The new year started out with a bang from Daily Wire Editor Emeritus Ben Shapiro and rapper Tom MacDonald blowing up the music industry after topping the charts with their rap collaboration “Facts” to news about the apocalyptic movie “Homestead” dropping from the studio behind “Sound of Freedom,” and more.
Shapiro recently teamed up with the Canadian wrestler-turned-rapper in a track that takes a swipe at the insanity of things in our culture like gender identity and defunding the police, as previously reported.
“As a longtime devotee of rap, becoming a rapper was the natural next step in my career trajectory,” Shapiro said in a press release from MacDonald. “So, when Tom asked if I wanted to collaborate on a song, I leapt at the chance.”
“This was the moment I spent 20 years of classical violin training preparing for,” he added. “For those who don’t appreciate my artistic stylings, all I can say is that they didn’t appreciate Bach properly in his own time, either.”
MacDonald said after releasing “Facts, “I like to do things nobody else can do. Not everybody can get Ben Shapiro on a track. For someone who had never recorded a rap song before, he got in the studio and nailed it. We’ve both criticized the status quo of hip-hop, so it made sense. There is a good intention at the heart of ‘Facts.’ There is light.”
The music video dropped on Friday morning and by mid-day, “Facts” was generating headlines, not only for topping the hip-hop/rap chart, beating out the likes of Nicki Minaj and Megan Thee Stallion, but then scoring the number one song in the country on the iTunes chart.
Minaj even caught word of Shapiro’s score on the rap and overall iTunes chart and congratulated the host of “The Ben Shapiro Show.”
And reactions to the music video might have been even better than the track itself, with Daily Wire’s Michael Knowles being at the top of that list. Shortly after “Facts” dropped, Knowles posted his blind reaction to the music video as he shared that he was totally unaware that the video was happening, asking if “this is real” or AI (artificial intelligence).
Earlier this month, the studio behind the sleeper hit of the summer “Sound of Freedom” and the popular faith-based television series “The Chosen”–dropped an incredible trailer for its apocalyptic movie “Homestead” which will later transition into a TV series.
“A string of attacks and collapses drives troubled Green Beret Jeff Kirkham to take a job as head of security for a wealthy doomsday prepper, Jason Ross. Ross has built an elaborate permaculture compound for friends and family,” a description of the movie read. “As the fabric of America goes to pieces, a few dozen families scramble to ‘The Homestead’ in a last-ditch effort to survive.”
“They quickly discover that Ross’ elaborate plans will not protect them,” the description added. “Outside the gates, desperate neighbors, criminals, and opportunistic rivals look to The Homestead’s resources as a treasure trove. Inside, the community divides into factions: military versus civilian, compassionate versus practical, spiritual versus rational. These groups clash over every fatality, every demand of survival, and over the strange prophecies of Jeff’s adopted daughter.”
“Eventually, the gentle rhythms of the land permeate all, and a spirit of unity begins to overtake the community,” it continued. “As they cultivate the plants, animals, and the soil, and as they face looming destruction, their modern squabbles give way to ancient, forgotten truths.”
The teaser trailer gave viewers a sneak peak of what they could expect, with a voiceover near the end of the clip stating, “Everyone Wants To Know How The World Ended…This is the story of how it began again.”
Actor Jesse Hutch, who plays Evan Lee an “ex Green Beret, who is part of the main security detail brought in to protect a 300 acre homestead,” shared a bit more information recently on social media about the film and training for the role.
“Film moves quickly,” Hutch captioned his post. “Every opportunity I had was created by a fantastic team who cared about the story. We trained on the weekends with Actual Green Berets and Marines.”
“I consult on the phone with active duty military,” he added. “I train physically 6 days a week. We have an awesome writing team. I can’t live 30 years of service in 1 feature film… but you’re damn right I’m gonna give it a shot. This will be released this year in 2024. The crew and cast are fantastic people. Keep your eyes open.”
The Golden Globes
The 81st Golden Globes took place earlier this month and the elite audience in the room and those watching at home made it crystal clear they want comedian Ricky Gervais back as the host given the responses to comedian Jim Gaffigan’s pedophile joke at the annual award show.
During the 2024 show, Gaffigan took the stage as one of the presenters and got more cheers and applause for his jokes than the comedian picked to host the 2024 show, Jo Koy, whose performance was widely panned by all.
“This is so exciting for me,” the 57-year-old actor/comedian said as a presenter at the annual ceremony for first-ever Best Performance in Stand-Up Comedy on Television. “The Golden Globes – I can’t even believe I’m in the entertainment industry. I can’t.”
“You know, it’s so unlikely,” he added. “I’m from a small town in Indiana. I’m not a pedophile. I don’t know if that’s a new category here, but …”
— Golden Globe Awards (@goldenglobes) January 8, 2024
The room of star Hollywood performers roared with laughter at the gag and gave the comedian a round of applause. At home, people felt similar, with people posting on social media clips of his bit along with clips of Gervais torching Hollywood four years earlier at the 2020 Golden Globes– while slamming Koy’s jokes as “reductive” and “cheap.”
Koy later hit back at the criticism of his jabs about “Oppenheimer,” “Barbie” and Taylor Swift and labeled celebrities who didn’t like his performance as “a lot of marshmallows. They’re delicious, but g**d***, they’re soft,” Koy said, per Variety. “I just come from a different time. I see the changes that are happening. I get it, but g**d***, can we f***ing laugh at ourselves?”
Gervais famously torched Hollywood over its “pedophile movies” and cracked a joke about convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein while hosting the show in 2020.
Entertainment And The NFL
The NFL ratings have been through the roof in January, with the AFC and NFC Championship games over the weekend giving CBS and Fox more than 50 million viewers for each, the first time that’s happened in 10 years.
And one NFL player who’s reminded fans just how much fun football can be to watch is Philadelphia Eagles star Jason Kelce whose viral shirtless antics at the Bills-Chiefs AFC Divisional playoff game sparked hilarious memes and led headlines for more than a week.
— Tammy Ljungblad (@kctammy2009) January 26, 2024
It all started after Kelce showed up in Buffalo to cheer on his brother Travis Kelce and watch the Kansas City Chiefs take on the Bills. To say Jason stole the show would be putting it mildly–even with superstar singer Taylor Swift in the suite to cheer on boyfriend Travis.
As Kelce was watching the game with his wife Kylie Kelce, his excitement over his brother’s touchdown led to him taking off his shirt in the Highmark Stadium box suite and jumping out into the stands with the fans.
During the Kelce brothers’ “New Heights” podcast, Jason admitted from the minute he got into the suite he wanted to get out of the box and into the stands with the Buffalo fans and “take everything off,” calling the experience from start to finish at the game “electric.”
“I feel like taking your shirt off is a Buffalo Bills thing,” Jason said as video of him drinking liquor shots out of a bowling ball at a tailgate party before the game and crushing beers in the stands played in the background.
“I wanted to take my shirt off at the tailgate,” he added. “Then when I entered the box I noticed … I could jump out of this box and I’ll be outside and if I take my shirt off then I’m outside part of the Buffalo Bills pageantry.”
Jason also admitted that he didn’t think his wife “was happy about it.” And while Kylie wasn’t thrilled, Travis revealed that the “Blank Space” hitmaker loved his brother’s shirtless fun and said, “Tay said she absolutely loved you.”
During an interview on “Good Morning America,” Kylie later shared her thoughts about her husband’s shirtless antics that went viral and said “the first time he jumped out of the suite, I was, you know what, go ahead. That’s my husband!”
“And then the second and third time he did it, I was like, I’m gonna need you to get back in because the poor cops that are out front trying to keep the chaos at a minimum, are, you’re making their jobs harder,” she added. “So at first, I was all for it. And then I had to try and reel him back in.”
Jeremy Renner, One Year Later: “It’s A Powerful Love And It’s Overwhelming.”
Jeremy Renner reflecting on if he’s changed at all a year after his near-fatal snow plow accident will close off our favorite entertainment stories of the month, ending on an inspirational note.
In a video posted recently on Instagram, the 53-year-old actor responded to the question about how he has changed since he suffered life-threatening injuries on January 1, 2023, near his home in Nevada.
“I don’t think that the core of any of who I am has changed at all,” Renner said. “I don’t even think the principles of, like, what I’ve always wanted in my life have changed at all.”
“So the only thing that’s really shifted, to be honest, for me, which is difficult, is accepting being seen and witnessed for who I am as a man, as a father, as a brother,” he added. “It’s a powerful love and it’s overwhelming.”
“I mean, that’s the biggest thing that I’ve changed,” Renner continued. “I personally shifted, so I had to learn to receive a lot of goodness, man … a goodness I didn’t believe existed in the world, brother. It’s f***ing special to know that you’re not going to have a bad day for the rest of your life.”
“I don’t know if I’m looking forward to it,” Renner said. “Again, I try to just do everything kind of step by step here. That’s one foot in front of the other one.”
“Then you’re walking…I think I’m excited when I’m there and I get in a rhythm there,” he added. “I’m excited about the character and, of course, all the people involved and all that in the storyline, but for me, I’m just tentative of confidence in work.”
The actor has undergone extensive therapy over the last year as part of his recovery after his body was nearly crushed under a 14,300-pound snowcat, resulting in more than 30 broken bones.
The “Avengers” star has kept fans up to date on social media while documenting his incredible journey to recovery during the past year.