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March 25, 2014 | By Joe Flint
Ben Sherwood has the kind of resume that could make even a high achiever jealous. A Harvard graduate and a Rhodes scholar, Sherwood has been a reporter, producer, author and executive. On Monday, Sherwood added the title chairman to his curriculum vitae when Walt Disney Co.  elevated him from president of ABC News to co-chairman of Disney Media Networks and president of the Disney/ABC Television Group. He will succeed Anne Sweeney, who is stepping down to try her hand at directing television.
March 25, 2014 | By Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times Daily Deal and Travel Blogger
It's a Small World, the theme park ride created by Walt Disney with dancing animatronic dolls and the song that endlessly loops through our collective brains, is about to hit middle age. The ride meant to convey peace and hope (not melodic overload) debuted at the 1964 New York World's Fair as a tribute to children everywhere and to UNICEF. Now, to mark the attraction's half century, Disney parks worldwide will host a global sing-along in April -- and everyone is invited. Performers will pay vocal tribute to the song and the ride in Disneyland in Anaheim, Disney World in Florida, and the Tokyo, Paris and Hong Kong parks on April 10. Disneyland's website says the ride has been closed for refurbishment and will reopen April 10. Aside from the park events, there's a digital side to the sing-along too. Fans who can't be there in person can make a video of themselves singing it -- solo, with friends and family, or with complete strangers -- and upload it to . The Walt Disney Co. announced last week it would donate $150,000 to UNICEF in honor of Small World's milestone and additionally will give $1 for every uploaded song and $1 for every virtual doll created on the website, up to $100,000.
March 24, 2014 | By Ryan Faughnder
Walt Disney Co. is buying Maker Studios, the digital media company behind YouTube successes such as "Epic Rap Battles of History" and PewDiePie. Burbank-based Disney said Monday that it will pay $500 million to Maker shareholders. Based in Culver City, Maker Studios has about  55,000 YouTube channels with 380 million subscribers and 5.5 billion views per month.  Shareholders could receive up to $450 million more, depending on Maker's performance after the acquisition.
March 22, 2014 | By James C. Taylor
NEW YORK - Pianist Evgeny Kissin speaks many languages, but to audiences around the world he is best known - and in some circles, revered - for his ability to articulate, with precision, the greatest scores of the classical piano repertoire. Talking with the Russian-born artist on New York's Upper West Side a few days before a sold-out solo recital at Carnegie Hall (the program of Scriabin and Schubert will repeat at Disney Hall on Monday), it becomes immediately clear that Kissin's mind is hard-wired for accuracy.
March 22, 2014 | By Deborah Vankin
In the next few months, Liza Minnelli will bring her new musical show, "Simply Liza," to Vienna, London, Paris and Amsterdam, among other places. There's one stage, however, on which this Oscar, Emmy, Grammy, Golden Globe and Tony winner has never set foot: Walt Disney Concert Hall. That'll change on Tuesday night, when "Liza With a Z" heads to downtown L.A. for a one-night-only performance of some of her favorite songs. Minnelli recently chatted about the show from her home in New York, on the eve of her 68th birthday.
March 19, 2014 | By Joe Flint
After the coffee. Before deciding whether to see "Nymphomaniac" now or wait for the edited version on cable. The Skinny: Caught Sunday's "The Walking Dead" last night where the Lizzie character got Fredo'd. Godfather fans will get the reference. Tough to watch, but she had to go. Wednesday's roundup includes a recap of Disney's annual meeting and Viacom's settling of a long legal fight with Google's YouTube. Also, a profile of NBC Entertainment chief Bob Greenblatt.
March 19, 2014 | By Randall Roberts, Los Angeles Times Pop Music Critic
The four identically dressed members of Kraftwerk stood before electronic consoles, glowing lecterns outlined in strips of blue light, in a dark Walt Disney Concert Hall.  Above them, three-dimensional moving images of sleek commuter trains speeding down tracks, molecules colliding and musical notes orbiting an idealized Earth were projected onto a vast screen.  Appearing for the first and second of eight sold-out performances over four...
March 19, 2014 | By David Ng
A theater initiative aimed at encouraging people with autism to attend live performances is targeting younger children with a new offering involving a Disney Live! show at Madison Square Garden in New York. The Theatre Development Fund said on Wednesday that the April 19 show of "Disney Junior Live on Tour! Pirate and Princess Adventure" will be a special performance geared toward children who have been diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum. The performance at Madison Square Garden is a partnership with TDF, a nonprofit New York group that promotes theater throughout the country, and Feld Entertainment, which manages the Disney Live!
March 19, 2014 | By Daniel Miller
Walt Disney Co. held its annual meeting in Portland, Ore., on Tuesday and used the occasion to reveal a few tidbits about its forthcoming film projects, including a pair of animated sequels and the company's first "Star Wars" picture. Shareholders of Disney, the world's largest entertainment company, also confirmed all 10 members of the board of directors who were up for reelection. The meeting was also notable for what did not transpire there. The Burbank company was able to avoid a vote on a proposal put forward by a group of activist investors who wanted to amend the process by which candidates are nominated to the board.
March 19, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
A decade after the titular superhero family of "The Incredibles" donned their spandex suits to save the day, Disney announced that its animation studio Pixar is working on a sequel to the Oscar-winning movie. The sequel was announced by Disney Chairman and Chief Executive Robert Iger during the company's annual shareholder meeting in Portland, Ore. Iger also revealed that Pixar is planning a third movie in the popular "Cars" franchise. Written and directed by Brad Bird, "The Incredibles" tells of a superpowered-family living in a world where superheroes have been banned from fighting crime.
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