Wednesday May 27, 2015

Kanye West says he was 'over-censored' at Billboard Awards

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kanye West is apologizing to TV viewers who saw his performance on the Billboard Music Awards. The rapper released a statement Tuesday saying he was "grossly over-censored" during his performance on the show. He says some of his lyrics were muted for...
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TV

Kanye West says he was 'over-censored' at Billboard Awards
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Kanye West says he was 'over-censored' at Billboard Awards

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kanye West is apologizing to TV viewers who saw his performance on the Billboard Music Awards. The rapper released a statement Tuesday saying he was "grossly over-censored" during his performance on the show. He says some of his lyrics were muted for 30 seconds, which misrepresented his voice and performance. The audience at Las Vegas' MGM Grand Garden Arena booed as West performed his songs "All Day" and "Black Skinhead" at Sunday's ceremony, which was broadcast on ABC. West's statement apologizes to the television audience, who he says was "unable to enjoy the performance the way he envisioned." ABC did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

David Duchovny takes a dangerous '60s trip in 'Aquarius'
Wednesday May 27, 2015
David Duchovny takes a dangerous '60s trip in 'Aquarius'

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Between wrapping "Californication" and the return of "The X-Files," David Duchovny is making a detour to the mind-bending 1960s. In NBC's drama "Aquarius," he plays a Los Angeles police detective whose search for a missing teen leads to a would-be rock star destined to become the era's bogeyman: Charles Manson. "Aquarius," which airs weekly after its 9-11 p.m. EDT Thursday debut, also will be available for online binging. In a network experiment that echoes a Netflix-style release, NBC is putting the full 13-episode season on NBC.com, the NBC app and other video-on-demand platforms following the premiere. The series gives Duchovny the chance to play a character far different from his hallmark TV roles of a sex-obsessed writer on Showtime's dark romp and a rule-breaking FBI agent from Fox's eerie 1993-2002 drama. LAPD Detective Sam Hodiak of "Aquarius" is a decorated World War II veteran dismayed to see the stalwart 1940s and staid '50s give way to drugs, rock 'n' roll and political tumult. "He is walking around looking at these kids with long hair and thinking, 'This is what I killed for? This is what I would have been killed for?'" Duchovny said. "In many ways he's the perfect guy to look through Manson. Manson's a fake ... a 35-year-old guy manipulating young girls." But in the polarized '60s, Manson was co-opted as a symbol of the dangers of social upheaval, the actor said. The series opens two years before the 1969 Tate-LaBianca murders, among the killings that led to the convictions of Manson (played by Gethin Anthony, "Game of Thrones") and his followers. Duchovny said he wasn't deliberately trying to distance himself from his past work by portraying a tough cop with a crew cut. "I want to do the best thing I can. But when the best thing that came across my desk was this ('Aquarius'), I wasn't unhappy that it was a straight-laced character. I wasn't unhappy that he was establishment," the actor said. Hodiak, who's going through a divorce and harbors creative passions, is a complex man, not a stereotype like the stoic police hero in TV's old "Dragnet" series, Duchovny added. "He's not Sgt. Joe Friday. But you'd probably think Joe Friday was Joe Friday night" if you met him, said Duchovny, smiling. It's a pun worthy of his wry "X-Files" hero Mulder, whom he'll play again in a six-episode sequel set for January. Duchovny, 54, hasn't been kicking back while awaiting production on the Fox series. His debut album, "Hell or Highwater," was released earlier this month — "I found out I was a musician really late in life" — and a second novel, after the well-received "Holy Cow," is upcoming. At this moment, he was hawking his tunes. "You can order the album today and you can get the single, $9.99," he said, teasingly. "Come on." ___ Lynn Elber is a national television columnist for The Associated Press. She can be reached at lelber@ap.org and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/lynnelber . ___ Online: http://www.nbc.com/ Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Lynn Elber from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Danielle Brooks heading to Broadway in 'The Color Purple'
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Danielle Brooks heading to Broadway in 'The Color Purple'

NEW YORK (AP) — Actress Danielle Brooks is going from orange to purple — jumping from "Orange Is the New Black" on TV to a Broadway stage in the upcoming "The Color Purple" revival. The actress, who plays Tasha "Taystee" Jefferson on the Netflix series, will play the proud, no-nonsense Sofia in the production directed and designed by John Doyle. She'll play the role Oprah Winfrey had in the film. "My body is having an out-of-body experience," she said Wednesday by phone from a writers' workshop in New Harmony, Indiana. "I'm so shocked and honored and grateful." The cast also includes Jennifer Hudson as Shug Avery and Cynthia Erivo as Celie. All three women will be making their Broadway debuts. Performances start Nov. 9 at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre. Brooks said "The Color Purple" was the very first Broadway show she ever saw 10 years ago when she was 15. "Now, 10 years later, I get to do it," she said. "I'm trying to hold it together." Doyle opened his production of "The Color Purple" in 2013 in London at the Menier Chocolate Factory. Music and lyrics are by Grammy winners Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray. The musical is a stage version of Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel set in rural Georgia that covers a lifetime of events observed by Celie, a homely, uneducated farm woman whose dreams are repeatedly shattered by the cruelty of males. Brooks, born and raised in South Carolina and educated at Juilliard's drama program, has been in the film "Angry Birds," HBO's "Girls" and "Time Out of Mind," starring Richard Gere. She said she hopes she can juggle both her new Broadway commitment and "Orange Is the New Black," which soon begins filming its fourth season and she credits with jump-starting her career. "It's opened so many doors in so many ways. I'm grateful that they've been so supportive of me and the new journey that I'm about to take," Brooks said. "Taystee is very much still alive. So far. Knock on wood, please." ___ Online: http://colorpurple.com Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Mark Kennedy from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Neil Young's latest single hits the web
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Neil Young's latest single hits the web

Veteran rocker and high definition music obsessive has shared the official video to "A Rock Star Bucks A Coffee Shop" and confirmed the release date for his latest album.Entitled "The Monsanto Years," Young describes the new album, which he recorded with a group called Promise of the Real (which includes Willie Nelson's sons in the lineup) as a concept album with an environmental focus. It will be released on June 29 and will come in vinyl and digital formats and in special CD and DVD packages.  Watch the video: https://youtu.be/UC2DpGaykaI Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Jimmy Smits signs on for lead role in hip-hop drama 'The Get Down'
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Jimmy Smits signs on for lead role in hip-hop drama 'The Get Down'

The actor will play the role of Papa Fuerte in Netflix's musical series directed by Baz Luhrmann.Papa Fuerte's real name is Francisco Cruz, and he's a South Bronx politician who helps constituents get the jobs, housing and healthcare they believe the government has failed to provide them. Set in New York in the 1970s, the series tells the story of a gang of teenagers with limited-seeming futures, whose lives are empty save for their friendship. The series will consist of 13 episodes and will air in 2016, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Movies

Review: Bujalski bulks up with a starrier cast in 'Results'
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Review: Bujalski bulks up with a starrier cast in 'Results'

In Andrew Bujalski's directorial debut "Funny Ha Ha" — the film often cited as the first "mumblecore" movie — its aimless protagonist Marnie, recently graduated from college, writes a to-do list charming in its modest ambition: "Make friends with Jackie." ''Learn to play chess?" ''Fitness initiative!" Bujalski's last film crossed one of those off the list (the '80s-set black-and-white mockumentary "Computer Chess"), and now he has taken his characters to the gym. The fitness world, where Bujalski's latest, "Results," is set, might seem like the most unlikely place for the Austin-based indie director to turn; his scruffy, nerdy characters would probably only blink stoically if presented with a treadmill. But, as with Marnie's list, Bujalski has always been both stirred and amused by the impulse for personal growth. "Results," itself, is a bulking up for Bujalski. Though still a low budget independent film, it cost more than his other four films combined and stars big name actors, including Guy Pearce and Colbie Smulders. This is a radical shift for Bujalski, who's synonymous with Cassevetes-like lo-fi productions made with non-professional actors. The (seeming) lack of polish in his films isn't merely a stylistic preference but an aesthetic principle: He favors natural, awkward behavior — familiar and mundane — over more mannered, movie-like performance. "Results" embodies both approaches in two totally opposite characters. Guy Pearce is Trevor, the fit, uber-positive owner of the Power 4 Life gym, where in stumbles Danny (Kevin Corrigan), a slovenly, divorced New Yorker who has inherited a huge sum of money and is now lazily living in an unfurnished Texas McMansion. "I want to be able to take a punch," he mumbles to Trevor. Trevor assigns him his top trainer, Kat (Smulders), an obsessive believer in fitness who shames anyone who drops out of a routine and (literally) chases down a suburban mom behind on her payments, cursing her as a "deadbeat." Despite their differences, she and Danny hit it off, and a kind of romantic triangle develops, along with Trevor, who has a vague history with Kat. It's a rom-com setup but one that disintegrates. The movie, which Bujalksi also wrote, instead follows more unpredictable story lines as Trevor, Danny and Kat each struggle in their own way to find fulfillment. Danny, unkempt and slovenly but honest and easygoing, upends the prescribed wellness programs of Power 4 Life. "We may disagree on the definition of health," he tells Kat, lighting a joint. They make an appealing triad. When younger, Pearce was a bodybuilder in his native Australia, and the character — composed, genial — suits him. Corrigan has long been one of the best character actors around: a laconic, deadpan presence who brings a sweet melancholy to even the smallest of parts. Nothing proves Bujalski's smarts as much as casting him in a leading role. But it's Smulders who takes hold of the film. Her angry intensity animates the story, prodding it along. Smulders has excelled as a member of ensembles ("How I Met Your Mother," ''The Avengers"), but "Results" suggests she can lead, too. Bujalski balances each character, shifting between perspectives in a way that doesn't always feel natural (some background is revealed artificially late in the movie). But the pleasure of "Results" is that it does something few movies do by sensitively burrowing into the foolhardy but admirable hopes and aspirations of regular people trying to improve themselves, whether it means a "fitness initiative" or something else. Change may be impossible, but progress isn't. "Results," a Magnolia Pictures release, is rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America for "for language, some sexual content and drug use." Running time: 105 minutes. Three stars out of four. ___ Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Jake Coyle from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Natalie Portman urges new Harvard graduates to take chances
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Natalie Portman urges new Harvard graduates to take chances

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — Natalie Portman advised graduating Harvard seniors Wednesday to use their inexperience to their advantage, saying she has learned that taking calculated risks can lead to life-changing rewards. The Academy Award-winning actress, speaking at Harvard College's Class Day, cited her work in "Black Swan" as an example of a time she didn't know her own limitations — and it paid off. Portman, who won an Oscar for best actress in the 2010 film, said she might not have taken the role if she had known how "woefully unprepared" she was to pull off the movie's ballet moves. "The point is, if I had known my own limitations, I never would have taken the risk," she said. "And the risk led to one of my greatest personal and professional achievements." The 33-year-old actress also met her husband, choreographer Benjamin Millepied, on the set of the movie. Portman, who graduated from Harvard in 2003 and starred in the most recent "Star Wars" movies, also cited another personal example: her first experience writing, directing and acting in a movie. The film, "A Tale of Love and Darkness," recently premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. "Make use of the fact that you don't doubt yourself too much right now because, as we get older, we get more realistic," she told the graduating seniors. "Accept your lack of knowledge and use it as your asset." Portman's address was a highlight of Wednesday's events, which also included award presentations and student speeches. Harvard seniors receive their diplomas Thursday. Harvard's tradition of inviting a guest speaker to address graduates the day before commencement began in 1968. The first invited guest was civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. His wife, Coretta Scott King, delivered the speech after his assassination. Last year, Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg delivered the address. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Prosecutor has no concerns about Lohan community service
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Prosecutor has no concerns about Lohan community service

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A prosecutor said Wednesday it appears Lindsay Lohan has completed more than 100 hours of community service, the final term of her sentence in a 2012 reckless driving case. Santa Monica Chief Deputy City Attorney Terry White said he does not have any concerns about Lohan's work in recent weeks with groups in New York. "It looks like she's completed her hours," White said. His comments came one day before Lohan's lawyer is scheduled to update a judge on the actress' progress. The "Mean Girls" star is under a deadline to complete more than 100 hours of community service by Thursday's court hearing. A judge could end her probation in the case, filed after Lohan crashed on Pacific Coast Highway while on the way to a film shoot in 2012. At a May 7 court hearing, Lohan still had 115 hours of work left. That prompted Superior Court Judge Mark Young to warn that there would be consequences if the actress missed another deadline. Lohan, 28, was ordered to redo 125 hours of service after White objected to her work in London, citing credit she received for meeting with fans of a stage production of "Speed-the-Plow." Lohan received credit for some of her work on the show, despite being assigned to a charity for underprivileged children and disabled adults. If the judge ends Lohan's case, it will be the first time in nearly eight years she has not been on probation in Los Angeles. Lohan was first placed on probation in August 2007 after she was charged with driving under the influence and drug charges after two arrests earlier that year. She failed to complete the terms of that case, prompting judges to sentence her to rehab, jail and morgue duty. In early 2011, Lohan's probation was extended after she was sentenced in a necklace theft case. Both the DUI and theft cases have been dismissed. ___ Anthony McCartney can be reached at http://twitter.com/mccartneyAP Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Anthony Mccartney from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Judge to determine whether to close Lohan driving case
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Judge to determine whether to close Lohan driving case

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A judge will determine Thursday whether Lindsay Lohan has completed her community service in a reckless driving case and can finally put her Los Angeles court troubles behind her. The "Mean Girls" star is under a deadline to complete more than 100 hours by Thursday morning's court hearing. Lohan has been working with a New York organization recently after failing to complete the service in London. Santa Monica Chief Deputy City Attorney Terry White said Wednesday he does not have any concerns about Lohan's work in recent weeks with groups in Brooklyn. "It looks like she's completed her hours," White said. Lohan remains on probation for a 2012 reckless driving and lying to police case filed after her Porsche collided with a dump truck on Pacific Coast Highway. She was on her way to a film shoot at the time. The case is the final criminal case against Lohan, who has spent nearly eight years on probation after first being charged with driving under the influence and drug possession in 2007. At a May 7 court hearing, Lohan still had 115 hours of work left. That prompted Superior Court Judge Mark Young to warn that there would be consequences if she missed another deadline. Lohan, 28, was ordered to redo 125 hours of service after White objected to her work in London, citing credit she received for meeting with fans of a stage production of "Speed-the-Plow." Lohan received credit for some of her work on the show, despite being assigned to a charity for underprivileged children and disabled adults. Lohan was first placed on probation in August 2007 after she was charged with driving under the influence and drug possession after two arrests earlier that year. She failed to complete the terms of that case, prompting judges to sentence her to rehab, jail and morgue duty. In early 2011, Lohan's probation was extended after she was sentenced in a necklace theft case. Both the DUI and theft cases have been dismissed. ___ Anthony McCartney can be reached at http://twitter.com/mccartneyAP Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Anthony Mccartney from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Review: Dwayne comes to the rescue, but he forgot the script
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Review: Dwayne comes to the rescue, but he forgot the script

It's sure been a rough year for Hollywood. First there was the stinging Sony hacking scandal. And now we have the humbling image of the Hollywood letters themselves toppling to the ground, as most of California is pulverized by an earthquake — make that earthquakes, plural — in "San Andreas." If those letters toppling sounds like a pretty obvious image, well, duh. Everything in "San Andreas," which stars Dwayne Johnson and his amazing musculature as a powerful-yet-sweet rescue pilot, is obvious, over-the-top, and occasionally laugh-out-loud cheesy. But really, you weren't expecting Ingmar Bergman, were you? Summer's upon us, and you could do worse than watch the undeniably appealing Johnson try to save the day while uttering the silliest dialogue imaginable. Plus, if you live far from the West Coast, there's the juicy schadenfreude factor — though we can count on the inevitable sequel ("San Andreas 2: Eastward," perhaps?) to fix that. The movie, directed by Brad Peyton, declares itself proudly from the start. We begin as a winsome blonde lass drives her car off the road and finds herself dangling on a cliff. Ray Gaines of the LAFD to the rescue. With an easy, calm smile, Ray (Johnson) finds a way to total his helicopter yet scoop the lass to freedom. But we soon learn that there was one major failed rescue in Ray's life that haunts him every day. In fact, it destroyed his marriage to Emma (Carla Gugino), who, as we meet her, is about to move in with her new fiancĂ©, a smarmy real estate developer named Daniel (Ioan Gruffudd, in a truly thankless role). Meanwhile, Emma and Ray's daughter, 19-year-old Blake (Alexandra Daddario), hitches a ride to San Francisco with her mom's beau and asks why he never had children. Gazing at a plan for his latest skyscraper, he says: "I guess I never had kids because I was too busy raising these." And that, dear reader, is what we mean by cheesy writing. But then calamity strikes. And we do mean calamity. Anything this movie can do once, it does twice, no, many more times. And so, just for example, twin earthquakes begin pummeling both Los Angeles, where Emma is, and San Francisco, where Blake is, almost simultaneously. This all a huge shock (pardon the pun) to everyone except one man: a geologist at Cal Tech, Lawrence (Paul Giamatti), who predicts much of the mayhem, but can't get anyone to listen. Giamatti brings all his nervous energy, but can't do much to liven up lines like: "This is NOT good." He's accompanied in many scenes by Archie Panjabi as a TV reporter who, if we're not mistaken, doesn't remove her stilettoes once, even when taking cover from the Big One. But back to Ray, because, while this movie is prepared to kill off thousands of people in seconds, it cares deeply, as does Ray, about those close to Ray. In fact, it's better not to wonder why this professional rescue pilot is spending the entire film saving his family. Wipe that distracting thought from your brain! Once Ray has saved Emma from a crumbling rooftop in LA, it's up to San Francisco, home of the famed Golden Gate Bridge — er, make that former Golden Gate Bridge. It's time to save Blake, who's at least lucky enough to have hooked up with a shy-sexy-sweet British guy, Ben (Hugo Johnstone-Burt) and his annoying little brother (Art Parkinson.) This rescue mission includes a tandem parachute jump into a baseball diamond. "It's been a while since I got you to second base," Ray says to his wife. Yes, he really says that. But wait: we forgot the tsunami! Well, it's that kind of movie, where so much happens that you can forget the tsunami part. But remember, you weren't expecting Bergman, right? So roll with it. "San Andreas," a Warner Bros. release, is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America "for intense disaster action and mayhem throughout, and brief strong language. " Running time: 114 minutes. One and a half stars out of four. _ Definition of PG-13: Parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Jocelyn Noveck from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Events

Kanye West says he was 'over-censored' at Billboard Awards
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Kanye West says he was 'over-censored' at Billboard Awards

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kanye West is apologizing to TV viewers who saw his performance on the Billboard Music Awards. The rapper released a statement Tuesday saying he was "grossly over-censored" during his performance on the show. He says some of his lyrics were muted for 30 seconds, which misrepresented his voice and performance. The audience at Las Vegas' MGM Grand Garden Arena booed as West performed his songs "All Day" and "Black Skinhead" at Sunday's ceremony, which was broadcast on ABC. West's statement apologizes to the television audience, who he says was "unable to enjoy the performance the way he envisioned." ABC did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Natalie Portman urges new Harvard graduates to take chances
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Natalie Portman urges new Harvard graduates to take chances

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — Natalie Portman advised graduating Harvard seniors Wednesday to use their inexperience to their advantage, saying she has learned that taking calculated risks can lead to life-changing rewards. The Academy Award-winning actress, speaking at Harvard College's Class Day, cited her work in "Black Swan" as an example of a time she didn't know her own limitations — and it paid off. Portman, who won an Oscar for best actress in the 2010 film, said she might not have taken the role if she had known how "woefully unprepared" she was to pull off the movie's ballet moves. "The point is, if I had known my own limitations, I never would have taken the risk," she said. "And the risk led to one of my greatest personal and professional achievements." The 33-year-old actress also met her husband, choreographer Benjamin Millepied, on the set of the movie. Portman, who graduated from Harvard in 2003 and starred in the most recent "Star Wars" movies, also cited another personal example: her first experience writing, directing and acting in a movie. The film, "A Tale of Love and Darkness," recently premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. "Make use of the fact that you don't doubt yourself too much right now because, as we get older, we get more realistic," she told the graduating seniors. "Accept your lack of knowledge and use it as your asset." Portman's address was a highlight of Wednesday's events, which also included award presentations and student speeches. Harvard seniors receive their diplomas Thursday. Harvard's tradition of inviting a guest speaker to address graduates the day before commencement began in 1968. The first invited guest was civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. His wife, Coretta Scott King, delivered the speech after his assassination. Last year, Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg delivered the address. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

U2's longtime tour manager, Dennis Sheehan, found dead
Wednesday May 27, 2015
U2's longtime tour manager, Dennis Sheehan, found dead

NEW YORK (AP) — For more than three decades, U2's beloved tour manager, Dennis Sheehan, kept the band running on time. Sheehan died early Wednesday, just a few hours after U2 kicked off its latest tour. But promoters vowed the shows would go on in his memory, and they'd be on schedule. "Dennis always got the band on stage, pretty much on time. We're going to make sure we do that tonight, in his memory," Live Nation's Arthur Fogel said Wednesday. "It is absolutely what he would have wanted." Sheehan, in his late 60s, died at a Sunset Strip hotel in West Hollywood on Wednesday, a day after the band kicked off a five-night stint in the Los Angeles area. U2 frontman Bono posted a statement on the band's website in honor of Sheehan. "We've lost a family member, we're still taking it in," Bono wrote. "He wasn't just a legend in the music business, he was a legend in our band. He is irreplaceable." Los Angeles County Fire Inspector Chris Reade said first responders were called around 5:30 a.m. to reports of a man in cardiac arrest. Sheehan was pronounced dead at the scene. The Irish quartet brought its "Innocence & Experience" tour to the Forum in Inglewood on Tuesday, the first of five nights in the Los Angeles area. "With profound sadness we confirm that Dennis Sheehan, U2's longstanding tour manager and dear friend to us all has passed away," Fogel said. "Our heartfelt sympathy is with his wonderful family." The death in the U2 camp comes after other recent setbacks for the band. Bono crashed his bike in Central Park in New York late last year, suffering multiple injuries, including fractures to his left eye socket, shoulder blade and left elbow. Doctors called it a "high-energy bicycle accident," and the singer had surgery. Guitarist the Edge took a less serious tumble when he fell off the stage near the end of a concert in Vancouver, where the band kicked of their tour earlier this month. The Edge later joked about the fall. And the band's latest album, "Songs of Innocence," was met with criticism last year when it was delivered for free on iTunes by Apple and weeks later released for sale. It was nominated for best rock album at the Grammy Awards in February. ____ Online: http://www.u2.com/news/title/dennis-sheehan-1946-2015 ____ AP writer Christopher Weber contributed to this report from Los Angeles. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Mesfin Fekadu from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

BAFTA to honor Johnnie To
Wednesday May 27, 2015
BAFTA to honor Johnnie To

The British academy of film is hosting a special event examining and celebrating the acclaimed Hong Kong filmmaker's career.Johnnie To, A Life In Pictures, will be hosted at BAFTA's London headquaters on June 22 in association with the Asian Film Awards Academy, and will see the director look back on his work and discuss his approach to filmmaking. Public tickets for the event go on sale on May 29 and the show will be recorded for future broadcast on BAFTA Guru, one of the organization's online channels. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

US, Swiss target top soccer officials in corruption probe
Wednesday May 27, 2015
US, Swiss target top soccer officials in corruption probe

ZURICH (AP) — The U.S. government launched an attack on what it called deep-seated and brazen corruption in soccer's global governing body Wednesday, pulling FIFA executives out of a luxury Swiss hotel to face racketeering charges and raiding regional offices in Miami. Swiss officials also invaded FIFA headquarters, seizing records and computers to investigate whether the decisions to award World Cups to Russia and Qatar were rigged. Scandals and rumors of corruption have dogged FIFA throughout the 17-year reign of its president, Sepp Blatter, but he was not named in either investigation. He is scheduled to stand Friday for re-election to a fifth, four-year term, and the organization said the vote will go ahead as planned, despite the turmoil. FIFA also ruled out a revote of the World Cup bids won by Russia in 2018 and Qatar in 2022. "We welcome the actions and the investigations by the U.S. and Swiss authorities and believe that it will help to reinforce measures that FIFA has already taken to root out any wrongdoing in football," Blatter said in a statement. The organization said it was cooperating fully with the investigation, and one American prosecutor said the charges were only the beginning. Some of the biggest names in soccer said they had complained for years about corruption in FIFA, which oversees the world's most popular sport and generates billions in revenue each year. "I was treated like a crazy person," former soccer great Diego Maradona told radio station Radio La Red in Buenos Aires. "Now the FBI has told the truth." Former Brazilian star Romario, an outspoken FIFA critic, said "someone had to eventually arrest them one day." Authorities conducted early-morning raids in Zurich at FIFA headquarters and the five-star Baur au Lac Hotel. In Miami, FBI and IRS agents carried computers and boxes out of the headquarters of CONCACAF, the governing body of North and Central America and the Caribbean, whose past and current presidents were among 14 defendants named in a 47-count indictment filled with corruption charges that include wire fraud, money laundering and racketeering conspiracy. Swiss police arrested seven soccer officials at the request of American prosecutors and threatened them with extradition to the U.S. Four other soccer and marketing officials and two corporate entities agreed to plead guilty, and prosecutors said they agreed to forfeit more than $150 million in illegal profits. "Beginning in 1991, two generations of soccer officials ... used their positions of trust within their respective organizations to solicit bribes from sports marketers in exchange for the commercial rights to their soccer tournaments," U.S. Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch said in New York. "They did this over and over, year after year, tournament after tournament." Richard Weber, head of the IRS Criminal Division, called the case "the World Cup of fraud." Kelly T. Currie, acting U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, said the 161-page indictment detailed decades of "brazen corruption" and said prosecutors will probe the role of banks involved. "The ultimate victim is soccer at large: it's the fans, it's the organization," Currie said. "The reason that these people were able to make so much money corruptly is just the love people have for the sport." Two current FIFA vice presidents were among those arrested and indicted, Jeffrey Webb of the Cayman Islands and Eugenio Figueredo of Uruguay. The others are Eduardo Li of Costa Rica, Julio Rocha of Nicaragua, Costas Takkas of Britain, Rafael Esquivel of Venezuela and Jose Maria Marin of Brazil. All seven are connected with CONCACAF and CONMEBOL, South America's governing body, and face up to 20 years in prison if convicted. FIFA suspended 11 people, including Webb and Figueredo, from all soccer-related activities. Webb called himself a reformer when he was elected as CONCACAF president in 2012. Prosecutors alleged part of the bribe money directed to Webb was transferred to the account of a contractor building a swimming pool at Webb's home in Loganville, Georgia. The Swiss justice ministry said six of the seven officials arrested oppose extradition to the United States. American authorities have 40 days to submit the formal extradition request. Four of the men indicted are sports marketing executives and another works in broadcasting. Jack Warner, a former FIFA vice president from Trinidad and Tobago, was among those indicted, and he turned himself in to police in Port-of-Spain after they issued an arrest warrant at the request of U.S. authorities. The Justice Department cited bribes and kickbacks involving media rights deals involving World Cup qualifying matches in the Caribbean and Central America; the Copa America, South America's continental national team championship; the Copa Libertadores, the continent's club championship; plus the CONCACAF Gold Cup and Champions League. Prosecutors said that when CONMEBOL reached agreements on Copa America deals worth $352.5 million with a new company named Datisa, that company agreed to pay $110 million in bribes to South American soccer officials. A dozen schemes were detailed in the indictment, including $10 million in payments from a FIFA account that ultimately benefited Warner following his 2004 vote for South Africa to host the 2010 World Cup. With the backing of Nelson Mandela, South Africa beat rival bids from Morocco and Egypt to host that tournament. The Swiss prosecutors' office said the U.S. probe was separate from its investigation but that authorities were working together. The votes to award the World Cups to Russia and Qatar have been surrounded in controversy and accusations of corruption. The Swiss prosecutors' office said it seized "electronic data and documents" at FIFA's headquarters as part of the probe. Swiss police said they will question 10 FIFA executive committee members who took part in the World Cup votes in December 2010. Qatar, a tiny Gulf nation with little soccer tradition, was criticized as a host because of its extreme summer heat. FIFA has since been forced to move the tournament to November-December instead of the usual June-July slot. FIFA hired former U.S. attorney Michael Garcia to investigate the 2018 and 2022 bid process. His findings were never fully released and both Russia and Qatar were confirmed as hosts. Garcia's full report was not released but was turned over to Swiss authorities in November. Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko, also a FIFA executive committee member, told The Associated Press: "We've got nothing to hide. We're prepared to show everything. We've always acted within the law." Qatari soccer officials declined comment. Hundreds of soccer officials are in Switzerland for the FIFA congress, where Blatter is widely expected to win re-election. Nike, which is not a FIFA sponsor but pays to have the Brazilian and other countries' national teams wear its gear, said it is cooperating with the U.S. investigation. European soccer's governing body said the election should be postponed and that it would consider boycotting the FIFA congress following the arrests. UEFA general secretary Gianni Infantino said the corruption investigations "tarnish the image of football as a whole." In a sign of the loyalty that Blatter enjoys, however, the Asian Football Confederation opposed a delay and repeated its support for the 79-year-old president. Blatter's only opponent in Friday's election, Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan, seized on the situation to push his candidacy. "We cannot continue with the crisis in FIFA, a crisis that has been ongoing and is not just relevant to the events of today," he said in a statement. "FIFA needs leadership that governs, guides and protects our national associations. ... Leadership that restores confidence in the hundreds of millions of football fans around the world." ___ AP Sports Writer Rob Harris and Associated Press writer Frank Jordans in Zurich, and AP Sports Writer Ronald Blum in New York and Associated Press writer Curt Anderson in Miami contributed to this report. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Graham Dunbar from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.