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March 12, 2014 | By Jeff Gottlieb
Angela Spaccia's upcoming sentencing for her role in the Bell scandal could bring a first in the long-running corruption case - the testimony of Robert Rizzo. The former city administrator, who became a symbol of greed and government corruption, has never spoken publicly about the case. He pleaded no contest to 69 felony corruption charges last year rather than stand trial. But now, the attorney for Rizzo's former assistant said he would subpoena Rizzo in an effort to get him to reveal details of the wrongdoing in the small, working-class city.
March 11, 2014 | By Mike Bresnahan
Jodie Meeks was the star of the Lakers' show last Sunday, outscoring Kevin Durant but also reminding his team of something less enthralling. He'll be a free agent in July. Almost all the Lakers will be, in fact. The latter isn't necessarily a bad thing for a 22-42 team scratching the depths of the Western Conference standings. INTERACTIVE: The Lakers ever-changing lineup But Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak will have a lot of work to do in a handful of months.
March 11, 2014 | By Robert Lloyd, Los Angeles Times Television Critic
In what might be an industry first, movie director Robert Rodriguez ("Desperado," "Machete," "Sin City") has his own TV channel. Born out of a commitment by Comcast, as it acquired an interest in NBCUniversal, to carry minority-owned networks, El Rey (also available via Time Warner and DirecTV) has as its sometime-stated target young English-speaking Latinos. Or rather, young English-speaking Latinos - and anyone else with a television - who likes the sort of movies Rodriguez makes.
March 10, 2014 | By Helene Elliott
Times columnist Helene Elliott rates the pluses and minuses in the NHL from the last week: + In his first start for Florida after being traded by the Vancouver Canucks, goaltender Roberto Luongo stopped 25 shots for the Panthers' first regular-season shutout in nearly two years. Luongo, who played for Florida earlier in his career, found his old Pink Panther-themed mask for just the right note. + Ryan Miller is 4-0 since the Blues acquired him from Buffalo last week, helping St. Louis erase the Ducks' once-commanding lead in the West.
March 9, 2014 | Michael Hiltzik
Robert Proctor doesn't think ignorance is bliss. He thinks that what you don't know can hurt you. And that there's more ignorance around than there used to be, and that its purveyors have gotten much better at filling our heads with nonsense. Proctor, a professor of the history of science at Stanford, is one of the world's leading experts in agnotology, a neologism signifying the study of the cultural production of ignorance. It's a rich field, especially today when whole industries devote themselves to sowing public misinformation and doubt about their products and activities.
March 7, 2014
Sheila MacRae Actress-singer was on '60s 'Honeymooners' Sheila MacRae, 92, a versatile actress and singer who performed in a popular 1950s nightclub act with her husband, Gordon MacRae, and appeared opposite Jackie Gleason in his late '60s revival of "The Honeymooners," died Thursday night at the Lillian Booth Actors Home of the Actors Fund in Englewood, N.J. She had undergone surgery a few weeks ago and had apparently been recovering well...
March 7, 2014 | By Meredith Blake
Robert Rodriguez helped ignite an independent film movement in the 1990s with his film "El Mariachi," shot for a mere $7,000, before moving on to blockbuster fare such as "Sin City" and the "Spy Kids" franchise. Now the restless filmmaker, 45, is trying to revolutionize the small screen with the recently launched cable network El Rey, targeted at a young, English-speaking Latino audience. It's available on Time Warner and DirecTV, among other outlets. You've had a lot of success in films.
March 6, 2014 | By Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times Music Critic
On announcing the death last week of composer Robert Ashley in New York at 83, the composer and critic Kyle Gann wrote on his blog that Ashley was "the greatest genius of 20th-century opera. I don't know how long it's going to take the world to recognize that. " I think I do. A little while, but not too much longer. Let's not argue about the greatest genius of opera in the 20th century. It's enough that Ashley was one of the greats and a true pioneer. Some might even want to argue about Ashley's lack of recognition.
February 27, 2014 | By Patrick Kevin Day
Just a few more days until the Oscars on Sunday, but host Ellen DeGeneres took time out from her daily show duties and prep for the big show to sit down with Robin Roberts on "Good Morning America" on Thursday morning. Even though DeGeneres has hosted the Oscars once before, back in 2007, she says that the Academy Awards audience and the audience for her daytime talker, "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" are vastly different. The audience for her daytime show "comes to see me and they travel from ... all over the world to come to a taping," DeGeneres explained.
February 27, 2014 | By Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
There are so many good reasons to bag "The Bag Man. " Where to begin? Director David Grovic, who co-wrote the mobster thriller with Paul Conway, seems to be inspired by the seedy crime-noir sensibility the Coen brothers brought to 1984's cult classic "Blood Simple" or Quentin Tarantino to the brilliant bruising of 1994's "Pulp Fiction. " The filmmaker is also confused by it apparently, because both aforementioned films have believable underpinnings and interesting characters who are put through their twisted paces by artists who actually have an endgame in mind.
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