Hollywood legend Lauren Bacall has been laid to rest following an intimate family funeral in New York City. The iconic actress passed away last week (ends17Aug14) at the age of 89 after suffering a stroke at her home in Manhattan, New York, and she was remembered at a memorial service in the Big Apple on Tuesday (19Aug14).
Around 50 guests attended the private ceremony at the Frank E. Campbell Funeral Home, while a larger congregation gathered at Bacall's apartment for the wake, according to New York Post gossip column Page Six.
Attendees included Anjelica Huston and Michael Douglas, whose father Kirk was a good friend of the late star.
Sara Bareilles has been hit with a lawsuit by an artist who insists her work was used by the singer without her permission. Acclaimed visual artist Maya Hayuk filed documents in Manhattan federal court on Wednesday (20Aug14), claiming Bareilles used her mural called Chem Trails NYC on various promotional pictures and videos without Hayuk's knowledge or permission.
Hayuk painted the massive piece on the Bowery Mural wall near Houston Street earlier this year (14), and Bareilles later posed for photographs and shot footage in front of the art, which was used to promote her album The Blessed Unrest and subsequent Little Black Dress tour.
Hayuk's lawyer, Aaron Silverstein tells the New York Daily News that his client is very "protective" of her work, since "her art is her only source of income," adding, "When her work gets appropriated without her permission, it's painful."
Hayuk is not only suing Bareilles, but bosses at her label Sony Music, as well as executives at fashion brand Coach, as they allegedly used the same mural as the backdrop in online advertisements for their apparel and handbags.
The artist is seeking at least $150,000 (£88,000) in damages in each lawsuit.
Representatives for Bareilles, Sony, and Coach declined to comment due to the pending litigation. The mural in question has since been taken down, as it was meant to be a temporary piece on the rotating Bowery wall.
Sony Pictures via Everett Collection
As a comedic actor, John Lithgow — one of the best of the sort today — plays big. With a 6'4" stature and the vocal projection of a well-read howler monkey, Lithgow has made sitcom fare seem like a night on Broadway, invigorating small-scale material with the bravado of a live performance. To me, this has always been his utmost appeal. But in soft, somber, and sweet Love Is Strange, Lithgow plays small and close. And the victory of his talents are just as present.
Lithgow’s role in Ira Sachs’ occasionally lovely, occasionally wrenching drama is one of intense vulnerability. After a long-awaited marriage to his boyfriend of 40 years, Alfred Molina, Lithgow’s Ben is forced (by the will of financial woes) from his Manhattan apartment and into the care of his nephew’s family. As a character whose neuroses are evident from minute one, Ben’s internal trauma is the principal hook for Love Is Strange: after finally winning the opportunity to commit to the man he loves, we watch the 70-year-old painter struggle to identify a “comfort zone” in a world he finds increasingly difficult to understand.
Sony Pictures via Everett Collection
Lining the film, we have Molina, adroitly playing the stoic (frustrated more than devastated, at least as far as he’s willing to show) in contrast to the anxiety inhabited throughout by Lithgow, and the pair’s lot of conditionally generous family and friends — a community led by Marisa Tomei, Lithgow’s primary screen partner as a budding adversary to Ben, and young Charlie Tahan, who too is at unwitting odds with his misplaced houseguest.
Though the ensemble doesn’t have a weak link to speak of, the show is Lithgow’s through and through. Love Is Strange uses Lithgow in its portrait of man eroded by time and change, a team of forces that maintain volatility even when they are working for the better. Appropriately enough, Sachs’ story takes some jagged turns, failing to cement every choice in a clear intent. But as an illustration of one man’s insides in a chapter he can just barely handle — all those between hope and loss — we see something rather moving.
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Music bosses at a little-known publishing group have won a major legal tussle against Sony over chart-topping 2010 Shakira hit Loca. A federal judge in Manhattan has ruled in favour of Mayimba Music executives who alleged the Spanish-language single infringed on the work of Ramon Arias Vasquez, who wrote Loca con su Tiguere in the late 1990s. They own the rights to his music.
The Mayimba publishers sued Sony Corp of America and several other Sony units in 2012. Two of them were found to be liable in court on Tuesday (19Aug14), reports Reuters.
The plaintiffs argued Shakira's track was was based on a 2007 song by rapper Eduard Edwin Bello Pou, aka El Cata, which also copied Arias' music.
The judge must now determine the Mayimba Music bosses' damages.
Actor Kirk Douglas has paid tribute to Lauren Bacall in an article published in the new issue of The Hollywood Reporter. The 89-year-old movie legend died after suffering a stroke at her home in Manhattan, New York last week (ends17Aug14), and Douglas, who starred opposite her in Young Man with a Horn 60 years ago, is now recalling his long friendship with the The Big Sleep star, praising her for helping him launch his career in Hollywood.
He writes, "I met Betty (Lauren) when she was 17 and I was 24. We were both studying at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. I was on my own in New York with meager funds.
"That winter, Betty saw me shivering in my thin overcoat. She didn't say anything, but she talked her uncle into giving me one of his two thick coats. I wore it for three years. That sort of unassuming kindness was one of her most endearing characteristics."
Following Douglas' stint in the U.S. Navy during World War II, the Spartacus star met up with Bacall in New York and she convinced producer Hal Wallis to see Douglas in the play The Wind Is Ninety. His performance subsequently earned him a role in The Strange Love of Martha Ivers.
Douglas and Bacall stayed in touch throughout the years, but the actor felt something was amiss when Bacall did not answer a recent letter he wrote to her.
He continues, "My latest note wasn't answered, which was unlike her. I wondered why. Then, on Aug. 12, like the rest of the world, I found out.
"It's hard to lose a friend, especially one with whom you have shared your dreams and your journey. In the case of Betty Bacall, I also lost my lucky charm - the girl who believed in me enough to talk Hal Wallis into giving me a Hollywood career. That was my first lesson in helping others without looking for thanks. I will continue to think about her whenever I put it into practice."
Sudanese supermodel Alek Wek's niece Ataui Deng has gone missing. Friends and family of Deng took to social media on Monday (18Aug14) to ask for the public's help in finding the model, who disappeared on 6 August (14).
According to the New York Police Department, Deng was last seen in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. She is described as "six-foot-one-inches tall, 110 pounds with black hair, a dark complexion with a slim build".
Deng is a Sudanese refugee who moved to the U.S. when she was 12; she signed with Trump Models four years later and has since walked the runway for acclaimed designers such as the late L'Wren Scott, Proenza Schouler and Zac Posen. She was also the face of River Island's 2013 Rihanna collection.
Italian-American opera singer Licia Albanese has died, aged 105. The famed soprano passed away peacefully at her home in New York on Friday (15Aug14).
Albanese was born in Bari, Italy and made her mark in her native country as a singer in the 1930s before moving to America. She made her U.S. debut at New York's famed Metropolitan Opera in 1940, performing her signature role as Cio-Cio San in Puccini's Madame Butterfly.
Albanese, who became a U.S. citizen in 1945, went on to become the opera company's shining star from 1940 to 1966, racking up more than 400 performances, and she still holds the house record for most appearances at 87 as Violetta in Verdi's La Traviata.
The diva also spent 20 seasons performing at the San Francisco Opera in California, and throughout her career, she sang alongside legendary tenors including Franco Corelli, Beniamino Gigli, Tito Schipa, Jussi Bjorling and Giacinto Prandelli, and was also a favourite of acclaimed conductor Arturo Toscanini.
In addition, Albanese spent her extra time sharing her talents with the younger generation, and taught classes at New York universities Juilliard, the Manhattan School of Music and Marymount Manhattan College, and in 1974, she created the Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation to help the careers of young opera singers.
In 1995, she received the National Medal of Honour for the Arts from former U.S. President Bill Clinton, who noted that Albanese "Had the rare ability to combine her great talent as a singer with equal talent as an actress".
Albanese is survived by her two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. A private burial service will be held on Thursday (21Aug14), and a memorial mass is planned for September (14) in New York.
Embattled hip-hop mogul Damon Dash is demanding $25 million (£14.7 million) from Lee Daniels amid allegations the director failed to honour an investment agreement for his hit movies. Jay Z's former business partner claims he first agreed to pump $2 million (£1.18 million) of his cash into Kevin Bacon's 2004 drama The Woodsman, which Daniels produced, and set up similar deals with the filmmaker for a string of his other projects, including Oscar-winning 2009 release Precious, 2012 thriller The Paperboy and 2013's The Butler.
In exchange for the help with funding, Dash maintains he was promised producing credits on the releases.
However, Dash alleges Daniels didn't hold up his end of the deal and snubbed his credit request, while he also did not receive any return on his investments, reports TMZ.com.
He filed suit in Manhattan Supreme Court, New York on Thursday (14Aug14).
The music mogul has been dogged with financial troubles for several years. The former Roc-A-Fella Records co-founder was evicted from his New York home last year (13) after allegedly falling behind on his rent, while he was also previously slapped with a $2.8 million (£1.65 million) federal tax bill relating to earnings dating back to 2005.
Rapper Nicki Minaj has been hit with a lawsuit for allegedly breaking a contract by cutting a performance short. Bosses at production company IMP Entertainment filed documents in Manhattan Supreme Court in New York City on Wednesday (13Aug14), claiming the Superbass hitmaker agreed to play an hour-long set a National Basketball Association (NBA) All-Star event in February 2011 alongside Drake and Lil Wayne.
In the contract, Minaj was slated to perform for 60 minutes at Los Angeles' Siren Studios, but she allegedly arrive 90 minutes late, and once on stage, she only played for 30 minutes before leaving the stage.
In the legal documents, obtained by the New York Daily News, Minaj was paid $53,050 (£31,803) to cover her fees and expenses prior to the gig, and her "abbreviated appearance defeated the entire purpose of the agreement."
IMP Entertainment executives are seeking to recoup the cash and other unspecified damages.
A representative for Minaj has yet to comment.
Actor James Caan and Barbra Streisand led tributes to their late pal Lauren Bacall following the actress' death on Tuesday (12Aug14). The 89-year-old movie legend died after suffering a stroke at her home in Manhattan, New York.
Caan, who worked with Bacall in 1990's Misery, shared his sorrow in a statement to Entertainment Weekly which reads, "She was a great, uplifting lady who was full of talent and fun. I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with her. I will miss her dearly."
Barbra Streisand, who directed Bacall in The Mirror Has Two Faces, says to Billboard.com, "What a terrible loss for us all... It was my privilege to have known her, to have acted with her, and to have directed her... And, most of all, to have had her as a wise and loving friend. She was an original. Even with all those great films we can visit again and again, she will be missed."
Alec Baldwin writes on Twitter.com, "The great Betty Bacall (her birth name) is gone. Read her first autobiography, BY MYSELF. I love that book," while KISS rocker Gene Simmons adds, "Lauren Bacall - sad. R.I.P. She was a class act. She will be missed."
Alan Cumming uploaded a picture of himself with the late actress and writes, "You are a sensation and a killer! (First thing BB ever said to me) RIP Betty you sensational killer," and Richard E. Grant adds, "Worked with Lauren 'Betty' Bacall who called herself a 'Broad'.Took no prisoners, but if she liked you, you were friends for life. Unique."
Other stars have sent their condolences via social media, including John Cusack, Stephen Merchant, Belinda Carlisle, Boy George, Dita Von Teese and Lynda Carter.
Set against the backdrop of the clandestine mission to build the world's first atomic bomb in Los Alamos, New Mexico and follows the brilliant but flawed scientists and their families as they attempt to co-exist in a world where secrets and lies infiltrate every aspect of their lives.