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Published: Tue, September 11, 2012 @ 12:00 a.m.

newsmakers

‘SNL’ adds 3 comics for upcoming season

NEW YORK

“Saturday Night Live” is adding three new performers for the upcoming season after the departures of Kristen Wiig and Andy Samberg.

The sketch-comedy show announced Monday that Cecily Strong, Aidy Bryant and Tim Robinson will be joining “SNL” for its 38th season.

Strong comes from the touring company of the Chicago improv theater Second City. She will be a cast member.

Bryant hails from the iO Theater in Chicago, and Robinson is an alumnus of Second City. They will be featured players.

It’s a period of transition for “SNL,” which will enter its new season without Samberg, Wiig or Abby Elliott. Many also expect Jason Sudeikis to depart soon.

“Saturday Night Live” premieres Saturday with host Seth MacFarlane and musical guest Frank Ocean.

Shark expert who worked on ‘Jaws’ dies

SYDNEY

Ron Taylor, a beloved Australian marine conservationist who helped film some of the terrifying underwater footage used in the classic shark-thriller “Jaws,” has died after a long battle with cancer, a close family friend said Monday. He was 78.

Taylor, who had suffered from leukemia for two years, died Sunday at a hospital in Sydney, said Andrew Fox, who worked with Taylor on shark-conservation efforts for decades.

Fox said Taylor had mixed feelings about his work on “Jaws,” which terrified beachgoers but ultimately helped draw attention to the intimidating yet often threatened animals.

Taylor and his wife, Valerie, spent years filming great white sharks and trying to convince a wary public that the much-feared creatures were beautiful animals worthy of respect. Their stunning up-close images of sharks drew the attention of “Jaws” director Steven Spielberg, who asked the couple to capture footage of a great white for his 1975 blockbuster.

Casino mogul wins $20M in slander case

LOS ANGELES

A jury on Monday awarded casino mogul Steve Wynn $20 million in his slander case against “Girls Gone Wild” founder Joe Francis, who claimed the creator of some of Las Vegas’ most-upscale resorts threatened to kill him over a gambling debt.

Witnesses disputed Francis’ claims during a four-day trial, including Grammy-winning record producer Quincy Jones, who Francis said told him about Wynn’s threats and showed him a stack of emails that contained them.

Wynn vehemently denied that.

In siding with Wynn, the jury determined that there was clear and convincing evidence that Francis slandered the casino mogul and knew his allegations were false when he made them.

Vindicator wire services


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