Run-DMC, Metallica top list of 2009 Rock Hall
New York — Run-DMC once hailed themselves as the Kings of Rock, so it’s fitting that the pioneering rappers have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Run-DMC joins the heavy metal band Metallica; guitarist and former Yardbirds member Jeff Beck; soul singer and guitarist Bobby Womack; and doo-wop group Little Anthony and the Imperials as this year’s inductee class.
Though Run-DMC wasn’t among the first rap acts, they were the first to achieve widespread mainstream success, and the first to notch a platinum album with 1986’s “Raising Hell.”
The rapping duo of Joseph “Run” Simmons and Darryl “DMC” McDaniels — plus their DJ, the late Jam Master Jay — were rap’s first rock stars. They had hits with songs like “My Adidas” and “It’s Tricky,” but had their greatest success when they remade Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way” with the rock act for a groundbreaking collaboration.
In an interview Wednesday, McDaniels called Run-DMC’s induction “inconceivable.”
Mr. Roarke of ‘Fantasy Island’ dies at 88
Los Angeles — Ricardo Montalban, the Mexican-born actor who became a star in splashy MGM musicals and later as the wish-fulfilling Mr. Roarke in TV’s “Fantasy Island,” died Wednesday morning at his home, a city councilman said. He was 88.
Montalban’s death was announced at a city council meeting by president Eric Garcetti, who represents the district where the actor lived. Garcetti did not give a cause of death.
“What you saw on the screen and on television and on talk shows, this very courtly, modest, dignified individual, that’s exactly who he was,” said Montalban’s longtime friend and publicist David Brokaw.
Montalban had been a star in Mexican movies when MGM brought him to Hollywood in 1946. He was cast in the leading role opposite Esther Williams in “Fiesta,” and starred again with the swimming beauty in “On an Island with You” and “Neptune’s Daughter.”
But Montalban was best known as the faintly mysterious, white-suited Mr. Roarke, who presided over a tropical island resort where visitors were able to fulfill their lifelong dreams — usually at the unexpected expense of a difficult life lesson. Following a floatplane landing and lei ceremony, he greeted each guest with the line: “I am Mr. Roarke, your host. Welcome to Fantasy Island.”
‘Prisoner’ actor Patrick McGoohan dies
Los Angeles — Patrick McGoohan, the Emmy-winning actor who created and starred in the cult classic television show “The Prisoner,” has died. He was 80.
McGoohan died Tuesday in Los Angeles after a short illness, his son-in-law, film producer Cleve Landsberg, said.
McGoohan won two Emmys for his work on the Peter Falk detective drama “Columbo,” and more recently appeared as King Edward Longshanks in the 1995 Mel Gibson film “Braveheart.”
But he was most famous as the character known only as Number Six in “The Prisoner,” a sci-fi tinged 1960s British series in which a former spy is held captive in a small enclave known only as The Village, where a mysterious authority named Number One constantly prevents his escape.
McGoohan came up with the concept and wrote and directed several episodes of the show, which has kept a devoted following in the United States and Europe for four decades.
McGoohan is survived by his wife and three daughters.
Swayze says he’s almost over pneumonia
New York — Days after checking himself into a Los Angeles hospital for pneumonia, Patrick Swayze says his condition is improving.
The 56-year-old actor, who is battling pancreatic cancer, tells People magazine: “I am alive and plan on continuing to stay that way. ... I am almost in the clear.”
Swayze says he checked into the hospital Jan. 9 because of a cough that he suspected was the result of an infection.
Jennifer Hudson to sing at Super Bowl
New York — Jennifer Hudson is using pop culture’s grandest stage — the Super Bowl — to make her return to the spotlight following the slayings of her mother, brother and nephew.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy confirmed Wednesday that Hudson will sing the national anthem at the Super Bowl in Tampa, Fla., on Feb. 1. E! News first reported Tuesday that Hudson would perform.
Hudson hasn’t made a public appearance since her 57-year-old mother, Darnell Hudson Donerson; 29-year-old brother Jason Hudson; and 7-year-old nephew Julian King were slain in Chicago in October. Her estranged brother-in-law has been charged in the killings.
The Super Bowl is the most viewed spectacle on television. Bruce Springsteen is scheduled to sing during halftime of the pro football championship game.
Ford, Fraser pair for medical drama
Los Angeles — Indiana Jones and “The Mummy” slayer are teaming up on the big screen — to battle not ancient, otherworldly baddies, but a big medical dilemma.
Brendan Fraser will join Harrison Ford for a medical drama set to begin filming in April, CBS Films announced Wednesday. The untitled movie will be the first production for CBS Films, a feature film division established in 2007.
Fraser will play a father who recruits the help of a medical researcher portrayed by Ford. CBS Films said the film’s screenplay is inspired by “The Cure,” a book by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Geeta Anand about John F. Crowley, a former Bristol Myers Squibb executive who started his own biotech company to save his two children from a rare muscular disorder.