Daily Edition July 30, 2014

Kim Kardashian Hollywood

If you’re not getting enough Kim Kardashian time between your TV, Internet and supermarket tabloids, there’s always the app. “Kim Kardashian: Hollywood“, a mobile game collaboration from the voluptuous celeb and gaming company Glu Mobile, is reportedly set to make $200 million this quarter after its launch in June. In the game, players try to work their way up the Hollywood ladder and become an A-List celebrity. Yep, that’s all. And it currently holds the No. 4 spot on Apple’s App Store, with approximately 100,000 new downloads per day.

Some people chuckle at Mrs. Kardashian West’s pricey lifestyle and reality show antics, but it’s hard not to acknowledge the fact that she has become one of Hollywood’s most successful businesswomen. In addition to the app, Kim has plenty of other money makers. There’s the Dash clothing boutique, which she owns with her sisters, the online fashion subscription service ShoeDazzle, and let’s not forget the hit reality show in which she plays a major role. Even her wedding (her last two actually), was reportedly paid for in large part by E! News in exchange for the rights to film it. So say what you will–Kim’s not listening. All she can hear is the sound of cash.

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Elise of Assassin's Creed

The new character in the CGI trailer for the Assassin’s Creed series is Elise. Although described as “an independent young noblewoman” she needs to be rescued by Arno, the lead character of Assassin’s Creed Unity. The lack of female characters (not just strong ones) was recognized by Ubisoft’s technical director James Therien. He explained including a female character means a lot of animation, a lot of customers. “It would have doubled the work on those things,” he told Videogamer: “…it’s something the team really wanted, but we had to make a decision. It’s unfortunate, but it’s a reality of game development.” As Tim Clark of PCGamer points out: Ubisoft paid nine separate studios tens of millions of dollars and they can’t spend the time to animate hair?

Luckily the technical team could afford to buy decent music. The song in the trailer is “The Golden Age” by Woodkid, the French music video director who worked on Pharrell Wiliams’ 24 Hours of Happy, Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream, and  Taylor Swift’s Back to December, among others.

Beck and Warby Parker

Beck and Warby Parker, Song Reader

For the second time in their short history, eye-wear experts Warby Parker and singer/songwriter Beck have teamed up. The first time these two powerhouses came together the result was a great, trendy pair of spectacles that were available to the public to purchase. This time around, the pair have extended their production to create a new album called Song Reader. Back in late 2012 Beck released an album, but it was a little different from most popular artist’s releases–it was composed entirely of sheet music and no recorded tracks. His intent was to release music into the world for others to interpret. Now, Warby Parker has worked together with legendary producer Randall Poster and Beck to create a 20-track collection of the tunes with interpretations by a number of high-profile artists including Fun, Jack White, Jeff Tweedy and of course, Beck himself. The album is available for download on iTunes and in all Warby Parker retail stores.

In addition to the Song Reader album being available for purchase, the dynamic duo have also re-released the frames from their first partnership, called “Carmichael” in a unique-to-Beck hue called Black Cherry. The frames are available for men and women and per Warby Parker’s policy, for every pair of frames purchased, a pair will be distributed to someone in need. And as if that wasn’t enough, all of the proceeds from Beck’s Song Reader album will go to 826 National, a non-profit that is dedicated to cultivating writing skills in students ages 6-18.

Arturo Vidal

Arturo Vidal playing for the Chilean National Team (photo: Fanny Schertzer )

According to Tuttosport, Chilean national Arturo Vidal will leave his roaming midfield position at Italian champion Juventus to join Manchester United in a deal worth $80 million. It’s a lot of money. Between salary and transfer fee Vidal would be the most expensive player in Manchester United’s history, according to Joe Prince-Wright at NBC Sports.

Manchester United, one of the most famous clubs in the world, is under pressure to return to its customary place among the elite in the Premier League. (Last season saw a lot of headlines that wondered “Worst Season Ever?“) The dip is not for lack of investment. At $470,000 per week Vidal would be only the second most highly paid player on the pitch for United–after Wayne Rooney.

Ryan Lochte

When 11-time Olympic medalist Ryan Lochte tweeted a pic of himself shirtless and ready to consume the 10,000 calorie meal on the table in front of him, he left out some critical info. How long, exactly, does it take to eat 10,000 calories? The answer for most people is about five days. (The average American’s daily calorie intake is between 1,800 and 2,400 per day.) But Lochte looks like he’s just sitting down for a casual lunch–albeit one that comes in assorted Tupperware buckets.

Speaking of Tupperware–hello, plastic container king? Found you a spokesperson. With a nice smile too. Looks like the asparagus is drenched in soy sauce, a nice touch to get the salt count high. And seems like mac n’ cheese in the big lasagna tray. Right in front of him? That definitely seems to be enough chicken to intimidate Joey Chestnut. So how long does a lunch like that take?

dropbox

The co-founder of a photography and GGI company took to Medium to describe everybody’s worst fear when it comes to using the “Cloud”–that what you store there could disappear. Jan Čurn, a sophisticated user if there ever was one, has been using Dropbox since 2009. He’s a “Pro” level subscriber. He “always loved the service,” he writes. Then in April 2014 with his laptop storage growing scarce, he tried to use the Dropbox “Selective Sync” feature and make Dropbox the sole repository for the back-up of some of his important files. There was a little hiccup when he tried to unsync the directories from his laptop, but he tried again and all seemed to go smoothly.

A few months later Čurn found out that “there was a delete event of 8343 files” and that most of the missing files were his photos. Irrecoverable files filled with irrecoverable memories. The directories he sync’d were still visible at Dropbox, but “many of them were empty.” Curn says he has shared his story so that Dropbox might react to some negative publicity by fixing what he says is a problem on the Dropbox end–and also to let other Dropbox users know that this can happen. That they should be wary.

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TreySongz/Instagram

Chris Brown is finishing his sixth studio album, X. He’s reunited with hip-hop superstar and ex-rival Drake, working with Ariana Grande and Kendrick Lamar. With all the legal troubles Brown’s been facing and fighting, he needs X to sell well. His legal fees are no joke.

Brown is a lot of things but he’s no dope when it comes to promoting his music. Earlier this week he was photographed hanging out with Kim Kardashian’s half-sisters, Kendall and Kylie Jenner, both of whom are pursuing modeling careers. And everyone knows Kardashians sell video. Was it a casting call?

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Justin Theroux in HBO's The Leftovers

Not everyone has the stomach to become a fan of the new HBO series The Leftovers. Entertainment Weekly’s Melissa Maerz is one of them. After watching the “Gladys” episode where a woman (Gladys, played by Marceline Hugot) gets brutally stoned to death, people like Maerz are passing on The Leftovers.

HBO’s gigantically successful and violent series Game of Thrones isn’t repulsing viewers like The Leftovers is. Maybe it’s the large ensemble cast without a single protagonist (like The Leftovers‘ Kevin Garvey played by Justin Theroux) that makes the violence more acceptable. And viewers love the look of GoT. Beauty may forgive the violence, too. In fact, Game of Thrones is nominated for 19 Emmys this year, including Art Direction and Cinematography. Of course, not everyone immediately loved Game of Thrones, either. TV critic Matt Brennan of Indiewire quit watching the fantasy epic two times before he “learned to love it.”

Hilary Duff screen shot

Hilary Duff would rather not be in the office. She’d rather be at the beach, getting a massage in a bikini. That’s pretty much the story in the video for her new single “Chasing The Sun.” The tune is a boppier version of Sheryl Crow’s “Soak Up The Sun”–with a little less grit–and Duff looks gorgeous all the way through. (Though she might look a little hotter in the office than at the beach!)

Duff’s last original album dropped in 2007, a lifetime ago–especially in the music business. Despite putting on the bikini for “Chasing The Sun,” the elegant, wholesome Duff–her fantasy is no dirtier than wanting to leave the office!–may be too modest for the new Instagram age, where Nicki Minaj and Miley Cyrus are getting pretty naked regularly. Interestingly, a close look at the new Hilary Duff video shows that the director was even told to focus more on her male beach companion’s butt than on Duff’s derriere. You might have to be Taylor Swift to pull that off these days.

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James Shigeta in The Flower Drum Song (1961)

James Shigeta, who starred in Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Flower Drum Song and later became familiar to millions as a convincing villain in Bruce Willis’ Die Hard franchise, died in Los Angeles. His was 81, his publicist said.

The Hawaiian-born Shigeta worked in films with everyone from Willis to Elvis Presley (Hawaiian Style, 1966). Shigeta was among the best known and most highly regarded Asian-American actors of his generation. His TV credits were also numerous and wide-ranging, from Kung Fu to Magnum, P.I. to Beverly Hills 90210. Shigeta began his entertainment career as a singer and piano player.