Woody Allen’s publisher may sue ‘Allen v. Farrow’ filmmakers

Woody Allen’s publisher may sue ‘Allen v. Farrow’ filmmakers

Get ready for Allen v. Farrow v. Skyhorse v. HBO. 

“Allen v. Farrow,” the four-part HBO documentary chronicling the doomed marriage and contentious custody battle between Woody Allen and Mia Farrow, is causing legal trouble in its own right — over copyrights. Skyhorse Publishing, which released Allen’s latest book, “Apropos of Nothing,” is threatening to sue the makers of the buzzy and controversial show for sampling bits from the famous director’s audiobook. 

Allen, 85, did not participate in the show, which premiered Feb. 21 and delves into accusations that the “Manhattan” director may have molested his then-7-year-old daughter, Dylan. 

“Neither the producers nor HBO ever approached Skyhorse to request permission to use excerpts from the audiobook,” Tony Lyons, president of Skyhorse, told the Los Angeles Times. “[W]e believe that its unauthorized use of the audiobook is clear, willful infringement under existing legal precedent … We will take the legal action we deem necessary to redress our and Woody Allen’s rights in his intellectual property,” the statement went on. 

Woody Allen and the book cover for his memoir published by Skyhorse, "Apropos of Nothing."
Woody Allen and the book cover for his memoir published by Skyhorse, “Apropos of Nothing.”
A still from "Allen v. Farrow." Mia Farrow and daughter Dylan are interviewed extensively in the show.
A still from “Allen v. Farrow.” Mia Farrow and daughter Dylan are interviewed extensively in the show.
Modern family: An old vacation snap shows members of the Farrow/Allen/Previn family.
Modern family: An old vacation snap shows members of the Farrow/Allen/Previn family.
Globe Photos/mediapunch/Shutters

The imprint likewise complained that they weren’t sufficiently warned that the memoir would be sampled, saying, “Skyhorse received information second hand only at the very end of last week.” 

Skyhorse’s legal argument boils down to the idea of fair use, or “a legal doctrine that promotes freedom of expression by permitting the unlicensed use of copyright-protected works in certain circumstances,” according to the US Copyright Office. The makers of the doc say they were exercising their right to use “legally used limited audio excerpts,” according to a statement sent to The Hollywood Reporter. 

Woody Allen and his wife, Soon-Yi Previn leaving their New York City home.
Woody Allen and his wife, Soon-Yi Previn, were recently spotted leaving their New York City home.
Elder Ordonez / SplashNews.com

The publishing house shot back that fair usage would need to be granted by a court, taking into account the “purpose” and “market impact” of the quoted materials. 

Allen — the mastermind behind movies including “Annie Hall,” “Blue Jasmine” and “Midnight in Paris” — also recently slammed the series, calling it a “hatchet job” in a joint statement with his wife, Soon-Yi Previn, 50, who is also one of Mia’s adopted children. “Multiple agencies investigated them at the time and found that, whatever Dylan Farrow may have been led to believe, absolutely no abuse had ever taken place,” said the statement.

The memoir itself was also a point of controversy last year: It was dropped by Hachette Book Group in March 2020 following a walkout by employees and a damning Twitter thread sent out by Allen’s son, Ronan Farrow. 

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CNN Anchor Says He’s ‘Not Surprised’ by Tiger Woods’ Accident

CNN Anchor Says He’s ‘Not Surprised’ by Tiger Woods’ Accident

Tiger Woods suffered serious injuries to his right leg on Tuesday after being involved in a single-car roll-over accident near Los Angeles.

While news of Woods’ accident shocked many and made headlines around the world, one person who said he was not at all surprised by the day’s events was CNN’s, Andy Scholes.

During CNN’s afternoon coverage of the accident, Scholes went on-air to say – with no supporting evidence whatsoever – that he was “not surprised” by the accident because “painkillers have become a part of his life.”

“Not entirely surprised by what we’re seeing here. Tiger, back in 2017, was found by police pulled over to the side of the road, asleep in his car,” Scholes said. “He had said he had taken a lot of painkillers at that time because we all know Tiger has undergone a lot of surgeries over the years and painkillers have become a part of his life.”

To be clear, Woods’ issues with painkillers are well-documented and it could well come to light that those issues played some role in Tuesday’s accident. However, at the time Scholes made these comments, there was no evidence that Woods had painkillers in his system. In fact, there’s no evidence a day later that painkillers played a role in the accident.

There’s a time for reasoned speculation based on history, and there’s not. Mere hours after a serious accident when the true extent of the injuries are not known and blood or toxicology reports have not been released, is not the time.

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He wants to kick Jim Crow out of the California Constitution

He wants to kick Jim Crow out of the California Constitution

Dorsey Nunn knows more about one particular line in the California Constitution than anyone would ever want to. It’s the line that harkens back to the dark days after the Civil War, the one that bans slavery — more or less.

“Slavery is prohibited,” says Article 1, Section 6 of the Constitution, the set of fundamental principles that defines what this state stands for. “Involuntary servitude is prohibited except to punish crime.”

The 69-year-old spent a decade behind bars for a 1971 robbery in which his accomplice killed a man. At San Quentin State Prison, he mixed chemicals for detergents that cleaned California’s tunnels and highways and hefted 50-pound sacks for later delivery. Two of his brothers were in prison at the same time.

Today he runs an advocacy group called Legal Services for Prisoners with Children. He has spent decades fighting for the rights of formerly incarcerated people. And, now, he wants to change the constitution.

“I think that some people would be satisfied with changing the names of schools. Some people would be satisfied with showing their disdain by pulling down statues of Confederate heroes,” he said. But what good is that, if “we leave in place direct instruments of law that flow directly from slavery and Jim Crow?”

Nunn is among the reasons Assemblymember Sydney Kamlager (D-Los Angeles) introduced legislation to remove what she views as the last vestiges of slavery from the state Constitution. He’s the reason the San Francisco Board of Supervisors’ public safety committee on Thursday will consider supporting Kamlager’s effort. He’s the reason the Riverside County Board of Supervisors is set to consider the issue in March after putting it on hold twice in February.

“We’re not talking about being soft on crime,” Nunn said. “We’re talking about being just on humanity.”

Colorado voters changed their Constitution in 2018 to ban involuntary servitude in that state’s prisons and jails. Utah and Nebraska did the same in 2020. The Abolish Slavery National Network lists 12 states with similar legislation or ballot measures in progress; activists in 12 other states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico also are organizing around the issue.

Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley introduced a measure in December to take similar language out of the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. His joint resolution died when the 116th Congress ended; he plans to reintroduce it in coming months.

“I do think the momentum is here,” said Michele Goodwin, the chancellor’s professor of law at UC Irvine and a constitutional scholar. “I think that in the wake of the [Jan. 6] insurrection, in the wake of [the deadly Unite the Right rally in] Charlottesville, we’re coming to understand how deeply our nation is imbued with racism and white supremacy.”

Not everyone, however, is on board. Riverside County Sheriff Chad Bianco plans to fight local efforts to change the California Constitution. He views Kamlager’s Assembly Constitutional Amendment 3 as a continuation of what he calls the Democratic agenda supporting criminals over victims of crime.

“There is not slavery,” says Bianco, who runs his county’s jails. “Inmates are not slaves. They are convicted criminals serving a sentence for victimizing us. This ACA 3 is just another in a long list of items that shows us that this legislature is anti-public safety and pro-criminal.”

Terry Thornton, spokesperson for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, declined to comment. “CDCR does not comment on proposed legislation,” she said.

Michele Kane, spokesperson for the California Prison Industry Authority, also demurred. Her agency provides jobs for about 7,000 prisoners at 35 facilities; incarcerated workers build furniture, sew masks, and provide other goods and services mostly to state agencies. “CALPIA does not comment on proposed legislation,” Kane said.

According to the agency’s website, “CALPIA’s job assignments are voluntary — offenders are not required to work; however, offenders are generally eager to participate, as waiting lists are common for many CALPIA assignments. The CALPIA work assignments can help offenders learn work skills and habits to become productive members of society.”

However, a Los Angeles Times investigation found that, as the pandemic raged, the state kept prison factories running, even as rehabilitation programs, educational classes and religious services were canceled to halt the spread of the coronavirus. Interviews with inmates revealed that they were forced to work for pennies an hour under threat of discipline; many became sick.

“I don’t think you can volunteer under gunpoint,” Nunn said. “In the event you do decide to go to CALPIA, they give you a choice between almost nothing and nothing. … If you quit, sooner or later you’ll get a 115, a rule violation … At a certain point how do you call that volunteering?”

Kamlager introduced ACA 3 on Dec. 18. If both the Assembly and the state Senate approve the amendment with a two-thirds majority, it will appear on the ballot sometime in 2022. To pass, it must receive 50% plus one vote, according to the California Secretary of State’s office.

Although she has long focused on criminal justice reform, Kamlager said, she had no idea that the state constitution sanctioned involuntary servitude to punish crime until she was approached by Nunn and Jamilia Land, a member of the Abolish Slavery National Network.

“For Black folks, we account for 28% of the prison population and less than 6% of California’s overall population,” Kamlager said in an interview. “We know that the numbers are a little more proportionate but still higher for Latino communities. And we know that many of the folks who are in our prisons who are Black and brown are working essentially for free. … You can’t talk about racial equity or racial justice without talking about economic justice.”

If the amendment passed, she said, its effects would not be felt immediately. Instead, it would kick off a conversation on reforming the state’s prisons and jails, about the circumstances under which prisoners work and what they are paid. According to the Prison Policy Initiative, California inmates are paid between 8 cents and 37 cents per hour for regular jobs and between 30 cents and 95 cents per hour for jobs in so-called correctional industries. Inmates fighting California’s wildfires earn between $2 and $5 a day plus $1 an hour when on a fire.

Nunn and his colleagues have begun reaching out to elected officials throughout the state to drum up support for changing the Constitution. Riverside County Supervisor V. Manuel Perez introduced his resolution to champion ACA 3 on Feb. 2 — the beginning of Black History Month and the same day San Francisco Supervisor Matt Haney introduce a similar resolution in his county.

“I just think it’s important that we recognize the fact that there’s always been controversy around prison labor,” Perez said in an interview. “It’s got its roots dating back to the Civil War and slavery. … Although the 13th Amendment was ratified, at the end of the day, there’s that clause that says, ‘except for the punishment of crime.’ I think that’s language that should be eradicated from our Constitution.”

The resolution was pulled on that day and rescheduled for consideration on Feb. 9. Then it was continued for another month for Riverside County officials to analyze its impact on jail programs such as work release and community service.

“Certainly no one supports involuntary servitude per se,” county Chief Executive Jeffrey Van Wagenen Jr. told the board at the time. “We want to make sure there’s no unintended or collateral consequences that would negatively impact any of the successful programs that we have, either statewide or in the county.”

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NPR Cookie Consent and Choices

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Late night hosts laugh at Rudy Giuliani literally running from his $1.3 billion lawsuit, tie in CPAC

Late night hosts laugh at Rudy Giuliani literally running from his $1.3 billion lawsuit, tie in CPAC

The Daily Beast

Victim That South Dakota AG ‘Didn’t See’ Came Through His Windshield, Investigators Say

Andrew Harrer/GettySIOUX FALLS, South Dakota—South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg has maintained since his fatal crash last fall that he didn’t see what he’d hit—but a newly released video of his police interview has revealed that the victim’s face literally “came through” his windshield.In videos released late Tuesday by the South Dakota Department of Public Safety, investigators can be seen challenging Ravnsborg’s claim that he didn’t see what it was he struck during the crash on Sept. 12, 2020. Ravnsborg was driving home from a Republican Party event that night when he struck and killed 55-year-old Joe Boever. Boever’s body was only found a day later, however, after Ravnsborg initially called 911 to report only that he’d hit “something” that he thought could have been a deer.During an interrogation on Sept. 30, investigators noted Boever’s glasses were found inside Ravnsborg’s 2011 Ford Taurus.“That means his face came through your windshield,” said a North Dakota Bureau of Investigation agent, one of two who questioned Ravnsborg for more than three hours in a pair of sessions.“His face is in your windshield,” the agent said as Ravnsborg groans. “Think about it.”Ravnsborg said he didn’t see the glasses, either, even when he later went through the front seat looking for an insurance card to show to Hyde County Sheriff Mike Volek, who lives near the crash site and responded to the 911 call.The agent said the broken glasses found inside Ravnsborg’s car belonged to Boever, who was walking into Highmore when he was struck and killed.Ravnsborg also was asked why he didn’t see a flashlight Boever was carrying when the crash occurred at 10:24 p.m. When the agents arrived from North Dakota, it was still on, shining “like a beacon,” they said.The agents also told Ravnsborg they knew he was on the shoulder of the road when the crash occurred. He did not have an explanation for why he was there.The investigators also noted he had made calls and looked at websites while he was driving from the Republican Party event in Redfield back to Pierre, the state capital. Ravnsborg had clicked on a Real Clear Politics story on Joe Biden and China just before the crash. He told investigators he had set the phone down before the impact.“I believe I did not do anything wrong,” Ravnsborg said. “I did not see him or anything. I did not know it was a man until the next day.”The videos were part of a collection of information released Tuesday, more than five months after the crash.South Dakota Attorney General Charged in Fatal Car CrashThe Republican official, who was charged last week with three misdemeanors—careless driving, failure to remain in his lane, and talking on a cellphone while driving, albeit prior to the crash—has been asked to resign by Gov. Kristi Noem, and articles of impeachment have been introduced in the legislature.So far, Ravnsborg—pronounced “Rounds-berg”—said he would not step down.“The Attorney General does not intend to resign. At no time has this issue impeded his ability to do the work of the office,” a statement released Tuesday by his private spokesman said. “Instead, he has handled some of the largest settlements and legislative issues the state has ever been through.”“As an attorney and a Lt. Colonel in the Army Reserves, AG Ravnsborg has fought for the rule of law and personal liberties and would hope that he is afforded the same right and courtesy.”Noem, a first-term Republican, said it’s time for Ravnsborg to go.“Now that the investigation has closed and charges have been filed, I believe the attorney general should resign,” she said in a statement. “I have reviewed the material we are releasing, starting today, and I encourage others to review it as well.”Legislators from both parties are calling for his impeachment or resignation.State Rep. Will Mortenson (R-Sioux Falls), filed impeachment articles Tuesday afternoon, with House Majority Leader Kent Peterson (R-Salem) and Minority Leader Jamie Smith (D-Sioux Falls) offering support.There were two articles of impeachment, one for the fatal crash, the other for Ravnsborg’s statements and actions in reporting the crash and during the investigation.“Following the collision, including during his reporting of the collision and the resulting investigation, Jason Ravnsborg undertook actions unbecoming the Attorney General,” article two states. “Jason Ravnsborg’s statements and actions failed to meet the standard of the Office of the Attorney General.”Boever’s cousin, Nick Nemec, who has served as a family spokesman, said he was “appalled” by these revelations.“To me, it sounds like a case of hit-and-run, even though he called a cop,” Nemec told The Daily Beast. “The cop was incompetent or was in collusion, I don’t know which.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

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Oklahoma man accused of cutting neighbor’s heart out, feeding it to his family

Oklahoma man accused of cutting neighbor’s heart out, feeding it to his family

An Oklahoma man suspected of murdering three people has confessed to killing his neighbor, cutting her heart out, and then cooking it to feed his family, authorities said.

Lawrence Anderson allegedly stabbed Andrea Lynn Blankenship, 41, to death in her Chickasha home on Feb. 9, The Oklahoman reported.

“He took the heart back to 214 West Minnesota, Chickasha,” an agent with the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation wrote in a search warrant obtained by the outlet.


Lawrence Anderson allegedly stabbed Andrea Lynn Blankenship, 41, to death in her Chickasha home on Feb. 9

Lawrence Anderson allegedly stabbed Andrea Lynn Blankenship, 41, to death in her Chickasha home on Feb. 9
(Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation)

“He cooked the heart with potatoes to feed to his family to release the demons.”

Anderson had been staying at the 214 West Minnesota address with his aunt, Delsie Pye, and uncle, Leon Pye, after his early prison release in January.

After leaving Blankenship’s home, Anderson, 42, went back to the Pye’s home where he cooked the heart with the intention of feeding it to them.

He then allegedly killed Leon Pye, 67, and his 4-year-old granddaughter, Kaeos Yates, and stabbed his aunt, according to the outlet citing the Oklahoma Bureau of Investigation.


His aunt survived the attack. He was arrested the day of the murders.

Authorities discovered Blankenship’s body two days later after Anderson confessed at a hospital in Oklahoma City where he was being treated. He’s being held in Grady County jail, and charges are pending.


Anderson has a long criminal record that includes drug convictions and domestic violence.

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Hello, Brains! A Life Spent Helping Others Understand A.D.H.D. Online

Hello, Brains! A Life Spent Helping Others Understand A.D.H.D. Online

Jessica McCabe, creator of the YouTube channel “How to A.D.H.D.,” is not a doctor or medical professional. At 38, she’s had a variety of professions including stand-up comedian, actor and restaurant server.

Through all those years, she has been learning about attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, which she was diagnosed herself at the age of 12. Explaining that information is something she has done on her YouTube channel since 2016.

“Our brains are a piece of equipment we work with every day for everything that we do, so it’s critical to understand it,” she said.

She didn’t make the connection between her challenges and her diagnosis, but things changed when she was in her 20s and found herself unable to complete college.

She began researching A.D.H.D. but had trouble organizing all the information she learned. So she turned to YouTube, a platform with which she was already familiar, to retain the material. “Notebooks, no, I lose notebooks,” she said. “YouTube. I won’t lose YouTube.”

In the beginning she found information for her videos on Google searches, but realized that there was a lot of misinformation about A.D.H.D. on the internet. “After I made it public, I thought, ‘I’m a college dropout. I don’t have a degree in this. I should not be educating people,’” she said.

Rachelle LeDuc-Cairns, a registered nurse in Canada, offered to teach her how to analyze research studies for their validity. Then Patrick LaCount, a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Child Health, Behavior and Development at Seattle Children’s Research Institute, began to meet with her weekly to review and discuss research studies. Today, she calls upon experts to help her on each subject, though her videos are not reviewed by a professional on a weekly basis.

“She has done a fine job popularizing the scientific findings in A.D.H.D. and bringing more attention to the condition, destigmatizing it and even motivating others with the condition and their families to obtain further information about it,” said Russell Barkley, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center.

The average age of her subscribers is between 18 and 34, she said; many of the videos focus on themes relevant to young adults. One of Ms. McCabe’s main intentions is to address the stigma of taking medication for this group and about giving it to children.

“I think there are a lot of moms that are tired of being told that they are drugging their children and that they are doing something wrong by treating their child’s medical condition,” she said.

In her video “What I Want to Say to My Mom, Who ‘Drugged’ Me,” Ms. McCabe discusses being prescribed Adderall. (When she began taking medication, her grade point average went up a full point.) Medicating children has been controversial, though “many of the medications used to treat A.D.H.D. have a long track record of safety and are research proven to be effective,” said Dr. Damon Korb, a developmental behavioral pediatrician in Los Gatos, Calif., and the author of “Raising an Organized Child.”

It’s adults who are often overlooked. There are twice as many research studies for child A.D.H.D. compared with adult A.D.H.D. on the National Library of Medicine website, according to Ari Tuckman, a psychologist in West Chester, Pa., and the author of the book “A.D.H.D. After Dark: Better Sex Life, Better Relationship.”

“It’s only recently that they started to research A.D.H.D. in adults,” Ms. McCabe said. “Before that it was thought of as a childhood issue. So who cares how an 8-year-old might be in a domestic relationship since they’re not there yet.”

To that end, in one of her most popular videos, she talks about relationships and how people with A.D.H.D. may experience situations like becoming bored with a partner: “Getting involved with the nearest available human of the desired gender because they’re there and you’re bored? I’m pretty sure this is how Tinder works.”

Ms. McCabe thinks a lot about communication and word choice. Most of her videos open with the greeting “Hello, Brains.”

“Mr. Rogers had a whole bible of rules for how he used language on his show,” she said. “According to my community, one of the most helpful things I’ve done has been to give people the language to describe their challenges and the strategies.”

Kerrie McLoughlin, 50, is a subscriber in Kansas City, Mo., who was diagnosed last year with A.D.H.D. “I had never heard of rejection sensitivity before, but as I watched the video, I instantly knew what it was,” Ms. McLoughlin said. “I teared up at the recognition in myself and started taking notes.”

Celeste Perez, 33, an entrepreneur in Los Angeles, Calif., was diagnosed at 29. Ms. Perez has used the channel to help explain her “A.D.H.D. quirks” to her husband in a way that did not involve boring, text-heavy studies. “I’d spent my life feeling serious anxiety over the smallest things, overthinking words I’d said and feeling enormously upset when things didn’t go perfectly,” she said.

Like many creators, Ms. McCabe now uses Patreon, which helps her amass paying subscribers. With nearly 3,000 subscribers, Patreon said her gross revenue there is $14,551 a month.

But her first donation came from Scot Melville, an engineer in San Francisco, who gave at the top tier of $100 per month, along with a note about how the channel changed his life. “I increased my salary by over $100k per year over the course of four years,” said Mr. Melville, 36. “I credit much of that increase to the skills Jessica has given me through her videos.”

Now instead of donating money, Mr. Melville donates his time as the technology consultant on Ms. McCabe’s team.

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