Entertainment

‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ compromise offered to small theaters

LOS ANGELES — The dozens of community and nonprofit theaters across the U.S. forced to abandon productions of “To Kill a Mockingbird” under legal threat were offered an olive branch in the form of Aaron Sorkin’s script for the Broadway version. Scott Rudin, producer of the New York ...

When music producers are accused of being predators

NEW YORK — Jessie Woo just wanted to sing. So when the budding vocalist met a successful music producer who told her he wanted to help her with her music, she believed him. Then, one night seven years ago, the producer raped her, she said. It was not the only time she was preyed upon by ...

Why small US theaters have canceled ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’

NEW YORK — Dozens of community and nonprofit theaters across the U.S. have been forced to abandon productions of “To Kill a Mockingbird” under legal threat by Broadway and Hollywood producer Scott Rudin. The combative move has prompted calls for a boycott of Rudin’s work. Rudin is ...

New solutions for the old problem of illegal massage parlors

BOSTON — They’re nestled amid bustling downtowns and tucked into nondescript strip malls across quiet suburbs. Brothels posing as massage parlors and Asian spas have been part of many American communities for decades, hidden in plain sight. But the Florida prostitution sting that ensnared ...

For many, ‘Green Book’ win was a confounding Oscar climax

LOS ANGELES — An Academy Awards that sparkled with more women and African-American winners than ever before came to a screeching halt with the night’s final honor. Some would even call it a “Crash.” In a twist ending that shocked many of the Dolby Theatre attendees and those watching ...

‘How to Train Your Dragon’ tops Oscar weekend with $55.5M

LOS ANGELES — “How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World” breathed some fire into a slumping box office with a franchise-best $55.5 million debut over Oscar weekend. Writer-director Dean DeBlois’ third and supposedly final installment in the “How to Train Your Dragon” series ...

Stanley Donen, director of ‘Singin’ in the Rain,’ dies at 94

LOS ANGELES — Filmmaker Stanley Donen, a giant of the Hollywood musical who through such classics as “Singin’ in the Rain” and “Funny Face” helped give us some of the most joyous sounds and images in movie history, has died. He was 94. Donen, who often teamed with Gene Kelly but ...

Chicago prosecutors charge R. Kelly with abusing 4 victims

CHICAGO — R. Kelly, the R&B star who has been trailed for decades by allegations that he violated underage girls and women and held some as virtual slaves, was charged Friday with aggravated sexual abuse involving four victims, including at least three between the ages of 13 and 17. In ...

Snowman pops up in Vegas as city sees rare winter weather

LAS VEGAS — Winter storms in the U.S. Southwest brought rare snowfall Thursday to the Las Vegas Strip, dusting casino marquees and prompting revelers to erect a snowman near the famous “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” sign. The National Weather Service reported the first significant ...

‘Empire’ actor charged with making false police report

CHICAGO — “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett was charged Wednesday with making a false police report when he said he was attacked in downtown Chicago by two men who hurled racist and anti-gay slurs and looped a rope around his neck, police said. Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said ...

Burberry apologizes for hoodie with noose knot

NEW YORK — The chief executive and chief creative officer of luxury fashion powerhouse Burberry have apologized for putting a hoodie with strings tied in the shape of a noose on their London Fashion Week runway. The knotted strings surfaced after Sunday’s show when a model hired to walk ...

First-ever ‘Jeopardy!” team contest draws top champions

CULVER CITY, Calif. — Glance around the “Jeopardy!” set during rehearsals for its first-ever team championship and it’s easy to be intimidated by the assembled brain power. There’s Brad Rutter, whose overall “Jeopardy!” haul, $4.3 million, is the most won on any game show. And ...

‘Black Panther’ costume designer blazes trail to inspire

LOS ANGELES — Ruth E. Carter is a black woman blazing a trail as a costume designer in a film industry with not many who look like her. But through her upcoming career achievement award and Oscar nomination for her Afro-futuristic wardrobes in the superhero film “Black Panther,” Carter ...

Women filmmakers have record showing at Berlin Film Festival

BERLIN — The voice of the female filmmaker was louder than ever at this year’s Berlin Film Festival, with seven out of the 16 films in the competition section helmed by women, and female directors from all corners of the globe featured prominently. Women directors represented 63 percent ...

Regina is already a King, but what about president?

NEW YORK — So, Regina King walked into a 99-cent store. And what’d she get? A prophecy on her life. No joke. King was shopping around — “sometimes people will say, ‘You at the 99-cent store?’ I like a bargain too” — when a woman walked up to her with something of a ...

10 days before show time, a full-on revolt over the Oscars

Would anyone — anyone at all — like to thank the academy? This is normally the time of year when Oscar hopefuls are readying acceptance speeches that almost always begin with a few words of gratitude for the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. But that sentiment has been hard to ...

K-pop and fancy sneakers: Kim Jong Un’s cultural revolution

PYONGYANG, North Korea — Dancers in hot pants. Factories pumping out Air Jordan lookalikes. TV dramas that are actually fun to watch. North Korean pop culture, long dismissed by critics as a kitschy throwback to the dark days of Stalinism, is getting a major upgrade under leader Kim Jong ...

CBS’ ‘Big Bang Theory’ has season high as end nears

NEW YORK — As the time approaches to say goodbye to Sheldon, Amy, Leonard, Penny and the gang, the CBS comedy “The Big Bang Theory” hit a season high in popularity last week. The 14.2 million viewers who tuned in to Thursday’s episode will surely be topped, since television’s most ...

‘The Lego Movie 2’ opens No. 1 but everything is not awesome

NEW YORK — “The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part” was easily the top ticket-seller in theaters over the weekend, but the film’s $35 million opening failed to stack up to its expected haul, according to studio estimates Sunday. The animated sequel had been forecast to draw around $50 ...

Chris Cornell’s kids accept posthumous Grammy

LOS ANGELES — The late Chris Cornell’s daughter called her father’s posthumous Grammy Award on Sunday a “bittersweet” moment for the family. Cornell’s daughter, Toni, and son, Christopher, accepted their father’s trophy for best rock performance for his song “When Bad Does ...