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Bruce Springsteen returning to Broadway this month

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Bruce Springsteen returning to Broadway this month

The Boss is coming back to Broadway — and much earlier than expected.

Rocker Bruce Springsteen, whose Broadway show ran for more than a year at the Walter Kerr Theatre in 2017 and 2018, will play Broadway once again beginning June 26 — less than three weeks away.

That imminent start date will almost definitely make “Springsteen on Broadway” the first show to play the Great White Way since theaters were shuttered in March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

This time, the intimate concert will instead play at the larger St. James Theatre a few blocks away and run through Sept. 4.

Tickets go on sale Thursday, June 10, at noon.

Audience members will have to prove they have been vaccinated to enter — either by their paper card or the New York Excelsior Pass — suggesting that performances will be at 100-percent capacity. It is not yet known if the vaxxed ticket-buyers will have to stay masked up, according to a spokesman.

However, there is precedent for shedding the face coverings at the theater. Closing night of the Tribeca Film Festival, on June 19 at Radio City Music Hall, will be a full-capacity vaccinated crowd and not require masks.

The reopening of Broadway has become something of a free-for-all. Initially, Gov. Cuomo announced that Broadway shows could kick off performances again Sept. 14, and heavy-hitters “Hamilton,” “Wicked” and “The Lion King” said during a celebratory “Good Morning America” appearance that they’d all start up on that day and welcome back audiences to the neighborhood.

Not so fast, Simba. The state’s restrictions have since been eased; a Broadway show could theoretically play to a full-capacity vaccinated crowd tomorrow if it had the means to (most do not). So, “Hadestown,” the 2019 best musical Tony Award winner, announced it would come back Sept. 2. And “Pass Over,” a play from Lincoln Center, said it would begin previews on Broadway Aug. 4. There will probably be even more shakeups in the schedule.

But there is no show with the ability to start earlier than Springsteen can. The small, intermission-less, acoustic performance — which was filmed for Netflix — features only the man himself on a stool with a cameo from his wife, Patricia Scialfa. The couple could rehearse in their Colts Neck, NJ, kitchen.

And the production will have no trouble selling tickets. During its initial run, every performance was sold out, and seats popped up on the secondary market for as much as $6,700. 

Since “Springsteen” will likely be the only show on Broadway for months, it will surely be one of the hardest tickets to come by — anywhere.

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Apple releases highly-anticipated, secret Beats earbuds

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Apple releases highly-anticipated, secret Beats earbuds

After years of anticipation and weeks of rumors, Apple has finally released the Beats Studio Buds. 

The existence of the secret headphones — which Apple sleuths have been excitedly expecting since 2014 — was at last confirmed on Monday when they also became available to order. The sleek new ear gear costs $149.99 on Apple.com and comes in the classic Beats colors of black, white and red. They will begin to ship on June 24. 

“Studio Buds is our tiniest, most subtle form factor to date, yet keeps Beats’ promise of delivering an immersive sound experience in a beautiful design,” said Beats and Apple Music vice president Oliver Schusser in a press release. “In building a product this small, every minute detail was considered, analyzed and selected to optimize for sound quality, comfort and durability.” 

The Buds feature one-touch pairing, have up to eight hours of battery life and two listening modes, active noise canceling mode and Transparency mode, the latter for “when you need to hear the world around you,” according to the press release. 

To experience the full capacity of the technology, Beats head of acoustics Todd Parker recommends listening to Saweetie’s “Best Friend,” Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” Radiohead’s “Fake Plastic Trees” and Daft Punk’s “Doin’ It Right.” 

Ahead of Monday’s announcement, various celebrities were spotted sporting the previously unreleased gear, including LeBron James and soccer star Alex Morgan. Apple obsessives have also found evidence of the headphones’ development in Federal Communications Commission’s reports and internal reference numbers over the years. 

“The Beats Studio Buds might be the most leaked earbuds in the history of earbuds that have leaked,” postulated one industry website on Friday. “They’re a thing, but they aren’t. They will be, but they aren’t yet. Except they are because people keep having their photos taken while they’re wearing them. But they aren’t a thing yet.”

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Kevin Hart slams cancel culture cops: ‘Shut the f–k up!

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Kevin Hart slams cancel culture cops: 'Shut the f--k up!

‘Nobody’s perfect’ seems to be the rallying cry of those opposed to cancel culture — including Kevin Hart.

In an interview with The Sunday Times, the comedian and actor attacked the internet trend, saying, “Shut the f–k up!”

Cancel culture — the viral phenomenon of “cancelling” people, brands, companies, and shows because of problematic ideologies either from the past or present — has changed comedy, according to Hart, 41. Things that used to be funny or accepted are now cancellable, and the possibility of old stand-up bits and tweets resurfacing could “bite you in the ass.”

The only way to grow, he said, is to mess up and learn from it.

“If you allow it to have an effect on you, it will. Personally? That’s not how I operate,” Hart told the UK outlet. “I understand people are human. Everyone can change.”

Hart, having been cancelled a number of times in recent years, also reflected on stepping down from hosting the Oscars in 2019 after receiving backlash on the internet over homophobic tweets and old jokes.

He posted a lengthy apology on his Instagram after the debacle, reemphasizing the need for personal growth that comes from learning from mistakes.

Hart isn’t the first celebrity to mock cancel culture, though. Last month, Chris Rock blamed the trend for creating “boring” entertainment because people are playing it too “safe.” Both comedians echoed similar sentiments about cancel culture transforming the comedy sector.

While the cancel culture trend gained traction the last few years — most notably with Ellen DeGeneres and J.K. Rowling in 2020 — this year, even Dr. Seuss was subject to cancel culture. In March, the books’ publisher announced they were pulling the licensing to six titles due to offensive depictions of black and Asian characters.

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Ned Beatty dead at 83

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Ned Beatty dead at 83

Veteran character actor Ned Beatty, best known for his work in “Superman” and “Network,” died in his sleep Sunday. He was 83.

The death, reported by TMZ, was confirmed by a family member who said he passed while surrounded by his family.

No further details about the death were immediately available but TMZ was told the death was not COVID-related.

Beatty was an on-screen legend throughout his five-decade-plus career and was known for his wide range of abilities.

In the 1976 box office hit “Network,” Beatty delivered a stunning 5 to 6-minute long monologue where he attempts to convince the protagonist to accept a major merger deal that wouldn’t be good for the public.

The performance ended up earning him a Best Supporting Actor nomination at the Oscars that year and in 1978, he stunned the masses again when he played a completely different character in “Superman.”

As Otis, the foolish sidekick of Gene Hackman’s Lex Luthor, Beatty proved to Hollywood he could play comedic characters just as well as he could play serious ones and continued the role during the “Superman II” sequel in 1980.

In his on screen debut in 1972, Beatty starred in the psychological thriller “Deliverance” and was the onscreen victim in the infamous “Squeal like a pig” rape scene that’d go down in film history as one of the most depraved moments to ever hit the box office.

In his older age, Beatty took on a number of voice acting roles in “Rango” and “Toy Story 3” where he played a devilish pink bear named Lotso and also appeared in major television series like “”MASH,” “CSI,’” and “Murder, She Wrote.”

He leaves behind his wife Sandra Johnson and eight children and grandchildren.

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