Articles on this Page
- 02/27/14--14:44: _Soon you'll be able...
- 02/28/14--04:00: _Stoya takes a bulle...
- 02/28/14--10:33: _This GIF résumé wil...
- 02/28/14--13:04: _FunnyOrDie's take o...
- 03/01/14--06:30: _The best FCC compla...
- 03/01/14--07:30: _We made you that #N...
- 03/01/14--08:52: _This teen's app tur...
- 03/02/14--05:00: _8 much better thing...
- 03/02/14--08:34: _The story behind th...
- 03/02/14--08:50: _How social media is...
- 03/02/14--19:37: _Ellen's Oscar selfi...
- 03/03/14--05:39: _And the award for B...
- 03/03/14--06:31: _Jimmy Kimmel gives ...
- 03/03/14--07:34: _The best photobombs...
- 03/03/14--09:37: _This GIF tattoo is ...
- 03/03/14--14:35: _Arby's bought Pharr...
- 03/04/14--04:00: _Challenging gay ste...
- 03/04/14--04:30: _The most popular pr...
- 03/04/14--07:49: _Rob Ford sweats thr...
- 03/04/14--09:06: _'12 Years a Slave' ...
- 02/27/14--14:44: Soon you'll be able to download your favorite BBC shows
- 02/28/14--04:00: Stoya takes a bullet for the Internet in her new webseries
- 02/28/14--10:33: This GIF résumé will make you feel bad about your paper one
- 02/28/14--13:04: FunnyOrDie's take on Comcast: It doesn't give a f*ck
- 03/01/14--06:30: The best FCC complaints about the 'Drunk in Love' Grammy performance
- 03/01/14--07:30: We made you that #Normcore playlist you didn't ask for
- 03/01/14--08:52: This teen's app turns your iPhone into a Game Boy Advance
- 03/02/14--05:00: 8 much better things to do in the time it takes to watch the Oscars
- 03/02/14--08:34: The story behind the Oscar envelopes
- 03/02/14--19:37: Ellen's Oscar selfie is now the most popular tweet in history
- 03/03/14--05:39: And the award for Best GIF goes to…
- 03/03/14--06:31: Jimmy Kimmel gives viral videos the big-budget Hollywood treatment
- 03/03/14--07:34: The best photobombs of the 2014 Oscars
- 03/03/14--09:37: This GIF tattoo is a collaborative work of art
- 03/03/14--14:35: Arby's bought Pharrell's hat on eBay last night
- 03/04/14--04:00: Challenging gay stereotypes through video games
- 03/04/14--04:30: The most popular products from the TV shows you're obsessed with
- 03/04/14--07:49: Rob Ford sweats through a rough 'Kimmel' appearance
- 03/04/14--09:06: '12 Years a Slave' won Best Picture—and now everyone's pirating it
Amazon’s Instant Video service just launched in the U.K., and it looks like the BBC is stepping up the competition.
Right now, the BBC iPlayer site is available for free to anyone who lives in the U.K. It can be used to watch BBC shows after they’ve aired, or to stream live TV if you have a television license. The problem is the programs are available for only seven days after they last aired, and as a result you can’t binge-watch the entire new season of Doctor Who in one sitting.
On Thursday, the BBC announced plans for a new commercial download service that will allow users to download and keep BBC programming permanently. Unlike the rest of BBC’s online content, which is free, the upcoming BBC Store will offer new TV shows and older programming from the BBC’s archive—at a price.
Coming from a taxpayer-funded company like the BBC, a commercial project like this may seem suspiciously profit-driven. However, BBC Store had to go through various assessments before it was OKed by the BBC’s governing body as being of value to the British public. It's not yet known if the BBC Store will only be availble in the U.K., as iPlayer is now, or if BBC fans from the U.S. will be allowed to use the service.
Anyone worried about the commercialization of the BBC shouldn’t start panicking too soon. It appears the BBC Store is just a response to the demand for instant online video, rather than an attempt to commercialize content that was already free on iPlayer.
This way, people can pay for permanent downloads rather than waiting for DVD box sets, and fewer people could end up resorting to piracy to catch up with shows that went past iPlayer’s seven-day period of availability.
Photo via doctorwho247/Tumblr
When I get on the phone with Stoya, she sounds distressed. She’s talking about Internet censorship in Turkey, and the men who’ve been tweeting… about her ankles.
“Every Turkish man with an Internet account wants to tell me I have fat ankles,” she explains. “I don’t know if there’s a cultural fixation on ankle size there. … So I’m finding a way to have my heart grow three sizes today.”
Stoya is an adult film star, but she’s also a writer, an aerial performer, and a human being. I called to ask about her new webseries for adult site WoodRocket (site NSFW) called Stoya Does Everything, which debuted in mid-February.
It’s part of WoodRocketTV’s push for more shareable content featuring adult film performers, an attempt to redefine adult entertainment. The site also features shows like James Deen Loves Food and the just-released Road Strip. Director Lee Roy Myers told us last October that he wants the site to “feel like a mix between YouTube and Funny or Die and online porn.”
The premise is simple, Stoya explains. “In each episode there’s a Stoya, and I go and do a thing.”
In the first episode, Stoya goes to a gun range. She’s wearing stilettos. “Guns make me very nervous,” she announces in the intro sequence. In under five minutes, a buckshot blows a shell into her blouse. It’s painful.
“How dumb was it going to a shooting range wearing a blouse?” she laughs. “So after the shooting range epsiode, we had a discussion with Lee Roy about how we didn’t want the show to be ‘Stoya Hurts Herself.’”
The most recent episode follows Stoya, dressed like Velma from Scooby-Doo, as she hunts ghosts in an allegedly haunted park in suburban Las Vegas. As in the gun range episode, she does not hide her discomfort.
“I’m creeped out,” she says, “but I just don’t do well with the suburbs.”
The 27-year-old has a good sense of humor, and it comes through in Stoya Does Everything. Going on Myers’s explanation of what he wants WoodRocket to be, can porn and comedy be synonymous?
“Adult films can be funny and funny can talk about or reference aspects of adult films,” Stoya says, “but ‘synonymous’ is far too intense of a word to use. Both mediums do tend to make use of a similar shorthand of idioms and caricatures to move plot along quickly and leave time for jokes or sex scenes, but they are completely different disciplines.”
She also has a good sense of humor when dealing with trolls, which has become an occupational hazard. She’s insanely popular on the Internet—she’s got close to 60,000 followers on Instagram and more than 160,000 on Twitter.
“It depends on each troll,” she says. “There’s one on Instagram who comments, ‘Can’t fap to this’ or ‘Can fap to this.’” He was entertaining, but the best way to make a troll go away is to tell them how entertaining they are. … What I get frequently [online] is, ‘You’re not like a normal porn star.’ I’m going to bet what you have in your head is not a normal porn star.
“The things I write about, people think I can’t properly evaluate my experience because I’m a pornographer.”
The topics of her writing offer insight into the stereotypes people hold about porn stars. She addressed the issue of consent and the lack of discussion about mental sexual health. She critiqued a Saturday Night Live sketch that portrayed two former porn stars as unintelligent eye candy. She traced the intersection of sex work and feminism, the need to separate her personal beliefs from her professional work, and people’s views about her feminism:
“Having a job that involves talking to the press means inevitably everything from my politics to my chewing-gum habits are up for debate and discussion. I've been told that I must be a feminist, that my job is feminist, that I absolutely cannot be a feminist, and, one time, that my vagina should be revoked for crimes against women.”
She references the 2011 book A Billion Wicked Thoughts, by neuroscientists Ogi Ogas and Sai Gaddam. It touches on the cognitive dissonance between what people search for online and what they might tell a researcher they like, based on a year’s worth of search terms.
“The Internet, in regard to sexuality, has allowed us to research niche content, things that 10 years ago people thought was weird,” she says. “We spend so little time discussing sexuality, and have so many hangups. [You ask someone], ‘What do you look at?’ Oh, I look at X-Art and sometimes I look at people shoving things in their butts. But when you look at their search history, it’s different.”
Thinking back to Turkish men’s potential obsession with women’s ankles, I ask if she’s ever felt threatened by online harassment.
“I’m more afraid of the guy who lives up the street than some guy on the Internet who was attracted to my Twitter because porn,” she says. “I’ve experienced all sorts of comments from people on the street since I was 14. Online, you’re not a foot away from me.”
An upcoming episode of the series will feature Stoya dressing up as professional wrestlers; she recently became obsessed with WWE Raw and SmackDown. If WoodRocket is attempting to bridge a gap, Stoya is the perfect muscle for it.
Screengrab via WoodRocket
Not only has designer Ivan Delgado dressed up his résumé for the job he wants, he’s turned it into a work of art.
Delgado is from Buenos Aires and has worked with creative agencies in Argentina. He recently did work for the LatinSpots advertising festival 'El Ojo de Iberoamérica' as a content creator and social media manager.
Delgado isn’t the first job seeker to give his resume a needed facelift. In 2011 marketer Matthew Epstein tried to woo Google with a clever YouTube video, a fake mustache, and a glass of scotch. It didn’t work. In 2012 graphic designer David Mas set up a dedicated Instagram account, @esto_es_un_curriculum, to show off his logos, animations, and prints. That same year Vanessa Hodja accidentally attached a photo of actor Nicolas Cage to her email in lieu of a résumé.
It’s unclear what luck Mas and Hodja expereicned with their unique résumés. Just in case Delgado’s GIF résumé is too over the top, he does have a traditional one employers can see on Behance.
Images by Ivan Delgado
Chances are, you are a Comcast customer, even if you don't own a TV or computer. And that means that you have constantly wondered why Comcast continues to grow as a company, despite having the reliability of a Nigerian prince who keeps emailing you and the customer service skills of your local DMV.
It's simple: Comcast don't give a f*ck.
A new video by FunnyOrDie features a representative of the communications giant lightheartedly explaining that, when it comes to your concerns about its service or monopolistic business moves, it simply "doesn't give a f*ck." After all, it doesn't become a "leader in horrible customer service" on its own merit!
Beyoncé and Jay-Z performed Beyoncé’s “Drunk in Love” at the Grammy Awards at the end of January, and it was an undeniably sultry performance. Beyoncé looked like an angel from Sex Heaven as she danced with her husband.
Only some viewers did not enjoy Queen Bey’s performance. Some viewers, with sensibilities dainter than a baby flower perched atop a tiny needle made of china, got offended by the sheer force of sexiness.
And their complaints to the FCC are hilarious. Smoking Gun gained access to some of the original documents; here are some highlights:
“She was dressed with half of her butt showing. Her hair was wet.”
Is there something displeasing about wet hair I haven't heard about?
Please censor this material from our children, and from public TV & Internet.”
Um, if you think this is one of the more explicit things on the Internet you’ve… probably never been on the Internet.
“Her spread eagle poses barely covered her vulva”
That phrase is more graphic than the performance.
“It was 'supposed' to be a classy awards show for music and not a stripper show.”
1. Why is “supposed” in scare quotes?
2. The Grammys have never been classy.
"I felt like I should be taking antibiotics"
That's not what antibiotics are for.
“I want to ask Beyonce if it’s ok if I stick my butt in her child’s face like she did mine [...] I wonder how many kids got raped last night after seeing Beyonce’s performance."
You can’t ask Beyoncé anything because she is busy being perfect, and also, why would kids get raped after seeing Beyoncé’s performance? Does this person think that children somehow become more rapeable after witnessing musical genius? (Rape is not funny, of course, times infinity. And that’s why this complaint is doubly stupid: It’s trivializing something serious by implying that watching the Grammys could make somebody more prone to getting raped.)
People also complained about the marriage ceremony that occurred for same-sex couples, as well as Katy Perry’s performance (in one, Perry was accused of summoning Satan).
Good work, everyone!
Have you heard about Normcore? It’s the hottest new fashion trend that’s sweeping the nation.
First articulated in a New York trend piece, Normcore (pronounced ‟#Normcore”) is basically what happens when Brooklyn hipsters decided it would be cool to dress exactly like their oh-so-square parents back in Indiana—ill-fitting dad jeans, faded baseball caps, white running shoes over black dress socks, etc.—but with nary a trace of the expected irony.
Daily Dot writer Audra Schroeder explained that it’s largely a reaction against the disposable consumerism inherent in most fashion trends. ‟We’re at a point in culture where dressing like you’re in a witness protection program has become cooler than buying an identity,” she noted.
Like any lifestyle trend, Normcore needs a soundtrack; music to be blasted by kids rocking Patagonia jackets and khaki cargo shorts. As something that maybe approaches a public service, we’ve put a playlist of Normcore jams for your pleasure.
What does Normcore sound like? Well, it’s certainly rockist, overwhelmingly white, and draws mainly from North American bands of the mid 1970s through late 1990s. The Counting Crows are on there, as is Billy Joel. Huey Lewis appears multiple times because, if there was ever a poet leaurate of Normcore, it’s the dude who wrote ‟Hip To Be Square.”
Still confused about normcore? (Yeah, that’s the correct reaction). These tweets might help:
Also, if you think that whole thing is kind of dumb (yeah, that’s the correct reaction) it’ll probably all be completely forgotten in about a week. But, while Normcore is still a thing, just continue dressing exactly how you’ve been dressing all along and you’ll fit right in.
Photo by Tommi Nummelin/Wikimedia Commons
You'd think that there was a whip-crack team of super hackers behind GBA4iOS, the fantastic new Game Boy Advance emulator that functions on nonjailbroken iOS devices—but there isn't.
It’s the work an 18-year-old named Riley Testut, according to Toucharcade.
A senior at Richardson High School near Dallas, Texas, Testut has been creating iOS applications for years. At 13, he released a basic augmented-reality shooter called Shoot Around. From there, Testut went on to design Camera Prime before a chance encounter with a SNES emulator on Github led to the beginnings of the GBA4iOS.
Interestingly, the GBA4iOS project has been floating around since last year. However, the first iteration ended up suffering after Apple closed off the loophole that allowed for its usage.
The finalized app, released in February, turns your iPhone into an old-school Game Boy, allowing you to play classic titles like Pokemon Emerald, Super Mario World: Super Mario Advance 2, and Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories in a way that looks and feels like the real thing.
Here’s Testut at a viewing party for when GBA4iOS went live.
This kid deserves some extra credit at school.
The night of the Oscars, after the Super Bowl, is my favorite American holiday. Traditionally, I observe both occasions by going out while everyone else is hunkered down in their darkened living rooms, unaware of the world beyond. As the rest of the country watched Seattle dominate Denver last month, my wife and I enjoyed having an entire movie theater to ourselves for a screening of Nebraska. It’s not often you can put your feet up at Lincoln Center Plaza.
The Academy Awards telecast is not quite an all-day affair, but it still runs long. Last year’s ceremonies clocked in at three hours and 35 minutes, while the record-setting 2002 broadcast stretched to four hours and 20 minutes—a well-executed joke from some pothead producer, no doubt.
Even if they manage to wrap it up on the early side, there’s plenty you can do in the time it takes to get from the red carpet to the Best Picture envelope.
Some modest suggestions:
1) Watch the fabled 210-minute cut of Caligula (1979).
You can watch live footage of Oscar-winners clapping for other Oscar-winners, or you can watch the extended edition of the most costly porno ever produced.
It features a screenplay from Gore Vidal, gratuitous scenes of Roman sex/violence shot by Penthouse’s founder, and perennial Oscar loser Peter O’Toole as the leprous Tiberius. Plus, a sometimes-nude young Helen Mirren!
2) Fly back and forth between two Scottish isles—134 times.
Loganair offers what’s considered the shortest regular commercial flight on the planet: a jump between the Orkney Islands of Westray and Papa Westray that can last as little as 47 seconds, start to finish. Sure, it might get a little nauseating after your 50th round trip, but you really can’t beat that view of, uh, some fields.
3) Write a 3,000-word essay.
Just know that you may not be pleased with the result.
4) Wait in line for a ride at Disneyland.
No Fastpass, no problem. We can’t promise that the actual ride is any good, however.
5) Go on a diet.
According to Ayurvedic physician Dr. Sivakumar Varma, you can greatly improve your health by waiting 210 minutes between eating dinner and going to sleep—that way your digestive tract has adequate time to do its thing. How you actually spend that period is up to you: staring hungrily at food, I guess.
6) Cook 70 three-minute eggs.
What is a three-minute egg? Nobody really knows. The only thing we’re sure of is how long they take to prepare. (It’s all explained in the YouTube clip below, which for some reason is four minutes long). After you cook 70, well, you’ll likely have gotten the hang of it. Then it’s just a matter of figuring out which neighbor’s house to chuck them at.
7) Pronounce the longest word in English.
The term “Methionylalanylthreonylserylar…,” etc., refers to a kind of protein and contains 189,819 letters. All of those letters are helpfully listed right here, for you to pronounce over the course of three and a half hours.
If that’s a bit daunting for your tastes, then just listen to this guy do it for you, albeit in a way that makes the word sound like Serbian gibberish.
8) Solve 2,000 Rubik’s Cubes at world-record speed.
Or, if you’re normal, just struggle to solve the first one until you pass out from sheer frustration.
But enough from me—you can come up with lots of great time-killers yourself. Remember, there’s no idea as boring and wasteful as the Oscars themselves. So what if you have nothing to say around the watercooler on Monday? At least you got something done.
Between red carpet selfies powered by Livefyre, the backstage award show Twitter Mirror that’s certain to make an appearance, and the telling fact that the Oscars are being live-streamed for the first time ever, it’s obvious these aren’t your grandma’s Academy Awards. These aren’t even your parents’ Academy Awards.
Compared to the relative simplicity and refined elegance that used to surround the Oscars, today’s award show has hit space age status.
But not all things Oscar have been given a digital makeover. Case in point, the envelopes. Marc Friedland, the founder of Marc Friedland Couture Communications, is the man behind the golden pieces of paper that change actors lives in an instant. His company has been creating the Academy Awards’ envelopes and winner cards for four years now, and it’s a labor of love.
“This is actually the 74th year that they’re using these couture envelopes,” he tells me. “Previously the envelope was just something used for the information, not as a visual icon to go with the statuette. Before that, it was just an off-the-shelf printed envelope. It was only about function.”
Friedland’s company also creates the very important item inside the envelopes: the winner cards. But don’t get too excited; he doesn’t have any intel. “We do a winners card for every nominee. This year there are 121, and there are 24 categories of winners across differences branches of the Academy.
“Then at some time prior to the Awards, probably within the week before, we hand off those envelopes and winners cards to Pricewaterhouse Coopers, and after they’ve been doubled, tripled, quadrupled checked, they’re delivered in person and then the votes are tabulated.”
After this, the winners cards are put into the correct envelopes, and squired away by policeman they go. “It’s all very secretive and protective,” Friedman says.
Don’t expect to find any of the non-winners cards that were preemptively made floating around: They are all destroyed.
These days, function be damned. The envelopes, Friedland says, are inspired by old Hollywood glamour, and the colors take cues from the red carpet and golden statues. “They go through embossing, engraving, hand processes, there are four different types of papers used, there’s real gold in them,” he says.
“One-hundred and ten man hours go into the making of these things. Until people hold it, they don’t realize it weighs a quarter of a pound, and it’s an eighth of an inch thick. It has eight carat gold flakes in it. These things are what make them so special!”
Special, but priceless. While there’s been some talk about the cost of these keepsakes, when I ask how much it would be for me to buy a set, I’m told you can’t truly put a number on them. “That’s like asking how much would Dorothy’s red slippers cost,” Friedland tells me.
Friedland’s company is a staple of celebrity events; it’s the name in custom paper solutions for the stars. “People spend so much money on home design, on wardrobes, and what they drive, he says. “Yet, how they communicate is equally as personal and individual. So we carved out a niche for ourselves to be the luxury staple of this.”
Pinpointing that niche has been a rewarding one. He’s made envelopes and invitations for many a celebrity’s wedding, “some are still, others are not.” Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston used his services for their nuptials, the company’s creativity was contracted for “one of Charlie Sheen’s weddings,” and they also made the invitations for Oprah’s Legends Ball.
And while all of these names and moments send the tabloids into a frenzy, it’s the Oscars that Marc Friedland and Co…. well, roll out the red carpet for.
“These envelopes have become very coveted. They’re definitely a true keepsake that will last a lifetime. They’re constructed and engineered to look great on camera, on stage, and to function well over time,” Friedland says.
And he’s convinced they will stand the test of time, not just on shelves, but in the ceremony itself. Some award shows are starting to use tablets or other digital solutions to read winner names; does he see a future where the Best Actor is announced via iPad, or further in the future yet… via hologram? “In this world of technology, people are more connected to their devices and tweeting, but they’re so much more isolated from people,” he says. The Spike Jonze film Her—nominated for best picture this year—captured this sentiment profoundly, Friedland says.
“But these envelopes… they hold so much emotion, so much spirit, so much heart and soul. And I don’t think that any technology device could hold anything like that. 50 years from now, these people open those envelopes and go back to that precise moment when their name was announced, when they achieved that pinnacle of success.
“We really create artifacts of a person’s life, of a legacy, of how people commemorate important moments in their lives. That’s what I love about what paper does.”
In September 1965, the Indonesian military overthrew the government, and death squads were formed to help execute anyone who was a threat to the country's “New Order”: communists, intellectuals, ethnic Chinese. In the span of one year, death squads executed approximately one million in the purge.
Director Joshua Oppenheimer spent eight years in Indonesia, interviewing survivors and perpetrators of the massacre. His Oscar-nominated documentary, The Act of Killing, follows Anwar Congo, one of the death squad commanders from 1965, who is still revered in Indonesia and speaks proudly of his acts. Many of the perpetrators he interviewed did.
Because of this chilling openness, Oppenheimer asked Congo and his old associates to reenact certain torture scenes. In one early scene, Congo gleefully employs an old method for strangling a detainee with wire. Elsewhere, he and his supporting cast dress up as ‘50s gangsters and stage a noir torture scene, then offer a sunny, guided tour of the spots where they murdered people.
The film hinges on these surreal revisionist histories, and sets within sets. At one point, Congo critiques his performance, and wonders out loud if what he did was wrong. At the end of the film, he retches on the rooftop where he murdered thousands, as if attempting to exorcise himself of centuries of demons.
It’s a powerful film, one that documents history’s descent into terror and genocide from a new angle. This movie, which was picked up by Drafthouse Films, has gotten quite a bit of publicity in Indonesia. But there are still powers attempting to censor, and Oppenheimer’s Indonesian co-producers have needed to remain anonymous. That's where social media has stepped in, helping publicize the film and give it life outside official channels.
"Thank you for making this movie. None of us would dare or even think about making anything like this. The Indonesian government is hard at work to discredit you and the Ministry of Communications and Informatics have blocked your website if we try to open it from Indonesian domain. Also from Google search."
“It’s hard to know whether [the Ministry of Communications] did it, or if the government hired cyber thugs to do it,” says Oppenheimer. "There’s [an Internet group] that’s hired to attack political opponents, so they could have very well been hired to attack our website.”
The film managed to spark controversy on Chinese social media as well, but for different reasons. China was in the midst of Mao's Cultural Revolution at the time of the purge, and many people there have only just learned of the mass massacres of ethnic Chinese thanks to the film.
Oppenheimer says social media in Indonesia has been mostly beneficial, both in spreading the word about the film, and unifying the country in general.
“I think social media has come to Indonesia almost with the same power as the national language,” he explains."Twitter might be bigger there than in [the United States]. Human rights lawyers might have 500,000 followers, millions of followers if they’re any type of celebrity. So I think social media’s been hugely important in raising dialogue about the genocide, and also for getting the film out.
“People are sometimes afraid of downloading the film, so we’ve put it up on YouTube without English subtitles, as something people can stream for free. We know the film’s been downloaded three-and-a-half million times, which is an awful lot.”
Those numbers are impressive, but so is the new dialogue pushing back against decades of revised history, which is attempting to bridge a gap between generations.
“We’ve had great support from the largest newspaper in Indonesia,” Oppenheimer says. “They produced a double edition of their magazine dedicated to showing The Act of Killing was a repeatable experiment, that it could be made anywhere in Indonesia. that there’s thousands of men like Anwar Congo living with impunity around the country. But much of the rest of established media said nothing about the film.
“On social media, there was this really active debate about the consequences of the stories we tell about the past. So the film revealed to everyone in Indonesia what they suspected was true—that the official history is a lie. This film was made as an antidote to fear, and people were beginning to question the official history. And a lot of that discussion was happening on Twitter and Facebook.”
Indonesia’s presidential spokesman Teuku Faizasyah recently told Reuters: “It's a tragedy and we, just like anybody else, despise those in the movie and the reenactment of the atrocities.”
Oppenheimer agrees that stance is a big step for a government that was once attempting to christen the architect of the genocide a national hero. If they’re still being cagey about their role, the government will soon have more to ponder. Oppenheimer will shortly release a follow-up film, The Look of Silence, which focuses on the survivors of the massacre.
“I think the government finally made this about face because they knew that the film wasn’t going away.”
Images via Drafthouse Films
It's the Oscars, and it's 2014, so this happened. Host Ellen DeGeneres took a selfie with too many stars to count—hey, Brad Pitt! Julia Roberts! Best actor in a supporting role Jared Leto! Best actress in a supporting role Lupita Nyong'o!—and asked Twitter to turn it into the most retweeted tweet in tweet history.
That was a tall order. She had none other than President Obama to beat.
Obama’s four more years tweet retweeted 778k times, the most ever. Ellen’s is at 152k so far...— Ethan Klapper (@ethanklapper) March 3, 2014
But she did it: In just 35 minutes, she hit 800,000 retweets. By 10:50pm ET, she had 1 million.
There was so much buzz, Twitter went down briefly.
Look at this fun and spontaneous Samsung product placement pic.twitter.com/BVjpZzNGBR— Ryan Broderick (@ryanpbroderick) March 3, 2014
Photo via Chris Geidner
For last night's Academy Awards, some of Hollywood's best and brightest gathered at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles to celebrate stunning achievements in film. Ellen DeGeneres hosted the 86th annual event, which yielded big wins for Alfonso Cuarón's Gravity, as well as Steve McQueen's 12 Years a Slave.
We live-GIFed the whole event over on our Tumblr, but here are some of the highlights.
1) Pharrell gets “Happy” with actress of the night Lupita Nyong'o
GIF by Courtney Caldwell
2) 12 Years a Slave takes home Best Picture for producer Brad Pitt and director Steve McQueen
3) Jennifer Lawrence being Jennifer Lawrence
5) Who did you ship? Benedict Cumberbatch/Jennifer Garner, Emma Watson/Joseph Gordon-Levitt, or Amy Adams/Bill Murray?
6) Harrison Ford eats all the pizza
7) Text from Amy Adams
8) Warm night for Frozen
9) Ellen DeGeneres scares the s**t out of Leonardo DiCaprio and Sandra Bullock
10) Jared Leto and Matthew McConaughey win big for Dallas Buyers Club
Photo via Ellen DeGeneres/Twitter | GIFs by Jason Reed
He already released another edition of “Mean Tweets” during ABC’s Oscar preshow, and his annual post-Oscars special was full of celebrity cameos and stars completely game for even the silliest of elaborate movie spoofs.
Last night’s show, Kimmel’s ninth, was no different. Instead of making an additional film to “Movie: The Movie” and “Movie: The Movie: 2V,” the man who’s gone viral from the many segments on his show (as well as the ones he set up to look like viral videos) released not one, but four movie trailers packed to the brim with cameos.
Each of them is a dramatic take on a viral video that’s captivated us from the moment it starts. We’ve seen the original videos, but that’s only the beginning.
First up? When Charlie Davies-Carr bit his brother Harry’s finger, it didn’t just create a laughable moment. They’re both a lot older now, and Harry’s out for vengeance in “Bitman Begins,” the “Christopher Nolan–directed film” that stars Liam and Chris Hemsworth.
“Sweet Brown: Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That” is like the modern Forrest Gump. While looking for a Cold Pop, she runs into a young Barack Obama and Steve Jobs and gives them the advice they need to make their mark on history.
And you must not have been paying attention because Sweet Brown has popped up a lot more often than we know over the years.
The musical rivalry gets even more intense when it’s not Mozart and Salieri, but rather Keyboard Cat and Hamster on a Piano in the dramatic “Ameowdeus.” Dramatic Chipmunk even makes an appearance in this story of jealousy and animal music.
If nothing else, it’s Kevin Spacey and Christoph Waltz in a cat and hamster costume, and they might just be next year’s frontrunners.
“David After Dentist” already shows David on anesthesia, so when it came to adapting it to film, naturally it turned into a trippy ride of David’s hallucinations including the Tooth Fairy, Double Rainbow, and an evil dentist played by Samuel L. Jackson.
We’re already watching.
Last night’s Oscars might be remembered more for a selfie than any speeches or surprise wins. Host Ellen DeGeneres’s expertly composed celebrity selfie pyramid received more retweets than President Obama’s “Four more years” tweet. These are the times we’re living in.
You might notice Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o and Kevin Spacey both photobombed the shot, which set the theme for the night. Celebs just couldn’t stop p-bombin’ other celebs. In Ireland Baldwin’s photo, the tables were turned, and Spacey was photobombed by Jared Leto:
Either before or after Jennifer Lawrence fell on the red carpet, she decided to photobomb these people. Or maybe this is just how she poses for photos:
And then there was this guy photobombing Ellen and Liza:
Aaaand back to Jared Leto:
But the prize should go to Lupita Nyong’o for this gem, snapped after the ceremony:
My favorite Lupita Oscars photo so far pic.twitter.com/o0o8yp42TI— Nora Grenfell (@nlgrenfell) March 3, 2014
Photo via Ellen DeGeneres/Twitter
Artist Evan Hawkins has just given the world another reason to admire Eadweard Muybridge's “The Horse In Motion.”
The historic photography experiment from 1878 that proved horses have all four hooves off the ground at the same time during a full gallop was the subject of “Horse in Motion,” a collaborative art project where Hawkins and his friends each got one of Muybridge's frames tattooed on their bodies.
Thanks to some photos of each finishes tattoo, the result was a stunning, smooth-looping, GIF animation that would inspire Muybridge to stroke his beard in delight.
“I only needed 10 people and I invited 18 close friends to be a part of the piece, within six hours every tattoo was spoken for,” Hawkins told me. “Three weeks later on Nov. 20th 2011, 10 of the 11 people hung out one Sunday night at Liberty Tattoo [in North Carolina] and [tattoo artist] Matt Hoyme spent about 8 hours tattooing us.”
Hawkins hopes to expand his project to 1,000 people across the globe “to create a full narrative that is spread across many individuals.” The question is: What GIF will he chose?
“I hope people are intrigued and amazed,” Hawkins added. “The response I have received so far has been quite encouraging and I know with proper time and funding I could easily pull it off."
H/T Mr. GIF | Photos via Evan Hawkins
The epic Twitter love story between Pharrell Williams’s hat and Arby’s has come to an end. Last night, before the Oscars began, the restaurant chain bought the instantly meme-able brown hat Williams wore to the Grammys. The restaurant chain's winning bid on eBay: $44,100.
Williams's brown Vivienne Westwood hat became a meme during the Grammys with its own Twitter account, and was photoshopped into Internet infamy. Because Arby’s is an edgy, provocative brand, it tweeted at the singer.
Late last month, Williams decided to use his hat’s fame for good and put it up for auction to benefit his charity for at-risk youth, One Hand to Another. The hat racked up 131 bids, but Arby’s ultimately won out. Williams let his fans know all is well between him and Arby’s, complete with an emoticon.
What a pleasant surprise. Thank you @Arbys, our roast beef is now officially well done. 😝— Pharrell Williams (@Pharrell) March 3, 2014
Hopefully the hat sold on eBay was legit. It was apparently spotted at the Oscars last night. Thankfully, Arby's kept up the topical tweets during the awards.
Image via eBay
BY YANNICK LEJACQ
Like a lot of guys growing up in the 1980s, Michael Patrick started playing video games at a young age. He loved Street Fighter, expressing a particular fondness for Chun Li, the first female character to be introduced to the series. He didn’t realize until years later how personal this choice was for him.
"Looking back, I think it was my inner drag queen acting out," Patrick, who's now 33 and works in New York City as a graphic designer, told me over Skype early one morning.
Patrick didn’t come out until he was 19, almost a decade after Street Fighter II (the one that introduced Chun Li) was first released. By that time, he had been won over by another gay icon: Madonna.
"I thought she was the coolest thing ever," he recalled. "And the fact that she would always give shout outs to gays made me feel accepted before I could accept myself."
Patrick isn't an "avid gamer" anymore, but he was reminded of his love of fighting games last June around the time of New York's gay pride parade. Seeing all the over-the-top costumes and floats that make the parade such a legendary event, he began to joke with his friends about what it would be like to have a fighting game—a genre long celebrated for its ridiculousness and camp nature—featuring entirely gay characters. Think Mortal Kombat, but with the cast of RuPaul's Drag Race.
"The idea was: the pride parade, but in a boxing match," Patrick said.
His friend laughed and moved on, but Patrick stuck with it. He hired programmers and sought out investments from friends and family. Not wanting to leave his day job, he'd wake up early in the morning before leaving for the office, and pick it up again once he got home (which is why we spoke over Skype at seven in the morning). And finally, last month, he unveiled his vision to the general public: Ultimate Gay Fighter, described on its website as "the world's first ever gay video game…ever!!!!"
From ‘House of Cards’ to ‘Breaking Bad,’ here are the 7 hottest ShopTV products
When you’re a die-hard fan of a TV show, your love of the program doesn’t end with watching it religiously. Most fans find creative ways to become involved with their favorite shows beyond binge-watching, rewatching, and then binge-watching again a few months (weeks?) later. Fans want more than to watch such beloved shows, we want to become a part of them. How else do you explain the mind-numbing amount of “Which character from insert favorite show here are you?” quizzes?
Which is where ShopTV comes in. ShopTV is an online store that sells items seen on and inspired by TV shows. Products are based on a range of genres, from reality TV to dramas to late night talk shows.
Heather MacKenzie, senior director at Delivery Agent, ShopTV’s parent company, told the Daily Dot she believes TV inspired products are so popular with fans because we want to immerse ourselves, and how we just want more.
“These products give them a way to live and breathe the show that they love,” she says.
MacKenzie says current hits tend to drive the most sales, though item popularity can vary.
“Shows that are in-season are usually our most popular, since the content is top-of-mind, but some shows have staying power even when they’re off the air. Sons of Anarchy and Breaking Bad are great examples of this,” she explains.
So what’s hot with fans right now? Here are seven of the most popular TV-inspired items currently found on ShopTV.
These FU cufflinks appear in the final scene of the show’s first episode in season two. The product’s single review encapsulates why these initial cufflinks will please any House of Cards fan, stating they are “the single best way to unleash your inner Frank Underwood.”
The winter games may be over, but with snow still in most of the country’s forecast you can pull off wearing this hat. According to MacKenzie, this brand was worn religiously by gold-medal alpine skier Julia Mancus and it was a hot commodity during the Olympics.
This mug may look familiar to those who have watched the new Tonight Show. MacKenzie said it has appeared on Fallon’s desk since he took over the franchise.
This chic necklace has made an appearance on multiple episodes of CBS’ The Good Wife. It’s worn by Julianna Margulies’ character Alicia Florrick.
These stylish motorcycle sunglasses were worn by Jax during the show’s sixth season.
You may have noticed this classy necklace the show’s titular character often wears.
Only fellow fans will catch this shirt’s Breaking Bad reference.
Photos via ShopTV
When that groundhog saw its shadow last month, it didn’t just predict six more weeks of winter. It forecast something even more depressing: At least six more weeks of Rob Ford.
The Toronto mayor has been on media tour to pump some air into his flailing Tube Man of a re-election campaign, and last night, he appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live. Ford was his own unique weather event, known as the sweatstorm. As soon as his butt hit the seat, Kimmel began reading Facebook comments from fans about Ford’s appearance on the show. Is it possible for Ford’s face to turn a deeper shade of beet red? Yes.
Kimmel then coached Ford on his controversial videos of the past, like one of him throwing candy canes at children, and the Mayor looked supremely uncomfortable. Kimmel then got serious, and asked Ford if he needs professional help for his drinking problem. “I wasn’t elected to be perfect,” he responded, deflecting the question.
Much of Ford’s interview sounded like that of a man in denial of many problems in his life. Kimmel’s a master level troll, and could have given Ford the verbal excoriation we all want to see. Kimmel did some mid-level trolling, but Ford didn't do much to keep up. The whole segment felt a bit sad. Thankfully, the next guest was Gonzo from The Muppet Show.
Screengrab via Jimmy Kimmel Live/YouTube
The 2014 Oscars subtly urged us, whenever possible, to keep paying wildly inflated ticket prices in order to see big-budget films in theaters—and if the latest BitTorrent stats are anything to go by, Hollywood has good reason to fear the slackening of that ever more critical revenue stream.
By taking the biggest prizes on Sunday, 12 Years a Slave and Gravity ensured their status as hot illegal downloads for the foreseeable future: according to TorrentFreak, shares of the former tripled, while piracy of the latter more than doubled. Never let it be said that Deep Web geeks reject award culture, I guess.
While no other film secured the 100,000 extra downloads that Best Picture winner 12 Years a Slave did, copies of other nominees, from American Hustle to Nebraska and Captain Phillips, have also proliferated online—likely thanks to Academy screeners.
But Google results reveal that studios have begun to crack down in earnest.
But firing off a few dozen DMCA notices, as copyright holders know, will hardly stem the rising tide of intellectual property theft. Heck, you don’t even have to download a video file; just pull up a seat and watch 12 Years a Slave on one of these tube sites. (Don’t get mad at us, Fox Searchlight—we’re not the ones hosting it.)
Luckily, the law-abiding among us can also learn about Solomon Northup’s harrowing life for free: His original 1859 memoir has been in the public domain for some time.