Friday Oct 31, 2014

Ellen Pompeo takes on first producing project for ABC

For the first time in her career, the star of "Grey's Anatomy" will take on the title of producer. The new role will expand her collaboration with ABC, the network that has aired the medical drama series since 2005.Ellen Pompeo is among the producers of "American Marriage," a drama soap on...
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TV

Ellen Pompeo takes on first producing project for ABC
Friday Oct 31, 2014
Ellen Pompeo takes on first producing project for ABC

For the first time in her career, the star of "Grey's Anatomy" will take on the title of producer. The new role will expand her collaboration with ABC, the network that has aired the medical drama series since 2005.Ellen Pompeo is among the producers of "American Marriage," a drama soap on the wedding preparations of a young, in-love couple whose families are diametrically opposed. The bride and groom-to-be are forced to deal with the multiple cultural and generational conflicts that could ruin the celebration. The series will be co-written by Pamela Falk and Mike Ellis, the duo behind the 2001 romantic comedy "The Wedding Planner," which starred Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Lopez. Ellen Pompeo rose to fame on "Grey's Anatomy" in the role of the surgeon Meredith Grey, whose love story with Doctor McDreamy has riveted millions of TV viewers worldwide since 2005. ABC is currently airing the show's 11th season. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

'American Gigolo' to be adapted for TV
Friday Oct 31, 2014
'American Gigolo' to be adapted for TV

The 1980 psychological thriller that made Richard Gere a star is headed for a small screen remake at Paramount Television.Ten years before the immensely popular "Pretty Woman," Richard Gere made a name for himself in the title role of "American Gigolo." The actor played Julian, a young man who funds his luxurious lifestyle by working as an escort for older women in Los Angeles. When one of his wealthy clients is murdered, he becomes the primary suspect. To adapt the thriller into a series, Paramount Television has teamed with Jerry Bruckheimer and Paul Schrader, respectively producer and screenwriter/director on the original feature. The project joins a growing list of Paramount movies currently being remade for the small screen. The studio has a series based on "Minority Report" in the works at Fox, while "Shooter," which starred Mark Wahlberg, is due to be adapted for TNT. Paramount's strongest play in this vein could likely be "Ashecliffe," a series in development at HBO and based on the thriller "Shutter Island." Scripted by Dennis Lehane, the author whose novel inspired the feature, the pilot is set to be helmed by the film's director Martin Scorsese. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

'The View' now under ABC News as further revamping
Thursday Oct 30, 2014
'The View' now under ABC News as further revamping

NEW YORK (AP) — ABC's daytime chat show "The View," which has failed to catch fire following an overhaul this fall, is switching to the network's news side after being part of ABC's entertainment operation for 18 years. ABC News President James Goldston on Thursday assigned Tom Cibrowski, the producer responsible for the "Good Morning America" rise to the top of the ratings, and colleagues Barbara Fedida and David Sloan to work on "The View." Following the retirement of Barbara Walters from an on-air role at the show she started, ABC brought in Rosie O'Donnell, Nicolle Wallace and Rosie Perez to join holdover Whoopi Goldberg. A new production team was named led by Bill Wolff, Rachel Maddow's former producer. The new "View" got off to a fast start with people sampling but ratings have flattened, said Bill Carroll, an expert on the syndication market for Katz Media. Through the end of last week, "The View" has averaged 2.9 million viewers, similar to the 2.92 million average during the same period last year, the Nielsen company said. There's a sharper drop (712,000 to 652,000) among viewers aged 18-to-49 years old, a group prized by advertisers. It may have something to do with a new group trying to gel or a slow news period, but the show "doesn't have the same energy, the same spark," Carroll said. The move was not made in response to ratings concerns, said Julie Townsend, ABC News spokeswoman. Goldston, in fact, offered advice to the new "View" team this summer and was in the audience for the season opener on Sept. 15. It makes logistical sense, in that the head of daytime TV for ABC entertainment, Lisa Hackner, is based in California. "The View" airs from a Manhattan studio next-door to ABC News headquarters. ABC News is also boosting Lincoln Square Productions, its division that makes non-fiction programming. That division produced the summer series "NY Med" and a recent documentary on Ebola that Dr. Richard Besser made for Discovery. Such programming has "broadened our perspective on how we better explain the world to our audience and draw new viewers to ABC News," Goldston wrote in a memo to ABC staff members. A chief competitor to "The View," CBS' "The Talk" has seen its ratings dip slightly from 2.67 million to 2.6 million, Nielsen said. Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

'Big Bang Theory' actress Cuoco gets Hollywood star
Thursday Oct 30, 2014
'Big Bang Theory' actress Cuoco gets Hollywood star

"The Big Bang Theory" actress Kaley Cuoco was joined by fellow cast members from the hit TV sitcom as she received a star on Hollywood's storied Walk of Fame.Jim Parsons (Sheldon), Johnny Galecki (Leonard), Simon Helberg (Howard) and Kunal Nayyar (Raj), as well as the show's co-creator Chuck Lorre, were on hand for the star-unveiling ceremony on Tinseltown's famous sidewalk. "This cast has changed my life in many ways," said the 28-year-old, who plays Penny in the series, which has been running since 2007 and is in its eighth season. "We laugh a lot (doing the show). This is a testament to the hard work and the dedication and the joy of doing something we love," said Lorre, as crowds gathered for the morning ceremony. "Big Bang" averaged about 20 million viewers an episode last season, making it the most-watched comedy in America. Earlier this year the three main stars of the sitcom reportedly reached lucrative new pay deals, ending a delay to the start of production on the show's latest season. Emmy winner Parsons, along with co-stars Galecki and Cuoco, roughly tripled their salaries and will now be earning about $1 million an episode, according to the Hollywood Reporter and Variety. The trio signed three-year deals, meaning they will stay with "Big Bang" through its 10th season, the industry journals said. Cuoco was accompanied by her tennis player husband Ryan Sweeting to Wednesday's ceremony. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Halloween beauty tips: the best celebrity looks
Thursday Oct 30, 2014
Halloween beauty tips: the best celebrity looks

In Tinseltown Halloween isn't just one night. Oh no! As with everything in Hollywood the stars don't do things by halves, and some major names have already hit the party circuit in some cool looks. Here are some of the best so far.Kate Hudson - instagram.com/p/ukbgHVpclp The actress posted this Halloween look four days ago with a shout out to makeup artist Christian, who put the colorful Mexican theme together. We're big fans of Hudson's bright Day of the Dead style decoration, which she finished off with a flower behind her ear.  Ashley Madekwe - instagram.com/p/umpxk1qhbZ Rising star Ashley Madekwe was inspired by Heath Ledger's portrayal of The Joker in Christopher Nolan's "The Dark Knight" this week. The British actress donned a green wig and slicked some red lipstick over her cheeks in a creepy grin.  Lucy Hale - instagram.com/p/umf4dqQuo0 "Pretty Little Liars" actress Lucy Hale went for a meta-twist on social media at a Halloween party this week, by dressing as yup, you guessed it, the Twitter Bird. She wore bright blue glasses, a blue wig and blue lipstick to get the look.  Colton Haynes - instagram.com/p/uq43snjTFD Actor and model Colton Haynes is known as one of Hollywood's hunkiest stars, but you would be forgiven for not recognizing him in his Halloween outfit this year. Haynes donned facial prosthetics, a wig and plenty of green face paint for his Princess Fiona costume.   Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Movies

Toronto hit romance 'Meet Me In Montenegro' given 2015 ETA
Friday Oct 31, 2014
Toronto hit romance 'Meet Me In Montenegro' given 2015 ETA

The semi-autobiographical romantic drama "Meet Me In Montenegro," which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September, is heading for a 2015 release after Sony's specialist distributor The Orchard tied up a deal.Alex Holdridge and Linnea Saasen co-star in and co-direct the film, which also has Rupert Friend of "Homeland" and Jennifer Ulrich of German vampire film "We Are the Night" in supporting roles. It follows an aspiring Californian director and a Norwegian dancer who, after being separated for many years, finally find each other again. It's Friend and Ulrich who help Holdridge's character forget about a failed project when he seeks solace in Berlin away from the hustle and bustle of LA. But there he bumps into Saasen and the pair must decide if and how they can continue their relationship. Holdridge's previous film was the very well received independent romantic comedy "In Search of a Midnight Kiss," which was among the winners at the 2009 Independent Spirit Awards. Holdridge and Saasen join "Big Bang Theory" star Simon Helberg and wife Jocelyn Towne in directing a film about their own unlikely courtship -- though for Helberg's upcoming "We'll Never Have Paris," it's Geoffrey Cantor and Melanie Lynskey who star, rather than the real world subjects themselves. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Downey, Watson, Dench honored by British Academy
Friday Oct 31, 2014
Downey, Watson, Dench honored by British Academy

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — There was a bit of a British invasion at the Beverly Hills Hilton hotel, as BAFTA Los Angeles hosted its annual Britannia Awards, honoring film and television talent from both sides of the pond, including director Mike Leigh and actors Dame Judi Dench, Emma Watson, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Robert Downey Jr. But the most of attendees Thursday night were Brits -- no surprise, given the party was thrown by the L.A. branch of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. Downey received the Stanley Kubrick Award for Excellence in Film, named after the legendary director of such films as "2001: A Space Odyssey" "(The award) means a heck of a lot to me," said Downey. "I love British filmmakers, and they have such a great talent pool." Oscar-winning actress Dench was honored with Albert R. ("Cubby") Broccoli Award for Worldwide Contribution in Entertainment, named after one of the original producers of the James Bond films. Noted Dench, "Well, I'm rather overwhelmed by (the award), because I didn't ever expect to have a film career at all. I never knew Cubby Broccoli, although I know, of course, (Albert's daughter) Barbara Broccoli and (Barbara's half-brother and Bond-series producer) Michael Wilson very well. And I've had 17 years of doing Bond, which has been just wonderful. So, I'm very, very proud that I shall have something that is named after Cubby." Dench and fellow honoree Watson posed together for photographers on the arrivals line. Watson, named Britannia British Artist of the Year, said Dench is "just all soul and all grace and strength and beauty, and she really, for me, she's an iconic British actor. She's what you aspire to be." The 79-year-old Dench is currently on a box-office roll, with her 2012 releases "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" and "Skyfall" and her Oscar-nominated 2013 "Philomena" all boasting worldwide grosses of more than $100 million each. Dench's next film is the sequel "The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," hitting cinemas in February. Dench said, "People like to say, 'When are you retiring?' Or 'When are you going to slow down?' That's all very rude in my family. We don't say any of that. I think if I stop, it'll be like a car: I shall run out of petrol and fall over. So, I plan not to that, if possible." The BAFTA Los Angeles Jaguar Britannia Awards are set to air on BBC America 2 November. Online: http://www.bafta.org/los-angeles Follow Mike Cidoni Lennox on Twitter at www.twitter.com/CidoniLennox Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

'American Gigolo' to be adapted for TV
Friday Oct 31, 2014
'American Gigolo' to be adapted for TV

The 1980 psychological thriller that made Richard Gere a star is headed for a small screen remake at Paramount Television.Ten years before the immensely popular "Pretty Woman," Richard Gere made a name for himself in the title role of "American Gigolo." The actor played Julian, a young man who funds his luxurious lifestyle by working as an escort for older women in Los Angeles. When one of his wealthy clients is murdered, he becomes the primary suspect. To adapt the thriller into a series, Paramount Television has teamed with Jerry Bruckheimer and Paul Schrader, respectively producer and screenwriter/director on the original feature. The project joins a growing list of Paramount movies currently being remade for the small screen. The studio has a series based on "Minority Report" in the works at Fox, while "Shooter," which starred Mark Wahlberg, is due to be adapted for TNT. Paramount's strongest play in this vein could likely be "Ashecliffe," a series in development at HBO and based on the thriller "Shutter Island." Scripted by Dennis Lehane, the author whose novel inspired the feature, the pilot is set to be helmed by the film's director Martin Scorsese. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Trailer: Katniss rises in 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1'
Thursday Oct 30, 2014
Trailer: Katniss rises in 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1'

As "The Hunger Games" trilogy approaches its tumultuous climax, Lionsgate has issued a new trailer ahead of the "Mockingjay" cinematic release on November 21.Setting the scene for a terrible conflict between Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and President Snow, this montage sees Lionsgate gear up for November's big release, even naming it the "Final Trailer" -- though it would seem strange to go an entire month without further supplementary material. Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Julianne Moore play Everdeen's powerful allies, Plutarch Heavensbee and President Alma Coin, while Donald Sutherland remains the despotic President Snow who seeks to crush the Panem city rebellion. Josh Hutcherson returns as the imprisoned Peeta Mellark, Woody Harrelson as Haymitch Aberthay and Liam Hemsworth as rebel soldier Gale Hawthorne. Francis Lawrence again directs "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1," with its second part due for release in November 2015. The week of November 21 marks the theatrical debut of "Mockingjay - Part 1" not only in the USA but in almost every territory covered by the film's release, including France, Belgium, Brazil and the Philippines (November 19), Australia, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and much of Latin America (November 20), and the UK, Ireland, Canada, China, Spain and Mexico on the same day as the USA. "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 Final Trailer - 'Burn'" : youtu.be/IXshQ5mv1K8 Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Coen brothers comedy 'Hail Caesar!' set for 2016
Thursday Oct 30, 2014
Coen brothers comedy 'Hail Caesar!' set for 2016

George Clooney and Josh Brolin star in the Coen brothers' historical comedy "Hail Caesar!," which will be released on February 5, 2016.This ensemble comedy harks back to 1950s Hollywood, as one studio's fixer attempts to solve a whole host of problems brought about by movieland's various demanding personalities. Alongside Clooney and Brolin will be the likes of Jonah Hill, Scarlett Johansson, Channing Tatum, Frances McDormand, Ralph Fiennes and Tilda Swinton. The Coens will be credited as both writers and directors on the film but, as The Hollywood Reporter observes, the February date means "Hail Caesar!" neatly sidestep January awards buzz. Both "True Grit" and "Inside Llewyn Davis," critically acclaimed and award show favorites at the Oscars and Golden Globes, were subject to December release dates; 2004's less rapturously received "The Ladykillers" was the last Coen brothers directorial feature to launch in the first three months of a calendar year. "Hail Caesar!" distributor Universal Pictures already has Amy Poehler and Tina Fey comedy "The Nest" set for December 2015, with all-star Guillermo del Toro horror "Crimson Peak" in October and another Josh Brolin film, "Everest," for September. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Events

Toronto hit romance 'Meet Me In Montenegro' given 2015 ETA
Friday Oct 31, 2014
Toronto hit romance 'Meet Me In Montenegro' given 2015 ETA

The semi-autobiographical romantic drama "Meet Me In Montenegro," which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September, is heading for a 2015 release after Sony's specialist distributor The Orchard tied up a deal.Alex Holdridge and Linnea Saasen co-star in and co-direct the film, which also has Rupert Friend of "Homeland" and Jennifer Ulrich of German vampire film "We Are the Night" in supporting roles. It follows an aspiring Californian director and a Norwegian dancer who, after being separated for many years, finally find each other again. It's Friend and Ulrich who help Holdridge's character forget about a failed project when he seeks solace in Berlin away from the hustle and bustle of LA. But there he bumps into Saasen and the pair must decide if and how they can continue their relationship. Holdridge's previous film was the very well received independent romantic comedy "In Search of a Midnight Kiss," which was among the winners at the 2009 Independent Spirit Awards. Holdridge and Saasen join "Big Bang Theory" star Simon Helberg and wife Jocelyn Towne in directing a film about their own unlikely courtship -- though for Helberg's upcoming "We'll Never Have Paris," it's Geoffrey Cantor and Melanie Lynskey who star, rather than the real world subjects themselves. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Downey, Watson, Dench honored by British Academy
Friday Oct 31, 2014
Downey, Watson, Dench honored by British Academy

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — There was a bit of a British invasion at the Beverly Hills Hilton hotel, as BAFTA Los Angeles hosted its annual Britannia Awards, honoring film and television talent from both sides of the pond, including director Mike Leigh and actors Dame Judi Dench, Emma Watson, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Robert Downey Jr. But the most of attendees Thursday night were Brits -- no surprise, given the party was thrown by the L.A. branch of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. Downey received the Stanley Kubrick Award for Excellence in Film, named after the legendary director of such films as "2001: A Space Odyssey" "(The award) means a heck of a lot to me," said Downey. "I love British filmmakers, and they have such a great talent pool." Oscar-winning actress Dench was honored with Albert R. ("Cubby") Broccoli Award for Worldwide Contribution in Entertainment, named after one of the original producers of the James Bond films. Noted Dench, "Well, I'm rather overwhelmed by (the award), because I didn't ever expect to have a film career at all. I never knew Cubby Broccoli, although I know, of course, (Albert's daughter) Barbara Broccoli and (Barbara's half-brother and Bond-series producer) Michael Wilson very well. And I've had 17 years of doing Bond, which has been just wonderful. So, I'm very, very proud that I shall have something that is named after Cubby." Dench and fellow honoree Watson posed together for photographers on the arrivals line. Watson, named Britannia British Artist of the Year, said Dench is "just all soul and all grace and strength and beauty, and she really, for me, she's an iconic British actor. She's what you aspire to be." The 79-year-old Dench is currently on a box-office roll, with her 2012 releases "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" and "Skyfall" and her Oscar-nominated 2013 "Philomena" all boasting worldwide grosses of more than $100 million each. Dench's next film is the sequel "The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," hitting cinemas in February. Dench said, "People like to say, 'When are you retiring?' Or 'When are you going to slow down?' That's all very rude in my family. We don't say any of that. I think if I stop, it'll be like a car: I shall run out of petrol and fall over. So, I plan not to that, if possible." The BAFTA Los Angeles Jaguar Britannia Awards are set to air on BBC America 2 November. Online: http://www.bafta.org/los-angeles Follow Mike Cidoni Lennox on Twitter at www.twitter.com/CidoniLennox Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Coen brothers comedy 'Hail Caesar!' set for 2016
Thursday Oct 30, 2014
Coen brothers comedy 'Hail Caesar!' set for 2016

George Clooney and Josh Brolin star in the Coen brothers' historical comedy "Hail Caesar!," which will be released on February 5, 2016.This ensemble comedy harks back to 1950s Hollywood, as one studio's fixer attempts to solve a whole host of problems brought about by movieland's various demanding personalities. Alongside Clooney and Brolin will be the likes of Jonah Hill, Scarlett Johansson, Channing Tatum, Frances McDormand, Ralph Fiennes and Tilda Swinton. The Coens will be credited as both writers and directors on the film but, as The Hollywood Reporter observes, the February date means "Hail Caesar!" neatly sidestep January awards buzz. Both "True Grit" and "Inside Llewyn Davis," critically acclaimed and award show favorites at the Oscars and Golden Globes, were subject to December release dates; 2004's less rapturously received "The Ladykillers" was the last Coen brothers directorial feature to launch in the first three months of a calendar year. "Hail Caesar!" distributor Universal Pictures already has Amy Poehler and Tina Fey comedy "The Nest" set for December 2015, with all-star Guillermo del Toro horror "Crimson Peak" in October and another Josh Brolin film, "Everest," for September. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Hip-hop trio Young Fathers surprise Mercury winners
Thursday Oct 30, 2014
Hip-hop trio Young Fathers surprise Mercury winners

Young Fathers, an underground hip-hop trio from Scotland with roots in Liberia and Nigeria, won the prestigious Mercury Prize Wednesday, beating out far better-selling British artists.Young Fathers' first studio album "Dead" topped a field that included Blur frontman Damon Albarn, as well as increasingly popular artists such as poet-turned-rapper Kate Tempest and R&B-influenced trip-hopper FKA twigs. Young Fathers took home the 20,000-pound ($32,000) award, given each year for the best British or Irish album, even though "Dead" had sold fewer than 2,400 copies by this week. "Young Fathers have a unique take on urban British music, brimming with ideas -- forceful, unexpected and moving," said Simon Frith, the chair of the judging panel. Based in Edinburgh, the trio features Alloysious Massaquoi, who was born in Liberia; Kayus Bankole, whose parents were from Nigeria and who grew up partly in the United States, as well as locally rooted Graham ("G") Hastings. With a rap lyrical delivery set to non-traditional bass arrangements and occasional African influences, Young Fathers have struggled to put labels on their genre. Critics' descriptions have included "psychedelic hip hop" and a "boy band through the bottom of a glass of crystal meth". In an interview before the awards, Hastings said the band believed that easy definition would amount to artistic failure. "Most bands exist because they think they can make money and have a laugh. So they try and fit in somewhere, but that's not fun for us," Hastings told online music magazine Drowned in Sound. Massaquoi said that most bands tried simply to emulate artists that they enjoyed. "We know the stuff that's influenced us has already been done, so we question how we can do it differently," he said. Young Fathers, who earlier released two EPs, have played two straight years at the influential South by Southwest festival and have signed to California's independent Anticon label. The band is planning to spend a month in Berlin to record a new album. The award for Young Fathers comes after criticism in recent years that the Mercury Prize has put too much of a focus on mainstream artists. The shortlist included a number of relatively obscure artists, with Albarn and Bombay Bicycle Club among the only well-known names to receive nominations. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Hong Kong gets 14 new Michelin-starred restaurants for 2015
Thursday Oct 30, 2014
Hong Kong gets 14 new Michelin-starred restaurants for 2015

Michelin's most affordable gourmet dining scene has become a richer and more diverse destination with the addition of 14 new starred addresses.In the iconic red guide’s latest 2015 edition for Hong Kong and Macau, Michelin inspectors awarded three new restaurants with two stars, and 11 new addresses with their first star. Restaurants Yan Toh Heen, The Principal, and Duddell’s helped expand Hong Kong’s two-starred club to 16. At the Hotel Intercontinental’s Yan Toh Heen, chef Lau Yiu Fai serves authentic Cantonese cuisine. Chef Siu Hin Chi also serves traditional Cantonese cooking at Duddell’s, a contemporary and innovative space that describes itself as a cultural and social destination for arty, creative types. At The Principal, chef Jonay Armas brings international flavors and culinary styles -- notably from Spain and Denmark -- to Hong Kong with a menu that focuses on color, texture and elegance. In the one-star category, notable inductees include Akrame by chef Akrame Benallal, just a few months after gaining a second star for his flagship Paris restaurant of the same name which serves contemporary French cuisine. Likewise, another French chef gained a Michelin star for his Hong Kong outpost. Chef Olivier Elzer, who worked with Joel Robuchon and Pierre Gagnaire, reinterprets classic French dishes at Seasons. More than 50 types of cuisine are represented in the latest Michelin guide for Hong Kong and Macau, including 21 styles of regional Chinese cooking and starred meal for less than 10 euros. Here is the final star count: ***7 restaurants** 16 restaurants (3 of which are new)*52 restaurants (11 of which are new)Bib Gourmand (good value eats)78 The Michelin Guide Hong Kong and Macau 2015 goes on sale October 31. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.