Review Category : Entertainment

Tony-winning musical “Newsies” comes to movie theaters for three nights only

©Disney(NEW YORK) — The Tony Award-winning Broadway musical Newsies closed in 2014, but you’ve got another chance to see it tonight, Saturday and next week…at a theater near you.

The creative team and original Broadway cast members — including current Supergirl star Jeremy Jordan — reunited to film a live performance at the Pantages Theater this past September. It will screen in theaters nationwide on February 16, 18 and 22 — visit Fathom Events to find out where it’s playing near you.

It’s a full-circle moment for Newsies, which began as a 1992 movie starring a young Christian Bale, with songs by Alan Menken, the composer behind The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin. Still, the movie flopped in theaters.

“It was at a very heady time where Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin were all opened or in production,” Menken tells ABC Radio. “And Disney said, ‘Let’s go ahead and make a live action movie.’ And there were a lot of wonderful things about it…but…it just did not make it with the public. They weren’t really ready for that kind of break-into-song musical.”

But surprisingly, the movie gained a cult following thanks to home video and cable airings.

“I think it was these cute boys, and the dancing, and I think this is the generation that has grown up with a real hunger for musical theater…and people just really embraced Newsies,” says Menken.

Eventually, the demand for a stage version of Newsies grew so insistent that Disney created one: it ran from 2012 to 2014 on Broadway, and then toured internationally. Now, it’s back in theaters, where it started. Will there eventually be another iteration?

“I’ve given up trying to predict what’ll happen with Newsies, or any project for that matter,” Menken laughs. “You just never know.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Matt Damon says “The Great Wall” is not what you think: “It’s this crazy monster movie”

Dan MacMedan/WireImage(LOS ANGELES) — Don’t judge Matt Damon’s latest film, The Great Wall by its poster.

The movie — opening thie week — and the casting of a Western actor in what appeared to be a historical film, drew controversy when it was announced. But Damon tells ABC Radio the movie is not what you think.

“This was designed as a giant East-meets-West co-production creature-feature monster movie,” he says. While concerns about cultural appropriation “are real and justified in general,” he says, “I would be surprised if people thought they applied to this after they saw it.”

“I guess you’d say it’s historical fantasy,” he says of the film, which is actually about European mercenaries searching for gun powder, but who end up defending the wall against a horde of monsters.

Damon blames misunderstanding about the film on early promotional images.

“Those allegations were kind of centered on the poster. And it said, The Great Wall, and then it was my name and my face and people were like, ‘What the…? You know, right?'” he explains. “So there was this kind of outcry, like, I think people maybe thought it was something about building the Great Wall, or something having to do with actual Chinese history.”

Instead, he explains, “It’s this crazy monster movie. You know, so it’s 1100 A.D., but there are monsters. I guess kinda like Game of Thrones.”

The Great Wall, co-starring Willem Dafoe, opens in limited release Thursday, nationwide on Friday.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Scarlett Johansson says monogamy isn’t ‘natural’ but ‘a lot of work’

Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) — In a recent interview with Playboy magazine, actress Scarlett Johansson gets candid about relationships, saying they are “a lot of work.”

In fact, she admits she’ll probably get flack for it, but she believes the idea of marriage and monogamy isn’t “natural.” Reports surfaced earlier this year that the Ghost in the Shell star and her husband, Romain Dauriac, had split, according to The Associated Press. It’s not clear if this interview was conducted before those reports broke.

“With every gain there’s a loss, right?” Johansson told Playboy. “ So, that’s the loss. You have to choose a path. I think the idea of marriage is very romantic; it’s a beautiful idea, and the practice of it can be a very beautiful thing. I don’t think it’s natural to be a monogamous person. I might be skewered for that, but I think it’s work. It’s a lot of work.”

The 32-year-old actress, who wed Dauriac in 2014 and has a daughter, Rose, with him, added that with so many other couples having to work at it as well, “that proves that it is not a natural thing.”

“It’s something I have a lot of respect for and have participated in, but I think it definitely goes against some instinct to look beyond,” she added.

Johansson was also married to actor Ryan Reynolds from 2008 to the early 2010s.

“Being married is different than not being married, and anybody who tells you that it’s the same is lying,” the actress said. “It changes things. I have friends who were together for 10 years and then decided to get married, and I’ll ask them on their wedding day or right after if it’s different, and it always is. It is.”

Said Johansson, “It’s a beautiful responsibility, but it’s a responsibility.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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AMC theaters offer free screenings of ‘Hidden Figures’

Octavia Spencer (center) in “Hidden Figures”; Hopper Stone/FOX(NEW YORK) — In celebration of Black History Month, 21st Century Fox and AMC theaters have teamed up to offer free screenings of the Oscar-nominated film Hidden Figures.

According to Variety, fourteen U.S. cities have been chosen to participate in the screenings, set to take place on February 18. Those fourteen cities include New York City, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles and others, with show times to begin at 10 a.m. local time.

The film, which has been nominated for three Academy Awards including Best Picture, stars Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, and Janelle Monáe as three black NASA mathematicians who were instrumental in helping the U.S. space program launch astronaut John Glenn into orbit, despite the racial segregation of the 1960s.

In addition to its critical acclaim, the historical drama has exceeded expectations at the box office, grossing over $144 million in the U.S.

“The storytelling and message that Hidden Figures carries is endearing and inspiring…We have witnessed first-hand the powerful impact it is having on audiences,” said Elizabeth Frank of AMC in a statement.

Tickets for the screening will be on a first-come-first-served basis and can be reserved on AMC theaters’ website.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Ashton Kutcher blows a kiss to Sen. John McCain at Senate hearing

Leigh Vogel/Getty Images(WASHINGTON, D.C.) — Actor Ashton Kutcher and Arizona Sen. John McCain shared a playful moment at the beginning of a Senate hearing on Wednesday when McCain teased Kutcher about his appearance.

McCain joked, “Ashton you’re better looking in the movies,” which led Kutcher to blow McCain an air kiss before he continued his remarks.

The lighthearted moment kicked off a hearing on the serious issue of modern day slavery and sex trafficking. Kutcher was asked to testify because of his position as the chairman and co-founder of Thorn, a company that builds software to fight human trafficking and sexual exploitation of children.

“This is about the time when I start talking about politics that the Internet trolls tell me to go back to my day job,” Kutcher quipped as he introduced his work with Thorn.

But he also said the issue of protecting children touches him personally as a father.

“My other day job is that of a father of two, a 2-month-old and a 2-year-old,” he said. “And as part of that job that I take very seriously, I believe that it is my effort to pursue their right to pursue happiness and to ensure society and government defends it as well.”

Kutcher has worked with McCain on this issue before. The McCain Institute partnered with Thorn to create a tool called Spotlight that helps law enforcement identify and stop online human trafficking networks.

“Spotlight was only enabled by the McCain Institute and the full support of Sen. McCain and a man that I find not only to be a war hero but a hero to this issue, John McCain,” Kutcher said during his testimony.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Ricki Lake’s ex-husband has died after struggle with bipolar disorder

Amanda Edwards/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) — Actress and former talk show host Ricki Lake has revealed that her ex-husband has died at age 45 after a life-long battle with bipolar disorder.

Lake shared the tragic news by posting a photo of the two of them on Instagram on Tuesday, and captioning it:

“It is with a heavy heart that I share that my beloved soulmate, Christian Evans has passed. The world didn’t understand this man, but I did. He succumbed to his life long struggle with bipolar disorder. For anyone who has ever lost a family member or friend to mental illness, my heart goes out to you.”

Lake continued, “I am a greater person for having known him and spent the past 6 and a half years of my life with him. He was a man of love and what mends my broken heart today is knowing that he is finally at peace and his spirit is free.”

She ended with, “Rest in peace, my love.”

The pair got engaged in August 2011 and they eloped in 2012. Lake separated from Evans on October 9, 2014 and she filed for divorce a week later, citing irreconcilable differences. Lake was previously married to Rob Sussman, and they have two sons named Milo, who is 19, and Owen, who is 15.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Will Smith and James Corden “Get Jiggy wit It” in new “Carpool Karaoke” trailer

Neilson Barnard/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — An extended trailer for Carpool Karaoke: The Series, a standalone show based on James Corden’s popular Late Late Show segment is available on YouTube, and features previously unreleased footage with Will Smith, among others.

In the clip, Smith and Corden rap the theme from Smith’s 1990s sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Other scenes include the two performing “Gettin’ Jiggy wit It,” accompanied by a marching band, and singing R. Kelly’s “I Believe I Can Fly” in a helicopter.

The trailer also features R& B artists John Legend and Alicia Keys singing with a choir in a laundromat; Billy on the Street‘s Billy Eichner and rockers Metallica leading supermarket shoppers and employees in the band’s “Enter Sandman”; country star Blake Shelton and talk show host Chelsea Handler in a bar belting out a drunken version of Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer”; and wrestler John Cena and seven-foot former pro basketball player Shaquille O’Neal hillariously trying to squeeze into a tiny car.

Pop superstar Ariana Grande and Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane and Good Morning America co-host Michael Strahan and race car driver Jeff Gordon also show up in the video.

Carpool Karaoke: The Series will premiere on Apple Music.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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2017 “Sports Illustrated” swimsuit issue cover model revealed

Gregg DeGuire/WireImage(LOS ANGELES) — On Tuesday night Kate Upton was revealed as the 2017 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue cover model on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live!

Jimmy Kimmel had the first interview with Upton after making the announcement during the broadcast.

Upton appeared in a tight white dress and joined Jimmy on the couch to thunderous applause. Kimmel pointed out that this is her third Sports Illustrated cover, but that Elle Macpherson holds the record with five.

Upton revealed that she didn’t find out she was on the cover until Monday, but did tell her family, including husband, Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander, who started spring training on Tuesday.

Jimmy said that she hadn’t seen the cover yet and then showed her some gag covers, including one of Upton buried in sand.

The actual cover was presented in a projection on the Empire State Building in New York City, and then Kimmel revealed that Sports Illustrated is issuing three collector’s covers, with an especially provocative cover featuring Upton in what Kimmel referred to as “a hammock that got torn to bits.”

A website — SI Swimsuit — launched at immediately following the broadcast. The announcement kicks off a week of festivities culminating in Vibes by Swimsuit, a music, food and culture festival taking place in Houston, February 17 and 18.

Jimmy Kimmel Live! airs week nights at 11:35 p.m. on ABC.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Harrison Ford involved in incident with passenger jet, sources say

Michael Kovac/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) — Harrison Ford was involved in an incident involving a passenger jet, sources told ABC News.

The actor, who is also a private pilot, was landing a plane at John Wayne Airport in Orange County when he flew over an American Airlines 737 aircraft bound for Dallas – Ft. Worth.

There were no injuries and the FAA is currently investigating the situation.

Ford’s publicist told ABC News he had no official statement about the incident.

The 74-year-old Star Wars: The Force Awakens star has been an avid airman for some time. In 2015, he was injured when the World War II-era plane he was flying crashed on a golf course near Santa Monica, California. Just after takeoff, Ford reported engine trouble, according to National Transportation Safety Board investigator Patrick Jones, and then allegedly came up short of the runway.

“The airplane Harrison was flying was an old model. It was built for slow speed and maneuverability,” ABC News aviation consultant John Nance said at the time. “I think what happened in this instance is the wheels dug into the wet ground and that made the aircraft stop too quickly.”

That October, Ford told Jimmy Kimmel that he remembered the engine stopping and telling the tower that he was going to ignore their suggestion of continuing on the usual landing route, but that was “the last thing I remember till five days afterwards.”

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Netflix reveals first ‘Stranger Things’ season two photos

Jackson Davis/Netflix(NEW YORK) — If you’re one of the many Stranger Things fans who are anxiously waiting for the hit sci-fi drama’s second season to begin, Netflix has just given us a sneak peek with some new photos.

Speaking of season two — word is it begins a year after Noah Schapp’s character, Will Byers, returns to the town of Hawkins, and everything seems perfectly normal. But this being Stranger Things, you know things are going to get pretty weird, pretty soon.

In addition to Schapp, Stranger Things stars Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Millie Bobbie Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Natalia Dyer, Charlie Heaton, Cara Buono and Joe Keery.

Stranger Things season two premieres Halloween weekend on Netflix.

Image courtesy Netflix

Image courtesy NetflixImage courtesy NetflixImage courtesy Netflix

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