3 items from 2017
Filmmakers and stars have often taken a political stance by choosing which projects to make. But when the Academy Awards ceremony began in 1929 to honor the best in film, this created a more public way to demonstrate opinions about the state of the world, the government or a cause.
Not everyone has taken this opportunity though, except for maybe wearing the odd ribbon to support awareness or using their attendance (or lack thereof) to show solidarity. Those blessed by winning a coveted statuette, however, can use their actual acceptance speech as a platform to speak out. Although the awards started being televised in 1953, it took until the 1970s until winners began to really take advantage of having a massive audience for their views. And at times, even the Academy itself got political. »
- Hanh Nguyen
Lugging a baby grand piano onto a punk club stage in the ’90s was about conspicuous as bringing a baby elephant—and twice as inconvenient. But any patrons who feared that they were about to endure a Gershwin recital were soon set straight by Ben Folds, frontman and primary songwriter of Chapel Hill, North Carolina’s Ben Folds Five.
Flanked by an explosive rhythm section in the form of stickman Darren Jessee and bassist Robert Sledge (PSA: the Five are actually three), Folds earned a reputation as the Jimi Hendrix of the piano—a violent virtuoso who punished all 88 keys »
- Jordan Runtagh
Ryan Lambie Feb 21, 2017
Everyone loves a good success story, and Hollywood history's full of them. Actors sleeping in their cars until they get their first lucky break. Writers papering the walls of their lodgings with rejection letters until they finally get a script in front of a receptive producer. Filmmakers who've spent years paying their dues before a studio finally comes calling.
Director Francis Ford Coppola, before he shot to fame - and, for a time, considerable wealth - with such films as The Godfather, The Conversation and Apocalypse Now, scrabbled around at the lower end of the industry like just about everyone else. »
3 items from 2017
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