2012 Year in Review: 10 Most Jaw-Dropping Moments (PHOTOS)

We’re pretty jaded, we consumers of celebrity culture. Lady Gaga? Been there, seen that. Honey Boo Boo? Stranger people have become sudden stars than the zaftig 7-year-old beauty pageant contestant and her self-styled redneck clan. Nicki Minaj feuding with her new co-worker Mariah Carey? Color us unsurprised.

It took a lot more than that to make our jaws drop this year. In order for us to star slack-jawed at our screens or text, “WTF?” to our friends, we needed to see stars acting out of character, people going off the rails, or just general good old-fashioned betrayal.

The things that shocked us this year include the events that even shocked the people involved in them. That someone would cheat on international heartthrob Robert Pattinson with their older movie director? That the very classy Kate Middleton would be embroiled in a topless scandal? Or that Angus T. Austin would go religious on us and start trashing the show that made him a multi-millionaire?

Click through the gallery above for our list of the 10 most jaw-dropping moments of 2012.

Are you still stunned? Are there any astonishing moments we should have included but didn’t. Go ahead and tell us; our delicate sensibilities can handle it.

           

Sandy Hook School Shooting Sparks Gun Control Debate: Where Do Celebrities Stand on the Second Amendment?

In the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting, America is mourning the loss of 26 lives — 20 children and 6 adults — along with the tragedy-stricken community of Newtown, Conn. But that grief has also given way to a highly politicized debate, as the massacre shines a spotlight on the long-dormant debate of gun control.

When gunman Adam Lanza opened fire inside the grade school on Friday, he was wielding a military-style semiautomatic Bushmaster rifle and carrying an arsenal of ammunition. Now the rampage has reignited a political debate around the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms — most specifically, whether assault weapons like the one used by Lanza should be limited or even banned.

As politicians and activists alike debate regulation of such weapons and consider possible policy changes, some Hollywood stars are weighing in on the timely topic.

Director Michael Moore — the brain behind the 2002 documentary Bowling for Columbine, which explored the causes for the Columbine High School massacre and other instances of gun violence — was distraught following the Connecticut tragedy, sharing his thoughts on tighter firearm restrictions on his website.

“I tried to ring a warning bell about this a decade ago. The disease has only gotten worse,” Moore wrote on Sunday. “But…you feel something different in the air across America tonight, don’t you? People have had it, and the outrage is loud and visible. I’m convinced the majority of Americans will now back strong gun control laws…. And perhaps a few are willing to look at the deeper issue of how this country officially sanctions violence as a means to an end.”

Other celebrities echoed his call for gun control action. Rashida Jones argued that “gun control is our only road to freedom;” Ben Stiller made a bid to “stop the access to guns in our country;” Susan Sarandon encouraged her followers to “let NRA know how you feel;” and Piers Morgan wondered whether President Barack Obama will “have the courage to stand up to the American gun lobby?”

But not all of Tinseltown is getting in on the anti-gun firestorm. In fact, many A-listers count themselves as cock-and-pull aficionados. From Angelina Jolie and Amber Heard, to Mark Wahlberg and Matt Damon, find out where the stars stand on the right to bear arms.

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Clint Eastwood’s Daughter Alison Eastwood and ‘Chainsaw Gang’ Boyfriend Stacy Poitras Getting Married (EXCLUSIVE)

The daughter of screen legend Clint EastwoodAlison Eastwood, is getting married to her long-time boyfriend Stacy Poitras, the couple has revealed to Celebuzz.

The stars on CMT’s Chainsaw Gang have been together for five years and have finally decided to say “I do” after being secretly engaged for the past three years.

“I feel like I am the luckiest guy in the world because Alison is truly an angel, we are both very happy,” groom-to-be Poitras told Celebuzz, in an exclusive interview.

He even asked the four-time Oscar winner’s permission to wed his daughter, who was born to Eastwood’s ex, swimsuit model Maggie Johnson in 1972.

“Clint is a cool guy… but he’s definitely a man of few words,” Poitras added.

“I actually asked for his permission three years ago at a Thanksgiving dinner in Pebble Beach that was attended by Alison’s mom Maggie too,” said Poitras.

“After the meal, I quietly asked him when we were alone if it would be alright if I asked for his daughter’s hand in marriage.

“He cooly looked me in the eye and softly said, ‘You better take that up with her,’ to which I replied, ‘So, I have your permission?’ and he said ‘Yes.’”

 

Alison, 40, starred opposite her dad in the 1984 film Tightrope. She made her directorial debut in 2007 with Rails & Ties, starring Kevin Bacon.

Despite her ties to Hollywood, Alison has kept her relationship with Poitras intensely private and out-of-the Tinseltown glare — so much so, that her future husband wants the intimate details about their proposal to remain a secret.

He added, “I am a very private person, so I don’t want to reveal how I actually proposed to Alison — but I was delighted when she said ‘Yes.’”

 

And, the ring?

“I gave her ring with a green emerald stone with two diamonds,” Poitras revealed.

Though the couple has yet to reveal a wedding date, Poitras said it will be an outdoor occasion in keeping with the couple’s love of nature.

The pair’s three dogs, two cats, two rabbits and three horses will also have a special place at the ceremony — and Clint, 82, has agreed to walk his daughter down the aisle.

“I actually spoke to Clint a couple of weeks ago over Thanksgiving and he was very happy for us both. And, naturally, he will be at our wedding to give his daughter away,” Poitras said.

“I am not really a very religious person, but we intend to have a traditional bare bones style wedding full of family and friends which will be a real celebration.

“Both Alison and I already refer to each other as husband and wife, because we feel we have such a strong spiritual bond between us and we want to celebrate that at our wedding.”

The couple first met five years ago at The Grill bar in Agoura Hills, Calif. where Poitras previously had an art studio. The two star on the CMT reality series, Chainsaw Gang, which airs Saturdays at 10 PM.

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Election 2012: 21 Memorable Moments of the 2012 Presidential Campaign

The 2012 presidential campaign has played like a couple of very long seasons of American Idol – only with, you know, actual consequences for the audience of voters who are watching.

The first season was a year-long series of Republican debates (20 of them!) and primaries, winnowing down a cast of colorful characters to find a winning challenger to compete against President Barack Obama.

Season 2 was the nearly-as-long battle of words and memes between the president and his eventual Republican challenger, Mitt Romney.

Like any good reality show, this one produced some memorable moments — bizarre gaffes, witty zingers, tactical victories and missteps, even outright smears — that went viral, producing instant eruptions of pundit commentary, late-night parody, and snark on Twitter and Tumblr.

Now that the show is just about over, with Election Day fast approaching on Tuesday, to be followed by the victor’s applying himself to the dreary duty of cleaning up America’s extravagant messes, it’s easy to forget that watching this whole spectacle was actually sort of fun and entertaining.

So here’s a list of the 21 most unforgettable, eye-rolling, knee-slapping, heartstring-pulling moments of the 2012 presidential campaign.

1. Newsweek runs a cover featuring a photo of crazy-eyed candidate Michele Bachmann, with a story titled “The Queen of Rage.” The magazine is criticized for sexism and bias for running the unflattering cover, though detractors of the often factually-challenged, conspiracy-minded candidate suggest the magazine is just telling it like it is. (Aug. 7, 2011)

2. At a Republican debate in Tampa, moderator Wolf Blitzer asks a hypothetical question about a young man who lets a life-threatening condition go untreated for lack of health insurance. Audience members are heard shouting, “Let him die.” Democrats cite the moment to paint the GOP and its supporters as heartless extremists. (Sept. 12, 2001)

3. No candidate was more entertaining than Godfather’s Pizza CEO-turned-GOP dark horse Herman Cain. Alas, such meme-friendly Cain-isms as the ridiculously simple 9-9-9 tax plan and his unique pronunciation of Uzbekistan (“Ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan”) came to a halt when old sexual harassment allegations surfaced and forced him to drop out of the race. (May-December 2011)

4. During a GOP debate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry suffers a brain freeze and is unable to name three federal government departments he would shut down as a budget-slashing president. The ensuing ridicule leads voters to stop taking him seriously as a candidate. (Nov. 9, 2011)

5. At a debate in Des Moines, when Perry confronts Mitt Romney on his flip-flopping (claiming he revised a line in reprints of his book, eliminating reference to his Massachusetts health plan as a model for the nation), the former Mass. Governor bets Perry $10,000 that the revision never happened. The expensive wager is supposed to be a rhetorical zinger, but it backfires on Romney, making him look like a wealthy, out-of-touch elitist. (Dec. 10, 2001)

6. At a fundraiser at Harlem’s Apollo Theater, President Obama does an impressive imitation of Al Green (who is present at the event), crooning a few bars of Green’s “Let’s Stay Together.” Within days, the YouTube video of the brief karaoke routine has streamed 4 million times and sent Green’s decades-old ballad soaring up the singles chart.(Jan. 19, 2012).

7. Newsletters published in the 1990s under Republican candidate Ron Paul‘s name come under fire for their racist content. Paul, who had initially refused to apologize for the bulletins, now disavowed them, saying he had lent his name to the publications without having read them.  (Jan. 2012)

8. Romney campaign advisor Eric Fehrnstrom uses an analogy to suggest that the extreme positions his candidate espoused during the primaries wouldn’t repel moderate voters in the general election: “It’s almost like an Etch A Sketch. You can kind of shake it up and restart all over again.” Romney detractors in both parties use the Etch A Sketch meme to criticize Romney’s seeming opportunism and lack of core principles. (March 21, 2012)

9. Democratic advisor Hilary Rosen criticizes Romney’s wife Ann as out-of-touch with wage-earning women, noting that the wealthy housewife and mother of five has “never worked a day in her life.” Republicans and feminists alike pounce on the comment, arguing that it devalues the work done by stay-at-home moms. Rosen is forced to apologize, as Democrats are forced to cede some of their moral high ground on women’s issues to the Republicans. (April 10, 2012)

10. The Daily Caller website unearths an excerpt from Obama’s memoir Dreams of My Father in which he mentions eating dog meat as a child with his stepfather in Indonesia. There’s even an audio clip of the president reading the words, from the book-on-tape version. Obama dog-meat recipe jokes abound, as the Republicans use the meme to counter the animal-cruelty story of how Romney strapped the family pooch to the roof of the car during a Romney clan road trip. (April 17, 2012)

11. Obama says “The private sector is doing fine” in terms of improving non-government job creation numbers. Republicans seize on the first six words to claim that the president is out of touch with the harsh economic realities of the suffering middle class. (June 8, 2012)

12. Obama gives a speech saying that businesses thrive when taxpayers and government help by (among other things) building infrastructure, so if your business succeeds while making use of public roads and bridges, you can’t claim sole credit for your success because “you didn’t build that.” Republicans glom onto those four words, claiming the president is saying that the government deserves all the credit for the success of private enterprise. It even makes “We Built That” the theme of the following month’s Republican National Convention. (July 13, 2012)

13. Discussing the dangers of deregulation, Vice President Joe Biden tells Virginians that the GOP wants “to unchain Wall Street,” which is “going to put y’all back in chains.” Insulted Republicans detect a reference to slavery and claim black voters should be offended by Biden’s rhetoric, but he refuses to apologize for his remarks.

14. At the Republican National Convention, Clint Eastwood upstages all the politicians with an improvised routine mocking Obama, represented onstage by an empty chair. Some observers find the 82-year-old actor/director’s speech baffling or embarrassing, but no one can stop talking about it. It may, in fact, be the single most memorable moment of the whole campaign.(Aug. 30, 2012)

15. At the Democratic National Convention, former President Bill Clinton upstages the nominee with a barn-burner of a speech, one that lays out the case for Obama’s re-election in simple, lay-person’s terms. Obama jokingly suggests that Clinton should be appointed Secretary of Explaining Stuff, but as Saturday Night Live‘s Seth Meyers jokes, that’s supposed to be Obama’s job. (Sept. 5, 2012)

16. Mother Jones magazine leaks a secretly taped video of Romney at a May fundraiser writing off “47 percent” of the electorate as people who won’t vote for him because they don’t pay federal income taxes, think of themselves as “victims,” and demand government services. Democrats capitalize on what may be the biggest Romney gaffe of the campaign, saying he’s insulted nearly half of America and that Obama wants to be president of 100 percent of the people. (Sept. 17, 2012)

17. The first presidential debate features a robust Romney outdoing a listless, barely there Obama. Nonetheless, the evening’s most memorable meme – Romney saying that, despite Big Bird’s popularity, he’d defund PBS – backfires against him, with Democrats and late-night comics ridiculing him for cracking down harder on Sesame Street than on Wall Street. (Oct. 3, 2012)

18. The Vice Presidential debate, between VP Joe Biden and Romney running mate Paul Ryan, is dominated by an aggressive Biden, who is nonetheless criticized for his rudeness in laughing at and interrupting Ryan. Biden’s smirk becomes such a big meme that it generates its own fake Twitter account. (Oct. 11, 2012)

19. A town hall-style debate between the presidential rivals reveals a more vigorous Obama. The most memorable soundbite is Romney’s remark about his affirmative-action hiring practices in selecting a cabinet in Massachusetts, saying he had “binders full of women” to choose from. Opponents snicker at the comment as evidence of Romney’s maladroitness on women’s issues. (Oct. 16, 2012)

20. In the final debate, when Romney criticizes Obama for allowing Navy ship counts to fall to their lowest level since World War I, he retorts that the nature of warfare has changed, and that we also have fewer “horses and bayonets.” That becomes the comic sound bite of the end of the campaign. (Oct. 22, 2012)

21. Donald Trump teases at a bombshell announcement that will change the election. It turns out to be an offer to donate $5 million to charity if Obama will release his college and passport applications. Amid the bitter partisan bickering of the bitter end of the campaign, the tycoon provides all Americans with something they can agree on at last: that Donald Trump is a self-serving publicity hound. (Oct. 24, 2012)

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Election 2012: 21 Memorable Moments of the 2012 Presidential Campaign

The 2012 presidential campaign has played like a couple of very long seasons of American Idol – only with, you know, actual consequences for the audience of voters who are watching.

The first season was a year-long series of Republican debates (20 of them!) and primaries, winnowing down a cast of colorful characters to find a winning challenger to compete against President Barack Obama.

Season 2 was the nearly-as-long battle of words and memes between the president and his eventual Republican challenger, Mitt Romney.

Like any good reality show, this one produced some memorable moments — bizarre gaffes, witty zingers, tactical victories and missteps, even outright smears — that went viral, producing instant eruptions of pundit commentary, late-night parody, and snark on Twitter and Tumblr.

Now that the show is just about over, with Election Day fast approaching on Tuesday, to be followed by the victor’s applying himself to the dreary duty of cleaning up America’s extravagant messes, it’s easy to forget that watching this whole spectacle was actually sort of fun and entertaining.

So here’s a list of the 21 most unforgettable, eye-rolling, knee-slapping, heartstring-pulling moments of the 2012 presidential campaign.

1. Newsweek runs a cover featuring a photo of crazy-eyed candidate Michele Bachmann, with a story titled “The Queen of Rage.” The magazine is criticized for sexism and bias for running the unflattering cover, though detractors of the often factually-challenged, conspiracy-minded candidate suggest the magazine is just telling it like it is. (Aug. 7, 2011)

2. At a Republican debate in Tampa, moderator Wolf Blitzer asks a hypothetical question about a young man who lets a life-threatening condition go untreated for lack of health insurance. Audience members are heard shouting, “Let him die.” Democrats cite the moment to paint the GOP and its supporters as heartless extremists. (Sept. 12, 2001)

3. No candidate was more entertaining than Godfather’s Pizza CEO-turned-GOP dark horse Herman Cain. Alas, such meme-friendly Cain-isms as the ridiculously simple 9-9-9 tax plan and his unique pronunciation of Uzbekistan (“Ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan”) came to a halt when old sexual harassment allegations surfaced and forced him to drop out of the race. (May-December 2011)

4. During a GOP debate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry suffers a brain freeze and is unable to name three federal government departments he would shut down as a budget-slashing president. The ensuing ridicule leads voters to stop taking him seriously as a candidate. (Nov. 9, 2011)

5. At a debate in Des Moines, when Perry confronts Mitt Romney on his flip-flopping (claiming he revised a line in reprints of his book, eliminating reference to his Massachusetts health plan as a model for the nation), the former Mass. Governor bets Perry $10,000 that the revision never happened. The expensive wager is supposed to be a rhetorical zinger, but it backfires on Romney, making him look like a wealthy, out-of-touch elitist. (Dec. 10, 2001)

6. At a fundraiser at Harlem’s Apollo Theater, President Obama does an impressive imitation of Al Green (who is present at the event), crooning a few bars of Green’s “Let’s Stay Together.” Within days, the YouTube video of the brief karaoke routine has streamed 4 million times and sent Green’s decades-old ballad soaring up the singles chart.(Jan. 19, 2012).

7. Newsletters published in the 1990s under Republican candidate Ron Paul‘s name come under fire for their racist content. Paul, who had initially refused to apologize for the bulletins, now disavowed them, saying he had lent his name to the publications without having read them.  (Jan. 2012)

8. Romney campaign advisor Eric Fehrnstrom uses an analogy to suggest that the extreme positions his candidate espoused during the primaries wouldn’t repel moderate voters in the general election: “It’s almost like an Etch A Sketch. You can kind of shake it up and restart all over again.” Romney detractors in both parties use the Etch A Sketch meme to criticize Romney’s seeming opportunism and lack of core principles. (March 21, 2012)

9. Democratic advisor Hilary Rosen criticizes Romney’s wife Ann as out-of-touch with wage-earning women, noting that the wealthy housewife and mother of five has “never worked a day in her life.” Republicans and feminists alike pounce on the comment, arguing that it devalues the work done by stay-at-home moms. Rosen is forced to apologize, as Democrats are forced to cede some of their moral high ground on women’s issues to the Republicans. (April 10, 2012)

10. The Daily Caller website unearths an excerpt from Obama’s memoir Dreams of My Father in which he mentions eating dog meat as a child with his stepfather in Indonesia. There’s even an audio clip of the president reading the words, from the book-on-tape version. Obama dog-meat recipe jokes abound, as the Republicans use the meme to counter the animal-cruelty story of how Romney strapped the family pooch to the roof of the car during a Romney clan road trip. (April 17, 2012)

11. Obama says “The private sector is doing fine” in terms of improving non-government job creation numbers. Republicans seize on the first six words to claim that the president is out of touch with the harsh economic realities of the suffering middle class. (June 8, 2012)

12. Obama gives a speech saying that businesses thrive when taxpayers and government help by (among other things) building infrastructure, so if your business succeeds while making use of public roads and bridges, you can’t claim sole credit for your success because “you didn’t build that.” Republicans glom onto those four words, claiming the president is saying that the government deserves all the credit for the success of private enterprise. It even makes “We Built That” the theme of the following month’s Republican National Convention. (July 13, 2012)

13. Discussing the dangers of deregulation, Vice President Joe Biden tells Virginians that the GOP wants “to unchain Wall Street,” which is “going to put y’all back in chains.” Insulted Republicans detect a reference to slavery and claim black voters should be offended by Biden’s rhetoric, but he refuses to apologize for his remarks.

14. At the Republican National Convention, Clint Eastwood upstages all the politicians with an improvised routine mocking Obama, represented onstage by an empty chair. Some observers find the 82-year-old actor/director’s speech baffling or embarrassing, but no one can stop talking about it. It may, in fact, be the single most memorable moment of the whole campaign.(Aug. 30, 2012)

15. At the Democratic National Convention, former President Bill Clinton upstages the nominee with a barn-burner of a speech, one that lays out the case for Obama’s re-election in simple, lay-person’s terms. Obama jokingly suggests that Clinton should be appointed Secretary of Explaining Stuff, but as Saturday Night Live‘s Seth Meyers jokes, that’s supposed to be Obama’s job. (Sept. 5, 2012)

16. Mother Jones magazine leaks a secretly taped video of Romney at a May fundraiser writing off “47 percent” of the electorate as people who won’t vote for him because they don’t pay federal income taxes, think of themselves as “victims,” and demand government services. Democrats capitalize on what may be the biggest Romney gaffe of the campaign, saying he’s insulted nearly half of America and that Obama wants to be president of 100 percent of the people. (Sept. 17, 2012)

17. The first presidential debate features a robust Romney outdoing a listless, barely there Obama. Nonetheless, the evening’s most memorable meme – Romney saying that, despite Big Bird’s popularity, he’d defund PBS – backfires against him, with Democrats and late-night comics ridiculing him for cracking down harder on Sesame Street than on Wall Street. (Oct. 3, 2012)

18. The Vice Presidential debate, between VP Joe Biden and Romney running mate Paul Ryan, is dominated by an aggressive Biden, who is nonetheless criticized for his rudeness in laughing at and interrupting Ryan. Biden’s smirk becomes such a big meme that it generates its own fake Twitter account. (Oct. 11, 2012)

19. A town hall-style debate between the presidential rivals reveals a more vigorous Obama. The most memorable soundbite is Romney’s remark about his affirmative-action hiring practices in selecting a cabinet in Massachusetts, saying he had “binders full of women” to choose from. Opponents snicker at the comment as evidence of Romney’s maladroitness on women’s issues. (Oct. 16, 2012)

20. In the final debate, when Romney criticizes Obama for allowing Navy ship counts to fall to their lowest level since World War I, he retorts that the nature of warfare has changed, and that we also have fewer “horses and bayonets.” That becomes the comic sound bite of the end of the campaign. (Oct. 22, 2012)

21. Donald Trump teases at a bombshell announcement that will change the election. It turns out to be an offer to donate $5 million to charity if Obama will release his college and passport applications. Amid the bitter partisan bickering of the bitter end of the campaign, the tycoon provides all Americans with something they can agree on at last: that Donald Trump is a self-serving publicity hound. (Oct. 24, 2012)

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Election 2012: 12 Celebrities Who Went Into Politics (GALLERY)

Back in 2008, during Barack Obama‘s meteoric rise from obscure Illinois Senator to the presidency, rival John McCain‘s camp criticized him for seeming too much like a celebrity. The complaint made little sense. After all, Americans — and especially Republican voters — love voting celebrities into public office.

It all started with a movie star who first won office as president of the Screen Actors Guild, then parlayed that experience into public office in California and then Washington, D.C. No, not Ronald Reagan. It was George Murphy, who became a U.S. senator from California in 1965, two years before future president Reagan became governor of California.

Since then, several actors have discovered that there’s a revolving door between Hollywood and Washington, one that involves more than just being a donor or an activist.

Interestingly, most actors-turned-politicians are Republicans. Maybe they just find Washington more hospitable than overwhelmingly liberal Hollywood.

Here’s a gallery of some of the most successful celebrity-to-politician transformations. Check them out and ponder, as the election approaches, the kind of charisma that makes both moviegoers and voters swoon.

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Beyoncé Bows Out of Clint Eastwood’s ‘A Star Is Born’ Remake

Beyoncé will not be Clint Eastwood‘s star.

The singer has confirmed that she will no longer play the lead in the legendary director’s remake of the classic film A Star Is Born. “I was looking forward to the production of A Star Is Born and the opportunity to work with Clint Eastwood,” Jay-Zs wife told E! News.

But Beyoncé — who was set to recreate the role most recently brought to life by Barbra Streisand — simply couldn’t squeeze in time for shooting the film, which tells the story of a promising young performer who falls for a fading rock star.

“For months we tried to coordinate our schedules to bring this remake to life,” she said, “but it was just not possible.”

That doesn’t mean a Beyoncé-Eastwood collaboration is completely off the table though.

“Hopefully in the future we will get a chance to work together,” said Queen B.

The singer-actress’ decision to drop out leaves Eastwood sans leads — or a start date, for that matter — for his forthcoming flick. A Star Is Born has been searching for man to star opposite its leading lady — with Bradley Cooper, Russell Crowe, Christian Bale and others floated as possibilities — but the role still stands empty. “We’ve talked to several people, and we probably won’t address that one till next year,” Eastwood told E! at the premiere of his latest film, Trouble With the Curve.

Though Beyoncé blames her chock-full calendar for leaving Eastwood’s project, their opposing political persuasions are hard to overlook. A big-time Barack Obama supporter, Beyoncé co-hosted an exclusive NYC fundraising event for the president with her husband Jay-Z last month.

But right-leaning Eastwood hit headlines in August for his now-infamous, off-the-cuff speech at the Republican National Convention, in which he argued with an empty chair that he pretended was the POTUS.

Weigh in: Could their political differences have led to this professional parting of ways?

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Buzz at the Box Office: Mania for ‘Transylvania’, Love for ‘Looper’

Halloween fever started early this year as Adam Sandler’s Hotel Transylvania shot to the top of the box office over the weekend.

Scaring up solid opening-weekend grosses of $34 million, the film more than doubled the returns of its next-highest competition.

That said, Rian Johnson’s Looper , which stars Bruce Willis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Emily Blunt, recouped more than two thirds of its reported $30 million budget with a haul of $21.2 million, an impressive showing that gives the filmmaker a commercial cache to match his critical bona fides.

What sort of returns did ‘Pitch Perfect’ produce?

Although Pitch Perfect came in at Number Six with a gross of $5.2 million, Universal’s music-themed movie did well in the context of its $17 million price tag, making it a minor success.

Meanwhile at Number Three, Jake Gyllenhaal’s End of Watch continues to perform solidly, earning $8 million and bringing its two-week tally to more than $26 million.

Trouble with the Curve, starring Clint Eastwood, Justin Timberlake and Amy Adams took home $7.5 million, landing it at Number Four and bringing its cumulative total to $23.7 million after just two weeks.

And Jennifer Lawrence’s House at the End of the Street followed at Number Five, earning another $7.1 million and bringing its theatrical gross to date to $22.2 million.

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Clint Eastwood Approves of Bill Hader’s Mocking ‘Saturday Night Live’ Impression (VIDEO)

Bill Hader should feel lucky, punk. After all, Clint Eastwood could have hated Hader’s scathing impression of him on last week’s Saturday Night Live — and as he’s shown in recent movies, the 82-year-old Hollywood legend can still kick some ass.

Fortunately for the sketch comic, Eastwood has given a thumbs-up to the sketch, in which Hader lampooned Eastwood’s now-notorious improvised comic routine in which he debated an empty chair (representing President Barack Obama) at last month’s Republican National Convention.

“I liked it,” Eastwood told E! News at Thursday’s Hollywood premiere of Trouble With the Curve. “It was good. Hader has me down pretty good.

What else did Hader’s sketch get right?


In the sketch, Hader’s Eastwood takes his chair-debate act on the road. In real life, Eastwood may travel to stump for Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. Asked if he’d be making more appearances on behalf of the Romney campaign, the actor/director told E! News, “I don’t know. I hope so.”

Trouble with the Curve marks Eastwood’s first time acting for a director other than himself in two decades (the last time was 1993′s In the Line of Fire, directed by Wolfgang Petersen.) Eastwood’s availability to star in Trouble, directed by his longtime assistant director Robert Lorenz, opened up when Eastwood’s plans to direct a remake of A Star Is Born fell through because his intended lead, Beyoncé, became pregnant. Eastwood told E! he still plans to direct the film, and that Beyoncé and rumored male lead Bradley Cooper may still end up starring in it.

“We were talking to Bradley Cooper,” Eastwood told E! “We’ve talked to several people, and we probably won’t address that one till next year. Early next year.” As for Beyoncé, the actor/director said, “She’s great. I don’t know if she’s available, but we’ve talked a little bit.”

Trouble With the Curve, in which Eastwood plays a veteran baseball scout, also features Amy Adams and Justin Timberlake. It opens in theaters on Friday.

 

‘Saturday Night Live’ Recap: Seth MacFarlane Channels Ryan Lochte, ‘Gangnam Style’ Mania Continues (VIDEOS)

Seth MacFarlane can do a lot of voices. So it only made sense that for his opening monologue on Saturday Night Live’s season premiere, the 38-year-old paid homage to his famous talent.

About halfway through his monologue, MacFarlane transitioned into a song that was about, well, how his head is “filled with voices” like Kermit the Frog and George Takei.

But perhaps his strongest performance was on Weekend Update with Seth Meyers, when the Family Guy creator dipped into the shoes of Ryan Lochte. While MacFarlane did not deliver any “JEAH” bombs, he did have some of the evening’s best lines.

“If you hold your ear up to my ear, you can hear the ocean,” MacFarlane said as the Olympic swimmer in full warm-up gear, complete with gold medals and later, a juice box.

“It feels weird to be dry,” he also said, as Lochte.

What were some other highlights from the season premiere of ‘SNL?’

The show’s cold opener marked the official transition of power — of portraying President Barack Obama — from Fred Armisen to Jay Pharoah, whose past impersonations have included Jay-Z, Kanye West and Eddie Murphy.

Jason Sudeikis, with yet another effortless portrayal of Mitt Romney, also joined in on the opening sketch.

 

Bill Hader reprised his Clint Eastwood duties (high pants included), starring as the Oscar winning actor in an ad for a “comedy duo” tour with the empty chair from the Republic National Convention.

 

Meanwhile newcomers Aidy Bryant, Tim Robinson and Cecily Strong (who replaced Kristen Wiig, Andy Samberg and Abby Elliot) fared well on the season opener, given the limited screen time they had.

It was only a matter of time before Psy made his way to the SNL stage with his viral song and dance “Gangnam Style.” Kudos to the show for pairing Bobby Moynihan with the actual South Korean sensation in a sketch that made everyone want to do the horse-riding routine.

 

Musical guest Frank Ocean gave his everything on stage, belting out “Thinking About You” and “Pyramids,” with the help of John Mayer and his guitar.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt is set to host the next installment of SNL, with tunes from Mumford & Sons.

What did you think of the season premiere of ‘Saturday Night Live?’ Share your thoughts below.

Brad Pitt ‘Doesn’t Feel Safe’ Without a Gun; 15 Other Celebrities Who Exercise Their Second Amendment Rights (GALLERY)

Brad Pitt may have played a gun-totting rebel in films such as Inglourious Basterds and Killing Them Softly, but he’s just adamant on bearing arms in real life as his onscreen personas.

In a recent interview with the Daily Mail‘s Live magazine, the 48-year-old revealed that he “doesn’t feel safe” without his trusty gun.

“America is a country founded on guns. It’s in our DNA. It’s very strange, but I feel better having a gun. I really do,” he said. “I don’t feel safe, I don’t feel the house is completely safe, if I don’t have one hidden somewhere. That’s my thinking, right or wrong.”

What does his fiancee Angelina Jolie think of Pitt’s love for guns?

The 37-year-old Mr. & Mrs. Smith star agrees with him.

In a 2008 interview with Live, Jolie admitted they have a gun in their shared home in order to protect their kids.

“I bought original, real guns of the type we used in Tomb Raider for security. Brad and I are not against having a gun in the house, and we do have one. And yes, I’d be able to use it if I had to,” she revealed. “I could handle myself.”

The A-listers aren’t the only celebs to have openly admitted to bearing arms. From Johnny Depp to onscreen cowboy Clint Eastwood, many Hollywood stars are exercising their rights as Americans to own and use guns.

Launch the gallery to see 15 celebs who are happily packin’ heat.