Authentic voices. Remarkable stories. AOL On Originals showcase the passions that make the world a more interesting place.
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Comedy is hard, but teaching comedy to children is hilariously difficult. Kevin Nealon is giving the challenge to some world-famous comedians. As these young minds meet with comedy’s best, get ready to learn some valuable comedy lessons, and to laugh!
James Franco loves movies. He loves watching them, acting in them, directing them, and even writing them. And now, he’s going to take some of his favorite movie scenes from the most famous films of all time, and re-imagine them in ways that only James can.
The story of punk rock singer Laura Jane Grace of Against Me! who came out as a woman in 2012, and other members of the trans community whose experiences are woefully underrepresented and misunderstood in the media.
Executive produced by Zoe Saldana (who will be the subject of one episode), a celebrity travels back to their hometown to pay tribute to the one person from their past (before they were famous) who helped change their life by giving them an over-the-top, heart-felt surprise.
Enter the graceful but competitive world of ballet through the eyes of executive producer, Sarah Jessica Parker. This behind-the-scenes docudrama reveals what it takes to perform on the ultimate stage, the New York City Ballet. Catch NYCB on stage at Lincoln Center.
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Documentary shorts conceived of and directed by famous actors. Jeff Garlin, Katie Holmes, Alia Shawkat, Judy Greer, and James Purefoy
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On your marks, get ready, and spend! Welcome to the world's biggest online retail event. Twice the size of Cyber Monday ...
in the U.S. November 11th is known in China as Singles' Day - a time for bachelors and bachelorettes to have fun. But e-commerce giant Alibaba has turned it into an e-shopping bonanza. In 2009 it started offering massive Singles' Day discounts - and other companies quickly joined the madness.
On your marks, get ready, and spend! Welcome to the world's biggest online retail event. Twice the size of Cyber Monday in the U.S. November 11th is known in China as Singles' Day - a time for bachelors and bachelorettes to have fun. But e-commerce giant Alibaba has turned it into an e-shopping bonanza. In 2009 it started offering massive Singles' Day discounts - and other companies quickly joined the madness. Last year Singles' Day online sales hit an estimated 4 billion U.S. dollars with more than 3 billion through Alibaba. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS REPORTER, JANE LANHEE LEE, SAYING: "This screen shows real time sales of Alibaba's shopping platforms. It's been a little over 50 minutes now with 6.2 billion yuan, that's a billion U.S. dollars, in sales that's been pushed through." For Alibaba's e-commerce platforms Taobao and T-mall, Singles' Day is a huge profit opportunity. Alibaba isn't a retailer, but a platform for retailers. So it doesn't have to hold inventory or deal with logistics challenges. And it collects listing fees, commissions on sales and ad revenues. But for online retailers it can be an expensive marketing exercise, as they race to the bottom with rebates or splash out on advertising to lure customers. Jason Yu, retail consultant of Kantar. (SOUNDBITE) (English) GENERAL MANAGER, KANTAR WORLDPANEL CHINA, JASON YU, SAYING: SAYING: "This year from January to September we are seeing that all the e-commerce companies have significantly increase their market spend, they have more than doubled their marketing spend." For some smaller retailers, Singles' Day has created a new life line. Brian Lee sells Elle branded bags in China. Half of his annual online sales come in this 24-hour shopping spree. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CEO, SINO SUPREME ENTERPRISE, BRIAN LEE, SAYING: "So we plan a whole year of merchandise specifically for T-mall and specifically for 11.11. And also in terms of expanding the call center, expanding the warehouse, getting new printers and all that. So we started 364 days ago." Brian normally sells 200 bags a day online. Today he's expecting to sell 40,000. Multiply that by all the e-commerce players, and imagine the stress on China's internet and delivery networks. But consumers are still clicking in to fight for the bargains. Student He Yanding and her boyfriend bought clothes and a massage machine online. (SOUNDBITE) (English) STUDENT, HE YANDING, SAYING: "On Singles' Day the discounts are huge, but the logistics can get clogged and it can take over a month to get some things. It's inconvenient." Call these growing pains, proudly brought to you by Alibaba. Spokesman John Spelich. (SOUNDBITE) (English) ALIBABA SPOKESMAN, JOHN SPELICH, SAYING: "We like to think of this as stressing the system and the result is, it's kind of like exercise. We're building up muscles for the future. So that's part of how you up the game is by putting a pressure like on this. It's sort of a can we do it? We think we can let's go out and prove it." The clock is still ticking with less than half a day left. But Alibaba and China are staring down another record year of sales on a day that's no longer synonymous with singles - but online shopping. ENDS