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Sunday, November 13, 2011


Company Town

The business behind the show

Box Office: Sandler, DiCaprio can't beat No. 1 'Immortals'

Immortals was the No 1 film athte box office this weekend
"Immortals" fought off the competition at the box office this weekend, emerging victorious with the No. 1 title.

The film, an expensive 3-D sword-and-sandals epic, claimed the top spot with a solid $32 million, according to an estimate from distributor Relativity Media. That was enough to fend off Adam Sandler's cross-dressing comedy "Jack and Jill," which took in a decent $26 million. The Clint Eastwood-directed "J. Edgar" biopic, meanwhile, collected a modest $11.5 million.

"Immortals" marks Relativity's biggest self-released opening ever. That's welcome news for the independent studio, many of whose films -- including "Machine Gun Preacher" and "Take Me Home Tonight" -- have failed to resonate with audiences in recent months. The company made a big bet on "Immortals," spending about $80 million to produce the Tarsem Singh-directed picture and at least $50 million more to market it.

Click here to read more on the national and international box office, on other films that were on screens this weekend and on industry news in the LA Times Company Town blog...

CSN Students: You do not have letter grades...lose that thought! Assignments are part of cumulative points.


Blog posts may no longer be required, but thank you for your contiued participation.
If you have posted 66 responses to the blogs since the start of class in August, you have me the requirements to earn the 100 points designated as "quiz" in the syllabus.
If you are short, you may post as frequently as you feel you need to, up iuntil the end of the termlast day of class. 
I will not answer "how many have I posted"/" If you feel you are short, make additional posts until you have met your requirement for the points.
I will be posting the points for eveyrone, but be aware that if in-class and blog participation is not me, I have the option of reducing your "quiz" points. There is no reason to fear this, as most all of you have exceeded the class discussion requirements.
Focus on your persuasive and study for the midterm...
Not to mention your other classes...


 Art Lynch
Com 101

International Education Week Events

Sunday Morning News and Views, Part II

A group of mothers is protesting what they call the latest in a string of offensive and inappropriate comments by Ultimate Fighting Championship athletes. At a news conference yesterday outside the Las Vegas headquarters of the biggest name in mixed martial arts, the activists called on Fox Sports and advertisers to "drop" the UFC until it adopts a code of conduct like other professional sports.

The first Academy Award of the season has gone to James Earl Jones. The actor received an honorary Oscar last night for his long film career. He accepted his Oscar from London's Wyndham Theater, where he is starring in "Driving Miss Daisy" with Vanessa Redgrave.

American Flag clothing and stickers wee banned at a public school function in Califonria. A federal judge says a Morgan Hill California high school official did not violate a group of students' right to free speech when he ordered them to remove clothing and stickers with the American flag on Cinco de Mayo. The judge in San Francisco on Tuesday said officials at Live Oak High School reasonably believed the students' clothing - worn on the Mexican holiday, Cinco de Mayo- could spark violence.


Nevada Congressman Joe Heck is honoring his fellow veterans in a weekly Republican address to the nation. Heck, an active-duty Army reservist, focused on veterans' unemployment during the national Republican address yesterday. Heck said the nation owes its veterans a strong economy, so they can transition into civilian life when they return from deployment.

The Republican co-chair of a committee in charge of slashing the nation's deficit on Sunday called deliberations a "roller coaster ride" and gave no indication that a deal could be struck before the panel's Thanksgiving deadline. Texas Rep. Jeb Hensarling told CNN's "State of the Union" that the panel will fail unless Democrats agree to significant "structural" changes to entitlement programs like Medicare and ocial Security. When asked whether that could be done in a matter of days, he said "we haven't given up hope." The supercommittee has until Nov. 23 to agree on how to reduce the deficit by at least $1.2 trillion in the next decade.

Any amount less than that would be made up in automatic across-the-board cuts divided evenly between defense and domestic programs. The Kurdish government has signed a deal with ExxonMobil to explore oil fields in northern Iraq, a move that puts them in sharp conflict with Iraq's national government.  The deal was announced Sunday by Kurdish officials at an oil and gas conference in Irbil in comments carried on Kurdish television.  The Kurdistan Regional Government has clashed with Baghdad over who has the right to sign deals with international oil companies to develop Iraq's vast energy resources. The Kurds want to be able to develop their own fields, while Baghdad maintains it has final authority. Kurdish Natural Resources Minister Ashti Hawrami told the conference that the deal with ExxonMobil is legal and vowed to press ahead with it.

Foreign policy was the topic as the eight Republican presidential hopefuls held their second debate in four days. They criticized President Barack Obama's efforts to thwart Iran's nuclear ambitions, but disagreed on the wisdom of a pre-emptive military strike. The debate was held in Spartanburg, South Carolina.
    
Penn State's first football game since the child sex abuse scandal broke -- and its first without Joe Paterno in decades --- was a loss, 17-14 to Nebraska. It's unknown where Paterno was during the game, but he did return to his house later. His son Jay, who is quarterbacks coach, was on the sidelines.    

Washington Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos says he didn't know if he would survive after being kidnapped
in Venezuela on Wednesday. Ramos says his kidnappers told him they planned to demand a large ransom. He was rescued yesterday during a commando style police raid in a remote area.
    
A new Navy cargo ship named after slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers has been christened in San Diego. Evers' widow, Myrlie, broke a bottle of champagne against its hull. The USNS Medgar Evers will deliver food, ammunition, fuel and other provisions to Navy combat ships at sea.


A woman is searching for the missing medical service dog of her 4-year-old autistic son in Salt Lake City. Tiffany McOmber told the Deseret News that her son, Isaiah McOmber, hasn't slept well since his dog, Peaches, was last seen Monday. Tiffany McOmber says the papillon, a small dog with big ears, assists her
son with any problems he may have and accompanies him around the clock. Tiffany McOmber says she accidentally left a pet carrier with Peaches inside on a UTA bus bench at 600 West and 300 South after hopping on a bus with her son. By the time she realized her mistake and returned about 30 minutes later, the dog was gone. She says she was preoccupied because of her family's pending
move to Texas.
 

Sunday Morning News and Views, Part I

Until 2006, housing prices in the United States were on a roll, rising year after year. During the peak period from 2001 through 2005, it wasn't just prices shooting up, but the rate of home ownership, hitting an all-time high of nearly 70 percent.  Now, it's been a full five years of falling prices -- not exactly an anniversary that makes Americans want to celebrate. The "slump" is more of a dive, as many Americans have seen their credit decimated by short sales, foreclosures or simply falling behind due to a decrease or loss of income. These changes, for the most part not the fault of the owners, will impact credit status for seven to as many as 25 years. 



Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi managed to hold onto power for almost two decades. He used his personal fortune and control of commercial television to rise to the prime minister's office. He began by producing a television game show where housewives had to strip off clothing when they could not answer questions. He built that into a media, business and political empire He weathered scandal after scandal -- from corruption charges to his fabled soirees with prostitutes. In the end, it wasn't Italian voters who turned him out -- but the markets, as Italy teetered dangerously close to bankruptcy. It was not a direct election, but the loss of his party's majority. Berlusconi s expected to take the traditional walk to the presidential palace to turn in his formal resignation tonight. Italy, the third largest economy in the European Union, is on the brink of collapse, as Europeans continue to weather a recession turned depression, which could topple the Euro, if not the European Union itself.


President Barack Obama is meeting with the leaders of Asian and Pacific countries in his birth state Hawaii this weekend. The president is expected to use the Asia Pacific economic summit to emphasize his effort to pivot the U.S. away from Europe, and towards the Pacific in the coming century. It's a tightrope, as the US remains economically threatened and yet dependent on China, which contrary to propaganda, is not a prosperous economy set to take over the United States. China faces far deeper financial troubles of their own. Their economy, along with their military prowess, claims on both sea and land currently claimed by other Asian nations or the International community, could pose a real threat to the region and the United States.

In the wake of the recent repeal of the Don't Ask, Don't Tell ban on openly gay military service, Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy took up his bill to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act. The Obama Admistration has already stopped trying to defend the law in court, even while Republican leaders in Congress attempt to preserve it in a number of ongoing cases. Is this poised to become a big issue in 2012?


The town of Aredale, Iowa, elected a new mayor this past week: 18-year-old Jeremy Minnier, who says he won because he cleans most of the gutters in town and has strong ideas on how to maintain the town's small town feel and very personal relationships between townspeople.


The venerable -- and prolific -- horror writer Stephen King has published a new novel.  This time, it's about time travel.  Host Audie Cornish talks to him about "11/22/63," his new book about going back in time to stop the assassination of John F. Kennedy. King says he got the idea back in 1971, as he was pondering how people often regret decisions or actions and say "if only I had....". 

 A new reality TV show about being Muslim in America premieres tonight on the cable network TLC. "All-American Muslim" follows five Arab-American families living in Dearborn, Michigan, one of the country's largest Muslim communities. It is intended to humanize both Muslim Americans and demystify their beliefs and practices.

Meanwhile a reality TV program in England premiers there tonight following a group of transsexuals, with the same intent of demystifying and leading to a greater acceptance of their lifestyles.



 





CSN Blogging

Subject:On Blog, partcipation and Quiz points

Blog posts may no longer be required, but thank you for your contiued participation.
If you have posted 66 responses to the blogs since the start of class in August, you have me the requirements to earn the 100 points designated as "quiz" in the syllabus.
If you are short, you may post as frequently as you feel you need to, up iuntil the end of the termlast day of class. 
I will not answer "how many have I posted"/" If you feel you are short, make additional posts until you have met your requirement for the points.
I will be posting the points for eveyrone, but be aware that if in-class and blog participation is not me, I have the option of reducing your "quiz" points. There is no reason to fear this, as most all of you have exceeded the class discussion requirements.
Focus on your persuasive and study for the midterm...
Not to mention your other classes...


 Art Lynch
Com 101

Raids in Rio

The largest, and some say most dangerous slum in the America's, is under police control this morning. Overnight 5,000 Brazilian special forces police invaded the sprawling mountain side slum, estimated to be home for up to a quarter of a million people, to drive out and control violent drug gangs and cartels. The move is the 19th "neighborhood" action by Rio police. The raids and eventual ongoing police presence are a part of attempts to clean up Rio for the World Games and eventually the Olympics (remember Rio received the games, which were favored to go to Chicago). Brazilian police backed by armored military vehicles have invaded Rio de Janeiro's biggest slum. Hundreds of black-clad, rifle-armed officers began swarming into the Rocinha shantytown early this morning.. Experts say it's the most important step yet in bringing security to Rio de Janeiro before it hosts the final matches of the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics. Between 100,000 and250,000 people live in Rocinha, which is the biggest drug distribution point in Rio. The slum straddles a green mountainside above posh neighborhoods.  The action is part of a policing program that sees elite police units force heavily armed drug gangs from shantytowns they've controlled for decades. Authorities then set up a permanent police presence.