Ads

Arts, Culture and Advertising news


Athletes’ Village Handed Over to Paris Olympics Organizers  

Paris — The organizers of the Paris Olympics took possession of the newly built athletes’ village on Thursday on schedule, reinforcing growing confidence that they will be ready for the Games. At an inauguration ceremony in northern Paris, chief organizer Tony Estanguet received a symbolic key for the complex in front of VIPs including President Emmanuel Macron. “It’s a demonstration that we have honored our commitments,” Macron told reporters, who told workers they should be “proud” of delivering the village “on time and in budget.” Organisers will spend the next four …


Cricket Tournaments in Indian-Administered Kashmir Boost Local Economy

Srinagar, Indian administered Kashmir — The blanket of snow covering one of the prominent cricket grounds at the Magam neighborhood of Budgam district on the Indian side of Kashmir has melted. The ground is set to host a monthlong local cricket tournament from March 3. Hundreds of youths from various parts of the valley will compete for a $3,000 cash prize. Cricket, originating in Britain, was historically enjoyed for fitness and leisure. It is the second most popular sport worldwide after soccer with approximately 2 billion fans and is the most …


What Might Happen Without a Leap Day? More Than You Think

NEW YORK — Leap year. It’s a delight for the calendar and math nerds among us. So how did it all begin and why? Have a look at some of the numbers, history and lore behind the (not quite) every four-year phenom that adds a 29th day to February. By the numbers The math is mind-boggling in a layperson sort of way and down to fractions of days and minutes. There’s even a leap second occasionally, but there’s no hullabaloo when that happens. The thing to know is that leap year …


‘One Love’ Gets More Box Office Love, No. 1 for Second Week 1

Los Angeles — For a second straight week, biopic “ Bob Marley: One Love” continues to exceed expectations by claiming the No. 1 spot at the box office, overcoming two debut films and Sony’s “Madame Web” that’s still producing subpar numbers. The Paramount film starring Kingsley Ben-Adir pulled in $13.5 million during its second week of release. The project, which was produced for about $70 million, already eclipsed that mark, grossing nearly $72 million domestically in North America. It’s an impressive achievement for the Reinaldo Marcus Green-directed Marley’s musical biopic that’s …


Israel Threatens Eurovision Pull-Out if Entry Vetoed 

Jerusalem — Israel on Sunday warned that it may withdraw from this year’s Eurovision Song Contest if organizers reject the lyrics from its entry as too political.    Eden Golan and her song “October Rain” were chosen to compete in the annual competition, which is being held in May in Malmo, Sweden.    Media reports have suggested that the song, which is mostly in English with some Hebrew words, references the victims of Hamas’s October 7 attack on southern Israel.    That could mean the ballad and its 20-year-old Russian-Israeli singer …


Japan’s ‘Naked Men’ Festival Succumbs to Aging of Population

Ōshū, Japan — Steam rose as hundreds of naked men tussled over a bag of wooden talismans, performing a dramatic end to a thousand-year-old ritual in Japan that took place for the last time.  Their passionate chants of “Jasso, joyasa” (meaning “Evil, be gone”) echoed through a cedar forest in northern Japan’s Iwate region, where the secluded Kokuseki Temple has decided to end the popular annual rite.  Organizing the event, which draws hundreds of participants and thousands of tourists every year, has become a heavy burden for the aging local faithful, …


Eva Peron Maintains Grip on Argentina Decades After Her 1952 Death

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Early every morning, just as she reaches her workplace at a labor union in Buenos Aires, Ángeles Celerier heads to the chapel and prays to Saint Cajetan, Saint Teresa and Eva Perón. Perón — unlike the others — has not been canonized by the Vatican, but this doesn’t matter to Celerier. “For me, she is the saint of the people,” the 56-year-old Argentine said. Many union members think of Evita as their patron or gaze at her photos with nostalgia, feeling that she and her husband, three-time …


Dior Postpones Hong Kong Fashion Show ‘Indefinitely’

HONG KONG — Dior has postponed a fashion show set to be held in Hong Kong next month, a city official confirmed Saturday, dealing a blow to the financial hub’s ambitions to boost its economy through major events. Hong Kong is courting top international celebrities and brands in the hope of rebooting its reputation, which has been battered by years of social unrest and strict pandemic curbs.  The Dior fashion show — meant to feature artistic director Kim Jones and the men’s autumn collection — was to be one of several …


Beatles To Get Fab Four of Biopics

NEW YORK — The Beatles are getting the big-screen biopic treatment in not just one film, but a Fab Four of movies that will give each band member their own spotlight — all of which are to be directed by Sam Mendes. For the first time, the Beatles, long among the stingiest rights granters, are giving full life and music rights to a movie project. Sony Pictures announced Monday a deal that may dwarf all music biopics that have come before it, with the stories of Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George …


Strike Closes Eiffel Tower in Blow to Tourists Ahead of Paris Olympics

Paris — The Eiffel Tower, one of the most visited tourist sites in the world, closed on Monday as staff went on strike in protest against the way the Paris monument is managed financially, disappointing the crowds below. The strike comes as Paris prepares to host the 2024 Summer Olympics, which begin on July 26 and will feature metal from the tower in the winners’ medals. Visitors stood outside the barriers of the tower grounds in front of a giant screen announcing the strike. “It’s a real shame, really, because we …


Berlin Film Fest Grapples With Nazi Past, Far-Right Threat

BERLIN — This week’s Berlin international film festival is wrestling on- and off-screen with the weight of the Nazi past and the menace of a resurgent far right. The 74th Berlinale, as the event is known, has a reputation for confronting political realities head-on with high-profile movies and hot-tempered debates. German director Julia von Heinz brought together an unlikely pair, U.S. actor Lena Dunham and Britain’s Stephen Fry, for her drama “Treasure,” about a Holocaust survivor who returns to Poland with his journalist daughter. Inspired by a true story, the film …


‘Bob Marley: One Love’ Stirs Up $27.7 Million Weekend at Box Office

New York — Paramount Pictures’ Bob Marley biopic “Bob Marley: One Love” outperformed expectations to debut at No. 1 at the box office with a $27.7 million opening weekend, while Sony’s “Madame Web” flopped with one of the lowest debuts for a movie centered on a Marvel character. Both films launched in theaters on Tuesday to rope in Valentine’s Day moviegoers. But on a weekend that was once expected to go to “Madame Web,” “One Love” emerged as the much-preferred option in theaters, despite largely poor reviews. Instead, “One Love,” starring …


‘Oppenheimer’ Wins 7 Prizes, Including Best Picture, at British Academy Film Awards

London — Atom bomb epic “Oppenheimer” won seven prizes, including best picture, director and actor, at the 77th British Academy Film Awards on Sunday, cementing its front-runner status for the Oscars next month. Gothic fantasia “Poor Things” took five prizes and Holocaust drama “The Zone of Interest” won three. Christopher Nolan won his first best director BAFTA for “Oppenheimer,” and Cillian Murphy won the best actor prize for playing physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer, the father of the atomic bomb. Murphy said he was grateful to play such a “colossally knotty, complex …


Solemn Monument to Japanese American WWII Detainees Lists More Than 125,000 Names

Los Angeles — Samantha Sumiko Pinedo and her grandparents file into a dimly lit enclosure at the Japanese American National Museum and approach a massive book splayed open to reveal columns of names. Pinedo is hoping the list includes her great-grandparents, who were detained in Japanese American incarceration camps during World War II.  “For a lot of people, it feels like so long ago because it was World War II. But I grew up with my Bompa (great-grandpa), who was in the internment camps,” Pinedo says. A docent at the museum …


Nepal Pursues Sacred Items Smuggled Abroad

KATHMANDU, Nepal — Nepal’s gods and goddess are returning home. An unknown number of sacred statues of Hindu deities were stolen and smuggled abroad in the past. Now dozens are being repatriated to the Himalayan nation, part of a growing global effort to return such items to countries in Asia, Africa and elsewhere. Last month, four idols and masks of Hindu gods were returned to Nepal from the United States by museums and a private collector. Among them was a 16th century statue of Uma-Maheswora, an avatar of the gods Shiva …


London Fashion Week Celebrates Multiculturalism, Urban Life

LONDON — The cultural richness brought by migrations across the world, familial nostalgia and the frenetic pace of London life marked the second day of the city’s Fashion Week on Saturday as up-and-coming designers showed off their styles for the season ahead. Some 60 designers, ranging from rising talents to renowned brands like Burberry, are exhibiting their new designs over five days, hoping to draw the interest of buyers and fashion influencers. The 40th anniversary edition of the event is also introducing greater diversity and inclusivity in terms of body shapes, …


What to Expect at Britain’s BAFTA Film Awards on Sunday

LONDON — Prepare for Poppenheimer. Poor Things and Oppenheimer are the leading contenders for the British Academy Film Awards, which will be handed out Sunday in front of an audience of filmmakers, movie stars and the heir to the British throne. Yorgos Lanthimos’ gothic fantasia is up for 11 trophies, while Christopher Nolan’s atom-bomb epic has 13 nominations for the British prizes, known as BAFTAs. That’s the same number Oppenheimer has for the Oscars, where it is also the frontrunner. The ceremony at London’s Royal Festival Hall will be a glitzy, …


Harrison Ford’s ‘Star Wars’ script fetches $13,600 at UK sale

London — An original draft “Star Wars” script left in a London apartment by actor Harrison Ford, who played Hans Solo in the movie, sold at a UK auction for $13,600 on Saturday.  The script was used when Ford was filming the first installment of the epic saga, originally entitled “The Adventures of Luke Starkiller,” at Elstree Studios north of London.  The fourth draft of the screenplay, dating from March 15, 1976, was snapped up by an Austrian collector when it went under the hammer at Excalibur Auctions in Hertfordshire, north …


Pope Urges Catholics to Swap Social Media for Reflection as Lent Begins

ROME — Pope Francis urged Catholics to forgo worldly trappings and focus on essentials as he opened the season of Lent with a traditional Ash Wednesday Mass on one of Rome’s historic seven hills. He criticized people’s tendency to lay bare their lives on social media, deploring “a world in which everything, including our emotions and deepest feelings, has to become ‘social.’” Instead, the faithful should enter their “inner chamber” to find time for quiet reflection and prayer, the 87-year-old pontiff said in a homily. Lent is a 40-day period of …