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Watch Kendrick Lamar Pay Tribute To Mac Miller’s Life, Music, And Contagious Smile

While the music world continues to feel the aftershocks from the unexpected passing of Mac Miller — who died on September 7 at age 26 — memorials and tributes for the late rapper have been flowing in. The latest comes from Kendrick Lamar, who thoughtfully remembered his friend and collaborator in a video recorded for Complex’s Open Late With Peter Rosenberg on Wednesday night (September 12).

After calling Miller a “funny, funny, funny individual” and talking about how he had “the same type of sick, twisted sense of humor” as him, Lamar continued, “Great musician, great writer. Just always had a smile on his face, and that’s something that I commend. No matter what he was going through, he didn’t make you feel sorry for him. He was strong about it.”

Lamar, who collaborated with Miller on 2016’s “God Is Fair, Sexy Nasty,” further commended the Pittsburgh MC’s unbridled positive energy.

“He always kept a smile on his face because he wanted you to smile too, and that’s just something I always loved,” he said. “No matter whatever personal issues, he gave you that energy. It wasn’t no ‘misery loves company’ with him. He showed a smile and you gave that smile right back. It made you feel good. So forever we gonna remember the life and we gonna remember that smile. Celebrate. Mac Miller. Love!”

Lamar’s video comes just a day after thousands of Miller’s family, friends, and fans gathered at Pittsburgh’s Blue Slide Park to honor his life with a hometown vigil.

The Open Late episode also featured Miller tributes from Macklemore, Machine Gun Kelly, Ty Dolla $ign, and more. See the full episode here.

EA Reportedly Being Investigated Over Loot Boxes In Europe

Loot boxes have become a hot button topic in more than just gaming. After Electronic Arts tried to have DICE implement the premium loot box system into Star Wars: Battlefront II, a lot of gamers, Star Wars fans, and parents rebelled, even going so far as to directly contact Disney and local lawmakers about the issue. After regional gambling commissions caught wind of it, some of them began enforcing gambling laws that require companies to register a gambling license in order to provide gambling services to the public. Companies like EA did not want to register for a gambling license but still wanted to include loot boxes into games like FIFA, which caused the company to run afoul of lawmakers, and now the publisher is being investigated by the authorities in certain European countries.

The news originated from the Dutch media outlet Metro, but Eurogamer provided an English translation of events, which reveals that the Belgian government has reportedly launched a criminal investigation into Electronic Arts after the company refused to remove the premium loot boxes from games like _FIFA. _

Originally, the Belgian gaming commission labeled games containing premium loot boxes as “illegal,” due to them relying on spending real money to earn a chance at being awarded with a prize. The fact that the prize is random and not directly what consumers may have wanted to purchase, it means that you’re basically playing a slot machine or roulette in hopes of gaining the item you want. Belgium and the Netherlands specifically listed games such as Overwatch and Dota 2 as the offenders of this unlawful practice, along with NBA 2K and the FIFA series.

2K Games recently and reluctantly removed the loot boxes from NBA 2K, while Blizzard and Valve also adhered to the policy of prohibiting those from Belgium and the Netherlands from accessing the loot boxes in their games. Electronic Arts, however, refused to remove the loot boxes in FIFA, claiming that loot boxes are ethically and lawfully implemented into its games. This refusal to comply with the governing laws has caught the watchful eye of the authorities, and now Electronic Arts will have to answer to the legal system.

Actual casinos and online gambling organizations have to get licenses to operate, otherwise they run the risk of the gambling commission shutting them down. This occurred back in 2016 with the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive scandal, where multiple YouTubers were engaged in running skin betting rings where gamers would gamble on loot boxes for the opportunity to unbox a rare skin. The gambling commission actually held Valve responsible for the gambling rings and ordered them to shut down the rings or face the legal consequences. This resulted in Valve issuing cease and desist letters to the Counter-Strike betting rings.

It’s unclear what Electronic Arts’ motivation will be facing off against the authorities over this move, as loot boxes are widely disliked by the gaming community, and, unless the company has plans on obtaining a gambling license, it’s difficult to see how EA would come out the victor in this case. However, we’ll soon find out if Belgium will fine EA or attempt to enact some other punitive measure against the company.

Overwatch’s Busan Map Is Now Playable

Trying to keep millions of players happy and engaged in a game for more than just a few months is no easy task. Heck, games like PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds got off to a hot start last year, but after numerous performance and optimization issues plagued the game throughout the year, it found itself losing a lot of its playerbase, giving Epic ample opportunity to swoop in and pick up the Battle Royale audience with Fortnite. Blizzard managed to steal some of the thunder from Valve’s Team Fortress 2 in a similar way with Overwatch when it released in 2016, but, so far, no company has been able to take the team-based PvP crown from Blizzard’s title… yet. The reason that Blizzard has been able to maintain some dominance in the ever-crowded FPS field is because the company has been regularly pumping out a lot of new content for Overwatch, including the brand new Busan map that is currently playable right now.

PlayStation Plus Members Can Grab Free Fortnite Gear

When it comes to home consoles, the platform holders try hard to get gamers to buy into the platform services rather than just owning the hardware. Microsoft kicked things off back during the sixth gen with the start of Xbox Live, and Sony quickly followed behind with the PlayStation Network. Since then both companies have been trying to one-up each other with what the online services offer, including trying to lure gamers in with specialty items for those who subscribe to the premium version of the online service. Sony has decided to tempt gamers to pay for the PlayStation Plus membership by giving them some free incentives. Those incentives come in the form of some free gear in Epic Games’ highly popular Battle Royale game, Fortnite.

Over on the PlayStation Store there’s a brand new PlayStation Plus Celebration Pack for the Fortnite Battle Royale mode. The add-on went live on September 11th exclusively for PlayStation Plus subscribers.

The Celebration Pack includes three cosmetic items that the store page notes will not affect the gameplay.

The pack comes with a Flappy Glider, which is a blue and white glider pack that you drop down into the map with. The Flappy Glider has a silly face on the top of it with two googly eyes and a small smile. This will replace your starting glider, if you choose to use it.

The second item on the list is a Controller Pickaxe, which is classified as an “epic” classed pickaxe. It’s still themed with a similar motif as the Flappy Glider. You see that it has a black paint job with a blue lightning spray on the top of the axe head.

The third item in the exclusive PlayStation Plus pack for Fortnite is a Skydiving Trail, which gives you a special falling trail when you dive into the map. The falling trail features four different colors for your character as they fall, including a purple trail on the left leg, a blue trail on the right leg, an orange trail on the right hand and a green trail on the left hand.

All three items will ensure that people know you have acquired the PlayStation Plus Celebration Pack. However, anyone who plays Fortnite on the Nintendo Switch or Xbox One won’t be able to see it anyway because Sony has blocked cross-play compatibility with the other consoles.

Nintendo hasn’t been very vociferous about cross-play and has silently accepted whatever cross-compatibility options that developers have put forward, but Microsoft has been making digs at Sony for denying gamers the ability to play with other console players. Nintendo fans have also been quite outspoken even though Nintendo has tried maintaining some element of diplomatic coyness. The reason for the outspokenness from Nintendo Switch owners is that if you attempt to use your PlayStation account to log into the Nintendo Switch version of Fortnite it will lock your account out of accessing the game on the Switch.

For those of you who don’t mind the whole lack of cross-play and are enjoying Epic Games‘ Battle Royale game on the PS4, you can get your hands on the three free cosmetic items right now if you have a PlayStation Plus subscription.

Oliver Queen Is Naked And Violent In Arrow Season 7 Footage

The sixth season of Arrow ended with Oliver Queen in a tough spot. After negotiating a deal with the FBI that resulted in him being locked up in maximum security prison, Oliver was stuck in the clink with a bunch of bad guys who had no reason to love the former Emerald Archer, and the first trailer for Season 7 proved that the other prisoners wouldn’t go easy on him. Now, Arrow has released a quick new video that shows Oliver naked and violent in a fight with another prisoner, and let’s just say it’s not the kind of shirtless footage Arrow fans usually hope for. Take a look!

Can’t a guy take a prison shower in peace without being jumped by another prisoner? We obviously don’t have the context for this throwdown (courtesy of the Arrow Twitter account) just yet, but it doesn’t look like much of a fair fight. The other prisoner has a knife of some sort and the advantage of not being wet, slippery, and naked for the attack, which was almost certainly a surprise. Given that Oliver seems to be alone in the shower room, I’m guessing there was some dealing with the prison guards for the bad guy to get the jump on Oliver. It would make sense if both the guards and the other prisoners had it out for Oliver, unfortunately. A vigilante wouldn’t be popular in the big house.

The good news for Oliver is that he has more than a decade of fight training that turned him into a killing machine who only stopped dropping bodies en masse because of a crisis of conscious in Season 2. Even naked, wet, unarmed, and quite possibly already sporting some bruises, Oliver more than holds his own against his attacker, who winds up getting his head shoved through a tile wall. This is why you don’t attack the Green Arrow when he’s been cut off from his friends and family, guys! He’s a little grouchy.

In all seriousness, this scene is likely the closest Arrow will ever come to airing a nude scene. The show is switching back to an 8 p.m. time slot on The CW, which could mean a slight dialing back on the violence in the Arrow-verse’s darkest show. Nudity other than the occasional shirtless scene is probably off the table, and Oliver getting attacked in the showers rather than working his way up the salmon ladder is probably not what fans were hoping for.

Sadly, Oliver won’t be the only one in some serious trouble, as all signs point toward Felicity facing some attackers as well, and she doesn’t have the combat training that has made Oliver so lethal. While she can hold her own, she will undoubtedly need to figure out a way to protect herself and William. Meanwhile, Laurel has a great new position in Star City, Barry met his daughter, and the Legends are going to get a fun new addition to the crew. Arrow really is the darkest Earth-1 Arrow-verse show! Find out just how dark the show will be to kick off the fall season with the premiere on Monday, October 15 at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.

Henry Cavill Responds To Superman Rumors In The Most Bizarre Possible Way

It’s been a weird day for Superman and DC Extended Universe fans. This morning, news broke that Henry Cavill is reportedly hanging up the Kryptonian cape and leaving Warner Bros, thus ending his tenure as the DCEU’s Superman at three movies. In the hours since then, there’s been a lot of talk about what this means for the future of the superhero franchise, but now Cavill himself has responded to these rumors in, quite frankly, a bizarre way.

Ok, so even if you just watched the video, let’s recap. We have Henry Cavill wearing a Krypton Lifting Team T-shirt, looking at the camera solemnly and lifting a Superman toy as a dog barking version of “The Blue Danube” plays. Oh, and he wrote “Today was exciting #Superman.” Seriously, how am I supposed to react to this? Cavill isn’t confirming or denying if today’s Superman news is true, but one thing is certain: it’s going to get a lot of people’s attention. You might as well put this video next to the word “cryptic” in the dictionary.

Game Of Thrones’ Kit Harington Still Hasn’t Cut His Jon Snow Hair Off

Kit Harington is at the Toronto Film Festival this week, and despite wrapping his official time on Game of Thrones, the actor is still wearing Jon Snow’s long hair. Making this notable is that Harington had previously expressed his desire to undergo a full de-Snowing when he completed his time playing the character. So, what’s holding him back? Harington explained why he has not changed up his look quite yet, saying:

In other words, Kit Harington is done filming Game of Thrones, but it may not be for forever. In his comments to EW, he hinted that he would need to wait until Season 8 is out of the woods, as far as reshoots are involved before he can put Jon Snow’s hair on the chopping block.

It is a move that many fans will undoubtedly be grateful for. After all, the slightest inconsistency in Jon Snow’s appearance in Season 8 could be disruptive and grounds for a lot of unnecessary Thrones theories. For instance: “Why Jon Snow’s Differing Hair Explains the Series Finale.”

So, it looks like Kit Harington’s makeover will have to wait for just a bit longer. According to Game of Thrones‘ visual effects supervisor Joe Bauer, the FX team will be working on Season 8 until May 2019. It is highly unlikely Harington will have to wait until then to chop his Snow locks. Still, his sacrifice is not lost on fans of the HBO hit. There is a particular agony in having to wait for a haircut.

Such is the pain of a character’s hair being as iconic as their, well…character. Thankfully for Kit Harington, Jon Snow did undergo a bit of a hair overhaul, courtesy of Melisandre, when he infamously came back from the dead. Thus, giving us the bun we enjoy today. Daenerys certainly did not mind it. As for any release date clues we can garner from Harington’s hair situation, there is not a lot to go on. Making the FX team working until next summer is arguably more telling.

As for the last time Kit Harington discussed his hair, he said he would be taking it “short-short” and admitted it would be hard to let go of the beard he grew to play Jon Snow. But he did not want to go into his next role looking the same. A move that many actors wanting to put a little distance between their characters on a visual level can probably relate to.

Kit Harington’s hair-story still awaits the end of his Jon Snow chapter. And when he goes through with it, we will know that it signals the end of Jon Snow’s reshoot watch. Game of Thrones will return for its eighth and final season at some point in 2019 on HBO. Thank the Seven Kingdoms, there is a lot of new programming over fall, to keep TV fans busy in the meantime.

How Crazy Rich Asians’ Editor Turned A Mahjong Scene Into An Avengers-Style Battle

This article contains some spoilers about the end of Crazy Rich Asians. You’ve been warned!

With a closer look at Crazy Rich Asians, there is quite the clever shift between the light and funny romantic comedy that draws us in and the dramatic second act we are dazzled with as the credits roll. It’s quite the subversive take on an ensemble comedy that critics and audiences alike have been celebrating with box office highs we forgot a movie of this genre could achieve. One scene in particular is arguably the most powerful in the film, and has nothing to do with the romance between Rachel and Nick. It’s when Rachel (Constance Wu) challenges Nick’s mother (Michelle Yeoh) to a game of Mahjong. It’s a dense and dramatic sequence, and when I spoke with the film’s editor Myron Kerstein, he noted that he considers it the highlight of his career: his Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon:

Just like a high-budget battle sequence right out of an Avengers film, a scene such as this relies on action and careful editing for the scene to be entertaining and coherent. Myron Kerstein was able to convey Mahjong to a diverse audience, many of which probably had never heard of or played the game, and have them understand exactly what happened in the scene. He noted that he himself didn’t know the details of its gameplay until he watched director Jon Chu and actress Michelle Yeoh discussing the game as they filmed the scene. He treated the gameplay between Constance Wu and Yeoh as choreography as he crafted the cut together.

Myron Kerstein also credits Constance Wu’s performance as inspiration when cutting the scene, as she gave a particularly powerful performance. While playing the game she shares a realization to Eleanor about her own self-worth and identity that has been challenged throughout the film through her judgement. Said Kerstein,

The scene is certainly quite the showdown of emotions for the two characters who both were looking in the best interests of Nick from their perspectives but couldn’t meet in the middle. Crazy Rich Asians challenged the ideals of a culture with its message as Rachel embraced and Nick’s affluent family embraced her upbringing with a single mother as being enough for the Prince Harry of the east. The film is currently in theaters, and will likely be available on home video before the end of the year.

Michael Bay Isn’t Making ThunderCats, But Someone Needs To

The Story

The broad strokes of the ThunderCats story tell an epic tale that is both familiar and fresh. Much like Krypton, Thundera is a dying world the ThunderCats must flee. They are pursued by evil mutants who destroy all that’s left of their species but this small group. The ThunderCats take refuge on Third Earth, where they are strangers in a strange land. There they find themselves faced with an even greater, more ancient evil in Mumm-Ra. In order to survive and free Third Earth from Mumm-Ra, Lion-O, the childlike leader of the ThunderCats, must learn responsibility and how to be a leader. These kind of story elements are familiar to audiences and have been proven to work in other properties, so they can work here. And those are just the broad strokes. With so many episodes to mine, there is enough material for a whole franchise, cherry-picking the best elements and creating entirely new stories. Cat people that are the last of their kind, with a child leader facing off with a magical mummy many years into the future of the Earth, that’s a story that deserves the big screen treatment.

The Walking Dead Finally Clarified How Much Time Passed

The Walking Dead will kick off its ninth season next month, but it won’t mark the ninth year of the zombie apocalypse. The show hasn’t followed Rick and Co. in real time, and it was never entirely clear just how many days and months and years had passed. Fortunately, The Walking Dead finally gave a precise time frame for the zombie apocalypse, and not as much time has passed as you may have guessed.

Now, those photos are taken from before the zombie apocalypse kicked off in the very first episode of The Walking Dead way back in 2010 and the Season 8 episode that saw Rick emerge from a shipping container in the junkyard, so the 632 days doesn’t apply to where the show completed its Season 8 finale. Taking into account that Rick was was in his coma for four to five weeks, Rick probably wasn’t up and at ’em in the zombie apocalypse for more than 600 days by the time he walked out of that shipping container. Throw in the passage of time between the shipping container and the showdown with Negan in the Season 8 finale, and Rick still probably wasn’t conscious in the zombie apocalypse for 632 days.

If you’ve done the mental math (or used a calculator) for the 632 days, you’ll note that less than two years have passed since Rick was chatting with Shane in his squad car before getting shot and stuck in a coma. While obviously the zombie apocalypse hasn’t lasted as long in-universe as fans have been watching from home, less than two years still seems awfully short in my book, and not just because Carl managed to go through puberty between the ages of 12 and 14. Rick and Co. have done a lot of traveling throughout the series; accomplishing all that they have in less than two years is remarkable.

If we want to do some more math, it’s probably safe to say that about a year had passed by the end of Season 3. Lori would have been pregnant for almost nine months before she died, and Judith wasn’t an infant anymore by the end of the season. If that math is correct, then Seasons 4-8 took place in under a year. Those survivors sure accomplished a lot in not all that much time! No wonder it seemed like Maggie was pregnant forever without even beginning to show.

Interestingly, the reveal (courtesy of the show’s official Twitter account) that The Walking Dead hadn’t even spanned two full years in the first eight seasons makes the upcoming time jump all the more significant. Back in August, one actor revealed that the time jump between Season 8 and Season 9 will be 18 months. The survivors will have spent just about as much time off-screen as they did on screen in the first eight seasons! No wonder they will have made so much progress and advanced their settlements by the time the action picks up again with the super-sized Season 9 premiere.

The good news is that we don’t have to wait too much longer to see what’s in store for Rick (for a brief time, anyway) after the time jump. The Walking Dead will premiere in the fall TV lineup on Sunday, October 7 at 9 p.m. ET on AMC.