Entertainment briefs – July 29

A comedy from the Coen brothers, the directorial debut of Drew Barrymore, and a new treatise from documentarian Michael Moore are among the movies added to the Toronto International Film Festival.

Coen brothers, Moore join Toronto film fest slate

TORONTO — A comedy from the Coen brothers, the directorial debut of Drew Barrymore, and a new treatise from documentarian Michael Moore are among the movies added to the Toronto International Film Festival.

Organizers say they’ve booked Joel and Ethan Coen’s black comedy, A Serious Man.” The ’60s-era tale comes a year after the brothers unspooled their comedy Burn After Reading at the festival last year, and the Oscar-winning No Country For Old Men in 2007.

Programmers will also screen Barrymore’s rowdy comedy Whip It, starring Halifax’s Ellen Page as a rebellious Texas teen that dives into the world of roller-derby.

Moore’s corporate critique, Capitalism: A Love Story, will play on the 20th anniversary of his breakout film, Roger & Me.

That’s in addition to two more galas set for September, both inspired by novels: Oscar Wilde’s Dorian Gray, directed by Oliver Parker and starring Colin Firth, and Rebecca Miller’s The Private Lives of Pippa Lee, directed by Miller and starring Robin Wright Penn, Alan Arkin and Keanu Reeves.

Other films include Werner Herzog’s drama Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans, starring Nicolas Cage as a drug-addicted homicide detective, and the Irish gangster comedy Perrier’s Bounty, starring Cillian Murphy as a man on the run from a Dublin kingpin.

The film festival runs Sept. 10 to 19.


Faux-memoir by chimp on Booker Prize longlist

LONDON — The purported autobiography of a movie-star chimpanzee is among the contenders for Britain’s most prestigious literary award.

Me Cheeta is one of 13 novels on the Booker Prize longlist.

Originally published anonymously, James Lever’s book tells the life story of the chimp who gained 1930s Hollywood stardom in Tarzan movies.

Other contenders announced Tuesday are former Booker winners A.S. Byatt and J.M Coetzee, as well as Adam Foulds, Sarah Hall, Samantha Harvey, Hilary Mantel, Simon Mawer, Ed O’Loughlin, James Scudamore, Sarah Waters, William Trevor and Colm Toibin.

The shortlist will be announced Sept. 8 and the winner of the prize on Oct. 6.

The Booker is open to writers from Britain, Ireland or the Commonwealth.


The Simpsons brushing up on curling before Olympics

CALGARY — The Fox Broadcasting Company hopes an upcoming episode of The Simpsons will sweep in some good ratings prior to the 2010 Olympic games in Vancouver.

The episode to be broadcast in February features Homer and Marge joining a mixed curling team to play one of Canada’s favourite sports.

Co-executive producer Rob LaZebnik, who spearheaded the curling research and wrote the script, says he originally was going to have Homer joint a four-person bobsled team.

But he says curling provides a chance for more laughs because it will show Homer and Marge on the ice.

LaZebnik says the episode is surprisingly respectful of curling and the three Canadian writers on the show are excited about the subject matter.

Randy Ferbey, former Canadian and world champion, says he expects the publicity will be good for the sport.


Jazz composer influenced Davis, Coltrane

BOSTON — Jazz composer George Russell, a MacArthur fellow whose theories influenced the modal music of Miles Davis and John Coltrane, has died. He was 86.

His publicist says Russell, who taught at the New England Conservatory, died Monday in Boston of complications from Alzheimer’s.

Russell was born in Cincinnati in 1923 and went to Wilberforce University. He played drums in Benny Carter’s band and later wrote Cubano Be/Cubano Bop for Dizzy Gillespie’s orchestra.

It premiered at Carnegie Hall in 1947 and was the first fusion of Afro-Cuban rhythms with jazz.

Russell developed the Lydian concept in 1953. It’s credited as the first theoretical contribution from jazz.


Lawyers for Jackson’s mom pressure administrators

LOS ANGELES — The legal team for Michael Jackson’s mother is aiming to press the special administrators of her son’s estate for more information.

Lawyers for Katherine Jackson on Tuesday requested a judge give them the authority to move ahead and subpoena attorney John Branca and former music executive John McClain.

They want to interview the men, named in Jackson’s will as executors, and dig through their records.

Just Posted

Alberta hiring more paramedics and buying new ambulances, none for Red Deer

Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer is not concerned the provincial government didn’t… Continue reading

‘My nightmare began again’: Close call as bus carrying Humboldt crash survivor rear-ended

CALGARY — A terrifying ordeal for Humboldt Broncos survivor Ryan Straschnitzki this… Continue reading

Halifax airport operations normalize after Boeing 747 runway overshoot

HALIFAX — The Halifax Stanfield International Airport has resumed normal operations a… Continue reading

Bentley family left without a home grateful for community support

Central Albertans are coming together to support a Bentley family left homeless… Continue reading

Red Deer RCMP ready for new mandatory alcohol screening law

Red Deer RCMP are ready to enforce a new law intended to… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer and District Kennel Club Dog Show at Westerner Park

The Red Deer and District Kennel Club is holding a dog show… Continue reading

Pence aide out of running to be Trump’s next chief of staff

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s top pick to replace chief of staff… Continue reading

Swath of South faces wintry mess: Snow, sleet, freezing rain

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A massive storm brought snow, sleet, and freezing rain… Continue reading

‘I killed my best friend’: Opioids’ fatal grip on mayor, pal

MOUNT CARBON, Pa. — Janel Firestone found her son — the 24-year-old,… Continue reading

Brothers, 20, face second-degree murder charge in death of teen: police

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Police west of Toronto say two brothers have been… Continue reading

A young mayor, his friend, and a fatal attraction to opioids

MOUNT CARBON, Pa. — Janel Firestone found her son — the 24-year-old,… Continue reading

GM fights to retain key tax credit amid plant closing plans

WASHINGTON — General Motors is fighting to retain a valuable tax credit… Continue reading

TTC union asks provincial government to step in on transition to Presto

TORONTO — The union representing transit workers in Canada’s most populous city… Continue reading

Small pot growers find roadblocks on path to microcultivation licences

Yan Boissonneault’s daughter was turning blue. Without warning, his baby had stopped… Continue reading

Most Read