- Mike Boettcher, Mary-Rose Abraham and Lee Alexander at Newsmakers1 day ago
Since winning an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for 12 Years a Slave, John Ridley’s schedule has been hectic. He’s been busy shooting American Crime , a pilot for ABC while also promoting the U.S. premiere of his highly anticipated Jimi Hendrix biopic Jimi: All is by My Side at SXSW in Austin.
So it’s understandable the screenwriter turned director has had little time to dwell on his alleged behind-the-scenes feud with 12 Years a Slave director, Steve McQueen which went public once he failed to thank the director during his Academy Award’s acceptance speech.
“I’m not worried about it,” says John Ridley, “what Steve did was potentially monumental and nobody can take that away from him . . . I’ve been a lot of places recently, and all I know is people praise that film like they should and more importantly, talk about Solomon and his story.”
Instead, Ridley is using his time to focus on his latest project, Jimi: All is by My Side , a film set to be released in the United States later this summer.
- Rebecca Jarvis and Mary-Rose Abraham at Newsmakers5 days ago
Even though it was 18 years ago, Peter Thum vividly remembers the phone call. It was the call telling him that his good friend from college had been shot and killed. She had been recently married and was only 28 years old.
“I can identify with a person who was so bright and whose future was going to be so wonderful,” said Thum. “Most of the time after people grieve, they move on. But this process of doing what we’re doing, this business, reminds me of her quite often.”
That business is Liberty United, which takes guns and bullet casings, melts them down and turns them into rings, bracelets and necklaces. The weapons, both illegal guns and pistols turned in during buyback programs, are sourced from local law enforcement. The company donates 20 percent of its profits to groups working to reduce gun violence.
“To me, [gun violence] is an unacceptable problem,” said Thum. “In the United States, this has to be something that we come up with a solution for. Two groups of people are unwilling to talk to each other and have set up polarizing sides that leave everyone in the middle feeling trapped. That’s not an acceptable way to treat the lives of those people who have been sacrificed.”
- Juju Chang and Mary-Rose Abraham at Newsmakers8 days ago
In her seventh book on parenting, Jo Frost – better known to U.S. audiences as the “Supernanny” – lays out the basics for raising a child during one of the most trying stages: toddlers.
The inspiration for Jo Frost's Toddler Rules is not only her 25 years’ experience guiding families. It was an incident on a Jet Blue flight a couple of years ago.
Watch the video below for the Supernanny's guide to handling your toddler's tantrums
“I was watching television and I saw that an aircraft had turned the plane around because a family couldn't control their child while she was having a temper tantrum,” recalled Frost. “Have we come to that? Have we really got to the stage where pilots are turning around airplanes because children are having meltdowns?”
In her book, Frost not only details the steps to dealing with tantrums, but says they’re healthy opportunities for a family to connect with their child and learn what the real problem is. The first step is understanding what triggers the meltdown so parents can respond rather than react.
Frost breaks tantrums into three categories:
--- mock: a child behaves a certain way to get what he wants
- Deborah Roberts and Mary-Rose Abraham at Newsmakers14 days ago
When Sandra Bullock won an Academy Award in 2010, it was a turning point. But not just for the longtime actress.
“I think the moment that Sandra Bullock won an Oscar in one of our dresses was really an incredible experience,” said Georgina Chapman, the co-founder and designer of the fashion house Marchesa. “It really was quite a pivotal moment for us at Marchesa.”
The one-shouldered formal evening gown was a shimmery silver with a cascade of bugle beads from top to bottom. Chapman remembered that “we worked through two nights straight fixing the dress, because all the bugle beads are made of glass, so every alteration we'd have to break the beads, smash them with a hammer, stitch it up and re-sew on the beads one by one. A lot of work went into that dress.”
Take a peek inside the Marchesa showroom with Georgina Chapman in the video below
- Brandi Hitt and Mary-Rose Abraham at Newsmakers14 days ago
For a man nicknamed Rush, and whose latest entrepreneurial venture All Def Digital shortens to A.D.D., Russell Simmons says only thing has calmed him: meditation.
“The idea of being still and operating from a calm place is one that I never would've thought would've suited my lifestyle or my goals or the way that I pursue life, 'cause I pursue everything with a vigor,” said Simmons.
After co-founding Def Jam Records, Simmons has had his hand in industries spanning film, television, fashion, digital media, video games and financial services. Simmons said before taking up twice-daily meditations about two decades ago, he was “frantic,” anxious and constantly worrying about what was going to happen the next day. Meditation allowed him to engage in the moment and let go of a feeling of neediness.
And now he hopes to share the benefits and demystify the practice of meditation through his new book Success Through Stillness .
Watch the video below to see Russell Simmons talk about rallying against Stand Your Ground laws
- Cecilia Vega and Mary-Rose Abraham at Newsmakers15 days ago
In two decades of catering the Governors Ball after the Academy Awards, Wolfgang Puck has dealt with his share of near-disasters.
His first year, the rice for his black truffle risotto wouldn’t boil because wind kept whipping at the stoves in his outdoor kitchen. Another year, a bigger catastrophe took place when he lost electricity and gas mid-way through cooking for 1,600 guests. Puck, who prepares meals at the last moment so that his food is fresh, was in disbelief.
"So all of a sudden the electricity goes out, the gas goes down and I said, ‘No, somebody's playing a joke on me,’" said Puck. "And then finally 15 to 20 minutes later, it came on again. But it was the longest 15 or 20 minutes. I didn't know if I should get enough sternos to heat them or jump off the building.”
Watch the video below to see Wolfgang Puck talk about being fired from his first restaurant job
Despite these mishaps, Puck has the catering of one of Hollywood’s biggest parties down to a science. His staff numbers more than 300 and he starts on the menu in January. And now, after 20 years, he sleeps soundly the night before and only gets nervous about an hour before the party.
- Dan Kloeffler at Newsmakers18 days ago
Jimmie Johnson gets nauseous in a car.
Not when he’s driving 190 mph around the track for 4 hours, but when someone else is in the driver’s seat.
"I get motion sickness," said the 38-year-old racing great as he revealed perhaps his one and only motor vehicle weakness during an interview at the Daytona International Speedway.
The racing season is just beginning and Johnson is on the edge of tying the greats, Dale Earnhardt Sr. and Richard Petty, holders of seven NASCAR championships. But before the race and the season’s business gets underway, he shared a little about himself – what makes him feel guilty, why he’s in the gym six days a week and what he thinks about his wife’s driving ability.
For five consecutive years, beginning in 2006, Johnson snagged the Championship Cup in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, with his iconic No. 48 Lowe’s car, getting rock star treatment from an exploding fan base, and millions of dollars in endorsements. And with each victory was a growing expectation that he could smash any record. But instead, Tony Stewart snapped the streak, and oddly enough, Johnson had a slight sigh of relief.
- Lama Hasan, Lee Alexander and Mary-Rose Abraham at Newsmakers20 days ago
Sally Green’s first novel Half Bad has already created so much buzz in the publishing industry that many are wondering if the former accountant turned novelist is the next J.K. Rowling.
After leaving a career in accounting to become a stay-at-home mom, Green attended a storytelling festival that ultimately changed her life. “I think that inspired me . . . I had an idea for a story, so one afternoon I thought I’ll write it down . . . I just kept going. You couldn’t have stopped me; I was addicted.”
Now publishers in 42 countries are not only banking on Green’s addiction on carrying her through the completion of a planned trilogy, but they are also betting it will resonate with the same readers that devoured the Harry Potter , Hunger Games and Twilight franchises, and have been left hungry for more supernatural storylines.
Half Bad , the first book in the Half Life trilogy, is set in modern-day England where two warring factions of witches, the White and the Black, live secretly among humans. The novel’s protagonist is 16-year-old Nathan, a half-White and half-Black witch who finds himself at the center of a suspenseful conflict – hunted from both sides.
- Dan Kloeffler and Mary-Rose Abraham at Newsmakers26 days ago
It just might be one of the longest freelance gigs in magazine publishing history. Cartoonist Al Jaffee has contributed to MAD Magazine , the satirical mainstay, since its beginnings, and is marking the 50 th anniversary of not only creating but illustrating its most iconic feature.
“Like all so-called independent contractors, you get up in the morning and you say to yourself ‘How am I gonna pay the mortgage this month? I better come up with an idea,'” said Jaffee, 92.
That idea was born when Jaffee saw fold-outs in magazines such as National Geographic and Life and, in typical MAD fashion, decided to do the opposite, creating the fold-in. A single image appears on the inside back cover along with a question. The reader folds the page in to reveal another image and the answer to the question. Thinking it was a “one-shot” gag, Jaffee was surprised when his editor demanded a fold-in for the next issue and it quickly became a regular feature.
“When we're successful, it's a funny take on a serious subject,” explained Jaffee. “When we fail is when we preach.”
- Bazi Kanani and Mary-Rose Abraham at Newsmakers29 days ago
In the year’s very first issue of her online newsletter “goop,” actress Gwyneth Paltrow featured recipes for a cleanse “that won't leave you feeling cold and hungry during the winter months.” The three-day diet was an abridged version of a three-week cleansing regimen created by Dr. Alejandro Junger.
The cardiologist is the bestselling author of two books on his “Clean” program which Paltrow, Demi Moore, fitness trainer Tracy Anderson, and thousands of people have used to rid their bodies of toxins.
“We have an overload of toxins that end up in our bloodstream,” said Junger. “Mostly through the chemicals that we put in our food. We use coloring agents, smelling agents, texturing agents, conserving agents, preserving agents and then even to the cows and chickens, we give them hormones and antibiotics and we feed them in the wrong way.”
Junger’s solution to detoxifying our bodies? Focusing on cleansing the gut by not eating any foods containing gluten, caffeine, alcohol, dairy, processed sugar, even most fruits, for 21 days. Breakfast is a shake with supplements. Lunch and dinner are solid meals.