Entertainment News: Guillermo del Toro's TV thriller 'The Strain' gets second season; SNL' announcer Don Pardo passes away and more

Wednesday, 20 August 2014 - 1:55pm IST | Agency: Reuters

Guillermo del Toro's TV thriller 'The Strain' gets second season

Gory paranormal television thriller 'The Strain', one of the top new series on U.S. cable television, has been renewed for a second 13-episode season, U.S. cable network FX said on Tuesday. The vampire horror drama from "Pacific Rim" filmmaker Guillermo del Toro debuted last month and has averaged 11 million total viewers, including delayed, online and video on demand viewing, over its first six episodes, FX said. Read more

'Saturday Night Live' announcer Don Pardo passes away

Veteran broadcaster Don Pardo, the seldom-seen, booming-voiced announcer for NBC's television sketch comedy show "Saturday Night Live" for nearly 40 years, died on Monday aged 96, the New York Times and other media reported. Pardo's death at his home in Tucson, Arizona, where he had continued to pre-record his weekly introductions for the New York-based "Saturday Night Live" during the past few years, was confirmed by his daughter, Dona Pardo, the Times said. Read more

Author's dive into Beatles story still has depths to explore

For British author Mark Lewisohn, telling the story of the world's greatest rock band the way it deserves to be told will take time - a quarter-century, to be exact. The noted Beatles scholar, 56, fell in love with the Fab Four as a child, and published his first Beatles-related reference work in 1986. His latest book, "Tune In," was published late last year.

Saxophonist Dickson plays classics, pop and saves lives too

After winning a Classic BRIT award in 2013, proving the saxophone can be an important classical instrument, Amy Dickson is taking it to more familiar pop territory on her new album. "A Summer Place", released later this month, is a crossover that includes vintage pop songs ranging from Simon & Garfunkel's "The Sound of Silence" to Andy Williams's "Moon River".

British singer Cliff Richard cancels cathedral performance

British singer Cliff Richard, whose house was searched last week by police investigating allegations of a sexual offense involving an underage boy in the 1980s, has canceled a
performance he was due to give next month in Canterbury Cathedral, his spokesman said on Tuesday. Richard, 73, who was in Portugal when the search was carried out, has denied any wrongdoing.

Nelson, Young headline Nebraska concert against Keystone pipeline

Veteran musicians Willie Nelson and Neil Young are teaming up for a benefit concert in Nebraska to raise funds in the fight against land being sold for the Keystone XL oil pipeline project, charity organization Bold Nebraska said on Monday. Nelson, 81, and Young, 68, both known for their ties to country rock and folk music and their environmental activism, will perform at the "Harvest the Hope Concert" on Sept. 27 at a farm near Neligh, Nebraska.

At 91, Marvel creator Stan Lee continues to expand his Universe

Marvel Entertainment's chief emeritus Stan Lee may be in his ninth decade, but it hasn't stopped him from adding outposts to his creative empire as he hopes to interest a new generation of children in super heroes of all shapes and sizes. Lee, 91, the creator of comic book franchises and box-office behemoths such as Spider-Man, Avengers and X-Men, is focusing on Stan Lee's Kids Universe and publishing new content across books, television and digital platforms for young children. Read more

Toronto film festival unveils star-studded guest list

The 39th Toronto International Film Festival will feature a host of Hollywood favorites when it opens next month, with actors including Robert Downey Jr. and Al Pacino expected to attend. Widely considered the kick-off to Oscar season, the festival will show 285 feature films, 143 of which will be world premieres. The festival unveiled its guest list and full program on Tuesday. Read more

Celebrities in firing line as China steps up drug war

China is turning up the heat in a high-profile crackdown on drugs that has ensnared a string of celebrities, including the son of Hong Kong kungfu movie star Jackie Chan, as the government seeks to push forward a wider campaign against extravagance and decadence. Chinese President Xi Jinping has vowed to go after corruption and excess among the elite, a prime source of public discontent as the gap between the poor and the wealthy continues to grow. 

Stellar 'It's Only a Play' cast welcomes Rupert Grint to Broadway

British actor Rupert Grint, best known as wizard Ron Weasley in the "Harry Potter" film franchise, makes his Broadway debut as a young, wunderkind director alongside a stellar ensemble cast in the show business comedy, "It's Only a Play." The play, which begins previews on Aug. 28 and opens for a limited run on Oct. 9, sports a notable cast headed by Tony winners Nathan Lane ("The Producers"), Matthew Broderick ("How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying") and Stockard Channing ("A Day
in the Life of Joe Egg").




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