August 29, 2008
Holes in Space
I was listening to Science Friday today and they were discussing the Lance Hadron Collider (LHC) which is set to be turned on for the first time to cause a collision of lead ions going just barely less than the speed of light with lead ions going in the opposite direction. While hopefully not creating a sudden burst of everything as in the Big Bang, it appears very shortly (September 10th 2008) scientists are going to potentially destroy the world (maybe, well probably not according to them)...by possibly creating a micro black hole (mBH) on Earth. The actual purpose of the LHC is to determine if the Higgs boson particle exists which will help prove/disprove a bunch of confusing science such as: the unified field theory, the theory of everything, super symmetry, string theory and the relationship between all sorts of matter, energy, antimatter, dark matter, and so on. Even though its hard to grasp a lot of the concepts at stake, there is a lot of awesome scientific knowledge could be gained by this 18 billion dollar experiment, which has been in the works for decades and the work of about 60 countries and thousands of contributing scientists; so I'm only kidding about any realistic concerns; although just the same I'm slightly nervous because I first heard about the LHC when I heard about a law suit filed in Hawaii against CERN back in March of this year based on a concern that an accidental micro-black-hole (mBH) might also be created. And apparently while the likelihood of a mBH being created is considered reasonable, there are differences of opinion over just how much of a danger that would actually be. Hawking predicted such a small black hole may just “evaporate” (evaporation of a black hole however may cause a massive amount of energy to be released). Here's more about the governments response to the lawsuit (which since filed in Hawaii will not impact the progress of the LHC regardless).
As the Science Friday interviewee Dan Hooper explains, cosmic rays strike the earths atmosphere constantly in similar circumstances to those the LHC will create. But I wonder, is it really fair to consider what happens where the atmosphere meets space with the conditions down on the ground? So I'm a little unsure if I should be unconcerned.
CERN (stands for: the European Organization for Nuclear Research) is responsible for building the LHC, which is currently the worlds most powerful particle accelerator (CERN its worth noting was also responsible for the creation of the World Wide Web back in the early 90s as a format for sharing information – the WWW is not to be confused with the actual Internet; which was created over a decade earlier).
If you have any confusion about what the LHC is intended to discover (and I sure still do), watch this amusing video:
August 28, 2008
A fake film trailerHere's an interesting video...while looking up facts on Hot Fuzz (IMDb) I stumbled upon this pretend/fake movie trailer for a movie called 'Don't' (which apparently showed before the Tarantino/Rodriguez double-feature Grindhouse (IMDb) which I have yet to see...) I can spot Nick Frost in this trailer and supposedly Simon Pegg can be found as well.
August 27, 2008
A rainy day
Sometimes I really wish I had a camera--today was such an occasion. All the rain in Charlotte (thanks to Fay) left roads closed and driving was a little messy this morning. Since I was riding shotgun I looked around; at one point I noticed an entire playground submerged, just the tops of slides and swings reaching above the muddy water. Seeing roads almost totally covered in foot-high water and driving through it was exciting. I guess all the rain was news worthy enough, my brother called to ask if I was building an ark.
August 25, 2008
Slither, Fuzz, Dr. Horrible, and new TrekA friend suggested that the best way to celebrate my birthday would be ordering pizza and renting a horror flick. We ended up with Slither (IMDb) and Hot Fuzz (IMDb).
I recently posted a video where Nathan Fillion discusses Slither. And as a huge fan of Firefly/Serenity I thought I'd check it out. Another reason I wanted to see it was knowing it was written and directed by James Gunn who previously wrote the screenplay for the 2004 remake of Dawn of the Dead, which is in my opinion one of the best in the survival horror genre. (Thats the film that put director Zach Snyder on the map by the way, and probably why he's directing the big-screen version of Watchmen due out next year -- maybe*). Slither stars Nathan Fillion as the sheriff investigating a strange alien-born disease that turns residents of a small South Carolina town into something of an amalgam of all nasty creatures found in horror films, mostly resembling zombies at first. Co staring is Elisabeth Banks who you may remember as the hot bookshop girl from the movie The 40 Year Old Virgin. Once the 'sickness' is discovered, the Sheriff organizes a posse (reluctantly including the character played by Banks) and together they try to track down the creature responsible for mysterious animal slayings and rescue a kidnapped girl.
*I mention that Watchmen (IMDb) will come out next year, maybe, because recently a friend pointed out to me that its come to light that 2oth Century Fox is claiming the rights to make the the film which is now in post-production at Warner Brothers. This Wired blog posting sums up the details nicely. Hopefully this lawsuit will not cause any delay in the release of Watchmen
Something else interesting I recently herd about (while listening to the most recent net@night podcast)...Leo and Amber were at the New Media Expo in Las Vegas interviewing actress Felicia Day about a project by Firefly/Serenity and Buffy the TV-series creator Joss Whedon, co-starring Nathan Fillion in a Web-based musical series called Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. I'm going to have to check this out.
Hot Fuzz (IMDb) is both directed by and stars much of the same cast that was in Shaun of the Dead (IMDb); and the principle two actors of both films are the same, Simon Pegg as the lead, and Nick Frost as his buddy/sidekick. As Shawn of the Dead was a parody of zombie films, Hot Fuzz does the same for cop-dramas, especially parodying the films Bad Boys II and Point Break, almost to the point of being overly redundant, but not quite. For me it was almost as great as Shaun of the Dead.
I noticed that Simon Pegg will play the part of Scotty in the upcoming remake/prequel of Star Trek (IMDb) the original series as a feature film to be directed by JJ Abrams (who previous work includes producing the TV-series LOST as well as the horror film Cloverfield). Its scheduled for release Christmas day this year. Being somewhat of a trekkie, and thinking about the remake of Star Trek caused me to wonder just how prolific the original show and its follow up feature films and spin-off series' have become... So it seems, there have been six separate TV-series' about Star Trek (including: the original series 1966-1969 [3 seasons - 79 episodes], an animated series I never really knew about featuring the voices of most of the original series cast 1973-1975 [2 seasons - 22 episodes], The Next Generation 1987-1994 [7 seasons - 176 episodes ], Deep Space Nine 1993-1999 [7 seasons - 176 episodes ], Voyager 1995-2001 [172 episodes ], and most recently a prequel series called Enterprise 2001-2005 [4 seasons - 98 episodes]).
The original series (or TOS as its often abbreviated by fans) was followed by six feature films continuing the missions with the original cast. The Next Generation (or TNG as its often abbreviated by fans) was followed by four feature films featuring the TNG cast, my favorite of which was First Contact (IMDb)--so including the upcoming remake, thats a total of 11 films.
There is even a unofficial fan-based continuation of the original series, named Phase II (it was previously called New Voyages) based on the fact that TOS was never actually completed--It was supposed to be a five-year mission but the show concluded after only three seasons. Some original cast and writers are involved. Their goal is to create 22 episodes to finish the “next” season; at this time there are five episodes available that you can download and watch for free at their website.
So if you consider each series and feature film as an individual entry into the cannon of the star trek universe, and including the upcoming feature film remake/prequel of the original series, as well as the unofficial fan-based continuation of the original series; then thats a total of eighteen individual projects in the Star Trek fictional universe, (and thats not even considering the stories contained in books and video games). Star Trek has had a prolific cinematic history indeed.
August 15, 2008
Happy 2nd AnniversaryWow, how about that?! Its been just a day over two years since I started this blog as a writing project. I named it 'weB-LOG as a way of pointing out how ridiculous at the time I thought the contraction 'blog' sounded.
For Fans of Firefly
I just happened to catch this clip while perusing the television and I'm posting it because If you're a fan of the show Firefly (IMDb) (and/or the follow up film Serenity (IMDb)) then it will likely be of some interest. Its an interview by Alan Tudyk of Nathan Fillion who both were members of the show Firefly and film Serenity.
If you don't know about Firefly and Serenity and you're into sci-fi, it might be worth your wile to check it out. Sadly the series lasted just one season on FOX, then thanks to its huge fan-base Universal Studios purchased the rights bring the series to the big screen. But the story was definitely not over after that film and there's no short supply of fans who would enjoy seeing it anew.
What's important for Firefly fans to note in this clip (towards the end) is Fillion confirming that while any possible sequels to Serenity have not been “planned” there is no say as to whether they are unlikely. However, since he's specifically referring to a film sequel that doesn't necessarily rule out plans to take the story back to the small screen where it began, which when it comes down to it is really what fans would want most of all.
*Also of interest in this interview: Fillion talks about a more recent project called Slither (IMDb) which looks like a good entry into a category I call 'survivor-horror' (which whether or not it exists, is what I consider a sub-genre within Horror); I'm not sure how I missed it.