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From Jay Leno's rising unpopularity to the TomKat split, we give you the best-read Arts stories of the year

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1. Jay Leno: the most hated man in television right now

In this Aug., 2012, story, TV critic John Doyle looks at reaction to Jay Leno's offer to work for free as Tonight Show ratings declined and staff was being let go .

”…it was an extraordinary offer to make,” Doyle writes. “Leno earns about $26-million a year but, as legend has it, puts it all in the bank because he makes so much money from the many stand-up gigs he performs every year. He can afford to work for free, obviously, but in the TV business, nobody works for free except the Interns. Nobody."
"And yet Leno’s offer barely made a dent in the showbiz news cycle. Why? Because these days everybody loathes Jay Leno. In fact, dissing Leno has become a sport.”


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2. Why this Canadian porn star's past isn't holding her back in Bollywood

Many Canadians may not have known the name Sunny Leone before reading this story by Stephanie Nolen.

”Sunny Leone, born and raised in Sarnia, Ont., is one of the biggest stars in the North American adult-entertainment business,” writes Nolen. “She’s been a Penthouse Pet of the Year, starred in high-grossing hits such as Not Charlie’s Angels XXX, has her own line of sex toys and a production company. Her Punjabi parents left India more than 30 years ago to find a new life in Canada. Now Leone is back in the land she calls her ‘birthright,’ seeking a new life of her own – and she’s a whole new kind of famous.”

But would a Canadian porn star make it in Bollywood? Nolen set out to find the answer.

priyam dhar The Globe and Mail

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3. Kristen Stewart should not have apologized, and here’s why

After photos were published of Kristen Stewart kissing Snow White and the Huntsman director Rupert Sanders, the actress made a public apology to boyfriend Rob Pattinson.

Bad move, argues Sarah Nicole Prickett. “Whom Stewart is having sex with should concern whom she is having sex with and whom those people are having sex with – and nobody else. Stewart is not a Mormon running for public office on higher moral ground. She is not your sex-addiction swami. She’s an actor and a human and 22 years old.”

What do you think? Add to the nearly 300 comments on the story to have your say.

REUTERS/Danny Moloshok

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4. How to get under Aaron Sorkin’s skin (and also, how to high-five properly)

”Aaron Sorkin knows the weight of last words, and his last words to me, as we walk-and-talk out of the HBO press room, are: ‘Write something nice,’” writes Sarah Nicole Prickett. “He says this in the ‘Smile, honey’ tone of much less successful jerks. It’s not advice the Oscar-winning, show-bossing Jonathan Franzen of screenwriting would take himself, thank what gods there be. In Sorkinville, these gods are men.”

As the story unfolds, we see how an innocent (and, okay, one not-so-innocent) comment from the writer puts Aaron Sorkin on edge. And as his new HBO series The Newsroom attests, so does the eclipse of an era in which all-powerful male iconoclasts held the reins of America the good.


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5. The TomKat split: Is Hollywood getting a divorce from Scientology?

When Katie Holmes filed for divorce from Tom Cruise earlier this year, there may have been more at stake than custody of Suri. As Leah McLaren found, the decades-old dream of L. Ron Hubbard to marry his religion to the entertainment industry was put in question as well.

”…Hubbard’s Project Celebrity just hit a major roadblock – one that illustrates that the dangers of unbridled publicity can be just as potent as its benefits,” writes McLaren. “In what is shaping up to be the biggest tabloid story of the year, Scientology’s reigning power couple – Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes – are in the middle of an acrimonious, bi-coastal split.”

”The detonation of TomKat has escalated from just another celebrity divorce story into a full-blown public trial for Scientology and its ties to the entertainment industry.”


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