April 26, 2013 |
"The amazing thing about James Brown, for me," says R.J. Smith, "is you can't figure him out. " That's not uncommon for a music journalist, but it reveals just how complex Brown was -- Smith was his biographer. Smith, the author of 2012's "The One: The Life and Music of James Brown," dropped by our video booth at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books to talk about his book and about James Brown, the godfather of soul. "He was a civil rights arbiter, and he was a Republican," Smith tells L.A. Times features editor Alice Short.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 1, 2013 |
SAN DIEGO -- A civilian supervisor on construction projects at Camp Pendleton has been charged with bribery after being caught in an FBI sting, federal officials said Monday. Natividad Lara Cervantes, 64, a civilian employee of the Department of Defense, was arrested after accepting $10,000 cash as a down payment on a $40,000 bribe in exchange for helping a contractor receive a $4-million flooring contract at the base, officials said. Cervantes, a supervisor for construction and service contracts in the inspection branch, used his position to "extort bribes from businesses seeking to do business" at the base and referred to himself as the "Godfather at Camp Pendleton," the FBI said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 23, 2013 |
Arnold Schwarzenegger is mourning the death of fitness impresario Joe Weider, who died Saturday at 93, calling Weider his mentor and the "godfather of fitness. " "He taught us that through hard work and training we could all be champions," Schwarzenegger, a Mr. Universe- and Mr. Olympia-winning former bodybuilder turned actor and former California governor, said in a statement released Saturday. "When I was a young boy in Austria, his muscle magazines provided me with the inspiration and the blueprint to push myself beyond my limits and imagine a much bigger future," he said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 6, 2013 |
ORANGE COVE, Calif. - When Victor Lopez was voted out after three decades as mayor of this small Central Valley town, his political nemeses took little time to dismantle what they considered a self-celebratory fiefdom. The Victor Lopez Community Center became the Orange Cove Community Center. Ditto the name changes planned for a street, park bandstand and day care center. As surely as the de-Stalinization of the Soviet Union, Lopez was to be erased from Orange Cove. "Don't do this," Mayor Gabriel Jimenez, a political neophyte who defeated Lopez in a close 2010 election, recalls warning fellow lawmakers.
December 7, 2012 |
Oscar-winning writer-director-producer Francis Ford Coppola makes movies to understand himself. "When you make a film it is like asking yourself a question," Coppola said over the phone from his home in Northern California. "When it's finished, you know the answer. Ultimately with all of cinema, we are just trying to learn about ourselves. I have always used the opportunity to make a film to learn more about myself, which I am still doing. " Coppola, 73, is returning to the Paramount lot next year - the studio where he had enormous success with "The Godfather" trilogy and 1974's "The Conversation," and for which he just finished the first draft of an ambitious, multi-generational drama akin to his 1974 masterpiece "The Godfather, Part II. " But he was in a reflective mood last week chatting about the Blu-ray release of "Francis Ford Coppola: 5-Film Collection," arriving Tuesday.
August 30, 2012 |
The children of Mario Puzo, author of the famed "Godfather" series, are trying to severe their family's more than 40-year association with Paramount Pictures after a bitter squabble that erupted earlier this year. On Thursday, Hollywood attorney Bert Fields, who is representing the Puzo children, told a federal judge in New York that Paramount had violated its 1969 contract with Puzo when the movie studio went to court this year to prevent the May publication of a new sequel, "The Family Corleone.