News In Brief

WHO NEEDS A BURGLAR ALARM?

A family in Dulliken, Switzerland, lost only what was in a coin purse as a result of a late-night break-in by burglars. As we pick up the story, the bad guys were rifling drawers on the first floor of a home in town as dad, mom, and the kids slept upstairs. Not asleep, however, was the family's pet rabbit. But since the species doesn't bark, growl, or squeal, it reacted to the intrusion the only way it could: by thumping on the floor of its cage with a hind foot. The noise awakened the family, who came down to investigate and chased the thieves away.

PITCH IN WITH THE CHORES

Greene County, Ind., officials not only hope you won't litter as you drive through, they want you to stop and pick up any roadside trash you see. As an incentive, they're offering thousands of dollars worth of "prize capsules" planted among the soda cans, candy wrappers, and styrofoam cups. No prize will be redeemed, however, unless accompanied by two full bags of litter.

'U-571' cruises ahead of summer blockbuster storm

Despite a flood of new releases, the submarine film "U-571" stayed afloat at No. 1 for a second week at the box office. But "The Flintstones," "Frequency," and "Where the Heart Is," all of which debuted last weekend, finished a strong second third, and fourth, respectively. Overall, however, "this is the calm before the storm," says Paul Dergarabedian of box-office tracker Exhibitor Relations Inc. Next weekend marks the unofficial kickoff for the summer blockbuster season, with the Roman spectacle "Gladiator" hitting theaters. Exhibitor Relations' list of top-grossing films April 28-30 (in millions):

1. U-571 $12.2

2. The Flintstones in

Viva Rock Vegas $10.5

3. Frequency $9.0

4. Where the Heart Is $8.2

5. Love and Basketball $5.1

6. Rules of Engagement $4.6

7. Keeping the Faith $4.4

8. 28 Days $4.0

9. Erin Brockovich $3.6

10. Final Destination $2.3

- Associated Press

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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