Weekend News Roundup! Black Friday; No Bowie Musical; More Dolce & Gabbana Tax News

Published November 28, 2011

 

ABOVE: DAVID BOWIE, WHO WILL NOT SOON BE PLAYED BY THE LUCKIEST STAGE ACTOR IN ALL GREAT BRITAIN.

Happy Monday! Here’s our compendium of pop-culture news you may have missed while you were doing more important things over the very long weekend.

• A record 226 million people went shopping in stores or online over the Black Friday weekend; the average shopper spent $398.62, up from last year’s $365.34, bringing the total to $52.4 billion, up from last year’s $45 billion. New York has a roundup of the craziest Thanksgiving weekend retail stories, including the lady in California who pepper-sprayed her fellow shoppers and the fellow in Connecticut who got tasered. [WWD, NYM]

• Hey, look: an actual, real-life, official video from The Weeknd! The nearly-eight-minute video for “The Knowing” was posted on Drake’s October’s Very Own blog, was directed by Mikael Colombu, is set in the future, features what can only be described as sex lasers, and is awesome overall. [OVO]

• The ongoing alleged tax-evasion saga of Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana will continue: Italy’s high court has overturned a judge’s April decision not to take the designers and five other defendants to trial in a €416 million tax evasion case. The designers will have to go to court after all, and if found guilty, they may face up to a €1 million fine and three years in prison. [Telegraph]

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1 (ugh, that title!) stayed in the #1 spot over the five-day Thanksgiving weekend, adding another $62 million to its overstuffed vampire coffers. The Muppets opened at #2 with a respectable $42M; Happy Feet Two held on at #3 with $18.4M, and Arthur Christmas and Hugo opened in the top five with $17M and $15.4M, respectively. [BOM]

• We would immediately book a flight to London in order to go see a musical based on David Bowie songs—but alas, Mr. Stardust himself hasn’t consented to the project, which had been titled Heroes: The Musical and was set for a run next year. Bowie’s camp released a statement reading, “Neither the David Bowie Organization, nor its co-publishers EMI Music and Chrysalis, has issued a license for a Bowie musical at the O2, as has been reported in the U.K.” [Artsbeat/NYT]

• Thanks to a licensing deal between NBCUniversal and Quill.com, The Office paper company Dunder Mifflin (the People Person’s Paper People) will soon lend its name to actual paper. With the deal, NBCUniversal will get about 6% of profits generated by the sale of the copy paper. In a cruel bit of irony, Quill.com is owned by—dun dun dun—Staples. [WSJ]

• British filmmaker Ken Russell (Women in Love) has died at 84 after a series of strokes. [NYT]

• Americans are 20 pounds heavier on average than we were just 21 years ago, in 1990; but our self-reported “ideal” weight is 10 pounds higher. 39% of Americans classified themselves as overweight, even though nearly two-thirds are. We’re regretting that last helping of stuffing… [NYP]