New this week: Rebel Wilson, The Black Keys, 'Firestarter'
This week’s new entertainment releases include a fresh album from The Black Keys, Rebel Wilson starring as a popular high school senior who emerges from a coma after 20 years, and the period drama “Operation Mincemeat,” based on a risky and real military operation in World War II.
Atwood, Grisham among contributors to pandemic novel
Atwood and Grisham are among several authors participating in a novel about the pandemic. The Authors Guild Foundation announced Thursday that it had reached a deal with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books & Media to publish Fourteen Days: An Unauthorized Gathering." (AP Photo)NEW YORK – One of the first novels about the pandemic will be a collaborative effort, with Margaret Atwood, John Grisham and Celeste Ng among the writers. Novelist and Authors Guild President Douglas Preston came up with the idea as a way to raise money for the foundation. Atwood is editing “Fourteen Days” and helped recruit a wide range of contributors, including Dave Eggers, Ishmael Reed, Monique Truong, Hampton Sides, Mary Pope Osborne and Emma Donoghue.
Quotes from Stephen King interview with The Associated Press
FILE - In this Nov. 13, 2013 file photo, author Stephen King poses for the cameras, during a promotional tour in Paris. It’s a popular name in Australia, and there a lot of people with that name there who have been doing crimes: Stephen Kings who have set houses on fire and Stephen Kings who are bank robbers. What I (also) see more and more are obituaries where so and so died at age 89 and he was a ‘big fan of Stephen King novels.’”—-SPECIAL GUESTS—-“Jill Biden showed up at a public event that I did. One time, I’m doing a reading in Seattle, and I’m looking at the crowd, 70-80 people. And I’m looking at this guy in the front row and he’s wearing workout pants, with a stripe down the side, and sneakers.
Stephen King talks about crime, creativity and new novel
(Hard Case Crime via AP, left, and AP)NEW YORK – Stephen King doesn't think of himself as a horror writer. Over the past decade, he has written three novels for the imprint Hard Case Crime: “Joyland,” “The Colorado Kid” and “Later,” which comes out this week. At the same time, he enjoys writing a crime story that is more than a crime story — or hardly a crime story at all. King, who publishes most of his work with Simon & Schuster, is part of the founding story of Hard Case Crime. A representative for the author called and said King did not want to write a blurb for Hard Case Crime; he wanted to contribute a book.
Stephen King helps kids publish pandemic-inspired book
FILE - In this Tuesday, May 22, 2018, file photo, PEN literary service award recipient Stephen King attends the 2018 PEN Literary Gala at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. Author Kings foundation covered the $6,500 cost of publishing a 290-page manuscript by students in Farwell Elementary Schools Author Studies Program. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)LEWISTON, Maine – A group of budding young writers is about to publish a book with some help from Maine's most famous writer. Stephen King's foundation covered the $6,500 cost of publishing a 290-page manuscript by students participating in Farwell Elementary School’s Author Studies Program. A number of local groups also sent donations that will be used for the Author Studies program.
Hunter Biden's memoir 'Beautiful Things' out in April
This cover image released by Gallery Books shows "Beautiful Things" a memoir by Hunter Biden. Biden, son of President Joe Biden and an ongoing target for conservatives, has a memoir coming out April 6. (Gallery Books via AP)NEW YORK – Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden and an ongoing target for conservatives, has a memoir coming out April 6. The book is called “Beautiful Things” and will center on the younger Biden's well publicized struggles with substance abuse, according to Gallery Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. Hunter Biden is a lawyer and former lobbyist whose work helped lead to the first impeachment of Trump.
Fly on Pence's head generates buzz in VP debate
A fly lands on the head of Vice President Mike Pence during the vice presidential debate Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020, at Kingsbury Hall on the campus of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. (Justin Sullivan/Pool via AP)WASHINGTON – The vice presidential debate featured plexiglass barriers to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The incident went unmentioned onstage, with the Republican vice president and Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris continuing to focus on the discussion of systemic racism in the justice system. It's on his head,” tweeted MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow. Wednesday night’s visitor wasn’t the first fly to take center stage at a presidential debate.
An eventful year for Pulitzer Prize winner Colson Whitehead
NEW YORK Even sheltering in place, Colson Whitehead has had an eventful year. Whitehead became the first fiction writer to win Pulitzers for back to back novels, Underground Railroad and The Nickel Boys, which won the Pulitzer in May and comes out in paperback this week. In Underground Railroad,' I felt I needed a fantastic device to move Cora (the main character) to her freedom. With The Nickel Boys, there was no need for any kind of fantastic flourish. "For The Nickel Boys, I was someone trying to figure out where the country was going.
New this week: 'Clemency,' BET Awards, HAIM, 'Doctor Sleep'
(Neon via AP)Heres a collection curated by The Associated Press entertainment journalists of whats arriving on TV, streaming services and music platforms this week. Written and directed by Chinonye Chukwu, Clemency was well-reviewed but got unjustly overshadowed by some of the higher profile awards contenders when it was released in December. Doctor Sleep: The Directors Cut: This Danny Torrance-focused sequel to The Shining was a little divisive upon release, which wasnt all that surprising. Film Writer Lindsey BahrMUSICGrey Daze: Fans of the late Grammy-winning screeching rock singer Chester Bennington will get a chance to hear him one more time. HAIM: Its been three years since sister trio HAIM have released a new album.
'Exorcist' actor Max von Sydow dies at age 90
"It is with a broken heart and with infinite sadness that we have the extreme pain of announcing the departure of Max von Sydow,” Diamond said. In 1980, von Sydow starred as the evil emperor Ming the Merciless in "Flash Gordon." He was baptized Carl Adolf von Sydow, but later changed his first name to Max. “I’m very grateful to the schooling I had in Sweden because in order to learn acting you have to work, work, work,” he said. Von Sydow married Swedish actress Christina Olin in 1951 and had two sons, Clas and Henrik.
'American Dirt' Latino backlash part of long publishing war
Her scathing review of “American Dirt,” in which she accuses Cummins of appropriating works by Latinos, went viral. “American Dirt,” published last week, tells the story of a Mexican woman and her 8-year-old son fleeing to the U.S. border after a drug cartel kills the rest of their family. Some Latino celebrities posted selfies with the book; Mexican-born actress Salma Hayek later apologized for promoting “American Dirt” without having read it after she was attacked on social media. Latino critics say ``American Dirt'' contains stereotypes, incorrect regional slang, and cultural inaccuracies. Tony Diaz, a Mexican American novelist in Houston, had promised to organize a protest outside.
Salma Hayek apologizes for praising controversial new novel
NEW YORK, N.Y. – Salma Hayek is apologizing for promoting a controversial new novel, Jeanine Cummins' “American Dirt,” without actually reading it. The heavily publicized book has been praised by Stephen King and Ann Patchett among others and was chosen by Oprah Winfrey for her book club. But numerous Mexican-American writers have called “American Dirt” an ill-informed narrative about Mexico that reinforces stereotypes. Cummins, a non-Mexican, even acknowledged in an author's note that she had reservations about writing the novel. She has said she wanted to personalize the issue of immigration and be a “bridge” between different worlds.