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Apple Drops $120 Million on Upcoming Action Thriller Film 'Emancipation' Starring Will Smith – MacRumors

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Apple has acquired the rights to “Emancipation,” an action thriller film about a slave on the run from the Confederacy in the midst of the Civil War, journeying north to join the Union Army (via Deadline). The film is set to star Will Smith and will be directed by Antoine Fuqua, who previously helmed “Training Day” and “The Equalizer.”

Image credit: Shutterstock via Deadline
Apple’s purchase of “Emancipation” is described as the largest festival acquisition deal in film history. Several bidders were interested in the film when it was introduced at the Cannes Virtual Film Market, which was held late in June as a replacement to the physical Cannes Film Festival.

Apple allegedly paid north of $120 million for the film package, and “Emancipation” is set to premiere in theaters first and then around the world on Apple TV+. Production is expected to begin in early 2021.

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What Really Happened At That BlizzCon Panel, According To The Woman In The Video – Kotaku

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“I didn’t think that much about it, because there’s always been for the longest time a certain amount of sexism in the games industry that is just there and you learn to roll your eyes and do your best to ignore it and just try to appreciate the things that you do like about it,” Xantia said.

“I loved Diablo II back in the day. Did I love the character model for the Amazon? No, not really. Hell, one of my earliest memories of gaming was being excited about the first Tomb Raider game and thinking, ‘That’s so cool it has a female protagonist.’ And then you see the first model of Lara Croft in the game and you’re like, oh, cool, great, great…”

There’s an audible exhaustion in her voice when she recalls this memory. The 2010 BlizzCon panel wasn’t an anomaly. It wasn’t the mask slipping in front of thousands on video. It was what she had come to expect from a space dominated by men with little regard for anyone else, and as California’s lawsuit and new reporting has confirmed, who were at times explicitly dangerous to the women around them.

Afrasiabi is one of the only people named in California’s lawsuit, accused of sexually harassing and groping female Blizzard employees. It also accused him of having a “Cosby Suite” at BlizzCon where he would also prey on women.

Based on images obtained by Kotaku, the “Cosby Suite’’ was an actual booze-filled party room at BlizzCon 2013 in which Afrasiabi and others would pose with a giant portrait of the comedian. Activision Blizzard confirmed to Kotaku that Afrasiabi was terminated last year for “misconduct.” Brack, the only other person named in California’s lawsuit for failing to address sexual harassment compalints against Afrasiabi, is still currently in charge of Blizzard.

Despite the experience at the panel, Xantia said she tried to get a job at Blizzard in its Strategic Initiatives Department around 2012 and was in the running for a while before ultimately being rejected. “I was pretty heartbroken about it at the time, but man, talk about being lucky in your failures,” she said. “I now feel like I dodged a bullet there.”

Following the resurfacing of the BlizzCon 2010 moment, former World of Warcraft lead designer Greg Street, currently at Riot Games, took to Twitter to apologize in a somewhat meandering tweet thread. He first qualified the “shitty answer” by saying it can be hard to see who’s asking the questions. He also mentioned that developers are nervous up there, in front of the crowd, out of fear they will say the wrong thing. Eventually he settled on, “I find the video embarrassing and I apologize to the player who asked the question and all others who were disappointed with our ‘answer.’”

Xantia said part of what’s been so weird about seeing the video brought back up over a decade later is seeing responses like Street’s.

“I guess Greg Street now knows who I am now. Cool. OK. And also that wasn’t really an apology, but sure you do you. Whatever gets you to sleep at night,” she said. “I was joking with a friend when I saw it, when I saw everything he was writing about that, just, you know, ‘Oh, I couldn’t see her react, I couldn’t see her face’ and how he’s disappointed in all of these things. Yeah, but your ears were working just fine. Did you not hear hundreds of people booing me? What would it have taken to say, ‘Hey, guys, come on, that’s not cool’? “Whenever you start explaining yourself to that degree, it stops being an apology.”

Xantia thinks Blizzard needs to be more candid too.

“One of the biggest things that they could do is, actually be honest and have that kind of ‘boys club’ not be above reproach,” she said. “It has to be more than just a show of ‘We did these couple acts of penance and now we’re all better.’ I think there actually has to be a fundamental reevaluation.”

Xantia’s found the recent actions of other developers at Activision Blizzard, including an open letter and walkout, to be cause for optimism. And despite how bizarre it’s been to play such a visible role in the public outcry that’s currently unfolding after all these years, she’s hopeful the negative experience is now making a positive contribution.

“I’ve gotten a moderate amount of attention for all this when I’m only tangentially connected to it,” she said. “I think the important voices are for the women who were actually at Blizzard who have had to endure far, far more than just being dismissed at a convention.”

“There are worse reasons to go viral. And if this helps to actually bring about change then that would be something profoundly good that came out of a pretty small, but still shitty moment.”

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Apple's 512GB M1 Mac Mini falls back to $799 at Amazon – Yahoo News Canada

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If you’ve been eyeing Apple’s latest Mac Mini as your next desktop, now is the time to act. You can currently get the 512GB model for $799 at Amazon, or $100 off the normal $899 price. The deal brings the desktop down to just below the record low we saw in March and April. It also means you’re only paying $100 more for double the storage of the $699 base model.

Buy Mac Mini M1 (512GB) at Amazon – $799

That should come in handy if you plan to take full advantage of the Mac Mini’s M1 chip. As we’ve previously noted, Apple’s in-house silicon is a powerhouse that makes quick work of most tasks, be it browsing bloated websites or opening creative editing software. Inside the desktop, you’ll find an 8-core CPU with four performance cores and four efficiency cores and a 16-core Neural Engine. Unlike with the iMac, you’ll also need your own display and peripherals like a keyboard and mouse. 

There are a few caveats, however. The Mac Mini’s RAM and storage aren’t upgradeable and the two rear Thunderbolt ports won’t please those who need extra monitors and faster connectivity. Apple also offers 16GB unified memory, up to 2TB SSD storage and 10 Gigabit Ethernet support at a cost. In fact, the true top-of-the line Mac Mini will set you back $1,799. Saying that, the specs available on this deal model should please most casual users.

Follow @EngadgetDeals on Twitter for the latest tech deals and buying advice.

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Apex Legends' Emergence battle pass trailer teases emotes, new skins for Volt, 30-30, Flatline, and more – Dot Esports

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Apex Legends: Emergence launches tomorrow with a new battle pass, which was revealed in a trailer this morning.

This season’s max tier rewards are reactive skins for the Volt, “Symbiotic Relationship” at tier 100 and “Fatal Injection” at tier 110. There’s plenty else to grind for throughout the season, though, including looks for Valkyrie and Horizon, among others.

Seer’s “Winged Sun” 30-30 Repeater skin is just one of the other weapon skins in the battle pass, which also includes Valkyrie’s “Temporal Scale” Flatline. There’s also several new emotes, Seer-themed loading screens, music packs, banners, and weapon charms, as players have come to expect.

The updated World’s Edge will be the main stomping grounds for the new season and has received several updates to the landscape and numerous points of interest. A lot of the changes were also focused on quality of life, like adding different flanking routes and pathways that weren’t there before.

Along with Seer and World’s Edge, the third big addition of the season will be the Rampage LMG. The weapon, invented by Rampart, is unique in that it uses thermal grenades as its source of ammunition, so be sure to pick them up while running through the battle royale.

Apex Legends: Emergence begins tomorrow, Aug. 3.

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