News Roundup: Aug. 19


TV and movie composer Jack Elliott died at 74 on Saturday of a brain tumor at the UCLA Medical Center, The Associated Press reports. Elliott was diagnosed with the tumor three weeks ago. He was one of the top composers in Hollywood, creating themes for hit TV shows like Barney Miller, Charlie’s Angels and The Love Boat. In film, he often teamed up with director Carl Reiner and worked on projects including The Comic, Where’s Papa?, The Jerk and Oh God.

In General

Variety editor-in-chief Peter Bart has been suspended because of allegations he violated the paper’s policies when he tried to sell movie scripts while he was editor, reports. The allegations were made in a story published in the September issue of Los Angeles magazine by former Los Angeles Times reporter Amy Wallace. Wallace also quotes Bart making a number of racially charged remarks. Bart is denying the allegations and is threatening to sue the magazine.

Actress Penélope Cruz says she is taking a holiday after doing several back-to-back films, AP reports. Cruz started acting at the age of 15 on Spanish TV and has appeared in close to 30 films, including Belle Epoque, All the Pretty Horses and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. She will also be starring in the upcoming romantic thriller Vanilla Sky alongside her new beau Tom Cruise. Cruz plans on studying photography during her brief film hiatus.

It seems pop star Britney Spears will be endorsing more than Pepsi Cola. According to ABC News, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has enlisted the help of the singer for the design of their new Web site, The site will promote the use of the leather substitute pleather, Spears’ apparent favorite material.

Clint Eastwood said in the September Issue of Gear magazine that Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen were currently his favorite actresses. Eastwood, of course, was joking. In the interview, which was conducted by Craig Kilborn, Eastwood also said that his grandchildren call him an “a-hole.” When Kilborn reminded the actor that his comments would end up in print, the 71-year-old actor replied, “What do I care? I’ve already had a good career.”

Steven Spielberg has completed his foundation’s mission to collect the accounts of more than 50,000 Holocaust survivors on videotape, Reuters reports. The Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation will use the taped accounts to educate and help overcome prejudice, intolerance and bigotry.

The first New York Korean Film Festival made its debut on Friday, opening with the gruesome thriller Tell Me Something, Reuters reports. A total of 11 films will be showcased during the festival, which runs through August 26. Other films shown include Joint Security Area, Attack at the Gas Station, The Foul King and The Isle.

A man was arrested and charged after he climbed on stage and ran towards singer Kylie Minogue during a concert, BBC News reports. Minogue was performing at the V2001 rock festival in Hylands Park near London. Security immediately grabbed the man and led him away. The two-day concert event also featured performances by the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Texas, Coldplay and The Charlatans.