1. “Yasiin Bey, a.k.a. Mos Def, cancels U.S. tour amid ’legal’ wrangles.” The rapper, who now lives in South Africa, has decided not to come back to his native US for ’immigration/legal’ reasons.
“The rapper Mos Def, now known as Yasiin Bey, has cancelled an upcoming tour of the United States, with promoters citing ’legal’ issues. The Together music festival in Boston wrote on its website: ’We regret to inform you that due to immigration/legal issues Yasiin Bey is unable to enter back into the United States and his upcoming US tour has been canceled.’ The details of the issues were not specified. Bey no longer lives in the US, having moved to South Africa. He recently told Rolling Stone about the move: ’I lived in Brooklyn 33 years of my life. I thought I’d be buried in that place. And around seven years ago, I was like, you know, “I gotta go, I gotta leave.” It’s very hard to leave. And I lived in a lot of places: Central America, North America, Europe for a while. And I came to Cape Town in 2009 and it just hit me. I was like, “Yeah.” I know when a good vibe gets to you. And, you know, I thought about this place every day from when I left.’”
2. ”Fast & Furious 7 Insurance Claim Could Reach Record-Breaking $50 Million.” Universal—using face-replacement technology and the late Paul Walker’s brothers to finish the film—is in a negotiation to get reimbursed as the costs soar past $250 million.
“When Paul Walker was killed in November in the midst of shooting Fast & Furious 7, it was clear the actor’s untimely death could trigger by far the largest insurance claim in Hollywood history. That now appears to be the case as the project is undergoing an effects-packed 13-week shoot that will culminate in July with an enormous crowd scene using 600 people in the town of Rosamond, near Bakersfield, Calif. But according to a source with knowledge of the situation, there is growing tension between Universal Pictures and its insurer, Fireman’s Fund, over the size of a record-smashing claim in the ballpark of $50 million.”
3. “Cannes Diary, Day 8: The Oldster, the Hipster, and the Return of the Director of The Artist.” Wesley Morris on Goodbye to Language, Bird People, and Mommy.
“I don’t know how Xavier Dolan doesn’t stand accused of serving gorgon after gorgon in at least every other movie—at least by me. [Suzanne] Clément practically detonated Laurence Anyways, which is about a woman who turns her husband’s sex change into Armageddon. But like Douglas Sirk, Rainer Fassbinder, and Pedro Almodóvar before him, Dolan has the talent and sensitivity to wed cinema to neurotic exaggeration. Mommy features the most acting of all the films here, and a lot of it’s the best. There’s vividness to his narcissists and humanity in the cartoons. He knows where the moral lines are and leaves most of them untransgressed.”
4. “Waving His Wand at Beowulf.” J.R.R. Tolkien’s translation of Beowulf is published.
“There’s more to J. R. R. Tolkien than wizards and hobbits. The author of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit was also an Oxford University professor specializing in languages like Old Norse and Old English. Beowulf was an early love, and a kind of Rosetta Stone to his creative work. His study of the poem, which he called ’this greatest of the surviving works of ancient English poetic art,’ informed his thinking about myth and language. But Tolkien was skeptical of converting this Old English poem into modern English. In a 1940 essay, ’On Translating Beowulf,’ he wrote that turning Beowulf into ’plain prose’ could be an ’abuse.’”
5. “Mykki Blanco Arrested in Portugal ’For Being Gay.’” “The world ain’t a fair place, and the idea of a young successful black guy doesn’t always fly everywhere.”
“I was swindled, by the Portuguese police department for being a gay black tourist that is the only explanation for this situation. I had literally just got off of a plane was in the airport on my way to the art gallery I am currently doing a residency at and I was taken advantage of by the Portuguese police. More than an act of racism and prejudice or even homophobia ( which were all 3 factors) I realized that class matters and that an upwardly mobile black man isn’t something people always want to see.”
Video of the Day: Woody Allen’s Magic in the Moonlight gets an official trailer:
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