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Steve Harvey to ring in 2018 with a special Fox telecast

Move over ABC, CNN and all the other networks planning to ring in the New Year. This year Steve Harvey will be hosting his own brand of New Year's revelry on Fox.

The popular personality and talk-show host will be stationed in Times Square for "Fox's New Year's Eve with Steve Harvey." It will air Sunday, Dec. 31, from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. and from 11 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.

In its announcement Thursday, Fox said Harvey will be joined by surprise celebrity guests and some of the year's top music artists to wrap up 2017 and kick off 2018. These guests and co-hosts will be announced later.

The special adds to an already jammed schedule for Harvey, who hosts six TV shows and a nationally syndicated radio show.

15-acre crystal-clear lagoon to be built in Orlando

A resort and 15-acre crystal-clear lagoon is being planned for Orlando's Lake Nona development, officials with the Tavistock Development Company said Wednesday.

>> Read more trending news

Company officials said crews will break ground on the Lake Nona Resort on Lake Nona's southern shore next year. It's expected to open in 2020.

The eight-story resort will feature 250 rooms, 80 condominium units, a spa and a beach volleyball venue.

The resort's lagoon -- one the nation’s largest man-made crystal-clear lagoons -- will be lined with sandy beaches and have the potential to be expanded to more than 20 acres. Visitors will be able to enjoy swimming, sailing and paddle boarding.

The lagoon will be accessible by resort guests and members of the Lake Nona Golf and Country Club, company officials said.

Expansion plans include luxury condominiums, single-family homes and a beach club along the lagoon, officials said.

The wellness resort will also feature an expansive rooftop lounge and ballroom and several restaurants.

Company officials announced Monday that a water sports park will be built near the Orlando VA Medical Center.

Read more here.

>> Related: Amazon to build mega warehouse in Orlando

Kids who read ‘Harry Potter’ are less prejudiced and more mature, study says

Did you read “Harry Potter” books as a kid? You’re a better human being than most, scientists say. 

» RELATED: ‘Pawgwarts': Animal shelter gets inspiration from Harry Potter 

Researchers from universities in Italy published a paper in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology that explored how story reading can be a powerful strategy in improving human attitudes.

Many of the fictional groups in “Harry Potter,” including muggles, were marginalized much like immigrants, homosexuals and refugees are in the real world. That’s why scientists wanted to use the novels to examine the “perception of stigmatized groups” among elementary, high school and university students. 

>> Read more trending news

First, they administered a six-week course on “Harry Potter” to 34 fifth-graders. By the end of the course, the students were asked to fill out a questionnaire on immigration. They found that those who read the book discussed topics such as bigotry and prejudice, while those who didn’t read it did not. 

Next, they studied 117 high school students and discovered that those who dived into “Harry Potter” had more positive perceptions of the LGBT communities than those who did not.

Lastly, they assessed college students. They noticed that those who read it had less of an emotional connection with Voldemort, the villain of the series, and had "improved attitudes toward refugees," the study read.

» RELATED: There's now a Harry Potter wizarding school in Central Texas

“Results from one experimental intervention and two cross-sectional studies show that reading the novels of ‘Harry Potter’ improves attitudes toward stigmatized groups among those more identified with the main positive character and those less identified with the main negative character,” the authors wrote. 

“Participants reading about Harry Potter's interactions with characters belonging to stigmatized groups may have learned to take the perspective of discriminated group members,” they said, adding, “and in turn, applied this enhanced ability to understand disadvantaged groups to real-world out-group categories.”

» RELATED: 2 new Harry Potter-related books coming this fall

Since their findings demonstrated that reading “Harry Potter” books yielded positive attitudes among children, they believe their studies could help reduce prejudices against disadvantaged groups. 

For future experiments, they hope to test other popular novels that may have similar effects. 

» RELATED: The kids of 'Harry Potter:' Then and now

Top 20 Global Concert Tours from Pollstar

The Top 20 Global Concert Tours ranks artists by average box office gross per city and includes the average ticket price for shows Worldwide. The list is based on data provided to the trade publication Pollstar by concert promoters and venue managers.

TOP 20 GLOBAL CONCERT TOURS

1. The Rolling Stones; $10,212,672; $160.54.

2. U2; $8,890,455; $113.92.

3. Coldplay; $5,761,835; $103.59.

4. Metallica; $4,043,977; $104.84.

5. Lady Gaga; $3,466,727; $118.04.

6. Paul McCartney; $3,290,780; $122.10.

7. Guns N' Roses; $3,259,917; $113.70.

8. Bruno Mars; $2,241,572; $114.26.

9. Roger Waters; $2,193,990; $120.28.

10. Depeche Mode; $1,526,448; $80.94.

11. Ed Sheeran; $1,409,620; $85.39.

12. James Taylor; $1,335,001; $87.35.

13. Neil Diamond; $1,288,026; $104.04.

14. Kendrick Lamar; $1,267,568; $90.84.

15. Tim McGraw / Faith Hill; $1,121,312; $84.15.

16. Queen + Adam Lambert; $1,110,448; $98.74.

17. Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band; $1,084,704; $89.82.

18. J. Cole; $1,045,296; $79.20.

19. Florida Georgia Line; $1,035,861; $51.51.

20. Jerry Seinfeld; $1,035,219; $123.24.

For free upcoming tour information, go to www.pollstar.com

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Former 'What Not To Wear' co-hosts Stacy London, Clinton Kelly, won't be reuniting anytime soon

TLC may be bringing back classic hits like “Trading Spaces” and “Four Weddings,” but the network probably won’t be rebooting “What Not To Wear” anytime soon, as the show’s former co-hosts are in a mysterious feud.

>> Read more trending news 

On Wednesday, Clinton Kelly, who now co-hosts “The Chew,” revealed that his former “What Not To Wear” co-host, Stacy London, blocked him on Twitter. He shared the news on Twitter after finding it out himself when he and London were tagged in the same tweet, posting a screenshot of her profile, which indicates that she blocked him, and writing, “Alllll righty then.”

London did not respond to Kelly’s tweet.

While fans who enjoyed the duo’s playful bickering on the show were surprised to discover they’re less than friendly in real life, Kelly himself was apparently not shocked. As Twitter users responded asking him what happened, he wrote back to one and refused to share any details.

“The tea is old,” he said. “And I never spill tea unless I’m shook, which I’m not.”

Kelly hinted at a possible rift between him and London and revealed they don’t talk often in his book, “I Hate Everyone, Except You,” which was released earlier this year. During an interview, Clinton said, “We spent so much time together for 10 years ... It was funny in the beginning when we completed each other’s sentences ... It got to be like, ‘OK, we need a break from each other.’”

“We loved each other and despised each other, and if she were writing a book, I expect she would say exactly what she thought about me too. And it would be fine,” he later elaborated, adding that he doesn’t have any regrets about addressing their tension in his book.

The successful TLC show finally came to an end after an entire 10 seasons in October 2013.

>> Related: HGTV to air 'Fixer Upper' and 'Flip or Flop' spin-off shows

Paul Buckmaster, arranger for Bowie, Elton John, dead at 71

Grammy winner Paul Buckmaster, who arranged and orchestrated some of the best-known songs of David Bowie, the Rolling Stones and Elton John among others in a career that spanned a half-century, has died. He was 71.

His assistant, Diana Post, says Buckmaster died on Nov. 7 in Los Angeles. She didn't mention the cause of his death.

Born in London, Buckmaster was known for punchy string arrangements that added emotional power to rock classics such as the Stones' "Moonlight Mile" and Elton John's "Tiny Dancer." His credits also include Bowie's "Space Oddity," a 1972 album for Miles Davis, Carly Simon's "You're So Vain" and music for Guns N' Roses and Taylor Swift. He won a 2002 Grammy Award for his arrangement work on Train's "Drops of Jupiter."

Photos: Jason Momoa through the years

He got his big break on “Baywatch,” was a leader on “Game of Thrones” and has returned to the ocean as Aquaman in “Justice League.” Take a look at how Jason Momoa has changed over the years.

Photos: Lisa Bonet through the years

Actress Lisa Bonet celebrates her birthday on Nov. 16.

Current events disrupt Showtime series on mass shootings

It came as little surprise to producers, but Showtime's about-to-conclude documentary series on mass shooting incidents was itself disrupted by mass shootings.

Showtime cut back on reruns of the series following the Oct. 1 attack at a country music concert in Las Vegas that killed 58 people and injured hundreds. An episode for later in October on the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting that killed 49 had to be changed because the claim that it was the nation's most deadly such event ever was out of date.

Las Vegas and the Texas church shooting proved the series was relevant. But when television news is filled with coverage of fresh horror, a pay cable series examining similar events is the polar opposite of escapist television.

"Probably these events were unhelpful from a viewership standpoint," said Aaron Saidman, one of three executive producers of "Active Shooter: America Under Fire." ''People who participated in the series reached out to us and said it was really hard to watch in light of what happened."

The series' eighth and final episode, about the 1999 attack on Columbine High School in Colorado, premieres Friday at 8 p.m. Eastern.

Simply by the odds, producers figured there was likely to be a shooting at some point during the series' run. Real life was even worse than they feared. Showtime gave no serious consideration to postponing the documentaries, said Vinnie Molhotra, the network's senior vice president for unscripted series.

"I feel like it really solidified our reason for doing the series in the first place," he said.

The idea came from a meeting producers had with the Santa Monica, California, police chief, who told them about a 911 dispatcher who had to be reassigned because of an emotional response to taking calls during a shooting. They decided to look at eight separate events with different perspectives, such as through the eyes of first responders or hospital workers overwhelmed by victims.

Columbine, where 12 students and a teacher were killed, in many ways set the stage for incidents to follow. Filmmakers showed how it led to a change in how police handle such cases; in Columbine authorities were seen as too methodical and it led police in later shootings to be more aggressive upon arriving on a scene.

The episode notes that Columbine led to some 80 copycat incidents. Makers of the series talked to experts about how the documentaries themselves could avoid inspiring attackers, said executive producer Eli Holzman, partner with Saidman and Star Price. The series discusses the movement to persuade journalists to avoid repeating the names of people responsible for the crimes.

"We don't glorify the violence," Holzman said. "We don't glorify the shooter. We try to really emphasize the people who are working to solve the problem and show the humanity of the people dealing with the consequences. This is not a group that anyone would want to join or be part of."

The Columbine episode relies heavily on Dave Cullen, who wrote a book about it that proves wrong much of what was believed to have motivated the killers. He portrays attackers Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris as bumblers whose plans for greater destruction didn't pan out.

The Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut was the most notable event producers avoided this fall. Since parents of children killed there have been involved in other recent projects, there was no stomach for making them relive that time again.

Filmmakers didn't preach about how society should deal with the problem. But they gave survivors and rescuers they interviewed the chance to offer opinions.

Holzman said his own feelings had changed through working on the series. He's a gun owner.

"I would be willing to own less of them and go through a lot more in order to acquire them," he said. "I would be willing to make the compromise so that my fellow citizens would be less likely to be harmed."

Saidman said he's disgusted that mass shootings keep repeating with little serious discussion of how to stop them.

"We've tacitly accepted this level or carnage as a normal part of American life," he said. "I have grown to find that completely abhorrent and morally objectionable."

Franken faces ethics probe after woman says he groped her

Minnesota Sen. Al Franken faces a storm of criticism and a likely ethics investigation after a Los Angeles radio anchor accused him Thursday of forcibly kissing her and groping her during a 2006 USO tour. He is the first member of Congress caught up in the recent wave of allegations of sexual abuse and inappropriate behavior.

Franken apologized, but the criticism only grew through the day. Fellow Democrats swiftly condemned his actions, mindful of the current climate as well as the prospect of political blowback.

Republicans, still forced to answer for the multiple allegations facing Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, joined in pressing for an investigation. Franken said he would welcome it.

Leeann Tweeden posted her allegations, including a photo of Franken and her, on the website of KABC, where she works as a news anchor for a morning radio show. The photo shows Franken posing in a joking manner, smiling at the camera with his hands on her chest as she naps wearing a flak vest aboard a military plane. Both had been performing for military personnel in Afghanistan two years before the one-time "Saturday Night Live" comedian was elected to the Senate.

Tweeden said Thursday that before an earlier show Franken had persisted in rehearsing a kiss and "aggressively stuck his tongue in my mouth." Now, she said, "every time I hear his voice or see his face, I am angry." She's angry with herself, too, she said, for not speaking out at the time "but I didn't want to rock the boat."

Franken, 66, is the latest public figure to be caught in the deluge of revelations of sexual harassment and misconduct that have crushed careers, ruined reputations and prompted criminal investigations in Hollywood, business and beyond. The swift rebukes from both Republican and Democratic lawmakers suggest that momentum from the online #Metoo movement has begun to spur a culture shift on Capitol Hill, where current and former staffers say misogynistic and predatory behavior has long been an open secret.

In a statement Thursday, Franken apologized to Tweeden and his constituents while maintaining that he remembered the rehearsal differently. Tweeden said she accepted his apology.

"Coming from the world of comedy, I've told and written a lot of jokes that I once thought were funny but later came to realize were just plain offensive," Franken wrote.

"I respect women. I don't respect men who don't," Franken added. "And the fact that my own actions have given people a good reason to doubt that makes me feel ashamed."

Of the photo, Franken said: "I look at it now, and I feel disgusted with myself. It isn't funny. It's completely inappropriate. It's obvious how Leeann would feel violated by that picture."

The accusations come just days after the Senate unanimously adopted mandatory sexual harassment training for members and staffs amid a flood of stories about harassment, sexual misconduct and gender hostility from staffers, aides and even female elected officials.

On Tuesday, Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., testified in the House that two current lawmakers, one Republican and one Democrat, were known to have engaged in sexual harassment.

Speier did not name the lawmakers — at the request of the victims, she said, and because of a non-disclosure agreement. Speier has become a voice for sexual harassment awareness after coming forward with her own story of being assaulted by a chief of staff when she was a congressional aide.

Tweeden on Thursday said Speier inspired her to share her story.

"If I'm going to tell my story, now is the time. 2017 is not 2006. It's just a different time," she said at a news conference Thursday in Los Angeles.

Senate Democrats spoke with one voice in describing Franken's actions as unacceptable and calling for an ethics probe.

Franken's fellow Minnesota Democrat, Amy Klobuchar, said, "This should not have happened to Leeann Tweeden. I strongly condemn this behavior, and the Senate Ethics Committee must open an investigation."

Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri, who is facing a tough re-election next year, said she was "shocked and concerned." She said, "Comedy is no excuse for inappropriate conduct, and I believe there should be an ethics investigation."

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and the top Democrat, Chuck Schumer of New York, called for an ethics inquiry.

Indeed, Franken himself said he welcomed the investigation.

Tweeden said Franken wrote a skit for the pair that was filled with "sexual innuendo," and had brought a woman's thong as a prop that he waved around during their performance. Part of the skit included a kiss, she said, and he insisted they practice during a rehearsal despite her protests.

"We did the line leading up to the kiss and then he came at me, put his hand on the back of my head, mashed his lips against mine and aggressively stuck his tongue in my mouth," she wrote.

The photo that she posted was taken on the trip home from Afghanistan. Franken is shown grinning and staring at the camera while reaching out over her chest as she naps. Tweeden said she didn't discover the photo until she returned home.

The USO said there was no claim of sexual harassment reported to the organization in 2006.

The USO, or United Service Organization, has long organized entertainment tours to serve military members overseas. Before he was elected a senator from Minnesota, Franken participated in four tours to four countries from 2003 to 2006.

The USO called the allegation against Franken "deeply disturbing."

Franken is a longtime comedian and "Saturday Night Live" writer who won a Minnesota seat in the Senate after a lengthy recount in 2009.

Franken, who has been married for more than 40 years, drew criticism during his first Senate campaign for joking about rape while discussing a sketch idea during his days at NBC-TV. Franken said then that he regretted some of the things he had written, and said he respected women "in both my personal and professional life."

___

Associated Press writers Kyle Potter and Amy Forliti in Minneapolis contributed to this story.

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