December 26, 2013

By DAVID BAUDER

AP Television Writer

 

Netflix, which didn’t exist as an original television programming source until last year, snagged six Golden Globe nominations on Thursday _ more than stalwarts ABC, CBS and NBC.

HBO led all TV networks with nine nominations. Starz and Showtime joined Netflix with six each while CBS and NBC each had five and ABC had four.

Netflix’s political series “House of Cards” earned a nomination for best TV drama, while Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright were nominated for their acting in the series. With the release of its inaugural season in February, “House of Cards” represented Netflix's first major foray into TV programming. It also earned an Emmy nomination earlier this year, but Netflix is still searching for its first award.

Another Netflix series, “Orange is the New Black,” earned Taylor Schilling a nomination for best drama actress. Finally, Jason Bateman earned a comedy nomination for the Netflix remake of “Arrested Development.” (The first Netflix original series, “Lily­ham­mer,” debuted in 2012.)

Starting with HBO a decade ago and continuing with AMC and now non-network programming services, the industry is learning that reputations can be built quickly on the basis of one or two strong shows, said David Bianculli, a former TV critic and professor of television at New Jersey’s Rowan University.

“Everyone thinks they can get in the game now,” Bianculli said. “Everyone thinks they can win the World Series of Poker.”

The true measure for Netflix will be if they can sustain the initial success with additional programs and also if they can show what kind of impact their shows have had beyond critics; you can’t find out how many people watched “House of Cards” like you can know how many people see ``Scandal'' each week, for example, he said.

The Golden Globes set up a potential victory lap for the well-regarded final season of “Breaking Bad,” which was nominated for best drama series and earned Bryan Cranston a nod for best actor. After sweeping the drama awards earlier this year, Showtime’s “Homeland” was shut out for the major awards.

High-profile actors in HBO movies about music figures earned some notice from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Michael Douglas and Matt Damon were both nominated for best TV movie actor for their roles in “Behind the Candelabra,” and Rob Lowe had a supporting actor nod. Al Pacino earned an acting nomination for playing music producer Phil Spector in an HBO film.

Starz often finds its original programming overlooked, but broke through this year with its films “Dancing on the Edge” and “White Queen.” The Sundance Channel got two nominations for “Top of the Lake.”

Don Cheadle of “House of Lies” will try for a second straight Golden Globe as a TV comedy actor, competing with Bateman, Jim Parsons of “The Big Bang Theory” and Andy Samberg of “Brooklyn Nine-Nine.” Senti­mental favorite Michael J. Fox, whose NBC show hasn’t been doing well in the ratings, earned an acting nomination for his work.

The best showing for the commercial broadcast networks, which were completely shut out of the awards given out earlier this year, came in the best comedy category. There, CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory,” ABC’s “Modern Family,” NBC’s “Parks and Recreation” and Fox’s “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” will compete with last year’s winner, HBO’s “Girls.”

Zooey Deschanel of Fox’s “New Girl” was nominated for best actress in a comedy, along with last year’s winner, Lena Dunham of “Girls.” Edie Falco of “Nurse Jackie,” Julia Louis-Dreyfus of “Veep” were also nominated, along with Amy Poehler of “Parks and Recreation,” who is co-hosting the Golden Globes with Tina Fey.

Louis-Dreyfus actually earned two nominations – one for “Veep” and one for best actress in a movie comedy for “Enough Said.”

“Does this mean I need two dresses?” the actress quipped.

Sofia Vergara earned her fourth straight Golden Globe nomination for her supporting role in “Modern Family.” She is hoping for her first win.

PBS’ “Downton Abbey” joins “Breaking Bad” and “House of Cards” as best drama nominees, along with CBS’ “The Good Wife” and Showtime’s new “Masters of Sex.”

Cranston and Spacey will compete for best drama actor with James Spader, whose NBC series “The Blacklist” has been a hit in its rookie season. Michael Sheen of “Masters of Sex” and Liev Schreiber of “Ray Donovan” also earned acting nods.

The best drama actress category sets up a competition between two big network shows – Julianna Margulies of “The Good Wife” and Kerry Washington of “Scandal” – with the Netflix stars Schilling and Wright, and Tatiana Maslany of “Orphan Black.”

“Downton Abbey” creator, writer and producer Julian Fellowes was already looking forward to the Jan. 12 Globes ceremony.

“The Globes are pretty lively because everyone is sitting at tables and having a fairly convivial time of it. Actually, the whole thing is a really jolly evening. I wouldn’t change anything because I think these kinds of award evenings, America does better than anyone,” he said. “They’re just so much jollier than they are back at home.”

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

December 26, 2013

By Troy Tieuel

LAWT Contributing Writer

 

Very few things can breach more barrios and cross more divided lines than music, and at the First Church of God, Center of Hope’s 3rd Annual Gospel Jazz Fest, artists from lands spanning the globe came together in musical unity in remembrance of a man who, like music, crossed boarders and changed history, Nelson Mandela.

Started by the late Reverend Geremy Dixon Sr., and continued by his son, current Senior Pastor of First Church of God, Center of Hope, Geremy Dixon Jr. the concert featured musicians who play with a gospel inspiration. 

“Several years ago, Sister Cathy Gill, who runs our young adult ministry [Warriors of Judah],” explained Pastor Dixon, “had the idea to have a jazz festival.  She was able to put together a dynamic event.   We really had no idea how it was going to take off, what type of talent was going to be involved.  That year it was fantastic, we brought it back again the next year. This is our third year doing it, and year after year, it gets better and better.”

Pastor Dixon accredits much of the success to the efforts of the Warriors of Judah and the youth ministers that comprise its ranks.  “That young adult ministry is made up of dynamic people, who, and I’m pleased to say, are passionate about the Lord, passionate about people, and passionate about putting on presentations that honor God in their excellence.”  

Ushered and hosted by the Warriors of Judah, City of Hope’s youth ministry, the four hour long jazz celebration entertained all with a selection of local and international jazz musicians and singers.

For more information go to www.firstchurchofgod.com/.

Pictured: The Rembert James ensemble "Bone Voyage" performing at the concert.  L-R Joey Navarro - piano, Richard Grant - trumpet, James - trombone, Leon Mobley - percussions, Emile Borde- steel drums. Not pictured: Marcus Miller - drums, Keith Jones- bass.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

December 19, 2013

By Kam Williams

LAWT Contributing Writer

 

Angell Conwell was born in Orangeburg, South Carolina on August 2, 1983, but raised in nearby Columbia. At 17, she made her big screen debut in the gritty, John Singleton drama Baby Boy opposite Tyrese, Taraji P. Henson and Snoop Dogg.

She followed that outing with well-received supporting roles in such feature films as The Wash, Soul Plane and 24 Hour Love. More recently, Angell enjoyed a starring role on the TV-One hit series “Family Time” with Omar Gooding, as well as a recurring role as Kevin Hart’s ex-wife on the hit BET series “Real Husbands of Hollywood.”

Her TV credits include guest starring roles on such shows as “NYPD Blue,” “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” “Moesha,” “That’s So Raven” and “3rd Rock from the Sun.” She has also appeared in the music videos “Batter Up” and “Ride Wit Me” and Usher’s “Confessions.”

In her spare time she enjoys reading inspirational books, days at the beach, walks with her dog Xeena and giving back by helping to serve at MyFriendsHouseLA.Com. Here, she talks about her upcoming independent movie 4Play with Wesley Jonathan, and about playing Leslie Michaelson on the daytime drama, “The Young & the Restless” which just celebrated its 40th Anniversary on the air.

LAWT: What interested you in doing a soap opera?

AC: Being on a daytime drama never crossed my mind until the breakdown for the character “Leslie” was released. She was described as a strong, spitfire legal shark. It’s rare that an opportunity comes to play such a character, and being that The Young & The Restless is not only the #1 daytime drama overall, it's also the #1 daytime drama within my family. They’ve all been watching since before I was born. After considering all these things, it made complete sense.

LAWT: Tell me a little about your character, Leslie.

AC: Leslie Michaelson is an attorney. She has a passion for what she does. She’s a stand-up woman who has been through many terrifying situations in life, but has turned them to her advantage. She loves her younger brother, Tyler [played by Redaric Williams], with all of her heart, and she stands by her man, Neil [played by Kristoff St. John], without being smothering. She’s quite a lady!

LAWT: How did you prepare to play a lawyer?

AC: As far as the legal lingo, I Googled most of the terminology and started to try to use it on a daily basis so that it would begin to sound normal coming out of my mouth. It's not every day talk for me, so I had to get used to that. Once I learn the material, it’s mainly all about helping to give Leslie some spice and life. The writers put it all on the paper. My job is to bring it.

LAWT: Are there any upcoming developments you can share about Leslie and her love interest, Neil?

AC: Plenty of Neil and Leslie’s relationship has revolved around Gus, Rose, a mysterious blogger, and figuring out the different connections. So, I’m hoping that we may get to see another dynamic to their relationship soon. Maybe more romance and passion, but honestly, I have no idea.

LAWT: “The Young and the Restless” has endured on TV for 40years. Do you feel any pressure to live up to that record of success and to honor the show’s long legacy?

AC: I used to feel pressure, but as time goes on, I realize that all you can do is do your best at any given moment.

For full interview visit: www.lawattstimes.com.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

December 26, 2013

LAWT News Service

 

The Pasadena Playhouse (Sheldon Epps, Artistic Director and Elizabeth Doran, Executive Director) announced  Academy Award and Emmy nominee Taraji P. Henson (“Person of Interest” “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”) will star as “Jane” in the World Premiere of “Above the Fold,” the fourth production of its 2013 – 2014 Season.  Written by Bernard Weinraub and directed by Steven Robman, ATF tells the story of Jane, an African-American newspaper reporter from New York, who flies to a Southern university where three white fraternity boys have been accused of raping a young African-American woman.

Taking place amidst the shift from print to digital journalism ATF asks tough questions about the exploitation of tragedy, the cost of success and the dangers that come when ambition collides with truth.

The cast of ATF will feature Kristi Johnson, who returns to The Pasadena Playhouse in the role of “Monique” after starring in the Playhouse productions of Jitney and Intimate Apparel. Johnson’s television credits include “Hart of Dixie,” “General Hospital,” and “House M.D.”

The cast also features  Arye Gross as “Marvin,” who is currently performing in “Parfumerie” at The Wallis in Beverly Hills.  Gross is also a series regular on ABC’s “Castle” and was a series regular on “The Ellen Show.” Kris Higgins appears as “Victor”. Higgins’s television credits include “Secret Life of the American Teenager ,“NCIS,” and  “Cold Case.” Mark Hildreth, a series regular on “Resurrection” will play the role of “Lorne”.  Joe Massingill , whose credits include series regular on “Hart of Dixie,”  and roles in “Epic” and “Trouble With The Curve will play the role of“Bobby”and Seamus Mulcahy, whose credits include “Killing Lincoln”  and “One Fall” will play the role of “Eric”.

 Sheldon Epps, artistic director of The Pasadena Playhouse, says, "I am tremendously excited about mounting the first production of this play which we developed in our Hothouse series.  The play is timely, resonant, hard hitting, and surprising.  Bernie writes of a world that he knows very well, so it provides a fascinating insider's look at the intricacies and the sometimes dangerous aspects of the world of journalism.  It is always a challenging pleasure to help give birth to new work and I look forward to both the process and to what I know will be the exciting rewards of having this play on our stage."

 “If you've ever wondered how much a news story is affected by the whims and biases of even the most scrupulous reporter, check out this play,” said Robman

 “All the actors, led by Taraji, give such depth and meaning to their roles. They're supremely talented.  And I'm deeply grateful to every one of them,” added Weinraub

Henson earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress opposite Brad Pitt in David Fincher’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. She is a 2011 Emmy nominee for Best Actress in a Movie or Miniseries for Lifetime’s Taken From Me. She starred as Detective Joss Carter in the highly rated J.J. Abrams crime drama Person of Interest for CBS opposite Jim Caviezel and Michael Emerson. Henson starred in the major hit Think Like a Man, which opened #1 at the box office and just completed Think Like a Man Too. She will next star in Sony’s No Good Deed opposite Idris Elba which opens in September 2014.

ATF will play January 28 – February 23, 2014.  The Pasadena Playhouse is located at 39 South El Molino Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101.  The performance schedule is Tuesday through Friday at 8:00 p.m.; Saturday at 4:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.; and Sunday at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Tickets are available by calling The Pasadena Playhouse at 626-356-7529 or by visiting The Pasadena Playhouse Box Office, Tuesday – Sunday from 1:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. during non-performance dates.  On performance dates the Box Office is open Tuesday – Saturday from 1:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. on Sunday.  For more information, visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

December 19, 2013

 

ARIES

Move slowly concerning relationships this week. People are a little edgy and they don’t know exactly where you are coming from. Make full explanations. Don’t assume that they know what’s on your mind.  Most of all, stay positive no matter what. Soul Affirmation: Clinging to the old will inhibit my growth this week. Lucky Numbers: 6, 8, 20

 

TAURUS

Exercise will work off some of your excess energy this week. Take a walk and remember that your world is made up of many beautiful parts. The part you are focusing on so intently this week is not your entire world. Proceed accordingly! Soul Affirmation: I celebrate with those around me. Lucky Numbers:  13, 29, 34

 

GEMINI

This week is a good week to dump any extra baggage that has been pulling you down. You have too much potential to throw away and waste your time on issues that will amount to nothing. Stay focused on your goals. Meet and spend time with people who will be able to help you reach them. Soul Affirmation: The word is in me. I bring it forth. Lucky Numbers:  7, 29, 44

 

CANCER

This is a good week for exercising that clever mind of yours.  Luck will be with you in all endeavors you start. Luck is with you always because positive outlook attracts positive vibrations. Soul Affirmation: I enjoy looking at the road of life sweeping just in front of me. Lucky Numbers:  30, 41, 54,

 

LEO

Your careless ways with money are going to be apparent this week. Financial mistakes you’ve made in the past will be especially painful. Don’t conceal the pain from yourself. It is a warning that you should take steps to prevent future financial crisis. Soul Affirmation: I let my friendships guide my way. Lucky Numbers:  5, 22, 35

 

VIRGO

Take advantage of the great weather and spend time outdoors enjoying and relaxing with Mother Nature. Learn a new sport, and spend time with family and friends. Don’t take travel matters into your own hands. Seek a professional who will be able to plan a wonderful vacation for you without breaking your bank. Cook up some goodies for your loved ones. Soul Affirmation: I change who I am by changing where I am going. Lucky Numbers:  3, 20, 23

 

LIBRA

Everything seems to be moving along in a very pleasant way this week. Friends are helpful, family is supportive, even the sun seems to be shining just for you! Enjoy this harmony and count your blessings. Finish a task at work. Soul Affirmation: The slowness of my week gives me time to refresh my energy. Lucky Numbers: 12, 26, 36

 

SCORPIO

The bond that you established with your spiritual side works well in your relationship with a special person. Speak of the reality of the intangible qualities of life. Your lover will understand. Keep attention on the financial matters you’ve been dealing with. Soul Affirmation: I obey the rules this week and avoid hassles. Lucky Numbers: 3, 8, 24

 

SAGITTARIUS

If you need some time to yourself this week, take it. You’ll be doing yourself an act of kindness. Since you do so much for others, why not treat yourself as well as you treat them? Your world is the way you are living. Live with love. Soul Affirmation: I get joy from giving good things. Lucky Numbers: 19, 39, 42

 

CAPRICORN

Remember that exercise is a wonderful tension-reliever if things get too intense this week. A walk over your lunch hour could make all the difference in how you feel this afternoon. Love yourself and reward yourself with perfect health and happiness. Soul Affirmation: Faith keeps me calm in the storms of life. Lucky Numbers: 44, 49, 51

 

AQUARIUS

You’ve done some of your own love homework. Hopefully you’ve had an opportunity to learn a new way of seeing the world and in that way you’ve found a way of loving that is more natural for you.  The combination of sexiness and joyful focus can create you a wonderful love experience. Soul Affirmation: I get joy from giving good things. Lucky Numbers: 14, 23, 37

 

PISCES

If you want to keep your positive outlook intact, avoid gossip and those who might want to just cry the blues for no good reason. You’ll be happiest this week if you keep busy and keep your opinions to yourself. However, good advice is available from an older female relative. Soul Affirmation: Love is easier than breathing. Lucky Numbers: 12, 30, 50

Parent Category: Lifestyle
Category: Arts & Culture

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