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'Breakfast at Tiffany's' added to US film registry

'Breakfast at Tiffany's' added to US film registry

WASHINGTON (AP) ``Breakfast at Tiffany's,'' `'Dirty Harry'' and ``A League of Their Own'' will be preserved for their enduring significance in American culture by the Library of Congress, along with ``A Christmas Story'' and some pioneering sports movies.

They are among 25 selections the library is inducting Wednesday into the National Film Registry. Congress created the program in 1989 to preserve films for their cultural or historical significance. The latest additions bring the registry to 600 films that include Hollywood features, documentaries, independent films and early experimental flicks.

The newest movie chosen for preservation is 1999's ``The Matrix,'' noted for its state-of-the-art special effects and computer-generated animation with a style that drew on Hong Kong action films and Japanese anime to change science fiction filmmaking, curators noted.

The oldest film being preserved, ``The Corbett-Fitzsimmons Title Fight,'' dates back 115 years to 1897. Film curators said the boxing movie helped establish the film industry as a successful business, drawing on the sport's popularity and controversy to generate $750,000 in income. Boxing was illegal in many states at the time but had been made legal in Nevada, which hosted the fight. The film, with a running time of about 100 minutes, became the longest movie ever produced at the time, showing the full course of the fight.

Another pioneering sports film, ``They Call It Pro Football'' from 1967, was chosen for how it changed the way football was portrayed on screen. Before then, football films were mostly highlight reels. National Football League commissioner Pete Rozelle decided the success of the NFL depended on its television image, to capture the struggle of football and not just the end result on the scoreboard.

The Librarian of Congress makes the selections each year after conferring with members of the National Film Preservation Board and receiving public nominations. To be considered, the films must be at least 10 years old.

``These films are not selected as the `best' American films of all time, but rather as works of enduring importance to American culture,'' said Librarian of Congress James Billington in announcing the selections. ``They reflect who we are as a people and as a nation.''

They also include some unforgettable characters.

Audrey Hepburn landed the lead in 1961's ``Breakfast at Tiffany's'' even though writer Truman Capote wanted Marilyn Monroe for the part. Film critics and the audience decided Capote was wrong and hailed Hepburn's portrayal.

``A League of Their Own'' from 1992 received many public nominations for the film registry over the years. With a cast that included Geena Davis, Tom Hanks, Madonna and Rosie O'Donnell, it told the story of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League.

Numerous public nominations also were received for ``Born Yesterday'' from 1950 and ``A Christmas Story'' from 1983. Both were chosen this year. Other Hollywood features on the list include ``Anatomy of a Murder'' from 1959 and ``3:10 to Yuma'' from 1957.

Each title named to the registry will be preserved in the library's Packard Campus for Audio Visual Conservation, built partially in a bunker in Culpeper, Va., or through collaborations with other archives or studios.

Documentaries chosen this year include ``The Times of Harvey Milk,'' made in 1984 about San Francisco's first openly gay elected official who was assassinated in 1978, and ``Samsara: Death and Rebirth in Cambodia'' from 1990 about the struggle to rebuild after Pol Pot's rule.

This year's selections include some firsts in film history. The 1914 film ``Uncle Tom's Cabin,'' based on the anti-slavery novel by Harriet Beecher Stowe, had been adapted earlier for movies with white actors in the lead roles. But this version was the first feature-length U.S. film to star a black actor when Sam Lucas was chosen for the part.

The library will also preserve the first ``Kodachrome Color Motion Picture Tests'' from 1922. The two-color film features leading actresses posing and miming for the camera to demonstrate the new color film. Before then, to show film in color, black and white images either had to be hand-painted or colored with a stenciling process. Inventors, including scientists at Kodak, began experimenting with ways to create true color film.

The Kodachrome test shown at Paragon Studios in New Jersey was the first publicly demonstrated color film that would attract interest from the American film industry. Later Technicolor would become the industry standard.

``Most every major Hollywood film from 1922 through the end of the silent era would have either a Kodachrome color sequence in it or Technicolor color sequence as a way of attracting audience interest,'' said Pat Loughney, chief of the library's audio visual preservation campus. ``It's a technical, historical achievement, but it's important to the progress of inventive work that made motion pictures successful.''

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National Film Preservation Board:http://www.loc.gov/film

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Follow Brett Zongker on Twitter athttps://twitter.com/DCArtBeat .

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Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman tests positive for COVID-19 with Opening Day 12 days away

Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman tests positive for COVID-19 with Opening Day 12 days away

The New York Yankees could be without their top relief arm on Opening Night against the Nationals.

Manager Aaron Boone announced Saturday that Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman is experiencing “mild symptoms” after testing positive for the coronavirus and will be away from the team “for the foreseeable future.” Chapman is the third Yankees player to contract the virus after infielder DJ LeMahieu and reliever Luis Cessa tested positive in early July.

Boone’s announcement comes 12 days before the Yankees are scheduled to take on the Nationals in D.C. to kick off MLB’s abbreviated 2020 season. New York will play three games against Washington in the only series between the two clubs this year.

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However, if any team is built to absorb the loss of its closer, it’s the Yankees. Boone said that reliever Zack Britton would be the “natural guy” to handle ninth-inning duties if Chapman isn’t ready for the start of the season. New York’s bullpen also includes Adam Ottavino, Chad Green and Tommy Kahnle, each of whom—like Britton—would be a closer on most other teams.

On Friday, MLB and the players union announced that 28 of the 30 MLB teams had at least one player or staff member test positive for the coronavirus between intake screening and monitoring testing. Overall, 83 of the 11,149 samples collected have come back positive—a rate of 0.7 percent.

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Juan Soto, Victor Robles, Howie Kendrick among several Nationals players still not in Summer Camp

Juan Soto, Victor Robles, Howie Kendrick among several Nationals players still not in Summer Camp

WASHINGTON --More than a week into the Major League Baseball’s reboot, and its gleefully-named and grotesquely-sponsored Summer Camp, the Nationals are still in wait-and-see mode.

Two players tested positive for Coronavirus at intake screening. The team is not obligated to release their names and cannot do so without the player’s permission. So, what we do know is Juan Soto, Victor Robles and Howie Kendrick are among multiple players not yet in Nationals Park for workouts 12 days before the season is scheduled to begin.

Their health and safety is paramount. However, when they are not working with the team, the organization needs to formulate a baseball-specific plan to go forward without them, should the need arise. And, that time is close because the preparation window is closing.

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“Right now, we’re taking things one day at a time,” Davey Martinez said Saturday. “I’ve got to put eyes on these guys and see where they’re at. I know Soto was actually working out pretty good in the Dominican back home, so was Robles. I talked to those guys. We talked to the strength-and-conditioning guys. They think they’re in really good shape. They worked really hard. We’ll have to get them on the field.

“The biggest thing is they can be in great shape, but how much baseball shape have they done? To me, where something happens, if anybody strains an oblique, you’re looking at a significant amount of time. You’re probably looking at almost a whole season here with only 60 games. We got to be careful, we’ve got to see where they’re at. Then once they get here, we’ll determine whether they’re going to be ready or not.”

The Nationals have three exhibition games scheduled before the season opener against Gerrit Cole and the New York Yankees. They can carry 30 players into that game. Martinez is trying to worry about who is in the stadium since he has no control over the clearances for the players who are not.

“We’re in a difficult situation,” Martinez said. “We really are with these guys. We’ve done everything we can. I know our strength guys have Zoomed with them and actually put them on some kind of workout program and watching them do what they can do in their apartment. You’re talking about some of our younger players, too. We don’t want to get them hurt. We’ve got to be smart. We’re also talking about a shorter season where we’ve got to win games right away. We’ll see how these guys come in and for me, it’s the baseball shape....Standing on their feet for seven, eight, nine innings.”

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Catcher Raudy Read played first base during Saturday’s intrasquad workout at Nationals Park. He was there in part because Read could well be a first baseman in the long-term. The Nationals also needed another body at the spot because Eric Thames -- their lone true first baseman available -- played for the opposing side.

The team variations spread across the infield and into the outfield because Soto, Robles and Luis Garcia remain in quarantine.

Martinez said “hopefully” the players in quarantine will be with the team soon. Even if they are, their window to be prepared for Cole is extremely limited, which is going to force the Nationals to start making contingency plans.