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Updated: 10 min 43 sec ago

In Its Strange Journey, 'The Interview' Becomes An Art House Film

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 6:45am

In what scenario does a $44 million slapstick comedy become a good fit for independent theaters? Only one involving geopolitical intrigue, a humiliating hack and terror threats from North Korea.

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British Citizens Warned To Behave In The United Arab Emirates

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 5:54am

In the style of "Twas the Night Before Christmas," Britons are warned no drunkenness or kissing at Christmas in Dubai. The British Embassy says, "We love seeing you all, but not for the wrong reason!"

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Rand Paul Gets In On Festivus Actions

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 5:34am

Festivus is the Seinfeld-inspired holiday with an annual airing of grievances. In its honor, Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul took to Twitter to complain.

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Sending Your Holiday Mail By Way Of Rudolph, Wis.

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 4:02am

We hear from the postmaster of Rudolph, Wisconsin, where thousands of people send their packages and cards to get the stamp canceled with an official Rudolph rubber stamp.

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Research Suggests Generosity Is Hardwired Into Our Brains

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 4:02am

If generosity makes us happy, and lots of research suggests that it does, why do many of us find it difficult to be generous?

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Despite Some Clouds, U.S. Economic Forecast Looks Sunny

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 4:02am

Data indicate the U.S. economy grew at an impressive 5 percent rate in the third quarter. The stock market hit another record on Tuesday. David Greene talks David Wessel of the Brookings Institution.

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Lower Gas Prices Add Fuel To U.S. Economic Recovery

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 4:02am

The average American is seeing a much bigger boost from falling gas prices than from pay raises. Cheap energy could finally put the U.S. economic recovery over the top.

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More Than 200 Theaters To Show 'The Interview' On Christmas Day

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 4:02am

The controversial buddy flick The Interview will be shown on Christmas Day after all, in a small group of theaters. We explore the film's journey from major Hollywood release to art house film.

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Poker Players Use Science To Effectively Give To Charities

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 4:02am

There's a new movement to get professional poker players to give a share of their winnings to charity — but most charities don't make the cut. Our Planet Money team explains why.

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Lower Oil Prices Drain Value Of Russians' Money

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 4:02am

In Russia, they are not celebrating lower oil prices. The price of oil could mean the difference between prosperity and recession. The ruble has lost about 45 percent of its value this year.

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Obama Administration Downplays Court Challenge To Health Law

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 2:25am

With this year's enrollment in Obamacare brisk, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell says she's not worried that the U.S. Supreme Court may yet overturn a key provision of the law.

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Deford: It's Hard To Write A Christmas Story About Sport

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 2:24am

Linking sports and the Christmas spirit is a true challenge, says commentator Frank Deford. "The idea of sports is to beat the other fellow," he says, "while the idea of Christmas is to be giving."

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Christmas In Liberia: Ebola Fears, No Snow, Holiday Spirit

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 2:23am

The deadly virus has cast a shadow over the country. Nonetheless, many Liberians are determined to have a happy Christmas and a hopeful new year.

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For Syria's President, The Year Ends Better Than It Began

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 2:22am

Syria's civil war is still raging with no end in sight. But Bashar Assad remains entrenched in Damascus and many argue his position improved over the year as the U.S. began bombing the Islamic State.

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The Year In Air Travel: Packed Planes And More Perks — For A Price

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 2:20am

Commercial airlines earned nearly $20 billion in profits this year. They're using the cash to buy new planes, update facilities and add amenities — but not all of those new comforts will be free.

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Costly Hepatitis C Drugs Threaten To Bust Prison Budgets

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 2:18am

Inmates in the U.S. have a high rate of infection with chronic hepatitis C — up to 35 percent or more by some estimates. New drugs introduced this year can cure the disease quickly, but at a cost.

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Mother, Empress, Virgin, Faith: 'Picturing Mary' And Her Many Meanings

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 2:17am

This Christmas, images of Mary created over five centuries glow on the walls of the National Museum of Women in the Arts. Curator Kathryn Wat says that, to her, Mary represents bravery and strength.

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Couldn't Miss This One: Behind 'Christmas Wrapping'

Wed, 12/24/2014 - 1:03am

It's a short story about a woman who just wants to spend the holiday alone, from a band that had no interest in writing what would become a holiday classic.

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Christmas Tree And Menorah Conrolled By Tweets

Tue, 12/23/2014 - 5:53am

Twitter users around the world can turn on and off lights at a holiday display in New Jersey. Tweet #brilliant#twinkle to @Oxmas—Tree to light the display and tweet #figgyypudding to turn them off.

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The Woman Who Mistook A Hat For A Parrot

Tue, 12/23/2014 - 5:44am

A woman in Scotland was driving home from shopping when she saw a bird on the road: green body, red head. It wasn't a parrot. It was a Christmas hat.

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