The parents of the camera assistant who was hit by a speeding train and killed while shooting Allman Brothers biopic Midnight Rider earlier this year (14) have settled their civil lawsuit against the producers of the film. Richard and Elizabeth Jones have reached confidential agreements with many of the defendants, including writer/producer Jody Savin and director Randall Miller.
Their daughter Sarah lost her life in a freak accident on the set of the film in rural Georgia, while she was attempting to shoot footage from a trestle in Wayne County.
Executive producers Jay Sedrish and Don Mandrik and location manager Charles Baxter have also reached a settlement with the grieving parents.
Their suit originally listed Gregg Allman, whose memoirs inspired the film, but his name was dropped from the case in October (14).
Filming was halted immediately after the tragedy and William Hurt, who was cast as Gregg Allman in the movie, has since quit the project.
Miller, Savin and Sedrish are still facing involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespass charges. Their case is scheduled to go to trial in March (15). They each face 10 years in prison if found guilty.
Hugh Grant wishes he could cut several scenes from his breakthrough movie Four Weddings And A Funeral because his acting was so atrocious. The Notting Hill star found fame with his role as bumbling Brit Charles in the 1994 comedy, but he admits there are moments in the movie where he cringes at his own poor performance.
He tells British TV show This Morning, "There are certain bits of Four Weddings where I really am very bad and (director Richard Curtis) would admit that and he really had to cut round my bad acting...
"When you have that funeral and there's the poem being read out and the camera pans along all these sad faces, tearful faces and I thought, 'I've got to do some crying'. I can't cry as an actor at all.
"I'd read somewhere, a tip, that if you stare at a light for long enough without blinking, your eyes start to water. And I did that and I thought I was being pretty good but actually if you look at it, it pans along and there's lots of very good acting going on and then there's this sort of mad red-eyed raccoon. I stare at it and think, 'What's that?' So I would have written that out of the script."
We had grown weary of Smallville, stopped laughing at That ‘70s Show, and couldn’t stomach even the thought of a third go-‘round for The Simple Life. By the autumn of 2004, we had no place to turn but to the mysterious island series that ABC ads had been pimping like crazy. Following our national love of sci-fi, of Survivor, of that bespectacled fella who made Felicity (ah, times were different then), we flocked to Lost, ill-prepared for the slew of questions, deficit of answers, and legion of unforgettable characters we'd meet over the course of the next six seasons. In honor of the 10-year anniversary of the dawn of America's last true pop culture addiction, we've decided to rank those characters — to celebrate the Oceanic Six, bemoan the Flight 815 tail section, and kind of sigh in bored confusion over the folks at the Dharma Initiative.
A quick qualifier: we aren't, and couldn't with any qualitative legitimacy, ranking all of the characters on Lost. We're ignoring the nearly anonymous Others, the one-line flashback extras, and that guy who was sucked into the jet propeller in the first episode. Remember him? I think his name was Gary. He's not on the list.
76. MILES STRAUMEThe most convoluted and out-of-place construct that Lost ever managed, which is saying something. Why can he speak to the dead? Who cares if he’s Dr. Chang’s son? Why did anyone think this character was a good idea?
75. SHANNONLess of a problem with the mythology than simply an annoying, corrosive onscreen presence.
74. KEAMY, FROM THE BOATUgh, this guy. This guy and his crew cut.
73. JACK’S NONEXISTENT SONDavid Shephard’s one saving grace is that he doesn’t actually exist. Three cheers for flash-sideways nullification!
72. LENNONIs… is his name actually Lennon? Or do they just call him that because he looks exactly like Lennon? And why, pray tell, does he look exactly like Lennon?
71. RICHARDThe irritation of the wholly useless Richard is maximized by the knowledge that he’ll be around forever.
70. ANNA LUCIAAnna Lucia acts as the epitome of everything that was wrong with the tail section chapter in maintaining the concrete belief that she is in any way a viable substitute for the main cast’s screen time.
69. GOODWINUgh, this guy. This guy and his wisps.
68. NIKKI AND PAOLONo explanation necessary for why Nikki and Paolo falls towards the bad end of the list, but a few extra points for the sadistic treat that was their final bow.
67. THE MOTHER“Hey guys, tonight’s episode of Lost has Allison Janney! From The West Wing! I love her! I bet they give her something cool and funny and totally pertinent to the contemporary storyline to do!”
66. ELOISE HAWKINGOne Farraday was more than enough, guys.
65. ILANAI have to be honest, I barely remember who this is.
64. DOGENDogen’s scenes were just one of many late series constructs that made us sigh wistfully and recount on the good old days when this show was about people trapped on an island.
63. MINKOWSKILadies and gentlemen, Fisher Stevens.
62. EMMA AND ZACKYou can really lump all the unaccounted for Lost children in one cloying bullet point: these two, the Kwon baby, Desmond and Penny’s kid, the deity twins, Aaron. They all just caused a whole mess of trouble, didn’t they?
61. LIBBY “What if — get this — what if we gave her a romance with a fan-favorite, and then closed an episode with a shocking stinger that revealed she used to be in a mental institution?“Sounds great! Then what?”“No, that’s about it.”
NEXT: 60 - 41
60. CHARLIE’S BROTHER“You all, everybody!” Ha. Remember that?
59. ABADDONEh, it’s Lance Reddick doing Lance Reddick, just without any of the interesting we were used to seeing.
58. JACK’S EX-WIFEHas anyone made a mash-up interweaving Julie Bowen’s Lost scenes with clips from Modern Family? I can’t imagine that anyone would have felt impelled to do so. And I certainly don’t feel impelled to check.
57. HORACE GOODSPEEDGoodspeed might have scored higher were not for his portrayer’s particularly creepy real life romantic exploits. Ech.
56. ALEX, ROUSSEAU’S DAUGHTERAw, she was okay.
55. WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALTPuberty ruins everything. Self-esteem, probing storylines…
54. RYAN PRICE AND HIS TEN BEST MENI’d like to see a separate series about these guys. Or at least a few minutes of the pilot of one.
53. THE MAN IN BLACKHe really couldn’t have just talked things out with brother Jay?
52. ALDO, FROM THE TEMPLELadies and gentlemen, Mac.
51. THE PICKETTSNever was a story of more woe than this of… Colleen… and… Danny.
50. RADZINSKYHeh, this guy. This guy and his combover.
49. KATE’S BOYFRIENDWell this one just makes me sad.
48. SUN’S DADDitto. What a jerk.
47. HURLEY’S IMAGINARY FRIENDI never entirely knew what to make of Hurley’s bout of delusional psychosis… but I’m a sucker for that thing where it looks like someone is taking a normal photograph, and then that very photograph amounts as evidence of something spooky going on.
46. CASSIDYHell hath no fury like a stunt cast actress scorn.
45. INMANScratch the Ryan Price and His Ten Best Men pitch. I want to see Inman slowly lose his noodle.
44. DANIEL FARRADAYSomewhere between endearingly nuanced and gratingly overacty, there lies Jeremy Davis’ performance.
43. JULIETFor a late addition central character, Juliet never really achieved genuine interesting-on-her-own-accord status.
42. THE PILOTSure, he died within moments of being introduced, but he single-handedly set the tone and stakes for the entire first season. Way to go, Sean Blumberg.
41. LEONARDFour. Eight. Fifteen. Sixteen. Twenty-three. Forty-two. Repeat.
NEXT: 40 - 21
40. TOM FRIENDLYThe reveal that he was gay helped warm us up to Tom just a bit, but I always wanted to know more about this prominent Other.
39. NAOMII feel as though I remember Naomi being far more interesting than she genuinely was. Could just be the chutzpah.
38. DR. PIERRE CHANGSmart men make bad dads, so says Lost.
37. JACOBFor an omnipotent deity, Jacob’s kind of a dingus.
36. FROGURTOr “Neil.”
35. CHARLES WIDMOREA bit too faceless to be an effective super villain, but could teach a master class in menacing accentry.
34. BRAM, THE OTHERAnd next to Stoker, probably the best Bram in pop culture.
33. PHIL, THE OTHERAw, this guy. This guy and his widow’s peak.
32. KATE’S DADGood dad alert! We’ve got an actual good dad on Lost people!
31. MR. EKOIf only you didn’t hate Hawaii so much, Adewale, maybe your character would have gotten an appropriate send-off.
30. CLAIRESane Claire? Fantastic. Crazy Claire? Abysmal. They average out to pretty good.
29. MIKHAILIs it just me, or are eye-patches unconditionally cool?
28. ROGER WORKMANThe pressures of fatherhood, the anchor of alcoholism, the monumental stresses of the DHARMA Initiative… Roger, we feel you.
27. HELEN, LOCKE’S GIRLFRIENDShe was nice.
26. SAYIDHe wasn't that nice, but he had more on his plate.
25. CHARLOTTEIt was hard to watch the nose bleeds, but we can’t begrudge an archeologist hero, now can we?
24. MICHAELSo many bad decisions, Michael. And so much harrowed shouting.
23. ETHAN ROMNobody does a dead-eyed stare like E-Rom.
22. PENNYOne half of the greatest love story in television history.
21. HURLEYAudience surrogate, comic relief, beacon of pathos, resident geek, everyman, proficient golfer. A winner.
NEXT: 20 - our #1 Lost chracter!
20. SUNSun’s lows are low, but her arc to redemption is a particularly challenging and interesting one.
19. ANTHONY COOPERIn earnest, the best villain Lost ever produced. Next to the piercing human condition, of course.
18. DETECTIVE MARSA hard-boiled lawman who has one job to do, but a heart he’s forced to lug around while doing it.
17. BERNARDAww. (See Rose)
16. JIN’S DADSorry, Kate’s dad. Jin’s dad is the padre supreme.
15. BOONEWhat a nice fella. And an incredible impetus for the “anyone can die” phenomenon that carried through the bulk of the series.
14. CHRISTIAN SHEPHARDWhether or not you like Christian Shephard is entirely dependent on how you feel about the finale. And I love the finale.
13. ROUSSEAUAn extended metaphor for the loss that courses throughout each character’s story, and the crash-and-burn phenomenon that will ensnare them if they do not seek and attack their issues… or maybe just a loony French lady. Either way, we dig it.
12. KATEWay more than just the “runs into the woods and gets in trouble” shtick that people fault her for, Kate is the gumption and emotional core of Lost. And we love her.
11. ARZTWhat a delightful jackass.
10. JOHN LOCKEThe beauty of Locke is how much you just want to punch him right in the nose… until you realize that he’s not presenting adversity, but challenging solutions.
9. ROSEEven aww-er.
8. SAWYERThe wincing pain of aloneness and self-loathing, evident in everything that the gallant Josh Holloway does with his consistently engaging (the LeFleur era a slight hiccup) character.
7. FRANK LAPIDUSFrank Lapidus monument currently in construction in the South Bronx.
6. DESMONDThe other half of the greatest love story ever committed to television… and, no offense to Penny, the half with the superior ‘do.
5. JACKOur hero, flawed though he may be, was the perfect man to guide us through this story about the fragmented tenets of the human experience. Desperate, lonely, contentious, prickly, and a bit of a tool at times, Jack is and remains the essence of what man is.
4. CHARLIE…But Charlie, in complement to Jack, is the essence of what man wants to be. Given the finest send-off on the series, Charlie becomes the hero that he always wished he could be, embracing his passion for music and his love for Claire to save his friends and surrogate family.
3. VINCENTLess a symbol than a silent character in his own right, Vincent represents that one glimmer of hope to which even the most cynical of us hang tight: the hope that we aren’t, and don’t have to be, alone. With Vincent around, nobody does.
2. BEN LINUSIf Jack is Charlie’s complement then Ben Linus is his stark contrast: the badness that enwraps each of us, causing us to so selfish, maniacal, underhanded things… but all to the same end: not being alone. Not the more admirable guy, but one of most complicated and interesting characters.
1. JINThe very best character arc on Lost comes attached to Jin, who began as an alienating question mark and wound up a fan favorite, an in-universe hero. Jin’s slow climb to island glory, paralleling his flashback descent down the gruesome drain of desperation, makes for Lost’s strongest, most entertaining, and perhaps most emotionally engrossing individual story. And man that ending!
Celebrated British sculptor David Wynne has died, aged 88. The artist, famed for his friendship with The Beatles, passed away on 4 September (14). No more details about his death were available as WENN went to press.
Wynne created a number of famous sculptures which are dotted around London, including a gate dedicated to Queen Elizabeth II at Hyde Park. His royal connection also included sittings with a number famous faces including Charles, Prince of Wales and the Queen herself.
He became close friends with The Beatles after creating a sculpture of the Fab Four in 1964, and he is credited with introducing the band to their guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
Wynne's famous works include likenesses of late actor/director Lord Richard Attenborough and Shergar, the famous racehorse which was stolen in 1983 and never found.
Kc & The Sunshine Band frontman Harry Wayne Casey has paid tribute to disco and R&B mogul Henry Stone, following his death on Thursday (07Aug14). The TK Records co-founder passed away from natural causes at the age of 93 at a Florida hospital.
Stone played an instrumental part in the careers of Ray Charles, James Brown and KC & The Sunshine Band after launching his own recording studio and label in 1948.
Charles became his first big artist, recording his early song St. Pete Florida Blues, also known as I Found My Baby There, at the studio.
Stone also helped to sign soul legend Brown and his band The Famous Flames, and scored a big hit with Please, Please, Please in 1956.
Casey, aka KC, worked part time at TK Records and ended up landing his group a deal at the label, where they experienced huge success with songs including Get Down Tonight, Shake, Shake, Shake (Shake Your Booty), That's the Way (I Like It), and I'm Your Boogie Man.
He also co-wrote George McRae's hit Rock Your Body in the mid-1970s with his bandmate Richard Finch.
Calling Stone his "mentor", Casey adds, "Henry believed in me when no one else did."
Meanwhile, Finch tells the Miami Herald, "The world of music has lost a trailblazer - a legend - but personally, I've lost the only father I've ever known.
"He was my friend and mentor... He gave life to the studio concept that Harry and I created together at TK, resulting in the birth of our band, KC & the Sunshine Band. Our success, the success of so many other TK artists, all props and thanks lie solely at the feet of Henry Stone."
Martin Freeman's stage turn as Richard Iii has divided critics, with reviewers branding the actor's performance "highly intelligent" but "disappointingly underpowered". The Hobbit star takes on the role of William Shakespeare's villainous king in a new production at London's Trafalgar Studios theatre which opened on Wednesday night (09Jul14).
The production had previously been hit with reports suggesting overzealous Freeman fans had been creating a distraction by whooping and cheering throughout the show, but critics reported the audience on press night was well behaved.
However, many theatre reviewers were underwhelmed by the show, with Charles Spencer of Britain's Daily Telegraph newspaper calling the production "unnecessarily complicated" and insisting Freeman's turn in the title role was "disappointingly underpowered", adding, "There were moments when your reviewer was tempted to stand up and boo."
The Guardian's Michael Billington calls Freeman's performance "highly accomplished" but insists the staging of the play "doesn't make total sense", while The Independent's Paul Taylor adds, "Freeman gives a highly intelligent, calculatedly understated performance... (but) Freeman doesn't radiate a sufficiently dangerous sense of unpredictability."
However, Ben Dowell of the Radio Times was full of praise for The Office star, writing, "Freeman does not disappoint... (His) talent lies in creating something frighteningly ordinary about his villainy."
Freeman follows in the footsteps of stars including Laurence Olivier, Sir Alec Guinness, Sir Kenneth Branagh and Sir Ian McKellen, who have all played the murderous king on the stage.
Musicians Carla Bley, George Coleman and Charles Lloyd have been selected to receive America's most prestigious jazz award next year (15). Composer Bley and saxophonists Coleman and Lloyd will be made Jazz Masters and handed a $25,000 (£15,625) fellowship, while Chicago, Illinois jazz club owner Joe Segal will also be feted by officials at the National Endowment for the Arts.
The quartet will be honoured during a ceremony at New York's Lincoln Center in April (15).
This year's (14) honourees included pianist Keith Jarrett, saxophonist Anthony Braxton and bassist Richard Davis.
Beloved U.S. comedian Jay Leno has been selected to receive the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. The funnyman, who stepped down as the host of The Tonight Show after 22 years in February (14), will be feted at a ceremony at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. on 19 October (14).
Twain Prize co-founder and co-executive producer Cappy McGarr says, "Jay has always been on our list. He is the quintessential American humorist. He does it every night, and has done it for many, many years. And he truly is an equal opportunity satirist."
Joking about the accolade, Leno quips, "What an honour! I'm a big fan of Mark Twain's. In fact, A Tale of Two Cities is one of my favorite books!"
A Tale of Two Cities was actually written by Charles Dickens.
Previous recipients of the top honour include Richard Pryor, Bill Cosby, Ellen DeGeneres, Will Ferrell and Carol Burnett, who took home last year's (13) award.
Who knew there were so many ladies from the land down under on U.S. television? Well, we didn’t. That is, until we started to do some research on our favorite female TV leads and found out that many hailed from Australia. Color us surprised!
Sure, there were a few that we knew about — Rebel Wilson comes to mind — but there were some surprises, especially since all these ladies have seriously mastered their American accents; they had us fooled.
Through our research, we found out which of television’s leading ladies are from Australia, as well as how many of them have acted together before — it seems like everyone was on the Australian TV series, The Sleepover Club. We’ve compiled a list of our favorites, and added some cool pieces of trivia, so that everyone can be more knowledgable about the Australian actresses on U.S. television.
GALLERY: Our 10 Favorite Australian Ladies Currently on TV
British actor Richard E. Grant will feature as a hologram in the upcoming theatre musical Water Babies. The Withnail & I star will pre-record his role in the stage adaptation of Charles Kingsley's children's novel, in which a young man jumps into a violent river and encounters a civilisation of underwater creatures who he must help before he can return to dry land.
Grant, who recently finished filming a guest role on British period drama Downton Abbey, will appear as a mythical sea monster dubbed the Kraken.
He announced the project on Twitter.com on Friday (11Apr14), writing, "Done on Downton (Abbey) & filming a hologram playing the Kraken for a stage musical version of The Water Babies today. Fully plate licked Friday."
The musical, starring Tom Lister from British soap opera Emmerdale, will open at the Curve Theatre in Leicester, England from 6 May (14).