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Missing 19-Year-Old Girl; Weather Outlook; Snubbed by Academy; Two-in-a-Million Shot

Aired January 17, 2014 - 08:30   ET


JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Hackers are possibly linked to organized crime in Russia.

Number four, a big fundraising weekend ahead for New Jersey Governor Chris Christie as 20 new subpoenas are issued in the bridge-gate scandal. As of now, the governor has not been subpoenaed.

And happy birthday Mrs. Obama. The first lady is celebrating her 50th today. And tonight, at 10:00, the premier of the CNN documentary, an "Extraordinary Journey: Michele Obama Turns 50." That's tonight, 10:00 p.m. Eastern, right here on CNN.

And we are always updating the five things you need to know, so go to for the latest.


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: All right, thanks, John.

The parents of a missing American teen vowing not to rest until their daughter is found. Here's the back story. Nineteen-year-old Danielle (ph) Wright was one of seven people aboard an 85-year-old schooner when it vanished in stormy seas somewhere between Australia and New Zealand. That was more than seven months ago, but the girl's parents say they aren't giving up hope. CNN's Pamela Brown joins us with more on the search.

Why the optimism?

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, you know, it's been seven months, you wonder that. But they said they're determined to find her. They're not giving up hope. As you pointed out, the search for the crew of the Nina continues thanks in part to the effort of these two parents. They want to find their daughter and bring her home. In fact, they were so determined, Ricky and Robin Wright have uprooted their lives, leaving their home in Louisiana and traveling to Australia, searching remote islands and coastal areas off the Australian shores.


BROWN (voice-over): Ricky and Robin Wright are on a mission to find out what happened to their 19-year-old daughter Danielle. She was one of seven crew members on board the 85-year-old schooner, the Nina. They've been missing for more than seven months after encountering a rough three-day storm.

ROBIN WRIGHT, MOTHER OF MISSING CREW MEMBER: We feel like Danielle's in very capable hands. The crew couldn't be a better crew for her to be involved with. I think that they're highly skilled and that they're taking care of each other.

BROWN: The Wrights have hope their daughter is still alive because of this satellite image taken in mid-September. They believe it proves the Nina is still out there. The last time anyone spoke with passengers on board the Nina was June 3rd as they sailed from northern New Zealand toward Australia. That day, a crew member called a meteorologist in New Zealand from a satellite phone seeking advice on a storm they were heading toward.

BOB MCDAVITT, NEW ZEALAND METEOROLOGIST: They were concerned, but they weren't in trouble. They were - they were in control.

BROWN: The next day, the same meteorologist got a text message saying, "any update for Nina?" No one has heard from them since.

ROBIN WRIGHT: The third day wasn't nearly as rough. We just can't comprehend that the lightest day would have sustained enough damage to sink the boat.

BROWN: Rescue teams searched and found no sign of the ship or the crew members and ended the official search.

RICKY WRIGHT, FATHER OF MISSING CREW MEMBER: Part of surviving is having the right mindset and they had the right mindset to do that.

BROWN: Now the Wrights are taking the search effort up themselves, relocating to Australia. Danielle's father, Ricky, is even getting a pilot's license so he can fly over remote islands to continue searching for his daughter.

ROBIN WRIGHT: You know, at the end of the day, we have to know that we've done everything we can possibly do.


BROWN: Now, the Wrights are experienced sailors themselves and say a crew like that of the Nina can live indefinitely on fresh fish and fresh water. They will continue to search remote islands off of Australia and New Zealand hoping the ship will eventually drift to a place where they'll be found safe and sound, if it hasn't already. But you can't blame them for keeping up this fight to find their daughter.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: No, you can't. you sure can't. Thanks, Pamela.

BROWN: And that - and that image, you know, does renew their hopes. So, we'll be following this story.

BOLDUAN: Thank you.

We're going to take a break here on NEW DAY. But coming up next, the Oscar snubs. One of the biggest films of last year left out in the cold despite the star studded cast. Lee Daniels' "The Butler" not on the nominations list. So what is behind the Oscar's exclusions.

CUOMO: And you remember this? Amazing buzzer beater, right? I mean even more amazing though now. Watch. Because in a follow-up story about it, the 13-year-old game winner did it again. This was it during the story. Bam, two for two. So now we have him here and we're playing with the idea of a threepeat. But just to get at his story, what an amazing kid. What an amazing thing he's gone though.



CUOMO: That actually went in on instant replay. That hoop is not the official height and the kid is on a staircase, so none of it matters. But the interview will, when we come back.


CUOMO: Welcome back to new dad. We're going to - NEW DAY. We're going to head over to Indra Petersons. What did I call it? I think I called it new - new dad?


BOLDUAN: New dad.

PETERSON: I heard dad.

CUOMO: Whatever it was, we know what it really is.

Let's get over to Indra Petersons to save me from myself. What do you have for us?

PETERSONS: I think you may have seen this video and you went with new dad just because take - imagine, you open the door, this is Siberia (ph) and, poof, that is what happens. You thought it was bad here just a few weeks ago. Temperatures there were a good 36 below zero. High pressure outside, low pressure inside. And that is the madness that you get. So suddenly our forecast looks so good. I love perspective, right?

All right, let's take a look at the temperatures. Yes, with the wind chill, it does feel like it is below freezing in Minneapolis, but not as cold as Siberia. See what I did there. All right, Minneapolis 11 for the high today. Chicago, 22. That cold air going to be spreading down to the southeast and also into the northeast. But again, very mild. In fact, a lot of these temperatures, even though you're cooling off, will stay near the average for this time of year.

What's going on? We have a couple of lows kind of cruising on through. So as the cold fronts make their way through, the Ohio Valley is going to see some snow today. The northeast will see snow from the first system. But two reinforcing lows come in right behind them. So with that it looks like the entire weekend will be a washout with both rain and snow. Of course if you talk about amounts, pretty light unless you're out toward Syracuse. Then maybe out towards Minneapolis, that's where you're going to get the higher amounts.

Chris and Kate.

BOLDUAN: Thanks, Indra.

All right, so let's talk about Oscar nominations. Oscar nominations are out. We talked about them yesterday with a lot of fanfare. But one film in particular was snubbed by the Academy and it has a lot of people talking. Lee Daniels' "The Butler" received zero nominations despite an all-star cast and some pretty great box office success. So why were Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey and the entire film left out in the cold. Let's bring in Christopher John Farley, the editor of "The Wall Street Journal" entertainment blog "The Speakeasy."

Chris, thanks for coming in.


BOLDUAN: We were talking about it even -- Nischelle Turner, she jumped on that right away. Why do you think "The Butler" was shut out?

FARLEY: Well, partly it came out in August and in movie terms that's like coming out in the 1800s. So a while back. People don't really remember the emotional impact it had on them. Two, you know, critical acclaim for "The Butler" has been falling ever since it came out.

I mean, when it first came out, I know it's in Rotten Tomatoes around like 83 or so or 80 percent, and since fallen to 73. As other films have come out, people have thought, well, maybe this is too conventional. Maybe this is too straightforward. Maybe movies like "Gravity" and "Dallas Buyers Club," and "12 Years a Slave," took more chances with their narrative and their subjects and maybe this - this is interesting. And so that's why it got completely shut out at the Oscars.

CUOMO: Is there something to the idea of the last film that you just mentioned, "12 Years a Slave." Does "The Butler" wind up being a victim to some kind of intra genre conflict that, well, we're not going to pick two of these films that seem to deal with the same subject matter. We'll only deal with one. Is there any thought to that?

FARLEY: Well, I think that "The Butler" and "12 Years a Slave" are almost from different universes in terms of their subject matter, in terms of the acting, in terms of the way the directors handled the subjects. I mean "The Butler" is a very - it's almost like a soap opera, tear jerking and "12 Years a Slave" was a very brutal, brave, in your face film that really deals with (INAUDIBLE) and in a real way with the consequences of slavery and the way people interact. I didn't see too much comparison online or from critics comparing the two because certainly both nominally deal with black/white, but they're really totally different in terms of film -- totally different experiences as films. BERMAN: Can we talk about Oprah, because a lot of people thought that Oprah was going to get a nomination for best supporting actress. She got snubbed. You don't snub Oprah.

FARLEY: I know. I mean - but the thing about Oprah, I mean even afterwards, even after she got past over and Harvey Weinstein's gone on record saying he thought she was an important actress in this film, that she should have been nominated, wasn't happy about it. He's someone who usually gets his way when it comes to the Academy. But, you know, Oprah was tweeting pictures of herself in her garden getting some vegetables. So -

BERMAN: So she's going to be OK.

FARLEY: She's got other things to do. She's got all of her whole Oprah empire to deal with. I think she's going to be OK.


BOLDUAN: And we were talking just in the break before that we were saying, it was just tough competition all across the board. So many great films, so many great actors that were kind of in contention. Tom Hanks. I'm always surprised when Tom Hanks isn't nominated because he seems to be an Oscar's darling. If he's in a film, he's nominated for it. What do you think? But not this year.

FARLEY: And he got the double - the double snub here because he was in "Captain Phillips," no nomination for that. He played Disney in "Saving Mr. Banks." And Walt Disney, a Hollywood icon, he got snubbed for that. It may be because Tom Hanks has gotten nominations and wins before. People thought, enough already. There are a lot of other great people to be nominated this year, including Christian Bale in "American Hustle." And so Tom Hanks, not his year. But you know what, I bet he'll have other years coming up.

BERMAN: But that hasn't hurt Meryl Streep.


BERMAN: I mean Meryl Streep sneezes and she gets a nomination.

FARLEY: Well, because I think people feel a little bit guilty. There was a long period there between wins for Meryl Streep, a couple decades. So maybe it's time to really honor one of America's greatest actors.

CUOMO: She's also - yes, she's also just such a versatile genius that I think that she kind of breaks the rules because, let's be honest, this isn't science, right? I mean this is -- there's a lot of cultural stereotyping that goes into it and there's a lot of politics that goes into it. But even with all that said, I think the biggest snub may be, and maybe it's because of my life I'm living with all the kids, "Monsters University." This movie got snubbed for the animation. "Monsters University was a transformative experience in the Cuomo household.

FARLEY: Transformative, OK.

CUOMO: You know but the kids love that now.

FARLEY: You see that on the ad now (ph). You see that in the DVD phase now.

BOLDUAN: (INAUDIBLE), yes, yes, exactly.

CUOMO: It's worn out. I've had to go through multiple copies of this movie. Were you at all surprised? Is there any buzz about this?

FARLEY: Not surprised at all because Pixar -

CUOMO: What?

FARLEY: Pixar has - is, I think, facing up to a quality issue now because obviously they make great films. "Cars 2" made a lot of money. Was not a big -- didn't get a lot of critical acclaim. "Monsters University," usually they get huge critical acclaim. The critics liked it, but they didn't love it. There were other films like "Frozen" that had big box office impact and more critical acclaim this year. And Pixar usually gets all of it. So I think they're going to - we'll - obviously we'll see other great things from Pixar. This is just a bump in the road. But it wasn't Pixar's year in terms of films.


FARLEY: And there are other - other more adventure (ph) films out there like Miyazaki's "The Wind Rises." A really daring film. It hits on difficult subject matter and not just about monsters and fantasy.

BOLDUAN: What I'm hearing from you is that it seemed that in the nominations they went more towards edgy, kind of pushing the envelope in whatever category they're in, versus the conventional films, the conventional way to tell a story than they have picked in the past. That's what I'm hearing from you.

FARLEY: I think you're exactly right. When you take chances, when you're adventurous, when you push the forum to some place it hasn't been before, like "Gravity," I mean that was a technical masterpiece, and yet it was anchored by a strong central performance by Sandra Bullock. That's what the academy wants to see. Those are the people that got nominated this year.

CUOMO: Can you think of another movie that got as much hype as "The Butler" did that got snubbed completely?

FARLEY: Yes. I think that one case where this happened was -- I'm -

BOLDUAN: Describe it (ph).

FARLEY: You know something - you know something the band (ph). It was - it was a movie about -- "The Last Emperor." "The Last Emperor" got a huge amount of acclaim. It got a lot of Oscar nominations. But in the end, it didn't get win - it didn't get any nominations for the actual Chinese cast that was in the film. And there was a huge controversy at the time. A terrific film. People wondered, why didn't it get more acclaim? Why didn't it get more nominations? Why didn't the actors get nominated? And that was a big snub at the time. And that compares to what happened to "The Butler." Because they made a lot of money too.

BOLDUAN: Thanks so much, Chris.

FARLEY: Great.

BOLDUAN: Thanks. Have a good weekend.

CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY, meet the most popular eighth grader in the Midwest. He's going to tell us all about his incredible game winning shot and then the time he did it again. We'll have him here to have some fun. There he is.


CUOMO: Can you think of another movie that got as much hype as "The Butler" did that got snubbed completely?

CHRISTOPHER JOHN FARLEY, EDITOR, WSJ ENTERTAINMENT BLOG: Yes. I think that one case where this happened was -- something (inaudible) -- it was a movie about "The Last Emperor". "The Last Emperor" got a huge amount of acclaim. It got a lot of Oscar nominations but in the end it didn't get wins -- it didn't get any nominations for the actual Chinese cast that was in the film. And it was a huge controversy at the time.

Terrific film -- people wondered why it didn't get more acclaim. Why didn't it get more nominations? Why didn't the actors get nominated and that was a big snub at the time and that compares to what happened to "The Butler". It made a lot of money too.

BOLDUAN: Thanks so much Chris.

FARLEY: Great.

BOLDUAN: Thanks. Chris?

CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY meet the most popular eighth grader in the Midwest. He's going to tell us all about his incredible game winning shot and then he did it again. We'll have him here to have some fun. There he is.


CUOMO: This is a follow u to a story we brought you earlier in the week. This is about a young man with luck enough for two -- literally. Thirteen-year-old Easton Gamoke -- he made this amazing full court shot. Watch it. A shot in the lifetime, wins the game at the buzzer.

But then the eighth grader returns home, a local station stops by, they say try it again. Boom. He hits the repeat shot -- crazy. Nobody has ever done it. Amazing, amazing. Easton Gamoke joins us now. How do you feel about yourself? EASTON GAMOKE, MADE FULL-COURT SHOT: I don't know. I feel awesome.

CUOMO: Come on. Who hits two full court shots? I mean just factually, you're awesome, right?

BOLDUAN: Wait. Was it a dare to do the second one? Yes.


BOLDUAN: It was a local news team came, right?


BOLDUAN: Did you ever thing you're going to hit the second one?


BOLDUAN: Any fakes?


BOLDUAN: You practice this all the time?

GAMOKE: Not a lot but I have shot it before.

BOLDUAN: Really?


BOLDUAN: Very cool.

CUOMO: Well people mess around with full court shots all the time but I mean it's not like something you go to during the game at any particular time, right?


JOHN BERMAN, CNN HOST: Easton, so you know, you hit the first shot during the game you have to be ecstatic. The second one comes along you say you never think you're going to make it. After you hit it, I mean what do you do when lightning strikes you -- I want one thing that's good to happen to me. What do you do when it happens twice?

GAMOKE: I don't know. I just had a bunch of people rushed me and I didn't really know what was going on at first. I didn't see the ball go in, actually.

BOLDUAN: You didn't?

GAMOKE: No, I didn't until everybody started rushing me and everything and then I knew it went in.

CUOMO: How frustrating is it for you now when you miss ordinary shots during the course of a game.

GAMOKE: Pretty frustrating. BOLDUAN: So as the decision comes -- it can't get better than that. You hit two full court shots. You're just retiring now?

GAMOKE: I don't know.

CUOMO: Well, what's going on? You're in eighth grade. You plan -- how are you doing? How is the career going?

GAMOKE: Good. It's been good.

CUOMO: Is the team any good?

GAMOKE: We're pretty good -- yes.

CUOMO: And what does basketball mean to you? Is it your favorite sport?

GAMOKE: Yes, it's my favorite sport.

BOLDUAN: Is that your favorite sport? You think you want to go on and play in high school and play in college?

GAMOKE: That's what I look forward to do, yes.

BOLDUAN: The high school coach already talking to you?

GAMOKE: I've talked to him before -- yes.

BERMAN: Well, you're designing some plays from 70 feet for you right now.

CUOMO: It also went viral right? You put it online. You were thinking you would get a couple of thousand. How many people watched it?

GAMOKE: I think the first video has over 800,000 views; and then the second one has over 400,000.

BOLDUAN: So what do you make of all of this? Yes, it is amazing to sink a full-court shot once. And then you get the attention of the local news and you sink it a second time. And now you're missing a day of school to be here. It's excused, by the way, because he's here. What do you make of all this?

GAMOKE: It's been an amazing last couple of days. Everybody at school has been congratulating me and everything.

CUOMO: Right.

GAMOKE: It's just been awesome.

CUOMO: Put any more pressure on you on the court or you know that this was just special stuff.


BERMAN: Is there a trick to hitting a shot from, you know, 80 feet?

GAMOKE: I don't think there is.

CUOMO: I think -- let's go to the wall because we're going to shoot some. Obviously we got the low ceiling in here and all that stuff. We have some dodge ball so it's a little bit easier so when you hit somebody in the face, it doesn't hurt quite as much.

BOLDUAN: So when we shoot it you actually don't break anything.

CUOMO: I think you do know something about how to hit this shot and I'll tell you why. I tried to do one the other day and I tried to shoot it like a normal shot, I missed. You threw it kind of like you throw a football or a baseball, right?



CUOMO: All right. So take a couple of whacks at it. See.


GAMOKE: You mean throw it like a baseball or just shoot.

CUOMO: Anyway you want. I'll try and get the rebound. Here hold this for me.


CUOMO: Just in case it's going to hit somebody in the face. I told you, you're going to hit the lights.

BOLDUAN: Watch the lights.

CUOMO: Oh. Stop, get down. Walk away. Walk away. That's amazing.

BERMAN: That's amazing.

CUOMO: I mean it's just -- you know.


CUOMO: How good are you at regular basketball?

BOLDUAN: This is kind of crazy.

CUOMO: What kind of points do you put up every day?

BOLDUAN: And he's very tall for 13 years old.

GAMOKE: 10, 15 a game.

CUOMO: What do you shoot from the free-throw line?

GAMOKE: 70, 80. CUOMO: But you're like, you know, 90 percent from over 50 feet away from the basket.

BOLDUAN: Will you challenge him please?

BERMAN: $10 -- I will give you $10 if you do the shot. CUOMO: I don't even know if I can hit --

BERMAN: You cannot hit the shot. $10 if you hit this shot.

CUOMO: I'm going to try.


CUOMO: The jacket's tight.

BOLDUAN: The jacket's tight. Blame the jacket. And a miss.

BERMAN: Gamoke hits it on his first try. You break the pit.

CUOMO: I know.

BOLDUAN: And he doesn't hurt any of the furniture.

CUOMO: That was terrible.

BOLDUAN: Congratulations.

CUOMO: What a break.

GAMOKE: Thank you.

BOLDUAN: Notice that neither of us --

BERMAN: I got to go.

CUOMO: It's a amazing thing that you did twice.

GAMOKE: Thanks very much.

CUOMO: Really awesome. Thanks for coming here pal -- good one.

BOLDUAN: As we go to break we want to show you some instant replay of this awesomeness.


BERMAN: Stop. Get down. Walk away. Walk away.

BOLDUAN: That's amazing.


BOLDUAN: We'll be right back.

CUOMO: Good thing you didn't show mine. BOLDUAN: Congratulations. That's awesome.



BOLDUAN: Welcome back. A big weekend ahead for "Saturday Night Live". Let's check in with Victor Blackwell in Atlanta for a look on what's coming up on NEW DAY tomorrow morning. Why are we talking about "Saturday Night Live" -- Victor?

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's a big show for "Saturday Night Live". Big show for us tomorrow. Good morning guys.

SNL is gearing up for a brand new show this weekend, and a brand new face. This lady right here -- her name is Sasheer Zamata. She's making her debut -- that's a big thing for any comedian. But she's also the fifth black female cast member ever on the show. So why and what does she need to do to impress. We'll ask some fellow female comedians including Debra Wilson of MadTV fame -- you know, she does that really funny Whitney Houston impersonation. And Loni Love.

Christi Paul will be there, I'll be there. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll learn something. It's the feel-good program of the year. 6:00 a.m. Eastern right here on CNN. Guys back to you.

BOLDUAN: That's a perfect way of summing it up. Thanks so much Victor. We'll see you tomorrow.


CUOMO: All right. It's time for the good stuff. Are you ready? Here we go.

This is all about a Georgia's man incredible act of social responsibility finally getting its due. His name is Ray Norman, homeless and carless after an accident totaled his car. But here's the story. He had to make a court appearance in connection with the accident but had no money, no car. And the courthouse was 29 miles away.

So on one of the coldest days of the year, only four degrees he walked 29 miles. It took him eight hours in the freezing cold. It was so cold officers at the court pooled their money to send him back to the shelter in a cab.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why did you do that?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I couldn't let him walk that far.


CUOMO: OK. So that would be the good stuff all by itself -- right? And yet there's more. More people started stepping up when they heard the story. Take a listen.


JOEL SHAPIRO, LOCAL BUSINESSMAN: For every mile you walked I'm going give you $100 so this is $3,000.


SHAPIRO: And I hope this gets you started.

NORMAN: Thank you.

SHAPIRO: You're very welcome.


SHAPIRO: For anybody with that much integrity, I just had to help him.


CUOMO: Local businessman Joel Shapiro. As for Ray, he says he's going to use the money to turn his life around. And as you heard Shapiro say, it's all thanks to doing the right thing and integrity.


NORMAN: Changed my life -- definitely changed my life.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What went through your mind?

NORMAN: Am I that crazy? I was like no I'm not crazy just dedicated.


CUOMO: Dedicated. A lot of times people put stigmas on the homeless -- about why they're homeless and there are judgments made. Here's a guy who went above and beyond to do the right thing, to show up at court on time. He's just trying to get back up on top and now someone is helping him finally. Certainly, a good end to a really --

BOLDUAN: Yes and hopefully it brings what he needs. And I'm sure he does -- it's just to break that cycle. Give him a little bit of help.


CUOMO: Right?

There you have it.

A lot of news this morning. Let's get you over to the "NEWSROOM" and Miss Carol Costello.

CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: Thanks. Have a great weekend.