American soprano Renee Fleming has swapped opera for acting to make her debut in a play at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts. The opera veteran is no stranger to the stage, but for the first time in her three-decade long career, she has stepped into the spotlight without a musical score to accompany her.
In Living on Love, Fleming plays a beloved American opera diva married to a fiery composer, and it co-stars Douglas Sills as her onstage husband, as well as Veep actress Anna Chlumsky and actor Justin Long.
Fleming managed to prove herself onstage, with critics giving her mostly positive reviews.
Alexis Soloski of the New York Daily News writes, "Like all the characters, (Fleming's character) Raquel is an assemblage of tics and quirks rather than a flesh-and-blood human. Ms. Fleming's take on the role is eight-lane-highway broad, and she has the costumes to match. But when she ascends into an aria, letting her heavens-grazing voice stand in for Raquel's, she seems entirely in tune."
Steve Barnes of New York's Times Union newspaper calls her performance both funny and "captivating", adding, "Fleming commands the theatre with an expected amount of regal presence, especially on the few occasions when she sings."
Living on Love ends its run on Saturday (26Jul14).
Beyonce has been hit with a negligence lawsuit from two fans who were allegedly trampled during her Mrs. Carter Show concert in Chicago, Illinois, last year (13). Raquel Castellanos and Gabriella Davidson filed papers in Cook County Circuit Court on Tuesday (01Apr14) against the Grammy winner, event promoters at Live Nation, and bosses at The United Center venue where the concert was held in December (13).
In the lawsuit, the self-proclaimed "long-time fans of Beyonce" state they waited for hours outside the building in order to secure prime spots in the general admission area in the venue.
However, as more fans started to arrive, Castellanos and Davidson claim the crowd grew "more anxious about how, when and where the gate(s) would be released and where ticket holders and fans were supposed to enter The United Center - none of which was explained."
They go on to allege that employees at The United Center opened the gates "without instruction or any reasonable system to permit an orderly entrance," and the "rushing mob" left both of them trampled, knocked unconscious and with broken bones. They were taken to hospital to treat their multiple injuries.
Castellanos and Davidson claim The United Center bosses, Live Nation executives and Beyonce were negligent by allegedly doing nothing to prevent the crowd from rushing, pushing and running towards the venue once the gate was opened.
The women are seeking an undisclosed amount in damages from the three parties.
Rascal Flatts guitarist Joe Don Rooney and his wife Tiffany Fallon are expecting their third child. The country music star and the former Playboy model are preparing to welcome another baby to their brood.
The couple shares its excitement in a statement to People magazine, which reads: "We are so thrilled and feel so blessed to bring another little angel into our world.
"Jagger and Rocky are very excited too. They're going to make a great 'big brother-big sister duo' as the Rooney circus continues."
Rooney and Fallon, who wed in 2006, are already parents to son Jagger Donovan, five, and daughter Raquel Blue, three.
Reality TV star Kim Kardashian reportedly stormed out of the lavish Vienna Opera Ball in Austria on Thursday night (27Feb14). The socialite was a guest of Austrian businessman Richard Lugner, 81, who has a history of doling out thousands of dollars to have famous women accompany him to the annual event. Pamela Anderson, Paris Hilton, Sophia Loren, Raquel Welch and Lindsay Lohan have all served as Lugner's dates in the past.
This year (14), he reportedly paid $500,000 (£299,580) for Kardashian to join him, but apparently the pair did not get on, according to TMZ.com.
The gossip site reports Kardashian felt uncomfortable and left early. Other reports suggest the reality TV star skipped dinner and refused to dance with Lugner, leaving her mother Kris Jenner to take her place.
The L.A. Complex really succeeds where Melrose Place fails in delivering a realistic portrayal of Los Angeles. Ultimately, though, it failed where Melrose succeeded in getting ratings. Despite not finding a huge following in the States, this Canadian drama cut through a lot of the B.S. and delivered some of the shocking spectacle of Hollywood best reserved for blind items and hidden gossip forums.
Like Melrose, the series focuses on a small Spanish-style housing complex with a pool in the courtyard. However, the people that live there are short-term renters scraping together whatever they can. Unlike Melrose or 90210, these kids are struggling artists searching for success the best way they can. Abby Vargas (Cassie Steele) is a young starlet with a sexual fetish for poor choices. Connor Lake (Jonathan Patrick Moore) is a sexy leading man who has just booked a major TV series. Raquel Westbrook (Jewel Staite) is a former child actress struggling to keep her career alive despite being considered old in her mid 30s.
Unlike many American shows, this drama doesn’t shy away from diversity in ethnicity, class, and sexual orientation. For example, Andra Fuller plays Kaldrick King, a high profile rapper who struggles with his gay identity and how it affects his career. Steele is a biracial Pacific Islander actress, and many of the peripheral characters are of varying races. The characters also have pretty complex issues. For example, Connor, despite his success, has pretty major psychological issues tied to needing love and self-harm. Rather than relying on outlandish storylines or impossible scenarios, most of the drama of the show comes from the character’s poor choices, issues, and the struggles surrounding living in a city like Los Angeles. There are no diamond thieves, building explosions, and murderous doctors on this show.
There’s something refreshing about a show that isn’t afraid to “go there.” It vaguely mirrors Degrassi: The Next Generation in the same way that Melrose was a more adult Beverly Hills, 90210. The issues and scenarios tend to be more topical and realistic. Granted in the high profile/high stakes world of Hollywood and the entertainment industry, but it also seems to feel more realistic about what happens behind closed doors. Fabricated relationships, confidentiality agreements, and secret executive meetings aren’t things your average layperson is privy to. The series ends up delivering fantasy that’s pretty spot-on plausibility-wise.
Both seasons of this sexy and thought-provoking soap are available on Netflix for an immediate marathon.
The adventurer portrayed by James Franco in 127 Hours has been arrested on a domestic violence charge in Denver, Colorado. Aron Ralston, who was forced to amputate his own arm after becoming trapped by a boulder during a hiking accident in Utah, was arrested on Sunday (08Dec13) on charges of assaulting minors.
Police spokeswoman Raquel Lopez tells The Associated Press she is unable to release any further details. Ralston is scheduled to appear in court on Monday (09Dec13).
Matthew McConaughey may just be having the best year ever. After years of playing the pretty boy, he has officially crossed over into a world filled with powerful indie roles and Oscar buzz. With starring roles and critical acclaim for performances in films like The Paperboy and Dallas Buyers Club, the actor has finally, as they say, arrived. We can even look forward to his upcoming role in the new Chris Nolan film Interstellar, which recently started filming. But he's not stopping here folks. Matthew McConaughey is dabbling in a new genre and it may or may not surprise you at all. In an interview with GQ Magazine, the actor revealed that he’s been writing raps recently. Get ready world. Get. Ready.
Now the good news is that McConaughey did not refer to himself as a rapper, nor did he make any big proclamations about leaving Hollywood behind for the rap world (hi Joaquin Phoenix). Instead, he simply explained that he’s got a collection of rhymes on his laptop, one of which goes a little something like this: "Rollin' through yellow lights on my skateboard/Kiss the fire and walk away whistlin'."
You heard it here first folks. And this only furthermore proves that pretty much everyone, everywhere secretly wants to be a rapper.
Droplet by droplet, the morbidly-dubbed “Studio that Dripped Blood” is slowly coming back to life. Hammer Studios – the legendary British film company responsible for a graveyard of ghoulish delights in the '50s, '60s and '70s – has announced that a Woman in Black sequel (titled Woman in Black: Angel of Death) has begun filming. The flick is yet another step forward for the once-defunct House of Horror, having risen from the dead in 2007 to release Let Me In (2010), The Resident (2011) and The Woman In Black (2012). Still, for any true Hammer fan – while new films are cool and all – there awaits a whole host of characters and properties just dying for a comeback in modern retellings, particularly if coupled with that splatter of that old Hammer magic.
If 91-year-old Christopher Lee can unleash heavy metal albums and still appear in films, he can still don the cape – even in a small role. A fierce, blood-thirsty vampire series is what this generation needs. No love interest or wimpy waif lead need apply.
The Curse of Frankenstein
American film fans used to a lumbering lummox and little else owe it to themselves to investigate the Hammer series (seven in all) where Herr Doctor is the true star, and new undead atrocities await each installment.
Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires
Karate action meets the undead? Winner! While the original (a coupling of Hammer and the Shaw Brothers Studio) failed to do much box office, today’s climate seems right for this reworking, especially in light of The Rock getting ready to battle demons.
Dennis Wheatley adaptations
Either When the Devil Rides Out or To the Devil a Daughter could make for a good retelling. Wheatley’s tales are crackin’ good on their own – let alone that modern CG techniques could only improve the dated supernatural elements.
One Million Years B.C.
Okay, well not even close to scary, Hammer is also known for its output of cavegirl movies (including the forementioned “One Million Years B.C.” that put Raquel Welch in a fur bikini. Nuff said). Take a host of today’s hottest stars, drag out the animals skins and let’s have one more fake dinosaur fight, shall we? Who’s in!?
Former screen siren Raquel Welch has found love with TV talent show boss Nigel Lythgoe, according to a new U.K. report. The 73-year-old Hollywood icon has been dating the American Idol producer, 64, for more than a month and is said to be smitten with the Brit, sources tell the Sunday Express.
An insider explains, "Raquel finds Nigel fascinating and an absolute English gentleman. Even though she is almost 10 years older than him, she stills looks great and Nigel is so smitten he seems to almost worship the ground she walks on.
"The chemistry between them is so strong, they are just going with it. Raquel's fully aware that age might not be on her or Nigel's side. But I haven't seen her as happy as she is with him for more years than I care to remember."
Lythgoe most recently dated Elvis Presley's ex-wife Priscilla, while The One Million Years B.C. beauty has four failed marriages behind her.
Gina Gershon has been cast as fashion mogul Donatella Versace in a new TV movie about the death of her brother. House of Versace will also feature Enrico Colantoni as Gianni Versace and Raquel Welch as the siblings' Aunt Lucia.
The film, which will chronicle Donatella's efforts to keep the family's fashion empire alive following the death of her brother in 1997, will be based on Deborah Ball's book House of Versace: The Untold Story of Genius, Murder, and Survival.
The movie will premiere in the U.S. on 5 October (13).