The U.K. Attorney General has declined to appeal disgraced entertainer Rolf Harris' five-year sentence for child sex offences after receiving a slew of complaints suggesting the punishment is not enough. The Australian singer/artist, 84, was ordered to serve five years and nine months behind bars in June (14), after he was convicted of 12 indecent assault charges regarding the molestation of four young girls between 1968 and 1986, when they were aged from seven to 19.
The punishment, handed down by judge Justice Sweeney, was considered by many to be too lenient and prompted 150 people to file official complaints about the sentence with U.K. authorities.
However, Attorney General Jeremy Wright has decided against challenging the sentence in the Court of Appeals.
A representative for the Attorney General's Office reveals, "He (Wright) did not think they (appeal judges) would find it to be unduly lenient and increase it...
"The sentencing judge was bound by the maximum sentence in force at the time of the offending.
"The judge made some of the sentences consecutive to reach the total sentence, but he could not simply add up sentences on individual counts; the overall sentence had to be just and proportionate to the overall offending."
Harris, who denied the counts, was stripped of his British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) fellowship and his Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame honour following his conviction.
Drew Barrymore's half-sister Jessica was found dead in her car on Tuesday (29Jul14). Jessica Barrymore, who shared the same father as Drew, was found in a vehicle in National City, just north of San Diego, California at 6am.
According to reports, local resident Marta Lopez found Jessica, 47, slumped behind the wheel of the car, which had blocked the driveway to Lopez's apartment building. Pills were discovered on the passenger seat and a can of energy drink was wedged between her legs.
The Medical Examiner's Office confirmed her identity to local radio station 10News.
An autopsy will be carried out to determine the cause of death.
Jessica would have turned 48 on Thursday (31Jul14). She is the daughter of John Drew Barrymore and his third wife Nina Wayne.
Buena Vista Pictures
Actress Mira Sorvino has blamed studio bosses at Disney for holding up plans for a sequel to her cult comedy Romy And Michele's High School Reunion.
The star teamed up with Lisa Kudrow for the wacky 1997 movie, which failed to make a big impact at the box office but has since become a cult hit, and in 2012, the two old pals sparked rumours they were reuniting for a long-awaited follow-up by posing for a photo together as their movie's superficial characters.
A representative for the film's fan-run Twitter account fuelled the reports by posting, "CONFIRMED. @LisaKudrow @MiraSorvino & others on board for R&M sequel but studio needs more demand! Urge @Disney, tell everyone & RETWEET!"
Now, Sorvino has revealed the project is on hold at Disney because executives are still not convinced a sequel will be a good business move.
Sorvino tells E! News, "Disney, if you're listening - everybody wants it! Me and Lisa... would love to do a sequel. We have asked Disney before. It's Disney that has to decide to say yes."
20th Century Fox Film
The power of YA fiction is undeniable. While not every film becomes a sure-fire hit in cinemas, some do gangbusters. It's a gamble, but one that can pay off extremely well. The last Hunger Games film netted $864 million worldwide, while other films like Divergent and The Fault in Our Stars both did great business that far exceeded their respective budgets. But the thing that all these films have in common are that they're all fronted by female protagonists. Looking on the other side of the coin, YA films with primarily male protagonist tend to not do nearly as well as their counterparts. From I Am Number Four, Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant, Alex Rider: Operation Stormbreaker, Ender's Game, City of Ember, the two Percy Jackson films, and countless others have all failed to become to next big thing in ya cinema. Outside of Harry Potter (which we're going to call the exception that proves the rule), it's hard to think of a male fronted YA series that has had as big of an impact as something like Twilgiht.
So what chance does The Maze Runner stand? The film, directed by Wes Ball, is only the latest hopeful in the YA film craze, one that shares a ton of themes with huge hits like The Hunger Games and Divergent. This time, dozens of teenage boys are locked in the middle of the glade, a grassy plain enclosed by gigantic maze with seemingly no solution. Each day, a group of boys ventures into the maze to search for clues, but many fall victim to the mysterious creatures that lurk in its passages.
The latest trailer boasts an intriguing premise with a ton of potential mysteries to be explored, but the undeniably male-centric cast might not have the appeal to capture as wide as an audience as a series like The Hunger Games, which has ballooned into a minor phenomenon. Since The Maze Runner is only the first part in a planned series of films, and answers to the mysteries won't likely come until deep into the series. We're hoping that this series goes the distance, but the box office may be a maze to complicated for this film to solve.
James Franco and Chris O'dowd's Broadway revival of John Steinbeck's classic novel Of Mice And Men bowed out on a box office high as it closed on Sunday (27Jul14) after raking in just under $1.04 million (£611,765) for the week's eight performances. The big figure set a new record for the show's venue, the Longacre Theatre, as it was the first time one of its productions had crossed the $1 million (£588,235) mark. The play had already recouped its $3.8 million (£2.24 million) investment in its first 12 weeks on the Great White Way.
Blockbuster movie Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes is spending a second week at the top of the U.K. box office chart after raking in $6.3 million (£3.7 million) last weekend (25-27Jul14). The sci-fi sequel held off competition from new releases Hercules, which took $2.3 million (£1.4 million) in its opening weekend, and dystopian horror sequel The Purge: Anarchy, which took $1.8 million (£1.1 million).
How To Train Your Dragon 2 slid two places into fourth with ticket sales of $1.6 million (£990,900), and the top five was rounded out by Transformers: Age Of Extinction, with takings of $1.3 million (£803,000).
Warner Bros. Pictures
San Diego Comic-Con: the annual gathering of comic book nerds, blockbuster action movie fans and the slightly terrifying people who still watch Supernatural religiously. It's the biggest pop culture event of the year, a time when studios bring the biggest and most shriek-inducing stars together to unveil new projects and showcase the exciting things fans will eventually be camped out all night for. And even though not all of us are lucky enough to experience Comic-Con in person, that doesn't mean we don't deserve to get all the up-to-the-minute news, reports and surprises. Since we here at Hollywood.com don't want you to miss out on all the excitement happening in Hall H or the surprises being unveiled over the weekend, we're running down the biggest news to come out of San Diego during the convention to ensure you can stay on top of everything, whether you're stuck in the office or waiting in line for another sold out panel.
All Bow Before ThanosAt the tail end of star-studded Avengers: Age of Ultron portion of the Marvel panel, Thanos himself, Josh Brolin joined the rest of the cast and riled up the crowd with a plastic Infinity Gauntlet, though this version of the legendary Marvel artifact probably doesn't have the power to create universe-spanning chaos like the real deal. The panel also featured short sneak preview of the upcoming film, which shows the team of heroes trading quips over drinks and taking turns trying to pick up Thor's hammer before banding together to battle Ultron. The trailer received a standing ovation from the mesmerized crowd.
The World's Finest Go Head to HeadIt looks like things are getting tense on the Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice set. The Warner Bros. panel featured Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill sizing each other up like prize fighters in front of an estatic Hall H crowd. We have to note how absolutely huge Affleck looked during the conference; Superman is certainly going to have his hands full. Director Zack Snyder then premiered a short sneak preview of the film, which showed a heavily armored Batman rigging up the Bat Symbol before looking up to see a angry looking Superman with glowing red eyes, ready to fire on the dark vigilante.
The Princess of the AmazonAlso at the Warner Bros. panel, Snyder revealed the first glimpse of Gal Godot's Wonder Woman costume via a new poster. The image features Wonder Woman brandishing a sword in an apocalyptic backdrop; the new costume, while lacking the iconic stars and stripes, is a fine mix of comic book inspirations and modern sensibilities. Best of all, Gadot looks positively fierce in the role. You could almost hear all the haters around the world silence at once.
Get ready for Guardians of the Galaxy 2Still a week away from the release of Guardians of the Galaxy, a boldly confident Marvel revealed that Guardians of the Galaxy 2 would arrive on July 28, 2017, with director James Gunn appearing via video from London to help announce the news.
The Hateful Eight Is a GoAfter a very messy and public leaking scandal, it looks like cooler heads have prevailed. Quentin Tarantino's shelved Western is set to begin filming in early 2015.
Ant-Man Infests Hall HThe cast and crew of the turbulent Ant-Man production gathered at the Marvel panel to introduce newcomers Corey Stoll and Evangeline Lilly to the crowd. Lilly will play Hope Pym, The daughter of Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) while Stoll will play Darren Cross, who will eventually become a similarly insect-themed foil to Ant-Man named Yellowjacket. Marvel boss Paul Feige also introduced a clip from the film which featured Paul Rudd's Scott Lang in the Ant-Man suit, jumping on a flying insect while being coached by Hank Pym.
Australian band 5 Seconds Of Summer surprised fans by personally handing out tickets for their first major U.S. concert. The She Looks So Perfect hitmakers rose to international fame when British boyband One Direction invited them on their worldwide tour last year (13).
5 Seconds of Summer celebrated their first ever U.S. concert headline date by giving fans chance to meet them as they bought their tickets at The Forum venue in Inglewood, California on Saturday (26Jul14).
Drummer Ashton Irwin was excited to meet their U.S. fans but was concerned about counting money during the ticket transactions, telling the Associated Press, "We might lose track of a lot of coins and stuff like that. But we'll work it out. We'll get through it."
The group will play a one-off gig at The Forum in November (14).
Michael Bay's Transformers: Age Of Extinction is breaking new ground in China after becoming the first movie ever to cross the $300 million (£176.5 million) mark at the nation's box office. By Sunday (27Jul14), the Mark Wahlberg film had grossed $301 million (£177 million) in China, taking its global haul to $966.4 million (£568.5 million), according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The action blockbuster is now on course to become the first movie of 2014 to hit the $1 billion milestone, a feat achieved by the last film in the franchise, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, which grossed $1.12 billion following its release in 2011.
Scarlett Johansson's action thriller Lucy has overpowered Hercules to debut atop the North American box office with a $44 million (£25.88 million) haul. Lucy, directed by Luc Besson, makes a strong debut at number one, easily beating Dwayne Johnson's outing as mythical Greek demigod Hercules, which opens with $29 million (£17 million).
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes places at three with $16.4 million (£9.65 million) in its third weekend on release, followed by The Purge: Anarchy at four and animated family film Planes: Fire & Rescue rounding out the top five.