Arts / Entertainment

Gay media group awards Ricky Martin

Gay media group awards Ricky Martin

Latin pop star Ricky Martin was honored by media group GLAAD for his work as a role model at a gala held on Saturday where he urged people to spread gay rights throughout Latin America.
“I just want to be free. I can say, today I am free,” the Puerto Rican singer said at New York’s Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) Media Awards, which recognize the best portrayals of gay community members in film, television, radio, music, newspapers and blogs.

From film-making to cake-baking

Sandra Bullock and her sister, Gesine Bullock-Prado, no longer work together, but they are still close. It’s not every day that your pastries are served by a film star, but for residents of Montpelier, Vermont, that’s what happened the day a new cake shop opened in town – and Sandra Bullock arrived to work behind the counter.
As she boxed up sticky buns and worked the till, the Oscar-winner joked with the assembled news crews that she wouldn’t be depending on the shop for a

Romanian film festival tackles tough rights issues

BUCHAREST – The One World human rights film festival kicked off in Bucharest Thursday offering 37 documentaries promising to tackle sometimes prickly issues under the theme “What a wonderful world?!”. Alongside the showings at the six-day festival in the Romanian capital will be debates on its main themes with surprise 2010 Colombian presidential candidate Antanas Mockus, the ecologist ex-mayor of Bogota, a star guest.
The event is sorted into the categories “What would you do

Sandra Bullock donates $1m for Japan crisis

LOS ANGELES – US actress Sandra Bullock has donated $1 million to help victims of Japan’s earthquake and tsunami crisis, the latest celebrity to pledge aid, the American Red Cross said Thursday. The contribution, described as from Bullock and her family, came after the US aid agency announced it had given $10 million to the Japanese Red Cross to help after last Friday’s quake.
“The American Red Cross is extremely grateful for this generous support from Sandra Bullock and her

‘American Idol’ king of TV advertising revenue

LOS ANGELES – “American Idol” is the darling of TV advertisers, dwarfing other TV shows by raking in an estimated $7.11 million every half hour last year for the Fox network, according to a survey. The singing contest topped’s list of TV’s biggest moneymakers in 2010, despite sliding ratings last year and generally lackluster talent. Far behind “Idol” was America’s most-watched TV comedy “Two and A Half Men”, with an estimated $2.89 million in advertising revenue

LA Reid to join Simon Cowell’s ‘X-Factor’

LOS ANGELES – Music executive Antonio “L.A.” Reid stepped down from his job at Island Def Jam Music on Thursday and was widely reported to be headed for a judging job at upcoming TV talent show “The X-Factor”, Reid, 54, who helped Justin Bieber, Usher and P!nk become stars, resigned as chairman of the Island Def Jam record label, telling staff in a memo leaked to the media that he was looking forward “with much enthusiasm to what the future holds.” Reid’s resignation came a day after

More ‘American Pie’?

Movie fans are set for another slice of ‘American Pie’ – with the stars of the original comedy. Jason Biggs, Seann William Scott and Eugene Levy have reportedly signed up for the reunion movie and Universal studio bosses are in negotiations with other former regulars like Thomas Ian Nicholas, Mena Suvari and Jennifer Coolidge. The news comes just a day after Scott’s publicist confirmed the actor had checked into rehab for “health and personal issues”. The 1999 original and 2001 sequel

Batman’s butler Michael Gough dies

Michael Gough, the British actor best known for playing Bruce Wayne’s butler Alfred in a series of Batman movies, died Thursday at age 94, his ex-wife said. Gough appeared in more than 150 movies and television shows, including British science-fiction show ‘Doctor Who,’ and recently voiced characters in Tim Burton’s ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and ‘Corpse Bride.’ But he remains best remembered for his role as Alfred Pennyworth in the Batman franchise, opposite three different Batmans:

Adams eyes Japan Aid concert

Canadian rocker Bryan Adams is hoping one of his high-profile peers puts together plans for another Live Aid to help the earthquake and tsunami survivors in Japan. Adams was a part of 1985’s Live Aid supergig and has since performed at a number of big-name charity concerts – and he’s waiting to get the call to be part of a show to help raise funds for relief in Japan. He says, “I’m wondering when someone is going to put something together for Japan. It would be great if the rock

Technological changes may lead to ‘reading divide’

TOKYO – The rapid rise of e-books could lead to a “reading divide” as those unable to afford the new technology are left behind, even as U.S. reading and writing skills decline still further. At particular threat are African-American communities where many students are already falling behind their majority peers in terms of literacy, said award-winning writer Marita Golden — and this despite the growing ranks of noted African-American writers, such as Nobel Prize winner Toni

CEA pushes to standardise 3D glasses

NEW YORK – For those of you who hate the fact that each brand of 3D TV comes with its own set of glasses, the Consumer Electronic Association (CEA) is trying to standardize frames among all brands.
According to sources, the U.S. trade organization that oversees the electronic industry is trying to get companies to allow users to buy one set of glasses for all 3D TVs.
Right now, 3D TVs are split between majority stereoscopic 3D TVs that use active shutter technology and

Jodie Foster hires Mel Gibson

Actor and director Jodie Foster on Wednesday defended her choice of Mel Gibson for the lead role in her movie “The Beaver,” saying she had “no regrets” about hiring him despite his personal troubles that delayed its release.
“Obviously all sorts of stuff happened after the film was finished,” she said in a question-and-answer session following the movie’s premiere at Austin’s South by Southwest arts festival on Wednesday night. “I certainly have no regrets about him being in the

William and Kate set up charity fund

Prince William and bride-to-be Kate Middleton have set up a gift fund to allow well-wishers who want to give them a wedding gift to donate money to charities they care about instead, royal officials said on Wednesday.
The couple have chosen 26 charities which will benefit from the Royal Wedding Charitable Gift Fund, some of which are not well-known or work in specific communities, St James’s Palace said.
“These causes are close to their hearts and reflect the experiences,

Good cinema, not stars, to shine at Twitter film awards

MUMBAI – After years of Bollywood award functions dominated by glamorous movie stars, fans in India are now using Twitter to honour deserving performances snubbed by the more mainstream events.
A rant on Twitter about an apparent bias in Indian film awards led to the launch of the Tweeple Film Awards, with more than 1,500 Twitter users voting to choose the jury alone.
“Film awards are commercialised, pander to stars and are given out depending on which star is attending the

Shah Rukh Khan named worst actor

Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan can now claim the unique honour of winning the best and worst actor awards for the same film in the same year. Khan, who won the Filmfare trophy in January for his performance as a man with Asperger’s Syndrome in “My Name is Khan”, was awarded the worst actor award this week at the Golden Kela awards, India’s version of the Razzies that spoof the Oscars.
The film, directed by Karan Johar, also picked up the dubious honour of the worst film of

Wahlberg to revive ‘The Fighter’

LOS ANGELES – Mark Wahlberg is so proud of The Fighter’s Academy Awards success, he is making plans to revive the boxing movie for a sequel. The actor plays real life boxing legend ‘Irish’ Micky Ward in the picture, opposite Christian Bale as Ward’s half-brother Dicky Ecklund.
‘The Fighter’ scored a number of high-profile awards nominations and Bale went on to win the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his performance, while Melissa Leo walked away with the Best Supporting Actress

Japanese quake shakes up Hollywood

TOKYO – Early estimates indicate a steep drop-off in box office revenue outside the U.S. immediately following the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The country is one of Hollywood’s biggest international markets, although industry analysts say the disaster’s long-term financial impact on movie studios should be limited.
Box office revenue in Japan plunged about 41 percent last weekend, compared with the prior weekend, according to data from Rentrak Corp. In the U.S., the decline