National / International News

Supreme Court Considers Whether A Sock Is Drug Paraphernalia

NPR News - Wed, 2015-01-14 12:16

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court heard arguments in a case that deported a graduate student in Kansas because a sock was deemed to be drug paraphernalia.

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Amazon Gains Ground With Online-Only Shows

NPR News - Wed, 2015-01-14 12:16

With the announcement this week that Woody Allen will write and direct a new television series for Amazon, the online retailer is now poised to be a major force in television.

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The Razzies: Lampooning Hollywood for 35 years

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2015-01-14 12:12

Sylvester Stallone has been nominated for 30 Golden Raspberry Awards and won four. He's not a fan. Neither is Michael Caine, who called the awards "the pustule on the butt of Hollywood” when he was nominated in 1980 for both "Dressed to Kill" and "The Island."

This celebrity aggravation wouldn’t be possible without John Wilson.

Wilson started the awards, which honor the worst of the worst in film each year, 35 years ago in his Los Angeles living room. The nominees and winners are now reported on throughout the world.

In his interview with Kai, Wilson shares the origin story of the awards and talks about the time Sandra Bullock showed up to accept her Razzie in person (Halle Berry did too). 

Here are two tidbits that didn’t make the radio broadcast. First, we asked Wilson if the Razzies have ever been used to promote a film:

It’s interesting. The ultimate Razzie movie is probably "Showgirls," the one that Paul Verhoeven did. I loved the quote, "It’s the only movie about Las Vegas that’s actually more tasteless than Las Vegas." [Wilson lives in Las Vegas] He showed up at the ceremony and accepted his award, but MGM, when they saw the reaction to it they tried to rerelease it and turn it into another "Rocky Horror Picture Show" and make it an interactive bad movie where you would come dressed as one of the dancing [strippers] and yell. It didn’t work, but yeah, I actually have in my storage a poster that says "Winner of an unprecedented seven Razzie Awards."

 We also asked Wilson if he views the Academy Awards differently after the Razzies have been the anti-Oscars for 35 years:

I’m way more cynical. I grew up with two parents who were Depression-era kids who loved movies and they passed that on to me. I actually as a child used to stay up and watch the Oscars in Chicago when I was very young, and I do love the Oscars. But they've gotten to the point where they’re so huge and so self-involved and so smug and so …  all of the things that an award that means something probably shouldn't be. And we’re still down here with our peashooter going: [Wilson blows a raspberry.]

This year’s Razzie Award nominations:

Worst Picture

  • "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas"
  • "Left Behind"
  • "The Legend of Hercules"
  • "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles"
  • "Transformers: Age of Extinction"

Worst Actor

  • Nicolas Cage, "Left Behind"
  • Kirk Cameron, "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas"
  • Kellan Lutz, "The Legend of Hercules"
  • Seth MacFarlane, "A Million Ways to Die in the West"
  • Adam Sandler, "Blended"

Worst Actress

  • Drew Barrymore, "Blended"
  • Cameron Diaz, "The Other Woman," "Sex Tape"
  • Melissa McCarthy, "Tammy"
  • Charlize Theron, "A Million Ways to Die in the West"
  • Gaia Weiss, "The Legend of Hercules"

Worst Supporting Actress

  • Cameron Diaz, "Annie"
  • Megan Fox, "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles"
  • Nicola Peltz, "Transformers: Age of Extinction"
  • Brigitte Ridenour, "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas"
  • Susan Sarandon, "Tammy"

Razzie Redeemer Award

  • Ben Affleck
  • Jennifer Aniston
  • Mike Myers
  • Keanu Reeves
  • Kristen Stewart

Worst Supporting Actor

  • Mel Gibson, "The Expendables 3"
  • Kelsey Grammer, "The Expendables 3," "Legends of Oz," "Think Like a Man Too," "Transformers: Age of Extinction"
  • Shaquille O'Neal, "Blended"
  • Arnold Schwarzenegger, "The Expendables 3"
  • Kiefer Sutherland, "Pompeii"

Worst Director

  • Michael Bay, "Transformers: Age of Extinction"
  • Darren Doane, "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas"
  • Renny Harlin, "The Legend of Hercules"
  • Jonathan Liebesman, "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles"
  • Seth MacFarlane, "A Million Ways To Die in the West"

Worst Screen Combo

  • Kirk Cameron and his ego, "Saving Christmas"
  • Seth MacFarlane and Charlize Theron, "A Million Ways to Die in the West"
  • Any two robots, actors (or robotic actors), "Transformers"
  • Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel, "Sex Tape"
  • Kellan Lutz and either his abs, pecs or glutes, "Legend of Hercules"

Worst Screenplay

  • "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas"
  • "Left Behind"
  • "Sex Tape"
  • "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles"
  • "Transformers: Age of Extinction"

Worst Remake, Rip-off or Sequel

  • "Annie"
  • "Atlas Shrugged: Who Is John Galt?"
  • "The Legend of Hercules"
  • "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles"

VIDEO: Capoue's wonder strike for Spurs

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 12:01
Etienne Capoue drills home an equaliser for Spurs as they fight back from two goals down against Burnley in the FA Cup third round.

Climbers inch towards El Capitan peak

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 12:01
Two climbers trying to scale the sheer face of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park are inching towards the top of the 3,000ft (914m) peak.

One County Provides Preview Of China's Looming Aging Crisis

NPR News - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:58

Eastern China's Rudong County began implementing the one-child policy 10 years before the rest of the nation. Now, an estimated 60 percent of the county's residents will be 60 or older by 2030.

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A 'high risk' year for the future of the BBC

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:53
BBC Director General Tony Hall has warned the future of the corporation is at stake, says David Sillito.

Philadelphia Pizza Lovers Pay It Forward One Slice At A Time

NPR News - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:53

A Philadelphia pizza shop has become an ad hoc feeding program for the homeless where customers can pay the $1 slices forward. To date, some 8,400 slices have been bought for the homeless.

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Free-Climbers Close In On Summit Of Yosemite's El Capitan

NPR News - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:47

Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson are using only their hands and feet to ascend the nearly 3,000-foot Dawn Wall. Ropes are used only to break a fall.

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New twist in equal pay battle

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:43
Female workers at North Lanarkshire Council have won their equal pay claims regarding interest on back pay but were not awarded compensation for injury to feelings.

VIDEO: Pardon? Testing new Google Translate

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:42
Rory Cellan-Jones tries out Google's enhanced translation tool to see if it delivers on its ambitious promises.

VIDEO: Teacher 'stalked by abuse victim'

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:30
A teacher who had sex with a pupil at school avoids being sent to prison by a judge who said the victim "stalked him".

As consumer prices fall, we may be buying more with less

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:11

Shoppers disappointed economists last month. Retail sales fell 0.9 percent, while experts expected an increase. But those Commerce Department numbers might not tell the whole story. Consumer prices have been falling, so we might be buying more things for less money. 

City newsagent to sell Charlie Hebdo

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:07
A Newport newsagent says he plans to sell copies of French weekly Charlie Hebdo due to customer demand.

Shazam CEO: Introducing visual 'Shazaming'

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:05

Before Apple came up with the App Store, Shazam was doing what it still to this day does best: helping people identify the music they are listening to. But, back in 2002, that didn't exactly work on flip phones the way it does on an iPhone or Android these days.

"Shazam was mobile before mobile was cool"

"We like to say 'Shazam was mobile before mobile was cool,'" says Rich Riley, Shazam CEO. "When it was originally launched, you would basically record a sound clip, text that to Shazam systems and it would return with the name of the song and you would pay like a dollar for that text."

Four years later came the iPhone.

"It took about 10 years to do the first one-billion Shazams and now we do a billion Shazams every 45 days or something like that," says Riley.

Top Shazam'd Songs of All Time: 15 million+

However, Shazam is not just about music anymore. Users can also Shazam television shows, movies and advertisements. The company also recently received $40 million from Mexico's Telecom mogul Carlos Slim for continued expansion.

"Most people now have this incredibly powerful device in their pocket. It’s only getting faster, it’s only getting more powerful and it’s the way they are going to want to connect to things around them," says Riley.

The company will soon announce "visual shazaming." Users will be able to Shazam things like print ads, quick response codes and packages.

"Say if it’s a DVD, for example, you can push Shazam and watch the full trailer," says Riley.

Shazam in five words or less

"Connect people to the world," says Riley.

Rich Riley's Bad Day at Work Playlist

"Blank Space" by Taylor Swift is the song currently stuck in Riley's head the most, he says, because his kids are obsessed with it.

Tulisa assault conviction upheld

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:03
Singer Tulisa Contostavlos loses an appeal against her conviction for assaulting a celebrity blogger at a music festival.

Latest Charlie Hebdo will barely be distributed in US

Marketplace - American Public Media - Wed, 2015-01-14 11:00

The first issue of Charlie Hebdo published after last week's attacks hit newsstands in France today. The 3 million copies essentially sold out within hours.

Would-be readers in the U.S. will likely  have a tougher time finding a copy. They also might want to brush up on their French.

The magazine's distributor in the U.S. and Canada says just 300 untranslated copies will be sold here.

They'll arrive Friday morning on an Air France flight, CNN says.

VIDEO: British man left in Guantanamo Bay

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 10:45
David Cameron will raise the issue of the one British resident left in Guantanamo Bay when he meets Barack Obama.

Rate of sea-level rise 'steeper'

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 10:42
The rate at which the global oceans have risen in the past two decades is more significant than previously recognised, say US-based scientists.

Wilfried Bony: Ivory Coast's history-making striker

BBC - Wed, 2015-01-14 10:40
The trainee footballers hoping to emulate Man City's new striker