'"People say 'It's all about the story,'"' Walt Disney Animation Studios chief technical officer Andy Hendrickson, said in a talk at the recent Siggraph conference. '"When you're making tentpole films, bullshit." Hendrickson showed a chart of the top 12 all-time domestic grossers, and noted every one is a spectacle film. Of his own studio's "Alice in Wonderland," which is on the list, he said: "The story isn't very good, but visual spectacle brought people in droves. And Johnny Depp didn't hurt."' posted by joannemullen at 10:30 PM PST - 107 comments
Singer, knob twiddler and bass player MNDR has had a great year, especially considering that she hasn’t even finished her first full-length solo recording yet. MNDR is best known in the pop world so far for her collaboration with Mark Ronson and Q-tip on Bang Bang Bang, a song that plays with the french children’s song alouette with a double entendre squeezed out of the consonants in “plucking feathers.” [more inside] posted by umbú at 9:09 PM PST - 12 comments
Meet Karl Welzien. He lives in Grand Blanc, Michigan. He is recently divorced from Ann, and lives with his buddy Dave. He loves drinking cold ones, driving his Sebring, maxing out some karaoke, and knocking back some Chili's hot wings because they have big bold flavor. He's a big fan of Guy Fieri, and loves the occasional "toilet nap" during his workday. Karl is a fictional character that exists only on Twitter, @DadBoner. [more inside] posted by jbickers at 1:41 PM PST - 44 comments
The Elusive Big Idea "It is no secret, especially here in America, that we live in a post-Enlightenment age in which rationality, science, evidence, logical argument and debate have lost the battle in many sectors, and perhaps even in society generally, to superstition, faith, opinion and orthodoxy. While we continue to make giant technological advances, we may be the first generation to have turned back the epochal clock — to have gone backward intellectually from advanced modes of thinking into old modes of belief." posted by bitmage at 1:23 PM PST - 92 comments
...the authors of the new paper argue that people don’t like to be at the bottom. One paradoxical consequence of this “last-place aversion” is that some poor people may be vociferously opposed to the kinds of policies that would actually raise their own income a bit but that might also push those who are poorer than them into comparable or higher positions. The authors ran a series of experiments where students were randomly allotted sums of money, separated by $1, and informed about the “income distribution” that resulted. They were then given another $2, which they could give either to the person directly above or below them in the distribution. The people who were a spot away from the bottom were the most likely to give the money to the person above them..
This may also explain why Warren Buffet's cry to stop coddling the rich (previously) will continue to fall on deaf ears. posted by asnider at 10:03 AM PST - 139 comments
Roger Ebert has posted the intro of his memoirs, Life Itself, to his blog, which particularly talks about how therapeutic his blog has been, giving him a voice when he can no longer speak. Originally dismissive of online media, he's gone on to embrace it (for example, with his twitter feed), in a manner matched by few other celebrities. posted by kaszeta at 8:32 AM PST - 22 comments
Did you inherit your parents stress? Your grandparents stress? What about their environmental enrichment? Current research in rats is exploring possible mechanisms through which stressful and positive environments could affect our future children and grandchildren. Also something to consider in tandem: many of the genes associated with addiction and mental illness are also associated with resiliency. [more inside] posted by xarnop at 7:43 AM PST - 39 comments
"Rupert Murdoch, James Murdoch and their former editor Andy Coulson all face embarrassing new allegations of dishonesty and cover-up after the publication of an explosive letter written by the News of the World's disgraced royal correspondent, Clive Goodman.
In the letter, which was written four years ago but published only on Tuesday, Goodman claims that phone hacking was "widely discussed" at editorial meetings at the paper until Coulson himself banned further references to it; that Coulson offered to let him keep his job if he agreed not to implicate the paper in hacking when he came to court; and that his own hacking was carried out with "the full knowledge and support" of other senior journalists, whom he named." (Most recent previously.) posted by Len at 4:58 AM PST - 77 comments