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Ridley Scott’s upcoming Biblical epic Exodus: Gods and Kings—which stars Christian Bale, Aaron Paul, Joel Edgerton, Sigourney Weaver and Ben Kingsley—is facing a similar criticism as many other high-profile Hollywood Bible adaptations: Its casting of predominantly white actors. Now, in an interview with Yahoo, director Ridley Scott has addressed the controversy:

Egypt was—as it is now—a confluence of cultures, as a result of being a crossroads geographically between Africa, the Middle East and Europe. We cast major actors from different ethnicities to reflect this diversity of culture, from Iranians to Spaniards to Arabs. There are many different theories about the ethnicity of the Egyptian people, and we had a lot of discussions about how to best represent the culture.

As SlashFilm points out, his answer isn’t exactly going over well with everyone. Along with commenting on the casting decisions, in the interview, Scott also discusses the religious tension that drew him to the Old Testament story: “The magnitude of Moses’s story, and what he believed, was very compelling. If you place yourself at that particular time—and it was savage times—to believe in one being or higher order, when the Egyptians had a thousand Gods, is incredible” ... Discuss

Hip-hop star André 3000, one part of Outkast’s dynamic duo, is thinking of retiring from music when he turns 40 in May. In an interview with The New York Times, he said, “I remember, at like 25, saying, 'I don't want to be a 40-year-old rapper.' I'm 39 now, and I'm still standing by that. I'm such a fan that I don't want to infiltrate it with old blood.” It remains to be seen exactly what that means for the rapper, as he also said he’d love to put out another album. The star has been famously reclusive over the years, popping up on the occasional guest verse, but largely staying out of the spotlight until this summer, when he reunited with Big Boi to play a string of festivals. He’s also starring as Jimi Hendrix in Jimi: All Is by My Side this fall. So while he may be moving on from hip-hop, chances are we haven’t seen the last of the star ... Discuss

According to reports, ISIS—or the Islamic State as they are now referring to themselves—has released a video showing the beheading of American journalist Steven J. Sotloff. Two weeks ago, the brutal Islamic militant group that controls large swaths of Iraq and Syria posted a video online depicting the beheading of American James Foley. Both men were freelance journalist who were captured in Syria. In a statement, Sotloff’s family said they believe the video was real. In the latest video, a man with a British accent, who The New York Times says is the same masked individual from the James Foley video, appears and says, “I’m back, Obama, and I’m back because of your arrogant foreign policy towards the Islamic State,” before killing Sotloff. A week ago, Sotloff’s mother released a video, pleading with ISIS leaders to spare her son ... Discuss

Penn State junior Mary Krupa has been dubbed the campus "squirrel whisperer" after earning the trust of one of the college's many squirrels in residence. Mary has trained a squirrel she calls Sneezy to pose in dress-up clothes such as hats and sunglasses, even holding miniature props. Sneezy's Facebook page has almost seven times more likes than the school's own mascot, the Nittany Lion, provoking enough confusion to cause a German magazine to mistakenly report Sneezy as the school's mascot ...

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