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(Spoiler alert: Do not read this post if you want to remain in the dark on who won Season 2 of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent: The Champions.)

Season 2 of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent: The Champions” is in the books. The champion of “The Champions” is V.Unbeatable.

And here’s a look at that momentous announcement for the dance group:

Give it up for your new #AGTChampion winners, @v_unbeatable! ???? pic.twitter.com/Ov4gkqnaEm

— America's Got Talent (@AGT) February 18, 2020

Monday also featured quite a lineup of guest performers, including a few “AGT” alums. KISS, Travis Barker (with AGT: Champions finalists V. Unbeatable), Lindsey Stirling (with AGT: Champions finalist the Silhouettes), Kodi Lee, Shin Lim and Colin Cloud, and Kseniya Simonova (with AGT: Champions finalists Angelina Jordan and Tyler Butler Figueroa) were all on the season finale’s set list.

Also Read: Watch Filipino Singer Marcelito Pomoy Perform a Duet - by Himself - for 'AGT: The Champions' Semifinals (Video)

Season 2’s Top 10 acts were:

V.Unbeatable – Dance Group – “America’s Got Talent” 2019 – Finalist (Howie’s Golden Buzzer)
The India-based dance group wowed audiences around the globe during season 14 of “America’s Got Talent,” where they finished in fourth place. Founded by Vikas and Om Prakash, the group was originally named Unbeatable. After a horrible accident during a group rehearsal, Vikas was injured and unfortunately passed away. The group renamed itself V.Unbeatable (for Vikas Unbeatable) in his honor and continued to pursue Vikas’ original dreams for the group.

Boogie Storm – Dance Group – “Britain’s Got Talent” 2016 – Finalist (Simon’s Golden Buzzer)
With their iconic costumes and awesome dance moves, Boogie Storm is a force to be reckoned with. Since appearing on “Britain’s Got Talent” in 2016, where they received Simon Cowell’s Golden Buzzer, they have traveled all over the world and have performed at many prestigious film premieres.

The Silhouettes – Shadow Dance Group – “America’s Got Talent” 2006 – Finalist (Alesha’s Golden Buzzer)
The Silhouettes, runner-up on “America’s Got Talent” season six, are a shadow-dance company created and directed by Lynne Waggoner-Patton, whose mission is to help homeless children and children in need around the world. They have been featured in both commercials and television shows and have helped raise millions by creating custom performances for charitable organizations.

Angelina Jordan – Singer – “Norway’s Got Talent” 2014 – Winner (Heidi’s Golden Buzzer)
At 7, singer Angelina Jordan was crowned the winner of “Norway’s Got Talent,” performing Billie Holiday’s “Gloomy Sunday.” Angelina’s videos have received more than 300 million views on YouTube and more than 1 billion views on Facebook. Angelina has performed for Nobel Peace Prize Laureates and raised over 21 million euros for children in need. One of her most memorable performances was performing with the legendary Quincy Jones in London in 2018.

Hans – Singer/Dancer/Musician – “America’s Got Talent” 2018 – Quarter-finalist
An international superstar, accordionist and Berlin boy wonder, Hans has been thrilling audiences around the globe with his own fabulous brand of critically acclaimed cabaret for over a decade, performing for everyone from prime ministers to princesses, taking him all around Australia and across Europe and the UK. In 2018 Hans came to the United States to appear on season 13 of “America’s Got Talent.”

Duo Transcend – Trapeze/Rollerskating Duo – “America’s Got Talent” 2018 – Finalist
Aerial trapeze artists Duo Transcend appeared on Season 13 of “America’s Got Talent.” Following that they have had the opportunity to travel and share their talent with millions around the world.

Marcelito Pomoy – Singer – “Pilipinas Got Talent” 2011 – Winner
Marcelito “Mars” Pomoy is a Filipino singer known for his ability to sing in both tenor and soprano and switch instantly from one to the other. He was the winner of the second season of “Pilipinas Got Talent.” In 2018, he appeared on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” where he wowed the audience and received a standing ovation for his rendition of “Beauty and the Beast.”

Alexa Lauenburger – Dog Act – “Das Supertalent” 2017 – Winner/ “Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions” 2019 – Finalist
Eleven-year-old Alexa Lauenburger’s passion for animals developed at a very young age.  Following in her father’s footsteps training dogs, Alexa secretly worked with the dogs and surprised her family with a dog show at the age of 7. Alexa won “Das Supertalent” in 2017 and her life changed in that moment.  She also participated in “Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions” in 2019 and received the Golden Buzzer from Ant and Dec.

Tyler Butler-Figueroa – Violinist – “America’s Got Talent” 2019 – Finalist
Twelve-year-old violinist Tyler Butler Figueroa touched the hearts and inspired millions of people around the world, including Simon Cowell, who gave him the Golden Buzzer, on season 14 of “America’s Got Talent.” At 4 years old, Tyler was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Looking for a way to express himself after being bullied for his hair loss, Tyler started playing the violin. Inspired by violinist Brian King Joseph from season 13 of “America’s Got Talent,” he started street performing and playing at local events to pay for travel expenses to audition for the show. Tyler is now cancer-free and has been in remission for four years.

Sandou Trio Russian Bar – Russian Bar – “America’s Got Talent” 2011 – Semi-finalist
Sandou Trio Russian Bar performed on season six of “America’s Got Talent.” Since then, the Trio have performed all over the world, including major league sporting events and have appeared in the FX series “Baskets,” and the feature film “The Greatest Showman.” The talented Trio have performed in several shows on the Las Vegas strip and provide entertainment for corporate events parties and more.)

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www.thewrap.com | 2/18/20

Ari Behn, the author and ex-husband of Norway’s Princess Martha Louise who once accused Kevin Spacey of sexual assault, has died. He was 47.

Behn’s manager, Geir Håkonsund, told Norwegian media that the author took his own life on Christmas Day.

“It is with great sadness in our hearts that we, the closest relatives of Ari Behn, have to announce that he took his own life today. We ask that our privacy is respected in the time to come,” Håkonsund said in a statement to Norwegian newspaper VG.

Also Read: Kevin Spacey Posts Another Bizarre Video as Frank Underwood: 'Kill Them With Kindness'

Behn, also an artist and a playwright, was best known for his short-story collection “Sad as Hell.”

In 2017, Behn came forward with an accusation of sexual assault against Spacey, who was fired from his Netflix series “House of Cards” after several similar accusations from other men came out that year. According to the BBC, Behn told Norwegian radio station P4 that Spacey groped him at a Nobel Peace Prize concert in 2007.

“We had a great talk, he sat right beside me,” Behn said at the time. “After five minutes he said, ‘Hey, let’s go out and have a cigarette’. Then he puts his hand under the table and grabs me by the balls.”

Also Read: Judi Dench: Don't 'Negate' Harvey Weinstein or Kevin Spacey's Work Just Because of Misconduct

Behn said his response to Spacey was, “Er, maybe later,” and added, “My hair was dark at the time, I was 10 years younger and right up his alley.”

Behn is not the first of Spacey’s accusers to die unexpectedly. The anonymous massage therapist who accused Spacey of sexually assaulting him last year died in September, one year after filing claims against the actor. As a result, that case against Spacey was dropped, according to the Los Angeles Times.

In a bizarre tradition started last Christmas Eve, Spacey posted another video in which he appeared as his “House of Cards” character, Frank Underwood, on Tuesday, with the message, “Kill them with kindness.”

Behn married Princess Martha Louise in 2002 and they divorced in 2016, according to his website. He is survived by his three daughters with his former wife: Maud Angelica, 16, Leah Isadora, 14, Emma Tallulah, 11.

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www.thewrap.com | 12/26/19

“Roma” and “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” have won the top film awards from the 2019 Location Managers Guild International’s LMGI Awards, which were handed out in Los Angeles on Saturday night.

“Mission: Impossible,” which was shot in France, the U.K., Abu Dhabi, Norway and New Zealand, won in the Outstanding Locations in a Contemporary Feature category. Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma,” shot entirely in Mexico City, won for Outstanding Locations in a Period Feature.

Voting in the television categories followed suit, with the contemporary award going to an action-packed franchise, “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan” (shot in Montreal, Morocco, France and Washington, D.C.) and the period award going to a more contemplative work, “Chernobyl” (shot in Lithuania).

Also Read: 'Fallout' Director Christopher McQuarrie to Write, Direct Next 2 'Mission: Impossible' Films

The awards covered an unusual 17-month eligibility period, with films and television shows released between Jan. 1, 2018 and May 31, 2019 qualifying for consideration.

Director Peter Weir received the LMGI Lifetime Achievement Award, while location manager Michael J. Meehan was given the Trailblazer Award.

The sixth annual LMGI Awards ceremony took place at the Eli and Edythe Broad Stage in Santa Monica.

The winners:

Outstanding Locations in a Contemporary Television Series: “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan” (Amazon Prime Video), Michele St-Arnaud, Arnaud Kaiser, Peggy Pridemore, Christian McWilliams, Lori Balton

Outstanding Locations in a Period Television Series: “Chernobyl” (HBO), Jonas Spokas

Outstanding Locations in a Contemporary Feature: “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” (Paramount Pictures), Ben Piltz, David Campbell-Bell

Outstanding Locations in a Period Feature: “Roma” (Netflix), Horacio Rodriquez de Zamacona, Claudia Puebla Monge

Outstanding Locations in a Commercial: “Nujeen Mustafa” (National Geographic -72andSunny), Jose Aragao, Luis Santos

Outstanding Film Commission: Film Otago Southland, KJ Jennings, Executive Manager

Lifetime Achievement Award: Peter Weir

Trailblazer Award: Location manager Michael J. Meehan

Humanitarian Award: Hidden Empire Film Group’s Deon Taylor, Roxanne Taylor and Robert F. Smith

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www.thewrap.com | 9/22/19

Students at the American Film Institute lead the way for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science’s annual Student Academy Awards.

The Academy named 16 students as winners on Thursday, including three in the narrative category from AFI. The competition received 1,615 entrants from 255 domestic and 105 international colleges and universities, the Academy said.

AFI was the only school to take more than one award. AFI students Asher Jelinsky (“Miller & Son”), Hao Zheng (“The Chef”)  and Omer Ben-Shachar (“Tree #3,”) took home awards in the narrative category. Last year, the University of Southern California was the only school to take home more than one award, with four.

Also Read: New Academy President on the Next Oscars: 'I Don't Think We Need to Be Changing the Show'

Winners of the Student Academy Awards are eligible to compete for Oscars in the Animated Short Film, Live Action Short Film or Documentary Short Subject category. Past winners have gone on to nab 62 Oscar nominations and have won or shared 12 awards.

The 2019 winners join the ranks of such past Student Academy Award winners as Patricia Cardoso, Pete Docter, Cary Fukunaga, Spike Lee, Trey Parker, Patricia Riggen and Robert Zemeckis.

Here’s the full list of winners:

Alternative/Experimental (Domestic and International Film Schools)
Georden West, “Patron Saint,” Emerson College

Animation (Domestic Film Schools)
Aviv Mano, “Game Changer,” Ringling College of Art and Design
Kalee McCollaum, “Grendel,” Brigham Young University
Emre Okten, “Two,” University of Southern California

Animation (International Film Schools)
Daria Kashcheeva, “Daughter,” Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts, Prague (Czech Republic)

Documentary (Domestic Film Schools)
Eva Rendle, “All That Remains,” University of California, Berkeley
Princess Garrett, “Sankofa,” Villanova University
Abby Lieberman and Joshua Lucas, “Something to Say,” Columbia University

Documentary (International Film Schools)
Yifan Sun, “Family,” The Polish National Film, Television and Theatre School, Lodz (Poland)

Narrative (Domestic Film Schools)
Asher Jelinsky, “Miller & Son,” American Film Institute
Hao Zheng, “The Chef,” American Film Institute
Omer Ben-Shachar, “Tree #3,” American Film Institute

Narrative (International Film Schools)
Zoel Aeschbacher, “Bonobo,” Ecole Cantonale d’Art de Lausanne (ECAL) (Switzerland)
Rikke Gregersen, “Dog Eat Dog,” Westerdals Kristiania University College (Norway)
Charlie Manton, “November 1st,” National Film and Television School (United Kingdom)

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www.thewrap.com | 9/12/19

The television series “Mrs. Fletcher,” “Briarpatch” and “Limetown” have been added to the lineup at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival, which will screen two or three episodes of each series followed by extended Q&As with the creators and cast.

Those three U.S. series will be part of TIFF’s Primetime section, which will also showcase the international series “Black Bitch” (Australia), “Savages” (France) and “The Sleepers” (the Czech Republic).

“Mrs. Fletcher” is an upcoming series from HBO and Crave, based on the Tom Perotta novel and starring Kathryn Hahn as an empty-nest mother. “Briarpatch,” from USA Network, stars Rosario Dawson as a political fixer investigating the death of her sister. And Facebook Watch’s podcast-based “Limetown” follows a public radio journalist (Jessica Biel) looking into the disappearance of 300 people at a research facility.

Also Read: Mister Rogers, the Joker and Judy Garland Are All Headed to Toronto Film Festival

Toronto organizers also announced the lineup for its five-day TIFF Industry Conference, which will launch on September 6 with a conversation with director Ron Howard and producer Brian Grazer, whose collaborations include the TIFF opening-night documentary “Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and the Band.”

The conference will also include master classes with Brazilian director Fernando Meirelles and Chinese-born director Lulu Wang; a conversation about gender equality led by Swedish Film Institute CEO Anna Serner; and guest speakers including Edward Burns, Barbara Kopple, Franklin Leonard and Alan Berliner.

The TIFF Doc Conference, curated by Thom Powers and Denae Peters, will include talks and panels featuring Kopple, Berliner, Kickstarter’s Elise McCave, Showtime’s Vinnie Malhotra, the International Documentary Association’s Claire Aguilar and the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Ashley Clark, among others.

Also Read: Toronto Film Festival Adds Documentaries From Alex Gibney, Barbara Kopple, Bryce Dallas Howard

Finally, TIFF named four young actors – Argentina’s Chino Darin, Norway’s Josefine Frida, the United States’ Kelvin Harrison Jr. and Australia’s Geraldine Viswanathan – to its Rising Stars program. The four join a quartet of previously announced Canadian Rising Stars, Mikhail Ahooja, Shamier Anderson, Kacey Rohl and Nahema Ricci.

Darin will appear at TIFF in “Heroic Losers,” Frida in “Disco,” Harrison in “Waves” and Viswanathan in “Bad Education.”

The 44th Toronto International Film Festival will kick off on September 5 with a screening of the documentary “Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and the Band,” and conclude on September 15.

Additional information on the programming is available at www.tiff.net.

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www.thewrap.com | 8/15/19

At the end of 2016, Steven Van Zandt aka Little Steven, was ready to take a deep breath, and some time off. Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band toured for the better part of the year in North America and Europe behind the re-release of “The River.” As Springsteen’s guitar soloing consigliere, Van Zandt knew that the band had a string of dates in Australia and New Zealand in early 2017, but nothing after that. It would have given him time to pursue other endeavors, perhaps even a new television project.

As he and his wife, Maureen, were making arrangements to celebrate ex-Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman’s birthday in London, the guitarist/TV mobster from HBO hit “The Sopranos” got an offer that he couldn’t refuse.

“I had no intention of coming back in,” he says over the phone ahead of a tour stop in Buffalo. “There had been no real plan to reconnect with my own work — as silly as that sounds now,” Van Zandt said. As he prepared for his trip, the guitarist was contacted by a promoter who asked him about performing at a blues festival in London on the same weekend as Wyman;’s birthday and asked Van Zandt if he could throw a band together and headline one of the nights. “If it hadn’t been Bill Wyman’s birthday, if I didn’t happen to run into this crazy promoter and he didn’t have this wild idea to have me headline a show, none of this woulda happened,” he said.

Also Read: Bruce Springsteen Teases Film of 'Western Stars' Performances

Thus, after 25 years away, Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul were unexpectedly reformed.

Though Van Zandt says that he will “never get back to being the frontman I was in the ’80s” at the peak of his solo career (he left the E Street Band in a performing capacity just before the release of “Born in the U.S.A.” in 1984), the axe man says that his two years on the road with his band has been more than gratifying and that he’s “halfway back” to where he was. In 2017, Van Zandt released “Soulfire,” an album of songs he’d had written for other artists, quickly followed up in 2019 by “Summer of Sorcery,” released earlier this year. It’s his first collection of solo material since 1999’s “Born Again Savage,” which was released right as Springsteen reunited with the E Street Band (the album was actually recorded in 1994 but the record company didn’t release it at the time).

“It’s been a challenge, but a healthy one,” Van Zandt says of relaunching his solo career. “But it keeps you working. ‘Summer of Sorcery’ has been just a wonderful show to do live. It was an accidental circumstance kinda thing, which describes most of my life (laughs), but here it is.”

Also Read: Bruce Springsteen's Unused 'Harry Potter' Song Finally Finds a Home in New Movie

It’s one thing to be known for his work playing Springsteen and having his hand in production on iconic albums from “Born to Run” through “Born in the U.S.A.” (“Nebraska” not withstanding), but getting the affirmation from a legend on his own material was the sign for Van Zandt that resuscitating his solo material was the right decision.

Ahead of his show in London, Van Zandt invited Paul McCartney to swing by (McCartney famously played with Springsteen and company in Hyde Park in 2009 where they went over curfew and had the power clipped) to take it in and hope on stage with him. On the off chance that Macca would take him up on his offer, Van Zandt quickly put together a swinging version of the Beatles’ “I Saw Her Standing There” and rehearsed it quickly with his band during soundcheck. Well, McCartney ended up hopping on stage and they did the revamped version, which was in the vein of rip-roaring rock-n-roll standard “Maybellene”. But, there was something else, though, that stuck out to him.

“It was one of the most thrilling moments of my life,” he says of McCartney joining him and the Disciples of Soul. “Coming on my stage, endorsing what I’m doing, my own personal music, that was just beyond my imagination. That kind of endorsement from a guy who is responsible for me doing this (playing music) — one of them — it was a remarkable moment.”

Also Read: Bruce Springsteen-Inspired Sundance Film 'Blinded by the Light' Given Release Date by Warner Bros.

While reforming the Disciples of Soul has been a way for him to unexpectedly stay busy while Springsteen was on Broadway, Van Zandt also found time to dip back into his catalog to find material to release as a two-volume soundtrack to New York mob drama “Lilyhammer,” which was the first original series to be released on Netflix. The two versions are snippets of the score Van Zandt wrote himself and odds, ends and an assortment of covers that were performed on the show before it ended in 2014.

“You’re always kind of checking to make sure your memory of it is accurate,” Van Zandt said of the music he wrote during those four years. “We all have a bit of narcissism that’s required but you want to make sure you’re not imagining something that isn’t there. There’s great performances and cool melodies and really enjoyed that particular artistic adventure.”

“Lilyhammer” saw him play Frank “The Fixer” Tagliano, an ex-mobster exiled in Norway. Tagliano’s gregarious personality drew in stark contrast to Silvio Dante, the mobster Van Zandt had famously portrayed on “The Sopranos.”

Also Read: Bruce Springsteen, Steven Van Zandt Disagree on 'Hamilton,' Mike Pence Drama

“On my first promotional tour, I had to explain to people what Netflix was,” he recalls of the show’s launch. “I was like, ‘Well, it’s kinda like Blockbuster but they’re makin’ their own stuff now. People were like, ‘Why would they want to do that? Why would they want to create original content?'”

Instead of it being an uncomfortable foray to an uncharted new world, Van Zandt says it “was the most wonderful business deal” he’d ever done. Originally, Van Zandt was going to bring “Lilyhammer” to Starz since he knew Chris Albrecht from HBO, but by a stroke of luck — or location — Netflix was across the street from the cable network and Van Zandt figured that he might as well go there as well. Starz didn’t have any budget left that year for the show (Albrecht asked him to wait a year), and it ended up being Netflix’s gain.

“I’ll never beat it,” he says. “It was just me and [Netflix chief content officer] Ted Sarandos and there was nobody else in the office, basically. It was a very, very small group of people and Ted was really the only guy I met,” Van Zandt remembers. The company had signed ‘House of Cards,’ at the time, but it wasn’t ready and by default Lilyhammer became Netflix’s first show. “I said, ‘Ted, are you sure you want to take a chance on us for your first show, a show with subtitles?’ Van Zandt asked. “And he was brave enough to say that it just works. I give him a lot of credit to have those kind of balls to take a chance like that on the first show. I took a chance on Netflix and they took a chance on me.”

Also Read: Netflix Will 'Rethink Our Entire Investment in Georgia' if Anti-Abortion Law Goes Into Effect

Now, 20 years since “The Sopranos” first aired on HBO, Van Zandt isn’t surprised that the show continues to maintain its popularity and cultural importance.

“It comes around every 10 years or five years, it’s there all the time,” he says of the landmark HBO series. “Which is nice because people can discover it, and they do.”

He doesn’t know if Dante will be in the upcoming “Sopranos” prequel, “The Many Saints of Newark,” Van Zandt says he is confident that the film will be rewarding for longtime fans of the HBO mega-series.

Also Read: 'The Sopranos' Prequel Movie: Everything We Know So Far About 'The Many Saints of Newark'

“I think it’s going to be great,” he says of the film. “The fact that David Chase is doing it automatically, in my mind, makes it a really, really safe bet. He’s one of the most brilliant guys I’ve ever met and I love everything he does. I think he’s great and we’ll all find out (about the movie) together.”

As for his day job, Van Zandt has shows booked with the Disciples of Soul through November and is ready to go whenever Springsteen gives the go-ahead. And that could be much sooner than E Street Nation is anticipating.

Earlier this year, Springsteen appeared with Van Zandt at the first show of his tour at the Saban Theater in Beverly Hills in May, ahead of a For Your Consideration appearance he was set to make for Netflix the next night. There, Springsteen said he had just finished an album of songs for the E Street Band. (As for “Western Stars,” Van Zandt loved it, saying “he’s so versatile and has a wide range of talent when it comes to his artistic vision. And it’s always interesting when he picks a new hybrid genre to explore and I thought it was wonderful.”)

Also Read: 'The Many Saints of Newark' Adds Italian Actress Michela De Rossi

Speaking of the mysterious collections of tunes his longtime pal says he has written, Van Zandt said that they’re “still rumblings and we’ll see what happens,” but said that he has left his calendar wide open after his final Disciples of Soul dates in November.

“I certainly am planning on the possibility,” he says of a new Springsteen and E Street Band record. “I wanted to leave room in case he wants to do a record with the E Street Band and we will have time to do it November, December and be able to deliver it in January (of 2020) and then be out (on the road) in the summer of 2020. IF that’s what he wants to do.”

Despite being fairly tightlipped on his knowledge on what’s to come on a future E Street album, Van Zandt said that the recording would be fast, with the band being able to “knock out a couple of tracks a day.”

As for his own foreseeable future, Van Zandt plans on keeping the Disciples of Soul together and not have a 25-year gap between material, calling “Summer of Sorcery” an “unexpected artistic rebirth,” but that “Bruce will always remain a first priority to me and we’ll see what he wants to do,” and that he isn’t quite done with doing TV just yet, especially given his unexpected roles of the seismic shift of that landscape.

“I was fortunate to be in the right place at the right time for the two major revolutions in that took place on TV,” he says of HBO and “The Sopranos” and the rise of Netflix Originals. “I’m lucky to be in two of the most unique TV shows in history. The nice thing about the modern world is that people keep discovering them every day. Somehow, in between all of my things, I have to find six months in a row where I can do a TV show again.”

“Summer of Sorcery” and “Lilyhammer Vols. 1 and 2” are out now via Wicked Cool/UMe

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www.thewrap.com | 7/12/19
BBC Sport remembers Norway's 2-0 win over Germany in the 1995 final, a game reportedly watched on television by one in four Norwegians.
www.bbc.co.uk | 5/20/19