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Start your week smart: Hollywood strike, Bob Menendez, Ophelia, Ukraine hits Crimea, New York bus crash

By Andrew Torgan and Daniel Wine, CNN

(CNN) — It may not be the lightest of topics to begin your Sunday with, but it’s one we shouldn’t shy away from either: Gun violence has changed day-to-day life in and out of the classroom, and schools and parents are attempting to take safety into their own hands. Scroll through this interactive feature to see the future of American classrooms.

Here’s what else you need to know to Start Your Week Smart.

The weekend that was

• The major film and television studios delivered their “best and final” offer to the striking writers, adding to significant hope that the negotiations to end the monthslong strike will conclude with an agreement this weekend. Negotiators with the Writers Guild of America were expected to review the offer and deliver their response.
• New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy and other top Garden State Democrats are calling on Sen. Bob Menendez to resign — a sign of how quickly the senator’s political support may erode after his shocking indictment on federal bribery charges.
• Ophelia, now a post-tropical cyclone, is moving up the East Coast, bringing heavy rainfall and threats of flash flooding and dangerous surf from North Carolina to New Jersey. New York City issued a travel advisory, warning of a “a long-duration rainfall event.”
• Ukraine said its bold strike on Russia’s Black Sea Fleet headquarters in the Crimean city of Sevastopol had left dozens dead and wounded “including senior leadership.” Ukraine’s attack shows the vulnerability of critically important infrastructure on the peninsula.
• The transportation company that owns the bus involved in a fatal crash in New York while bringing high school students to a band camp was listed as an “unacceptable operator” by the state after failing several safety inspections since 2022. Two teachers were killed and multiple students injured in the crash.

The week ahead

The US government will relaunch a program to provide free Covid-19 home tests to Americans as new variants continue to alarm health officials. Go to to order up to four free tests. The government had shipped more than 755 million free Covid-19 tests to people who requested them through the website before the program was suspended in May after the end of the Covid-19 public health emergency.

Members of the House are set to return to session as the possibility of a government shutdown in a week appears ever more likely. Late last week, Speaker Kevin McCarthy sent his members home without a clear plan to avoid the looming shutdown after Republican hardliners once again scuttled his spending plans, delivering an embarrassing floor defeat for GOP leadership for the second time in a week.

The second Republican presidential primary debate is set to take place at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California. And once again, former President Donald Trump will not be in attendance. He will instead travel to Detroit to deliver a speech to an audience that will include current and former union members, according to a source familiar with his plans. Trump, who has maintained a large lead in national and early-state primary polls, also skipped the first GOP primary debate in Milwaukee last month. The third debate will take place in Miami on November 8.

CNN will join the Max streaming platform. The network’s parent company, Warner Bros. Discovery, announced last month that it will incorporate live news into its super-streamer Max service, allowing subscribers access to 24/7 programming from the global news brand. The service, which launches a little more than a year after Warner Bros. Discovery executives shuttered the previous standalone CNN+ service, will be called CNN Max and launch with a “beta” label in the US before being rolled out more broadly.

A House Oversight panel is set to hold its first hearing in the impeachment inquiry of President Joe Biden. A committee spokesperson told CNN that the hearing will focus on the constitutional and legal questions Republicans are raising about Biden. While the witnesses are still being finalized, House Oversight Chairman James Comer told CNN he plans to have a financial expert speak about the bank records he has uncovered pertaining to the Biden family’s business dealings and a constitutional expert to discuss why an impeachment inquiry is warranted. The panel is also poised to issue its first subpoenas to the president’s son and brother, Hunter and James Biden, according to the spokesperson.

Netflix will send out its final red envelope, marking an end to 25 years of mailing DVDs to subscribers. The company says it will continue to accept returns of customers’ remaining DVDs until October 27. Introduced in 1998 when Netflix first launched, the DVD-by-mail service promised an easier rental experience than having to drive to the nearest Blockbuster. The red envelopes, which have long been synonymous with Netflix itself, littered coffee tables and dorm rooms across the country. But in 2007, Netflix began streaming content online and gradually shifted the focus away from its original DVD business.

Government funding expires when the clock strikes midnight and it becomes October 1, which marks the start of the new fiscal year. (As shorthand, the deadline is commonly described as September 30 at midnight.) Congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle are hoping to pass a short-term funding extension before then to keep the lights on and avert a shutdown, although the situation is looking grim. So what, exactly, could happen if the government shuts down at the end of the week? Here’s everything you need to know.

One Thing: Wagner in Africa
In this week’s One Thing podcast, CNN chief international correspondent Clarissa Ward tells us about her trip to the Central African Republic to investigate the future of Wagner, the private military company, following the death of its leader, Yevgeny Prigozhin. Listen here for more.

Photos of the week

Check out more images from the week that was, curated by CNN Photos.

What’s happening in entertainment

TV and streaming
Fox’s new animated series “Krapopolis” makes its debut tonight. Set in mythical Ancient Greece, the show centers on a flawed family of humans, gods and monsters that tries to run one of the world’s first cities without killing each other.

“The Golden Bachelor,” ABC’s senior-citizen version of “The Bachelor,” its long-running dating show, premieres Thursday.

In theaters
Friday is shaping up to be a busy day at the box office with a little something for everyone.

First up is “PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie,” the fifth feature-length installment of the popular animated children’s TV show. This outing involves a meteor crash that gives the pups superpowers.

“The Creator” comes across as a mashup of “The Terminator,” “I, Robot” and “A.I. Artificial Intelligence.” Set in a post-apocalyptic future (aren’t they all?) during a war between humans and robots, a former soldier (see above) is tasked with finding a secret weapon — a robot in the form of a young child (ditto) that could save, or destroy, humanity.

“Dumb Money” takes full advantage of its David-vs.-Goliath underpinnings to turn a tale of stocks and finance, a la “The Big Short” or “Too Big to Fail,” into a crowd-pleasing underdog story. Paul Dano heads a sprawling cast as the guy leading the rebels with pitchforks on behalf of GameStop, resulting in a film that CNN’s Brian Lowry says is “smart and satisfying enough to earn every dollar it makes.” “Dumb Money” premiered in select US theaters on September 15 but now goes into wide release.

“The Kill Room” is the tale of a hitman, his boss, an art dealer and a money-laundering scheme that accidentally turns the killer-for-hire into an avant-garde sensation. It stars Samuel L. Jackson, Joe Manganiello, Uma Thurman and Maya Hawke — Thurman’s daughter with ex-husband Ethan Hawke.

“57 Seconds” is the amount of time a mysterious ring allows a young man to travel back into the past. What could possibly go wrong?

Finally, we arrive at “Saw X.” If you know the stomach-turning horror franchise, you know what you’re getting yourself into. (A note to readers: We’re not linking to the trailer. If you must see it, Google it.)

What’s happening in sports

At a glance …
It’s a big week for golf fans, with the 2023 Solheim Cup wrapping up today in Spain and the Ryder Cup getting underway outside Rome on Friday. At the Solheim Cup, Europe pulled even with the United States heading into the final round of matches.

Ethiopia’s Tigist Assefa obliterated the women’s marathon world record as she won the Berlin Marathon, completing the course in 2:11:53 and shaving more than two minutes off the previous best.

The WNBA playoffs continue today with semifinal matchups pitting the Connecticut Sun against the New York Liberty and the Dallas Wings v. the defending champion Las Vegas Aces. The teams play again on Tuesday and Friday. The WNBA finals begin on October 8.

For more of your favorite sports, head on over to CNN Sports as well as Bleacher Report, which — like CNN — is owned by Warner Bros. Discovery.

Quiz time!

Looking for a challenge to start your week? Take CNN’s weekly news quiz to see how much you remember from the week that was! So far, 66% of fellow quiz fans have gotten eight or more questions right. How will you fare?

Play me off …

‘Ice Ice Baby’
Monday is National One Hit Wonder Day, and perhaps no other song better exemplifies the phenomenon than one that makes you “Stop. Collaborate and listen.” Word to your mother … (Click here to view)

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