Christian Bale says G-string anxiety and Chris Hemsworth's ripped physique almost made him turn down 'Thor: Love and Thunder,' plus more news

Christian Bale was not about to wear a G-string alongside Chris Hemsworth for the new ‘Thor’ film

Christian Bale’s onscreen transformation track record speaks for itself. But even the man who lost more than 50 pounds for 2004’s “The Machinist,” bulked up a few years later for “The Dark Knight,” then gained 40 pounds to play Dick Cheney in “Vice” was prepared to turn down the role of the evil Gorr the God Butcher in “Thor: Love and Thunder” after he saw the character in comic book form. “I did have a look briefly and said, ‘He’s got a G-string on. Nobody wants to see me like that,‘” Christian recently told The Wrap, recalling his reaction after director Taika Waititi showed him the original books. “He was also crazy musclebound in the comics,” Christian added. “And I was in the middle of making another film where I was really quite skinny. I said, ‘Dude, nobody wants to see me in a G-string.'” One more thing held him back from trying to morph into the right shape for the role — Chris Hemsworth’s insane “Thor” physique. “And there’s no point in working out at all,” Christian explained, “because you can’t compete with Chris.” In the end, he didn’t have to. Instead, he worked with Taika to develop a creepy, goth-inspired Nosferatu version of Gorr. “Thor: Love and Thunder” opened last week.

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Jon Stewart says nope to presidential bid after viral op-ed calls for his 2024 run

After a Politico op-ed pitching Jon Stewart for president in 2024 went viral last week, the former “Daily Show” star responded to the idea on Twitter over the weekend. “Ummm…No thank you,” wrote Jon, whose new series “The Problem With Jon Stewart” launched on Apple TV+ last year. The op-ed, “If Tucker Runs in 2024, Here’s Who the Democrats Need,” wagered there’s a good chance controversial Fox News commentator Tucker Carlson could run on the Republican Party’s ticket in the next election. According to writer Juleanna Glover, President Joe Biden “should run” again, but if he opts not to, Jon would be “a better fit than most politicians for what modern politics has become” for the Oval House. As part of the author’s argument, she points to Jon’s deep knowledge of the political system’s flaws — and his infamous Tucker take-down in 2004 on “Crossfire.” Running for office may not appeal to the comic, but he’s still very much engaged in civic advocacy, both on and off-camera. After shutting down the presidential run idea with his firm “nope” tweet on Saturday, July 9, Jon hopped back on the platform and used the extra traffic to highlight a veteran’s health issue he’s passionate about. “But while I have your attention, could all of you (including news orgs) please ask @PatToomey why he is single-handedly stalling a veterans health care bill that passed w huge bipartisan support over a technicality?” Jon asked. “Asking for 3.5 million friends. Thanks!”

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Kate Mara reveals she and Jamie Bell are expecting baby No. 2

“There are three of us in this pic.” So said Kate Mara on Instagram on Sunday, July 10, sharing a photo of her and husband Jamie Bell walking out of Claridge’s, hand-in-hand. The super low-key pregnancy post quickly garnered love from pals like Jenna Dewan, who wrote, “Awwww congratulations loves!!!!😍😍😍,” in the comments, and MJ Rodriguez, who replied by writing, “Omg congratulations cutie.” Actors Michael B. Jordan and Andrew Rannells sent supportive comments Kate’s way, as well. Kate, 39, and Jamie, 36, announced the birth of their first child in similar form, sharing a pic of some very tiny toes snuggled up on a fluffy rug in May 2019. “We had a baby a couple weeks ago…,” Kate captioned the photo. “Here are her feet 💕.” Jamie also shares an 8-year-old son, Jack, with his ex, Evan Rachel Wood.

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Nicki Minaj clarifies pregnancy comments ahead of Wireless Festival set

Nicki Minaj sparked a wave of stork rumors ahead of her set at London’s Wireless Festival on Sunday, July 10. While chatting with fans on Instagram Live before she took the stage, the rapper was asked if she and her husband Kenneth Petty were expecting baby No. 2.”I’m not fat, guys, I’m pregnant. Sorry,” she said, rolling her eyes, according to TMZ. When the screen lit up with excited congrats from the “Barbz,” however, Nicki backtracked, asking fans, “Oh wait. Did I say it wrong?” She then apologized, claiming she got mixed up. “I’m sorry. I think I said it wrong. I meant to say, I’m not pregnant. I’m fat.” Whether intentional or not, her comments got fans buzzing on social media. The pregnancy whispers may have also contributed to the apparent fan frenzy ahead of her festival slot on Sunday. The Independent reported on Sunday that police were called in to help manage the massive crowds at the gates ahead of Nicki’s set. According to a statement from the Metropolitan Police, the security staff was forced to place “a brief hold on people being admitted to the event to ensure the safe flow of people into the site,” which “caused a large crowd to form.” Nicki and Kenneth welcomed their first child, a boy, in 2020.

Shawn Mendes postpones shows ‘until further notice,’ citing mental health concerns

Just a few weeks into his “Wonder: The World Tour,” Shawn Mendes announced on Friday, July 8, that his mental health has “hit a breaking point” and he’s postponing all shows until his July 31 and Aug. 2 dates in Toronto, near his hometown of Pickering, Canada. “This breaks my heart to have to say this, but unfortunately I’m going to have to postpone the next three weeks of shows through Uncasville, CT until further notice,” the singer, 23, wrote on Instagram Friday. “I’ve been touring since I was 15 and to be honest it’s always been difficult to be on the road away from friends and family,” he explained. “After a few years off the road, I was ready to dive back in, but the decision was premature and unfortunately the toll of the road and the pressure has caught up to me and I’ve hit a breaking point.” Shawn went on to say that after discussing the situation with his “team and health professionals,” he determined he needs to “take time to heal and take care of myself and my mental health, first and foremost.” He added, “As soon as there are more updates I promise I will let you know love you guys.” Shawn’s tour is currently slated to run through early August 2023.

Michael Imperioli, more ‘Sopranos’ star pay tribute to Tony Sirico

The former cast of “The Sopranos” have spent the past few days honoring their late co-star, Tony Sirico — aka Paulie “Walnuts” Gualtieri — in the wake of his death in Florida at age 79 on Friday, July 8. Emmy-winning actor Michael Imperioli, who played Christopher Motisanti on the long-running HBO show, was among the first to post about Tony’s death. “It pains me to say that my dear friend, colleague and partner in crime, the great TONY SIRICO has passed away today,” Michael wrote on Instagram on Friday. “Tony was like no one else: he was as tough, as loyal and as big hearted as anyone I’ve ever known. I was at his side through so much: through good times and bad. But mostly good. And we had a lot of laughs. We found a groove as Christopher and Paulie and I am proud to say I did a lot of my best and most fun work with my dear pal Tony. I will miss home forever …” Jamie-Lynn Sigler, who played Meadow Soprano, also shared a heartfelt tribute on Instagram, recalling Tony’s protective instincts around her on the set and his incredible acting skills. “Oh Tony. I’m so heartbroken. I loved you so much,” she wrote. “I have never been able to walk into a room that you were in without you giving me an enormous hug, drenching me in your cologne, and making sure I knew any man that came near me would have to answer to you first. You were SUCH a phenomenal actor. Stealing every scene you were in. You were tough, and strong, yet sweet and a real artist. There will never ever be anyone like you. I feel so lucky to have known you and been loved by you.” Lorraine Bracco, meanwhile, shared how close she and Tony became over the years after working together on 1990’s “Goodfellas.” “I adore Tony Sirico. A stand up guy who always had my back and who loved my children and my parents,” Lorraine wrote alongside photos of the two together. “I have a lifetime of memories with Tony— starting with Goodfellas to The Sopranos and way beyond— but my God, did we have fun doing the Bensonhurst Spelling Bee—I’m still laughing. I hope he’s in heaven cracking everybody up now. Love you, my Pal…rest in peace.” Tony’s passing comes on the heels of the death of Ray Liotta, another beloved “Goodfellas” star, in late May. Lorraine also mourned Ray’s death on Instagram, sharing photos of the actor and the caption, “Life is precious.”

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