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MySpace launches MySpace Music


MySpace’s entry into the streaming music space called MySpace Music has launched.

Using the service you’ll be able to listen to music from many recording artists and if you want to buy one you’ll be sent over to Amazon to purchase it from their DRM-free MP3 store (lately the only place I’ve been buying music).

Some early complains seem to revolve around an initial lack of content but I’d imagine that’s something MySpace will be working on in the near future.

Unlike other streaming music services like Napster, MySpace Music is ad-supported so there is no monthly fee for the service.

For more info check it out here.


NBC returns to iTunes

At Apple’s Let’s Rock event today they announced that NBC content was returning to iTunes and would be available in HD.

That means that all of these neworks are also back:

  • USA Network
  • SCI FI Channel
  • Bravo
  • Sleuth
  • NBC News

Yep, that also means that shows like 30 Rock, The Office, Hereos and Battlestar Galactica are also back.

Age falsification for some Chinese gymnists?


While everyone on the Chinese Olympic gymnastic team has a passport that indicates that they either are or will be 16 by the end of the 2008 calendar year, a requirement for them to be eligible to compete in the Beijing Games, some information has been uncovered that seems to prove otherwise.

News outlets have reported discovered official documents stating that three of China’s gymnasts, He Kexin, Yang Yilin and Jiang Yuyuan, are all too young to compete, meaning that their passports have been falsified.

The Times found two online records of official registration lists of Chinese gymnasts that list He’s birthday as Jan. 1, 1994, which would make her 14. A 2007 national registry of Chinese gymnasts — now blocked in China but viewable through Google cache — shows He’s age as “1994.1.1.”

Another registration list that is unblocked, dated Jan. 27, 2006, and regarding an “intercity” competition in Chengdu, China, also lists He’s birthday as Jan. 1, 1994. That date differs by two years from the birth date of Jan. 1, 1992, listed on He’s passport, which was issued Feb. 14, 2008.

…The other gymnast, Jiang, is listed on her passport — issued March 2, 2006 — as having been born on Nov. 1, 1991, which would make her 16 and thus eligible to compete at the Beijing Games.

A different birth date, indicating Jiang is not yet 15, appears on a list of junior competitors from the Zhejiang Province sports administration. The list of athletes includes national identification card numbers into which birth dates are embedded. Jiang’s national card number as it appears on this list shows her birth date as Oct. 1, 1993, which indicates that she will turn 15 in the fall, and would thus be ineligible to compete in the Beijing Games.

[Via Digg and The Gymblog]

China uses lip-syncing prettier girl to open Olympics

When the 2008 Olympics opened and 9-year old Chinese girl named Lin Miaoke took the stage to sing during the opening ceremonies she touched the hearts of millions with her pretty face and beautiful voice.

Surprise–the voice wasn’t hers.

The actual singer, Yang Peiyi, wasn’t as pretty and had crooked teeth so she was kept off stage while the more attractive Lin Miaoke lip-synched on stage.

Organizers of the Beijing Games don’t seem to see a problem, and spokesman Wang Wei said that “the song was pre-recorded…the artistic directors just picked the best voice and the best performer.”

Which just happened to be two different people. Seems kinda wrong.

[Via Reuters]

VUDU adds movie renewals, new 99-cent SD channel

Set-top streaming video provider VUDU announced a couple of new features that set it out a bit from the competition such as Apple and their Apple TV.

Traditionally when you rent a movie online you have a fix number of days to watch it and when it expires you’ll need to rent it again for the full rental price if you want to see it again or if you didn’t have a chance to finish it the first time.

VUDU now gives you the opportunity to extend this time by a day for 99-cents for SD (standard definition) and $1.99 for HD (high definition) movies as long as you extend it within the first week. Otherwise it’s a new rental again.

Also announced is a new “99 for 99” channel that will offer “99 quality films” for 99-cents and new titles will be rotated in each week.

For more info about extending rentals check out the info page here.

For more info about 99 for 99 check out the info page here.

[Via Electronista]

Early review trashes The Clone Wars movie

Harry Knowles, founder of Ain’t It Cool News, got a chance to check out a screening of the new Star Wars animated feature The Clone Wars, opening in the US on Thursday. What did he think?

Lucasfilm asked him to pull the review if that gives you an idea.

“I hated the film. HATED IT. REALLY HATED IT.”

Since the review has been pulled you can’t see it on Ain’t It Cool News anymore but luckily Valleywag scored a copy so here’s the complete review:

Harry hated THE CLONE WARS!

I’ve never hated a STAR WARS film before. I have weathered Jar Jar and any number of Ewoks. I survived Hayden and a wooden Portman. I even accepted Jake Lloyd. I handled all that because it felt like STAR WARS.

I can accept all of Lucas’ flaws, so long as at its heart it felt like Star Wars. I can deal with politics in Star Wars. I can deal with trade skirmishes in Star Wars. I can deal with musical numbers, breathing in the vacuum of space. Basically – so long as it feels like STAR WARS – I can watch any of it.

Was I looking forward to STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS (2008)?

******** A!

I was dying. After Genndy’s CLONE WARS – I felt that perhaps Lucas “got it” – and that this new animated series was taking a lead from Tartakovsky’s brilliant assembly of pieces. Genndy’s CLONE WARS got STAR WARS better than anyone has got it since Lawrence Kasdan and Irvin Kershner. Genndy took designs and characters that folks were dissatisfied with and made them cool. He did this by using and adapting the themes created by John Williams, the wholly perfect entity involved with Star Wars along with… the sound effects of Ben Burtt. He understood speed and motion – not just with action, but in editing. He understood classic film composition and iconography. And he knows what BADASS is.

The folks behind this STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS movie… you could tell, they looked at what Genndy did – but they didn’t understand any of it. There’s a ****load of battles and ***** going boom. There’s noise everywhere – fury everywhere… but none of it is directed. The music by Kevin Kiner is criminally bad. Why they didn’t employ Paul Dinletir and James Venable is beyond me. No, no – let’s hire the composer of WALKER, TEXAS RANGER. Ahem.

Now – I made excuses for this film as I was watching it. I don’t think you understand how much I love STAR WARS. Maybe you do, maybe you do too.

Before the movie started I was firing myself up to go out after the film and buy that new $200 Hasbro Millenium Falcon. I really wanted to go buy it, and I wanted this movie to empower my brain to go through with that. Instead, I found myself at home – putting on Genndy’s THE CLONE WARS – to try and rebuild my passion – so I can go get that new Falcon.

Instead – I’m thinking I’ll just be here at home enjoying this and that’ll be all I need.

Anyway – as I was watching the film, I was excusing the sloppy shots, the sloppy use of the Clone Troopers and Droids – undoing all the awesome work that Genndy had done – and the droids are silly again. The Clone Troopers are limp. And the Jedi – they’re at 25% power from the mind of Genndy. But I was accepting that. I figured that was Lucas dialing back so that the animated series wouldn’t overpower his features.

Then they introduced Baby Jabba aka Rotta the Huttlet aka Stinky. At the point of this character’s introduction – it officially became, the worst character in the history of STAR WARS. If you hate George Lucas cutsiepoo bull**** – oooooooh boy. You’re gonna have a field day of venting and hatred directed at this unbelievably ****ing awful little ****.

Oh – but wait… Little Stinky the Hutt isn’t the worst character in the history of STAR WARS… because Stinky got introduced earlier in the film. As much as I hated lil Stinky… I was weathering Stinky. I seriously was. But later there was a character of such immense **** – offensively bad. The character was so bad, so incredibly awful – that it was a slap to the face. It woke me out of my ****-accepting stupor and made me angry. SUDDENLY my “inner fanboy rage” was awoken.

As I watched this terrifyingly awful character named Ziro the Hutt. A seemingly female Hutt – with tattoos and make-up that sounds like a racist take on a Black New Orleans Crack-Dealing Whore. Because this Hutt speaks ENGLISH – and it is many times worse than I’m actually describing. This character was actually too much for me. So bad that every flaw I was looking past, was now a road sign to inadequacy and mediocrity. All of a sudden my brain realized that Asajj Ventress’ voice no longer was acceptable – and sure enough – the amazing Grey DeLisle, who originally voiced the character back in 2003 – had been replaced by a Nika Futterman – and that voice was missed. The character didn’t have that snarling menace anymore.

I realized that nothing in this animated film felt right. I felt time expanding. It seemed that the film was dragging – nevermind that lots of **** was firing all over the place – and stuff was going boom and things were being revealed. I just didn’t care because this wasn’t what I wanted.

I hated the score, the animation, the shots, the characters and most of all the retarded ******** idiot story.

I hated the film. HATED IT. REALLY HATED IT.

Does this mean the whole Star Wars Animated Series is doomed? No – but it isn’t a good sign. So much of this is awful because of the Hutt plotlines and character. I also feel that Dave Filoni must be a hack. His work here is sloppy – and depending on writers and directing talent – individual episodes may be better. This film was several episodes all strung together – my prayer is that the individual episodes will be both great and awful – and we’ll discover which talents are responsible for each.

That said – the audience did have light applause. My father liked it. My sister felt too much was going on. Me nephew really liked it. That said – Yoko was complaining right along with me. She thought it was **** too. I know Moriarty liked it. Wonder what Quint and Massawyrm thought.

****. I hated a STAR WARS. That ****ing sucks.

This doesn’t mean that EVERY reviewer will feel this way but it certainly is a bad start.

[Via Valleywag]

Triumph rips Comic-Con 2008 attendees [UPDATED]

Triumph the Insult Comic Dog made an appearance at Comic-Con 2008 to interview some of the attendees and if you’re a fan of Triumph, hilarity ensued.

At a running time of over 9 minutes it’s a bit on the long side, but if you’re a Triumph fan you’ll enjoy every minute of it.

Check it out over at CrunchGear.

UPDATE: Found a version on YouTube so I’m embedding it below (for as long as its alive anyway):

[Via CrunchGear]

Prince of Persia movie delayed


Apparently the video game-based movie Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, originally expected to be released on June 19, 2009, has been delayed until May 28, 2010.

It’s not exactly clear why its been delayed, but it does seem to still have Jerry Bruckheimer producing it, Mike Newell directing it and Jake Gyllenhaal starring in it so it doesn’t seem to be some Hollywood scandal. Maybe Walt Disney Pictures just didn’t want it to compete with the next Transfermers movie, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, scheduled to be released June 26, 2009?

[Via Kotaku]

Blu-ray to pass DVD sales by 2011

The may be a bit biased, but Sony Pictures Home Entertainment said that they expect by sometime in 2011 that sales of Blu-ray movie will surpass DVD sales.

They also expect that by the end of 2008 Blu-ray sales will grow to 25 percent, up from just 9 percent at the end of last year.

Although Sony Pictures only released 122 of their 650 videos on Blu-ray in the US, that number will continue to grow as penetration of Blu-ray players grows.

Sales of Blu-ray players in the US has grown 400% in the US and by 600% in Europe in the first half of 2008, so it’s on its way.

Their estimate of Blu-ray outselling DVD by 2011 could very well be accurate, but if streaming video continues to gain momentum it could be a moot point.

[Via Electronista]

Trailer released for upcoming Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince


The next Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, is coming on November 21st and the first trailer has been released.

Fans of the series can check it out below–looks pretty good.

[Via CrunchGear]