Wednesday, March 12, 2014
From news service reports
LOS ANGELES - When "Beloved" starring Oprah Winfrey fell flat at the box office in 1998, Winfrey drowned her sorrows in macaroni and cheese.
Oprah Winfrey, right, shares a moment with Forest Whitaker at the premiere of “Lee Daniels’ The Butler.”
The Associated Press
She found a different way to celebrate when "Lee Daniels' The Butler," her first big-screen performance since "Beloved," hit No. 1 in its debut last weekend.
"I actually got a purple Hula Hoop that I bring out for occasions like this," Winfrey said this week. "So I brought out that Hula Hoop in the front yard."
The scant turnout for "Beloved," based on Toni Morrison's novel, caught Winfrey by surprise after the reception of 1985's "The Color Purple," the Steven Spielberg film in which she made her big-screen debut and which earned her an Oscar nomination.
"I didn't know that by Saturday morning you could already know that you're a loser," she said, referring to how quickly a new film's performance is judged. "So Saturday morning I get the call that ('Beloved') was beat out by 'Bride of Chucky."'
She asked her chef to start cooking comfort food and ended up "in a macaroni-and-cheese coma."
Given that unhappy memory, she said, she decided on "no expectations" for director Daniels' "The Butler," in which Forest Whitaker portrays a longtime White House butler and Winfrey plays his wife.
"Do the work, offer it, and however it's received" was her approach, said the former daytime talk-show queen who now oversees her cable channel, OWN.
"I actually think this weekend is going to do better than we imagine," Winfrey said. "It's touching the hearts of people who didn't expect it."
Hud Mellencamp still on Duke football team
DURHAM, N.C. - Duke coach David Cutcliffe says walk-on Hud Mellencamp will continue to practice with the football team while he deals with felony battery charges in Indiana.
Cutcliffe said Thursday the son of rocker John Mellencamp will remain active in practice and "we'll let the legal due process occur."
Hud Mellencamp, 19, is charged with punching and kicking a 19-year-old man last month.
Authorities say Mellencamp's younger brother, 18-year-old Speck Mellencamp, entered the porch of a man's home in Bloomington, Ind., and punched him in the face, believing that man had hit him earlier that evening.