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  • TV
  • Celebrity
(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

Tavis Smiley is fighting back against sexual misconduct accusations that resulted in PBS suspending distribution of his late-night talk show.

In a Facebook video posted Wednesday evening, the “Tavis Smiley” host said that he was shocked by the announcement from PBS, stating that Variety knew before he did. 

“I have the utmost respect for women and celebrate the courage of those who have come forth to tell their truth,” Smiley said. “To be clear, I have never groped, coerced, or exposed myself inappropriately to any workplace colleague in my entire broadcast career, covering six networks over 30 years.”

  • Movies
John Cho and Alia Shawkat will host the Spirit Awards brunch and announce the winners of five cash grants.
John Cho and Alia Shawkat will host the Spirit Awards brunch and announce the winners of five cash grants. (Film Independent)

Alia Shawkat and John Cho will host the upcoming Spirit Awards nominees brunch on Jan. 6 and announce the winners of five cash grants. (What independent filmmaker couldn’t use actual money instead of just a trophy?)

“John Cho and Alia Shawkat are both such fantastically talented actors, in independent film and beyond, so we couldn't be happier to have them hosting our Spirit Awards brunch,” Josh Welsh, president of Film Independent, which puts on the Spirit Awards, said in a statement.

Also in a statement, Shawkat captured the freewheeling spirit of the event: “I’m very excited to host the Spirit Awards brunch, as I love brunch and independent cinema.”


Illuminating the late Philip Seymour Hoffman’s longtime struggle with addiction, Mimi O’Donnell, his partner and mother of his three children, opened up about their relationship in a heartbreaking new essay for Vogue.

O’Donnell also wrote about the triggers that led to Hoffman’s relapse after two decades of sobriety and his death at age 46.

The Oscar-winning “Capote” star died of an overdose in 2014 involving a powerful cocktail of drugs. Hoffman’s body was found in the bathroom of his New York apartment with a syringe still in his forearm — heroin, cocaine, benzodiazepines and amphetamine were found in his system, causing “acute drug intoxication,” the coroner’s report said.

  • Movies
Mel Brooks will be part of the TCM Classic Film Festival next year.
Mel Brooks will be part of the TCM Classic Film Festival next year. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

The ninth TCM Classic Film Festival will open next year with a 50th anniversary screening of “The Producers.” The April 26 screening will mark the world premiere of a new restoration of the film, and Mel Brooks — director, writer, producer and actor — is expected to attend.

The film won an Oscar for Brooks for original screenplay and a nomination for supporting actor for Gene Wilder. It was later adapted into a stage musical that was then re-adapted back to the screen for a 2005 film.

In a statement, Ben Mankiewicz, “TCM Prime Time” host and official host of the TCM Classic Film Festival, said, “From ‘Blazing Saddles’ and ‘Young Frankenstein’ to ‘Spaceballs,’ Brooks' uniquely keen eye can both spoof and celebrate classic Hollywood.”

  • TV
  • Politics
  • Late-night

Stephen Colbert had so many feelings about Roy Moore’s loss that he had to sing about it. 

The “Late Show” host kicked off Wednesday night’s episode addressing the biggest night for Democrats since Nov. 7: Doug Jones winning Alabama’s Senate race. 

“If you’ll excuse me, I’m a little shaky tonight,” said Colbert at the top of his show. “Because my heart has been hurting all day due to a condition my doctor calls ‘hope.’”

  • Celebrity
(Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

“Super Size Me” director Morgan Spurlock published an essay Wednesday night that opened up in great detail about his own sexual misconduct.

The confession comes after months of women — and men — stepped forward with allegations of sexual harassment against high-profile men, both inside and outside the workplace.

“As I sit around watching hero after hero, man after man, fall at the realization of their past indiscretions, I don’t sit by and wonder ‘who will be next?’ I wonder, ‘when will they come for me?’” Spurlock wrote in the essay linked to his verified Twitter account. 

  • Birthdays
(Liz O. Baylen / Los Angeles Times)

I'm happy [fame] didn't happen for me as a kid because I really got to figure out who I am. But it's an ongoing thing, though. Even if you start to do well, there's still that argument of doubt.

  • Awards
  • Celebrity

The on-camera talent recognized during the 24th Screen Actors Guild Award nominations on Wednesday shared their excitement and gratitude for the special honor bestowed upon them by the acting community.

The SAG Awards serve up laurels for actors and ensemble casts working in television and film as voted by their peers. The awards show, hosted by “The Good Place” star Kristen Bell, will take place on Jan. 21.

Eric Stonestreet, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Julie Bowen in "Modern Family"
Eric Stonestreet, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Julie Bowen in "Modern Family" (Peter "Hopper" Stone / ABC)

Wednesday’s announcement of the Screen Actors Guild Award nominations suggested fewer shocks and more sea changes, with a new television powerhouse arising and comedy getting a makeover. Here are five of the most surprising tidbits from the nominations:

1. There was a significant changing of the guard in television comedy, with “Modern Family” and “The Big Bang Theory” both getting completely shut out of Wednesday’s nominations. It’s the first time “The Big Bang Theory” has missed an ensemble nomination since 2011 and the first time “Modern Family” has ever been snubbed in the category since the show’s debut in 2009. 

2. Netflix dominated with 19 overall nods for television — with an additional two for film — far outpacing HBO, in second place with 12. The most noteworthy aspect of Netflix’s newfound ascendancy is how widespread it is. The streaming giant scored four nominations in both female acting categories, with the eight nominations going to actresses from seven different shows. Netflix’s power even went so far as to boost some of its more under-the-radar series, including nods for women’s wrestling comedy “GLOW,” backwoods thriller “Ozark” and Jeff Daniels in “Godless.”

  • Politics
  • Celebrity
Cher and Kumail Nanjiani were among the celebs celebrating Doug Jones' election victory in Alabama.
Cher and Kumail Nanjiani were among the celebs celebrating Doug Jones' election victory in Alabama. (Fiona Hansen / Associated Press, left; Chris Pizzello / Associated Press, right)

“Does this mean I DON’T have to bury 2017 in the back yard?? Thank you, Alabama!!!!” 

That Twitter quip came from Chris Evans, the “Avengers” actor who was among the many blue-state celebrities celebrating Democrat Doug Jones’ victory Tuesday night over Republican Roy Moore in traditionally red state Alabama. The senatorial contest attracted national attention after Moore was accused of sexual misconduct involving teenage girls while in his 30s

Cher, always outspoken, didn’t get to use the “mean” material she had ready in case Jones lost. And she was too stunned to celebrate as she had planned. Instead, she tweeted, “I WAS GOING TO JUMP ON MY BED,DANCE AROUND,BUT I CANT MOVE… OH GOD HE WON.”