It was the happiest day of Phillip Cho's life. Shortly after New Year's Day in 2005, he learned that he had acquired a fortune of $600 million — a windfall from his brother, who had won a settlement in a corporate espionage lawsuit, and who planned to give Cho access...
The Lotus and the Storm, Lan Cao's high-profile follow-up to her best-selling debut, Monkey Bridge, revisits her preoccupation with how U.S. involvement in the war in Vietnam continues to reverberate through both countries, via a family saga. Reportedly the first Vietnam War novel written by a Vietnamese-American, Monkey Bridge illustrated Cao's talent for graceful prose that deftly evokes lives stranded between two worlds. Cao, who was born in Vietnam, lives here now and teaches international business law at Dale E. Fowler School of Law at Chapman University. She'll read tonight at Skylight Books in Los Feliz. Skylight Books, 1818 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz; Tue., Sept. 2, 7:30 p.m.; free, book is $27.95. (323) 660-1175, skylightbooks.com.More
Sept. 3: Dustin Lance Black, Craig Borten.
Love books but hate literary events? That's the tagline for Reza Aslan's monthly conversation series, "The Writer's Room." The third installment happens this week — and it's an accurate hook. For starters, the event happens in a posh, glittery nightclub. There's a house band and a full bar (even a two-drink minimum). The crowd is eclectic, engaged and, frankly, a bit raucous — with the encouragement of Aslan, who conducts the interviews with irreverent verve and a side-splitting humor not frequently in evidence during his public-intellectual cable news appearances. Defining the literary community as "anyone who makes their living with words," Aslan's guest list includes journalists, poets, songwriters, scholars, comics, novelists — and, of course, screenwriters. The August edition is a double bill, as Aslan (himself a practitioner of fiction and teleplays in addition to his scholarly journalism) welcomes the screenwriters behind two of the year's most high-profile books-turned-movies: Scott Neustadter (The Fault in Our Stars) and Kelly Marcel (Fifty Shades of Grey). Expect personal and professional insight, anecdotes and advice among the clinking of glasses and waves of laughter that happen when writers get real. DBA Hollywood, 7969 Santa Monica Blvd., W. Hlywd.; Wed., Aug. 6, 8 p.m. (doors at 7 p.m.); $30; 21 and older. (855) 367-7969, dbahollywood.com.More
Twice each year, the MAK Center hosts young artists from outside the United States, giving them an apartment they can stay in for three months while working on a project based on Los Angeles. The spring-summer residency just ended and Copenhagen-based Maria von Hausswolff is showing the four-minute film noir she made. It delves into suicide, scandal, murder and romance. Vienna-based Björn Kämmerer made a 16mm film inspired by the "bad guy" targets used for shooting practice. 1137 S. Cochran Ave., Mid-Wilshire; on view through Sept. 7. (323) 651-1510, makcenter.org.More
Designed to demonstrate solidarity with the values and goals of the Martin Luther King's I Have a Dream speech, this event boasts a line up of professional and student dancers, plus LA Opera Young Artist soloists, a high school choir, a violin prodigy and a marching band. Register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/dance-the-dream-los-angeles-registration-6951609451 to participate in the dancing which will be filmed for a documentary.More
fri 7/25 Dierks Bentley GREEK THEATRE For the better part of the past decade, Dierks Bentley has helped usher in a new era of country music. His catalog has spawned seven No. 1 hits on Billboard's Hot Country Songs charts and cemented his status as one of mainstream country's superstars...
Visual allure often isn't a virtue we value when chasing obscure flavors in L.A.'s international neighborhoods. In fact, adventurous diners tend to appreciate the opposite: The grungier the location, the more accomplished we feel for having sought it out. Looks be damned — let the fireworks happen on the flavor...
The Los Angeles art world has been saying a collective "hallelujah" since the arrival in January of Philippe Vergne as MOCA's new director. Although some East Coast commentators condemned the appointment — citing in particular a budget crisis scandal in which Vergne resorted to selling off a number of works...
The David Smith exhibition that LACMA put on in 2011 was full of competent metal sculptures, made by the sculptor from the 1940s to the 1960s. It was called "Cubes and Anarchy," a very macho, modernist title. L.A. artist Evan Holloway, who's poked at the over-confident grandeur of modernists before, took a notebook with him to Smith's show. He sketched Smith's sculptures from the side; seen from this angle, they lose their boldness. Now, suddenly, they're compelling because they're wispy, delicate and sweet. Holloway's drawings are part of the Armory Center for the Arts' current show, "The Fifth Wall." 145 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena; through Dec. 14. (626) 792-5101; armoryarts.org.More
Artist Tony Greene made all his work between his 1987 CalArts graduation and his 1990 death from AIDS-related complications. In his paintings, he walks this fine line between control and excess: carefully calculated rectangles surrounding yellowed images of body parts, which have been accented with cream- and rust-colored lettering that's garishly rustic. They're hanging in midcentury architect Rudolf Schindler's Kings Road House now, and they're perfect there, against the smooth, minimal concrete walls. The house gives the paintings all the seriousness they deserve, while the paintings make the house more human. 835 N. Kings Road, W. Hlywd; through Sept. 7. (323) 651-1510, makcenter.org.More
Weep at another whiff of an Elmore Leonard adaptation, one that nails down neither the peppery laughs nor the street-crime desperation that are key to the writer's work. Instead, the comedy is too broad to take the characters seriously, and the vibe is breezily aimless, a mistake in a story...
After The Princess Bride made Robin Wright a star, she shocked Hollywood by saying no. No to The Firm and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. No to Jurassic Park, Dirty Dancing, Born on the Fourth of July and Batman Forever. She even said no to the cover of Vanity Fair...
Supernatural teen angst and romance are in the chilly air of fashion photographer–turned-filmmaker Carter Smith's (The Ruins) brooding and mostly naturalistic psychodrama, ripped from the pages of Christopher Barzak's young-adult novel One for Sorrow.
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Bruce Penhall's young son died while working on the 10 last night.
Updated after the jump: Caltrans responds, and the ghost of Penhall expresses unhappiness with his job.
Originally posted at 8:30 a.m.
The victim of a late-night crash on the 10 West has been identified as 21-year-old Connor Penhall, a Caltrans subcontractor and the son of racer-turned-actor Bruce Penhall.
KNX news radio reports that the famous dad rushed to the scene of the accident last night to identify his son and say goodbye.
As for the driver of the Toyota Rav4 that hit young Penhall:
California Highway Patrol officials tell City News Service that 37-year-old Tatsuhiko Sakamoto, who was apparently drunk, barreled through a coned- and signed-off area of the 10 West while Caltrans was doing construction work.
click to enlarge
Ironically, Bruce Penhall played a California Highway Patrolman in the '90s TV show "CHiPs."
Penhall was reportedly operating a concrete saw when he was hit.
Sakamoto was immediately breathalyzed and arrested at the scene for "gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated," "felony DUI" and "driving without a license." (Although his city of residence is listed as Arcadia, Sakamoto only had a Hawaii driver's license, not a California one.)
The crash occurred at about 11:45 p.m. yesterday, just 45 minutes after the stretch of freeway was closed off for the night.
Like his dad -- who was the World Speedway Champion for motorcycle racing in 1981 and 1982 -- 21-year-old Penhall has apparently done some racing of his own. Here he is at the Baja 500 in 2009 (a race for trucks, not motorcycles):
One day before he died, Penhall Tweeted: "Nothing worse then hear a loud smack by a car, and a dog screaming... :("
The celebrity son grew up in Corona; his Facebook profile says he went to Lee Pollard High School. And his photos are mostly of him behind the wheel, including this one of him "messin" around on a motorcycle, out in the dusty Mojave Desert town of Adelanto:
Under-construction stretches of L.A. freeways at night have proven a dangerous place for both drivers and road workers. Last summer, a young war vet died after crashing his motorcycle into an excavator -- on this very same stretch of the 10 in Baldwin Park.
UP NEXT: Caltrans officials say there's nothing more they could have done to prevent this accident. Also, some of Penhall's past commentary on his construction job shows he may have wanted out.
The annual Burning Man festival in Black Rock, Nevada was shut down today after light overnight rains left the area known as the Playa flooded and muddy, officials said. Organizers advised festival-goers heading to the annual event to postpone their arrival until at least midday tomorrow. Burning Man was providing...
Los Angeles authorities were previously made aware that Miley Cyrus' American Music Awards date, 22-year-old homeless man Jesse Helt, was wanted in Oregon, said Martin Silbernagel, Community Corrections director for Polk County. When asked if the Los Angeles Police Department and the L.A. County Sheriff's Department were notified that Helt had a...
Jerry Brown, California's skin-flint governor, acceded Wednesday to an increase in the film tax credit to $330 million. Brown is a well-known skeptic of Hollywood subsidies, but the combined forces of organized labor, multinational entertainment conglomerates, and B-list celebrities proved too powerful to resist. The industry didn't get the $400...