Wednesday, December 18, 2013
18 December 2013
Katie Holmes b. 1978 (Batman Begins)
Josh Dallas b. 1981 (Once Upon a Time, Thor, Doctor Who)
Anna Walton b. 1980 (Hellboy II, Mutant Chronicles)
Julian Arahanga b. 1972 (The Matrix, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys)
Victoria Pratt b. 1970 (Mutant X, Cleopatra 2525, Xena)
Casper Van Dien b. 1968 (Dracula 3000, Sleepy Hollow, Starship Troopers)
Brad Pitt b. 1963 (World War Z, Meet Joe Black, Twelve Monkeys, Interview with the Vampire)
Jeff Kober b. 1953 (V, Alien Nation, The X-Files, Tank Girl, Kindred: The Embraced, Charmed, Star Trek: Voyager, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The Hills Have Eyes II)
Steven Spielberg b. 1946 (director, War of the Worlds, Minority Report, A.I., Jurassic Park, Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T., Hook)
Alan Rudolph b. 1943 (director, Breakfast of Champions)
Keith Richards b. 1943 (Pirates of the Caribbean)
Michael Moorcock b. 1939 (writer, Elric of Melnibone)
Alfred Bester b. 1913 died 9/30/1987 (won 1953 Hugo for The Demolished Man)
Wow. That's a heck of a birthday list. There are several choices for Pretty Girls to put in the Picture Slot, Brad Pitt is an honest to Odin A-List actor and we have a bunch of people whose best known role is in a genre film or TV show. But for me, the Picture Slot has to go either to Alfred Bester or the guy you are looking at. I'm old enough to remember when Francis Ford Coppola, George Lucas, Martin Scorsese and Steven Spielberg were all put in the same category, but as time has progressed, Spielberg and Scorsese continued doing successful and respected work and Lucas and Coppola have faded.
As important as Star Wars and Star Trek are to the progress of science fiction films and TV, Spielberg is both tremendously successful and an artist people take seriously, and the fact that he still champions science fiction film making along side his serious historical dramas shows how integral the genre is to the industry today. Spielberg's sci-fi movies have done as much for the genre as John Ford's best work did for both the success and the status of the Westerns.
Many happy returns of the day to all our birthday boys and girls, and to Alfred Bester, thanks for all the memories.
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers released, 2002
Avatar released, 2009
James Cameron may be an egocentric wanker, but he does know how to make a jillion dollar movie. Peter Jackson seems like a nicer fellow, and he also seems to know how to milk a huge sum out of an audience.
Predictor: T. Baron Russell in A Hundred Years Hence, publish in 1905
Prediction: [I]t may with perfect safety be predicted of the master's cane a hundred years hence that it will be found only in museums, and (whether rightly or wrongly) be regarded as a relic of degrading barbarism. One reason why corporal punishment will have to be abolished is that boys and girls will certainly be educated together instead of apart.
Reality: What I love most about the predictions from before World War I is to be reminded of what life was like back then. Russell gets full marks for this one. There are some who argue today to return to the separation of the genders in the classroom, but corporal punishment when it is discovered is as socially unacceptable as overt racism.
Looking one day ahead... INTO THE FUTURE!
Thursdays belong to our pal Isaac Asimov, bolding gazing at the wonder world of 2014 from his vantage point in 1964.
Join us then... IN THE FUTURE!