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Entertainment

    Lawyers say nine people, including actor David Tennant and former Formula One driver Eddie Irvine, have launched legal action against Rupert Murdoch's British newspaper operations over alleged tabloid phone-hacking. Law firm Collyer Bristow said Thursday it is representing Irvine, ex-'Doctor Who' star Tennant and seven others over 'phone hacking and other unlawful activities.' Murdoch closed the tabloid News of the World in 2011 after revelations it had eavesdropped on the voicemails of celebrities, politicians and even a 13-year-old murder victim. Several journalists were convicted, and Murdoch's company paid out millions in compensation. Collyer Bristow partner Steven Heffer said Murdoch's company closed its compensation scheme in 2013, and 'my clients have been left with no alternative but to issue claims in the High Court.' Murdoch's News U.K. had no immediate comment.
  • The chains are famous for advertisements featuring models and celebrities like Paris Hilton, Kate Upton and Emily Ratajkowski munching on burgers while scantily clad. A new commercial for the chains shows the imagined Carl Hardee Sr. taking back control of the operation from immature son Carl Hardee Jr. Carl Sr. rips down photos of swimsuit models and puts up framed pictures of hamburgers. The chains are now calling themselves 'pioneers of the great American burger.' The company's racy advertising campaign had a defender in Andrew Puzder, who is stepping down as CEO of the chains' parent company, Carpinteria, California-based CKE Restaurant Holdings. Puzder withdrew as President Donald Trump's nominee for Labor Department secretary last month.
  • Frozen' producer Peter Del Vecho tells Entertainment Weekly the original version of the film was more in line with the Hans Christian Andersen tale on which it's based. Del Vecho says princess sisters Anna and Elsa weren't related in early scripts. He says 'Elsa was a self-proclaimed Snow Queen, but she was a villain and pure evil.' The drafts included a finale with Elsa using her powers to save the kingdom, but Del Vecho says the character's evilness gave them 'no emotional connection' to her. The filmmakers finally got things right after reworking the script. A sequel to the film is in production.
  • The FBI has recovered a 1919 Norman Rockwell painting stolen more than 40 years ago from a New Jersey home. The painting, sometimes called 'Lazybones' or 'Boy Asleep with Hoe,' graced the cover of the Sept. 6, 1919, edition of the Saturday Evening Post. The oil-on-canvas piece was among several items taken during a 1976 break-in in Cherry Hill, a Philadelphia suburb. Susan Murta tells The Philadelphia Inquirer (http://bit.ly/2nONreH ) the FBI did a great job. She last saw the painting in her parents' home in 1976. Her parents are now deceased. An Inquirer story last year said the owner forked over $75 for it after accidentally damaging the painting with a pool cue in 1954. It's now believed worth more than $1 million. It's unclear how the painting was recovered. ___ Information from: The Philadelphia Inquirer, http://www.inquirer.com
  • Actor Adam Pally has been arrested and charged with possession of cocaine and marijuana in New York. New York City police spokesman Thomas Antonetti tells The Associated Press that Pally was arrested late Tuesday night in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan. He faces a criminal possession charge for the cocaine and a possession of marijuana count. A court date is set for June. Pally's representative didn't immediately return a request for comment Thursday. Pally is best known for his role as Max Blum in the short-running ABC sitcom 'Happy Endings.' He also plays Dr. Peter Prentice on Hulu's 'The Mindy Project' and stars in 'Making History' on Fox.
  • Afghanistan's first — and only — all-female symphony is trying to change attitudes in a deeply conservative country where many see music as immoral, especially for women. The symphony's two conductors show how difficult that can be, but also how satisfying success is. One of them, Negin Khpolwak, was supported by her father when she joined the Afghanistan National Institute of Music and then became part of its girls' orchestra, called Zohra. But the rest of her family was deeply against it. Her uncles cut off ties with her father. 'They told him he is not their brother anymore,' said Khpolwak, now 20. 'Even my grand-mother disowned my father.' Khwolpak had learned about the music institute at the orphanage in Kabul where she spent most of her life. Her father sent her to the orphanage because he was afraid for her safety in their home province of Kunar in eastern Afghanistan, an area where Taliban militants are active. The institute is one of the only schools in Afghanistan where girls and boys share classrooms, and it draws its students from the ranks of orphanages and street children, giving them a chance at a new life. Khpolwak studied piano and drums before becoming the orchestra's conductor. More than 30 girls aged 12 to 20 play in Zohra, which is named after a goddess of music in Persian literature. In January, the orchestra, which performs traditional Afghan and Western Classical music, had its first international tour, appearing at the World Economic Forum in Davos and four other cities in Switzerland and Germany. 'The formation of the orchestra is aimed at sending a positive message to the community, to send a positive message to the girls, to encourage families and girls to join the music scene of the country,' said Ahmad Naser Sarmast, the institute's founder and director. Sarmast has experienced firsthand the militants' hatred of music. In 2014, a Taliban suicide bomber blew himself up at a concert Sarmast was attending. He was wounded and a German man in the audience died. The Zohra orchestra was created in 2014 when one of the institute's students, a girl named Meena, asked Sarmast if there could be a group where girls could play together. Sarmast leaped at the idea. Since then, Meena has disappeared. Last year, the 7th grader told the school she had to attend her sister's wedding in her family's village in eastern Nangarhar province. She never returned, a sign of how tenuous people's situation is in a country where war rages, communications are poor and poverty is rife. Sarmast said the school has not been in contact with her, but he's hopeful she'll return to the school and Zohra. The orchestra's other conductor, 18-year-old Zarifa Adiba, faced resistance from her family just as Khpolwak did. When she joined the school in 2014, she only told her mother and step-father, not her four brothers and her uncles, because she knew they would disapprove. Her mother and step-father tried to tell them about the importance of music — without mentioning Adiba — but they weren't convinced. 'If my brothers and uncles had known about me learning or playing music, they 100 percent would have stopped me because they had a very negative view toward music,' Adiba said. Her family's opposition to music was so intense she hesitated to join the orchestra's trip to Davos. But she ended up going, and as one of the conductors she was widely interviewed in the media there and appeared on TV. When she returned, her uncles were the first to congratulate her. Two of her brothers are still not happy about her involvement with music but now she has the support of the rest of the family, she has more courage, and she said she is sure her brothers will eventually come around. 'I changed my family, now it is time for other girls to change their families because I am sure that slowly all Afghanistan will change,' she said.
  • Longtime friends Leonardo DiCaprio and Q-Tip hung out at an intimate showcase for an Australian band making its New York City debut late Wednesday. The Oscar-winning actor and Grammy-winning rapper were in the small audience at Ludlow House as trio Chase Atlantic performed songs in a stripped, raw form. DiCaprio bobbed his head from his plush chair while sitting next to Sports Illustrated Swimsuit model Nina Agdal and chatting with the leader of A Tribe Called Quest. Q-Tip went to the stage to watch when the band asked people to come closer, as DiCaprio, in a fedora, sat back. The audience included music industry insiders, record label players and some press. Chase Atlantic performed songs from its three-song project released in January, 'Part One,' as well as tracks from another three-song album, 'Part Two,' to be released Friday. The group's genre-bending sounds echo The Weeknd and The 1975. Band members include brothers Clinton Cave and Mitchel Cave, and Christian Anthony.
  • Noreen Fraser, a TV producer whose own cancer diagnosis turned her into an activist against the disease, has died. She was 63. Fraser died Monday at her Los Angeles home of metastatic breast cancer, her family said. She joined forces with other prominent women, including Katie Couric, to found Stand Up to Cancer. The organization holds celebrity-filled telethons and has raised a reported $300 million-plus for research since 2008. Its aim is to get lifesaving treatment to patients more quickly through collaborative research. Another of its founders, producer Laura Ziskin, died of breast cancer in 2011 at age 61. Fraser's personal crusade began after she was diagnosed in 2001 with breast cancer, her husband, TV producer Woody Fraser, told the Los Angeles Times. 'She didn't know if she'd see her children graduate from grade school, then high school, then college,' he said, adding that she got to witness those events but not her daughter's upcoming wedding. Fraser established the Noreen Fraser Foundation in 2006 to fund women's cancer research. At her direction, the foundation's assets were transferred last year to the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of California, Los Angeles, where a research lab is named for her. Fraser, a native of Cleveland, produced TV shows including 'Entertainment Tonight' and 'Home Show.' Besides her husband, she is survived by children Madeline and Mack; her parents Jackie and Fred Friend; and eight siblings.
  • Wonder Woman is here to save the world, and, possibly the future of Warner Bros. DC Comics universe. New footage featuring actress Gal Gadot's lasso-wielding superhero stole the show Wednesday night at CinemaCon, which also featured some peeks at 'Aquaman' and 'Justice League.' It also marked Ben Affleck's first public appearance since acknowledging he'd recently completed rehab for alcohol addiction. The 'Batman' star didn't say anything, but just stood alongside his 'Justice League' director Zack Snyder and co-stars Henry Cavill, Jason Momoa and Ezra Miller. But it was Wonder Woman's show, even though Gadot wasn't in Las Vegas. The sepia-soaked extended clips highlighted the World War I espionage thrills as Diana/Wonder Woman adjusts to life with mortals. Co-star Chris Pine, who plays an American soldier, said the Patty Jenkins-directed film had a 'Casablanca' feel. Even the new 'Justice League' footage spotlighted Gadot's Wonder Woman as she breaks into Affleck's supposedly secured bat cave with ease and informs the caped crusader that they would need to assemble to defeat a threat. 'Wonder Woman' hits theaters June 2 and 'Justice League' bows Nov. 17.
  • A propeller stops midair. Soldiers packed like sardines on a pier cower in fear of an unseen threat. Those are the images Christopher Nolan left CinemaCon audiences hanging onto Wednesday as he premiered new footage from 'Dunkirk,' his long-awaited epic about the storied World War II evacuation. 'It's something British people grow up with. It's in our DNA,' Nolan said. 'It's something that's been close to my heart for a long time.' Nolan told the audience of theater owners that he wanted to tell the story in the most visceral way possible, putting audiences on the beaches, in the air and running with the troops. The 'Interstellar' and 'Dark Knight' director shot the film entirely on large format celluloid and said theaters are the only way to experience the suspenseful survival story. 'The only platform I'm interested in talking about is theatrical exhibition,' Nolan said. 'I want to thank you all for everything you've done for my films. Without you there is no audience.' The film's large eclectic ensemble cast includes veterans like Kenneth Branagh and Mark Ryland, Nolan mainstays Tom Hardy and Cillian Murphy, pop star Harry Styles and a few newcomers like Fionn Whitehead. It arrives in theaters on July 21.