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What links Machine Gun Kelly to François Truffaut, Gérard Depardieu and Degrassi? | Pop and rock

Shoot to thrill

Machine Gun Kelly
Pop-punkster Machine Gun Kelly … Photograph: Getty

Spearheading the pop-punk revival is Machine Gun Kelly. Signed to P Diddy’s Bad Boy Records, he flipped from rap to pop-punk on his 2020 album Tickets to My Downfall. Now comes new LP Mainstream Sellout (a bit on the nose, but we are where we are). You may also have seen him across the internet in the showiest of showmances with actor Megan Fox.

All the small (unidentified flying) things

Travis Barker
… whose sound is masterminded by Travis Barker, whose bandmate Tom DeLonge investigates UFOs … Photograph: Getty

The mastermind behind MGK’s sound is Travis Barker, ubiquitous producer and drummer, best known for Blink-182. Barker’s bandmate Tom DeLonge has made news with his investigations into aliens, including the series Unidentified: Inside America’s UFO Investigation (Sky/Now).

Close encounters of the French kind

François Truffaut
… like those in Close Encounters of the Third Kind, featuring François Truffaut, whose The Last Metro starred Gérard Depardieu … Photograph: Allstar

Steven Spielberg’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind remains an indelible UFO story. Improbably, it features New Wave director François Truffaut. One of his final works was the 1980 wartime drama The Last Metro, with Catherine Deneuve and Gérard Depardieu.

Visa trouble

Andie MacDowell, Gerard Depardieu, 1990
… who was in Green Card with Andie MacDowell, who was also in Maid … Photograph: Alamy

In 1990, long before his Russian passport and a pivot to Putin, Depardieu tried to break America via the romcom Green Card, opposite Andie MacDowell. More recently, MacDowell appeared with her daughter Margaret Qualley in the Netflix drama Maid.

Fantastic Ms Fox

Megan Fox
… as was Raymond Ablack, who was in Euphoria with Maude Apatow, who was in This Is 40 with Megan Fox, seen now with MGK. Photograph: Rex/Shutterstock

Another Maid actor is Raymond Ablack, who was in the 2000s iteration of Degrassi, the Canadian teen drama, alongside pre-rap Drake. Later TV forays for Drake include executive producer on Top Boy and Euphoria. Starring in the latter is Maude Apatow, daughter of Judd who put his family in This Is 40, which also featured Megan Fox – as seen with Machine Gun Kelly (who also appeared with Maude in Judd’s The King of Staten Island). Which takes you on to Barker and his girlfriend Kourtney Kardashian, and on to Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, and … well, life is short, so let’s wrap this story up.

Pairing notes

Listen The podcast Bandsplain examines cult bands and revered artists, including Blink-182, Pavement, Lil’ Kim and more.

Eat A notorious magazine profile of MGK and Megan Fox saw them visit LA’s Soho Warehouse, where they ate lamb chops ($38) and ravioli ($26). Mainstream dine-out!

black and white cartoon rabbits going down holes in a red line

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