Daily Brief: Newsom Proposes $2.7 Billion for COVID Response, L.A. County Sets Record for Cases

Also, Michaela Jaé ”MJ” Rodriguez makes history as the first transgender actor to win a Golden Globe for her role in FX’s ’Pose.’

» Robert Durst, Real Estate Heir Convicted of Murder, Dies at 78 The scion of a New York real estate dynasty, who was convicted in September of murdering his close friend Susan Berman in 2000 in order to cover up the presumed death of his wife, died early Monday while in custody of the California Department of Corrections. Durst’s attorney, Chip Lewis, said he believed Durst died of natural causes. [Los Angeles Times]

» Newsom Proposes $2.7 Billion to Expand COVID Response Ahead of his upcoming budget proposal for the fiscal year starting in July, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s administration on Saturday previewed a $2.7 billion COVID emergency response package to expand testing and boost hospital staffing. [Cal Matters]

» James Mtume, Jazz and R&B Pioneer Known for ‘Juicy Fruit,’ Dies at 75
The Grammy award winning percussionist and leader of the group Mtume, who are best known for their hit “Juicy Fruit” which was famously sampled on the Notorious B.I.G.’s “Juicy,” has died. [Pitchfork]

» L.A. County Sets Another Single-Day Record With More Than 45,000 COVID Cases The county recorded 45,584 new cases, setting another record Sunday, amid a surge in infections driven by the Omicron variant, according to figures released by the county’s Department of Public Health. [Los Angeles Times]

» Michaela Jaé “MJ” Rodriguez Makes History as First Transgender Actor to Win Golden Globe Rodriguez took home a Golden Globe for best actress in a TV drama for her role as housemother Blanca on the FX show Pose. [CNN]

» Despite COVID Surge, ‘Scream’ Will Only Screen in Theaters The Los Angeles Times’ spoke to film critics about the risks of having to watch the anticipated movie in theaters instead of having the option to stream it at home. [Los Angeles Times]


» Jon Stewart is Forced to Teach the Internet About Humor in J.K. Rowling Aftermath The veteran comic and commentator didn’t know that so many people had forgotten what jokes are in his seven-year absence

» SoCal Reps Recall the Jan. 6 Insurrection One Year Later ”It was one of the darkest days of our history, and we still have a long way to go to recover from that day,” Rep. Mike Levin says

» The Non-Golden Globes Announce Winners in Extremely Bizarre Year Bet Ricky Gervais’ ”controversial” monologues are looking really appealing to Hollywood right about now


(Photo courtesy of YouTube)

Weekday Playlist: The Weeknd, Gunna, Lauren Spencer-Smith

Coming off the heels of the holiday season, the month of January tends to be a slow month for the music industry—but not this week. From The Weeknd’s new album Dawn FM, to Gunna’s DS4Ever project, and singles from artists like Sebastián Yatra and Lauren Spencer-Smith, 2022 appears to be off to a great start—or at least when it comes to music. Here’s a roundup of our favorite new releases.


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