CHARLOTTE RAE – OBIT
LOS ANGELES (AP) – She will be best remembered for the housemother who shepherded a group of girls through boarding school – and through issues like sex, substance abuse and eating disorders – on the TV show “The Facts of Life.” But Charlotte Rae had a career that included other TV roles, as well as work in the movies and on stage. Rae has died. Her publicist says she died at her home in Los Angeles yesterday with her family at her side. She was 92. No cause of death was immediately provided, but last year, Rae was diagnosed with bone cancer after beating pancreatic cancer. Rae first portrayed Edna Garrett in 1978 during the first season of the NBC comedy “Diff’rent Strokes” – then brought that character to “Facts of Life.” Her work on the show earned her an Emmy nomination. The NBC series ran nine seasons, but Rae left after seven. She would later explain that she left because, quoting here, “I needed some time for the rest of my life.”
CHARLOTTE RAE – REACTION
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Two actresses who were members of the brood of young girls Charlotte Rae mentored on “The Facts of Life” are remembering her. Mindy Cohn, who played Natalie, posts on Instagram that Rae was a “champion,” “teacher” and “a proud example of the tenacity and perseverance needed to live life.” Cohn ended with “I love you.” Kim Fields, who played Tootie, also expressed condolences. She said, “sorry, no words at the moment just love and tears…and yeah, smiles.” Todd Bridges, who starred with Rae on “Diff’rent Strokes” said on Twitter that Rae was loved by all her colleagues and the show “would not have been the same” without her. And one of Rae’s Broadway colleagues, Audra McDonald, tweets that Rae was “so sweet, funny, wise, lovely and brilliant.” McDonald ended her tweet with: “Rest In Peace Sweet Charlotte Rae.”
CBS – MOONVES SCANDAL
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) – The head of CBS entertainment spent time yesterday fielding a barrage pf questions about sexual harassment at the network. Kelly Kahl told reporters in Beverly Hills, California that the company isn’t perfect – and that there is always room for improvement in any large company. But he says the TV part of the operation is a safe and welcoming workplace. Kahl’s appearance before comes amid allegations against CBS Corp. CEO Less Moonves. Six women have alleged sexual misconduct by Moonves between the 1980s and the late 2000s. In response to the New Yorker magazine, Moonves acknowledges making advances that may have made women uncomfortable. But he also says he never misused his position to harm or hinder anyone’s career.
60 MINUTES BOSS TO DELAY RETURN
NEW YORK (AP) – The executive producer of the CBS news show “60 Minutes” is delaying his return from vacation. Jeff Fager will stay away from the top-rated newsmagazine show until an investigation into sexual misconduct claims at the network wraps up. He was due back today. Fager has denied any wrongdoing. And CBS declined to say when the investigation might end.
NEW YORK (AP) – Call it a case of “Cruise” control. Tom Cruise’s latest “Mission: Impossible” movie has captured the box office title for a second straight weekend. This time “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” held off a challenge from Winnie-the-Pooh. The Disney movie “Christopher Robin” finished in second place – a rare instance that a Disney movie hasn’t made its debut at the top of chart. Number three is “The Spy Who Dumped Me,” followed by “Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again” and “The Equalizer 2.”
DAN AYKROYD – COMEDY MUSEUM
JAMESTOWN, N.Y. (AP) – Dan Aykroyd has brought his Harley Davidson motorcycle to the new National Comedy Center. But he didn’t leave with it. The comedian left the bike there for permanent display. It was the same chopper he used to ride to “Saturday Night Live” studios when he was on the show. The National Comedy Center, which opened last week, is full of comedic artifacts including costumes and scripts. Dozens of interactive exhibits let visitors explore decades of humor and their own comedic tastes.
REALITY TV STAR DIES
LEXINGTON, S.C. (AP) – Authorities say a reality television star from the series “My 600-lb Life” has been found dead at a South Carolina home. James “LB” Bonner was 30. The sheriff’s department in Lexington County says deputies performing a welfare check found Bonner dead from a gunshot wound Thursday. It didn’t appear foul play was involved.
by Oscar Wells Gabriel II
Follow Oscar Wells Gabriel II on Twitter at https://twitter.com/OWGabriel2