- Model Josh Kloss accused singer Katy Perry of pulling down his pants and exposing him at a party after filming with Perry for her “Teenage Dream” music video.
- After Kloss came forward, Russian TV host Tina Kandelaki said Perry drunkenly tried to kiss her at a party.
- Some associated with Perry have jumped to her defense, calling Kloss’ accusation a smear job, while others online say it shows a double standard between men and women facing misconduct allegations.
Josh Kloss Accuses Perry
Pop Singer Katy Perry faced two accusations of sexual misconduct this week, with one man saying she pulled his pants down at a party and another woman claiming she forcibly tried to kiss her.
In a Sunday Instagram post, model Josh Kloss — who worked with Perry for her 2010 “Teenage Dream” music video — accused the singer of pulling down his sweat pants and underwear while at a party for director Johny Wujek’s birthday.
Kloss said he had approached Perry to introduce her to his friend, who had been excited to meet her. He alleges she then exposed him in front of a crowd and his friend.
“But as I turned to introduce my friend, she pulled my Adidas sweats and underwear out as far as she could to show a couple of her guy friends and the crowd around us, my penis,” Kloss said in the post. “Can you imagine how pathetic and embarrassed i felt?”
View this post on Instagram
You know. After I met Katy, we sang a worship song, “open the eyes of my heart” She was cool and kind. When other people were around she was cold as ice even called the act of kissing me “gross” to the entire set while filming. Now I was pretty embarrassed but kept giving my all, as my ex was busy cheating on me and my daughter was just a toddler, I knew I had to endure for her sake. After the first day of shooting, Katy invited me to a strip club in Santa Barbara. I declined and told her “I have to go back to hotel and rest, because this job is all I have right now” So I saw Katy a couple times after her break up with Russel. This one time I brought a friend who was dying to meet her. It was Johny Wujek’s birthday party at moonlight roller way. And when I saw her, we hugged and she was still my crush. But as I turned to introduce my friend, she pulled my Adidas sweats and underwear out as far as she could to show a couple of her guy friends and the crowd around us, my penis. Can you imagine how pathetic and embarrassed i felt? I just say this now because our culture is set on proving men of power are perverse. But females with power are just as disgusting. So for all her good she is an amazing leader, hers songs are mainly great empowering anthems. And that is it. I continued to watch her use clips of her music videos for her world tour and then her dvd, only highlighting one of her male co-stars, and it was me. I made around 650 in total off of teenage dream. I was lorded over by her reps, about not discussing a single thing about anything regarding Katy publicly. And a couple interviews they edited and answered for me. So, happy anniversary to one of the most confusing, assaulting, and belittling jobs I’ve ever done. Yay #teenagedream I was actually gonna play the song and sing it on ukele for the anniversary, but then as I was tuning I thought, fuck this, I’m not helping her bs image another second.
Prior to the alleged incident, Kloss said he had a crush on Perry, saying when he first met her, she was “cool and kind.” He said the two once sang the contemporary Christain song “Open the Eyes of My Heart” together.
Soon after, however, he said Perry became “cold as ice” and claimed Perry described kissing him as “gross” in front of the entire set crew. Kloss also said he felt embarrassed during that incident, but he said he continued with the video because his daughter was a toddler at the time and he was struggling with his marriage.
“I just say this now because our culture is set on proving men of power are perverse,” Kloss said in the post. “But females with power are just as disgusting.”
Following the filming, Kloss said Katy’s reps forbid him from publicly talking about Perry, going so far as to edit his answers in interviews — sometimes answering for him, he claimed.
Kloss then made another post where he listed a series of example interview questions and how he had to respond, one of those questions being, “How was kissing Katy?”
In the post, Kloss said he had to shy away from specifics, instead making comments about the positivity on the set, how proud he was of the video, and the good atmosphere of working with Perry and director Yoann Lemione.
“I was supposed to minimize myself and stay PC to protect her ‘image,’” he said. “I listened and was a good boy. The fear sticks with you, when you are censored to protect someone else’s image. But in return treated like a prostitute and exposed in front of a group of her friends and other random people.”
View this post on Instagram
I was supposed to minimize myself and stay PC to protect her “image” I listened and was a good boy. The fear sticks with you, when you are censored to protect someone else’s image. But in return treated like a prostitute and exposed in front of a group of her friends and other random people. Then you are shocked and you block it out, because you watch the face of children being uplifted by positive music she sang. And your mind is stuck trying to do your job and protect her bs image or be honest and help the global dialogue about power and abuse. And you hear over and over a million times that Males are the great evil on this planet. Meanwhile you know the truth POWER empowers what is corrupt in people, regardless of their gender. Folks I am putting us both out on display to increase and enlighten everyone. I don’t want money for this, Many of you project your own ambitions. I don’t want fame from this, that is why I stomached it and kept working, and kept supporting the “teenage dream” image. And this anniversary, and time elapse made me realize hey now is the time to let it out and let it go. Not one more day of hearing “How was Katy Perry?”
Kloss said he struggled to come forward with his accusations because he has seen the impact Perry’s music has on kids.
“Then you are shocked and you block it out, because you watch the face of children being uplifted by positive music she sang,” Kloss said.
Ultimately, he said part of why he chose to respond was because he is continually faced with the question, “How was Katy Perry?”
Russian TV Host Throws Another Accusation Against Perry
Following Kloss’ accusations, Russian TV host Tina Kandelaki claimed Wednesday that Perry tried to drunkenly kiss her at a party.
“Once, I was invited to a private party with Katy Perry, where she, being pretty tipsy, chose me as an object for the manifestation of her passions,” she wrote on the social media platform Telegram. “I managed to fight back — strength training was not in vain — and Katy instantly found a new victim (how awful, a female again) for kisses, hugs and dirty dances.”
“From what I can recall, there didn’t seem to be victims at the party,” she continued, “but I won’t be surprised by the flow of memories from unhappy fans who have had to carry this with them, and now suddenly remembered this vicious dignity.”
Kandelaki did not mention when or where the incident reportedly took place.
While Perry has remained quiet on both accusations, others have jumped to her defense.
Wujek, whose party was where the first accusation allegedly occurred, condemned Kloss in his original post about Perry.
“Oh hell no,” Wujek said. “I’m not about to let you make accusations against my friend like this. This is such bullshit. Katy would never do something like that. We all know about your ongoing obsession with her since the day of filming that video…. You were….planning an imaginary future with her….move on josh.”
Jewelry designer Markus Molinari — who has worked with Perry — also claimed Kloss had an “obsession” with Perry and told him to “move on.”
Another model who starred in Perry’s “Thinking of You” music video defended the singer in a separate post and called the accusation a “smear job.”
“What I can tell you is my personal experience and it was nothing but positive,” model Anderson Davis said. “Katy was extremely inspiring, sweet, darling, professional on set and off the few times that we ran into each other.”
“ Simply put…it sounds like a smear job to me,” he continued. “Maybe it’s always been this way, but moreso today, everyone seems so needy for attention no matter how they can get it , even at the cost of someone else’s reputation. We have a responsibility as a society as individuals not to be careless with our accusations or words.”
He also said none of Katy’s reps ever told him what to say when answering questions in interviews.
View this post on Instagram
I’d be 100% happy to defend Katy. After being contacted regarding my thoughts on this from numerous entertainment outlets, I’ve decided to give my own words here so that they couldn’t be twisted! I read an article regarding the male model’s thoughts and what he had claimed Katy Perry had done to him. What I can tell you is my personal experience and it was nothing but positive. Katy was extremely inspiring, sweet, darling, professional on set and off the few times that we ran into each other. I personally didn’t have anyone on Katy’s team lording over me to answer interview questions in any certain way. We made a beautiful music video , I worked with some very talented but more importantly great people, and made some friends that I’ve enjoyed drinks and dinner with over the years. Simply put…it sounds like a smear job to me. Maybe it’s always been this way, but moreso today, everyone seems so needy for attention no matter how they can get it , even at the cost of someone else’s reputation. We have a responsibility as a society as individuals not to be careless with our accusations or words. #katyperry
Others online have noted the similarities the allegations share with the many accusations of sexual assault against prominent men as part of the #MeToo movement. They also express concern that Perry is being treated differently in regard to cancel culture, primarily because few prominent women have been accused of sexual misconduct.
Others have referenced an incident where the singer kissed a 19-year-old man on American Idol without his consent. In 2017, Perry kissed contestant Benjamin Glazer during the audition round after he said he had had yet to have his first kiss. Glazer described the kiss as “uncomfortable” but stopped short of calling it harassment.
See what others are saying: (InStyle) (The AV Club) (Mercury News)
Zendaya, John David Washington, and “Euphoria” Creator Film Secret Movie During Coronavirus Pandemic
- “Malcolm & Marie,” a new picture starring Zendaya and John David Washington was completely written and shot during the coronavirus pandemic, which has forced most productions to halt in an effort to slow the spread of the virus.
- The film was written and directed by “Euphoria” creator Sam Levinson, who began the project after Zendaya asked him if he could pull off a quarantine movie.
- The cast was under strict safety precautions and underwent a two-week quarantine on location before filming. While filming, sanitation, social distancing, and other measures were also taken.
- This comes as Hollywood is working on its plans to open up again, a complicated task made even more difficult by growing coronavirus cases.
Film Shot in Secret
Zendaya, along with John David Washington and “Euphoria” creator Sam Levinson, secretly filmed an entire movie during the coronavirus pandemic.
According to a report from Deadline, the actress called Levinson after production for season 2 of “Euphoria,” which she also stars in, came to a halt over concerns regarding COVID-19. She asked if he could write and direct a movie during quarantine and just six days later, he churned out a script titled “Malcolm & Marie.” Levinson then brought Golden Globe-nominated Washington on board to co-star in the feature alongside Zendaya.
Shooting began on June 17 and wrapped up on July 2, according to Deadline’s exclusive. The film was shot at the Caterpillar House in Monterey County, California, where shooting on private property was allowed at the time. The house sits on 33 acres of land, providing plenty of space between the crew and the outside world.
Safety Measures Taken
Levinson, Washington, Zendaya, and other producers on the project worked with lawyers, doctors and industry unions to make sure they were following COVID-19 safety precautions while on set. Deadline said that the cast and crew quarantined in Monterey for two weeks prior to shooting.
During that time, everyone wore masks, social distanced, had individual dwellings, rehearsed in the parking lot, and ate in designated spots with food only prepared by chefs who were also quarantining. No one was allowed off the property, no physical contact was allowed, and no more than one person was allowed in a room at the same time, unless those people had been quarantining together.
Cast and crew were tested at the start and end of their quarantine, and the film kept to a relatively small crew. Only 12 people were allowed on set at a time, and had to wear personal protection equipment when in contact with actors. Physical distancing was required as much as possible.
Production offices worked remotely and there were increased sanitation measures for those on set. Surfaces were cleaned, frequent hand washing was required, and people were not allowed to share things like keys or phones.
Hollywood and Coronavirus
This comes as production fell last quarter by 98%, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Because of this, Hollywood is anxious to find a path forward with filming. Some bigger productions, like “Jurassic World: Dominion,” which is set to resume filming this month, will have large budgets devoted to sanitation.
However, that picture is filming in the United Kingdom. Movies filming in the United States have to battle growing coronavirus cases, which could severely delay reopening plans.
Christopher Miller, a writer and producer behind hits like “The Lego Movie” and “Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse” warned that these increased cases could throw the industry further behind.
Right now, Hollywood could look to “Malcolm & Marie” as an example of how to shoot a film while in quarantine. While it was completed in secrecy and details are still scant, projects designed to be completed in some form of isolation could be the answer.
See what others are saying: (Deadline) (The Hollywood Reporter) (IndieWire)
Lady A, Formerly Lady Antebellum, Sues Black Blues Singer Lady A Over Rights to Use Name
- In June, the country group Lady Antebellum renamed itself Lady A, dropping the word “antebellum” due to its association with slavery. However, a Black blues singer named Anita White noted that she had been using “Lady A” professionally for more than 20 years.
- After a Zoom call between all parties, it appeared that they agreed to coexist, but White later said she felt the band’s camp was trying to erase her after seeing their draft agreement.
- On Wednesday, the band sued White for the right to use the name after claiming she demanded $10 million dollars as part of a draft settlement agreement.
- The band claims they trademarked the name in 2010 without opposition and are not seeking monetary damages or asking for White to stop using the name, but want all parties to coexist.
Country Band Rebrands
Lady A, the country band formerly known as Lady Antebellum, is now in a legal battle with a Black blues singer named Anita White, who is known professionally as Lady A.
Discussions over the use of “Lady A” have been going on for about a month now, so let’s take a look at how the issue started.
After nationwide protests over the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and other Black people unjustly killed by police, people all across the country have been forced to confront systemic racism and their roles in perpetuating inequality. In response, there have been widespread changes, from TV shows removing scenes with blackface, to brands pulling logos that many deemed offensive.
The country band joined in on that movement, dropping “antebellum” from their name over its ties to slavery.
On June 11, bandmembers Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley, and Dave Haywood said they would officially go by Lady A. At the time, the group said, “When we set out together almost 14 years ago we named our band after the southern “antebellum” style home where we took our first photos. As musicians, it reminded us of all the music born in the south that influenced us…southern rock, blues, R&B, gospel and of course country.”
“But we are regretful and embarrassed to say that we did not take into account the associations that weigh down this world referring to the period of history before the Civil War, which includes slavery. We are deeply sorry for the hurt this has caused and for anyone who has felt unsafe, unseen or unvalued. Causing pain was never our heart’s intention, but it doesn’t change the fact that indeed, it did just that.”
Anita White Blindsided
But soon after, Anita White came forward to say she had been using Lady A as a stage name for over 20 years and was blindsided by the country band’s announcement. Her fans reportedly bombarded her with the news that her name has been solen, and in an interview with Rolling Stone, the 61-year-old singer said the band hadn’t reached out to her before making their decision.
At the time, she called it ironic that they were changing their name in support of racial equality while at the same time taking another name from a Black performer. She said she would not stop using the name and called their failure to reach out “pure privilege.”
“They’re using the name because of a Black Lives Matter incident that, for them, is just a moment in time. If it mattered, it would have mattered to them before. It shouldn’t have taken George Floyd to die for them to realize that their name had a slave reference to it,” she added.
“It’s an opportunity for them to pretend they’re not racist or pretend this means something to them.”
Discussions Take Place
After facing questions about White, the band admitted that they were not aware she was already using the name and planned to reach out.
Then on June 15, they shared an image of a Zoom call with White that seemed to suggest they had reached an agreement. “We are excited to share we are moving forward with positive solutions and common ground. The hurt is turning into hope. More to come,” the band wrote at the time.
White tweeted out a similar message, however, shortly after the chat, she told Newsday, “I received a draft agreement from the Antebellum camp. I’m not happy about [it] yet again after talking in good faith… Their camp is trying to erase me and I’ll have more to say tomorrow. Trust is important and I no longer trust them.”
Tensions escalated Wednesday when the band sued the singer for the rights to use the name. According to the lawsuit, the parties involved had agreed to coexist, with the band agreeing to support the singer’s musical career. It even says they had plans to collaborate on a song together.
However, the band says talks fell apart when “White’s new counsel delivered a draft settlement agreement that included an exorbitant monetary demand.”
The group said in a statement, “Today we are sad to share that our sincere hope to join together with Anita White in unity and common purpose has ended. She and her team have demanded a $10 million payment, so reluctantly we have come to the conclusion that we need to ask a court to affirm our right to continue to use the name Lady A, a trademark we have held for many years.”
“We are sad to share that our sincere hope to join together with Anita White in unity and common purpose has ended. We can do so much more together than in this dispute.”
The suit outlines the band’s history with the name, saying they’ve used Lady Antebellum and “Lady A” interchangeable since around 2006 or 2007. The filing reportedly included documents of the band’s website and other reports demonstrating their use of the name.
According to the suit, the group applied to register “Lady A’ as a trademark in 2010. It was officially registered in 2011 and reportedly received no opposition at the time.
The suit says White never applied to trademark or register the name “Lady A.” The legal filing also doesn’t ask for White to stop using the name, or for any monetary damages. Instead, it says, “Plaintiffs simply wish that the parties continue to coexist.”
Backlash against the group came swiftly following news of the suit, with people now questioning if the intentions behind their initial name change were genuine.
One user wrote, Lady Antebellum changing their name to Lady A to show solidarity with BLM only to SUE AN ACTUAL BLACK ARTIST who already has that name is performative wokeness at its BLEAKEST.”
Even though the group filed for a trademark, some think it’s still not a good look for them to file a lawsuit against a Black artist over the name. Some argued that they should just pick something else.
Still, there are many who view White’s request for $10 million as extortion and believe the band was trying to come to a peaceful resolution.
Meanwhile, others believe it’s likely a defensive move on the band’s part to get legal approval for use of the name in case White decides to sue them.
a non-lawyer suggests i make this crystal clear: the band’s suit is not an attempt to get white to stop using “lady A” or limit her in any way. it’s a defensive move based on the premise that SHE was about to sue THEM anyway. the suit seeks affirmation their tm rights are valid.— alexandra j. roberts (@lexlanham) July 9, 2020
White, for her part, simply tweeted, “No Weapon formed against me shall prosper” following the news, but has not commented much further.
Either way, it seems like the bands attempt to avoid controversy with their name has now brought along just that.
See what others are saying: (CMT) (The Hollywood Reporter) (Entertainment Weekly)
Halle Berry Apologizes for Considering a Transgender Role in an Upcoming Film
- In an Instagram live interview Friday, Halle Berry mentioned that she was considering taking the role of a transgender man, while repeatedly misgendering him by using “she/her” pronouns.
- Some responded with anger, but many asked her to reconsider and educate herself on trans issues.
- People specifically asked her to watch Netflix’s “Disclosure,” a documentary that explores trans representation in Hollywood and the real-world implications trans depictions have on the trans community.
- Halle apologized Monday, promising to promote better representation both on and offscreen. Her apology was welcomed by fans, GLAAD, and “Disclosure,” which thanked her for listening and learning.
Berry Considers Taking Transgender Role
After a weekend of backlash, education, and conversations about transgender representation, actor Halle Berry announced Monday that she is no longer considering plans to play a transgender character.
The backlash against Berry first appeared Friday after she took part in an Instagram live interview with hairstylist Christin Brown. In that stream, Berry talked about possibly cutting her hair short again for a potential new film project, saying, “I’m thinking of playing a character where the woman is a trans character, so my hair is gonna have to be – she’s a woman that transitioned into a man, so my hair is going to be really shaved.”
“I want to experience that world, I want to understand that world. I want to understand that character. I want to deep dive in that in the way I did ‘Bruised,’ Berry continued.
“This world, who this woman was is so interesting to me, and that will probably be my next acting role.”
“It’s really important to me to tell stories, and that’s a woman, that’s a female story actually– it changes to a man, but I want to understand the why and how of that,” she added.
Internet Asks Berry to Reconsider
When people caught wind of this interview, people took issue with her remarks and the idea that a cisgender woman would be taking on such a role.
This isn’t exactly a new point of debate. For instance, Scarlett Johansson came under similar scrutiny in the past when she initially accepting the role of a transgender man for the film “Rub & Tug,” which she later walked away from after backlash.
However, in Berry’s case, people were also upset by her lack of knowledge about the transgender community, noting that she repeatedly misgendered the character by using “she/her pronouns.”
Still, while some people responded with anger, a lot of people took the approach of asking her to educate herself on trans issues and reconsider taking that role. Many actually asked her to watch Netflix’s new documentary “Disclosure,” which is executive produced by Laverne Cox. That film takes an in-depth look at Hollywood’s depiction of transgender people to help understand the real-world implications they have on the trans community.
On Monday, the official Twitter account for the documentary even shared a clip from the project, writing, “Today is a good day to remind people that casting trans actors in trans roles is more than about opportunity.”
Then it directly addressed Berry in another post, asking her to watch the film “to understand how cis actors like yourself acting in trans roles has major cultural consequences offscreen.”
Others continued sharing similar messages, including the film’s director Sam Feder, who added, “Often people don’t know what they don’t know. And that’s ok!”
Halley Berry Responds
By Monday evening, Berry responded with a statement posted to her social media pages apologizing for her remarks and adding, “As a cisgender woman, I now understand that I should not have considered this role, and that the transgender community should undeniably have the opportunity to tell their own stories.”
She explained that she was grateful for the guidance and critical conversations that have taken place over the last few days, adding. “I will continue to listen, educate and learn from this mistake. I vow to be an ally in using my voice to promote better representation on-screen, both in front of and behind the camera.”
Berry Thanked for Listening
Berry’s statement was received very well, with a lot of people thanking her for being willing to engage in dialogue with others and responding with a statement so quickly.
Similar sentiments came from the documentary’s account, which thanked her for listening and learning.
GLAAD also tweeted at Berry, saying it was pleased that she had listened to the concerns of transgender people, adding, “Other powerful people should do the same.”
Still, Berry has faced some criticism from those angry with her for apologizing, as some believe there should more flexibility in Hollywood about who can play what roles. Conservative commentator Ben Shapiro for instance called her statement “performative wokeness.”
But that is a point the film’s Twitter account hit on Monday when it first addressed Berry’s initial comments. At the time, the account tweeted, “In preemptive response to the critique that all artists should be able to play any role.@Lavernecox “I think if all things were equal, then [yes]. But all things are not equal.”