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Allen wins Nutcracker Award

Just in time for Christmas, Debbie Allen has gotten a nice present – the Goldstar National Nutcracker Award.

The ticket discounter has declared the award-winning director and choreographer’s school the winner of the seventh annual contest that crowns the best version of “The Nutcracker” in the land.

The Debbie Allen Dance Academy’s show, “The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker,” which was mounted earlier this month in Los Angeles, beat out nearly 60 other productions of “The Nutcracker.” It’s Allen’s second time winning the award.

Her show begins when young Kara Johnson receives a nutcracker filled with hot chocolate, falls asleep, and the nutcracker comes alive. Written and directed by the “Fame” star, the show had an original score by Mariah Carey, Arturo Sandoval, Chau-Giang Thi Nguyen, James Ingram and Thump.

Voting for the Goldstar National Nutcracker Award is determined by Goldstar members.

Arsenio unhurt in crash

Los Angeles police said Tuesday that drugs and alcohol do not appear to be factors in a minor crash that occurred after talk show host Arsenio Hall drove off the side of the road in West Hills.

Hall was not injured in the incident at about 7:30 p.m. Monday near the intersection of Sherman Way and Medical Center Drive, police said.

“He was just off the side road there,” said LAPD Sgt. Emalee Baptiste.

There was no arrest and no collision report, she added. It was unclear what caused Hall to drive off the road or how much damage was done to the vehicle, Baptiste said. “A new car, so it was hard to say,” she said.

Diesel joins ‘Guardians’

Vin Diesel, the “Fast and Furious” star, has officially joined “Guardians of the Galaxy,” the new Marvel Studios superhero movie, Variety reported Tuesday. Diesel will voice a giant tree character named Groot, though the movie is live-action.

“Guardians of the Galaxy” could launch a whole new crop of superheroes into the market, including Chris Pratt as Star-Lord, Zoe Saldana as Gamora and Bradley Cooper as Rocket Raccoon. It’s due in theaters Aug. 1.

Saving Stewart museum

For a time it looked like the Jimmy Stewart Museum wasn’t going to make it. It’s in the actor’s hometown of Indiana, Pa., far from Los Angeles, where more tourists would see it. And many fans who grew up during the era of Stewart’s films are cutting back on travel.

But as the word got out about the museum’s plight, donations began coming in, averting a crisis for the next few years. Museum Director Timothy Harley says a San Diego couple originally from western Pennsylvania began making yearly $25,000 donations, matching what the Stewart family gives.

The museum highlights the movie career of Stewart, who starred in the 1947 Christmas classic, “It’s a Wonderful Life.” It also highlights his service as a World War II bomber pilot.