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Peter Sklar, Founder of Edhat, Passes Away

Peter Sklar, the pioneer of Santa Barbara’s online media, and founder of Edhat.com has passed away. Sklar, 50, passed away yesterday after battling brain cancer for the last 18 months. Prayers and much love go to his wife Sue and his two sons.

Edhat was started by Peter Sklar in 2003 and his work gave the community news and imformation online as a premiere news source when the Santa Barbara News-Press imploded. Peter Sklar was a community and industry pioneer and he will be greatly missed. I will miss him for his kindness and concern to get every side of an issue out there for all to see.  BC




For the first time in its 18-year history, Santa Barbara’s State Street Ballet will present Tchaikovsky’s incomparable holiday masterpiece The Nutcracker with full symphony orchestra on Saturday and Sunday, December 22 and 23 at The Granada Theatre, 1214 State Street, in downtown Santa Barbara.www.granadasb.org.
Ticket prices are $21-$41. Patron Tickets (center section) are $100.
For Group sales (groups of 10 or more receive tickets for $20 in B section), contact Gloria Regan 805-319-1648. For more details visit www.statestreetballet.com

Performances on Saturday, December 22 are at 2:00 and 7:30 and on Sunday, December 23 at 2:00. Call The Granada Theatre Box Office for tickets: (805) 899-2222 –



Anticipation is mounting for the pending Magic Castle Movie with the
announcement of Director McG (Terminator, Charlie's Angeles, ect) taking the
helm of the film, Radar pictures is still keeping things under wraps.

Milt Larsen, co-founder of The Magic Castle is preparing for the film, the release of a new book, entitled “My Magical Journey: The First 30,000 Days” (ISBN: HB: 978-1-939178-00-8 SB: 978-1¬939178-01-5),  and the 50th anniversary of the the Hollywood landmark.

The construction of the original structure began in 1908 and In November of 2009
the historic structure once known as the Lane Mansion celebrated its centennial. 
On Jan 2nd, 1963 that same structure became, what is now known as, the world
famous Magic Castle.  In January, 2013, fans and fanatics of the mystical and
mysterious world of illusion gathered to celebrate its 50th anniversary.

The Magic Castle has grown over the years from its original design to include 13
performance spaces including close-up magic, the Parlor of Prestidigitation and,
of course, The Palace of Mystery.  Practically every great magician of the
modern era has appeared within walls, as well as a few noted amature
illusionists including Cary Grant, Johnny Carson, Jason Alexander, Dom Deluise,
Tony Curtis, Neil Patrick Harris, to name a few and boasts a membership that
includes many of todays top stars such as Johnny Depp, Jane Fonda, Florence
Henderson, Carol Channing, Romi Dames, Tippi Hedren, Stephen Hawking, and more.  

The Magic Castle is not only the showplace for some of the greatest magicians
from around the globe, it also houses one of the largest original collections of
Houdini's great tools of the trade including his personal handcuffs, straight
jacket, metamorphosis trunk and famous milk can escape in the Houdini Séance
Room.  Houdini himself used these props to mystify thousands.  The castle also
houses collections from W.C. Field, Johnny Carson, Walt Disney and many more.



The Santa Barbara International Film Festival, presented by lynda.com, will honor director, producer and actor Ben Affleck with the Modern Master Award at the 28th edition of the Fest, which runs January 24 -February 3, 2013, it was announced today by SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durling. The Tribute will take place on Saturday, January 26, 2013 at the historic Arlington Theatre.

“Affleck has come into his own as a multi-dimensional artist with ARGO,” commented SBIFF Executive Director Roger Durling. “He embodies
what the Modern Master Award is all about, and we're thrilled to honor him this year."

The Modern Master Award is the highest honor presented by SBIFF. Established in 1995, it was created to honor an individual who has enriched our culture through his/her multi-faceted accomplishments in the motion picture industry. Affleck joins an illustrious group of past recipients including Michael Douglas, Jodie Foster, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Diane Keaton, Sean Penn, Jeff Bridges, Peter Jackson, George Clooney, Will Smith, Cate Blanchett, Clint Eastwood, James Cameron, Christopher Nolan, and Christopher Plummer.

Affleck will be honored for his work this year as the director, star and producer of the critically acclaimed film Argo. He has proven to be a master of his craft with Argo, receiving acclaim from both critics and audiences. Skillfully capturing the tension brought upon by the subject matter, Affleck uses the film’s pacing and tone to enhance it to its greatest potential. Based on true events, the film chronicles the life-or-death covert operation to rescue six Americans, which unfolded behind the scenes of the 1979 Iran hostage crisis. The film stars Affleck, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin, John Goodman, Victor Garber, Tate Donovan, Clea DuVall, Scoot McNairy, Rory Cochrane, Christopher Denham, Kerry Bishé, Kyle Chandler and Chris Messina. Based on a screenplay by Chris Terrio, the film is produced by Grant Heslov, Affleck and George Clooney.

Driven to act from a young age, Ben Affleck began by taking on small roles and independent films including Dazed and Confused (1993), Mallrats (1995), and Chasing Amy (1997). It was later in 1997 that he broke through to critical acclaim with Good Will Hunting, which he co-wrote and starred in alongside Matt Damon. His work won him the Academy Award® for Best Original Screenplay. Following this success, Affleck proceeded to take on a variety of roles in such hit films Armageddon (1998), Shakespeare in Love (1998), and Dogma (1999). In addition to flexing his comedy and romance muscles, Affleck also showed his grittier side in such films as Reindeer Games (2000), Pearl Harbor (2001), The Sum of All Fears (2002), Daredevil (2003) and Hollywoodland (2006). In 2007, Affleck stepped behind the camera to make his feature film directorial debut with the film Gone Baby Gone, which he also wrote. After acting in several films such as State of Play (2009) and The Company Men (2010), Affleck returned to directing with the critically acclaimed The Town (2010).

The festivities will take place at the historic Arlington Theatre on Saturday, January 26, 2013. Tickets for the Modern Master Award are available now and can be purchased through www.sbfilmfestival.org or by calling 805-963-0023. Festival Passes and Packages are still available and sold exclusively at www.sbfilmfestival.org and 805-963-0023.

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival is dedicated to discovering and showcasing the best in independent and international cinema. Now in its 28th year, The SBIFF has expanded to feature 11 days of 200+ films, tributes and symposiums that range from American indie films to world cinema and everything in-between. With its commitment to cultural diversity and powerful storytelling, SBIFF transforms beautiful downtown Santa Barbara, CA into a rich destination for film lovers that last year alone attracted more than 70,000 attendees. SBIFF brings to the forefront the importance and power of the art of filmmaking and continues its pledge to further its education initiative through its 10-10-10 Student Filmmaking and Screenwriting Competitions, “Field Trip to the Movies” program and educational seminars. This year’s presenting sponsor is lynda.com. The festival is set to run January 24 – February 3, 2013. For more information, please visit www.sbfilmfestival.org.


An Inspiring Texas Gentleman Meets His Maker
By Bonnie Carroll


During the year that Maj Hagman was designing and building the Taj Ma Maj (a name given to their new house by the late writer Ivan Goff) in Ojai, California, I was working in Larry & Maj Hagman’s home production office in Malibu. It was a time when Dallas was creeping toward a final episode, Larry was coming to grips with his need for a liver transplant, and his mother Mary Martin was dying. Their house was always packed with action, including major celebrity guests, and just old friends who had made their mark in ‘the business' who loved spending time with them.

Maj and Larry were devoted to their families. Larry to his mother and sister, and Maj to her mother and siblings. Their two blond and beautiful kids were both married and building their own lives, but they were constantly in touch. Larry was in severe grief for his mother for many months before she actually passed, and his love for her was strong.

Many people did not realize that Larry really was born in a small town in Texas, where his father was a local lawyer and his mother ran a dancing school for kids. When Mary Martin left to go work on the New York stage, it did not take long before Larry also went to find his way in the world of entertainment, and the rest is history.

The best example I can share on his innate Texas gentleman style is to tell you that one Friday when I was working with him the office heater broke down, and the repair people never showed up over the weekend to fix it. When I climbed up the stairs to his office on Monday I saw Larry, wearing an old Navajo blanket robe and clogs, starting a fire in the fireplace so I would not freeze. He had lugged a bunch of fire wood up there and was getting a fire up before he left for the studio. He was a consummate gentleman, and a big bear of a man who was kind to all the people around him.

To say that Larry was a proud American would be an understatement. He loved this Country, was thrilled to be a Santa Claus at the White House one year, and enjoyed so much all the good things that being an American had brought to his personal table. Maj Axelsson Hagman was from Sweden, and these two were really strong in their American pride. Maj was an extremely talented designer and architect who created several of their dwellings. Their children both had the fairness of their Scandinavian mother, and the photogenic good looks of their dad. Maj & Larry had a gang of beautiful little girl grandchildren that Larry referred to as “the blondies” who he frequently took with him to special events to show off.

Just a few days before Larry’s death my daughter and I were talking about his new Dallas show and how amazing it was that he had overcome his liver transplant to go on to do a remake of the historic TV show. Well, I’m pleased he had a chance to be doing the thing he loved just before his passing, and that he was with his family in Dallas for a last Thanksgiving. Larry and Maj were always traveling to be with their family during the holidays; family always came first. This guy was a bigger than life person, and gave me an example of remarkable kindness that I will always remember with a smile. 

Goodbye J.R. – I know Peter Pan has been waiting for you up there, and will be so happy to be with her ‘big boy’ once again!





Beth Farnsworth KEYT 3 &  Rolf Geyling SBRM President

The Santa Barbara Rescue Mission, 535 E. Yanonali Street, served 300 meals to community members in need at their November 21st Thanksgiving Feast. Among the many media and volunteers in attendance was Emmy award winning journalist and producer Beth Farnsworth of KEYT 3, who along with her daughter served meals to the homeless and hungry during the two hour event.

The chefs serving up the holiday plates worked on the preparation of 200 turkeys for the feast for over a week, and their cook team included forty-five men from the SBRM recovery program, along with area volunteers. The SBRM 12-month residential recovery program aims to bring individuals from decades of addiction, institutionalization, and homelessness back to sobriety, health and wholeness. Certification through the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs ensures that participants receive the highest standard of treatment in a non-medical facility.

Rolf Geyling, president of the Rescue Mission began the dinner with an inspiring prayer. “The homeless, hurting and hungry in our community feel forgotten – especially during the holidays.” “In the last year, we have seen a 14 percent increase in need for our emergency services to the homeless” said Geyling In 2011 the Mission provided 164,615 meals and 61,576 safe nights of shelter for individuals with no place else to turn. For additional information or to make a donation visit: www.sbrm.org.

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© 2008 Bonnie Carroll, All Rights Reserved