January 14, 2019: Travis Scott Wouldn't Play Super Bowl Halftime Show Without N.F.L. Charity Donation, Illinois Denies Permit for R. Kelly-Hosted Concert, Ties and Surprise Wins Highlight Critics' Choice Awards

By Ian Zelaya January 14, 2019, 8:46 AM EST

1. TRAVIS SCOTT WOULDN'T PLAY SUPER BOWL HALFTIME SHOW WITHOUT N.F.L. CHARITY DONATION: The N.F.L. officially announced Maroon 5, Travis Scott, and Big Boi as headliners for Super Bowl LIII. But rapper Travis Scott only agreed to perform if the N.F.L. donated to a social justice cause. Billboard: “A source close to the negotiations has now confirmed to Billboard that Scott required the N.F.L. to make a joint donation to an organization fighting for social justice in order for him to move forward with the event. Scott made a $500,000 donation in partnership with the N.F.L. to 'social justice accelerator' Dream Corps, an organization founded by Van Jones in 2014, and will work with the N.F.L. on additional initiatives. ... News of Scott's involvement with the halftime show—which takes place on Sunday, February 3 at Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium—was initially met with some criticism. Michael B. Jordan, Reverend Al Sharpton, and others voiced their disapproval of Scott's choice to team up with the N.F.L. after their treatment of quarterback and activist Colin Kaepernick."

2. ILLINOIS DENIES PERMIT FOR R. KELLY-HOSTED CONCERT: The organizers of the Spring Break Jam concert, an event hosted by R. Kelly at the Illinois State Fairgrounds, have been denied a permit because of security concerns. Organizers had already announced the event, but Illinois Department of Agriculture spokeswoman Denise Albert said the application to lease the venue was still under review. Albert said the cancellation wasn't in response to the Lifetime documentary series Surviving R. Kelly, which brings a new wave of sexual misconduct allegations against the singer, but because of security concerns sparked by protests outside of Kelly’s Chicago studio. Chicago Tribune: “The rally was organized by #MuteRKelly, a grassroots effort that seeks to boycott Kelly’s music—on the radio, through sales, and in stadiums—and hold him accountable for allegations of abuse. Albert said the event could be reconsidered and approved in the future, but not with Kelly on the bill. ... It was unclear why the concert was listed on the Illinois State Fairgrounds’ event calendar for the Expo Building if the concert had not been approved and there was not a signed agreement. The latest aftershock from Surviving R. Kelly, which has reached almost 20 million viewers, came Friday, when Kelly was ordered to allow city building inspectors to check out his Near West Side recording studio after reports that people were living in the industrial warehouse space in violation of city codes."

3. TIES AND SURPRISE WINS HIGHLIGHT CRITICS' CHOICE AWARDS: The 24th annual Critics' Choice Awards on Sunday were highlighted by two ties: Glenn Close and Lady Gaga tied for lead actress in a drama film, while Amy Adams and Patricia Arquette tied for lead actress in a limited series. Roma won best picture and director for Alfonso Cuarón, while The Americans, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story won top TV honors. Variety: “The Broadcast Film Critics Assn., which presents the show’s movie awards, tends to be a strong bellwether for the Oscars, largely because it’s the only organization of its size to vote on movie superlatives in the run-up to the annual Academy Awards. You begin to see how the season’s various contenders play out with a vast organization as opposed to the numerous, smaller regional organizations and the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. (which presents the Golden Globes). ... First Man star Claire Foy received the #SeeHer award, presented to 'a woman who pushes boundaries to help change stereotypes and recognize the importance of authentic portrayals of women across the entertainment landscape.' The Big Bang Theory creator Chuck Lorre, meanwhile, received the Creative Achievement award, recognizing a body of work that stands out for its sustained excellence over a period of decades."


LOS ANGELES:  The iHeartRadio Alter Ego show will take place January 19 at the Forum. Headliners include Twenty One Pilots, Muse, the Killers, and Weezer.

For information on upcoming events in Los Angeles, visit Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  And Fish Kitchen & Bar will open at the Fort Lauderdale Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa on February 7. The 115-seat restaurant will serve seafood and mainland dishes. 

NEW YORK:  The Highline Ballroom has closed, after the venue’s landlord decided to not renew its lease. The venue plans to reopen in Chelsea or the Meatpacking District.

For information on upcoming events in New York, visit Masterplanner:

SAN FRANCISCO:  San Francisco Ballet’s This Is Passion: Opening Night Gala will take place January 23 at City Hall and the War Memorial Opera House lobby. 

TORONTO:  The MLSE Foundation will host A Night With Blue & White presented by Rogers on January 21 at the Fairmont Royal York. 

YOUR NEWS: What are you doing? Tell us:

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With contributions from Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

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