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ENTERTAINMENT
January 16, 2014 | By Glenn Whipp
We won't have to wait long to see what kind of final decisions Oscar voters will be making out of Thursday's Oscar nominations. This weekend brings the Screen Actors Guild and Producers Guild awards, with the Directors Guild following on Jan. 25. Those awards will give us plenty of concrete clues about where the most contentious contests -- picture, actor, supporting actress, director -- might be headed. Meanwhile, Cate Blanchett and Jared Leto can likely work on some new material for their anticipated acceptance speeches.
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ENTERTAINMENT
January 14, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
Comedic actor Jack Black and his Electric Dynamite production company have acquired the rights to remake "Wizard's Way," a low-budget British movie about two nerds obsessed with an aging online fantasy video game. Black will also serve as an executive producer on the original "Wizard's Way," which is written and directed by Joe Stretch, Socrates Adams and Chris Killen and makes its North American premiere at the Slamdance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, this weekend. In many ways, "Wizard's Way" calls to mind the 2007 documentary "The King of Kong.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 9, 2014 | By Jack Dolan and Ben Poston, Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge James Chalfant stared in disbelief Tuesday at a list of hundreds of Department of Water and Power employees who have asked that their names and salaries be withheld from the public, citing safety concerns. On the list were mechanics, typists and meter readers. "This is frivolous on its face; I mean, these are DWP employees," Chalfant said, noting that the names of government employees are public and even undercover police officers have a hard time demonstrating they would be in danger if their names appeared on a list of department employees.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 16, 2013 | By Ari Bloomekatz
The estimated jackpot for Tuesday's Mega Millions drawing has reached $550 million, making it the second-largest prize for the game and the fourth-largest overall in the United States. The $550 million prize has a cash payout option of $295 million. The highest jackpot, shared by winning ticket holders in three states, was $656 million in March 2012. The odds of winning the jackpot used to be 1 in 176 million, but as of Oct. 22 the odds changed to 1 in 259 million. Players had been able to pick six numbers 1 through 56; now it's 1 through 75 and the Mega numbers have decreased from 46 to 15. The game is played in 43 states, as well as the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
NEWS
December 16, 2013 | By Paul Whitefield
The Mega Millions jackpot Tuesday: $586 million. The odds of winning: 1 in 259 million. Sounds good; count me in. Yes, lottery fever is sweeping the nation - or at least that part of the nation that takes part in the Mega Millions game (the game is played in 43 states plus the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Wouldn't want to leave the Virgins out, right?). Somehow, I can't help but think that if the Obama administration had modeled the roll-out of Obamacare after the lottery, everyone in the country would've signed up by now - many more than once.
SPORTS
December 15, 2013 | By Paresh Dave
Despite a hole in the infield and a depleted bench, the Dodgers already have the makeup of a playoff team. And with pitching a key factor in postseason success, it's not surprising that bookies are listing the Clayton Kershaw-led Dodgers as favorites to win next year's World Series. But to be champions, the Dodgers would have to become the first team in at least 13 years to win the World Series after opening with the best odds, according to the online sports book TopBet. The odds boards at Las Vegas Hotel & Casino have cast similar droughts since the New York Yankees reigned as expected three times in a row from 1998-2000 and won again as favorites in 2009.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 15, 2013 | By Hector Becerra
Earlier this year, two young men stood on a bluff overlooking the unusual camp that homeless man Charles Ray Walker built in Boyle Heights and surveyed the bamboo-pricked hill, seeing how they could revive the swath of land into the green wonderland it had once been. Below them, hundreds - maybe thousands - of toys, signs and assorted oddities dotted the land, noticeably dustier than they were before Walker died last year. "We want to do this in his honor, to get this place like a community garden," said Randall Foster, 27, a conceptual artist who met Walker.
NATIONAL
December 14, 2013 | By Saba Hamedy
Friday the 13th meant no luck for the countless people across the nation who bought tickets for the Mega Millions jackpot. The $425-million prize went unclaimed  and has now grown to $550 million, the fourth-largest jackpot in U.S. lottery history. The winning numbers on Friday were: 19 24 26 27 70. Mega Ball number: 12. Still, nine people won $1 million each for matching up the first five numbers, according to the Mega Millions website Saturday. Thus far, the highest Mega Millions jackpot was $656 million in March 2012, with three winners in Illinois, Kansas and Maryland.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 13, 2013 | By Scott Collins
Matthew Perry is looking for a roommate. But, warning: The former "Friends" star is kind of a slob these days. Perry is aiming for a revival of "The Odd Couple," the classic 1970s sitcom based on Neil Simon's play about two divorced men who make unlikely roommates. CBS just made a script commitment to the project - a first step toward a possible series pickup. Perry would executive produce and co-write the script, but the big news is that he would play Oscar Madison, the irrepressible slob played in the original series by Jack Klugman.
SPORTS
December 12, 2013 | by Houston Mitchell
Imagine being days away from a huge payoff, but still knowing you will have to sit through an entire football game, hoping your team will win. Fourteen people out there are going through that now. When the opening odds for the BCS title were put on the board at the LVH hotel in Las Vegas in July, Auburn, which was coming off a 3-9 season and had a new coach, was listed at 1,000 to 1. Fourteen people, probably Auburn fans who support their team...
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