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Quick Takes: Anne Rice quits Christianity

July 30, 2010

Anne Rice has had a religious conversion: She's no longer a Christian.

The 68-year-old author wrote Wednesday on her Facebook page that she refuses to be "anti-gay … anti-feminist" and "anti-artificial birth control."

She added that "In the name of … Christ, I quit Christianity and being Christian. Amen."

Her publisher, Alfred A. Knopf, confirmed Thursday that the posting was by Rice.

Rice is best known for "Interview With a Vampire" and other gothic novels. Raised as a Catholic, she had rejected the church early in her life, but renewed her faith in recent years and in 2008 released the memoir "Called Out of Darkness: A Spiritual Confession."

—Associated Press

Venice festival reveals lineup

Sofia Coppola's comic drama "Somewhere" and Darren Aronofsky's "Black Swan" will make their world premieres at the Venice Film Festival, among 22 titles that organizers announced Thursday will vie for the prestigious Golden Lion.

Also showing is Richard J. Lewis' adaptation of Mordecai Richler's comic novel "Barney's Version," starring Paul Giamatti and Dustin Hoffman, and the period drama "Meek's Cutoff" from U.S. indie director Kelly Reichardt.

German director Tom Tykwer will premiere his movie "Drei" and Tunisian-born director Abdellatif Kechiche will return to the festival with "Venus Noire."

In all, 79 world premieres will be shown at Venice from Sept. 1-11.

—Associated Press

Timberlake, Target team up

William Rast, the fashion line by pop singer Justin Timberlake and his childhood friend Trace Ayala, has a new partner: Target.

The retailer announced Thursday that a William Rast collection, including denim, outerwear and sportswear for men and women, would launch in December and be available for a month.

Target has had a steady stream of limited-edition partnerships with top-level designers, including Zac Posen, Jean Paul Gaultier, Rodarte and Proenza Schouler, giving the retailer a certain prestige among the fashion crowd and bringing designer labels down to a more affordable price point.

—Associated Press

Moore plans to revive cinemas

For generations, Americans viewed films in stately, single-screen theaters that were pillars of city business districts — an experience that faded with the rise of suburban multiplexes and the decline of downtowns.

Michael Moore wants to bring those theaters back. The Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker has a plan to refurbish or prop up downtown movie houses in his home state of Michigan — and eventually nationwide.

Such efforts have been made before. But Moore's approach has a twist, modeled on the successful resurrection of the State Theatre in Traverse City, his adopted hometown in northern Michigan.

The way to rescue downtown movie houses, Moore says, is to run them as nonprofit ventures staffed mostly with volunteers. That slashes costs and gives the community a stake in the theater's survival, he says.

Moore plans to provide grants and training to theater operators who use those methods.

—Associated Press

Rascal Flatts picks a label

Rascal Flatts has a new home. The country music titans will release their new album, "Nothing Like This," on Big Machine Records on Nov. 16.

Big Machine also is the home of Taylor Swift, giving the independent label two of country music's most bankable acts.

The Disney Music Group shuttered the band's only previous label, Lyric Street, in April.

—Associated Press

Klingon word for 'spelunker'?

A popular sightseeing destination in Australia is boldly going where no tourist attraction has gone before — by offering audio tours in the Klingon language.

Starting Aug. 22, "Star Trek" fans and those who are fluent in Klingon can visit the Jenolan Caves National Park and take a self-guided audio tour in Klingon through the Nettle Cave.

The site currently offers audio tours in eight languages and decided it would be fun to add a fictional one.

—CNN

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