Feb 092015
 

JACK BLACK TO PERFORM AT THE OSCARS®The versatile actor, singer and comedian Jack Black will make a special appearance at the 87th Oscars, show producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced. The Oscars, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, will air on Sunday, February 22, live on ABC.

“Jack Black is a complete original comic voice and we’re beyond thrilled that he has agreed to join the Oscars show in a very special sequence” says Zadan and Meron.

Black has starred in such films as “High Fidelity,” “Shallow Hal,” “School of Rock,” “King Kong,” and “Tropic Thunder,” and is voicing the title character in “Kung Fu Panda 3,” his third turn in the animated feature series. He also is the lead singer and guitarist of the comedy rock duo Tenacious D, which he formed in 1994 with Kyle Gass. Black has made three previous appearances on the Oscars, most recently as a presenter at the 81st Academy Awards.

The 87th Oscars will be held on Sunday, February 22, 2015, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and will be televised live on the ABC Television Network at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT. The Oscars, produced by Zadan and Meron, also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.


Jan 272015
 

MUSIC SUPERSTAR ADAM LEVINE TO PERFORM AT THE OSCARS

Adam Levine Will Perform At The OSCARSGrammy®-winning singer, songwriter and actor Adam Levine will perform the Oscar®-nominated song “Lost Stars” at the 87th Oscars, show producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced today. The Oscars, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, will air on Sunday, February 22, live on ABC.

“Adam Levine is an exceptional and dynamic artist. We’re thrilled to have him make his Oscars stage debut this year,” said Zadan and Meron.

“Lost Stars,” written by Gregg Alexander and Danielle Brisebois for the film “Begin Again,” is nominated for Original Song. The four other nominated songs are “Everything Is Awesome” from “The Lego Movie,” “Glory” from “Selma,” “Grateful” from “Beyond the Lights” and “I’m Not Gonna Miss You” from “Glen Campbell…I’ll Be Me.”

Levine is the lead singer for the group Maroon 5, which has received three Grammy® Awards, two for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals (2005 and 2007) and one for Best New Artist (2004). Levine made his feature film acting debut in “Begin Again,” which is directed by John Carney and also stars Keira Knightley and Mark Ruffalo.

The 87th Oscars will be held on Sunday, February 22, 2015, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and will be televised live on the ABC Television Network at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT. The Oscars, produced by Zadan and Meron, also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.

Jun 202013
 
Actor James Gandolfini dead at age 51

Poses backstage during the 55th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards at the Shrine Auditorium September 21, 2003 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Getty Images) Anything L.A.

By Chelsea J. Carter and JD Cargill, CNN
updated 12:14 AM EDT, Thu June 20, 2013

James Gandolfini, best known for his role as an anxiety-ridden mob boss on HBO’s “The Sopranos,” died Wednesday while on vacation in Italy. He was 51.

The exact cause of death is not known, but his managers said it was possibly a heart attack.

“It is with immense sorrow that we report our client, James Gandolfini. passed away today while on holiday in Rome, Italy,” managers Mark Armstrong and Nancy Sanders said in a joint statement. “Our hearts are shattered and we will miss him deeply. He and his family were part of our family for many years and we are all grieving.”

The actor had been scheduled to make an appearance at the Taormina Film Fest in Sicily this week.

Gandolfini won three Emmy Awards for his portrayal of Tony Soprano, the angst-wracked mob boss who visited a therapist and took Prozac while knocking off people. “The Sopranos” aired from 1999 to 2007.
HBO: Actor James Gandolfini has died
Larry King: ‘Sopranos’ made him a star
Gupta: 51 is young for a heart attack
2007: ‘The Sopranos’ TV legacy

Share your memories

“Jimmy was the spiritual core of our Sopranos family, and I am stunned at this devastating loss,” said Chris Albrecht, the former president of HBO who gave the green light to the show. “He was a great talent, but an even better man. My thoughts are with his family.”

Actor Steve Van Zandt, who played Tony Soprano’s confidant Silvio Dante, felt equally close to Gandolfini in real life. “I have lost a brother and a best friend,” he posted on Twitter. “The world has lost one of the greatest actors of all time.”

Gandolfini was born September 18, 1961, in Westwood, New Jersey, according to Biography.com.

He graduated from Rutgers University and, as the story goes, worked as a bartender and a bouncer in New York City until he went with a friend to an acting class.

He got his start on Broadway, with a role in the 1992 revival of “A Streetcar Named Desire” with Jessica Lange and Alec Baldwin.

Gandolfini’s big screen debut came in the role of a heavy in the bloody “True Romance” in 1993. His breakthrough on the small screen came in 1999 with the role of Tony Soprano.

“He was a genius. Anyone who saw him even in the smallest of his performances knows that,” David Chase, who developed “The Sopranos,” said in a statement. “…A great deal of that genius resided in those sad eyes.”

Gandolfini, who was notoriously press shy, had a reputation in the tabloids for being sometimes difficult.

“He wasn’t easy sometimes. But he was my partner, he was my brother in ways I can’t explain and never will be able to explain,” Chase said.

While Gandolfini was known for sometimes ruthless, often imposing characters, those who worked with him described an actor who put his heart into a role.

“He was just so good at the emotion. A very passionate man and a very, very tender man,” Matthew Warchus, who directed Gandolfini in the 2009 Broadway play “God of Carnage,” told CNN. “I really loved him and admired him a great deal.”

Larry King, who saw Gandolfini in Las Vegas just weeks ago, told CNN the actor was “jovial and seemed happy.”

“He stamped himself in ‘The Sopranos’ so much, people have overlooked his many diversified roles he’s performed,” King said. “He was a very diverse character actor, who became a star.”
2007: James Gandolfini on the red carpet
Photos: People we lost in 2013 Photos: People we lost in 2013

Gandolfini’s acting credits included roles in “The Last Castle” with Robert Redford, “The Mexican” with Brad Pitt and Julia Roberts and “Surviving Christmas” with Ben Affleck.

In recent years, he had starred in several movies, including the Oscar-nominated “Zero Dark Thirty,” “The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3” and “Killing Them Softly.”

Gandolfini was also known to children, voicing Carol, a wild thing, in the 2009 movie adaptation of Maurice Sendak’s classic “Where the Wild Things Are.”

He took to the stage to do a reading of Sendak’s “In The Night Kitchen” to mark the author’s 80th birthday.

News of the actor’s death spread quickly, drawing shock and sadness from those who had worked with him.

“James Gandolfini was a kind, funny, wonderful guy. I’m so lucky to have worked with him. Sending love to his family. Such a sad, sad day,” Olivia Wilde, who starred with the actor in “The Incredible Burt Wonderstone,” said in a post on Twitter.

Actor Steve Carell, who also appeared in the movie, simply said on Twitter: “James Gandolfini. What a great loss.”

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie described himself as a “huge fan” of Gandolfini.

“It’s an awful shock. James Gandolfini was a fine actor, a Rutgers alum and a true Jersey guy,” he said.

Gandolfini is survived by his wife, Deborah, and their 9-month-old daughter, Liliana. He is also survived by a son, Michael, from another marriage.

CNN’s KJ Matthews, Douglas Hyde, Elise Miller and Henry Hanks contributed to this report.