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    A new book by a noted historian attempts to show how expanding American democracy hurt Native Americans in the early days of the nation and how tribes viewed the young United States as an entity seeking to erase them from existence. University of Oregon history professor Jeffrey Ostler's just-released 'Surviving Genocide: Native Nations and the United States from the American Revolution and Bleeding Kansas' argues that the emergence of American democracy depended on the taking of Native lands. Leaders of the fledgling nation also felt that removing Native Americans from the ancestral land — by any means necessary — was key to allowing an expanding and poorer white population to move west, the historian writes. Ostler said he based his book on 30 years of research by other scholars in the field of Native American studies but wanted to do a large survey of how tribes saw the looming U.S. threat. 'If I ask my students, 'Why did we have an American Revolution?' They'll say 'Taxation without representation,'' Ostler said. 'But a very significant issue among the leaders of the American Revolution was that the British were blocking the colonists' access to western lands.' Future President Thomas Jefferson would even write from France that the U.S. needed a constant supply of land to grow while ignoring the people who already lived there, Ostler said. Ostler's book is the first of two volumes on Native American history. The book comes as scholars and writers are challenging narratives around American history and how it hurt people of color. These efforts are drawing criticism from some conservative columnists. Most recently, The New York Times Magazine published a series of essays called The 1619 Project earlier this month around the 400th anniversary marking the beginning of American slavery. The writers argue that African Americans were the true 'perfecters of this democracy' in the U.S. by continually fighting for the nation's ideals of equality and against the legacy of slavery. Columbia University history professor Karl Jacoby called Ostler's book an exciting work in Native American history. Jacoby said it would counter the romantic story portrayed in such recent books like David McCullough's 'The Pioneers: The Heroic Story of the Settlers Who Brought the American Ideal West.' Historians, scholars and activists took to social media accused McCullough of romanticizing white settlement and downplaying the pain inflicted on Native Americans. 'Ostler's book is very different and gives a much more complex and accurate story about what happened,' Jacoby said. Ostler said he is working on finishing his second volume of 'Surviving Genocide' which will cover the how Native Americans responded to attempts to remove and kill them in New Mexico, Arizona and the Pacific Northwest. ___ Russell Contreras reported from Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is a member of The Associated Press' race and ethnicity team. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/russcontreras
  • Angel Has Fallen' easily topped the box office with a $21.3 million debut, according to studio estimates Sunday, as the action sequel became the latest mid-budget release to find modest success in the often quiet late summer. The Lionsgate film beat expectations going into the weekend, opening similarly to the previous 2016 installment 'London Has Fallen.' The film series stars Gerard Butler as a Secret Service agent protecting the U.S. president played by Morgan Freeman. In 'Angel Has Fallen,' Butler's agent is wrongly accused of trying to assassinate the president. Going back to 2013's 'Olympus Has Fallen,' the franchise has been a quietly consistent performer, taking in roughly $200 million worldwide each time. 'Angel Has Fallen,' produced for about $40 million by Millennium Films, is poised for a similar course, opening just shy of the $21.6 million 'London Has Fallen' debut. David Spitz, president of domestic distribution for Lionsgate, pointed to the film's A-minus CinemaScore and 94% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes (far better than the 39% critic score) as good word-of-mouth harbingers for the continued playability of 'Angel Has Fallen' through the last weeks of summer. 'That's a great sign that the movie is going to be theaters for a long time,' Spitz said. 'Over-performing this weekend and exit polls suggesting we're going to have a nice long runway is terrific.' Late August is known as a sleepy period at the box office, but it's also one of the few parts of the calendar relatively light on big-budget tentpole releases. That's given some room for recent successes such as Universal's comedy hit 'Good Boys,' which slid to second with $11.8 million. Last week, it became the first R-rated comedy in more than three years to land at No.1. And the Lionsgate-distributed 'Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark' has also flourished in August, taking in $50.5 million in three weeks including $6 million this weekend. Some of the bigger films are still expanding around the globe, though. The 'Fast & Furious' spinoff 'Hobbs & Shaw' opened this weekend in China — where the high-octane franchise has regularly thrived — grossing $102 million and pushing the film to a worldwide total of $588.9 million. Disney's 'The Lion King,' after seven weeks of release, still ranks among the top four films domestically and has now passed $1.5 billion worldwide. That ranks ninth all time, not accounting for inflation. However, the acclaimed Fox Searchlight horror release 'Ready or Not,' about a bride forced into a deadly game of hide-and-seek with her new in-laws, got off to a lackluster start. It took in $7.6 million in ticket sales and $10.6 million since opening Wednesday. Faring better was the Christian film 'Overcomer,' from Sony's Affirm Films, which landed in third with an $8 million opening weekend. It also scored an A-plus CinemaScore from audiences. Among specialty releases, Amazon's 'Brittany Runs a Marathon,' about a young woman (Jillian Bell) who devotes herself to running to lose weight, scored the weekend's most packed theaters. It debuted with a per-theater average of $35,194 in five locations. And Roadside Attractions' 'Peanut Butter Falcon' made an impression in expansion, taking in $3 million from 984 theaters. The film stars Zack Gottsagen, who has Down syndrome, Shia LaBeouf and Dakota Johnson. Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Comscore. Where available, the latest international numbers for Friday through Sunday are also included. 1. 'Angel Has Fallen,' $21.3 million. 2. 'Good Boys,' $11.8 million. 3. 'Overcomer,' $8 million. 4. 'The Lion King,' $8.2 million. 5. 'Hobbs and Shaw,' $8.1 million ($120 million international). 6. 'Ready or Not,' $7.6 million. 7. 'The Angry Birds 2 Movie,' $6.4 million. 8. 'Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark,' $6 million. 9. 'Dora and the Lost City of Gold,' $5.2 million. 10. 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,' $5 million. ___ Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP
  • Can someone as notorious in the #MeToo era as Harvey Weinstein get a fair trial in the world's media capital? That's one of the legal questions looming over the sexual assault case against the movie mogul with jury selection scheduled for early next month. Weinstein's lawyers want the trial moved from New York City to Long Island or upstate New York — part of the last-minute wrangling that includes efforts by prosecutors to bolster their case with testimony from actress Annabella Sciorra, who says Weinstein raped her in the 1990s. Weinstein has denied all accusations of non-consensual sex. The maneuvers have the potential to cause further delays in an already fitful prosecution. Some of the uncertainty could be cleared up Monday, when Weinstein is due to be arraigned on a new indictment, and an appeals court is expected to rule on a defense motion for a change of venue that prosecutors oppose. Such motions are rarely granted. But defense lawyers argue the court should make an exception in Weinstein's case, given a 'circus-like atmosphere' and 'hysteria' fueled by news reports and social media posts. In court papers, they noted that their client's name was mentioned online on the New York Post's gossip column Page Six more than 11,000 times. 'It is safe to say that New York City is the least likely place on earth where Mr. Weinstein could receive a fair trial, where jurors could hear evidence, deliberate and render a verdict in an atmosphere free of intimidation from pressure to deliver a result that the politicians, the activists, the celebrities and the media demand,' the lawyers wrote in court papers. But 'the publicity will be suffocating' wherever the case is tried, said Jeffrey Lichtman, a high-profile New York City attorney who is not part of the case. Lichtman, who represented Mexican drug lord Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman, called the change-of-venue bid misguided because Weinstein, he said, would probably fare better with a jury composed of more 'open-minded' Manhattan residents who 'might be more sympathetic to the defense that these accusers slept with Harvey with the hope of getting a movie role.' Weinstein, 67, is charged with raping a woman in 2013 and performing a forcible sex act on a different woman in 2006 — both of which he denies. He faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted on all counts. He is free on $1 million bail. The new indictment against Weinstein hasn't been made public. But in court papers, prosecutors said it was needed to bring evidence involving Sciorra, best known for her work on 'The Sopranos.' She claims Weinstein raped her inside her Manhattan apartment after she starred in a film for his movie studio in 1993. Prosecutors can't charge Weinstein with the alleged attack because the accusation dates to 13 years before New York eliminated its statute of limitations for rape cases in 2006. But in court papers filed this month, prosecutors told the judge the indictment will give them a legal foundation to call the actress as a witness to strengthen the predatory sexual assault charge against Weinstein. That requires evidence of a history of past sex crimes against women. Court papers filed by the defense called the attempt to make Sciorra a prosecution witness an '11th-hour maneuver' that 'raises significant legal issues' that could delay the trial by several weeks. The actress is among the dozens of women who have leveled accusations against Weinstein in accounts published by The New York Times, The New Yorker and other outlets. The Associated Press generally does not name people who say they are victims of sexual assault, but Sciorra went public with her story in a story in The New Yorker in October 2017. She told the magazine she didn't report the assault at the time because, even though she tried to fight off Weinstein, she believed she was to blame. Prosecutors said she didn't speak with them until after Weinstein's arrest in May 2018. 'Like most of these women, I was so ashamed of what happened,' she said. 'I felt disgusting.' ___ Follow Hays at twitter.com/aptomhays and Sisak at twitter.com/mikesisak
  • The Rock is honeymooning at a Disney convention. Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson got married last weekend in Hawaii to longtime partner Lauren Hashian — and then spent Saturday promoting 'Jungle Cruise' at the D23 Expo in Anaheim, California. He says his new wife didn't mind. 'She loved it because she knows D23— as she knows — is named after me. Dwayne. That's where the D comes from,' Johnson joked on a red carpet at the convention. 'We had a great wedding. Yes. It was really beautiful.' Johnson partnered with Emily Blunt to make the movie based on the Disneyland ride, set to be released next year. Blunt said her favorite moment making the film came during a comedic bit with Johnson while escaping an 'Amazonian tribe.' 'The dialogue that happens and the comedy that happened in that — we could not make it through a take without laughing. So I have such a fond memory of it. It was like agony to try and get through the scene,' Blunt said. Johnson added: 'It gave me so much joy to make her laugh so hard that the takes were ruined.' 'Jungle Cruise,' directed by Jaume Collet-Serra and also starring Paul Giamatti and Jack Whitehall is to be released next summer.
  • Angelina Jolie says she's 'so proud' that her 18-year-old son is leaving home to study biochemistry in South Korea. The actress was seen in video released several days ago dropping her son Maddox off at Yonsei University in Seoul, and holding back tears. 'I didn't realize everybody had watched me do it,' she said Saturday at the D23 expo in Anaheim, California. 'It felt very private when we were there and just fun. But the school is so wonderful and we're so proud that he's there. And it's a great university and I'm just amazed I have a son who's that smart.' Jolie is in two upcoming Disney movies: a sequel to 'Maleficent' and Marvel Studios' 'Eternals.' 'They called me — but I was so happy. I think I just didn't see myself that way. I thought I was kind of ready to direct and sit home,' Jolie said of joining 'Eternals.' 'I was but now I'm now I'm going to be dressing in gold and jumping around.' 'Eternals,' which will feature actors including Salma Hayek, Brian Tyree Henry and Kumail Nanjiani, is set for release next year. It's directed by filmmaker Chloe Zhao, until now best known for critically acclaimed indie films like 'The Rider.
  • A new environmental foundation backed by Leonardo DiCaprio is pledging $5 million in aid to the Amazon, which has been swept by wildfires . Earth Alliance was created last month by DiCaprio and philanthropists Laurene Powell Jobs and Brian Sheth. On Sunday, it launched the Amazon Forest Fund in an announcement on their website. The alliance is also seeking donations to help repair the Brazilian rainforest, called the 'lungs of the planet.' Brazilian federal experts reported a record number of wildfires across the country this year, up 84% over the same period in 2018. The funds will be distributed to five local groups working to combat the problem: Instituto Associacao Floresta Protegida, Coordination of the Indigenous Organizations of the Brazilian Amazon, Instituto Kabu, Instituto Raoni, and Instituto Socioambiental.
  • Doctors at the hospital where Spain's former monarch Juan Carlos I underwent heart surgery say he is making a satisfactory recovery almost 24 hours after the operation. Lucía Alonso, the managing director of Madrid's Quironsalud University Hospital, said Sunday the 81-year-old king emeritus is awake and breathing without support. Alonso says in a statement that Juan Carlos is sitting up in bed and 'is in good spirits.' The triple bypass procedure Saturday was scheduled after the former king had a checkup two months ago. The hospital said the operation was successful and without complications. Juan Carlos abdicated in 2014 in favor of Felipe, ending a near 39-year reign. He retired from public duties last May.
  • Plácido Domingo returns to the stage at the Salzburg Festival on Sunday in his first appearance since nine women accused him of sexual harassment in a report by The Associated Press. The case has divided the opera world. Two U.S. opera houses immediately canceled planned appearances. European opera houses have so far confirmed engagements scheduled through November 2020, in what some see as an effort to slow a perceived rush to judgment in the #MeToo movement. The 78-year-old star, who rose to global fame as a tenor, will sing the baritone role of Miller in performance of 'Luisa Miller.' He has received unwavering support from the festival, as well as his co-stars. Domingo appears smiling in an Instagram posted this week by co-star Nino Machaidze alongside tenor Piotr Beczala and conductor James Conlon. The AP story published last week detailed extensive allegations of sexual harassment by nine women against Domingo that spanned decades, starting in the 1980s. The women accused Domingo of using his power at the LA Opera, where he has been the longtime general director, and elsewhere to try to pressure them into sexual relationships. Several of the woman said he dangled jobs and then sometimes punished them professionally if they refused his advances. Allegations included repeated phone calls, invitations to hotel rooms and his apartment, and unwanted touching and kisses. In a statement to the AP, Domingo called the allegations 'deeply troubling and, as presented inaccurate' and said he believed his interactions with the women to be consensual. He hasn't spoken publicly about the allegations since the article was published. Culture writer Hedwig Kainberger wrote in the Salzburger Nachrichten this week that there is no reason for Domingo not to sing at the festival. She noted that he has never had the sort of political power at the Salzburg festival that he has in some U.S. opera houses. 'However, Plácido Domingo has benefited a lot from public fame,' Kainberger added. 'Therefore, in addition to the jubilation, he should also bear the criticism, listen to the protests, participate in the clarification and muster the courage to make any confessions.' Culture editor Gert Korentschnig wrote in in the Vienna daily Kurier on Sunday that such cancellations absent a guilty verdict in a court of law are 'an excessive exaggeration of political correctness,' and that the focus should be not on individual singers but on the system as a whole. 'Is opera, where the artists and above all female artists, depend on the goodwill of the artistic director, conductor or singer, a hoard of power abuse?' he asked. 'The Domingo case is more than a pummeling of a superstar. It is a cry against suppression and machoism throughout the music business.
  • The Obama summer playlist has everyone from Drake and Beyonce to Steely Dan and Frank Sinatra. The former president calls it 'some new, some old, some fast, some slow.' Barack Obama tweeted 44 songs Saturday that he and his wife, Michelle, have been listening to. They include Drake's 'Too Good,' Steely Dan's 'Reelin' in the Years' and the Sinatra standard 'I've Got You Under My Skin.' Other choices are 'MOOD 4 EVA,' the 'Lion King' song with Beyonce and Jay-Z among other artists; and such oldies as Van Morrison's 'Brown Eyed Girl' and Dobie Gray's 'Drift Away.' Last week, Barack Obama offered book recommendations, among them Colson Whitehead's 'The Nickel Boys,' Hilary Mantel's 'Wolf Hall' and the 'collected works' of Nobel laureate Toni Morrison, who died Aug. 12.
  • The Latest on Walt Disney Co.'s biannual D23 fan convention in Anaheim (all times local): 12:05 p.m. Tom Holland has made an appearance at a Disney fan convention amid the news that Spider-Man will no longer be part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Earlier this week, it was reported that the cross-studio partnership between Disney and Sony, which allowed Holland's Spider-Man to appear in Marvel films, was ending. Marvel also helped produce the stand-alone Spider-Man films such as this summer's 'Far From Home.' Holland was not at D23 Saturday on behalf of Marvel however, but Pixar. He's voicing a role in the upcoming animated film 'Onward.' The nearly 7,000 people in the audience screamed wildly for Holland. He did not address Spider-Man specifically but told the audience that it's been a crazy week and cryptically quoting Tony Stark in 'Avengers: Endgame,' added: 'I love you 3000.' ___ 11:40 a.m. Jamie Foxx and Tina Fey are lending their voices to the new Pixar film 'Soul.' Director Pete Docter announced the cast for the upcoming jazz-themed film Saturday at Disney's D23 fan convention in Anaheim that also includes Questlove, Daveed Diggs and Phylicia Rashad. Docter, in his first appearance on stage as the chief creative officer of the shop behind 'Toy Story,' says that 'Soul' imagines that every human attends a pre-birth seminar where they're given quirks, interests and passions. Foxx voices the lead character Joe, who is a jazz musician and middle school band teacher. Jon Batiste is contributing original songs for the film and Oscar-winners Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross are doing the score. 'Soul' hits theaters in June 2020. ___ 10:50 a.m. Writer and director Ryan Coogler says that 'Black Panther 2' will hit theaters on May 6, 2022. Coogler made an appearance Saturday at the Walt Disney Co.'s D23 fan convention in Anaheim. Coogler said he wasn't ready to reveal a title or a plot yet for the highly anticipated sequel to 'Black Panther,' which became a cultural phenomenon and grossed over $1.3 billion at the worldwide box office. Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige also announced that Kit Harington is joining the cast of 'The Eternals,' which will reunite him with his 'Game of Thrones' co-star Richard Madden. Harington is playing a non-Eternal named Dane. 'Crazy Rich Asians' star Gemma Chan has also joined the cast of the Marvel project which includes Angelina Jolie. ___ 10:45 a.m. Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy says that 'Star Wars: Episode IX — The Rise of Skywalker' is going to be an incredibly good time. Nearly 7,000 people got a look Saturday at a new poster and some new footage from the film at the Walt Disney Co.'s biannual D23 fan convention in Anaheim. The film which opens in theaters nationwide Dec. 20 closes out the over 40-year-old Skywalker saga. Kennedy was joined on the convention stage by writer-director J.J. Abrams and stars including Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Billy Dee Williams and Anthony Daniels. R2-D2 evoked the most applause from the excited audience. Abrams said that the late Carrie Fisher is also part of 'Episode IX' thanks to unused footage from 'Episode VII.