Arts and culture

We tend to forget how near a thing it was, how outlandish an idea it seemed to some at the time, this concept of women gaining access to the ballot box. In one of history's great thrillers, the battle to ratify the 19th Amendment, almost a hundred years ago, came down to single vote, a single male legislator and — crucially — a single dear, darling, determined mother.

To create the fantastical, otherworldly story in A Wrinkle In Time, the cast and crew traveled to the mountains of New Zealand and to a sequoia forest in Northern California. They also created elaborate sets on a soundstage in Santa Clarita, north of Los Angeles, which is where director Ava DuVernay was behind the camera over a year ago.

Updated at 11:30 p.m ET

The city of San Francisco is joining the cause of removing old statues that are out of step with contemporary political and cultural tastes.

The sculpture "Early Days" sits near San Francisco's City Hall. It depicts a vaquero and a missionary standing over a sitting Native American.

In the new film Red Sparrow, a CIA officer walks alone in Moscow's Gorky Park. There's a hand-off — a brush pass in the darkness with a Russian agent. Then all goes wrong: Police lights flash, gunshots ring. The CIA officer runs for his life straight to the gates of the American Embassy.

Jennifer Lawrence plays Dominika, a ballerina-turned-Russian-spy who's taught the tools of her trade by a secret, highly specialized "Sparrow School."

Writer Sherman Alexie last week issued a statement admitting he "has harmed" others, after rumors and allegations began to circulate about sexual harassment. Without providing details, Alexie said "there are women telling the truth," and he apologized to the people he has hurt. Now, some of those women have come forward to speak to NPR about their experiences with him.

Updated at 3:13 p.m. ET

"I have two words to leave with you tonight, ladies and gentlemen: inclusion rider."

Nearly every sport has been hit with news of doping — of athletes using illegal performance-enhancing drugs. Perhaps the most famous example is cyclist Lance Armstrong, who denied doping allegations for years and then admitted using performance-enhancing drugs in 2013. That's where the documentary Icarus begins.

Growing up with a Mexican father and an American mother, author Luis Alberto Urrea often felt like there was a border wall running through his family's San Diego apartment.

"The kitchen was the United States; the living room was Mexico," Urrea says. "One side was struggling with all her might to make me an American boy, and the other side, with all of his might, was trying to keep me a Mexican boy."

It only stands to reason that the most surprising Oscars might be followed by the least surprising Oscars.

The red carpet of an award show is historically a sublime display of grace, style and dazzling celebrity personality. It's an opportune time for our favorite stars to share themselves, their projects, their thoughts with us, while we watch with rapt attention. In a majestic display, the stars descend upon the venue, a sea of crimson underfoot.