Following is a summary of current entertainment news briefs.
Josh Duggar, former reality TV star, charged for possessing child sex abuse materials
Joshua James Duggar, the 33-year-old former star of the popular reality TV show «19 Kids and Counting,» appeared in federal court on Friday to face criminal charges that he received and possessed materials that depicted the sexual abuse of children, the U.S. Justice Department said. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Arkansas confirmed that Duggar made his initial appearance in federal court and pleaded not guilty to the charges, which allege he obtained the sexually explicit material sometime between May 14 and May 16 of 2019.
Grammy organizers change rules after allegations of corruption
The organizers of music’s Grammy Awards on Friday announced an end to the so-called «secret» committees that have led to allegations that the highest honors in the industry are open to rigging. The Recording Academy said that nominations for the next Grammy Awards in January 2022 will be selected by all of its more than 11,000 voting members, instead of by committees of 15-30 industry experts whose names were not revealed.
California Disneyland re-opens but you can’t hug Mickey Mouse
Masks, temperature checks, and no hugs with Mickey Mouse greeted visitors to Disneyland in California on Friday as Walt Disney’s original theme park reopened for the first time in over a year. Under coronavirus pandemic guidelines, «The Happiest Place on Earth» was opened only to California residents, and capacity was limited to 25% to allow for social distancing.
Five charged in violent abduction of Lady Gaga’s bulldogs
Five people have been arrested on charges stemming from the violent theft of two bulldogs belonging to pop star Lady Gaga and the shooting of a dog walker during the pets’ abduction in Hollywood earlier this year, authorities said on Thursday. Four of the five suspects were known street gang members, while the fifth was the woman who reported she had found the dogs and safely returned them after a reward was offered, the Los Angeles Police Department said.
Thousands of revelers attend Wuhan music festival
Thousands of people attended the first day of the Wuhan Strawberry Music Festival on Saturday. In warm conditions on the first day of a five-day May Day national holiday revelers in the central Chinese city danced, bounced, and screamed with delight as some of their favorite acts took the stage.
Harvey Weinstein extradition delayed, new challenge expected
California’s effort to extradite Harvey Weinstein on rape and sexual assault charges was delayed on Friday, and the convicted former movie producer will have another 30 days to challenge its latest effort to bring him to court. Erie County Court Judge Kenneth Case said prosecutors could arrange for Weinstein’s transfer to Los Angeles on May 30.
Oscar-winning ‘Moonstruck’ actress Olympia Dukakis dies at 89
Olympia Dukakis, who won an Oscar for her performance as a sardonic, middle-aged mother who advises her headstrong daughter on matters of love in the 1987 romantic film comedy «Moonstruck,» died on Saturday at age 89. Dukakis – a cousin of unsuccessful 1988 Democratic U.S. presidential nominee Michael Dukakis – passed away at her New York City home on Saturday morning after months of failing health, according to her agent, Allison Levy. Her daughter, Christina Zorich, was by her side.
BAFTA suspends UK actor Clarke after groping and harassment allegations
The British Academy of Film and Television Arts has suspended actor and filmmaker Noel Clarke after the Guardian newspaper reported he had been accused of groping, harassment and bullying by 20 women. Clarke, 45, denied any sexual misconduct or wrongdoing and said he would defend himself against the «false allegations».
Bittersweet moment at final season premiere of TV show ‘Pose’
True to the colorful nature of the show, the cast and creators of the TV series «Pose» came out in style on Thursday for the premiere of their final season, in one of New York’s first red carpet events since the start of the pandemic. There were mixed feelings about the return.
Block by block, LEGOLAND New York prepares to open
After spending a lot of time indoors through the year-long coronavirus pandemic, families in the New York area will soon have one of the first new theme parks in years to visit as restrictions are eased, with LEGOLAND preparing to launch its latest resort. Located in Goshen, some 60 miles (95 km) north of New York City, LEGOLAND New York is in the final stages of construction and plans a phased-in opening this summer in order to comply with social distancing guidelines.
(With inputs from agencies.)