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Published: Wednesday, January 03, 2018 @ 1:14 PM
Updated: Wednesday, January 03, 2018 @ 1:14 PM
MADISON, Wis. — Sony Pictures is trying to capitalize on a tragedy by releasing a movie starring horror character Slender Man, according to the father of one of two Wisconsin girls who attacked their classmate to please the fictional boogeyman.
Bill Weier, father of Anissa Weier, told The Associated Press in a telephone interview Wednesday that he hopes local theaters won't show the movie when it's released in May.
"It's absurd they want to make a movie like this," Bill Weier said. "It's popularizing a tragedy is what it's doing. I'm not surprised but in my opinion it's extremely distasteful. All we're doing is extending the pain all three of these families have gone through."
Sony Pictures media relations officials didn't reply to two emails left in the company's general inbox for reporter's inquiries.
Weier and Morgan Geyser lured classmate Payton Leutner in 2014 to a wooded park in Waukesha, a Milwaukee suburb. There, Geyser stabbed Leutner 19 times, narrowly missing her heart, while Weier urged her on. Leutner managed to crawl out of the woods to a path where a passing bicyclist found her. She survived the attack.
Weier and Geyser told detectives they had to kill Leutner to prove to Slender Man that they were worthy of being his servants as well as protect their families from him. All three girls were 12 years old at the time of the attack.
Geyser, now 15, pleaded guilty to attempted first-degree intentional homicide in a deal with prosecutors, who have asked she get at least 40 years in a mental hospital when she's sentenced in February. Weier, now 16, was sentenced to 25 years in a mental institution last month after pleading guilty to attempted second-degree intentional homicide.
Slender Man was created online by Eric Knudson in 2009 as a mysterious specter photo-edited into everyday images of children at play. He's typically depicted as a slim, spidery figure in a black suit with a featureless white face that preys on children. He has grown into a popular boogeyman and has appeared in video games and online stories.
The Sony production, entitled "Slender Man," marks the first full-length feature built around the character. The picture is directed by Sylvain White, who also helmed 2007's "Stomp the Yard," and stars Javier Botet as Slender Man.
The studio released a trailer Wednesday. It's unclear from the preview whether the movie will include any elements from the Wisconsin case, but in one scene a wall is covered with drawings of Slender Man that resemble sketches Geyser drew. Other scenes show Slender Man stalking a girl in the woods and a girl stabbing herself in the head with a scalpel in school, showering a classmate with blood.
Geyser's attorney, Anthony Cotton, declined to comment on the movie. A spokesman for Leutner's family didn't immediately reply to email and voicemail messages.
Slender Man has been cited as a factor in other crimes. Days after the Wisconsin stabbing, a 13-year-old girl in Hamilton County, Ohio, attacked her mother with a knife. The mother told WLWT-TV that she thought the girl was obsessed with Slender Man. In September of that same year, a 14-year-old girl in Port Richey, Florida, set her house on fire. Sheriff's deputies said she started the fire after reading an e-book called "Soul Eater" and reading about Slender Man.
Published: Wednesday, January 17, 2018 @ 7:00 AM
NEW YORK — The widow of late Eagles guitarist Glenn Frey is suing the New York City hospital that treated her husband before his death in 2016.
According to Reuters, Cindy Frey filed a lawsuit Tuesday accusing Mount Sinai Hospital and gastroenterologist Steven Itzkowitz of negligence while treating the musician, who had ulcerative colitis, in late 2015.
The wrongful death lawsuit alleges that "Frey was rendered sick, sore, lame and disabled" because Itzkowitz and the hospital did not properly diagnose, treat or disclose the risks of treatment to him, Reuters reported.
Frey died Jan. 18, 2016, after suffering "complications from rheumatoid arthritis, acute ulcerative colitis and pneumonia," the band said in a statement at the time. He was 67.
Eagles manager Irving Azoff previously told The Wrap that rheumatoid arthritis medications were partly to blame for Frey's death.
“The colitis and pneumonia were side effects from all the meds,” Azoff said.
Cindy Frey is seeking "unspecified damages," Reuters reported.
Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 12:20 PM
LOS ANGELES — Kim Kardashian West and Kanye West are parents of three. The TV personality and rapper welcomed a baby girl Monday via surrogate. The couple, married in 2014, are already parents to daughter North, 4, and son Saint, 2.
Kardashian West confirmed the news on her official website.
“Kanye and I are happy to announce the arrival of our healthy, beautiful baby girl. We are incredibly grateful to our surrogate who made our dreams come true with the greatest gift one could give and to our wonderful doctors and nurses for their special care. North and Saint are especially thrilled to welcome their baby sister.”
The baby was born Jan. 15 at 12:47 a.m. PT and weighed 7 pounds, 6 ounces, Kardashian West said.
Reports emerged in July that the celebrity pair hired a surrogate to carry their third child. By September, Kardashian West confirmed the news and later revealed to Ellen DeGeneres that they were having a baby girl.
Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 5:01 PM
MIAMI — Enrique Iglesias is taking a break from his ulta-private life to share the first photo of one of his twins with the world, and so is his rumored wife, retired tennis star Anna Kournikova.
E! News reported that the singer, who welcomed twins with Kournikova in December, shared the first photo of himself snuggling one of the babies on social media on Instagram with the caption, “My Sunshine.”
Kournivoca posted a similar photo an hour later on her Instagram page with the same caption. In the image, she cradles one of her babies in her hands and gives a kiss.
The couple kept Kournikova’s pregnancy a secret from the public for the duration until they welcomed the babies, a boy and a girl, late last year. According to TMZ, the twins were reportedly named Nicholas and Lucy.
Iglesias and Kournikova started dating in 2001 when the retired tennis star appeared as his love interest in the music video for his hit single “Escape.”
Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 4:06 PM
— Fans can enjoy new episodes of TLC’s revamped version of “Trading Spaces” starting this spring.
A new trailer for the latest iteration of the reality TV design show was announced Friday and included the April 7 premiere date for the program.
The trailer, on the Trading Spaces Facebook page, shows original host Paige Davis with designers Vern Yip, Hildi Santo-Tomas, Doug Wilson, Laurie Smith and Genevieve Gorder and carpenters Ty Pennington and Carter Oosterhouse.
New additions to the cast -- John Gidding, Kahi Lee, Sabrina Soto, Brett Tutor and Joanie Sprague -- are also featured.
Us Weekly reported that despite sexual assault allegations against Oosterhouse, TLC and “Trading Spaces” co-stars are sticking by the former model turned carpenter.
Former makeup artist Kailey Kaminsky said in a Dec. 14 interview with The Hollywood Reporter that Oosterhouse repeatedly coerced her into in sexual acts with him while on the set of his HGTV show “Carter Can” in 2008.
“What I can tell you from my experience with Carter is that he is an absolute professional,” Davis said during the 2018 Winter Television Critics Association Press Tour Jan. 12. “I’ve never had any experience with him where I haven’t just had the best time ever. He’s down to earth. He’s very good at what he does. And I enjoyed working these episodes with him. And I’m really excited for them to air.”
“Everything she just said, I reiterate,” Pennington said. “We know Carter as the Carter we know, and he’s a great guy.”
Yip also voiced support for Oosterhouse, saying, “From what I know of Carter, he is a decent human being. He is a solid person. He’s a loving husband. He’s a loving father. And I think we have to realize that it’s important to make sure that we listen to exactly what’s going on, and that we don’t throw somebody under the bus without first making sure that we understand the entire story and view it through the lens of the facts. That’s not me saying something is untrue or not true, but that’s just me saying that from what I know of Carter, he’s a good, good person.”
Nancy Daniels, president and general manager of TLC, said at the same event that the network is fine having the show continue with Oosterhouse.
“At the end of the day, we feel very comfortable continuing with Carter in the show,” she said, according to Variety.
“Trading Spaces” airs April 7 at 9 p.m. on TLC. Watch the trailer for the show’s return below.