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Last Update on March 02, 2015 08:06 GMT


NEW YORK (AP) -- Will Smith has whipped "Fifty Shades of Grey" in the box office race. But his new movie has raised questions about whether audiences are still chained to his projects. "Focus" took in $19.1 million in its opening weekend. While it's enough to knock "Grey" from the top, it's Smith's first release since his 2013 flop, "After Earth." Focus is rated "R" so that will limit its exposure to audiences too young to remember Smith as the blockbuster force he once was. Number two this past weekend is "Kingsman: The Secret Service," with nearly $12 million. Number three was the new SpongeBob movie, followed by "Fifty Shades."

There's a new number-one movie this weekend -- as the AP's Jamie Friar reports.

<<CUT ..003 (03/02/15)>> 00:15 "it feel, wow"

Sound of Margot Robbie and Will Smith

Sound of Margot Robbie and Will Smith, in a scene from "Focus," the number one movie at the box office.


LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Margot Robbie said she heard the stories about how cool Will Smith is before she worked with him in "Focus." And she says the actor lived up to his billing. Robbie says it's even true Smith comes on the set rapping the theme to his old TV show "Fresh Prince of Bel Air." Robbie says Smith is "everything you want him to be."

Margot Robbie says she isn't fazed by being put on several best-dressed lists for the Oscars this year.


LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Some actors spend their whole careers trying to break free from a character they've been linked to on TV or in movies. At first, Leonard Nimoy tried to do that. But he eventually made peace with the idea that some people would always see him as Spock, the legendary, logical figure from "Star Trek." In 1975, he wrote an autobiography titled: "I Am Not Spock," only to write another two decades later titled: "I Am Spock." Nimoy says in the second book that every day he'd hear Spock's "cool, rational voice" -- or hear that voice from a fan of Spock's. Nimoy died this past Friday of end-stage COPD -- chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. He was 83.

Science fiction authors are mourning the passing of Leonard Nimoy, who played Spock on "Star Trek." AP correspondent Warren Levinson reports.

<<CUT ..019 (03/02/15)>> 00:16 "as it looks"

Robert Thompson, director, Center for Television and Popular Culture, Syracuse University

Robert Thompson, who teaches television and popular culture at Syracuse University, says Leonard Nimoy probably made more of Mr. Spock than was on the page. ((note audio quality))

<<CUT ..018 (03/02/15)>> 00:12 "of that territory"

Robert Thompson, director, Center for Television and Popular Culture, Syracuse University

Robert Thompson, who teaches television and popular culture at Syracuse University, says Mr. Spock was a forerunner of characters who are good in math and science, but not so good at social interaction. ((note audio quality))

<<CUT ..017 (03/02/15)>> 00:11 "work so well"

Robert Thompson, director, Center for Television and Popular Culture, Syracuse University

Robert Thompson, who teaches television and popular culture at Syracuse University, says a nearly robotic performance helped make Mr. Spock an icon. ((note audio quality))

<<CUT ..016 (03/02/15)>> 00:32 ""

Warren Levinson, AP correspondent

The death of actor Leonard Nimoy prompts reflections on the influence of Mr. Spock, his best-known role. AP correspondent Warren Levinson reports.

<<CUT ..015 (03/02/15)>> 00:21 "long and prosper (music fade)"

Sound of Leonard Nimoy as Spock

Sound of Leonard Nimoy as Spock in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn.

<<CUT ..014 (03/02/15)>> 00:19 "or the one"

Sound of Leonard Nimoy as Spock and William Shatner as Capt. Kirk

Sound of Leonard Nimoy as Spock in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn.

<<CUT ..013 (03/02/15)>> 00:26 ""

Sound of the theme music

Sound of the theme music from the original Star Trek TV series.

<<CUT ..012 (03/02/15)>> 00:13 "whatever that arise"

Leonard Nimoy, actor

In an AP interview in 2009, Leonard Nimoy said he believed he was getting more like the character Spock the older he gets.

<<CUT ..011 (03/02/15)>> 00:11 "they got it (second reference)"

Leonard Nimoy, actor

In an AP interview in 2009, Leonard Nimoy explains why he decided to reprise his role of Spock in the latest Star Trek movie.

<<CUT ..010 (03/02/15)>> 00:06 ""

Sound of Jane Wyatt and Leonard Nimoy

Sound of Jane Wyman and Leonard Nimoy in a scene from the original Star Trek TV show.

<<CUT ..009 (03/02/15)>> 00:18 "I am delighted"

Sound of Deforrest Kelley and Leonard Nimoy

Sound of Deforrest Kelley and Leonard Nimoy in a scene from the original Star Trek TV show.

<<CUT ..008 (03/02/15)>> 00:01 ""

Sound of Leonard Nimoy

Sound of Leonard Nimoy saying "Live Long and Prosper."

<<CUT ..007 (03/02/15)>> 00:15 "impact on me"

William Lyon, "Star Trek" fan

This "Star Trek" fan, William Lyon, says Leonard Nimoy was a part of his life.

<<CUT ..006 (03/02/15)>> 00:07 "human he is"

Marlene Panoyan, spokeswoman, Hollywood Chamber of Commerce

Marlene Panoyan, spokeswoman, Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, says she met Leonard Nimoy at another actor's Walk of Fame ceremony, and says she found him to be very humble.

<<CUT ..005 (03/02/15)>> 00:15 "originated as Spock"

Leron Gubler (luh-RAHN' GOO'-blur), president, Hollywood Chamber of Commerce

Hollywood Chamber of Commerce president Leron Gubler says many fans are mourning the loss of the popular "Star Trek" actor.


LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Authorities in Los Angeles are trying to figure out if the dress recovered from a Hollywood hotel is the same one Lupita Nyong'o (loo-PEE'-tuh nee-YAHN'-goh) wore to the Oscars -- and reported stolen last week. The dress turned up under a bathroom sink in the same hotel where Nyong'o was staying when it went missing. A Los Angeles County Sheriff's official says the dress "greatly resembles" the pearl-adorned Calvin Klein dress, valued at $150,000. In a statement, Nyong'o tells Women's Wear Daily she's happy it appears the dress has been recovered. says a person claiming to have taken the gown told the celebrity Web site where it might be found.


CHICAGO (AP) -- Vince Vaughn and Lady Gaga have taken the plunge. Don't be thrown off; the singer is still supposed to marry actor Taylor Kinney. But Gaga and Vaughn did take one of those cold-water plunges to raise money for a good cause. They dipped into icy Lake Michigan to help Special Olympics. Gaga and Kinney announced their engagement recently. Kinney also took part in the dip in Chicago yesterday, where it was 20 degrees.

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Officially, E! Entertainment says Kelly Osbourne is leaving "Fashion Police" to pursue other opportunities. But you don't have to be a police detective to believe the departure is linked to co-host Giuliana Rancic's comments on Zendaya's dreadlocks last week. Osbourne was one of those who criticized Rancic's remark that suggested Zendaya's hair smelled of patchouli oil or marijuana. Rancic apologized. But Osbourne tweeted she was thinking of quitting the show because she can't stand racism. E! says Fashion Police will air as scheduled on March, 30. No word who will replace Osbourne.


BOSTON (AP) -- Bill Cosby's lawyers have asked a federal judge in Boston to dismiss a defamation lawsuit against the comedian. The lawyers say Cosby was acting in self-defense when his reps denied allegations he sexually assaulted women, in some cases after drugging them. The lawyer for the women say they believe Cosby was calling them liars when he used his reps to make the denials. The attorney believes suing Cosby for defamation would provide a chance for a jury to hear the assault cases -- and decide which party is telling the truth. The women's claims come well after the statute of limitations has passed for criminal or civil lawsuits.


NEW YORK (AP) -- A liberal media watchdog group is barking up the tree that is Fox News host Bill O'Reilly. Media Matters for America has ordered its researchers to dig through years of O'Reilly's writings, radio and TV shows and public appearances to find examples of inconsistencies. O'Reilly has been dogged recently by his claim that he was in a "war zone" more than 1,000 miles away from the Falklands War 30 years ago. He also had claimed he was outside the home of a friend of JFK assassin Lee Harvey Oswald when the friend killed himself. O'Reilly has defended his comments -- and his bosses at Fox News say they support him.

Rewind Time

March 02, 2015 08:06 GMT

Today is Monday, March 2, the 61st day of 2015. There are 304 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On March 2, 1965, the movie version of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Broadway musical "The Sound of Music," starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer, had its world premiere at New York's Rivoli Theater.

On this date:

In 1793, the first president of the Republic of Texas, Sam Houston, was born near Lexington, Virginia.

In 1836, the Republic of Texas formally declared its independence from Mexico.

In 1865, Congress established the position of Naval Judge Advocate General.

In 1877, Republican Rutherford B. Hayes was declared the winner of the 1876 presidential election over Democrat Samuel J. Tilden, even though Tilden had won the popular vote.

In 1917, Puerto Ricans were granted U.S. citizenship as President Woodrow Wilson signed the Jones-Shafroth Act.

In 1939, Roman Catholic Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli (puh-CHEL'-ee) was elected pope on his 63rd birthday; he took the name Pius XII. The Massachusetts legislature voted to ratify the Bill of Rights, 147 years after the first 10 amendments to the U.S. Constitution had gone into effect. (Georgia and Connecticut soon followed.)

In 1940, the cartoon character Elmer Fudd made his debut in the Warner Bros. animated short "Elmer's Candid Camera," in which the title character finds himself pitted against a rascally rabbit that was a precursor to Bugs Bunny.

In 1955, nine months before Rosa Parks' famous act of defiance, Claudette Colvin, a black high school student in Montgomery, Alabama, was arrested after refusing to give up her seat on a public bus to a white passenger.

In 1962, Wilt Chamberlain scored 100 points for the Philadelphia Warriors in a game against the New York Knicks, an NBA record that still stands. (Philadelphia won, 169-147.)

In 1972, the United States launched the Pioneer 10 space probe, which flew past Jupiter in late 1973, sending back images and scientific data.

In 1985, the government approved a screening test for AIDS that detected antibodies to the virus, allowing possibly contaminated blood to be excluded from the blood supply.

In 1990, more than 6,000 drivers went on strike against Greyhound Lines Inc. (The company, later declaring an impasse in negotiations, fired the strikers.)

Ten years ago: The number of U.S. military deaths in Iraq reached 1,500. The woman who'd accused NBA star Kobe Bryant of rape settled her lawsuit against him, ending the case.

Five years ago: Authorities in San Diego County found the body of 17-year-old Chelsea King, who'd been missing since Feb. 25, 2010. (John Albert Gardner III later pleaded guilty to raping and murdering King and another victim, 14-year-old Amber Dubois; he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.)

One year ago: The historical drama "12 Years a Slave" won best picture at the 86th annual Academy Awards; one of its stars, Lupita Nyong'o, won best supporting actress. Matthew McConaughey was named best actor for "Dallas Buyers Club" while Cate Blanchett was honored as best actress for "Blue Jasmine"; Alfonso Cuaron received best director for "Gravity."

(Stations: Rock musician Casey, one name, is correct)

Today's Birthdays: Actor John Cullum is 85. Author Tom Wolfe is 85. Former Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev is 84. Actress Barbara Luna is 76. Author John Irving is 73. Actress Cassie Yates is 64. Actress Laraine Newman is 63. Former Sen. Russ Feingold, D-Wis., is 62. Former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar is 60. Singer Jay Osmond is 60. Pop musician John Cowsill (The Cowsills) is 59. Tennis player Kevin Curren is 57. Country singer Larry Stewart (Restless Heart) is 56. Rock singer Jon Bon Jovi is 53. Blues singer-musician Alvin Youngblood Hart is 52. Actor Daniel Craig is 47. Actor Richard Ruccolo is 43. Rock musician Casey (Jimmie's Chicken Shack) is 39. Rock singer Chris Martin (Coldplay) is 38. Actress Heather McComb is 38. Actress Bryce Dallas Howard is 34. NFL quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is 33. Actor Robert Iler is 30. Actress Nathalie Emmanuel (TV: "Game of Thrones") is 26.

Thought for Today: "Nothing ever really sets human nature free, but self-control." -- Phyllis Bottome, English writer (1884-1963).

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