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Quick Takes: The 'Simpsons' state

April 11, 2012

Matt Groening has been keeping a secret for more than 20 years, but he's finally broken his silence: He's revealed in which state Springfield, the setting for "The Simpsons," is located.

The answer? Oregon.

Not a total shock, considering that Groening grew up in Portland, Ore. Still, the cartoonist has been awfully cagey about the location over the years, and the show has delighted in perpetuating the mystery.

But in an interview in the May issue of Smithsonian magazine, which went online Tuesday, Groening has finally come clean. Why did he keep it a secret for so long?

"I don't want to ruin it for people, you know?" he said. "Whenever people say it's Springfield, Ohio, or Springfield, Mass., or Springfield, wherever, I always go, 'Yup, that's right.'"

—Patrick Kevin Day

Rocker's death is ruled a suicide

The death of rock guitarist Ronnie Montrose, who formed a self-titled band in the 1970s and played with heavy hitters such as Van Morrison and Herbie Hancock, has been ruled a suicide.

The San Mateo County coroner has concluded that Montrose took his own life last month at his home in Millbrae, Calif., the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

His widow, Leighsa Montrose, told the newspaper that her 64-year-old husband was tormented by clinical depression for much of his life. She said he suffered from severe self-doubt that caused him to harshly evaluate his performances, even on nights audiences gave him multiple standing ovations.

There was no suicide note, she said, and she was left bewildered by his decision, especially since he spent two years being successfully treated for prostate cancer.

—Associated Press

Gibb, in hospital, misses premiere

Bee Gees star Robin Gibb was too ill to attend the London premiere of "The Titanic Requiem," his first classical work, his son said Tuesday.

Robin Gibb composed the symphonic piece with his son, Robin-John Gibb, and was scheduled to perform a new song, "Don't Cry Alone," during the premiere concert at the Royal Albert Hall.

But in a message read to the audience, Robin-John said his 62-year-old father is still in a hospital.

Gibb had intestinal surgery last month and was hospitalized late last year for stomach and colon problems. He has not disclosed the nature of his illness, but has said a growth on his colon has been removed.

—Associated Press

A day in life of Earth, in photos

The Swedish pop singer Robyn is joining South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu, former Irish president Mary Robinson and thousands of people around the world in an attempt to capture a day in the life of the planet.

The project — ADay.org — is inspired by the "Family of Man," a 1955 exhibition of international photography that became a multimillion-selling book.

Since then, digital technology and the Internet have made millions of people published photographers, and the project's organizers hope to harness many of the estimated 1 billion digital cameras now in the hands of people around the world.

Amateur and professional photographers are being encouraged to capture images of their home, family, travel or work on May 15. The uploaded images will be published on the Internet and compiled into a touring exhibition and a book.

Organizer Jeppe Wik-

strom hopes it will provide a record of our common humanity — and of the details of everyday life that photojournalism doesn't always capture.

—Associated Press

Cannes to salute director Ceylan

The Cannes Film Festival announced Tuesday that it will award this year's Carrosse d'Or to Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan. It's the second year in a row that the award will be given to a filmmaker from the Middle East; in 2011, it went to Iranian director Jafar Panahi.

Administered by the Director's Fortnight section of the festival, the Carrosse d'Or (Golden Coach) is given annually to a director for the "courage and independent-mindedness" of his or her work. Clint Eastwood and David Cronenberg are among previous winners.

Ceylan, 53, is known for his austere dramas about human loneliness and alienation. His "Once Upon a Time in Anatolia" opened in L.A. last Friday.

—Steven Zeitchik

Finally

Returning: HBO has renewed "Game of Thrones" for a third season.

Book deal: Grammy-winning jazz performer and composer Herbie Hancock, who turns 72 this week, has a deal to write a memoir for Viking, due in 2014.

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