Theater reverses ban on 'Stomp the Yard'

Theater reverses banon 'Stomp the Yard'
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- The CEO of a theater chain who said he wouldn't show "Stomp the Yard" at his Springfield theaters because he feared the movie could attract gang members has changed his mind. "The chance of violence [happening] went down rapidly to about zero" because of the publicity surrounding his original decision, Tony Kerasotes of Kerasotes Theatres, a Midwest chain, said Thursday night.
"Stomp the Yard," the story of the fictional, historically black Truth University where the fraternities and their step competitions dominate the social scene, will be shown starting Sunday, Kerasotes said. The PG-13 rated movie, a Sony Screen Gems release, opened in theaters nationwide Friday, including at more than 40 Kerasotes-owned locations.
Kerasotes had said he feared a repeat of a fight and shooting that occurred Christmas Day at a screening of "Black Christmas" at Parkway Pointe theater in Springfield. "Black Christmas" is a horror film and doesn't depict the black community.
"I was fearful the movie ['Stomp the Yard'] could become the occasion for more gang violence, because I felt certain it would draw that audience," he had said.
Ken Page, president of the Springfield branch of the NAACP, said that not showing "Stomp the Yard" would have hurt black audiences, particularly black families that would be attracted to what he said is an uplifting film.
Nimoy's visit surprisesuniversity president
DAYTON -- Wright State University President Kim Goldenberg received a surprise at his retirement bash -- a visit from Mr. Spock of "Star Trek," aka actor Leonard Nimoy.
Nimoy greeted Goldenberg with the Vulcan salute, usually paired with the well-wishing, "Live long and prosper."
Goldenberg, 59, said he and his wife, Shelley, are Trekkies. "We don't collect the paraphernalia and all that," he said. "We like the show for its philosophies." Goldenberg will retire Jan. 31 after nine years as president of Wright State. About 200 people attended the celebration Thursday night at the Dayton Art Institute.
Nimoy, 75, starred in the original "Star Trek" TV series, which ran from 1966-69, and in numerous "Star Trek" movies.
A scary new network
PASADENA, Calif. -- Television will soon have an option for people who want to be scared out of their wits at any hour.
Chiller, a new network devoted exclusively to horror movies and series, will crawl up from the crypt on March 1. The specialty network is being launched by NBC Universal Cable Entertainment.
The series "Friday the 13th," "Twin Peaks," "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" and "Tales from the Crypt" will be on the lineup at first. Look for movies like "The Shining" "Psycho" and "Blade Runner" to be in heavy rotation. The network hasn't announced any original series.
The satellite service DirecTV is, so far, the only carrier to say it will carry Chiller. The network will also be presented as a triple-pack service, with separate high definition and on-demand channels. Chiller is similar to Sleuth, an NBC Universal network devoted to crime mysteries. The company also owns USA, Bravo and Sci Fi.
Today's birthdays
Actor-director Charles Nelson Reilly is 76. Comedian Rip Taylor is 73. Actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus is 46. Rock singer Graham "Suggs" McPherson (Madness) is 46. Country singer Trace Adkins is 45. Actor Patrick Dempsey is 41. Actor Orlando Bloom is 30.

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