‘Avatar’ director Cameron says he still hopes to film four sequels

MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif. (Reuters) – “Avatar” director James Cameron said he still aims to make four sequels to the 2009 science-fiction blockbuster and is moving ahead with production while regulators review the proposed sale of 21st Century Fox’s film studio to Walt Disney Co.

CORRECTED-U.S. banks push mortgage apps as home lending slows

NEW YORK, April 20 (Reuters) – Big U.S. banks are racing to launch websites and mobile apps to make getting a mortgage faster and easier, investments that may have modest near-term payoffs as home lending activity slows.

Underlining alliance, Venezuela’s Maduro visits new Cuban leader

HAVANA (Reuters) – Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro became on Saturday the first foreign leader to meet with Cuba’s Miguel Diaz-Canel since he became president of the communist-run island this week, underscoring the importance of the Venezuelan-Cuban alliance.

Johnson, Landry tied for lead in San Antonio

(Reuters) – Zach Johnson sank a six-foot putt for birdie on his final hole for a four-under-par 68 to ensure a share of the lead with Andrew Landry on 13-under 203 after the third round of the Texas Open on Saturday.

World Bank shareholders back $13 billion capital increase

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The World Bank’s shareholders on Saturday endorsed a $13 billion paid-in capital increase that will boost China’s shareholding but bring lending reforms that will raise borrowing costs for higher-middle-income countries, including China.

Japan may soften trade stance as U.S. keeps up pressure

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Despite calls to resist protectionism and for the United States to rejoin a multilateral trans-Pacific trade pact, Japan is gradually shifting gear to adjust to a trade environment shaken up by U.S. President Donald Trump.

Saudi security shoots down recreational drone near royal palace

DUBAI/RIYADH (Reuters) – Saudi Arabian security forces said they had shot down a recreational drone in the capital on Saturday after online videos showing gunfire in a neighborhood where royal palaces are located sparked fears of possible political unrest.

Nicaragua’s Ortega offers benefits rethink as protest death toll rises

MANAGUA (Reuters) – Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega said on Saturday he was ready to consider changing an unpopular social security overhaul that has sparked days of deadly protests and one of the biggest crises of his leadership.

Marquez loses Austin pole with three-place penalty

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) – Honda’s MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez was handed a three-place penalty for slow riding after taking pole for the sixth year in a row at the Grand Prix of the Americas on Saturday.

German minister urges Russia to cooperate in solving Syria crisis

BERLIN (Reuters) – German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas on Saturday urged Russia to help solve the Syria crisis as he set off for a meeting of foreign ministers from the Group of Seven (G7) major industrialized nations in Toronto.

Trump weighs pardoning late African American boxing champion

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump said on Saturday he was considering pardoning the late boxing legend Jack Johnson, the first black heavyweight champion of the world who was jailed after having a relationship with a white woman.

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth celebrates 92 years with star-studded concert

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Queen Elizabeth attended a star-studded special concert on Saturday as the world’s oldest and longest-reigning living monarch celebrated her 92nd birthday.

World Bank says shareholders endorse capital increase

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The World Bank said on Saturday its shareholders had endorsed a $13 billion paid-in capital increase, a series of internal reforms and a set of policy measures to strengthen the international lender’s capabilities.

Motorcycling: Marquez on provisional pole in Texas for sixth year running

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) – Honda’s MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez crashed but still took pole position for the Grand Prix of the Americas for the sixth year in a row on Saturday, pending a stewards’ investigation.

Armenian PM says country needs him as opposition stages ninth day of protests

YEREVAN (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of Armenian opposition supporters rallied on Saturday for a ninth consecutive day to demand the resignation of Prime Minister Serzh Sarksyan, but he said the country needed his experience to tackle problems such as Nagorno-Karabakh.

U.S. Treasury chief may visit China as trade tensions simmer

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Saturday he may travel to China, a move that could ease tensions between the world’s two largest economies, as international policymakers acknowledged Beijing needs to change its trade practices.

American pilot Goulian tops qualifying in Cannes

(Reuters) – U.S. pilot Michael Goulian came out on top in an intense qualifying session in Cannes for Sunday’s second leg of the Red Bull Air Race world championship.

Turkey’s Erdogan says U.S. should look at its own actions if it wants jailed pastor freed

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – President Tayyip Erdogan said the United States should look at its own actions if it wants the return of an American Christian pastor who has been jailed in Turkey for suspected links to a 2016 failed coup.

Mladenovic draws France level with U.S. in Fed Cup semis

(Reuters) – Kristina Mladenovic came back from a set down to beat CoCo Vandeweghe 1-6 6-3 6-2 and draw France level with defending champions U.S. in their Fed Cup semi-final in Aix-en-Provence on Saturday.

Barbara Bush remembered for her dignity and wit at Houston funeral

HOUSTON (Reuters) – Former first lady Barbara Bush was remembered at her funeral on Saturday as a formidable but caring figure whose devotion to her family was matched only by her commitment to public service.

Tens of thousands of Hungarians protest against PM Orban’s rule

BUDAPEST (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of Hungarians protested on Saturday against government control over the media, which they say helped Prime Minister Viktor Orban to a landslide election victory earlier this month.

U.S. Treasury chief may go to China as trade tensions simmer

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin may visit China, in a move that could help defuse rising trade tensions between the world’s two largest economies that threaten to derail a global economic recovery.

Ex-U.S. presidents among mourners as Barbara Bush lauded at funeral

HOUSTON (Reuters) – Former first lady Barbara Bush was remembered on Saturday as a sharp-tongued but caring figure whose devotion to her family was matched only by her commitment to public service.

One killed, 16 injured as Madagascar police disperse protests

ANTANANARIVO (Reuters) – One person was killed on Saturday when Madagascar police fired teargas at opposition demonstrators protesting against new electoral laws they say are designed to lock out their candidate from a presidential election due this year.

Nadal cruises into Monte Carlo final

MONTE CARLO (Reuters) – Defending champion Rafa Nadal remains on course for an 11th Monte Carlo Masters title after beating Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov 6-4 6-1 in the semi-finals on Saturday.

Philippines’ Duterte sets window for peace talks with communist rebels

MANILA (Reuters) – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said on Saturday he had set a 60-day timeframe for peace talks he is seeking to revive with communist guerrillas, urging the rebels’ exiled leader to come home to hammer out a deal.

Russia says kills nine militants plotting attack in Dagestan

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia said on Saturday it had killed nine militants who had been plotting a terrorist act in the volatile Dagestan region in the south of the country.

Thousands of Hungarians protest against Orban’s media control

BUDAPEST (Reuters) – Around ten thousand Hungarians protested in Budapest on Saturday against government control over the media which they say helped Prime Minister Viktor Orban to a landslide election victory earlier this month.

U.S. regulator permits China’s ZTE to submit more evidence

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The U.S. Commerce Department has granted ZTE Corp’s request to submit more evidence after the agency banned American companies from selling to the Chinese technology firm, a senior Commerce official said on Saturday.

UPDATE 1-U.S. regulator permits China’s ZTE to submit more evidence

NEW YORK, April 21 (Reuters) – The U.S. Commerce Department has granted ZTE Corp’s request to submit more evidence after the agency banned American companies from selling to the Chinese technology firm, a senior Commerce official said on Saturday.