- Former One Direction star Louis Tomlinson said he won’t appear on BBC Breakfast again after being asked questions about his grief over the loss of his mother and sister.
- One of the interviewers apologized for upsetting the singer but defended the questions, which were related to a song on his new album.
- Despite much backlash from Tomlinson’s fans, BBC also issued a statement calling the questions “fair.”
Singer Louis Tomlinson vowed to never appear on BBC Breakfast again after a promotional interview for his debut solo album, Walls, included questions that made him uncomfortable.
During Monday morning’s show, journalists Dan Walker and Louise Minchin asked about how personal loss influenced his music, mentioning the deaths of his mother and sister. Tomlinson’s mother, Johanna, died of leukemia in December 2016 and his 18-year-old sister Félicité died after an accidental drug overdose just last March.
“Is there a point at which you write that stuff –and it is quite clearly from the heart when people listen to the music– do you feel that at some stage ‘I’ve put too much of myself in there’ or is that part of helping you in writing that way as well about the loss of your mom and your sister and other things?” Walker asked.
Tomilson explained that because he started his career on X-Factor, with cameras around him from such an early time, he’s always given a lot of himself. “It’s kind of all I know in my career really, so I almost use that to my advantage, you know I’m brave enough to talk about these things,” he continued.
Minchin then added, “and you talk about grief don’t you in ‘Two of Us’’ and that’s had quite an impact I understand on fans as well actually.” The singer agreed and talked about how special it is for him to see the emotional weight of this song and what the lyrics mean to different people.
Immediately after, Minchin asked about his relationship with former bandmate Zayn Malik. “You’ve had a bit of a spat with Zayn. How’s that going?” she asked.
“God, you’re proper going in it today aren’t you?” Tomlinson responded. When Walker explained that people would be interested to know the answer to this question, Louis said, “Yeah they will but people pick off on every little thing I say and, look I’m just not ready to have that conversation yet. I think that’s fair enough.”
When the presenters raised the possibility of a 1D reunion, the singer’s frustration became even more apparent. “You’ve ticked them all off now. You’ve got trauma, Zayn, and now we’re finally on this one.” However, Tomlinson eventually conceded, saying, “I’ll give you the answer I give everyone else. It’s inevitable. I don’t know when. We don’t know when. I think we’d be stupid not to get back together, but we don’t know. I’ve only just made my first album.”
BBC Defends Interview Questions
After the segment aired, Tomlinson told his 33.5 million Twitter followers: “Defo won’t be going on there again Haha! Love to all my fans for always having my back.”
When Walker saw the posts, he said he was sorry that Tomlinson felt that way and asked what specifically made him upset.
Tomlinson explained that he was “upset that you continued to ask me about my grief. It goes without saying how hard it is to lose both people so close to me.”
“The least I ask is that you respect my decision of not wanting to be asked in interviews about something so painful.” he continued. “I’m lucky enough to have a creative outlet for me to talk about grief this doesn’t however, give you the right to talk about it for gossip purposes.”
I was upset that you continued to ask me about my grief. It goes without saying how hard it is to lose both people so close to me. The least I ask is that you respect my decision of not wanting to be asked in interviews about something so painfull.— Louis Tomlinson (@Louis_Tomlinson) February 3, 2020
I'm lucky enough to have a creative outlet for me to talk about grief this doesn't however give you the right to talk about it for gossip purposes.— Louis Tomlinson (@Louis_Tomlinson) February 3, 2020
However, Walker defended the line of questioning, tweeting back. “We were asking you about the song on your new album about your mum. We know it’s painful which is why we didn’t dwell on it. No intention to upset you or be ‘gossipy’ about it at all. That’s not our style on #BBCBreakfast.
Hi Louis. We were asking you about the song on your new album about your mum. We know it’s painful which is why we didn’t dwell on it. No intention to upset you or be ‘gossipy’ about it at all. That’s not our style on #BBCBreakfast.— Dan Walker (@mrdanwalker) February 3, 2020
The singer’s tweets seemed to suggest that he or his team has previously made the show aware of topics he did not want to discuss. When one Twitter user told Walker that he should respect Tomlinson’s limits, Walker responded saying, “Totally understand that – which is why we checked. We were told by his team that he didn’t want a picture of his mum on screen (which we didn’t do) and he wouldn’t mention her specifically but would talk about grief more generally. Which is why we asked the 2 questions.”
Another fan said the questions were not general since they specifically mentioned his mother and sister, to which Walker responded: “I get that you know his life inside out but lots of people don’t. We mentioned his loss to make it clear what we were talking about to those watching who weren’t aware what he’d been through. He was on for about 9 minutes and we asked him 2 questions about grief & moved on.”
A BBC spokesperson also told several media outlets: “We wanted to cover all aspects of Louis’s life that have influenced his new album and feel the questioning was fair.”
The incident has resulted in a ton of internet backlash against the BBC reporters, with some fans accusing the show of exploiting his grief and not asking enough questions about the album.
See what others are saying: (CNN) (Paper Magazine) (HuffPost)
Billie Eilish Advocates for Climate Action Ahead of U.N. COP26 Summit
The singer was joined by “The Office” actor Rainn Wilson and other big-name celebrities and activists in a pitch for world leaders to make substantial progress at the conference.
Billie Eilish Calls for Climate Action
Singer Billie Eilish partnered Tuesday with the environmental group Arctic Basecamp at the University of Exeter to call for meaningful climate action ahead of the U.N. COP26 climate conference.
“This year our leaders are deciding the global actions required on the environment climate emergency in a critical decade for our planet,” Eilish said in a video. “We must stand together and speak up to save our planet, not just for us, but for our future generations. And we need urgent, urgent action now.”
Eilish is no stranger to advocating for solutions to climate change. In September, the “Happier Than Ever” singer urged Congress to pass climate legislation as part of the #CodeRedClimate campaign. For her latest pitch with Arctic Basecamp, she was joined by other big names, including “The Office” actor Rainn Wilson, explorer Levison Wood, climate activist Daze Aghaji, and wildlife advocate Robert Irwin, who is the son of the late Steve Irwin.
“Courage. That’s what our world’s leaders need more than anything,” Wilson said in the video message. “The decisions that they make about the climate crisis in the next decade are the most important decisions in our planet’s history.”
What is COP26?
Arctic Basecamp works with scientists and other high-profile organizations all over the world to call attention to climate issues and encourage effective solutions. It was founded by Gail Whiteman, a professor at the University of Exeter, who released a statement thanking the slew of stars and activists for their involvement in the COP26 initiative.
“It is amazing to be working with such brave people that not only are using their voice but are using their voice for good,” she said. “This is a crisis and the Arctic is sounding the alarm. It is time that world leaders come together to create real change that ensures a safe future for humanity.”
COP26 will kick off in Glasgow on Oct. 31 and run through Nov. 12. Global leaders will discuss several actions regarding the environment, including pacts like the Paris Agreement and U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. They will also focus on a series of goals, including achieving global net-zero emissions by mid-century and protecting ecosystems, along with other infrastructure threatened by climate change.
U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has pitched the event as a key moment for the world to come together and tackle climate change. This week, he described it as “our best chance to make the changes we need to protect our planet for our children and grandchildren.”
See what others are saying: (Billboard) (CNN) (The Independent)
Dave Chappelle Says He’s Willing To Meet With Trans Community Under Certain Conditions
After being criticized for transphobic comments, the comedian said he would give an audience to the transgender community even though he is “confused” about what they would be discussing.
Dave Chappelle Addresses Netflix Employees
Comedian Dave Chappelle responded on Monday to the recent backlash he has faced for making transphobic remarks in his new Netflix stand-up special “The Closer.”
Over the past several weeks, many employees at Netflix have protested against Chappelle’s program and numerous LGBTQ+ rights groups have condemned his comments. Netflix employees staged a walkout last week to call out “The Closer” and advocate for more trans and nonbinary employees to be included at the company.
Some reports have alleged that Chappelle denied the opportunity to speak with the trans community and allies at Netflix. In a new video addressing the controversy, Chappelle refuted that allegation.
“It’s been said in the press that I was invited to speak to the transgender employees of Netflix and I refused. That is not true,” he said “If they had invited me, I would have accepted it, although I am confused about what we would be speaking about.“
“I said what I said, and boy, I heard what you said. My God, how could I not?” he continued. “You said you want a safe working environment at Netflix. It seems like I’m the only one who can’t go to the office.”
Chappelle Says He Will Meet With Trans Community
Chappelle added that he would be willing to meet with the trans community but is not “bending to anybody’s demands.”
“I have some conditions. First of all, you cannot come if you have not watched my special from beginning to end,” Chappelle explained. “You must come to a place of my choosing at a time of my choosing, and thirdly, you must admit that Hannah Gadsby is not funny.”
Gadsby is a comedian best known for her Netflix special “Nanette.” While defending Chappelle, Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos name-dropped Gadsby and “Nanette” as examples of the service’s offerings that give voice to marginalized communities. Gadsby shot back at the executive, saying she did not want him to “drag [her] name into [his] mess.”
“Now I have to deal with even more of the hate and anger that Dave Chappelle’s fans like to unleash on me every time Dave gets 20 million dollars to process his emotionally stunted partial world view,” Gadsby wrote on Instagram. “Fuck you and your amoral algorithm cult.”
During “The Closer,” Chappelle called himself “team TERF” while discussing author J.K. Rowling being “canceled” after making a series of transphobic comments herself. He said he agreed with Rowling and added that “gender is a fact.” He later made a slew of other comments, including a joke about Caitlyn Jenner and remarks comparing the genitalia of transgender women to Beyond and Impossible meat.
As outrage poured in, Sarandos released a series of statements in support of Chappelle and his artistic freedom. During his video, Chappelle thanked Sarandos, claiming that he has lost a series of opportunities amid the controversy. Chappelle recently completed a documentary that he says was going to screen at film festivals, but he is allegedly no longer welcome at those events.
“When this controversy came out about ‘The Closer,’ they began disinviting me from these film festivals, and now, today, not a film company, not a movie studio, not a film festival, nobody will touch this film,” Chapelled claimed. “Thank God for Ted Sarandos and Netflix, he’s the only one that didn’t cancel me yet.”
Chappelle later announced that he will be taking his documentary on tour to cities like San Francisco, New York, Atlanta, and Toronto.
See what others are saying: (Variety) (The Hollywood Reporter) (NPR)
Affidavit Outlines Alleged Events That Lead Up to Fatal Shooting on “Rust” Set
Before the tragic incident that resulted in the death of the film’s cinematographer, actor Alec Baldwin was allegedly assured that the gun he was handed on set was not loaded.
Details of Events Leading Up to Shooting
An affidavit alleges that actor Alec Baldwin was rehearsing a scene that involved him pointing a gun at the camera when he misfired the weapon last week, killing the production’s cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins, and injuring director Joel Souza.
Multiple outlets obtained the affidavit from the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office on Sunday. The document details the alleged events that resulted in Thursday’s tragedy on the set of “Rust.” Souza told investigators that during a firearms safety announcement, he heard the prop weapon referred to as a “cold gun,” a term that means the gun is not loaded.
According to Souza, the guns on set were usually checked by two people: armorer Hannah Guttierrez-Reed and assistant director Dave Halls. Halls was in charge of giving the guns to actors, though sources said both Guttierrez-Reed and Halls did so at various times.
The affidavit said that Halls handed the gun to Baldwin while announcing it as a “cold gun.” Investigators say investigators that Halls got the revolver from a tray set up by Gutierrez-Reed.
Souza said the crew had spent part of the day preparing for a scene in a church and later left to take a lunch break at another location. He said he was unsure if the firearm had been checked again after returning from lunch.
When the accident happened. Souza said he heard what “sounded like a whip and then loud pop.” He first noticed Hutchins grabbing her midsection and stumbling back before realizing he had been hit in the shoulder.
The incident came after six camera crew workers reportedly walked off the set in protest of unfair and unsafe working conditions. According to the affidavit, a replacement crew had quickly been hired, but production on the day of the accident was off to a late start because of related issues. Regarding general on-set behavior, Souza claimed that “everyone was getting along” and that there had been “no altercations” to his knowledge.
The affidavit’s walkout claim backed up previous reporting from The Los Angeles Times. Sources from the set of “Rust” told the outlet on Friday that half a dozen workers left the set because they were frustrated by safety issues, long hours, long commutes, and a long wait for their paychecks.
Safety Issues on Set of “Rust”
According to the report, standard industry safety protocols “were not strictly followed,” and at least one worker complained specifically about gun safety. Some sources told The Times that there had already been at least two accidental discharges of a prop gun. Around a week before the fatal accident, Baldwin’s stunt double allegedly fired two rounds after being told a gun was cold.
“There should have been an investigation into what happened,” one source told the outlet. “There were no safety meetings. There was no assurance that it wouldn’t happen again. All they wanted to do was rush, rush, rush.”
Another source told The Times that “corners were being cut” on set.
The report also claimed that Hutchins was among those advocating for her team to have safer work conditions.
Rust Movie Productions released a statement saying safety “is the top priority of Rust Productions and everyone associated with the company.”
“Though we were not made aware of any official complaints concerning weapon or prop safety on set, we will be conducting an internal review of our procedures while production is shut down,” the statement continued.
Baldwin, for his part, sent his condolences to Hutchins’ family on Friday. At the time, he said he was cooperating with the ongoing investigation.
Vigils have been held in New Mexico and Hollywood to honor Hutchins. The American Film Institute also made a memorial scholarship in her name.