If you haven’t seen the Burton exhibit at MOMA, stop what you’re doing immediately and walk over to 53rd street. The exhibit is phenomenal – so inspiring. I particularly loved this 1976 rejection letter from Walt Disney Productions. (Also check out this 1992 interview with Rolling Stone.)
It was only a matter of time before someone made a biopic about Temple Grandin. When you stop and think about it, HBO makes perfect sense- so does Claire Danes. (Oh and add Sheila Nevins to my list of creative heroes.)
(update! this just in from Temple Grandin: “Now I See the Moon provides insightful ways to teach and work with individuals with autism and severe disabilities. It will give parents great hope.” Whoop! Whoop! JC)
Shirley MacLaine reading T. S. Eliot from the movie Woman Times Seven (1976)
At the kick-off dinner for the Denver Publishing Institute last night, Joyce Meskis from The Tattered Cover asked the group if they had ever liked a movie more than the book from which it was made. We were all pretty hard-pressed to name one, but we agreed on “Jaws” and “The Reader.” Got any other suggestions?
The magic of a great kids book…
The Criterion Collection has taken an interesting step forward, almost contrary to their “mission statement.” A little background first: way back in the day, they invented the Director’s Commentary and the “Deluxe Edition” with their line of laserdiscs (remember those?), and soon after moved to DVDs. They’re essentially an arthouse imprint for lost and underrated classics of world cinema, like the Taschen or Rizzoli of DVDs. (Bob Stein of the Institute for the Future of the Book was a co-founder.) Each film is presented in the best possible format, with updated packaging, scholarly essays, definitive “Director’s Editions” and clean, beautiful transfers. A 1953 film like The Wages of Fear looks better in a Criterion edition than most recent DVDs. If anyone would resist the digitalization of content, it would be these guys.
Well, surprise: with their website re-launch, Criterion is offering online rentals of a broad selection of their almost 500 titles. For five bucks you get to watch the film as many times as you want for one week. A little like iTunes or Netflix, sure. But their real innovation, in my opinion, is that your rental fee also acts as a coupon off the purchase of the physical DVD from their online store. They’ve found a great way to link the online and offline content experience.
Would this work for books? The subscription model idea has been kicked around the industry for a while now – what if it was tied to an easily accessed online platform? What do you guys think?
Walking a Tightrope Between the World Trade Towers Was Nothing–Try Building A Barn By Hand, With 18th Century Tools
You may know Philippe Petit for his remarkable artistry as a tightrope-walker, most famously for his walk between the World Trade Towers. That feat is documented in the Academy Award-nominated film, “Man On Wire,” which Petit discusses here:
Philippe Petit on The Colbert Report on January 27, 2009
Philippe Petit on The Conan O’Brien Show.
Philippe Petit at Sundance 2008
Now Petit is attempting a new challenge: he is building a barn by hand, using only 18th-century tools. And he has signed with HarperStudio for his book about that experience, to be published in Fall, 2010.