BAFTA suspends nod amid allegations
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The British Academy of Film and Television Arts says it is suspending its nomination of director Bryan Singer amid accusations that he sexually assaulted minors.
Singer had been among those nominated for his work on the Queen biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody,” which he was fired from in late 2017. BAFTA says Wednesday that the organization considers the alleged behavior unacceptable and incompatible with its values and that Singer has been informed of the suspension.
The Atlantic magazine last month published an expose detailing the stories of four alleged victims who said they were seduced and molested by the Singer while underage. Singer has denied the allegations.
The film and others nominated for it will remain eligible for BAFTAs, which will be presented Sunday.
Urban to play at NHL Stadium Series
PHIADELPHIA, PA (AP) — Keith Urban will perform at the NHL’s Stadium Series outdoor game in Philadelphia between the Penguins and Flyers on Feb. 23.
The league announced Wednesday that the country music star would perform during the first intermission. Urban is the latest high-profile music act to play an NHL event, following Weezer at the Winter Classic and Bebe Rexha at All-Star Weekend.
Urban has no connection to the Flyers or Penguins, but he and wife Nicole Kidman are Nashville Predators fans, and he sang the national anthem during their 2017 playoff run. The NHL took the Stanley Cup to Urban’s studio in Nashville in April.
NHL chief content officer Steve Mayer called getting Urban a win for the league, which has put energy into getting more current musical acts for major events.
James shares truths though new novel
NEW YORK (AP) — Marlon James has unearthed monsters everywhere from a colonial era plantation to the house of Bob Marley. His latest book is set in a fantastical vision of ancient Africa filled with monsters and witches and ever taller tales.
Likened to “Game of Thrones” by some critics, “Black Leopard, Red Wolf” is the first of three planned fantasy novels, featuring a hunter for hire named Tracker whose pursuit of a missing boy extends over 600 pages of warfare, sex, shape shifting and plotting.
James is the author of the Booker Prize-winning “A Brief History of Seven Killings,” about the attempted 1976 assassination of Marley.
He sees “Black Leopard, Red Wolf” as a fitting testament for a moment which demands a close look at the past.