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Every day, items of interest to you arrive in our email. Our bi-monthly format doesn't lend itself to daily updates. However, this is a small inconvenience to our Contributing Editor Steven H Silver. He's begun this column which will fill you in on recent news in science fiction. We'll be updating the page as he sends in new items.

Did you miss something? Have a look at last month's news page.

Material for possible inclusion here should be sent to Steven H Silver at

30 July 2004
Book Club Formed
Phandemonium, Inc., which is the parent organization for Capricon in Chicago, has announced the formation of the Capricon Book Club. The first meeting of the club will be held at Borders Books & Music, 1700 Maple Avenue in Evanston, Illinois and will meet at 7pm on August 15. The first book to be discussed will be Isaac Asimov's collection I, Robot. Future books will be selected during the meeting.

Bone-devouring Worms Found
Two new species of worm have been discovered in the deep ocean. These worms, belonging to the new genus Osedax, contain bacteria which helps them digest fats and oils from whale skeletons in a symbiotic relationship which may indicate a completely new type of metabolism. The worms do not have eyes, mouths or stomachs. Instead they consist of a balloon-like egg sac, which branches into a greenish root system.

Director Irvin S. Yeaworth, Jr. (b.1926) died on July 19. Yeaworth directed the film "The Blob," which starred Steve McQueen, in 1958. The following year, he directed "4D Man" and in 1960 "Dinosaurus!"

Nobel-winning scientist Francis Crick (b.1916) died in San Diego died on July 28. Crick, along with James Watson, discovered the structure of DNA in 1953. In addition to Crick and Watson, the discovery was based on the work of Rosalind Franklin, who died in 1958 and was not eligible for the Nobel Prize awarded to Crick and Watson in 1962. Crick recently described the discovery as "a series of blunders where we gradually found what the mistakes were."

Announcer Jackson Beck (b.1912) died on July 29. Beck is best known for being the voice who proclaimed "Faster than a speeding bullet. More powerful than a locomotive. Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound." on the Superman radio show. He later provided the voice of Perry White and Lex Luthor in a variety of Superman cartoons, beginning in 1941 until the late 1960s. In addition, he voiced Bluto in numerous Popeye cartoons.

28 July 2004
Complete Seiun Nominations
The nominations for the Seiun Nominations, the Japanese version of the Hugo Awards, have been announced. Winners in these and the Japanese language categories will be announced the weekend of August 21 at the Japanese National Convention. Awards in these two categories will also be presented during the Hugo ceremonies at Noreascon 4. The list was provided by Jim Bailey with translations by his brother, Eric Bailey.

Japanese Long Stories
Dairoku Tairiku (1-2) [The Sixth Continent (1-2)], by Issui Ogawa, Hayakawa Books, Series Ending 08/28/2003
Iria no Sora, UFO no Natsu (1-4) [Iriya's Sky, UFO's Summer (1-4)], by Mizuhito Akiyama, MediaWorks, Series Ending 08/2003
Michibiki no Hoshi (1-4) [Guiding Star (1-4)], by Issui Ogawa, Kadokawa Haruki Corporation, Series Ending 11/25/2003
Marudokku Sukuranburu (1-3) [Mardock Scramble (1-3)], by To Ubukata, Hayakawa Books, Series Ending 07/31/2003
Kioku Osen [Contaminated Memories], by Joji Hayashi, Hayakawa Books 10/31/2003
Kami wa Chinmoku Sezu [The Gods will not Stay Silent], by Hiroshi Yamamoto, Kadokawa Shoten 10/31/2003
Bokyaku no Fune ni Nagare wa Hikari [The City and the Stars], by Hirofumi Tanaka, Hayakawa Books 07/25/2003

Japanese Short Stories
"Rovohr no Wakusei" ("The Ancient Planet of Vohr"), by Issui Ogawa, Hayakawa Books, Appeared in August SF Magazine 08/2003
"Uchu Kenetsu" ("Cosmic Censorship"), by Hosuke Yajiri, Hayakawa Books, Appeared in April SF Magazine 04/2003
"Yoru to Doro no Kaikoban" ("Night and Dirt, the Revised Edition"), by Taka Tobihiro, Hayakawa Books, Appeared in April SF Magazine 04/2003
"Yomibito Shirazu" ("Unaccepted Death"), by Shinji Kajio, Shinchosha, Appearing in "Unacceptable Death" 08/01/2003
"Arakajime Kettei Sareteiru Ashita" ("Tomorrow has already been Decided"), by Yasumi Kobayashi, Hayakawa Books, Appeared in "The Woman Scratching her Eyes" 09/15/2003
"Deidorimu, Tori no Yo ni" ("Daydreaming, Like a Bird"), by Masaki Motonaga, Hayakawa Books, Appeared in July SF Magazine 07/2003

Foreign Long Stories
The Impossible Bird, by Patrick O'Leary/Trans. Naoya Nakahara
Heaven's Reach, by David Brin/Trans. Akinobu Sakai
Leviathan, by James Byron Huggins/Trans. Toru Nakamura
The Drive-In, by Joe R. Lansdale/Trans. Koji Onoue
The Other Wind, by Ursula K. Le Guin/Trans. Masako Shimizu
Das Jesus Video, by Andreas Eschbach/Trans. Yoshio Hirai
Ethan of Athos, by Lois McMaster Bujoid/Trans. Ayako Ogiso
Fastwalker, by Jacques Vallee/Trans. Takeyoshi Inobe

Foreign Short Stories
"Hell is the Absence of God," by Ted Chiang/Trans. Yoshimichi Furusawa
"Appropriate Love," by Greg Egan/Trans. Makoto Yamigishi
"Lobsters," by Charles Stross/Trans. Akinobu Sakai
"Liking What You See - A Documentary," by Ted Chiang/Trans. Hisashi Asakura
"Maturity," by Theodore Sturgeon/Trans. Yoshiaki Shimojima Shobunsha
"Great Wall of Mars," by Alastair Reynolds/Trans. Naoya Nakahara

Uchuu no Stellvia (Stellvia)
Rahxephon Tagen Hensokyoku (Rahxephon: Pluralitas Concentio)
Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
Dorama Ai no Uta - Tenshi Mitai (Love Poems Drama - Twin Angels Story)
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
Sumeba Miyako no Cosmos So Suttoko Taisen Dokkoida (Why Not Live in the Cosmos House, The Great Stupid War Dokkoida)
Obaman Kingugeina (Overman King Gainer)

Kanata Kara (From Far Away), by Kyoko Hikawa, Hakusensha, LaLa, Series Ending in March Issue
Jojo no Kimyo na Boken Dairokubu - SutonOshan (1-17) (JoJo's Bizarre Adventure Part 6 - Stone Ocean (1-17)), by Hirohiko Araki, Shueisha, Jump Comics, Series Ending 07/04/2003
Ruka to ita Natsu (1-4) (Summer with Ruka (1-4)), by Masaya Hokazono, Shueisha, Young Jump Comics Ultra, Series Ending 11/24/2003
Enburion Rodo (1-7) (Embryon Rod (1-7)), by Hajime Yamamura, Wani Books, Gum Comics, Series Ending 02/2003
Kurono Aizu Ransa (1-3) (Chrono Eyes Glancer (1-3)), by Yuichi Hasegawa, Kodansha, Magazine Z Comics, Series Ending 11/21/2003
Strega!, by Koichiro Yonemura, Shueisha, Ultra Jump, Series Ending in November Issue
Juosei (1-5) (Planet of the Beast King (1-5)), by Natsumi Itsuki, Hakusensha, Jets Comics, Series Ending 04/28/2003

Katsuya Terada
Hikaru Tanaka
Juryoku Iwago
Mikio Masuda
Yoko Fujiwara
Daisuke Nishijima
Takashi Murakami
Tanno Shinobu

Warera no Yujin Uchusen, Nihon Dokuji no Uchu Yuso Shisutemu "Fuji" (A Manned Spaceship of Our Own, The Japanese Manned Spacecraft Concept, "Fuji"), by Shinya Matsuura, Shokabo 09/2003
Igyo no Wakusei - Keigai Wakusei Keisei Riron kara (Strange Planets - The Theory of the Formation of Extraterrestrial Planets), by Shigeru Ida, NHK Publishing 05/01/2003
Uchu e no Pasupoto 2 M - V&H - 2A Roketto Shuzai Niki (Passport to the Universe 2: A Diary of Findings on the M - V&H - 2A Rocket), by Yuichi Sasamoto, Asahi Sonorama 10/2003
Shinkai no Pairotto (Deep Sea Pilot), by Shingo Fujisaki, Tashiro Shozo, Kantaro Fujioka Kobunsha 07/17/2003
Ano koro no Mirai Hoshi Shinichi no Yogen (The Future According to Shinichi Hoshi), by Hazuki Saisho, Shinchosha 04/2003
Amerika de Nihon no Anime ha, Dou Mirarete Kita ka? (How is Japanese Animation Viewed in America?), by Satoshi Kusanagi, Tokuma Shoten 07/23/2003

Oritsu Kagaku Hakubutsukan Shirizu I (The Royal Museum of Science Series I - Star Tales), Takara, Kaiyodo, Series Starting 08/18/2003
Nomination Reason 1 - Using Toys and Candy to Introduce a Passion for Learning about the Universe
Nomination Reason 2 - Visual Presentation
Shinshugo no Yuujin Uchu Hiko (The Shenzho 5 Manned Spaceflight Launch), People's Republic of China 10/15/2003-10/16/2003
Nomination Reason 1 - Recognizing the Outstanding Achievement
Nomination Reason 2 - Development of the First New Space Ship in a Long Time
Nomination Reason 3 - Feels like a Vision of Arthur Clarke's World
Meiji/Taisho/Showa Nichibei Kaku Senki Shusei (A Collection of Imaginary Military Tales of Meiji, Taisho and Showa about the War Between the U.S. and Japan), Edited by Yasuo Nagayama, Chuokoron-Shinsha 07/2003
Nomination Reason - The Editing

Are Fans Brains?
British fan Nick Mills taped an episode of the BBC game show "The Brain of Britain" on July 27. The show has been running since the 1960s, although the format dates back to 1953 when it was incorporated into another show, "What Do You Know?"

Pre-Roman Site at Pompeii
Archaeologists from Basilicata University have uncovered the remains of a structure in Pompeii which was built by the Samnites, who ruled in Pompeii before the Romans. The find came while the researchers were looking for Pompeii's harbor and found what appears to be a Samnite temple to the goddess of love, Mephitis. The Samnites expanded into the area in the 6th century BCE and fought three wars with the Romans, culminating in the Samnite destruction by L. Cornelius Sulla in the first century BCE. The Samnite temple was discovered under a temple built to Venus by Sulla to celebrate his victory.

Shuttle Tanks Redesigned
NASA has announced that prior to the next space shuttle launch, the foam which has been used as insulation on the rocket boosters will be replaced with heaters. NASA blames a piece of falling foam with damaging the leading edge of the Columbia's wing which resulted in the destruction of Columbia during re-entry on February 1, 2003. NASA is also installing new monitors inside the wings and cameras on the belly of the shuttle.

Space Race 2004
Burt Rutan, whose SpaceShipOne became the first private vehicle to reach space, has announced that he will make his two flights for the X-Prize on September 29 and October 4, only five days apart despite the prize's requirement of two flights fourteen days apart. The da Vinci project, another team angling for the X-Prize has announced they will reveal their design on August 5 and will launch shortly after Rutan attempts his flights.

27 July 2004
Star Wars Title
George Lucas has announced that the title of Star Wars Episode III will be "Revenge of the Sith." This title hearkens back to the originally announced title for the third film, "Revenge of the Jedi" which eventually became "Return of the Jedi."

Speculative Literature Foundation Grants
The Speculative Literature Foundation (SLF) has announced the creation of its first annual travel grant of $600, designed to assist writers (fiction, poetry, drama, creative non-fiction) in their research. The grant is designed to help cover airfares, lodging and other expenses involved in a research trip. Applications must be received by September 30th 2004. For more information, see

Matching Grants Announced
SFSFC issued three matching grant challenges. It will match up to $1000 donated to the Clarion West Writers' Workshop, up to $3000 to help MCFI/Noreascon 4 purchase high quality exhibit shipping cases for storage, protection, and transportation of Worldcon history exhibits. Noreascon 4 will purchase the cases for use by all future Worldcons, and a $600 matching grant to Strange Horizons to help cover web hosting and operating expenses.

Rowling Expecting
Best-selling and Hugo Award-winning author J.K. Rowling has announced that she is expecting her third child. In her announcement, Rowling promised that her pregnancy will not delay the publication of the sixth Harry Potter novel, currently scheduled for 2005.

Fan Otto Pfeifer died on July 23 at Avanere hospice in Shoreline, Washington. Pfeifer was a fan humorist whose greatest activity occurred in the pages of SAPS over four decades. For the last few years, Pfeifer was suffering from Alzheimer's Disease.

22 July 2004
Stamp Push
Chris Barkley is promoting a plan for several science fiction editors, authors, and artists to be honored on U.S. Postage stamps. Barkley notes that the process for honoring people on stamps is a long one and urges people to sign copies of his letter and send it to the United States Postal Service. Copies can be obtained from him at

Composer Jerry Goldsmith (b.1929) died on July 21. Goldsmith composed scores for Hollywood dating back to the 1940s, including many science fiction and fantasy films. Some of his work included "The Twilight Zone," "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea," the original "Planet of the Apes," "Logan's Run," "Alien" and Star Trek: Nemesis," among others. Goldsmith died of cancer.

Comic book illustrator Rudy Palais died at the beginning on July. From 1941-1962, he illustrated the Classics Illustrated series . He also drew many of the early titles for EC Comics, Science Comics and Catman Comics.

19 July 2004
Interaction Names Co-Chair
Interaction, the 2005 World Science Fiction Convention to be held in Glasgow, Scotland, has announced that Colin Harris will serve as co-chair alongside Vince Doherty. In addition, Paul Treadaway has been promoted from Vice Chair to Deputy Chair of the convention with specific duties to include responsibility for the convention's public profile and membership recruitment.

Largest European Dinosaur Found
Scientists have discovered the largest dinosaur ever discovered in Europe in a field in Riodeva, Spain. For generations local farmers had been clearing stones from their almond orchards. Paleontologist Alberto Cobos recognized the stones as fossils. He and colleagues have discovered a dinosaur with an estimated weight of 40-50 tons and a bone as large as a person, nearly 5'10" in height. Discovered nar the site of the discovery of Aragosaurus, Spain's first new species, these fossils may indicate another new species of dinosaur.

18 July 2004
Author Roxanne Hutton (b.1954) died on July 16 due to brain cancer. Hutton sold three science fiction stories during her brief career, two to Artemis and one (as yet unpublished) to Writers of the Future, for which she won second prize. Hutton worked as a columnist and was a graduate of the Odyssey Writers Workshop.

17 July 2004
No Monolith
The Cassini spacecraft has returned photographs of Saturn's moon Iapetus from a distance of 1.8 million miles. Iapetus is distinct in that its two sides have completely different albedos, with one hemisphere appearing dark and the other light. Scientists hope the pictures will help determine why Iapetus does have a dark side. Already, the pictures seem to support the idea that it is caused by some internal material as opposed to ejecta from the moon Phoebe. In the novel 2001, Arthur C. Clarke placed one of the monoliths on Iapetus (moved to Io for the film and sequels).

Alien Purchased
Irish singer Chris de Burgh, best known for the song "Lady in Red," has purchased the alien model which burst from John Hurt's chest in the 1979 film "Alien" for £29,875. De Burgh explained he bought it because it was a "defining moment in cinema history for its sheer horror."

Return to Mercury
NASA has announced that it will launch the Messenger planetary probe to Mercury on August 2. This will be the first spacecraft to fly to Mercury since Mariner 10 in the mid-1970s. Messenger will make its first Mercury fly-by in 2008 but not take up orbit around the planet until 2011. The project calls for a year-long orbit in which Messenger will map the planet and look for ice in polar craters. Less than half of Mercury surfaced was mapped by Mariner.

Sci Fi Channel Admits to Hoax
The Sci Fi Channel has admitted that the publicity around their biography of M. Night Shyamalan, "The Buried Secret of M. Night Shyamalan," is based on a hoax. Shyamalan, who directed the Nebula-winning film "The Sixth Sense" was initially involved with the project, but broke off his participation when questions became too personal. Sci Fi further admitted that portions of the documentary, such as the story of a drowning near Shyamalan's home when he was a boy, are fabrications because the network wanted viewers to walk away wondering what was real and what wasn't.

Emmy Nominations
The Fifty-Sixth Emmy Award Nominations have been announced. The following categories all have at least one nominee of genre interest. The Awards will be presented at a televised event on September 19.

Outstanding Animated Program (For Programming Less than One Hour)
Futurama, The Sting
Samurai Jack, The Birth of Evil
The Simpsons, The Way We Weren't
South Park, Christmas In Canada
SpongeBob SquarePants, SpongeBob BC

Outstanding Animated Program (For Programming One Hour Or More)
The Powerpuff Girls: Twas The Fight Before Christmas
Star Wars: Clone Wars

Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special
And Starring Pancho Villa As Himself
Angels In America, Part 1 - Millenium Approaches
Battlestar Galactica, Night 1
44 Minutes: The North Hollywood Shoot Out
Ike: Countdown To D-Day
Something The Lord Made

Outstanding Makeup For A Series, Miniseries, Movie Or A Special (Prosthetic)
Nip/Tuck, Pilot
Star Trek: Enterprise, Zero Hour
Tracey Ullman In The Trailer Tales

Outstanding Music Composition For A Series (Dramatic Underscore)
Dead Like Me, Pilot Music by Stewart Copeland
Line Of Fire, Eminence Front Larry Groupé, Composer
Pandemic: Facing AIDS, Uganda/Thailand Philip Glass, Music Composer
The Simpsons, Treehouse Of Horror XIV Music by Alf Clausen
Star Trek: Enterprise, Similitude Velton Ray Bunch, Composer
24, 6:00 AM - 7:00 AM Music by Sean Callery

Outstanding Music And Lyrics
The Fairly OddParents, Abracatastrophe (Song: Wish Come True!) Music by Guy Moon, Lyrics by Butch Hartman and Steve Marmel
Futurama, The Devil's Hands Are Idle Playthings (Song: I Want My Hands Back) Music and Lyrics by Ken Keeler
Sesame Street Presents "The Street We Live On", (Song: The Street I Live On) Mike Renzi, Composer, Lou Berger, Lyricist
The Simpsons, The President Wore Pearls (Song: Vote for a Winner) Music by Alf Clausen, Lyrics by Dana Gould
Until The Violence Stops, (Song: Because You Are Beautiful) Music by Toni Childs, David Ricketts, and Eddie Free Lyrics by Toni Childs

Outstanding Sound Editing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special
And Starring Pancho Villa As Himself
Battlestar Galactica, Night 2
Caesar, Night 2
44 Minutes: The North Hollywood Shoot Out
Spartacus, Night 2

Outstanding Sound Mixing For Nonfiction Programming (Single Or Multi-Camera)
The Amazing Race, I Could Never Have Been Prepared For What I'm Looking At Right Now
American Masters, Judy Garland: By Myself
Dinosaur Planet, Alpha's Egg; Pod's Travel
Failure Is Not An Option
Survivor, They're Back

Outstanding Special Visual Effects For A Series
Dead Like Me, Pilot
Star Trek: Enterprise, Countdown
Star Trek: Enterprise, The Council
Stargate SG-1, Lost City Part 2
Stephen King's Kingdom Hospital, Thy Kingdom Come (Pilot)

Outstanding Special Visual Effects For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special
Angels In America, Part 2 - Perestroika
Battlestar Galactica, Night 1
Dreamkeeper, Part 1
10.5, Night 1
The Winning Season (A Johnson & Johnson Spotlight Presentation)

14 July 2004
Aeon Award Announced
The Irish magazine Albedo One has announced the creation of the Aeon Award. Entries should be no more than 60,000 words and must be accompanied by a reading fee of US$2 or Ĵ3. The winner will be chosen from a shortlist by Ian Watson and announced in August 2005 at the 63rd World Science Fiction Convention in Glasgow, Scotland. For more information, see

Tiger Killed
The escaped tiger which belonged to Steve Sipek, who portrayed Tarzaen under the screen name Steve Hawkes, was killed by police in Florida. The officer who shot the tiger claimed it had lunged at him, but Sipek disputed that account, saying the tiger was asleep when it was shot five times.

Artist Sam McKim (b.1925) died on July 9. Although McKim auditioned for the role of Pinocchio in the 1930s and lost the part, he was hired by Disney as an artist in 1954 and drew the first maps of Disneyland as well as preliminary sketches for many of the other Disney parks and the four World's Fair exhibits Disney produced in 1964-5.

13 July 2004
Tarzan's Tiger Loose
A tiger owned by Steve Sipek has been reported escaped in Loxahatchee, Florida. Sipek appeared as Tarzan in two films in the early 1970s, "Tarzan, King of the Jungle," and "Tarzan and the Rainbow," both under the name Steve Hawkes. In addition to the escaped tiger, Sipek owns another tiger, two lions, a black leopard and a cougar.

12 July 2004
Another Record for Spider-Man 2
"Spider-Man 2" set another record as it became the fastest film to mark $250 million in total ticket sales in just 12 days, one day faster than previous record holder, "Shrek 2." "Spider-Man 2" remained the number one film at the box office over the weekend.

McFarlane Loses Suit
Todd McFarlane Productions has lost a law suit brought by former Hockey player Tony Twist alleging that McFarlane unlawfully used Twist's name for the character of a mob boss in the Spawn comic books in the early 90s. In the second trial on the issue, Twist was awarded $15 million for the infringement. McFarlane's lawyers have said they will appeal. In 2000, Twist was awarded $24.5 million, but the judge overruled the decision and a new trial was ordered. The US Supreme Court rejected an appeal by McFarlane.

Paula Danziger (b.1944) suffered an heart attack in June and died on July 8. Danziger wrote numerous children's novels, including the science fiction book This Place Has No Atmosphere. She began publishing with the novel The Cat Ate My Gymsuit.

Actress Isabel Sanford (b.1917) died on July 8 of natural causes after being hospitalized on July 4. Sanford played the role of a judge in the vampire spoof "Love at First Bite," but got her start in "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner." She received her greatest fame playing Louise Jefferson on "The Jeffersons" and in 1981 became the first African American woman to win an Emmy for that role.

11 July 2004
Campbell Sturgeon Awards
The John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best science fiction novel of 2003 was awarded to Jack McDevitt for the novel Omega. The Theodore Sturgeon Award for best science fiction short story of 2003 was awarded to Kage Baker for "The Empress of Mars."

Anders Resigns
Lou Anders has announced his resignation as Senior Editor of Argosy. Anders will be focusing his attention on his position as Editorial Director of Pyr, a division of Prometheus Books. Anders oversaw the resurgence of Argosy and the publication of its first two issues.

8 July 2004
SESFA Nominees Announced
The Southeastern Science Fiction Achievement Award nominees have been announced by John C. Snider. Hosted by scifidimensions, the awards recognize achievement in writing for authors from the American south east.

Best Novel
Hyperthought, by M.M. Buckner
Omega, by Jack McDevitt
Pattern Recognition, by William S. Gibson
Veniss Underground, by Jeff VanderMeer

Best Short Fiction
"Daddy Mention and the Monday Skull," by Andy Duncan
"The Door Gunner," by Michael Bishop
"The Haw River Trolley," by Andy Duncan
"Threads," by Jessica Reisman

Lifetime Achievement in SF/F/H
Joe Haldeman
Robert E. Howard
Murray Leinster
Manly Wade Wellman

Artist John Cullen Murphy (b.1919) died on July 2. Murphy is best known as the illustrator of the Prince Valiant comic strip, which he began to illustrate in 1970. Beginning in 1979, his son wrote the scripts. Murphy retired in March and turned the illustration over to Gary Gianni of Chicago. He became interested in illustration when his neighbor, Norman Rockwell, asked him to model for a cover of the Saturday Evening Post when Murphy was 15.

7 July 2004
SFWA Elects Officers
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America have elected their officers for the 2003-2004 year. The office of Eastern Regional Director remains vacant with Catherine Asaro fulfilling the duties until a new director is appointed.
Catherine Asaro, President
Andrew Burt, Vice-President
Deborah Ross (Wheeler), secretary
Justin Stanchfield, Treasurer
Alexis Glynn Latner, South-Central Regional Director
Sheila Finch, Western Regional Director
Derryl Murphy, Canadian Regional Director
James A. Hartley, Overseas Regional Director

Spider-Man Sets Another Record
"Spider-Man 2," which last week set a record for highest first day box-office for a film opening on a Wednesday, has also set a record for the highest box-office for the first five days, with 180 million dollars. The previous record was set last month by "Shrek 2." "Shrek 2" currently ranks at number 5 on the all-time highest grossing films, having surpassed "Spider-Man" and is right behind "Star Wars: Episode 1: The Phantom Menace."

2 July 2004
Doohan Suffering Alzheimer's
James Doohan, who portrayed Montgomery Scott in the original "Star Trek" series and subsequent films, has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease. The 84 year old actor began his career in the television series "Space Command." In was also among the forces which landed in Normandy on D-Day. A tribute to Doohan is scheduled to be held in Hollywood in August.

Locus Award Winners
Locus has announced this year's Locus Award winners. While the award has traditionally been presented at Westercon, this year's awards will be presented at Noreascon 4 in Boston over Labor Day weekend.
SF Novel: Ilium, by Dan Simmons
Fantasy Novel: Paladin of Souls, by Lois McMaster Bujold
First Novel: Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, by Cory Doctorow
Young Adult Novel: The Wee Free Men, by Terry Pratchett
Novella: "The Cookie Monster," by Vernor Vinge
Novelette: "A Study in Emeralds," by Neil Gaiman
Short Story: "Closing Time," by Neil Gaiman
Collection: Changing Planes, by Ursula K. Le Guin
Anthology: The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twentieth Annual Collected, edited by Gardner Dozois
Non-Fiction/Art: The Sandman: Endless Nights, by Neil Gaiman, et al.
Editor: Gardner Dozois
Magazine: The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction
Book Publisher: Tor
Artist: Michael Whelan

Rusch to Write Column
Kristine Kathryn Rusch will contribute a regular opinion column to Ĉon Speculative Fiction, an electronic magazine/anthology set to launch in October. Ĉon will only be available in ebook formats and will be on sale beginning in January 2005.

First Fountain Award Announced
The Speculative Literature Foundation has announced the winner of the first Fountain Award to Alison Smith for her story "The Specialist." This prize, which includes a $1000 award, is given to a short story of exceptional literary quality. The judges for the 2003 award included Heinz Insu Fenkl, John Kessel, Larissa Lai, Kelly Link, and Maureen McHugh.

Spider-Man 2 Sets Records
Opening on Wednesday, June 30, "Spider-Man 2" set the record for Wednesday opening day box-office take with $40.5 million. The overall opening day record belongs to The Matrix Reloaded, which opened to $42.5 million.

Wooden Rocket Awards
The 2004 Wooden Rocket Awards have been announced by Crowsnest. This year Crowsnest received more than 68,000 nominations.
Best Online Magazine: Science Fiction Weekly
Best Print to Web Magazine: Locus Online
Best Author Site: Hatrack River, Orson Scott Card
Best Artist Site: Bob Eggleton
Best Gallery Site: Worlds of Wonder
Best Print Publisher Site: Tom Doherty Associates
Best E-Book Publisher Site: Baen Webscriptions
Best E-Book Site: J.A. Edwards
Best Official Movie Site: The Lord of the Rings
Best Fan Movie Site: DuneWorld
Best Official TV Site: Stargate SG-1
Best Fan TV Site: Firefly Fans
Best Online SFF Store: Other Realms
Best Fan Site Home Page: Making Light, Teresa Nielsen Hayden
Best Directory Site: SadGeezer's Guide to Cult TV Sci-Fi
Best Convention/Society Site: Dragon*Con
Best Foreign Language Site: SFU: Le Portail de la Science Fiction du Fantastique

Cassini In Orbit
The Cassini space probe entered orbit around the planet Saturn after a six and a half year voyage on the morning of July 1. Cassini is scheduled to orbit the planet and its 31 moons for the next four years, although the current trajectory is its closest approach to the planet and its ring system. Within hours, of moving into orbit, Cassini was already surprising scientists with pictures of sharp-edged rings around Saturn.

Gyros repaired
Following a five hour forty minute space walk, the gyros on the International Space Station were repaired. Gennady Padalka and Mike Finkle had attempted to repair the system last week, but the attempt was aborted when Finkle's suit suffered a rapid decrease in oxygen pressure.

No Daleks for Who
After negotiations broke down between the BBC and the estate of writer Terry Nation, the BBC announced that the Daleks, which were created by Nation, would not be appearing in the new Doctor Who Series set to launch in 2005 starring Christopher Eccleston.

Actor Marlon Brando (b.1924), best known for his role as Vito Corleone in "The Godfather" and Stanley Kowalski in "A Streetcar Named Desire" died on July 1. Brando, who had a reputation for being difficult, was lured out of retirement in 1978 to play the role of Jor-El in the film "Superman," for which he earned $4 million. Brando won two Oscars, for his work in "On the Waterfront" and "The Godfather," although he refused to accept the latter award.

Copyright © 2004 Steven H Silver

Steven H Silver is a four-time Hugo Nominee for Best Fan Writer and the editor of the anthologies Wondrous Beginnings, Magical Beginnings, and Horrible Beginnings (DAW Books, January, February and March, 2003). In addition to maintaining several bibliographies and the Harry Turtledove website, Steven is heavily involved in convention running and publishes the fanzine Argentus.

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