'Beauty and the Beast' debut weekend earnings revised up

NEW YORK (AP) -- Disney's live-action "Beauty and the Beast" was an even bigger hit than first thought. The film's weekend box office earnings were revised up nearly $5 million from estimates Sunday. In final figures Monday, Disney said "Beauty and the Beast" made $174.8 million in North American theaters. The result set numerous records.

PM Prep-Segue

ROMAN POLANSKI CASE LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A judge in Los Angeles says he will be issuing a ruling that might end the long-running sex abuse case of Roman Polanski. The Oscar winning director is an international fugitive from justice in the United States -- this after fleeing in 1989 before he was sentenced for having sex with a 13-year-old girl.

'Beauty and the Beast' roars with monstrous $170M debut

NEW YORK (AP) -- Disney's live-action "Beauty" was a beast at the box office, opening with an estimated $170 million in North American ticket sales and setting a new high mark for family movies. "Beauty and the Beast" blew past the previous record-holder for G- or PG-rated releases, according to studio estimates Sunday. Last year, Disney's "Finding Dory" debuted with a then-PG-best $135 million. "Beauty and the Beast" felled many other records, too.

'Beauty's' Beast Dan Stevens breaks out behind the effects

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) -- When Dan Stevens met his "Beauty and the Beast" co-star Emma Watson in preproduction, she wanted to get to work analyzing the story and the themes. He just wanted to talk about her U.N. speech about gender inequality. "It was so impressive and so mighty in its message. I was so blown away by it," Stevens said recently.

'La La Land,' 'Beauty' herald more Days of Sun for musicals

So, perhaps you've heard: "La La Land" didn't win best picture at the Oscars. But if every cloud has a silver lining, this one might be called golden: The Emma Stone-Ryan Gosling musical, which did win six Oscars, has been racking up box office numbers remarkable for a musical -- nearly $417 million globally so far, according to comScore -- and even more for an original one with no previously known songs or story.

Alan Menken on cuts, adds and intimidating Emma Watson

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) -- Composer Alan Menken really wanted to include the song "If I Can't Love Her" in the new live-action "Beauty and the Beast." The soaring ballad, sung by the Beast, was written for the Broadway musical as the closing number before intermission. "It's a monumentally good song. But it is unique to the structure of a stage musical," Menken said recently.

Review: A 'Beauty and the Beast' with a new dimension

The Disney "live-action" remakes, of which the new "Beauty and the Beast" is but one in an assembly line, are starting to resemble an iPhone software update. Click a button and that old cartoon interface changes Belle into Emma Watson, the Beast into Dan Stevens and maybe fixes a few bugs in the system.

Tribeca to close with 'Godfather' reunion, screenings

NEW YORK (AP) -- The 16th Tribeca Film Festival will close with a "Godfather" cast reunion and a back-to-back screening of parts one and two of Francis Ford Coppola's classic saga. Tribeca announced Wednesday that the 45th anniversary screenings will be followed by a conversation with Coppola, Al Pacino, Diane Keaton, Robert Duvall, James Caan and Talia Shire.

Review: A 'Beauty and the Beast' with a new dimension

The Disney "live-action" remakes, of which the new "Beauty and the Beast" is but one in an assembly line, are starting to resemble an iPhone software update. Click a button and that old cartoon interface changes Belle into Emma Watson, the Beast into Dan Stevens and maybe fixes a few bugs in the system.

Children under 16 can't see 'Beauty and the Beast' in Russia

MOSCOW (AP) -- Children under age 16 won't be able to go to the new Disney film "Beauty and the Beast" in Russia because it includes a gay character, the Russian Culture Ministry said Tuesday. The ministry told The Associated Press in an emailed statement that its decision for the 16-plus rating followed petitions by lawmaker Vitaly Milonov, known for his ultraconservative views, petitioned for the live-action film to be banned.

Emma Watson hits back at critics of provocative photo shoot

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Emma Watson has hit back at critics who claimed her recent photoshoot for Vanity Fair betrayed her feminist ideals. In one image from the shoot, photographed by Tim Walker, Watson poses in a crochet white top that reveals part of her cleavage. The 26-year-old Watson told The Associated Press on Saturday that the controversy represented "a fundamental and complete misunderstanding of what feminism is.