I'm Davan Maharaj, editor of the Los Angeles Times. Here are some story lines I don't want you to miss today.
The Cabbie and His Captor, Together Again
Last month, three men escaped from an Orange County jail, kidnapped a cabdriver and held him captive for a week. But one of the fugitives helped save the driver's life, and now they have formed an unexpected friendship. "My son, as long as I am still here, I will rescue you like you rescued me," the cabbie told prisoner Bac Duong during a visit to jail. Read on to see why he's buying Duong books, giving him money and vowing to bring his fiancée to see him.
Five Stages of the GOP Elite's Grief
As we told you yesterday, many Republican leaders see Marco Rubio as their best hope to defeat Donald Trump. Except the billionaire keeps "winning, winning, winning," as he said in Las Vegas. Like it or not, the GOP elite is having to get used to the idea of a Trump candidacy. Here's their strategy for possible acceptance.
Something Rotten in San Francisco?
San Francisco's seen a lot lately. An FBI investigation into corruption and racketeering several years ago. The sentencing of former state Sen. Leland Yee to five years in prison Wednesday. And the city's top prosecutor filing bribery and money-laundering charges against three former fundraisers for Mayor Ed Lee. Here's a look at what's rumbling through the City by the Bay.
An Oscar Season Like No Other
Sunday is Hollywood's biggest night of the year, but the talk of the town mostly hasn't been about which film will win best picture or whether Leonardo DiCaprio can finally walk away with a little gold man. On the Oscar campaign trail, self-congratulation has taken a back seat to self-examination over questions of race and discrimination. Will it take the glitz off the ceremony?
The Nat Turner Story Revisited
Consider the tale of Nat Turner, a slave who led an uprising in 1831 against white landowners in Virginia. When William Styron, a white novelist, wrote about him 50 years ago, the book won a Pulitzer but became the target of black intellectuals. A movie version of it was scuttled. Now, Turner's tale is back in the new film "The Birth of a Nation" from black filmmaker Nate Parker, to widespread acclaim. It also revives the question: Who has the moral authority to speak about slavery?
Those Who Paved the Way
Meet the L.A. resident who in 1918 became the first known African American in the West to hold statewide office. The black workers who built the canals of Venice but were not allowed to live in the beach town. The Pan-African studies professor at Cal State L.A. who is a force behind the Black Lives Matter movement. As Black History Month winds down, here's a look at some civil rights pioneers who have made a difference in Southern California.
-- How difficult should it be to fire a teacher?
-- An L.A. councilman blocks a DWP move, even as he advocates less political meddling at the utility.
-- Prosecutors decline to charge a man held in the killing of 1-year-old Autumn Johnson.
-- Huntington Park looks to bring shoppers back to Pacific Boulevard.
-- While Hillary Clinton talks about race, Bernie Sanders turns elsewhere to reach minority voters.
-- The prospect of a Trump-Rubio rumble and three other things to watch for in the Republican debate.
-- Peru has copper. China wants it. And now Beto Chahuayllo is dead.
-- A look at what's at stake in Iran's elections.
-- The earliest-known medieval Muslim graves are discovered in France.
HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS
-- Winning an Oscar is priceless, but selling it gets you exactly $10.
-- We asked five actors what it's like to be a stand-in for the stars at Oscars rehearsals.
-- Do the hustle? Take a sneak peek at the Academy Awards stage's '70s glam concept.
-- Video: Caviar, avocados and gold dust go into Wolfgang Puck's menu for the Oscars Governors Ball.
-- The franchise that probably won't be: A weak debut is expected for the $140-million "Gods of Egypt."
-- TV review: "Fuller House" is a group hug of a show, full of inside jokes and cuteness.
-- At odds with Netflix, many theaters refuse to screen the sequel to "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon."
-- An appeals court rules that businesses can't make workers share tips.
-- Whether Apple or the FBI is winning the PR war depends on which poll you're looking at.
-- Chinese tech execs side with Apple ... or maybe just against the FBI.
-- How is everyone liking, loving or wowing the new Facebook reactions?
-- The college basketball difference: The game ball can change from game to game.
-- The Rams' immediate to-do list includes getting players settled in L.A.
WHAT OUR EDITORS ARE READING
-- The Daily Pennsylvanian explains what happened with that Marco Rubio blog post.
-- A case of art forgery exposed because of cat hair. (Science)
-- Sorry, but ... do the British say sorry a lot? (BBC)
ONLY IN L.A.
It was a pretty much a given that L.A's bid to bring back the Olympics in 2024 would have a star-studded video and promises of good weather. Now, L.A. 2024 is getting its own Snapchat geofilter from the Venice-based company. How does it work? Post photos or video from select neighborhoods where Olympic events would take place, and you affix an L.A. 2024 "angel" logo to them. We've seen dogsnaps and dadsnaps, so why not Olysnaps?