1. Two arrests have been made in connection to the shooting death of 14-year-old Lecent Ross, police said Thursday.
2. '12 Years A Slave' is shattering and anguishing, a singular anomaly in an entertainment medium. More than that, Steve McQueen's hugely ambitious chronicle of slavery in America is revelatory, a work of art that has been embraced by mainstream audiences. That's a testimony to the power of art (as expressed in John Ridley's script and performances by Chiwetel Ejiofor, Lupita Nyong'o and Michael Fassbender, among others), and heartening evidence of moviegoers' hunger for substance and meaning in the films they choose to see.
4. Plans to open 20,000 specialist football schools in 2017, aimed at training young players and cultivating talent, are part of the government's latest plan to advance China's ability to compete on the global pitch.
5. The S&P 500’s total return of 14% this year was 40% higher than its 25-year average annual gain. Wall Street’s chief strategists spent much of the last 12 months revising their targets higher from behind. The index printed over 50 all-time record closes, with nearly all investment management professionals racing to at least pull even. A few characteristics made the U.S. stock market particularly difficult to keep up with this year.
6. The crown passed from the Plantagenet dynasty to the Tudor monarchs who painted Richard as a deformed villain who stopped at nothing in his quest for power, even murdering his two young nephews -- the so-called Princes in the Tower -- to secure the throne.