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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, March 1, 2010

Technology helps Ebert speak again

Advertiser Staff

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

GEORGE BURNS | Associated Press

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Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Lil Wayne

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Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Leonardo DiCaprio

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CHICAGO Film critic Roger Ebert says computer programmers have captured his voice from movie commentary tracks so he can type what he wants to say and listeners hear a voice that sounds like him.

Ebert lost his ability to speak after surgery for cancer. He wrote in yesterday's Chicago Sun-Times that a company has helped him regain a voice his grandchildren can recognize.

Ebert recorded commentaries for DVD movies before he lost his voice. A Scottish company, CereProc, blended digital recordings of Ebert speaking to make his text-to-audio voice.

Ebert wrote that the voice will be heard predicting Oscar winners on a segment of "The Oprah Winfrey Show" airing tomorrow.

RAPPER FEARS 'SHARIN' SHOWERS' IN JAIL

NEW YORK Lil Wayne may be a self-professed gangsta with a gunshot wound to prove it, but he's made plenty clear how he feels about doing time.

"I'd rather be pushin' flowers," he raps in 2008's "A Milli," "than to be in the pen sharin' showers."

He might have to get used to it. At the apex of a career that has made him one of music's biggest sellers, the Grammy-winning artist is expected to start a yearlong jail term tomorrow after pleading guilty in a New York City gun case.

It would make him the latest in a string of rappers to go to jail after rising to fame and the latest celebrity inmate to test law enforcement officials' ability to draw the line between providing special treatment and recognizing potential risks to high-profile convicts.

'SHUTTER ISLAND' NO. 1 FOR SECOND WEEKEND

LOS ANGELES Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese continue to lure moviegoers to "Shutter Island," while James Cameron's "Avatar" has surpassed $700 million domestically.

The psychological thriller was the No. 1 film for a second straight weekend with $22.2 million, raising its 10-day total to $75.1 million, according to studio estimates yesterday.

Meanwhile, "Avatar" became the first movie ever to top the $700 million mark domestically. With a $14 million weekend, the science-fiction blockbuster now is at $706.9 million domestically and $2.5 billion worldwide.

MUSEUM TO DISPLAY MORE ROCK ARTIFACTS

CLEVELAND There's always been room at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum for the exciting, most popular relics, like Michael Jackson's "Thriller" jacket. But most of the not-so-flashy mementos were tucked away in storage.

Visitors will get to see those hidden artifacts later this year, when the museum opens its library and archives in a recently completed high-tech building it shares with Cuyahoga Community College's creative arts programs.

The items also include such gems as Jim Morrison's first poem, video from the 1981-82 Rolling Stones tour and personal letters from the Grateful Dead, Whitney Houston, Patti Smith and others.

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