Music mogul Clive Davis and Billy Joel's backing band will headline the inductees into the Long Island Music Hall of Fame in New York next week (23Oct14). Rapper Kurtis Blow, songwriter Gerry Goffin, Patti Lupone and Debbie Gibson are also among the local heroes who make up the fifth induction class, while Darryl 'D.M.C.' McDaniels has been named the recipient of the 2014 Harry Chapin Award.
Joel and McDaniels' group Run-D.M.C. have already been inducted - the Piano Man singer was among the inaugural class in 2006. His bandmates, drummer Liberty DeVitto, bassist Doug Stegmeyer, Richie Cannata and guitarist Russell Javors, have backed the star since the mid-1970s. Cannata left the group in 1982 and Stegmeyer died in 1995.
Previous Long Island Music Hall of Fame inductees include the Ramones, Tony Bennett, Public Enemy, Lou Reed, Mariah Carey and John Coltrane.
Neil Patrick Harris will host the 2015 Academy Awards!
The former How I Met Your Mother star is no stranger to hosting big ceremonies - he previously hosted the Tony Awards four times, and the Emmy Awards twice. Harris even scored three consecutive Outstanding Special Class Programme Emmy trophies for his contribution to the Tonys. Announcing the news on Wednesday (15Oct14), Oscars producer Neil Zadan said:
"We are thrilled to have Neil host the Oscars. We have known him his entire adult life, and we have watched him explode as a great performer in feature films, television and stage. To work with him on the Oscars is the perfect storm, all of his resources and talent coming together on a global stage." The Gone Girl star added, "It is truly an honour and a thrill to be asked to host this year’s Academy Awards. I grew up watching the Oscars and was always in such awe of some of the greats who hosted the show. To be asked to follow in the footsteps of Johnny Carson, Billy Crystal, Ellen DeGeneres, and everyone else who had the great fortune of hosting is a bucket list dream come true."
The 87th Academy Awards will air live on 22 February, 2015. This year's (14) ceremony was hosted by Ellen DeGeneres.
Rapper T.I. was the guest of honour in Jackson, Mississippi on Wednesday (24Sep14) as he was presented with the key to the city. The Live Your Life hitmaker was feted during a special ceremony at City Hall, which was hosted by Mayor Tony Yarber, who praised the hip-hop star for using his many brushes with the law to encourage youths to make the right choices.
Accepting the accolade, T.I. said, "I can't really change everyone's opinion of me but I can change me.
"Everybody don't catch on and everybody don't acknowledge change at the same time, but the good part is, I ain't doing it for them (sic). I don't need credit. Just knowing that I can use my experiences, my past, good and bad, to help assist the future: children, teenagers, young adults and the grown people who may have gone through the same things. They can have an example showing that, 'Hey, just because I fell down in something, doesn't mean I got to stay down in it'. When it's all said and done, I've seen people rise from the wreckage."
During his visit to Jackson, T.I. also stopped by local schools to speak to students about how he overcame his troubled past. The rapper spent time behind bars for possession of weapons and drugs.
His Mississippi honour was an early birthday present of sorts for T.I. - the rapper/actor turned 34 on Thursday (25Sep14).
Dexter star Michael C. Hall is set for a Broadway return as a transgender German rock star. The actor will take over the lead in Hedwig & the Angry Itch when Andrew Rannells completes his run in the show.
Rannells replaced Tony Award winner Neil Patrick Harris in the show earlier this year (14), and will play Hedwig at the Belasco Theatre next month (Oct14).
Hall will take over the lead from 16 October (14) and stay with the quirky musical until 4 January (15).
The actor made his Broadway debut as the emcee in Cabaret in 1999 and played Billy Flynn in Chicago in 2002, while he wrapped up his latest New York stage stint in The Realistic Joneses in July (14).
Spandau Ballet are to return to the stage in Britain for the first time in four years when they perform at the U.K. premiere of their new movie next month (Sep14). Singer Tony Hadley and his group proved to be a big draw when they played after the film's premiere during this year's South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, and now they're planning a repeat performance at London's Royal Albert Hall.
Spandau Ballet will play a hits-packed set on 30 September (14) after the screening of their career documentary Playboys of the Western World.
The big event will be beamed to cinemas all over the U.K. and Ireland via satellite.
The group last performed at the Royal Albert Hall in 1983.
Samuel L. Jackson is in talks to replace his Django Unchained co-star Jamie Foxx in Kevin Hart's new movie The Black Phantom.
The Pulp Fiction star has become the frontrunner to become the Phantom's nemesis-turned-sidekick in the film, according to Deadline.com.
The film will team Hart with his Ride Along director Tim Story again, while producer Clint Culpepper previously worked with Jackson on 2008 thriller Lakeview Terrace.
Actor Neil Patrick Harris has landed a role in the new American Horror Story series after writing to creator Ryan Murphy and asking for a part.
The former How I Met Your Mother star, who is currently starring on Broadway in Hedwig & the Angry Inch, recently told Entertainment Weekly Radio that he had penned a request note to Murphy, suggesting himself for upcoming series, Freak Show.
He said, "I wrote a letter to Ryan asking if I can be in it, even though I wasn't even available to be in it. To do one that involves any kind of freak, circus nonsense is going to be so unsettling to watch."
Murphy caught wind of the radio chat and has since responded to Harris via Twitter, writing, "@ActuallyNPH of course you can be on Freak Show! I have a role I think you'd love."
Harris previously worked with Murphy in an episode of Glee, for which he won an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series in 2010.
MGM via Everett Collection
Veteran stage and screen icon Elaine Stritch has died at the age of 89. The actress passed away at her home in Birmingham, Michigan on Thursday (17Jul14).
The star, known for her brash attitude and sharp tongue, began her career with her first stage role in 1944 and made her Broadway debut in Loco just two years later (46).
She went on to become a regular in New York's famous theatre district, featuring in a hit 1952 revival of the musical Pal Joey and landing her first leading Broadway role in Goldilocks in 1958. Her other theatre credits include parts in Noel Coward's Sail Away, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Stephen Sondheim's 1970 musical Company, a role she reprised in 1972 when it opened in London's West End.
She later won high praise for her one-woman show Elaine Stritch at Liberty, for which she won a Tony Award in 2001. During the production, in which she recounted her life story, Stritch revealed she had tried and failed to win the role of Dorothy Zbornak in hit TV series The Golden Girls, a job which went instead to Bea Arthur.
Her early TV appearances came on shows like The Growing Paynes, Studio One and the classic British comedy series Two's Company. In more recent years, she appeared in U.S. soap One Life to Live, 3rd Rock from the Sun and Law & Order, while she earned an Emmy Award playing Alec Baldwin's mother on 30 Rock.
Stritch's filmography included parts in the 1957 remake of A Farewell to Arms, The Perfect Furlough, Providence and Woody Allen films September (1987) and Small Time Crooks (2000). She also portrayed Winona Ryder's grandmother in Autumn in New York and Jane Fonda's acerbic mum in 2005's Monster in Law.
The actress, who was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame in 1995, bid farewell to fans with her Movin' Over and Out concert series in the Big Apple in April, 2013, before moving to Michigan to spend more time with her family.
Hollywood actress Maggie Gyllenhaal is hiding a secret smoking habit.
The Dark Knight star, who is a mother to two young daughters, insists she doesn't puff on cigarettes regularly, but often falls "off the wagon" and buys a pack.
She tells Britain's Stylist magazine, "I don't smoke cigarettes officially but now and then I fall off the wagon. I can't keep it up at home. I can't smoke as a mother - it's too much sneaking around... I'm buying cigarettes and I'm like, 'What am I doing? Pull it together!'"
Justin Timberlake gave his blessing to a group of Broadway stars who covered his songs in a special cabaret show on Monday night (14Jul14).
The Mirrors hitmaker is currently in the middle of his own The 20/20 Experience World Tour, but took time to send a special delivery to the cast of Broadway Sings Justin Timberlake in New York City.
A post from the official Broadway Sings Twitter.com account featured a photo of a bouquet of four dozen white roses, along with a handwritten note which read, "Break legs! I am very honored (sic). Best, JT."
Broadway stars including Tony Award winner Lena Hall and former Smash actor Andy Mientus were part of the showcase, which included covers of Timberlake's hits such as Cry Me a River, Suit & Tie and a number of 'N Sync tracks.
The concert was sold out, but the cast will take to the stage again next Monday (21Jul14).