2021 was the year of returning to movie theaters (kind of), the year of “cancel culture” (sort of) and a year full of both tragedy and celebration in Hollywood. This week, “The Take” takes a look back at the year in the entertainment biz.

The top five grossing films of the year, so far, are “Shang-Chi,” “Black Widow,” “F9,” “Venom: Let There Be Carnage” and “A Quiet Place Part II” — but of course, many films were streamed from home. As Hollywood’s tug of war continues between the couch and the theaters, consumers ran to buy tickets for superhero flicks, sequels and established properties.

Aside from movie theaters beginning to make a comeback, live award shows also returned, after more than a year of at-home Zoom ceremonies throughout the pandemic. The 2021 Oscars had a major shocker when the late Chadwick Boseman lost the lead actor trophy to Anthony Hopkins, who was not present at the show, and the 2021 Emmys had a diverse showing of nominees, but ended up with a trending hashtag, #EmmysSoWhite.

Tragedy struck in 2021 with the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchin on the set of Alec Baldwin’s “Rust,” and also at Travis Scott’s Astroworld music festival, where 10 people died from injuries. Both instances raised crucial questions about safety measures in the industry, and many legal issues remain in both developing cases.

Celebrities had a fall from grace this year from the allegations lodged against actor Armie Hammer, who was dropped from his agency and most of his projects, to the short-lived “Jeopardy!” host Mike Richards, who held the top post on the iconic gameshow for a mere matter of days before being axed. Sharon Osbourne departed “The Talk,” Ellen DeGeneres announced the end of her daytime talk show and Dave Chappelle continues to be surrounded by controversy after his Netflix standup special drew criticism from the trans community.

Perhaps the biggest story of 2021 revolved around pop star Britney Spears, who was freed from her conservatorship in November. As the singer’s legal battle continues, the #FreeBritney movement is celebrating Spears’ newfound freedom, after more than 13 years under the legal arrangement.

Hosted by Variety chief correspondent Elizabeth Wagmeister and awards editor Clayton Davis, Variety’s “The Take,” presented by Apple TV Plus, is a weekly series that will navigate the week’s top stories from the entertainment world, pop culture and media, while providing expert analysis and exclusive insight on what’s buzzing in Hollywood. Filmed in Variety’s state-of-the-art studios in Los Angeles, new episodes are released weekly on Fridays on Variety.com, YouTube and social media.

Make sure to let us know … What’s your take?