The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories


1. Tower Heist surprised many by landing in second place at the box office in its debut weekend behind Puss in Boots; as ArtsBeat notes, this “does not bode well for the next Academy Awards,” which will reteam Eddie Murphy as the evening’s host and Brett Ratner as its producer.

2. Photographer Amy Harris has decided to bring assault charges against Left Brain from Odd Future, alleging that he slapped her during a performance by the group in New Orleans last month. [via Rolling Stone]

3. Nearly 20,000 people have helped raise $790,000 in donations to help Ai Weiwei pay off the $2.4 million in fines and taxes that the Chinese government says that he owes them. [via BBC]

4. John Lennon’s rotten molar went for £19,000 — almost double the reserve price — at an auction in the UK over the weekend; the rumored buyer is a dentist from Canada. [via NME]

5. A poster for the Tom Hanks/Julia Roberts movie Larry Crowne that shows the duo riding a scooter without helmets has resulted in a €30,000 fine for the film’s distributor in Spain. Says an insider: “When the fine showed up in the post we thought it was a joke. We didn’t even expect something like this when we distributed the remake of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.” [via Guardian]

Bonus Buzz: Drugs Of The ’90s