Midler wins raves on Broadway as Hollywood agent Sue Mengers
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bette Midler marked her return to Broadway after more than 30 years on Wednesday, and critics lined up to heap praise on her turn in the one-character play "I'll Eat You Last: A Conversation with Sue Mengers" in which she portrays the legendary Hollywood agent. The late Mengers was famous as a brash, foul-mouthed, witty and fearsome force of nature whose clients included Barbra Streisand, Faye Dunaway and Gene Hackman to name but a few and critics noted the comfortable fit between the show's star and its subject. They also cited Midler's confident possession of the stage and seduction of the audience and most were impressed with the play itself as well.
Mamma Mia! Bookie offers odds on ABBA reunion
LONDON (Reuters) - A British bookmaker is taking bets on an ABBA comeback after singer Agnetha Faltskog hinted at a possible reunion for Sweden's most successful band. Faltskog, who has come out of retirement to release a solo album called "A", was asked by German's Die Zeit Magazine if she would be open to an ABBA reunion and she responded positively.
Psy knocked from top of Korean charts by 63-year-old singer
SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korean rapper Psy, whose latest video "Gentleman" tracked global megahit "Gangnam Style" by going viral on the Internet, has been knocked from the top of the music charts in his native country by a 63-year-old easy listening pop singer. "Gangnam Style", which holds the YouTube record for most views with more than 1.5 billion, catapulted the sunglassed Korean with the garish jackets to world stardom and made him one of the best-known faces to grace the growing K-pop music scene.
Gwyneth Paltrow named People's most beautiful woman
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Oscar-winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow on Wednesday was named the world's most beautiful woman for 2013 by People magazine, knocking pop singer Beyonce out of the top spot. The 40-year-old mother of two credits a five-day-a-week exercise regimen for keeping her in shape as she grows older.
A Minute With: Colin Firth from royal to ordinary 'Arthur Newman'
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - After winning a Best Actor Oscar for playing a stuttering British royal in 2010 film "The King's Speech," Colin Firth is back on screen as a character who appears ordinary to the point of boring in indie drama "Arthur Newman." Opening in select U.S. movie theaters on Friday, Firth plays an American man who is dissatisfied with his life and hits the road with a new identity. Things get derailed when he meets Mike (Emily Blunt) a troubled young woman fleeing from her own issues.
Ang Lee, Kidman join Cannes Film Festival jury
LONDON (Reuters) - Double Oscar-winning director Ang Lee and Australian actress Nicole Kidman will be on the nine-member jury at this year's Cannes Film Festival, organizers said on Wednesday. The panel, led by triple Oscar-winner Steven Spielberg, will decide the awards handed out when the world's most important annual cinema showcase closes on May 26.
Coinstar bets on "Man of Steel," "Iron Man" to boost rental business
(Reuters) - Coinstar Inc raised its full-year adjusted profit forecast as it bets on a slate of movies scheduled to be released in the third quarter to boost its Redbox video rental business, sending its shares up 8 percent after the bell. Coinstar, which plans to change its name to Outerwall Inc, acquired Redbox in 2008 for its DVD kiosk business, and it has become its primary source of sales since then.
"The English Teacher" follows footsteps of "Weeds," "Nurse Jackie"
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Fans of "Nurse Jackie," "Weeds," and "The Big C" will recognize the quirky lead of "The English Teacher" as she steps out of her straight-laced life to encounter unexpected consequences, the movie's director said in an interview. In "The English Teacher," which has its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival on Friday, lead character Linda Sinclair, played by Julianne Moore, tries to mount a high school production of a play written by a former student (Michael Angarano) who has returned to his small hometown in Pennsylvania.
Kurdish singer sparks identity debate on Arab talent show
ARBIL, Iraq (Reuters) - A singer from Iraq's Kurdistan region has made it through to the semi-final of an Arab talent contest, igniting heated debates over Iraqi identity and politicizing the popular TV show. A panel of judges praised 24-year-old Parwaz Hussein and she was voted through to the next round of "Arab Idol", in which aspiring popstars from Morocco to Bahrain compete for a recording contract.
Swedish police find drugs on Justin Bieber bus, no suspects
STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Swedish police said on Thursday they found drugs on teen idol Justin Bieber's tour bus in Stockholm, but had no suspects and were unlikely to pursue the case further. A police officer on crowd duty smelled marijuana on an empty tour bus outside the hotel where Bieber was staying just before his concert in the capital on Wednesday night, police spokesman Kjell Lindgren said.