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Sunday 17 November 2019

'Hobbit' on top in US

'The Hobbit' has set a box office record with the biggest December opening ever in the US, beating the three previous 'Lord Of The Rings' films with a haul of $84.8m (€64.39m).

Peter Jackson's Middle Earth epic surpassed Will Smith's 'I Am Legend', which opened with $77.2m (€58.6m) in 2007. It also overtook 'Avatar', which opened with $77m (€58.47m). Internationally, 'The Hobbit' also added $138.2m (€105m) for a debut well north of $200m (€151.8m).

Clinton by Scorsese

Filmmaker Martin Scorsese is making a documentary on Bill Clinton for HBO. HBO has announced that Scorsese is producing and directing the film, with Clinton's co-operation.

The network did not announce an anticipated air date for the show on the 42nd president of the US, who was in office from 1993 to 2001.

Pupil fights ID badge

A 15-year-old pupil has gone to court in Texas to fight being excluded over her opposition to the use of electronic tagging badges in her high school.

The San Antonio school district equipped 4,200 pupils with mandatory ID badges containing tracking chips, saying it would improve safety and boost attendance. Andrea Hernandez has been told she must transfer to another campus if she does not wear the badge.

Kim Jong Il on show

The embalmed body of former North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, still in his trademark khaki jumpsuit, has been put on display on the anniversary of his death.

Kim lies in state a few floors below his father, national founder Kim Il Sung, in the Kumsusan mausoleum, the cavernous former presidential palace in Pyongyang. North Korea also unveiled Kim's yacht and his armoured train carriage, where he is said to have died. Among the personal belongings featured in the mausoleum are the parka, sunglasses and pointy platform shoes he wore in the last decades of his life.

Safe sex bill to pass

Philippine legislators are set to pass a law that would provide government funding for contraceptives and sexuality classes in schools, despite strong opposition by the dominant Roman Catholic Church.

Church leaders have criticised the country's leaders for backing the bill. Archbishop Socrates Villegas, vice president of the Philippines' Bishops Conference, said the wide and free accessibility of contraceptives would result in the destruction of family life.

Irish Independent

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