Arts & Entertainment

This page is specifically for ‘all things’ Arts and Entertainment. I am totally convinced that all things entertainment are as much a part of Americana as any other conscription of American society. Feel free to discuss ‘all things entertainment.’

Yvette Wilson (born March 6, 1964 – June 15, 2012, in Los Angeles, California)

   Yvette Wilson was an American comedian and actress. She is best known for her role as Andell Wilkerson on the UPN sitcom Moesha and its spinoff The Parkers. She has appeared on many comedy films such as House Party 2, House Party 3, Friday, and on Russell Simmons’ Def Comedy Jam.
On June 15, 2012, Yvette lost her battle to cervical cancer and died.

The Fearsome Threesome…Awesome!

  I’m sure that we join in with fans, admirers,  historians, enthusiasts, literally from the entire planet in  C-O-N-G-R-A-T-U-L-A-T-I-O-N-S to Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, and Taylor Lautner for their very recent “Stars on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame and their hand, feet, and autograph ceremony in front of the Grumman’s Chinese Theater.

This is but another tribute to their work together on the Twilight Saga moreover, it is a tribute to each of the participants other works. When we saw this and later heard via The Jimmy Kimmel Show that Ms. Kristen Stewart didn’t even tell her parents until the evening before!

We are so proud of these three and all the characters of the set of films who have literally touched our hearts.

Bubba Smith, NFL Great, Found Dead

 Former NFL star Bubba Smith, who went from feared defensive end on the field to endearing giant in his successful second career as an actor, died Wednesday. He was 66 years of age.

The top overall pick in the 1967 draft after a sensational career at Michigan State, the 6-foot-7 Smith spent five seasons with the Baltimore Colts and two seasons each with Oakland and Houston. He won the 1971 Super Bowl with the Colts.

As an actor his most memorable role was playing Moses Hightower, the soft-spoken officer in the “Police Academy” series. He also appeared in such television series as “Good Times,” ”Charlie’s Angels,” and “Half Nelson,” and was a regular in the
ground-breaking Miller Lite commercials featuring retired players.

Congrats to Harry Potter!

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 soared into the record books with the highest-grossing opening weekend ever. The series finale drew an estimated $168.55 million on around 11,000 screens at 4,375 locations, dethroning The Dark Knight’s $158.4 million. Deathly Hallows Part 2’s first weekend flew past the previous franchise high of $125 million, posted by Deathly Hallows Part 1 last November, and it topped the franchise in terms of estimated attendance as well.

The final chapter begins as Harry, Ron, and Hermione continue their quest of finding and destroying the Dark Lord’s three remaining Horcruxes, the magical items responsible for his immortality. But as the mystical Deathly Hallows are uncovered, and Voldemort finds out about their mission, the biggest battle begins and life as they know it will never be the same again.

So..What’s up Vanessa Carlton?

We are still trying to understand why it is so important for people to share the sexual preferences with the world. Why is it that someone feels entitled, empowered, and free to say anything about what happens behind closed doors at all?

Do you find the above statements offensive? We didn’t think so; what on earth is offensive about stating that one does not feel that it’s necessary or even appropriate to discuss or otherwise what one does as a couple in the privacy of their own homes. Make no mistake about this at all – we are very pro-privacy – inasmuch as we could clearly argue that it is certainly a “natural right” that people are entitled to have. However, that’s not the same as blabbering about it all over the world or as a celebrity, using the mass media to get your message out.

Why? Because that privacy belongs to you…that is yours. From the other point of view, openly discussing or even displaying what goes on behind closed doors could in fact, be offensive to others. Either way we like it the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment is meant to go both ways; however, not in America! That particular clause goes one way only.

Which brings us FINALLY to our point: Recently whilst doing some charitable work, none other than Vanessa Carlton went up to the microphone and declared that “…she was a happy bi-sexual woman…” What do we say? Who cares and keep it to yourself!

Thanks for the memories…Dennis Hopper 

Considering a career that spanned decades, Dennis Hopper worked, wrote, and partied with some of the most influential names not only in Hollywood, but it was what he did with his fame that got him recognized in the music industry, fashion and art industries as well. Most people became aware of Dennis Hopper as his role as Howard Payne, the estranged, disabled – retired bombing mastermind in Speed with Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock; however, during the early days for Hopper a full generation earlier, he was working with Jack Nicholson and Peter Fonda in the epic Easy Rider.
In fact many could argue that the 1960s were Dennis Hopper’s glory days. In the span of one year Hopper worked with Marlon Brando, Robert Duval, and Martin Sheen in Coppola’s Apocalypse Now. Even before that Oscar laden film was produced, Hopper was staring with Paul Newman in Cool Hand Luke, together with the “Duke” himself, John Wayne, in The Sons of Katie Elder and True Grit. We would be negligent if we did not mention Hopper’s work in the Clint Eastwood film Hang Em’ High.
Dennis Hopper had a way of transcending through the decades of film-making Hollywood as evidenced by his role in Edtv along with Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, Hoosiers with Gene Hackman and of course a wonderful film now, although not upon original release Waterworld, with Kevin Costner. If we were to include his performance in True Romance, it would be easy to count them up: Marlon Brando, Paul Newman, Peter Fonda, Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Robert Duval, Brad Pitt, Matthew McConaughey, Kevin Costner, Keanu Reeves, Christian Slater, and Nick Cage and that’s some of the men. R.I.P. Dennis!

Gary Coleman, television star of 1980-90s fame dies at 43 years of age

Many folks will never forget the cute and cuddly, the chubby-cheeked and ‘whatz u talkin’ bout,’ Willis’ star of the television series D’ffrent Strokes succumbed to his untimely, but long-lived life, on May 28, 2010. Unbeknownst to many was that just about every major in the television series — which was tremendously successful — had off-screen problems that could bring a grown man to tears. Let’s all remember Gary with a smile he branded on our faces.

John Hughes, unexpectedly dies of heart attack

John HughesJohn Hughes, the director of the 80s “brat pack” films Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club as well as the writer-producer of blockbuster hit Home Alone died suddenly of a heart attack in Manhattan on Thursday; he was 59.
A writer for National Lampoon magazine in the 70s, Hughes shot to fame in the early 80s by penning the hit comedy National Lampoon’s Vacation and made his directorial debut with Sixteen Candles in 1984 and went on to make such iconic teen films as The Breakfast Club and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off; he also wrote and produced Pretty in Pink, which starred his most famous leading actress, Molly Ringwald (who was in both Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club)

Walter Cronkite dies at 92

Walter CronkiteRevered U.S. news anchor Walter Cronkite has died after a long illness. He was 92.  The legendary broadcaster passed away at his New York home on Friday with his family at his bedside.

Cronkite fronted the evening news for American TV network CBS from 1962 to 1981, reporting on major events such as the moon landing, the infamous Watergate scandal during Richard Nixon’s White House administration, and the assassination of former U.S. President John F. Kennedy.

The CBS bulletin became the most watched news show in the country during Cronkite’s tenure, prompting viewers to vote him “the most trusted in America” in a 1972 poll.

Billy Mays found dead at home

mays1

Passion for products and life!

Television pitchman Billy Mays — who built his fame by appearing on commercials and infomercials promoting household products and gadgets — died Sunday.

Mays, 50, was found unresponsive by his wife inside his Tampa, Fla., home at 7:45 a.m. on Sunday, according to the Tampa Police Department.

Police said there were no signs of forced entry to Mays’ residence and foul play is not suspected. Authorities said an autopsy should be complete by Monday afternoon.

“Although Billy lived a public life, we don’t anticipate making any public statements over the next couple of days. Our family asks that you respect our privacy during these difficult times,” Mays wife, Deborah, said in a statement on Sunday.

Mays was well known for his numerous television promotions of such products as Orange Glo and OxiClean. He was also featured on the reality TV show “Pitchmen” on the Discovery Channel, which followed Mays and Anthony Sullivan in their marketing jobs.

David Carradine found dead

news_davidcarradineActor David Carradine, a born seeker and cult idol who broke through as the willing student called “grasshopper” in the 1970s TV series “Kung Fu” and decades later as leader of an assassin squad in “Kill Bill,” was found dead Thursday in Thailand. Police said he appeared to have hanged himself.

The officer responsible for investigating the death, Lt. Teerapop Luanseng, said “I can confirm that we found his body, naked, hanging in the closet,” He said police suspected suicide.

“My Uncle David was a brilliantly talented, fiercely intelligent and generous man. He was the nexus of our family in so many ways, and drew us together over the years and kept us connected,” Martha Plimpton said Thursday.

R.I.P. “Kwai Chang Caine”

Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen married (finally!) 

“Katherine Heigl and T.R. Knight leaving Gray’s Anatomy

tr-and-kate

I already miss her!!

Katherine Heigl and T.R. Knight will soon take off their scrubs for good, their Grey’s Anatomy costar confirms.

When Us Weekly asked James Pickens Jr. (a.k.a. Grey‘s Dr. Richard Webber) on February 7 if Heigl is leaving the medical drama, he said, “Yes, she is.” And he continued, “Wherever Katherine goes, I wish her nothing but the best.”

Not known by many, Ms. Heigl has been in the acting industry since very early in her life. Nothing could be better proof than her recent roles in Knocked Up and 27 Dresses.

Great news for Sir Paul McCartney fans, Paul scores AGAIN!

paul-n-nancyRumors–with wings–have been flying all day since British tabloids the Sunday Mirror and Sunday Telegraph published reports that Paul McCartney, make that Sir Paul McCartney, is poised to marry gal pal Nancy Shevell, whom he began dating a little over a year ago in the midst of his messy $50 million divorce from Heather Mills.

We don’t know exactly when, or IF, the rumored nuptials may take place. (A McCartney rep has denied the wedding gossip altogether.) Given Macca’s rep as a romantic–remember, it was a cozy Route 66 drive across the U.S. last summer that sealed his relationship with Nancy–could a Valentine’s Day ceremony be possible? But there is one thing we do know: While Groucho Marx once famously noted that “love flies out the door when money flies innuendo,” unlike the case with Heather Mills, no one’s going to be able to hurl any gold-digger dirt at the late-fortysomething  (and very hot!) Nancy Shevell.

Another thing we do know is that if Shevell needs a wedding dress, she’ll need look no further than her future stepdaughter, Stella McCartney. The second-oldest child of Paul and the late Linda McCartney’s three children, Stella is a successful fashion designer.

Travesty Toils in Travolta Family

John Travolta and his wonderful wife, Kelly Preston, have suffered perhaps the most egregious incident that any loving couple and family could ever face: the death of one of their children. Jett, who made Mr. Travolta’s face light up at the mere mention of his name, accidentally hit his head on the tub whilst having a seizure.

Although details remain sketchy at this time–indeed for the good of the family–and after so many celebrity related deaths getting far too much media attention, it is quite a relief that this particular accident is left well-alone.

From our staff here at American Age we wish all of the Travolta family peace in this great time of need. We also pray that the loving hand of God will hold and comfort them.

As for anything more, we simply will not be covering it out of respect for the Travolta family.

Tara Reid, Hollywood part-time actress and full time party animal enters rehab:

Tara Reid has seemingly spent the last decade out and about, but her latest destination hits much closer to home.

The American Pie actress and velvet-rope fixture has checked into Promises Treatment Center in Malibu, according to her publicist, Jack Ketsoyan.

We appreciate your respect to her and her family’s privacy at this time,” he said. Ketsoyan did not say what Reid is being treated for and no other details were forthcoming.

The 33-year-old Reid, whose personal life and plastic-surgery travails have earned her far more headlines than her career over the last few years, described herself to People a few months ago as “a social drinker.”

When asked whether she was still a party girl, the Taradise star said, “I’ve done enough of everything for a lifetime! I partied. I had fun. I ate and drank and dated a million guys, but I’m so happy with where I am right now. I don’t need to do any of that anymore.”

Who changed the way actor’s live more than Paul Newman? He didn’t live in Hollyweird, oh contraire! Paul blended in so well when his ‘acting career’ was said to be “over.” I will miss Paul Newman.

Bye-bye Bernie Mac, Damn how you made me laugh!

Bernie Mac died today after suffering from a rare lung disorder called Sarciodosis. He was just 50 years of age. Starting out as a stand-up comedian, Mr. Mac also began acting in minor roles, and received his big break as Pastor Clever in Ice Cube‘s 1995 film Friday. Following that role, Mac also worked in many other movies and had some television appearances in titles including Booty Call, How to Be a Player, Life and What’s the Worst That Could Happen?. Mac was one of the few African American comedic actors to be able to break out of the traditional “black comedy” genre.

May the Lord Bless and Keep You, Tony Snow 1955-2008

Tony Snow

Tony Snow

Tony Snow, former press secretary in the Bush administration, has gone home to resume his duties handling press and media matters in Heaven. Mr. Snow passed away today, July 12, 2008 at approximately 2:00 AM at Georgetown University Hospital.

Bush noted that Snow had worked as a speech writer in the administration of his father, former President George H.W. Bush, “and I was thrilled when he agreed to return to the White House to serve as my press secretary.”

Bush’s father, speaking to FOX News, said Snow did his job in a way that showed “the political process didn’t have to be mean and ugly.” Snow could “disagree, but do it agreeably, the former president said.

 Rest in Peace, Brother, George Carlin 1937-2008

George Carlin was so far ahead of his time that it took literally 50 years or longer for people to catch on to what this brilliant counter-culture comedian not only had to say…but what he was saying.

There will never be enough accolades now, or even in the future that will attest to his brilliance; although, I don’t think you’d ever hear him say that. It wasn’t until recently that Mr. Carlin started to acclaim the people because times have changed. In other words the world finally caught up to what he was saying.

‘Brother George’ grabbed my life as soon as I could listen to a 33 rpm “long-play album.” Carlin was a humorist; moreover, he was a realist that had the uncanny ability to make us laugh at ourselves as well as the government without using a foul word.

Most people these days say that his best performance of all time was his skit on the “7 Words You Can’t Use on Television.” However, if you want to hear George Carlin at what my friends believe was his greatest of all time skit…”Drugs” is the one for all of us.

Yves Saint Laurent, Ultra-Famous Designer, Dead at 71 

PARIS – Yves Saint Laurent, one of the most influential and enduring designers of the 20th century, empowered women by reinventing pants as a sleek, elegant staple of the female wardrobe.

Saint Laurent, 71, died Sunday night at his Paris home after a yearlong battle with brain cancer, said Pierre Berge, Saint Laurent’s close friend and business partner for four decades.

Saint Laurent widely was considered the last of a generation that included Christian Dior and Coco Chanel and made Paris the fashion capital of the world, with the Rive Gauche, or Left Bank, as its elegant headquarters.

“Chanel gave women freedom,” and Saint Laurent “gave them power,” Berge said on France-Info radio. He called Saint Laurent a “true creator” who went beyond the aesthetic to make a social statement.

“In this sense, he was a libertarian, an anarchist and he threw bombs at the legs of society,” he said. “That’s how he transformed society and that’s how he transformed women.”

Further reading please see here

 Sir Paul awarded a Doctorate degree from Yale University

 

From the Associated Press NEW HAVEN, Conn. — Paul McCartney can add one more honor to the numerous awards, accolades and the knighthood he has already received.

The ex-Beatle on Monday was awarded an honorary doctor of music degree from Yale University.

In granting the honorary degree to McCartney — Sir Paul McCartney since he was knighted in 1996 — the university said no one compared with the legendary songwriter.

The University said the ex-Beatle awakened a generation

Yale said the 65-year-old McCartney awakened a generation, giving a fresh sound to rock, roll, rhythm and blues.

Yale also conferred honorary degrees on former U.S. Trade Representative Carla Hills, astronomer Martin Rees, architect Cesar Pelli, poet John Lawrence Ashbery and others.

 Katie Holmes (Cruise) is Bouncing to Broadway!

The star of “Dawson’s Creek” and lovely wife of Tom Cruise, who most recently starred in this years “Mad Money” along with Diane Keaton and Queen Latifah, will hit the stage in a revival of Arthur Miller’s “All My Sons” this fall.

Fellow cast members include John Lithgow, Dianne Wiest, and Patrick Wilson. Exact dates and the precise theater will be announced.

The play, first seen on Broadway in 1947, was Miller’s first Broadway hit. It concerns businessman Joe Keller (Lithgow) whose factory supplied defective cylinder parts to the military resulting in the deaths of 21 pilots during World War II. However, it was his business partner who went to jail for the mistake. Tear em’ up Katie! 

James Garner hospitalized after stroke

 James Garner, who was hospitalized late last week after suffering a minor stroke, is doing well and should be going home shortly, the veteran television and film star’s publicist said Tuesday.

The star of such TV shows as “Maverick” and “The Rockford Files” went to the hospital after becoming ill at home Friday, said his publicist, Jennifer Allen. 

“He’s still in the hospital but my understanding is he is doing well and will be going home soon. When, exactly, we have not been told yet,” Allen told The Associated Press. 

Garner, who turned 80 last month, rose to prominence in the 1950s as the star of “Maverick,” playing a wry riverboat gambler who was quicker with a quip than a gun and, unlike his Western counterparts, was faster still to run from trouble than to face it. The show aired from 1957 to 1962 but Garner, who was nominated for an Emmy as Bret Maverick, left in 1960 to pursue a film career.

He has appeared in such films as “The Children’s Hour,” “Victor/Victoria,” “The Great Escape” and was nominated for an Oscar in 1985 as the small-town pharmacist opposite Sally Field in “Murphy’s Romance.”

Famed Hemingway office “Harry’s Bar”–Venice Italy


ROME (Reuters) – Harry’s Bar, the famed Venice watering hole where Ernest Hemingway held court over hearty food and stiff martinis, is offering a discount to “poor” Americans suffering from a weak dollar and subprime blues. 

The decision by the owner of the restaurant, one of the most expensive even when the U.S. currency is strong, underscores the growing concern about the weak dollar among tourism operators in Italy and elsewhere in Europe.

Outside one can see visual hand-made signs in the windows at Harry’s Bar stating: “20% Discount to our American friends…”

Now that’s pure class, but what else have we come to know about our Italian friends? Classy all the way!  

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