Quick Takes

Nabokov’s last work to be printed

Vladimir Nabokov’s son says he will publish the Russian author’s last manuscript despite the writer’s dying request that it be burned.

Dimitri Nabokov says in an interview with the German edition of Vanity Fair that his father must have wanted the work published or he would have destroyed it himself.

The work titled “The Original Laura” was left behind on 138 notecards when the author died in 1977. He asked his wife, Vera, to burn the work. She never did. His 74-year-old son says the work is scheduled for release in September.

From the Associated Press

Advocacy groups decry ‘Thunder’

“Tropic Thunder,” the Ben Stiller comedy that opens today, is pushing the boundaries of good taste too far for groups representing the mentally disabled.

Dozens of people from organizations such as the Special Olympics and the American Assn. of People With Disabilities protested the movie-industry spoof across the street from the film’s premiere at Mann’s Bruin Theatre in Westwood on Monday.

The groups are outraged by scenes featuring the liberal usage of a disparaging term used to describe the mentally disabled.

From the Associated Press

CNN to open more U.S. bureaus

CNN plans to double its newsgathering presence in the United States, even as threats of an advertising recession have led to job cuts at other news organizations.

The pioneer global cable news network said Tuesday that it would double the number of regions from which its newsgathering staffs operate to 20. It will begin operations in Columbus, Ohio; Denver; Houston; Las Vegas; Minneapolis; Orlando, Fla.; Philadelphia; Phoenix; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; and Seattle.

CNN will hire a few new employees, while reassigning some current employees to new jobs. The goal is to have a mix of traditional network correspondents and what CNN calls “all-platform journalists” or APJs, who gather news using lightweight kits that include laptops, cameras and editing tools for Internet as well as on-air programming in all 20 cities.

From Reuters

Theatre Center hires manager

Hoping to rise above its precursors’ legacy of fiscal problems, the New Los Angeles Theatre Center has hired a new general manager as it tries to turn downtown dwellers into ticket-buyers.

Paul Stuart Graham arrived last month after three years as producing director of Actors Co-op, the respected 99-seat theater based at First Presbyterian Church of Hollywood. The general manager’s job includes trying to attract a healthy audience for LATC’s four stages, which range from a small black box to 500 seats.

“Running a 99-seat theater is a whole different ballgame than operating a venue with four theaters,” said Graham, who also teaches arts management at Cal State Los Angeles.

The city-owned LATC is in a restored 1916 bank building; converting it into a theater complex and sustaining its operations has cost more than $31 million in public funding since the mid-1980s. Envisioned as a cog in the revival of downtown L.A., it has struggled since to become self-sustaining. The Latino Theater Company has operated LATC since 2006 under a 20-year agreement with the city.

-- Mike Boehm

Hayes is said to have had a stroke

Isaac Hayes apparently died of a stroke, officials with the Memphis Sheriff’s Department said Tuesday.

The deep-voiced soul singer died Sunday after he was found unconscious at his Memphis residence. No autopsy was performed, but paperwork filed by Hayes’ family physician, Dr. David Kraus, lists the cause of death as a stroke, sheriff’s spokesman Steve Shular said.

Kraus told investigators that he had been treating Hayes, 65, for high blood pressure, Shular said.

Family members found Hayes lying on the floor of his home beside a treadmill that was still switched on.

From the Associated Press

Music producer sues Hudgens

A music producer has sued Vanessa Hudgens for $5 million, claiming the actress and her father have repeatedly violated a contract and failed to pay him his share of her earnings.

Hudgens, one of the stars of Disney’s successful “High School Musical” series, entered into an agreement with producer Johnny Vieira when she was still a minor, according to the lawsuit, filed in L.A. Superior Court Monday. Vieira claims Hudgens and her father, Greg, sued to get out of the agreement but have also failed to abide by settlement terms.

From the Associated Press