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Category: Taylor Swift

ACM Awards: After big win, Taylor Swift shouts out to missing date

Taylor Swift at the ACM Awards
Taylor Swift may have gone alone to the Academy of Country Music Awards on Sunday night, but she made sure Kevin McGuire was with her on stage anyway when she accepted the trophy for entertainer of the year.

McGuire, for those who don't know, is the 18-year-old, leukemia-fighting, New Jersey high school senior who invited Swift to his prom, only to have her invite him to the ACMs instead. Unfortunately, McGuire, who is undergoing chemotherapy, fell ill with a 103-degree fever in the days before the show and was unable to attend.

“We work hard and we try to give back," Swift said after taking the prize for the second year in a row, according to Pop & Hiss. "Recently, I have been aware of a different struggle that is going on. My date tonight was supposed to be a high school football player named Kevin McGuire, and he is not here. But I promised him I’d give him a shout-out.

"So Kevin and all your family and friends, thank you for wanting to take me to the ACMs."

Kevin and the gang were watching back home at an Applebee's restaurant where he'd once worked. McGuire, who has battled leukemia since he was 13, had spoken with the country singer on the phone over the weekend, both wishing each other good luck.

"I wasn't expecting such great people," he told New Jersey's Courier-Post of Swift and her staff. "It's amazing to see how people who I don't even know could care that much."

His mom, Vicki, shared an anecdote with the Courier-Post about when her son learned his immune system was compromised to the point that he wouldn't be able to attend the red-carpet affair on Sunday.

"He said to me, 'Well, how many people get to say they turned down Taylor Swift?'"

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— Christie D'Zurilla
Twitter.com/dzurillaville
Christie D'Zurilla on Google+

Photo: Taylor Swift accepts the Academy of Country Music Award for entertainer of the year at the ceremony in Las Vegas on Sunday night. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press

 


'The Lorax': Taylor Swift finally taught Zac Efron to play guitar

Taylor Swift's costar Zac Efron with the Lorax

Taylor Swift fans of the world, let it be known that you guys just might have a chance with the pop-country star, even post-Joe Jonas and post-Taylor Lautner. In “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax,” Zac Efron’s character goes on an adventure to impress Swift's character, but she has yet to be so wildly wooed in real life outside of "the fan/YouTube section of my life," she said.

“Guys in my life — I don’t think I have a memory of [being impressed like] that. But that’s good! The bar’s really low,” Swift said Sunday at the world premiere of “The Lorax,” her first voice-acting gig.

The film, based on the 1971 children’s book by Dr. Seuss, also sparked a friendship between its lead vocal stars that led to Swift teaching “High School Musical” star Efron to play guitar.

PHOTOS: "Dr. Seuss' The Lorax" premiere arrivals

“She’s a great teacher,” Efron said at the Universal CityWalk premiere. “In the past, everyone who’s tried to teach me guitar starts with music theory and stuff like that. I tend to just doze off after a little while. She went straight into songs. She taught me, like, four chords, and I’m already playing all the good campfire songs.”

Co-writer Ken Daurio was just “happier and happier” upon learning of each actor who had signed onto the film, especially Danny DeVito, who voices the title character, a small but formidable mystical creature who speaks for the trees.

The script even went through some changes once DeVito was aboard.

“Once you find out Danny DeVito was going to be the Lorax, it so informs everything you do,” co-writer Cinco Paul said on the premiere's orange carpet, which was lined with replicas of the book's Truffula Trees.

Daurio added, “Once we heard Danny and knew it was going to be him, a lot of the dialogue did change. It just helps you think of what his attitude was going to be — he’s going to have that bite.”

The Lorax's lexicon of insulting nicknames like "beanpole" was written in after DeVito took the part. The actor himself said he embodies "the spirited tenacity of the Lorax. I don't really like to take no for an answer."

"Dr. Seuss' The Lorax" also features the voices of Ed Helms, Betty White and Rob Riggle. The film opens March 2.

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— Emily Rome

Photo: Zac Efron with the Lorax at the world premiere of "Dr. Seuss' The Lorax" at Universal CityWalk on Sunday. Credit: Kevin Winter / Getty Images


Taylor Swift's 'Hunger Games' song, and an upset union [Audio]

Taylor Swift is excited about her new release for "The Hunger Games," but it seems that the American Federation of Musicians is upset at Lionsgate for runaway music production

This post has been corrected, as indicated below.

Taylor Swift is excited about her new release for "The Hunger Games" movie, but it seems someone is playing a few dissonant notes.

The pop-country singer-songwriter revealed on her Twitter page last week that "Safe & Sound," a new song featuring the group the Civil Wars, will be included in "The Hunger Games." But it seems that an American Federation of Musicians honcho, while not singling out Swift, had a bone to pick with the film's producers.

Ray Hair, international president of the union, took to YouTube to express his disappointment that Lionsgate chose to record music for the film in London instead of employing musicians in the U.S. under AFM contracts.

PHOTOS: Meet the main cast/characters of "The Hunger Games"

"For the 'Hunger Games,' Lionsgate is paying the actors, the writers, the directors, the stage crew and the other workers according to agreements with their unions. But for AFM musicians: zero, zilch, nada. For the Americana, Appalachian-style music that the movie needs, Lionsgate is going to Europe so that the company can escape having to pay AFM healthcare and pension contributions."

Ouch. Appalachian-style music? There's merit in that, because part of the post-apocalyptic tale is set in the rural District 12, home of main characters Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson).

Commenters are choosing sides in the musical debate, with some standing with the AFM president while others take a "get over it" attitude, pointing out that some of the cast members are British and that London has some of the best and most iconic soundstages and musicians in the world.

But back to Swift: There's also debate about which scenes this soft and sweet song could be used for. We'll try not to spoil the movie for those of you who haven't read the books (get on that, people), but -- though there's already a song in place -- one haunting and tragic scene comes to mind.

You know the one.

Where do you stand? Listen to the tune, below, and let us know in comments.

[For the record, 1:15 p.m., Dec. 27: The headline on this post originally read "Taylor Swift's 'Hunger Games' song has a union upset." Though AFM President Ray Hair has criticized Lionsgate for its choice to record "The Hunger Games" music in London, he did not refer specifically to Swift's new song. The headline has been changed to reflect that.]

 

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-- Jevon Phillips

Left photo: Taylor Swift. Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times 

Right photo: "The Hunger Games'" Jennifer Lawrence, playing Katniss Everdeen. Credit: Lionsgate


Taylor Swift postpones concerts, citing bronchitis

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift has postponed a few concerts due to illness, moving a Friday show in Atlanta and two weekend gigs in Charlotte, N.C., to dates in October and November.

Swift "has bronchitis, and has been advised by her doctor that she is not well enough to perform this week," her camp said in a statement.

The Atlanta and Charlotte moves come after Swift postponed a Louisville, Ky., concert, telling fans Saturday via Twitter that she was "so sorry to have to postpone this show to Oct 11. This is my first time having to do this. I'm so, so sorry."

She plans to pick up her guitar again July 14 in Montreal.

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-- Christie D'Zurilla
Twitter.com/dzurillaville

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Photo: Taylor Swift performs in Omaha, Neb., on May 27, 2011. Credit: Nati Harnik / Associated Press


Taylor Swift, Shania Twain bring back 'Thelma & Louise'; who will play Brad Pitt?

Taylor Swift and Shania Twain and Thelma and Louise

Taylor Swift and Shania Twain are on the lam and loving it -- from the look of these photos. The two country artists got silly on the set of a Country Music Television Awards shoot as they recreated the iconic characters from "Thelma & Louise."

Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis played the original pair in the 1991 road trip movie about a girls' weekend gone bad, in which the heroines get caught in a murder scandal and take off for Mexico in their 1966 Thunderbird.

Taylor Swift and Shania Twain and Thelma and Louise

And who will channel Brad Pitt's hitchhiking hottie character, J.D.?  "Glee's" Chord Overstreet. Click to see a photo of the actor looking a lot like Brad, with blond highlights, white V-neck T-shirt and a five o'clock shadow.

While Twain is set to make an appearance at the award show airing Wednesday night, Swift is competing for three awards including video of the year, female video of the year and Web video of the year for her tune "Mine."

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Taylor Swift buys her parents $1.4-million house in Nashville

-- Emily Christianson

 Photos: Taylor Swift, left, and Shania Twain. Credits: Rick Diamond / Getty Images

 


Taylor Swift debuts ‘Story of Us’ video [Poll]

Taylorswiftstory

Taylor Swift launched her new "Story of Us" video on MTV on Tuesday night, sparking fresh gossip over who inspired the love song. Swift, who famously wrote "Forever & Always" about ex Joe Jonas, confessed the song is definitely about a former flame.

"Any time I'm onstage or watching the music video, the first thing that comes into my mind is the person I wrote the song about," she told MTV. "It's like the first thing that you think of is the moment that inspired the song, which is that excruciating, awful moment when you run into an ex for the first time."

Could it be John Mayer, Taylor Lautner or even Lucas Till? So far the country star is mum about whom the "Story" is based on, but will offer a few details. "Afterward, I just felt so empty, like we were both fighting this silent war of pretending we didn't care that the other was there," she said. "And I went home, and I wrote this song about it."

The "Story of Us," off her "Speak Now" album, captures the spirit of her awards show encounter, but in a different setting. In the video the couple falls in and out of love in the Vanderbilt University library. Looking especially preppy in her Ivy League get-up, Swift turns up the on-screen angst -- big time.

Whom do you think the video is about?

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Photo: Taylor Swift at Time's 100 Most Influential People in the World gala on May 4, 2011. Credit: Lucas Jackson / Reuters.


Taylor Swift buys her parents $1.4-million house in Nashville

Taylor Swift bought a $1.4 million house for her parents Taylor Swift is a down-home kind of gal -- and this time around it's a $1.4-million home.

The country star and serial dater has generously purchased her parents a luxurious pad in Nashville, Us magazine reports.

"It's an incredible house," a source tells the mag. "Taylor's been visiting her parents there and she's so excited for them." 

The property, built in 1925, boasts three bedrooms and 5,000 square feet, complete with a blue stone terrace and sizable outdoor fireplace. The Real Estalker, which has pictures of the place, said records show the sale went down toward the end of last year.

The Nashville pad isn't the only real estate transaction for the blond of late: She's also scooped up a place in Los Angeles for herself.

"She is in L.A. so much -- and she was paying a fortune in hotel charges!" the Us source added.

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-- Matt Donnelly
Twitter.com/MattDonnelly

Photo: Taylor Swift at the Academy of Country Music Awards on April 3. Credit: Jason Merritt / Getty Images


Academy of Country Music Awards: Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift bring red carpet glam

Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood and Taylor Swift at the Academy of Country Music Awards

This post has been corrected. Please see the note below for details.

Country music crooners and honorees hit the red carpet for the 46th Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas on Sunday. Among the guests at the ACMAs: Miranda Lambert, who was nominated for seven awards, including song and album of the year.

Nominees Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood   got all dolled up for the show, rocking Elie Saab and Jean Fares gowns, respectively.

Red carpet photos on the Academy of Country Music Awards Surfer Bethany Hamilton, the subject of the new film "Soul Surfer," arrived to present an award at the show. Underwood, who appears in the film, performed with "American Idol" judge Steven Tyler, whom she smooched onstage.

The show, which took place at Mandalay Bay and the MGM Grand simultaneously, was hosted by actress-singer Reba McEntire and Blake Shelton, who is engaged to Lambert. Click the pics to see who else got fancy on the red carpet.

Keith Urban and wife Nicole Kidman hit the red carpet, as did "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" actress Marg Helgenberger, "Gossip Girl's" Chace Crawford and former "Dancing With the Stars" dancer and country singer Julianne Hough.

Martina McBride, three-time winner in the academy's top female vocalist category, arrived in a Pamella Roland gown.

Charles Kelley, Dave Haywood and Hillary Scott, the members of Lady Antebellum, snagged several awards over the course of the evening. Sugarland members Kristian Bush and singer Jennifer Nettles, nominated for vocal duo of the year, performed during the ceremony.

For the record, 1:10 p.m. April 11: A previous version of this post misspelled Reba McEntire's last name as McIntyre.

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Top photos: Miranda Lambert, left, Carrie Underwood and Taylor Swift arrive at the Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas on Sunday. Credits: Chris Pizzello / Associated Press, left and center; Jason Merritt / Getty Images, right.

Right photo:  Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban at the ACMAs. Credit: Sam Morris / Reuters


2011 Vanity Fair Oscar party: Impossible glamour (and a taste of In-N-Out Burger)

Natalie Portman at the 2011 Vanity Fair Oscar party

With a giant photo of actor James Dean looming over the entrance to Los Angeles' Sunset Tower Hotel, Vanity Fair welcomed an army of stars to its 2011 Academy Awards post-party.

Notoriously exclusive and always glamorous, the annual event did not disappoint as big winners including Natalie Portman, Colin Firth, Melissa Leo and director Tom Hooper came with trophies in hand to greet Editor in Chief Graydon Carter.

Colin Firth and Anne Hathaway at the Vanity Fair party
Portman was naturally the belle of the ball, hand-in-hand with fiance Benjamin Millipied as countless people congratulated her on her awards-season sweep.

Jude Law palled around with Cameron Diaz and "Contagion" costar Gwyneth Paltrow while Gabrielle Union chatted with Jamie Foxx -- who then ran into his friend Jessica Biel. Biel and Foxx  went off together to circulate while Justin Timberlake stood with Andrew Garfield and his girlfriend.

Gorgeous women weren't in short supply, including newly single Scarlett Johansson, who was engaged in deep conversation with Tim Burton and Helena Bonham Carter. Though this was Portman's year, few could quite contain themselves when nominee Michelle Williams floated by.

In stunning Chanel haute couture, Williams had a soft glow that stopped conversations and, frankly, assured us she'll make a convincing Marilyn Monroe in the forthcoming "My Week With Marilyn."

Colin Firth at the 2011 Vanity Fair Oscar partyLet us not forget Williams' humble roots, however: She looked right at home speaking with former "Dawson's Creek" costar Busy Phillips

Star couples -- including Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, designer Tom Ford and Richard Buckley, Reese Witherspoon and Jim Toth, Jon Hamm and Jennifer Westfeldt, Liev Schreiber and Naomi Watts, and Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann -- put up unified fronts.

But no couple was so convincing as Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez, the picture of young Hollywood come to the grown-ups' table, running back and forth between the Tower bar and terrace holding hands (yes, they were). Taylor Swift made an appearance in a gold mini, snacking from a cone full of In-N-Out Burger fries that was getting passed around. Meanwhile, her former flames Jake Gyllenhaal and Joe Jonas worked the crowd. 

It's a good year to be a television star, being that many small-screen favorites were invited to film's big night: Sofia Vergara of "Modern Family" and "Glee" folks including Lea Michele, Chris Colfer and Matthew Morrison made the scene.

Fellow gleek Dianna Agron showed up, looking nowhere near as traumatized as some since-debunked reports would have her after her split with actor Alex Pettyfer

Continue reading »

Taylor Swift, Adam Young are 'Enchanted' with each other [Poll]

This post has been corrected. See the note at the bottom for details.

Owl City musician Adam Young has figured out that Taylor Swift's song "Enchanted" is about him. And, just in time for Valentine's Day, he posted a reply to the singer's pretty open song about their first meeting.

Taylor SwiftSwift, who has written songs about ex-beaus John Mayer and Taylor Lautner, revealed to writer Chris Willman last November that she'd written "Enchanted" about a guy she'd met in New York City.

"Meeting him, it was just this overwhelming feeling of, 'I really hope that you're not in love with somebody.' And the whole entire way home, I just remember ... sitting there thinking, am I ever gonna talk to this person again? It was that feeling of pining away for a romance that may never even happen," she said.

The songstress, whose album "Speak Now" dropped in October, apparently spelled out "A-D-A-M" in the accompanying lyrics, which are about, well, how enchanted she was to meet this guy. In the song, she swoons over the moment and pretty much begs, "Please don't be in love with someone else."

Finally, a guy named Adam -- this one of "Fireflies" fame -- put two and two together and figured out that it was probably him she was pining after. (Wethinks it would really stink if it were actually Maroon 5's Adam Levine she was crushing on.)

"I'm so tremendously honored that Taylor would write such an elegant song and thereby offer a gracious nod in my direction. Needless to say, I was lost for words and utterly smitten. I couldn't stop smiling," Young wrote on his band's blog where he recounted his relationship with Swift's album and posted a pic of the two of them.

In his reply, in which he sings "Enchanted" back to her and inserts her name in some verses, he introduces the song with this love note:

Everything about you is beautiful. You're an immensely charming girl with a wonderful heart and more grace and elegance than I know how to describe. You are a true princess from a dreamy fairy tale; a modern Cinderella. I'm terribly sorry it's taken me such a long time to reply but I figured Valentine's Day was the perfect time to write this note to you and simply say...I was enchanted to meet you too.

Love, Adam

Awwww and a half! Though we ask that if anyone wants to write a love song about the Ministry, we'd appreciate it if you were a bit more straightforward -- if only because "Ministry of Gossip" is a pretty long thing to spell out in a song. And really, "M-O-G" hardly sounds sexy.

For the record, 5:40 p.m. Feb. 15: This post originally incorrectly attributed Taylor Swift's quote about meeting a guy in New York to M Magazine. The quote, from a Chris Willman interview for New York magazine, originally appeared in a Yahoo! Music post written by Willman. M Magazine gave no attribution for the quote.

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-- Nardine Saad
twitter.com/NardineSaad

Photo: Country music superstar Taylor Swift poses before performing at Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum's "All for the Hall" concert benefit. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times


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