The fight between Julie Taymor and the producers of "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" is getting uglier. On Tuesday, producers said they have filed a countersuit in federal court against the director, accusing her of failing to fulfill her contractual obligations on the Broadway musical.
The producers said in a release that Taymor refused on a number of occasions to collaborate on changes to the show with other members of the production team. "The show is a success despite Taymor, not because of her," said the claim.
Last year, Taymor sued the producers, claiming that her creative rights were violated and that she wasn't compensated for her work. Taymor was fired as director of the musical in March following scathing reviews and a number of technical mishaps during the show's preview period.
Charles Spada, an attorney who represents Taymor, said the producers' counterclaims are "baseless."
Edgar Allan Poe acolyte overdue
Is the "Poe Toaster" nevermore?
Edgar Allan Poe fans are planning one last vigil to watch for the mysterious person who for decades visited the gothic writer's grave on the anniversary of his birth.
The rose and cognac tributes of an anonymous man in black are thought to date to at least the 1940s. Notes left with the tributes indicate that the tradition passed to a new generation in the 1990s. But the visitor, dubbed the "Poe Toaster," hasn't appeared since 2009.
Poe House and Museum Curator Jeff Jerome says he'll wait one last time overnight Wednesday before calling an end to the tradition. He'll host a reading of Poe tributes Thursday, an event that may become a new tradition to mark the macabre writer's birthday.
'Artist' leads British race
"The Artist," which won three Golden Globes on Sunday, received the most nominations Tuesday for the Orange British Academy Awards with 12 nods, including best film, original screenplay, director, actor and actress.
The British Academy of Film and Television Arts gave the espionage thriller "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" 11 nominations and Martin Scorsese's valentine to cinema, "Hugo," nine nominations.
Besides "The Artist," best film nominees are "The Descendants," which won the Globe Globe for best movie (drama), "The Help," "Drive" and "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy."
The winners will be announced in London on Feb. 12.
Jill Biden pens children's book
Jill Biden, after years of teaching English to college and high school students, has written a book of her own.
The wife of Vice President Joe Biden has completed a children's story, "Don't Forget, Nana, God Bless Our Troops," told from the point of view of granddaughter Natalie Biden and a tribute to soldiers and their families.
Biden, called Nana by her granddaughter, has met with many military families and said she thought of doing the book as she realized how many people did not understand their experiences. The story is especially personal because son Beau Biden, Delaware's attorney general and a major in the state's Army National Guard, spent a year in Iraq.
"I really feel that you write your best about what you know best," Jill Biden, who taught in Delaware before moving to Washington, said Tuesday. "That's what I teach to my students, so I thought using my own experience would have a little more meaning and a little more heart to it."
The book will be published June 5 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.
Rock hall library opens quietly
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum opened its new library and archives to the public on Tuesday to give scholars and fans access to the stories behind the music through such "artifacts" as personal letters from Madonna and Aretha Franklin and 1981-82 video of the Rolling Stones tour.
The collection, cataloged over the last few years, includes more than 3,500 books, 1,400 audio recordings and 270 videos, and is housed in the new four-story, $12 million building.
Thousands more books and recordings and hundreds of videos will be added as previously stored items and new donations are cataloged, said Andy Leach, director of the library and archives.
Tuesday's opening of the building on the Cuyahoga Community College campus in Cleveland, not far from the rock hall, occurred without a lot of fanfare. The low-key opening allows the public to enjoy the library before a grand opening April 9. The college funded the building and the rock hall financed construction and furnishings of its interior.
The library also offers photos, oral histories and scrap books.