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Archive for March 3, 2011

Raphael Hillyer, American violist, founding member of the Juilliard String Quartet, died from heart failure ,he was 96

 Raphael Hillyer was an American viola soloist, teacher died from heart failure ,he was  96. Born Raphael Silverman in Ithaca, New York, his career included playing in the Boston Symphony Orchestra and co-founding the Juilliard String Quartet[1]. Hillyer was still lecturing and teaching viola at Boston University during the final month of his life.[2]

  (April 10, 1914 – December 27, 2010)


Hillyer was a founding member of the Juilliard String Quartet. He was born in 1914 to a family with a musical background: his mother was a pianist and his father, a mathematician, also was an amateur violist. Hillyer’s formal violin studies began in 1921, and his youthful passion for music was further ignited on a trip with his parents in 1924 to Leningrad, Russia where he studied with Sergei Korgueff and an 18 year-old Dmitri Shostakovich. At the age of 16 Hillyer attended the Curtis Institute of Music, followed by studies at Dartmouth College, from which he graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a mathematics degree in 1936. He then completed graduate work in music under Walter Piston and Hugo Leichtentritt at Harvard University,where he played frequent recitals with his friend and classmate, Leonard Bernstein.[3]
In 1942, Hillyer joined the Boston Symphony Orchestra as a violinist under Serge Koussevitsky[4] and played with the Stradivari Quartet alongside Boston Symphony violist, Eugene Lehner, who became his mentor. In 1946, at the urging of Lehner, Hillyer, until then a violinist, prepared for an audition with a new quartet that was in need of a violist. With a borrowed viola and an intensity for which he was becoming well known, Hillyer played the audition and was chosen to be the violist and founding member of what became the Juilliard String Quartet. Hillyer remained with the Juilliard String Quartet for 23 years, recording, teaching and concertizing — championing new music and reinvigorating chamber music. After retiring from the Juilliard String Quartet in 1969, Hillyer performed frequently as soloist and collaborator with other chamber music groups. He also intensified the work he had grown passionate about: teaching and mentoring young musicians throughout the world. He was a guiding force behind the Tokyo String Quartet for decades. [3] Hillyer continued to teach at Boston University until his death. On December 6, 2010, he taught his very last class, which was described by those in attendance as “as passionate and illuminating as any he had ever taught.”To

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Who is Chan Kong-sang?

Who is Chan Kong-sang? The entertainment, acting and martial arts world knows him as Jackie Chan. Chan is a Hong Kong[2] actor, action choreographer, filmmaker, comedian, director, producer, martial artist, screenwriter, entrepreneur, singer and stunt performer.
In his movies, he is known for his acrobatic fighting style, comic timing, use of improvised weapons, and innovative stunts. Jackie Chan has been acting since the 1960s and has appeared in over 100 films. Chan has received stars on the Hong Kong Avenue of Stars and the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
As a cultural icon, Chan has been referenced in various pop songs, cartoons, and video games. Chan is also a Cantopop and Mandopop star, having released a number of albums and sung many of the theme songs for the films in which he has starred.

Early life

Chan was born on April 7, 1954, in Victoria Peak, in the former Crown colony of Hong Kong, as Chan Kong-sang (meaning “born in Hong Kong”) to Charles and Lee-Lee Chan, refugees from the Chinese Civil War. He was nicknamed Paopao (Chinese: 炮炮, literally meaning “Cannonball”) because the high-energy child was always rolling around.[3] Since his parents worked for the French Consul to Hong Kong, Chan spent his formative years within the grounds of the consul’s residence in the Victoria Peak district.[4]
Chan attended the Nah-Hwa Primary School on Hong Kong Island, where he failed his first year, after which his parents withdrew him from the school. In 1960, his father immigrated to Canberra, Australia, to work as the head cook for the American embassy, and Chan was sent to the China Drama Academy, a Peking Opera School run by Master Yu Jim-yuen.[4][5] Chan trained rigorously for the next decade, excelling in martial arts and acrobatics.[6] He eventually became part of the Seven Little Fortunes, a performance group made up of the school’s best students, gaining the stage name Yuen Lo in homage to his master. Chan became close friends with fellow group members Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao, the three of them later to be known as the Three Brothers or Three Dragons.[7]
At the age of 8, he appeared with some of his fellow “Little Fortunes”, in the film Big and Little Wong Tin Bar (1962), with Li Li Hua playing his mother. Chan appeared with Li again the following year, in The Love Eterne (1963) and had a small role in King Hu‘s 1966 film, Come Drink with Me.[8] In 1971, after an appearance as an extra in another Kong Fu film, A Touch of Zen, Chan began his adult career in the film industry, initially signing to Chu Mu’s Great Earth Film Company.[9] At the age of 17, he worked as a stuntman in the Bruce Lee films Fist of Fury and Enter the Dragon under the stage name Chan Yuen Lung (Chinese: 陳元龍).[10] He received his first starring role later that year, in Little Tiger of Canton, which had a limited release in Hong Kong in 1973.[11] Due to the commercial failures in his early ventures into films and trouble finding stunt work, in 1975 Chan starred in a comedic adult film, All in the Family, which features Jackie Chan’s first and possibly only nude sex scene filmed to date. It is also the only film he has made to date that did not feature a single fight scene or stunt sequence.[12]
Chan joined his parents in Canberra in 1976, where he briefly attended Dickson College and worked as a construction worker.[13] A fellow builder named Jack took Chan under his wing, earning Chan the nickname of “Little Jack” which was later shortened to “Jackie” and the name Jackie Chan stuck with him ever since.[14] In addition, in the late 90s, Chan changed his Chinese name to Fong Si-lung (Chinese: 房仕龍), since his father’s original surname was Fong.[14]

Film career

Early exploits: 1976–1979

In 1976, Jackie Chan received a telegram from Willie Chan, a film producer in the Hong Kong film industry who had been impressed with Jackie’s stuntwork. Willie Chan offered him an acting role in a film directed by Lo Wei. Lo had seen Chan’s performance in the John Woo film Hand of Death (1976) and planned to model him after Bruce Lee with the film New Fist of Fury.[9] His stage name was changed to Sing Lung (Chinese: 成龍, also transcribed as Cheng Long,[15] literally “become the dragon”) to emphasise his similarity to Bruce Lee, whose stage name was Lei Siu-lung (Chinese: 李小龍, meaning “Little Dragon”). The film was unsuccessful because Chan was not accustomed to Lee’s martial arts style. Despite the film’s failure, Lo Wei continued producing films with similar themes, resulting in little improvement at the box office.[16]
Chan’s first major breakthrough was the 1978 film Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow, shot while he was loaned to Seasonal Film Corporation under a two-picture deal.[17] Under director Yuen Woo-ping, Chan was allowed complete freedom over his stunt work. The film established the comedic kung fu genre, and proved to be a breath of fresh air for the Hong Kong audience.[18] Chan then starred in Drunken Master, which finally propelled him to mainstream success.[19]
Upon Chan’s return to Lo Wei’s studio, Lo tried to replicate the comedic approach of Drunken Master, producing Half a Loaf of Kung Fu and Spiritual Kung Fu.[14] He also gave Chan the opportunity to co-direct The Fearless Hyena with Kenneth Tsang. When Willie Chan left the company, he advised Jackie to decide for himself whether or not to stay with Lo Wei. During the shooting of Fearless Hyena Part II, Chan broke his contract and joined Golden Harvest, prompting Lo to blackmail Chan with triads, blaming Willie for his star’s departure. The dispute was resolved with the help of fellow actor and director Jimmy Wang Yu, allowing Chan to stay with Golden Harvest.[20]

Success of the action comedy genre: 1980–1987

Willie Chan had become Jackie’s personal manager and firm friend, and has remained so for over 30 years. He was instrumental in launching Chan’s international career, beginning with his first forays into the American film industry in the 1980s. His first Hollywood film was Battle Creek Brawl in 1980. Chan then played a minor role in the 1981 film The Cannonball Run, which grossed US$100 million worldwide. Despite being largely ignored by audiences in favour of established American actors like Burt Reynolds, Chan was impressed by the outtakes shown at the closing credits, inspiring him to include the same device in his future films.
After the commercial failure of The Protector in 1985, Chan temporarily abandoned his attempts to break into the US market, returning his focus to Hong Kong films.[16]
Back in Hong Kong, Chan’s films began to reach a larger audience in East Asia, with early successes in the lucrative Japanese market including The Young Master (1980) and Dragon Lord (1982). The Young Master went on to beat previous box office records set by Bruce Lee and established Chan as Hong Kong cinema’s top star.
Chan produced a number of action comedy films with his opera school friends Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao. The three co-starred together for the first time in 1983 in Project A, which won the Best Action Design Award at the third annual Hong Kong Film Awards.[21] Over the following two years, the “Three Brothers” appeared in Wheels on Meals and the original Lucky Stars trilogy.[22][23] In 1985, Chan made the first Police Story film, a US-influenced action comedy in which Chan performed his own stunts. It was named the “Best Movie” at the 1986 Hong Kong Film Awards.[24] In 1987, Chan played “Asian Hawk”, an Indiana Jones-esque character, in the film Armour of God. The film was Chan’s biggest domestic box office success to date, grossing over HK $35 million.[25]

Acclaimed sequels and Hollywood breakthrough: 1988–1998

In 1988 Chan starred alongside Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao for the last time to date, in the film Dragons Forever. Hung co-directed with Corey Yuen, and the villain in the film was played by Yuen Wah, both of whom were fellow graduates of the China Drama Academy.
In the late 1980s and early 90s, Chan starred in a number of successful sequels beginning with Police Story 2, which won the award for Best Action Choreography at the 1989 Hong Kong Film Awards. This was followed by Armour of God II: Operation Condor, and Police Story 3: Super Cop, for which Chan won the Best Actor Award at the 1993 Golden Horse Film Festival. In 1994, Chan reprised his role as Wong Fei-hung in Drunken Master II, which was listed in Time Magazine’s All-Time 100 Movies.[26] Another sequel, Police Story 4: First Strike, brought more awards and domestic box office success for Chan, but did not fare as well in foreign markets.[27] Jackie Chan rekindled his Hollywood ambitions in the 1990s, but refused early offers to play villains in Hollywood films to avoid being typecast in future roles. For example, Sylvester Stallone offered him the role of Simon Phoenix, a criminal in the futuristic film Demolition Man. Chan declined and the role was taken by Wesley Snipes.[28]
Chan finally succeeded in establishing a foothold in the North American market in 1995 with a worldwide release of Rumble in the Bronx, attaining a cult following in the United States that was rare for Hong Kong movie stars.[29] The success of Rumble in the Bronx led to a 1996 release of Police Story 3: Super Cop in the United States under the title Supercop, which grossed a total of US $16,270,600. Jackie’s first huge blockbuster success came when he co-starred with Chris Tucker in the 1998 buddy cop action comedy Rush Hour,[30] grossing US$130 million in the United States alone.[20] This film made a star of Jackie Chan, in Hollywood. As a publicity stunt, Jackie also wrote his autobiography in collaboration with Jeff Yang entitled I Am Jackie Chan.

Dramatization and fame in Hollywood: 1999–2007

In 1998, Chan released his final film for Golden Harvest, Who Am I? After leaving Golden Harvest in 1999, he produced Gorgeous, a romantic comedy that focused on personal relationships.[31] Chan then helped create a PlayStation game in 2000 called Jackie Chan Stuntmaster, to which he lent his voice and performed the motion capture.[32]

Despite further success with Shanghai Noon in 2000, Rush Hour 2 in 2001 and Shanghai Knights and The Medallion in 2003, Chan became frustrated with Hollywood over the limited range of roles and lack of control over the film-making process.[33] In response to Golden Harvest’s withdrawal from the film industry in 2003, Chan started his own film production company, JCE Movies Limited (Jackie Chan Emperor Movies Limited) in association with Emperor Multimedia Group (EMG).[20] His films have since featured an increasing number of dramatic scenes while continuing to succeed at the box office; examples include New Police Story (2004), The Myth (2005) and the hit film Rob-B-Hood (2006).[34][35][36]
Chan’s next release was Rush Hour 3 in August 2007. It grossed US$255 million.[37] However, it performed poorly in Hong Kong, grossing only HK$3.5 million during its opening weekend.[38]

New experiments and change in style: 2008–present

As Chan had stated years before, there would be a point in his life in which he would have to be modernized and use special effects, and try new different things than martial arts flicks. This began in 2007, with the filming of The Forbidden Kingdom (released in 2008), Chan’s first onscreen collaboration with fellow Chinese actor Jet Li, which was completed on 24 August 2007 and the film was released in April 2008. The film featured heavy use of effects and wires.[39][40] Chan voiced the character Master Monkey in the DreamWorks Animation film, Kung Fu Panda, released in June 2008, appearing with stars Jack Black, Dustin Hoffman and Angelina Jolie.[41] In addition, he has assisted Anthony Szeto in an advisory capacity for the writer-director’s film Wushu, released on May 1, 2008. The film stars Sammo Hung and Wang Wenjie as father and son.[42]
In November 2007, Chan began filming Shinjuku Incident, a dramatic role featuring no martial arts sequences with director Derek Yee, which sees Chan take on the role of a Chinese immigrant in Japan.[43] The film was released on 2 April 2009. According to his blog, Chan discussed his wishes to direct a film after completing Shinjuku Incident, something he has not done for a number of years.[44] The film is expected to be the third in the Armour of God series, and has a working title of Armour of God III: Chinese Zodiac. Chan originally stated that he would start filming on April 1 2008, but that date had passed and the current state of the film is unknown.[45] Because the Screen Actors Guild did not go on strike, Chan started shooting his next Hollywood movie The Spy Next Door at the end of October in New Mexico,[46] In The Spy Next Door, Chan plays an undercover agent whose cover is blown when he looks after the children of his girlfriend; Chan most likely did the film to appeal to his younger audience in America. In Little Big Soldier, Chan stars, alongside Leehom Wang in a non-martial arts comedy movie based on the Warring States Period.
On June 22 2009, Chan left Los Angeles to begin filming The Karate Kid, a remake of the original, in Beijing. [47] The film was released in America on June 11, 2010 and sees Chan’s first dramatic American film. In the film, he plays Mr. Han, a kung fu master and maintenance man who teaches Jaden Smith‘s character, Dre, kung-fu so he can defend himself from school bullies. In Chan’s next movie, The New Shaolin Temple, instead of playing one of the major characters, he plays the Cook of the temple.


Jackie Chan performs most[48] of his own stunts, which are choreographed by the Jackie Chan Stunt Team. He has stated in interviews that the primary inspiration for his more comedic stunts were films such as The General directed by and starring Buster Keaton, who was also known to perform his own stunts. Since its establishment in 1983, Chan has used the team in all his subsequent films to make choreographing easier, given his understanding of each member’s abilities.[49] Chan and his team undertake many of the stunts performed by other characters in his films, shooting the scenes so that their faces are obscured.[50]
The dangerous nature of his stunts makes it difficult for Chan to get insurance, especially in the United States, where his stunt work is contractually limited.[50] Chan holds the Guinness World Record for “Most Stunts By A Living Actor”, which emphasizes “no insurance company will underwrite Chan’s productions, in which he performs all his own stunts”.[51] In addition, he holds an unrecognised record for the most number of takes for a single shot in a film, having shot over 2900 retakes for a complex scene involving a badminton game in Dragon Lord.[52]
Chan has been injured numerous times attempting stunts; many of them have been shown as outtakes or as bloopers during the closing credits of his films. He came closest to death filming Armour of God, when he fell from a tree and fractured his skull. Over the years, Chan has dislocated his pelvis and broken his fingers, toes, nose, both cheekbones, hips, sternum, neck, ankle and ribs on numerous occasions.[53][54] Promotional materials for Rumble in the Bronx emphasized that Chan performed all of the stunts, and one version of the movie poster even diagrammed his many injuries.

Filmography and screen persona

Jackie Chan created his screen persona as a response to Bruce Lee, and the numerous imitators who appeared before and after Lee’s death. In contrast to Lee’s characters, who were typically stern, morally upright heroes, Chan plays well-meaning, slightly foolish regular guys (often at the mercy of their friends, girlfriends or families) who always triumph in the end despite the odds.[14] Additionally, Chan has stated that he deliberately styles his movement to be the opposite of Lee’s: where Lee held his arms wide, Chan holds his tight to the body; where Lee was loose and flowing, Chan is tight and choppy. Despite the success of the Rush Hour series, Chan has stated that he is not a fan of it since he neither appreciates the action scenes in the movie, nor understands American humour.[55] In the same interview Chan said that while he is not enamored with the films he makes in the U.S., and has repeatedly shown a lack of enthusiasm for some of his biggest Hollywood projects fearing that Chinese viewers may not understand them, he uses the high salaries from these pictures to fund Chinese projects that he is more interested in.[citation needed]
In recent years, the aging Chan grew tired of being typecast as an action hero, prompting him to act with more emotion in his latest films.[56] In New Police Story, he portrayed a character suffering from alcoholism and mourning his murdered colleagues.[57] To further shed the image of Mr. Nice Guy, Chan played an anti-hero for the first time in Rob-B-Hood starring as Thongs, a burglar with gambling problems.[58]

Television work

In 2000, Chan hosted a fictionalised version of himself in the animated series Jackie Chan Adventures, which ran until 2005.[59]
In July 2008, the BTV reality television series entitled The Disciple (simplified Chinese: 龙的传人; traditional Chinese: 龍的傳人, lit. “Disciple of the Dragon”) concluded. The series was produced by, and featured Jackie Chan. The aim of the program was to find a new star, skilled in acting and martial arts, to become Chan’s “successor” and student in filmmaking. Contestants were trained by Jackie Chan Stunt Team members Alan Wu and He Jun and competed in various fields, including explosion scenes, high-altitude wire-suspension, gunplay, car stunts, diving, obstacles courses etc. The regular judges on the program were He Ping, Wu Yue and Cheng Pei Pei. Guest judges include Stanley Tong, Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao. The “Finals” began on 5 April 2008, with 16 contestants remaining, and concluded on 26 June 2008. Amongst those in attendance were Tsui Hark, John Woo, Ng See Yuen and Yu Rongguang.
The winner of the series was Jack Tu (Tu Sheng Cheng). Along with runners up Yang Zheng and Jerry Liau, Tu is now set to star in three modern Chinese action films, one of which was scripted by Chan, and all three will be co-produced by Chan and his company JCE Movies Limited. The films will be entitled Speedpost 206, Won’t Tell You and Tropical Tornado and will be directed by Xie Dong, Jiang Tao and Cai Rong Hui. All 16 finalists will be given the opportunity to work on the films, or to join the Jackie Chan Stunt Team. Production on the first film is due to begin in September 2008. In addition, the finalists will be given roles in a forthcoming BTV action series.[60][61][62]

Music career

Jackie Chan had vocal lessons whilst at the Peking Opera School in his childhood. He began producing records professionally in the 1980s and has gone on to become a successful singer in Hong Kong and Asia. He has released 20 albums since 1984 and has performed vocals in Cantonese, Mandarin, Japanese, Taiwanese and English. He often sings the theme songs of his films, which play over the closing credits. Chan’s first musical recording was “Kung Fu Fighting Man”, the theme song played over the closing credits of The Young Master (1980).[63] At least 10 of these recordings have been released on soundtrack albums for the films.[57][64] His cantonese song Story of a Hero (英雄故事) (theme song of Police Story) was selected by the Royal Hong Kong Police and incorporated into their recruitment advertisement in 1994.[65]
Chan voiced the character of Shang in the Chinese release of the Walt Disney animated feature, Mulan (1998). He also performed the song “I’ll Make a Man Out of You”, for the film’s soundtrack. For the US release, the speaking voice was performed by B.D. Wong and the singing voice was done by Donny Osmond.
In 2007, Chan recorded and released the song “We Are Ready”, the official one-year countdown song to the 2008 Summer Olympics. He performed the song at a ceremony marking the one-year countdown to the 2008 Summer Paralympics.[66]
The day before the Beijing Olympics opened, Chan released one of the two official Olympics albums, Official Album for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games – Jackie Chan’s Version, which featured a number of special guest appearances.[67] Chan, along with Andy Lau, Liu Huan and Wakin (Emil) Chau, performed “Hard to Say Goodbye”, the farewell song for the 2008 Summer Olympics closing ceremony.[68]

Image and celebrity status

Jackie Chan has received worldwide recognition for his acting, having won several awards including an Innovator Award from the American Choreography Awards and a lifetime achievement award from the Taurus World Stunt Awards.[69] He has stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the Hong Kong Avenue of Stars.[70] Despite considerable box office success in The Northsouth Territories, Chan’s American films have been criticised with regard to the action choreography. Reviewers of Rush Hour 2, The Tuxedo, and Shanghai Knights criticised the toning down of Chan’s fighting scenes, citing less intensity compared to his earlier films.[71][72][73] The comedic value of his films is questioned; some critics stated it can be childish at times.[74]
Chan is a cultural icon, having been referenced in Ash’s song “Kung Fu“, Heavy Vegetable‘s “Jackie Chan Is a Punk Rocker”, Leehom Wang‘s “Long Live Chinese People“, as well as in “Jackie Chan” by Frank Chickens, and television shows Celebrity Deathmatch and Family Guy. He has been the inspiration for manga such as Dragon Ball (including a character with the alias “Jackie Chun“),[75] the character Lei Wulong in Tekken and the fighting-type Pokémon Hitmonchan.[76][77][78] In addition, Jackie Chan has a sponsorship deal with Mitsubishi Motors. As a result, Mitsubishi cars can be found in a number of Jackie Chan films. Furthermore, Mitsubishi honoured Chan by launching Evolution, a limited series of cars which he personally customised.[79][80][81]
A number of video games have featured Jackie Chan. Before Stuntmaster, Chan already had a game of his own, Jackie Chan’s Action Kung Fu, released in 1990 for the PC-Engine and NES. In 1995, Chan was featured in the arcade fighting game Jackie Chan The Kung-Fu Master. In addition, a series of Japanese Jackie Chan games were released on the MSX by Pony, based on several of his films (Project A, Project A 2, Police Story, The Protector and Wheels On Meals).[82]
Chan has always wanted to be a role model to children, remaining popular with them due to his good-natured acting style. He has refused to play villains and has almost never used the word “fuck” in his films (He’s only said that word in two films, The Protector and Burn, Hollywood, Burn), but in Rush Hour, in an attempt to be “cool” and imitate his partner Carter, who said “What’s up, my nigga?” to a club of black men, he said the same thing when Carter was in another room and they all attacked him, so he had to pull out his fighting skills to beat them down and escape.[83] Chan’s greatest regret in life is not having received proper education,[84] inspiring him to fund educational institutions around the world. He funded the construction of the Jackie Chan Science Centre at the Australian National University[85] and the establishment of schools in poor regions of China.[86]

Chan is a spokesperson for the Government of Hong Kong, appearing in public service announcements. In a Clean Hong Kong commercial, he urged the people of Hong Kong to be more considerate with regards to littering, a problem that has been widespread for decades.[87] Furthermore, in an advertisement promoting nationalism, he gave a short explanation of the March of the Volunteers, the national anthem of the People’s Republic of China.[88] When Hong Kong Disneyland opened in 2005, Chan participated in the opening ceremony.[89] In the United States, Chan appeared alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger in a government advert to combat copyright infringement and made another public service announcement with Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca to encourage people, especially Asians, to join the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.[90][91]
Construction has begun on a Jackie Chan museum in Shanghai. Work began in July 2008 and although was scheduled to be completed on October 2009, as of January 2010 it is still under construction.[92]


During a news conference in Shanghai on 28 March 2004, Chan referred to the recently concluded Republic of China presidential election, 2004 in Taiwan, in which Democratic Progressive Party candidates Chen Shui-bian and Annette Lu were re-elected as President and Vice-President as “the biggest joke in the world.”[93] Chan’s comments were criticized by Parris Chang, a Taiwanese legislator and senior member of the DPP, who called for the government of Taiwan to take punitive steps against Chan for his comments, such as banning his movies and barring him the right to visit Taiwan.[94] Some 50 police and security personnel were required to separate protesters from Chan, as they were attempting to spit at him when he arrived at Taipei airport for a charity sponsored by cable TV channel TVBS on 18 June 2008.[95] Chan insisted that his remarks were not intended to insult the people of Taiwan.[96]
Referring to his participation in the torch relay for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, Chan spoke out against demonstrators who disrupted the relay several times attempting to draw attention to a wide-ranging number of grievances against the Chinese government, including China’s human rights record and the political status of Taiwan. He warned that he would lash out against anyone planning to stop him from carrying the Olympic Torch, saying, “Demonstrators better not get anywhere near me.” In addition Chan felt that the protesters were publicity seekers. ‘They are doing it for no reason. They just want to show off on the TV,’ he said. ‘They know, “if I can get the torch, I can go on the TV for the world news”.’ Chan felt the country was trying to improve and the Olympics is a chance for the country to open up and learn from the outside world and vice versa. “We are not right about everything. Things are getting better in China but we can change and are changing. We want to learn from the rest of the world as well as teach others about our ways and our culture.” [97]
On 18 April 2009, during a panel discussion at the annual Boao Forum for Asia titled “Tapping into Asia’s Creative Industry Potential,” Chan said “…in the 10 years after Hong Kong’s return to Chinese rule, I can gradually see, I’m not sure if it’s good to have freedom or not.”[98] Chan went on to say, “If you’re too free, you’re like the way Hong Kong is now. It’s very chaotic. Taiwan is also chaotic.” He also added, “I’m gradually beginning to feel that we Chinese need to be controlled. If we’re not being controlled, we’ll just do what we want.” Chan however complained about the quality of Chinese goods, saying, “…a Chinese TV might explode.”[99] but refrained from criticizing the Chinese government for banning his 2009 film Shinjuku Incident.[100] Chan’s comments prompted an angry response from some legislators and other prominent figures in Taiwan and Hong Kong. Hong Kong Legislator Leung Kwok-hung said that Chan “insulted the Chinese people. Chinese people aren’t pets.”[101] The Hong Kong Tourism Board stated that it had received 164 comments and complaints from the public over Chan’s remarks.[102] A spokesman for Chan told reporters that the actor was referring to freedom in the entertainment industry rather than Chinese society at large and that certain people with “ulterior motives deliberately misinterpreted what he said.”[103]

Entrepreneurship and philanthropy

In addition to his film production and distribution company, JCE Movies Limited, Jackie Chan also owns or co-owns the production companies JC Group China, Jackie & Willie Productions[104] (with Willie Chan) and Jackie & JJ Productions.[105]
Chan has also put his name to Jackie Chan Theater International, a cinema chain in China, co-ran by Hong Kong company Sparkle Roll Group Ltd. The first – Jackie Chan-Yaolai International Cinema – opened in February 2010, and is claimed to be the largest cinema complex in China, with 17 screens and 3,500 seats. Chan expressed his hopes that the size of the venue would afford young, non-commercial directors the opportunity to have their films screened. 15 further cinemas in the chain are planned for 2010, throughout Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, with a potential total of 65 cinemas throughout the country proposed.[106] [107]
In 2004, Chan launched his own line of clothing, which bears a Chinese dragon logo and the English word “Jackie”, or the initials “JC”.[108] Chan also has a number of other branded businesses. His sushi restaurant chain, Jackie’s Kitchen, has outlets throughout Hong Kong, as well as seven in South Korea and one in Hawaii, with plans to open another in Las Vegas. Jackie Chan’s Cafe has outlets in Beijing, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and the Philippines. Other ventures include Jackie Chan Signature Club gyms (a partnership with California Fitness), and a line of chocolates, cookies and nutritional oatcakes. He also hopes to expand into furniture and kitchenware, and is also considering a branded supermarket.[109] With each of his businesses, a percentage of the profits goes to various charities, including the Jackie Chan Charitable Foundation.
Chan is a keen philanthropist and a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, having worked tirelessly to champion charitable works and causes. He has campaigned for conservation, against animal abuse and has promoted disaster relief efforts for floods in mainland China and the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami.[5][110][111] In June 2006, he announced the donation of half his assets to charity upon his death, citing his admiration of the effort made by Warren Buffett and Bill Gates to help those in need.[112] On 10 March 2008, Chan was the guest of honour for the launch, by Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, of the Jackie Chan Science Centre at the John Curtin School of Medical Research, Australian National University in Canberra. Jackie Chan is also a supporter of the Save China’s Tigers project which aims at saving the endangered South China Tiger through breeding and releasing them into the wild; he is currently an ambassador for this conservation project.[113] Chan has many historic artifacts, such as old door frames from 2000 years ago. He also owns the Jinricksha Station in Singapore.
In April 2008, Jackie Chan was invited for the audio launch of an Indian film, entitled Dasavathaaram (2008) in Chennai (Madras), where he shared the dais with Indian celebrities, including Amitabh Bachchan, Mammootty and Kamal Hassan. Though he did not understand a word of Tamil, Chan was touched by the Indian community’s love for him and his films, and was impressed with the movie Dasavathaaram, expressing a keen interest in working with the star of the film, Kamal Hassan. Hassan himself reciprocated the desire to work with the action superstar, urging Chan to keep his promise of working with him on a possible film project.
Following the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, Chan donated RMB ¥10 million to help those in need. In addition, he is planning to make a film about the Chinese earthquake to raise money for survivors.

 The Jackie Chan Charitable Foundation

Founded in 1988, the Jackie Chan Charitable Foundation offers scholarships and active help to Hong Kong’s young people through a variety of worthy causes. Over the years, the foundation has broadened its scope to include provision of medical services, aid to victims of natural disaster or illness, and projects where the major beneficiaries are Hong Kong people or organizations. Major donation projects of The Jackie Chan Charitable Foundation

  • The Jackie Chan Gymnasium at Lingnan University
  • The Jackie Chan Challenge Cup Intercollegiate Invitation Tournament
  • The Jackie Chan Family Unit, Hong Kong Girl Guides Association Jockey Club Beas River Lodge
  • The Jackie Chan Whole Person Development Center
  • Renovation of the Bethanie Site, Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts
  • Medical Funding in Mainland China (Operation Smile)
  • Medical Donation in Hong Kong (Queen Mary Hospital, SARS Relief)
  • Support for the Performing Arts
  • Youth Development Programs

The Dragon’s Heart Foundation

The Dragon’s Heart Foundation was founded in 2005 to fulfill the desperate needs of children and the elderly in remote areas of China. Since 2005, the Dragon’s Heart Foundation has built over a dozen schools, provided books, fees, and uniforms, and has raised millions of dollars to give much-needed educational opportunities for the poor. In addition, the Dragon’s Heart Foundation provides for the elderly with donations of warm clothing, wheelchairs, and other items. Jackie often travels to the remote locations to attend groundbreakings or school openings, and to lend support and encouragement.

Awards and nominations

Hong Kong Film Awards

(10 Best Actor Nominations, 7 Best Action Choreography Nominations, 3 Film Nominations, 1 Best Director Nomination, 1 Best Original Film Song Nomination)

Personal life

In 1982, Jackie Chan married Lin Feng-Jiao (aka Joan Lin), a Taiwanese actress. That same year, the two had a son, singer and actor Jaycee Chan.[33]
He speaks Cantonese, Mandarin, and English fluently, and also speaks some German, Korean and Japanese, as well as a little Spanish.[114]

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Did you know that Gregory Isaacs released 500 albums during his career?

Did you know that Gregory Anthony Isaacs [1] was a Jamaican reggae musician?

Did you know that Milo Miles, wrote in the New York Times, he described Isaacs as “the most exquisite vocalist in reggae”?

Did you know that Isaacs died from lung cancer25 October 2010,  he was 59

Did you know that Isaacs nicknames include Cool Ruler[3] and Lonely Lover?

Did you know that By the late 1970s, Isaacs was one of the biggest reggae performers in the world, regularly touring the US and the UK, and only challenged by Dennis Brown and Bob Marley?

(15 July 1951 – 25 October 2010)

Did you know that Gregory Isaacs released 500 albums during his career? Many being compilations. Studio albums of original material are  listed below:

  • In Person (1975) Trojan
  • All I Have Is Love (1976) Trojan
  • The Best Of Vol. 1 (1977) GG’s
  • Extra Classic (1977) African Museum
  • Mr Isaacs (1977) DEB
  • Cool Ruler (1978) Front Line
  • Soon Forward (1979) Front Line
  • Slum (Gregory Isaacs in Dub) (1978) Burning Sounds
  • Gregory Isaacs Meets Ronnie Davis (1979) Plant (with Ronnie Davis)
  • Showcase (1980) Taxi
  • Lonely Lover (1980) Pre
  • More Gregory (1981) Pre
  • The Best Of Vol. 2 (1981) GG’s
  • Night Nurse (1982) Island/Mango
  • Out Deh! (1983) Island/Mango
  • Let’s Go Dancing (1984)
  • Judge Not (1985) Greensleeves (with Dennis Brown)
  • Private Beach Party (1985) Greensleeves & RAS
  • Easy (1985) Tad’s
  • Double Dose (1986) Blue Trac (with Sugar Minott)
  • All I Have is Love Love Love (1987) Tad’s
  • Victim (1987) VP
  • Watchman of the City (1987) Rohit
  • Come Along (1988), Live & Love
  • Red Rose for Gregory (1988) Greensleeves & RAS
  • Warning (1989) Firehouse
  • Feature Attraction (1989) VP for Mixing Lab records
  • No Contest (1989) Greensleeves & VP (with Dennis Brown)
  • I.O.U. (1989) Greensleeves & RAS
  • On The Dance Floor (1990) Heartbeat
  • Call Me Collect (1990) RAS
  • Set Me Free (1991) VP, Digital B & Vine Yard
  • No Intention (1991) VP
  • Boom Shot (1991) Shanachie
  • State of Shock (1991) RAS
  • Past and Future (1991) VP
  • Pardon Me! (1992) RAS
  • Cooyah! (1992) Label Unknown…
  • Can’t Stay Away (1992) VP & Xterminator
  • Rudie Boo (1992) Star Trail
  • Unattended // Absent (1993) Pow Wow & Greensleeves
  • Unlocked (1993) RAS
  • Midnight Confidential (1994) Greensleeves for Xterminator records
  • Dreaming (1995) Heartbeat
  • Not a One Man Thing (1995) RAS
  • Private Lesson (1996) Heartbeat
  • Mr. Cool (1996) VP
  • Maximum Respect (1996) House of Reggae
  • Hold Tight (1997) Heartbeat
  • Hardcore Hits (1997) Ikus
  • Dance Curfew (1997), Acid Jazz – with Dread Flimstone
  • Kingston 14 Denham Town (1998) Jamaican Vibes
  • Do Lord (1998) Xterminator
  • New Dance (1999) Prestige
  • Turn Down The Lights (1999) Artists Only
  • So Much Love (2000) Joe Gibbs Music
  • Future Attraction (2000) VP
  • Father & Son (2000), 2B1 – Gregory Isaacs & Son
  • It Go Now (2002), 2B1
  • Life’s Lonely Road (2004)
  • Give It All Up (2004) Heartbeat
  • Rat Patrol (2004) African Museum
  • Masterclass (2004) Greensleeves for Blacker Dread records
  • Revenge (2005) P.O.T.
  • Substance Free (2005) Vizion Sounds
  • Come take my hand (2006) Mun Mun
  • Hold Tight (2008) Mafia & Fluxy
  • Brand New Me (2008) African Museum
  • My Kind Of Lady (2009) Rude Productions
  • Isaacs Meets Isaac with King Isaac (2010) King Isaac Music

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Grant McCune, American Academy Award-winning visual effects artist (Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope), died from pancreatic cancer he was , 67.

 Grant McCune  was an American special effects designer whose entry into Hollywood was the uncredited creation of the great white shark in the 1975 film Jaws died from pancreatic cancer he was , 67.. His efforts there led to work on a series of major films, including his design of the robots in the Star Wars films, winning an Oscar in 1977 for his efforts in the first film in the series.

(March 27, 1943 – December 27, 2010)


McCune was born on March 27, 1943, He attended California State University, Northridge where he earned his undergraduate degree in biology and met his future wife.[1][2] McCune was able to use his scientific training when he and Bill Shourt were hired in 1975 to work on creating the iconic shark in the movie Jaws, marking his start in Hollywood, though he was uncredited.[1] He was subsequently hired to work on the Star Wars movies as the franchise’s chief model maker, responsible for the design details of the robots (such as R2-D2[3]) and alien characters in the films. He and his team earned an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects at the 50th Academy Awards for Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope.[1] He received a second Oscar nomination for his work on the 1979 film Star Trek: The Motion Picture. As a partner at Apogee Productions, McCune’s work was featured in such films as Caddyshack and Die Hard before founding his own firm, which was hired to work on such movies as Speed and Spider-Man.[3]
Interviewed by Popular Mechanics magazine in 2009, McCune described how one uses a photographer’s eye in designing miniatures, using perspective and surface details to make the objects appear as realistic as possible.[4]
A resident of Hidden Hills, California, McCune died at his home there of pancreatic cancer at the age of 67 on December 27, 2010. He was survived by his wife, Katherine, as well as by a daughter and a son.[3][1

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Sir David Scott, British diplomat. died he was , 91

Sir David Aubrey Scott GCMG  was a British diplomat who served as High Commissioner to New Zealand and Ambassador to South Africa died he was , 91.

 Early life

Scott was the elder son of (Hugh) Sumner Scott who was a schoolmaster at Wellington College, and his wife Barbara Jackson, who was a J.P. and county councillor, becoming Chairman of the Berkshire County Council Education Committee. Scott was educated at Charterhouse School and at the University of Birmingham where he studied mining engineering.

Professional career

Military service

During World War II he served in the Royal Artillery.[1] From 1945 to 1947 he was chief radar adviser in the British Military Mission to the Egyptian Army.

Diplomatic posts

Scott joined the Commonwealth Relations Office in 1948 where he was assistant private secretary to the Secretary of State in 1949. From 1951 to 1953, he was at Cape Town and Pretoria and then worked in the Cabinet Office from 1954 to 1956. In 1955 Scott was on the Malta Round Table Conference, and was Secretary General of the and Caribbean and Malaya Constitutional Conference in 1956. He served in Singapore from 1956 to 1958 and was on the Monckton Commission on Central Africa in 1960. From 1961 to 1963, he was Deputy High Commissioner to the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland and in 1964 was at the Imperial Defence College. His next post was Deputy High Commissioner in India from 1965 to 1967 and he was awarded CMG in 1966.[2] From 1967 to 1970 he was British High Commissioner in Uganda and non-residential Ambassador to Rwanda. He was Assistant Under Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office from 1970 to 1972 and was High Commissioner to New Zealand and Governor of the Pitcairn Islands[3] from 1973 to 1975 and was awarded KCMG in 1974. He was appointed British Ambassador to South Africa from 1976 to 1979 when he retired and was awarded GCMG.


After his retirement, Scott became director of several companies including Barclays Bank International from 1979 to 1985, Mitchell Cotts Plc from 1980 to 1986, Delta Metals Overseas from 1980 to 1983, and Bradbury Williams Plc from 1984 to 1986. He was chairman of Ellerman Lines from 1982 to 1983 and of Nuclear Resources Ltd from 1984 to 1988. He was also a consultant to Thomas de la Rue & Co from 1986 to 1988. Scott was also Vice President of the UK South Africa Trade Association from 1980 to 1985 and published Ambassador in Black and White in 1981 and Window into Downing Street in 2003. He became a Freeman of the City of London in 1982 and liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Shipwrights in 1983. He became president of the Uganda Society for Disabled Children in 1984 and was Governor of the Sadlers Wells Trust from 1984 to 1989. In 1989 he was a member of the Manchester 1996 Olympic bid committee. In retirement he was first Vice-Chairman then Chairman and finally (from 1998) President of the Royal Over-Seas League.


Scott married Vera Ibbitson in 1941 and had three children. Their daughter Diana married Sir Brian Unwin. Their son Robert chaired the 1996 Manchester Olympic bid committee. Their third child Andrew is a schoolteacher and choral conductor. David and Vera Scott lived at Milford, Surrey. Vera died on 2 October 2010. David died on 27 December 2010.

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Sir Arthur Galsworthy
High Commissioner to New Zealand
Succeeded by
Harold Smedley
Preceded by
Sir James Bottomley
British Ambassador to South Africa
Succeeded by
Sir John Leahy

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Salvador Jorge Blanco, Dominican Republic politician, President (1982–1986) died he was , 84

José Salvador Omar Jorge Blanco was a politician, lawyer and a writer died he was , 84. He was the 48th President of the Dominican Republic, from 1982 –1986. He was a Senator running for the PRD party. He started his political career as a Committee Secretary for the Unión Cívica de Santiago in 1963 and joined the PRD in 1964.

(July 5, 1926 – December 26, 2010)


Blanco succeeded fellow PRD member Jacobo Majluta Azar to the presidency in 1982. Despite their political affiliations, Guzmán’s term (before Majluta’s) was characterized by a bitter feud with Blanco, who from the senate led the party in opposition to the administration. Unproven, but widely circulated rumors and conspiracy theories tied Guzmán’s family advisers to corruption, especially following the president’s alleged suicide in July 1982.

At the time of Blanco’s election, it was hope that neopatrimonial patterns would experience a clearer and more dramatic break, given that Blanco was going to govern with a PRD majority in both houses (17 out of 27 in the senate and 62 of 120 in the chamber). However, two events highlight Jorge Blanco’s constraints and his limitations while in office. In April 1984, sharp price increases mandated as part of an economic stabilization program approved by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) led to massive riots and scores of deaths. This tarnished the administrations record in civil and human rights, one of the areas where the PRD had been able to project its sharpest differences with the former Balaguer administration. Then, in November 1985, a party primary that was intended to highlight the PRD’s continued commitment to internal democratic procedures to select its presidential nominee ended inconclusively due to a shoot-out at the Concorde Hotel, where the ballots were being counted. Blanco governed the Dominican Republic during a period of dramatic economic difficulties imposed largely by the international system. In 1985, for the first time since the 1965 civil war, the country experienced negative growth rates.[1]

Post-Presidency and Corruption Charges

Salvador Jorge Blanco was, at the end of his mandate in 1986, considered by many to be one of the most promising political leaders in Dominican Republic. However, following a long interrogation session and an order for his arrest on curruption charges relating to the illegal commissions on the purchase of equipment for the armed forced, Jorge Blanco fled to the Venezuelan embassy on April 30, 1987[citation needed], requesting political asylum. A heart spasm led to his internment in a Santo Domingo clinic, even as the Venezuelan government opted not to respond to his asylum request. Jorge Blanco was allowed to leave for the United States for medical treatment after acknowledging there was a warrant for his arrest. President Joaquín Balaguer, who succeeded him, tried Blanco for corruption in November 1988. Blanco was prosecuted (in absentia) by Marino Vinicio Castillo, and eventually sentenced to a multi-million fine and 23 years in jail after several months of a trial that was televised. In May 2001, the Supreme Court reviewed the case, it found the case was damaged by violations of President Jorge Blanco’s rights and the conviction was quashed. Blanco always denied the charges and claimed his nightmare was the result of political persecution by Joaquín Balaguer.[2]


On November 25 2010 the Ex-President was taken to the emergency room at the Center for Advanced Medicine Dr. Abel González, after falling from his bed and hitting his head causing a heavy internal hemorrhage. On the early morning of December 26 2010 he suffered a heart attack and passed away after being in a coma for 37 days. [3]

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Wade Crane, American pool player, died from an automobile accident he was , 66.

 Wade Arlyn Crane  was an American professional pool player, nicknamed “Boom-Boom” because of the cannonball sound that emanated from his powerful break. Crane also played under the alias of “Billy Johnson died from an automobile accident he was , 66..”
A former World 8-Ball and 9-Ball champion, Crane was a dominant player in the 1980s. He was voted by his peers to have the best 9-ball break in history.[3]

(February 20, 1944 – December 26, 2010)

 Early Days

Wade Arlyn Crane grew up in Robbinsville, a small town with a population of 700 located in the western-most part of North Carolina in the Smokey Mountains. He was the youngest of four children. His father was killed in an automobile accident shortly after he was born, which necessitated him being raised by his grandmother.
Coming from a modest background, he sought employment at the age of 12 and landed a job in a small five-table pool room named Cooper’s. It was here where he initially developed his passion for playing pool. He did odd jobs, keeping the pool room clean, sweeping floors, and even had a shoe shine stand. The owner would direct the customers to play pool with young Wade if the pool room was empty. Crane was a self-taught pool player. He soon began to enjoy the competitive spirit. In high school, he was a fullback on the football team, the Robbinsville squad, and made it to the state playoffs two years straight.
After high school, Crane decided to leave Robbinsville and live with his older brother in Chicago, where he got a job at Brach’s Confections, a candy company. He worked there for three years, earning $150 a week, and initially had little interest in playing pool. Sometimes, though, his older brother, Bill, would call on Wade to meet him at the local pool hall on Cicero Avenue. Bill would make bad games and find himself overmatched. He would then call on his little brother, Wade, to bail him by having him play the same pool players that he lost to. Thereafter, Bill began to match up Wade with the local players. At this time, both Bill and Wade became active in Chicago‘s pool scene. Soon Wade was competing at Bensinger’s pool room in Chicago against tough opponents in the area, like Mexican Johnny, John Abruzzo, and George Walker.
In 1965, Crane was making more money playing pool than working at Brach’s Confections, so he decided to leave the Windy City and move to Atlanta, Georgia. It was at this time that he assumed the alias of “Billy Johnson,” a moniker he would hang onto for 20 more years. He changed his name because he wanted to engage in money matches down South and feared some might recognize the name “Wade Crane” from his earlier days of gambling throughout that region.
“While me and a friend were driving along the interstate to this pool room, we passed a Howard Johnson’s,” said Crane. He decided to just add on “Johnson” to “Bill” and came up with the road name of “Billy Johnson.” It was a good name for him because he had been using his brother’s fake ID to get into the Chicago taverns and pool rooms, so he was used to answering to “Bill.”
In the early ’70s, Crane returned to North Carolina and opened his own pool room in Asheville, which was an attraction for many of the top players in the country, i.e., Buddy Hall, Jim Rempe, Mike Sigel, and Allen Hopkins. Now the 25-year-old Crane was ranked second to Luther Lassiter, who was the 9-Ball Champion of the South.[4]
The money matches began to dwindle, so he decided to move to Knoxville, Tennessee, for a change. It is here where he met his third wife, Linda, who was a waitress at a steak and seafood restaurant. They dated for 18 months before he proposed. After they were married, the couple moved back to Crane’s hometown of Robbinsville, where he operated a small video arcade and quit playing pool. It was three and a half years before his wife saw him shoot a game of pool.
In 1983, pool became attractive to Crane once more, due to the large money payouts in pocket billiard competitions. Crane returned to the pool scene, but this time, he would be shooting pool in a new environment, competing in short race-type matches on pristine equipment at tournament venues instead of gambling long ahead sets on inferior equipment in various pool rooms around the country.[5][6]

Professional Career

At the height of Crane’s game in June 1985, he scored a perfect Accu-Stats score in the finals against Buddy Hall at the Resorts International Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in the Last Call for 9-Ball tournament, a feat that to this day has never been achieved by any other competitor in a pool tournament during a finals match.[7] During one match, he ran seven consecutive racks against Hall. He was the top money winner of major professional pool tournaments in 1985.[8]
Crane went undefeated at the 1985 Red’s Open 9-Ball Championship in Houston, Texas, until he met Efren Reyes in the finals, who was at this time shooting pool under an alias of “Cesar Morales.” The irony, however, was that Crane happened to be the only other competitor in the 108-player event that also used an alias, “Billy Johnson,” when he took second-place honors. The final score was 13 to 9. This was the first tournament that a then-unknown Efren Reyes, a pool champion from the Republic of the Philippines, competed in on American soil.[9]
Pool & Billiards Magazine named Wade Crane in 1985 as the Pool & Billiard Magazine’s All Star Player of the Year.
At the 1987 Steve Gumphreys Memorial 9-Ball Open tournament held in Jackson, Mississippi, Crane defeated Earl Strickland twice in the finals of a double-elimination format event to win the title.[10]
Crane was heralded as a legend by pool industry members.[11] He was deemed as a courteous pool competitor, with a sense of humor that was enjoyed by his peers, according to Nick Varner and Johnny Archer, both Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame Inductees.[12]
As owner of Crane’s Billiard Academy, he gave instructions to beginners, amateur players, as well as male and female professional pool competitors.
For 15 years, he was an instructional journalist for Pool & Billiards Magazine, providing guidance on shot selection and other pool-related strategies in his monthly article entitled “Crane’s Winning Way.”
A recognition ceremony to commemorate Crane’s legacy of pool in action will be held at the 7th Annual One-Pocket Hall of Fame dinner on January 25, 2011, at the 2011 Derby City Classic. Wade Crane will be inducted into the One-Pocket Hall of Fame posthumously with the Lifetime Pool in Action Award for his tremendous all-around talent.[13]
At 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, December 26, 2010, Crane was in an automobile accident in Knoxville, Tennessee, when his 2000 Volkswagen crossed three lanes of traffic and struck a retaining wall. No other vehicle was involved in the accident. It is believed that Crane suffered from an undiagnosed medical condition before the crash.[14] He was pronounced dead at the University of Tennessee Hospital.[15][16]


Wade Crane produced a pool instructional videotape entitled “Learn to Play the Winning Way.” [17]
Accu-Stats Video Productions filmed several live matches of Wade Crane in pocket billiards competitions:[18]


  • 1972 Golden 8-Ball Tournament (Tempe, Arizona)
  • 1985 Last Call for 9-Ball (Atlantic City, New Jersey)
  • 1985 Florida State 9-Ball Championship (Davies, Florida)
  • 1985 Busch World Open 9-Ball Championship (Moline, Illinois)
  • 1986 Shenandoah Open
  • 1987 Steve Gumphreys Memorial 9-Ball Open (Jackson, Mississippi)
  • 1991 Southeastern 9-Ball Tournament (St. Petersburg, Florida)
  • 2010 One-Pocket Hall of Fame Lifetime Pool in Action Award

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Eugene K. Garfield, American founder of the Auto-Train Corporation, died from esophageal cancer he was , 74

Eugene Kerik Garfield  was an American lawyer who founded the Auto-Train Corporation died from esophageal cancer he was , 74. Auto-Train became what is now known as Amtrak‘s Auto Train. He served in the executive branch of the State of Florida and the federal government.[2][3]

(January 18, 1936 – December 26, 2010)

Early life and government career

Garfield was born in Newark, New Jersey, on January 18, 1936, and developed a life-long interest in railroading after receiving a toy train set as a child, which his sister would later recall saying “I would ask him, ‘Is that what started all this?'”.[1] He graduated from Rutgers University in 1957 with concentrations in Natural Sciences and Higher Mathematics. He graduated from the University of Miami School of Law on June 9, 1960, where he earned his Juris Doctor degree.[1]
He practiced law in Florida and Washington, D.C. In Florida, Garfield served governmental entities in several capacities including Legal Counsel to the Governor of Florida and as General Counsel to the Florida Department of Education. Garfield was a member of the Florida Council of 100, appointed by Governor Reubin Askew. He was a member of the National Highway Safety Commission, appointed by President Gerald R. Ford. While working in Florida, he founded the Florida School Board Attorney’s Association. In Washington, D.C., during the administration of President Lyndon B. Johnson, Garfield served in capacities as Assistant to the White House Chief of Staff and Assistant to the first United States Secretary of Transportation.[1] During his tenure there, the Department of Transportation was considering alternatives for developing a scheduled train service for passengers and their vehicles that would operate along the East Coast, operating between travel destinations in Florida and the cities in the Northeast, though it would later decide to leave such service to non-governmental operators.[1]

Post-government career

Following his work in the United States government, Garfield founded the Auto-Train Corporation as a passenger railroad that could also transport personal cars. The Auto-Train came into service in 1971, carrying passengers and their cars on the 900 miles (1,400 km) between Lorton, Virginia and Sanford, Florida, with food service, movies and sleeping cars available to passengers during the 15-hour trip in each direction.[1] The initial trip featured luxury food for passengers and a bar that remained open until 3 a.m.[4]
Garfield had his own personal Pullman car, with private bedrooms and a dining room for himself and his family, that could be attached to the Auto Train.[1] The service was profitable during its first years of operation, frequented by snowbirds making their annual winter migration to Florida, with a disproportionate share of elderly travelers, many taking along their Cadillacs, the vehicle that accounted for as much as 60% of the Auto-Train’s car load.[4] In later years losses mounted in the face of lower prices available to leisure travelers heading to Florida by airplane and renting a vehicle at their destination, as well as a money losing branch route to Kentucky.[4] The Auto-Train operation went out of business in 1981, but Amtrak decided to take over the operation in 1983 and continues to offer the service.[1]
He was a member of the Board of Trustees for the Pan American Development Foundation, American University in Washington, D.C., and the National Symphony of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.. Garfield was a member of the Transportation Committee of the Metropolitan Orlando International Affairs Commission. He was also an Advisory Board Chairperson for the Institute for Transportation Research at Barry University. He served as the primary advisor to the Governor of Florida and the Florida Department of Transportation on the development of a high speed rail system in Florida. Garfield lectured at many schools in the United States including the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Florida State University, and the Andreas School of Business at Barry University.[1][3]

Later years

Garfield retired from the Auto-Train along with the practice of law and served as the Chairman of the North American Maglev Corporation, his next locomotive endeavor. He died at the age of 74 on December 26, 2010, in Hollywood, Florida due to esophageal cancer.[1]

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Did you know that Jackie Chan is in the Guinness World Record for “Most Stunts By A Living Actor”?

Did you know that Jackie Chan has been injured numerous times attempting stunts; many of them have been shown as outtakes or as bloopers during the closing credits of his films/

Did you know that he came closest to death filming Armour of God, when he fell from a tree and fractured his skull?


Did you know that over the years, Chan has dislocated his pelvis and broken his fingers, toes, nose, both cheekbones, hips, sternum, neck, ankle and ribs on numerous occasions?

Did you know that promotional materials for Rumble in the Bronx emphasized that Chan performed all of the stunts, and one version of the movie poster even diagrammed his many injuries?

Did you know that the dangerous nature of his stunts makes it difficult for Chan to get insurance, especially in the United States, where his stunt work is contractually limited?[50]

Did you know that Jackie Chan holds the Guinness World Record for “Most Stunts By A Living Actor”, which emphasizes “no insurance company will underwrite Chan’s productions, in which he performs all his own stunts”?

Did you know that Chan holds an unrecognised record for the most number of takes for a single shot in a film, having shot over 2900 retakes for a complex scene involving a badminton game in Dragon Lord?[52]

Top Ten Jackie Chan

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