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Kayley Loveridge

Hurricane Florence

Hurricane Florence Heads Towards Virginia and the Carolinas

More than one million residents living the coastlines of Virginia and the Carolinas have been forced to evacuate their homes as the life-threatening Hurricane Florence hurtles towards the east coast.

Weather officials predict this storm to be one of the most powerful to ever hit the region, with forecasters estimating that the hurricane will make landfall this Thursday (September 13). Experts have reported that the region can expect potentially catastrophic winds of up to 150mph and high levels of flooding with up to two meters of rainfall.

The storm currently sits in category four on the national weather service’s (NWS) classification system, but the US national hurricane center (NHC) has said that it is closer to category five in strength—the most powerful classification as marked on the classification system.

At a news conference on Monday, South Carolina governor Henry McMaster said Florence “is particularly big, particularly strong and… there’s nothing stopping it.

“And when it hits the Gulf Stream in warmer water, it’s going [to intensify] even more.” McMaster declared a state of emergency on Saturday, along with the governors of Virginia, North Carolina and Maryland.

The NHC said, “The bottom line is that there is high confidence that Florence will be a large and extremely dangerous hurricane, regardless of its exact intensity.”

President Donald Trump took to Twitter to say, “My people just informed me that this is one of the worst storms to hit the East coast in many years. Also, looking like a direct hit on North Caroline, South Caroline and Virginia. Please be prepared, be careful and be SAFE!”

According to records, Hurricane Florence is the first storm at category four strength to hit the Carolinas for 30 years; the last occurrence was Hurricane Hugo in 1989.

People have been warned to steer clear of the coast’s beaches and oceans as the sea swelled and dangerous rip currents already surfaced over the weekend, forecasting the arrival of Hurricane Florence.

Further reading: Did Hurricane Irma Happen Because of Climate Change?

Mac Miller Death

Mac Miller’s Death is Tragic—But It’s Not Ariana Grande’s Fault

American rapper Mac Miller died of an alleged drug overdose on September 7. He was just 26 years old. Miller had suffered with substance abuse since the age of 15, famously admitting to Noisy that using drugs was “dangerous, dude. But they’re awesome”. The announcement shook the core of the music industry and, although I wasn’t an avid fan, it shook me. Not only did the industry lose an intelligent, energetic talent, but his death comes at an age so close to my own that it’s also a frightening reminder of our own mortality.

In a statement, Miller’s family described him as “a bright light in this world for his family, friends and fans.” Meanwhile, close friends and colleagues took to the Twittersphere to obituarise the young star. Post Malone said, “You changed so many lives. Had so much love in your heart…Never a more kind and sincere and beautiful person”, while singer Charlie Puth said, “I can’t keep losing friends like this…I wish I spent more time with you these past weeks…I’m so sorry”.

Yet, erupting through these mournful messages almost as quickly as the news broke, was a more sinister and dangerous narrative: The blame for Miller’s death, in the eyes of some, was not his history of substance abuse or his mental health, but his ex-girlfriend Ariana Grande.

In a now edited article by TMZ, the outlet that first reported the death, a reporter wrote: “Miller has had trouble recently with substance abuse…in the wake of his breakup with Ariana Grande.” Fans of the rapper flooded the internet to lay blame at Grande’s feet. One Twitter user was reported by UNILAD as saying, “@ArianaGrande look what you did to Mac Miller! He needed support and you weren’t there for him so he could move on. Instead you got engaged with another after two weeks of dating just to f**k with Mac Miller!” Another said, “[…] Yeah I get why he would be upset and why he would wanna take drugs bc drugs stop all of the pain for a while. So honestly it is sorta her [Grande’s] fault”. Grande has since deactivated the comments section on her Instagram account following a surge of misogynistic, hateful and relentless abuse hurled at her following his death.

Elsewhere, global news outlets published loud headlines referring to the K.I.D.S artist as simply “Ariana Grande’s ex-boyfriend”. These shamelessly shifted the attention to Grande, which diminishes Miller’s legacy as an accomplished musician, producer and artist, to simply the ex-boyfriend of a famous pop star.

“Headlines referring to Miller as ‘Ariana Grande’s ex-boyfriend’ diminish his legacy as an accomplished musician, producer and artist to simply the ex-boyfriend of a famous pop star”

Grande also faced similar online harassment at the hands of Miller’s fans after a hit and run incident that occurred in May 2018. More recently, when cameras caught the moment a pastor touched Grande’s breast at Aretha Franklin’s funeral earlier this month, many focused instead on the length of her dress—as if that was the reason such atrocious behavior occurred.

Grande isn’t the first woman to be demonized for refusing to shoulder and absorb the trauma and behaviors of men. Yoko Ono was famously blamed for the breakup of the Beatles. Rock star Courtney Love is still blamed for her husband Kurt Cobain’s drug addiction and subsequent suicide, too—a deeply harmful phenomenon that blurts out the expectation that women are obligated caretakers.

“Grande isn’t the first woman to be demonized for refusing to shoulder and absorb the trauma and behaviors of men”

Should Grande have stayed with the rapper to see him recover from his addictions before moving on? Absolutely not—especially at the expense of her own mental wellbeing—and she shouldn’t have to feel guilt for it either. It seems it’s easier to ignore the glaring, complicated and insidious disease that is addiction than it is to blame one single person—much easier if it’s an ex.

Back to School

Back to School: Getting Around Campus

The first year at college is particularly exciting; for many students, this is their first home away from their parents, and with that brings a huge sense of freedom. But campus life in those first few weeks of semester can prove to be confusing, too. Learn to navigate your new campus and get settled in quickly with our top tips.

Orientation day

Most colleges offer orientation days when new students go back to school at the beginning of the fall semester. This day is a perfect opportunity to register, sign up to classes, learn about general rules and policies and get to know new peers and faculty. Not only this, new students will be given a guided group tour of the campus and the opportunity to explore independently so that when the first day of class arrives, students are more adequately acquainted with their new surroundings.

Map it

Maps, whether they be printed or downloaded and interactive, are a basic essential for a new student’s campus pocketbook. Familiarize yourself with the major locations situated on the map and keep it with you during the first weeks of college to easily locate classes, the library, the school’s health center and the student union. Alternatively, if you are unsure ask older students or members of staff for directions.

Public transport

Public transport for college students tends to be very reliable, frequent and (perhaps best of all) affordable. Check the campus’ bus terminal for routes around your new city and their scheduled times. You will likely need a student identification card for travel discounts, so make sure this stays in your purse or wallet at all times. Some universities also provide park and ride shuttle services so you can park your car outside of college grounds and get into campus easily.

Campus security

Colleges across the nation are upping their security measures amidst recent reports of attacks and crimes on campus—according to rainn.org, an astonishing 11.2 percent of all students in the US experience sexual assault alone. Prior to starting classes, find out who your campus security personnel are and take note of their contact details. Always try to walk in groups where possible when traveling across campus grounds (particularly in the dark, winter months) and endeavour to plan ahead by telling your roommates where you are going and when they should expect you home.

Back to school checklist

Do you have:

  • ƒ Campus map?
  • ƒ Campus security contact?
  • ƒ Student identification card?
  • ƒ Classroom locations/numbers?
  • ƒ Student Union location?

Further reading: Exploring Campus

Clear choice for security

The Clear Choice for Security

Security is increasing daily; people are undergoing hassles at security checkpoints and having to return to your car from either a game, the airport or a major concert simply because your bag was not clear or see-thru instead of visible. Or did you buy one of those cheap clear bags only to have it break after using it a few times? Don’t waste your time or money on anything less than the best and choose Stadium Bags; the clear choice for security.

Safety Bags Inc was created to find a way to assist with the safety measures being implemented nationwide and is a clear choice for security. Mompreneur, founder and CEO, Dori DeCarlo, set out to create a line of clear bags, backpacks, sports, travel and wheelchair bags to assist with security issues facing our schools, offices, airports, public venues and sports arenas. This journey began after the Columbine shooting which was ENOUGH for Dori to want to find a way to keep our schools safe. Now this mission has expanded into so much more than just clear bags and backpacks for students.

Seeing that both college and professional sports have adopted a mandatory clear bag policy, www.stadiumbags.com, a division of Safety Bags, was launched in 2016. Our stadium line of clear bags and backpacks has been featured on TV alongside Kevin Harrington, original shark from Shark Tank, Worldwide Business with kathy ireland®, GMA’s Deals and Steals, InStyle TV and more. Winner of both the Family Choice Award for products in 2016, 17 and 18 and the Fiverr & New York Yankees Game Changer Contest, StadiumBags.com has been making national news since they hit the market!

StadiumBags.com makes safety and convenience co-exist with clear bags and backpacks specifically designed for both the college and pro sports mandatory clear bag policy. Now, any bag larger than the palm of your hand must be clear—but you don’t have to sacrifice on style, quality and privacy to follow the rules! Privacy, how can a see-thru bag offer privacy, you say? Our Cross Body Mini Messenger style bag has an inner sleeve, because while we may be tomboys at heart, sometimes we need to be discrete! The main sleeve can hold up to a 10-inch smart device and you can use it without removing it from your bag. Our Stadium Tote Bags have different color straps for variety, with an inner mesh pocket and side cell-phone sleeve. Our Mini Stadium Backpack is only small in name, and while it meets the 12x12x6 size requirements, it is still large enough to carry what you need to the game or concert.

All our bags are constructed in a 5mm 20-gauge, temperature-treated PVC Vinyl, and are lined in fabric instead of plastic. We worked with chiropractors on their ergonomic design to make them healthy for the body. Double-zippered openings, extra-padded handles and straps ensure that you are carrying the best clear bag money can buy. There is simply no other line on the market with the quality and versatility to match StadiumBags.com. As consumers, we know that cheap is expensive! Why not buy bags guaranteed to last season after season? We stand by our bags with a three-year warranty against manufacturers defects – how many $30 products can you say that about?

Take the hassle out of going to the game with the see-thru bags from StadiumBags.com—the Clear Choice for security for sports fans…and more!

College Football 2018

College Football 2018: Players to Watch

The college football 2018 season is set to be a sizzler; keep your eye on College News’ top 10 favorites to watch on the pitch this year

Damien Harris: RB, Alabama Crimson Tide

21-year-old Alabama Crimson Tide running back, Damien Harris, is more than worth his salt. Incredibly, Harris was eligible for the 2018 NFL draft but chose to remain a member of the prestigious college football team instead. After rushing for 1,000 yards last year and with a touchdown count reaching 11 (up from two the previous year), the Kentucky-born player is no doubt an asset to the team. 247Sports said of the running back, “Harris is so talented, his hold on Alabama’s RB1 status nearly led to five-star Najee Harris’ transfer after his freshman season last fall.”

N’Keal Harry: WR, Arizona State Sun Devils

The Arizona State Sun Devils wide receiver N’Keal Harry shows deep promise in the game despite his modest record of rushing for 659 yards and five touchdowns last season. Sports outlets everywhere applaud the player’s ability to catch the ball with exceptional precision. This, combined with his tactful use of running speed variations, makes Harry a strong candidate for the 2018 college football season. NFL.com said that Harry is “one of the most talented receivers in college football.”

Cam Akers: RB, Florida State Seminoles

Cam Akers already boasts an impressive portfolio in his so far short career, having achieved a whopping 13,243 yards and 149 touchdowns to date. The Florida State Seminoles running back was named MS Gatorade Player of the Year in 2016 and won the US Army Player of the Year Award in the same year. Holding the grand record for rushing 1,024 yards last season (beating Dalvin Cook’s 2014 record of 1,008 yards), Akers is cementing his reputation as a leading player in the game and one to put your bets on.

Drew Lock: QB, Missouri Tigers

Missouri quarterback, Drew Lock, has been making waves in the college football scene since 2015; that same year he was ranked by Rivals as a four-star recruit and the number six best pro-style quarterback in the 2015 class. According to seccountry.com, Lock is “considered one of college football’s premier NFL prospects heading into the 2018 season.” In an interview with FOX Sports, draft analyst Mike Detillier said, “I’ve never seen a quarterback more accurate throwing the football than Drew Lock from Missouri. He’s the best. The best quarterback here on this campus.”

 Justin Herbert: QB, Oregon Ducks

Quarterback Justin Herbert’s star is rising in the college football landscape and his place in the Oregon Ducks college football team is well-deserving. Herbert has long been applauded for his deft precision when it comes to throwing and catching the ball, with the NFL stating that, “Herbert’s arm and mobility will entice scouts, as well as help Oregon overcome the loss of head coach Willie Taggard after only one season at the helm.”

David Sills: WR, West Virginia Mountaineers

David Sills returned to West Virginia University in 2017 to take the post as the team’s wide receiver. The 22-year-old has lauded much critical acclaim in sports circles, with Sports Illustrated anointing him one of the greatest prospects ever. 247Sports said, “Sills led college football last fall with 18 touchdown receptions and averaged 16.3 yards per grab”—no mean feat at all.

Devin Bush Jr: LB, Michigan Wolverines

Linebacker Devin Bush Jr helps lead a fantastic defense unit for the Michigan Wolverine’s college football team. The 20-year-old has made it onto several players-to-watch-out-for lists so far this year, and it’s easy to see why. Chad Reiter at NFL.com said, “Bush is the new prototype for Linebacker in college and the NFL—not necessarily big, but fast and aggressive. He can blow through the A-gap to wrap up quarterbacks, attack gaps on stretch plays to bring down running backs in the backfield, and get out to the hash to cover receivers.”

Shaq Quarterman: LB, Miami Hurricanes

Shaq Quarterman was rated a four-star prospect by 247Sports, had scholarships offered to him for his exceptional sportsmanship prior to committing to Miami and was named Freshman All American by ESPN—it’s easy to see why this linebacker is one to watch out for this season. NFL.com said of Quarterman, “He’s fast, instinctive, and a terrific tackler. An NFL team will give him the keys to defense not long after he arrives.”

Ed Oliver: DT, Houston Cougars

Defensive tackle for the Houston Cougars, Ed Oliver, has been the focus of many sports journalists across the nation this year. In March, Oliver announced (before his final college season even begins) that he intends to enter the draft for the NFL in 2019. The six-foot-two athlete was rated a consensus five-star recruit, ranking as one of the top players in his class. 247Sports said, “No one in college football, at this size, moves like Oliver…The closest player to a ‘sure-thing’ in next year’s draft, Oliver has a chance to make serious noise on the Heisman race as a junior even if his team isn’t elite.”

Clelin Ferrell: DL, Clemson Tigers

“The headliner up front on the Tigers’ freakish defensive line, [Clelin] Ferrell is a monster pass rusher,” says NFL.com. This Defensive End player was a four-star recruit straight out of high school and rated the number five prospect in Virginia. Just last year, this player was even named the team co-defensive player-of-the-game, too, making Ferrell College News’ last, but by no means least, favorite to watch on the pitch this year.

Further reading: Playing College Sports: All You Need to Know

Student Loan Debt

Dealing with Student Loan Debt

The most recent data suggests that US student loan debt is soaring at a dizzying pace. This past year, figures have shown that it now currently sits at around $1.4 trillion—yes, trillion. Shockingly, college tuition fees have increased almost 400 percent in the last 30 years while the average household income growth certainly has not, says news site theatlantic.com. Yet, while the nation places great importance on college education for a sustainable and thriving economic future, yearly university fees are still climbing, forcing people to take out giant student loans and some would-be students to forget about college altogether. According to The Washington Post, some four in 10 people who have attended college in their lives have taken out a loan to facilitate their studies. A report by the College Board released in 2016 found that the average debt attributed to those who took out a student loan to complete a bachelor’s degree was $28,400, but the reality is often much higher for many students. What is even more egregious about this situation, is that it is largely students from the least affluent backgrounds who take on the most student loan debt. Around a fifth of people who have student loan debt are also “falling back” on their payments, incurring penalties and sky-rocketing interest rates on top of an already huge sum.

Some think tanks are now arguing that the US government should eliminate student loan debt completely, saying that, in the long-term, these crippling bills will do nothing to bolster the country’s economy later down the line, and may actually damage it. But, unless this happens and college is still your goal, it is key to take into account all of the financial options available to you to help keep costs down as much as possible throughout your studies. Financial aid in the form of scholarships or non-repayable grants can slash student loan debts down by a considerable amount, and there are also many universities across the country who offer significant financial aid packages which cover up to 100 percent in tuition fees.

Five colleges with great financial aid packages

There is a wealth of colleges throughout the US—including major Ivy League universities—who offer financial aid to those who need it the most.

  1. Columbia University

One of the most expensive schools in the states, Columbia University’s tuition and fees reach $55,056 per year. Thankfully, the college offers a very attractive financial aid package, which comes to an average of $55,521.

  1. Harvard University

Harvard University is considered one of the most elite schools in the world, and the privilege of attending is reflective of its mammoth yearly fees which reach $47,074. But, like Columbia, it offers a great financial aid page of $51,308 to cover this—and then some. 100 percent of students who were eligible for this package’s needs were met.

  1. Yale University

Annual tuition and fees at this Ivy League school reach $49,480. Yale offers an average of $52,894 in their financial aid package, and 100 percent of students who utilized the financial aid package’s needs were met.

  1. Princeton University

With annual tuition and fees costing $45,320, Princeton University offers an attractive financial aid package which sits at an average of $49,502.

  1. University of Richmond

While annual tuition fees for the University of Richmond are around $50,910, the university offers a financial aid package is $45,784, making the remaining $5,000 or so a lot easier to cope with when it comes to paying fees.

It’s safe to say that student loan debt may be an inevitable part of studying, but there are options available to help alleviate financial pressures during your school years. Make sure to research the universities you might like to attend before applying. Some schools may offer substantial non-repayable grants to help cover the ever-increasing fees attached.

Further reading: Applying for a Post-Graduate Degree

Travel Ban

Supreme Court Upholds Travel Ban

On Tuesday 26 June, the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of president Donald Trump’s travel ban after months of legal battles, which targets several Muslim-majority countries, coming as a massive shock to anti-discrimination advocates.

This ban, favored five to four, upholds the government’s position that the president has the authority to “suspend entry of aliens into the United States.”

Trump took to Twitter just hours after the ruling to hail his appreciation of the decision, tweeting: “SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS TRUMP TRAVEL BAN. Wow!”

Of the decision, Trump stated, “The ruling shows that all the attacks from the media and the Democrat politicians were wrong, and they turned out to be very wrong.

“If you look at the European Union, they’re meeting right now to toughen up their immigration policies because they’ve been over-run, they’ve been over-run.

“And frankly, a lot of those countries are not the same places anymore.”

Despite the decision, criticism flooded in from chief justice John Roberts. “The president of the United States possesses an extraordinary power to speak to his fellow citizens and on their behalf,” he said. “Our presidents have frequently used that power to espouse the principles of religious freedom and tolerance on which this nation was founded.”

One of the lawyers who voted against the ruling, Neal Katyal, tweeted “Disappointed by the decision, but proud to be part of a judicial process that closely reviews and checks presidential overreach. Americans don’t exclude b/c of nationality or religion. POTUS shouldn’t take ruling as approval to continue attacking our constitution. I will always fight it.”

The travel ban currently affects travelers coming in from Syria, Iran, Libya, Yemen and Somalia—predominantly Muslim areas of the world.

President Trump controversially implemented the first travel ban just a week after his internment into office in January 2017.

Further reading: Trump to Host Video Game Violence Meeting

Bo Turnham Eighth Grade

Bo Burnham on Eighth Grade

Comedian, musician, actor and writer Bo Burnham talks with College News about the upcoming release of his directorial debut Eighth Grade, anxiety and life as a comedian.

College News: Let’s talk about your directorial debut, Eighth Grade. What has the response been so far?

Bo Burnham: The response has been really lovely so far. We’ve only shown it at a few festivals, but it feels like it’s connecting with people which is very, very nice and relieving.

CN: Eighth Grade centres around shy 13-year-old Kayla. You have spoken often about the character being the vessel with which to voice your own thoughts and feelings on the world. Were there any challenges you faced when it came to writing her character and how did your initial character ideas evolve as you wrote the film?

BB: The challenge was always trying to capture this voice authentically. My disconnect from her was two-fold: I was never a 13 year-old girl, and I was never 13 years old right now. And I knew both of those things lent themselves to a specific experience that I couldn’t fully understand. And the answer was just to research—and Generation Z is very easy to research. They post literally everything about themselves in real time online. As far as the ideas evolving, it all evolved once Elsie Fisher [actress who stars as Kayla in Eighth Grade] got involved—I told her every day that I wanted this movie to come to her and not the other way around. Once real kids got involved I deferred to them for the sort of nuts and bolts “truth” of the thing.

CN: When conceptualizing and writing the screenplay for Eighth Grade, what themes and topics were you keen on portraying through the characters and the plot?

BB: I wanted to talk about the internet and about anxiety. I have struggled with anxiety a lot in my life and have felt that my anxiety has deep ties to the internet in some way. And this story felt like the best way to explore it. I think the internet makes eighth graders out of us all.

CN: There is a pivotal, sexually awkward scene during the film that sees Kayla apologise to older character Riley for not being intimate with him. Was this scene written with the current political/social climate and #MeToo movement that’s currently engulfing Hollywood in mind?

BB: Definitely not. This was written two years ago and shot last summer—but I’m happy that people see that scene as in alignment with the values and concerns of the #MeToo movement—as I think it’s a vital and insanely overdue public conversation. And we still have a long way to go, especially with young people, in educating them on consent and sexual behaviour.

CN: You have had an extensive and thriving career as a comedian. How would you describe your comedic style?

BB: Trying very, very hard. Effortful!

 “I have struggled with anxiety a lot in my life and have felt that my anxiety has deep ties to the internet in some way”—Bo Burnham

CN: A common reaction that comedians and comediennes receive is backlash and criticism for using un-PC language or satirising socially sensitive topics. Has there been a particularly standout moment where this has happened to you? How do you deal with that kind of backlash personally?

BB: Oh sure I’ve dealt with backlash for things I said, especially when I was younger, 17 or 18 years old just trying to say the most offensive things because that’s what I thought comedy was. I tend to only look back on that stuff cringing at myself, not at the people objecting to it. I feel like comedians get to express themselves all the time, so they shouldn’t start complaining when the audience wants to express back.

CN: Can you tell our readers about how you got your break in the industry and how your career evolved into the realm of film and television?

BB: [I] started posting videos on YouTube and those sort of took off. And then it was just a sort of long, weird journey of performing stand up everywhere and quietly writing scripts in my free time. And then when it felt like I had gotten enough momentum in the comedy world to justify getting a small budget for a movie, I dropped stand up and started working on this movie. And here we are! And death next, I think!

CN: Writing is very much central to your career having written for your own comedy performances, television shows and now film. Can you tell us a little bit about the writing process for you? How do your ideas emerge and manifest into full-rounded projects?

BB: Honestly, they are often not full-rounded until the very end—if they get there at all! The initial point for me, usually, it just reading books or watching movies and just getting excited about things I like. And then trying to daydream and find any sort of ledge I can grab onto to start climbing towards something. My ideas usually start very specifically with an image or a scene or a moment—not with a THEME or some BIG SWEEPING IDEA. I like to start from a moment or image that I really love and then work outward. Because it’s really the moments that I’m going to be working on, and it’s the moments that people will experience, so if a moment can’t work out the gate, it feels not worth the time. That may make no sense.

CN: What three key pieces of advice would you give to budding young comedians, actors and writers that you wish you had been given yourself when you were starting out?

BB: I would say relax and enjoy it. I do believe that the best part of the creative process is available to everyone—just doing it. Just starting the process of picturing things and making things and seeing how they turn out and editing and making yourself better. Just start and jump in and don’t worry if you suck out the gate. This is what I try to remind myself of all the time. Just focus on what you can control which is your work and your ability to get better by your own standards. Just do the work and enjoy it. The whole reason to do creative things is to be able to do something interesting and enjoyable and the interest and enjoyment is available right away!

CN: Do you have any new and exciting projects on the horizon for 2018 and early 2019 that our readers should keep an eye out for?

BB: Just Eighth Grade. Hopefully in the next few months I’ll bang my head against a wall and something will fall out. But I’m only seeing tumbleweeds at the moment. Help!

> Watch Eighth Grade at cinemas from July 2018.

Further reading: Summer Blockbusters 2018

Summer Blockbusters

Summer Blockbusters 2018

So far, 2018 has been a stonker of a year for film—read on for the most anticipated upcoming summer blockbusters releases this year.

Major production companies and indie production houses across the board have already presented cinema-goers with an incredible slate of films so far this year. Marvel’s Black Panther alone served to be one of the highest grossing movies of all time, racking up over $1 billion at box office. So, what does summer 2018 have in store?

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom 

Dinosaur fans rejoice! The second in the Jurassic World franchise, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, will hit theaters come June 22. This time around, the story follows Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) and Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) on a mission to rescue dinosaurs from Isla Nublar under the false impression that they will be saved from extinction. It’s not until later on that they learn that scientists want to genetically mutate these rare creatures in order to turn them into living weapons.

Hereditary 

Set the be the scariest film of the year, Hereditary first debuted at Sundance festival in January of this year and has received major critical acclaim at advanced screenings ever since. When the grandmother of the troubled Graham family passes away, dark family secrets slowly unravel. Starring Toni Collette, Gabriel Byrne and Alex Wolff, Hereditary is set to hit theaters June 8.

Sorry to Bother You 

Starring Lakieth Stanfield from the wildly successful Get Out (2017), Sorry to Bother You is a comedy that follows telemarketer Cassius Green, who discovers that sounding ‘white’ over the phone is the secret to his success. A film with a stark underlying comment on one of the biggest political discourses in America today, this film is likely to become one of the biggest summer blockbusters to date. See it in cinemas from July 6.

Eighth Grade

Eighth Grade is comedian Bo Burnham’s first foray into directing, and will hit the big screen from 13 July. This slice-of-life movie follows teenager Kayla (Elsie Fisher) as she tries to survive the last week of an abysmal eighth grade year before finally heading off to high school. Already causing a stir in the movie scene, this highly anticipated film is a wonderfully frank look at the life, anxieties and worries of a 13-year-old in the internet age.

Crazy Rich Asians

Based on a novel of the same name by Kevin Kwan, Crazy Rich Asians follows economics professor Rachel Chu as she accompanies her partner to Singapore to attend his best friend’s wedding. It is not until she lands in Singapore that she discovers her boyfriend comes from an extremely wealthy family and she is unwittingly thrust into the world of Asia’s rich and finest. This romantic comedy will be released in America August 17.

Further reading: Ocean’s Eight Confirmed for Release This Summer

Animal Fur

Faux Real: End of Animal Fur

Historically, animal fur has been synonymous with the world of luxury fashion. But, in an until recently unprecedented stand, some major luxury fashion brands have pledged to ban fur from their lines once and for all.

The relationship between high-end luxury fashion brands and animal ethics groups has been fraught for decades. However, recent years have seen a rise in major fashion houses and designers denouncing the use of animal fur, marking a monumental victory for animal rights. Some American cities are also taking an independent stand to diminish the retail of the product. San Francisco voted to ban all sales of fur within its limits in March of this year. An historical moment for the city, this new legislation will go into effect January 2019. 

A worldwide stand against animal fur

There is no doubt that fur as clothing is drenched in the glitz of showbiz history. Adorning Hollywood starlets and wealthy clientele alike, female glamour was once defined by a mink coat. If recent years are anything to go by, however, this antiquated approach to style is getting the overhaul animals deserve, and its effects can be seen around the globe.

Norway, which was once the world’s largest producer of fox fur, has committed to phasing out the country’s fur farms by 2025. The Nordic country follows in the footsteps of the UK, Germany, Austria and Croatia, who have all prohibited fur farms. What’s more, according to the Financial Times, 850 retailers globally are now registered as Fur Free Retailers.

“Fur? I am out of that. I don’t want to kill animals to make fashion. It doesn’t feel right”—Donatella Versace

High time, high fashion

The Versace family’s eponymous brand joined the ever-growing list of fashion houses to eradicate fur products from its lines. Head of the family Donatella Versace said earlier this year, “Fur? I am out of that. I don’t want to kill animals to make fashion. It doesn’t feel right.” We’re with you there, Donatella.

Major Italian fashion house Gucci announced its move to eliminate animal fur from its label back in 2017 from its Spring 2018 line onwards. Any remaining fur stock, they said, would be auctioned with proceeds given to animal welfare charities. “Being socially responsible is one of Gucci’s core values, and we will continue to strive to do better for the environment and animals,” said Gucci president and CEO Marco Bizzarri at the London College of Fashion in October 2017. “Gucci is excited to take this next step and hopes it will help inspire innovation and raise awareness, changing the luxury fashion industry for the better,” he added.

According to the Financial Times, fur products in Gucci’s line account for just €10 million of their €6.21 billion worth. A change in consumer behavior also prompted the fashion titan to change course. With the rise of vegetarianism and veganism among millennials (the brand’s main consumer base), sales for animal products were likely to decrease anyway.

Not long ago, accessible luxury fashion brand Michael Kors also hopped onto the faux fur bandwagon. “Due to technological advances in fabrications, we now have the ability to create a luxe aesthetic using non-animal fur,” said Kors himself, following a statement that the company would join others in cutting the use of animal fur from its brand.

John D. Idol, chairman and chief executive at Michael Kors, said in a statement, “This decision marks a new chapter as our company continues to evolve its use of innovative materials.”

Is the future faux?

The concept of replacing animal fur with fake fur has been met with mixed reactions. While it undoubtedly eliminates the possibility of animal slaughter, some have argued that the material’s production is harmful to the environment and not as sustainable as we’d like to think. The principal materials used to make faux fur—including acrylic and polyesters—are made from non-renewable products such as coal and petroleum which deplete the Earth’s natural resources. Mark Oaten, CEO of the Fur Trade Association, said, “Fake fur requires the extraction and fractionating of petroleum, as well as the subsequent conversion into fibers and mass manufacturing into products. These are not only incredibly energy-intensive but also produce a lot of extremely unpleasant chemical compounds.” But is this argument against faux alternatives enough to slow the momentum gained to banish animal fur and encourage fur-aesthetic lovers to buy real?

While commitments to a fur-free future have made a powerful political statement, fur farming is still a major cash cow with the global fur industry estimated to be worth a staggering $40 billion. For now, though, the formidable solidarity between fashion houses renowned for their lavish excess, independent boutiques and countries around the world who are stepping into a cruelty-free future together shows that compassionate fashion is—for want of a better word—“in”.

$200m

is the value of mink fur industry each year

Source: truthaboutfur.com

Further reading: Making a Fashion Statement