Entertainment

Box Office Top 20: ‘Star Wars’ flies toward ‘Avatar’ record

LOS ANGELES - "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" is even closer to usurping "Avatar's" reign as the top domestic box office earner of all time.Disney's record-busting film brought in $90.2 million over the New Year's weekend, bringing its domestic total to $742.2 million. "Avatar" earned $760.5 ...

Body of missing country singer recovered at Oklahoma lake

PONCA CITY, Okla. - The body of a country singer was recovered Monday at an Oklahoma lake, one week after he disappeared while going duck hunting with a companion who had sent an ominous tweet about threatening weather.The Oklahoma Highway Patrol said Craig M. Strickland, 29, of Springdale, ...

‘Meredith Vieira Show’ ending after 2 seasons

LOS ANGELES - "The Meredith Vieira Show" is ending after two seasons. In a statement Monday, Vieira said she was sorry to see her daytime talk show wrap and thanked her viewers. Vieira's syndicated program failed to get ratings traction in the competitive daytime arena ruled by shows including ...

People’s Choice award for Ellen

LOS ANGELES - Ellen DeGeneres is receiving a humanitarian award, and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is reaping the benefits. Producers of the People's Choice Awards announced Monday that DeGeneres will be recognized as the Favorite Humanitarian at Wednesday's ceremony. The honor comes ...

Activision acquires Major League Gaming

LOS ANGELES - Activision is adding a veteran e-sports organizer to its arsenal. "Call of Duty" publisher Activision Blizzard Inc. announced plans Monday to buy Major League Gaming in a move to push deeper into e-sports. The deal to purchase the 12-year-old competitive gaming organizer is ...

Ready, set, roll: Boston Marathon gets its 1st documentary

BOSTON - America's marquee marathon is ready for its close-up."Boston," the first feature-length documentary film about the Boston Marathon, is in the works. Its creators say the movie will go well beyond the 2013 bombings to retrace the iconic footrace's first steps in 1897."Over the years, ...

Motion to block subpoena of Bill Cosby’s wife denied

BOSTON - Bill Cosby's wife will be forced to testify in a defamation lawsuit filed by seven women who accuse the comedian of sexually assaulting them decades ago.A federal judge on Thursday denied a motion by Camille Cosby to throw out a subpoena requiring her to give a deposition in the ...

Charleston a focus of Spoleto Festival USA

CHARLESTON, S.C. - Historic Charleston is a large focus of next spring's 40th edition of the Spoleto Festival USA, from glimpses of the city in the iconic opera "Porgy and Bess" to the tragedy of the Emanuel AME Church shootings.The lineup for the internationally known arts festival that runs ...

Chris Brown investigated for alleged battery

LAS VEGAS - Las Vegas police are investigating an allegation of battery against R&B singer Chris Brown.Authorities received a call shortly before 10:30 a.m. Saturday about the alleged battery at the Palms Casino Resort, Lt. Jeff Goodwin said. A police statement Saturday evening said an ...

Ratings plunge for NYE College Football Playoff

DALLAS - Jimmy Kimmel told people to watch. All the prodding and promoting wasn't enough to convince many fans to tune in.College football's move to create a new tradition with semifinal matchups on New Year's Eve drew ratings more than a third lower than last season, when the matchups were ...

Vegas police investigating Brown for alleged battery

LAS VEGAS - Las Vegas police are investigating an allegation of battery against R&B singer Chris Brown.Lt. Jeff Goodwin says authorities received a call shortly before 10:30 a.m. Saturday about the alleged battery at the Palms Casino Resort. Goodwin would not release any details about ...

‘Game of Thrones’ author blogs that he missed book deadline

NEW YORK - For fans of George R.R. Martin, winter is not coming - at least not right away.The "Game of Thrones" author says he missed a Dec. 31 deadline to finish "The Winds of Winter," the sixth book in his popular fantasy series. That means the next HBO season based on the novel will start ...

Philadelphia celebrates with Mummers Parade

PHILADELPHIA - Outrageously costumed Mummers have strutted and twirled at Philadelphia's annual New Year's Day parade, a colorful celebration that features string bands, comic brigades, elaborate floats and plenty of feathers and sequins.Participants danced wildly and toted parasols Friday down ...

Cosby tweets ‘Thank You’ to friends, family

PHILADELPHIA - Bill Cosby has tweeted a brief message to fans following his arrest on a sexual assault charge. The message says, "Friends and fans, Thank You." It was sent Thursday from Cosby's Twitter account. The 78-year-old comedian was charged this week with drugging and sexually assaulting ...

Natalie Cole, Grammy winning singer, has died at age 65

LOS ANGELES - Natalie Cole, the daughter of jazz legend Nat King Cole, who carved out her own success with R&B hits like "Our Love" and "This Will Be" before triumphantly intertwining their legacies to make his "Unforgettable" their signature hit through technological wizardry, has ...

Hard-fought legal battles expected in the Cosby case

PHILADELPHIA - Bill Cosby's lawyers went on the attack Thursday after the comedian's arrest, calling the sexual assault charges a flawed, politically motivated case that will not hold up in court.They are expected to try to gut the prosecution's case or get it thrown out altogether by a variety ...

Lucas sorry for calling Disney ‘white slavers’

LOS ANGELES - George Lucas has apologized for criticizing Disney's handling of "Star Wars" and saying he had sold his characters to "white slavers" in a recent interview with Charlie Rose.In a statement issued Thursday, Lucas says he misspoke and used a "very inappropriate analogy." It was not ...

Swift’s world tour the top earner with $250.4M

NEW YORK - Taylor Swift's star-studded "1989 World Tour" topped Pollstar's list of worldwide tours of the year, grossing $250.4 million.Swift's tour grossed $70 million more than the No.2 tour of the year, AC/DC's "Rock or Bust World Tour," which brought in $180 million.One Direction, U2 and ...

Bill Cosby charged with a sex crime dating to 2004

ELKINS PARK, Pa. - Bill Cosby was arrested in the twilight of his life and career Wednesday and charged with a decade-old sex crime after a barrage of accusations from dozens of women made a mockery of his image as TV's wise and understanding Dr. Cliff Huxtable.Holding a cane, the 78-year-old ...

Tonya Pinkins quits NYC play

NEW YORK - Bertolt Brecht's epic play "Mother Courage and Her Children" may be about the horrors of war, but a new off-Broadway production is revealing real conflict offstage, too.Tony Award-winning actress Tonya Pinkins said she will abruptly leave the Classic Stage Company's revival early ...