The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories


1. Thanks to state and federal officials, there’s a new safety plan in effect on the set of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark that sounds an awful lot like common sense: “… one offstage crew member will attach the harness and related cables, wires or tethers to the actors, and a second stagehand will verify that the attachments are made. That second stagehand will then verbally notify a stage manager that they are safely connected. The actor will also verify that the attachment is made. Previously, there was no second stagehand to verify or communicate with the stage manager, and the actor was not required to check his harness.” [via NYT]

2. Late-night comedy scandal: Did Conan O’Brien swipe Jimmy Kimmel’s parody of Sarah Palin shooting and killing Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer? Both shows aired very similar looking mashups two weeks apart. [via THR]

3. In her first network TV interview since Heath Ledger’s January 2008 death, Michelle Williams talked to Nightline about her grieving process. “It was a year of very magical thinking, and … in some ways I’m sad to be moving further and further away from it.” [via Radar Online]

4. Their plans are better than ours are: Gwyneth Paltrow, Chris Martin, Jay-Z, and Beyoncé will all be in Las Vegas for New Year’s Eve at the “record-breaking” $25 million party thrown at the new Cosmopolitan Hotel. [via Jezebel]

5. Watch Ed Helms and John C. Reilly in the newly-dropped trailer for Cedar Rapids, a comedy which Vulture very aptly describes as “The Hangover, with nerds, in Iowa.”

Bonus link: BuzzFeed’s Top 50 Most Viral Posts of 2010