Showbiz Sandbox 234: Scandal and Politics Invade Hollywood (Again)

Two real-life controversies are presently complicating life in Hollywood where studios prefer to make lots of money and ignore complicated social issues or the sometimes tawdry private lives of their executives and talent. The first involves accusations of forcible rape by movie director Bryan Singer. The second involves boycotting a historic Tinseltown hotel over its owners politics.

In less contentious news it appears our prediction about the future of Craig Ferguson as host of the “Late Late Show” was correct, and he will indeed be departing by the end of this year. The host says the decision was entirely his own, despite what it might look like with David Letterman retiring from his show’s lead in, “Late Night”.

Tony nominations were announced last week to honor some of this year’s best and brightest Broadway productions and performers. We give you a rundown of all the front runners as well as a look at a few that didn’t make the cut.

Of course, we also cover the week’s top entertainment news stories including the “Star Wars Episode VII” casting announcement, AT&T’s acquisition offer of DirecTV and Ben Affleck’s blackjack trouble.

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Bob Hoskins, Actor Who Combined Charm and Menace, Dies at 71
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/01/movies/bob-hoskins-british-actor-dies-at-71.html

Amazing Spider-Man 2′ Soars With $92 Mil Stateside Bow
http://variety.com/2014/film/news/box-office-amazing-spider-man-2-soars-with-92-mil-stateside-bow-1201171380/

‘Amazing Spider-Man 2’ Kicks Off Summer With $92 Million Debut
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/box-office-amazing-spider-man-701103

Wes Anderson to Celebrate ‘Grand Budapest Hotel’ With Cruise
http://www.rollingstone.com/movies/news/wes-anderson-to-celebrate-grand-budapest-hotel-with-cruise-20140505

DreamWorks Animation Takes $57M Impairment Charge on ‘Mr. Peabody & Sherman’
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/dreamworks-animation-takes-57m-impairment-699590

Jeffrey Katzenberg Predicts 3-Week Theatrical Window in Future
http://variety.com/2014/film/news/jeffrey-katzenberg-predicts-3-week-theatrical-window-in-future-1201166052/

Craig Ferguson to Exit CBS’ ‘Late Late Show’
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/craig-ferguson-exit-late-late-show-699470

Craig Ferguson: ‘I Wanted to Leave the Show Before I Stopped Enjoying It’ (EXCLUSIVE)
http://variety.com/2014/tv/news/craig-ferguson-i-wanted-to-leave-the-show-before-i-stopped-enjoying-it-exclusive-1201166239/

No Craig Ferguson Replacement Before Upfronts (Exclusive)
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/craig-ferguson-replacement-wont-be-699948

Tony Awards 2014: ‘A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder,’ ‘Hedwig and the Angry Inch’ Lead the Nominations Field
http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/04/29/2014-tony-awards-nominations/

2014 Tony Award Nominations – The Complete List
http://www.broadwayworld.com/article/2014-Tony-Award-Nominations-The-Complete-List-20140429#.U1_NGuZdUWE

‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ Cast Revealed
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/star-wars-episode-vii-cast-698480

A&E’s ‘The Returned’ Adaptation Ordered Straight to Series
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/a-es-returned-adaptation-ordered-699658

CEO Michael Powell Uses Keynote to Plead to Keep Cable, Internet Private
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/ncta-2014-ceo-michael-powell-699677

Finding the Best Path Forward to Protect the Open Internet
http://www.fcc.gov/blog/finding-best-path-forward-protect-open-internet

Netflix Pays Verizon For Network Connection to Speed Up Video
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/04/netflix-and-verizon-reach-interconnection-deal-to-speed-up-video/

Beyond Net Neutrality
http://www.vox.com/2014/5/2/5665890/beyond-net-neutrality-the-new-battle-for-the-future-of-the-internet

AT&T Mulls $40 Billion Acquisition of DirecTV
http://variety.com/2014/tv/news/att-mulls-40-billion-acquisition-of-directv-report-1201169045/

Author of the Book ‘Gravity’ Sues Warner Bros. Over Credit
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/30/business/media/author-of-the-book-gravity-sues-warner-bros-over-credit.html

Ben Affleck Accused of Card Counting, May Be Banned From Blackjack
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/gossip/la-et-mg-ben-affleck-counting-cards-blackjack-casino-las-vegas-20140502,0,20324.story#axzz30ogtx87M

New Sex Abuse Lawsuit Targets Bryan Singer, Gary Goddard
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/new-sex-abuse-lawsuit-targets-701110

Bryan Singer Sex Abuse Case: Why the Accuser Filed in Hawaii
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/bryan-singer-sex-abuse-case-699830

Bryan Singer, Other Sex Abuse Defendants Could Face Long Court Battle
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/bryan-singer-sex-abuse-defendants-700496

Bryan Singer Sex Abuse Case: The Troubling History Behind the Accusations
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/bryan-singer-sex-abuse-case-699828

Oscars ‘Night Before’ Party Pulled From Beverly Hills Hotel Over Sultan of Brunei Ownership
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/beverly-hills-hotel-protest-oscars-701143

Jimmy Buffet’s Live At The Drive-In
http://www.margaritaville.com/liveatthedrive-in