MEDICAL EXAMINERS: ASTROWORLD DEATHS WERE DUE TO COMPRESSION ASPHYXIA
HOUSTON (AP) – The ten people who died at the Astroworld Music Festival were packed so tightly in the crowd that they could not breathe, according to medical examiners in Houston. The official cause of death was compression asphyxia, according to the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences. The people who died at the Nov. 5 concert ranged in age from 9 to 27. The medical examiners found contributing factors of cocaine, methamphetamine and ethanol in one man’s death. Survivors say the crowd surged during Travis Scott’s performance to the point where they found it difficult to breathe or raise their arms. Scott has said he did not hear screams in the crowd and did not know of the deaths until afterward.
SAWEETIE CREDITS PARENTS AS EARLY INFLUENCES
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Saweetie’s first audiences were among the toughest: a bunch of guys drinking beer and playing dominoes. They were her father’s friends, and he would have her rap for them. Saweetie says in hindsight, her father was preparing her for anything. Her mother was looking out for her too, but it took Saweetie a while to realize it. Saweetie says she did not want to go to college, but her mother pushed her to do it. Now Saweetie says she’s appreciative because she has a communications degree from USC.
FAITH HILL AND TIM McGRAW PLAY MARRIED COUPLE IN “1883”
LAS VEGAS (AP) – You’d think Faith Hill and Tim McGraw would be comfortable portraying a married couple in the new series “1883.” They had to make sure they weren’t TOO comfortable. Hill says she and McGraw agreed not to rehearse together at home or even talk about the show. She says after being married for 25 years, they felt it would be more authentic if neither one had a preconceived notion about the other’s character. McGraw says he is “awe-inspired” to get an opportunity to work with his wife on something this epic. Hill and McGraw play Margaret and James Dutton in “1883,” which is the prequel to the Paramount series, “Yellowstone.” “1883” premieres on Paramount Plus on Sunday.
“NEW YEAR’S ROCKIN’ EVE” ADDS MORE PERFORMERS
LOS ANGELES (AP) – AJR, Avril Lavigne (lah-VEEN’) and Walker Hayes have been added to the lineup of entertainment for the West Coast party for “New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” on ABC on New Year’s Eve. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Maneskin, French Montana, Big Boi, Polo G and OneRepublic also will perform. The show will broadcast performances from New York, New Orleans and San Juan, Puerto Rico.
MUSIC PRODUCER FLOW LA MOVIE IS KILLED IN PLANE CRASH
SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (AP) – Puerto Rican music producer Flow La Movie has died after a small plane crashed in the Dominican Republic on its way to Orlando, Florida, on Wednesday. All seven passengers and two crew members were killed as the plane attempted to land minutes after takeoff, according to Helidosa Aviation Group. It did not give details on what may have caused the crash or why the pilots tried to land. Flow La Movie, whose real name was Jose Angel Hernandez, was 36. Among his works was producing the 2018 song “Te Bote” sung by Bad Bunny and Ozuna.
“SEX AND THE CITY’ STAR CHRIS NOTH ACCUSED OF SEXUAL ASSAULTS
LOS ANGELES (AP) – The man called “Mr. Big” in the “Sex and the City” TV series and movies is facing sexual assault allegations. Two women tell The Hollywood Reporter that Chris Noth assaulted them in separate encounters. The trade publication reports one woman says she was assaulted in 2004, the other in 2015. Their identities are being withheld to protect their privacy. Noth tells THR the sex was consensual – and the claims against him are “categorically false.” The stories come as Noth is in a new TV series based on the original HBO series. One accuser says hearing Noth was on the new series “And Just Like That…” “set something off” in her – and prompted her to go public.
ALEC BALDWIN’S PHONE TO BE SEARCHED IN “RUST” SHOOTING PROBE
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) – Authorities in New Mexico are trying to find out whether Alec Baldwin’s cell phone might yield some clues about what happened when the actor fired a prop gun that killed the cinematographer on the set of the movie “Rust.” Investigators have submitted an affidavit seeking the phone to look over photos, texts and calls both before and after the shooting. Baldwin has said he pulled back the hammer of a revolver to rehearse a scene on Oct. 21 – and when he released the hammer, a live round came out, killing Halyna Hutchins and injuring director Joel Souza.
SOME BROADWAY SHOWS SHUTTERED AGAIN BECAUSE OF COVID VARIANT
NEW YORK (AP) – The adage that “the show must go on” is being challenged again – and again, it’s because of the coronavirus. Some top shows on Broadway have been pulled temporarily because of the spread of the latest COVID variant. Among them are “Hamilton” and “Mrs. Doubtfire,” along with others that scrapped shows this week. It isn’t only Broadway, either. In London, producers closed a revival of “Cabaret” starring Eddie Redmayne – because of the spread of the new variant.
KEEGAN-MICHAEL KEY TO HOST “NFL HONORS”
NEW YORK (AP) – Emmy-award winning actor, writer and producer Keegan-Michael Key will host the “NFL Honors” on Feb. 10. The event airs at 9 p.m., eastern on ABC and will be simulcast on ESPN+ and the NFL Network. At the event, The Associated Press individual awards will be given out. Key hosted the event in 2017. He created and co-starred in Comedy Central’s “Key & Peele” with Jordan Peele.