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"The Interview" hits theaters...Pope offers plea for victims of violence... First family celebrates holiday in Hawaii

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NEW YORK (AP) — Critics and early viewers agree that "The Interview" is less than a masterpiece. But since threats from hackers nearly derailed its release, it's become an event. Hundreds of theaters across America made special holiday arrangements today to show the comedy depicting the assassination of North Korea's leader. One theater manager in New York City says "We are taking a stand for freedom."

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Abused children, refugees, hostages and others suffering from violence are in Pope Francis' prayers this Christmas. In his annual "Urbi et Orbi" message delivered before thousands gathered at the Vatican, Francis said Christmas joy will only be realized when weapons are transformed "into ploughshares, destruction into creativity, hatred into love and tenderness."

KAILUA, Hawaii (AP) — President Barack Obama and the first family are enjoying Christmas in Hawaii. They gathered this morning in their rental home to open Christmas gifts and sing carols then headed to a sun-drenched secluded beach. The president and first lady plan to travel to a Marine Corps base later today to visit with service members and their families.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Don't eat the apples. That's what California health officials are warning people who bought Happy Apple brand caramel apples. They've been recalled over concerns they could be contaminated with listeria. The recall comes after at least three deaths and at least 29 illnesses in 10 states have been linked to an outbreak of the deadly bacteria.

TITUSVILLE, N.J. (AP) — It's a day to remember. George Washington and his troops made a daring Christmas Day crossing of the Delaware River on a snowy day in 1776. The trek turned the tide of the Revolutionary War. Hundreds of people turned out today under sunny skies to watch re-enactors travel between Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania, and Titusville, New Jersey in four replica boats.

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