The prize for biggest Hollywood money-maker for 2013 goes to former pro wrestler Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. According to the annual Forbes list of bankable actors, Johnson-starring movies earned $1.3-billion (U.S.) last year, which put him slightly ahead of runner-up Robert Downey Jr. at $1.2-billion. Rounding out the top five on the list is Steve Carell ($964-million), Vin Diesel ($887-million) and Sandra Bullock ($862-million).
Just as we suspected: Parents see their youngest children as smaller than they really are. Australian researchers recently rounded up mothers whose children were in the two- to six-year-old range and asked them to estimate how tall their children were on a featureless wall. When it came to guessing the heights of their youngest ones, they fell short at an average of three inches a child. The researchers also conducted an online survey of 747 mothers, of whom 70 per cent confirmed that their first child suddenly looked much bigger after the birth of their second child.
Who knew George Zimmerman was an artist? Best known for being acquitted of murder charges in the 2012 death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, Zimmerman has put original artwork up for auction on eBay under the user name “therealgeorgez.” One painting features an image of the American flag with the words “God, One Nation with Liberty and Justice For All” emblazoned on it. To date, the painting has garnered seven bids, with the highest being $212.50 (U.S.).
Apple has released a holiday-themed TV ad. The two-minute spot appeared this week to promote AirPlay, a new Apple feature that enables users to stream content from their iOS device to their television sets. As for the storyline, the ad is a brisk recap of “A Harris Family Holiday,” with images of parents and kids folicking in the snow during the festive season. The ad was filmed entirely with an Apple iPhone 5S.
Kudos to Casey Neistat for thinking of the less fortunate this holiday season. Hollywood studio Twentieth Century Fox hired the high-end marketing whiz to produce a video for it in support of the coming Ben Stiller movie The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. But instead of using the money to make the promo, Neistat used the entire budget to help survivors of the recent typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. Neistat says he gave Fox the heads up on his plan and that the studio signed off on the decision.