"We had not met before. We just sent messages through family and I really did not want to talk to her." Jill Scott on meeting James Brown's first wife Deedee at the New York premiere of new biopic Get On Up. Scott portrays Deedee in the film.
Sir Anthony Hopkins has become the latest movie star to sign up for a TV series after joining the cast of a new project inspired by director Michael Crichton's cult 1973 movie Westworld. Evan Rachel Wood will also star in the project, which will be produced by J.J. Abrams and Jerry Weintraub.
The original film starred Richard Benjamin, James Brolin and Yul Bryner, who portrayed creepy robot cowboy Gunslinger.
Rock icon Billy Joel is set to be honoured with America's prestigious Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.
The Piano Man star has been selected as the 2014 recipient of the Library of Congress award, which is named after iconic composer George Gershwin and celebrates the lifetime achievements of a living musical artist.
Librarian of Congress James H. Billington says, "Billy Joel is a storyteller of the highest order. There is an intimacy to his songwriting that bridges the gap between the listener and the worlds he shares through music. When you listen to a Billy Joel song, you know about the people and the place and what happened there. And while there may be pain, despair and loss, there is ultimately a resilience to it that makes you want to go to these places again and again."
"Importantly, as with any good storyteller, the recognition experienced in a Billy Joel song is not simply because these are songs we have heard so many times, but because we see something of ourselves in them."
A flattered Joel adds, "The great composer, George Gershwin, has been a personal inspiration to me throughout my career and the Library's decision to include me among those songwriters who have been past recipients is a milestone for me."
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member will be presented with the accolade at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. in November (14).
Previous recipients include Paul Simon, Sir Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder and Carole King, who made history last year (13) as the first woman to ever claim the Gershwin Prize.
Getty Images/Bruce Glikas
Actor Zach Braff has denied rumours he's dating Taylor Swift, insisting he has sworn off dating "super-famous girls" after becoming a tabloid target while romancing singer/actress Mandy Moore.
Speculation recently surfaced that the former Scrubs star and the serial celebrity dater had become an item, but in an interview with U.S. shock jock Howard Stern on Monday (21Jul14), Braff quickly shot down the story. Calling the Love Story singer "a sweet girl" the actor explained he has only met Swift twice and romance reports are nothing but "Internet bulls**t".
Braff, who recently split from his model girlfriend Taylor Bagley after five years together, revealed he vowed never to date another celebrity after breaking up with Saved star Moore in 2006. He told Stern, "When you date another famous person, that's when they really hound you. That's when the paparazzi are outside your house and that's when you can't ride your bike through Manhattan because they follow you."
"When my relationship with Mandy ended, (my publicist) said, 'I'm going to give you a hint that you should know. If you don't date these 25 girls, your life will be so much easier.' And she was kind of exaggerating because there's more than those 25 girls, but in so many words, if you can, don't date other famous people because then all the tabloids pretty much leave you alone."
He added, "I could walk down the street, I don't get followed. Well, if you're going to hook up with a famous girl, that might be fun for your ego, but you don't want to be out in public dating a famous girl because then they follow you everywhere you go."
And Braff admitted he'd hate to have pal Harry Styles' life, adding, "He can't walk two f**king feet or a crowd forms and the paparazzi forms (sic)... He's the sweetest kid, but I don't want that existence."
Ironically, Styles briefly dated Taylor Swift at the end of 2102.
"I did not (know who he was). When I read the script, I was like, 'Is this a fictitious character?' (But) I did the research and I fell in love with this man... He was such a wonderful individual." Actor Nelsan Ellis had to study soul singer/producer Bobby Byrd's background before signing up to star as James Brown's best friend and confidante in new biopic Get On Up.
Dan Aykroyd has added his tribute to late friend and co-star James Garner, branding him a "first class actor and man". The old pals teamed up with another movie great, the late Jack Lemmon, for 1996 adventure comedy My Fellow Americans and Aykroyd admits he will cherish the time he spent with The Rockford Files star, who died on Saturday (19Jul14).
Remembering Garner during an appearance on U.S. breakfast show Today on Monday (21Jul14), the Ghostbusters star said, "What a classy guy. He was just the old school Hollywood. Gracious and generous...
"(He had) no pretensions at all. (I) got to work with him and Jack Lemmon in that picture My Fellow Americans, and James was just first class; (a) first class actor and man... He will be missed."
Moviemaker Ron Howard, singer/songwriter Carole King, actress Marlee Matlin and Garner's TV granddaughter Kaley Cuoco from 8 Simple Rules were among the first celebrities to offer up their tributes after news of the 86 year old's death broke on Sunday (20Jul14).
MCA Universal via Everett Collection
Philip Seymour Hoffman rejected a plan to set up a trust fund for his children shortly before his death.
The actor passed away in February (14) after suffering a heroin overdose, and he left the bulk of his estate to his longtime partner Mimi O'Donnell, the mother of his three children.
Court documents filed as part of the proceedings have revealed the star discussed a plan to set up a trust for his children with his accountant in the year before his death, but rejected the idea because he didn't want his kids to grow up spoiled.
Attorney James Cahill, Jr., who has been appointed to protect the interests of Hoffman's children, Cooper, 10, Tallulah, seven, and Willa, five, revealed the actor's discussions with accountant David Friedman in the paperwork filed at Manhattan Surrogate's Court in New York City.
In the documents, obtained by the New York Post, Cahill, Jr. states that Friedman "recalled conversations with (Hoffman) in the year before his demise where the topic of a trust was raised for the kids and summarily rejected by him" because he didn't want them to grow up as "trust-fund kids".
The documents also reveal Hoffman wanted O'Donnell to be given spousal rights even though they were not married, with Friedman stating that the actor "simply did not believe in marriage".
Actor Dan Aykroyd made quite an entrance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon in America on Friday night (18Jul14) by performing one of his favourite James Brown tunes with rock 'n' roll veteran Bobby Rush. The Blues Brothers star portrays Brown's manager Ben Bart in new biopic Get On Up and decided to promote the film with a musical tribute to his late hero.
Aykroyd and Rush performed Brown's I'll Go Crazy and the actor then explained to host Fallon that the number was special to him as he used it to persuade his late friend not to retire.
Aykroyd explained he performed the track when Brown was part of the Kennedy Center Honors in 2003.
The actor explained, "He was thinking about retiring and I sang it to kind of dissuade him from retiring - if you leave me, I'll go crazy... He was so much fun. He was a great guy, a wonderful man."
Brown died on Christmas Day (25Dec), 2006.
Moviemaker Ron Howard, Carole King and Marlee Matlin have led the early tributes to TV and film veteran James Garner, who passed away on Saturday (19Jul14), aged 86. The Rockford Files star died of natural causes at his home in Los Angeles on Saturday evening (19Jul14), and celebrities have flooded Twitter.com with their last respects.
Howard recalled the actor's role in 1966 movie Grand Prix, noting, "RIP James Garner. Admired by all who knew him. When starring in Grand Prix the people around F1 (Formula One) said he had the talent to be a pro driver," while singer/songwriter King remembered working with Garner on the set of Murphy's Romance, adding, "He was one of the nicest people".
Matlin tweets, "Now sad to read my dear friend & costar James Garner passed. RIP sweet Jim Rockford," and Forrest Gump star Gary Sinise, writes, "R.I.P James Garner. Such a lovely man I had the pleasure of working him in 1989 in My Name Is Bill W with James Woods", while Kaley Cuoco - Garner's TV granddaughter in 8 Simple Rules - adds, "I say this with a heavy broken heart. Was an honor working beside u receiving ur bear hugs every day. (love) u Grampa Jim (sic)."
Other tributes have come from singer LeAnn Rimes, Alan Cumming, Stephen Fry, former child star Haley Joel Osment, and Sally Field, who writes, "My heart just broke. There are few people on this planet I have adored as much as Jimmy Garner. I cherish every moment I spent with him and relive them over and over in my head. He was a diamond." Field starred alongside Garner in Murphy's Romance, which earned the actor an Oscar nomination.
The Rockford Files star James Garner has died, aged 86. Emergency services were called to his Los Angeles home on Saturday evening (19Jul14) and the actor was pronounced dead at the scene, according to a report by TMZ.com.
He died of natural causes, an officer from the Los Angeles Police Department told the Reuters news agency.
Garner is best known as detective Jim Rockford, the title character of crime series The Rockford Files. The series ran from 1974 to 1980 and he later reprised the role in the 1990s for several TV movies. He was nominated for his role at the Emmy Awards for five consecutive years and eventually won the accolade in 1977.
The actor is also famous for his leading role in western TV series Maverick, which began in the 1950s. He later co-starred with Mel Gibson in the 1994 big screen version.
He also appeared in 1963 movie classic The Great Escape, Grand Prix in 1966 and 1985's Murphy's Romance, which earned him an Academy Award nomination. His last notable film credit was in romance drama The Notebook in 2004.
In 2008, Garner suffered a stroke and had worked little since.
Director Ron Howard was among the first to pay tribute, writing in a post on Twitter.com, "RIP James Garner. Admired by all who knew him. When starring in Grand Prix the people around F1 said he had the talent to be a pro driver."
Actress Marlee Matlin adds, "Away from home; can't sleep. Now sad to read my dear friend & co-star James Garner passed. RIP (rest in peace) sweet Jim Rockford."