Audience members at the first showing of Simon Cowell's The X Factor musical in London were left waiting nearly an hour between acts due to technical problems. Preview performances of I Can't Sing!, a spoof of the British reality TV series which has been backed by Cowell, were pushed back twice as the production crew needed more time to work on the technical aspects of the show.
The West End musical was finally unveiled to the public on Wednesday (05Mar14), but the preview was hit with long delays.
The mid-show interval lasted nearly an hour due to a technical glitch and staff at the The London Palladium theatre handed out free drinks in a bid to keep the crowd happy.
A spokesperson for the show says, "We have a huge and ambitious set, which is thrilling our audiences when they see it, but we're aware that the turnaround between acts needs to be quicker and our technical teams continue to work extremely hard on shortening it. The preview period for any new West End show is, by its nature, a time for ironing out any issues and we fully recognise there's still work to do on the interval length, which is getting shorter all the time, and we thank everyone for their patience."
The show, starring Downton Abbey actor Nigel Harman, is due to officially open on 26 March (14)
Friends of tragic camera assistant Sarah Jones have set up an online campaign to improve safety on film sets. Jones was killed last month (Feb14) after she was hit by a train while shooting Allman Brothers biopic Midnight Rider in Georgia, and now her pals have created a website, where cast and crew members on film projects can pledge to protect their colleagues.
The document, which can be signed online, reads in part: "I solemnly pledge from this day forward that a safe set will be my first and highest priority. I pledge to look out for the safety of those around me and in turn will expect others to do the same."
Jones' friends write: "We have to be our own safety net because we are the only ones there in the moment. We need to be willing to speak up, speak loud, and more importantly support others in doing so."
The website also includes safety hotline numbers.
The cast and crew of hit sci-fi film Gravity have been sent congratulatory messages from space following the film's triumph at the Oscars. The drama, which stars Sandra Bullock as an astronaut, won seven Academy Awards, including Best Director for Alfonso Cuaron, at the glitzy Hollywood prizegiving on Sunday (02Mar14), and the story resonated with the team at the International Space Station.
Real life astronauts Michael S. Hopkins, Richard Mastracchio and Koichi Wakata sent a video message to the Gravity team to congratulate them on their Oscars glory.
In the film, which was shot onboard the space station, Hopkins performed multiple celebratory somersaults in zero gravity, while his colleagues praised the film's "stunning visuals and stark imagery".
NASA veteran Mike Massimino also recorded a video to congratulate the Gravity crew, along with Catherine 'Cady' Coleman, while representatives at the space agency said in a statement, "NASA congratulates everyone involved with producing the movie Gravity for all of the Oscar wins, especially Alfonso Cuaron for winning best director at the 86th Academy Awards ceremony."
The videos were posted on NASA's website.
British TV host Chris Tarrant was hospitalised on Saturday (01Mar14) after falling ill on a flight to London. The Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? presenter was returning to the U.K. from Thailand when he alerted the cabin crew that he was feeling unwell.
An ambulance was waiting at Heathrow Airport upon landing to take the 67 year old to London's Charing Cross Hospital.
His manager Paul Vaughan believes the health scare was down to Tarrant's long-running battle with asthma.
He says, "I've been his manager for 30 years, and I know that if he goes down like a ton of bricks it's usually asthma.
"I'm surmising, but I think his asthma attack might have been triggered by a night-time stopover in Bangkok, which has very poor air quality."
Tarrant, who quit his hit quiz show last month (Feb14) after 15 years, was in Asia shooting a new travel series.
The cast of TV musical Glee remembered their late colleague Cory Monteith on Monday (24Feb14) as they celebrated the show's 100th episode. The cast, crew and network executives behind the hit TV series gathered on the show's set in California to mark the occasion.
Dana Walden, chairman of 20th Century Fox Television, gave a moving speech at the event and paid tribute to Monteith, who died of a drug overdose last year (13).
Walden said, "We've celebrated so many milestones on this stage and most recently we celebrated the life of our good friend and colleague, Cory Monteith. I miss Cory a lot today. He was always front and center at an event like this; he really loved them and was always smiling in the front row. He was so proud of this show. He was blown away by the talent that surrounded him - and he had very good reason to be proud."
Former cast members Dianna Agron and Amber Riley returned to film appearances in the milestone 100th episode alongside Lea Michele, Chris Colfer, Darren Criss, Naya Rivera.
The show's two-part 100th episode is set to air in the U.S. on 18 March (14) and 25 March (14).
U.S. soap The Bold & The Beautiful is set to make TV history by becoming the first American daytime drama to shoot in the United Arab Emirates. The hit show will shoot in Abu Dhabi and Dubai next month (Mar14) with leading actors Thorsten Kaye, Don Diamont and Katherine Kelly Lang making the trip with the crew.
The episodes shot in the Middle East will air in the summer (14), according to TV Guide magazine.
Show producer Bradley Bell says, "This is a great opportunity for us. B&B (sic) is really popular on the Dubai One network and that's opened up a lot of doors. We don't quite know what to expect but that's always the most fun part of this job - going off and trying things we've never done before. It's very exciting."
Actress Lang will compete in a triathlon in Abu Dhabi during filming.
Bell explains, "Kelly asked me for time off to take part in the event and I said, 'Well, how about we all come with you?', so we're going to back up the station wagon and all pile in!"
"I turned 21 on the set of that film. I will never forget it, because obviously you turn 21 and you're like, 'Woo! 21!" We were working nights, so Jim and the whole crew helped me celebrate that night." Cameron Diaz reflects on celebrating her milestone birthday with The Mask co-star Jim Carrey on the set of the hit 1994 comedy, which marked her film debut.
Aviation officials in the U.S. have launched an investigation into allegations Justin Bieber and his entourage broke regulations on a private jet flight. The pop superstar chartered a plane to fly himself and a group of friends from his native Canada to New Jersey on 31 January (14) ahead of the Super Bowl football game there on 2 February (14), but hit headlines after landing when the aircraft was raided by drug police and border officials.
A subsequent incident report from the flight, obtained by Nbcnews.com, alleged the group had been smoking marijuana onboard and had been rude and disruptive to the flight attendant.
It has now emerged FAA executives have launched a probe into what happened onboard the plane.
An FAA representative says in a statement, "The FAA is looking into allegations that passengers on board a Gulfstream GIV aircraft that landed at Teterboro Airport on Friday January 31, 2014 interfered with the flight crew in violation of FAA regulations."
The body's rules state: "No person may assault, threaten, intimidate, or interfere with a crew member in the performance of the crew member's duties aboard an aircraft."
The plane's incident report alleges the stewardess onboard Bieber's plane was left cowering in the cockpit after a run-in with the group during the flight.
Moviemaker Cameron Crowe has added his name to the long list of celebrities paying tribute to actor Philip Seymour Hoffman after penning an essay about his Almost Famous star on his The Uncool blog. Hoffman died of an apparent drug overdose on Sunday (02Feb14) and many of the actor's co-stars and famous friends flooded Twitter.com and Facebook.com to pay their respects.
A day after the tragedy unfolded, Crowe remembered Hoffman, who portrayed journalist Lester Bangs in his hit 2000 film.
In his letter, the director recalled a special scene in the movie, which Hoffman made his own.
He wrote: "My original take on this scene was a loud, late-night pronouncement from Lester Bangs. A call to arms. In Phil’s hands it became something different. A scene about quiet truths shared between two guys, both at the crossroads, both hurting, and both up too late.
"It became the soul of the movie. In between takes, Hoffman spoke to no one. He listened only to his headset, only to the words of Lester himself. (His Walkman was filled with rare Lester interviews). When the scene was over, I realized that Hoffman had pulled off a magic trick. He’d leapt over the words and the script, and gone hunting for the soul and compassion of the private Lester, the one only a few of us had ever met.
"Suddenly the portrait was complete. The crew and I will always be grateful for that front row seat to his genius."
R&B star Akon has asked a judge to throw out a lawsuit accusing him of failing to secure his rapper pal Pitbull for an Egyptian artist's music video. The Lonely singer was slapped with legal action by Arab musician Tamer Hosny last week (ends24Jan14) amid claims Akon had reneged on a $300,000 (£187,500) deal for the hitmaking pair to appear in the promo for his new song, Arabian Knight.
Hosny alleged the no-show by Pitbull cost him $100,000 (£62,500) in equipment rental fees and a day's pay for the video crew, and demanded compensation.
However, Akon has now hit back at the accusations, insisting he never agreed to get his Shut It Down collaborator to sign on for the job because he is not Pitbull's agent.
He has also disputed the amount he was paid for his involvement, revealing Hosny only gave him $145,000 (£90,625) to provide vocals for Arabian Knight.
Akon is adamant he fulfilled his end of the deal and has therefore requested the case be dismissed, reports TMZ.com