In their never-ending quest to reach the coveted Millennial demographic, the producers of the Academy Awards have hit on everyone's favorite trend-piece subject: Selfies! Host Ellen DeGeneres invited a slew of famous faces — including Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence, and Brad Pitt — to join her for a meme-ready picture:
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) March 3, 2014
On Tuesday, the U.S. government sued to keep the family of San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook from receiving $275,000 from life insurance policies he took out in 2012 and 2013.
Prosecutors say while planning a terrorist attack, Farook obtained a $25,000 life insurance policy in 2012 and a $250,000 policy in 2013. His mother, Rafia Farook, is the beneficiary for both policies. "Terrorists must not be permitted to provide for their designated beneficiaries through their crimes," U.S. Attorney Eileen Decker said in a statement. "My office intends to explore every legal option available to us to ensure these funds are made available to the victims of this horrific crime. We will continue to use every tool available to seek justice on behalf of the victims of the San Bernardino terrorist attacks."
On Dec. 2, 2015, Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, shot and killed 14 people and injured 22 others after storming into a training session attended by Farook's San Bernardino County co-workers. Catherine Garcia
More than 50 years after its release, Mary Poppins is getting a sequel.
Mary Poppins Returns will hit theaters on Dec. 25, 2018, starring Emily Blunt as the magical nanny with the bottomless carpet bag and Hamilton's Lin-Manuel Miranda as Jack the lamplighter, a new character. The 1964 Disney classic starred Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke, and won five Academy Awards.
Mary Poppins Returns will be set in Depression-era London, with Jane and Michael Banks now adults, The Hollywood Reporter says. Michael is a father of three, and they are visited by their beloved nanny after the family is hit by tragedy. The movie will be directed by Rob Marshall. Catherine Garcia
Documents serving as evidence in a class-action lawsuit against Trump University show instructors were told how to bring in customers, convince them to spend more money on additional classes, and counter objections they might have.
Close to 400 pages out of Trump University playbooks were ordered released last week by U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel, after a request by The Washington Post. The now-defunct real estate school was created by presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, and his attorneys objected to the move, saying the documents contain trade secrets. The pages reveal that instructors were given detailed directives on everything from how to run an event to how to dress, CNN reports. Students filled out profiles, which included listing their assets, and instructors were told to sort through those profiles and separate those with liquid assets over $35,000 from those with less than $2,000.
The playbooks also directed instructors to push the Gold Elite package on students ("if they can afford Gold Elite, don't allow them to think about doing anything besides the Gold Elite"), which came with a $34,995 price tag, and if students voiced concerns, instructors were given retorts — for instance, if a student said he didn't want to go into debt by using credit cards, he was asked: "Do you like living paycheck to paycheck? Do you enjoy seeing everyone else but yourself in their dream houses and driving their dream cars with huge checking accounts? Those people saw an opportunity, and didn't make excuses, like what you're doing now." Read more about the playbooks at CNN. Catherine Garcia
Polish Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro announced he has asked the Polish Supreme Court to overturn a lower court's ruling from last year that rejected a request from the United States to extradite director Roman Polanski to Los Angeles.
Polanski, 82, fled the U.S. for France in 1978, hours before he was to be sentenced for drugging a 13-year-old girl and having sex with her. Under a plea deal, he agreed to plead guilty to unlawful sex with a minor and served 42 days in prison, but he left the U.S. due to fears he would receive more time. "He is accused of a terrible crime against a child, the rape of a child," Ziobro told Polskie Radio. "Were he a teacher, a doctor, a plumber, or a painter, I'm sure any country would have extradited him to the United States long ago."
Polanski divides his time between Paris and Krakow, and his lawyer, Jerzy Stachowicz, told NBC News that Ziobro had previously announced he would make the request and "we were expecting this." Polanski's victim, Samantha Geimer, is now 52 and a mother of three, and she says she agreed with the lower court's decision. "I'm sure he's a nice man and I know he has a family and I think he deserves closure and to be allowed to put this behind him," she said. "He said he did it, he pled guilty, he went to jail. I don't know what people want from him." Catherine Garcia
The "impressive" independent candidate The Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol tweeted about over the weekend is a constitutional lawyer named David French, Bloomberg Politics reports, citing "two Republicans intimately familiar" with Kristol's efforts.
The sources confirmed that French is open to running for president against Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, but hasn't made a final decision. French is a National Review staff writer, recipient of the Bronze Star, a veteran of the 2003 Iraq War, and the author of several books.
A source said some conservative donors are excited about the prospect of French joining the race. Kristol and French, who lives in Tennessee with his wife and three children, declined to comment to Bloomberg Politics, but in the June 6 issue of The Weekly Standard, Kristol wrote, "To say that [French] would be a better and a more responsible president than Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump is to state a truth that would become self-evident as more Americans go to know him." During a press conference Tuesday, Trump said any independent candidates would be "fools." Catherine Garcia
Hong Kong businessman Vincent Lo learned the hard way just how costly getting on Donald Trump's bad side can be. What started out in 1994 as a successful business relationship between Lo and Trump culminated in 2005 in a $1 billion lawsuit, after Trump decided he was displeased with how a deal went down.
Lo, along with other Hong Kong businessmen who bailed Trump out of major financial trouble by investing in one of Trump's midtown Manhattan properties, eventually sold the 77-acre property near Lincoln Center for $1.76 billion, which The New York Times reports is "believed to be the largest residential real estate transaction in the city's history." But instead of being thrilled by the deal, Trump was livid. He said his partners didn't consult with him, and that if they had, they could've gotten more money.
So Trump sued for a "staggering breach" of fiduciary duty and demanded $1 billion in damages. While Lo recalls at first finding the lawsuit to be "a shock" — especially because he claims Trump had been aware of the deal before it happened — he says he's since realized that's just how Trump operates. "Well, that's him," Lo said recently. "To file a lawsuit is nothing. It's just like having lunch."
While you're busy waiting in hour-long lines for your turn in the TSA's X-ray machine this summer, hundreds of pups will have their noses to the ground trying to find bombs before they're even constructed.
As terrorists increasingly adapt new measures to get around security — like enclosing explosives in caulk to prevent vapors from reaching dogs' noses — the TSA is teaching canine teams not just how to detect the individual ingredients that make a bomb, but how to identify the presence of potentially dangerous combinations of chemicals, The New York Times reports.
"So we're now asking dogs not just to find a needle in a haystack — now we're also saying to the dog, 'We need you to find any sharp object in the haystack,'" researcher Clive Wynne said.
Training takes the dogs between 15 and 25 weeks, in which they learn how to sniff warehouses, cargo bays, and the interiors of airplanes. TSA trainers first introduce the scents of chemicals most commonly used in explosives, like TNT, C4, commercial dynamite, and Semtex, but the exact combinations are kept a secret.
To date, more than 900 canine teams are working across the country to keep travelers safe. Watch some of the class of 2016 at work, below. Jeva Lange