The excess of Petrov

Why are actors playing in popular Russian films the same? Klim Shipenko explains

Reading time 6 minutes

On February 6, the famous Russian singer and composer Yuri Loza made an ironic post on his Facebook account, in which he noted Alexander Petrov’s over-popularity in contemporary Russian cinema. The musician considered it unfair that thousands of talented actors graduate from Russian film schools every year, each of them is waiting for new chance, but the producers prefer to give all the potential box office roles to Petrov.

Юрий Лоза поднял актуальную для многих российских кинозрителей тему
Yuri Loza asked a question that is relevant for many Russian moviegoers …

Although Yuri’s post was written in a rather humorous style, it provoked a discussion around the current situation with Russian actors. One of the participants of the discussion was Klim Shipenko, a successful film director. In 2019, two of his films were released at once: a criminal-dramatic psychological thriller “Text” (with Petrov playing the main role) and a comedy “The Serf”. The first film, according to the Kinopoisk online portal, was warmly received by both viewers (rating 7.0) and critics (85% of reviews were positive). This was also emphasized by the box office of 850 million rubles. With a budget of 75 it achieved excellent results at the main Golden Eagle film contest in Russia. “Text” received awards for the best film, best male roles of the first and second plans (Petrov and Ivan Yankovsky, respectively), as well as for the best editing (Tim Pavelko). Shipenko himself was awarded a nomination for best directing, and composer Nikolai Rostov was awarded for best music. “Serf”, with a similar rating of 7.0 at “Kinopoisk”, became the most profitable Russian film in the history of Russian distribution, collecting for the first time more than 3 billion rubles and breaking the “Upward” record.

А Клим Шипенко дал ответ на этот вопрос
… and Klim Shipenko answered this question

The director said that in terms of perception of actors, Russian viewers are very different from Western ones: there is still a distrust in the quality of domestic cinema, so producers prefer to screen more popular characters in order to increase the chances of success. And Petrov in this sense is not the first: Sergey Bezrukov followed the same path after the role of Sasha Bely in the crime series “The Brigade”, Konstantin Khabensky after the role of Anton Gorodetsky in the fantasy “Night Watch” and Danil Kozlovsky after the role of hockey player Valery Kharlamov in sports drama “Legend number 17”. Petrov gained popularity in the second half of the 2010s after the series “Policeman from Rublevka”, where he played Grigory Izmailov, a police captain.

Один из предшественников Петрова Данила Козловский в фильме "Легенда №17" (в центре)
One of Petrov’s predecessors, Danila Kozlovsky, in the film “Legend No. 17” (center)

Shipenko also noted that even Russian stars of the first echelon are not success guarantors at the box office, in contrast with Western ones. And the director definitely knew what he was talking about: despite the impressive final fees of “Text”, the adaptation of the novel by Dmitry Glukhovsky had an almost failed first weekend. During the first week, the box office amounted to only 92 million rubles. This figure slightly exceeded the budget of the film and took 4th place at the end of the week. It lost to the “Joker” (Todd Philips), who had already been in the box office for a month. In the future, word of mouth saved the situation: firstly, positive reviews began to come about the quality of the film, and secondly, the scandal around the overly frank bed scene with Christina Asmus and Ivan Yankovsky played a big role. Many viewers went to the cinema to find out what was special about this scene.

По этому фото не скажешь, но именно сцена с участием этих двоих сделала "Текст" таким популярным в прокате
You can’t tell from the photo, but it was the scene with the participation of these two that made “Text” so popular at the box office

As a result, the director described a vicious circle: it is more difficult for unknown actors to get into potentially stellar roles, and the famous ones are becoming even more popular, so they bother the audience.

Two out of five is twenty five

Harvey Weinstein trial took place in New York

Reading time 4 minutes

On February 24 was the final hearing of Harvey Weinstein’s case, a  famous Hollywood producer. The jury found him guilty in two of the five counts – criminal acts of a sexual nature and a rape of the third degree. The victim of the first crime was Weinstein’s former assistant Miriam Haley. It happened in 2006. The prosecution proved that she was prone to an oral sex. Jessica Mann, a stylist and actress was raped in 2013.

Мириам Хейли
Miriam Haley
Джессика Манн
Jessica Mann

The former director of Weinstein’s company is also charged with sexual abuse, threats and other extenuating circumstances. Due to a pronounced lack of consent to sex, the sentence is up to 5 years. However, Weinstein was acquitted of “predatory sexual abuse.” If this did not happen, the producer would face a life-long sentence. The estimated conclusion is from 5 to 25 years. The verdict will be issued on March 11. Weinstein should be waiting for further decisions in a prison on Riker Island, but immediately after the court he was taken to the hospital.

Движение "MeToo", ставшее популярным после дела Вайнштейна
The MeToo movement became popular after the Weinstein’s case

The scandal around Harvey Weinstein’s persona begun in October 2017. Ex-employees of The Weinstein Company and actresses who starred in the company’s films massively claimed sexual harassment from the former Boss. Ashley Judd, Uma Thurman, Angelina Jolie and others. He was fired right after the applications were received. Later, criminal cases were brought against him and investigated in February. MeToo social movement, organised  by actress Alyssa Milano, became popular after these accusations. At the same time an Oscar-winning actor, Kevin Spacey and a  famous comedian, Louis C. Key , were accused. The disclosure began to spread in other areas of life, not only in the United States, but also in the rest of the world. Of the most striking cases is a Lockhart Steele’s one. He was an editor-in-chief of Vox Digital Media. He lost his job after being accused by the former secretary. Another unusual example is the head of the South African Football Association, Danny Jordan. He was also removed from the office and prosecuted after being accused by Jennifer Ferguson, a politician. The wave of scandalous revelations of celebrities that began after the Weinstein’s affair gave rise to the term – “The Weinstein Effect”.

Philipp Plein is in the middle of a scandal

The designer dedicated his latest show to Kobe Bryant

Reading time 3 minutes

The Philipp Plein fashion house demonstrated the new fall-winter 2020-2021 collection on Milan Fashion Week. The designer tended to honor the name of Kobe Bryant, a basketball player who was killed in an accident on January, 26 in California. His 13-year-old daughter Gigi and seven more passengers, including the pilot, were on board.

After the show, the brand founder was accused of using the tragic event to draw attention to the catwalk.

The collection pieces included $2,070 jerseys and $3,150 sweatshirts with the Black Mamba’s number, 24 (Bryant’s nickname) on them. The items were colored in yellow and purple. These are the colors of the Los Angeles Lakers team where the basketball legend had been playing since 1996 till 2016. The clothes were also adorned by Swarovski crystals. The Lakers logo were replaced with the Philipp Plein’s one. Sweatshirts and jerseys went on sale right after the show. Olivia Culpo, a former Miss Universe walked the runway. Pinkett Smith, a “Red Table Talk” host, also joined the fashion show.

Moreover, two golden helicopters were put on the stage. As Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash, these decorations also caused a backlash.

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Just landed 🛬 PLEIN ™️ WINTER 2020 #nolimits

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Plein answered to Page Six Style that the helicopters were meant to be placed before Bryant’s death, in November. He said that he would have get rid of them. The designer declared that he used his fashion show to express the respect and admiration for The Bryants. He also added that became a victim of public misinterpretation.

As Plein stated, all the profits from the sale of limited sweatshirts and jerseys would be sent to the charity organization called Mamba and the Mambacita Sports Foundation, created by the family of the basketball player after his death. The designer’s first contribution of $20,000 was made the day before the show.

A few reactions to the German designer presentation are displayed below:

The name of the German designer and brand’s founder is associated with scandals and provocations. The designer more than once got into trouble with clients, colleagues and the press. Despite the fact that Plein studied law and knew the basics of legal affairs, this fact did not save him from breaking the rules.

The first example is ridiculously paradoxical. Malik Yousef, a rapper, pretended to be a representative of Kanye West and signed a contract with the Philipp Plein’s brand on his behalf. Under the agreement, Mr. West was obliged to perform three songs with the orchestra, attend Philipp Plein’s dinner and go on the catwalk. The brand paid fake Kanye $750 000. As a result, the rapper Malik Yousef responded that he signed the contract on his behalf. Kanye did not know anything about the deal and did not receive money. And Philipp Plein’s representatives replied that they fell for the bait of experienced scammers who were hiding behind the friendship with a famous rapper. It’s funny that the deal on this scale was concluded without the direct presence of Kanye West himself.

In 2016, Philipp received accusations from Dolce & Gabbana’s lawyers. The brand claimed that Philipp Plein International reached ten sales consultants from the boutiques in Milan and asked them to work in the PP’s fashion house. Plein responded that “in a free country everyone could choose independently where to work. And if employees are happy at their place of job, they don’t leave”.

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Just received a love letter from Dolce and Gabbana's lawyer accusing me and my people that we would steal their employees……. 1. This is a free country and everybody can choose by themselves who they want to work for !! 2. If people are happy at their job they don't think about leaving !!! 3. I really love and respect the brand dolce and gabbana , it was an inspiration for me and many others to start my business and to work in fashion !!!! @stefanogabbana @dolcegabbana It's is sad to say but everybody loves you until you become competition !!!! Since more than 15 years I work 24/7 on realizing my dream and building my company …. I respect everybody and I never received any support from this industry until today !!! I want to take this moment to apologize to absolutely "NOBODY" !!!!

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Philip Plein broke many hearts. After the break-up Morgan Osman, a model from Miami replied on social media that Philipp Plein’s clothes were sewn in Turkey for $20. Then they hang a “Made in Italy” tag and sell them for $800. Plein was forced to explain. He wished the former lover to cease using his name.

Morgan Osman, Philipp Plein's former girlfriend

Plagiarism happens frequently in fashion industry. Alexander Wang, an American designer accused PP of coping his ideas for the show, which was organized with the Swedish brand H&M in 2014. To prove his point of view, Wang posted a video on his official Instagram page comparing the Plein Sport 2017 show with Alexander Wang x H&M in 2014. Wang ironically signed the publication: “Can I copy your homework? Yeah, but just change it up a bit so it doesn’t look obvious you copied”. Philip did not leave a comment about the situation.

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🤔

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Valentino’s collection is not on the catwalk but in the cinema

The fashion Brand collaborated with Luca Guadagnino, a film director

Reading time 3 minutes

This month a short drama “The Staggering Girl” directed by Luca Guadagnino  (also “Call Me By Your Name”, “Suspria”) will be released. It was inspired by Valentino’s couture collections 2018-2019. Julianne Moore is a leading actor, but Valentino’s ensembles come to the forefront of Luca’s favorite cameraman, Sayombhu Mukdeeprom. The movie can be easily taken into screenshots and printed, for example, in Vogue.

After attending Valentino’s Couture Spring 2018 fashion show, Guadagnino got the idea of filming something equally amazing with his fellow countryman, Pierpaolo Piccioli. Piccioli, in his own words, dreamed of becoming a filmmaker when he was young, so, the idea of turning the “stream of consciousness” (as he describes the couture collection of spring 2018) into a movie, found the most lively response from the designer.

Guadagnino’s passionate romance with fashion has been known for a long time. For example, director’s favorite actress Tilda Swinton wore Raf Simons twice: for the movie “Io sono l’amore”, and for “A Bigger Splash”. Guadagnino’s hobby resulted in the creation of the Frenesy Film company, which specializes in collaborations with fashion brands. Its portfolio includes short films for Giorgio Armani, Sergio Rossi, Cartier and Salvatore Ferragamo. The latest documentary named “Walking Stories” came out last fall. It was based on designer’s autobiography.

At the same time, “The Staggering girl”, which is formally a short film (37 minutes), Guadagnino designates it as an artistic picture with a plot, and not just an elegant fashion film. The story unfolds around the New York city. The main actress, Francesca Moretti (Julianne Moore), is a writer, daughter of German-Italian artist Sofia Moretti. Francesca goes to Rome to persuade an aging and going blind mother to move in with her, but, once visiting the long-abandoned home, she is immersed in memories. Guadagnino and Piccioli encoded the state of mind of their heroine using the color and style of clothing that she wears.

 Top 3 most eloquent outfits from the movie

BLACK FULL SKIRT DRESS WITH A SLIT UP THE SIDES, COUTURE COLLECTION SPRING 2018

 Francesca, despite her Italian origin, is a true New Yorker: she lives in a Spartan setting and dresses appropriately. Her clothes are exclusively dark, whether it is an oversize black palazzo pants with a turtleneck and an oversize coat or a chic evening satin dress with shoulder-length gloves. Wearing this drees, she appears at her friend’s house party, where she sees a picture on the wall, reminding her of the mother.

LUSH RED OFF-THE-SHOULDER DRESS , COUTURE COLLECTION FALL 2018

Scarlet is the color which Francesca associates with her mother. Young Sophia Moretti is played by Mia Goth, another Guadagnino’s favorite actress. They worked together on “Suspiria”. When Francesca is immersed in childhood memories, she sees her mother as a lady of society. She likes to party or spending time in front of the easel. Her mother wears velvet and sequins or a lush scarlet off-the-shoulder dress – Valentino’s classic. It appears on the catwalk in different variations from year to year.

AZURE CAPE WITH SATIN APPLICATIONS, FALL 2018 COUTURE COLLECTION

A luxurious cape embroidered with satin applications and a gold edging is the brightest item, both in the movie wardrobe and in Valentino’s Couture collection fall 2018. According to Piccioli, Greek myths served as inspiration for the collection, especially, the one about Leda and the swan.

The last couture show of Jean-Paul Gaultier

In the finale, the fashion world threw the maestro into the air and chanted “Gauthier! Gauthier!”

Reading time 3 minutes

On January 22, Jean Paul Gaultier, the one we call the terrible child of fashion, presented what is announced to be the last Haute Couture show of his eponymous house. Tears, laughter and surprised exclamations were heard every minute at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris. Three thousand spectators could feel a concert atmosphere in the air. The one and only Jean-Paul Gaultier could provoke such emotions. He worked especially hard on his last show. On January 17, the designer claimed that he was saying goodbye to Haute Couture Week. He came up with about 200 images and decided to demonstrate them all on the catwalk.

Madonna Blonde Ambition Tour - Japan - April 20th, 1990
Madonna Blond Ambition Tour – Japan – April 20th, 1990

The guests enjoyed nostalgia throughout the show. There was the creative director of Louis Vuitton, Nicolas Gesquière, in the hall. He began his career with Gaultier as a junior assistant. Gesquière reminded Eva Herzigova, a Czech-Italian supermodel and actress, that he once dressed her before the show. Laetitia Casta, a French actress and model, who was also discovered by the maestro in 1994, came to the show in the same jacket she first appeared on the Jean-Paul Gaultier catwalk 26 years ago. The hall whispered that even anonymous Martin Margiela arrived at the Théâtre du Châtelet to say goodbye to the teacher. He assisted Gaultier in the early 1980s.

Dita Von Teese was wearing a dress made of bandage belts during the Jean-Paul Gautier show
Dita Von Teese was wearing a dress made of bandage belts during the Jean-Paul Gautier show

The performance began with a funeral scene from the 1966 movie “Who are You, Polly Maggoo?” Then people in black carried out a coffin with two cones. This was a reference to the legendary Gaultier cone bra in 1950th style, which Madonna glorified in 1990 as a part of her Blond Ambition World Tour. However, it was not a fateful lady in linen who came out, but the girl in a white dress, assembled from a dozen of other white doll dresses. Perhaps Gaultier wanted to say that couture was still alive, contrary to popular belief that this format was outdated. At least during the following hour no one doubted his idea.

Gigi Hadid joined the last Jean-Paul Gautier show
Gigi Hadid joined the last Jean-Paul Gautier show

Beloved muses of the designer convinced the public of the vitality of haute couture: Béatrice Dalle in the costume of a vampire smoked right on the stage, Dita Von Teese was wearing a dress made of bandage belts, Rossy de Palma looked like an eccentric widow. Coco Rocha repeated her legendary Irish dance. Irina Shayk commanded attention in a semi-sheer corset dress which featured the French designer’s iconic cone bra. Boy Georges sang his “Church Of The Poison Mind” while the crowd tossed Jean-Paul into the air for several minutes.

This parade will remain in the annals of fashion. The maestro assured that the last show did not sign the end neither of his career, nor of his brand. He said he already had lots of new projects, kept in secret.

From Jay-Z to Drake: Richest Rappers

The Forbes rating is headed by the first billionaire in hip-hop culture — Jay-Z

Reading time 7 minutes

In early June, an influential financial publication Forbes published a list of the richest rap artists. The wealthiest rapper in the world is a hip-hop artist Jay-Z, the husband of the famous R’n’B singer Beyoncé. In early 2000s he sang: «I’m already the G.O.A.T. — next stop is the billie». So it happened: today the musician’s capital is one billion dollars. Jay-Z became the first owner of a billion dollars in the history of hip-hop culture.

Jay-Z (Shawn Corey Carter) for the second year in a row becomes the wealthiest rapper in the world

The rapper invested in a private company Uber, music service Tidal, alcohol production company Armand de Brignac и D`Uss. The musician gains his profit from concerts and Roc Nation service, and also a partnership with the recording Studio Def Jam. The real estate of Jay-Z and his wife Beyoncé is estimated at $50 million, and the collection of art objects — $ 70 million.

The younger generation of hip-hop artists takes Jay-Z as an example of success. TV presenter and novice rapper Fab 5 Freddy believes that Jay-Z — an example of how to make the real American dream come true.

Second place — Dr. Dre, $800 million

Dr. Dre (Andre Romelle Young ) was considered the richest artist in hip-hop culture until March 2018

Five years ago, Dr. Dre. declared himself the owner of a billion dollars. However, Forbes did not confirm this information about his financial condition. In 2014, the musician sold his line of headphones Beats by Dr. Dre to Apple for three billion dollars. He owned approximately 20-25% of the company’s shares. For the deal with Apple, hip-hop artist received an advance of about $500 million. Only last summer the company paid Dr. Dre remaining fee, however, even this did not help him top the Forbes’s list.

In recent years, the artist has put his music in the background. Dr. Dre invested his money in real estate and charity. He bought a huge Villa in California for $40 million. Together with partner Jimmy Iovine, he also invested $70 million in the development of the Academy of Arts at the University of Southern California.

Third place — Diddy, $740 million

In 2017, P. Diddy (Sean John Combs)  was recognized as the wealthiest hip-hop artist

Hip-hop artist Diddy earned his first money at the age of 12 by selling newspapers. He admitted this in an interview in the anniversary issue of Forbes. At that time the edition considered Diddy to be the wealthiest and most influential rap artist.

Now the musician takes the third place in the list of the richest rappers. Market fluctuations have a negative impact on his business projects. The most unprofitable were the cable  business Revolt and the clothing brand Sean John.

However, the rapper Diddy owns a successful business as well. For example, the production of luxury vodka Ciroc. Products give the musician a lot of money, as the volume of sales has increased in recent years. According to Forbes, Diddy will soon replace Jay-Z and become a billionaire.

Fourth place — Kanye West, $240 million

Kanye West
In the promotion of the collection of sneakers Yeezy, actively involved the wife of the rapper – Kim Kardashian

The famous performer and husband of epotage Kim Kardashian Kanye West ranks fourth in the list of wealthy colleagues. Recently, the musician can be spotted at private Sunday services on the South coast. West also held an Easter service at the largest Coachella festival.

In 2016, the musician told about his debt of $53 million. Then he suggested the Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg to invest one billion dollars in his projects. In 2019, Kanye West still entered the top five wealthy artists in hip-hop culture, but thanks to another source of investment. Kanye West has a partnership  with the sports brand Adidas for more than one year. Prior to this brand, the artist had a contract with Nike. This collaboration with Adidas brings huge income to the rapper, his line of sneakers Yeezy is gaining more and more popularity. According to Forbes, if Yeezy sales do not stop growing, Kanye West will become a billionaire thanks to the business.

Fifth place — Drake, $150 million

Drake
Hip hop artist Drake produces strong alcohol, which brings him huge profits

Concludes the list of the richest hip-hop artists 32-year-old canadian rapper Drake. But he is already catching up with his colleagues: over the past year, his musician’s capital has doubled. Drake has invested in real estate and in its own brand of whiskey Virginia Black. The rapper cooperates with the XS Nightclub in Las Vegas, which also brings the rapper a large fee.

In 2013, the musician admitted that earning more money is one of his main goals. And he sticks to the plan: since that time, the average price tag for one concert of the artist has grown from $500,000 to more than two million dollars.

Tarantino made a romantic film with a terrible ending

The love story of Sharon Tate and Roman Polanski which turned into a tragedy

Reading time 8 minutes

«Once Upon a Time in Hollywood», a three hours long retro filmed by Quentin Tarantino, was shown at the Cannes Film Festival. The film is based on the real events of 1969. The main roles were performed by Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie played the main character. The film is timed to the 50th anniversary of the death of Hollywood actress Sharon Tate.

Margot Robbie played the main character in the «Once Upon a Time in Hollywood» movie

Sharon Tate was one of the most beautiful Actresses of her generation. She became widely known after her role in the film “Valley of the Dolls” in 1967. At that time, the young actress also married the famous Director Roman Polanski. Hollywood couple attracts attention: she is a young actress with model features, he is a talented, but not the most charming Director.

Sharon Tate and Roman Polanski got married in 1967

During World War II Polanski and his family got into the Krakow Ghetto. Having seen all the horrors of the war, the Director shot his movies in dark colors and the genre of psychological thriller. Sharon is the complete opposite: she was born and raised in the American family of the officer. Since childhood, she participated in various beauty contests and aspired to world fame.

She began her actress career as a model at beauty contests in the US

Polanski and Tate met at a casting for the film «The Fearless Vampire Killers» in 1967. «She made a big impression on me and I called her,» says Polanski about their first meeting. During the filming of the movie, between the Director and the actress broke out romantic feelings. Polanski was patient with Tate, who suffered from her inexperience in the film industry. Once they needed seventy takes for just one scene.

In the «The Fearless Vampire Killers» the Director also acted as the lover of Tate’s character

Sharon Tate broke off her engagement to her longtime lover Jay Sebring because of Polanski. For two years, the Hollywood couple enjoyed the relationship and traveled the world. The Director often took his Muse on business trips and on film shoots. In early 1969, the Polanskis learned about the imminent addition to the family.

Despite the label of the most unusual couple of Hollywood, Tate was happily being married to Polanski

In the summer of 1969 in Europe, Polanski was shooting his new film — «The Day of the Dolphin». Tate was with him, but due to her pregnancy she left for America. When she said goodbye to her husband, Sharon was very much worried, as if she felt that this was their last meeting.The Director embracing his pregnant wife thought that he might not see her again. But quickly pushed away the bad thoughts.

The couple was waiting for their firstborn, who already had a name — Paul Richard

In a country house near Los Angeles, Tate spent the summer days waiting for her husband. On the 8th of August, 1969, the actress spoke with Polanski, who once again postponed his arrival to America. That night, Tate’s sisters were supposed to look after her, but Sharon refused their help. Without knowing it, she saved the lives of her family.

The motives for the murder of Sharon Tate and her friends are still not disclosed

The evening of the same day Tate spent in the company of her friends, when followers of Charles Manson broke into her house. They massacred everyone, including two random witnesses. Sharon was 9 months pregnant and begged to spare her unborn child, but the cultists only tortured her. They wrote «Pig» on the front door in her blood. This crime was recognized as the most brutal in the XX century.

Roman Polanski allowed to take a picture of himself with the inscription, which was left by the killers of his wife

Roman Polanski could not come to his senses for a long time and suspected all of his friends in this murder. Only after the arrest of Charles Manson’s group, the Director calmed down, but could not continue shooting the film «The Day of the Dolphin». He believed that it was because of this project he had to leave his beloved wife. Polanski returned to his work with the film «Macbeth», in which he used a lot of blood and cruelty. When the English film critic Kenneth Turan reproached him for this, he replied: «You were not at my house last summer».

Roman Polanski admitted that he tried to commit suicide several times because of the loss of his pregnant wife

Polanski did not give his permission to Quentin Tarantino to use his story in the film. Because of that, the current wife of the Director criticized Tarantino. He, in turn, addressed the sister of Sharon who approved the project.

Russians who impressed the Eurovision

The most successful performances from Russian artists at the European song contest

Reading time 7 minutes

Sergey Lazarev will be representing Russia at the Eurovision at Tel Aviv for the second time. This Russian artist won the public vote, but based on the results of overall scoring he took the third place in 2016. The European audience was moved by his song «You Are The Only One» and the breathtaking performance with 3D projection. Now, everyone bode him the the success of another artist, Dima Bilan, who managed to win a Crystal microphone with the second attempt.

Which other artists from Russia achieved success and claimed the first place in the main European song contest?

Сергей Лазарев
Sergey Lazarev will be representing Russia at the Eurovision again
Alsou «Solo» (2000) — 2nd place
Алсу
Alsou became the first Russian representative to take a prize place

The first one to have an impact on Europe was sixteen year old Alsou, the youngest contestant in the history of this show, with the song «Solo». Originally, «Solo» was made for male vocals, but the artist was so imbued with the song, so she choose it. The authors, Andrew Lane and Brandon Barnes, corrected the song for the young singer, and she went to thrill Europe. Alsou won the second place, what became a real triumph for Russia.

Tatu «Don’t believe, don’t be afraid, don’t ask» (2003) — 3rd place
Тату
Tatu believed in their victory until the end, but took only the third place

The third place was accepted with disappointment. In 2003 the duo actively transferred from Russia to Europe and held a leading position in the charts of many countries of the continent. So the girls were one of the favorite contestants on the show. Julia Volkova and Lena Katina wore shirts with number one, because they were sure in their victory. However, Tatu took the third place, lagging behind the leaders only by 1 and 3 points. Many people assume that their Russian song «Don’t believe, don’t be afraid, don’t ask» was not understood by the European audience.

Serebro «Song #1» (2007) — 3rd place
Serebro
Serebro became a real  discovery of Eurovision

The group’s debut with their «Song #1» took place at “Eurovision-2007”. The unknown trio of Maxim Fadeev was the winner of the national contest. People did not pin their hopes on inexperienced girls, but they brilliantly performed at the final and took the honorable third place.

Polina Gagarina «Million voices» (2015) — 2nd place
Полина Гагарина
Polina Gagarina’s performance turned into a magic fairytale

Polina Gagarina was representing Russian at the Eurovision with the composition «Million voices» which was written by five authors from different countries. The song is about intolerance to the division of people, the importance of love and peace between them. The magnificent dress of the artist became a part of the projected starry sky. Her performance is considered one of the most memorable performances in the history of the Eurovision. During the show, Gagarina was a leader, but lost the victory to the Swedish representative in the final.

Dima Bilan «Never let you go» (2006), «Believe» (2008) — 2nd and 1st places
Дима Билан, Евгений Плющенко и Эдвин Мартон
Dima Bilan brought Russia the only one victory at Eurovision

Dima Bilan was able to impress the Eurovision twice. The first time, in 2006, the artist with the song «Never let you go» took the second place, giving up the victory to a Finnish hard rock band «Lordi». Ballerinas took part in the performance, and one of them appeared in rose petals from the piano in the middle of the song. In his performance, Bilan did his signature jump for the first time, which became the singer’s hallmark.

Dima Bilan managed to win a Crystal microphone with the second attempt. He also brought Eurovision to Russia for the first time in the history of the show. Together with the figure skater Evgeni Plushenko and the violinist Edvin Marton, the artist created a performance for his song «Believe». Putting his health in danger, Bilan performed barefoot on ice while the famous skater could hurt the singer in any time. But the performance was impeccable and very sensual, which touched both the jury and the audience.The outcome was the first and so far the only Russian victory at Eurovision.

Egypt Station by Paul McCartney

Ex Beatle took the lead in the chart with his new album

Reading time 4 minutes

Egypt Station is the first release of the ex-member of the Beatles Paul McCartney in five years. To make this happen, the artist worked with Greg Kurstin, the music producer.

The rumors about a new album appeared at the end of June, when the performer uploaded a photo of himself with a mic and a piano on his Instagram. The longplay consists of sixteen songs, McCartney sings about space adventures and calls for peace.

The album became a leader of American chart Billboard. The last time McCartney led this chart with his album Tug of War 36 years ago.

Маккартни во время записи альбома. Фото: RollingStone
McCartney during the recording of his new album. Ph: RollingStone
A Five-Year Lull

After releasing an uplifting and optimistic album New in 2013, Paul McCartney took a music break. This was McCartney’s longest break throughout his whole music career. However, the musician did not disappear from the music world, in fact, he frequently reminded of himself via mass media. Paul McCartney recorded a song with Rihanna and Kanye West, became a nominee for Grammy award, and composed a soundtrack for a videogame.

Paul McCartney, Rihanna, and Kanye West. Ph: FRIDAY.az

In style, Egypt Station almost does not differ from ordinary music of the member of The Beatles. The emphasis on a piano, acoustic, and dynamic rhythm cause nostalgia for musician’s previous albums. This is the well-known Paul McCartney of 2000s.

During one of Paul McCartney’s performances. Ph: Diego Vara/Reuters
A Song Station

The new album contains sad and happy ballads, vivid rock-blockbusters, his songs appeal to people  because of modern sounding and this special McCartney’s frolic.

At the same time, Paul McCartney keeps speculate about eternal, global and ridiculously prosaic problems. What prevents people from living in peace? How to draw a beautiful girl’s attention? Where have all the things we loved as children gone? And why does your car’s wheel become flat every time you are in a hurry?

Обложка нового альбома. Фото: BBC.com
A cover of the new album. Ph: BBC.com

According to the artist, tracks in the album are organized in a special order, so listeners can feel this travelling from one song to another – like from station to station.

The name of the album triggers memories about McCartney’s  Spirits of Ancient Egypt hit of 1975, and the “Station” part can be construed as the last stop in musician’s career. However, considering the quality of his music, 78-years old sir Paul is not going to retire from performing yet.

Rap God vs Rap Devil

Новый альбом Эминема: кому досталось и при чём здесь Machine Gun Kelly

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Несмотря на то что рэперу из Кливленда Колсону Бэйкеру были посвящены всего несколько строк из 13-и треков, именно он стал самой интересной фигурой.

В треке «Not Alike» есть такие фразы:

«И я обращаюсь к тебе, хоть ты и сам знаешь, что ты представляешь из себя, Келли,
Я никогда не действую исподтишка и тем более не пишу диссы тайком.
Но ты можешь дальше комментировать мою дочь Хэйли».

Последние предложения — отсылка к твиту MGK 2012 года, где тот называет Хэйли Мэттерс «горячей» (на тот момент ей было всего 16 лет), с этим связаны слухи, якобы после твита Эминем забанил Колсона на радиостанции, которой заведует. А претензии к скрытым диссам связаны с тем, что в последних работах, а именно в треке «No reasons» (совместный с Tech N9ne) и во фристайле с Лейкерсом, Колсон без упоминания имени отпускает высказывания в сторону Эминема.

В интервью со Свэеем Каллоуэем, американским журналистом и радиоведущим, Эминем называет эти обе причины ключевыми.

Обложка к диссу MGK "Rap Devil"
Обложка к диссу MGK “Rap Devil”

Конфликт получает свое развитие.
С удивительной скоростью, через пять дней после релиза «Kamikaze», Machine Gun Kelly выпускает пятиминутный дисс на Маршалла с названием «Rap Devil», что является отсылкой к хиту «Rap God» из альбома MMLP 2, вышедшего в 2013 году. Сутки спустя дисс занял первое место на портале Genius.

В треке MGK насмехается над внешним видом «Бога Рэпа», указывает на то, что он «староват» и много думает о себе, но параллельно с нападками чередуются «восхваления», как-никак Эминем долгое время был кумиром и примером для артиста из Кливленда.

Дисс дошел до своего адресата: именитый рэпер даже назвал его «неплохим». Ответный трек не был ожидаемым, ведь Эминем склонен игнорировать подобные нападки, которые далеки от его уровня, но релиз не заставил себя ждать.

Обложка трека Эминема "Killshot"
Обложка трека Эминема “Killshot”

Трек «Killshot» целиком посвящен Колсону и разбирает по косточкам его творение. Эминем указывает на отсутствие фактчекинга, банальность строк («у тебя странная борода», «слабые колени»), а также на былой фанатизм («Я, кажется, забыл перезвонить тебе. Держи автограф для твоей дочки»).
По многим параметрам «Killshot» оказался куда более состоятельным и объективным. За первые сутки трек вошел в десятку самых просматриваемых на Genius с 36-ю миллионами просмотров и до сих пор не сдает своих позиций в iTunes.

Был ли этот конфликт спланированной пиар–акцией или нет, мы уже не узнаем, но оба артиста по итогу остались в плюсе, а поклонники двух рэп–исполнителей получили дополнительный повод для дискуссий и достойные треки впридачу.