Saturday Sep 20, 2014

'King Arthur': Astrid Bergès-Frisbey cast as Guinevere

Previously seen in "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" and soon to appear in "I Origins," the French actress has joined the cast of Guy Ritchie's movie based on the Arthurian legend.The 28-year-old actress will play King Arthur's wife Guinevere, whose story arc will almost certainly...
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TV

'King Arthur': Astrid Bergès-Frisbey cast as Guinevere
Saturday Sep 20, 2014
'King Arthur': Astrid Bergès-Frisbey cast as Guinevere

Previously seen in "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" and soon to appear in "I Origins," the French actress has joined the cast of Guy Ritchie's movie based on the Arthurian legend.The 28-year-old actress will play King Arthur's wife Guinevere, whose story arc will almost certainly include an extramarital affair with Sir Lancelot. Astrid Bergès-Frisbey will share the screen with Charlie Hunnam ("Sons of Anarchy") in the title role and Idris Elba as the knight Sir Bedivere. Release dates have not been announced for "Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur." In the meantime, the French actress will be seen in Mike Cahill's "I Origins," a sci-fi drama in which a molecular biologist (Michael Pitt) falls in love with a young woman (Bergès-Frisbey) before she dies. On the verge of making an extraordinary scientific discovery, the character travels to India to confirm his theory.   Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

YouTube most popular: Lip Sync Battle, J-Lo and Derek Jeter
Saturday Sep 20, 2014
YouTube most popular: Lip Sync Battle, J-Lo and Derek Jeter

Blake Shelton takes on Gwen Stefani in a lip syncing battle, J-Lo sizzles in her latest music video and Derek Jeter strolls around the Bronx.YouTube's top five Most Popular videos as recorded on Friday, September 19 at 3:30pm GMT:Lip Sync Battle with Gwen Stefani and Blake SheltonFirst published: September 17Total views: 3.1 millionJimmy Fallon, Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani go head to head in an epic lip syncing battle featuring music from Ellie Goulding and Carly Rae Simon. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lY9cUsTtPKA&feature=youtu.be Jennifer Lopez - Booty ft. Iggy AzaleaFirst published: September 18Total views: 2.3 millionJ-Lo shimmies in her racy video for her latest track "Booty" featuring Iggy Azalea.http://youtu.be/nxtIRArhVD4Gatorade | Made in New York ft. Derek Jeter First published: September 18Total views: 2.2 millionYankee baseballer Derek Jeter strolls through New York's Bronx neighborhood before bowing out of the game. http://youtu.be/xfgS1lvqX8I Wheel of Fortune's Third Million Dollar Winner! First published: September 17Total views: 388,229One lucky contestant becomes the third-ever million dollar winner on TV show "Wheel of Fortune".http://youtu.be/zDSETMZ4YEM Kmart Not a Christmas Commercial First published: September 12Total views: 3.4 millionCunning Kmart slyly sidesteps the fact that it is clearly far too early for Christmas commercials with its tongue-in-cheek ad "Not a Christmas Commercial".http://youtu.be/lNRcg5NRaXs Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Review: 'Maze Runner' doesn't find its own path
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Review: 'Maze Runner' doesn't find its own path

If you see one film about walled-in males this fall, it should be the savage and powerful British prison drama "Starred Up," a superlatively acted father-son story played out behind bars and starring up-and-coming Jack O'Connell. Not many are likely to make that choice, though, as "The Maze Runner," based on the James Dashner 2009 fantasy novel, will surely multiply the business of "Starred Up" many times over with a far more tame film barely distinct from the hordes of young-adult sci-fi adaptations sprinting through movie theaters. Has a cottage industry ever sprung up as fast as the YA land rush brought on by "Twilight" and "The Hunger Games"? I'd like to use a mortal instrument to put an ender to this game. Please, giver me a break. But to be fair, there isn't anything inherently wrong with "The Maze Runner," directed by special effects-veteran Wes Ball. It's just that it does so little to find its own path separate from its dystopia brethren. All of the recent young-adult formulas are adhered to here: the teenage rebellion against tradition, the coming-of-age metaphors, the heavy sequel-baiting. Dylan O'Brien, best known as one of the stars of MTV's "Teen Wolf," stars as Thomas, a newbie to a strange prison called "The Glade" — a pastoral park surrounded by a monolith concrete maze. The movie, with a neat lack of exposition, starts with Thomas being elevated into this world and dropped there without any memory of life outside or his identity. He's quickly indoctrinated to the ways and order of the Glade, where several dozen other boys have also been plunked down like lab rats for the last three years. Under the leadership of the calm Alby (Ami Ameen) and the more questionable rigidity of Gally (Will Poulter), they make exploratory runs into the maze each day before the gate closes at sundown. "The Maze Runner" succeeds most in its "Lord of the Flies"-like collection of teenagers. (Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Blake Cooper are among the distinct faces in the crowd.) When a lone girl (Kaya Scodelario) is surprisingly elevated into the Glade, they, like proper adolescents, blink with astonishment: "It's a girl." There's a pleasantly low-fi, bare-bones kind of storytelling here, at least before the movie's mysteries are boringly explained — another apocalypse to parse. Thomas, curious and daring, quickly upends the routines of the Glade and manages to discover more about the concrete labyrinth, which is patrolled by weird, giant, half-robot scorpions dubbed "Grievers." (That the only monsters "The Maze Runner" can summon are "weird, giant, half-robot scorpions" is surely a hint to its lack of imagination.) The maze, too, is a letdown. Given that it's the central conceit of the film, one expects more than domino rows of big cinderblocks. Jack Nicholson's Jack Torrance, who so memorably stalked the snowy hedge maze of "The Shining," wouldn't bat an eye at these drab corridors. "The Maze Runner" a 20th Century Fox release, is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America for "thematic elements and intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, including some disturbing images." Running time: 112 minutes. Two stars out of four. ___ MPAA rating definition for PG-13: Parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. ___ Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Fish Moon and Penguin meet Jim Gordon in 'Gotham'
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Fish Moon and Penguin meet Jim Gordon in 'Gotham'

A few days before the premiere of the highly anticipated Batman spin-off series, FOX has revealed a new clip from the pilot episode. The scene focuses on two of the main villains of "Gotham."A prequel to the adventures of Batman, the drama will include scenes with the young Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz). But its primary focus is the early career of Commissioner James Gordon, played by Ben McKenzie ("The O.C.") and his partner Harvey Bullock, played by Donald Logue. In the new video, Jim Gordon has a brush with the Dark Knight's future opponent, Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) and with the leader of Gotham's villains, Fish Moon, a character created for the series and played by Jada Pinkett Smith. Written and produced by Bruno Heller, the creator of "Rome" and "The Mentalist," the series will also include appearances by Catwoman (Carmen Bicondova), E.Nygma (Cory Michael Smith), Poison Ivy (Clare Foley), Bruce Wayne's faithful butler Alfred Pennyworth (Sean Pertwee) and Gordon's fiancee Barbara Kean (Erin Richards). "Gotham" premieres on September 22. Watch the teaser: http://youtu.be/z-tH4VVGDSs Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

E! says 'Fashion Police' will continue
Friday Sep 19, 2014
E! says 'Fashion Police' will continue

The E! TV channel says that "Fashion Police" will continue without Joan Rivers. In a statement Friday, the channel said it "thought long and hard" about what Rivers would have wanted for the show. The decision was made that the late comedian would have hoped that "Fashion Police" continue, E! said. Rivers' daughter, Melissa, who is the show's executive producer, agreed and gave her "blessing," the channel said. The 81-year-old Joan Rivers died Sept. 4, a week after going into cardiac arrest during a procedure at an outpatient surgery facility in New York. "Fashion Police" will return next January, starting with Golden Globes coverage, E! said. No further details about the show, including whether Rivers would be replaced, were announced. Other show hosts include Kelly Osbourne. Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Movies

'King Arthur': Astrid Bergès-Frisbey cast as Guinevere
Saturday Sep 20, 2014
'King Arthur': Astrid Bergès-Frisbey cast as Guinevere

Previously seen in "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" and soon to appear in "I Origins," the French actress has joined the cast of Guy Ritchie's movie based on the Arthurian legend.The 28-year-old actress will play King Arthur's wife Guinevere, whose story arc will almost certainly include an extramarital affair with Sir Lancelot. Astrid Bergès-Frisbey will share the screen with Charlie Hunnam ("Sons of Anarchy") in the title role and Idris Elba as the knight Sir Bedivere. Release dates have not been announced for "Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur." In the meantime, the French actress will be seen in Mike Cahill's "I Origins," a sci-fi drama in which a molecular biologist (Michael Pitt) falls in love with a young woman (Bergès-Frisbey) before she dies. On the verge of making an extraordinary scientific discovery, the character travels to India to confirm his theory.   Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Review: 'Maze Runner' doesn't find its own path
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Review: 'Maze Runner' doesn't find its own path

If you see one film about walled-in males this fall, it should be the savage and powerful British prison drama "Starred Up," a superlatively acted father-son story played out behind bars and starring up-and-coming Jack O'Connell. Not many are likely to make that choice, though, as "The Maze Runner," based on the James Dashner 2009 fantasy novel, will surely multiply the business of "Starred Up" many times over with a far more tame film barely distinct from the hordes of young-adult sci-fi adaptations sprinting through movie theaters. Has a cottage industry ever sprung up as fast as the YA land rush brought on by "Twilight" and "The Hunger Games"? I'd like to use a mortal instrument to put an ender to this game. Please, giver me a break. But to be fair, there isn't anything inherently wrong with "The Maze Runner," directed by special effects-veteran Wes Ball. It's just that it does so little to find its own path separate from its dystopia brethren. All of the recent young-adult formulas are adhered to here: the teenage rebellion against tradition, the coming-of-age metaphors, the heavy sequel-baiting. Dylan O'Brien, best known as one of the stars of MTV's "Teen Wolf," stars as Thomas, a newbie to a strange prison called "The Glade" — a pastoral park surrounded by a monolith concrete maze. The movie, with a neat lack of exposition, starts with Thomas being elevated into this world and dropped there without any memory of life outside or his identity. He's quickly indoctrinated to the ways and order of the Glade, where several dozen other boys have also been plunked down like lab rats for the last three years. Under the leadership of the calm Alby (Ami Ameen) and the more questionable rigidity of Gally (Will Poulter), they make exploratory runs into the maze each day before the gate closes at sundown. "The Maze Runner" succeeds most in its "Lord of the Flies"-like collection of teenagers. (Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Blake Cooper are among the distinct faces in the crowd.) When a lone girl (Kaya Scodelario) is surprisingly elevated into the Glade, they, like proper adolescents, blink with astonishment: "It's a girl." There's a pleasantly low-fi, bare-bones kind of storytelling here, at least before the movie's mysteries are boringly explained — another apocalypse to parse. Thomas, curious and daring, quickly upends the routines of the Glade and manages to discover more about the concrete labyrinth, which is patrolled by weird, giant, half-robot scorpions dubbed "Grievers." (That the only monsters "The Maze Runner" can summon are "weird, giant, half-robot scorpions" is surely a hint to its lack of imagination.) The maze, too, is a letdown. Given that it's the central conceit of the film, one expects more than domino rows of big cinderblocks. Jack Nicholson's Jack Torrance, who so memorably stalked the snowy hedge maze of "The Shining," wouldn't bat an eye at these drab corridors. "The Maze Runner" a 20th Century Fox release, is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America for "thematic elements and intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, including some disturbing images." Running time: 112 minutes. Two stars out of four. ___ MPAA rating definition for PG-13: Parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. ___ Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Amy Adams, Christopher Waltz star in 'Big Eyes' trailer
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Amy Adams, Christopher Waltz star in 'Big Eyes' trailer

Tim Burton directs the leads from "American Hustle" and "Django Unchained" in an examination of the real-life husband and wife artistic pairing, Walter and Margaret Keane.Walter Keane rose to fame in the 1950s with his portrayals of children and young women with oversized eyes, making him a national celebrity. But after their divorce, Margaret took Walter to court to prove that she was the true artistic talent and he the mere signatory to her influential work. Burton himself is known as an admirer of the Keane style, with Adams and Waltz attached to the project in 2013. Krysten Ritter ("Breaking Bad"), Danny Huston ("Wrath of the Titans") and Jason Schwartzman ("The Grand Budapest Hotel") are among the supporting actors. Big Eyes trailer: movies.yahoo.com/video/big-eyes-trailer-151825125.html Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Jazz at Lincoln Center opens season with 'Ochas'
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Jazz at Lincoln Center opens season with 'Ochas'

NEW YORK (AP) — Wynton Marsalis opened Jazz at Lincoln Center's 2014-15 season with the world premiere of "Ochas," a three-movement suite blending jazz with the traditional folkloric music of Cuba and the Afro-Cuban Santeria religion. At a pre-concert reception Thursday night, Marsalis said the 2014-15 season would be "a spectacular journey through the Americas celebrating the depth, diversity and influence of jazz in the Caribbean and North, South and Central America." The seeds for "Ochas" were planted in 2010 when Marsalis took his Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra to Cuba for a weeklong residency of concerts and educational programs. The trip reinforced his understanding of the links between Cuban music and American jazz, both rooted in African traditions carried over by slaves. Marsalis collaborated with the influential Cuban pianist and composer Chucho Valdez and rising Cuban percussion star Pedrito Martinez on a JALC commission to create "Ochas," which had its premiere at the Rose Theater on Thursday night. "Ochas" was perhaps one of the most challenging pieces ever undertaken by the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, centered on a dialogue between the jazz big band and traditional Afro-Cuban bata drums. Martinez's trio of bata drummers, including his mentor Roman Diaz, used their hands to play intricate rhythmic patterns on the three hourglass-shaped drums of different sizes. He also led the ritual chants sung in the ancestral Yoruban language of Nigeria dedicated to each of the deities in the Santeria pantheon. The chants became more complex when two female vocalists joined in on the suite's second movement, dedicated to the female deities in Santeria, also known as Regla de Ocha. The Cuban ensemble was later augmented by a male and a female dancer in brightly colored traditional garb. They performed traditional dances of the Santeria ritual that fuses Yoruban beliefs with some influences from Catholicism. Against this backdrop, the JLCO played jazz themes intended to evoke the spirit of each Santeria deity. Blistering trumpet solos by Marsalis, Ryan Kisor, Kenny Rampton and Marcus Printup highlighted the section devoted to Ogun, the machete-wielding blacksmith and god of war. A sensuous alto sax solo by Sherman Irby opened the segment devoted to Oshun, the goddess of love, maternity and marriage. As an ensemble, the JLCO provided a rich palette of musical colors, with growling and muted trumpets and trombones and a reed section that played assorted saxophones, clarinets, flutes and piccolos. Valdes, 72, made his first appearance on piano in the segment devoted to Obatala, the oldest of the deities known as the creator of Earth and sculptor of mankind. Valdes, who introduced the bata drums into a modern jazz setting with the Afro-Cuban jazz fusion band Irakere in the '70s, provided a bridge between the Cuban drummers and jazz orchestra with his percussive piano playing and virtuosic technique. JALC will continue its journey through the Americas in upcoming months with performances by Brazil's SpokFrevo Orquestra and guitarist Mario Adnet; Cuban saxophonist-clarinetist Paquito D'Rivera; Panamanian singer and songwriter Ruben Blades; and Mexican singer Lila Downs. The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra is planning a spring 2015 tour of Brazil, Venezuela and Mexico. ___ Online: http://www.jalc.org Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain in New York at its most violent
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain in New York at its most violent

A24 Films has released the first trailer for the new thriller from J.C. Chandor, director of the 2013 film "All Is Lost."Far from the safe city it has become today, New York was plagued by violence in 1981. In this context, against a backdrop of widespread corruption, Abel Morales (Oscar Isaac), an immigrant married to Anna (Jessica Chastain), struggles to maintain and grow his business in the oil sector. The thriller is due to bow in the US on December 31, 2014. Last year, J.C. Chandor garnered critical acclaim for his drama "All Is Lost," in which Robert Redford plays a solo sailor attempting to survive storms and other setbacks aboard a compromised boat. Before that, in 2011, Chandor directed Kevin Spacey, Paul Bettany and Jeremy Irons in "Margin Call." The three actors played executives at a major investment firm attempting to cut their losses at the onset of the financial crisis. As reported by Deadline in July, Chandor's next project could be "Deepwater Horizon," a feature on the 2010 BP oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico and the ensuing environmental disaster. The filmmaker is reportedly in talks to helm the project, which is based on a New York Times article titled "Deepwater Horizon's Final Hour." Mark Wahlberg is attached to star. Watch the trailer for "A Most Violent Year": youtu.be/ySWXwXlXlQU Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Events

Sophia Loren, almost 80, opens life exhibit in Mexico
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Sophia Loren, almost 80, opens life exhibit in Mexico

Italian film legend Sophia Loren inaugurated Thursday an exhibition in Mexico showing off personal treasures including glamorous dresses, silk purses and her Oscar, to mark her upcoming 80th birthday.The trove, which includes jewelry, high-heel shoes and portraits of the diva, is being displayed at the Soumaya Museum of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim in Mexico City. "This is not a celebration of the past but the prologue of a beautiful life that has given me a lot," Loren told a news conference alongside Slim and her son Carlo Ponti. Wearing a red pantsuit, Loren walked through the exhibition dubbed "Sophia Loren: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow," which will open to the public on September 22 in the modern hourglass-shaped museum. Visitors will get a glimpse of her personal and professional life, including original screenplays and clips of famous romantic movie scenes with legendary leading men such as Marcello Mastroianni, Cary Grant and Marlon Brando. She said her best actress Oscar for the 1960 Italian World War II drama "Two Women" is her favorite item on display. "One feels out of this world, it's like falling in love," Loren said as she recalled receiving the Academy Award. The actress was emotional at times in recalling her life. "I've had a very difficult life but it has been a fruitful life," said Loren, who married film director Carlo Ponti in 1957 and was by his side until his death aged 94 in 2007. They had two sons, Carlo and Edoardo. Slim will host a dinner in honor of Loren on her birthday on Saturday with guests including artists and business leaders. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Alec Baldwin passionate about green energy
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Alec Baldwin passionate about green energy

NEW YORK (AP) — Alec Baldwin says he is passionate about green energy and is hoping next week's U.N. climate summit brings home to Americans that the United States has fallen behind other countries in promoting wind and solar power. The Emmy award-winning actor who has appeared on film, stage and television spoke at a reception Thursday night to celebrate the launch of a book entitled "Addressing Climate Change" featuring the work of award-winning English photographer Henry Dallal, who has often photographed Queen Elizabeth II. Its contributors include U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres, who attended the launch. "We've been talking about this for 25 years," Baldwin told The Associated Press. "We need to learn the lessons that other people are learning — no nukes, less coal ... reduce, reduce, not eliminate." He singled out Germany's increasing use of solar and wind power. The reception was hosted by Peter Brown, the onetime manager of the Beatles who is now chairman and CEO of BLJ Worldwide, a global public relations firm. Baldwin made clear his opposition to fracking, which involves injecting water, sand and chemicals to break apart underground rocks to release oil and gas — even if it does lead the U.S. to energy independence. "For me energy independence comes from renewables," he said. "We have to fan those flames ... and teach another generation of young people that this is the vital issue — renewable energy," he said. Baldwin said he can't attend the climate summit Ban is hosting next day because he will be flying to London that day to start filming "Mission Impossible Part 5" with Tom Cruise, where he will be playing the director of the CIA. "Me the director of the CIA?," he asked. "I think it's perfect!" Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Bennett, Gaga: Kids should know more about jazz
Friday Sep 19, 2014
Bennett, Gaga: Kids should know more about jazz

NEW YORK (AP) — Kids, Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga have homework for you: Listen to their new jazz album. The Grammy winners say they hope "Cheek to Cheek," an album featuring selections from the Great American Songbook, will turn younger people on to jazz music. "The point of this album is not only to bring Tony and I together to collaborate, but to bring jazz to an entirely new audience," Gaga said in an interview this week. "This is really about us giving jazz what it deserves, which is the upmost respect and upmost praise." "Cheek to Cheek" features covers of songs from Duke Ellington's "Sophisticated Lady" to Cole Porter's "Anything Goes" to Billy Strayhorn's "Lush Life." Gaga and Bennett have worked on the album, to be released Tuesday, for two years. "Besides having the whole world enjoying her right now, she has a vast group of young people who love her, and they've never heard popular jazz music, classical American music," Bennett said in a separate interview this week. "And my ambition was to do this album so they would get acquainted with that music." Gaga, who grew in New York like Bennett, said she has been singing jazz music since she was 13. She broke onto the music scene in 2008 with multiple No. 1 hits flavored with dance and electronic beats. "It's truer to my nature," she said of recording jazz. "Because so much of what I've done has been heavily Auto-Tuned or made very electronic to fit on the radio, but this is so much easier because I'm a rebel and this is really rebellious for me to say goodbye to pop for a moment and just sing some pure jazz." "The truth is that this is the original pop music of America," she added. "And I've been trying to explain to my fans in the best way that I can that these songs are truly timeless." Gaga, 28, and Bennett, 88, first collaborated in 2011 on "The Lady Is a Tramp." The song appeared on Bennett's album "Duets II," which sold more than 1 million copies and won two Grammy Awards. Bennett, who had his first number one song in 1951, said the key to his longevity is maintaining high standards. "I joined the American Theatre Wing (after fighting in World War II) and it was the best choice I ever made because the first thing they taught everybody, whether it was music or dancing or singing, they taught everybody 'Never compromise, only do quality,'" Bennett said. "And now it's all paid off." ___ Online: http://www.ladygaga.com/ https://tonybennett.com/ ___ Follow Mesfin Fekadu at twitter.com/MusicMesfin Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

'Ghostlight' proves Buckley not bound by Broadway
Friday Sep 19, 2014
'Ghostlight' proves Buckley not bound by Broadway

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Underestimate Betty Buckley at your own peril. One man foolishly did while the singer and actress was starring as a mom in the TV series "Eight is Enough." Every six weeks or so, between shooting episodes in Los Angeles from 1977-81, Buckley would fly to New York for singing lessons, "keen on getting back and singing in musical theater again." Buckley remembered sharing this information with one of her series' young producers. "He goes, 'Oh, Betty. You have such delusions of grandeur.' He said, 'You'll be lucky if you play American mothers on American television for the rest of your life.' And I said, 'We'll see... We'll see.'" Two years after "Eight is Enough" ended its run, Buckley won a Tony Award for her featured role in "Cats," introducing Andrew Lloyd Webber's classic "Memory" to Broadway audiences. Some 30 years later, Buckley is defying categorization again, with her new 16th album, "Ghostlight," produced by T Bone Burnett and released Tuesday, the songwriter-musician behind such triumphs as the Grammy-winning Alison Krauss-Robert Plant collaboration "Raising Sand." To the uninitiated, Buckley and Burnett may appear to be an odd couple. But they grew up together and hung out at Record Town, a Fort Worth, Texas, music shop where they heard "every conceivable kind of music," Buckley recalled. Though still in high school, Burnett already had his own recording studio, and taped Buckley in 1967, when she was age 19. The eclectic selections from those sessions, released 40 years later as the album "Betty Buckley 1967," foreshadow "Ghostlight," which serves up songs by composers as wide ranging as Tom Waits and Henry Mancini. Buckley recounted how she and Burnett settled on the album's title after kicking around ideas for its concept. "He said, mischievously, 'It's like when the theater's dark.' And I said, 'Like a ghost light?' And he goes, 'Ghost light?' And I said, 'It's the tradition in the theater where there's a stand and a bald light bulb.' And when the performance is done, they place the ghost light to keep the spirits of the theater company.'" Though Buckley knows her theater history, the stage is just one corner of the entertainment world where she's hung her hat. Seven years after playing Martha Jefferson in the original Broadway cast of "1776," she made an indelible impression as the caring high-school teacher opposite Sissy Spacek in the horror film "Carrie." And then there was that hit TV show. "When I finished 'Eight is Enough,' I did the film 'Tender Mercies' and I played a country-western star who is an alcoholic," Buckley said. "And then I played a cat on Broadway and I was a boy in '(The Mystery of) Edwin Drood' and then I was an old man in 'Edwin Drood' and I was a diva in 'Sunset Boulevard.'" Every now and then, she thinks of that TV producer who questioned her versatility. What would Buckley say to him now? "'I told you so,'" she said. ___ Online: http://www.bettybuckley.com ___ Follow AP Entertainment Writer Mike Cidoni Lennox at www.twitter.com/CidoniLennox Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Wig designer's suit against Nicki Minaj dismissed
Thursday Sep 18, 2014
Wig designer's suit against Nicki Minaj dismissed

ATLANTA (AP) — A federal judge in Atlanta has tossed out a lawsuit filed against rapper Nicki Minaj by her former wig designer. In a lawsuit in February, Terrence Davidson accused Onika Maraj, who uses the stage name "Nicki Minaj," and Pink Personality LLC of breaking implied contracts, reneging on discussions to launch a reality TV show and a wig line, and misappropriating his designs. Lawyers for Minaj filed a motion in May to dismiss the lawsuit, arguing that Davidson failed to state a valid claim. U.S. District Judge Harold Murphy on Tuesday did just that. He agreed that Davidson did not state viable claims against Minaj and Pink Personality. A lawyer for Davidson did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment Thursday. Davidson, who lives in Georgia, said in the lawsuit that he began working as Minaj's hair stylist in early 2010. He created multiple wigs for the rapper, known for her flamboyant hairpieces, that she wore to a preshow for MTV's Video Music Awards, during media appearances in London and for the music video "SuperBass." Davidson said he turned down a contract for a reality TV show at the urging of a Minaj representative. At the time, Davidson said he was discussing doing a joint reality show with Minaj and launching a line of wigs with the music star. But months passed, and Davidson said Minaj and her team shut him out. He stopped working as her stylist in early 2013. He said Minaj took his designs without his consent and used them to start her own wig line. Minaj's lawyers countered that Davidson "is upset because he lost his most famous client" and was seeking to force himself into a business relationship that Minaj and Pink Personality developed without him to get money from them that he didn't earn. The judge wrote in his order that the verbal promises of future business Davidson said he got from Minaj and her team were too vague and that it was unreasonable for Davidson to rely on them as a done deal. The judge also wrote that Davidson claims his wigs are distinctive because of their design and color and that there's no evidence that he made any attempt to connect them to himself in the public mind or that anyone was confusing the wigs sold by him with wigs sold by Minaj. Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.