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Recent Entertainment articles from Daily Dot

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    The WB, the pulpy teen TV network beloved throughout the '90s and oughts, had a long history of recycling stars from previous shows and putting them together in new and fascinating combinations, even before its conversion to the CW in 2006. 

    Now, real life is echoing fiction: Star of the late CW hit Gossip Girl Leighton Meester recently confirmed she was dating former WB star Adam Brody, who first turned heads in Gilmore Girls before going on to star in the short-lived but beloved TheO.C.

    In honor of this fairy tale romance, the Daily Dot thought we'd take a look at the network that brought them together. 

    Much like its string of hits, the WB may be gone, but it lives on. (The WB is dead. Long live the CW.) In fact, if you had to pick one single network that's spawned the most loyalty and rabid fan followings within online fandom, the WB towers above all comers with its long succession of shows with large and occasionally enormous fandoms: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dawson's Creek,  Angel, 7th Heaven, Felicity, Gilmore Girls, Sabrina, Charmed, Roswell, One Tree Hill, Everwood, Smallville, The O.C., and Supernatural. Its successor, the CW, the amalgam of WB and UPN, has continued the trend, first with Gossip Girl and now TheVampire Diaries

    All of these shows have made waves online and still enjoy lasting popularity, despite the fact that they're often, perhaps unfairly, seen as trashy. With numerous shows on the list making it to the fabled seven-season mark and beyond, it's clear that the WB found its audience. It also spawned a number of successful shows aimed at adults, including The Jamie Foxx Show, Reba, and The Steve Harvey Show, as well as reality staple America's Next Top Model.

    Now, even years after many of these shows have ended, the fans are still around. Here are highlights from the fandoms the WB has spawned over the years. From fanvids to fanfiction, Tumblr memes and more, we don't wanna wait for our lives to be over before we thank the WB/CW for bringing us a decade—and counting—of fandom.

    First, a look at the two largest fandoms to come out of the WB's sprawling network run: Buffy and Supernatural.

    Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel

    Illustration by sr-hattori/Deviantart

    The Show:

    The original Whedonverse, Buffy focuses on the life and adventures of a female vampire slayer (Sarah Michelle Gellar), while Angel picks up with a focus on her undead ex-boyfriend (David Boreanaz). Buffy is a groundbreaking series well-known for its innovative writing and for practically incepting pop culture with the concept of a "strong female character” (back before the concept itself became the problem). 

    Buffy Summers, with her sharp stake (she calls it "Mr. Pointy") and even sharper wit, is a heroine beloved by feminists and fanboys alike. It doesn't hurt that the rest of the "scoobies," her band of friends and supporters—which notably includes one of television's first long-term lesbian relationships—are equally popular.

    The fandom spawned from this 10-year franchise continues to be mighty and loyal, turning each of Joss Whedon's subsequent projects into cult hits and coalescing in the massive mainstream success of 2012's The Avengers. Meanwhile, the storyline of Buffy has been continuing for years in a succession of popular Dark Horse comic series, Season 8 and Season 9.  

    The Fandom:

    The large and ongoing fandom for the Buffyverse shows no sign of letting up anytime soon. The Buffyverse category at Fanfiction.net alone is over 45,000 stories strong, behind only Supernatural and Glee as the most popular television franchise on the site. Here are a few of the highlights:

    • Whedonesque: For many years the ultimate fandom news blog for all things Joss Whedon, Whedonesque is closed but still active today with daily updates about what's happening in the ever-expanding Whedonverse. 

    • "Jossed": Ever heard someone complain about "getting Jossed"? This term, originally from Buffy fandom, is now used routinely by fans everywhere to talk about the event when a show's creator—in this case Joss Whedon—ruins your private plans, hopes, or wishes for a currently in-progress storyline by taking it in a different direction. This originally referred to fanfic writers who would find as the show progressed that their fics were no longer plausible because of new developments in the story—thus rendering them Jossed. 
    • "Big Bad": The writers of Buffy coined this term, which describes the narrative equivalent of a video game "boss." Unlike an easily defeated "Monster of the Week," Big Bads need to be identified over time and faced down at the climax of the season. The trope is one of the most numerous on TV Tropes because of its popularity and its application to basically everything.
    • History Lessons: This small but awesome archive features fics that describe the adventures of all the previous women who were ordained as slayers before Buffy, from the "Prime" Slayer on through the centuries.
    • "Superstar": A fanvid by heresluck. The world can always use more Buffy/Faith fanworks, and this is one of the best.

    • The Better Buffy Fiction Archive: This is a rec list/fanfic archive covering both Buffy and Angel fandoms, dating from the year 2000. With 500 stories, it's a great way to find the fandom classics in all pairings and genres.
    • The Buffy Club Home to thousands of DeviantArt works from all corners of the fandom.
    • Tea at the Ford: A wide-ranging site, now primarily inactive, featuring a community of fans writing meta, or critical commentary, on the Buffyverse, as well as the
    • BtVS Oline: This fansite is home to info about the Buffyverse, fanfic listings, and up-to-date information on Buffy conventions and meetups around the world.

    Supernatural

    Illustration by clefchan/Deviantart

    The Show:

    Featuring the beefy duo of Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles as Sam and Dean Winchester, two brothers with an, err, haunted past, Supernatural started out as a monster-of-the-week fest from creator Eric Kripke before evolving into an epic battle of angels and demons, cribbing from every kind of ancient and pop mythology available along the way. And then the fangirls found it. 

    The large and loyal fanbase grew rapidly and has expanded ever since, with many fans joining after several seasons, when Misha Collins arrived as an angel. The testosterone-fueled fan favorite is the second-largest TV fandom on both FanFiction.net and the Archive of Our Own, with innumerable fics and communities on LiveJournal and private fanarchives.

    Supernatural, more than any other show, has an incestuous relationship with its own fandom (this will be ironic two paragraphs from now), in which it constantly refers to the fandom on the show itself, including giving Sam and Dean their own fictional fandom, one with many of the same attributes that the real fandom has. 

    This meta-commentary has been extremely popular with fans, but has also made many fans uncomfortable because of the extent to which it breaks the fourth wall. This thin line between fandom and the creators of its canon (or source material) is an ongoing point of fascination and controversy within the fandom. The show also has invited other forms of controversy, primarily for its perceived misogyny, lack of female characters, and the drama of its fandom. 

    The Fandom: The immense fandom for Supernatural—SPN, for short—has garnered it several People's Choice Awards for favorite sci-fi/fantasy show. In 2012, the “SPN Family” picked up its own award for best fandom. But despite being referred to as a family, the Supernatural fandom is divided into fans of two main slash ships, Destiel and Wincest.

    • Wincest: For several seasons of Supernatural, if you were in Supernatural fandom, you most likely shipped Wincest, or the epic sibling love of the Winchester brothers, a.k.a. Sam/Dean. This isn't as strange as it may seem at first, given that incest pairings are extremely popular in fandom, and given that the show repeatedly referenced the mistaken belief that the brothers were gay. In later seasons, the joke became explicit, with members of the show's in-universe fandom openly shipping the brothers together on the show.
    • Destiel: The sigh of relief when another shippable hot dude with no relatives showed up on Supernatural could be heard across fandom. As popular as Wincest was, the broship of Dean and the angel Castiel has surpassed it as the show's popularity has grown. Dean/Castiel, or Destiel, quickly became a major fandom staple, with fans of the pairing boosting it to a high-profile fandom tournament runoff twice in the last year alone: first at EOnline's Valentine's fandom tournament for most popular TV couple, where it lost to Glee's Rachel/Quinn, then at AfterElton's slash tournament, where it faced off against Teen Wolf's Sterek for the most popular slash fandom ship.
    • J2: In addition to Wincest, the RPF (Real Person Fanfic) pairing of the actors who play them, Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles, is also quite popular within the fandom. Known as "J2" or "J Squared," the pairing got a boost from the real friendship of the actors, who are best friends and were roommates for a time during the filming of the show. Jared/Jensen is the most popular example of CW RPF, which refers to the fandom based around the real actors behind the shows on the WB, UPN, and the CW.
    • The Supernatural WIki: In addition to being an immense resource about the show, the SPN wiki is also a great resource for fans wanting to learn about fandom news.
    • Redemption Road: A large fan project involving multiple writers and artists, "Redemption Road" is an alternate season 6 written to follow the continuity of the series through season 5. Written over a year between 2011 and 2012, this Dean/Castiel storyline features 24 "episodes" as well as "DVD extras."
    • SPN Heavy Meta: On LiveJournal, this is the spot for discussion about the episodes, the fandom, and more. 
    • Crack Impala: A spinoff of popular LiveJournal fanfic recommendation community crack_van, the crack impala is by SPN fans, for SPN fans.
    • WinCon: It began as a small convention for Supernatural slash fans, but has evolved into a pan-fandom slash con. Still, the SPN contingent is strong. 
    • "Still Alive": This fanvid by counteragent is a great example of how the fandom comments on itself—specifically on the show's alleged sexism and the ongoing controversies within the fandom.

    • Superwholock: Proof that Supernatural fandom is one of the current powerhouse communities of Tumblr, Superwholock is an ongoing fandom meme combining the SPN universe with two other Tumblr giants, Doctor Who and Sherlock.

    The Rest:

    Charmed: This long-running series about a family of witches spawned a large amount of fanwork.

    Fandom highlight:"A Company Man," a season 6 AU (alternate universe fanfic) which focuses on the character of Chris and his surprising history—a popular recurring subject for the fandom.

    Dawson's Creek: This wildly popular show made a star out of then-unknown Katie Holmes and epitomized a crop of late-'90s teen shows featuring too-savvy characters and high levels of angst.

    Fandom highlight: Build Our House on a Mountain, an epic The Office/Dawson's crossover fic featuring popular Dawson’s character Pacey and The Office's Pam.

    The Gilmore Girls: Three generations of women in a quirky New England town contend with life, love, and each other.

    Fandom highlight: "Boston Marriage." Rory and Paris, her one-time academic rival turned college roommate, take their relationship to the next level.

    Gossip Girl: This CW show propelled all of its glamorous cast members to stardom and set us up for a revival of girls-in-Manhattan series.

    Fandom highlight: Television Without Pity featured what was perhaps the Internet's best attempt to turn this glitzy teen soap opera into profound social commentary, in Jacob Clifton's popular Gossip Girl recaps (archived).

    The O.C.: A happy-go-lucky surfer dude meets steady nuclear family and proceeds to disrupt their staid, rich lifestyle.

    Fandom highlight: "Telegraph Avenue."  A slash fandom classic, this 30,000-word fic is full of light, easy banter and humor that makes this slow-building Ryan/Seth fic easy to enjoy even if you don't know O.C. from OJ.

    One Tree Hill: Yet another show about siblings, the WB scored a hit that carried over to the CW for nine seasons with this basketball-infused family drama.

    Fandom highlight: The One Tree Hill Wiki is a currently active fandom wiki with 700 pages devoted to the show.

    Smallville: Though the fandom is less active currently, for most of the oughts, Smallville fandom was one of the reigning slash fandoms, reviving interest in the love/hate rivalry of Clark Kent and Lex Luthor and laying the scene for the revival of the Superman franchise.

    Fandom Highlight: "Bad Romance," a popular fanvid by Sisabet that mixes footage from the animated Superman series, scans from the DC comic, and Smallville.

    The Vampire Diaries: This wildly popular adaptation of the popular young-adult fantasy series of the same name has generated a large fandom with a number of fanfic communities, endless Tumblrs, its own ONTD spinoff, and much more.

    Fandom Highlight: With so many different pairings to choose from, the Vampire Diaries fic recs on the LiveJournal rec community crack_van are a great place to start.

    Think we've left off the highlights from some of your favorite WB and CW fandoms? Tell us what we've missed!

    Photo via jonboyhancock/Instagram


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    Hail to the ink, baby.

    Bruce Campbell is so ready for the remake of The Evil Dead that he's prepared to reimburse the first person to get a tattoo of the new flick.

    He tweeted that he'll pay back whoever's brave enough to go under the needle and have their flesh emblazoned with Evil Dead imagery (there's no "the" this time around).

    Campbell, of course, was the protagonist in Sam Raimi's original film, which garnered two sequels and shot Campbell—and his amazing chin— to cult stardom. He's also producing the remake, so any press is good press for the film.

    So far, it does not appear that anyone has capitalized on Campbell's offer.

    If you're hoping to take him up and need some inspiration, here's the ridiculously violent, completely not-safe-for-work trailer for the remake.

    Photo via joblomovienetwork/YouTube


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    Connor Manning is considerably awesome—and he’d be the first one to tell you so.

    The charismatic vlogger updates his YouTube channel twice weekly with new videos. This week, he opens up about his personal history with YouTube—the people and passion that drive him to create—and what it takes to succeed on the network.


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    Every evening, the Daily Dot delivers a selection of links worth clicking from around the Web, along with the day's must-see image or video. We call it Dotted Lines.

    Photo via Brandon Bird


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    Kyle Marshall isn't simply a YouTube correspondent. He's a charter community member. The Alberta, Canada, resident has been making videos since 2008 and to this day will still make upwards of 15 videos in a single week.

    His trademark program is his weekly installment of YouTube News, which runs each Tuesday.

    This week, Marshall shows his love for YouTube hero John Green's meeting with the president and offers his thoughts on the favoritism shown at last weekend's Streamys Awards.

    Photo via Kyle Marshall/YouTube


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    Netflix’s exclusive online series House of Cards has put the subject of Web series on everyone's mind (and the ballots for Emmy consideration). But there's so much more out there than what’s streaming on Netflix and Hulu. From Yahoo!, Vimeo, and YouTube to a host of private networks, there's a Web series out there for you.

    So which series are worth checking out? You may have heard about the "big" shows, like Felicia Day's The Guild, Tom Hanks's Electric City, and Hulu's Booth at the End. You may have even heard about the online cult hits, like Squaresville and Inspector Spacetime. But what about the other shows you may have missed? In this follow-up to last year's Web Series 101, the Dot gives you the rundown on what's current, what's coming, and what we hope will come back.

    1) Awkward Black Girl

    Pros: It's impossible not to love the ongoing adventures of J, whose bad rap lyrics are almost as awkward as her life. With season 2 underway, this award-winning series blends social anxiety, romance, and nerd culture into one hilarious mix that continues to be the best show on the Web.

    Cons: None, just love.

    2) Wigs

    Pros: With all-star casts, good writing, and a commitment to crafting memorable characters, it's easy to fall in love with Wigs, which is less a series than a network of short sub-series, each one exploring the life of a different woman.

    Cons: The series is a bit difficult to follow because of all the concurrent series and different storylines. It’s easiest just to pick a playlist.

    3) Burning Love

    Pros: It’s produced by Ben Stiller, who knows comedy and assembled an A-list cast. Burning Love is a hilarious, intelligent, surprisingly endearing parody of reality TV dating competitions. It takes these shows' heady cliches about love and sex to their natural hysterical conclusions, all while showcasing great writing and great acting from a cast including Kristen Bell, Jennifer Aniston, and Community''s Ken Jeong.

    Cons: Although season 2 is currently airing, season 1 has been taken totally offline in anticipation for the show's television debut next week. The upside? Just like the actual Bachelor/Bachelorette, you don't need to know anything about season 1 to jump into season 2.

    4) Prison Dancer

    Pros: This unique and poignant show is based on the hit viral video to Filipino prisoners dancing to Michael Jackson's "Thriller."  Through a series of vignettes about a fictional Filipino prison dance team, this musical—which is also an interactive transmedia experience with an actual stage counterpart—is touching, funny, and well-acted.

    Cons: The plot is a little flimsy and melodramatic at times, but with a diverse cast, a transgender main character, and a light focus on social issues, we don't have a lot to complain about here.

    5) Zoochosis

    Pros: Machinima's latest offering is hypnotically weird, and we're on the "love" side of the love/hate divide.

    Cons:Zoochosis is the offspring of a crass and heinously sexist series of "short films" by the same name at Zoochosis.com. So far they've (mostly) stayed away from the intensely creepy, objectifying antics of the previous version, but seriously, one more creeper cleavage or panty shot and we're done here.

    6) Ghost Ghirls

    Pros: Jack Black is behind it, and hey, if Jack Black thinks it's funny, it probably is. (Unless it involves Michael Cera. It's OK, Jack, we all have our weak spots.)

    Cons: It looks like a fictional rehash of a short-lived tongue-in-cheek reality bit called "Girly Ghost Hunters." Then again, just because Canada rejected the concept doesn't mean the Internet will.

    7) The Path

    Pros: This is an intriguing Young Adult fantasy series along the lines of Beautiful Creatures and Once Upon a Time, whose plot is being crowdsourced directly from fandom. So far it seems to be working.

    8) Upyri

    Pros: We met these guys at last year's Dragon*Con, where they were scouting around and talking to fans for their Christian vampire urban fantasy rap Web series. Let's just repeat that. Christian vampire urban fantasy rap.

    Cons: So far it looks like it's trying desperately to do about 70 different things at once. It's like a train wreck, but we honestly can't say we've ever seen any other Web series quite like it. Christian vampire urban fantasy rap.

    9)  EastSiders

    Pros: After a highly publicized preview of the first two episodes, this dramedy about a gay relationship on the rocks easily met its Kickstarter goal to fund the rest of the season.

    Cons: So give us the rest already.

    10) The followup to The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

    Pros: This modern-day adaptation of Pride and Prejudice has more than earned its large and enthusiastic fan following, and as the epic transmedia series nears a close, Bernie Su and crew are looking to continue their success with a new project.

    Cons: By far the most popular choice for the LBD crew's next project is Jane Austen's Emma, but this would be an incredibly tricky project to adapt, and nothing will ever top Amy Heckerling's modernization in 1995's brilliant Clueless. But whatever it is, we want it yesterday.

    Series we need more of: These series are on funding hiatus or in-between seasons, but we hope they'll be back.

    1) H+: the Digital Series:  Like everyone else, we quickly fell in love with Usual Suspects director Bryan Singer's high-budget dystopian thriller. With an epic 48 episodes in season 1, we should feel spoiled, but instead we're clamoring for more.

    2)Hipsterhood: This low-budget comedy already has Kickstarter funding for a second season, and we hope that means new episodes will follow. We can't resist making fun of hipsters. Or hipsters making fun of themselves. Or a show that allows us to enjoy both at once.

    3) Space Janitors: The move to Geek & Sundry has been good for this quirky Canadian sci-fi spoof. But although season 2 is done filming, there's no ETA on when it will launch.

    4) Job Hunters: This dark comedic satire in which Battle Royale meets The Office needs to return so it can answer the burning question: If this is an “only the strong survive” fight to the death, then why is everyone white?

    5) Leap Year: This quirky series about four friends who get laid off and start their own business has something we'd never expect to find in a series about venture startups sponsored by an insurance company: warmth.

    Bonus
    Video Game High School: Supporters have already raised nearly a million dollars on Kickstarter to fund season 2 of this popular series, which asks the simple question: What if high school was a series of real-life video games?  

    Screengrab via Wigs/YouTube


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    If you wanted to check out one of the five films nominated for Best Animated Short before Oscar Night, you just lost your chance.

    The films, which were posted to YouTube and Hulu last month, have been pulled offline just days before the Oscars on Sunday, the Verge reported.

    Although Fresh Guacamole had been online for viewers since last March, it was Disney's online push for Paperman, the animated short that appears before Disney's Wreck-It Ralph (which is nominated for Best Animated Feature Film), that set the precedent. Disney released the short on YouTube after it received the Best Animated Short nomination, which gave the film extensive coverage. Looking to benefit as well, the other films soon followed Disney's lead.

    Now all of the nominated short films have been taken down, after a letter from Shorts International Chief Executive Carter Pilcherwhich stated that the films would cause "significant, if not irreparable damage" to their theatrical release if they continued to stream them online.

    The letter, which was leaked online by Deadline, further demonstrates the divide between online content and mainstream entertainment.

    "Unlike Webbies or Ani's, the Academy Award is designed to award excellence in the making of motion pictures that receive a cinematic release, not an online release," Pilcher wrote on Feb. 14.

    "This release of the films on the Internet threatens to destroy 8 years of audience growth and the notion that these film gems are indeed movies—no feature length film would consider a free online release as a marketing tool!"

    Pilcher was prompted by independent theaters, which threatened to pull the short films if they remained online, due to plummeting sales.

    While releasing the shorts online may create and attract buzz, he pointed out that that won't actually help them win an Academy Award.

    "The fact that all the films were put online is perplexing as Academy voters have other and better means of viewing the films," Pilcher explained, possibly feeding into some people's belief that the Academy voters are old and boring.

    He gave the filmmakers until Feb. 15 to remove their films from the Internet so that no film suffers a disadvantage. All of the films have since complied.

    Wired's Graeme McMillan noted that while Paperman and Maggie Simpson were made by big studios and didn't really need the online exposure, the other nominees (Adam & Dog, Head Over Heels, and Fresh Guacamole) were independent productions that could have benefited from the free promotion.

    But when YouTube views can now help determine a Billboard No. 1 hit, Nielsen will finally include online streaming in measuring ratings, and a Web series can take home an Emmy, it's becoming harder for mainstream entertainment to dismiss online platforms as an effective marketing tool.

    Photo via danieldsdc/Webstagram


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    Careful as you go cruising the aisles of your favorite local grocery store this weekend. There's a new craze sweeping through their ever-shiny linoleum floors, one that's high on milk jugs and short on necessary mops.

    Gallon Smashing is the new thing YouTube's telling you is the cool thing to do, and it's remarkably simple. Just head over to the dairy stand at your nearest supermarket, grab two gallon jugs, walk down the aisle, and then intentionally trip over your own feet, thus allowing both gallons to fly helplessly into the air before crashing to the floor and spewing all over.

    These three crazy kids from TheChaizyChannel had the idea to kick it off, and their video's already been seen more than 320,000 times. With any luck, it'll hit the million mark by Monday, leading to a sweeping new round of “Got Milk?” advertisements.

    Photo via TheChaizyChannel/YouTube


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    The hit PC game Minecraft, where players use colorful 3D blocks to build objects and their surroundings, is so simple a child could master it.

    That's exactly what 8-year-old Kai Coulter of Seattle has done. Now he wants to teach the world.

    Coulter created a hand drawn eight-page Minecraft guide highlighting the game's main storyline and gameplay. Coulter's father, Ben, posted photos of the guide on Reddit, where they've been viewed more than 268,000 times

    "My son has been playing Minecraft on XBox 360, since I got it for him just before Christmas 2012," Ben Coulter told the Daily Dot. "This was his first attempt at a guide, but he's been writing little books like this for a couple of years. He's covered Star Wars, Batman, Cars and a few others."

    On Reddit's r/gaming community, more than 330 people praised Ben for his creativity and suggested other games for him to cover. 

    "Kid did a fine job," romeoromero commented. "With such cognition of the game at an early age, he already has the credentials to write the sequel to the Ages of Minecraft once he gets older. Or whatever iteration of the game exists at that point."

    "This kid needs to write a chapter on Red Stone," maadclaw commented. "It's the only way I'll ever learn it."

    The positivity has inspired Kai to keep the guides coming.

    "He was really surprised at the amount of responses he received from his guide," Ben Coulter added. "He will definitely be doing more guides in the future."

    Photos by Ben Coulter/Reddit


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    It's the best weekend of the year if you're into borrowed dresses and little gold statuettes named Oscar.

    The Academy Awards ceremony takes place Sunday. All the bright and beautiful faces of the film industry—and Russell Crowe—will be on the red carpet.

    Ahead of the festivities, we took a look at how the Best Picture nominees stack up against one another on the Web to get a measure of their popularity beyond the box office (where Lincoln, Django Unchained, and Les Misérables top the domestic charts).

    Facebook

    Amour: 18,831 likes

    Argo: 220,090

    Beasts of the Southern Wild: 56,974

    Django Unchained: 865,256

    Les Misérables: 1,287,022

    Life of Pi: 560,523

    Lincoln: 295,846

    Silver Linings Playbook: 171,806

    Zero Dark Thirty: 152,953

    It's the musical that triumphs on Facebook, rising above runner-up Django like Anne Hathaway stretching to reach a high C. 

    Twitter

    Here's a peek at the number of followers on the official accounts for the nominees.

    Amour: 648 followers

    Argo: no official account

    Beasts of the Southern Wild: 3,330

    Django Unchained: 25,462

    Les Misérables: 78,690

    Life of Pi: 16,195

    Lincoln: 9,204

    Silver Linings Playbook: 11,777

    Zero Dark Thirty: 4,889

    Les Mis again punches out the competition. Michael Haneke's Amour has fewer than 1,000 followers, which is almost as sad as the film itself.

    Meanwhile, Twitter, with the aid of Topsy, has been tracking sentiment (i.e. the degree of positivity) for Best Picture, Best Actress/Actor, and Best Director contenders. As of Thursday, Silver Linings Playbook is just edging out Argo when it comes to how much Twitter users like those films. Poor Zero Dark Thirty, though.

    GetGlue

    GetGlue is a community that allows fans to "check in" to what they're watching to let their friends know and earn neat stickers along the way. The site doesn't offer fully accurate stats for the number of check-ins in most topics; it counts by the thousand.

    Amour: 9,951 check-ins

    Argo: 77,000

    Beasts of the Southern Wild: 22,000

    Django Unchained: 100,000

    Les Misérables: 199,000

    Life of Pi: 65,000

    Lincoln: 58,000

    Silver Linings Playbook: 60,000

    Zero Dark Thirty: 56,000

    Tom Hooper's film once more soars like a Claude-Michel Schönberg ballad, taking almost double the number of check-ins of its nearest rival. 

    Again, the low-key Amour can't compare to the bombast of high-profile flicks like Quentin Tarantino's Django.

    IMDb

    For each film, we've grabbed the user score and the number of votes received. IMDb scores are weighted averages to disregard anyone trying to game the system.

    Amour: 8.0, 20,169 votes

    Argo: 8.0, 117,560

    Beasts of the Southern Wild: 7.4, 28,855

    Django Unchained: 8.6, 215,316

    Les Misérables: 7.9, 81,679

    Life of Pi: 8.2, 108,841

    Lincoln: 7.7, 60,829

    Silver Linings Playbook: 8.0, 96,808

    Zero Dark Thirty: 7.6, 56,830

    Django is currently ranked in IMDb's Top 250 films of all time, in 41st place. Life of Pi is the only other Best Picture nominee from this year to make the cut, at 188th place.

    Letterboxd

    A hot new kid on the cinephile's Web block, Letterboxd is a social network for movie lovers, acting as a film journal, a (yet another) way to see what your friends are watching, and a place to share your opinions about what you've seen. Here's a look at how many Letterboxd users have seen the Best Picture nominees.

    Amour: 2,330 people

    Argo: 7,054

    Beasts of the Southern Wild: 3,797

    Django Unchained: 10,403

    Les Misérables: 4,099

    Life of Pi: 4,809

    Lincoln: 4,005

    Silver Linings Playbook: 5,887

    Zero Dark Thirty: 4,827

    It's little surprise that a Tarantino film sparked more curiosity among film buffs than the other candidates. 

    YouTube

    Perhaps the key measure of a film's popularity on the Web is trailer views. Movie trailers are perhaps the most effective way to get people interested in a film, as they boil the essence of the movie down to a couple of minutes (or at least try to).

    To give a fair comparison of view counts, we've looked to distributor's official YouTube channels or the channel created to promote a film. Where a film has more than one distributor trailer, we've given the figure for the most-viewed one. We've also noted some view counts from other channels.

    Amour: 23,676. A Movieclips version has 284,853 views.

    Argo: 154,882. The FilmsActuTrailers upload has 3,900,184 views.

    Beasts of the Southern Wild: 71,586. FilmTrailerZone's version has 1,216,534 views.

    Django Unchained: 56,890. A trailer posted by JoBlo has 8,305,159 views.

    Les Misérables: 13,266. On the film's channel, the same trailer has 1,146,185 views.

    Life of Pi: 9,917,584. JoBlo has it at 6,042,882 views

    Lincoln: 7,669,223 on the official lincolnmovie channel.

    Silver Linings Playbook: 180,233. This one has 5,121,260.

    Zero Dark Thirty: 1,686,231. JoBlo, the top result for the trailer on YouTube search, has 2,309,914 views.

    Life of Pi and Lincoln run away with this one. The former certainly has more striking visuals than many of the other trailers, and it likely helps view counts that both of these have dedicated channels (which surely give them a bump in Google search results, too).

    Meanwhile, we'll be around to livetweet and live-GIF the event on our Tumblr, so join us, won't you?

    Photo by catmca/Flickr

     


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    It's officially Jennifer Lawrence's world, and we just live in it.

    That fact was enforced during the 85th Academy Awards when the Silver Linings Playbook actress gracefully recovered from tripping on her flowy dress on her way to collect her Best Actress Oscar. But that wasn't the only memorable moment during the seemingly neverending star-studded affair.

    Host Seth MacFarlane made a valiant effort at dumbing down the telecast to the Fox demographic with his mix of off-color jokes that left the audience full of squares gasping. Thankfully he didn't resort to doing a Family Guy voice once, though.

    Ben Affleck probably felt vindicated for his drama Argo winning Best Picture, which was announced by First Lady Michelle Obama via satellite. Life of Pi also won big and took home six statuettes including one for Ang Lee for Best Director. Les Miserables star Anne Hathaway picked up the award for Best Supporting Actress, while her nipples got their own Twitter account, thanks to a show-stealing wardrobe malfunction.

    In non-nipple-related news, Daniel Day-Lewis won Best Actor for Lincoln, and delivered a speech that was universally praised as “classy.”

    The Internet can also take partial credit for one Oscar win. Inocente, one of three nominated films backed by Kickstarter donations, won Best Documentary Short.

    In case you missed the six-hour extravaganza, here are the 7 most memorable moments from Sunday's show, originally posted live on our Tumblr.

    1) Charlize Theron and Channing Tatum danced, for some reason.

    2) Quvenzhane Wallis flexes, but where is her puppy purse?

    3) If you tried dodging seeing Les Miserables, TOO BAD! They performed.

    4) Blergh.

    5) Adele is a half way to winning an EGOT!

    6) There is no way Tumblr is ready for this.

    7) Arbromance

    Photo and GIFs via Daily Dot/Tumblr

     


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    Twitter can't get enough of the Oscars.

    During this year's Academy Awards ceremony, fans sent 8.9 million tweets about the show. That's 2.1 million for the red carpet and 6.8 million for the actual awards gala.

    There were certain moments that caused a spike in activity during the evening. The largest peak in activity occurred when Ben Affleck's Iran hostage crisis thriller, Argo, scooped Best Picture, with 85,300 tweets per minute (TPM).

    In second place was everyone's favorite songstress, Adele, as she performed the eponymous theme of the James Bond flick Skyfall and garnered 82,300 TPM in the process.

    Jennifer Lawrence also proved a big talking point as the Hunger Games and Silver Linings Playbook star scooped Best Actress. Her win (and fall as she walked to the stage) prompted 71,600 TPM.

    Adele makes a second appearance in the top five-most tweeted moments, as her Best Original Song win spurred 64,000 TPM from fans.

    It was a strong night for the women of the Oscars on Twitter. Anne Hathaway also prompted healthy levels of discussion, to the tune of 60,400 TPM, when she won Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

    Photo via Ben Affleck/Instagram


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    For the first time in the history of the Internet, a Kickstarter campaign has gone on to win an Academy Award.

    The big crowdfunding winner at last night's Oscars Awards in Los Angeles was Sean and Andrea Nix Fine's Inocente, a documentary that details the story of a Californian teenager who fought homelessness in an effort to become an artist. 

    The film, which originally aired on MTV in August, won the Oscar for Best Documentary Short Subject, beating out another Kickstarter-funded film, Sari Gilman'sKings Point. A third Kickstarter film, Buzkashi Boys, was nominated for Short Film (Live Action).

    Inocente's filmmaking team raised $52,527 from 294 backers in the summer of 2012.

    "We were kind of three-quarters done with the film, and we were trying to find more money to make the film, and we decide to do something with Kickstarter with our producers, and it really helped," Sean Fine told TheWall Street Journal

    "It really helped galvanize the community and get the word out about the film, and it … kept us going basically through the post-production process."

    Fine's wife, Andrea, added that funding the film on Kickstarter not only allowed for the idea to come to fruition, it helped create a community of people who already had an emotional and monetary attachment to the film. 

    "They're watching tonight, and you know they flipped when the film won," she told WSJ. "So that feels great."

    Photo viaInocente/Facebook


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    What do you do after you've taken the world by storm, produced a massively popular cult movie, and spawned endless debates about whether your brand of clueless Eurotrash kitsch is secretly self-aware or just really really bad?

    You get a Twitter, of course.

    That's what we were delighted to discover Tommy Wiseau, noted auteur director of 2003's bizarre melodrama The Room, had done. 

    Since the film came out, fans have been divided over whether The Room, a movie so bad it must be seen to be believed, was the work of an oblivious idiot or a clever trick by a man determined to troll everyone and getting the last laugh after all. 

    Now Wiseau's Twitter continues the inexplicable madness, with such gems as "You will be very close to my bottom" and "Persivistance pays off."

    Produced, written, acted, and directed by the notably stringy-haired and largely incoherent Wiseau, The Room is widely considered one of the worst films ever created. Its notable features include an inexplicable plot, awkward-acting characters who appear and disappear without explanation (because members of the cast kept quitting), blurry camerawork, plenty of odd soft-porn scenes, and @Horse_ebooks–worthy dialogue ("Leave your stupid comments in your pocket!" and "If a lot of people love each other, the world would be a better place").

    Wiseau reportedly spent more than 1 million dollars to finance the film, which became a cult hit once noted Hollywood types like Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas discovered it and started promoting it in their own circles. 

    In the wake of The Room's cult success, Wiseau did a number of guest comedy spots, starred in the brief comedy horror spoof The House That Drips Blood on Alex (sadly, written by someone else), and produced his own series of YouTube videos in which he shares his worldly wisdom about everything from kissing to method acting to Citizen Kane.

    Recently, Tumblr discovered Wiseau's Twitter account. Followed by a none-too-shabby 18,000 people, it's unverified, but we want to believe. It's full of Wiseau-flavored observations and technical f**k-ups—basically, exactly what we'd expect from the man who shot his own movie twice because he couldn't figure out how film worked.

    But despite the superficial ineptitude, Wiseau, who allegedly trained at the American Conservatory Theater, may be onto something. After all, he's spawned a massive cult following complete with audience participation and regular packed showings at theaters all over the world. Not to mention his own bobblehead doll.

    Perhaps before we break out the Tommy Wiseau Twitter drinking games, we should stop and heed the wisdom of a master. Especially when he tells us, "Creativity comes from yourself and yourself can be creating things that you want to happen for yourself."

    Spoken like a true Internet sensation.

    Photo via Mayfair Theatre


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    In Spotify Essentials, the Daily Dot curates custom playlists created by some of our favorite artists, staff writers, and Web community leaders. This week,Daily Dot writer and James Bond aficionado Patrick Caldwell shares some deep cuts from and inspired by the spy movie franchise.

    Long before Sean Connery utters the iconic “Bond …  James Bond” introduction or a bikini-clad Ursula Andress strolls out of the sea with a knife strapped to her waist, and long before the first shaken-not-stirred martini is ordered, the James Bond film franchise begins with a song.

    Paired with the equally memorable gun barrel opening—since reprised in every subsequent film and endlessly parodied—Monty Norman and John Barry’s distinct James Bond theme scores the rousing opening title sequence of 1962’s Dr. No, the first Bond film.Since then, the music has played as essential a role in the series's larger-than-life atmosphere as its guns, girls, stunts, exotic locales, and gadgets.

    Adele’s “Skyfall,” which picked up an entirely predictable and deserved Academy Award for Best Original Song last night, is a perfect example of a James Bond title theme: a big, bold, brassy hit from a modern pop star, with silly lyrics, more horns than a Homestuck convention, and enough strings to knit a sweater. Whether they embrace the musical movements of their moments or eschew the contemporary for the classical, as Adele did with "Skyfall," James Bond title themes all share a certain je ne sais quoi, a quality that’s unmistakably Bond.

    But while the series’s famous main theme and its various title themes loom largest over pop culture, the Bond films have inspired an astonishing array of bizarre musical detours. There are remixes, alternate versions, secondary songs, rejected title themes, and oddball covers littered across the musical landscape like so many silhouetted supermodels, consigned to a fate of relative obscurity. Fortunately, many have drifted their way onto Spotify, which houses an impressive cache of Bond oddities. With a hat tip to Adele, this 21-song, one-hour playlist sets its sights on some of Bond’s lesser-known musical moments.

    The offerings begin, as they must, with the James Bond theme—but it’s not the iconic original version heard everywhere from the aforementioned Dr. No to 2006’s Casino Royale. No, it’s an irrepressibly funky, irresistibly cheesy disco take on the classic theme by Marvin Hamlisch for The Spy Who Loved Me—an undeniably ‘70s variant for the best Bond movie of the ‘70s. Disco versions of orchestral themes were a fad that flared briefly but brilliantly, and “Bond ‘77” is as thoroughly enjoyable an artifact of the era as Meco’s disco Star Wars theme or Giorgio Moroder’s epic take on Battlestar Galactica.

    At least "Bond '77" can be heard in The Spy Who Loved Me and appears on the soundtrack album. Some James Bond songs weren't so lucky, and were instead recorded but shelved.

    The playlist dives into this pool of rare gems, from Johnny Cash’s booming “Thunderball” to Alice Cooper’s hard rock stab at “Man With The Golden Gun.” There’s the perfectly titled “Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” from Bond maven Shirley Bassey, who blazed the trail still followed by most Bond title themes with “Goldfinger.” Blondie puts in an appearance with “For Your Eyes Only,” and the block closes up with three rejected songs from poor, beleaguered Tomorrow Never Dies—from Pulp, Danish band Swan Lee, and K.D. Lang. (Lang’s “Surrender,” at least, appeared in the movie’s closing credits. Astonishingly, that’s not even every rejected song for that particular film; there were around 12 submissions, including takes from Saint Etienne and the Carpenters.)

    Indeed, the James Bond series’s producers can be harsh; in the case of a-ha’s “The Living Daylights,” the version heard on the soundtrack and in the film isn’t a-ha’s preferred mix. The playlist includes an alternate version of the song as the minds behind “Take On Me” would have wanted you to hear it. It then veers briefly into songs inspired by Bond music, with Robbie Williams’s “Millenium” and Kanye West’s “Diamonds From Sierra Leone”—which sample from the themes to “You Only Live Twice” and “Diamonds Are Forever,” respectively. Bond theme samples are surprisingly few in pop music; one imagines they may be difficult to clear.

    Not rare, however, are covers of Bond title themes. Many of the best, like Radiohead’s “Nobody Does It Better,” are regrettably not available on Spotify, but the playlist still includes five diamonds: Coldplay’s sweeping live version of “You Only Live Twice,” Guns N' Roses’ “Live And Let Die,” Me First and the Gimme Gimmes’ brilliant punk rock prayer “Nobody Does It Better,” Shirley Bassey’s classed-up version of “A View To A Kill,” and the Wise Guys’ delightful a capella approach to “Goldeneye,” a song originally written by Bono and the Edge.

    Of course, if you came of age in the 1990s and owned a Nintendo 64, you no doubt remember Goldeneye 007 far better than the movie it adapted, and for you, there’s a thoroughly entertaining metal cover of the music from that game’s frigate level. From that guitar-saturated track it’s only logical to segue into two instrumental covers of Bond title themes. The series has always adapted well to surf rock—indeed, the at-the-time trendy genre inspired the original James Bond theme—so the playlist includes versions of “Goldfinger” and “Diamonds Are Forever” from surf rock masters past (the Ventures) and present (Man or Astro-man?) And then, Shirley Bassey makes one final appearance on the playlist, with the sparkling David Arnold-written ballad “No Good About Goodbye.” Released on her 2009 album The Performance, it’s beautiful and blustering—and with multiple uses of the word “solace” in the lyrics, it would have made for an infinitely preferable title theme for Quantum of Solace than Alicia Keys and Jack White’s “Another Way To Die.”

    And then, like many a double-entendre-laden Bond film closing scene (“I think he’s attempting re-entry, sir”), we close things out with a joke: British DJs and comedians Adam Buxton and Joe Cornish’s “Santum of Quolace,” another potential alternate take on Quantum of Solace—and one that nostalgically wishes for a departure from the “gun and great big man-tits” grittiness of the Daniel Craig films for the simple innocence of Roger Moore, “a hover-gondola and a Union Jack.”

    Photo and GIF via  J’s Tammany Hall/Tumblr


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    The backlash over New York City DJ Baauer's mega-popular "Harlem Shake" rolls on.

    If kids aren't getting suspended for performing the ridiculously elementary dance routine for cover videos in classrooms, retired reggaeton artists are considering lawsuits over intellectual property they believe the DJ has stolen.

    Controversy over the latter began to spill out last week, when Baauer, who's currently nursing a No. 1 spot on Billboard's Hot 100 chart, took to Reddit to host an Ask Me Anything session.

    While there, a curious redditor named KoalaYummies asked the über-hot producer where he got the sample for "the Spanish-speaking girl," the one who proclaims "Con los terroristas" 15 seconds into the track—right at the point in all the videos when the footage blacks out and cuts back in to absolute mayhem.

    Baauer told Reddit that he found the samples for the track"on the innerweb," but we all know what happens when a celebrity leaves a vague comment like that on Reddit: them boys and girls go on and follow up.

    After some prodding from Gawker's Adrian Chen, a redditor named CristolaPared determined that, among other sections, the"Con los terroristas" sample comes not from a "Spanish-speaking girl" but from a retired Puerto Rican reggaeton artist named Hector "el Father" Delgado, who shouted the line on his late 1990s hit "Los Terroristas."

    Today, Delgado wants his recompense.

    The performer-turned-born again Christian preacher turned to Puerto Rican radio Saturday to announce that Baauer made no efforts to properly seek usage rights of the "Con los terroristas" sample and that he's considering a lawsuit against the New York-based DJ for using a recording without consent.

    "I'll leave that to the lawyers," he added, before waxing on in Spanish about the plan God has made for him.

    Even if he doesn't decide to sue, Delgado could still stand to make a pretty penny by filing a simple Content ID copyright claim on the "Harlem Shake," which has played out on more than 12,000 YouTube videos—many of which run advertisements—that currently total more than 100 million views.

    Photo via The Sunny Coast Skate/YouTube


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    Every evening, the Daily Dot delivers a selection of links worth clicking from around the Web, along with the day's must-see image or video. We call it Dotted Lines.

    WANT. Here's a parody of Edward Gorey's Gashlycrumb Tinies, with video game characters instead. Click for bigger. (Buy the poster here.)

     

    And our favorite video of the day: This little girl named Kayla loves the moon more than you've ever loved anything. 


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    Here at the Daily Dot, we swap GIF images with each other every morning. Now we’re looping you in. In the Morning GIF, we feature a popular—or just plain cool—GIF we found on Reddit, Canvas, or elsewhere on the Internet.

    Any regular skier will tell you, one of the most important things to do on the slopes is avoid the trees and any other sort of obstruction.

    That's unless you're freestyle skier Logan Imlach, an adrenaline junkie who prefers to ride into walls.

    "[In 2008] I went on to pursue the competition scene with the oh-so-common illusion of making the X-Games. This ended abruptly with the destruction of my right knee, leading to a full ACL replacement and lateral meniscus shaving," Imlach wrote on his blog

    "After that, riding park wasn't nearly as appealing, so I found myself exploring the backcountry and scouring Anchorage for handrails. It was then that I found myself on my true path in skiing: filming on things not touched by a Snow CAT."

    Imlach made parking lots and back alleys his personal skiing playground while his friends filmed his jumps. The Anchorage, Alaska, native ultimately grabbed the attention of Level 1, a group of filmmakers, who awarded Imlach their Superunknown sponsorship in 2010. Imlach followed up that success with a role in Level 1's 55-minute award-winning film, Sunny, in 2012.

    In the movie Imlach skies through an abandoned Army barracks in Whittier, Alaska. The following GIF from the film was posted on Reddit Monday.

    Screengrab via Vimeo


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    "This ain't Harlem," the folks at one of New York City's premier hip-hop radio stations will tell you. These are fighting words.

    In an effort to cut off any perpetuation to the notion that the Harlem Shake (the 30-second dance sequence made so unseemly popular thanks to YouTube and a brostep song by NYC producer Baauer) is anything close to the original "Harlem Shake" (the one from the 1980s that involves a breakneck beat, a shoulder lock, and an elbow pop), members of the Breakfast Club morning show at Power 105.1 FM have taken to YouTube to show the world how the Harlem Shake is really done.

    "This is Harlem," the video points out after the newly minted Original Harlem Shakers break into a four-minute dance circle that finds them taking turns running through their iterations of the classic Al B dance. Since being posted on YouTube yesterday, the video has already received more than 10,000 views.

    "The Real Real Real Harlem Shakes" arrives as an obvious response to the wild craze that's surrounded Baauer's "Harlem Shake" and its army of variation videos, all of which have been seen more than 100 million times. 

    Those tribute videos, which Baauer and his management team have happily not filed copyright claims against, recently helped "Harlem Shake" ascend to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, making it the first song to utilize YouTube popularity to reach the top of the charts. (Billboard began factoring YouTube views into its Hot 100 metrics last week.)

    In Harlem, the traditionally black Manhattan neighborhood responsible for such cultural institutions as stride piano, the Apollo Theater, and Juelz Santana, allegiants to the original Harlem Shake have begun getting the word out about Baauer's unoriginal use of the name. 

    Last week, the people at Schlepp Films journeyed up to West 125th Street to speak with Harlemites about how they view Baauer's "Harlem Shake." Stretching five minutes and digressing from a state of "What the hell is this?" to "That's downright offensive to the original Harlem Shake," that video has already been seen more than 7 million times. 

    Here's hoping the Original Harlem Shakers' iteration of the iconic '80s dance gets just as many views.

    Photo viaVinnie Mac/YouTube


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    For years, humankind has been plagued by the all-important question: Are Tilda Swinton and David Bowie the same person?  Both age at half the speed of an ordinary human. Both are ethereal yet powerful alien beings sent to earth to bless us with their talents as artists and entertainers*. Both have seriously, seriously amazing hair.

    The release of Bowie’s new music video has finally put an end to the Bowie/Swinton debate, as it features onscreen proof that they are indeed two separate people. But in a celebration of the all-too-believable Bowie-as-Swinton theory, we present the Tilda Stardust Tumblr blog.

    “Dedicated to the belief that Tilda and Bowie are one person”, Tilda Stardust features painstakingly researched photos comparing the similarities between the two stars -- helped along by the fact that both favour androgynous fashion, and both have had a wide range of hairstyles over the years. Looking at these pictures, it’s easy to see where the theory comes from:

    Photos via TildaStardust/Tumblr

    Photos via TildaStardust/Tumblr

    Having scrolled through a couple of pages of Tilda Stardust, the next step is obvious: petition the production company of the upcoming Bowie/Iggie Pop biopic and request that Swinton be cast in the lead role.

    * Unverified. But the hair thing is definitely accurate.

    Image via DavidBowieVEVO/YouTube


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