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movies | film

Categories within movies | film

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Would you pay $50 to watch a new movie at home?

Video includes clips from Walt Disney Studios and images from Getty Images.

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Sean Parker, founder of Napster and former president of Facebook, has an idea about how to let you watch new-release movies from home. 

But it costs $50 per movie for a 48-hour viewing period, plus $150 for a set-top box.

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Variety reported Parker is an investor in the startup Screening Room, which uses anti-piracy technology to let users watch films at home the same day they hit theaters.

Attempts to put new movies in homes have failed in the past, but this one could succeed. Screening Room will bring both distributors and exhibitors in on the revenue it makes.

Critics say the plan is too expensive, but supporters insist that splitting the $50 cost among five friends to watch a new film at home costs less than catching a flick in theaters. 

Read more here.

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Oscar-nominated movies explained in one sentence each

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The 88th annual Academy Awards will take place Feb. 28 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California. 

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If you haven't had time to see the movies, here's a breakdown of the nominees, one potentially sarcastic sentence at a time: 

"The Big Short" – A simple explanation of the 2008 financial crisis thanks to celebrities like Margot Robbie, who explains finance terms while drinking champagne in a bathtub.

"Bridge of Spies" – Tom Hanks has to negotiate trading a Soviet spy for an American military man across a bridge during the Cold War. 

"Brooklyn" – An Irish girl who moved to America is confused about where she wants to live and forgets she's married for a second.

"Mad Max Fury Road" – Charlize Theron and Tom Hardy are chased by a band of guitar-playing dehydrated warriors through a sandstorm.

"The Martian" – Astronauts accidentally leave Matt Damon behind on Mars, where he fights for his life and figures out how to grow potatoes out of dehydrated excrement.

"The Revenant" – Leonardo DiCaprio gets attacked by a bear and has an all around bad week as he fights the elements and seeks revenge for his family.

"Room" – Jacob Tremblay gains freedom after being held captive in a room for years, allowing him the opportunity to experience the outside world for the first time.

"Spotlight" – Mark Ruffalo helps uncover the Catholic church sex abuse story.

"Trumbo" – Bryan Cranston just wants to write movies, but he gets accused of being a communist because he is one.

"Steve Jobs" – It's about the life of Apple co-founder and former chairman and CEO Steve Jobs.

"The Danish Girl" – Eddie Redmayne transforms himself as he undergoes one of the first sex-change operations in a tear-inducing story.

"Joy" – Jennifer Lawrence plays a mom and reminds viewers that Joy Mangano developed velvet hangers.

"Carol" – 1950s fashion and forbidden love are on display in this film.

"45 Years" – An old married couple has a late life crisis when the wife finds out the husband was engaged before.

Academy Awards have decades-long history with race controversy

This video includes clips from CBS, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and images from Getty Images, Kate Gabrielle / CC BY 2.0 and Loren Javier / CC BY ND 2.0.

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One of the most talked about stories surrounding this year’s Academy Awards is the #OscarsSoWhite controversy, prompted by a lack of diversity in the award show's nominations.

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Racial issues have plagued the film industry for decades, as highlighted by the first black Academy Award winner, Hattie McDaniel. McDaniel won the award in 1940 for her portrayal of a slave named Mammy in "Gone With the Wind."

McDaniel was reportedly segregated from her white co-stars at the event, forced to sit at a table in the back of the room. After the Academy Awards, McDaniel had to celebrate elsewhere too, as the clubs were still separated in the 1940s.

Much like Will and Jada Pinkett Smith are planning to do this year, McDaniel’s co-star Clark Gable considered skipping the awards ceremony over segregation. McDaniel reportedly had to convince Gable to change his mind.

Although McDaniel got her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, she still faced discrimination after her death. She was denied a spot in the Hollywood cemetery due to her race.

Hollywood has certainly come a long way since McDaniel’s Oscar win, but there’s still progress to be made. It took 50 years for another black actress to take home an Oscar, when Whoopi Goldberg won for her role in "Ghost."

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Oscars swag bags value more than $200,000

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Jennifer Lawrence, Cate Blanchett, Leonardo DiCaprio and Matt Damon are among some of the many stars who will be attending the Oscars this year on Feb. 28. 

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But the actors who don't go home with an Academy Award won't leave empty-handed. 

Like any good celebration, each year the Oscars give out gift bags to attendants. 

This year, the goodies inside the bag are worth an estimated $200,000. That's a significant increase from last year's $125,000 bags.

The bags, packaged by Distinctive Assets, will include a 10-day first class trip to Israel worth about $55,000 and a 15-day Japanese walking tour worth approximately $45,000. Smaller items like $300 worth of personalized M&Ms and "luxury toilet paper" that costs more than $200 will be included as well. 

Distinctive Assets said this year's bag is "once again a blend of fabulous, fun and functional items meant to thrill and pamper those who may have everything money can buy but still savor the simple joy of a gift."

The package also contains a year’s worth of unlimited Audi car rentals, worth $45,000, a lifetime supply of Lizora skin creams, worth $31,200, $5,530 worth of laser skin therapy and other high-priced items, The Guardian reported. 

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