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December 23, 2013 | By Steven Zeitchik
After weeks of questions and production delays, Universal Pictures has decided to move forward with "Fast & Furious 7" with Paul Walker included in the finished film. The late star will feature prominently in the sequel, the studio suggested in an announcement late Sunday. "Vin Diesel and Paul Walker lead the returning cast of 'Fast & Furious 7,'" it said in a statement, also announcing that the movie will now hit theaters on April 10, 2015, nine months after the original July date.
April 5, 2014 | By David Colker
When professional storyteller Leslie Perry was in his prime, his performances were electrifying displays of verbal pyrotechnics, with Perry shouting out passages like a hellfire preacher while sometimes dancing back and forth on the stage, his fists pumping in rhythm with the recitation. In more recent years, with his body sapped by amyotrophic lateral sclerosis , also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, Perry sat in a chair while telling his stories. And though his movements had to be far more subtle, the vocal colors he brought to his stories made them no less riveting.
February 15, 2013 | By Wesley Lowery
Cinemark USA Inc., one of the world's largest theater chains, on Friday announced plans to sell off all of its Mexican theaters. The Texas-based chain, the third-largest theater company in the U.S., plans to sell its 31 theaters in Mexico -- representing 290 screens -- to two Mexican theater companies, Grupo Cinemex and Cadena Mexicana de Exhibicion.  “This transaction allows us the opportunity to provide greater focus on the growth...
March 24, 2014 | By Richard Verrier
Tim Warner, chief executive of Cinemark Holdings Inc., admits he'd never heard of the popular science fiction series "Doctor Who. " So the Montana native was skeptical when executives at BBC Wordwide approached him about the idea of screening a simulcast of the 50th anniversary episode of the cult-classic British TV series in Cinemark theaters across Latin America and the U.S. In late November, hundreds of "Whovians" showed up at more than...
December 25, 2013 | By Jason Felch
On one of the busiest film nights of the year, hundreds of people at a Los Angeles movie theater complex were evacuated after fire alarms interrupted their Christmas movie viewings. The alarms went off at the ArcLight Cinemas in Hollywood on Sunset Boulevard about 5:30 p.m., an employee said. By 6:20, guests were being allowed back into the theaters. “Looks like it was a false alarm,” said employee Eric Corbin. “We're still accepting purchases, and more than likely we'll be up and running in the next half hour.” Christmas Day is one of the busiest of the year for the ArcLight, where 14 theaters can seat several thousand movie-goers.
December 7, 2012 | By Mike Boehm
America's nonprofit theaters are feeling a bit better about their finances these days, according to a recent survey conducted by the sector's main national service organization, Theatre Communications Group. But the actors, directors and designers who work in those theaters shouldn't bank on a trickle-down effect boosting their standard of living. Asked to list their top five priorities for the coming year, only 19% of the 206 theaters surveyed by TCG and its partner, the Assn.
October 1, 2012 | By Richard Verrier
Carmike Cinemas, the nation's fourth-largest theater circuit, is bulking up. The Columbus, Ga.-based chain said Monday it had signed an agreement to buy 16 theaters with 251 screens from Dallas-headquartered Rave Review Cinemas for $19 million in cash and $100.4 million of assumed lease obligations. Of the 16 theaters being acquired, six are in Alabama, four in Florida, two in Indiana, and one each in Illinois, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Texas. “The addition of these 16 state-of-the-art theaters and 251 screens from Rave is a key, opportunistic development for Carmike," said Carmike Cinemas President and Chief Executive Officer David Passman.
April 11, 2013 | By Mark Olsen
Executives at Sony Pictures Entertainment are working to get “Django Unchained” back into theaters in China after the film was abruptly pulled on its opening day. Some screenings were halted after they were already underway. It wasn't immediately clear why the action was taken. "We regret that 'Django Unchained' has been removed from theaters and are working with the Chinese authorities to determine whether the film can be rescheduled," said Sony Pictures Entertainment spokesman Steve Elzer on Thursday.
July 25, 2013 | By Mark Olsen
One of James Gandolfini's final films is coming to theaters in September. "Enough Said," Nicole Holofcener's romantic dramedy that stars the late  "Sopranos" actor as a romantic lead, will open in limited release on Sept. 20, studio Fox Searchlight said Thursday. The theatrical release will hit several weeks after the Toronto international Film Festival premiere, announced this week. The film is also considered a likely selection as a sneak preview at the Telluride Film Festival over Labor Day weekend.
June 28, 2013 | By Mark Olsen
Rather than the large-scale stadiums he usually appears at, Bruce Springsteen will soon be coming to a theater near you. Material submitted by more than 2,000 Springsteen fans around the world makes up the film "Springsteen & I. " Billed as "a collective filmmaking experience," the movie is credited to director Baillie Walsh and will hit cinemas July 22 and July 30, playing at some 500 theaters across the country,  including 29 in the Los Angeles...
March 17, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
The tweets were coming fast and furious before many of the weekend screenings had rolled their credits: “Veronica Mars,” the Rob Thomas cult show revived as a Kickstarter film to much fanfare last year, was a bust. You probably saw five in your feed before breakfast Sunday, and the gist of many of them was the same. Just $2 million in box office for a movie that had garnered so much attention? This was, the naysayers said, just one more example of the overinflated role of crowdfunding in the new Hollywood, one more example of the online echo chamber giving disproportionate attention to what a few hard-core fans were interested in. But was it really such a bust?
March 14, 2014 | By Mike Boehm
This post has been updated. Please see below for details. This spring's National Football League draft will tell us who the most prized college players are. It's thought to be a good year for quarterbacks. College and university talent in the arts gets no such showcase. Perhaps the nearest thing is the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival, held each spring in Washington. It's a good year for Southern California playwrights. The Kennedy Center announced Thursday that Jeff Augustin of UC San Diego and Brian Polak of USC have won $1,000 first-place awards for full-length plays, with $500 runner-up awards going to Michael Yichao of the California Institute of the Arts and Kristin Idaszak of UC San Diego.
March 14, 2014 | By Laura Bleiberg
It's a full spring dance season, with national and international companies heading into town, a trend that continues well into summer. For the next three months, "diversity" is one watchword, with flamenco, contemporary ballet, modern dance and neo-classical masterpieces being presented around the region. Companies that qualify as American treasures will be well represented too, with Paul Taylor, Alvin Ailey and Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo performing. New York's Tere O'Connor will be bringing two new pieces to the Skirball Cultural Center in April, while a newer Big Apple group, the much-talked-about Jessica Lang Dance, makes its first appearance here in late May. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Ballet presents its eighth repertory season and premieres two commissioned works, including one from Christopher Stowell, a former principal dancer with San Francisco Ballet.
March 14, 2014 | By Rob Weinert-Kendt
Controversy of one kind or another has dogged "Porgy and Bess" since its Broadway premiere in 1935. Just the fact that George Gershwin's first real stab at grand opera debuted on Broadway rather than the Metropolitan Opera, which had initially commissioned the work, encapsulates two of the work's main fault lines: the debate over whether it's a musical or an opera or something in between, and the matter of its African American cast, which necessitated...
March 14, 2014 | By Margaret Gray
In Greg Pierce's "Slowgirl" at the Geffen Playhouse, 17-year-old Becky (Rae Gray) comes to visit her Uncle Sterling (William Petersen), who left the U.S. years earlier for Costa Rica. She's freaked out by his primitive jungle lifestyle, which is charmingly evoked by Richard Woodbury's sound design and the tropical leaves that hang above Takeshi Kata's delicate, bare-bones set, configured tennis-court style with the audience on either side (an approach that heightens naturalism but also impedes sightlines)
March 13, 2014 | By F. Kathleen Foley
Fueled by youth and passion, Poor Dog Group toys with the deliberately obscure in “Five Small Fires,” the collective's latest offering at Bootleg Theater. A group of young cultists, who are being sought by the authorities, have holed up in a community center in Glendale. The space is strikingly bare, save for a few video cameras and microphones -- instruments for streaming the group's post-apocalyptic message over the Internet. In oblique, poetically charged interchanges, the cultists consistently refer back to a transformative but arcane ritual they recently underwent on a relative's cow farm in Costa Rica.
December 20, 2013 | By Kelly Merritt
NEW YORK - I'm standing on the stage of the Hudson Theatre. I'm 23 again, when I dreamed of stardom on the Great White Way. Though I hadn't the stomach to wait for fame and fortune and traded singing for paper and pen, I often return to indulge my love of New York City theaters. This year, on a trip to the city, I discovered that my favorite old theaters have become vibrant attractions all on their own, replete with tours and fans. Little did I know the Hudson Theatre (145 W. 44th St.)
May 4, 2013 | By Richard Verrier, Los Angeles Times
MONTE RIO, Calif. - On the redwood-lined banks of the Russian River, dozens of local residents and tourists gathered in a grassy field on a hot Sunday afternoon, lining up to buy raffle tickets and $10 plates of barbecued chicken as a bluegrass group rehearsed a number for a Ramble at the Rio concert. It might have been a church social or a school fundraising picnic. But this event was to raise money to save a centerpiece of the community: the Rio Theater. VIDEO: Upcoming summer films Built from a World War II Quonset hut and adorned with murals from local artists, the Rio has been screening films in this town of about 1,200 people since 1950.
March 13, 2014 | Matt Cooper
"Is There Sex After Marriage?" That is the question at Two Roads Theater. Also, Shakespearean characters take part in "Classic Couples Counseling" at the Secret Rose, and you-know-who has got some 'splaining to do in "I Love Lucy: Live on Stage" at Segerstrom Center. Jim Henson's Sid the Science Kid: Live! Family-friendly show featuring characters from the PBS series. La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts, 14900 La Mirada Blvd., La Mirada. Sunday, 1 and 3:30 p.m. $13.50-$20.
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