Jennifer Hudson and Beyonce won major honors at the NAACP Image Awards on Thursday night, where The Secret Life of Bees was named best picture.
But both Rihanna and Chris Brown stayed away from the most prestigious African-American awards show of the year, which took place less than a week after Brown, 19, was arrested for making criminal threats against Rihanna, 20.
Will Smith and Rosario Dawson took the top actor and actress awards for Seven Pounds, while Hudson took home trophies for outstanding new artist, best album and best collaboration.
Beyonce was named best female artist and Jamie Foxx was best male artist. Rap mogul Sean Combs was named best TV actor for his role in Raisin in the Sun. Slumdog Millionaire won the prize for outstanding independent motion picture.
Meanwhile, new details emerged on Wednesday about Brown’s alleged attack.
According to E! Online, Rihanna told police that her superstar boyfriend threatened to kill her and then choked her until she lost consciousness.
The glamorous young couple started fighting in Brown’s rented Lamborghini following a star-studded pre-Grammy party late Saturday, Feb. 7. According to OK magazine, the tiff was sparked when Brown received a text message from another woman after reportedly flirting with Paris Hilton at the party.
When Brown pulled over in a swanky Los Angeles neighborhood, Rihanna grabbed the car keys and threw them out the window, E! reported. After struggling to find the keys, Brown then wrapped his hands around his girlfriend’s neck and screamed, “I’m going to kill you.”
Rihanna reportedly told police she lost consciousness and woke up to find Brown gone. Police were called by a neighbor and took Rihanna to hospital in a squad car, where she was treated for a split lip, contusions on her forehead and bite marks on her arms.
Rihanna and Brown missed the Grammy Awards ceremony on Sunday of last week, at which both had been scheduled to perform.
Brown was arrested on charges of making criminal threats and is free on US$50,000 bail. Prosecutors have ordered police to continue their investigation into the incident, a sign that more serious charges are being weighed.
Peter Gabriel’s minute in the Oscars spotlight will lack one important element: Peter Gabriel. The Academy Award-nominated singer won’t perform at the Feb. 22 ceremony to protest an apparently revamped presentation of best original song contenders. Gabriel says in a video on his Web site that he objects to the songs being shortened to 65 seconds apiece and made part of a medley. Gabriel is nominated alongside Thomas Newman for Down to Earth from WALL-E.
“It’s a bit unfortunate because the songwriters, even though they’re a small part of the whole filmmaking process, we still work bloody hard and deserve a place in the ceremony as well,” the 59-year-old singer said.
In other film news, director Claudia Llosa’s The Milk of Sorrow, a movie that addresses the fears of women abused during Peru’s turbulent recent history, won the Berlin film festival’s top Golden Bear award.
The movie stars Magaly Solier as Fausta, a young woman suffering from a mysterious illness that is said to be transferred through the milk of mothers who were raped or physically abused during Peruvian authorities’ long war against leftist guerrillas. The Spanish-Peruvian co-production is Llosa’s second feature film.
The festival’s jury grand prize, which comes with a runner-up Silver Bear, was shared Saturday by two films. Argentine director Adrian Biniez’ debut feature Gigante tells the story of a supermarket security guard who falls in love with a cleaner, while German director Maren Ade’s Everyone Else follows a couple during a difficult vacation.
Iran’s Asghar Farhadi was chosen as best director for About Elly, which looks at thirtysomething Iranians’ attitudes to life.
Sotigui Kouyate was named best actor for his part in director Rachid Bouchareb’s London River. He plays a French Muslim desperately awaiting news of his son after the 2005 terrorist attacks in London.
Birgit Minichmayr won the best actress honor for her role as half of the awkward couple in Everyone Else.
Sept.13 to Sept.19 Fu Pei-mei (傅培梅) leafed through the telephone book and jotted down the address of every prestigious Taipei restaurant she could find. She then mailed out her request: “Seeking famous chefs to learn cooking from, high pay.” A star student from a wealthy family in Japanese-occupied Manchuria, Fu never bothered with cooking growing up. After fleeing her hometown at the age of 15 due to the Chinese Civil War, she eventually ended up in Taiwan, where she held a number of clerical jobs in Taipei. She enjoyed office work, especially since the company provided meals. This was the 1950s, however, and
Last week the Transitional Justice Commission proposed taking down the statue of Chang Kai-shek (蔣介石) at Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall in central Taipei. It depicted the move as part of a plan for excising markers of authoritarianism from the park. The most important task, the commission said, would be removing the hall’s “axis of worship,” the 6.3m-tall bronze statue of Chiang. Let us hope that if and when that obscenity is finally removed from the memorial, it is placed in the famed Cihu Memorial Sculpture Garden in Taoyuan’s Dasi District (大溪), where it can be properly mocked for all eternity. CHIANG,
The pandemic seems to be far from over, but the Post Pandemic Renaissance Theater (PPRT) is getting a head start by putting on its first event last Friday: the first round of the Taiwan Monologue Slam. Ten contestants delivered passionate and nuanced pieces on stage, and the audience voted with their phones for two winners who will advance to the local finals in November. There will be four finals in the next year, and each winner is automatically entered into the World Monologue Games regional finals, bypassing the preliminaries. The goal is to eventually get a Taiwan team to next summer’s games,
As dozens of pro-China lawmakers in Hong Kong’s legislature stood up in May to heap praise on a bill giving Beijing an effective veto over candidates in the city’s elections, only one legislator condemned the move. “Cronyism will be the primary prerequisite for this election,” said Cheng Chung-tai, by then the legislature’s sole directly elected opposition member, after the others had either resigned or been removed. “Corruption is bound to happen,” he told the assembly at the time. By late last month, Cheng had been stripped of his seat by the committee he had criticized, which ruled that he didn’t “genuinely uphold”