News from Brazil

Culture & Regional

In Brazil on October 15, 2010 at 9:42 am


Render of the Gloria Palace Hotel in Rio, under major reconstruction presently (more here).


Following months of teasers, Tropa de Elite 2 (Elite Squad 2), the sequel to the controversial and wildly popular Tropa de Elite finally opened in Brazil, attracting record crowds of 1.25 million to theaters on the first weekend making it the fifth biggest opening in Brazil of all time (The Rio Times).

Tight security may be the most important part of director Jose Padilha and his Zazen Productions’ plan to self-distribute “Elite Squad 2,” which debuted on 696 screens in Brazil — making it the widest national release ever (Reuters).


A large-scale research project, looking at online behaviour around the globe, found out that digital sources are overtaking TV, radio and newspapers as the media channel of choice for 61% of the online population around the world. Brazil scores very well at second place in online friendships. In Malaysia the average number of friends is 233, closely followed by 231 in Brazil and 217 in Norway (BBC).


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Brazil will auction large swaths of the Amazon forest to be managed by private timber companies and cooperatives to help reduce demand for illegal logging (Reuters).

It is only a small pilot project, but its leaders say the microchip system has the potential to be a big step forward in the battle to protect the Amazon. The chips allow land owners using sustainable forestry practices to distinguish their wood from that acquired through illegal logging that each year destroys swathes of the forest (Reuters).



One of the popular outgoing president Lula’s last initiatives in office was to launch the new program Rio Top Tours – Rio de Janeiro from a new perspective. Lula recently visited the favela Dona Marta, to inaugurate the project, a pacified favela that, with the presidential visit, symbolized a new safety for the area and the first step on the way to big changes for the community (The Rio Times).

Brazil’s development bank, known as BNDES, approved 400 million reais in financing to Maracana stadium (Bloomberg).

Rio officials have embarked on an ambitious plan to wrest control of the slums, or favelas, from ruthless drug gangs who ruled for years with big guns and abject terror (The New York Times).

Besides the glitz and the glamor, samba is a serious business and as the end of the year approaches, the city’s samba schools are getting into full gear with preparations for the Carnival Parade. Rehearsals have already begun in earnest at their respective samba courts or quadras and this month many are deciding which Samba-enredo (theme tune) is going to be sung at the Sambódromo in Sapucaí Avenue (The Rio Times).

When it comes to naming the most fashionable neighborhoods in the city, there are few that would utter the word ‘Catete’ in any such discussions. Perched on the back of Gloria, along from Largo do Machado and squeezed in between favela-strewn hillside and the thundering main road of the Aterro, on the surface there aren’t any immediately obvious redeeming features (The Rio Times).


The Rio Times looks north to the state of Bahia this week in the series on Brazil’s World Cup 2014 host cities, and more specifically the capital Salvador, which will see matches leading to the biggest prize in sport contested there in three and a half years time (The Rio Times).


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