Michael Clarke Duncan
has died at 54
from a heart attack, following recent heart problems. After working as a bodyguard for the Notorious B.I.G. he landed his first major role in Armageddon (1998) which led to his Oscar-nominated performance in The Green Mile (1999). He is also known for prominent roles in The Whole Nine Yards (2000), Daredevil (2003), and Sin City (2005).
posted by Evilspork
on Sep 3, 2012 -
Zdeněk Miler, the animator of the beloved Krtek ("Little Mole") animations died today.
Conceived in 1954 after stumbling on a mole's burrow on his evening walk, Krtek appeared in about fifty films all drawn by Miler. The first Krtek film ("How Krtek Got His Pants
"), originally an educational video about the manufacture of linen, won first prize at the Venice Film Festival in 1957. The Krtek films have been aired in about eighty countries. Miler's young daughters did the uber-cute vocalizations for Krtek, and were the films' test audience as Miler tweaked the films per their suggestions. Here are some perennial favorites: Krtek and the Radio
, Krtek and the Green Star
, Krtek at Christmas
, Krtek and the Robot
, like most film buffs, was surprised that Krtek had remained largely unknown in the United States. "Pretty much the whole world knows Krtek," Mr. Miler said. "America, which is usually first in everything, is last in this. I always look at American history," he said, "and it is a very hard one. People came. They conquered a continent. They suffered hardships, and that hardship is reflected in its movies. I look at children there and think what they are watching is a reflection of that hardness. If you look at America, it is epic. Whereas here, it is more poetic. I feel here there is more lyricism."
posted by Atrahasis
on Nov 30, 2011 -
Growing up, she was a beloved celebrity in her home country. Thousands of girls were named after her. So was a bestselling perfume
. But Josef Stalin's "Little Sparrow," his only daughter, (born Svetlana Stalina) defected to the United States in 1967. Upon arriving in New York, she promptly held a press conference
that surprised the world, denouncing her father's regime. Svetlana
became a naturalized US citizen, moved to Taliesin West, married an American, changed her name to Lana Peters, then returned to the Soviet Union in 1984, declaring
that she had not been free "for one single day" in the U.S., only to once again
return to America in 1986. She lived out her remaining days in a small town in Wisconsin
. Mrs. Peters passed away
from colon cancer on November 22nd, at the age of 85. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Nov 28, 2011 -
The Hardest Cases: When Children Die, Justice Can Be Elusive
A joint investigation by PBS Frontline, ProPublica and NPR has found that medical examiners and coroners have repeatedly mishandled cases of infant and child deaths, helping to put innocent people behind bars. (Via. (Article contains descriptions of children that have been killed by abuse. May be disturbing / triggering to some readers.) [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Jun 28, 2011 -
"A ballet dancer needs a mirror to perfect her style, her technique. A singer needs the same -- an aural mirror."
In 1950 and '51, Japan’s first reel-to-reel tape recorders, the "G-Type
" (for gov't use)
and the "H-1
" (for home use)
were released by a company named Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo. Music student Norio Ohga was unimpressed by the wobbly sound of "Talking Paper
," so he wrote a note complaining to the firm's founders, who hired him. Mr. Ohga never achieved his original dream of becoming a baritone opera singer, but the future President of TTK, (later renamed Sony,) would still make an indelible, global impact on the world of music -- including the development and introduction of the compact disc. Mr. Ohga died on April 24, 2011
. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on May 4, 2011 -
"For the progress of humanity, work alone is not adequate, but the work should be associated with love, compassion, right conduct, truthfulness and sympathy. Without the above qualities, selfless service cannot be performed."
On Sunday morning
, Indian guru Sri Sathya Sai Baba passed away.
He leaves behind a massive empire
, several million mourning devotees worldwide,
an extensive religious philosophy
, a great deal of controversy
and a legacy of large-scale philanthropic projects in India, including free hospitals and mobile medical facilities
, a free university and schools,
and other efforts which included supplying clean water
to hundreds of rural villages. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Apr 25, 2011 -
A Tragedy of Errors.
On Feb. 21, 2010, a convoy of vehicles carrying civilians headed down a mountain in central Afghanistan and American eyes in the sky were watching. "The Americans were using some of the most sophisticated tools
in the history of war, technological marvels of surveillance and intelligence gathering that allowed them to see into once-inaccessible corners of the battlefield. But the high-tech wizardry would fail
in its most elemental purpose: to tell the difference between friend and foe." FOIA
of US cockpit and radio conversations and an interactive feature
provide a more in-depth understanding of what happened.
posted by zarq
on Apr 10, 2011 -
"All my life I’ve focused on the poor. The rich ones have their own photographers."
Social documentary photographer Milton Rogovin
's 'life was about seeing.
In the literal sense, he was an optometrist. In a more figurative sense, through the lens of his camera, he saw things and people that were often ignored — the poor, the oppressed, the "forgotten ones
," as he called them.' "A librarian in Buffalo's Communist Party, he was called before the House Un-American Activities Committee
in 1957, and was named "Buffalo's Top Red" in the Buffalo Evening News. Losing business and facing intense social persecution, Rogovin turned to photography in order to create images that conveyed his desire for a more equal and just society, and to give voice to others who were persecuted, who were invisible to most."
Mr. Rogovin died on January 18th at his home in Buffalo
at the age of 101
. Previously on Metafilter [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Jan 21, 2011 -
American jazz singer Blossom Dearie dead at age 82.
American jazz singer Blossom Dearie died Friday in her Greenwich Village home after a long illness. For most, an acquired taste. Her voice and phrasing had a way of drawing you in, taken aback by how soft and gentle she sounded. I think it was New Yorker critic Whitney Balliet who said her voice wouldn't reach the second story of a doll house. [more inside]
posted by paddbear
on Feb 8, 2009 -
not overdoses, number one cause of musicians' early demise. An almost-thorough list of dead rock stars, but there are some "cause" blanks that need filling in.
posted by usedwigs
on Jan 25, 2007 -
The invasion of Iraq may have caused 650,000 Iraqi deaths
according to a study being published in the Lancet on Saturday. The work follows up a controversial late 2004 study
by the same researchers that estimated "excess deaths" due to the conflict (at that time) to be 100,000. In response to criticism that the 2004 paper's margin of error was uselessly high (the 95% confidence interval was 8,000-194,000), the new results are based on a larger sample, yielding more reasonable range of 426,000-793,000. The paper is virtually guaranteed to reignite debate
over the accuracy of the most widely cited source for Iraqi casualty information, the Iraq Body Count
project (which currently gives a max of 48,893), and the media reports it relies on. The lead author, Les Roberts of John Hopkins, has said
that the original study's publication was timed to influence the 2004 elections, and it would appear that this one is as well. [more inside]
posted by gsteff
on Oct 11, 2006 -
Yet another dead microbiologist.
Why was Joeng Im of the University of Missouri, a 72 year old protein chemist, stabbed to death, stuffed in the trunk of his car, and burned? Was it a random act of violence? Was it a former student bent on revenge? Or is this biologist merely following in the footsteps of 40 other microbiologists and other scientists who have mysteriously died in the past 4 years? Scientists like David Kelly
, Steven Mostow
, Ian Langford
, , Don C. Wiley
, David Wynn-Williams
, Michael Perich
, Gene Mallove
, and dozens of other scientists?
Is it too presumptuous
, too "tinfoil hat
" to suppose that someone is killing off the microbiologists of the world, for some nefarious purpose?
posted by Sir Mildred Pierce
on Jan 14, 2005 -
1.26 million people killed every year
on the road or from subsequent injuries...
..Four Qld road deaths in 5 hours
. 42,815 people died in 2002 in automobile crashes in the United States. Shouldn't these facts give us the resolve to explore a better solution to our transportation needs? I do not see the national debate that these deaths would evoke if the cause was different. Why are we numb to this?
posted by JohnR
on Nov 24, 2003 -
I really don't know what to say about this site. Except that I didn't even know a .mil domain extension existed until now. The link comes from a letter to the editor of my hometown, small-town Indiana newspaper
(also see "Operation Dear Abby"), where people are generally in support of the war. A boy from my hometown was killed. He was a really good kid; I knew his family, who are just the kind of people you think of when you think of small town John Couger-style, pink-housed, middle class America. I am against this war in principle, but how can you say this really decent kid's life
was wasted? All questions, no answers, probably a bad post. Apologies all around.
posted by _sirmissalot_
on Apr 3, 2003 -
The Political Graveyard
-- It all started innocently enough.....I was reading a piece by a professor of media and journalism studies who wondered: Was Paul Wellstone murdered?"
and cited an unusual number of democrats who had died in plane crashes. Was it true, I wondered? -- My search led me to The Political Graveyard
, with it's endless categorizations of the details in the deaths of US politicians. Deaths by religious affiliation, politicians killed by poison or gunfights, opium overdoses or car crashes. But was it true? Yes, the site seemed to confirm the deaths (for the last 3 decades or so) of a statistically anomalous number of national democratic politicians (sitting or running for office) in plane crashes....but the site just grabbed me and wouldn't let me leave: Charles Tillinghast James (1805-1862): died while making his own cannon, Richard Ellis (1781-1846): died when his clothes suddenly caught fire, Thomas Caute Reynolds (1821-1887): killed himself by leaping down an elevator shaft, Sidney Theodore Roebuck (1901-1982): died from RAT poison, and MY FAVORITE, Elmer Severson (1922-1999), who died from spinal cord injuries he lost a "tussle with a cow"
posted by troutfishing
on Nov 1, 2002 -
In 1997, Scott Shuger created for Slate.com what would quickly become the wildly popular column "Today's Papers."
The column was innovative in its brief and snarky discussions about that day's headlines on all the major news dailies.
The differences between each paper's choice of stories covered, and the variances from paper to paper in their coverage of those same stories was illustrative in a fashion we now take for granted around here on MeFi.
Shuger died suddenly over the weekend in a scuba mishap and is remembered here by his colleagues at slate.com
posted by BentPenguin
on Jun 17, 2002 -
Smoking creates "indirect positive effects."
A report from tobacco giant Philip Morris concluded that the Czech government saved money because of the "indirect positive effects" of the early deaths of cigarette-smokers. PM makes about 80 percent of the cigarettes smoked in the Czech Republic. Said a Philip Morris spokesman
: "Tobacco is a controversial industry, but we are still an industry and sometimes we need some economic data on our industry."
posted by tranquileye
on Jul 17, 2001 -
Go to a football match.
Police arrive with tear gas and start a riot. 130 people die. I wonder if the police get some kind of bonus for killing innocent civilians...
posted by timbooker
on May 10, 2001 -
justifiable? i'm sure that both sides have their own reasons. but, honestly ... all the fatalities. how can there be any possible rationale for the loss of so much?
posted by a11an
on Apr 10, 2001 -
Aloha, Mr. Hand.
Ray Walston is dead. For all you counting by threes, he would be the third, I guess. You can stop counting now.
posted by bondcliff
on Jan 2, 2001 -