Monday, June 30, 2014

Star Wars VII - Carrie Fisher's daughter Billie cast as Princess Leia

Carrie Fisher and Billie Lourd. Photo / Getty Images
Carrie Fisher and Billie Lourd. Photo / Getty Images
Carrie Fisher's daughter Billie Lourd has been cast in Disney's eagerly anticipatedStar Wars: Episode VII.
The 57-year-old actress reprises her role as Princess Leia in the upcoming latest instalment of the sci-fi series, which is currently being filmed at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire, southeast England.
And although her daughter Billie Lourd, 21, is a relative unknown, director JJ Abrams is said to have chosen her to play a young version of her mother's character because of their visual similarities.
A source told The Sun newspaper: "Billie flew into the UK to join her mother earlier this month.
"She will even have her hair tied up in Princess Leia-style buns. She's an aspiring actress and singer so she grabbed the opportunity with both hands.
"Carrie backed the move as she wanted somebody in her family to play her most famous role."
Lourd - whose father is entertainment agent Bryan Lourd - will feature in flashback scenes as a younger version of Princess Leia, hero Luke Skywalker's sister, whom her mother portrayed in the first three Star Wars films.
Abrams has also created walk-on parts for his father Gerald and father-in law James H McGrath Jr, who both appeared in Star Trek under his direction.
Meanwhile Harrison Ford is recovering after breaking his leg on set and will soon begin rehab.
Ford was injured a week ago during filming of the much-anticipated sequel at Pinewood Studios outside of London.
The accident involved a spacecraft door falling on the 71-year-old actor's leg.
Ford's Han Solo pilots the Millennium Falcon, which is returning in Episode VII.
The film is scheduled for release in December 2015.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Shock result! - Serena Williams loses to Alize Cornet at Wimbledon - article pics

Wimbledon 2014: Serena Williams goes out to Alize Cornet

Serena Williams loses to Alize Cornet at Wimbledon

Five-time champion Serena Williams suffered her earliest Wimbledon defeat since 2005 as she lost to France's Alize Cornet in the third round.
Cornet, ranked 24th, won 1-6 6-3 6-4 on Court One to claim her second victory of the year over the world number one.
It is only the third time in 15 visits to Wimbledon that Williams has lost so early, and she has not been past the fourth round of a Grand Slam in 2014.
Cornet, 24, had never before beaten a top-20 player at a Grand Slam.
Alize Cornet
Cornet has only reached the fourth round at a Grand Slam once before, in Australia five years ago
"I just cannot believe it," she told BBC Sport. "Three years ago I couldn't play on grass, I was so bad, but now I have beaten Serena, the world number one on her own court.
"I have to get used to it and focus on the next match because the tournament is not over for me. I am not sure how I did it but just with the heart and the help from the crowd."
Williams said: "She kept her unforced errors really low. I think I made a few errors too many. She was going for her shots. She played really well today."
Cornet did have a confidence-boosting win over Williams in Dubai earlier this year to call upon, but it still came as a major shock to see her grab the initiative and dominate the closing stages.
Williams, 32, had looked edgy in the opening exchanges, making five errors and two double faults before the rain came at 1-1 to force the players off for several hours.
A run of five straight games on the resumption suggested the American had overcome whatever had been troubling her earlier, but the feisty Cornet came battling back.
After failing to serve out the set at 5-1, she converted at the second attempt and was pushing hard at the start of the third against an uncertain Williams.

Martina Navratilova

"What a performance from Cornet. She believed she could do it and she brings down the champion. This was a shock, particular after the rain delay. Serena was very nervous but when they came out again she was all guns blazing. But something switched on in Cornet and it all changed. I thought 6-1 6-2, but Cornet obviously had a game plan and stuck to it."
Four break points slipped by in the opening game, but Cornet was having plenty of joy on the Williams second serve and moved to within two points of victory on serve at 5-2.
Williams has already lost in the fourth round of the Australian Open and the second round of the French Open this year, and was not about to give up on another chance at an 18th major title.

Alize Cornet factfile

  • Age: 24
  • World ranking: 24
  • WTA singles titles: 4
  • Career prize money £1.87m
  • Career win/loss record 291 - 220
  • Career high ranking: 11 (Feb 2009)
She heaped the pressure on Cornet with a break of serve, but two games later a wayward forehand and a poor volley gave the Frenchwoman match point, and Williams could only steer a backhand into the net.
Cornet celebrated the win of her career, adding: "It is the biggest shock of the tournament because she is the world number one and I still can't believe I did it, me! I am loving it here in London."
Williams will get her next chance to add to her haul of major titles when she defends her US Open crown in August, but she said the competition was getting tougher.
"It's difficult," said the American. "If I'm not playing a great, great match, these girls when they play me, they play as if they're on the ATP Tour, and then they play other girls completely different.
"It's never easy, you know, being in my shoes. But you've got to be ready."
Serena Williams
Williams had made a shaky start before the rain came with the American serving at 1-1, deuce
Serena Williams
Williams returned a rejuvenated figure after the rain break and won five straight games
Alize Cornet
Cornet came storming back in the second set and was the aggressor early in the third
Serena Williams
Williams fought back from 5-2 down in the final set to put the pressure on Cornet one more time
Alize Cornet
Cornet held her nerve by serving out the match to love, sealing the biggest win of her caree

Brazil 1 Chile 1 Brazil goes through on penalties 3 - 2 - pics

David Luiz 18′
Team badge of Chile
Sánchez 32′
  • ET 30
  • FT 90
  • HT 1-1
Brazil win 3-2 on penalties
28 June 2014Last updated at 19:55 GMT
Brazil secured a dramatic shootout victory over Chile to reach the quarter-finals and keep alive their dream of winning the World Cup on home soil.
QPR goalkeeper Julio Cesar saved from Mauricio Pinilla and Alexis Sanchez before Gonzalo Jara hit a post with the decisive spot-kick to prompt wild celebrations inside Estadio Mineirao.
David Luiz and Marcelo had converted their efforts for Brazil, but with Willian and Hulk missing, it fell to the hosts' star striker Neymar to step up under intense pressure and nervelessly slot what proved the winning kick.

Match analysis

"Brazil have got away with it. They have not reached the level they can but they keep getting the luck.
"Going forward, apart from Neymar, it is a weak point for Brazil. They are reasonably solid defensively but struggle in attack."
Luiz had earlier put the hosts in front, only for Alexis Sanchez to equalise. Hulk then had a strike disallowed for handball - fairly, but much to the disgust of the home fans - while Pinilla hit the crossbar for Chile in the final minute of extra time.
It was a match of variable quality but no little drama, and one that left players, staff and supporters of both teams in tears.
Cesar - who joined Toronto FC on loan in January and has barely played in the past year - ended an unlikely hero, redeemed after his mistake cost Brazil in the quarter-finals four years ago.
Brazil go on to face Colombia or Uruguay in Fortaleza on Friday; Chile go home but with their reputation as one of the game's most dangerous sides significantly enhanced.

Match facts

Fred had the most shots in the first half, but failed to get one on target.
Brazil have now lost just one of their last 16 World Cup games when scoring first.
Five of Chile's six goals at the World Cup have come before half-time.
Fernandinho committed more fouls (6) than he made passes (4) in the opposition half.
If a penalty is being taken to avoid elimination, the success rate is only 44%.
The last eight World Cup shootouts have been won by the team going first.
Having never lost to La Roja on home soil and having won all three of their previous World Cup meetings, Brazil arrived with history on their side.
Chile earned a 2-2 draw at the same venue last year but that was one of only two encounters in which they avoided defeat since last beating Brazil 14 years ago.
The noise in the stadium before before kick-off was astonishing, swathes of yellow dominating the pockets of red, and the atmosphere only intensified when Fernandinho went in late on Charles Aranguiz, and the Chile midfielder and team-mate Gary Medel responded in kind by wiping out Neymar.
Chile team after the penalty shootout
Jara (18) consoles team-mate and defender Gary Medel
After English referee Howard Webb turned down a penalty appeal at either end, Brazil soon took control and were rewarded for their pressure when Neymar's corner was flicked on by captain Thiago Silva and steered into the net by what appeared a combination of Luiz and Chile defender Jara.
Brazil's main threat was once again Neymar, the 22-year-old dragging a shot wide after racing towards goal and then being sent flying by Arturo Vidal's reckless challenge.
Coach Luiz Felipe Scolari had warned his side they could not afford to make any mistakes in the knockout stage and he would have been furious with the way Chile were allowed back into contention.
Play media
Chile's Gonzalo Jara misses the decisive penalty
Chile's Gonzalo Jara misses the decisive penalty
Hulk's poor control from Marcelo's throw-in gifted possession to Eduardo Vargas and he quickly found Sanchez in the penalty area to drill a low finish across Cesar.
Brazil worked hard to regain the lead but the half ended with the hosts frantically scrambling to deny Aranguiz after carelessness from Luiz Gustavo.
The second half felt comparatively subdued until Webb's big call arrived, either he or his assistant Mike Mullarkey judging Hulk to have controlled a pass with his arm before beating Bravo. It was a tough and unpopular decision but seemed, on the basis of television replays, to be the correct one.
A period of Chile pressure ensued as Cesar superbly denied Aranguiz from close range.
Former Manchester City striker Jo replaced Fred to a warm welcome - he now plays for local side Atletico Mineiro - and might have made a quick impact, but failed to connect with Hulk's cross.
Bravo did well to repel a Neymar header and Hulk's powerful strike, again thwarting the much-improved Hulk in the first period of extra time.
Scolari played his final card by introducing Willian for a disappointing Oscar, but the weary Chileans - for whom the excellent Medel was carried off on a stretcher in tears - switched from an aggressive 3-1-4-2 formation to a defensive 5-1-3-1 and appeared intent on holding on for penalties.
They could, however, have snatched the most incredible of winners when substitute Pinilla rattled the bar powerfully in the final minute.
Penalties would be needed and Brazil held their nerve to make the last eight.
Brazil fans at Copacabana beach in Rio
Brazil fans at Rio's Copacabana beach celebrate their side's opening goal
Brazil team celebrate opening goal
And the Brazil team celebrated like their supporters inside the Estadio Mineirao
Alexis Sanchez celebrates his goal
Sanchez's equaliser was his fifth goal in his last six competitive games for Chile
English referee Howard Webb and Brazil's Neymar
English referee Howard Webb (left) handled several protests from the players
Brazil's Hulk
Brazil's Hulk protests to assistant referee Mike Mullarkey about the disallowed goal
Hulk penalty is saved by Claudio Bravo
And when it came to the shootout he had a penalty saved by Claudio Bravo
Brazil players celebrate after Gonzalo Jara misses the final penalty
But Jara missed the final spot-kick to give the hosts a thrilling and tense win



  • 12 Julio César
  • 02 Dani Alves Booked
  • 06 Marcelo
  • 17 Luiz Gustavo Booked
  • 03 Thiago Silva
  • 04 David Luiz
  • 11 Oscar (Willian - 105' )
  • 05 Fernandinho (Ramires - 72' )
  • 09 Fred (Jô - 64' Booked )
  • 10 Neymar
  • 07 Hulk Booked


  • 01 Jefferson
  • 08 Paulinho
  • 13 Dante
  • 14 Maxwell
  • 15 Henrique
  • 16 Ramires
  • 18 Hernanes
  • 19 Willian
  • 20 Bernard
  • 21 Jô
  • 22 Victor
  • 23 Maicon


  • 01 Bravo
  • 04 Isla
  • 02 Mena Booked
  • 18 Jara
  • 17 Medel (Rojas - 108' )
  • 05 Silva Booked
  • 20 Aránguiz
  • 21 Díaz
  • 08 Vidal (Pinilla - 87' Booked )
  • 07 Sánchez
  • 11 Vargas (Gutierrez - 57' )


  • 03 Albornoz
  • 06 Carmona
  • 09 Pinilla
  • 10 Valdívia
  • 12 Toselli
  • 13 Rojas
  • 14 Orellana
  • 15 Beausejour
  • 16 Gutierrez
  • 19 Fuenzalida
  • 22 Paredes
  • 23 Herrera
Ref: Howard Webb
Att: 57,714





On target






Friday, June 27, 2014

Who said the world was fair? - Forbes - Maria Sharapova tops list of world's highest paid female athletes - but the pay gap is much worse in sports than in business EXCEPT in TENNIS!!! - article, pics


Maria Sharapova Tops List Of The World's Highest-Paid Female Athletes

Women earn only 77 cents for every dollar earned by men in the U.S., according to data from the Census Bureau. The pay gap is even worse in the world of sports. The maximum salary in the WNBA is $107,000. Kobe Bryant will earn $30.5 million from the Los Angeles Lakers next season.
Inbee Park won $585,000 for her 2013 U.S. Open golf title. The men’s winner, Justin Rose, pocketed $1.4 million for his victory. Park is having a golf season for the ages and could pocket $5 million from prize money and endorsements in 2013. Meanwhile,Tiger Woods reigns as the world’s highest-paid athlete with earnings of $78 million.

The income difference derives from the gap in revenues generated by the stars of these sports, but there is one major sport where men and women compete on equal footing: tennis. A pay disparity existed in tennis for decades as women received smaller payouts at the French Open and Wimbledon, but Venus Williams led a campaign for equal pay and the two majors changed their policies in 2007. The highest-paid tennis players are now equally split between men and women.
So when it comes to the world’s 10 highest-paid female athletes, tennis players dominant the list, grabbing seven spots. Maria Sharapova is on top for the ninth straight year with $29 million in earnings from prize money, endorsements and appearance fees between June 2012 and June 2013. The Russian-born Sharapova leads a globe-spanning list with eight different nationalities represented in the top 10.
Sharapova’s earnings power skyrocketed in 2004 when she won Wimbledon as a 17-year-old. Companies flocked to the 6-foot-2-inch blond beauty with multimillion dollar endorsement deals. Today she counts Nike, Head, Samsung Electronics , Tag Heuer and Evian as sponsors. She added a three-year deal with Porsche in April. Her French Open win in 2012, which gave her a career Grand Slam, triggered lucrative bonuses with sponsors.
Sharapova is looking beyond tennis with her latest venture: She launched a candy business, Sugarpova, in 2012 with her own money. The gummy candies are now available in 15 countries and the company expects to sell 1.5 million bags of candy in the first 12 months at $5 to $6 a bag. Sharapova is plowing any profits back into the company and hopes to expand into areas like fashion, accessories and make-up.
Serena Williams ranks second with earnings of $20.5 million, which includes $8.5 million in prize money and $12 million from sponsors Nike, Wilson,Gatorade and OPI. Williams has cut back her traditional endorsement commitments in recent years in favor of equity deals with HSN, Sleep Sheets, Mission and the Miami Dolphins. She continues to have a huge platform to speak from as the top female player in tennis. Williams nabbed the No. 1 ranking in the world in February for the sixth time in her decorated career. At 31 years old, she became the oldest woman to ever hold the top spot. Williams has won nine tournaments as well as an Olympic gold medal over the past year, and her $47 million in career prize money is the most of any female athlete.
China’s Li Na makes for a clean sweep of the top three from the world of tennis. She earned an estimated $18.2 million, including $3.2 million in prize money. Like Sharapova, Li catapulted onto the world stage with a Grand Slam win and into the arms of sponsors. She became the first Asian-born player to win a singles Grand Slam event at the 2011 French Open, which quickly led to seven multimillion-dollar endorsement deals after the historic win, including Samsung and Mercedes-Benz .

Victoria Azarenka of Belarus ranks No. 4 at $15.7 million. Her $7.9 million prize money haul in 2012 was a single year record for a female athlete in any sport (we credit her with $6.7 million between June 2012 and June 2013). She won her second straight Australian Open in January. Endorsement partners include Nike, Wilson, American Express , Six Star Pro Nutrition, InstaForex and Citizen Watch. Red Bull inked her to a deal in January, which made her the first tennis player sponsor for the beverage giant.
Nascar’s Danica Patrick is the first athlete outside of tennis on our list, clocking in at No. 5 with earnings of $15 million. Patrick is racing full-time in the Sprint Cup series for the first time in 2013. She attracted widespread attention for winning the pole position at the Daytona 500 and finishing eighth in the race, which was the highest finish ever at Daytona for a female driver.
Patrick makes the bulk of her income off the track through 15 personal sponsors including Chevrolet, Coca-Cola , Nationwide Insurance and Tissot. Go Daddy is the primary sponsor of her Sprint Cup car and she has appeared in a celebrity record 12 Super Bowl commercials for the domain registrar over the past seven years.
South Korean figure skating champion Kim Yuna ranks No. 6 with estimated earnings of $14 million. Kim took a year off from competing before returning in December, and she captured her second World Championship in February. Kim is the headline act in the All That Skate figure skating show and she is a staple on TV in South Korea thanks to commercials for her dozen sponsors including Samsung, Korean Air and KB Financial. Kim is expected to be one of the leading stars at the 2014 Winter Olympics.