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‘Ant-Man’ inches past ‘Pixels’ to take first place spot

This photo provided by Disney shows Paul Rudd as Scott Lang/Ant-Man in a scene from Marvel's "Ant-Man." (Zade Rosenthal/Disney/Marvel via AP)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Ant-Man” crept past new opener “Pixels” to claim the top spot at the box office this weekend by an ant-sized margin. The Disney and Marvel superhero pic brought in $24.8 million over the weekend, bringing its domestic total to $106.1 million according to Rentrak estimates Sunday. “Pixels,” meanwhile, just barely missed first place… Continue reading →

Am/Fm to open Live After Five in fall

Photo provided by Facebook-- Am/Fm

The Gonzales cover band Am/Fm will open the Live After Five fall concert series Friday, Sept. 4, at North Boulevard Town Square. The series, hosted by the Downtown Business Association, offers free concerts from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. each Friday on the square’s Crest stage. The rest of the fall lineup includes: Continue reading →

Angela Hill leaving WWL Radio; 'Scoot' to take over afternoon show

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--Former WWL-TV anchor Angela Hill speaks in WWL Radio host Garland Robinette's studio after it was reveled that she will soon have a show on the radio network at WWL Radio studios in New Orleans, La. Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013. Robinette and Hill also worked together at WWL-TV and were married for 9 years.

. Angela Hill, who retired in 2013 as a news anchorwoman at WWL-TV, is leaving WWL Radio, the station announced Friday afternoon. 'Scoot' will replace Hill in the 1-4 p.m. weekday time slot. “It’s been an amazing experience, one I will always cherish, but it’s time to do other things," Hill said in a news… Continue reading →

Review: Boxing drama ‘Southpaw’ punches new life into familiar scenario

Associated Press photo by Scott Garfield/The Weinstein Co. -- Jake Gyllenhaal plays Billy Hope in 'Southpaw,' which releases Friday.

Boxing drama “Southpaw” doesn’t spare the pain. Physical pain, frequent and stinging, is all over the screen, especially on actor Jake Gyllenhaal’s bloody face. Emotional pain shows up, too, in Gyllenhaal’s expression and those of the supporting characters. In “Southpaw,” Gyllenhaal’s Billy “The Great” Hope falls from the top of the… Continue reading →

Review: Disappointing ‘Pixels’ falls apart before it begins

Photo provided by Sony Pictures -- Josh Gad as Ludlow is chased by Pac-Man in Columbia Pictures' 'Pixels,' opening in theaters Friday.

The most believable element in “Pixels” is that alien video-game creatures could attack our planet. The core concept is clever — space aliens misunderstand a recording of old video games as a declaration of war, and send digital monsters based on those games to Earth as their army. But its execution in the hands of director-producer… Continue reading →

Review: ‘Towns’ is modest, middle-of-the-road teen drama

This photo provided by Twentieth Century Fox shows, Cara Delevingne, right, as Margo, and Nat Wolff as Quentin, in a scene from the film, "Paper Towns." (Michael Tackett/Twentieth Century Fox via AP)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Based on an earlier teen fave novel by “The Fault in Our Stars” author John Green, “Paper Towns” is a mild coming-of-ager about dawning awareness and life lessons learned among a small group of Florida high school seniors. Part mystery story, part road movie and part pre-prom graduation romp, the film is most interesting… Continue reading →

Italian Heritage Festa returns to Baton Rouge; Association wants to hit 3,000 mark at event

Photo provided by the Greater Baton Rouge American Italian Association -- The New Orleans Express Band returns to the festa, with performances at 11:15 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

They’re going regional. After a challenge three years ago from Mayor Kip Holden, the Greater Baton Rouge American Italian Association is working to expand its annual Italian Heritage Festa beyond the community. “He (Holden) said, ‘We would like this to be bigger than Baton Rouge,’” festa co-chairman Frank Arrigo says. To that end, more than… Continue reading →

Lena Prima brings ‘Pennies from Heaven’ to Baton rouge

Photo provided by LENA PRIMA --- A 5-year-old Lena Prima makes her singing debut with dad Louis Prima at the Sands Hotel in Las Vegas. She sang 'Santa Claus is Coming to Town.'

It’ll be raining “Pennies from Heaven” at the Belle of Baton Rouge Atrium Saturday night as Lena Prima makes her Baton Rouge debut. Prima will perform for the Greater Baton Rouge American Italian Association’s Italian Heritage Festa’s “An Evening in Concert” at 6:30 p.m. “Pennies” is her favorite song among those made popular by her late… Continue reading →

UpStage Theater reopens Christine Houston's 'I Love You Nana'

Photo provided by Maddgame Entertainment -- From left,, Ashley Downing, Nikki Nadkarni and Will Merrill rehearse a scene from UpStage Theatre's 2015 summer comedy, 'I Love You Nana,' which opens Friday.

Everyone will love Nana in the end, maybe even Doris. But that’s a tall order, considering Doris’ ingrained disdain for the elderly. It’s not unfounded — she has good reason for how she feels. Doris was raised by an elderly aunt who mistreated her, so any preconceptions about her husband’s grandmother are understandable. Then again, not… Continue reading →

Baton Rouge area calendar for July 24-30, 2015

Advocate staff photo by HEATHER MCCLELLAND --  Scott Bell looks over art hanging at Forum 35's annual Art Melt last year at the Capitol Park Museum. This year's Art Melt is Saturday starting at 5 p.m.

LIVE AFTER FIVE REVEAL WATCH PARTY: 5 p.m., Draft House Bar, 421 Third St. Announcement of fall music lineup, along with staycation give-a-ways, including VIP bracelets for the concerts, gift baskets and gift cards. The reveal video also will air on WAFB. ARTISTS’ OPENING RECEPTION: 6 p.m.-9 p.m., FW Gallery, 8501 Highland Road.Continue reading →

New Orleans area calendar for July 24-30, 2015

Photo by KENNY MARTINEZ -- Students in the NORDC/NOBA Center for Dance Summer Intensive Dance Program perform their finale concert in 2014. This year's closing concert is at 7 p.m. Saturday at  NOCCA’s Freda Lupin Memorial Hall, New Orleans.

ARTIST PERSPECTIVE WITH WILLIE BIRCH- “INSTALLATION AS METAPHOR”: 5 p.m.-9 p.m., Stern Auditorium, New Orleans Museum of Art, 1 Diboll Circle, New Orleans. Birch’s work can be found in the exhibition “Ten Years Gone.” “PETER PAN”: 7:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts,… Continue reading →

Outlying areas calendar for July 24-30, 2015

Photo provided by Doc Voorhies -- From left, Jessica Babineaux is Tracy Turnblad, Thomas Luke plays Link Larkin and Adele Hebert portrays Amber Von Tussle in Iberia Performing Arts League's 'Hairspray,' which continues this week in New Iberia.

FRIDAY NIGHT COOKIE JAR FISHING TOURNAMENT: 7 p.m.-midnight, La. Express Boat Dock, Jarreau. Entry fees apply to fish the tournament and fishermen must qualify to fish the final “classic tournament.” $30. (225) 293-340. HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON: 3 p.m., Louisiana Children’s Discovery Center, 113 N. Cypress St., Hammond. Summer blockbusters month… Continue reading →

Polite Company

Advocate photo by ROBIN MILLER -- Aileen Hendricks, left, as Detective Daisy Doright grills suspects about the murder of Penelope Polite, played by Christina Normand on the bench, in the Louisiana Voices of Women's production of "Murder at the Polite Ladies Society."  The society ladies are, from left, Brenda Cedars as Victoria Virtue, Faydra Thomas as Terry Tippler, Julie Richard as Mary Merry, Judith Sinclair as Justine Justice and Ella McCrary as Barbara Babbles.

Murder and money are always a good recipe for a dinner theater. Now add a dash of New York Detective Daisy Doright, and the table is set for “Murder at the Polite Ladies Society.” The Louisiana Voices of Women Theatre Company is premiering this play written by its founder and president, Aileen Hendricks, on… Continue reading →

‘Frozen’ singer Idina Menzel will open up to audience at Saenger in New Orleans

Photo by ROBIN WONG -- Idina Menzel

Before “Frozen,” Idina Menzel was merely a Tony-winning Broadway star. After “Frozen,” the singer-actress found herself engulfed in the Disney animated musical’s global blizzard of popularity. “Frozen” is the highest-grossing animated movie in history. Menzel sings and speaks the role of Princess Elsa, the “Frozen” character who performs the film’s Oscar-winning hit, “Let… Continue reading →

Tim Rushlow leaves Little Texas behind for a more intimate solo adventure

Photo provided by Vanessa Davis –- Tim Rushlow

In the 1990s, Little Texas, featuring singer Tim Rushlow, released more than a dozen country hits, including “God Blessed Texas,” “Amy’s Back in Austin,” “What Might Have Been” and “My Love.” Rushlow launched a solo career after Little Texas’ breakup. More recently, he’s been hosting “Rushlow in the Round.” The intimate, singer and… Continue reading →

’Ant-Man’ debuts with $58M; ‘Trainwreck’ opens with $30.2M

Photo by Zade Rosenthal – Paul Rudd surfaces as the title character in 'Ant-Man.’ The movie topped the box office in its opening weekend, earning $57.2 million.

NEW YORK (AP) — Marvel’s “Ant-Man” punched above its weight at the weekend box office, debuting with an estimated $58 million, while Amy Schumer’s “Trainwreck” also opened strongly with $30.2 million. The result for “Ant-Man” didn’t match some of Marvel’s better known and brawnier properties. But “Ant-Man” — a relatively inexpensive superhero movie with a $130 million… Continue reading →

Film Society to screen sports drama ‘Southpaw’

Photo by SCOTT GARFIELD -- Rachel McAdams, left, and Jake Gyllenhaal star in the boxing drama 'Southpaw.'

The Louisiana Film Society, Louisiana International Film Festival and the Weinstein Company are presenting a free pre-release screening of the drama “Southpaw.” The screening is at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 22, at Cinemark Perkins Rowe. Directed by Antoine Fuqua (“Training Day,” “The Replacement Killers”), “Southpaw” features Jake Gyllenhaal as boxing champ Billy “The Great”… Continue reading →

Review: ‘Ant-Man’ marches onto the big screen, earns place among heroes

Photo by Zade Rosenthal – Paul Rudd surfaces as the title character in 'Ant-Man.’ The movie topped the box office in its opening weekend, earning $57.2 million.

As movie superheroes go, it took years for Ant-Man to surface. This summer, Marvel Studios, following its gigantic success with Iron Man, Spider-Man and others, finally gets to the tiny but amazingly effective Ant-Man. Ant-Man is an original member of Marvel Comics’ superhero collective, The Avengers. In “Ant-Man,” starring Paul Rudd as… Continue reading →

Like a family dinner: Troupe serves up laughs with spoof, improv nights

Advocate staff photo by  APRIL BUFFINGTON --  David Vitrano, below, and more of the Family Dinner Improv Comedy Troupe crew get the audience ready for the second half of 'Spoof Night!' recenlty.

Quick, choose a mode of death by alien. Vaporizing, zapping or a good smashing are all possibilities. You could even succumb to an invisible death ray, after which the alien will drag you to some unknown destination. Or, in this case, somewhere backstage, because those who were dying stood on the Manship Theatre stage. That was,… Continue reading →

Annual Swamp Pop Music Festival to benefit Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Photo provided by the Swamp Pop Music Festival -- Ryan Foret and Foret Tradition close out the festival with an 8:30 p.m. show Saturday.

The 18th Annual Price LeBlanc Toyota and Nissan Swamp Pop Music Festival is Friday and Saturday at the Lamar Dixon Expo Center’s air-conditioned Trademart building in Gonzales. The festival, which annually draws as many as 6,000 attendees, opens at 6 p.m. Friday with Kenny Fife and Bac Trac. Other acts during the weekend include Warren Storm, Willie… Continue reading →

Review: Exotic Indian - Lafayette’s Masala’s aromatic spices addicting

Advocate photo by PATRICIA GANNON -- The tandoori mixed grill at Masala consists of five different meats: three kinds of chicken, lamb, and shrimp

Masala Indian Kitchen, located on Kaliste Saloom Road in Lafayette, is an exotic concept on what’s come to be known as “restaurant alley.” The subtle smell of incense was pleasantly pervasive and a faraway female voice sang, while bare brick and warm spice-colored walls completed the look. The exposed industrial ceiling was festooned with small white lights.… Continue reading →

Funk band Freeze reunites for BR show

Photo provided by DALE CRAFT --- Members of the popular 1980s dance band Freeze, front from left, are Jay Hebert, Mike Kirkpatrick and Will Waller; and, back, Kirk Blackwood, Ray Dalcourt, Pat Niquiporo and Richard Payne.

The temperature will drop Sunday at Club Coozan as members of Freeze reunite. The band, which served as the house band at Smackwater Jacks, was popular during the mid-’70s and ’80s, and billed itself as “The Sound of Electrified Funk.” Freeze was the idea of Mike Kirkpatrick (trumpet)… Continue reading →

Smashing Pumpkins, Marilyn Manson hasten ‘End Times’

Photo by PAUL ELLEDGE -- Smashing Pumpkins

The Smashing Pumpkins and Marilyn Manson, two alternative-rock acts that achieved stardom in the 1990s, combine their dark musical forces for “The End Times Tour.” The U.S. and Canadian Pumpkins-Manson tour opened July 7 at the Concord Pavilion in Concord, California. Running through Aug. 8, it arrives in New Orleans Monday for a show at… Continue reading →

Outlying areas calendar for July 17-23, 2015

Photo provided by Elizabeth LeBlanc -- The eight annual Cruisin' for a Cure to benefit the American Cancer Society will take place at Syngenta's Pavilion in St. Gabriel. Vintage cars, trucks and bikes will be on display and judged.

FRIDAY NIGHT COOKIE JAR FISHING TOURNAMENT: 7 p.m.-midnight, LA Express Boat Dock, Jarreau. Entry fees apply to fish the tournament and fishermen must qualify to fish the final “classic tournament.” $30. (225) 293-3402 or mr.guy@netzero.net “HAIRSPRAY”: 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Essanee Theatre,… Continue reading →

Hometown crowd never gave up on 3 Doors Down

Photo provided by Republic Records -- 3 Doors Down

When 3 Doors Down performs Sunday in Champions Square in New Orleans, the nationally known rock band will be close to where it all began. Now based in Nashville, Tennessee, 3 Doors Down is originally from the small town of Escatawpa, Mississippi. In 2000, the band soared out of Mississippi on the melancholy wings… Continue reading →

Rock opera ‘Deep Love’ takes the long road to NYC

Associated Press photo by MARK KENNEDY -- Jon Peter Lewis is co-director, co-book writer and stars in 'Deep Love: A Ghostly Rock Opera' at the New York Musical Theatre Festival.

There’s not much to do in eastern Idaho in the winter. It’s freezing, windy and depressing. Why not create a musical? Stay-inside weather — plus a healthy dose of heartache — helped spark the creation in 2009 of “Deep Love: A Ghostly Rock Opera.” Six years later it arrives in steamy… Continue reading →

New Orleans-shot ‘Horror Story’ gets 19 Emmy nominations

Photo provided by FX -- Veteran actress Jessica Lange portrays Elsa Mars in 'American Horror Story: Freak Show.'

The New Orleans-shot FX anthology series “American Horror Story: Freak Show” received 19 Emmy nominations Thursday, including Best Limited Series. The series’ fourth season was set in Jupiter, Florida, 1952. It focused on a troupe of circus performers as they struggled to survive in the dying American carny world. “Horror Story’s” companion documentary, “American Horror… Continue reading →

Garth Brooks makes belated but triumphant New Orleans debut: ‘You have no idea how long I’ve been waiting for you guys’

Advocate photo by ERIKA GOLDRING -- Country superstar Garth Brooks performs during the first of four concerts at the Smoothie King Center on July 10, 2015, in New Orleans.

Country music star Garth Brooks’ accomplishments include 25 No. 1 songs, sales of 135 million albums and 14 albums that debuted at No. 1. By now, 26 years after his album debut, you would think he’d done everything in the music business that can be done. But there was at least one thing he hadn’t done… Continue reading →

Local dancers featured in third tour of ‘Cinderella’

Photo provided by WENDY BIBBY -- Alexa White and Jessie Cochran play the stepsisters and Kathryn McCleary shares the title role in Tri-Parish Ballet's 'Cinderella.'

There’s a point in Sergei Prokofiev’s ballet, “Cinderella,” when the evil stepsisters believe they’ve won the prince’s favor, because they’re offered oranges. The fruit was an exotic treat in Russia when Prokofiev was composing his ballet between 1940 and 1944. They were even considered special in the United States at that time.… Continue reading →

New Orleans’ queen of bounce music Big Freedia now an author

Photo provided by Nicole Balin -- New Orleans bounce artist Big Freedia has just published a memoir, 'Big Freedia. God Save the Queen Diva!'

Already a music and TV star, Big Freedia, New Orleans’ queen of bounce music, is now a published author. “Big Freedia: God Save the Queen Diva!” is out this week. Freedia co-wrote the lively memoir with her Beverly Hills-based publicist, former music journalist Nicole Balin. She sees more books in her future,… Continue reading →

Shows to watch for July 10-16, 2015

Photo provided by Mike Atkinson -- Blu Rouge -- Local variety music band Blu Rouge will perform at 7 p.m. Friday at Ahuua's Mexican Restaurant and at 9 p.m. Saturday at Backstreet Lounge.

ROCK/POP FRIDAY POLLY PRY: Chelsea’s Café IMAGINE — ACADIANA’S BEATLES TRIBUTE BAND: Varsity Theatre (8 p.m.) SATURDAY PANIC! AT THE DISCO: Blue Bayou/Dixie Landin’ (7 p.m.) BLUE VERSE: Varsity Theatre (8 p.m.) THE IVORY SONS: Chelsea’s Café BLUES/R&B

Fair festivals calendar for July 10-16, 2015

CHRISTMAS IN JULY: Downtown Ponchatoula. The historic downtown district will be decked out in red, white and blue. Stroll downtown where there’s plenty of eating, drinking and shopping spots. SOUTHERN SPORTSMAN’S FESTIVAL & EXPO: 2 p.m.-8 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sunday, The Alario Center, 2000 Segnette Blvd., Westwego.… Continue reading →

Review: Greek, Lebanese cafe transports you to another place with visuals, selections

Advocate photo by ELLYN COUVILLION --Athenos Greek and Lebanese Cafe

It was a mini Monday escape when we stepped inside Athenos Greek and Lebanese Cafe. Large, appealing murals of a pretty countryside and majestic mountains took us to another place. Textured walls in ivory, gold and orange-red, arched doorways and interesting-looking hookahs displayed on sconces completed the decor. The eatery was practically filled but adequate space… Continue reading →

Annual Insect Day returns to State Arboretum

Photo provided by STEVEN BARNEY -- Visitors take in the exhibits at last year's Insect Day at the Louisiana State Arboretum. This year's event is Saturday.

The bugs are back! The fifth annual Insect Day at the Louisiana State Arboretum will take place 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, rain or shine. New to the event is a live bee display by the Capital Area Beekeepers Association. All day, visitors can see indoor displays of live and preserved insect… Continue reading →

Winehouse remembered, grieved in ‘Amy’

Photo provided by A24 Films -- Amy Winehouse

Like its subject, “Amy” doesn’t follow a conventional path. A moving, unavoidably sad documentary about British soul, jazz and pop star Amy Winehouse, “Amy” has neither a narrator nor the carefully framed, talking-head interviews that are staples of the genre. Instead, Asif Kapadia tells Winehouse’s story through a vast collection of audio clips and nonprofessional and… Continue reading →

Lil Wayne releases surprise free mixtape ‘FWA’

Photo provided by Cash Money Records -- Lil Wayne

“Rest in peace to Cash Money Weezy,” Lil Wayne raps early into his “Free Weezy Album.” “Gone but not forgotten.” The rapper has yet to resolve the nasty legal battle with his longtime label, Cash Money Records, but he’s continuing to sate fans awaiting his studio album by offering another project,… Continue reading →