Thursday Dec 18, 2014

Craig Ferguson to end 10 years as host of 'Late Late Show'

NEW YORK (AP) — It's not such a great day, America — not for fans of Craig Ferguson. Ferguson, TV's kinetic Scottish cutup, on Friday brings to a close his decade-long run as host of CBS' "The Late Late Show." Airing Friday at 12:35 a.m. EST, he concludes a...
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TV

Craig Ferguson to end 10 years as host of 'Late Late Show'
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Craig Ferguson to end 10 years as host of 'Late Late Show'

NEW YORK (AP) — It's not such a great day, America — not for fans of Craig Ferguson. Ferguson, TV's kinetic Scottish cutup, on Friday brings to a close his decade-long run as host of CBS' "The Late Late Show." Airing Friday at 12:35 a.m. EST, he concludes a grand stretch of silliness and smarts that, while never posing much of a ratings threat to talk-show rivals, struck a chord with a loyal following (and earned him a coveted Peabody Award for his 2009 interview with — of all people — Archbishop Desmond Tutu). Smarts with silliness. Last April, Ferguson told viewers he was stepping down. "CBS and I are not getting divorced, we are consciously uncoupling," he said, puckishly echoing the words of estranged Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin. This was no surprise since, weeks earlier, David Letterman had announced he was retiring from "Late Show," whereupon CBS tapped Stephen Colbert to replace him. Once upon a time, Ferguson had been thought a strong contender for that job. But "The Late Late Show" began fading in the ratings, particularly with the arrival of Seth Meyers last February as his NBC competition. Ferguson's imminent departure is being upstaged by the much-anticipated, much-lamented exit Thursday by Colbert as host of Comedy Central's "The Colbert Report." He will step into his "Late Show" role sometime after Letterman's signoff May 20. Taking Ferguson's place as host of "The Late Late Show" is British actor-writer-comedian James Corden, who debuts March 9. During the two-month interim, a slate of guest hosts — including Drew Carey, Will Arnett, Wayne Brady, Jim Gaffigan, Billy Gardell and Sean Hayes — will fill in. But Ferguson won't be absent from the airwaves. This fall, he launched "Celebrity Name Game," a weekday syndicated game show. Now 51, Ferguson came to "The Late Late Show" in January 2005 with a varied resume including punk-rock drummer, author, standup comic and actor. He had appeared in several films, and written and starred in three, including the 2003 comedy "I'll Be There," which he also directed. He was best known as Nigel Wick, the imperious British boss on Drew Carey's long-running ABC sitcom, a role he landed after his arrival in Los Angeles in 1995. As "Late Late Show" host, Ferguson steadily redefined late-night talk in his own image. While most late-night hosts don't say much about who they really are, Ferguson was heroically self-disclosive, mining humor from tough times including two divorces, career setbacks, and his past drug and alcohol abuse. He spent one entire show paying tribute to his dad, who had died the day before. The Glasgow-born Ferguson also talked up his new homeland, adopting as a frequent catchphrase, "It's a great day for America," followed by a wisecrack. But he wasn't kidding. In 2008 he was officially sworn in as a U.S. citizen, proudly sharing video from the ceremony with his audience. In its first years, the show was emphatically no-frills, originating from a tiny Los Angeles studio with no house band or announcer. It has remained bare-bones, although it relocated to slightly better digs and added a sassy robotic skeleton named Geoff Peterson as Ferguson's sidekick. It was with Geoff that Ferguson in recent days was celebrating the end of his "Late Late Show" run. Or, as he put it, his "last week in this dump." _____ EDITOR'S NOTE — Frazier Moore is a national television columnist for The Associated Press. He can be reached at fmoore@ap.org and at http://www.twitter.com/tvfrazier. Past stories are available at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/frazier-moore _____ Online: http://www.cbs.com Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Wikipedia reveals what the world edited in 2014
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Wikipedia reveals what the world edited in 2014

Wikipedia has published its first-ever annual video, revealing what the world read and edited on the encyclopedic site during 2014.Over 100 million changes were edited into articles throughout the year, with hot topics including everything from the political unrest in Ukraine to the 2014 Winter Olympics. The FIFA 2014 World Cup was a big talking point, while England's poor performance in the tournament led to the editing of the page "England national football team". The Scottish referendum on independence, the Brazilian presidential elections and the US Senate elections were all big political events which attracted interest. Meanwhile the conflict in Gaza also attracted a lot of activity on the site. The global popularity of the "Ice bucket challenge" led to changes being made to the pages "Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis", while the health crisis created by Ebola was also a hot topic in several languages. In terms of entertainment, "Game of Thrones," "Breaking Bad" and "Doctor Who" were all on the editing list, while Academy Award Best Picture winner "12 Years a Slave" also garnered a lot of attention. Novelists Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Maya Angelou, actors Philip Seymour Hoffman and Robin Williams and cricketer Phillip Hughes, all of whom passed away this year, all found their pages read and edited. For the full video, see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ci0Pihl2zXY Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

'Walking Dead' companion series to be set in LA
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
'Walking Dead' companion series to be set in LA

The Atlanta area, where "The Walking Dead" is set, isn't the only place infested with walkers. Survivors on the west coast are also battling the zombie epidemic, as viewers will learn in the new spin-off/companion series set in Los Angeles. The project is currently in development under the working title "Cobalt.""Almost from the beginning of ‘The Walking Dead' on AMC, fans have been curious about what is going on in the zombie apocalypse in other parts of the world," said AMC president Charlie Collier last September, when the companion series was announced. In addition to satisfying that curiosity by depicting the zombie apocalypse in a different region, the new companion show is expected to shed some light on the origins of the epidemic -- a subject left undiscussed in "The Walking Dead." Robert Kirkman, who created the comic that inspired the original series, is involved in the project along with "The Walking Dead" producers Gale Anne Hurd and David Alpert. David Erickson, who is penning the script, will serve as showrunner. The pilot will be shot in early 2015 with Cliff Curtis in the title role. The Kiwi actor seen in "Gang Related" will play Sean Cabrera, a teacher and a good man trying to do right by everyone in his life. The character is recently divorced from Andrea, with whom he has a son, Cody. Also among the main characters is Cabrera's colleague Nancy Tomkins, a single mother of two. Her son Nick is a troubled kid who falls into drugs, while her daughter Ashley, more level-headed and ambitious, is eager to leave home and make something of her life. The two teens will be played by Frank Dillane ("Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince") and Alycia Debnam Carey ("Into the Storm"). Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Fashion films of the week: Valentino, Dior, Versace
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Fashion films of the week: Valentino, Dior, Versace

This week's fashion films are all based around the theme of runway shows, following Dior and Valentino's recent adventures in Tokyo and New York City. Valentino This 12-minute film will transport you to the Big Apple, where Valentino showed a 47-piece one-off all-white couture collection in the city to celebrate its new flagship in the city. We think you'll agree that it lives up to Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli's usual sparkling levels of attention to detail and their stunning silhouettes. http://youtu.be/CH5P2DIuW_E Christian DiorThe Valentino designers weren't the only ones on the road recently. Raf Simons transported his Christian Dior crew to the Japanese capital for a Pre-Fall show held in a sumo arena. This super quick video from the brand shows off Creative and Image Director of Dior Makeup Peter Philips's look for the show on model Yumi Lambert. http://youtu.be/r0bH5qP318Y Atelier VersaceThe Italian brand's mesmerizing couture show under the Atelier Versace label is the star of this video. The slick film shifts between a model wearing the pieces and the team (including Donatella) working on the show back in the summer. http://youtu.be/Nl2avEetUMw Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Stolen emails reveal lapses in Sony security practices
Wednesday Dec 17, 2014
Stolen emails reveal lapses in Sony security practices

WASHINGTON (AP) — In the weeks before hackers broke into Sony Pictures Entertainment, the studio suffered significant technology outages it blamed on software flaws and incompetent technical staffers who weren't paying attention, even as hackers targeted executives to trick them into revealing their online credentials. Its chief executive was regularly reminded in unsecure emails of his own secret passwords for his and his family's mail, banking, travel and shopping accounts, according to a review of more than 32,000 stolen corporate emails circulating on the Internet. Scrutiny of Sony's stolen computer data hasn't yet revealed exactly how hackers managed to slip inside to steal such an enormous cache, when it happened, who was behind the theft or their motives. But late Wednesday, a U.S. official told The Associated Press that federal investigators have now connected the Sony hack to North Korea. The official was not authorized to discuss an ongoing criminal case openly, and spoke on condition of anonymity. Confirmation of the North Korean link came just after Sony cancelled plans for the Dec. 25 release of "The Interview," which had been one of the hackers' public demands due to its depiction of the fictional assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The stolen files expose lax Internet security practices inside Sony such as pasting passwords into emails, using easy-to-guess passwords and failing to encrypt especially sensitive materials such as confidential salary and revenue figures, strategic plans and medical information about some employees. Experts say such haphazard practices are common across corporate America. "Most people who say they're not doing that are lying," said Jon Callas, co-founder and chief technology officer for Silent Circle Inc., a global encrypted-communications service. The emails show CEO Michael Lynton routinely received copies of his passwords in unsecure emails for his and his family's mail, banking, travel and shopping accounts, from his executive assistant, David Diamond. Other emails included photocopies of U.S. passports and driver's licenses and attachments with banking statements. The stolen files made clear that Diamond was deeply trusted to remember passwords for Lynton and his family and provide them whenever needed. "I still need the password to your Amazon account," Diamond wrote to Lynton in August. Sony spokeswoman Jean Guerin did not respond to a phone message left with an assistant in her office and email from The Associated Press on Wednesday. In an October email, the company's chief financial officer, David C. Hendler, complained to Lynton that Sony Pictures had experienced months of "significant and repeated outages due to a lack of hardware capacity, running out of disk space, software patches that impacted the stability of the environment, poor system monitoring and an unskilled support team." Hendler also blamed a company rule that required employees to keep too many old emails. "Sloppy, really sloppy," said Kevin Mitnick, a former hacker who served five years in federal prison and now runs Mitnick Security Consulting LLC. But Mitnick was quick to acknowledge that other top chief executives are "probably doing it, too." Companies can use password-management software, which can store dozens or hundreds of encrypted passwords to various accounts behind one protected password. "It's pretty ordinary for CEOs and executive assistants to share confidential information by email," he said. "They feel that their email is secure and they have nothing to worry about." The fact that Lynton regularly received emails with his passwords was particularly a problem for Sony because hackers who steal corporate data often will immediately search for the word "password" or a variation of the word across thousands of messages. "If I'm trying to get credentials, that's the first search I'm going to run," said Mitnick, who is hired by companies to test their internal security. The October email inside Sony, among tens of thousands of messages stolen in the crime, described specific software and hardware upgrades and plans to hire an outside consulting firm to improve the company's network, plus new rules to limit the amount of old emails that would be stored on servers. Lynton received it roughly three weeks before employees reported signs that hackers were rummaging inside Sony's computer network. ___ Associated Press writer Eric Tucker contributed to this story. . Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Movies

Italian actress Virna Lisi dead at 78
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Italian actress Virna Lisi dead at 78

Italian actress Virna Lisi, who played opposite Hollywood stars including Frank Sinatra in the 1960s and later established herself an acclaimed character actress, has died at the age of 78.Italian media quoted her son as saying that Lisi had passed away peacefully in her sleep on Wednesday, a month after being diagnosed with an incurable illness. Born in Ancona in 1936, she was an established cinema and theatre actress before Hollywood producers looking for a new Marilyn Monroe came calling in the mid-1960s. With Jack Lemmon she made "How to Murder Your Wife" in 1965 and followed up by starring alongside Tony Curtis in "Not with my Wife, You Don't" and with Sinatra in "Assault on a Queen" the following year. Reluctant to be restricted to love-interest roles based on her looks, she turned down the sexy part taken by Jane Fonda in Roger Vadim's "Barbarella" (1968) and moved back to Europe after only three years of a seven-year contract with Paramount studios. While in Hollywood, she maintained a parallel career in European cinema, notably playing a lead role in "The Birds, the Bees and the Italians," which shared the top prize, the Palme d'Or, at the Cannes film festival in 1966. After taking a break from acting in the early 1970s, Lisi successfully reinvented herself as a character actress with a broad range. Her portrayal of Catherine de' Medici in "La Reine Margot" (1994) saw her pick up both a French Cesar and the best actress award at Cannes. She also worked extensively in television and made the last of her nearly 80 films, "Il Piu Bel Giorno Della Mia Vita," in 2002. She is survived by her son Corrado Pesci and three grandchildren. Her husband of 53 years, the architect Franco Pesci, died in 2013. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Sony has 'no further release plans' for NKorea parody
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Sony has 'no further release plans' for NKorea parody

Sony Pictures has "no further release plans" for "The Interview," the parody film which angered North Korea and triggered a hack attack linked to Pyongyang, a spokesman said Wednesday.The Hollywood studio earlier canceled the December 25 theater release date for the movie, about a fictional plot to assassinate North Korean ruler Kim Jong-Un. "In light of the decision by the majority of our (theater) exhibitors not to show the film 'The Interview,' we have decided not to move forward with the... theatrical release," it said in a statement. "Sony Pictures has no further release plans for the film," a spokesman added to AFP an hour or two after the statement. The comment appeared to rule out prospects for the film to be released in DVD or Video on Demand (VoD) formats. It was unclear if it was applicable only to the United States or worldwide. Hackers earlier this week warned cinema-goers not to see the movie co-starring US comic actors James Franco and Seth Rogen. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Viola Davis to join the supervillains of 'Suicide Squad'
Wednesday Dec 17, 2014
Viola Davis to join the supervillains of 'Suicide Squad'

The actress seen in "The Help" and "How to Get Away with Murder" will play Amanda Waller in the upcoming DC Comics adaptation, Latino Review reports.In the original comics, Amanda Waller is the government agent who gives orders to the Suicide Squad, a group of supervillains that includes The Joker, among others.  To be helmed by David Ayer ("Fury"), the feature will center on a group of characters accustomed to hatching evil schemes and battling Batman or Superman. Convicted and imprisoned, the supervillains agree to undertake life-threatening missions for the US government in exchange for reduced sentences.  "It's a 'Dirty Dozen' with supervillains," Ayer told the British magazine Empire.   Viola Davis is on track to play Amanda Waller, but only if shooting can be worked around her TV schedule, which includes starring in "How to Get Away with Murder." If an arrangement is reached, she will share the screen with Jared Leto, who is cast as The Joker, and Margot Robbie, who will play his henchwoman and girlfriend Harley Quinn. DC Comics and Warner Bros have also enlisted Will Smith as the expert marksman Deadshot, Tom Hardy as the secret agent Rick Flag, Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang and supermodel Cara Delevingne as the sorceress known as Enchantress. "Suicide Squad" is due in theaters in August 2016, three months after the release of "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice." Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Stars and others react to 'Interview' cancellation
Wednesday Dec 17, 2014
Stars and others react to 'Interview' cancellation

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Stars, politicians and pundits are weighing in on Sony Pictures Entertainment's decision Wednesday to cancel the Dec. 25 release of "The Interview," the Seth Rogen-James Franco comedy at the center of the North Korean cyberattack that has seen thousands of Sony's private documents and other proprietary materials released online: — "Dear Sony Hackers: now that u run Hollywood, I'd also like less romantic comedies, fewer Michael Bay movies and no more Transformers. Also, Sony Hackers - I really liked Tyler Perry in "Gone Girl" so hold off on doing anything yet with Madea." — Michael Moore on Twitter. — "Sony has absolutely no courage or guts. They should have never pulled it." — Donald Trump via video on Facebook. — "No one should kid themselves. With the Sony collapse America has lost its first cyberwar. This is a very very dangerous precedent." — Newt Gingrich on Twitter. — "Sad day for creative expression. #feareatsthesoul" — Steve Carell on Twitter. — "We should not let a pathological regime in N. Korea intimidate us. I'd be 1st on line to see #TheInterviewMovie. Dear @SonyPictures - please make #TheInterviewMovie available in DVD so I can decide whether to see it, not N. Korea." — Rep. Steve Israel, D-New York, on Twitter. — "Today the U.S. succumbed to an unprecedented attack on our most cherished, bedrock principle of free speech by a group of North Korean terrorists who threatened to kill moviegoers in order to stop the release of a movie. The wishes of the terrorists were fulfilled in part by easily distracted members of the American press who chose gossip and schadenfreude-fueled reporting over a story with immeasurable consequences for the public--a story that was developing right in front of their eyes. My deepest sympathies go out to Sony Pictures, Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg and everyone who worked on 'The Interview.'" — Screenwriter Aaron Sorkin in a statement. — "An un-American act of cowardice that validates terrorist actions and sets a terrifying precedent." — Jimmy Kimmel to Judd Apatow on Twitter. — "This only guarantees that this movie will be seen by more people on Earth than it would have before. Legally or illegally all will see it." — Judd Apatow on Twitter. — "Wow. Everyone caved. The hackers won. An utter and complete victory for them. Wow. Saw @Sethrogen at JFK. Both of us have never seen or heard of anything like this. Hollywood has done Neville Chamberlain proud today." — Rob Lowe on Twitter. — "Is that all it takes - an anonymous threat and the numbers 911 - to throw free expression under the bus?" — Bill Maher on Twitter. — "THE INTERVIEW is now poised to shatter the world record for "spite viewings."" — Comedian Patton Oswalt on Twitter. — "My recommendation would be that people go to the movies." — President Obama to ABC News. ___ AP Entertainment Writers Lindsey Bahr and Sandy Cohen contributed to this report. Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Star of 'Dear White People' joins 'Rocky' spin-off
Wednesday Dec 17, 2014
Star of 'Dear White People' joins 'Rocky' spin-off

Tessa Thompson, the incendiary female lead from provocative college comedy "Dear White People," is to feature in the "Rocky" spin-off "Creed."The picture sees Sylvester Stallone return to the role of champion boxer Rocky Balboa, with Michael B. Jordan as the grandson of Apollo Creed. Creed Sr., played by Carl Weathers in the six previous "Rocky" films, started out as Balboa's ring rival before becoming a close friend and Rocky's manager, and even though the character died during the opening fight of "Rocky IV," he was still referenced during the film franchise's subsequent two films. By contrast, "Creed" will see Michael B. Jordan's gifted young fighter come under the tutelage of Rocky himself, as the up and coming pugilist from a privileged background seeks to establish himself against his family's wishes. Thompson will star opposite Jordan and Stallone, reports Deadline, though her role remains under wraps for now. The year, she won widespread recognition for her portrayal of college radio host Sam White in Justin Simien's 2014 film "Dear White People," and she plays student leader Diane Nash in the Martin Luther King civil rights historical "Selma," which is in the running for several Golden Globes and due December 25. Ryan Coogler is helming "Creed," having directed the 2013 multi-award winning "Fruitvale Station," which also had Michael B. Jordan in a starring role. Production is to start in January. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Events

Craig Ferguson to end 10 years as host of 'Late Late Show'
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Craig Ferguson to end 10 years as host of 'Late Late Show'

NEW YORK (AP) — It's not such a great day, America — not for fans of Craig Ferguson. Ferguson, TV's kinetic Scottish cutup, on Friday brings to a close his decade-long run as host of CBS' "The Late Late Show." Airing Friday at 12:35 a.m. EST, he concludes a grand stretch of silliness and smarts that, while never posing much of a ratings threat to talk-show rivals, struck a chord with a loyal following (and earned him a coveted Peabody Award for his 2009 interview with — of all people — Archbishop Desmond Tutu). Smarts with silliness. Last April, Ferguson told viewers he was stepping down. "CBS and I are not getting divorced, we are consciously uncoupling," he said, puckishly echoing the words of estranged Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin. This was no surprise since, weeks earlier, David Letterman had announced he was retiring from "Late Show," whereupon CBS tapped Stephen Colbert to replace him. Once upon a time, Ferguson had been thought a strong contender for that job. But "The Late Late Show" began fading in the ratings, particularly with the arrival of Seth Meyers last February as his NBC competition. Ferguson's imminent departure is being upstaged by the much-anticipated, much-lamented exit Thursday by Colbert as host of Comedy Central's "The Colbert Report." He will step into his "Late Show" role sometime after Letterman's signoff May 20. Taking Ferguson's place as host of "The Late Late Show" is British actor-writer-comedian James Corden, who debuts March 9. During the two-month interim, a slate of guest hosts — including Drew Carey, Will Arnett, Wayne Brady, Jim Gaffigan, Billy Gardell and Sean Hayes — will fill in. But Ferguson won't be absent from the airwaves. This fall, he launched "Celebrity Name Game," a weekday syndicated game show. Now 51, Ferguson came to "The Late Late Show" in January 2005 with a varied resume including punk-rock drummer, author, standup comic and actor. He had appeared in several films, and written and starred in three, including the 2003 comedy "I'll Be There," which he also directed. He was best known as Nigel Wick, the imperious British boss on Drew Carey's long-running ABC sitcom, a role he landed after his arrival in Los Angeles in 1995. As "Late Late Show" host, Ferguson steadily redefined late-night talk in his own image. While most late-night hosts don't say much about who they really are, Ferguson was heroically self-disclosive, mining humor from tough times including two divorces, career setbacks, and his past drug and alcohol abuse. He spent one entire show paying tribute to his dad, who had died the day before. The Glasgow-born Ferguson also talked up his new homeland, adopting as a frequent catchphrase, "It's a great day for America," followed by a wisecrack. But he wasn't kidding. In 2008 he was officially sworn in as a U.S. citizen, proudly sharing video from the ceremony with his audience. In its first years, the show was emphatically no-frills, originating from a tiny Los Angeles studio with no house band or announcer. It has remained bare-bones, although it relocated to slightly better digs and added a sassy robotic skeleton named Geoff Peterson as Ferguson's sidekick. It was with Geoff that Ferguson in recent days was celebrating the end of his "Late Late Show" run. Or, as he put it, his "last week in this dump." _____ EDITOR'S NOTE — Frazier Moore is a national television columnist for The Associated Press. He can be reached at fmoore@ap.org and at http://www.twitter.com/tvfrazier. Past stories are available at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/frazier-moore _____ Online: http://www.cbs.com Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Italian actress Virna Lisi dead at 78
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Italian actress Virna Lisi dead at 78

Italian actress Virna Lisi, who played opposite Hollywood stars including Frank Sinatra in the 1960s and later established herself an acclaimed character actress, has died at the age of 78.Italian media quoted her son as saying that Lisi had passed away peacefully in her sleep on Wednesday, a month after being diagnosed with an incurable illness. Born in Ancona in 1936, she was an established cinema and theatre actress before Hollywood producers looking for a new Marilyn Monroe came calling in the mid-1960s. With Jack Lemmon she made "How to Murder Your Wife" in 1965 and followed up by starring alongside Tony Curtis in "Not with my Wife, You Don't" and with Sinatra in "Assault on a Queen" the following year. Reluctant to be restricted to love-interest roles based on her looks, she turned down the sexy part taken by Jane Fonda in Roger Vadim's "Barbarella" (1968) and moved back to Europe after only three years of a seven-year contract with Paramount studios. While in Hollywood, she maintained a parallel career in European cinema, notably playing a lead role in "The Birds, the Bees and the Italians," which shared the top prize, the Palme d'Or, at the Cannes film festival in 1966. After taking a break from acting in the early 1970s, Lisi successfully reinvented herself as a character actress with a broad range. Her portrayal of Catherine de' Medici in "La Reine Margot" (1994) saw her pick up both a French Cesar and the best actress award at Cannes. She also worked extensively in television and made the last of her nearly 80 films, "Il Piu Bel Giorno Della Mia Vita," in 2002. She is survived by her son Corrado Pesci and three grandchildren. Her husband of 53 years, the architect Franco Pesci, died in 2013. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Wikipedia reveals what the world edited in 2014
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Wikipedia reveals what the world edited in 2014

Wikipedia has published its first-ever annual video, revealing what the world read and edited on the encyclopedic site during 2014.Over 100 million changes were edited into articles throughout the year, with hot topics including everything from the political unrest in Ukraine to the 2014 Winter Olympics. The FIFA 2014 World Cup was a big talking point, while England's poor performance in the tournament led to the editing of the page "England national football team". The Scottish referendum on independence, the Brazilian presidential elections and the US Senate elections were all big political events which attracted interest. Meanwhile the conflict in Gaza also attracted a lot of activity on the site. The global popularity of the "Ice bucket challenge" led to changes being made to the pages "Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis", while the health crisis created by Ebola was also a hot topic in several languages. In terms of entertainment, "Game of Thrones," "Breaking Bad" and "Doctor Who" were all on the editing list, while Academy Award Best Picture winner "12 Years a Slave" also garnered a lot of attention. Novelists Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Maya Angelou, actors Philip Seymour Hoffman and Robin Williams and cricketer Phillip Hughes, all of whom passed away this year, all found their pages read and edited. For the full video, see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ci0Pihl2zXY Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.

Film students to play role in Academy Awards show
Thursday Dec 18, 2014
Film students to play role in Academy Awards show

LOS ANGELES (AP) — As many as six aspiring filmmakers will appear in next year's Academy Awards ceremony, and Channing Tatum will help them get there. Oscar producers said Wednesday they're bringing back the Team Oscar program that invites young filmmakers to play a role in the awards show. Craig Zadan and Neil Meron say Tatum will once again serve as spokesman for Team Oscar and help choose its members. The actor posted a video on YouTube inviting students to submit a 60-second video through the film academy's Facebook page to audition. American citizens ages 18 to 30 are eligible, and submissions are due Jan. 12. The winning artists will be flown to Los Angeles to participate in Oscar week activities and appear on the Oscar ceremony as trophy carriers. ___ Online: http://youtu.be/LoWK3WqxmwI Copyright (2014) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Sequel to Mandela's autobiography to be published in 2015
Wednesday Dec 17, 2014
Sequel to Mandela's autobiography to be published in 2015

A sequel to the late Nelson's Mandela's autobiography "The Long Walk to Freedom" is to be published in South Africa next year, the former president's foundation said Wednesday. The book titled "The Presidential Years", which Mandela began writing in 1998, will be based on his five years in office. He had already drafted 10 chapters "when he finally ran out of steam" in 2002, said the foundation which has released a handwritten manuscript of the opening sentences of the book. "The book will be based on the 10 chapters written by Mandela himself," Danielle Melville, the spokeswoman for the Nelson Mandela Foundation, told AFP. She did not say who has been brought in to finish the book. The foundation, which oversees the legacy of South Africa's first black president said it had "embarked on a project to see the completion of 'The Presidential Years' as an authorised account of Mr. Mandela's presidency." The hand-written draft opens with a poignant passage: "Men and women, all over the world, right down the centuries, come and go. Some leave nothing behind, not even their names. It would seem that they never existed at all." Mandela died a year ago at the age of 95 after a long illness. His first internationally acclaimed autobiography published in 1995 has been translated into numerous languages and adapted into an award-winning film. Mandela left instructions for the draft to be handed to five of his comrades for comments, including President Jacob Zuma, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj, who was also jailed with Mandela on Robben Island. The internationally revered anti-apartheid hero spent 27 years in prison before coming out to lead South Africa after the fall of apartheid in 1994. He only served a single five-year term as president, stepping down from office in 1999 having laid the foundation for a united South Africa. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2014.