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January 2, 2014 | By Jerry Hirsch
Italian automaker Fiat plans to take full control of Chrysler Group by buying out the shares held by a United Auto Workers union-controlled trust fund. The union and Fiat reached a deal on New Year's Day for the automaker to acquire the 41.5% of Chrysler's shares that were held by the UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust. Fiat already acquired the rest of Chrysler's shares through a deal launched during the bankruptcy restructuring of the Auburn Hills, Mich., automaker in 2009.
December 26, 2013 | By Mike Boehm
The film "12 Years a Slave" is based on the true story of a free black man who was kidnapped into slavery in the pre-Civil War American South. But posters for its Italian release have marginalized Chiwetel Ejiofor, who stars as the protagonist, in favor of large head shots of white actors Brad Pitt and Michael Fassbender. Pitt, who produced the film, has a relatively small role, and Fassbender has a supporting part as a cruel slave owner. A spokesman for Lionsgate -- whose subsidiary Summit Entertainment is handling sales of the film to overseas distributors -- issued a statement disavowing responsibility for the posters, which were created for the film's Italian distributor, BIM. INTERACTIVE: '12 Years a Slave': Steve McQueen, Chiwetel Ejiofor on key scenes It said the the posters "were unauthorized and were not approved by any of the producers or licensors of the film," and that Summit "is investigating and taking immediate action to … have those posters currently in the marketplace recalled.
December 14, 2013 | By Lauren Beale
It's showtime, so to speak. No, not on the basketball court at Staples Center, but in Playa del Rey, where Jerry Buss' mansion has come on the market at $5.95 million. The custom Italian-style villa, built in 1998 by the late Los Angeles Lakers owner and billionaire, is a showstopper. For starters, Lakers logos adorn the stained-glass double-door entry set in a rotunda. Inside, a hallway with Spanish tile floors and a wood-beam ceiling leads to a winding staircase. On the second level, wood floors step down to the living room where columns flank the fireplace.
November 29, 2013 | By S. Irene Virbila
Claudio Blotta and his wife Adria Tennor of barbrix restaurant and wine bar and Cooks County plan to open a new restaurant in Atwater Village this spring. The site is the former Acapulco on Glendale Boulevard. “We don't have a name yet. The project is that new,” says Blotta. “It will be Italian and we'll have a wood-burning oven for pizza, a wood-burning grill - and a full bar. I'm excited about that. I love a Negroni.” Architect Osvaldo Maiozzi (Rivera, Petty Cash, Republique, etc.)
November 23, 2013 | Elaine Woo, Los Angeles Times
Fifty miles north of London lies Bletchley Park, a railway town during World War II that had few, if any, sights to recommend it. It was here, to a rundown estate on the other side of the tracks, that 19-year-old Mavis Batey was dispatched in the spring of 1940. As Hitler's forces advanced across Europe, encoded messages from Panzer divisions, U-boats and even the German high command were being intercepted and relayed to the men and women at Bletchley Park, whose job was to break the German code and help Britain and its allies outwit the Axis powers.
November 17, 2013 | By Glenn Whipp
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Governors Awards - or as Martin Short called them, the "highest honor an actor can receive ... in mid-November" - were presented Saturday evening in Hollywood. And Short's joking comment aside, the evening made for a heartfelt tribute to three movie legends - Steve Martin, Angela Lansbury and Italian costume designer Piero Tosi - picking up honorary awards for their body of work, as well as Angelina Jolie, winner of the academy's Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.
October 25, 2013 | By Mike Boehm
Giuseppe Verdi's 200th birthday celebration resumes in Southern California this weekend with the three-day Italian Opera Festival at the Soka Performing Arts Center in Aliso Viejo. The composer's birthday was Oct. 10. On Saturday, the festival at Soka University, an offshoot of the annual Tuscia Operafestival in Viterbo, Italy, will feature a “Viva Verdi!” program that includes overtures and arias from 10 of his works, including “La Traviata,” “Il Trovatore,” “Aida,” “Otello” and Verdi's “Requiem.” Stefano Vignati, the Tuscia festival's music director, conducts the Tuscia Operafestival Symphony with reinforcements from the Youth Philharmonic Orchestra, San Diego.
October 13, 2013 | By Roger Vincent
After a decade of delays, a $100-million real estate development in the heart of Chinatown is getting underway as the changing neighborhood catches a wave of investment sweeping through downtown Los Angeles. Work began this month on the Blossom Plaza apartment and retail complex that will take over the space formerly occupied by Little Joe's, an Italian restaurant and bar that was once a beloved fixture on North Broadway. The eatery has been closed for 15 years, and its shabby-looking building and parking lot have long been considered a blight on the community's main thoroughfare.
October 11, 2013 | By Deborah Vankin
“I AM LA” could stand for many things -- for example, it could be the proud assertion of an Angeleno, invoking the city's strikingly diverse composition of ethnic cultures. This Saturday, the term “I AM LA” will resonate in Downtown L.A. as the abbreviation of the Italian American Museum of Los Angeles, which is hosting its fifth food and wine festival, “Taste of Italy.” The event is a fundraiser for the in-progress museum, which is nearing the end of a 20-year process working toward building a brick-and-mortar home for its collection.
October 9, 2013 | By David Wharton
Italian gymnast Carlotta Ferlito has apologized for a racist remark she made in reference to an American rival at the world championships in Belgium. Ferlito and teammate Vanessa Ferrari had finished just off the podium in the balance beam competition on Sunday when she commented on bronze medalist Simone Biles, who is African American. "I told Vane that next time we'll have our skin black so we can win too," she said. Ferlito tweeted her mea culpa on Tuesday. "I want to apologize with the Americans girls.
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