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John Grisham Apologizes for Child Porn Remarks

Friday, October 17th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

J. Countess/WireImage(NEW YORK) — John Grisham has issued an apology after commenting to the British newspaper The Telegraph that punishment for child pornography offenses can be too harsh.

The best-selling author of such books as The Firm and A Time to Kill said America’s judges had “gone crazy” over the past 30 years by imprisoning far too many people. He said, “We have prisons now filled with guys my age. Sixty-year-old white men in prison who’ve never harmed anybody, would never touch a child.”

He added, “But they got online one night and started surfing around, probably had too much to drink or whatever, and pushed the wrong buttons, went too far and got into child porn.”

Grisham told the story of a law school friend who was imprisoned after he was caught in a Canadian child porn sting operation when his “drinking was out of control.” He said his friend “went to a website. It was labelled ‘sixteen year old wannabee hookers or something like that’. And it said ’16-year-old girls’. So he went there. Downloaded some stuff — it was 16 year old girls who looked 30. He shouldn’t ’a done it. It was stupid, but it wasn’t 10-year-old boys. He didn’t touch anything.”

Grisham declared that while he has no sympathy for “real pedophiles,” “so many of these guys do not deserve harsh prison sentences, and that’s what they’re getting.”

The interview resulted in backlash against the author, who on Thursday posted an apology on his website. It reads, “Anyone who harms a child for profit or pleasure, or who in any way participates in child pornography — online or otherwise — should be punished to the fullest extent of the law. My comments made two days ago during an interview with the British newspaper The Telegraph were in no way intended to show sympathy for those convicted of sex crimes, especially the sexual molestation of children. I can think of nothing more despicable.”

The statement continues, “I regret having made these comments, and apologize to all.”

Grisham’s latest book, Gray Mountain, will be released next week.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Crusin In Cruces

“Pacific Rim” Becoming a Trilogy

Friday, October 17th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

Warner Bros.(LOS ANGELES) — Director Guillermo del Toro had already announced his hit robots vs. giant monsters movie Pacific Rim will spawn a sequel and an animated show, but in a new interview with Collider, the Oscar nominated filmmaker now says PacRim will spawn a cinematic trilogy.

Pacific Rim 2 will begin shooting November or December of next year.

When asked about the sequel, del Toro explains, “Some of your favorite characters come back, some others don’t because we have decided that we’re going to shoot ambitiously and say ‘Let’s hope we have three movies,’ so some characters come in at the end of the second, hoping that it will ramp up on the third one.”

One “favorite character” who will return is Ron Perlman, who played black marketeer Hannibal Chau in the original. Chau, who makes a living selling body parts from the giant monsters, appears to get eaten by one of them in the movie, though an after-credits scene shows him escaping.

Perlman, a frequent collaborator with del Toro since he and the “visionary” director met in 1991, revealed to ABC News Radio that Chau would be back. “We’re gonna get the offer any day for Pacific Rim 2,” said the star who also starred in Hellboy and its sequel for del Toro.

The former Sons of Anarchy star said of the filmmaker, “He’s Mount Rushmore man…He presides over the movie set you’ve always dreamed of. You know it’s almost like a combination of an eight-year-old’s birthday party…complete with piñatas and…donkeys that give you that five-minute ride and stuff. Uh, the fart jokes, the, the whoopee cushions…he’s like a complete adolescent who happens to be the most well-read, most brilliant, most visionary, imaginative guy who has ever come down the pike, cinema-wise.”

Perlman provides the voice for Xibalba, the God of Death, in the new animated movie The Book of Life. The mystical, magical movie, which also features the voices of Zoe Saldana, Cheech Marin, Christina Applegate and Channing Tatum, opens Friday.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Review: “The Best of Me” (Rated PG-13)

Friday, October 17th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

Relativity(NEW YORK) — The Best of Me, the latest film to be based on a Nicholas Sparks novel, is so embarrassingly bad, it hurts to write about it. If you can forgive bad casting, ham-handed dialogue, obvious digital manipulation of the film, sloppy sound mixing and far-fetched plot points, then you just might be able to enjoy what I believe to be one of the worst movies of the year.
Twenty-one years after going their separate ways, former high school sweethearts Dawson (James Marsden) and Amanda (Michelle Monaghan) are reunited after older mutual friend Tuck (Gerald McRaney) passes away. Dawson is a loner who works on an oil rig, but enjoys reading books about philosophy when he has a break. Amanda is living a Stepford existence, playing the part of the dutiful, beautiful, stay-at-home mother to a teenage son in a loveless marriage.
We learn about their history through a series of flashbacks in which Luke Bracey plays the young Dawson and Liana Liberato plays young Amanda.  And here’s where the movie implodes.
There’s nothing wrong with Bracey as an actor, but this has to be one of the worst pieces of casting I’ve ever seen. He’s supposed to be the high school version of Dawson, but have you ever met a high school student with crow’s feet? In real life, Bracey couldn’t pass for an undercover cop in high school, never mind the fact there’s virtually no resemblance between him and Marsden. Bracey’s casting is such a distraction, it’s a cinematic disaster. Liberato is much more convincing as a young Monaghan.
As for the plot: Dawson’s crazy, drug-running father and brothers, his relationship with Tuck, and his star-crossed relationship with Amanda past and present — it hardly matters.  Other than the actors’ efforts to try to overcome this flaw-laden film, The Best of Me’s only other redeeming quality is that it finally ends.
One out of five stars.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Double Your Dollars

Joshua Jackson and Diane Kruger Not Rushing to Get Married

Friday, October 17th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

Kevin Winter/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Joshua Jackson and Diane Kruger have been together since 2006, but don’t expect them to walk down the aisle anytime soon.

The former Fringe actor tells the November issue of Glamour magazine, “I can tell you why we’re not married: We’re not religious.”

Jackson continues, “I don’t feel any more or less committed to Diane for not having stood in front of a priest and had a giant party.”

The 36-year-old actor tells the magazine, “We’re both children of divorce, so it’s hard for me to take marriage at face value as the thing that shows you’ve grown up and are committed to another person,” adding, “But it may change at some point. We may get married.”

The actress, who was married to French actor Guillame Canet from 2001 to 2006, credits her divorce for teaching her that being married isn’t mandatory.  “I believe in a commitment that you make in your heart, she told Glamour in 2011, adding, “There’s no paper that will make you stay.”

Kruger currently stars in the FX series The Bridge. Jackson stars in the new Showtime series The Affair.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Body Found in Washington State Presumed to Be Missing Actress Misty Upham

Friday, October 17th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

Brian To/WireImage(SEATTLE) — Police in the Seattle suburb of Auburn, Washington, say a body has been found that is presumed to be that of missing actress Misty Upham.

The Auburn Police Department says it received a call Thursday afternoon that a body had been found in a wooded area. The body was found at the bottom of an embankment near the White River by a member of Upham’s family.

A purse containing identification of Upham was found at the scene. Police say a positive identification of the body has not yet been made. However, TMZ reports that Upham’s uncle says it has been confirmed it was Upham who was found. The Hollywood Reporter further notes that the actress’ father, Charles Upham, confirmed her identity to authorities.

The body has been turned over to the King County Medical Examiner for positive identification and a determination of cause of death. The medical examiner’s findings are expected to be released in the next few days.

The 32-year-old Native American actress was reported missing by her family on Oct. 6. The previous day, Upham’s family called police to report she was suicidal.

Upham’s acting credits include the films August: Osage County, Frozen River and Django Unchained. She appears in the upcoming Jennifer Aniston drama Cake.

Meryl Streep, who starred in August: Osage County, told The Hollywood Reporter in a statement, “So so sad to hear this news — all our thoughts are with her family and with her beautiful spirit.”

Frozen River star Melissa Leo told the publication, “Such a loss… so sad, so so sad.”

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Hometown Headlines w/ Brad Barrett

Movie Review: “Fury” (Rated R)

Thursday, October 16th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

Columbia Pictures(NEW YORK) — Fury takes place at the end of World War 2. The conflict is clearly over for Hitler and everybody knows it, except Hitler. War is already brutal and dangerous, but it’s even more so when your enemy is desperate, and the remaining Nazis are very desperate and unimaginably brutal. To deal with them, the most hardened, skilled soldiers are called in to lead the final push into Germany.

We first meet Brad Pitt’s Don “Wardaddy” Collier in the aftermath of a battle, on a field barely visible through the literal fog of war. Using what appears to be an unmanned, damaged tank for cover, he knocks a mounted German soldier from his horse and kills him with his bare hands. Collier then gently takes the horse by the reins, lovingly strokes its mane, looks it in its eyes and sets it free. It’s the first of many scenes in Fury that highlight the incongruous nature of war.

Turns out the tank, dubbed “Fury,” wasn’t unmanned after all.  Collier climbs in and we meet the rest of the crew: Swan (Shia LaBeouf), Garcia (Michael Peña) and Travis (John Bernthal). They’re a dysfunctional band of brothers, living from second to second in a mobile iron box, surrounded and accompanied by death — and we’re along for the ride.

When they get back to base, fresh-faced kid Norman Ellison (Logan Lerman) introduces himself as the new member of the team. Ellison was a clerk and has no battle experience whatsoever, but this is the end of the war and it’s all hands on deck. The kid doesn’t want to be there and the guys, given Norman’s lack of experience or enthusiasm, don’t really want him there either.  It won’t be long before we discover Norman’s ambivalence will become a complete liability.

How Collier and company handle Norman is a showcase of deft writing, acting and directing, of which this movie has many. Particularly stunning is a scene in which Collier and Norman enter the apartment of two German women in a town they just liberated. While the rest of the soldiers are in the streets celebrating, the war-hardened soldier and the boy who’s learning to be a soldier experience a taste of normalcy, but a reality check comes knocking on the door when the rest of the unit, drunk, enters the apartment and antagonizes their brothers in arms, and the women. It will leave a lump in your throat a few tears in your eyes.

Fury is not a great World War 2 film, but it is one of the better ones. Absolutely no punches are pulled here in displaying the anxious, intense, horrific and violent nature of battle, while at the same time exploring the camaraderie and hearts of the men who lived and died in the midst of it. Writer/director and producer David Ayer is carving a niche for himself with films that explore male bonding in extraordinary, life-threatening situations. There were flashes of that theme early in his career but his brilliance became apparent in 2012’s cop drama End of Watch, which also starred Pena, alongside Jake Gyllenhaal. 

There is brilliance in Fury, but Ayer sells out a bit when this very human story at times becomes too Rambo-esque.  And I get it: it’s probably what he needed to do to get Hollywood to pony up for a film that is otherwise a seemingly true-to-life war tale – perhaps too true-to-life.  Even so, it’s one worth seeing.

Four out of five stars.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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What Ben Affleck Said When He Surprised the Michigan State Football Team

Thursday, October 16th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

ABC News(LANSING, Mich.) — It’s no surprise that Ben Affleck is filming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice in East Lansing, Michigan, but the surprise was that the action star was working out at the Michigan State University football weight room.

Affleck was lifting weights when coach Mark Dantonio asked him to address the team, according to the Detroit Free Press.

“I’m Batman,” Affleck, 42, said, walking out on to the practice field. He then told them to win next week or else … minus the “or else” part.



Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Jude Law Expecting His Fifth Child with Ex Catherine Harding

Thursday, October 16th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Jude Law is going to be a father times five.

The actor and his ex-girlfriend, Catherine Harding, are expecting a baby together, People magazine reports.

“I can confirm that Jude Law and Catherine Harding are expecting a child together in the spring. Whilst they are no longer in a relationship, they are both wholeheartedly committed to raising their child,” a rep for the actor told the magazine. “They consider this a private matter and other than this confirmation, no statement will be made. I ask that you respect the privacy of all parties involved and their families.”

Law, 41, has three children — son Rafferty, 18, daughter Iris, 14, and son Rudy, 12 — with his ex-wife Sadie Frost, and a 5-year-old daughter, Sophia, with model Samantha Burke.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Joan Rivers’ Cause of Death Revealed

Thursday, October 16th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images(NEW YORK) –  Joan Rivers died in a New York City hospital Sept. 4 at the age of 81. Now, there are some answers for what happened.

Rivers was sedated with propofol before she died of low blood oxygen during a procedure to treat voice changes and acid reflux, according to the New York City medical examiner.

Rivers lacked sufficient oxygen to her brain for a prolonged period of time, which caused brain damage, the medical examiner said. Her heart had stopped after she was sedated with propofol while undergoing procedures to examine her condition.

The medical examiner’s office said it found no obvious medical error and that the manner of death was “therapeutic complication,” indicating that death is an accepted possibility of the procedure she was undergoing.

Her daughter, Melissa Rivers, told ABC News, “We continue to be saddened by our tragic loss and grateful for the enormous outpouring of love and support from around the world. We have no further comment at this time.”

A person briefed on the Rivers investigation said an autopsy was not performed on Joan Rivers at the instruction of the family and in accordance with Jewish law. Instead, the report was based on a noninvasive physical examination and a thorough review of her charts from Yorkville Endoscopy, where she was undergoing her procedure, as well as her medical history.

As a result, the report from the medical examiner’s office does not explain what caused the sudden lack of oxygen. No additional information will be released by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, citing New York state law.

Rivers was being treated at Yorkville Endoscopy in Manhattan Aug. 28 when she suffered cardiac arrest. She was taken to a nearby hospital, where she arrived unconscious and was kept sedated by her doctors.

Her daughter confirmed a few days later that her mother was on life support.

The comic legend died “surrounded by family and close friends,” Melissa Rivers said.

“My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh,” she said in a statement. “Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.”

Meanwhile, the New York State Health Department recently completed its “full investigation” of the clinic where Rivers was being treated, according to a DOH representative, and results will be released soon. A source said initially there was no suspicion of wrongdoing and the investigation was routine.

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Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Song of The Day

Zoe Saldana Finally Opens Up About Her Pregnancy

Thursday, October 16th, 2014 by

Posted in Entertainment News

Randy Holmes / ABC(LOS ANGELES) — For months, Zoe Saldana has played coy about her pregnancy. However, on Wednesday night, she revealed that her due date is eight to 10 weeks away and that so far, things have been going well.

“I feel great,” she told said during an appearance The Late, Late Show. “I’m hungry all the time!”

The actress, 36, is reportedly expecting twin boys with her husband, Marco Perego, though she has yet to confirm that tidbit. One thing is for sure, though: Pregnancy has increased her appetite. During her appearance on the talk show, the actress dug into ribs that host Craig Ferguson provided for her.

“It feels good. Food just tastes so delicious,” she gushed. “It’s really good because you trick yourself. Working in Hollywood, you trick yourself, going, ‘That burger’s disgusting. A burger is awful,’ but now that you’re pregnant, you’re like, ‘I can eat all of that together at the same time! I can have the pickle with the doughnut and it will probably be life-changing.’”

However, Saldana said that she isn’t craving anything specific, nor has she sent Perego out on a food-finding mission. Instead, her sleepless nights are spent watching crime mysteries and dreaming about receiving compliments on her changing physique.

“Now that I’m pregnant, I’m kind of itching for sex comments, compliments,” she said. “Not getting picked up because my husband will kill you, but, [for someone to say], ‘Your wife is looking really hot!’ We like that.”

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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