Recently in Notable Category

The roof of the Metrodome collapsed after 17 inches of snow fell in Minneapolis Saturday, part of a blizzard that hit the Midwest over the weekend, CNN reported.

The 64,000-seat stadium caved in, moving the Minnesota Vikings game with the New York Giants from Monday at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan, the NFL said in a statement Sunday.

Travel in Minnesota, western Wisconsin and parts of the Dakotas, has been difficult to impossible, the Washington Post reported.

Snow drifts from 3 feet to 6 feet high have been reported around the Twin Cities, after the fifth biggest snow on record, the Washington Post reported.

"That snow isn't going anywhere anytime soon-no thaws in sight through Christmas Day," Meteorologist Paul Douglas at the Star Tribune said in a storm recap

A video of the Metrodome collapsing can be seen here.

2011 Sundance Film Festival goes back to its off-kilter roots

Festival programmers announced Wednesday that 58 features and documentaries are included on the Sundance schedule, although the festival lacks a previously quintessential element: movie stars.

The films were culled from 3,812 submissions, and feature mostly unrecognizable performers with lesser known filmmakers, the New York Times reported.

The lineup for the narrative films includes Demi Moore, Liv Tyler, John C. Reilly and some indie darlings, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Last year's competition showed well-known actors like Natalie Portman, James Franco, Kristen Stewart, Michelle Williams, Orlando Bloom and James Gandolfini, The New York Times reported.

"For whatever reason, there aren't as many big stars doing an independent turn as in past years, and that's perfectly fine with us," said John Cooper, who is in his second year as festival director.

Cooper hopes to steer the festival back to its original, off-kilter character, avoiding the grandiose influence of Hollywood, the Los Angeles Times reported.

"I felt audiences wanted us to stick with it," Cooper said. "Not that that's what the industry wanted us to do."

On the same note, the Utah gathering will forgo the previously traditional gala in Park City, and instead will start the competition when Sundance begins Jan.20, which concludes 10 days later, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The festival has awards for best American drama and documentary, along with contests for top international drama and documentary, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Facebook revealed a new message system that will go beyond the outdated e-mail.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that e-mail is past its prime. Most young people use texting and other instant messages to communicate with friends, so converging various modes of communication may be the future, the Associated Press reported.

Zuckerberg said that the service will not be the "Gmail killer," as some have dubbed it. The system, called "Project Titan," will combine multiple forms of communication on one platform, the AP reported.

The system will allow users to send messages to any device or media that they would like, which a press release on the Facebook Blog called "seamless messaging." This streamlines the process by allowing users to talk to their friends in real time via e-mail, chat, SMS or Facebook messages, all in one place.

U.S. teens use primarily text messaging to communicate, while e-mail is the least used, according to a 2009 survey from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, CBS reported.

More than 4 billion Facebook messages are sent through their system each day by around 350 million people that actively use the service and others who use the basic chat, CBS reported.

"If we do a good job, some people will say this is the way that the future will work," Zuckerberg said.

The Governors Awards, the honorary portion of the Academy Awards, kicked off the Oscar season Saturday night while honoring Francis Ford Coppola, the director of The Godfather films, and others among Hollywood's greatest.

Robert De Niro sang Coppola's praises while Coppola recieved the Irving G. Thalberg Award for producing, USA Today reported.

"Seriously Francis, thank you for the career-making break you gave me in The Godfather II," De Niro said. "You're an inspiration and one of my biggest influences."

"Now that we're going up for the same parts, I hope we can remain friends," De Niro, 67, joked while helping present an honorary Oscar to actor Eli Wallach, who turns 95 next month.

Clint Eastwood, 80, recalled that Wallach is one of two living stars from the 1966 movie The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, starring Eastwood himself, the New York Times reported.

French Filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard was presented with an honorary Oscar, although he has been previously ignored by the academy. He has repeatedly denounced Hollywood and has made some controversial comments that have been perceived as anti-Jewish, the New York Times reported.

"He didn't just break the rules, he ran them over with a stolen car," Phil Alden Robinson, a screenwriter for films including Field of Dreams and who suggested that Godard be honored, the New York Times reported.

"Let's be honest, you have said things that have offended pretty much everyone in this room, at least once," Robinson said. "You have also said really snarky things about Hollywood and the Oscars ... but then again, so has everyone in this room, at least once."

Godard was not there to accept his award, so Tom Sherak, the academy's president, said he planned to personally deliver it to Godard in Switzerland, the New York Times reported.

The event used to be a part of the broadcasted ceremony, but became a separate event last year to cut down on the usually drawn-out telecast and to allow for more time to honor recipients.

Russian journalist beaten near his home in Moscow

A Russian journalist for the daily newspaper Kommersant was seriously injured Saturday during a beating in front of his Moscow home.

Oleg Kashin, 30, is in a medically induced coma in a Moscow hospital with a concussion, a broken jaw, broken fingers and fractures in both legs, the Guardian reported.

Kashin's editor, Mikhail Mikhailin, said he believes the attack was a response to his writing on controversial topics, including youth political movements and protests, the New York Times reported.

"The thing that bothers me is that at the moment of the beating, they broke his fingers," Mikhailin said in an interview with the Ekho Moskvy radio station. "It is completely obvious that the people who did this did not like what he was saying and what he was writing. I don't know what specifically they did not like, but I firmly connect this with his professional activities."

Kashin was returning to his home at an apartment complex early Saturday when two men repeatedly beat him with a blunt object, the Guardian reported. Witnesses said they saw two men waiting near his home before the attack.

The beating adds to a string of attacks on Russian journalists in recent years, shocking the media and civil rights community, the Guardian reported.

Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert rallied a crowd of more than 200,000 for a "comedic call for calm," at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., Saturday.

The Comedy Central duo hosted the "Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear" amid the fearful and ill-tempered politics and media of the upcoming election in a variety show-like line-up of musicians and special guests, the Associated Press reported. The crowd embraced the comedic event by wearing goofy costumes and carrying signs protesting protest signs.

Stewart, the host of "The Daily Show" that pokes fun at celebrites and politicians, led the side for sanity, while Colbert, who poses as an ultraconservative on "The Colbert Report", embodied the side for fear, the AP reported.

"Maybe I need to be more discerning," Colbert said when basketball star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who is Muslim, joined him on stage after he jokingly expressed his distrust of Muslims, the AP reported. He told Stewart, "Your reasonableness is poisoning my fear."

According to Stewart, the day was an effort to turn down the yelling, insults and anger of recent partisan division, days before America will vote.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Stewart said Americans hear "how fragile our country is, on the brink of catastrophe, torn by polarizing hate, and how it's a shame that we can't work together to get things done. The truth is, we do. We work together to get things done every damn day. The only place we don't is here or on cable TV."

Marion Brown, jazz saxophonist and music educator, dies at 79

Marin Brown, a distinctive alto saxophonist known for his association with the avante garde Jazz community of the 1960's and 70's, died Monday.

Brown was treated for various illnesses and died in a hospice in Fourt Lauderdale, Fla., according to his son Djinji, the New York Times reported. He was 79.

Brown recorded with John Coltrane and the tenor saxophonist Archie Shepp, and was a prominent part of the movement called free jazz, a type of improvisation that defied the classic conventions of jazz, the New York Times reported. He recorded dozens of albums, although he has not performed publicly for many years.

Marion Brown Jr. was born in Atlanta on Sept. 8, 1931, the New York Times reported. He was a member of an army band and later studied music at Clark College and Howard University. He moved to New York in 1962 to start his professional music career.

He taught African-America music at Bowdoin College and earned a Master's degree in Ethnomusicology from Wesleyan University, JazzTimes reported.

"My reference is the blues, and that's where my music comes from," Brown said in the liner notes by Charles Fox and Leo Smith for Brown's Porto Novo album, JazzTimes reported. "I do listen to music of other cultures, but I just find them interesting. I don't have to borrow from them. My music and my past are rich enough. B.B. King is my Ravi Shankar."

According to the New York Times, Brown married Gail Anderson, but later divorced. He is survived by his son Djinji, and two daughters Anais St. John and La Paloma Soria-Brown and two granddaughters.

Chilean miners' survival story could be made into a movie

After emerging from 69 days underground, the 33 Chilean miners' story of survival might be made into a movie, ABC reported.

The media has been saturated with the miner's story of heroism and human will. Live feeds have been shown of the miners being rescued and each man's story has inspired people all over the world, the New York Times reported.

According to the New York Times, their reality might be made into a Hollywood blockbuster like "The Social Network" which chronicles the story of Mark Zuckerberg the founder of Facebook, or "World Trade Center" which tells the story of an officer who was trapped underground on 9/11.

"They are the national pride of Chile. If you don't do right by these people, you'll have a nation pissed off at you," Michael Shamberg, a producer of "World Trade Center" said. "In my opinion, this isn't a movie that I would want to make without the approval of the real people."

The miners, who were rescued ahead of schedule after over a 22 hour operation, are being monitored for their medical and mental condition. They are in surprisingly good condition according to doctors and their progress will be monitored over the next six months, ABC reported.

Ben Sherwood, a former producer at ABC News and NBC News and founder of a website that is a social network and resource for survivors of disasters, said that all the components are there. Their epic story has elements of drama, humor, romance and an emotional bond between 33 men working together to survive, the New York Times reported.

"When we find out what really happened down there, I'm confident there will be amazing stories that we can't even imagine," Sherwood said.

The next Harry Potter film will not be released in 3D

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 will not be released in 3D, Warner Bros. said Friday, because they ran out of time to properly convert the movie into a 3D format, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Warner Bros. said that they do not want to make fans wait any longer for the film, which is based on the seventh Harry Potter book, BBC reported.

"We do not want to disappoint fans who have long anticipated the conclusion of this extraordinary journey," the studio said in a statement Friday according to the Wall Street Journal.

The release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 will be released November 19 in the U.K. and the U.S.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is set to release in the summer of 2011 on July 15 in both 2D and 3D formats.

Part two will be the first, but perhaps not the last, Harry Potter film to be screened in 3D.

According to the BBC, J.K. Rowling has recently suggested that she has considered writing more books about Harry Potter and the world of wizards and witches.

"I'm not going to say I won't," she said.

Glastonbury Festival in the UK sold out after four hours

Tickets for the Glastonbury Festival 2011 sold out Sunday in just over four hours after their website and phone lines were bombarded by fans, the BBC reported.

According to the festivals official website, organizers apologized for those who were not able to snag tickets. They said that there were some issues "due to the sheer volume of people trying to get through," NME reported.

The tickets sold out eight hours earlier than last year, according to the BBC.

The festival's website changed their home page to text only because it was overloaded by the thousands of online visitors.

The festival, which celebrated its 40th anniversary last year, is held at Worthy Farm in Somerset in the U.K. and can host up to 177,500 people, the BBC reported.

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