MUSIC

Natalie Portman Calls Moby "Creepy," He Responds By Getting Creepier

"I recently read a gossip piece wherein Natalie Portman said that we'd never dated. This confused me, as we did, in fact, date."

Stereogum

It isn't unusual for celebrities to fake love for publicity.

It was revealed in 2017 that Drake and Jennifer Lopez orchestrated their relationship to appear more serious than it was, and Tom Hiddleston and Taylor Swift had a particularly clumsy PR relationship that backfired magnificently. Now, Moby, the 55-year-old Techno DJ whose once fruitful career has deteriorated into making ambient music for a sleep aid, is trying to play the same game. But this time, his counterpart isn't in on the hoax. "I was a bald binge-drinker who lived in an apartment that smelled like mildew and old bricks, and Natalie Portman was a beautiful movie star," Moby wrote in his latest memoir Then It Fell Apart. "But here she was in my dressing room, flirting with me." He goes on to describe a magical night of walking under "old oak trees" and holding hands before returning to Portman's dorm room. "After she fell asleep I carefully extracted myself from her arms and took a taxi back to my hotel."

In the opening lines of an interview with Bazaar, Portman took the opportunity to deny the relationship vehemently. "I was surprised to hear that he characterized the very short time that I knew him as dating, because my recollection is a much older man being creepy with me when I had just graduated high school." She went on to say that no fact-checking had been done by either Moby or his publisher prior to the book's publication, making this PR stunt "feel deliberate." She theorized that he had figured that tossing her name into his life story would help the book sell copies, which it inevitably did. Moby landed a slew of high-profile interviews as a result of the claims. He appeared coy when asked about the alleged fling on Wendy Williams, choosing to elaborate on the success of his record Play instead of answering. When Williams asked him point-blank to confirm the relationship, he went mum. Yet, after Portman's denial, Moby suddenly had a lot to say and was quick to push back, resharing an awkward photo with the actress and doubling down on his claim that they dated; he chose to completely ignore the other allegation that she was in high school at the time.

These exaggerated claims aren't the only ones Moby's made in his memoir. He also wrote that he hooked up with Lana Del Ray, put his bare penis on Donald Trump's leg during a party, and discussed Portman's hotness with Joe Perry at the VMAs. In a separate interview with The Guardian, Moby, who identifies as vegan, also said his drug addiction was so bad at one point that he "went out and bought $300-worth of cocaine, a case of vodka, and a big bag of McDonald's and put it all into a blender." In the same interview, he also claimed to have invented the iPhone. Separately, he said that he's had a "sevensome...or an eightsome," and he's, in all seriousness, said that one of his "major goals in life" was to just "start walking" in a random direction and see what happens.

Such outrageous feats of braggadocio paint the picture of an unfettered man pining to be a rockstar and remain in the spotlight. His history of fame-seeking is also deep-rooted in his music. Every single track off of his fifth and most popular album, Play, was sold and licensed to be used in commercials, a move that decimated his reputation in the Techno community. Yet, in the wake of #MeToo, Moby's inability to recognize the severity of Portman's accusations is disturbing and will no doubt bring a lot of Moby's crazy anecdotes into further question. "The trend toward PR relationships seems to have tailed off in a social media age," wrote VICE. "Which relies more on transparency and honesty than deception and manipulation." While Moby's claims would have generated a good amount of buzz 10 years ago, the same deceptive antics in 2019 paint a different picture, one of a washed-up white guy who wants to be cool more than empathetic and genuine.

CULTURE

Racist Video Game YouTuber Implodes After Being Called "Cringe" on Reddit

Even the most seasoned cringe connoisseurs could never have foreseen the sheer depth of cringe that Krist was capable of sinking to.

Krist the 30 Year Old Boomer

"Krist the 30 Year Old Boomer" is actually 37.

He tells us as much in his latest YouTube video, "I Am Done," in which he asserts that after "supporting the gaming companies for as long as I can remember," he is never going to buy another console game in his entire life.

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Arts

Meshahnye, the Classic Gorky Play, Returns to New York

DoubleDeckerProductions Stages a New Revival of the Russian Classic at One of Off-Broadway's Most Hallowed Venues

DDP Production Team

Take a stroll down to the East Village this week and you may just end up in Russia...

DoubleDeckerProductions is presenting a brand new translation of Maxim Gorky's play "Meshahnye" (Мещане) starting this week. The play is directed by Jenny Sterlin (known for roles on Broadway opposite Alan Cumming) and debuted last night at the Cino Theater at Theater for the New City to positive reception.

The 1902 Russian play reflects the timeless human divide between generations, class status, revolt, and the never-ending struggle of duty, morality, and traditional values. It's story follows the household of Vasil Vasilyevich, and the gradual disintegration of his family unit. His children are depressed, his wife is harried, their friends either drunk or iconoclastic. All of this takes place against the stagnating backdrop of pre-revolutionary Russia. Previously translated as Philistines by Dusty Hughes, this new production began with a literal translation of Gorky's original words by Russian native Leo Grinberg and then modernized the language, with the help of Jenny Sterlin, in order to portray the shockingly relevant and culturally enlightening story for a contemporary audience.

Translator Leo Grinberg and director Jenny Sterlin

"Meshahnye" will be performed by a diverse group of actors of various ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds. The principal Vasilyevich family will be played by John Lenartz, Isabella Knight, and Annie F. Nelson. Rounding out the complex cast of characters are Kenneth Cavett, Ninoshka De Leon Gill, Leo Grinberg, Kelli Maguire, Kassandra Perez, Fede Rangel, Aaron Wright, Zenon Zeleniuch, and Thomas Burns Scully. "Meshahnye" is being produced by Artistic Director Jenny Sterlin, Laurie Prose, General Manager, and Alex Duncker, Production Assistant.

DoubleDeckerProductions is a non-profit company that exists to advance the cause of human understanding by creating theatrical productions at the highest level of artistic excellence and making them affordable for the broadest community. DoubleDeckerProductions has a history of producing award-winning new works often focused on generational identity and character dynamics.

DDP Production Team

Their illustrious past includes readings of Haitian playwright Bernard Sterlin, productions of plays by Jimmy Kerr, successful entries at Origin Theatre's 1st Irish Theatre Festival (winning Audience Favorite in 2016 for Dorothy of Nowhere), and much, much more. With this track record, it's not surprising that their board consists of Tessa Thompson (Dear White People, Thor: Ragnarok), Judith Ivey (Tony and Drama Desk Award winner), Richard Martin, Susan Rothschild (NYC Department of Cultural Affairs), and stage and screen legend Alan Cumming (Macbeth, X-Men 2, GoldenEye).

"Meshahnye" will continue to play Thursday through Monday (with an additional performance on Wednesday the 26th) until September 30th. Tickets are $35 with student and senior discounts available. For reservations visit DoubleDeckerProductions.org or email DoubleDeckerProductionsNYC@gmail.com.

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