Saturday, July 26, 2008

saturdays with ted: j.j. abrams and rives

J.J. Abrams, best known as the creator of Felicity, Alias, and Lost, discusses "mystery boxes," a concept that has fueled his innovative creativity throughout his career. Although Abrams seems a bit out of place at Ted, once he starts talking about magic and his belief in the possibilities of imagination, he reminds you why dreams are just as important as science. His talk is quite infectious, mostly because he talks like an excited ten-year-old fanboy, and he reveals a shocking secret about a scene from Mission Impossibe III (which involves sensory deception), and he talks about my favorite scene from Jaws (which, by the way, does not involve sharks). He discusses his art, his love for his line of work, and most importantly, the significance of human imagination. "A blank page is like a mystery box." Indeed, Mr. Abrams, indeed. (January 2008, 18:02)

Rives, who interestingly writes children's pop-up books, is a master storyteller, creating lyrical poetry with words. In the first video, he talks about strange occurrences at 4am. It's quite funny, but only because ridiculous conspiracy theories (and aren't they all ridiculous?) amuse me. (July 2007, 9:16) The second video is closer to his Def Jam Poetry (watch Dirty Talk or Kite), and he performs a truly wonderful poem called "If I Controlled the Internet." He has some pretty good ideas, and his delivery reminds me of George Carlin's "Modern Man" sketch (possibly the most brilliant execution of language), and I wouldn't mind if Rives had control of the internet for a few days. (December 2006, 4:15)

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