News Briefs TV, movie and music news

'Midnight Rider' filmmakers surrender to Georgia police

Back in February, camera assistant Sarah Jones died on the set of Midnight Rider. Jones, who was 27 at the time, was struck by a train while on the set of the Gregg Allman biopic. Georgia’s Wayne County Police Department confirmed to EW that the film’s director (Randall Miller) and producer (Miller’s wife Jody Savin) turned themselves in on Sunday.

The couple, along with executive producer Jay Sedrish, were charged with involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespass in a Georgia county court on July 3. Both Miller and Savin were released on bail.

Conor Oberst rape accuser recants story

More than half a year after accusing Bright Eyes frontman Conor Oberst of raping her after a 2003 concert when she was 16 years old, North Carolina resident Joanie Faircloth has recanted her allegation.

She initially made the claim in the comments section of an xoJane post about an anonymous woman’s experience being raped by her rock-star boyfriend, writing that Oberst “took advantage of my teenage crush on him,” and later expanded on the story in a Tumblr that, along with the xoJane comments, has since been deleted.

In a statement published by Spin, Faircloth writes, in part, “The statements I made and repeated online and elsewhere over the past six months accusing Conor Oberst of raping me are 100% false. I made up those lies about him to get attention while I was going through a difficult period in my life and trying to cope with my son’s illness.”

Back in February, Oberst sued Faircloth for defamation, asking the court for $1.2 million in damages. Faircloth hadn’t responded to the suit, which Oberst asked a judge to rule in his favor last week, before approaching them to retract her claim. Oberst and his camp have yet to announce whether or not they’ll continue to pursue their case.

Germany wins World Cup, defeats Argentina 1-0

After a brutal World Cup final which saw flying kneecaps of fury and tears of blood, Germany defeated Argentina to win the World Cup 1-0. It was an exciting end to a tournament that saw renewed interest in the game here in the states: The US-Portugal game was the most-watched soccer game in American history, which would make it one of the least-watched soccer games in any other country’s history, but still. It’s an exciting day for the German team–and for their beloved coach, German Sandy Cohen.

JWoww welcomes baby girl

Jenni “JWoww” Farley–who rose to pop culture prominence as the angry conscience at the center of Jersey Shore–has given birth to a daughter, Meilani Alexandra. Her fiancé/costar Roger Mathews tweeted: “She is here! Meilani Alexandra Mathews. 7lbs 13 ounces. Words can’t describe what looking into your child’s eyes can do to you. Im Humbled.” A rep for JWoww told E Online, “Jenni and Roger are so excited to welcome the newest guidette…Meilani is already looking to trade her baby bottle for barbells.”

Conductor Lorin Maazel dead at 84

Lorin Maazel, an internationally known conductor and musician, died Sunday of complications from pneumonia at his Virginia home, where he was preparing for the annual Castleton Festival. He was 84.

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Tracy Morgan released from rehabilitation center

30 Rock star Tracy Morgan was released today from a rehabilitation center to finish his physical recovery at home, according to Reuters. His publicist Lewis Kay confirmed this, releasing a statement saying that “Tracy has been released from the rehabilitation center and will continue his recovery efforts at home with an aggressive outpatient program.  He asked me to pass along his sincerest gratitude to everyone who has helped him get to this point. He would also appreciate some privacy during this crucial point in his recovery.” Morgan was critically injured in a car crash near Cranbury, N.J., on June 7 when a Walmart truck hit the rear of a Mercedes limo bus carrying the comedian. Morgan sustained multiple injuries, including a broken leg, while another comedian, James McNair, was killed in the incident. In July, the driver of the Walmart truck, Kevin Roper, pleaded not guilty to criminal charges that include vehicular homicide and assault by auto. On Thursday, lawyers acting for Morgan sued Walmart, according to CNN.

Legendary jazz bassist Charlie Haden dies at 76

Charlie Haden, whom Time magazine hailed as “one of the most restless, gifted, and intrepid players in all of jazz,” died Friday morning in Los Angeles after a long illness. A rep from ECM Records confirmed the news. He was 76.

A 16-time Grammy nominee and a founding member of the revolutionary Ornette Coleman Quartet, Haden’s career spanned over 50 years and vastly changed the ways that the bass was used in jazz. The Iowa native also founded the politically charged ensemble the Liberation Music Orchestra, a group whose pieces reflected his views on the Spanish Civil War and the Vietnam War, among other political and military conflicts. Considered one of the founding fathers of free jazz, Haden also played alongside Keith Jarrett in the ’60s and ’70s.

According to the statement from ECM, those by Haden’s side at the time of his death included Ruth Cameron, his wife of 30 years, and his children Josh Haden, Tanya Haden, Rachel Haden, and Petra Haden.

Harry Potter actor David Legeno found dead in Death Valley

British actor David Legeno, who appeared as werewolf Fenrir Greyback in the Harry Potter films, was found dead on Sunday, California police said today.

Hikers found Legeno’s body in Death Valley, California, and a helicopter was used to transport him from the area. It appears that Legeno died of heat-related issues, but the Inyo County Coroner will determine the cause of death, the Inyo County Sheriff’s office said in a statement.

The London-born actor was also a boxer and martial arts expert. In addition to the Harry Potter films, Legeno appeared in Snow White and the HuntsmanSnatchCenturion, Batman Begins, and several other films.

Boyfriend of 'Glee' star Becca Tobin found dead in hotel room

Matt Bendik, boyfriend of Glee‘s Becca Tobin, has died.

People reports that Bendik’s body was found Thursday afternoon in his Philadelphia hotel room. The 35-year-old worked in nightlife as a managing partner of AV and Voyeur/DBA nightclubs in Los Angeles. He was also the director of nightlife for Addiction night club at The Modern Honolulu.

According to TMZ, Bendik was on a business trip with Tobin at the time of his death.

Man charged with assaulting author Colum McCann

New Haven police have arrested Michael Mott, 34, of Oxford, Connecticut, for assaulting award-winning novelist Colum McCann, the Associated Press reports. Mott turned himself into the police on Monday evening and confessed to assaulting the National Book Award winner outside of the Study Hotel on June 28.

The Let the Great World Spin author was attending a conference at the The Study Hotel in New Haven. According to the New Haven Registerwitnesses reported that McCann tried to help a woman, Mott’s wife, who was having an argument with Mott after the hotel staff told the couple that their credit card was declined. McCann offered Mott’s wife some assistance, but she declined, and McCann exited the hotel, said the police.

Mott then followed McCann outside and attacked him, according to police. Following the assault, McCann was treated for significant but not life-threatening facial injuries. The New Haven police charged Mott with assault and with family violence breach of peace for the dispute that occurred in the hotel lobby.

 

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