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The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. Last night, after a whopping 122 million votes had been tallied (a new record for American Idol), 17-year-old country singer Scotty McCreery, who quite frankly reminds us of Howdy Doody, was named the winner of season 10. [via People]

2. According to TMZ, British import Cheryl Cole has been replaced as a judge on X-Factor by Nicole Scherzinger, formerly of the Pussycat Dolls. The Daily Mail claims that it’s because of Cole’s lack of chemistry with Paula Abdul and producers’ fears that Americans wouldn’t be able to understand her accent.

3. In the latest installment of Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifiankis, guest Will Ferrell feeds his host cherries, Jon Hamm makes a cameo, and there’s an unfortunate incident involving a monkey’s genitals. Sound good to you? Watch it here.

4. The Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum has just announced the winners of the 2011 National Design Awards. View the full list here.

5. Bill Nighy has joined Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, Bryan Cranston, and Jessica Biel in the cast of Len Wiseman’s Total Recall reboot, which drops the Martian storyline from the 1990 original. He’ll be playing Quatto (“Kuato” in the Arnold Schwarzenegger version), “the enigmatic and charming” leader of the resistance. [via TotalFilm]

Bonus link: Where in the World Are Exiled Leaders?

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