How Movie Studios Rejected Scripts During the Silent-Film Era: A Cold, 17-Point Checklist Circa 1915

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Born during the era of silent movies, the Essanay Film Manufacturing Company produced a series of Charlie Chaplin films in 1915, most notably including The Tramp. The Essanay document above shows us one thing: It didn’t take long for the film industry to master the cold rejection letter.


Famous Edgar Allan Poe Stories Read by Iggy Pop, Jeff Buckley, Christopher Walken, Marianne Faithful & More

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In 1849, a little over 167 years ago, Edgar Allan Poe was found dead in a Baltimore gutter under mysterious circumstances very likely related to violent election fraud. It was an ignominious end to a life marked by hardship, alcoholism, and loss.


The Best Commercial Ever? James Brown Sells Miso Soup (1992)

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Most stars are understandably choosy about what products, if any, they’re willing to endorse. Serious artists are mindful about their reputations.


Alejandro Jodorowsky Explains How Tarot Cards Can Give You Creative Inspiration

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The practice of cartomancy, or divination with cards, dates back several hundred years to at least 14th century Europe, perhaps by way of Turkey. But the specific form we know of, the tarot, likely emerged in the 17th century, and the deck we’re all most familiar with—the Rider-Waite Tarot—didn’t appear until 1909.


The Incredibly Strange Film Show: Revisit 1980s Documentaries on David Lynch, John Waters, Alejandro Jodorowsky & Other Filmmakers

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Every filmmaker, no matter how mainstream or underground, has to get the inspiration to become a filmmaker somewhere. “I used to watch the programme Jonathan Ross did in the late 80s called The Incredibly Strange Film Show and they did a whole hour on Sam Raimi,” remembers Shaun of the Dead and Scott Pilgrim vs.


Hear Bill Murray’s Favorite Poems Read Aloud by Murray Himself & Their Authors

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I’d be wary of any movie star who invites me to his hotel room to “read poetry” unless said star was documented poetry nut, Bill Murray.
Earlier this year, Leigh Haber, book editor of O, The Oprah Magazine, reached out to Murray to see if he’d share some of his favorite poems in celebration of National Poetry Month.


Some of Buster Keaton’s Great, Death-Defying Stunts Captured in Animated Gifs

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In the days of silent comedy, jokes by necessity consisted of physical routines. Charlie Chaplin’s mournful expressions, slumped shoulders, and funny walks immediately come to mind, as well as his slapstick bits and pratfalls.


Watch Soviet Avant-Garde Composers Create Synthesized Music with Hand-Drawn Animations (1934)

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The Russian Revolution not only radically reshaped social and political institutions in the soon-to-be Soviet Union, but it also radicalized the arts. “The Romanovs, who ruled Russia for 300 years,” comments Glenn Altschuler at The Boston Globe, used “culture as an instrument of political control.


H.G. Wells Pans Fritz Lang’s Metropolis in a 1927 Movie Review: It’s “the Silliest Film”

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When we watch Fritz Lang’s Metropolis now, we see an aesthetically daring landmark work of science-fiction cinema. When H.G. Wells watched Metropolis back in 1927, the year of its release, he saw something very different indeed.


A Complete List of the 533 Movies & TV Shows Watched on the International Space Station

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Image courtesy of NASA
To keep some measure of sanity, the astronauts living aboard the International Space Station (ISS), some 220 miles above our planet Earth, make a point of unwinding. According to NASA, the astronauts get weekends off.


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