Los Angeles, May 11 (AP/UNB) -After listening to Britney Spears and both of her parents speak in an unusual court appearance, a judge has ordered an expert evaluation of the 37-year-old singer's situation.
The courtroom was cleared of members of the public and media Friday before Spears and her parents were brought in through a side door to discuss her conservatorship, which has put control of nearly all of her affairs in the hands of her father.
After the hearing, Judge Brenda Penny ordered a so-called 730 expert evaluation, a competence examination that is usually used for parents in divorce cases.
It's not clear whether the examination relates to Spears' relationship to her two sons or her parents' oversight of her.
Penny says in her order that both Spears and her parents agreed to the evaluation.
Britney Spears appeared in court at her own request to speak to a judge who oversees the conservatorship that has controlled her affairs for 11 years.
But Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Brenda Penny cleared the courtroom Friday of all members of the public and media before Spears appeared, so only those involved in the case know what she said.
When the doors re-opened, the courtroom was empty, and Penny has issued no ruling or statement on Spears' case.
Spears was brought in and out of the courthouse via backdoors and side entrances, and only a few determined fans and passers-by caught glimpses of her.
The 37-year-old singer doesn't normally attend hearings on her conservatorship, which gives her father, Jamie Spears, and various lawyers power over much of her life.
los Angeles, May 10 (AP/UNB) — A man charged with bludgeoning and strangling to death a Hollywood television director more than three decades ago was arrested Thursday in North Carolina after police said DNA and a confession linked him to the crime.
Edwin Hiatt was arrested in Burke County for the 1985 death of Barry Crane in Los Angeles. He has been charged with murder in California and will be returned there, Los Angeles police announced.
A housekeeper found Crane, 57, dead in his garage in his Studio City townhouse on July 5, 1985. He was naked and had been wrapped in bedsheets. He had been beaten with a large ceramic statue and strangled with a telephone cord, the News Herald of Morgantown, North Carolina reported, citing court documents.
Crane directed dozens of episodes of such hit 1970s and '80s TV shows as "The Incredible Hulk, "Hawaii 5-O" and "The Six Million Dollar Man." He also produced the show "The Magician" and was associate producer for "Mannix" and "Mission: Impossible."
He also was a world-class bridge player.
There was no word on a motive for the killing.
Crane's death went unsolved until police said they matched a fingerprint from Crane's stolen car to Hiatt last year. FBI investigators then obtained discarded cigarette butts and a coffee cup from the parking lot of the auto repair shop in Burke County where Hiatt worked.
DNA from some items matched that from cigarette butts found in Crane's stolen car, which was discovered shortly after his death on a mountain road, investigators said.
On March 8, homicide detectives went to North Carolina to interview Hiatt.
"During the interview, Hiatt admitted to killing Barry Crane," an LAPD statement said.
It wasn't known whether Hiatt had a lawyer.
Video from WSOC-TV showed Hiatt, 52, of Connelly Springs, being arrested. Hiatt, with long white hair and beard, held his handcuffed hands in front of him as he was taken to a car.
Hiatt told the station that he didn't remember Crane's name until it was told to him and had no memory of what occurred so long ago except for "bits and pieces that were brought back to me just by suggestion."
Asked if he could have killed Crane, he replied: "Anything's possible back then ... I was big into drugs."
"I just don't want to remember the past," he said, adding later: "It's a different life today."
Co-workers told the News Herald that Hiatt was a generous and peaceful man.
"He wouldn't hurt a flea," Dee Hall said.
"This is something that supposedly happened 30 years ago, the man's changed," Hall said. "Christ has come in and he's become a new creature. If God's forgiven you, you're forgiven. That's it."
Dhaka, May 9 (UNB) – The birth anniversary of ‘Biswakabi’ Rabindranath Tagore was celebrated on Wednesday across the country.
Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy inaugurated the nationwide celebration of the poet’s 158th birth anniversary with the tagline ‘Manobik Bishwa Binirmane Rabindranath’. Education Minister Dipu Moni inaugurated the celebration in the afternoon.
Cultural Affairs Minister KM Khalid chaired the programme while Bangla Academy President Dr Anisuzzaman, educationist and literary researcher Dr Sanjida Khatun, cultural ministry’s acting Secretary Dr Md Abu Hena Mostafa Kamal and Liberation War Museum Trustee Mofidul Haque shared their thoughts on the poet, his influences on Bangladesh and his literary creations.
Dipu Moni said Tagore was a lifelong friend of Bangladesh, even before the nation was born.
“He and our father of nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman dreamt the same dream about the nation which we refer to as ‘Sonar Bangla’, and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has been working towards achieving that,” she said.
Anisuzzaman said that Rabindranath was universal as a Bengali poet, and was one of the best humanitarians the world has ever seen.
It was announced that his 158th birth anniversary will be celebrated all over the country including places such as Shilaidaha, Shahzadpur, Patishar, Dakhsindihi and Pithabhog which are connected to the poet in many different ways.
Later, a cultural programme was organised by Shilpakala Academy with performances by prominent artists.
Renowned singer Rezwana Chowdhury Bonna, Lily Islam, Sajid Akbar, Mahadeb Ghosh performed Tagore songs and prominent dancer Shibli Azad-Shamim Ara Nipa along with their team presented dance performances.
New York, May 7 (AP/UNB) — Cardi B swept by in a stunning red quilted dress accentuated with a matching sequin headpiece, feathers and a train that took up much of the pink carpet, Jared Leto was accompanied by his own (fake) head and Katy Perry came as a candled chandelier at the crazy, campy Met Gala on Monday night.
Lady Gaga used the pink carpet as a runway and a changing station — earning giggles and claps from Anna Wintour — and Tiffany Haddish brought fried chicken in a plastic bag as many of the A-list guests worked the camp theme to the max. That included Zendaya, whose Cinderella Tommy Hilfiger dress went aglow with the wave of a magic wand. She dropped one of her see-through slippers on the way up for the cocktail hour.
Also princessy, of the saucy variety: Nicki Minaj in a short pink Prabal Gurung dress with yards and yards to her train, the last star to walk the carpet.
Perry, whose look was created by Jeremy Scott for Moschino, said she wanted to be "of the light," though she appeared concerned her heavy looking headpiece would topple as she smiled and walked precariously up the stairs at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, designer Diane von Furstenberg briefly in her orbit as Lady Liberty.
Perry, Bella Hadid dished, "had to be trucked here in a UPS truck." (She changed from chandelier to a fully loaded burger for dinner).
Emily Ratajkowski channeled Cher in a barely there silver dress and wing-like headpiece with hanging crystal strands. Tom Ford dressed Gemma Chan, who wore a custom headdress inspired by Elizabeth Taylor.
Lupita Nyong'o spent four hours getting ready in a multicolored, cool chick witch-like getup, her hair high and packed with golden Afro picks. Leto wore a red caftan with jewel loops, cradling his long-haired macabre version of himself, and Tracee Ellis Ross posed inside a gold picture frame attached to the front of her black dress. She noted it's detachable for the dinner hour, thank goodness.
Regina King, in a copper sequin Oscar de la Renta gown with a large shoulder embellishment, said she wasn't ready to go full camp, so she stuck to high lacquered hair.
"So, glamour is camp," the Oscar-winner said. "Maybe next year the comfort level will have expanded."
The 71st annual gala hit a high point early with Lady Gaga working the pink carpet to its fullest in long golden eyelashes and a huge fuchsia dress, peeling off layer after layer until she was down to a bra, panties and fishnet stockings.
Billy Porter went Egyptian-esque sun god in gold wings and a chain head piece by the design duo the Blonds, carried onto the carpet by shirtless men in gold pants as he lay on top of a black throne.
"Camp is the art of being extra and I've always been extra," he laughed. "I'm from the theater so it's easy for me."
Brandon Maxwell, who created Gaga's reveal, helped her navigate the stairs as she posed with several helpers. Maxwell undressed her further, revealing a black strapless asymmetrical ballgown underneath with a huge side bustle. Then she undressed again to show off a pink dress reminiscent of Marilyn Monroe in "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes," walking up and down the carpet.
But she wasn't done. Moments later, she was down to a glittering bra and panties set, with huge platform shoes.
Gaga is a hard act to follow but Serena Williams, one of her co-hosts, did her best in a neon yellow flowing custom Versace gown adorned with leaves, Nike sneakers on her feet. She was one of several athletes to attend, including Cam Newton, Dwyane Wade with wife Gabrielle Union, and Tom Brady with Gisele Bundchen on his arm.
Colin Kaepernick also made an appearance wearing Pyer Moss.
This year's gala theme, "Camp: Notes on Fashion," was inspired by a seminal 1964 essay by Susan Sontag in which she describes the phenomenon as something that shan't be talked about: "To talk about Camp is therefore to betray it."
The theme is chosen for the Costume Institute's spring exhibition and gala guests are encouraged to take it on.
Karlie Kloss wore a custom gold Dapper Dan-Gucci cocktail dress; singer Anderson .Paak, wearing Gucci, was fanboyed on the carpet by Ferragamo-dressed Taron Egerton, who was asked what his upcoming film character, Elton John, would think of the night's vibe: "He kind of invented it, right?"
Haddish, in a black-and-silver tiger stripe "Pimperella" Michael Kors pantsuit with wide bells at the ankles, a glitzy hat on her head, said she vowed not to go snackless this year, hence the fried chicken.
"I bring my own snacks because last year I was starving and I learned my lesson," she said. Of the theme, she declared: "Camping means no panties!" She noted that during her broke days, "I used to buy knock-off Michael Kors everything. Now here I am several years later wearing Michael Kors, for me, designed for me."
Harry Styles offered a tad of see-through via his custom Gucci organza shirt with black lace, donning a single bee earing and heeled booties. Kacey Musgraves, in custom Moschino, was a proper pink Barbie with long platinum hair, while Gigi Hadid walked with the designer of her look, Kors, offering a silver cat woman style in a swirl-pattern jumpsuit, long coat and helmet-like hat, with long spiked white eyelashes.
Awkwafina breezed through in trophy gold, accompanied by designer Joseph Altuzarra, while others in garish greens, animal prints and metallics soaked up the theme. Some played it safe in more traditional carpet looks, like Hailey Bieber in a lovely, tight pink dress with a daring — but not terribly campy — low back.
Also not particularly camp, and not particularly high-fashion, for that matter: Gwyneth Paltrow in a loose ruffle-neck pale yellow gown by Chloe.
Naomi Campbell wore pink with a long, feathered cape, lace leggings and low barely-there neckline. And Joan Collins, perhaps the queen of camp, posed with her in a white puffy gown reminiscent of Scarlet O'Hara.
Kim Kardashian West was dewy in tight, tight, tight couture Thierry Mugler, husband Kanye West stone-faced silent at her side in a Dickey's zip jacket. Sister Kylie Jenner went for purple from her loose dyed hair to her big feather-muff sleeves, giving partner Travis Scott a peck on the lips as she walked.
Janelle Monae, always evocative on the carpet, balanced multiple hats piled high on her head wearing a pink and black gown with a black-and-white eye covering her breast on one side, courtesy of designer Christian Siriano.
Wintour, who masterminds the gala every year, wore a light pink cape with loose ostrich feathers over a matching gown adorned in a flower sequin design. She told waiting reporters this year's theme is anything goes.
"I hope they have a lot of fun," she said of her A-list guests. "The more crazy the better."
New York, May 4 (AP/UNB) — When Cheslie Kryst won the Miss USA crown, it marked more than a personal triumph: It meant that for the first time, three black women are the reigning Miss USA, Miss Teen USA and Miss America.
The North Carolina lawyer completed the historic triple Thursday with pageant winners 2019 Miss America Nia Franklin and recently crowned 2019 Miss Teen USA Kaliegh Garris.
"The three young women who have focused their energy on demonstrating how standards of black beauty speak for American standards of beauty are to be commended," said Thomas DeFrantz, a professor in the Department of African and African American Studies at Duke University.
"These three standard-bearers prove that black beauty is at the heart of a 21st century American ideal," he added.
Franklin, from New York, won her title in September in Atlantic City, New Jersey, becoming the first woman also to win the Miss America crown without having to don a swimsuit. Garris, from New Haven, Connecticut, won her crown in April, and hopes to become a trauma nurse.
Kryst, a former Division I athlete and attorney at Poyner Spruill LLP in Charlotte, North Carolina, won her crown in Reno, Nevada. She holds an MBA from Wake Forest University.
"Mine is the first generation to have that forward-looking mindset that has inclusivity, diversity, strength and empowered women. I'm looking forward to continued progress in my generation," said Kryst, after accepting her crown. She now advances to the Miss Universe competition.
The oldest of the three is the Miss America pageant, which began in 1921 but women of color were barred from participating until the 1940s by a rule that said contestants must be of "the white race." Frustration led to the creation of Miss Black America contest.
In 1970, Cheryl Browne became the first black woman to participate in the Miss America pageant. Since then, more than a dozen black women have been named either Miss America or Miss USA, including actress Vanessa Williams, the first-ever black Miss America in 1983.
The Miss USA contest was created in 1952 and crowned the first African American contestant — Carole Anne-Marie Gist — in 1990. A year later, Janel Bishop won the Miss Teen USA title, becoming the first African American winner.