Upcoming PS4 exclusive The Last of Us Part 2 has seemingly been banned in some Middle Eastern countries.Users on Reddit have reported that the game is currently unavailable to pre-order on the United Arab Emirates or Saudi Arabia PS Store pages. In contrast, accessing the PS Store from places like the USA or UK at the moment allows you to view and pre-order The Last of Us Part 2. Many users have come to the conclusion that the game may have been banned and blocked for sale in these countries.

Interestingly, searching for The Last of Us Part 2 on both the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia PS Stores provides avatar and theme results, but not the game itself.

IGN has reached out to Sony for comment on the situation.

The Middle East is known for having less tolerance to LGBT themes than Western territories, and some work has been banned, such as this year’s Pixar movie Onward, due to a line of dialogue referencing a gay relationship. The Last of Us Part 2’s protagonist, Ellie, is gay, which may potentially have caused the apparent sale block.Read More At Ign.com

Michael Brush

MarketWatch – May 27, 2020

There’s a big debate now about whether Warren Buffett has “lost his touch.” I’m not sure, but here’s one group of people that has little doubt: airline sector insiders.

While Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway BRK.A, +0.57% BRK.B, +0.25% booked substantial losses dumping airlines stocks in the late first-quarter weakness in the sector, insiders at close to half a dozen airlines bought lots of their stock — including the airlines Berkshire sold.

Read: Warren Buffett has lost at least $7 billion from his last 3 big investments

In a direct challenge to the Oracle of Omaha, insiders racked up the kind of sector-wide buying I look for to support a bullish industry call in my stock newsletter Brush Up on Stocks.

Money managers invested in airline stocks say that three key factors explain airline insider bullishness:

1. Government to the rescue: Politicians see the airline sector as a cornerstone of U.S. economic security. Moreover, airlines and related businesses employ a lot of people. So the federal government readily approved $50 billion in support. NOW PLAYING: SpaceX Successfully Launches NASA Astronauts into Space

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One in 15 jobs is airline-related if you include hospitality, says Frank Holmes, CEO of U.S. Global Investors, which manages the U.S. Global Jets JETS, -1.63% exchange-traded fund. “There is big multiplier effect in the airline industry. That is why politicians supported the package.”

2. Travel is coming back: The number of airline passengers screened per day has risen to around 200,000 from lows of 87,000 in mid-April. This offers “flickers of hope” for the group, says Raymond James airline analyst Savanthi Syth. While still low, travel statistics are heading in the right direction, Syth says.

As travel picks up, the benefits of airline sector consolidation will kick in again, adds Samantha McLemore, a portfolio manager at Miller Opportunity Trust Fund LMNOX, -0.77% . Airlines have inherently higher return on capital and cash flows because of improved cost controls and pricing power. Airlines also have been able to raise capital during this crisis so they will be able to “fund their way through this” as traffic improves, she says. 

3. Airline stocks did well after the last three financial crises: In the six months after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the 2003 SARS outbreak, and the 2008-09 financial crisis, airline stocks rose 80%-120%, Holmes points out. Insiders buying now are hoping the past will repeat….Read The Rest At MarketWatch.com

Susannah Alexander

May 25, 2020, 6:13 AM PDT

Hugh Jackman’s much-loved take on X-Men mutant Wolverine came to an end in 2017’s Logan, a film which saw the famous character pass away peacefully after completing one final mission.

The decision to kill off such a huge character was a shock to some fans but the film’s writer and director James Mangold has now revealed that it was a surprisingly easy decision to depict Logan / Wolverine’s final days.

Speaking to ComicBook.com ahead of a quarantine watch party of Logan, he said that the process was “a lot less of a committee than you’d think”.

Photo credit: 20th Century Fox
Photo credit: 20th Century Fox

“It was really Hugh and I at first,” he said. “It seemed logical, that if it were going to be his last film, that he’s either going to ride off onto the horizon or die, that you need to have some kind of curtain on his story. That’s a logical assumption, right?

“But the reason the choice was at our feet was because you needed the sense of closure. You needed some sense of an ending if you were going to end, if you were dealing with the legacy of Hugh’s many performances and many films, and trying to set this part in some definitive way.”

Killing off such a massive character is a pretty big deal but Mangold revealed that studio Fox was surprisingly on board with the idea when it was pitched.

“Frankly, even the studio didn’t even have nervousness about it, because it felt like an event,” he said. “It gave the movie, on a simple level, the reality that while it may not feature as flamboyant or expensive action as some other movies, that the must see of the movie was going to be because it would be the end of a legend….Read The Rest At Yahoo.com

Mike Murphy

MarketWatch – May 24, 2020

White House national security adviser Robert O’Brien said Sunday that the U.S. will likely sanction China if it approves a bill reining in Hong Kong’s autonomy, adding that the law could erase the city’s standing as a global financial hub.

Speaking Sunday morning on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” O’Brien said the Chinese proposal likely would trigger sanctions for violating the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, passed by Congress and approved by President Donald Trump last year.

“It looks like, with this national security law, they’re going to basically take over Hong Kong and if they do … Secretary (of State Mike) Pompeo will likely be unable to certify that Hong Kong maintains a high degree of autonomy and if that happens there will be sanctions that will be imposed on Hong Kong and China,” he said.

O’Brien also said a move by China to take further control over Hong Kong could send its financial community fleeing….Continue Reading At MarketWatch.com

By Sherisse PhamSteven Jiang and Noah Broder, CNN Business

Updated 7:57 AM ET, Mon May 25, 2020

Hong Kong/Beijing/Washington (CNN Business)Rising tensions between the United States and China are spilling over into the airline industry.Washington has accused Beijing of blocking American carriers from resuming flights to China, prompting US authorities to more heavily scrutinize Chinese airlines.The tit-for-tat began last week after the US Department of Transportation claimed that regulators in Beijing were “making it impossible” for US carriers to fly between the two countries.United Airlines (UAL) and Delta Air Lines (DAL) want to restart US-China routes in early June and have submitted applications to the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) to do so, according to the US Department of Transportation. Like other carriers, United and Delta suspended flights to China in February as demand cratered because of the coronavirus.

The problem facing the US carriers is that the CAAC, in an effort to stop imported cases of Covid-19, ordered all airlines to use their flight schedules for the March 16-22 week as a benchmark to determine how many flights they could operate to China until further notice. By that date, US airlines had “completely ceased flying passenger service to China,” according to the Department of Transportation.

Here comes the US crackdown on China stocks

Here comes the US crackdown on China stocksclose dialog

Work Transformed is your guide to navigating this new normal. Sign up for tips and tactics from CNN Business.Sign Me UpNo, ThanksBy subscribing you agree to ourprivacy policy.Newly reported virus cases in China are few in number and the majority stem from those who return to the country from elsewhere. Fear remains high among the public that China could see a surge in new cases if large numbers of international flights are allowed to resume — especially from countries like the United States, where the death toll alone is nearing 100,000 and where confirmed cases have reached more than 1.6 million.The CAAC has not responded to United and Delta’s requests to resume operations, according the US agency.Meanwhile, several Chinese airlines have continued to fly US-China routes throughout the pandemic. But the Chinese aviation regulator has limited each of them to operating just one weekly flight to the United States.The Chinese aviation regulator told US officials that they are considering removing the March benchmark, but the cap of one weekly flight to China would also be imposed on US airlines. That would violate an air transport agreement between the two countries.In response, the Department of Transportation on Friday issued an order requiring Chinese airlines that fly to the United States to file flight schedules with the US government,including details about the type of equipment used, the frequency of each flight, specific airports served at each point, and arrival and departure times.

People are flying again ... sort of

People are flying again … sort of

Once those details are submitted, the department will then determine whether the flights “may be contrary to applicable law or adversely affect the public interest,” according to the order. The Chinese carriers — including Air China, China Eastern, China Southern and Hainan Airlines — must file the information by Wednesday.Beijing on Monday denounced the new restrictions.”China is opposed to any US measures that may disrupt or restrict Chinese carriers’ normal commercial passenger flights,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said during a regular press briefing.Zhao also pushed back against Washington’s claims that it was preventing US carriers from operating in China, adding that the country’s measures are “open, fair and transparent.”As part of its requirements for US airlines, the CAAC also wants those carriers to accept liability if any passenger who arrives on their flights tests positive for Covid-19 in China, according to a person familiar with the matter who was not authorized to speak on the record. That would also violate the countries’ air transport agreement.Moreover, Chinese carriers have filed an unprecedented number of requests for passenger charters — more than a dozen per week, the person said. These charters are being organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to repatriate Chinese students.

Businesses fear the worst for Hong Kong's future

Businesses fear the worst for Hong Kong’s future

But the flights are also carrying Chinese commercial passengers to and from the United States, the person said. US carriers have been told that only Chinese airlines are eligible to provide these repatriation services, the person said.United declined to comment on the matter. United spokesperson Leslie Scott said the airline looks forward to resuming passenger flights between the United States and China “when the regulatory environment allows us to do so.”Delta did not respond to a request for comment.China is an important international marketfor both US airlines, according to John Grant, an analyst with aviation analytics firm OAG.Last May, China was United’s sixth largest international market based on seats offered, and the ninth largest international market for Delta, Grant said. In terms of overall capacity, however, China represents less than 1% of either carrier’s total network, because domestic flights make up the bulk of their business.Nevertheless, “access to China in the recovery out of Covid-19 is important from both a passenger and cargo revenue perspective, and importantly a wider catalyst to reopening global trade once again,” Grant said.United reported $40.8 billion revenue for 2019, and about 4% of that comes from China, according to Forbes. Delta, which reported revenue of $43 billion for 2019, also gets about 4% of its revenue from the country, according to Forbes.

By David Williams, CNN

Updated 12:40 PM ET, Mon May 25, 2020

(CNN)Pixar’s new short film “Out” is reminiscent of classic Disney body-swap comedies like “Freaky Friday” and the “Shaggy Dog” movies, but it’s also a first for the studio, because its main character is gay.

'Arthur' character Mr. Ratburn came out as gay and got married in the season premiere and Twitter loved it

‘Arthur’ character Mr. Ratburn came out as gay and got married in the season premiere and Twitter loved it

The story revolves around a young man named Greg, who’s afraid to tell his parents that he’s gay and is worried that they will see a picture of him and his boyfriend when they come help him move.Thanks to some magic from a rainbow-riding purple sparkly cat and a pink dog, Greg switches bodies with his dog right in the middle of his parent’s visit.Pixar✔@Pixar

The latest heartwarming tale from @Pixar’s #SparkShorts. Start streaming Out tomorrow on #DisneyPlus.

Embedded video

8,329Twitter Ads info and privacy2,577 people are talking about thisThere are wacky hijinks, as you’d expect, but the story focuses on the pain that Greg and his mother are experiencing.Pixar is owned by Disney and the short, which is just under 10 minutes, debuted on Friday on the Disney+ streaming service.

Good News Is More Important Than Ever.Subscribe to CNN’s The Good Stuff, a weekly newsletter bringing you the most fascinating, uplifting and inspiring stories from around the world. It will brighten your inbox every Saturday morning.Sign UpNo, thanksBy subscribing, you agree to our Privacy PolicyIt was written and directed by Steven Clay Hunter, who’s worked on many Pixar films, including “Toy Story 4” and “Finding Dory,” as part of Pixar’s SparkShorts series, which is designed to discover new storytellers and experiment with different techniques.People shared their reactions on Twitter with the hashtag #PixarOut. Many said they cried watching it and wished that it had been around when they were growing up. A few people posted that they thought it wasn’t an appropriate message for children….Continue Reading At Cnn.com

insider@insider.com (Bill Bostock) , INSIDER May 24, 2020

  • Every year during the holy month of Ramadan, the king of Saudi Arabia pardons hundreds of prisoners as a gesture of goodwill.
  • Princess Basmah of Saudi Arabia, who has been imprisoned since March 2019, hoped she would be granted mercy. That did not happen.
  • Ramadan ended on Saturday with marked silence from Basmah’s uncle and cousin, King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
  • Upon her detention in 2019, Basmah was charged with procuring a fake passport and suspected of trying to flee the kingdom. Those charges were dropped but she remains detained.
  • Her inner circle has told Insider they believe her imprisonment is due to her past criticism of the state’s policies, and a family battle over multi-million dollar inheritance.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Fourteen months after she was abducted, jailed, and accused of trying to flee Saudi Arabia, Princess Basmah bint Saud bin Abdulaziz al-Saud hoped she would be freed this Ramadan, but her pleas have fallen on deaf ears.

Every year the king, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, issues pardons for hundreds of prisoners as a gesture of goodwill during the Islamic holy month, which this year ran from April 23 to May 23.

On April 16, the princess broke her 13-month silence to reveal on Twitter that she was in jail, and begged her uncle King Salman and cousin Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for freedom.

“I am beseeching my uncle … and my cousin … to review my case, and to release me as I have done no wrong. My current health status is VERY critical,” she said in a series of tweets.

Those tweets were deleted shortly afterward, and all her communications from prison were cut. Her office reposted the tweets on April 27.

Basmah (center, in white) and her daughter Suhoud al-Sharif (left).
Basmah (center, in white) and her daughter Suhoud al-Sharif (left).

Royal Bridges

Held without charges

Basmah and her 28-year-old daughter, Suhoud al-Sharif, were abducted at their apartment building in Jeddah on March 1, 2019, and detained shortly after.

They were later taken to the high-security al-Ha’ir prison, where they have remained since….Continue The Story At Yahoo.com

Michael Tomasky, The Daily Beast May 25, 2020

So many shocking things have become normal now under this administration that it’s kind of hard to imagine what would genuinely jolt the nation at this point. And with regard to November’s election, the shocking-but-normal reality is that we know Donald Trump will cheat. There was a terrifying piece in the Times on Sunday laying out all the different moves he could pull to steal the election that his opponents are war-gaming to prepare for and counter. One little nugget from it: Trump could issue orders that impact cities in battleground states like “declaring a state of emergency, deploying the National Guard or forbidding gatherings of more than 10 people.” 

Everyone knows he’ll cheat. Even his supporters know he’ll cheat. His cheating is one of the things they love about him. So that he’ll cheat—while loudly accusing the other side of cheating—is a given. We just don’t know yet exactly how. Here are five all-too-plausible scenarios. Trigger warning: They may literally make you sick, especially the last one.

Scenario One: He steals it “fair and square.” In other words, he wins like he did in 2016, eking out a 78,000-vote, three-state Electoral College margin (or something along those lines) while losing the popular vote. Except this time, he’s likely to lose the popular vote by more than last time, perhaps far more. Why? Because Joe Biden’s margins are likely to be bigger than Clinton’s were in the large blue states, and Trump’s margins are likely to be smaller in the big red states like Texas and Georgia. So he could lose the popular vote by five or six million this time instead of the 2.8 million of last time. 

This Is How Republicans Steal an Election, and Maybe Kill Some Dems in the Process

The result would not, strictly speaking, be “cheating,” since these are the effed-up rules of our democracy, though there would still be the usual, run-of-the-mill cheating he’d do during the election—colluding with Russia, blocking vote-by-mail, doing the kinds of things the Times article suggested he’d do to put a few of his short, vulgar fingers on the scale. So there’d be plenty of cheating done on the way….Continue The Story At Yahoo.com

Tamara Hardingham-Gill, CNN • Published 22nd May 2020

(CNN) — When Hilde Falun Strom and Sunniva Sorby began a long-planned expedition in the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard last September, their main goal was to encourage conversation around climate change in the polar regions.After spending close to nine months collecting data and samples for researchers in remote Bamsebu, situated 140 kilometers from the “nearest neighbor,” the adventurers were all set to bid farewell to the tiny wooden hut they’ve been calling home since the beginning of their trip.However, as was the case for many people across the world, their plans were abruptly put on ice due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Now the pair have little choice but to remain cut off from civilization with only each other for company, along with their dog Ettra and various polar bears, reindeer and geese, until a ship is able to make it across to take them home.”We have been very cold,” Strom tells CNN Travel via satellite phone. “There’s no electricity. No running water. It’s been challenging, but it’s the most beautiful area you can picture.”Strom and Sorby spent two years planning the project known as Hearts in the ice, which saw them become the first women in history to overwinter in the Arctic without a male team member.During their time in Bamsebu, the duo have been collecting weather and wildlife data, monitoring clouds, sea ice and organisms for international agencies such as the Norwegian Polar Institute and NASA…Read The Rest At Cnn.com