and also in law school. But they would like to start a family.”

The trial ended with Jackson’s acquittal on all counts. Jackson was charged with molesting Arvizo, plying him and his brother, Star, with wine, and conspiring to hold the family against their will.

The trial included testimony from dancer and choreographer Wade Robson that the singer didn’t abuse him as a child, which helped undercut Arvizo’s accusations. Robson is one one of two men in “Leaving Neverland” who now accuse Jackson of years of sexual abuse. He contends in the documentary that Jackson told him to lie, so he did.

Arvizo, now in his late 20s, does not have a publicist and could not be reached for this article. TheWrap asked Palanker if she could relay a request to Arvizo, she declined, saying he does not wish to speak to the media.

The director of “Leaving Neverland,” Dan Reed, recently told British website iNews that he tried to contact Arvizo, but never heard back.

“He really just wants to live his life,” Palanker told TheWrap. “He doesn’t like it when Michael Jackson comes back into the news.”

Also Read: After ‘Leaving Neverland,’ We Need to Reassess Michael Jackson

She said she doesn’t know whether Arvizo has seen “Leaving Neverland,” but said Reed had tried to get  him a link to the movie, since Arvizo does not have HBO.

Palanker, herself a director, writer and producer, met Arvizo around 1999, when he was about nine years old, as part of a mentoring program for underprivileged children run by the Laugh Factory comedy club in Los Angeles.

The trial was a key part of her life, too: It’s where she met her husband, former Santa Barbara Senior Assistant District Attorney, Ron Zonen, who prosecuted the Jackson case. The two met after she’d been called as a witness for the prosecution.

“Gavin is a lifelong friend of mine,” she said. “I was at his wedding and he was at mine. I married the prosecutor from the trial so we feel like Gavin was a pathway to that. He’s an important person in my life.”

Arvizo and his family first met Jackson after Arvizo was diagnosed with cancer in 2000. Jackson, who had learned of Arvizo’s condition, sent him a basket full of toys and later invited him and his family to Neverland Ranch.

In the documentary “Living With Michael Jackson,” Arvizo appeared on camera holding hands with Jackson. The singer said he slept with children, but not in a sexual way.

The program triggered intense speculation and concern because a decade before, Jackson had paid about $20 million to settle an abuse accusation from another boy, Jordie Chandler.

Prosecutors argued that Jackson molested Arvizo after the documentary aired, even as he tried to do damage control.

Authorities interviewed Arvizo, and by the end of 2003, Jackson was charged.

During the trial, Arvizo said the singer gave him alcohol and molested him at the ranch. His description has many similarities to the accounts that Robson and another man, James Safechuckgave 15 years later in “Leaving Neverland.”

In Palanker’ testimony at the trial, she said that Arvizo’s mother, Janet, called her from Neverland at one point and said the family was being held against their will. She said Janet told her: “These people are evil. They’re keeping us.”

But Palanker also testified that she became suspicious when Arvizo’s father repeatedly asked her for money.

Palanker was one of several witnesses who helped the defense make its case that Arvizo’s family had a history of soliciting people for cash. Comedians Jay Leno, Chris Tucker, and George Lopez all testified that they had in fact given money to the Arvizos. (Lopez said he had come to believe that Gavin’s father was more interested in money than helping his son).

Palanker said she had no issues with Janet, who, through marriage, eventually came to have the same name as Michael Jackson’s sister: Janet Jackson.

That was one of many odd things about Janet Jackson, whose behavior on the stand was erratic and hurt the prosecution’s case. She interrupted, offered confusing answers, and scolded jurors.

“I disliked it intensely when she snapped her fingers at us,” said one juror, a woman. She remembered thinking: “Don’t snap your fingers at me, lady.”

Also Read: ‘Leaving Neverland’ Premiere Is HBO’s Third Most-Watched Doc in a Decade

Though Jackson was found not guilty in court, “Leaving Neverland” won’t help his legacy, said Gloria Allred, who briefly represented Chandler.

“Even though there can’t be consequences in the court of law now, there should be consequences in the court of public opinion,” she said.

Radio stations in Canada, New Zealand and Australia have  dropped Jackson’s songs from their playlists. And The Wall Street Journal reported that Sony Music Entertainment, which last year paid $250 million for the rights to distribute the musician’s recordings, could take a big hit on the investment.

Palanker said the documentary was “monumentally important” because it clearly laid out the “seduction of a child and a family.”

“It’s so important that people watch this film so that they understand how this happened,” she said.”And it happened on a grand scale.”

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Son of Ex-Time’s Up CEO Hires Kevin Spacey’s Lawyer to Defend Sexual Assault Accusation

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

The son of former Time’s Up CEO Lisa Borders has enlisted an attorney for Kevin Spacey to defend him against the sexual assault accusations that led to Borders’ resignation from the anti-abuse group.

Borders resigned from Time’s Up this week because of the accusation against her son, Gary “Dijon” Bowden Jr. Time’s Up started in January 2018 in response to accusations of abuse by high-profile Hollywood men, including Spacey.

A rep for Time’s Up referred “all media inquiries to her Attorney Alan Jackson.” Jackson confirmed he represents Bowden. He has denied any inappropriate conduct by his client.

Also Read: Time’s Up CEO Lisa Borders Resigned After Son Accused of Sexual Assault

More than 30 men have accused Spacey of sexual of sexual misconduct, including actor Anthony Rapp, who said Spacey made a sexual advance on him when he was 14. Spacey said he did not remember such an encounter.

Spacey is facing a criminal charge of indecent assault and battery related to a July 2016 encounter between the Academy Award winner and a then-18-year-old employee of a Nantucket, Mass., restaurant. Jackson represented Spacey last month at a court appearance where the actor pleaded not guilty.

Borders abruptly resigned her post this week as Time’s Up first CEO, four months into her job, citing “family concerns that require my singular focus.” As TheWrap reported Thursday, those family concerns were the accusations against Bowden, a self-described healer.

Also Read: Time’s Up President Lisa Borders Resigns After Three Months

According to a person with knowledge of the situation, Borders’ responses in defending her son made her position untenable.

The individual told TheWrap: “Lisa wanted to take action to defend her son and in doing so was in conflict with her role leading an organization deeply rooted in supporting survivors.”

In a statement Thursday, Time’s Up told TheWrap that Borders had informed leaders of the organization about the accusations, and that the departure was amicable.

Also Read: Time’s Up Names WNBA’s Lisa Borders as First CEO and President

Bowden, 36, has a business that offers services ranging from photography and inspirational podcasting to sessions where he pleasures women.

Reiki instructor Celia Gellert, said in a private Facebook that women should stay away from Bowden, according to the L.A. Times. She told the newspaper that she felt “violated” when Bowden, “touched her genitalia, kissed her neck and brushed his erect but clothed penis against her body during the session.”

Also Read: TimesUp Fund Logs 3,000 Complaints Since Launch, Leaders Say at Power Women Breakfast DC (Video)

Gellert filed a police report, according to an individual with knowledge of the situation. She runs a women’s empowerment group in Santa Monica.

Borders was hired by Time’s Up with great fanfare in October from the WNBA, where she was president since 2016. Before that Borders has been a vice president at Coca-Cola and the vice mayor of Atlanta. She was chosen after a broad search for a leader for the organization and was hand-picked by founders Shonda Rhimes, Katie McGrath and Rebecca Goldman.

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Time’s Up President Lisa Borders to Resign

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Time’s Up President Lisa Borders is resigning “to address family concerns,” she announced on Monday.

“As Time’s Up continues to grow, I am proud of the work I have done to shepherd its continued development,” Borders said in a statement. “Unfortunately, it is with deep regret that I must resign from Time’s Up to address family concerns that require my singular focus. I appreciate the opportunity to support this mission and I hope my efforts will continue to resonate.”

The organization’s COO Rebecca Goldman will serve as interim CEO, Time’s Up announced in a statement on Twitter.

Also Read: Time’s Up: Skydance’s John Lasseter Hire ‘Perpetuates a Broken System’

“With gratitude for her work, TIME’S UP accepts and supports Lisa Borders’ decision to resign as President and CEO,” reads the statement. “We know that it is the right decision for Lisa as well as the organization. Our COO, Rebecca Goldman, will serve as interim CEO while we conduct an executive search. We remain steadfast in our mission to create safe, fair, and dignified work for women of all kinds.”

Borders joined Time’s Up in October as the organization’s first ever CEO and president. Borders joined Time’s Up from the WNBA, where she’s been the president since 2016. The longtime executive has also been a vice president at Coca-Cola and was the vice mayor of Atlanta.

Also Read: Time’s Up Entertainment Unveils New Initiative to Promote Minorities in Hollywood

Launched last year behind some of the most high-profile names in Hollywood, Time’s Up has been calling out workplace misconduct in the wake of several accusations against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein and many other hitmakers.

TV producer Shonda Rhimes, actress Kerry Washington, actress Katie McGrath, National Women’s Law Center head Fatima Goss Graves and ad agency head Wendy Clark spearheaded the selection of Borders to lead the organization.

See the two statements below.

Statement from Lisa Borders and TIME’S UP

— TIME’S UP (@TIMESUPNOW) February 18, 2019

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Kicking and Screaming, FX Is Forced to Confront Future in the Stream (Column)

Read on: Variety.

During his network’s presentation at the winter Television Critics Assn. press tour, FX chief John Landgraf made waves — and headlines — by mounting perhaps his most direct criticism yet of Netflix. Landgraf, whose briefings to the press tend to rely h…

How Gronk Got His Head Cut by a Beer Can at Patriots’ Super Bowl Victory Parade (Video)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Three-time Super Bowl champion Rob Gronkowski has a head injury — but don’t panic, this one is from a beer can thrown at the New England Patriots victory parade, not a hit by the L.A. Rams defense.

The tight end, whose 29-yard catch from Tom Brady in Super Bowl LIII was the only one in the red zone for either team, visited the “Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon” on Wednesday night to show off his war wounds.

“The parade, millions of fans showed up to watch you and celebrate you, and you had to go ‘full Gronk’ for them,” Jimmy Fallon marveled.

Also Read: Super Bowl LIII MVP Julian Edelman on the ‘Ups and Downs, Ebbs and Flows of the Season’

“The parade is hands down the best party, it’s the best experience anyone can go through,” Gronkowski, always the MVP of any party, replied. “We had 1.5 million people on the city of Boston, the Patriots Nation is always represented.”

Fallon went on to show a clip of a shirtless, possibly drunk, Gronk catching beers one-handedly while riding a duck boat on Tuesday morning, before breaking out into a full air guitar performance.

“Hold on, I’ve got a story,” the now fully-dressed NFL star said. “There were five of those nipple shots thrown at one time, then five beers are thrown. Everyone in the duck boat is duking and dodging … we’re getting good practice in for next season, then the next thing you know, ‘POW’ — you see that?”

Also Read: Super Bowl LIII Is ‘About Experience vs Youth,’ ESPN’s Mina Kimes and Dianna Russini Say

Gronk then pointed to a cut on his forehead as Fallon had the cameras zoom in around the Lombardi Trophy between them for a better view.

“Full beer can right to the face. I was bleeding all over on the parade on the duck boat. Then my dad is blocking the next shots and karate kicking a beer flying at me.” Thank god Papa Gronk was there to play defense …

Gronk went on to tell Fallon that he wants to set Tom Brady’s daughter up with one of his nephews, and then responded to the often-asked question of whether he’ll be retiring from the NFL this season.

Also Read: Rob Gronkowski Strips Off His Shirt, Flips Steaks on ‘MVP’ Season 2 (Video)

“There’s buzz everywhere that you’re going to be the next Hollywood action star karate kicking beers – you could be the next John Cena or Dwayne Johnson, would you be up for that?”

“First off, I’ve got to see where I’m at. Right after the season, you can’t make a decision, it’s so emotional. You’ve got to settle down and see how your body responds,” Gronkowski said, while explaining that he was supposed to come on the show Monday but had a shot to his quad and it was too painful. “But I know how to bounce back … always come back stronger.”

Watch the interview in the video above, and see Gronkowski and Fallon “crush” Liam Hemsworth and Jessica Williams in a game of “Catchphrase” below.”

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Super Bowl LIII MVP Julian Edelman on the ‘Ups and Downs, Ebbs and Flows of the Season’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Super Bowl LIII MVP Julian Edelman admitted that he’s hasn’t slept since his team won the Super Bowl on Sunday, but that didn’t stop him from hamming it up for the media just hours after the New England Patriots’ victory party shutdown.

“It’s a huge honor to get this award, but honestly, I am just so proud of all these guys that we have this year. The ups and downs that we all had, the ebbs and flows of the season. You play all year to see how the team shapes up, to see how this team grinded and worked this week,” the wide receiver told reporters in a morning press conference on Monday. “When things weren’t at their best, to constantly go out and improve shows that the 2018 New England Patriots are a resilient group and it was unbelievable.”

The MVP honor for his performance that totaled 10 catches for 141 yards in the Patriots’ 13-3 win over the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta came after Edelman missed the first four games of the 2018 season due to a suspension for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Also Read: Super Bowl LIII Is ‘About Experience vs Youth,’ ESPN’s Mina Kimes and Dianna Russini Say

Monday’s MVP trophy presentation also marked the second time in three years that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell had to hand it over to a Patriots player who had started the season off with a four-game suspension.

Two years ago it was Tom Brady getting the award following the Deflategate battle with the NFL that landed him in court and at loggerheads with Goodell.

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Once again, the commissioner had to put on a smile as he praised Edelman, coach Bill Belichick and the Patriots.

“While this is an incredible organization and a team effort, this morning is about the MVP — Julian Edelman — who is now the seventh wide receiver to get that honor,” Goodell told reporters in his introduction. “Well deserved, extraordinary performance and not just last night but his performance postseason has been simply off the charts. I think he has 115 postseason career receptions and is only second to a guy named Jerry Rice, which is pretty good company.”

Also Read: New England Patriots Defeat Los Angeles Rams 13-3 in Underwhelming Super Bowl LIII

Edelman also missed the whole of the 2017 season with a torn ACL, making his MVP honor even more meaningful.

When asked what his struggle against adversity this year meant to him, the sleep-deprived Super Bowl champion replied: “I didn’t really have time to sit back and think about it. I have been trained being in New England to always look at what’s on your plate at that time.

“When you get hurt, you are competing against yourself each day to get your knee better. You are walking one day, jogging one day, cutting one day — those little wins build confidence. You are trying to get back into the flow of things. You’re thinking about winning games and going out trying to contribute,” he said. “Maybe in the next couple of weeks I’ll be able to look back and think about that. But by then we’ll be starting up again!”

Also Read: Super Bowl LIII Early Ratings Fall 5 Percent From Last Year, Lowest Since 2009

Edelman also achieved the seemingly-impossible feat of getting a laugh out of the notoriously serious Belichick.

“I remember going in and seeing Coach Belichick when I was a rookie, by the grace of God, we were walking out at the same time and I’d maybe said three words to him before then as I’d only been on the team for about six months,” he recalled.

“I saw him on the treadmill watching film at about 10 o’clock at night and went ‘Coach, you sure like football, huh?’ And he goes, ‘It sure beats being a plumber, see you tomorrow,’” Edelman said, doing his best Belichick imitation.

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“At the time, he was a three-time Super Bowl-winning head coach … when you see guys do that, it’s going to rub off.”

When it was his turn to take to the podium, Belichick shared a slightly different version of events. “First of all, I think Julian might have misquoted me as I have a ton of respect for plumbers. I can barely turn the water on myself and those people do a great job. I think I said it ‘beats working,’” he laughed.

Now having won his sixth Super Bowl as head coach of the Patriots, which is more than any other in NFL history, Belichick went on to heap praise on all his players.

Also Read: Tony Romo’s CBS Microphone Fails in First Quarter of Super Bowl LIII

“I just can’t say enough about our football team, certainly Julian epitomizes the work ethic, the mental toughness, the physical toughness, determination, will, the ability to perform under pressure. We have so many guys who do that well in so many different ways,” he said.

The Patriots now get to celebrate yet another Super Bowl victory with a parade through Boston on Tuesday.

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Super Bowl LIII Halftime Show: No Kaepernick Reference or Outkast Reunion – But Some ‘SpongeBob SquarePants’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

The Super Bowl LIII Halftime Show was about as exciting as the first half of Super Bowl LIII. Considering the current score is 3-0, you get what we’re saying there.

For those who flipped over to “WWE Halftime Heat” or the “Puppy Bowl” at the midpoint of Sunday’s big game, allow us to catch you up. For starters, no, there were no Colin Kaepernick references. Also, with no surprise appearance by rapper Andre 3000, there wasn’t an Outkast reunion for host-city Atlanta to lose it over.

But what did we get? Well, rapper Travis Scott was introduced by a “SpongeBob SquarePants” vignette. So there’s that.

We also got a handful of headliner Maroon 5 songs, some bars out of Scott and Big Boi, one cool car, and a whole bunch of sky-lantern drones with personalized messages on them.

Also Read: Tony Romo’s CBS Microphone Fails in First Quarter of Super Bowl LIII

Singer Rihanna and rapper Cardi B both said they declined the halftime gig in support of former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who many people believe was blackballed from the NFL for kneeling during the national anthem. Kaepernick, who was subsequently joined in the act by some other players, said he took a knee before his games in protest over police mistreatment of black youth.

The second half to Super Bowl LIII is underway on CBS.

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Super Bowl LIII Is ‘About Experience vs Youth,’ ESPN’s Mina Kimes and Dianna Russini Say

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

With just a few hours to go before Super Bowl LIII is underway, and Las Vegas oddsmakers have the New England Patriots are 2.5 point favorites over the L.A. Rams.

At 41, Tom Brady is heading into his ninth Super Bowl, while 24-year-old Jared Goff at the big game for the first time in his short career.

That will be a huge factor in how they will handle the pressure from both the Super Bowl itself, and the circus that has surrounded it in Atlanta all week, according to the hosts of ESPN’s Twitter show “Mina and Dianna – LIVE! from Atlanta.”

Also Read: Super Bowl LIII: The Scene From Atlanta (Photos)

“This is really about experience vs. youth, and I am going to give the nod to experience just knowing how much it takes to handle everything leading up to the game,” reporter and anchor Dianna Russini told TheWrap. Having had non-stop media or team obligations since they arrived a week ago, “some of these players are even getting bored,” she added.

When asked if we’re going to see a changing of the guard with the Patriots handing their NFL dynasty over to Goff and the Rams, ESPN senior writer, radio host and television commentator Mina Kimes said: “Sadly not. For this game in particular, most people are picking the Patriots.

“They really don’t even have a new storyline, weirdly most people thought Brady was going to retire last year than this year,” she told TheWrap.

Having explicitly said that there’s “zero chance” that Super Bowl LIII is going to be his last game, Brady will bring his almost two decades of experience under the spotlights down on the young Rams roster as they prepare for their first championship game.

Also Read: Super Bowl LIII Preview: Will Rams-Patriots Deliver a Record TV Audience for CBS?

“Think of the anything you’ve done for the first time, like driving. Remember the first time you drove and just how much better you were a month later? The Patriots are coming in with all this experience of just handling the Super Bowl,” Russini explained. “I think that is going to help them in the end. Once you understand the trail, it gets a lot easier — you have the knowledge, you know what you need to do.

“They are the best at knowing it and sticking with their plan and not getting distracted,” she added.

Also Read: Super Bowl LIII: Here’s Every Ad That Brands Have Dropped So Far Before the Big Game (Updating)

A lot of that comes from Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, who engineered that historic comeback against the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI when the Patriots were down 21-3 at halftime.

“What fascinates me is whether Sean McVay can make the necessary changes that Belichick does,” Kimes said of the Rams 32-year-old head coach, who both ESPN experts believe could be the “next Bill Belichick.

Also Read: Turner Sports Signs Multi-Year Deal With Alliance of American Football

As for Goff, “he has been a good quarterback but not a great quarterback. He was only phenomenal in one game and that was against the Vikings,” Kimes said.

We’ll find out if these and many other predictions are true when Super Bowl LIII kicks off from Mercedes-Benz Stadium at 6:30 p.m. ET live on CBS.

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New England Patriots to Face Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII

‘Bohemian Rhapsody,’ ‘The Favourite’ Win Top Awards from the American Cinema Editors

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

“Bohemian Rhapsody” and “The Favourite” have been named the best-edited feature films of 2018 at the American Cinema Editors’ ACE Eddie Awards, which took place on Friday night at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

“Bohemian Rhapsody” won in the Best Edited Feature Film (Dramatic) category, while “The Favourite” topped the Best Edited Feature Film (Comedy) category.

Since the ACE Eddie for feature film was split into separate drama and comedy or musical categories 19 years ago, the winner in the drama category has gone on to win the Academy Award for film editing 13 times, and the Best Picture Oscar seven times. The winner in the comedy or musical category has only won the Oscar in those categories once, when “Chicago” did it in 2003.

Also Read: ‘The Favourite’: Oscar-Nominated Editor, Production Designer Explain Why Film is Yorgos Lanthimos’ Most Accessible

But over the last five years, the two groups have diverged, with the ACE Eddie winner only winning the editing Oscar once, and never winning Best Picture. This year, all five of the Oscar editing nominees were also nominated for the ACE Eddie Award, as were seven of the eight Best Picture nominees.

“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” won the award for the best-edited animated film, while “Free Solo” won the prize for the editing of a documentary film.

In the television categories, the winners included “Atlanta,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” “Killing Eve,” “Bodyguard,” “Escape at Dannemora” and “Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown.”

Also Read: SAG Awards 2019: The Complete Winners List

Also during the ceremony, director Guillermo del Toro received the Golden Eddie Filmmaker of the Year Award, while Lifetime Career Achievement Awards went to editors Jerrold L. Ludwig and Craig McKay.

The list of winners:

Best Edited Feature Film (Dramatic): “Bohemian Rhapsody,” John Ottman, ACE
Best Edited Feature Film (Comedy): “The Favourite,” Yorgos Mavropsaridis, ACE
Best Edited Animated Feature Film: “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” Robert Fisher, Jr.

Best Edited Documentary (Feature): “Free Solo,” Bob Eisenhardt, ACE
Best Edited Documentary (Non-Theatrical): “Robin Williams: Come Inside My Mind,” Greg Finton, ACE & Poppy Das, ACE

Also Read: ‘Free Solo’ Sets Documentary Record at Indie Box Office

Best Edited Comedy Series for Commercial Television: “Atlanta”: “Teddy Perkins,” Kyle Reiter
Best Edited Comedy Series for Non-Commercial Television: “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”: “Simone,” Kate Sanford, ACE
Best Edited Drama Series for Commercial Television: “Killing Eve”: “Nice Face,” Gary Dollner, ACE
Best Edited Drama Series for Non-Commercial Television: “Bodyguard”: “Episode 1,” Steve Singleton
Best Edited Miniseries or Motion Picture for Television: “Escape at Dannemora”: “Better Days,” Malcolm Jamieson & Geoffrey Richman ACE
Best Edited Non-Scripted Series: “Anthony Bourdain – Parts Unknown”: “West Virginia,” Hunter Gross, ACE

Best Student Editing: Marco Gonzalez, Boston University

Golden Eddie Filmmaker of the Year Award: Guillermo del Toro
Lifetime Career Achievement Award: Jerrold L. Ludwig, ACE
Lifetime Career Achievement Award: Craig McKay, ACE

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‘Bohemian Rhapsody,’ ‘The Favourite,’ ‘Atlanta’ Win ACE Editing Awards

Read on: Variety.

Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” and period romp “The Favourite” walked away with top film honors at the 69th annual ACE Eddie Awards Friday night. Both films were nominated for the film editing Oscar last week. In the ACE drama…

Super Bowl Parties 2019: TheWrap’s Ultimate Guide to the Hottest Invites in Atlanta (Updating)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(This preview focuses on private, invite-only events aimed at an industry audience. For events open to the general public, scroll to the bottom)

Anyone who’s anyone is heading south to Atlanta Super Bowl weekend for a party scene that is guaranteed to be hotter than last year in Minneapolis — and while we don’t just mean the weather, thankfully it is going to be well above freezing this time around.

The New England Patriots (playing in the Super Bowl for the third consecutive year) and the Los Angeles Rams are set to face off in Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on Feb. 3, with Gladys Knight singing the national anthem and Maroon 5 performing at halftime.

But long before the highly-wagered on coin toss is flipped to start the game, the Hollywood of the South will host some of the biggest names in movies, entertainment, music, and, oh yeah, sports.

Also Read: New England Patriots to Face Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII

TheWrap will be there, once again, bringing behind-the-scenes insight from the hottest parties, the most exclusive events and, of course, the Super Bowl itself, which airs live on CBS.

Check out all the sought-after invites for the weekend of Jan. 31-Feb. 3 leading up to kick off at 3:30 p.m. PT/6:30 p.m. ET on Super Bowl Sunday.

Also Read: Super Bowl LIII Preview: Will Rams-Patriots Deliver a Record TV Audience for CBS?

Bootsy Bellows’ Big Game Experience, Thursday, Jan. 31-Sunday, Feb. 3, 11 p.m.
RAVINE ATL, 1021 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta

Hollywood hot spot Bootsy Bellows is partnering with Miami super club E11EVEN MIAMI for the seventh annual Big Game Experience headlined by Gucci Mane — who performed at the Patriots’ post party after their Super Bowl LII loss last year — plus celebrity DJs Tiësto and Kaskade. The party extravaganza spreads over four nights this year, and is hosted by L.A. night spot gurus John Terzian and Brian Toll, with The h.wood Group. The team recently opened swanky sports bar 40 LOVE in West Hollywood, which has rapidly become a favorite among cool football fans and celebrities alike. Past guests at Bootsy’s bashes include Jamie Foxx, Baker Mayfield, G-Eazy, Tyga, 21 Savage, Fergie, John Hamm, Justin Bieber and Odell Beckham Jr.

Also Read: Patriots-Chiefs Is CBS’s Most-Watched AFC Championship Game in 8 Years

Barstool Sports, Friday, Feb. 1, 6:30 p.m. 
Coca-Cola Roxy, 800 Battery Ave. SE, Atlanta
Barstool Sports aren’t pulling any punches as usual with their “Rough N’ Rowdy” amateur boxing brawl on Friday night. “El Presidente” Dave Portnoy puts his money where his mouth hosting the hands-on event that’s sure to be wilder than a Buffalo Bills Mafia tailgate. The decks will be manned by DJ Dante (a.k.a. Rob “Gronk” Gronkowski’s favorite mix master) and cocktails come courtesy of New Amsterdam Vodka. Those not lucky enough to be there in person can pre-order the four-hour PPV fight on

Also Read: YouTube TV Expands Nationwide Ahead of Super Bowl

The Thuzio Party, Friday, Feb. 1, 7 p.m. 
SweetWater Brewery, 195 Ottley Drive, Atlanta 
Having co-hosted with uber-agent Drew Rosenhaus in recent years, sport entertainment company Thuzio is teaming up with David Johnson and Adrian Peterson for a Friday evening bash at the SweetWater Brewery.

ONE37pm and VaynerSports Annual Emerging Kings Party, Friday, Feb. 1, 9 p.m.
The Fairmont, 1429 Fairmont Ave NW, Atlanta
NFL agency VaynerSports has teamed up with lifestyle brand ONE37pm for their annual Emerging Kings event on Friday night. The party features the talents of YG, Tee Grizzley, Lil Keed, Crespo and DJ E Feezy, with a special performance by rapper TI. A bunch of NFL greats represented by VaynerSports are also expected to attend, including Allen Robinson, Derrick Morgan, Kyle Allen and Josh Jackson. Look out for Hall of Famers Ed Reed, Ray Lewis, and Warren Moon as well. The hosts will also spotlight athletes honored by ONE37pm’s Most Entrepreneurial Athletes, an editorial program that launched in early January.

Leather & Laces Spectacular, Friday, Feb. 1 and Saturday, Feb. 2, 10 p.m.
BELIEVE, 181 Ralph David Abernathy, Atlanta 

Currently in its 16th year, the Leather & Laces party has become a Super Bowl weekend staple and will now stretch over two nights. Rapper extraordinaire and party-rocker Flo Rida is back as the headliner on Friday, with the help of guest DJ Dallas Austin. Saturday night will see NASCAR Sprint Champion Kyle Busch partying with Victoria’s Secret models … which pretty much sums up the scene at Super Bowl. Held at BELIEVE in downtown Atlanta, the 30,000 square foot space will include “International Model Night” and “The Wish Lounge,” plus a floor-to-ceiling video wall, and quintessential Leather & Laces ultra-seek décor.

Fanatics, Saturday, Feb. 2, 12-4 p.m.
College Football Hall of Fame, 250 Marietta St NW, Atlanta
Appealing to fans of every NFL team, Fanatics (purveyor of authentic official licensed sports merchandise) is hosting an afternoon event featuring rapper Meek Mill. Past attendees include Patriots owner Robert Kraft (who’s a big Mill fan!), Bon Jovi, Wiz Khalifa, Odell Beckham Jr., Alex Rodriguez, Alyssa Milano and Shaquille O’Neal, many of whom are expected to make an appearance this year.

Wheels Up 5th Annual Super Bowl Party, Saturday, Feb. 2, 1-5 p.m.
Secret location TBA on invite
Many VIP fans will no doubt be using Wheels Up’s private jet service to fly to Atlanta in style for Super Bowl weekend, and the aviation company always rewards its members with one of the best daytime parties of the year. This year’s hosts will see JJ Watt, Scott Van Pelt, Steve Smith, Rich Eisen, Mike Tirico, Kirk Herbstreit, Dan Quinn, Larry Fitzgerald, Sam Darnold, Ron Rivera, Russell Wilson, Mike Golic, Kevin Harvick, Mark Teixeira and Larry Fitzgerald share their football know-how with the crowd, before Kelley James performs on stage. Sponsored by BMW, Bose, Citron, Rao’s, Ture Fusion, Diageo, look out for attendees wearing Wheels Up swag around Atlanta for the rest of the weekend (and possibly the whole year!).

Also Read: Michael C Hall to Star in Broadway Musical of Skittles Super Bowl Ad (Video)

DirecTV Super Saturday Night, Saturday, Feb. 2, 8:30 p.m.
Atlantic Station, 1371 Market St. NW, Atlanta
With past performances by Taylor Swift, Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce, the DirecTV Super Saturday Night has often brought bigger names to the stage than the actual Super Bowl halftime show. This year they please all the rock fans out there with the Foo Fighters. Supporting Dave Grohl and co. are hip-hop duo Run the Jewels. Expect anyone who is anyone to be there, with last year’s VIP suite looking like an NFL Hall of Fame ceremony with the likes of Peyton and Eli Manning, Dak Prescott and Tim Tebow all hanging out together.

Sports Illustrated’s Saturday Night Takeover, Saturday, Feb. 2
College Football Hall of Fame, 250 Marietta St NW, Atlanta
After being absent from the Super Bowl party circuit since 2016 in San Francisco, Sports Illustrated is back with a vengeance, teaming up with Talent Resources Sports to host a Saturday night takeover at the illustrious College Football Hall of Fame. The venue in Atlanta’s hip entertainment district will be transformed by award-winning agency MGE. Snoop Dogg and Lil Wayne will headline, with DJ IRIE and Dallas Austin also performing. Guests can also bid on unique silent auction items including exclusive sports and entertainment memorabilia such as Steve Young’s 49ers helmet, a Prince signed electric guitar, a Peyton Manning Super Bowl game helmet and the 1999 Rams Lombardi trophy. All proceeds will go to a charity TBA.

Also Read: Tom Brady on Why He’ll Keep Playing Football: ‘Once You Stop, You’re Done’ (Video)

Maxim Big Game Experience, Saturday, Feb. 2
Maxim always aims to impress on Super Bowl eve, and this year is no different, with Atlanta native Future headlining their marquee party. “I can’t wait to show out for my city at The Maxim Big Game Experience,” the multi-platinum hip-hop artist promised in the party announcement last month. “Atlanta ain’t ready for the vibes we bringing!” Future will be joined by Jamie Foxx and Diplo on stage at the 19,000 square feet of event space at The Fairmont, while guests should expect Maxim’s usual A-list talent and unique activations, which in past years has included Justin Bieber and VIP driving experiences.

Rolling Stone’s Big Game Bash, Saturday, Feb. 2, 10 p.m.
The Goat Farm, 1200 Foster St NW, Atlanta

Before the G.O.A.T. Tom Brady takes to the field against the Rams on Sunday, Rolling Stone will be hosting it’s annual Super Bowl bash at The Goat Farm, which is actually a cool performance venue nestled among the ruins of an old cotton gin factory. The party presented by Mercedes-Benz and LDV Hospitality features special performances from Ludacris, Young Thug, Gunna and Lil Keed, with Questlove DJing a set. Ciara and Russell Wilson are among the stars expected to attend.

Maxim Pregame Experience, Sunday, Feb. 3, noon-5 p.m.
STATS Complex, 300 Marietta St NW, Atlanta
Maxim proves that they don’t just cater to night owls by also holding a party bright and early on Sunday, too. Hosted by Pro Football Hall of Famer and NFL Network analyst Deion Sanders, the festivities will feature DJ Snoopadelic (a.k.a. Snoop Dogg) on the decks with a special DJ set and performance. Partnering with secondary ticket marketplace TickPick, and produced by Lagardère Sports & Entertainment/Rooftop2 Productions, the daytime bash will take over the STATS Complex, a 30,000 square foot-space filled with flat-screen TVs, tables, dance floors and a rooftop deck that’s located half-a-mile from Mercedes-Benz Stadium so that those lucky enough to have a game ticket can just walk on over. “Certainly, Deion Sanders and Snoop know how to host a party,” TickPick co-founder and co-CEO Brett Goldberg said. Well, duh.

Also Read: Tom Brady, LeBron James Lead 2018 ESPYS Nominations

Ticketed/Open to the Public

Bud Light Super Bowl Music Fest, Thursday, Jan. 31-Saturday, Feb. 2
State Farm Arena, 1 State Farm Dr, Atlanta
As always Budweiser are bringing the party atmosphere all weekend with the Bud Light Super Bowl Music Fest hosted at State Farm Arena by On Location Experiences and Bud Light. The festivities kick off Thursday night with the EA Sports Bowl featuring Lil Jon, Ludacris, Quality Control?’s, Migos, Lil Yachty & Lil Baby and Metro Boomin. Next up is Super Friday with Aerosmith and Post Malone, and then Saturday closes out with the Bud Light Super Bowl Eve featuring Bruno Mars & Cardi B. Tickets and info on all the events can be found here.

Shaq’s Fun House Super Bowl, Friday, Feb. 1, 9 p.m.
The Battery, Atlanta
The gentle giant of the NBA is hosting his own party zone when Shaq’s Fun House takes over the Battery on Friday night. Diplo, Tiesto, Mijos and T-Pain are all helping the big fella celebrate. Sadly, don’t expect to see a repeat of Gronk danceing on top of Shaq’s shoulders like at Miami’s Ultra Festival, as the Patriots tight end will be having a quiet night in preparing for Sunday’s game. Tickets and VIP packages can be purchased on StubHub.

StubHub Annual Game-Day Fan Event: ATL Tailgate, Sunday, Feb. 3
State Farm Arena, 1 State Farm Dr, Atlanta
As thousands of fans clamor to get a last minute ticket Sunday morning, the world’s biggest ticket reseller, StubHub, hosts it’s annual game-day fan event at State Farm Arena adjacent to Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The tailgate will serve up on-theme food and drink; oversized games including cornhole and beer pong; face painting and team merchandise to get game-ready, meet-and-greets and football toss with NFL legends. Emmanuel Sanders, Dan Fouts, Ryan Shazier, Kordell Stewart and Mark Brunell are all expected to be on hand to toss a pigskin around or sign autographs.  On Jan. 20, StubHub launched the industry’s first 3D-immersive ticket-buying experience for the Big Game in the StubHub iOS mobile app, letting buyers can get a real-life look at a view of the entire stadium, including the seat view from any row,  so they can ”try before they buy.”

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#MeToo Starts 2019 With Milestones, From ‘Surviving R Kelly’ to Kevin Spacey’s Charges

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

After suffering a few setbacks in 2018, the #MeToo movement is starting 2019 with a run of milestones, from the new attention paid to R Kelly to the criminal charges against Kevin Spacey.

This year has already seen Kevin Spacey going to court to face a criminal charge; CBS choosing veteran producer Susan Zirinsky to be first the woman to lead the its news division; prosecutors in Chicago and Atlanta investigating accusations raised in Lifetime’s “Surviving R Kelly” documentary, and new sexual harassment protection laws, inspired by #MeToo, taking effect in 11 states.

The victories provide new inspiration to activists who suffered through Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court in the fall, despite accusations of sexual misconduct. (He denied them.) Activists were also disappointed and angry after The New York Times reported that Asia Argento, one of #MeToo’s most prominent voices, paid $380,000 to a young man who accused her of sexually assaulting him when he was 17. (She also denied any wrongdoing.)

Also Read: Alyssa Milano Calls for Accountability, Rehabilitation ‘Protocol’ Amid John Lasseter Backlash

“There have been moments that have not been helpful to the movement, and I have no doubt there will be more,” Alyssa Milano, who helped popularize #MeToo, told TheWrap. “There is not going to be a perfect movement. S— is going to get broke and I think there will some small moments that we see as setback.”

“Surviving R Kelly” detailed accusations of abuse and sexual misconduct against the singer starting in the ’90s. It also looked into the circumstances surrounding his acquittal on 2002 child pornography charges. Kelly’s attorney, Steve Greenberg, did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but denied the accusations in an interview with The Associated Press.

Some radio stations have stopped playing R Kelly’s music, and an Illinois concert was canceled.

“Lifetime took a risk that was brilliant and brave,” said #MeToo founder Tarana Burke, who was featured in the docuseries. “It was exactly what we need to bring this to the attention of the masses.”

The year began with a huge, systemic victory for the #MeToo movement, but also a sign that activists still  have differences to iron out.

Besides the new anti-harassment laws that took effect Jan. 1, California has passed a new law requiring women to be on corporate boards by the end of this year.

“What we’re seeing is a sisterhood forming all around the world,” actress Rosanna Arquette, who was one of the first to accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct, told TheWrap. “We have #MeToo in India now.”

But some #MeToo activists were puzzled by a video released by TimesUp on New Year’s Day. Hollywood activists started TimesUp in part to respond to the issues raised by the #MeToo movement, which caught fire in 2017 after numerous women accused Weinstein of offenses ranging from harassment to rape. (He has denied any non-consensual sex.)

The TimesUp video raised eyebrows because it failed to include a single Weinstein accuser. A TimesUp statement said in a statement: “The cultural reckoning we’re experiencing today would not be possible without the brave survivors who came forward and told their stories through the #MeToo movement.”

Also Read: Lady Gaga Apologizes for Past R Kelly Collaboration, Pulls Song From iTunes

Some news has contained positive and negative elements for #MeToo. Last week, former Pixar boss John Lasseter, who was ousted over accusations of inappropriate touching and kissing, scored a high-profile job with Skydance Animation. (Lasseter admitted to “missteps” that made employees feeling “disrespected and uncomfortable”).

TimesUp said in a statement that the hiring “endorses and perpetuates a broken system that allows powerful men to act without consequence.”

Women in Animation president Marge Dean said on the group’s Facebook page: “The single biggest effect of the events last year is that we saw men experiencing consequences for their bad behavior. The Lasseter decision seems to have weakened that giant step forward, and I felt panic that our progress was being undermined.”

But Skydance’s handling of the situation indicated it was at least aware of the problems raised by Lassiter’s hiring. The company held town halls to address it, and Skydance CEO David Ellison released a statement that promised, in part, that Lassiter had “given his assurance that he will comport himself in a wholly professional manner.”

Spacey also attempted something of a comeback near the start of the New Year: On Christmas Eve, on the same day Massachusetts officials announced he would face a felony assault charge — he is accused of groping an 18-year-old’s genitals in a restaurant — Spacey released a video of himself as his “House of Cards” character, Frank Underwood.

He chided viewers not to believe he was guilty of anything, adding: “You want me back.”

But the video was widely condemned, and Spacey’s next public appearance was at a Massachusetts courthouse on Jan. 7. Spacey entered a plea of not guilty.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Almost Half of All Men Toppled by #MeToo Have Been Replaced by Women

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Gucci Mane, French Montana, Tiesto Tapped to Perform Super Bowl Weekend

Read on: Variety.

Gucci Mane, French Montana, Tiësto and Kaskade are among the artists headed to Atlanta at the end of the month as part of Super Bowl weekend festivities in the city. The four performers will be playing at The H.wood Group’s annual Bootsy Bellows …