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Settlement money to fund Hoffman prize

Herding his sons to school on Feb. 5, David Bar Katz was stopped by his eldest, who was browsing a computer. “My 14-year-old said, ‘Dad, there’s something online about you and Phil being lovers,’ ” Katz said. “I said, ‘Phil would get a kick out of that.’ ” Phil was Philip Seymour Hoffman, the actor and Katz’s good friend, who had been found dead three days earlier, apparently from an overdose of heroin. Katz, a playwright, was one of two people who had gone to his apartment and discovered his body. “Things had already achieved the maximum level of surreality, and I thought this thing online was a big nothing,” Katz said. In fact, the article, published by The National Enquirer, quoted Katz saying that he and Hoffman were lovers who had freebased cocaine the night before his death, and said that Katz claimed to have seen him using heroin many times. But Katz had not spoken with The Enquirer that week, or ever. Hoffman had never used drugs in his presence, Katz said, and had spoken often with him about his pursuit of sobriety. In a matter of hours, Katz signed the complaint in a libel suit. Within two days, The Enquirer had withdrawn the article and apologized. And Tuesday, less than three weeks after the article was published, Katz said he had formed the American Playwriting Foundation, which will give an annual prize of $45,000 for an unproduced play. It will be called the Relentless Award, in Hoffman’s honor. Under a settlement, the foundation and the prize are being paid for by The Enquirer and its publisher, American Media Inc. (New York Times News Service)

Meyers off to strong start

Nielsen says the premiere of ‘‘Late Night With Seth Meyers’’ averaged 3.4 million viewers in ‘‘fast official’’ ratings from Nielsen. (AP)

O’Brien loses part of arm

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PBS’s Miles O'Brien says his left arm was amputated above the elbow. O'Brien, who worked in Boston early in his career, says he was diagnosed with ‘‘acute compartment syndrome,’’ in which blocked blood flow in the body has serious effects. (AP)

Hot

“It’s the kind of slow-burn sexual moment where the audience isn’t quite sure whether the thing that’s happening is actually happening until wow, yeah, that just happened.” — Nathan Darrow, of “House of Cards,” describing a kissing scene in the second season.

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