Entertainment – International

Madonna to direct film on Sierra Leone dancer

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — Pop superstar Madonna on Tuesday announced that she will direct a biopic about Michaela DePrince, a war orphan from Sierra Leone who overcame overwhelming odds to become a successful ballerina. “Taking Flight,” taken from the name of DePrince’s 2014 autobiography, will be the musical icon’s third time as a feature film director after “Filth and Wisdom” in 2008 and “W.E.” in 2011. DePrince, abandoned by her uncle during the […]

Jay-Z, Beyonce announce new joint tour

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — Music’s first couple Beyonce and Jay-Z on Monday announced a new joint tour in what will likely mark some of the year’s most lucrative concerts. The rapper and diva, who in June gave birth to twins, will open the stadium tour on June 6 in the Welsh city of Cardiff. The 36-date show will travel across Europe, including a Bastille Day show at the Stade de France in Paris, […]

Facebook announces last major label deal

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — Facebook on Friday announced a licensing deal with Warner Music, the last of the major label groups to sign with the social media behemoth which is promising more personalized music. Facebook’s two billion users will soon be able to post in more creative ways with the catalogue of Warner, whose artist roster includes Ed Sheeran, Coldplay and the late Prince. “Our partnership with Facebook will help expand the universe […]

Lionel Richie honored at Hollywood handprints ceremony

by Frankie Taggart Agence France-Presse LOS ANGELES, United States (AFP) — Four-time Grammy winner Lionel Richie cemented his legacy in Hollywood Wednesday, plunging his feet and hands into a wet paving slab at the forecourt of the iconic TCL Chinese Theatre. The 68-year-old R&B singer, a former frontman for Motown legends The Commodores, has sold more than 100 million records over a career spanning six decades. “This is almost beyond the childhood dream,” Richie told […]

‘The Shape of Water’ makes a splash at Oscars

  by Frankie Taggart Agence France Presse HOLLYWOOD, United States (AFP) — Fantasy romance “The Shape of Water” took home the best picture Oscar on Sunday, capping an awards season which has seen the film lavished with acclaim and glittering trophies. Guillermo del Toro’s Cold War-era story of love between a mute cleaning woman and a mystery merman-like creature being held in a top secret government laboratory in Baltimore has dominated Hollywood’s annual prize-giving season. […]

Oscar winners in main categories

HOLLYWOOD, United States (AFP) — Here are the winners in key categories for the 90th Academy Awards, which were handed out on Sunday in Hollywood. “The Shape of Water” was the big winner of the night with four statuettes, including best picture and best director. Best picture: “The Shape of Water” Best director: Guillermo del Toro, “The Shape of Water” Best actor: Gary Oldman, “Darkest Hour” Best actress: Frances McDormand, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” […]

NBA star Kobe Bryant wins Oscar for best animated short

HOLLYWOOD, United States (AFP) — Retired basketball superstar Kobe Bryant — once the toast of Los Angeles for the Lakers — is now a Hollywood A-lister with an Oscar. Yes, you read that correctly. Nearly two years after leaving the NBA, the 39-year-old Bryant won the Academy Award for best animated short on Sunday for “Dear Basketball,” a collaboration with artist Glen Keane and legendary composer John Williams. “Thank you, Academy, for this amazing honor. […]

Sam Rockwell wins best supporting actor Oscar for ‘Three Billboards’

HOLLYWOOD, United States (AFP) — Sam Rockwell on Sunday won the Oscar for best-supporting actor for “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” with one of the night’s top films picking up the first award. Rockwell took the Academy Award for his role as racist, foul-mouthed police officer Jason Dixon in the movie, a dark crime comedy. He bested his co-star Woody Harrelson, Willem Dafoe (“The Florida Project”), Richard Jenkins (“The Shape of Water”) and Christopher Plummer […]

90th Oscars kicks off in Hollywood

HOLLYWOOD, United States (AFP) — Hollywood was sprinkled with stardust on Sunday as the movie industry’s A-listers came out for the Oscars, hosted by late night funnyman Jimmy Kimmel. Dark comedy “Three Billboards” is in pole position for the most prestigious prizes, although fairy tale romance “The Shape of Water” leads the overall charge with 13 nominations on a night expected to highlight Tinseltown’s campaigns against sexual misconduct and gender inequality. © Agence France-Presse

Five things to watch on Oscars night

by Frankie Taggart Agence France-Presse HOLLYWOOD, United States (AFP) — All eyes will be on the battle for Oscars supremacy between “The Shape of Water” and “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” on Sunday. But if there’s one thing previous ceremonies have demonstrated, it’s that it’s a good idea never to expect the expected on Hollywood’s biggest night. Here are five things to watch for: The specter of ‘Envelopegate’ It may have been the most embarrassing […]

Video: Statue of Harvey Weinstein put on display briefly on Hollywood Boulevard

In the run-up to the 2018 Oscars, a British artist briefly puts on display a statue of Harvey Weinstein, in a bathrobe on a sofa, on Hollywood Boulevard. The artist wants to denounce the culture of silence that allowed the abuse to go on for so long. “This year we’ve got Harvey Weinstein clutching an Oscar in his hands, dressed in a bathrobe, which sadly so many people had to experience,” said the artist who […]

Shakira pays 20 mn euros to Spain taxman: report

MADRID, Spain (AFP) — Superstar Shakira has handed over more than 20 million euros ($24.6 million) to tax authorities in Spain, a report said Tuesday, accused of not paying taxes despite being a resident between 2011 and 2014. Catalan daily El Periodico reported that the Colombian award-winning singer had paid the money “to settle part of the debt claimed by Spain’s tax authorities”, corresponding to what she allegedly owes for 2011. The fiscal authorities filed […]