by By Louise Watt, The Associated Press Posted Jul 6, 2014 2:37 am MDT ‘Transformers’ earns almost as much in China as in US after record number of screenings AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email BEIJING, China – The latest “Transformers” movie, which features Chinese locations, actors and products, has so far earned almost as much in China as in the United States, driven by a record number of screenings for a foreign movie.“Transformers: Age of Extinction” has made an estimated $149 million in the U.S. and $134 million in China, the world’s biggest and second-biggest movie markets, respectively, according to figures from box office tracking website Box Office Mojo.Director Michael Bay’s film, which was released June 27 in both markets, heavily courted the Chinese audience by employing Chinese stars, basing part of the action in cities in China and showing Chinese products such as liquor and milk. A reality TV show to choose four people to play roles in the film helped to drum up publicity.Observers say “Transformers” is on course to beat “Avatar” as the biggest earner at the fast-growing Chinese box office. “Avatar” earned $218 million in China in 2010.More than half of China’s more than 20,000 screens showed the fourth in the “Transformers” blockbuster franchise.Hou Tao, vice-president of leading entertainment consultancy EntGroup, said Sunday that on average 55 per cent of screens were set aside for the movie at the start, which had dropped to 46-48 per cent in the last few days. He said that it was a record for foreign movies, which would normally be lucky to be shown on 40 per cent of screens.Whether any other foreign movie will receive such a favourable screening “just depends on the movie itself, whether it’s popular, whether it’s competitive enough, and whether at the time there is no other movie to compete with it,” Hou said.He said “Transformers” had done well in China because of its Chinese elements and it hadn’t had to compete with any other big movies. Also, advertisers who had arranged for their products to be shown in the movie promoted the film by offering free tickets, Hou said.___Associated Press researcher Henry Hou contributed to this report.
Mr. Kelly, who built a national profile as a gun safety advocate after the shooting of his wife, former Representative Gabrielle Giffords, ran as a pragmatic outsider. At the center of his campaign was the bet that he could appeal to voters in the rapidly changing state — especially the crucial voting blocs Ms. McSally had alienated, including women, younger voters and Latinos, who have become increasingly powerful parts of the electorate in recent years.His victory, predicted for months in statewide polls, was crucial for Democrats in their bid to take back the Senate. The contest, one of the most expensive and closely watched in the nation, was the first time Arizonans had voted to send two Democrats to represent the Senate since the 1950s, underscoring the shifting demographics and politics of a state once known as a conservative stronghold. Though she clung tightly to the president, the feeling was not always mutual. Mr. Trump had repeatedly asked his advisers if her candidacy was adversely affecting his own prospects in Arizona, and at his campaign rallies in the state, instead of bolstering Ms. McSally, he sometimes treated her with disdain. In the final days of the race, during a rally in Goodyear, Mr. Trump told the senator that she had one minute to speak, urging her to be “quick, quick, quick, quick!” Mr. Kelly leaned hard into his biography on the campaign trail, playing up his work as a NASA space shuttle pilot and retired Navy captain and presenting himself as an independent-minded moderate. He often sidestepped questions about more liberal policies favored by progressives in Congress, keeping a laserlike focus on health care and bludgeoning Ms. McSally over her handling of the pandemic.- Advertisement – Ms. McSally had a compelling story of her own to tell. The first woman to pilot an American warplane in combat, she sued the Bush administration for making her wear an abaya while on duty in Saudi Arabia, and last year spoke out powerfully about how she had been raped by a male superior officer.But she came into the contest weakened, having lost her first run for Senate in 2018 and prompting Gov. Doug Ducey to appoint her to the seat left vacant by the death of Senator John McCain earlier that year.In that race, Ms. McSally abandoned the centrist reputation she had cultivated as a congresswoman to prevail in a crowded Republican primary and enthusiastically embraced Mr. Trump, a strategy she maintained in the contest against Mr. Kelly in the special election to serve out the remainder of Mr. McCain’s term.- Advertisement – – Advertisement – “They don’t want to hear this, Martha,” he said as she rushed to the stage.There were unforced errors on her part, too. Ms. McSally came under fire in August after jokingly suggesting that supporters “fast a meal” to donate to her campaign. The comment underscored the enormous fund-raising disparity between her campaign and Mr. Kelly’s. He became a fund-raising juggernaut, tapping a web of donors from his time leading a gun control foundation and a swell of online enthusiasm.But perhaps the most insurmountable chasm Ms. McSally faced was between Arizona’s ruby-red activist base and an increasingly powerful coalition made up of moderates in the suburbs and ethnically diverse voters who chafed at the president’s divisive talk and handling of the pandemic. In a debate with Mr. Kelly in the closing weeks of the race, she declined to say whether she was proud of her support for Mr. Trump.The extent of the suburban revolt against Mr. Trump was underscored on Tuesday night as Representative David Schweikert, a Republican representing a district on the outskirts of Phoenix, tried to fend off a Democratic challenger in an area long considered safely Republican. Mark Kelly, an astronaut and retired Navy captain, toppled Senator Martha McSally, Republican of Arizona, early Wednesday, flipping a seat vital to Democrats’ effort to wrest control of the Senate.It was the second time that voters in the traditionally conservative state rejected Ms. McSally, who attached herself to President Trump to buoy her Senate prospects in 2018 and never let go, as they delivered a wholesale rebuke of the president and his allies.- Advertisement –
After failing to score big in the run-up to the World Cup summit clash against Sri Lanka in Mumbai, Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni resembled a “bomb about to explode” ahead of the final, teammate and Man of the Tournament Yuvraj Singh said.”He (Dhoni) was not getting big scores in the tournament, but he kept working hard, and did not miss a single practice session. Watching him in the nets gave one the impression that he was a ‘bomb about to explode’,” Yuvraj wrote in the Cricket Board’s latest quarterly newsletter dedicated to India’s World Cup triumph.”Looking back, I am glad he ‘exploded’ in the final, and not earlier! He went in ahead of me in that game, but that was purely to keep the left-right combination going in the middle.”He had a point to prove and he played an innings of a lifetime,” the left-handed big-hitter said.Dhoni went in ahead of man-in-form Yuvraj when the final was on a knife-edge at the Wankhede Stadium with India at 114 for 3 in the 22nd over chasing a target of 275.The Indian skipper, in the company of left-handed opener Gautam Gambhir (96) first and then Yuvraj (21 not out), smashed an unconquered 91 off only 79 balls with eight fours and two sixes – including the winning hit off Nuwan Kulasekara – to power India to victory.Yuvraj wrote in the article that the Ranchi-born captain takes to “pressure like a fish to water” and that he was lucky to “have the best view of the captain’s winning hit”. — With PTI inputsadvertisement
iStock/Thinkstock(PANAMA CITY, Fla.) — Hurricane Michael is closing in on the Florida Panhandle, forecast to make landfall as a “monstrous” Category 3 storm with a dangerous storm surge of up to 12 feet, officials said.“You cannot hide from storm surge,” Florida Gov. Rick Scott warned at a news conference Tuesday. “We can rebuild your house, but we cannot rebuild your life.”“If you have 6 feet of storm surge, you’re out the middle of it, I don’t know how you’re going to survive,” Scott said.“This storm can kill you,” Scott said. “You need to evacuate if you’re ordered to do so.”Michael is now a Category 3 hurricane with 120 mph winds.The storm is forecast to make landfall near Panama City, Florida, on Wednesday afternoon.Besides the dangerous storm surge, residents should also prepare for torrential rain and major flooding, Scott said, with 4 to 8 inches of rain expected and even 12 inches possible in some areas.Scott called the storm “monstrous,” adding, “We haven’t seen anything like this in the Panhandle in decades.”A hurricane warning is in effect for Florida cities including Tallahassee, Panama City, Apalachicola and Pensacola.Florida State University has closed through Friday and the Pensacola International Airport is set to close Wednesday.At least 32 shelters have already opened in the Sunshine State, officials said.In Carrabelle, Florida, resident Cole Lauzau said she is planning to try riding out the storm at home with her roommate and their dog.They live across the street from a swamp, so Lauzau is bracing for water to rise up to their home.For now, Lauzau is trying to plan ahead, making sure they have enough water, food and sandbags.“We’re a little nervous,” she told ABC News. “If we can possibly ride it out safely, we’re going to try it. And if it gets much worse … we will go.”Warnings are in effect for more than 300 miles of coastline, the National Weather Service said.In Georgia, which will be hit by damaging winds and downed power lines, Gov. Nathan Deal on Tuesday declared a state of emergency for 92 of his state’s counties.Scott has declared a state of emergency in 35 counties in Florida. President Donald Trump has approved an emergency declaration for Florida, permitting the federal government to provide resources and aid during the dangerous storm.In Alabama, where residents may see massive power outages, high winds and heavy rain, Gov. Kay Ivey issued a state of emergency statewide.North Carolina and South Carolina will likely see heavy rainfall, which could cause flooding in areas already damaged by last month’s Hurricane Florence. Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.