What to See, Hear, and Read

This Week in Culture: June 27, 2014

Kim Jong-un-able to Take a Joke The Interview, a buddy comedy starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, just released a teaser trailer. The movie’s plot centers around assassinating Kim Jong-un…which, perhaps unsurprisingly, hasn’t gone over well in North Korea. Jong-un has apparently promised “merciless” retaliation should the movie come to theaters. Chill out, Kim.
A Scar that Launched a Career Michael Kenneth Williams, best known for his roll as Omar on HBO’s The Wire and, more recently, as Chalky White on HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, spoke with NPR this week about the origins of his infamous facial scar, and how it launched his career, from backup dancer to Baltimore stickup man.
Speaking of Baltimore D. Watkins, a Baltimore writer respected for his inside look at culture in of one of the most dangerous cities in America, just published a 4,000-word piece in Aeon Magazine about his experiences in the city. His previous story Too Poor For Pop Culture, which was published in Salon to much acclaim, took a look at what a “selfie” means to communities disconnected by poverty.
Rising Talent at the Governors Ball GP was on the scene at The Governors Ball Music Festival earlier this month, where we spoke with three up-and-coming artists to get a look at the festival from the other side of the stage.
Me Walk Pretty One Day David Sedaris, who you know from Me Talk Pretty One Day and Naked, published an article in The New Yorker this week that outlines his obsessive experiences with The Fitbit, a personal activity tracker.
Stay Off the Grass, Please Wimbledon, the oldest of the four tennis majors, is going on until July 6. Stella Artois just created a commercial for Rufus, the hawk that has been scaring pigeons away from the tennis courts for the last 14 years. Also, don’t miss GP’s photo essay French Red, documenting the French Open’s distinct red clay.
Time to Feel Poorly You’re getting old, man. This site lets you know exactly how old you are, and exactly what’s been going on since you arrived in this good ole world.
12 years in the making. Richard Linklater, director of Dazed and Confused (and Matthew McConaughey’s infamous line about high school girls), has a new movie premiering next month that was 12 years in the making. Boyhood is a masterpiece of filmmaking, and The New Yorker followed Linklater around during its completion in order discover the secret of his success in indie filmmaking.
You Wouldn’t Do Well in Jail Vice investigated the horrible state of Alabama’s prisons; meanwhile, solitary confinement, a very controversial practice of isolating prisoners from human contact due to poor behavior, may be on its way out.
Germany, Biting and Belgium — Not in That Order World Cup Update: The U.S. was defeated by Germany 1-0, but we still advanced to the Knockout Stage of the Cup and play Belgium next Tuesday at 4 p.m. EST. Oh, and in case you missed it, Luis Suárez, one of Uruguay’s best strikers, was banned for nine games after biting an Italian player during a World Cup game last Tuesday. He has been barred from all soccer-related activities for four months, fined an amount equal to $112,000, and has inspired a Pac-Man parody called Biteman.
The Old Spiderman Sounds Like a Dick A 26-year-old woman ran an underground poker game for some of Hollywoods biggest stars, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire and Ben Affleck. Here’s how.
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