“I’m doing so good here, thanks to my brother and the kids,” she said. “I didn’t think I could be this happy without singing, without being center stage.”
It all started with Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic (“make flying fun again”), which used hand-drawn cartoons. “In the ensuing years, airlines have pulled out nearly every gimmick imaginable to make their safety video a YouTube sensation. A Qatar Airlines video takes place at an FC Barcelona match, an El Al video takes the form of a cringeworthy Devo tribute, and … even sedate, legacy brands like British Airways, Singapore Airlines, United, and Air France have succumbed to the trend in recent years, with tasteful videos that offer their own unique spin on the genre.” Then there’s the undisputed champion, Air New Zealand …
In an extensive Q&A that also covers the history of the ancient Syrian city, its destruction by ISIS, the lack of an international or UN intervention to save it, and the trade in looted antiquities, Andreas Schmidt-Colinet, an archaeologist who worked at Palmyra for three decades, makes his case for what the West should and shouldn’t do at the site now that the shooting there is over.
“I think the biggest change that is still to come is that much of the tracking and experimentation that we associate with online behavior will increasingly apply to our offline behavior. That is, right now, many researchers are aware that all our behavior online is tracked and subject to experimentation. For example, when you visit Amazon, they are recording and analyzing your browsing behavior, and they are running experiments to improve their business metrics. However, increasingly, more and more of these same things will happen with our off-line behavior because of so-called ubiquitous sensing and the internet of things.”
“Despite the many advantages conferred by digital goods, comparable versions of physical goods are valued more. When a physical good such as a paper book, a printed photograph, or a DVD is digitized, it loses some of its value to buyers. Our experiments suggest that the key driver of this value loss is not the resale value of the good, or how much it costs to make, or how long it can be used, or whether it’s unique or popular. We find that the key difference is that digital goods do not facilitate the same feeling of ownership that physical goods do.”
Samantha Ellis argues that the March sisters end up squelching themselves as they marry (except, of course, for the one who ends up dead), and each of the sequels, starting with the immediate one (Good Wives) is harder than the last. And this could all be quite deliberate on the part of Louisa May Alcott, who never wanted to write Little Women in the first place.
“It’s not a luxury product. I mean it may appear to people who buy Hermes bags, but it’s not a Hermes bag. Sometimes people try to categorize it as a luxury. It’s a disservice to art in my opinion. And it really distorts the nature of the market.” (Well, he would say that, wouldn’t he?) (video)
When the movie was first in previews, audiences wanted Holly Hunter’s newscast-producer character to end up with one of her two guys. So James L. Brooks, against his better judgment, shot a scene to provide that happy-ish ending. As Jane Craig (Hunter) said in another context, “It’s awful.” Jason Bailey explains.
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance was turned down 121 times by publishers; Stephen King’s Carrie, 30 times; Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time, 36; Catch-22, 22 times (of course). Emily Temple’s list includes other surprising titles – including (!) The Diary of Anne Frank.
“In Christmas movies, audiences can bank on heartwarming plots where grouches become kind and misers become charitable. But Christmas movies also tend to reinforce the myth of the “good capitalist,” favoring stories about individual virtue over any real social change. The way Christmas movies tell it, the generosity of individuals is sufficient to mitigate the harms of class inequality.”
This year’s list runs from Maria Balshaw (the first woman to head the Tate gallery system); through Dana Schutz and the artists who led the attack on her painting of Emmett Till, the creators of the “pussy hat” and of the Fearless Girl sculpture on Wall Street; down to the photographer who created the pregnant-Beyoncé image – not to mention Beyoncé’s sister, Solange Knowles.
Over the past two decades, under CEO Laura Walker and deputy Dean Cappello, New York Public Radio has become known (even more than before) as a programming and podcasting powerhouse. How did things get to the point that three of the station’s best-known hosts were fired within four months? And why only now, when management was aware of the relevant problems for years? A reporter looks into how, as Walker puts it, concerns about growth and content crowded out concern with the people producing the content.
The takeaway? Audiences seem to have grown cynical of the whole Marvel-inspired interlocking universe trope. And in an era when summer moviegoing (the studios’ most reliable money-making time frame) hit a 25-year low, with revenues tumbling more than 14 percent and tying with 2014 for the worst year-over-year decline in modern history, that emphasis on spectacle, formulaic filmmaking, and empire-building (at the expense of creating relatable characters or even coherent story lines) proved to be bad for business.
It’s almost mind-blowing that what the Guerilla Girls have been saying for years is finally filtering to the places it needs to be: “Eike Schmidt, who became the Uffizi’s director in 2015 after a stint at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, says he drew inspiration from the Guerilla Girls, a group of feminist art activists, who told him that many museums have the works of women artists, but they’re kept in storage.”
Lucy Kirkwood, playwright of The Children (now playing on Broadway), says she was trying for a long time to figure out how to write plays about climate change. “Then the events of Fukushima happened, the terrible disaster there. There was a retired work force that volunteered to go back to clear up the plant there. And apparently the entire country sort of voluntarily monitored their own energy usage. They managed to bring down their national energy usage just because everyone was diligent and considerate and thought about themselves as part of something bigger.”
It’s just an idea right now … an idea with a building, and a lot of support, attached. “Four black theater organizations have pledged support, and have expressed interest in moving their institutions to the new Memphis museum. These include the Baltimore-based Black Theatre Commons, Washington, D.C.–based August Wilson Society, St. Paul, Minnesota–based Black Theatre Association, as well as the Lorton, Virginia–based Black Theatre Network.”
The owner, who was just awarded a $50,000 Knight grant to expand the store: “I’m committed to helping comic book creators perfect their craft, partnering with artists, editors and writers in helping them figure out what can make their art stand out. Many of these creators haven’t had the same opportunities as other artists. There will be a new multipurpose room, which will serve as a space for a creator college. You have to be knowledgeable if you’re pitching comics to people.”
It’s weird to say this about a Disney-owned film in a franchise that has arguably made war more popular and famous than any other film could, but The Last Jedi is different. It’s a film that “struggles to distance itself from the most toxic elements of Star Wars in order to chart a more progressive terrain.”
The artist is L.A.-based painter Njideka Akunyili Crosby. Crosby “is known for depicting intimate familial settings with layers of paint, photographs and found images — the latter of which are often drawn from news clippings and Nigerian lifestyle magazines. These she frequently bathes in tinted washes, giving the images a nostalgic feel.”
“The five-year grant will fund a localized version of “Sesame Street,” distributed through television and digital devices, and home visits using “Sesame Street” content for an estimated 1.5 million children. Instead of the stars that Americans grew up with, like Big Bird, Elmo and Oscar the Grouch, the characters would be tailored to the region, speaking Arabic and Iraqi Kurdish.”
“The orchestra has released a statement saying that it, along with Dutoit, ‘have jointly agreed to release him from his forthcoming concert obligations with the orchestra for the immediate future,’ adding that it is ‘committed to the highest standards of ethical behaviour’. … He has been sacked from other positions at the San Francisco Symphony, the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, while orchestras in New York, Chicago and Cleveland have all cancelled appearances from him.”