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Entertainment Brief: Feb. 24

Rolling Stones to Feature Paul McCartney on New Album 

In an email to CNN on Feb. 22, a representative from the Rolling Stones confirmed former Beatle Paul McCartney was helping the band record a song for their new album. 

This album is the Stones’ first studio effort consisting of original music since 2005’s “A Bigger Bang.” While the band released “Blue and Lonesome” in 2016, it consisted only of blues cover songs. 

 According to Variety, it is being produced by Andrew Watt, the Grammy award-winning producer behind Ozzy Osbourne’s “Patient Number 9.” 

This album also marks the first Rolling Stones studio release since the 2021 death of longtime drummer Charlie Watts. According to Deadline, the album will have contributions from Watts recorded before his passing. 

The Rolling Stones are one of the most enduring bands from the “classic rock” era. Founded in 1962 by frontman Mick Jagger and guitarist Keith Richards, they were a large part of the “British Invasion” of the 1960s, alongside The Beatles. 

Both the Stones and Beatles have been painted by popular media as rivals, especially given how similar both groups were to each other. Regardless, this studio union between McCartney and the Stones serves as a dream collaboration for many fans. 

Alec Baldwin’s Manslaughter Charge Downgraded 

On Feb. 20, New Mexico prosecutors downgraded the involuntary manslaughter charges against actor Alec Baldwin. 

According to court documents, Baldwin could still face 18 months in prison, but prosecutors have removed what they call a “firearm enhancement.” This enhancement could have extended Baldwin’s prison stay. 

The downgrade was made after Baldwin’s legal team disputed the charge, claiming the statute “didn’t exist under the state of the accident.” 

New Mexico’s firearm laws changed in March of 2022 while Baldwin’s “Rust” shooting took place in Oct. of 2021. Additionally, prosecutors argued, under the original statute, a gun had to be “brandished,” which requires proof of intent to harm. 

Baldwin is expected to make his first court appearance Friday. 

Oscars to Introduce Crisis Team

Following last year’s infamous Will Smith slap at the 2022 Oscars, the Academy of Motion Pictures has introduced a crisis team. 

According to an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Glenn Wiess, the executive producer of this year’s Academy Awards, said the team is another safety layer for the unknown. 

“We go in with a really good plan for the known, but you have to be ready for what may transpire with what you didn’t plan.” Wiess said. 

While not mentioned explicitly, many believe this team is being established after actor Will Smith slapped comedian Chris Rock for making a joke about his wife last year. 

This year’s Oscar ceremony will be held on March 12 and will be hosted by Jimmy Kimmel. 

Selena Gomez Returns as Most Followed Woman on Instagram 

Selena Gomez returned to Instagram this week and dethroned Kylie Jenner as the most-followed woman on the platform. 

Gomez had once possessed the title, but took a break from the app, citing it as “toxic.” 

“People can call me ugly or stupid, and I’m like, ‘whatever.’ But these people get detailed,” Gomez said in an interview with Vanity Fair. “They write paragraphs that are so specific and mean. I would constantly be crying. I constantly had anxiety. I couldn’t do it anymore. It was a waste of my time.” 

With Gomez’s return, she surpassed previous record-holder Jenner. While the reality television star has 380 million followers, Gomez currently has 382.

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