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Disney to premiere 'Descendants' sequel across 5 networks

The Disney Channel is giving a big push to its sequel for the "Descendants" movie in July, premiering it simultaneously on five television networks and online.

Disney said Tuesday that "Descendants 2" will air July 21 on ABC, the Disney Channel, Lifetime, Freeform and Disney XD, as well as on those networks' apps. The original "Descendants," about the teenage sons and daughters of some famed Disney villains, ranked as the fifth most-watched cable TV movie when it came out two years ago.

Disney executive Gary Marsh said the passion for the movie is unlike anything they've seen since "High School Musical." It has inspired spin-off books, a music video and other merchandise.

The movie stars Dove Cameron, Cameron Boyce, Mitchell Hope, Sofia Carson, Booboo Stewart and Mitchell Hope.

'Bachelor' star Chris Soules charged in deadly Iowa crash

Chris Soules, an Iowa farmer who starred on "The Bachelor" two years ago, was arrested Tuesday after authorities say he caused a traffic accident that killed a fellow farmer and fled the scene.

Soules, who was portrayed as a wholesome country boy looking for love on season 19 of the ABC reality show, was behind the wheel of a pickup truck that rear-ended a tractor in northern Iowa near Aurora on Monday night, the Iowa State Patrol said.

The crash caused the tractor to roll and go into a ditch on one side of the road, while Soules' truck went into a ditch on the other side, the patrol said. The tractor driver was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. The patrol identified him as 66-year-old Kenneth Mosher, a farmer from Aurora.

Soules wasn't injured in the accident and left the area before emergency responders arrived, the Buchanan County Sheriff's Office said. He was arrested later at his home in Arlington, which is about 10 miles (16 kilometers) north of Aurora and 75 miles (120 kilometers) north of Iowa City.

Authorities said someone had called 911 to report the crash, but they didn't release the identity of the caller or audio of the call. Investigators spoke to multiple witnesses and determined that Soules caused the crash and fled, according to a complaint, which doesn't name the witnesses.

Police audio of the incident obtained by the Des Moines Register shows that a deputy told a dispatcher Soules "took off" in a red truck while Mosher was unconscious in his vehicle.

Alcohol was found at the scene, and investigators are trying to determine whose it was, said Sheriff Bill Wolgram. Court records show that Soules has had some driving infractions in the past, including a 2006 conviction for operating while intoxicated.

Soules, 35, was arrested about five hours after the crash and then booked into the Buchanan County Jail on a charge of leaving the scene of a fatal accident, which carries a penalty of up to five years in prison. He was released around midday on $10,000 bond, and will be required to surrender his passport and wear an electronic monitoring ankle bracelet until his trial, jail officials said.

The sheriff's office said the crash remains under investigation and additional charges could be filed.

Soules' lawyers, Sean and Molly Spellman, didn't immediately reply to messages seeking comment. His spokesman, Stan Rosenfield, issued a statement saying Soules "was devastated" to learn that Mosher died.

"His thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Mosher's family," said Rosenfield, who declined to comment further.

Soules first drew national attention as a participant in "The Bachelorette" in 2014, when he tried to win the affections of star Andi Dorfman but was passed over. A fan favorite, ABC had him back as "The Bachelor" the following year. His appearance drew attention to farming life and some of the struggles facing rural Iowa. He proposed to Chicago fertility nurse Whitney Bischoff at the end of his season, but their relationship ended shortly after the show.

Soules has since served as a spokesman for various agricultural interests and worked in farm real estate and investing.

The crash comes as Gov. Terry Branstad and lawmakers have expressed alarm about a rising number of deaths on Iowa roadways caused by intoxicated and distracted drivers. Branstad last week signed laws allowing officers to pull over drivers for texting while driving, increasing the penalties for texting-related vehicular homicides, and creating a statewide sobriety and drug monitoring program for intoxicated drivers.


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Ex-reality TV star arrested in Phoenix for car theft, drugs

A former reality television star has been arrested in Phoenix for alleged vehicle theft and drug possession.

Phoenix police say 31-year-old Jacob Harris was released on his own recognizance Monday after his initial court appearance. He faces a May 5 status conference.

Harris was on Discovery channel's "Deadliest Catch" series.

According to court documents, Harris traveled from Washington state to Arizona with a female companion and was staying at a Phoenix hotel.

The unidentified woman called police Saturday to say Harris took her vehicle without her permission while she slept.

Harris was found at a gas station and told police he was getting breakfast for himself and the woman.

Police say a baggie of Xanax pills fell out of his pocket and Harris also had crystal methamphetamine in his possession.

HGTV's 'Flip or Flop' to return with divorcing co-hosts

The divorcing co-hosts of HGTV's "Flip or Flop" are returning to the show for a seventh season.

HGTV announced late Monday that Tarek and Christina El Moussa will be back on the show for a 20-episode run beginning in December.

Tarek El Moussa filed for divorce from Christina El Moussa in January. They have two children together.

The couple announced their separation last year.

"Flip or Flop" follows the El Moussas as they buy, renovate and sell Southern California properties. HGTV says the popularity of the show has inspired a franchise that will follow house-flippers in other cities.

O'Reilly surprised by Fox exit, says truth will come out

Five days after being fired from his top-rated Fox News Channel perch, Bill O'Reilly used a podcast to express his dismay and vowed that "the truth will come out."

"I am sad that I'm not on television anymore," he said in an episode Monday of his personal website's "No Spin News" podcast, available only to subscribers after this week's free window. "I was very surprised how it all turned out."

O'Reilly, who exited Fox News amid sexual harassment allegations that he has denied, said he couldn't add much more "because there's much stuff going on right now."

"But I can tell you that I'm very confident the truth will come out and when it does, I don't know if you're going to be surprised, but I think you're going to be shaken, as I am," said O'Reilly, who was Fox's most popular and most lucrative personality.

He declined to expand on that point, he said, "because I just don't want to influence the flow of the information. I don't want the media to take what I say and misconstrue it."

But his listeners have a right to know exactly what happened, and "we are working in that direction," O'Reilly said.

O'Reilly's remarks were the first since his exit on Wednesday, which took place while he was away on his vacation. He had issued a statement after Fox announced his departure, defending himself against what he called "unfounded claims" and saying he took pride in his 20-plus years with the news channel.

O'Reilly's firing came after The New York Times reported in early April that five women had received settlements totaling $13 million after they alleged sexual harassment and other mistreatment and dozens of advertisers pulled out of his show. He was paid a reported $25 million upon his exit.

During his podcast, O'Reilly didn't address speculation that he might land elsewhere in broadcasting or cable, but he discussed briefly how he intended to build his online forum into a "genuine news program."

On Monday's roughly 20-minute podcast, he discussed topics including President Donald Trump's poll numbers. As the program is developed, guests and other elements would be added, he said.

Not long after O'Reilly signed off online, Tucker Carlson's show moved into the 8 p.m. EDT time slot that had been home to "The O'Reilly Factor."

Carlson tipped his hat to O'Reilly at the top of "Tucker Carlson Tonight" without discussing why he left.

"I watched Bill O'Reilly at this hour for years, and I always marveled at how well-prepared he was, how tough he was, and how crisply and directly he expressed his views," he said. "What O'Reilly did was not easy. He set a high bar, and I'm gonna do my best to meet it."

One of Carlson's guests, Caitlyn Jenner, teased him about being shifted to various Fox News time slots because of the departures of Megyn Kelly, who left for a new job at NBC, and O'Reilly.

"You've been running around .... Hopefully you're here for a while," Jenner said, smiling, and then discussed politics and gender identity issues with the host.

Earlier Monday, former Fox News host Andrea Tantaros filed a lawsuit against Fox News saying she believes network operatives used bogus social media accounts to torture her after she complained about sexual harassment by longtime former CEO Roger Ailes, who resigned last July. The network denied her claims.

Bill O'Reilly says he's surprised that he's off TV but is confident the truth will come out about his exit from Fox News

Bill O'Reilly says he's surprised that he's off TV but is confident the truth will come out about his exit from Fox News.

Lawsuit claims ex-Fox News host was harassed online by Fox

Former Fox News host Andrea Tantaros said in a lawsuit Monday she believes network operatives used bogus social media accounts to torture her after she complained about sexual harassment.

She also said she believes someone hacked her computer and phone.

Tantaros' attorney, Judd Burstein, filed the suit in Manhattan federal court. The lawsuit doesn't offer hard evidence that Fox was behind harassing tweets.

It says an analysis revealed surveillance software on her computer, but not who put it there, and it hopes to use the court's power to reveal who was behind the harassment. The lawsuit claims Tantaros was viewed as a threat by Fox executives after she declined an offer of more than $1 million to remain silent.

The lawsuit says Tantaros suspected her emails and telephone conversations were being monitored after she revealed personal information in calls or emails that were then referenced by others in cruel social media posts.

A law firm, Dechert LLP, representing Fox, said in a statement that the network and its executives "flatly deny that they conducted any electronic surveillance" and have no knowledge of the harassing tweets.

"This lawsuit is a flimsy pretext to keep Ms. Tantaros and her sexual harassment claims in the public eye after the State Supreme Court directed her to bring them in arbitration," it added.

Last August, Tantaros sued the network, its ousted chairman, and other top executives, claiming they retaliated after she detailed unwanted sexual advances made by her onetime boss, Roger Ailes. Burstein argued that it should be argued in open court, but a Manhattan state judge ruled in February it should be resolved in a closed-door arbitration.

Tantaros worked as a host and political analyst for Fox News from 2011 to 2016.

Sex, lies and physics: 'Genius' drama is Einstein tell-all

The unparalleled brilliance and puckish wit? Check. The trademark wild mop of hair? Check. The marital infidelity and free-wheeling sex?

Yes, check again for Albert Einstein, who in National Geographic's miniseries "Genius" comes across as a full-blooded, hot-blooded figure who lived by his own rules, both scientific and domestic.

The 10-part series, starring Oscar-winning Geoffrey Rush ("Shine") as the mature physicist and Johnny Flynn ("Lovesick") as the budding one, also places Einstein firmly in a 20th-century world engulfed by political chaos and war.

"Genius" (debuting 9 p.m. EDT Tuesday) is both entertaining and intelligent, as befits a drama that's based on Walter Isaacson's acclaimed 2007 biography, "Einstein: His Life and Universe," and is the Nat Geo channel's first scripted series.

Also credit Ron Howard, who brought another complex scientist to the screen in "A Beautiful Mind," the 2001 Academy Award-winning film about troubled mathematician John Nash.

There are some "Mind"-type cinematic flourishes in "Genius," restrained special effects that provide a visual sense of Einstein's thinking and the universe as he sees it and helpful for the science-challenged.

But the series opens with Rush's Einstein and a young woman in the throes of passion (intercut, unnervingly, with an assassination that foretells of the upheaval ahead for him and the world).

It was a deliberate choice, said Howard, who directed episode one and is among the series' executive producers that include Brian Grazer, his longtime creative partner, and Gigi Pritzker. Noah Pink and Ken Biller are the screenwriters.

"Not only did it (the scene) appeal to us dramatically, but it also fulfilled the desire to announce to audiences right away that we weren't approaching it in an entirely straightforward, traditional and academic way," Howard said. "We were looking for the drama in the story and willing to deal with Einstein, warts and all."

"Genius" hopscotches through time as it follows Einstein flailing as an unconventional student; a young lover and imperfect husband and parent; a Jew clashing with the German scientific establishment; and as the conflicted father of the atomic age.

Rush said he was more familiar with aspects of Einstein's world-changing theory of relativity than with the man himself, a distant figure often reduced to a beaming, wild-haired figure with brains.

"We all know the look of Einstein — it should be an emoji," Rush said by phone from Australia. As he delved further into Einstein's life, Rush was struck by his many sides and the fame he achieved for work unknowable by many.

"He experienced a level of global celebrity equal to that of his contemporary, Charlie Chaplin," Rush said. But while Chaplin's Little Tramp film character had an everyman appeal, Einstein "managed that by coming up with theories that 99.9 percent of the world had no idea what he was talking about."

Not all were fans. Einstein was seen as a threat by, among others, fellow German scientists who derided his work as a sign of foreign influence and "devoid" of reality in the changing political order destined to be ruled by Adolf Hitler.

There are parallels with today's clashes over climate change and other science, Howard said.

"This sort of tactic of trying to galvanize support around a particular agenda by narrowing your focus, as opposed to broadening it, by doubting innovation and trying to rigidly hang on to accepted ideas. There's nothing new in that," he said.

Howard wants viewers to appreciate the courage it took the trailblazing Einstein to pursue his ideas against fierce opposition and, despite his own sometimes "less than noble" personal behavior, become a voice for shared humanity.

"There's a kind of courage required for Einstein to have given us everything he gave us, in addition to the transformative work in physics. The role that he ultimately took on as a philosopher and political force," Howard said, "that was not something he welcomed at all. It was thrust upon him."


This story has been corrected to show the spelling of the producer's name is Pritzker instead of Pritzer.


Lynn Elber can be reached at and on Twitter at

Megyn Kelly may return to TV sooner than expected

Megyn Kelly may be appearing on NBC sooner than expected, according to a report from The New York Post. The former Fox News standout left the network in the beginning of 2016 after months of rumors that she was mulling other offers.

>> Read more trending news

“She will start in May, and her Sunday show will premiere in June,” the Post reported, citing an unnamed source.

Kelly is expected to wear many professional hats at the network and will host a daily talk show later in the summer, according to the Post.

>> Related: Megyn Kelly says 2016 election helped her marriage

Shortly after she left Fox News, speculation was that she wouldn’t be able to appear on television until July, after fulfilling a noncompete clause in her contract with Fox. 

“This was a tough decision for me, because I love this show, our staff, my crew, my colleagues here at Fox -- and you, all of you,” Kelly said during her final broadcast on Fox.

Review: Trombone Shorty album displays another growth spurt

Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andrews reinforces his commitment to New Orleans on "Parking Lot Symphony," a rich, energetic collection of funk, R&B, and even dirges and pop. As is his calling card, Andrews broadens the city's musical traditions without straying too far as his voice finds new hues and shades of expression.

Andrews tips his hat to the city's legends by covering The Meters' "It Ain't No Use" with that band's Leo Nocentelli on acoustic guitar. The sparking celebration of "Here Come the Girls," Allen Toussaint by way of Ernie K-Doe, has Ivan Neville on piano.

Instrumentals like "Fanfare" and "Tripped Out Slim" also dig deep into Andrews' NOLA roots and along with the dirges bookending the album — the first mournful, the closer hopeful — showcase his skills across an orchestra of instruments, from trumpet and keyboards to glockenspiel and vibraphone.

If "Where It At" sounds more than a bit like an 'N Sync production, it's on purpose but still creepy, and if you're reminded of Lenny Kravitz on "Dirty Water" or "No Good Time," chalk it up to Andrews' long-ago stint in his band.

Part of a large and prominent musical family, Andrews' involvement in his native city — he's from its Treme neighborhood, a cradle of jazz and brass bands — goes far beyond his allegiance to its musical styles. There's his foundation and music academy, mentoring work as well as collaborations with a project to improve low-performing schools through arts programs.

Should they pave paradise to put up a "Parking Lot Symphony," you won't hear a peep out of me.

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