The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories


1. Last night on the Late Show, Alec Baldwin discussed his fists’ recent run-in with New York Daily News photographer Marcus Santos. He also dropped his pants.

2. Katy Perry is planning to launch her own record label. “I’m preparing for it now,” she told The Hollywood Reporter . “And when this record label does come to fruition, I’m going to try and avoid the things that take away any fighting chance for an artist to have financial success. As people are coming to me with opportunities, I’m thinking, ‘How would I want to be treated?'”

3. The good news: Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei was able to leave his house for the first time in a year today without having to tell the police about his movements. The bad: Apparently they’ve forbidden him from traveling, with the threat of bigamy and pornography charges if he doesn’t follow the ban. [via Reuters]

4. Ryan Phillippe will make his directorial debut with the indie thriller Shreveport, a film about “a fading movie star who is suddenly kidnapped, held hostage, and tortured while filming a low-budget film in the Louisiana city.” He co-wrote the script with Joe Gossett, and also plans to star in the pic. [via The Playlist]

5. A British tabloid reports that Kanye West has “become obsessed with roars, barks and jungle noises,” and is planning to make an entire album featuring just animal noises. Meanwhile, word is that Cruel Summer, his G.O.O.D. Music collaboration album, will drop on August 7th. [via NME, Vulture]

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