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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 17, 2004 | Andrew Blankstein, Times Staff Writer
A teenage girl was found guilty Tuesday of helping two men kill popular young actor Merlin Santana, making a clean sweep for prosecutors, who earlier won convictions against her two codefendants. Monique King lied to her two accomplices by saying the actor had made sexual advances toward her; she also helped them get away after they shot Santana, said Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Larry P. Fidler.
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ENTERTAINMENT
April 25, 2014 | By Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times Theater Critic
Depending on your knowledge of the material and expectations going in, the touring version of "The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess," which opened Wednesday at the Ahmanson Theatre, might be either an ingenious, audience-friendly re-creation or a bastardization of this classic American show. Both perspectives can reside within the same spectator, as they do within me, one alternately gaining the upper hand over the other. Undeniable, however, is the majesty of the score, which begins after the Overture with "Summertime" and keeps soaring with "My Man's Gone Now," "Bess, You Is My Woman Now" and "I Loves You, Porgy.
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ENTERTAINMENT
August 20, 1991 | DAVID WALLACE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
In a year that has seen would-be action heroes Jeff Speakman and Brian Bosworth make well-orchestrated attempts to muscle their way into the action-adventure movie arena, Columbia Pictures is clearly betting that Jean-Claude Van Damme could be the next Chuck Norris, Steven Seagal--or even Arnold Schwarzenegger. "Double Impact," the $15-million action film in which Van Damme plays dual roles, opened well Aug. 9 and has grossed $15.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 25, 2014 | By Amy Kaufman
Keira Knightley is used to early wake-up calls. The actress has a penchant for period films, and it takes a while to get tied into a corset. But on the set of the modern-day romance "Begin Again," the British star's call time was decidedly later than on "Anna Karenina" or "Pride & Prejudice. " "I'm so used to sitting in a chair for two hours getting my hair and makeup done," she said recently via telephone from the U.K., "but this time I turned up half an hour before I needed to start shooting and chucked my hair in a ponytail.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 6, 1994 | NANCY SPILLER, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
This week Universal Studios released "The Little Rascals," a multimillion-dollar remake of the scruffy kid series that has charmed the world since its birth in 1922. This "Rascals" is remarkably faithful to the Hal Roach originals, right down to Alfalfa's cowlick, Darla's feminine mystique, Froggy's croak and the circle around Petey's eye. Even some of the original locations have been used, with filming in Burbank neighborhoods unchanged since the '20s and '30s.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 20, 1991 | AMY LOUISE KAZMIN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Actor Robert Young, who for 10 years served as the ideal TV patriarch in "Father Knows Best" and went on to star in "Marcus Welby, M.D.," attempted suicide at his Westlake Village home last week, authorities said Saturday. Lt. Bob Barrier, of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, said Young, 83, ran a hose from the exhaust pipe to his car's interior last Saturday about 7:45 a.m. Authorities were alerted after Young called a tow truck to try to start his car.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 26, 1999 | COLL METCALFE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Actor Martin Lawrence regained consciousness Wednesday after slipping into a coma caused by severe heat exhaustion, according to doctors at Columbia Los Robles Medical Center in Thousand Oaks. The 34-year-old Lawrence, star of the television show "Martin" and films such as "Life," "Bad Boys" and "Nothing to Lose," collapsed and fell into a coma Sunday after returning to his Westlake Village home from a jog.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 11, 1985
Veteran character actor Rafael Campos, who got his start in the role of a juvenile delinquent in "Blackboard Jungle," has died at the Motion Picture and Television Hospital, a spokeswoman for the Woodland Hills facility confirmed Wednesday. He was 49. Campos, who died Tuesday, had been at the hospital since last December, when stomach cancer was diagnosed.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 5, 1994 | KENT BLACK, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Last winter, Paul Petersen was awakened by a frantic call. "It was this kid calling from the Roxy," recalls Petersen, 48, an author and onetime child actor who played Jeff on "The Donna Reed Show" from 1958 through 1966. "He said he saw River Phoenix in one of the nightclub's bathroom stalls shooting heroin." Petersen, who for four years has been organizing support groups for former child stars and the pressure they face in an often indifferent Hollywood, sprang into action.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 27, 1999 | GLENN LOVELL, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Outraged friends and colleagues are rallying to the defense of late '50s screen hunk Jeff Chandler to offset damage done to his reputation by Esther William's racy bestselling autobiography, "The Million Dollar Mermaid." According to Williams, who began a love affair with Chandler during the shooting of "Raw Wind in Eden" in 1956, Chandler was "happy and secure only in women's clothing." Cross-dressing, she writes, gave the actor a sexual thrill.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 24, 2014 | By Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
It sounds contrived, and it is. It sounds like a bit of a stunt, and it is that too. It may even sound boring, but that it is not. In fact, whip-smart filmmaking by writer-director Steven Knight and his team combined with Tom Hardy's mesmerizing acting make the micro-budgeted British independent "Locke" more minute-to-minute involving than this year's more costly extravaganzas. Though a dozen actors are listed in "Locke's" credits, Hardy is the only one who appears on screen in this real-time drama that unfolds inside a moving BMW during the 85 minutes it takes construction foreman Ivan Locke to make a nighttime drive from Birmingham to London.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 19, 2014 | By Mike Boehm, Los Angeles Times
"What's my motivation?" is a standard laugh line satirizing the acting profession, a livelihood in which it's not always clear why one is doing what one needs to do. At the moment, Daniel Beaty and Keith David may be the two American actors least likely to say it. They are playing (and singing) the role of Paul Robeson in two separate plays on two separate Los Angeles stages. Their shared motivation is telling a story that is the ultimate retort to the idea that there's an unbridgeable gap between being a performer and living a serious life.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 16, 2014 | By Betsy Sharkey
Whether or not you embrace director Darren Aronofsky's fierce biblical vision in "Noah," it's worth seeing the film for the remarkably moving performance by Russell Crowe in the title role. The actor seems to do his best work in period pieces, the more centuries away from the present the better. Crowe's very good Roman soldier in "Gladiator" won him an Oscar in 2001, and his swashbuckling ship captain in "Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World" greatly buoyed that film. It's not that Crowe can't thrive in more contemporary eras - his other Oscar nominations were for portraying Nobel-winning mathematician John Nash in "A Beautiful Mind" and a big-tobacco whistle blower in Michael Mann's "The Insider.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 10, 2014 | By Victoria Kim
Family members in a brewing legal dispute over the body of screen legend Mickey Rooney have reached an agreement on where and how the star should be buried, heading off a potentially costly and public court fight, attorneys announced Thursday afternoon. The agreement comes on the eve of a court hearing scheduled for Friday morning, at which a judge was to hear arguments from an attorney for Rooney's estranged wife on one side, and Rooney's conservator, who has the support of his stepson Mark Rooney and daughter-in-law, on the other.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 10, 2014 | By Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
For a while now, Nicolas Cage has seemed more punch line than artistic force. More memorable for stopping by "Saturday Night Live" in 2012 to join the "In the Cage" satire, a none too flattering impression perfected by the very funny Andy Samberg , than for dreadful films like "Ghost Rider" that inspired it. Classic Cage, the kind of performances that graced 1987's "Moonstruck" with such moody romantic charm, or 1995's "Leaving Las Vegas"...
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 7, 2014 | Valerie J. Nelson
Mickey Rooney, a celebrated child actor who embodied the All-American boy in the "Andy Hardy" films of the 1930s and '40s and became one of the era's top box-office draws, has died. He was 93. Rooney, whose roller-coaster show-business career was marked by an often-turbulent personal life, died Sunday at his home in Los Angeles. Cmdr. Andrew Smith of the LAPD and the L.A. County coroner's office confirmed his death. The cause was not disclosed. One of the most enduring performers in show business, he made his debut on the vaudeville stage in 1922 as a toddler and toured into his late '80s in a two-person stage show with Jan Chamberlin, his eighth wife.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 10, 1994
A jury deliberated less than four hours Wednesday before acquitting an actor of raping a 16-year-old extra last summer on the set of "Sister Act II." The jury also found Ron Johnson, 21, not guilty of raping a 19-year-old woman, who came forward after seeing news accounts of the extra's accusations. She accused Johnson of raping her in 1992 after she met him at a house party.
NEWS
July 6, 2001 | P.J. HUFFSTUTTER and RALPH FRAMMOLINO, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
When 43-year-old porn actor Tyce Bune goes to work these days, he makes sure to pack something extra in his briefcase along with the usual script and change of clothes: a vial of Viagra tablets. On a typical day, when filming can stretch on for 14 hours, Bune will strip down and have sex in front of a camera crew as many as three times. During busy times, he might work five days a week.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 7, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
Many of the obituaries and appreciations for Mickey Rooney pay deference to his diverse skills: singing, family comedies, musicals, dramas and even the movement to TV, all while being a serious box-office draw. As my colleague Kenneth Turan wrote , few now comprehend  “how large this man loomed over the American film landscape.”  Much of that is the function of his enthusiastic on-screen persona - the word irrepressible comes up a lot. But even as that Andy Hardy-ish appeal faded in postwar America, Rooney was able to move with it, or at least find surprising relevance, segueing to other genres and modes with a certain ease.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 7, 2014 | By Susan King, Los Angeles Times
One of the last remaining stars of Hollywood's golden era, Mickey Rooney was born to vaudeville parents, and appeared with them onstage by the age of 1. He became a star when he was signed to play the part of comic book hero Mickey McGuire in a series of successful shorts that began in 1927 with "Mickey's Circus" and ended with "Mickey's Derby Day" in 1936. But it was at MGM in the 1930s that the diminutive dynamo hit real fame, particularly with the "Andy Hardy" movie series that launched in 1937.
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