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Jay-Z accepts the President's Merit Award onstage during the Clive Davis and Recording Academy pre-Grammy gala on Saturday.
Jay-Z accepts the President's Merit Award onstage during the Clive Davis and Recording Academy pre-Grammy gala on Saturday. (Michael Kovac / Getty Images)

Jay-Z, who will be up for eight Grammys Sunday, got President Trump’s attention during his guest appearance in the premiere episode of CNN’s “Van Jones Show.”

When Jones asked Jay-Z about Trump’s comments about “shithole” countries,” the hip-hop star said, “Everyone feels anger; but after the anger, it’s real hurtful. Because it’s looking down at a whole population of people, and it’s so misinformed because these places have beautiful people. … This is the leader of the free world speaking like this.”

Trump, apparently a CNN viewer despite giving the network a “Fake News” award, tweeted his response on Sunday morning to Jay-Z’s appearance.

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  • Birthdays
Alan Alda
Alan Alda (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)

I think I found my way by hook and by crook to what I'm really suited to. I think throughout my life I've learned things about talking to an audience, conveying a story to an audience, and I can really help do that with scientists, because the thing I had when I was 11 I still have with me, which is my curiosity.

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Patt Morrison asks: Alan Alda

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  • Birthdays
(Beatrice de Gea / Los Angeles Times)

If you're up there trying to be cool, you're done. I have that philosophy as a comedian, so I just took it over to acting.

  • Music
  • Celebrity

Céline Dion is doing much better after a bout with the flu forced her to cancel a few of her Las Vegas shows recently.

The Caesars Palace headliner took to Instagram early Friday to share the good news, posting an unexpected snapshot with fellow hitmaker Adele — who happened to be sporting some of Dion’s concert merch. While Dion was clad in a sparkly show gown, the “Hello” singer showed off her black sweatshirt featuring an illustration of the French Canadian crooner.

Dion, 49, wrote that she “had a pretty rough time during the last couple of weeks,” but has since improved.

R&B artist Jhené Aiko is the latest celebrity to sign on to Colin Kaepernick's #MillionDollarPledge campaign.
R&B artist Jhené Aiko is the latest celebrity to sign on to Colin Kaepernick's #MillionDollarPledge campaign. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

The smooth R&B singer and songwriter Jhené Aiko has followed former NFL player Colin Kaepernick’s lead and donated $10,000 to charity, directing funds to a Southern California-based rolling schoolroom called School on Wheels. She is the latest celebrity to write a check in service of Kaepernick’s drive, which he has tagged #MillionDollarPledge.

Aiko’s contribution, part of a fund-matching campaign Kaepernick started earlier this month, was announced via the quarterback’s Instagram account. His match will bring the total donation to $20,000. Aiko joins rappers Snoop Dogg and T.I., tennis pro Serena Williams, NBA player Stephen Curry and others in opening their wallets for Kaepernick’s charity campaign. 

School on Wheels offers crucial tutorial services to the area’s homeless population, which has ballooned in recent years. According to a report in The Times, homelessness in Los Angeles County jumped 23% in 2017 over the previous year, and rose 20% in Los Angeles during that same period. 

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  • TV
  • Politics
  • Late-night
Adult film star Stormy Daniels will appear on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" on Tuesday.
Adult film star Stormy Daniels will appear on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" on Tuesday. (Bill Haber / Associated Press)

President Trump is expected to bring the thunder when he delivers his State of the Union address on Tuesday, but the real storm is likely to hit afterward. Stephen Colbert had previously announced “The Late Show” will air live after the speech, and now Jimmy Kimmel has booked a special guest sure to raise some eyebrows.

On Thursday night, Kimmel announced via Twitter that adult film star and purported Donald Trump mistress Stormy Daniels will be joining him on his Tuesday show.

“I am pleased to announce that the very gifted @StormyDaniels will be on #Kimmel Tuesday 1/30 after the #StateOfTheUnion,” Kimmel tweeted. “I have MANY QUESTIONS!” He then added a #MAGA hashtag.

  • TV
  • Late-night

Seth Meyers is fed up with everyone involved in the latest round of DACA negotiations, no matter what side of the aisle they’re on.

That was the takeaway from Thursday night’s “A Closer Look” segment on “Late Night,” which took aim at everyone from Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer to his Republican counterpart, Mitch McConnell.

“I’m sorry, Democrats, but I just don’t trust you to hold anyone’s feet to the fire,” Meyers said of Schumer’s lackluster performance during the government shutdown. “I don’t even trust you around fire. I can’t imagine it not ending up with all your hair burned off.”

(Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Vanity Fair has scrubbed James Franco from its annual Hollywood portfolio cover in the wake of the sexual misconduct allegations levied against him.

“The Disaster Artist” star, who apparently sat for the magazine interview and portrait session shot by Annie Leibovitz, was digitally removed in light of the Los Angeles Times’ Jan. 11 report detailing five women’s allegations of sexually inappropriate or exploitative behavior.

Franco has denied the allegations in late-night appearances and in the report, which was published just after he took home the Golden Globe Award for lead actor and was called out for wearing a Time’s Up pin on his lapel.

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  • Birthdays
(Lori Shepler / Los Angeles Times)

The truth is, I've saved people's lives. But I'm really just a comedian. That's all I am. So it's a very awkward place. Everybody's got so many different expectations of me.

FROM THE ARCHIVES: She's Ellen, and She's a Comedian

  • Awards
  • Celebrity
Casey Affleck and his lead actor Oscar at the 89th Academy Awards.
Casey Affleck and his lead actor Oscar at the 89th Academy Awards. (Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

Casey Affleck has withdrawn as presenter of the lead actress Oscar at this year’s Academy Awards, breaking with tradition in the shadow of the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements surging through Hollywood and beyond.

The decision was confirmed Thursday by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Affleck’s rep said the actor won’t attend the star-studded ceremony. 

Historically, the previous year’s lead actor winner presents the prize to the incoming lead actress, while the previous year's lead actress presents to the new lead actor winner