All Things Considered for Sunday, January 19, 2014

Mars Or Bust: Putting Humans On The Red Planet

Some of the earliest science fiction imagined voyages to Mars. We now have the space-faring technology to make reaching the Red Planet possible. It would involve massive resources and many potential dangers, but some believe the rewards would be massive.

Iran To Take First Step Toward Long-Term Deal

On Monday, the nuclear deal between six world powers and Iran officially kicks in. But this agreement is just a first step in a long negotiation process. NPR's Arun Rath talks to Karim Sadjadpour, senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, about what to expect from additional disarmament talks.

Profiting From Rhinos, Far From Their Habitat

According to Bloomberg Businessweek, Rhinoceros horns now sell for more on the black market than cocaine or heroin. Demand from Southeast Asian consumers is primarily to blame. In order to cash in, thieves have begun targeting a different kind of rhino habitat: museums. NPR's Arun Rath speaks with journalist Adam Higginbotham about the so-called "Rathkeale Rovers," a gang suspected of several thefts.
Hiding the redesigned, 50th anniversary Ford Mustang before its official unveiling was no easy task — the photo-hungry car paparazzi were eager for a glimpse. But, like other car companies, Ford has its own "camouflage coordinator" to create a disguise for the vehicle during test drives and trial runs.
Photographer Bill O'Leary's big break came in 1990, the night Washington, D.C., Mayor Marion Barry was arrested during an FBI sting. O'Leary was an intern for The Washington Post, and he suddenly found himself in the right place and the right time to take the perfect shot of the mayor.

Can You Bank On Making Movies Destined For The Oscars?

Two researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, have looked into "Oscar baiting," making films that are reliable picks for Oscar nods. Along the way, Gabriel Rossman and Oliver Schilke came up with a formula to predict Oscar success. NPR's Arun Rath talks with Rossman, whose paper will be published in February.
This past week, Somali-born actor Barkhad Abdi received an Academy Award nomination for his role opposite Tom Hanks in the film Captain Phillips. The part was his first acting role. Abdi plays a Somali pirate who leads the hijacking of the Maersk Alabama. He spoke with NPR's Arun Rath in October about learning to relate to his character. (This story originally aired on All Things Considered on Oct. 20, 2013.)
Nick Kroll's sketch comedy TV series, Kroll Show, kicked off its second season this month. One of his signature characters is a seedy, wannabe ladies man named Bobby Bottleservice. Kroll says playing a variety of characters keeps him from being pigeon-holed by his role as Ruxin on the FX show The League.
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