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Web posted on:
Monday, November 02, 1998 6:29:08 PM EST

Today's buzz stories:

Domingo, center, with his "Three Tenor" counterparts

Placido Domingo 'upgrading' role at L.A. Opera

LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- Placido Domingo, one-third of the Three Tenors, will take over as artistic director and co-manager of the L.A. Opera in 2000 while keeping his duties as head of the Washington Opera. Domingo, currently the artistic adviser and principal guest conductor for the L.A. Opera, will become its artistic director, sharing oversight of the company with a yet-to-be-named manager.

"Becoming artistic director at L.A. Opera feels less like a major change in my life there than a kind of upgrading," Domingo said from Washington, where he's appearing in the season's opening production of "Fedora." Domingo will replace General Director Peter Hemmings when he retires in June 2000, the Los Angeles Times reported. Domingo, 57, said he will also continue his singing and conducting career.

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James Woods says he earned success

NEW YORK (CNN) -- James Woods is an Oscar-nominated actor who currently stars in the No. 1 movie at the box office, "John Carpenter's Vampires." But Woods says he didn't earn his success through easy connections.

"I hate to say that, but name an actor, and I'll tell you who they're related to," says Woods. "It's unbelievable! So I came out here, this sort of skinny geeky kid, and it just took forever. I didn't get my first sort of break until I was 30."

In "Vampires," Woods plays a cranky Nosferatu slayer. He says he ad-libbed a whole slew of diatribes against religion, women, homosexuals and other targets just to amuse the director, and was shocked when they wound up in the film. "One day I saw him choking from laughter on the camera deck," Woods said of Carpenter. "I said, 'Do not use this scene in the movie. My movie career will be over! But John had the (courage) to go for it." The 51-year-old actor received a best actor Academy Award nomination for the 1996 film "Ghosts of Mississippi."

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Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee rally seniors for social change

RENTON, Washington (CNN) -- Husband-and-wife actors Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee want to make a difference. At a recent appearance at the Renton Senior Center to promote their book, "With Ossie And Ruby: In This Life Together," the couple urged fellow seniors to play active roles in campaigning for social change.

"We've got the possibility of setting things right," Dee, 74, said at the center on Friday. "There's a boldness that belongs to us as seniors. We have to get our army together. We can get out there and put this world in order." The couple -- with numerous film credits including "Do The Right Thing," in which they appeared together -- will celebrate their 50th anniversary on December 9.

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Producers plan 25th anniversary 'Texas Chain Saw Massacre'

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Fans of "The Texas Chain Saw Massacre" will be happy to know that a fifth installment of the classic slasher franchise is already in pre-production. Unapix Entertainment has bought the rights for a 25th anniversary sequel, titled "TX25." It's expected to hit theaters next year. Its executive producer is promising the new film will have "all the thrills and chills of the 1974 original, but will deliver them in a hip, contemporary way."

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George Michael video spoofs lewd conduct incident

NEW YORK (CNN) -- George Michael has apparently filtered his recent run-in with the law into his creative endeavors. The singer was arrested last April for lewd conduct in the restroom of a Beverly Hills park. The video to his latest song, "Outside," spoofs that incident by showing couples performing sex acts in public places. One scene reportedly features a public restroom that changes into a disco while Michael sings in a policeman's uniform. The video will make its debut Wednesday on an MTV special about Michael.

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Reuters contributed to this report.

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