The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories


1. Apparently Aretha Franklin was the first guest to arrive at Sarah Jessica Parker’s $40,000-a-head Barack Obama fundraising dinner last night, and decided to leave after only 20 minutes. Gawker is calling it “a big diva move,” but given the fact that she’s 70 years old, maybe she was just tired.

2. Tony-nominated Newsies star Jeremy Jordan will be joining the cast of Smash next season. His character description? “Straight, working class from Brooklyn. Sexy, charismatic, musically gifted, but also self-destructive and remote.” [via ArtsBeat]

3. Here’s the full synopsis for District 9 director Neill Blomkamp’s highly-anticipated second feature, Elysium, a sci-fi film that’s set in 2159 and stars both Matt Damon and Jodie Foster. [via Slashfilm]

4. We enjoy watching Azealia Banks channel her inner cowgirl in her new Rankin-directed video for “Liquorice” — and you can definitely tell that her pal Nicola Formichetti did the styling. [via Clash Music]

5. “Dance for You,” the second song off of Dirty Projectors’s forthcoming album Swing Lo Magellan (due out July 10th in the US), makes for rather nice Friday morning listening, don’t you think? [via Pitchfork]

Bonus Buzz: What’s One Meme You Absolutely Can’t Stand?