'Three's Company' actress Ann Wedgeworth dies at 83

Nov 18, 2017 8

Actress Ann Wedgeworth, who gained fame on film and Broadway before taking on the role of a flirty divorcee on “Three’s Company,” has died at age 83.

Wedgeworth died Thursday in the New York area after a long illness, her daughter Dianna Martin said.

Wedgeworth landed her first Broadway role in the 1958 comedy “Make a Million” and continued to take on stage roles for decades. She won the 1978 Tony award for best featured actress in a play for her performance in Neil Simon’s “Chapter Two.”

She acted in several soap operas and also found success in Hollywood with roles alongside Gene Hackman in the 1973 film “Scarecrow” and Robert De Niro in “Bang the Drum Slowly” the same year.

But she’s perhaps best known for her brief tenure on the TV sitcom “Three’s Comedy,” where she played Lana Shields, an older woman with her eyes set on her young neighbor Jack, played by John Ritter.

She appeared on only nine episodes of the show before her character was written out, which she said took her by surprise. In a 1980 interview with People, Wedgeworth said she “had no warning or explanation. Suddenly everyone was very cold to me.”

Wedgeworth continued to tally TV and film credits for decades, including a starring role on the CBS series “Evening Shade” with Burt Reynolds from 1990 to 1994.

She was born in Abilene, Texas, in 1934. Her father was the superintendent of a local school and her mother died when Ann was 2 years old. After getting a drama degree from Southern Methodist University, she moved to New York City in the 1950s to pursue a theater career.

She married actor Rip Torn and the couple had a daughter, Danae Torn, before ending their five-year marriage in 1961. Wedgeworth later married acting teacher Ernest Martin and had her second daughter, Dianna Martin.

Wedgeworth is survived by her husband, her two daughters and stepsons Michael Martin and Greg Martin.

Lena Dunham defends 'Girls' writer-producer accused of raping underage actress

Nov 18, 2017 9

Lena Dunham sprung to the defense Friday of a male writer and executive producer on her TV show “Girls” who is accused of raping an actress when she was 17.

The following day, Dunham apologized on Twitter for her earlier statement saying she’d “naively believed” sharing her opinion from her vantage point “was important.” But she now understood “that it was absolutely the wrong time to come forward” and said “I am so sorry.”

“Every woman who comes forward deserves to be heard, fully and completely, and our relationship to the accused should not be part of the calculation anyone makes when examining her case,” Dunham wrote. “We apologize to any woman who have been disappointed.”

Shortly after being posted, the tweet was taken down from the site.

According to The Wrap, “Passengers” actress Aurora Perrineau filed a police report alleging that Murray Miller sexually assaulted her after a night out in Los Angeles in 2012.

“I woke up in Murray’s bed naked,” Perrineau said in a statement for a polygraph test she took in September, the site reported. “He was on top of me having sexual intercourse with me. At no time did I consent to any sexual contact with Murray.”

During their night out, Perrineau said she “repeatedly” told Miller she was 17.

Dunham — who tweeted last month that men who spoke out against disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein were “more sexually irresistible (consensually, of course)” — issued a joint statement to The Hollywood Reporter with “Girls” showrunner Jenni Konner.

LENA DUNHAM BLASTED FOR TWEET ABOUT HARVEY WEINSTEIN ACCUSATIONS

“During the windfall of deeply necessary accusations over the last few months in Hollywood, we have been thrilled to see so many women’s voices heard and dark experiences in this industry justified,” Dunham and Konner’s statement said. ” … But during every time of change there are also incidences of the culture, in its enthusiasm and zeal, taking down the wrong targets. We believe, having worked closely with him for more than half a decade, that this is the case with Murray Miller.

“While our first instinct is to listen to every woman’s story, our insider knowledge of Murray’s situation makes us confident that sadly this accusation is one of the 3 percent of assault cases that are misreported every year,” the statement added. “… We stand by Murray and this is all we’ll be saying about this issue.”

An attorney for Miller accused Perrineau of trying to extort money from him.

“After being contacted several weeks ago by lawyers who — on Ms. Perrineau’s behalf — sought substantial monetary damages from him, Mr. Miller’s legal team gathered overwhelming evidence directly contradicting these false and offensive claims,” Don Walerstein told The Hollywood Reporter. “Only after her demands for money were rebuffed did Ms. Perrineau go to the police.”

Miller was an executive producer or co-executive producer on 52 episodes of “Girls,” which ran for six seasons on HBO before going off the air earlier this year. He’s also worked on the animated shows “American Dad!” and “King of the Hill.”

Lena Dunham apologizes for defending 'Girls' writer-producer accused of raping underage actress

Nov 18, 2017 8

Lena Dunham apologized Saturday for defending a male writer and executive producer on her TV show “Girls” who is accused of raping an actress when she was 17.

In a new statement Dunham issued on Twitter, she said that she’d “naively believed” sharing her opinion of the situation from her vantage point “was important.” But she now understood “that it was absolutely the wrong time to come forward” and said “I am so sorry.”

“Every woman who comes forward deserves to be heard, fully and completely, and our relationship to the accused should not be part of the calculation anyone makes when examining her case,” Dunham wrote in regards to the statment she made Friday. “We apologize to any woman who have been disappointed.”

Shortly after being posted, the tweet was briefly taken down from the site before reappearing shortly thereafter.

According to The Wrap, “Passengers” actress Aurora Perrineau filed a police report alleging that Murray Miller sexually assaulted her after a night out in Los Angeles in 2012.

“I woke up in Murray’s bed naked,” Perrineau said in a statement for a polygraph test she took in September, the site reported. “He was on top of me having sexual intercourse with me. At no time did I consent to any sexual contact with Murray.”

During their night out, Perrineau said she “repeatedly” told Miller she was 17.

Dunham — who tweeted last month that men who spoke out against disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein were “more sexually irresistible (consensually, of course)” — issued a joint statement to The Hollywood Reporter with “Girls” showrunner Jenni Konner.

LENA DUNHAM BLASTED FOR TWEET ABOUT HARVEY WEINSTEIN ACCUSATIONS

“During the windfall of deeply necessary accusations over the last few months in Hollywood, we have been thrilled to see so many women’s voices heard and dark experiences in this industry justified,” Dunham and Konner’s statement said. ” … But during every time of change there are also incidences of the culture, in its enthusiasm and zeal, taking down the wrong targets. We believe, having worked closely with him for more than half a decade, that this is the case with Murray Miller.

“While our first instinct is to listen to every woman’s story, our insider knowledge of Murray’s situation makes us confident that sadly this accusation is one of the 3 percent of assault cases that are misreported every year,” the statement added. “… We stand by Murray and this is all we’ll be saying about this issue.”

An attorney for Miller accused Perrineau of trying to extort money from him.

“After being contacted several weeks ago by lawyers who — on Ms. Perrineau’s behalf — sought substantial monetary damages from him, Mr. Miller’s legal team gathered overwhelming evidence directly contradicting these false and offensive claims,” Don Walerstein told The Hollywood Reporter. “Only after her demands for money were rebuffed did Ms. Perrineau go to the police.”

Miller was an executive producer or co-executive producer on 52 episodes of “Girls,” which ran for six seasons on HBO before going off the air earlier this year. He’s also worked on the animated shows “American Dad!” and “King of the Hill.”

Weinstein made list of names, gathered intel to silence claims, report says

Nov 18, 2017 11

Ousted Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein reportedly compiled a secret list of people to have investigated because of potential information they may have had regarding his alleged sexual assault, The Guardian reported.

The outlet said The Observer obtained the list, which was allegedly drafted by Weinstein early this year ahead of The New York Time’s scathing expose on Oct. 5 of the sexual assault accusations leveled against him.

Ninety-one names of actors, publicists, producers, financiers and others in the industry reportedly made up the list, which was allegedly part of Weinstein’s attempt to silence his accusers, The Guardian said.

BUCCANEERS QB JAMEIS WINSTON ACCUSED OF GROPING UBER DRIVER

The list was reportedly given to investigators, hired by the media mogul, to gather intel on the individuals and determine whether they had any information about Weinstein or if they had plans to go public with allegations against him, according to the report.

Among those on the list were some of Weinstein’s first public accusers, including Rose McGowan, Laura Madden and Zelda Perkins, The Guardian reported. All three of their names were reportedly marked red, as a target of high importance.

ROY MOORE, BATTLING SEX ASSAULT ACCUSATIONS, SAYS HE DOESN’T KNOW LATEST ACCUSER

The name of another Hollywood producer, Brett Ratner, was also reportedly on the list. Ratner has since faced his own slew of accusations from women claiming he sexually assaulted them.

According to The Guardian, there were also notes on the list indicating that Weinstein knew of The New York Times probe long before they published.

Since he was first publicly accused, Weinstein has routinely denied all claims of non-consensual sex made against him through a representative.

Jeff Flake: GOP is 'toast' if it becomes party of Trump, Moore

Nov 18, 2017 21

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., was caught on a hot mic Friday telling a Republican mayor that “if we become the party of Roy Moore and Donald Trump, we are toast.”

Flake made the comment to Mesa, Ariz. Mayor John Giles following a town hall event at which Giles had asked Flake about the possibility of running for president in 2020.

“Can we start the presidential campaign today?” Giles asked Flake during the event, to scattered laughter from the audience.

Flake, who announced last month he would not run for re-election to the Senate in 2018, made the “toast” comment to Giles after the event had ended. It was picked up by his lapel mic and recorded by Phoenix TV station ABC15.

In response, Giles told Flake, “I am not throwing smoke at you but … think how much fun it would be just to be the foil, you know, and to point out what an idiot this guy is,” apparently referring to Trump.

“Anyway,” Giles added, “hope you do it.”

Flake, a longtime critic of the president, shrugged off the remark Saturday afternoon, tweeting “No news here. I’ve been saying this to anyone who will listen.”

In a Senate floor speech announcing that he would not seek a second term, Flake criticized Trump for engaging in “reckless, outrageous, and undignified behavior.” He also accused the Republican Party of having “”given in or given up on the core principles in favor of a more viscerally satisfying anger and resentment … but anger and resentment are not a governing philosophy.”

Flake has also been unsparing in his criticism of Moore, the Republican candidate in next month’s Alabama Senate special election. 

On Monday, after several women came forward to allege sexual misconduct by Moore, Flake said he would “run to the polling place” to support Democrat Doug Jones if he was an Alabama voter. Flake also said that he would vote to expel Moore from the Senate should the Republican candidate win the Dec. 12 election.

Flake has also criticized Moore in the past for stating that Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., should not be seated in Congress because Ellison is a Muslim. 

“When a judge expressed his personal belief that a Muslim should not be a member of Congress because of his faith, it was wrong,” Flake said last month. “That this same judge is now my party’s nominee for the Senate should concern us all. Religious tests have no place in the United States Congress.”

The Latest: Detroit priest beatified by Catholic church

Nov 18, 2017 6

The Latest on the beatification of the Rev. Solanus Casey, a late Detroit priest who could be made a saint by the Roman Catholic Church if a second miracle is attributed to him: (all times local):

___

4:55 p.m.

A Detroit priest who focused his ministry on the poor and needy has been beatified by the Roman Catholic Church, a key step toward sainthood.

The Rev. Solanus Casey was known as Father Solanus, a member of the Capuchin (CAP’-uh-shin) Franciscan order of priests. He died in 1957.

Tens of thousands of people attended the beatification Mass Saturday at a Detroit stadium. Italian Cardinal Angelo Amato read a letter from Pope Francis, who described Father Solanus as a “humble, faithful disciple of Christ.” He was given the title of “blessed.”

Father Solanus is credited with interceding to cure a Panamanian woman of a skin disease while she prayed at his tomb in 2012. She attended the Mass.

He can be made a saint in the years ahead if a second miracle is attributed to him.

___

12:40 a.m.

A priest who dedicated himself to helping others is on a path to sainthood decades after his death.

Solanus Casey, known as Father Solanus, will be beatified Saturday at a Mass attended by 65,000 people at a stadium in Detroit, the city where he spent much of his ministry.

Pope Francis said Father Solanus met the requirements to earn the title of “blessed,” especially after a woman from Panama was cured of a skin disease while she prayed at his tomb in 2012.

Father Solanus can be made a saint in the years ahead if a second miracle is attributed to him.

Barred from giving homilies because of academic struggles, he dedicated himself to helping the poor and counseling people with emotional and health problems. He died in 1957.

Taking flight: McKenzie Milton accounts for 5 TDs as Knights dismantle Temple

Nov 18, 2017 7

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — McKenzie Milton threw four touchdown passes and ran for a score as No. 14 Central Florida comfortably took care of business against Temple, winning 45-19 Saturday to stay unbeaten heading into a showdown with rival USF.

The Knights (10-0, 7-0 American Athletic conference, CFP No. 15) turned three Temple turnovers inside the Owls’ 25 into 17 first-half points, taking a 31-10 lead when Gabriel Davis stretched across the goal line for a 5-yard touchdown reception with 2:36 left in the second quarter.

The AAC East Division will be decided on Black Friday in Orlando, Florida, when No. 23 South Florida (9-1, 6-1) visits UCF. Temple (5-6, 3-4) could have been easy to overlook for the Knights. The game had no bearing on whether they play for a conference title and a loss probably wouldn’t have damaged their chances to play in a New Year’s Six bowl.

With speculation swirling about where second-year coach Scott Frost might be coaching next and a huge game looming, the Knights insisted earlier in the week they would not be distracted. Mission accomplished.

Shaquem Griffin, the 2016 AAC defensive player of the year whose left hand was amputated when he was 4, was all over the field for the UCF defense. He forced a fumble in the first half that set up a score and made his second career interception in the second half, running step-for-step down field with a receiver and cradling the ball into his chest.

Frank Nutile, who helped revive Temple’s offense when he took over at quarterback four games ago, was picked off four times.

THE TAKEAWAY

UCF: The Knights have so many ways to attack. Six different players scored touchdowns, including freshman Otis Anderson, who is listed on the depth chart as a wide receiver but is also one of the team’s leading rushers. He had 62 yards on five carries against Temple and caught a touchdown pass.

Temple: The Owls tried to slow the pace against the Knights, but turnovers killed that plan. Temple is not built to get into a back-and-forth game with the highest scoring team in the country.

UP NEXT:

UCF: The War on I-4 has never been bigger.

Temple: The Owls try again to reach bowl eligibility, this time at Tulsa.

FBI’s black ‘extremists’ report ignites fears of return to illegal government watch

Nov 18, 2017 17

Political organizations and veteran members of the civil rights movement have expressed concern over an FBI report noting the rise of black “extremists,” and fear it could lead to a return to a time when the agency unjustly spied on organizations which hadn’t broken any laws.

The memo, released in August, said that violence against law enforcement has been on the rise from “black identity extremists” who “acted in retaliation from perceived past police brutality incidents” and noted its likely continuation.

It cited the deadly police shooting in Dallas in 2016, in which a sniper who was upset about police treatment of minorities killed five officers, and also a man in Baton Rouge, La., who killed three officers in 2016 after writing about the need to inflict violence on “bad cops.”

ARMY ACKNOWLEDGES FAILURS TO REPORT CRIME DATA TO FBI

The FBI said it doesn’t target groups without cause and the report only serves to acknowledge what they believe are emerging trends, noting that a memo on white supremacists was also filed. Nonetheless, they’ve drawn the ire of members of The Congressional Black Caucus, who said the report is mixing groups.

In a letter from the organization to FBI Director Christopher Wray, they said the report “conflates black political activists with dangerous domestic terrorist organizations” and would only further sever the ties between police and minority groups.

To further complicate the situation, Attorney General Jeff Sessions proved unable to answer questions about the report from Rep. Karen Bass, D-Ca., during a recent congressional hearing. Bass later said that the memo felt like “a flashback to the past.”

Sessions said he was aware of “groups that do have an extraordinary commitment to their racial identity, and some have transformed themselves even into violent activists.” He struggled to answer the same question about white extremists.

Bass also said she’d received complaints from members of Black Lives Matter, who claimed they were being monitored and harassed by police in her district. She said she worries the report will send a message to police that it’s okay to crack down on groups critical of law enforcement.

JEFF SESSIONS’ INVOLVEMENT IN TRUMP CAMPAIGN, RUSSIA INVESTIGATION: A TIMELINE

Additionally, some veterans of the black and Latino civil rights movement said the FBI assessment reminded them of the bureau’s now-defunct COINTELPRO, a covert and often illegal operation under Director J. Edgar Hoover in the 1950s and 1960s. Agents were assigned to “expose, disrupt, misdirect, or otherwise neutralize the activities of black nationalists,” Hoover said in a once-classified memo to field agents.

The issue of race has been an especially hot topic during President Trump’s term following accusations that his administration was insensitive to racial issues, including his response to the violence in Charlottesville, Va., in August.

In a statement to the Associated Press, the FBI said it cannot and will not open an investigation based solely on a person’s race or exercise of free speech rights.

“Our focus is not on membership in particular groups but on individuals who commit violence and other criminal acts,” the FBI said. “Furthermore, the FBI does not and will not police ideology. When an individual takes violent action based on belief or ideology and breaks the law, the FBI will enforce the rule of law.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

FSU tops 30 points for 1st time this season in dominating rout of Delaware State

Nov 18, 2017 8

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida State tied a school record for first-half points as it rolled to a 77-6 victory over Delaware State on Saturday.

The 71-point win also marks the second-highest margin of victory by Florida State. The record is 74 in a shutout against Whiting Field in 1949.

The Seminoles (4-6) led 56-6 at halftime, which equaled the points they scored in the first 30 minutes on Nov. 14, 1992, against Tulane. The Seminoles would go on to win that game 70-7.

Florida State scored 63 unanswered points after a Nyfease West 1-yard touchdown run brought Delaware State (2-9) within 14-6 with 4:04 remaining in the first quarter.

The Seminoles also scored touchdowns on offense, special teams and defense in the first quarter. It is the first time it has done that in the same game since 2013 against Wake Forest.

The Seminoles opened the scoring on a Jacques Patrick 14-yard touchdown run and extended their lead to 14-0 when Tarvarus McFadden took a blocked field goal 63 yards.

The Hornets got the ball back with a chance to tie the game at 14, but Derwin James picked off Keenan Black and ran 41 yards for his first career touchdown.

James Blackman completed 11 of 15 passes for 179 yards and three touchdowns for FSU. Patrick also ran for a pair of scores.

J.J. Cosentino and Jake Rizzo played QB for the Seminoles during the second half and also directed scoring drives.

The Hornets gained 125 yards on their first two drives but were held to 67 the remainder of the game. Keenan Black played quarterback in the first half and was 7 of 18 for 98 yards.

The teams agreed to play 10-minute quarters during the second half. NCAA rules state that at “any time during the game, the playing time of any remaining period or periods and the intermission between halves may be shortened by mutual agreement of the opposing head coaches and the referee.”

The NCAA rules only allow for shortening the length of time in each quarter and don’t permit the use of a running clock, though there is evidence of games having used running clocks in the past. It is the seventh time since 2012 a game has been shortened in the second half.

It is the second time involving Florida State with the first time being 2012 against Savannah State. After a 56-minute weather delay in the second quarter with Florida State ahead 48-0, officials agreed to use a running clock. The game was called for good in the third quarter due to lightning with the Seminoles leading 55-0.

THE TAKEAWAY

Delaware State: Coach Kevin Carter and his team can claim at least one moral victory. The touchdown marked the first time in nine games that an FCS team had scored a first-quarter TD on the Seminoles.

Florida State: This marks the first time this season that Florida State has scored 30 or more points in a game. Its previous season high was 28 in a three-point loss to Louisville on Oct. 21.

UP NEXT

Delaware State: Season complete.

Florida State: Travel to Florida on Saturday. It is the first time since 1959 that both teams go into the game with losing records.

Alabama Democrat Doug Jones denies being an 'ultra-liberal,' says he opposes Trump's border wall

Nov 18, 2017 21

Alabama Democratic Senate nominee Doug Jones says it’s “absurd” for the campaign of GOP opponent Roy Moore to characterize him as an “ultra-liberal.”

“That’s pretty absurd,” Jones told Fox News’ Peter Doocy on Saturday at a fish fry in Birmingham. “You know, that’s their only hope. I mean look, they’re in desperation mode right now.”

As the Moore campaign tries to move past the allegations of sexual misconduct that have crippled his campaign over the last week, they are emphasizing Jones’ stances on cultural issues. Moore’s wife, Kayla Moore, took aim at Jones’ positions during a speech in Montgomery on Friday.

“Our opponent — who is an ultra-liberal, who was an Obama delegate, who is for full-term abortions, who is for more gun restrictions, who is for transgender bathrooms, who is for transgender [people] in the military — is against everything we in Alabama believe and stand for,” Kayla Moore said.

Jones on Saturday let out a loud laugh when asked to respond to that.

LIBERAL VIEWS OF ROY MOORE’S DEMOCRATIC RIVAL COULD POSE PITFALL AMID SCANDAL

“If you look at the positions I’ve got on health care, if you look at the positions I got on jobs, you should look at the support I have from the business community, I think I’m pretty mainstream,” Jones said. “I want to reach across the aisle…So I don’t really care what he says about me.”

Alabama hasn’t elected a Democrat to the Senate since 1992. But a Fox News poll taken in the wake of the Moore allegations and released Thursday shows Jones leading Moore 50 percent to 42 percent.

Jones and Moore are battling for the seat once held by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who was known for his tough stance on illegal immigration.

Asked if he supports the building of a wall on the border with Mexico, Jones said Saturday: “No, I do not. I think it’s too expensive.”

“I don’t think we need to be spending $20 billion dollars,” Jones said, citing an estimate cost for the wall. “I want to put it on healthcare, I want to get tax cuts for the middle class.”

Fox News’ Peter Doocy contributed to this report.

Alex Pappas is a politics reporter at FoxNews.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AlexPappas.