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Category: Jack Black

Eva Longoria, Judd Apatow do a fundraising dinner with Obama

Inside Obama's most recent, Hollywood-heavy fundraiser

President Obama swung through Los Angeles on Monday, and though his visits inspire groans over traffic jams, he did manage to lure a few showbiz heavyweights out of the house.

A fundraising dinner was held at West Hollywood's Fig & Olive in the president's honor, fetching $35,000 for two seats. Price of admission included some words from First Lady Michelle Obama's husband, an introduction from Jeffrey Katzenberg and a lovely "Desperate" housewife.

Eva Longoria indeed came to dine, as did funnyman Jack Black, Danny DeVito and Rhea Pearlman, music man Quincy Jones and California Gov. Jerry Brown.

"He inherited a crashing economy and two wars .... Yet he kept us moving forward," Katzenberg said in his opening remarks, according to a guest.

"We must keep fighting for him so he can keep fighting for us," he added.

Details on the menu and wine were not released, but Fig & Olive boasts a primarily Mediterranean menu. For you foodies: Chef Pascal Lorange served all dishes with olive oil in place of butter and cream.

A far cry from that Chicago pizza, eh POTUS?

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— Matt Donnelly
twitter.com/MattDonnelly

Photos: Eva Longoria, left, President Obama and Judd Apatow. Credits: Mario Anzuoni / Reuters, left; Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times, center; Jason Merritt/Getty Images, right.



Prince William and Kate to meet Nicole Kidman, Jennifer Lopez and more at BAFTA bash

Prince William and Kate in Canada

This post has been corrected. See the note below for details.

Canada has given Prince William and Catherine, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, among the finest that nation has to offer. So what is Hollywood going to hand over?

Movie stars, natch, with BAFTA's "Brits to Watch" event set deliver some of the best in the business to greet the newlywed royals Saturday at the Belasco in downtown L.A. William was named president of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts in February 2010.

Jennifer Lopez and husband Marc Anthony, Nicole Kidman, Tom Hanks and Jack Black are rumored to have sent in RSVPs.

As have Kristen Chenoweth, Dana Delany, Ginnifer Goodwin and "Dancing With the Stars" pro Derek Hough, according to E! Online.

Will and Kate will travel from Santa Barbara's polo grounds on Saturday to downtown L.A.'s Belasco Theater for the event, which is to highlight emerging British talent in film. 

[For the record, 5:45 p.m. July 7: This post originally said the BAFTA event would be in Culver City; it will be held in downtown L.A., with the royals heading to Culver City on Sunday to participate in a hiring fair and service project for military veterans and their families.]

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-- Matt Donnelly
Twitter.com/MattDonnelly

Photo: Prince William and Catherine, the duke and duchess of Cambridge, wear the sweaters of the Canadian Rangers after being made honorary members on Tuesday near Blatchford Lake. Credit: Arthur Edwards / Getty Images



'Kung Fu Panda 2' movie premiere: Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Seth Rogen laugh it up [Video]

Jack Black at 'Kung Fu Panda 2' premiere

Kungfupandagalleryslide Jack Black
described what it was like to find his "inner panda" at the "Kung Fu Panda 2" premiere at Grauman's Chinese Theatre on Sunday morning. Amid a carnival on Hollywood Boulevard that resembled an inflatable Shanghai, with an endless McDonald's breakfast buffet, Black displayed his animated Zen alongside co-stars Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu and James Hong (who was wearing a handmade noodle-bowl hat).

Also on the carpet: Brad Pitt, Dennis Haysbert, Danny McBride, Jean-Claude Van Damme, composer Hans Zimmer, screenwriters Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger, and director Jennifer Yuh Nelson.

The sequel to the popular animated film, about fat kung fu panda prodigy Po (Black) from a noodle-making family, delves deeper into the cuddly hero's psyche and into adoption themes, which resonated with Jolie (tigress) and her family, many of whom are adopted.

"I saw it with all my children ... and they just loved it," she said. "Nothing was surprising to them, it just made them feel good that Po was also like them."

Black, on the other hand, was content to simply goof around. Striking kung fu pose after pose and waving amiably at fans lined up along the carpet, he joked that working in 3-D for the film was no different than his everyday life.

"I guess I'm always in 3-D," he said. "We're in 3-D right now."

The last to wander amiably down the carpet was a very jovial Hoffman (Shifu), who revealed that he had a hard time finding the requisite inner peace required to make the movie until he had to go to work after having a root canal.

"I finally found inner peace," he said. "Not from the root canal. From the drugs."

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-- Jessica Gelt

Photo: Jack Black at the "Kung Fu Panda 2" premiere. Credit: Kevin Winter / Getty Images. Left photo: Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. Credit: Matt Sayles / Associated Press


Jack Black on hanging out with Angelina Jolie, killing Shirley MacLaine

Jack Black talks his friendship with Angelina Jolie

For more than a week, Angelina Jolie and Jack Black have been flooding websites and magazines with their cutesy promotional stint hyping "Kung Fu Panda 2" at the Cannes International Film Festival.

The Ministry caught up with Black on Tuesday at the L.A. fundraiser "Playlist for the A-List," a celebrity karaoke jam for UNICEF, where he expanded on (or rather, clarified the details of) his relationship with Brad Pitt's life partner.

"We get along, it's always cool to hang out," he said, acknowledging that he and Jolie are something of strange bedfellows. 

For starters, they didn't share the same mode of transport to Cannes. Jolie and Pitt have their estate, Chateau Miraval, in the south of France, from which they traveled to glamorous film festival. 

Black was flown out on what he called "the Katzenberg Express," on the dime of DreamWorks honcho Jeffrey Katzenberg

"She and Brad have a place out there. I was not over there, I guess it's like an hour away from Cannes, otherwise I'm sure I would've been invited," he cracked.

The Ministry asked Black, after his work and publicity with Jolie on two "Kung Fu Panda" films, plus "Shark Tale" in 2004, what he thinks is the biggest misconception about her? Following a pause so long we feared he would whip out a "Nacho Libre" move on us, he simply said, "I don't know her that well."

It was a moment of refreshing honesty in a media cycle that tends to pin lifelong-friend status on stars who spend such fleeting time with one another.

Talk turned to his upcoming projects, particularly "Bernie" -- a film in which he plays a small-town mortician who sparks a friendship with a widow played by Shirley MacLaine. Black's character kills MacLaine's, then goes to great lengths to convince townspeople that she's still alive.

"I think it's my best work," Black said. 

And what was it like to kill the legendary MacLaine?

"Heavy," he said.

RELATED:

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-- Matt Donnelly
Twitter.com/MattDonnelly

Photo: Jack Black and Angelina Jolie smile for the cameras at the Cannes International Film Festival. Credit: Martin Bureau / AFP/Getty Images


'Gulliver's Travels' premiere: Jack Black, Emily Blunt, Jason Segel brave the rain

Gulliver's Travels premiere

The "Gulliver's Travels" premiere in Hollywood on Saturday was proof that it never rains in California — or at least proof that it never rains on a red carpet in California, thanks to those big ol' tents they put up in a pinch.

Jack Black at the Gulliver's Travels premiere Star Jack Black was joined by cast members Emily Blunt, Jason Segel and T.J. Miller outside Grauman's Chinese Theater to launch the comedy, in which Black plays a travel writer bound for Bermuda who winds up on the island of Lilliput instead.

Black, accompanied by wife Tanya Haden, fittingly showed up in a T-shirt reading, "I see small people." Click the photo of him at right for more pictures from the red carpet.

Speaking of small people, the red carpet was loaded with younger actors, including Ryan Ochoa, Tucker Albrizzi, Jimmy Bennett, Zach Callison, Parker Contreras, Jordan Monaghan, Jadin Gould, Madison Leisle, Saige Ryan Campbell, Rachel Fox and Bella Thorne.

Also spotted: Elena Diaz, Corbin Bernsen, Sonia Rockwell, Gabriel Jarret, Tommy Davidson, Carla Ortiz, Romany Malco, Justin Price and socialite Barbara Davis, who was just seen at the after-party for the final "Larry King Live" broadcast Thursday night.

"Gulliver's Travels," directed by Rob Letterman, opens Christmas Day.

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— Christie D'Zurilla

Top photo: Jack Black, left, Jason Segel and Emily Blunt under the tent on the red carpet outside Grauman's Chinese Theatre for the "Gulliver's Travels" premiere on Dec. 18. Credit: Mario Anzuoni / Reuters.

Right photo: Jack Black flexes his star power. Credit: Kevin Winter / Getty Images

 


'American Idol' rewind: Jack Black's 'Kiss From a Rose'


We were just checking out pop critic Ann Powers' review of Tuesday's "American Idol" show and were happily reminded of Jack Black's performance of "Kiss From a Rose" on the 2007 installment of "Idol Gives Back." So, right up above, there you have it. (But note that Black names the wrong Caped Crusader movie: The Seal song wasn't used in the Michael Keaton / Tim Burton "Batman Returns," but in the Val Kilmer / Joel Schumacher "Batman Forever.") 

Simon Cowell weighed in back then with, "You were better than Sanjaya," and Seal dug the performance as well -- we'll leave it up to you to decide how Black ranked against the song stylings of current contestant Lee DeWyze, who performed the tune Tuesday night without a shred of irony (probably because he's not Jack Black). 

-- Christie D'Zurilla


David Beckham and boys have a Sunday Funday

Dbeks2 Though it's always a thrill to see Victoria Beckham engaged in family activities while wearing 8-inch stilettos and a cocktail dress, her sons occasionally need bonding time with dad.

On Sunday, soccer star David Beckham took his brood -- Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz -- to Santa Monica for P.S. Arts' 12th Annual "Express Yourself" event, sponsored by Target.

The beautiful and athletic bunch had a ball at the carnival-themed party, where onlookers said David was "just a big kid," indulging in surfboard painting, creating custom board shorts and banging on bongo drums.

Click onward for more family photos of Jack Black and Michelle Monaghan with her newborn! 

-- Matt Donnelly


Photo: David Beckham and P.S. Arts co-chair Maria Bell smile for the camera between frantic periods of fun boyish activity on Nov. 15 in Santa Monica. Credit: Charley Gallay / WireImage.

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