November 27, 2012 |
It began as a favor. It became an obsession. It was 1996 and screenwriter Gary Ross got a call from a desperate friend. Out of time and money, director David Koepp was in frantic need of a children's story to complete his movie feature debut, "The Trigger Effect. " Acquiring the rights to a known book was out of the question, so Koepp threw a Hail Mary pass to his friend: Write the beginnings of a story about a boy named Bartholomew Biddle, by tomorrow, for free. "How could I possibly say no?
November 27, 2012 |
After years of proposals and discussion from several companies hoping to reintroduce passenger rail service between Southern California and Las Vegas , one project now appears to be on the fast track. Las Vegas Railway Express , the company that plans to operate a weekend, adults-only party train between Fullerton and Sin City, marked a milestone this month with the signing of an agreement with Union Pacific Railroad. The pact will allow the "X Train" to run on tracks that have carried only freight since Amtrak ceased passenger service between Los Angeles and Las Vegas 15 years ago. The venture has purchased 16 rail cars, but they need to be refurbished before the trains can begin operating.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 21, 2012 |
Teen actress Ariel Winter of "Modern Family" will remain with her sister under temporary guardianship, and a trial has been scheduled to decide her future home, a judge ruled Tuesday. L.A. County Superior Court Judge Michael Levanas said a county Department of Children and Family Services report found that allegations that Winter's mother emotionally abused her were substantiated, while the department found physical abuse allegations inconclusive. The judge on Oct. 3 temporarily stripped Chrisoula Workman of custody of her daughter.
November 8, 2012 |
The uneven comedy "Nature Calls" stars Patton Oswalt as an over-enthusiastic Scouting leader struggling to keep his troop together even as most of his charges would rather stay indoors with their computers, phones and TVs. Rob Riggle, Johnny Knoxville and Patrice O'Neal (who died after the production finished) all play grown-ups who have also lost sight of the bigger-picture values of Scouting, chasing after the troop when they go on an unauthorized camping trip. Not surprisingly, the men all learn lessons in maturity along the way. Writer-director Todd Rohal - whose previous features are "The Guatemalan Handshake" and "The Catechism Cataclysm" - appears caught between an impulse toward broad, mainstream comedy and something quirkier and more character-focused.
October 30, 2012 |
GOLDEN, Colo. - The teenager suspected in the death and dismemberment of 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway and the attempted abduction of a young woman was charged as an adult Tuesday with 17 counts, including first-degree murder, kidnapping and sexual assault on a child. Austin Reed Sigg, who will turn 18 in January, sat silently in a tiny courtroom ringed by 11 sheriff's deputies as the charges were read. He was shackled and, unlike during his last court appearance, did not turn and attempt to make eye contact with his family seated a few feet away.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 21, 2012 |
When Los Angeles County voters go to the polls on election day, the ballot will include a question they've never seen before: Should pornographic movie performers be required to wear condoms during filming? From now until Nov. 6, analysts say, supporters and opponents of Measure B could have a tricky time convincing them to even consider the point. "Not only is it an issue that's not particularly important to voters, but it's way down the ballot," said Darry Sragow, a longtime political strategist and attorney unaffiliated with either side of the campaign.
October 21, 2012 |
Lauren Conrad isn't just a celebrity. The blond from Orange County, with her trademark cat-eye makeup, is a cottage industry. Conrad, 26, hasn't appeared regularly on television since exiting the MTV reality show "The Hills" in 2009, but off-screen, she's been quietly building a lifestyle empire. (Her net worth is estimated to be about $12 million.) She's written two bestselling series of young-adult novels that play with Hollywood stereotypes. She runs an eponymous clothing line sold at Kohl's and a second fashion collection called Paper Crown that's available at 120 boutiques nationwide.
October 20, 2012 |
For decades, hits to the head have been as much a part of football as touchdowns and chilled beers. But recently, more and more athletes have spoken out about the long-term damage they've sustained from repeated concussions incurred during games and practice. These types of head injuries are dangerous to adults, but they're even more concerning when they happen over and over again to children. Because of that, parents, teachers and coaches are looking for ways to make the game safer.
October 16, 2012 |
I happen to like "Emily Owens, M.D.," the CW's new medical comedy, which is also its new medical drama. It is smartly written and well played and stars Mamie Gummer, who has been sneaking up on television via "John Adams," the short-lived "Off the Map" and a delightful recurring role on "The Good Wife. " But I can see that this series, which premieres Tuesday, is also going to be very much a matter of taste. If I call it a cross between "New Girl" and "Grey's Anatomy," an incomplete but not inaccurate comparison, well, I can already hear some doors slam shut.
October 14, 2012 |
The sleepy Boston suburb that Mitt Romney has called home for much of his adult life has much to offer a family. It features excellent schools, big homes, and so little excitement that a local newspaper once called it the most boring town in the region. But there's a division in Belmont too, that may, or may not, have been present as far back as when the painter Winslow Homer built a summer home here in the 1850s. It's a divide between the rich and everyone else. Before he sold his house and moved into a condo, Romney and his family lived on Belmont Hill, where the residences are large and the yards spacious.