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October 29, 2018

Box office revenue is way up this month compared to years past, and it's all because of alien symbiotes, Lady Gaga, and the return of Michael Myers.

With Halloween taking in an additional $32 million this weekend, October 2018 is now the highest-grossing October ever, with the total revenue across all film releases being $786 million, per The Hollywood Reporter. With still a few days left in the month, this outpaces October 2014, which previously held the record with a total gross of $758 million. This year's performance was a massive improvement on last October, when the total box office revenue was just $557 million; many of the highest-grossing films of that month actually came out in September.

This October's biggest release was Venom, Sony's Spider-Man universe film that hit multiplexes during what is typically a superhero film lull. It took in another $10.8 million this weekend, putting it well on its way to a domestic total of over $200 million. A Star Is Born also continues to belt its way to victory, landing at #2 for the fourth weekend in a row. Though the Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga musical drama only debuted with $42 million at the start of the month, its legs have been quite impressive, and with the total gross now approaching $150 million, it's not far behind Venom.

Halloween also helped October 2018 shatter records, with the slasher sequel reaching a to-date gross of $126 million. It's now the second-highest grossing film of the franchise behind only John Carpenter's original, which took in $183 million domestically adjusted for inflation, according to The New York Times. Brendan Morrow

1:18 a.m.

French President Emmanuel Macron on Sunday said leaders at the Group of Seven summit are close to reaching a deal that provides Brazil with "technical and financial help" to fight the fires devastating the Amazon rainforest.

The Amazon is the world's largest rainforest, and produces about 20 percent of the planet's oxygen. Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who campaigned on a promise to open the Amazon up for mining, logging, and other businesses, was slow to react, and environmentalists and researchers say cattle ranchers and loggers, emboldened by Bolsonaro's rhetoric, are behind most of the fires. On Friday, Bolsonaro finally said the military would fight the blazes, and told world leaders to let him deal with the crisis on his own.

Last week, Macron said the fires are an "international crisis," and on Sunday, Pope Francis said they are worrisome, and he wants people to "pray so that with the commitment of all, they can be put out soon. That lung of forests is vital for our planet." Catherine Garcia

12:32 a.m.

Catherine Kyle has always loved the Pittsburgh Pirates, and she was finally able to cheer her team on inside PNC Park Saturday night.

To surprise Kyle on her 99th birthday, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren organized a trip to see the Pirates face off against the Cincinnati Reds. Despite being a lifelong fan, Kyle had never been to one of their games, and her family knew this would be the ultimate birthday gift.

Wearing matching yellow shirts that said "Catherine's Crew," the family was out in full force, and Kyle told CBS Pittsburgh she was most looking forward to hearing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" during the seventh inning. "They're a bunch of nice guys," she said of the team. Catherine Garcia

August 25, 2019

The Group of Seven meeting of world powers Biarritz, France, has had its ups and downs — surprise meetings, surprise guests, curious statements, a little tension, lots of trade talk — but everyone appeared to be getting along just fine on Sunday when the leaders and their plus-ones took photos together on the beach in front of the Biarritz lighthouse.

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One photo, of American first lady Melania Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, reminded a lot of people of that stock photo-turned-overdone meme of the guy looking over his shoulder at another woman — you know the one — with some notable differences:

But of course that's silly — it's France, people kiss each other on the cheek.

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

Besides, what's not to smile about? Biarritz looks lovely this time of year. Peter Weber

August 25, 2019

Police in Hong Kong arrested 36 people, including a 12-year-old, on Sunday, following a violent protest.

They were detained for a variety of reasons, police said, including unlawful assembly, possession of an offensive weapon, and assault against a police officer. Demonstrators have been filling the streets for more than two months, calling for democratic elections and investigations into use of force by police. Tens of thousands of people marched peacefully earlier in the day, but at the end of the rally, some protesters broke away from the crowd at Tsuen Wan Park and started setting up traffic barriers in the road.

Police responded, putting up warning flags and then using tear gas to get the protesters to leave. In response, demonstrators threw bricks and gasoline bombs toward the officers, The Associated Press reports. After the remaining protesters, holding sticks and rods, started chasing officers down the street, police pulled their guns on the group, with one firing a warning shot. "The escalation you're seeing now is just a product of our government's indifference toward the people of Hong Kong," demonstrator Rory Wong told AP. Catherine Garcia

August 25, 2019

Joe Arpaio marked the anniversary of President Trump pardoning him by announcing he is once again running for sheriff in Maricopa County, Arizona.

"Watch out world!" the 87-year-old said in a statement. "We are back!" Arpaio served six terms as sheriff, and his jails were known for their harsh conditions, with immigrants housed in tents outside during extreme heat; inmates fed twice a day with food served at other institutions as a form of punishment; and prisoners forced to wear pink underwear. As a result, several civil rights lawsuits were filed against Arpaio, NBC News reports, and a federal judge ruled twice that his jails violated the constitutional rights of inmates because of poor medical care.

Arpaio was handily defeated in November 2016, and convicted in July 2017 of contempt of court after he disregarded a federal judge's order to stop arresting immigrants based on suspicion that they were undocumented. One of Trump's earliest supporters, he was pardoned by the president in August 2017. In his statement, Arpaio said he's been urged by "thousands" to run again, and "the last four years have proven to be a time of lost opportunities to continue the kind of tough policing this country needs." Catherine Garcia

August 25, 2019

There's about to be more Mickey Mouse, Frozen, and Marvel inside Target stores across the United States.

Disney and Target announced on Sunday they are partnering to open permanent Disney stores inside select Target locations, with 25 launching on Oct. 4. By October 2020, the plan is to open 40 more stores within the store. The designated Disney areas will cover about 750 square feet adjacent to the children's clothing and toy section, with at least 450 items, including apparel, games, and some collectible merchandise.

The first Disney stores will open in several major cities, including Philadelphia, Chicago, and Denver. Catherine Garcia

August 25, 2019

President Trump, on more than one occasion, asked Homeland Security and national security officials to consider the following: What if the United States dropped a nuclear bomb inside the eye of a hurricane, disrupting it before it could reach land?

Several people who heard Trump's suggestions, and others who read about it in a National Security Council memo, told Axios on Sunday that Trump wanted officials to start exploring his hypothesis. During one meeting at the White House, Trump's idea stunned his briefer, who was "knocked back on his heels," an attendee told Axios. "You could hear a gnat fart in that meeting. People were astonished. After the meeting ended, we thought, 'What the f—k? What do we do with this?'"

Trump discussed the idea early in his presidency — and at one point also suggested using regular bombs as opposed to nuclear — and hasn't said anything since John Bolton became his national security adviser, Axios reports. This idea has actually been bandied about before, but the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said it won't work because the explosives would need to have an exorbitant amount of energy to modify the hurricanes, plus radioactive fallout would spread with the trade winds, harming people and the environment.

While Trump's idea caught several people off guard, a senior administration official told Axios they didn't think it was strange at all that the president of the United States thought it would be wise to drop a nuclear bomb into the eye of a hurricane. "His goal — to keep a catastrophic hurricane from hitting the mainland — is not bad," the person said. "What people near the president do is they say 'I love a president who asks questions like that, who’s willing to ask tough questions.' ... It takes strong people to respond to him in the right way when stuff like this comes up." Catherine Garcia

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