20 December 2014

N. Korea proposes joint probe with US into Sony cyber attack

Workers remove a poster for "The Interview" from a billboard in Hollywood, California, December 18, 2014North Korea called Saturday for a joint investigation with the US into a crippling cyber attack on Sony Pictures, denouncing Washington's "slandering" after President Barack Obama warned Pyongyang of retaliation. The US blames the isolated state for the hacking which prompted the cancellation of the Christmas Day release of "The Interview", a madcap romp about a CIA plot to kill leader Kim Jong-Un which infuriated North Korea. "As the United States is spreading groundless allegations and slandering us, we propose a joint investigation with it into this incident," a foreign ministry spokesman in Pyongyang said. "Without resorting to such tortures as were used by the US CIA, we have means to prove that this incident has nothing to do with us," the spokesman was quoted as saying by the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).


20 December 2014

Bill Cosby's silence may be his best defense at this point

FILE - In this Nov. 21, 2014 file photo, entertainer Bill Cosby performs at the Maxwell C. King Center for the Performing Arts in Melbourne, Fla. Cosby has has remained silent, and that may be his best strategy. With police urging any possible sex abuse victims to come forward, two lawsuits pending and more than 15 women making accusations stretching back years, Cosby has little to gain by speaking publicly. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File)LOS ANGELES (AP) — Bill Cosby has the right to remain silent — and that may be his best strategy.


20 December 2014

Why the Sony hack isn't big news in Japan

FILE - An exterior of the Sony Pictures Plaza building is seen in Culver City, Calif., Friday, Dec. 19, 2014. While Sony Pictures is technically part of the Sony empire, it has long been run as an entirely separate U.S. company. So far, the Japanese media seems to view the hack as an American problem rather than a domestic one. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)Japan's biggest newspaper, Yomiuri Shimbun, featured a story about Sony Corp. on its website Friday. It wasn't about hacking. It was about the company's struggling tablet business.


20 December 2014

Madonna releases 6 songs after leak

FILE - In this Nov. 28, 2014 file photo, Madonna visits Malawian President Peter Mutharika at State House in Lillongwe Malawi. In a surprise preview of her new album, Madonna released six songs Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014, on iTunes and various streaming services. The songs were released because several in-progress demos were leaked earlier this week, according to Madonna publicist Liz Rosenberg. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)NEW YORK (AP) — In a surprise preview of her new album, Madonna released six songs Saturday on iTunes and various streaming services.


20 December 2014

Obama says North Korea hacked Sony, vows response

President Barack Obama speaks during a news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, Friday, Dec. 19, 2014. The president claimed an array of successes in 2014, citing lower unemployment, a rising number of Americans covered by health insurance, and an historic diplomatic opening with Cuba. He also touts his own executive action and a Chinese agreement to combat global warming. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama declared that Sony "made a mistake" in shelving a satirical film about a plot to assassinate North Korea's leader, and he pledged the U.S. would respond "in a place and manner and time that we choose" to the hacking attack on Sony that led to the withdrawal. The FBI blamed the hack on the communist government.


20 December 2014

Protesters in contempt of court for anti-whaling campaign

File - This Nov. 6, 2013 file photo shows anti-whaling activist Paul Watson, center, founder of the Oregon-based Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, as he listens during a contempt of court hearing in federal court in Seattle. Radical environmentalists have been found in contempt of court for failing to heed an order to halt their relentless campaign to disrupt the annual whale hunt off the waters of Antarctica. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday, Dec. 19, 2014 ordered a lower court to determine how much Watson and members of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society owe Japanese whalers. (AP Photo/Karen Ducey, Pool, file)SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers were found in contempt of court for continuing their relentless campaign to disrupt the annual whale hunt off the waters of Antarctica.


19 December 2014

Craig Ferguson says good night as 'Late Late Show' host

FILE - In this Dec. 1, 2012 file photo, Craig Ferguson appears backstage at the Grammy Nominations Concert, in Los Angeles. Ferguson will spend tomorrow's future yesterdays (as his theme song proclaims) somewhere other than "The Late Late Show." Friday Dec. 19, 2014 was his last hoorah after a decade as host of the CBS talk show. (AP Photo/Dan Steinerg, File)NEW YORK (AP) — Craig Ferguson will spend tomorrow's future yesterdays (as his theme song proclaims) somewhere other than "The Late Late Show." Friday was his last hoorah after a decade as host of the CBS talk show.


19 December 2014

AP Interview: Coelho says Sony hack threatens all

Brazilian author Paulo Coelho gestures during an interview with The Associate Press, at his apartment, in Geneva, Switzerland, Friday, Dec. 19, 2014. Coelho says the Sony hack threatens us all if society doesn't enforce important values against anonymous terrorists. The best-selling author says he was prepared to make himself an example — even if it meant inviting criticism and threats — if Sony Pictures had taken him up on his $100,000 offer for the rights to its cancelled film. (AP Photo/Boris Heger)GENEVA (AP) — Brazilian author Paulo Coelho says the Sony hack threatens us all if society doesn't enforce important values: our individual and collective freedom of expression and an unwavering refusal to negotiate with anonymous terrorists.


19 December 2014

Protesters in contempt of court for anti-whaling campaign

File - This Nov. 6, 2013 file photo shows anti-whaling activist Paul Watson, center, founder of the Oregon-based Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, as he listens during a contempt of court hearing in federal court in Seattle. Radical environmentalists have been found in contempt of court for failing to heed an order to halt their relentless campaign to disrupt the annual whale hunt off the waters of Antarctica. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday, Dec. 19, 2014 ordered a lower court to determine how much Watson and members of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society owe Japanese whalers. (AP Photo/Karen Ducey, Pool, file)SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers were found in contempt of court Friday for continuing their relentless campaign to disrupt the annual whale hunt off the waters of Antarctica.


19 December 2014

Obama says North Korea hacked Sony, vows response

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama declared Friday that Sony "made a mistake" in shelving a satirical film about a plot to assassinate North Korea's leader, and he pledged the U.S. would respond "in a place and manner and time that we choose" to the hacking attack on Sony that led to the withdrawal. The FBI blamed the hack on the communist government.

19 December 2014

Actor Stephen Collins denies he's a pedophile in interview

FILE - In this Sunday, Nov. 9, 2008, file photo, Stephen Collins arrives at the premiere of "Defiance," during AFI Fest, in Los Angeles. In an interview with Yahoo's Katie Couric posted online Friday, Dec. 19, 2014, Collins said he's not a pedophile and insists he has inappropriately touched a minor just once, describing himself instead as someone suffering from "exhibitionist urges" and "big boundary issues." (AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File)NEW YORK (AP) — Former "7th Heaven" star Stephen Collins declares he's not a pedophile, and insists he has molested a minor on just one occasion and engaged in sexual misconduct with only three girls in all.


19 December 2014

Ashanti 'shocked' by prospect of stalker retrial

Singer Ashanti leaves the courthouse after testifying at Devar Hurd's trial in New York, Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014. Ashanti said in testimony at Hurd's trial Tuesday that she was "disgusted" and "absolutely scared" when she learned in July 2013 that Devar Hurd, who had been convicted of stalking her, had since been tweeting her X-rated messages and posed for a photo with her sister. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)NEW YORK (AP) — Ashanti is appalled by the prospect of facing her accused stalker again in court, but the Grammy-winning R&B singer said Friday she's determined to see the case through after a mistrial.


19 December 2014

Sony on shelving 'The Interview': 'We had no choice'

NEW YORK (AP) — Following pointed criticism from President Barack Obama for shelving "The Interview," Sony Pictures Entertainment on Friday defended its decision, claiming it had no choice but to cancel the film's Christmas Day theatrical release.

19 December 2014

9 films advance in Oscars shortlist for best foreign film

In this image released by Sony Pictures Classics shows Erica Rivas in a scene from "Wild Tales," one of nine films in contention for an Oscar nomination for best foreign film. (AP Photo/Sony Pictures Classics)LOS ANGELES (AP) — The list of contenders for best foreign film got a bit smaller Friday as the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences announced the nine features that will advance to the next round of voting.


19 December 2014

Celebrities react to latest Sony hack developments

An exterior of the Sony Pictures Plaza building is seen in Culver City, Calif., Friday, Dec. 19, 2014. President Barack Obama declared Friday that Sony "made a mistake" in shelving the satirical film, "The Interview," about a plot to assassinate North Korea's leader. He pledged the U.S. would respond "in a place and manner and time that we choose" to the hacking attack on Sony that led to the withdrawal. The FBI blamed the hack on the communist government. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)Latest reaction from Hollywood and beyond to the Sony hacking scandal and President Obama's remarks Friday that the studio "made a mistake" in not releasing its embattled film "The Interview":


19 December 2014

More than 4 million people watched 1st dog telethon

In this Dec. 13, 2014 photo provided by Katie Sullivan and James Marquis, they pose with their newly-apopted dog Octavia, a 2-year-old German shepherd featured in a segment of "Telethon Dogs" presented by Queen Latifah over the two-hour Thanksgiving night telecast, at their home in Costa Mesa, Calif. Producers say more than 4,400 people filed adoption papers for homeless dogs during what was billed as the first all-star dog adoption telethon. Director Michael Levitt says it would be huge if only half of the applications result in adoptions. Levitt also says he thinks anyone who watched the show would strongly consider a rescue next time they get a dog. Seventy dogs from rescues across the country were featured on the two-hour Thanksgiving night telecast — a show the producer hopes becomes a fixture in the future. More than 4 million people tuned in to the show, which was co-hosted by actresses Hilary Swank and Jane Lynch, and aired on donated time from the Fox Network.(AP Photo/Katie Sullivan and James Marquis)LOS ANGELES (AP) — More than 4,400 people filed adoption papers for homeless dogs during what was billed as the first all-star dog adoption telethon, producers say.


19 December 2014

2012 movie massacre hung over 'Interview' decision

FILE - In this July 21, 2012 file photo, three helicopters make a flyover of the Century Theater in Aurora, Colo., a day after twelve people were killed and dozens were injured in the attack early Friday at the packed theater during a showing of the Batman movie, "Dark Knight Rises." When a group claiming credit for the hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment threated violence against theaters showing “The Interview” earlier this week, the fate of the movie was all but sealed. Even though law enforcement didn’t deem the threats of violence credible, theater owners and Sony undoubtedly considered the 2012 massacre of a dozen people in a Colorado movie theater. (AP Photo/Barry Gutierrez, File)LOS ANGELES (AP) — When a group claiming credit for the hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment threated violence against theaters showing "The Interview" earlier this week, the fate of the movie's big-screen life was all but sealed.


19 December 2014

More than 4 million people watched 1st dog telethon

In this Dec. 13, 2014 photo provided by Katie Sullivan and James Marquis, they pose with their newly-apopted dog Octavia, a 2-year-old German shepherd featured in a segment of "Telethon Dogs" presented by Queen Latifah over the two-hour Thanksgiving night telecast, at their home in Costa Mesa, Calif. Producers say more than 4,400 people filed adoption papers for homeless dogs during what was billed as the first all-star dog adoption telethon. Director Michael Levitt says it would be huge if only half of the applications result in adoptions. Levitt also says he thinks anyone who watched the show would strongly consider a rescue next time they get a dog. Seventy dogs from rescues across the country were featured on the two-hour Thanksgiving night telecast — a show the producer hopes becomes a fixture in the future. More than 4 million people tuned in to the show, which was co-hosted by actresses Hilary Swank and Jane Lynch, and aired on donated time from the Fox Network.(AP Photo/Katie Sullivan and James Marquis)LOS ANGELES (AP) — Producers say more than 4,400 people filed adoption papers for homeless dogs during "Cause for Paws: An All-Star Dog Spectacular," billed as the first all-star dog adoption telethon.


19 December 2014

Guest lineups for the Sunday news shows

WASHINGTON (AP) — Guest lineups for the Sunday TV news shows:

19 December 2014

Key Profumo scandal figure Mandy Rice-Davies dies

FILE - In this Monday, Sept. 30, 2013 file photo, Mandy Rice Davies, former model and showgirl, right, poses with actress Charlotte Blackledge, who plays her in the new Andrew Lloyd Webber musical 'Stephen Ward', during the show launch photocall, in London. Mandy Rice-Davies, a key figure in Britain's biggest Cold War political scandal, the “Profumo Affair,” has died. She was 70. Her PR firm said Friday Dec. 19, 2014, that Rice-Davies died Thursday evening "after a short battle with cancer." (AP Photo/Sang Tan, File)LONDON (AP) — Mandy Rice-Davies, a key figure in the "Profumo Affair," a sex-and-politics scandal that rocked Cold War Britain, has died at age 70.