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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Charlie Chaplin, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 9 of 9
1. Einstein’s mysterious genius

Albert Einstein’s greatest achievement, the general theory of relativity, was announced by him exactly a century ago, in a series of four papers read to the Prussian Academy of Sciences in Berlin in November 1915, during the turmoil of the First World War. For many years, hardly any physicist—let alone any other type of scientist—could understand it.

The post Einstein’s mysterious genius appeared first on OUPblog.

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2. Oscar Week celebrations, Hollywood and Linc

It's Oscar week! It kind of snuck up on me, to tell you the truth...

In case you're wondering why it matters: Double Vision: The Alias Men (Linc's third adventure) sets in Hollywood, with the final scenes during the Academy Awards. It was a lot of fun to take the story there. The ending is pretty over-the-top--such a blast to write.

To celebrate, I thought I'd give away a copy (U.S. only, postage is wicked expensive overseas...) of Double Vision: The Alias Men. Later this week, I'll share some resources I found during my research for the book--all about Charlie Chaplin, silent films, and Hollywood history. Cool stuff.

In the meantime, here are the nominees for Best Animated Feature, since those are kid-friendly. I'm ashamed to admit that I have only seen the Dragon 2 movie (which was fun). Any guesses on the winner...?

Here is the full list of categories and nominees.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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3. Announcing The Alias Men Blog Tour!

And then there was book three of the trilogy...! Well, almost anyway--Double Vision: The Alias Men hits the shelves on October 14th. I hope you'll add it to your collection!

It wouldn't be a book release without a cool blog tour, so here's where you can find Linc and me for the next few weeks. I hope you'll follow along...

The Alias Men Blog Tour:
Oct. 6-10: The Secret Files of Fairday Morrowfeatures Double Vision: The Alias Menwith a review, author interview, plus a GIVEAWAY..!
Oct. 13: Linc hangs out at the great Erik’s blog, This Kid Reviews Books. Linc talks about spy techniques he picked up on his Pandora missions. And there’s another GIVEAWAY
Oct. 14: Double Vision: The Alias Men is released! Have a virtual party at the YA Sleuth blog…! And follow F.T. on Twitter @FTBradleyAuthor for more kid spy fun.
Oct. 16: F.T. Bradley gives you Five Ways to Bring MG into The Classroom at the Unleashing Readers blog, plus a GIVEAWAY.
Oct. 17: Linc is interviewed by Lizzy, Fairday and Marcus over at The Secret Files of Fairday Morrowblog. A fun post!
Oct. 20: Buried in Books lets F.T. Bradley talk about the Double Vision trilogy…
Oct. 20: Also this day, the fabulous Ms. Yingling reviews Double Vision: The Alias Men on her blog for Marvelous MG Monday…
Oct. 21: Another favorite blog, YA Book Nerd, hosts F.T. Bradley and the Double Vision trilogy, plus a GIVEAWAY
Oct. 21: F.T. Bradley hangs out at Sleuths, Spies and Alibis
Oct. 24: F.T. Bradley gives tips for parents of reluctant readers, Seven Ways to Get Your Kid to Read, at Pragmatic Mom’s blog, plus a GIVEAWAY!
Oct. 25: At the Nerdy Book Club, find F.T. Bradley’s top 10 books for reluctant readers...

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4. OUPBlog’s First Podcast: Gene Autry

Rebecca OUP-US

We have a really special treat for you today. Recently, Holly George-Warren author of Public Cowboy No. 1: The Life and Times of Gene Autry interviewed Jacqueline Autry. Ms. Autry, the second wife of Gene Autry, currently serves as Director and Chairman of the Board of the Autry National Center, the governing body for the Museum of the American West, Southwest Museum of the American Indian, and the Institute for the Study of the American West. The transcript is after the break. Click to play the Gene Autry podcast.


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5. Protected: Ferling Podcast

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6. The Kid

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7. Sir Charlie Chaplin, the funniest man in the world

Fleischman, Sid. 2010. Sir Charlie: Chaplin, The Funniest Man in the World. New York: Greenwillow.

For many, particularly the younger generation for whom this book is written, Charlie Chaplin is an icon,   but not an icon in the sense of its earlier definition - as a symbolic star, an iconic idol of the silver screen, but an actual icon - a face with a ridiculously small mustache and bowler hat; a silhouette with bowed legs, a cane, and over sized shoes. Sid Fleischman's book, Sir Charlie Chaplin, The Funniest Man in the World, breathes new life into this icon, the genius of the silent screen.

From Chaplin's meager beginnings as the son of minor vaudevillian performers, a drunken father and a mother beginning to lose her voice - Chaplin fell still farther into the depths of London's Cockney slums.  Already educated in the school of hard knocks, seven-year old Charlie and his older brother Sydney were sent to a workhouse in 1896, "owing to the absence of their father and the destitution and illness of their mother," according to the ledger entry at the "booby hatch." His mother, as she would many times throughout her life, was admitted to a ward for the mentally ill.

Using period quotes and engaging prose packed with personification and similes,

...Chaplin was losing confidence in his isolated and bullheaded judgment.  Disaster holding aloft a mallet, as in one of his slapsticks, might be waiting for him in the theater.  Silent films had become as out-of-date as the once-stylish spats he still wore over his shoes. 
Fleischman gives a chronological account of Charlie's rise to fame with the creation of his signature character, The Little Tramp, his personal foibles (including paternity scandals), his wartime contributions, his fall from favor with the American people (including his investigation by the House Un-American Activities Committee and J. Edgar Hoover during the notorious "red scare" years), and his eventual arrival at the place of elevated regard that he finally held in his later years and beyond.  He was belatedly honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1972, and knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 1975.

In the book's preface, Fleischman reveals that he arrived in Hollywood in the 1950s to write movie screenplays only shortly after Chaplin had left for Switzerland, but "his (Chaplin's) footprints were everywhere."  Fleischman credits Chaplin's films with tutoring him in the school of "spectator theater" and the gift "of the visual."  Fleischman's interest in and connection with his subject is apparent throughout.

Fans of Chaplin will appreciate this intense look into the ups and downs of a life devoted to the entertainment of others; sometimes at great cost to Chaplin himself and those closest to him.  Those who know Chaplin only as a bowler-wearing icon will (hopefully) scurry out to the public library in sea

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8. ‘And the Oscar went to …’

In his acceptance speech at the 1981 Oscars (best original screenplay, Chariots of Fire), Colin Welland offered the now famous prediction that ‘The British are coming!’ There have since been some notable British Oscar successes: Jessica Tandy for Driving Miss Daisy (1989); director Anthony Minghella for The English Patient (1996); Helen Mirren (in The Queen, 2006); and — maintaining the royal theme — awards for best director, actor, and film for The King’s Speech in 2011.

But looking at all British Oscar winners — since the first Academy Awards in 1929 — presents a different story. Less the ‘British are coming!’, more the ‘British have been!’ A full list of Oscar winners with entries in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (currently 79 individuals) lists 70 recipients between 1929 (Charlie Chaplin, The Circus) and 1980 (Alec Guinness, honorary award), and just 9 winners since Colin Welland’s rousing prediction. The Oxford DNB’s selection criteria — that all people included are deceased in or before 2009 — means this imbalance isn’t really a revelation, nor should it come as a surprise. Quite simply, and happily, most post-1981 British winners remain in good, creative health.

But the ODNB’s Oscar list is nonetheless an interesting reminder of outstanding talent, and outstanding films, from the history of British cinema. Here, of course, you’ll find the great names: Vivien Leigh (twice best actress for Gone with the Wind, 1940, and A Street Car Named Desire, 1952), Laurence Olivier (special award for Henry V, 1947 and best actor, Hamlet, 1949), or the lovely Audrey Hepburn (best actress, Roman Holiday, 1954). Also notable is that some of the most successful figures in British cinema have worked behind the camera, including the directors Carol Reed and David Lean who were both double winners.

The Oxford DNB’s list also reminds us of the perhaps forgotten successes: Jack Clayton whose The Bespoke Overcoat won ‘best short (two-reel) film’ in 1957 or Elizabeth Haffenden, winner, in 1960, of the best costume (colour) Oscar for the often scantily-clad Ben-Hur. Then there are the surprises: did you know that George Bernard Shaw won a statuette in 1939 for his adapted screenplay of Pygmalion, or that the dramatist John Osborne collected the same award for Tom Jones in 1964?

Finally, there are the ones who almost got away. It seems extraordinary that Stanley Kubrick (he lived in Britain, so he’s in the ODNB) won only once — and this for ‘best special effects’ in 2001: A Space Odyssey. Or that Cary Grant (born in Bristol) had to make do with an ‘honorary award’ in 1970. Perhaps most surprising is that the giant of twentieth-century film, both in the UK and US, only reached the stage once, to receive the Irving G. Thalberg memorial award in 1968. He, of course, is Alfred Hitchcock whose life is recreated in an eponymous film out this month — and possibly on next year’s Oscar shortlist.

In addition to the Oxford DNB biographies above, the life stories of Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant are also available as episodes in the ODNB’s free biography podcast.

Now, from podcast to a pop quiz from Who’s Who, we’ll test you not only on what you know about the BAFTAs and Oscars, but who you know.

Your Score:  

Your Ranking:  

The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography  is the national record of men and women who have shaped British history and culture, worldwide, from the Romans to the 21st century. In addition to 58,500 life stories, the ODNB offers a free, twice monthly biography podcastwith over 175 life stories now available. You can also sign up for Life of the Day, a topical biography delivered to your inbox, or follow @odnb on Twitter for people in the news. The Oxford DNB is freely available via public libraries across the UK. Libraries offer ‘remote access’ allowing members to log-on to the complete dictionary, for free, from home (or any other computer) twenty-four hours a day.

Who’s Who is the essential directory of the noteworthy and influential in every area of public life, published worldwide, and written by the entrants themselves. Who’s Who 2013  includes autobiographical information on over 33,000 influential people from all walks of life. The 165th edition includes a foreword by Arianna Huffington on ways technology is rapidly transforming the media.

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Image credit: CHICAGO – JANUARY 23: Oscar statuettes are displayed during an unveiling of the 50 Oscar statuettes to be awarded at the 76th Academy Awards ceremony January 23, 2004 at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, Illinois. The statuettes are made in Chicago by R.S. Owens and Company. (Photo by Tim Boyle) EdStock via iStockphoto.

The post ‘And the Oscar went to …’ appeared first on OUPblog.

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9. Guest Post: Katherine Holmes

Today's guest comes to us from the wilds of Alaska and back again. Katherine Holmes makes a stop on her blog tour with some background info on her novel The Swan Bonnet.

We tend to absorb the history of our environment As it was for many, Alaska was romantic to me as a frontier, romantic while living in the city. Of a sudden someone would leave Minneapolis for Alaska. My brother went there to do legal work after he had worked with Indian Legal Aid in Duluth While he was on the south coast, I thought of moving. I read up on the state and became caught up in its history. The near extinction of swans in the United States had me thinking about settings and soon I was planning a story.

Learning about Alaska was like learning grammar through a foreign language. I've never read a history book about Minnesota though I have Midwestern ancestry going back to the mid-1800s. Mining hopes in Alaska were very similar to those on Minnesota's Iron Range in the early 20th century. The influx of people in Northern Minnesota had similarities to Alaska’s new population. Sometimes they were the same people. Like Alaska, the fur trade began Minnesota history. I'd heard much about the 1920s on the Iron Range from my mother. Boomtowns and sudden wealth mapped the region.

After being fascinated with two books of Alaskan history, I researched swans. I read how warehouses with thousands of swan pelts were discovered, more than 10,000 at a time. Eventually hunting laws were enforced and a successful environmental chronicle was documented. I began my Alaska story as a shorter fiction about an Irish immigrant couple who bought shore property where swans migrated. But soon the story led to a coastal town and characters emerged.

When I thought of the swans being killed in masses, I knew that few women were part of such a money-making venture. How much did women help such an environmental campaign in a lone setting when a particular species were illegal to hunt? It is known how women responded to Prohibition then.

I posted the book at Authonomy.com in 2009 while I began to re-work the historical detail. I was afraid the swan hat would seem far-fetched. But it wasn't historically. The West established its own dress. I actually hadn't seen Chaplin's The Gold Rush and later, when I watched the VHS, the women's fur hats were part of the entertainment.

Not until I was rewriting the book did I realize the inspiration for the swan hat. Of course, it was meant to be the white hat of the western. But I remembered from my grade school years the pheasant pelts one of my brothers brought home after hunting. He hung the pheasant pelts on the wall of his room and then in the basement. These pelts fit neatly on the head so that, with my friends, I wore a pheasant hat - until my mother found out and scared us about lice. There is some kind of method to storytelling after all.

About the author: After stints in publishing and as a reporter, Katherine L. Holmes obtained an M. A. in Writing from the University of Minnesota. Her poems and short stories have been published in many journals. In 2012, her short story collection, Curiosity Killed the Sphinx and Other Stories, was published by Hollywood Books International. She has also published a children’s fantasy, The House in Windward Leaves.

Visit the Katherine on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/katherine.l.holmes

As usual, you can find me at www.FB.com/MarkMillerAuthor

The Swan Bonnet is available in eBook and paperback.
Get it on Kindle here:

Thanks for reading!

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