Tag Archives: hero

Man of Steel – new 2013 Superman movie is an origins story, Christopher Nolan style

If Superman and Batman duked it out, who would win? The question put Man of Steel director Zack Snyder in a tough spot, since The Dark Knight Rises auteur Christopher Nolan is the guy who hired him to make the new Superman movie.

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Snyder and new Superman actor Henry Cavill showed off new Man of Steel footage Saturday that operates on the premise that “this is the first Superman movie,” Snyder said. “We respect the canon and we knew the comic book exists; the movies are their own thing. When we started, we had to act as if no film had been made. We approached it in our head as if we’re making a Superman movie for the first time.”

The clip teased an earnest origins story rooted in the heartland, where young Clark Kent grows up on an American-as-apple-pie farm and displays heroic powers as a child that makes him feel like an outcast. Later, the classic red cape waves heroically in the breeze and Superman soars into the heavens per standard iconography, but there’s also contemporary inflections when Superman mixes it up with military troops that look like they could have been airlifted straight out of Iraq or Afghanistan.

“A lot of times in the past, Superman has been this big blue Boy Scout up on a throne that nobody can really touch.”

 

 

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Rockin Fig wins two NSSA Championship titles

What do Kelly Slater and Rick “Rockin’ Fig” Fignetti have in common?

Both surfers seem to be getting better with age.

Fig, as he’s known is the surf world, has been chasing after an NSSA Championship title for decades, and finally this week the 55-year-old was able to claim victory with not one, but two big National titles at the competition on the south side of the Huntington Beach Pier.

Fig is a well-known figure around the community and the voice of surfing, his unique and quirky voice recognizable from blaring through speakers at the U.S. Open or from his 20-year stint as the surf reporter on KROQ. He was inducted two years ago in the Surfing Walk of Fame as the “Local Hero,” and has one of the original surf shops in town.

But in the water, Fig is also a fierce competitor. He competed in the first NSSA National Championships in 1978, making the final 35 years ago. He got fourth, but that result gave him something to strive for.

 

Keep readingAfter 35 years, Rockin’ Fig claims two NSSA National Championships

 

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How Linkedin gets 20x more money per user than Facebook

Forbes has LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner on the cover—but the professional social network’s business model is the real hero of the story.

Here are some of the amazing statistics Forbes’ George Anders reports:

  • LinkedIn users spend an average of 18 minutes a month on the site. Facebook users spend 6.4 hours a month.
  • But LinkedIn gets $1.30 in revenue for every hour those users spend on site. Facebook: 6.2 cents.
  • Anders describes LinkedIn’s most expensive product offering, LinkedIn Recruiter, as a “Bloomberg terminal” for talent scouts. It costs up to $8,200 a year per “seat,” or user license.
  • Adobe, a big LinkedIn customer, has 70 seats. At list prices, that’s about half a million in revenue a year from a single client.
  • LinkedIn’s top salespeople make as much as $400,000 a year selling Recruiter.
  • LinkedIn spends 33 percent of revenue on sales and marketing.
  • LinkedIn’s profits are expected to double this year to $70 million.

 

Via - How LinkedIn Gets TWENTY Times More Money Per User Than Facebook

 

**Note: Facebook’s profit in the last quarter was $205 million on revenue of $1.1 billion.

 

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Great Expectations: Pixar anoints its first female protoganist in “Brave”

Dear Pixar: You had me at her hair…

With a resplendent mane of fiery red curls, Merinda, the hero of Pixar’s latest animated feature “Brave” is truly the hallmark of a princess whose time has come. And not just because the animation of her volume of hair required a technological breakthrough, which it did.

Six years in the making, Merinda is the first female protagonist to join Pixar’s all-male cast of leading heroes, breaking the mold of the damsel-in-distress princess archetype that punctuates virtually all films produced by Pixar’s predecessor, Disney.

Associate producer Mary Alice Drumm describes “Brave” as a movie about redefining expectations for female protagonists:

“I think when people think about a girl as a hero, they think less strong, less brave. But Merida is brave like her father and brave like her mother. She’s a very relatable person, and I think people are going to have some interesting things to talk about after they see the movie.” ~SFGate

Producer Katherine Sarafian adds:

“There’s the bravery of adventure, with sword fights and chases and all that,” she says. “Then there’s the bravery of being seen for who you are. If you see yourself in a certain way and the rest of the world sees you in another way, that’s a struggle. It’s brave to look at who you are and speak your truth and find your way in the world.” ~SFGate

Brave opens June 22, and although its leading lass is garnering attention for her gender, Sarafian says the film is still a Pixar movie, with “big action, big heart, big humor, big adventure.”

If you had the chance to change your fate, would you?

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Super Hero Film Festival – May 18-21 – from the Los Angeles Times

Friday, May 18

7:00 pm – Dawn of the Dead (2004)
Special guests: Zack Snyder and Robert Kirkman

10:00 pm – Shaun of the Dead
Special guest: Edgar Wright

 

Saturday, May 19

12:00 pm – RoboCop
Special guest: Peter Weller

4:00 pm – A Clockwork Orange
Special guest: Malcolm McDowell

8:30 pm – SUPER
Special guest: Rainn Wilson

 

Sunday, May 20

2:00 pm – WALL-E
Special guest: Andrew Stanton
Includes a special preview of Disney/Pixar’s ‘Brave’

6:00 pm – Serenity (SOLD OUT)
Special guest: Nathan Fillion

 

Monday, May 21

7:30 pm – An Evening with Stan Lee
Screening: X-Men

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On set for the Avengers with green-screen action photos

If you’re like me, then you’re super excited about the new Avengers movie. After last weeks premiere (photos, videos) the anticipation is building.

To whet your appetite I found a full article about being on-set for the movie and green screen photos of the live action.

To the casual observer, Joss Whedon might seem like an odd pick to bring such a hugely anticipated project to the big screen. Known mostly for his TV work like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly, some might have expected a more seasoned helmer…

“There was a moment a couple weeks after I had taken the job when I suddenly went, ‘Agh,’ and my wife just turned to me and said, ‘Honey, it’s just the next story,’” laughs the filmmaker. “I went, ‘O.K., thanks. I’m back.’ That was it, because ultimately it is. The financial burden is not on me. As I have said many times, ‘The first weekend is [the audience's] job. The second weekend is mine.’ If the story is compelling, if I got it right, if people want to come back to it, yay!”

Blog Design – the ultra-minimalist brigade

When I first started blogging, Jason Kottke, of kottke.org, was a sort-of hero for what I wanted to do. His style of blogging is very similar to mine and so are his design aesthetics.

As time has progressed, I’ve switched from the hero archetype to more of a hopeful-peer. My delusions of equality were boosted when I noticed Jason’s latest redesign of his blog. Where several of the features match the design I created for this blog.

When you read a blog there are so many items for you to click. It’s like you’re in Times Square and everyone wants your attention. That isn’t very Jobsian (Steve Jobs-esque) especially when I only want you to do three things on my blog: read it, share it, and (hopefully) enjoy the ads.

So, I have taken the opposite, ultra-minimalist approach, the only-what-you-need-to-survive style. Everything is gone, links are minimal, and reading is clutter-free.

Jason has taken this approach for years, probably long before I even dreamed of being a blogger, but now he is going for gold. Joining the ultra-minimalist brigade, and several of his updates match mine. While others completely blow me out of the water (mirror on Tumblr?).

It’s a great confidence boost for me, but also leaves me with some things to copy or rather “good artists copy, great artists steal”.

Here is the update in Jason’s own words.

In doing the design, I focused on three things: simplicity, the reading/viewing experience, and sharing.

Simplicity. kottke.org has always been relatively spare, but this time around I left in only what was necessary. Posts have a title, a publish date, text, and some sharing buttons. Tags got pushed to the individual archive page and posts are uncredited (just like the Economist!). In the sidebar that appears on every page, there are three navigation links, other ways to follow the site, and an ad and job board posting, to pay the bills.

Reading/viewing experience. I made the reading column wider (640px) for bigger photos & video embeds and increased the type size for easier reading. But the biggest and most exciting change is using Whitney ScreenSmart for the display font, provided by Hoefler & Frere-Jones’ long-awaited web font service, which is currently in private beta.

The reading experience on mobile devices has also been improved. The text was formerly too small to read, the blue border was a pain in the ass (especially since the upgrade to iOS 5 on the iPhone & iPad changed how the border was displayed when zoomed), and the mobile version was poorly advertised.

Sharing. I’ve always thought of kottke.org as a place where people come to find interesting things to read and look at, and design has always been crafted with that as the priority. A few months ago, I read an interview with Jonah Peretti about what BuzzFeed is up to and he said something that stuck with me: people don’t just come to BuzzFeed to look at things, they come to find stuff to share with their friends. As I thought about it, I realized that’s true of kottke.org as well…and I haven’t been doing a good enough job of making it easy for people to do.

So this new design has a few more sharing options. Accompanying each post is a Twitter tweet button and a Facebook like button.

via kottke.org