T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots

Capping off a year of game-changing firsts, T-Mobile US, Inc. today announced it’s got some skin in the Super Bowl this Sunday, airing its first ever TV commercials produced especially for the Super Bowl – both featuring Tim Tebow making the case for contract freedom.

T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots

T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots (Photo from ad shot by Stacy Wall, Imperial Woodpecker Prod.)

T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots

T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots (Photo from ad shot by Stacy Wall, Imperial Woodpecker Prod.)

The commercials (www.youtube.com/watch?v=ItbUe2QZ2CQ and www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyK2UG334C8), which will debut during the game on Sunday, are the first T-Mobile spots created specifically for the Super Bowl. They feature Tebow in a series of tongue-in-cheek vignettes showing how awesome life can be when you aren’t tied down to a long-term contract.

T-Mobile came to me with a great idea around a fun and creative Super Bowl spot. I love what they’ve been doing and how they treat their customers,” said Tim Tebow. “It was a blast filming all of the various scenes, and working with T-Mobile to highlight their concept around no contracts for their customers.”

T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots

T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots (Photo from ad shot by Stacy Wall, Imperial Woodpecker Prod.)

T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots

T-Mobile Drafts NFL Free Agent Tim Tebow to Showcase Contract Freedom in Two New Super Bowl XLVIII TV Spots (Photo from ad shot by Stacy Wall, Imperial Woodpecker Prod.)

Contract Freedom,” T-Mobile’s latest game-changing offer announced earlier this month, pays contract termination fees to any new or existing customers who port-in their number to a post-paid Simple Choice plan and trade-in their eligible phones(ii). T-Mobile offers up to $300 per line for smart phones traded-in and reimburses contract termination fees up to $350 per line, for a total of up to $650 per line. This provides families (up to five lines) with a quick and easy way to escape carrier annual service contracts that have deterred them from pursuing a better and more affordable wireless experience with T-Mobile.

Over the past year, T-Mobile has become America’s No.1 choice in wireless by eliminating the frustrations that the wireless industry is so famous for, with moves such as eliminating annual wireless service contracts and offering customers upgrade flexibility and freedom(i). In its latest move announced earlier this month, T-Mobile announced its ground-breaking “Contract Freedom” offer to pay off the contract termination fees of customers who switch to T-Mobile from other carriers and trade in their devices.

Why would anyone in their right mind stay in a situation that restricts them?” said John Legere, president and CEO of T-Mobile US. “We want everyone to be able to exercise their own choice which comes with contract freedom. We thought Tim Tebow was the perfect choice for these spots. And, like T-Mobile, he has the grit, determination and passion for doing the right thing.”

We’ve seen such a huge response from our Contract Freedom launch that we wanted to showcase the momentum of our latest Un-carrier move on a much grander stage,” said Mike Sievert, chief marketing officer of T-Mobile US. “You can’t get more visibility for a big message like this than at the Super Bowl, and who better than Tim Tebow to embody the relevance of contract freedom.”

[i]Based on net postpaid phone subscriber additions in Q2-Q4 2013 combined.

[ii]Eligible device trade-in, qual’g service, device purchase, & port-in from eligible carriers req’d. Up to five lines. See participating store for details

General Mills Details New Products Launching in Company’s Second-Half of Fiscal 2014

Company enhances focus on quality product innovation to deliver unwavering consumer demand for taste, health and convenience at a good value

Today General Mills announced an aggressive lineup of new products set to bring more consumers to General Mills’ leading brands. More than 50 new items will debut from the company’s U.S. Retail business with dozens more rolling out in international markets during the second-half of the company’s fiscal 2014, which ends in May.

This lineup builds on strong introductions during the company’s first-half of fiscal 2014, with standouts including Nature Valley Protein Granola, Yoplait Greek blended yogurt, Nature Valley Soft Baked Oatmeal Squares and Old El Paso frozen entrees.

The latest wave of new products from General Mills is poised to meet growing consumer interest in snacks, protein-rich breakfast items, and globally-inspired convenience meals.

Today General Mills announced an aggressive lineup of new products set to bring more consumers to General Mills' leading brands and drive profitability for the company. More than 50 new items will debut from the company's U.S. Retail business with dozens more rolling out in international markets during the second-half of the company's fiscal 2014, which ends in May.  (PRNewsFoto/General Mills)

Today General Mills announced an aggressive lineup of new products set to bring more consumers to General Mills’ leading brands and drive profitability for the company. More than 50 new items will debut from the company’s U.S. Retail business with dozens more rolling out in international markets during the second-half of the company’s fiscal 2014, which ends in May. (PRNewsFoto/General Mills)

Snack Foods on the Rise

Consumers are seeking snack foods more than ever. General Mills continues to lead growth in the grain snacks category in the U.S., adding almost 10 points of market share over the past five years. Through the first-half of fiscal 2014, strong new product innovation from Fiber One and Nature Valley has driven a gain of nearly four more share points and retail sales gains of 11 percent.

In the second-half of the fiscal year, General Mills is launching a diverse lineup of new items across its portfolio geared to meet consumers’ increasing appetite for snacks that offer added benefits like protein, fiber, whole grains, or a full serving of a fruit or vegetable.

Most notable:

  • Nature Valley Breakfast Biscuits – Available in Blueberry and Honey flavors, the new breakfast biscuits provide 26 grams of whole grain, 5 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber per serving.
  • Fiber One Meal Bars – The Fiber One franchise enters the nutrition bar category with new Fiber One Meal Bars touting 10 grams of protein, 9 grams of fiber and fortified with 14 vitamins and minerals. Available in Chocolate Peanut Butter, Strawberry Greek Yogurt and Dark Chocolate Almond varieties.
  • Yoplait Greek 100  Taste plus protein all in 100 calories. New indulgent flavors of Yoplait Greek 100 include Apple Pie and Strawberry Cheesecake.
  • Yoplait Light Dessert Mix-Ins – Yoplait Light Dessert Mix-Ins come with a serving of yogurt and a separate pack of toppings. Consumers can mix together flavors like Key Lime Pie with Graham Cracker Crumbles, Boston Cream Pie with Chocolate Cookie Crumbles, and Coconut Cream Pie with Graham Cracker Crumbles.
  • Nature Valley Nut Clusters (exclusive to convenience stores) – These bite-sized clusters of nuts, dried fruit and seeds pack in 8 grams of protein per serving. Nature Valley Nut Clusters come in two varieties: Roasted Nut and Seed, and Apple Cinnamon.
  • Cascadian Farm Protein Bars – For consumers seeking alternative protein, these new bars are made with organic pea protein and are available in Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip and Honey Roasted Nut.
  • LA RABAR uber bars – These sweet, salty and chewy bars add two new decadent flavors: Dark Chocolate Turtle and Dark Chocolate Peanut.
  • Green Giant savory snacks – Building on the growing popularity of its veggie snack chips, Green Giant is introducing new Baked Sweet Potato Fries and Baked Veggie Puffs.
  • Chex Mix Popped – Popped popcorn plus traditional Chex Mix combine for a lighter snack option. Available in Sweet & Salty and White Cheddar flavors.
  • Chex Chips (exclusive to convenience stores) – A bigger, puffier version of the Chex pieces consumers love, in four bold flavors: Caramelized Onion, Cheddar Jalapeño, Cinnamon & Sugar, and Wasabi.
  • Food Should Taste Good Pita Puffs – Available in four sophisticated flavors – Pesto, Chive, Cinnamon Sugar, and Multigrain – these pita puffs are big on flavor with a light, crisp texture.

Breakfast Still a Great Start

Ready-to-eat cereal is still the most popular at-home breakfast choice in the U.S., with more than 90 percent of U.S. households purchasing cereal each year. Big G has led category performance for several years and gained share through the first half of fiscal 2014. General Mills plans to drive growth in the second-half by bringing product news and innovation to the cereal aisle with:

  • Fiber One Protein Cereal – For protein seekers, this sweetened granola cereal offers 10 grams of protein with milk and 20 percent Daily Value of fiber. Available in Maple Brown Sugar and Cranberry Almond varieties.
  • Nature Valley Protein Granola – Great taste plus 10 grams of protein per serving, the new Cranberry Almond flavor is ideal with milk, on top of yogurt or all on its own.
  • Multi-Grain Cheerios Dark Chocolate Crunch – Dark chocolate flavored O’s and clusters made with real cocoa and five different whole grains, the newest Multi-Grain Cheerios variety provides 15 grams of whole grain, 9 grams of sugar and just 110 calories per serving.
  • Chocolate Toast Crunch – Consumers who love those irresistible squares will be excited to try this new chocolate variety.
  • Cascadian Farm Graham Crunch – These delicious organic graham squares are made with wheat, rice, oats and a sprinkle of sugar. Continue reading

Eddy Anemian – Winner of the H&M Design Award 2014

The winner of the H&M Design Award 2014 is Eddy Anemian, a 24 year-old student at La Cambre in Brussels. The winning collection was presented with a fashion show at Mercedes-Benz Stockholm Fashion Week. In addition to the show, Eddy has won €50,000 and the opportunity to sell pieces developed from his collection in selected H&M stores and online later this autumn.

HMDA2014_Eddy_Anemian_portrait

The H&M Design Award jury included fashion designer Erdem, actress Michelle Dockery, style expert Michelle Harper, executive fashion editor of Vogue UK Serena Hood, senior fashion editor of Vogue Italy Sara Maino, as well as H&M’s creative head of design Ann-Sofie Johansson, and H&M’s creative advisor Margareta van den Bosch.

All of the judges fell in love with Eddy’s collection, both the romance of how it looks when it is worn, and the extraordinary skill of his work seen up close. He is a worthy winner, and a bright new star for fashion’s future,” says Ann-Sofie Johansson, H&M’s creative head of design.

Eddy’s work was very beautiful. The textile techniques used were interesting, as well as the elegant silhouettes he created. The future is very bright for him. I’m excited to see what he will do next,” says fashion designer Erdem.

Eddy, from Saint Chamond in France, won the H&M Design Award 2014 with his fourth-year collection titled They Can Cut All The Flowers, They Cannot Keep Spring From Coming. It was inspired by Tilda Swinton in the movie I Am Love, and the French painter Ingres, with floral upholstery fabrics cut and reconstructed into fluid shapes, contrasted with flounces of waterproof fabric with the effect of marble. Eddy is now in his final year at La Cambre, and hopes to one day have his own label. Continue reading

POV’s “American Promise” Is a Rare and Compelling Exploration of Race, Class and Opportunity in America, Monday, Feb. 3, 2014 on PBS

Two African-American Boys Enter a Prestigious Private School and Their Families Confront the Opportunities and Frustrations Presented by the Changing Face of Success in America

A Co-production of Rada Film Group with ITVS and POV’sDiverse Voices Project, Which Receive Funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; Film Is Part ofAmerican Graduate: Let’s Make It Happen. A Co-presentation with the National Black Programming Consortium.

American Promise provides an outstanding, honest portrayal of the complexities involved in steering black boys to success where cultural barriers and environmental obstacles still remain.”
Alvin F. Poussaint, MD, Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

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American Promise is an intimate and provocative account, recorded over 12 years, of the experiences of two middle-class African-American boys who entered a very prestigious–and historically white–private school on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. The Dalton School had made a commitment to recruit students of color, and five-year-old best friends Idris Brewster and Oluwaseun (Seun) Summers of Brooklyn were two of the gifted children who were admitted. The boys were placed in a demanding environment that provided new opportunities and challenges, if little reflection of their cultural identities.

Filmmakers Joe Brewster and Michèle Stephenson

Filmmakers Joe Brewster and Michèle Stephenson

Idris’ parents, Joe, a Harvard- and Stanford-trained psychiatrist, and Michèle, a Columbia Law School graduate and filmmaker, decided to film the boys’ progress starting in 1999. They and members of the large Summers family soon found themselves struggling not only with kids’ typical growing pains and the kinds of racial issues one might expect, but also with surprising class, gender and generational gaps. American Promise, which traces the boys’ journey from kindergarten through high school graduation, finds the greatest challenge for the families–and perhaps the country–is to close the black male educational achievement gap, which has been called “the civil rights crusade of the 21st century.”

Joe Brewster and Michèle Stephenson’s American Promise, winner of a Special Jury Award at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, has its national broadcast premiere on Monday, Feb. 3, 2014 at 10 p.m. (check local listings), closing the 26th season of the award-winning POV (Point of View) on PBS. American television’s longest-running independent documentary series, POV is the winner of a 2013 MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions.

The Dalton School, which provides classes from kindergarten through high school, is a launching pad for success, but also a high-pressure learning environment for all its students. Joe and Michèle, along with Seun’s parents, Tony, a systems engineer for CBS, and Stacey, a nursing care manager for elder health, have worked hard to build their careers despite early disadvantages and are united in their drive to have their sons succeed at school and in life. But there are differences in outlook. Michèle, with Latino-Haitian roots, has some hesitation about sending Idris to private school, where she is afraid he will lose touch with his heritage, while Stacey, who hails from Trinidad, wants Seun to learn something she admits she hasn’t–how to be comfortable around white people. While both fathers have high expectations for their sons, Joe is particularly demanding, while Tony tends to be more forgiving of Seun’s ups and downs. Continue reading

NFL Star Quarterbacks Colin Kaepernick and Cam Newton To Host Cartoon Network’s Fourth Annual HALL OF GAME(TM) AWARDS

Musical Guests Fall Out Boy and Jason Derulo To Perform

Annual Awards Show Premieres February 17 at 7 p.m. (ET/ PT)

Cartoon Network is pleased to announce quarterbacks Colin Kaepernick (San Francisco 49ers) and Cam Newton (Carolina Panthers) will host Cartoon Network‘s fourth annual Hall of Game Awards, premiering Monday, February 17 at 7 p.m. (ET/ PT). Cartoon Network (www.CartoonNetwork.com) is regularly the #1 U.S. television network in prime among boys 6-11 & 9-14. Currently seen in 99 million U.S. homes and 194 countries around the world, Cartoon Network is Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.’s ad-supported cable service now available in HD offering the best in original, acquired and classic entertainment for kids and families. In addition to Emmy-winning original programming and industry-leading digital apps and online games, Cartoon Network embraces key social issues affecting families with solution-oriented initiatives such as Stop Bullying: Speak Up and the Move It Movement.

Cartoon Network's fourth annual Hall of Game Awards, premieres Monday, February 17 at 7 p.m. (ET/ PT).  (PRNewsFoto/Cartoon Network)

Cartoon Network’s fourth annual Hall of Game Awards, premieres Monday, February 17 at 7 p.m. (ET/ PT). (PRNewsFoto/Cartoon Network)

Taking over the reins from past hosts like Tony Hawk, Shaquille O’Neal and Nick Cannon, Kaepernick and Newton will bring their own unique sense of style to this year’s show and promise that this year’s show will be the one of the most raucous and outrageous sports awards show while maintaining the charisma that TV viewers enjoy year after year.

 Colin Kaepernick (AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)

Colin Kaepernick (AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)

Last year’s show was hosted by Shaquille O’Neal and Nick Cannon, and featured appearances by one of this year’s hosts Colin Kaepernick as well as Snoop Dogg aka Snoop Lion, Jessica Alba  Jacoby, Bryant, Jimmy Smith, JJ Watt, Victor Cruz, David Price, Swin Cash, Tamika Catchings, Chris Johnson,  Dominic Monaghan, Rico Rodriguez, Raini Rodriguez, Jeff Probst, Laura Marano, Bridgit Mendler, Lucas Cruikshank, James Maslow, Carlos Pena, Jr. & Kendall Schmidt, Shauna Case, Shameik Moore, Tristan Pasterick, Chanelle Peloso, Jeremy Shada, and Brandon Soo Hoo andGaelan Connell, Connor del Rio, Jessie T. Usher, Aimee Carrero), Toby Turner, Kerri Walsh Jennings, Allyson Felix, Ryan Lochte, Conor Dwyer, Nathan Adrian, Carmelita Jeter, Gabby Douglas, McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman and Jordyn Wieber and the 2012 SI Kids SportsKid of the year Cayden and Conner Long, along with musical performances by The Wanted.

The Hall of Game Awards lets viewers vote for their favorite sports stars and sports moments of the year.  Voters can log on to http://www.HallofGame.com and cast their vote for their favorites now.  A new category has recently launched on http://www.HallofGame.com featuring WWE headliners. The “Rumble Royalty” category features WWE Superstars Daniel Bryan, John Cena, The Miz and Randy Orton. Along with two of the hottest musicals acts Fall Out Boy (“My Songs Know What You Did… Light ‘Em Up”) and Jason Derulo (“Marry Me”), the annual sports awards show promises to be the biggest and coolest award show of the season.

This year promises to be bigger and more electrifying with performances by the Harlem Globetrotters, the extreme pogo group Xpogo, Mascots from the NHL, NBA, MLB and NFL competing in an obstacle course, skateboarder Nyjah Huston, Olympic gold medalist for downhill skiing Lindsay Vonn, two year old trick shot master Titus, WWE Superstars The Miz and Alicia Fox, skateboarders, BMX bikers and skiers in an extreme sports demo and many, many more.  There will also be a special segment honoring the 2013 SI Kids SportsKid of the year Jack Wellman.  Also Hall of Game commentators John DiMaggio and Tom Kenny (voice of Jake the Dog and Ice King respectively on Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time) will keep viewers laughing with their witty observations throughout the show. Continue reading

ACADEMY RESCINDS ORIGINAL SONG NOMINATION FOR “ALONE YET NOT ALONE”

On Tuesday night, the Academy’s Board of Governors voted to rescind the Original Song nomination for “Alone Yet Not Alone,” music by Bruce Broughton and lyric by Dennis Spiegel. The decision was prompted by the discovery that Broughton, a former Governor and current Music Branch executive committee member, had emailed members of the branch to make them aware of his submission during the nominations voting period.

No matter how well-intentioned the communication, using one’s position as a former governor and current executive committee member to personally promote one’s own Oscar submission creates the appearance of an unfair advantage,” said Cheryl Boone Isaacs, Academy President.

The Board determined that Broughton’s actions were inconsistent with the Academy’s promotional regulations, which provide, among other terms, that “it is the Academy’s goal to ensure that the Awards competition is conducted in a fair and ethical manner. If any campaign activity is determined by the Board of Governors to work in opposition to that goal, whether or not anticipated by these regulations, the Board of Governors may take any corrective actions or assess any penalties that in its discretion it deems necessary to protect the reputation and integrity of the awards process.

An additional nominee in the Original Song category will not be named. The remaining nominees in the category are:

“Happy” from “Despicable Me 2”
Music and Lyric by Pharrell Williams

“Let It Go” from “Frozen”
Music and Lyric by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez

“The Moon Song” from “Her”
Music by Karen O; Lyric by Karen O and Spike Jonze

“Ordinary Love” from “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom”
Music by Paul Hewson, Dave Evans, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen; Lyric by Paul Hewson

The members from each of the Academy’s branches vote to determine the nominees in their respective categories – actors nominate actors, film editors nominate film editors, musicians and composers nominate song and score.

During the nominations process, all 240 voting members of the Music Branch received a Reminder List of works submitted in the Original Song category and a DVD copy of the song clips with film and song title only (additional information including composer and lyricist is not provided).  Members were asked to watch the clips and then vote in the order of their preference for not more than five nominees in the category. A maximum of two songs may be nominated from any one film.

Academy Awards® for outstanding film achievements of 2013 will be presented on Oscar® Sunday, March 2, 2014, at the Dolby Theatre® at Hollywood & Highland Center® and televised live on the ABC Television Network.  The Oscars, produced by Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.

Swarovski Announces Its Autumn/Winter 2014 New York Fashion Week Swarovski Collective Designers:Rodarte, Prabal Gurung, SUNO, Wes Gordon, and Brandon Sun

 Swarovski has announced its line-up of Swarovski Collective designers who will be showcasing their Autumn/Winter 2014 collections during New York Fashion Week. Selected for their creative flair and ability to demonstrate exquisite

Brandon Sun crystal sketch for the Autumn/Winter 2014 Swarovski Collective.  (PRNewsFoto/Swarovski)

Brandon Sun crystal sketch for the Autumn/Winter 2014 Swarovski Collective. (PRNewsFoto/Swarovski)

craftsmanship with crystal, the Collective designers receive financial support as well as the opportunity to experiment with Swarovski’s extraordinary crystal range. Founded in 1999 by Nadja Swarovski following a collaboration with Alexander McQueen and Isabella Blow, the Swarovski Collective has grown to support over 150 designers in producing some of the most avant-garde fashion looks of the past decade.

Putting our crystals into the hands of creative talents always seems to inspire and results in the most extraordinary experimentation. Members of the Swarovski Collective continue to amaze us with their ability to fuse crystal so imaginatively into their collections. This season is no exception and we are thrilled to welcome some exciting new talents into the program for Autumn/Winter 2014,” says Nadja Swarovski, Member of the Swarovski Executive Board.

Designers this season include Collective veterans Rodarte, Prabal Gurung, SUNO, and Wes Gordon as well as Brandon Sun, who is partnering with Swarovski for the first time. Sun crafted a successful career at both J Mendel and Oscar de la Renta before presenting his first collection in 2012. He commented: “I am honored to be partnering with Swarovski. I always choose to work with the finest materials, whether fur or fabric, and Swarovski offers the best one can use for embellishments.”

Swarovski has brought us so much over the past few years, it’s impossible to summarize all it means. The crystals have helped to elevate our designs to another level, adding a new dimension to the collections,” stated SUNO designers Erin Beatty and Max Osterweis.