Monday, June 24, 2013

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Google News Entertainment Test post content

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Andrew Symonds 'wins' Celebrity Splash

Former Australian cricketer Andrew Symonds performed a dive any soccer player would be proud of to win the the reality series Celebrity Splash.

He is also likely to be the only winner of Celebrity Splash as the show's grand final drew a paltry 650,000 viewers to rank 15th on the night, one spot below Ten News at Five.

The show launched on April 29 to a respectable audience of 1.3 million, backing that up with a respectable 1 million viewers the following night. It sank to 821,000 viewers for the first semi-final, which saw the second semi-final dumped from the schedule with the episode merged with last night's final which was also moved to a lower profile timeslot.

Symonds accomplished a challenging half twist off the 10m platform to win the Seven Network series from Tamsyn Lewis, Koby Abberton and Derek Boyer on Thursday night.

"It's rewarding to win because it was quite challenging and difficult at times, especially mentally," Symonds said after taking out the title.

"This makes all the effort and all the pain worthwhile."

Boyer, who was eliminated in the first round, returned to replace veteran TV star Denise Drysdale in the semi-final.

It was the second time Boyer was called in as a replacement after initially joining the series to fill in for the injured Laura Csortan.

The former Gladiator star and Abberton advanced to the grand final after defeating model Nick Bracks and Adam Richard in the semi final.

Besides the celebrities showing off their diving skills, judges and Olympic champions Greg Louganis and Matthew Mitcham wound back the clock.

The pair performed their first ever dive together - a flying front one-and-a-half somersault pike.

For any keen-eyed (and long suffering) viewers who spotted a rogue individual leaping into the pool in the background of the show's final shot as host Larry Emdur bid Australia farewell. Seven have confirmed it was Pauly Fenech, a non-finalist, who nonetheless sat pool-side for the duration, unable to resist the urge to take a final dive.


Friday, April 12, 2013

Twitter Acquires Music Service We Are Hunted

Twitter confirmed Thursday it had acquired We Are Hunted, a San Francisco-based music startup that tracks the most popular songs across the Internet and social media.

"While we are shutting down, we will continue to create services that will delight you, as part of the Twitter team," We Are Hunted wrote on its website. "There's no question that Twitter and music go well together. Artists turn to Twitter first to connect with fans, and people share and discover new songs and albums every day. We can't wait to share what we've been working on at Twitter."

The acquisition announcement follows news in March that Twitter plans to release its own music app. At the time, CNet reported that the micro-blogging social network was about to release an application dubbed Twitter Music designed to help people find new music.

Launched in Brisbane, Australia in 2009, We Are Hunted is a music discovery service that scours the Web to find trending songs and artists (the company recently relocated to California). Its dynamic playlists, or charts that can be streamed in sequence, are a reflection of what people are talking about and streaming online. The service skews toward underground music -- the default chart is the Emerging Chart -- but We Are Hunted also has a Mainstream chart that is usually filled with popular songs from a variety of genres.

It appears the We Are Hunted brand will be retired and Twitter will launch a standalone app using the acquired technology. A post at explains that the website is being shut down and all user accounts will be deleted. All that's left of the website is an announcement of the acquisition and a field where users can enter their email address or user name to retrieve songs they have favorited on the service. No information was given on the future of the popular We Are Hunted app for Spotify (it was still operational Thursday evening).

Evidence of the existence of an app came Thursday in two tweets  by Ryan Seacrest. One of the tweets said the app "shows what artists are trending, also has up and coming artists." The app could be released on iOS by the end of March, according to CNET.

Twitter's foray into music has the potential to be one of the world's most popular music apps and destinations for music discovery. The service passed the 200 million active user mark in December and has over 500 million registered users worldwide. Music identification apps Shazam and SoundHound have more than 300 million and 130 million registered users, respectively.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart living together

Actors Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart are reportedly living together again.

Stewart moved into her own home in the Los Feliz area of Los Angeles after the couple split last year, and even though they later reconciled, they remained in separate houses until he returned from filming in Australia this week.

"Rob is living at Stewart's. He considers it his home, Stewart's there, their dogs are there and most of his stuff is there. He considers Stewarts' home, his home too. I guess his home is where is heart is. And right from the get go Kristen made it clear that it was also his home," quoted a source as saying.

Their friends believe the enforced separation while Pattinson was working on The Rover in Australia was a good thing as it has brought them closer.

"Again they have been inseparable since Pattinson's gotten back. I think the distance did them good. He isn't showing any signs of needing any sort of space from her, that's for sure," the source added.

"Stewart is confident that her relationship With Pattinson is stronger than ever and has no problem whatsoever with Pattinson wanting to take things slow. They have been together pretty much non-stop since he's been back. He has just only arrived, but the first person he wanted to see and spend time with is Stewart," the source added.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Hacked off the system: Logie votes audit comes after Underground actor's joke

A fringe actor's bid to influence the Logies Award voting may have had the desired effect after organisers started a random audit.

TV Week and market research company Roy Morgan have been conducting the voting and for the Logies nominees which ended on February 13.

During the voting period Jordan Raskopoulos, who had a supporting role in Underground: The Julian Assange Story on Network Ten, held the Logies up to ridicule on an online forum.
Jordan Raskopoulos.

Raskopoulos played Julian Assange's hacker buddy Trax and also appeared in the 2008 series Stupid Stupid Man.

In attempting to influence the online voting for the Logies to claim Most Popular Actor, Raskopoulos said he would reward those who voted for him by letting them write lines of his acceptance speech.

However, an audit is underway of the voting and emails are believed to have been sent to selected individuals on Friday asking them to verify their vote and personal details.

They have until today to respond.

A TV Week spokeswoman says if there are any discrepancies during the collation of votes, an audit is conducted.

The magazine would not confirm if voting for Raskopoulos had set off alarm bells.

"The data is collated by Roy Morgan, audited by Ernst & Young, and all votes are scrutinised," the spokeswoman said.

"Where there is uncertainty about the legitimacy of a vote, numerous methods are employed to determine the vote's validity, and email is amongst them.

"If Roy Morgan haven't received a response by the deadline, other methods are used to scrutinise the legitimacy of the vote.

"Unfortunately, Roy Morgan can't share the verification methods with you, for privacy reasons."

Immediately after Raskopoulos made his bid to win online votes, Ten sought to distance itself from the fringe actor and said it "in no way endorses Jordan's campaign or comments".

In the online forum Raskopoulos included a draft of his speech, where he quoted from Lord of the Rings and Monty Python, and also promised to "lick Richard Wilkins" if the opportunity arises.


Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Entertainment attorney Mike Novak dies at 57

Mike Novak, one of Detroit's top entertainment attorneys, died Sunday of a heart attack at his Grosse Pointe Shores home. He was 57.

Novak was Bob Seger's attorney for decades, and the singer was hit hard by the loss.

"I never knew a better guy," Seger said Monday, "and I know a lot of people. Just a truly good, good guy. He was always positive, my lawyer forever, and one of my best friends. He should have had a lot more years. Life isn't fair."

Novak was a clerk for Seger's attorney Patrick Freydl in the 1980s. When Freydl moved to California, Novak started working directly with Seger and his manager Punch Andrews.

"He's always been like a little brother to me. I mean, the guy was in our office every other day," Seger said. "He was our consigliere. We asked him about everything."

Novak also represented many radio clients as an attorney/agent, including WRIF-FM's morning team Drew and Mike.

The lifelong Detroiter attended Our Lady Queen of Heaven school in Detroit and was president of the class of 1973 at Detroit's Osborn High School. He received a bachelor's degree in film studies from New York University and, in 1980, earned his law degree from Wayne State University.

Film publicist Ken Droz met Novak when he was the attorney for Detroit promoter Brass Ring Productions in the 1980s. Droz remembered him as "a really fine attorney; he would never try to poach a client. Very high integrity."

"He was a true mensch," Droz said. "Always offering to help someone if he could, be it a musician, filmmaker, journalist, artist, friend or whatever."

In the 1970s, before he went to law school, Novak played drums in several blues bands, including the Progressive Blues Band, alongside former Detroit News reporter Lowell Cauffiel. Cauffiel recalled Novak's generosity.

"He never sent a bill to me when I was struggling," said Cauffiel, a writer/producer in Los Angeles. "My son Johnny got an offer for a two-record deal for his band, and Mike handled it without charge. He would just say, 'Catch me later, when you hit the big time.'"

For many of his clients, there would never be a big time, but Novak worked on their behalf anyway.

The attorney had many enthusiasms, including golf. "I loved playing golf with him," Seger said. "He turned me on to every course I play! The one I play down in Florida, he told me about that one. He's so interwoven into my whole life."

Along with his independent practice, Novak was counsel with the Troy firm Giarmarco, Mullins & Horton P.C.

He is survived by his wife, Loretta Ames, a sister and two brothers.

Visitation will be 2-9 p.m. Thursday at Verheyden Funeral Home, 16300 Mack Ave., Grosse Pointe Park.

On Friday, visitation will begin at 9:30 a.m. and a funeral mass will follow at 10:30 a.m. at St. Paul's on the Lake Catholic Church, 157 Lakeshore Drive, Grosse Pointe Farms.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

'I'm ready': Jackman jokes about becoming Bond

Hugh Jackman is ready to don a tux and sip a martini with the Aussie screen star joking that he is willing to wait for his chance to play famous fictitious British spy James Bond.

Jackman, 44, said he was too busy playing Wolverine in the X-Men series in 2006 when he was approached to take on the 007 part.
The good thing about Daniel [Craig] is he's, what, 62 now, isn't he? He's falling apart at the seams. 
Instead Briton Daniel Craig, 44, got the gun and has now made three Bond films - Casino Royale (2006), Quantum of Solace (2008) and Skyfall (2012).

"At the time it was wrong for me, but when I saw Daniel in the movie I thought maybe I should have been more interested, because it was great," Jackman told British newspaper The Sun.
"But I am great mates with Daniel. When he was in Australia we caught up and, you know, no one could have played Bond better."

But the Sydneysider has not given up on the chance to serve Her Majesty's secret service and took a swipe at his mate's unflattering physique.

"I will just wait," he quipped. "The good thing about Daniel is he's, what, 62 now, isn't he? He's falling apart at the seams. So I just keep telling him, 'I'm ready, whenever you want to let him (Bond) go, I'm ready.'
"The good thing is I have also got a British passport."