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Cinemas planning to show Team America told to cancel screenings

"Kim Jong Il" in Team America: World Police. Credit: Press Association Images

Cinemas in the United States who had planned to responded to the cancellation of The Interview by showing another movie that pokes fun at North Korea in its place have been told not to do so by its distributor, Paramount Pictures, it is claimed.

The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema's branch in Dallas had planned to show a free screening of Team America: World Police, the 2004 satirical comedy co-written by South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, but have since tweeted that that have now cancelled the show due to "circumstances beyond their control".

Another theatre that had planned to show the same movie, claimed in a tweet that Paramount Pictures was preventing them from doing so.

Team America: World Police, which features an all-puppet cast, focuses on American anti-terror unit tries to save the world from an attack led by North Korea’s former leader Kim Jong-il.


ITV News Quiz: Test your knowledge of banned films

Sony has taken the unusual step of deciding not to release the film The Interview following an online backlash and threats to attack cinemas where it is shown.

While the circumstances are unusual, it is certainly not the first film to be effectively banned. Take our quiz and test your knowledge of banned films.

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US loses first 'Cyber War', Republicans claim

The US has lost its first cyber war and North Korea has won, says one of America's top Republicans, after a cyber attack on a film studio led to a film about North Korea being pulled from release.

Today many in both Washington and Hollywood have been criticising the decision to cancel the film.

ITV News Washington Correspondent Robert Moore reports.


Mario Balotelli fined and suspended for Instagram post

Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli has been fined £25,000, suspended for a match and ordered to attend an "education programme" by the FA as punishment for an Instagram post that provoked claims of racism and anti-semitism.

Mario Balotelli retweeted the offensive image on his Instagram account before removing it after criticism. Credit: Mario Balotelli/Instagram

Balotelli admitted breaching FA rules after apologising for re-posting an image from the computer game 'Super Mario' on his Instagram page which included the comment "jumps like a black man and grabs coins like a Jew".

The Football Association confirmed the punishment, announcing:

Following an Independent Regulatory Commission hearing today, Mario Balotelli has been fined £25,000, suspended for one-match with immediate effect, subject to any appeal, and warned as to his future conduct after he admitted breaching FA Rules in relation to social media.

The charge was that an image the Liverpool player posted on social media was abusive and/or insulting and/or improper, contrary to FA Rule E3(1).

Furthermore, the posting was considered to be an “Aggravated Breach” as defined in FA Rule E3(2) in that it included a reference to ethnic origin and/or colour and/or race and/or nationality and/or religion or belief.

Mr Balotelli has also been ordered to attend an education programme.

– Football Association

White House: Sony hack 'serious national security matter'

Credit: ITV News

The massive cyber attack on Sony Entertainment is being treated as a "serious national security matter", the White House has confirmed.

But White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters that he was unable to confirm if North Korea was responsible for the attack, and said a federal investigation was "progressing".

US officials also said that the National Security Council is now considering a "proportionate response" to the hack.

Putin: 'They will always try to put the bear on a chain'

Vladimir Putin was in defiant mood today. Credit: Reuters

Vladimir Putin was in defiant mood today when he faced his annual news conference, taking questions for over three hours from Russian and international journalists.

Among the Russian president's most eye-catching statements, he claimed Western countries wanted to "keep the bear on a chain" - a reference to a popular symbol of his country.

On the Russian economy recovering

Growth in the world economy is going to be secured. The pace will slow down, but there will be growth. The economy will grow and our economy will come out of its current situation. How long will it take? In the least favourable scenario I think about two years.

On a US-Saudi plot to lower the oil price

We are all witnessing a decline in energy prices. There are all sorts of conversations on why this is happening. Either there’s some kind of a plot by Saudi Arabia and the US to punish Iran or influence the economy of Russia, Venezuela, etc. It may be or it may not be.

On relations with the West

Sometimes I think, maybe it would be better for our bear to sit quiet, rather than chasing around the forest after piglets. To sit eating berries and honey instead. Maybe they will leave it in peace. They will not. Because they will always try to put him on a chain, and as soon as they succeed in doing so they tear out his fangs and his claws.

On his role in the current crisis

Responsibility for everything that happens in a country rests with the head of state, and further down according to rank.

Of course, the current situation has been provoked by external factors above all. But...much of what we planned to do and said we would do to diversify our economy over the last 20 years has not been done.

On Iran's nuclear programme

The Iranian government is showing great flexibility, in my view. I don't really undersand why a finaly agreement has not been signed on Iran's nuclear programme. I hope that will happen in the near future.

On his love life

Don't worry. Everything is fine. He asks 'do you have love?', I say 'what do you mean?', he says 'Do you love someone?', I say, 'Yes', he says 'Does somebody love you?', I say 'Yes'.

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