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Tuesday, December 5, 2017

New CHINESE Trailer for “THE LAST JEDI” Reveals Scenes on NEW PLANET Location


There are less than two weeks left before the big premiere of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” worldwide. It’s easy to assume by this point that all of the juicy, rumor-generating scenes and sequences would’ve already been teased in the various trailers that have come out during the months leading up to opening day. To that, Lucasfilm may as well be telling us to hold their beer with the release of the Chinese International Trailer for “The Last Jedi.” Sure, some scenes have been reused from past trailers – in particular the rumor-laden ones – but a new segment caught some attention.
As Polygon tells it, the newest trailer to come out for “The Last Jedi,” geared towards moviegoers in China which is guaranteed as one of the largest overseas audiences for anything by Disney, drew a lot of focus for revealing some scenes taking place in a planet that thus far, has only been mentioned by the production team but never shown. This is the world of Canto Bight, which director Rian Johnson once described as a resort planet with shades of being an alien Monte Carlo. All that has been known about Canto Bight is that it’s one of the places the “Star Wars” sequel trilogy characters will be visiting.
Now, we get to see the glamorous resort with our own eyes, and the Chinese get first peek too. Neal Scanlan, chief of the Star Wars Creature Workshop that designs all the non-human alien races and creatures popping up in the Galaxy Far, Far Away, reveals in an interview with Empire magazine that at the very least, John Boyega’s character Finn will be at Canto Bight for a particular reason. As for the wild animals that rampaged through the planet as seen in the trailer, they’re quite plot-relevant as well.
Actually, they’re not wild alien creatures but rather runaways. Those animals are called Fathiers, which are caught by the people of Canto Bight and trained under conditions approaching real-world animal cruelty to participate in races that the wealthy resort visitors then bid on. Scanlan adds that Finn ends up interacting with the Fathiers while in Canto Bight, though how that leads to their rampage through the place, only the movie would be able to tell.
There’s not much to say about the other scenes in the Chinese trailer that hasn’t been commented on before: the apparent joining with the Dark Side by Rey (Daisy Ridley) at the invitation of Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), Ren apparently doing his damnedest to try and kill his mother General Leia (which would conveniently write off the character following the death of her actress Carrie Fisher last year), and so on.
If you’re interested in the theories the scenes in question have wrought in the fan community, and how well “The Last Jedi” might fare box office-wise compared to 2015’s “The Force Awakens,” then this article is one of those that are taking a good long look into those rumors and speculations.
Photo courtesy of jedinews.co.uk

Achtung! We’re goin’ Scootin’ in Berlin! The German capital is Scoot’s third long-haul destination after Athens and Honolulu


Singapore – Scoot, Asia/Pacific’s Best Low Cost Airline[1] for four consecutive years and the low-cost arm of Singapore Airlines (SIA), plans to spread its wings to its second European and third long-haul destination – Berlin – in the second half of 2018.
The four-times-weekly Singapore-Berlin flights will be operated with Boeing 787 Dreamliners, subject to regulatory approval. Berlin will be the SIA Group’s fourth destination in Germany, after Düsseldorf, Frankfurt and Munich, which are operated by SIA.
Mr Lee Lik Hsin, Scoot’s Chief Executive Officer, said, “Scoot’s merger with Tigerair Singapore earlier this year has greatly strengthened our position, standing us in good stead to launch and sustain our long-haul operations. Athens has lived up to our expectations while bookings for Honolulu have been very promising. We are excited to bring our unique Scootitude to Berlin and can’t wait to launch those great value fares that Scoot is known for!” Scoot intends to launch sales for Berlin in the first quarter of 2018.
Germany is the largest economy in Europe, while Berlin is a hub within Europe for technological innovation and boasts a strong entrepreneurial and start-up culture. Berlin’s rich history is unsurpassed and it is also famed for its arts and culture, having been designated a “City of Design” by UNESCO in 2006 and included in UNESCO’s Creative Cities network.
Scoot’s current route network comprises 62 destinations across 16 countries, with services to Honolulu launching in December, and Kuantan flights commencing in February 2018. Scoot operates a fleet of 16 787 Dreamliners and 23 Airbus A320 family aircraft, with four more Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 39 Airbus A320neo aircraft on order.
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About Scoot
Scoot is the low-cost arm of the Singapore Airlines Group. Scoot took to the skies in June 2012 and merged with Tigerair Singapore in July 2017, retaining the Scoot brand and positioning it well for a new chapter of growth. Scoot has carried over fifty million guests and now operates a fleet of 16 state of the art, widebody Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 23 young and modern Airbus A320 family aircraft, with four more Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 39 Airbus A320neo aircraft on order. Scoot’s network presently encompasses 62 destinations across 16 countries, with Honolulu, Kuantan and Berlin to join the network soon. Scoot provides – in addition to fantastic value airfares – a safe, reliable and contemporary travel experience with a unique attitude – Scootitude. Offering amenities including on-board Wi-Fi Internet connectivity and in-seat power on selected flights as well as the ability to redeem and accrue Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles, Scoot was voted 2015, 2016, 2017and 2018 Best Low Cost Airline (Asia/Pacific) by AirlineRatings.com and ranked in the Top 10 of the World’s Best Low-Cost Airlines in 2015 by Skytrax. Scoot is passionate about changing the way people travel long distance. Book your tickets at FlyScoot.com or contact our Call Centre. Find out more on FlyScoot.com,Facebook.com/FlyScootInstagram.com/FlyScoot, and Twitter.com/flyscoot.
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PHILIPPINES is 4th RUNNER UP While BRAZIL is Crowned MISS ASIA PACIFIC INTERNATIONAL 2017


Before the advent of Miss Earth in 2001, there was already one beauty pageant based in the Philippines that had been around – somewhat – for almost 50 years. Actually, a prototype of the pageant was held in Manila, 1965, as Miss Asia with only five contestants. In 1968 said pageant became an annual event as Miss Asia Quest, then Miss Asia Pacific Quest by 1985, and finally its present name of Miss Asia Pacific International by 2005.
What followed then was a decade-long hiatus before the pageant was re-launched last year in 2016. Last Saturday, the second Miss Asia Pacific International pageant of this iteration was held, with last year’s title-holder Miss Netherlands crowning her successor Miss Brazil. The Philippines’ own bet managed to reach the Final Five.
ABS-CBN News reports that on coronation night of the 2017 Miss Asia Pacific International beauty pageant, held at the Resorts World Manila’s Newport Performing Arts Theatre on November 29, Francielly Ouriques of Brazil received the title crown from her predecessor Tessa Helena Le Conge of the Netherlands. Ouriques prevailed against a relatively small pool of 42 contestants including Cebu model and Miss Philippines Ilene de Vera who finished the competition as Fourth Runner-up.
De Vera was looking forward to an opportunity to win the Miss Asia Pacific International crown on Saturday evening, the way previous Filipina contestants have done so on previous iterations of the pageant: Ma. Del Carmen Ines Zaragoza (1982) and Gloria Dimayacyac (1983) won the Miss Asia Quest titles while Lorna Legaspi (1989) and Michelle Aldana (1993) were crowned Miss Asia Pacific Quest. Her Fourth Runner-up placing in the Final Five this year is par for the course with other Philippine contestant finishes in this year’s crop of beauty pageants. The sole exception has been Karen Ibasco, Miss Earth 2017.
Completing the Final Five for this year’s Miss Asia Pacific International are New Zealand’s Acacia Walker (First Runner-up), Valeria Cardona of Honduras (Second Runner-up), and Dutch bet Morgan Doelwijt who finished third. In addition to her Fourth Runner-up finish, Ilene de Vera also won First Runner-up in Evening Gown (winner being Honduras) and Second Runner-up in both Palawan Festival Costume and Swimsuit (both of which were won by Brazil). Another pageant contestant to garner a notable Philippine following was half-Filipina Yuki Du Sonoda, representing Japan. She made it all the way to the Top Ten. Miss Iceland Donna Eunice Cruz also had Filipino blood, though she did not place.
The theme of the Miss Asia Pacific International is to promote tourism to the Philippines overseas, with the international community. Its first pageant following the hiatus that started in 2006 was held in Palawan’s Sheridan Beach Resort & Spa in Puerto Princesa.
Photo courtesy of news.abs-cbn.com

Friday, December 1, 2017

Continuing Eruption of MOUNT AGUNG Causes More Flight CANCELLATIONS at BALI


Normally when the island of Bali in Indonesia is mentioned, the first thought to come to mind is that it’s a globally popular resort destination in Southeast Asia. But beyond the scenic sights and sounds there is also an undercurrent of natural danger. There are two active volcanoes on the island, Mount Batur and Mount Agung. The latter has been making its presence felt to the Balinese this year as far back as August. In late November this finally escalated into a phreatic and then magmatic eruption, causing lahar flows and ash plumes that darkened local skies, wreaking havoc on flight schedules.
The New Daily.au reports that as of noon on Friday, December 1, several major airlines such as JetStar and Qantas with flights going out of Bali’s Ngurah Rai/Denpasar International Airport have cancelled in light of forecast changes described as being “sudden” with regards to aerial visibility due to the ongoing volcanic activity of Mt. Agung. According to a statement by JetStar, while flights on Friday morning and afternoon are good as written off, their pilots at the airport will make new assessments with the Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre tonight and tomorrow morning on Saturday, to make a new updated schedule of outgoing flights.
This comes as a new spate of bad news for about 4,300 Australian travelers currently stuck at Bali due to bad weather conditions on account of the Agung eruption. They had been hoping to take advantage of a planned 10 scheduled flights and eight emergency relief flights put together by Qantas and JetStar for this Friday, all of which were wiped out by the two airlines’ cancellation announcements. The various flights would have arrived at destination airports in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide and Cairns.
For many of the stranded Australians, this means another evening spent sleeping at the airport in “unpleasant” hot and steamy conditions. Lucky indeed are those travelers who managed to board return flights on Thursday for arrivals at Perth in the afternoon, and Melbourne and Sydney later that night. The best hope those who remain have lies with Virgin Australia, which had announced on their website during Friday morning (AEST) that they will fly three recovery flights from Bali’s Denpasar before the day is out. According to their traffic alert statement, some of these relief flights might need to perform fuel stops on the way back to Australia.
And of course, all airlines involved have thus far cancelled any flights from Australia to Bali until further notice. JetStar notes the continuing unpredictability of Mount Agung’s eruption, such that any aircraft that do make the trip to the Indonesia island are merely being ferried there to be used as relief flights when conditions permit.
Photo courtesy of The Sun