David Vincent Kimel, a historian completing his PhD at Yale, found a rare copy of the script for Gone With The Wind that contains a number of deleted scenes, including one in which Rhett Butler considers suicide: "Selznick harbored a shocking secret never revealed until today: a civil war that had roiled the production internally over the issue of slavery, with one group of screenwriters insisting on depicting the brutality of that institution, and another faction trying to wash it away. Selznick’s struggles over the exclusion of the KKK and the n-word from the script and his negotiations with the NAACP and his Black cast are the stuff of legend. But the producer’s decision to entertain scenes showcasing the horrors of slavery before deciding to cut them has never been told."
First Black man to win hiking’s ‘triple crown’ says trails are for healing
Akuna Robinson is the first Black man to wear the “triple crown” for completing three of the most challenging U.S. trails: the Pacific Crest Trail, the Appalachian Trail and the Continental Divide Trail. He’s also the winner of the 2022 George Mallory Award for outdoor explorers. But his advocacy and kindness loom even larger than his accomplishments: He’s a trail mentor, a nature lover and a survivor of depression and anxiety who advocates for mental health. Robinson, 41, was born in Germany to a military family and grew up in New Orleans. A veteran of the Iraq war, Robinson found himself suffering from PTSD, alcoholism and mental health struggles after being discharged in 2003.
Do trees really support each other through a network of fungi?
The tips of tree roots are intertwined with filaments of fungus, forming a hidden underground network that seems to benefit both organisms: the filaments break down minerals from the soil that trees can then take into their roots, while the fungus gets a steady source of sugar from the trees. More poetically, research has hinted that these connections—known as mycorrhizal networks—can extend between trees, enabling one tree to transfer resources belowground to another. Some researchers even argue that trees are cooperating, with older trees passing resources to seedlings and nurturing them as a parent might. There is even a punny popular name for the phenomenon: the “wood-wide web.”
Walt Disney's quest to depict realistic dinosaurs in Fantasia
From the very start of preproduction on Fantasia in September 1938 Disney wanted to include a prehistoric sequence that would serve as “a coldly accurate reproduction of what science thinks went on during the first few billion years of this planet's existence” (Fantasia). So he brought on Julian Huxley, Barnum “Mr. Bones” Brown, and Roy Chapman Andrews as scientific consultants for the project, along with Edwin Hubble. To think that all of them worked on the same project -- an animated film, no less! -- is mind-boggling. Huxley, hard at work on his magnum opus Evolution: The Modern Synthesis, shared his research on genes and their role in biological development.
The forefather of the Internet and his dream of world peace
On March 2012, Google announced a partnership with the Mundaneum, a museum in the Belgian city of Mons. The highly symbolic move helped revive interest in the work of Paul Otlet, the man acknowledged by many as the forefather of the Internet. Paul Marie Ghislain Otlet (1868–1944), was a Belgian lawyer, bibliographer, and peace activist, considered by many to be the father of modern information science. For almost 50 years, he worked tirelessly to gather every important piece of human thought into a gigantic bibliography of 15 million books, magazines, newspapers, photographs, and other media.
Warren Beatty appears in Dick Tracy film as a copyright dodge
If you tuned into TCM on Friday, February 10, you might have been surprised to see Warren Beatty, 85, back in character as Dick Tracy, a comic-strip character he played in the 1990 film of the same name. Written and directed by Beatty and Chris Merrill, Dick Tracy Special: Tracy Zooms In also starred film critics Leonard Maltin and Ben Mankiewicz as they “interview famous detective Dick Tracy about his life and career” over video chat, according to TCM’s synopsis. As GameSpot and others have speculated, it seems Beatty produced and starred in the special to hang onto the rights to the Dick Tracy character.
An early animator's special-effect tricks