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Former 'World's Tallest Man' Leonid Stadnyk dies aged 44



Leonid Stadnyk, who held the record of world’s tallest man, has died aged 44.

The peasant farmer from the north-western Ukrainian village of Podoliantsy died on Sunday from a cerebral haemorrhage, linked to health problems caused by his height, the Mirror reported.

Before he died, Stadnyk had grown to almost 8 feet, 5 inches (2.6 metres).

His height became abnormal when he was aged 14, and a benign tumour in his brain caused a gland to continually secrete growth hormones - meaning he never stopped growing. At its worst his condition, known as giganticism, caused him to grow at the rate of roughly one foot every three years.

In 2007, he was briefly named the world’s tallest man by the Guiness World Records, but refused to be measured by the organisation. The title was instead given to China's Bao Xishun, who stands at 2.36m tall. In comparison, the average British man is only 5ft 5inches (1.65metres) tall.

"We have contacted Stadnyk, but he seems like a very shy guy," a Guinness World Records spokeswoman said at the time. “He doesn't want us around. So we have to stick to what we have.”

31-year-old Turkish farmer Sultan Kosen currently holds the record, measuring 2.51m (8 feet, 3 inches).

Mr Stadnyk did not enjoy his fame, or his height. In a 2004 interview with Reuters he spoke of how his condition forced him to quit his job, and lead him to live a lonely life with is mother.

"For my entire life I wanted to be shorter. I was bowing down, stooping," Stadnyk said. “I have always wanted to be in the shadows. I tried not to stand out, but now..."

“There were no shoes, no clothes for me in the shops. When I was undergoing medical checks, they could not measure my height, the scale ran out. Then I became self-conscious,” Stadnyk, who worse size 27 shoes in UK sizes.

His height meant he could no longer be a veterinarian, as he could only travel by horse or cart, and could not find adequate clothing to protect his body from harsh winter weather. "I did not have proper shoes and my feet froze. I had to stop working."

He also dismissed the local media frenzy around him, and said he has no plans to capitalise on his extreme size and move into show business. He told reporters he wanted to stay near his mother, his best and only friend at the time, and work in their garden.
 
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    Al Pacino on suffering from depression: 'It can last and it's terrifying'



    Al Pacino has opened up about the struggles he and others have faced when battling depression.

    The veteran actor said that he felt "spared" and "lucky" that he is yet to have been derailed by the mental health condition that has led to the deaths of so many – including Robin Williams.

    Speaking at Venice Film Festival, he said: "I may be depressed but I don't know about it.

    "People go into depression and it's very, very sad and it can last and it's terrifying.

    "I know that, I've had bouts with stuff that comes close to that, but not with that intensity. I feel spared, I feel lucky."

    "In Godfather II, I would imagine Michael Corleone was depressed," he added.

    Pacino was at the festival to promote two films – The Humbling and Manglehorn.

    On the role he plays in the former, in which he stars as an aging actor who strikes up an affair with a younger woman, he said: "The character is getting older and the feelings he has for his work are becoming less available to him, so he tries to compensate and becomes a little off and confused and slips into a kind of depression that expresses itself in his work."

    source independent
     
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    Jimi Jamison dead: Survivor frontman and singer of Baywatch theme tune dies age 63





    Jimi Jamison, the lead singer of US band Survivor, has died at the age of 63.

    His booking manager Sally Irwin told TMZ that Jamison had died of a heart attack on Sunday night.

    The band issued a statement on their Facebook page, saying they were “shocked and saddened” by Jamison’s death. The band was due to embark on a new tour on 12 September.

    “The entire Survivor family is very shocked and saddened by the passing of our brother Jimi Jamison. Our thoughts, love and prayers go out to his family and friends,” the statement read.


    Jamison, who co-wrote and sang the on the Baywatch theme song ‘I’m Always Here,’ joined Survivor after the disbanding of his own group, Cobra, in 1984. He joined two years after ‘Eye of the Tiger’ was released, and took over from the band’s original singer Dave Bickler.

    Jamison’s first single with Survivor was ‘The Moment of Truth,’ which became the theme tune for The Karate Kid, and the first album he appeared on with the band, Vital Signs, achieved multi-platinum status and included hit singles ‘I can’t hold back’, ‘High on You’ and ‘The Search is Over’.

    In 1985, the band’s track ‘Burning Heart’ became the title track for Rocky IV.






    After Survivor disbanded at the end of the ‘80s, Jamison worked on and released two albums, When Love Comes Down and Empires. It was during this period that he co-wrote the Baywatch theme tune.

    Jamison rejoined the band in 2000, left again in 2006, and re-joined again in 2011. The last gig he played with Survivor was on Saturday.

    source independent
     
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    Joan Rivers Dead: Comedian And Actress Passes Away At 81


    Joan Rivers is dead at age of 81, reports Reuters.

    The controversial comedian and "Fashion Police" co-host" was rushed to Mount Sinai hospital in New York on Aug. 28 after she stopped breathing during a surgery on her vocal cords, TMZ first reported.

    Rivers' daughter, Melissa, released this statement on her Facebook page:

    "It is with great sadness that I announce the death of my mother, Joan Rivers.
    She passed peacefully at 1:17 pm surrounded by family and close friends. My son and I would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff of Mount Sinai Hospital for the amazing care they provided for my mother.
    Cooper and I have found ourselves humbled by the outpouring of love, support, and prayers we have received from around the world. They have been heard and appreciated.
    My mother's greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon." - Melissa
    Rivers remained in hospital and was kept on life support as her condition fluctuated, moving in and out of intensive care throughout the week.

    Rivers was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1933, and graduated from Barnard College in 1954. She got her start in show business in the late 1950s appearing in off-Broadways plays and performing stand-up routines in comedy clubs in Greenwich Village. Her first big break came in 1965, when she made her first appearance on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson." She landed her first syndicated talk show, "The Joan Rivers Show," which lasted one season, in 1968 and continued to shoot to fame with appearances on "The Tonight Show" and "The Ed Sullivan Show." In the 1970s her star power continued to grow as she appeared on more variety shows, and in 1978 she wrote and directed "Rabbit Test," starring Billy Crystal.

    "I have never wanted to be a day less than I am,'' she insisted in a 2013 interview with The Associated Press. "People say, 'I wish I were 30 again.' Nahhh! I'm very happy here. It's great. It gets better and better. And then, of course, we die,'' she quipped.

    In 1987 she hosted the season-long "The Late Show Starring Joan Rivers," and in 1989 came back to daytime TV with "The Joan Rivers Show."

    "The trouble with me is, I make jokes too often,'' she told the AP in 2013, just days after the death of her older sister. "I was making jokes yesterday at the funeral home. That's how I get through life. Life is so difficult -- everybody's been through something! But you laugh at it, it becomes smaller.''

    "To control an audience is a very masculine thing,'' Rivers told the Los Angeles Times in 1977. "The minute a lady is in any form of power, they (the public) totally strip away your femininity -- which isn't so. Catherine the Great had a great time.''

    Rivers had accomplished an incredible amount in her life, but she is perhaps best-known for her presence on the red carpet. Joan and her daughter "revolutionized the red carpet from a runway -- with little celebrity-reporter interaction -- into its own brand of entertainment that, for many, was just as interesting as the awards ceremony that followed," according to Vanity Fair. Rivers also charmed us in movies like "Spaceballs."

    The duo reported on celebrities on the red carpet asking everyone "Who are you wearing?" from 1996 until around 2004. Rivers focused all of her take-no-prisoners judgments for celebrity fashion on her E! series "Fashion Police," which launched in 2002.

    In recent years, Rivers was a familiar face on TV shopping channel QVC, hawking her line of jewelry, and won the reality show "Celebrity Apprentice'' by beating out her bitter adversary, poker champ Annie Duke. In 2010, she was featured in the documentary "Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work.''

    She never let age, or anything, make her sentimental. Earlier in 2014, she got inked: a half-inch-tall tattoo, "6M,'' on the inside of her arm representing 6 million Jews killed in the Nazi Holocaust. In 2013, she brashly pledged to work "forever.''

    "You never relax and say, 'Well, here I am!''' she declared. "You always think, 'Is this gonna be OK?' I have never taken anything for granted.''

    Survivors include her daughter and a grandson, Cooper.


    Joan Rivers Dead: Comedian And Actress Passes Away At 81
     
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    Iran: Happy video dancers sentenced to 91 lashes and jail



    Six Iranians arrested for appearing in a video dancing to Pharrell Williams' song Happy have been sentenced to up to one year in prison and 91 lashes, their lawyer says.

    The sentences were suspended for three years, meaning they will not go to prison unless they reoffend, he adds.

    The video shows three men and three unveiled women dancing on the streets and rooftops of Tehran.

    In six months, it has been viewed by over one million people on YouTube.

    The majority of people involved in the video were sentenced to six months in prison, with one member of the group given one year, lawyer Farshid Rofugaran was quoted by Iran Wire as saying.

    The "Happy we are from Tehran" video was brought to the attention of the Iranian authorities in May, after receiving more than 150,000 views.

    Members of the group behind the video were subsequently arrested by Iranian police for violating Islamic laws of the country, which prohibit dancing with members of the opposite sex and women from appearing without a headscarf.

    They later appeared on state-run TV saying they were actors who had been tricked into make the Happy video for an audition.

    The arrests drew condemnation from international rights groups and sparked a social media campaign calling for their release.

    Williams, whose song was nominated for an Oscar earlier this year, also protested at the arrests.

    "It is beyond sad that these kids were arrested for trying to spread happiness," he wrote on Facebook.'

    BBC News - Iran: Happy video dancers sentenced to 91 lashes and jail
     
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    Charlie Chaplin, his body-snatchers and The Price of Fame


    Eugene Chaplin tells Geoffrey Macnab about his father Charlie, and the tragicomic kidnapping of his corpse


    Toward the end of my interview with Eugene Chaplin, I mention to him that I used to live in Southwark, south-east London, close to where his father was born, and that I sometimes drank at a pub on the New Kent Road called the Charlie Chaplin. Eugene, who grew up in Switzerland a long way from the poverty his father endured as a young man, reveals that he too has visited the Charlie Chaplin.

    "That's the nice thing. No one knows me," the 61-year-old says of his regular trips to his father's old haunts. The local people have no idea that this silver-haired man with a very toothsome smile is the son of the most celebrated comedian in film history. "I guess if I presented myself, they wouldn't believe me."

    Eugene takes his friends to the area and shows them the house in East Street where Charlie may have been born. "They put the plaque up. But apparently, it's the wrong house!"

    The Walworth of his father's childhood is now full of tower blocks and concrete walkways, but Eugene insists he can still get "the feeling" of his father's London. "[Chaplin biographer] David Robinson showed me where the workhouses were," Eugene says of the grim institutions where young Charlie was briefly an inmate.

    Eugene appears as a circus manager in a new French film called The Price of Fame, which dramatises the extraordinary events of early 1978, when Chaplin's corpse was exhumed and stolen by petty thieves who demanded a hefty ransom for its return.

    Eugene, who was 24 at the time, remembers both the terror and the comedy of the incident. Chaplin died on Christmas Day, 1977, and was buried near his home in Corsier-sur-Vevey, by Lake Geneva. A few months later, the police rang the family. "They said, look, somebody dug up the grave and he's gone. It was a horrendous thing to happen, especially in Switzerland, where everything is so quiet."

    At almost the same time that Chaplin's corpse was snatched, the former Italian prime minister Aldo Moro had been kidnapped and killed by the Red Brigades. The early suspicions were that terrorists were trying to hold Chaplin's family to ransom. But in fact, two petty crooks from eastern Europe were responsible.

    "The atmosphere was horrible," Eugene remembers. There were threats that his younger brother Christopher would be shot if the ransom wasn't paid. "My mother [Oona Chaplin] was more worried about our safety. For her, a dead body is a dead body."

    The family quickly realised that the body-snatchers weren't professional thieves, and Oona Chaplin (the daughter of the playwright Eugene O'Neill) was remarkably forgiving. The thieves later wrote letters apologising for their actions. "The wife of the nicer one wrote and said 'We're so sorry'. My mother wrote back and said: 'Look, all is forgiven.'" When the corpse was recovered, the family put concrete around the grave to stop a repeat performance.

    The Chaplin family had been wary of attempts to make dramas out of the incident. However, Eugene was charmed by Xavier Beauvois, the French director of Of Gods and Men, and accepted that there was something Chaplinesque about the idea of the hapless thieves and their harebrained scheme. "It just shows how stupid humankind can be. [Beauvois] took that, and he showed that kind of stupidity with a sense of humour."

    What is it like being the son of one of the most famous men in the world? Eugene takes the question in good grace – although he does admit to getting irritated if asked to imitate the famous Chaplin walk. "Being the son of someone like that is to accept that, really, Chaplin belongs to the people," Eugene reflects. "People come up and say 'I knew your father' or 'Apparently, he did this…', but I just knew him as a father. I have my truth about him and the rest – I don't believe!"

    Eugene trained as a stage manager at RADA. (Richard Attenborough signed Eugene's graduation certificate.) He went on to work for several years as a sound engineer at Mountain Studios in Montreux. (He was an assistant engineer on David Bowie's Heroes and Lodger albums, and also worked with Queen and the Rolling Stones.) Eugene is now heavily involved in the circus business, and has organised circus festivals in Canada and Switzerland.

    "I inherited my love of the circus from my father," says Eugene. "Every year, we would go when the circus came to town, and afterwards, he would throw a party and invite all the artists to the house. We'd have the Russians, who would bring a bear. Someone else would bring a crocodile. There were monkeys and all. As a kid, I would see these extraordinary people doing extraordinary things at the circus. Then I had the chance to meet them back home, and to see that they were totally normal people. That's what I love about them. The majority of them are hard working and down to earth. You don't have that star system you have in the film business." And being a clown, Eugene explains, is "a way of being", not something an actor can pick up after a rehearsal or two.

    Switzerland was a haven for Charlie Chaplin, who arrived there in 1952. What he liked about the country is also what appeals to his son: the quietness and the discretion. "People look at you but they won't walk up to you. The Swiss are very shy." Eugene has clearly never craved his father's celebrity, and seems distrustful of the film business. Nonetheless, his pride in his lineage is self-evident. As he points out: "it is better to be the son of Charlie Chaplin than to be the son of a mass murderer."

    'The Price of Fame' is expected to be released in the UK next year


    source independent
     
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    Sophia Loren: How I rejected Cary Grant and 'pulverised' Marlon Brando with my eyes





    Imagine having the problems of Sophia Loren.

    In her new autobiography, Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow (the name of one of her films), the screen idol recalls having to fend off the advances of both Cary Grant and Marlon Brando.

    Loren, 80, first worked with Grant on 1957 film The Pride and the Passion. He was 30 years older than her and married to his third wife, while she was on the verge of marrying film producer Carlo Ponti, who would later become her husband of 40 years until his death in 2007.

    But none of this deterred Grant, who sent letters begging Loren to leave her partner for him, as well as sending daily flowers.

    “You’ll be in my prayers,” he wrote. “If you think and pray with me, for the same thing and purpose, all will be right and life will be good.”

    The book claims Grant asked her to marry him, with pictures of their love letters.

    “Forgive me, dear girl. I press you too much,” read one note from Grant. “Pray – and so will I – until next week. Goodbye Sophia. Cary.”

    Instead, she chose her mentor and director, Ponti, who was 22 years older than her and also still married to his first wife, who he left for Loren.

    Her autobiography was prompted by the discovery of a box found in the actress’ Swiss home, containing souvenirs and mementos collected throughout her life, the Guardian reports.

    She also relays the occasion she was forced to rebuke Marlon Brando for being too amorous.

    The pair met while filming 1967 film A Countess from Hong Kong.

    “All of a sudden he put his hands on me,” she recalled. “I turned in all tranquillity and blew his face, like a cat stroked the wrong way and said, ‘Don’t you ever dare to do that again. Never again!’”

    “As I pulverised him with my eyes he seemed small, defenceless, almost a victim of his own notoriety. He never did it again, but it was very difficult working with him after that.”

    source independent
     
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    Mrs Bach had too many kids to write the great man's music, says Julian Lloyd Webber



    It is a provocative claim which has split music scholars. Has new forensic analysis “proved” that some of Johann Sebastian Bach’s best-loved works were actually written by his wife?

    Now the acclaimed cellist Julian Lloyd Webber has rubbished the theory that Anna Magdalena, Bach’s second wife, was the secret composer of some of his major pieces, including the cello suites.

    Magdalena would have been too busy looking after the couple’s 13 children to have time to compose and produce the manuscripts for Bach’s most notable pieces, he argues.

    An accomplished singer and known copyist, Anna Magdalena married Bach in 1721, 17 months after the death of his first wife.

    A new documentary, Written By Mrs Bach, claims that that Anna’s musical contribution was far greater than had previously been imagined and, as a result, she has been unfairly written out of the history books.

    She was actually the guiding hand behind the cello suites, the aria from the Goldberg Variations, and even the first prelude of the Well-tempered Clavier: Book I.

    Forensic analysis of her manuscript handwriting shows that it did not have the “slowness or heaviness” usually attributed to someone who is simply copying but the quick, uncertain hand of a creator.

    Numerous corrections to scores written in her hand, signal that she had been composing the works all along. One front page is headed “written by Mrs Bach” in French.

    Martin Jarvis, professor of music at Charles Darwin University in Australia, said that those pieces deviate from other Bach works in significant structural and technical respects, making it likely they are the work of Anna, who was known to be a gifted musician but would not have been allowed to take any credit for her contributions.

    However Lloyd Webber, who has performed the cello suites throughout his career, rejected the theory. “It’s a great romantic story and I wish it was true. But the theory doesn’t hold up.”

    “The cello suites are very much in the style of Bach, the elements cited are characteristic and I don’t think they are the work of a different composer.”

    “I know the original manuscript, I’ve seen it. If Anna composed the original manuscript it would be much more of a mess. It must be copied from something.”

    Anna Magdalena ran a busy and stressful household. She was pregnant every year from 1723 to 1737, bearing 13 children, seven of whom died in youth. The couple also raised the surviving children from Bach’s first marriage.

    But Professor Jarvis said Lloyd Webber was positing a “typical male view”. He said: “She had Bach’s sister-in-law to help and also servants. If she had time to write the music out beautifully why would she not have time to compose?”

    “The manuscripts are beautifully drafted. You don’t get the impression she was distracted by screaming at kids.”

    Critics of his theory are sexist. “If I’d said it was Wilhelm Friedemann Bach (eldest son of Johann Bach from his first marriage) and composed the works, everyone would have said ‘of course’. But to suggest this was not a Bach and a woman, people said ‘it’s not possible.’ It’s anti-feminism - the Bach world objects to it being a woman.”

    Prof Jarvis first developed suspicions about Bach’s authorship when he played the cello suites as a young student at the Royal Academy of Music in London. He said those works betray “musical differences which are so different to anything else Bach composed,” a claim Lloyd Webber says does not stand up.

    Lloyd Webber, 63, also announced that he is to perform in public again, after announcing his retirement in April due to a neck injury which left him unable to play.

    He announced a series of UK concerts in 2015, in which he will answer questions and introduce footage of career highlights. He is also asking audience members to bring their cellos and will perform a “mini-masterclass” each night at the show’s climax.

    He said: “I badly missed being on stage. I will play a Vivaldi bassline as an encore. I banned myself from playing but I don’t think I should be banned really. It’s ridiculous to lose the skill. But the herniated disc means I can only play flat out for three-to-four minutes.”

    Broadcasters are currently bidding to screen the Written By Mrs Bach film.

    source independent
     
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    Furious 7 Trailer Shows Paul Walker Take Charge Before "One Last Ride":

    The first trailer for Furious 7 was released on Saturday, Nov. 1, showcasing some of the last exhilarating acting scenes Paul Walker filmed before his tragic death in November 2013. In the fast-pace two-minute clip, Walker's Brian O'Conner jumps to new heights in action-packed car chases alongside his on and offscreen family.

     
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    People Are Outraged Over Nicki Minaj's New Nazi-Themed Music Video

    Nicki Minaj just released her new lyric music video for "Only" on Friday, and it is already receiving tons of criticism for resembling cartoonish Nazi propaganda.

    The similarities are glaringly obvious and the Anti-Defamation League is clearly not pleased, saying in a statement that they are "deeply disturbed by the unadulterated Nazi imagery."

    "The irony should be lost on no one that this video debuted on the 76th anniversary of Kristallnacht, the 'night of broken glass' pogrom that signaled the beginning of the Final Solution and the Holocaust," added ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman.

    "It is troubling that no one among Minaj’s group of producers, publicists and managers raised a red flag about the use of such imagery before ushering the video into public release," said Foxman, a Holocaust survivor. "This video is insensitive to Holocaust survivors and a trivialization of the history of that era. The abuse of Nazi imagery is deeply disturbing and offensive to Jews and all those who can recall the sacrifices Americans and many others had to make as a result of Hitler’s Nazi juggernaut."

     
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    Carol Ann Susi dead: The Big Bang Theory actress dies after battling aggressive form of cancer



    “Unseen by viewers, the Mrs. Wolowitz character became a bit of a mystery... What was not a mystery, however, was Carol Ann's immense talent”



    Carol Ann Susi, the actress who played the role of Mrs. Wolowitz, Howard’s mother, in sitcom The Big Bang Theory, has died after a brief battle with an aggressive form of cancer.

    CBS and executive producers Chuck Lorre, Steven Molaro and Bill Prady said in a joint statement: “The Big Bang Theory family has lost a beloved member today with the passing of Carol Ann Susi, who hilariously and memorably voiced the role of Mrs. Wolowitz.

    “Unseen by viewers, the Mrs. Wolowitz character became a bit of a mystery throughout the show's eight seasons. What was not a mystery, however, was Carol Ann's immense talent and comedic timing, which were on display during each unforgettable appearance.


    Carol Ann Susi, the actress who played the role of Mrs. Wolowitz, Howard’s mother

    “In addition to her talent, Carol Ann was a constant source of joy and kindness to all. Our thoughts and deepest condolences are with her family during this time, and we will miss her greatly.”

    A representative for Susi also released a tribute to the late actress.

    “A spunky Italian gal from Brooklyn whose passionate interests included Doctor Who, Halloween horror mazes, cooking and the Magic Castle, Carol Ann drew fervent circles of followers,” it read.

    “She has a force of nature who didn't suffer fools and was fiercely loyal to her friends. Known only to a very lucky few, she was a world-class culinary genius who frequently scored blue ribbons at the very competitive cooking competitions at the Los Angeles County Fair.”

    Susi was first discovered by the casting department at Universal Studios in Los Angeles, after she moved to the city to pursue a career in entertainment in the Seventies.

    She went on to secure dozens of small screen appearances, including in cult comedy Cheers, Doogie Howser, M.D., Mad About You, Just Shoot Me, Seinfeld and Six Feet Under.

    She also starred in ABC series The Night Stalker as Kolchak's secretary, Monique Marmelstein.

    She is survived by her brother, Michael.

    source independent
     
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    Cosby Rape Allegations: Hollywood Losing Ability to Cover Up Sex Crimes

    Even if allegations against Bill Cosby are false, they are forcing a discussion on Hollywood sex abuse in general

    Whether true or not, the Bill Cosby rape allegations, combined with recent allegations of molestation against other Hollywood players, are unraveling the entertainment industry’s ability to cover up decadent behavior, from “casting couches” to abuse of minors.

    Although the allegations against Cosby have existed for decades, they just went nuclear after comedian Hannibal Buress brought attention to them in his current stand-up routine.

    “Bill Cosby has the f***ing smuggest old black man public persona that I hate,” Buress said. “He just gets on TV — ‘Pull your pants up, black people. I was on TV in the ’80s. I can talk down to you because I had a successful sitcom.’”

    “Yeah, but you raped women, Bill Cosby. So, brings you down a couple notches.”

    But the allegations against Cosby were largely ignored, Buress suggested, because of Cosby’s “Teflon image,” which one of Cosby’s accusers also alluded to.

    “The entertainment world is rife with famous men who use their power to victimize and then silence young women who look up to them,” Barbara Bowman, the accuser who was once an aspiring actress, said. “Even when their victims speak out, the industry and the public turn blind eyes; these men’s celebrity, careers, and public adulation continue to thrive.”

    But this appears to be changing.

    For one thing, even if the allegations against Cosby are false, they are forcing a discussion on Hollywood sex abuse in general, which industry executives have spent decades trying to hide under fraud, lies and deceit.

    “Every year, thousands of children swarm Hollywood in search of fame, but what they often find under the surface is a deep and disturbing underbelly of manipulation and abuse,” reads the synopsis of An Open Secret, a new documentary that exposes child molestation in Hollywood.

    And the film wasn’t released to a limited audience; it premiered at DOC NYC, the country’s largest documentary film festival.

    “…What I found really disturbing was the number of convicted pedophiles who are still being hired on set, on kids’ shows,” the film’s director, Amy Berg, said in an interview. “These are people who technically should be nowhere near children.”

    “That was really upsetting.”

    The documentary represents the growing backlash against an industry that, even outside of sex abuse, has routinely used and abused people like livestock.

    “I have actress friends who are being put out to pasture at 29,” actor John Cusack said in an interview. “They just want to open up another can of hot 22.”

    “It’s becoming almost like kiddie porn. It’s f***ing weird.”

    source infowars
     
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    The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings mythology explained in one short YouTube video

     
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    Rock Star Joe Cocker Dead At 70



    British-born singer famous for his bluesy voice

    Joe Cocker died today at age 70, after losing a battle with lung cancer.

    The blues and rock singer died in his Colorado home, his management staff confirmed.

    Cocker, a British-born musician who rose to fame in the 1960s, was known for his cover of The Beatles’ “With A Little Help From My Friends” and a duet with Jennifer Warnes for the movie An Officer and a Gentleman called “Up Where We Belong,” for which he received a Grammy in 1983.

    His agent Barrie Marshall said the singer was “simply unique,” the BBC reports. “It will be impossible to fill the space he leaves in our hearts.”

    In all, Cocker produced 40 albums throughout his career.

    source Time
     
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    Netflix is making a live-action Legend of Zelda TV series





    Video game superstar Link is reportedly getting his very own Netflix series.

    According to the Wall Street Journal, the TV adaptation of the hugely successful video game franchise Legend of Zelda is in its early stages.

    Netflix envisions the series as a family-friendly Game of Thrones — the HBO fantasy epic based on a book series.

    The action-adventure fantasy series follows Link, a normal boy with an excellent bow, and his numerous rescues of the Princess Zelda from the clutches of Ganandorf.

    There have been 17 Zelda games since Nintendo released the 1986 original for the NES, with Ocarida of Time considered by aficionados to be amongst the best ever console games.

    It's still possible that Netflix or more likely Nintendo will pull the plug before it gets much father, with the Japanese video games giant notoriously protective of its treasured properties.

    In 1993, a movie based on Nintendo's Super Mario Bros was released and it flopped.

    Nothing since then has developed very far, but after years of cratering financial figures perhaps Nintendo has been emboldened.

    Mario and friends may have returned to profitability last year, but across the board sales remain poor.

    A western TV show, if successful, would be a shot in the arm for a company that doing particularly badly outside of Japan.

    Netflix has refused to issue an official comment, and Nintendo told WSJ it "doesn't comment on rumours and speculation".

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    Grammys 2015: List of winners in full

    Winners in selected categories at the 57th annual Grammy Awards announced on Sunday during ceremonies at the Nokia Theatre and Staples Center were as follows:

    Record of the Year: "Stay With Me," Sam Smith

    Album of the Year: "Morning Phase," Beck

    Song of the Year: "Stay With Me," Sam Smith

    Best New Artist: Sam Smith

    Best Pop Solo Performance: "Happy (Live)", Pharrell Williams

    Best Pop Duo/ Group Performance: "Say Something," A Great Big World with Christina Aguilera

    Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album: "Cheek To Cheek," Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga

    Best Pop Vocal Album: "In The Lonely Hour," Sam Smith

    Best Dance Recording: "Rather Be," Clean Bandit featuring Jess Glyne

    Best Dance/ Electronic Album: "Syro," Aphex Twin

    Best Contemporary Instrumental Album: "Bass & Mandolin," Chris Thile and Edgar Meyer

    Best Rock Performance: "Lazaretto," Jack White

    Best Metal Performance: "The Last In Line," Tenacious D

    Best Rock Song: "Ain't It Fun," Hayley Williams & Taylor York

    Best Rock Album: "Morning Phase," Beck
     
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    Mafia planned to murder Michael Jackson, Goodfellas star Frank DiLeo reportedly claimed




    The controversies surrounding Michael Jackson’s life following his sudden death in 2009 have been rich and various.

    But few are as outrageous as the claims currently being made in a book based on the journals and private videos of the King of Pop’s ex-manager, Frank DiLeo.



    DiLeo, who effortlessly took on the role of Tuddy Cicero in Martin Scorsese’s classic mob movie Goodfellas, was in charge of Jackson's career at the height of his fame in the Eighties.

    He died in 2011 at 63 following the complications of heart surgery.

    According to the New York Post, DiLeo behind a number of personal accounts and footage, during which he talked about Jackson. The documents have since been compiled into the post-humus biography DiLeo: I Am Going To Set The Record Straight by his former business partner Mark Lamica.

    In it, Lamica writes that DiLeo shared his knowledge of a planned Mafia contract to kill Michael Jackson – and how he managed to stop it from happening.

    DiLeo also spoke extensively about Jackson’s changing appearance.

    Lamica said: “Michael told Frank in a phone call that he couldn't bear to see his father’s [Joseph Jackson] face when he looked in the mirror.

    “Frank had told him he needed to stop changing his face, because he was becoming unrecognisable to his fans.”



    Lamica also claims the book will include details about his Neverland Ranch deal with Colony Capital and his record label, as well as “naming and shaming” those in the industry DiLeo felt had exploited him.

    The release date for the book is yet to be confirmed.

    A spokesperson for Michael Jackson’s estate is yet to comment on the claims.

    source independent
     
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    Watch Jon Stewart tell his live studio audience that he's leaving 'The Daily Show' this year

    At the end of "The Daily Show" Tuesday evening, host Jon Stewart told his live audience that after 17 years, he'll finally leave the night show later this year.

    Stewart says he's not sure of his final day on air. He mentions that his contract is up in Sept., but that his last day "might be December, might be July."

    He also emphasizes that he doesn't have any specific plans for the future, yet, but that he does have "a lot of ideas."

    Watch Stewart break the news to his unsuspecting audience below:

     
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    Pompidou Centre hails recovery of £1.5m Picasso missing since 2001


    'La Coiffeuse' was stolen in France and smuggled into the US in a parcel marked 'art craft/toy: value $37'


    The Pompidou Centre in Paris hopes to put a lost Picasso masterpiece back on public display by the end of May – after a US attorney revealed it had been found in New York.

    La Coiffeuse, or “The Hairdresser”, painted in 1911 and owned by the French government, disappeared from the modern art museum in 2001.

    It was put into storage in 1998, and staff only realised it was missing after receiving a loan request from another institution three years later.

    On Thursday, Loretta Lynch, the US attorney for the Eastern District of New York announced that the “lost treasure” had been found and that she was setting in motion a civil forfeiture for it to be returned to France.

    The painting, worth more than €2m (£1.5m), was discovered inside a parcel marked “Happy Christmas – art craft/toy: value $37” at the Port Newark, New Jersey.

    The package had been shipped via Fedex from an address in Belgium on 17 December, under the name “Robert”. The painting was initially shipped to a climate-controlled warehouse in Long Island, according to a report in The New York Times. It was seized by US customs officials when it arrived in Newark.

    Two of the French museum’s experts travelled to New York last month and confirmed that the painting was the missing piece. So far no arrests have been reported on either side of the Atlantic.

    The work was bequeathed to the French government in 1966 by George Salles, a former director of the National Museums of France. It last went on public display in 1998, in Munich. On its return to Paris, it was sent to the Pompidou’s storage unit.

    It is unclear at what point the canvas, which measures 33cm by 46cm canvas, went missing, but it was eventually declared stolen by the French government.


    Alain Seban, director of the Pompidou, said the centre was excited at “this happy ending” to the search for the work. He expressed his “deep gratitude” to the customs services in the US and France.

    Mr Seban told the Associated Press that the discovery comes as a “true comfort” at a time when the cultural world is reeling from an Isis video showing the destruction of statues in Iraq.

    Hundreds of artworks by Picasso are listed on the Art Loss Register, a London-based listing of missing artwork. In 1989 thieves made off with 12 works worth more than €23m from the house of one of his granddaughters. Two more, worth nearly €70m, were taken from another granddaughter in 2007.

    source independent


     
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