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The year in entertainment: Women dominate headlines

The Los Angeles Times covered news all around the world. This video highlights some of our staff's most engaging visuals and storytelling from 2017.
Diversity — and some confusion — at the Oscars
The audience reacts as the "Moonlight" cast and crew take the stage.
The audience reacts as the "Moonlight" cast and crew take the stage. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

#OscarsSoWhite? This time around, not so much. After a two-year drought, people of color were once again nominated in the Academy Awards’ acting and directing categories, and "Moonlight," "Hidden Figures,” “Fences” and “Lion” were among the best-picture nominees. Still, the contenders weren’t truly diverse, just “blacker,” according to the creator of the social-campaign hashtag. Next year, the slate may be even more homogenous. And let’s not forget about the finale of the show, when the 2017 Oscar for best picture went to — well, it wasn’t “La La Land.” Thanks to a screw-up on the sidelines, folks who tuned out immediately after the wrong title was read woke up the next day to headlines full of “Moonlight,” the actual winner. An anti-climactic ending, for sure, unless you were rooting for “Moonlight.”

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Melissa McCarthy helps make ‘SNL’ ratings great again
Melissa McCarthy as former Press Secretary Sean Spicer and Alec Baldwin as President Trump.
Melissa McCarthy as former Press Secretary Sean Spicer and Alec Baldwin as President Trump. (Will Heath / NBC via Associated Press)

As former White House spokesman Sean Spicer on “Saturday Night Live,” Melissa McCarthy slammed her lectern into the open arms of a public obsessed with POTUS 45. “SNL” ratings spiked and love for the funny lady flowed. Alas, when “Spicy” made a cameo as himself come Emmys time, it wasn’t nearly as amusing.


Deborah Borda leaves L.A. for New York Philharmonic

As chief executive of the L.A. Philharmonic, she opened Disney Hall, brought Gustavo Dudamel to Los Angeles and oversaw operations as it became the most progressive major symphony orchestra in the world. Then Deborah Borda was lured back to the New York Philharmonic in a move that caught the arts world by surprise.


‘Wonder Woman’ fights like a girl and rescues the box office
Gal Gadot stars as the title character in "Wonder Woman."
Gal Gadot stars as the title character in "Wonder Woman." (Clay Enos / Warner Bros.)

Get this: A movie starring a female superhero, directed by a woman, was amazingly appealing to men and women alike. Who would have thought? “Wonder Woman” showed the world how cool it could be to fight like a girl, all the while rescuing summer at the box office.


‘Dear Evan Hansen’ the big winner at the Tonys
Producer Stacey Mindich, at the mike, and the cast of "Dear Evan Hansen" accept the award for best musical at the conclusion of the 2017 Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
Producer Stacey Mindich, at the mike, and the cast of "Dear Evan Hansen" accept the award for best musical at the conclusion of the 2017 Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. (Theo Wargo / Getty Images)

The Tony Awards were all about “Dear Evan Hansen,” a young-adult musical that explores teen suicide through the story of an awkward, anxious high school nobody whose lie gets caught up in a social-media chain reaction. The show took home a half-dozen trophies (after nine nominations) during a broadcast hosted by a pre-scandal Kevin Spacey.


No more buy-a-bride auction at Pirates of the Caribbean
Disneyland is removing the scene where bound and tearful women are on the auction block for pirates in the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction.
Disneyland is removing the scene where bound and tearful women are on the auction block for pirates in the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction. (Gary Coronado / Los Angeles Times)

Presciently, the Pirates of the Caribbean crew found itself among entertainment’s most evolved men after Disney announced in June that it would bring on a female pirate and swap out the ride’s buy-a-bride auction for a more forward-thinking scene of villagers queuing up to surrender their belongings to the conquering horde.


Los Angeles succumbs to ‘Hamilton’
Lin-Manuel Miranda meets a mob of fans who gathered outside the Hollywood Pantages Theatre on Wednesday for a "Hamilton" ticket lottery and surprise mini-concert by cast members.

“Hamilton” finally arrived in L.A., bringing with it sky-high show prices and a Pantages-adjacent mini-concert for fans who gathered for a shot at 40 opening-night tickets being sold, via lottery, for $10 each.


Shonda Rhimes’ move to Netflix is a gut punch to ABC

Drama queen Shonda Rhimes (and we mean that in the best way possible) took her “Scandal”-spinning showrunner skills to Netflix over the summer, reinforcing the growing influence of streaming services. In jumping ship, the prolific producer delivered a gut punch to ABC, her former network home.

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Taylor Swift wins in court — and tops the chart

Taylor Swift made a buck the hard way in 2017: via federal court. A jury awarded the pop star a symbolic $1 judgment after determining that yes, a former radio personality had groped her backside during a photo opp. Then Swift’s “Reputation” brought in big bucks the old-fashioned way as the year’s best-selling album.


Wait, what? Doctor Who is a … woman?
Jodie Whittaker is the first woman to lead "Doctor Who."
Jodie Whittaker is the first woman to lead "Doctor Who." (BBC America)

In a groundbreaking casting move, the 13th actor chosen to play “Doctor Who” was, well, an actress. “Whovian” fans, who had apparently wanted a lady Doctor for a while, celebrated online after Jodie Whittaker got the gig.


A new look for the Grammy Award nomination

As the Recording Academy finally woke up and embraced hip-hop — and rap and R&B — its Grammy Award nominees skewed heavily toward women and artists of color. For the first time in Grammy history, no white men were up for album of the year.


Margaret Atwood had a very good year

Streaming services had a major crush on Margaret Atwood. Her dystopian “Handmaid’s Tale” made Emmy-winning waves for Hulu, while the grim “Alias Grace” became a Netflix original. Well played by a prize-winning author who’s fondly known as the patron saint of Canada.

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