Fans & Friends React to Death of Rapper Lil Peep

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The music world is mourning the loss of a fierce young talent, with the announcement that New York rapper Lil Peep has died at just 21 years old. According to his manager, Adam Grandmaison, he was rushed to the hospital after an overdose. Just hours before his death, he posted a video to Instagram, claiming he took six Xanax ahead of his El Paso, Texas show, and insistin, “I’m not sick.”

After a series of self-produced mixtapes, Lil Peep released Come Over When You’re Sober (Part One) earlier this year. Known for his deeply emotional lyricism, he quickly gained a devoted cult following. Also praised for his unique style, he earned acclaim from fashion industry insiders, even walking in a show for Vlone and posing for a Mario Testino shoot that ran in V Magazine.

“I am shocked and heartbroken,” said First Access Entertainment CEO Sarah Stennett, who worked with the artist last year. “I do not believe Peep wanted to die, this is so tragic. He had big goals and dreams for the future which he had shared with me, his team, his family and his friends. He was highly intelligent, hugely creative, massively charismatic, gentle and charming. He had huge ambition and his career was flourishing… I have spoken to his mother and she asked me to convey that she is very, very proud of him and everything he was able to achieve in his short life. She is truly grateful to the fans and the people who have supported and loved him.”

Friends and members of the music community have taken to Twitter to express their grief. Some are also using his death to raise awareness of depression and drug abuse.


Karl Lagerfeld is Designing This Year’s Claridge’s Christmas Tree

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It’s that time of year…

Fashionable Christmas trees are going up, and someone has to make them look fashionable.

One of the most talked about every year is the tree at Claridge’s, London’s classic Mayfair hotel. And the jolly man with the white hair that will be designing it is Karl Lagerfeld. Obviously, we’re expecting something typically magnificent from the exalted fashion designer.

Lagerfeld says of the assignment, “Christmas trees are the strongest ‘souvenir’ of my happy childhood.” Us too!

The Claridge’s Christmas tree has long been a staple of the London holiday season, drawing locals and visitors alike to ooh and ah between posh shopping stops. This is the eighth time the hotel has commissioned such a cultural visionary to handle the design, having collaborated with Dolce & Gabbana, John Galliano and Burberry in previous years.

Karl Lagerfeld’s Christmas tree design will be unveiled Wednesday, November 22 in the Claridge’s glittering lobby.

The Weeknd Celebrates 5 Years Since ‘Trilogy’ with New Collection

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It was 2012 when we were first introduced to the sensual R&B of Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, aka The Weeknd. After performing at Coachella and kicking off his first US tour, he then signed with Republic Records; shortly after, he released a compilation album of his mixtapes, entitled Trilogy.

Five years later, The Weeknd is celebrating his critically-acclaimed inaugural album with a limited-edition collection, featuring a hat, a t-shirt, a long sleeve, and a hoodie – it’s all inspired by the artwork of the original album. Also part of the collection is a six-piece vinyl box set that includes House of Balloons, Thursday and Echoes of Silence, limited to 1000 units. As a gift, the collection will also come with a special-edition photo set of artwork from the Trilogy era.

The Trilogy five-year anniversary collection is now available online.

Emmy Rossum to Star as Angelyne in Limited Series

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It’s the Hollywood Cinderella story over three decades in the making. Angelyne has long left her neon pink mark on LA, staring down upon the city from her billboards and cruising its streets in her iconic pink Corvette.

But the blonde bombshell’s origin story remained an elusive mystery until a recent Hollywood Reporter exposé by Gary Baum revealed her identity as Renee Goldberg, a Polish immigrant and daughter of Holocaust survivors. The remarkable backstory is the basis of a new limited series from executive producer Sam Esmail (Mr. Robot) and Emmy Rossum. The latter will star as the billboard beauty before her reinvention as the first self-made celebrity.

“I have always been fascinated by the enigma that is Angelyne,” Rossum says. “At a young age, I can vividly remember staring up at her on a billboard above me and wondering, ‘Who is that woman?’ Gary Baum’s investigative journalism has finally unearthed the true, complex identity of the infamous woman who has fascinated Los Angeles for over 30 years. From the moment I read Gary’s recent piece, I knew I had to tell this story. It’s a poignant and bizarre tale about the hunger for fame, the sexualization of women and the erasing of past traumas.”

The limited series is a first for The Hollywood Reporter, who recently won an Emmy for their unscripted series, Close Up With the Hollywood Reporter.

Mom is Acting Very Strange in ‘Bitch’ Clip

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There’s no denying that being a mom is stressful. Even if you’ve never been one, you’ve likely put yours through hell on more than one occasion.

And in writer/director/star Marianna Palka’s latest film Bitch, motherhood is just that. Jill (Palka) is a wife and mom of four at the end of her rope, with a strange canine stalking her; after attempting suicide, she assumes the identity of a vicious dog. Incapable of fulfilling her matriarchal duties, her philandering husband Bill (Jason Ritter) must find a way to keep his family together without getting fired, while also trying to adjust to his wife’s bizarre behavior.

Bitch premieres Friday, November 9.


Kristen Stewart Makes Directorial Debut with ‘Come Swim’

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Kristen Stewart is ready to go from “It” girl to serious filmmaker. Indeed, she’s adding writing and directing to her résumé with the new short film Come Swim – which premiered last year to rave reviews at Sundance and Cannes.

The Oscar-qualifying flick follows a day in the life of one man; a surrealist journey through his psyche, it delivers an artistic portrait of his anxieties, desires, and heartbreak. It strips him down to his dark, emotional core.

Come Swim will premiere to wider audiences November 10 as part of the Refinery29 Shatterbox Anthology Series, which celebrates female directors in a still male-dominated industry. Last year’s series premiered Chloë Sevigny’s directorial debut Kitty.

Watch the Come Swim trailer below.


New App Offers Network of Mental Health Support

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Photo courtesy of Huddle


Although the stigma around mental health is slowly lifting, social media remains an often toxic environment for those seeking support. Celebrities have begun using their platforms to start conversations on the topic, and viral hashtags are encouraging many to come forward with their own experiences. But sites like Twitter and Instagram can cultivate a divisive atmosphere.

Huddle is a new app that seeks to offer that support – it allows users to upload videos in which they share their stories. And pixelation lets people remain as anonymous as they prefer with their testimonials. The space invites other users with similar experiences to offer resources and messages of support; and with a zero-tolerance policy against harmful or negative behavior, it provides a safe space for its members. Currently, there are active communities on the app discussing topics in regards to LGBTQ issues, racism, addiction, sexual assault, depression, stress, anxiety, body positivity, and more.

“Huddle is the only social platform where talking about mental health issues is encouraged, and being vulnerable is celebrated,” says co-founder Dan Blackman. “It’s a unique place where real connections can be made with people that are ready to support – and we aren’t seeing this on any other platform. Places like Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr are are not set up to encourage users to talk and connect through real life struggles. But Huddle is a place to share where you’ve been, and to connect with people who have been there too.”

“The internet has always been a great connector of people,” adds co-founder Tyler Faux. “With Huddle, we’re using the camera in our phones to emulate the humanity and positivity of in-person support groups necessary for some of the most important conversations of our users’ lives. We’ve been thrilled to see Huddle resonate so strongly in the thousands of discussions taking place today, and are looking forward to continue growing our nascent community.”

Huddle is now available for download.

Fine & Rare Offers a New Take On the Classic Old Fashioned Cocktail

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Winter is coming, and nothing warms us up quite like a tasty cocktail. One of our favorite places to get a delicious fall tipple is NoMad’s Fine & Rare, where the ambiance is as warm as the libations. And our go-to is their Smoking Rye Old Fashioned, which puts a unique seasonal touch on the classic.

“This cocktail is a fantastic way to infuse the aroma of fire on a cold winters night, with one of the most warming drinks around,” says Joseph Bennett, bar manager of Fine & Rare. “The smoke dances and sticks to the glass as you uncover it, creating a cocktail experience for all the senses.”

Capture the ambiance at home, with your own version of the new fall classic.

Fine & Rare Smoking Rye Old Fashioned 

2 oz. Knob Creek Rye
4 dashes of Angostura bitters
1 Demerara sugar cube
Gently muddle the sugar cube with the ingredients and stir.
Strain into a wine glass with a giant ice cube or sphere.
Garnish with an orange twist.
Cover the wine glass with a piece of wood, a book, whatever you have lying around and use a wood smoker gun to fill the wine glass with smoke. Take the hose from the smoker out and let the drink sit covered for about 30 seconds.
Uncover the drink and enjoy.

Sia Tweets Nude Photo After Paparazzi Threatens to Sell

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For all her iconic music and videos, Sia is probably most talked about for hiding behind her signature black and white bob. In a 2013 op-ed for Billboard, she explained why she covers her face.

“If anyone besides famous people knew what it was like to be a famous person, they would never want to be famous,” she wrote. “Imagine the stereotypical highly opinionated, completely uninformed mother-in-law character and apply it to every teenager with a computer in the entire world. Then add in all bored people, as well as people whose job it is to report on celebrities. Then, picture that creature, that force, criticizing you for an hour straight once a day, every day, day after day.”

That’s why it’s even more despicable than usual that the artist was the latest target of an attempted nude photo leak. According to a screenshot she tweeted, a paparazzo was attempting to sell 15 photos of her. But she beat the photographer to the punch, including an image in the NSFW tweet.

Sia made a bold response that took the power away from someone attempting to profit off an invasion of her privacy. It’s reminiscent of designer Marc Jacobs, who accidentally posted a nude shot to Instagram, but owned it when he sold a t-shirt with the photo’s caption.

In addition to this surprise early Christmas gift for her fans, Sia’s holiday album Everyday is Christmas is now available on iTunes.