Sarah Ball

Morning Mix: Oldest Cook Brother Passes Away at 37

Oldest Cook Brother Dies of Brain Cancer. "American Idol" winner David Cook lost his brother Saturday -- Adam Cook, 37, had been struggling with brain cancer since before his younger brother made the show.  He made the decision to stop chemotherapy treatments, which no longer seemed to be helping his advanced sickness, earlier this year.  He's survived by his wife and two kids. [The Associated Press]'Wolverine' Has Strong Opening Weekend.  It didn't quite catch "Iron Man" and his $102...

Breaking: Dali Painting Stolen in Netherlands

This just across the wire: Armed burglars have stolen a valuable Salvador Dali painting, per the Associated Press -- no story yet, just the headline. Their sources are Dutch police.  More to come!*UPDATE, 12:38 p.m.:  Masked, armed robbers threatened the guards at a Netherlands musuem and made off with two paintings, one by surrealist Dali, the Associated Press is reporting via the Boston Herland.  The piece says that the Dali work in question is a gouache rendering called "Adolescence,"...

Morning Mix: First Big Blockbuster of the Season!

Jackman & Co. to Jack Up Box Office.  No competition here -- summer's first blockbuster movie, "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," has little competition for a big box office sweep. "Ghost of Girlfriends Past" is another star-studded film opening, but as a rom-com with as-yet shaky reviews, the film looks to make little impact.  20th Century Fox has specific goals in mind for the X-Men film: to equal or best the $102 million "Iron Man" opening last year. [Variety]  Here's a sentence that could've...

Developments in Rihanna-Chris Brown Case

Singer Chris Brown's lawyer, Mark Geragos, sought dismissal earlier this afternoon of the two felonies charged against his client; he cited the leaked photograph of a visibly battered and bruised Rihanna as evidence of court malfeasance. "The leaks can form the basis for a motion to dismiss the case in regards to outrageous governmental misconduct," Geragos said, according to an E!

Woody Allen: 1, American Apparel: 0

After American Apparel -- maker of gold lamé leggings, terrycloth booty shorts and other items that might be better branded as The Boogie Nights Collection -- put Woody Allen's image on a billboard, sans the director's permission, Allen sued for a cool $10 mil.  So via lawyer Stuart Slotnick, American Apparel demanded the director prove he had a reputation worth damaging: "We believe that Mr.

What The @*%$#?! Supreme Court Reviews Bleep-age

A glimmer of hope (sort of) if you're hoping to hear @*%$# during daylight hours: The nation's top court today revived the debate on the FCC's ban of "fleeting expletives" on live TV -- narrowly determining that, while the current bans suffice for now, they should be reviewed by a lower court for possible unconstitutionality.  The current rules allow the FCC to keep television curse-word free from 6 a.m.

The Case of 'Slumdog Millionaire' and the Endless Headlines

This week, we'll swap April for May -- making "Slumdog Millionaire" a nearly five-month-old release, something you'd never guess by the headlines.  Not a week goes by that the '09 Best Picture isn't atop entertainment sites' "LATEST" queues and sidebars, for all manner of good and evil.  Last week, we watched captivated as the father of the film's eight-year-old star Rubina Ali was accused of trafficking his daughter for a six-figure sum -- to undercover journalists.

Not Even 'Wolverine' Can Battle Swine Flu

The latest installment in "Wolverine: The Snafus" is a delayed premiere -- Wednesday's Mexico debut of the film in Mexico City has been postponed due to the swine flu outbreak, a 20th Century Fox source confirmed earlier this afternoon to People.  The studio's rationale included this magnanimous quote from an unnamed rep:We were not only concerned about Hugh's welfare – and we would never send anyone into harm's way – but we also have an enormous office filled with people we care about.How...

Morning Mix: Bea Arthur, We'll Miss You

Arthur, 86, Dies In Los Angeles.  Bea Arthur, the acid-tongued Dorothy of "Golden Girls" and Maude of "Maude," who collected both Emmys and a Tony during her acting career, died Saturday at age 86.  She had been battling cancer, her assistant confirmed to the Associated Press. [Washington Post]Spears' Baby's Father Charged, Hospitalized.  Casey Aldridge, the 19-year-old fiance to Jamie Lynn Spears and father of their child, was charged with careless operation of a motor vehicle early Sunday...

Damien Hirst: 'I'm Not Buying Art -- But You Totally Should!'

Y.B.A. posterman Damien Hirst -- yes, he who smashed Picasso's 1993 single-artist auction record back in September with a $199 million haul -- is not buying art these days.  Seems he is one of the wealthy patrons whose reticence accounts for the 30 to 50 percent drop in contemporary art acquisitions.  Nevertheless, he'd still like you to open your wallet -- he'll be making bronze meteorites soon, he thinks (quote: "They're going to be out of this world!") and Lord knows we all need one of...

Why Ben Bernanke Is Actually Jack Nicholson

It has come to our attention -- thanks to some bored banker friends of ours -- that the ongoing letter-writing campaign to the federal government from New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, regarding the bullying tactics of the Federal Reserve, uncannily echoes the plotline of "A Few Good Men," which was about a letter-writing campaign to the federal government, regarding the bullying tactics of the Marine officers stationed at Guantanamo Bay.  Which is nice, because we haven't watched the...

Morning Mix: Lee, Tarantino Up for Palme d'Or; Lohan Is Not

Tarantino, Lee Up For Palme d'Or.  The Festival de Cannes has released the names of the 20 films up for the prestigious Palme d'Or, the festival's marquee award. (The French festival opens May 13 with Pixar's "Up").  Quentin Taratino's "Inglourious Basterds" is among them, as is Ang Lee's "Taking Woodstock" and Jane Campion's "Bright Star" (about Keats).   Many of this year's directorial nominees have already won.  [BBC News]'Millionaire' Back in Late August.  He's baaaack!  Regis Philbin...

'The Hills' To Get Season Six? Gotta Get Through S5 First

Ratings for MTV's darling, "The Hills," are down this year over the last season -- whereas Season Three netted over 4 million viewers, this outing (the fifth) has been flatlining around 3 million.  This might be less surprising, if it weren't the cherished show's last season (or, at least, supposedly the last with heroine Lauren Conrad intact -- the AP is reporting today that the show's producers are in talks about a Season Six) and if it weren't a markedly better, more dramatic, more eventful...

Mini Q+A: Daryl Hannah Shares Her Earth Day Tips

Green actress Daryl Hannah is featured in the Oscar-nominated documentary "The Garden," about a group of community farmers and eco-activists who protested a Los Angeles developer's move to turn 14 acres of communal garden space into warehouses and factories.  (You may remember Hannah's arrest while protesting the development in 2006, when Los Angeles police removed her from a tree.)  The film opens in New York theaters on May 8 -- ahead of its release, and in honor of Earth Day, Hannah shares...

Morning Mix: Happy "Earth" Day!

Cruise Script-Tailoring Is Keeping A Handful of Men Really Rich.  Not everybody is scaling back or earning less these days.  Variety reports that Tom Cruise has "single-handedly propped up the script-doctoring biz," with a veritable army of rewriters he has working on his next five projects, some earning $250,000 per week.  As the paper reports, Cruise often has notes to alter the words, and has the rewriters tailor to his specifications after the studio's own rewrites are through.  What's...

Charlyne Yi: The Hipster's Cougar Cub?

***UPDATE: When we penned this, we were using information from Yi's MySpace page, her IMDB listing and a handful of Sundance reviews of her film, "Paper Heart" -- all of which listed the comedian's age as 33 years.  Some further reconnaissance uncovered the fact that Yi is more likely in her early to mid-20s -- though in a long-standing Hollywood actress tradition, nobody seems to know her true age.  We have the suspicion that she's getting the last laugh, as we'll sheepishly eat crow for...

Jon Meacham Wins Biography Pulitzer!

NEWSWEEK Editor Jon Meacham won the Pulitzer Prize for Biography on Monday afternoon for "American Lion: Andrew Jackson in the White House."  Click here to read an excerpt, or here to download his interview with NEWSWEEK ON AIR about the book, which was selected by the New York Times Book Review as a Notable Book of 2008.

How Will Nielsen Battle Back?

Warranted or not, Nielsen's ratings are often blasted as non-representative and capriciously collected. Just last week, Slate blasted the company's box system for skewing the numbers at this crucial point in the TV year, right before May sweeps.  The Big Money argues that if you really want to stage a "Save My Show" campaign, you and all your friends had better watch it online -- rather than on your old TV set.  At least then, your "vote" will be counted -- Chadwick Martin argues that you...

Morning Mix: Vintage Edition

Raw Version of Tarantino Clip Now Online. The uncensored version of the sneak peek at "Inglourious Basterds," Quentin Tarantino's new film, is now online.  The early look at the film came on Tuesday's "American Idol," when Tarantino made an appearance.  Check it out here. [Youtube]'Father Knows Best' on the Big Screen.

Some Good News About 'HP6,' Finally.

It's being moved up two days -- per Variety's report, Warner Brothers moved the summer flick from Friday, July 17th, to the Wednesday, the 15th. It is customary for studios to release major blockbusters on Wednesdays in the summer -- funny that it's only just being upgraded to blockbuster status?Speaking of Variety, it looks to have been completely redesigned over the course of the day.  That, or I'm going crazy.  I read it this morning in its old-school, green-highlighted form.  And now? ...

Morning Mix: Blago Wants to Skip Town -- to Costa Rican Jungle?

Blago Slated to Headline NBC Reality Show.  Impeached Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich already has his next move underway -- he's set to star in this summer's "I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here," in which he will battle it out with nine other "celebrities" in the Costa Rican jungle.  Pending, that is, the court loosening his travel restrictions.  Can anyone forsee a judge OKing this?! [Variety]Nobody Cares That Adam Lambert Is Gay.  The media is trying to raise some interest in this...

Lindsay Lohan Goes For Funnybone -- But Misses

So The Blogosphere has been chuckling -- we all sit in one big beanbag-riddled rec room, you know -- for the past day or so over Lindsay Lohan's FunnyOrDie video spoof (above), in which she emulates an eHarmony video soliciting a new significant other.  (Lohan has very publicly split up with girlfriend Samantha Ronson).  She takes herself to task for all the crap she's been through -- "I'm looking for someone I can spend the rest of my life with.  Or, at least the rest of my probation...

Living On (Digital) Love: An Avatar Story

The latest from NEWSWEEK's Jessica Bennett is this feature about finding and keeping love in a virtual world -- a virtual, 3-D, avatar-based world. Bennett follows two unmarried single parents who, though geographically separated, have found a lasting and almost marriage-like relationship as avatars in 3-D computer game Second Life.  I'm really thrilled that people can finally read this story, as it's been in the works here for a while now.  It's fascinating and really sticks with you, as in...

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