Jeb Bush Has Become The GOP Front-runner For 2016 — So Now What? –

Mitt Romney’s decision to forgo a third try at the White House has settled the question of whether the 2016 GOP presidential field has a front-runner — bestowing a coveted status on former Florida governor Jeb Bush that also raises new challenges and perils.

'Me And Earl And The Dying Girl' Sweeps Sundance Awards

PARK CITY, Utah (AP) — Sundance breakout “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl,” a quirky, heartfelt story about a pair of high school film lovers who befriend a girl with cancer, won both the U.S. dramatic audience award and the grand jury prize at the 31st Sundance Film Festival awards, announced Saturday.

Thomas Mann, R.J. Cyler, and Olivia Cooke lead the cast of the idiosyncratic tearjerker from director Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, who dedicated the audience award to all the filmmakers and artists in his hometown of Laredo, Texas. Nick Offerman, Connie Britton, and Molly Shannon also star. “My love goes out to the entire cast and crew,” said Gomez-Rejon. “This movie was about processing loss but really to celebrate a beautiful life and a beautiful man, which is my amazing father … to celebrate his life through humor.”

“The Wolfpack,” Crystal Moselle’s documentary about six movie-loving teenage boys isolated from society picked up the grand jury prize for best documentary.

“I stalked these kids on the street one day and here I am,” said Moselle.

Comedian Tig Notaro, whose documentary “Tig” premiered at the Festival, hosted the ceremony. She also told the audience that she used to volunteer at the Festival in the mid-’90s.

The 31st Sundance Film Festival wraps on Sunday.

Other winners Saturday:

— U.S. drama, grand jury prize: “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl”

— U.S. drama, audience award: “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl”

— U.S. drama, directing: “The Witch,” Robert Eggers

— U.S. drama, special jury award for cinematography: “Diary of a Teenage Girl,” Brandon Trost

— U.S. drama, special jury award for collaborative vision: “Advantageous”

— U.S. drama, special jury award for editing: “Dope,” Lee Haugen

— U.S. drama, special jury award for musical score:

— U.S. drama, special jury award for breakthrough talent:

— U.S. documentary, grand jury prize: “The Wolfpack”

— U.S. documentary, audience award: “Meru”

— U.S. documentary, directing: “Cartel Land,” Matthew Heineman

— U.S. documentary, special jury award for social impact: “3 1/2 Minutes”

— U.S. documentary, special jury award for verite filmmaking: “Western”

— U.S. documentary, special jury award for cinematography: “Cartel Land,” Matthew Heineman, Matt Porwoll

— U.S. documentary, special jury award for breakout first feature: “(T)error”

— Alfred P. Sloan feature film prize: “The Stanford Prison Experiment”

— Waldo Salt screenwriting award: “The Stanford Prison Experiment,” Tim Talbott

— World cinema drama, grand jury prize: “Slow West”

— World cinema drama, audience award: “Umrika”

— World cinema drama, directing: “The Summer of Sangaile,” Alante Kavaite

— World cinema drama, special jury award for cinematography: “Partisan,” Germain McMicking

— World cinema drama, special jury award for acting: “The Second Mother,” Regina Case and Camila Mardila

— World cinema drama, special jury award for acting: “Glassland,” Jack Reynor

— World cinema documentary, grand jury prize: “The Russian Woodpecker”

— World cinema documentary, audience award: “Dark Horse”

— World cinema documentary, directing: “Dreamcatcher,” Kim Longinotto

— World cinema documentary, special jury award for unparalleled access: “The Chinese Mayor”

— World cinema documentary, special jury award for impact: “Pervert Park”

— World cinema documentary, special jury award for editing: “How to Change the World,” Jim Scott


Follow AP Film Writer Lindsey Bahr on Twitter at



These Twin Sisters Just Turned 90, And They're Still Cracking Each Other Up

If you’re looking for an example of true sisterhood, look no further than this duo — they’ve been inseparable for 90 years, and they’re still having a ball with each other.

Identical twins Helen Baynes and Lucille England celebrate their 90th birthdays Sunday. The two women were born in Detroit and now live outside of the city.

In a video interview with Click on Detroit, shown above, the pair have a blast recounting tales of constantly pranking friends and family and getting in trouble at their first job, working side-by-side as telephone operators. When one sister teases the other, she follows it up with a gentle pat on the hand.

They’re dressed in matching outfits, which Baynes’ daughter Linda Wade said they’ve been doing since they were little kids.

“They play off each other,” Wade told The Huffington Post. “They will sit on the couch and talk for hours, just whispering back and forth and no one can hear but them.”

She said her mother and aunt had been blessed with great health, but also thrive because of their senses of humor.

“I think that really keeps them going,” she said.

Stories that have become family lore show that the twins like to laugh at themselves. In one tale Baynes remembers, the sisters were tasked with taking their father’s remains home from Florida after he passed away. His body got on the plane, but the twins, notoriously late, missed the flight. Then there’s the one about Lucille and Helen winning an award at the state fair as toddlers, for best twins — but they were only judged to be 98 percent perfect, because they were a hair overweight.

Helen and Lucille also benefited from loved ones who respected and worshiped them.

“Their mom and dad always thought they were princesses, and then when they got married, their husbands treated them like princesses,” Wade said. “Their husbands were very good to them. My dad passed away three years ago in April, but everyone used to marvel at how he used to take care of her. My uncle now does the same thing for both of them.”

Maybe there’s something about going through life with a constant companion that keeps you in good health and better spirits — or maybe it’s just the double doses of love and laughter. Happy Birthday, Lucille and Helen!

Seahawks Super Bowl Repeat A Scary Prospect For NFL

PHOENIX (AP) — Here are some scary thoughts for the rest of the NFL:

A win Sunday will stamp the Seahawks as one of the best teams of the Super Bowl era. And, given Seattle’s makeup and philosophy, the future for the franchise might be brighter than for any other club. Rarely has a team with so many key young players been so formidable. The last such group might have been the Jimmy Johnson Cowboys of the early 1990s, when Dallas had the Triplets: future Hall of Famers Emmitt Smith, Troy Aikman and Michael Irvin.

Seattle has its own trio of All-Pros, but on defense: cornerback Richard Sherman, safety Earl Thomas and middle linebacker Bobby Wagner. All are 26 or younger.

They’re complemented by young talent all over the lineup, from Kam Chancellor (26) in the secondary to linebacker K.J. Wright (25) to offensive leaders quarterback Russell Wilson (26), receivers Doug Baldwin (26) and Jermaine Kearse (25 next week), tight end Luke Willson (25) and a bunch of twenty-somethings on the line.

All of them already have experienced the ultimate success on the field, and if they can beat New England for a second straight championship, the D word frequently will be thrown around.

“For us to win the Super Bowl back-to-back years, we definitely could be a team that’s talked about as a dynasty,” Wright says. “I’m glad that the core players of this team are still together. The more we continue to stay around here, the more championships we’ll win.”

Very possibly.

But it’s not just the talent coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider have collected, and how quickly Seattle locked up key personnel with contracts; only Wilson and Wagner need to be re-signed among the elite players.

It’s the culture the Seahawks have developed.

Unlike the Patriots, who emulate the approach of their reveal-nothing coach and front office, the Seahawks are free-wheeling. It some ways, they resemble a college team, which makes perfect sense: Before turning around the Seahawks, Carroll won two national titles at Southern Cal.

While the methods of Bill Belichick clearly work in New England — no franchise has been more successful overall in the last 15 years — the Patriots last won a championship a decade ago. Although Tom Brady says he hopes to quarterback the team well into his 40s (he’s 37), the current roster doesn’t strike fear for the future the way Seattle’s might.

That’s true even if the Patriots win Sunday in a dead-even game: The betting line is pick-em.

“There are a number of kind of tenets you know, but developing a really competitive roster, keeping it young, always trying to upgrade,” Carroll says of the program he’s installed in Seattle since arriving in 2010. “That mentality is really pervading. It shows up everywhere. The style of play that we want, that we agreed to, about being a physical team and running the football and playing defense on teams. And with that thought, those are all just kind of the tenets that we’ve built it on and we’ve tried to remain uncommonly consistent in that commitment. I think that’s at the core of everything.”

The Nolls and Landrys and, yes, Belichicks might scoff at the openness. But in the Gen X NFL, letting players “be themselves,” as Sherman says, could be the way to go.

In a copycat league, if the Seahawks come through Sunday, who’s to say Seattle’s approach won’t be emulated? Lots of the Seahawks think so, even hope so.

With championships in the bank and money to spend under the salary cap, the Pacific Northwest becomes an even more attractive landing spot. And that will be true even if — as expected — some of Carroll’s assistants leave for promotions elsewhere this offseason.

“I know that the guys that are here really want to be here, and want to have the style of coaching,” says center Max Unger, a six-year veteran. “I think that it really just focuses on what you do well and highlighting that within your position. It’s just a positive mindset.”

And then there’s the ultimate attraction: winning rings.

“Man, that’s why I stayed because of being able to play in these types of games and just a chance to play on this team,” says defensive end Michael Bennett, who left Tampa after four seasons, won a championship last year on a one-season deal, and then re-signed with the Seahawks. “I mean, this team is full of energy, full of superstars, full of everybody who wants to be successful.

“I mean, money can’t put a price on winning. I know a lot of guys who have made a lot of money and they are still upset that they can’t be in this spotlight. Pro Bowls are one thing, MVP is one thing, but Super Bowl is a whole other atmosphere. When you win a Super Bowl, you get so much notoriety and you get the chance to really be on a great team. Money just can’t put a price on that.”


AP NFL website: and

'Tron'-like headphones, virtual reality at Sundance and other stories you might've missed this week!

We get it. It’s been a busy week. Luckily, we’re here to catch you up on the release date of the Apple Watch, VR headsets in Hollywood and all the other cool stuff you may have accidentally glossed over during five days on the daily grind….

Obama Said To Seek 19% Global Minimum Tax In Bid For Road Money

President Barack Obama will propose that U.S.-based companies pay a minimum 19 percent tax on their future foreign earnings, capturing profits that are now often beyond the government’s reach.

Packers' Aaron Rodgers Wins 2nd MVP Award

PHOENIX (AP) — Aaron Rodgers has won his second Associated Press NFL Most Valuable Player award in somewhat surprisingly easy fashion.

Rodgers, who also took the honor in 2011, received 31 votes for the 2014 award from a nationwide panel of 50 media members who regularly cover the league. Houston’s J.J. Watt, seeking to become the first defensive player to win MVP since 1986, got 13 votes. Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray, the 2014 Offensive Player award winner, and quarterback Tony Romo each got two votes. Patriots QB Tom Brady and Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner received one apiece.

Rodgers threw for 38 touchdowns and a league-low five interceptions; he has thrown 512 passes at home without a pick. He led the Packers to two victories at season’s end despite playing with a severe calf injury.

The award was presented at the “NFL Honors” show Saturday night.


AP NFL website: and

Save Your Back When You Use The Tennis Picker

Tennis PickerTennis players, do you think you can count the number of times you have to bend over to pick up a ball during a match? What if you could save your back all of that strain and eliminate the bending? Eliminating all that strain is just what Kim Seunghyun and Yu Yunjo want to do with their concept, the Tennis Picker.

Football Hall Of Fame Selects Seau, Bettis, Brown, Haley, Shields

PHOENIX (AP) — Junior Seau, Jerome Bettis, Tim Brown, Charles Haley and Will Shields were elected Saturday to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The class of 2015, announced a day before the Super Bowl, also includes a pair of contributors, Bill Polian and Ron Wolf, along with senior selection Mick Tingelhoff.

Five nominees were eliminated in the final vote: Tony Dungy, Kevin Greene, Marvin Harrison, Orlando Pace and Kurt Warner.

Earlier Saturday, the selection committee reduced the list of 15 modern-day finalists by cutting Morten Andersen, Terrell Davis, John Lynch and coaches Don Coryell and Jimmy Johnson.

A candidate needs 80 percent of the vote from 46 media members to get in.

The induction ceremony is in August at Canton, Ohio.

Seau, elected posthumously, was the only first-time eligible candidate to get in this year. He committed suicide at age 43 in 2012, and researchers who studied his brain said it showed signs of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a disease connected to repeated head injuries, including concussions.

His death, less than 2 1/2 years after the end of his playing career, resonated among players in the league, raising worry about the physical and emotional toll the sport takes.

Two sons of Seau’s represented him on stage with the other seven men elected Saturday when the class was announced during the NFL Honors show.

A field-covering, hard-hitting linebacker, the charismatic Seau played in the NFL for 20 seasons, the first 13 with the San Diego Chargers, followed by three with Miami and four with New England. He was Defensive Player of the Year for San Diego in 1992, made six All-Pro teams, and was a member of the league’s All-Decade team of the 1990s.

Patriots coach Bill Belichick said this week he “loved” having Seau on his roster.

“I can’t imagine having a Professional Football Hall of Fame without Junior Seau in it,” said Belichick, whose team plays the Seattle Seahawks in Sunday’s Super Bowl.

“I’d say the one word that comes to me when I think about Junior and football is ‘passion.’ He was a very passionate guy. A lot of energy. Lot of enthusiasm. First guy in the building in the morning — watching film, lifting weights, ready for practice,” Belichick said. “Energy before the game, on the sideline, during the game. An emotional player, but a smart player.”

Bettis, a finalist for the fifth time, was a burly running back nicknamed The Bus who began a 13-season career by earning Rookie of the Year honors for the Rams. He capped it by winning the 2006 Super Bowl with the Steelers in a game played in his hometown of Detroit.

His 13,662 yards rushing rank fifth in history and he had eight seasons of at least 1,000.

When Brown retired after the 2004 season, he ranked No. 2 in NFL history with 14,934 yards receiving, No. 3 with 1,094 catches, and No. 3 with 100 touchdown catches.

He was the 1987 Heisman Trophy winner at Notre Dame. As a rookie with the Raiders, Brown led the league in kickoff returns, return yards, and average yards per return, and was an All-Pro pick as a kick returner. He earned another All-Pro selection in 1997 at wide receiver.

Haley, elected in his 11th year of eligibility, was a defensive end and linebacker for 12 seasons with the 49ers and Cowboys. After entering the league as a fourth-round draft pick in 1986, he wound up as the first player in NFL history to play on five Super Bowl-winning teams.

He finished his career with 100 1-2 sacks and twice was an All-Pro, once at linebacker and once at defensive end.

Shields was a guard for Kansas City from 1993-2006, never missing a game in his 14 seasons. He was a first-team All-Pro three times, a second-team All-Pro four times, and was a member of the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 2000s.

Polian and Wolf were general managers who built Super Bowl champions. Polian’s Bills and Colts teams reached a total of five Super Bowls, with Indianapolis winning the title in 2007. Wolf’s Packers won the 1997 Super Bowl, then lost in the NFL championship game a year later.

Veterans’ committee nominee Tingelhoff retired in 1978 after starting all 240 games of his career as the center for the Minnesota Vikings.


Follow Howard Fendrich on Twitter at



AP NFL website: and AP NFL Twitter feed:

The Artist Behind The "Sexist" Newsweek Cover Speaks: "I Wanted To Depict The Harassment That Women Suffer"


On Friday I interviewed Edel Rodriguez, the artist behind the Newsweek cover that has people tweeting in shock and exclaiming their outrage on the nation’s morning shows. As the cofounder of PowerToFly, the first platform that places women in tech positions they can do in offices or from home, I’m glad Rodriguez’s cover has generated a conversation that is too often considered a side issue despite sexism’s effect on the majority of the world’s population. My cofounder, Milena Berry, and I did not experience the sexism detailed in the article by Nina Burleigh that Rodriguez illustrates. We’re fortunate to have a tremendous group of female and male investors led by Lerer Hippeau Ventures who hail from the East Coast and overseas.

What Rodriguez is confronting us with is a raw and very unpleasant image of the Valley that’s applauded for creating the world’s most progressive companies when, in fact, some women are calling it a place stuck in the 1950s. As a former journalist who used to write about the Valley’s “innovative spirit”, the cover makes me question why I celebrated a culture without looking into its disparities. What follows are Rodriguez’s answers to my questions over email. PowerToFly team member Cathy Sharick contributed to the piece.

1. First of all, congratulations on creating a cover that people are really talking – or freaking out – about. How do you feel about all the reaction it’s getting?

Part of my job is to help make that happen. I think the reaction is good. It’s an important topic at this point in time, it’s great when people are compelled to discuss the issue in one way or another.

2. You have done illustrations on many divisive topics like gun control, the turmoil in the Middle East, and race in America. Have any of your other pieces caused such a strong reaction?

I’ve been illustrating for about 20 years and have had thousands of images published. There have been a number of images that have gotten reactions during that time, but the reactions were through letters or blogs. Reactions are exponentially different nowadays because everyone uses Twitter, Facebook, etc. That’s a relatively recent form of commenting on imagery.

3. Your work is being called “sexist”… When it’s an article about sexism… It’s kind of getting killed as the messenger here, no? We know what people in the media and on Twitter think, but have any of your colleagues shared their reactions?

Most of my colleagues, both illustrators and art directors, love the image and think it’s an accurate representation of the story. They work with controversial topics every day and have a good sense of how to portray complex topics. They understand that our job is to provoke the viewer into reading a story.

4. Why did you choose to use an image of a woman’s skirt being lifted? I’d love to hear your thought process around creating the cover a little bit more.

I wanted to depict the harassment that women suffer. How the harassment can be unexpected and come out of nowhere. To show that frozen moment of shock, when a woman is just going about their life at work and something like this happens. I wanted to have the viewer see that moment when they look on a newsstand, and to be shocked themselves. Then be compelled to pick up the magazine and read the story behind the cover. These harassers have spent much of their lives behind a computer, seeing women as objects. I wanted them to be confronted with their stupidity as well. Hopefully by seeing it there, frozen in time, they could come to terms with what they are doing.

5. When you were creating this cover did you get any direction from Newsweek beyond the content of the article? And this might seem like a silly question but many of our readers might not know the answer – were you able to read the entire article before you worked on your illustration?

Yes, I was given the entire article and read it before starting my sketches. There was no direction on images. I came up with the ideas and the art director, a woman, felt that this one fit best with the point of view of the story.

6. I’m curious what you thought about the actual article written by Nina Burleigh. As a woman who recently raised a seed round for PowerToFly with my female cofounder Milena Berry, I found the stories about women struggling for funding to be beyond sad and discouraging. Luckily we didn’t have the same experience. But considering the article maybe you should have done an image of a woman having to grope a man with one hand and ask for money with the other?

It’s a great article that describes a disgusting pattern of behavior. I have two daughters, ten and five, who love technology and I don’t want them to have to deal with this in their careers in the future. As to your idea for an image, you stick to Tech, I’ll make the pictures, ok? Kidding!

7. After this experience what would you say to your media colleagues in general about their analysis of your work? I saw a TODAY host call the cover “obscene and just despicable, honestly” (and then she mentioned she had never read the piece). Over a year ago, I saw this same host comment on a segment about Miley Cyrus twerking at the VMAs. She offered no opinion except that she didn’t know “what to think.” Yes, I’m alluding to a double standard where we pin up barely legal actresses as sex symbols and then are aghast when someone illustrates sexism.

Television media is hyper and sensationalist for the most part. I can’t take a bunch of talking heads on TODAY seriously. Does anybody? One moment they’re outraged about this supposed sexist image and the next segment is about ’50 Shades of Grey’ followed by a ‘hot new swimsuits’ segment. It’s too ridiculous to even consider. I’ll read articles or comments by people whose opinions I respect, that I’ll do.

8. Does this firestorm mean that print is not dead? Or at least print covers?

This firestorm and the recent events at Charlie Hebdo prove that print has a real place in contemporary society. People still want to hold something real and permanent in their hands. Print will evolve, but it will never die.