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daily 04/14/2015

    • Rubio’s entry in the 2016 presidential race will fuck up his hitherto inexplicably promising career. It will cost the Republican Party dearly in Florida and in Washington. It will prove to be one of the dumbest moves in the dumb history of politics. This will happen because Marco Rubio is that rare youthful combination of un-telegenic bumbling incompetence and malign corruption only Florida can nourish to maturity.
    • Cruz—who also will not be president in 2017—provides a perfect contrast to Rubio. Because Ted Cruz, however much of a detestable pandering creeper he might be, is an astute politician who has real incentives to crash the GOP primary this year.
    • He is skipping a run for reelection to the Senate next year.
      • bad decision
    • Thanks to his blandness and his refusal to do, like, policy, his approval numbers and net positives beat those of any other state politician.
    • But Obama had the advantage of not looking and sounding like a complete fucking idiot. Obama was on the
    • sports has a way of quickly quashing optimism, the only time it’s feasible to believe the best about your team is before the actual sports start, and the draft allows us to extend that optimism years and even
    • Gassée’s above comment is what’s known as an “objectively solid burn,” which you’d think Patel would be used to by now, leaving home every day looking like GWAR’s webmaster.
    • The Titans, picking at No. 2, have done nothing to publicly discourage other teams from believing they’re willing to trade their pick. They may still use it, but they’re definitely listening to offers.
    • Edgar Wright, freshly done with his British TV series Spaced, takes general meetings with Artisan about doing a Marvel adaptation. Subsequently, Wright and writer Joe Cornish hash out a treatment for an Ant-Man movie starring Scott Lang. Wright later recalled that it was “basically doing a superhero film in invert commas, and it takes place in another genre, almost more in the crime-action genre.” Artisan tells the pair that it wanted something more family-friendly, and passes on the treatment. Wright suspects his Artisan contacts never even showed the treatment to Marvel.
    • Wright and Cornish present their Ant-Man treatment to Feige and Marvel Studios leader Avi Arad. They are reportedly thrilled with it and ask Wright and Cornish to move forward. Soon afterward, Marvel overhauls its approach to movies. It announces plans to self-produce movie adaptations of ten different characters under its own Marvel Studios banner, thanks to a $525 million loan from Merrill Lynch. One of the characters Marvel says it aims to adapt is Ant-Man.
    • In February, Stan Lee — no longer involved in Marvel decision-making — tweets that he had lunch with Edgar Wright and that “Marvel is prepping a movie starring– Ant Man!”
    • Cornish tells Digital Spy that there was originally going to be a reference to Ant-Man in Thor (which debuts that same month), but that the reference was cut from the finished product.
    • October 2012
      Marvel announces that Ant-Man will be released on November 6, 2015.
    • July 2013
      At San Diego Comic-Con, Marvel announces that the second Avengers movie will be titled Avengers: Age of Ultron. But although Henry Pym built Ultron in the original comics, director Joss Whedon says Pym isn’t involved in the movie version of Ultron. Wright tells Digital Spy that the Ant-Man script is complete.
    • November 2013
      In a major setback, Marvel has to abandon its plans to shoot Ant-Man in the U.K., allegedly due to a dispute over filming on protected land. Shooting is relocated to the U.S.
    • Marvel has delayed production of the movie at the request of Edgar Wright, who had to rush his The World’s End when that film’s producer was diagnosed with cancer.
    • January 2014
      Marvel announces that Michael Douglas will play Pym (and that the already-cast Rudd will play Lang). It moves the Ant-Man release date to July 17, 2015.
    • The villain’s name has, by this point, been changed to Yellowjacket (a confusing choice, given that that’s a code-name often used by Pym himself in the comics).
    • With only weeks to go before shooting begins — and with some sets already built — Feige reportedly calls Wright back to Los Angeles to tell him that the studio wants to do a draft of the script without Wright or Cornish’s involvement. Rather than walk out on the movie, Wright sticks around to see what the new draft will look like. According to a source close to the production, Wright has no control over his rewriters.
    • Around this time, Rudd approaches his friend, writer/director Adam McKay, about getting involved in the movie.
    • The Marvel movies are very collaborative, and I think they are more collaborative than what he had been used to. And I totally respect that.
    • June 6, 2014
      Reports emerge that cinematographer Bill Pope and composer Steven Price have also left the film.
    • July 25, 2014
      More bad PR for the film: Deadline reports that Patrick Wilson, Matt Gerald, and Kevin Weisman have all left the cast. San Diego Comic-Con is underway, making for exceptionally poor timing on this news.
    • Stoll will play Yellowjacket — a confusing announcement for geeks, as Yellowjacket is just one of Pym’s aliases in the comics. Lilly tells the crowd she’s excited to be in the movie, but that “I don’t even have a script yet!”
    • Van Dyne (a.k.a. the Wasp) is a major Marvel Comics character, but, as the Mary Sue puts it, the movie appears to be making her simply “a female character who loses her life to make a male character feel sad.” The hashtag “#JanetVanCrime” becomes popular among infuriated fans.
    • W.com publishes an interview with Rudd where he says of the finished script, “The idea, the trajectory, the goal, and the blueprint of it all, is really Edgar and Joe, but that “[w]e changed some scenes, we added new sequences, we changed some characters, we added new characters.”
    • as well as three new figures with much more ambiguous motivations, Vision (Paul Bettany), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), and Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson).
    • (Just ask Edgar Wright, who left the Ant-Man directorial chair when Marvel began adding characters and through lines from its other films into his.)
    • In particular, Whedon says he poured himself into the movie’s big villain, Ultron. A peacekeeping robot gone wrong, Ultron seeks to destroy his creator Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) and regularly rants about humanity’s feeble failings. That sort of comic-book motivation could come off as one-note in another filmmaker’s hands, but “Ultron’s pain is very, very real to me,” said Whedon. “He can’t control the way his pain makes him behave.” Whedon pauses, his soft voice grown even softer. “And I can relate to that.”
    • “I was like, ‘Good luck, you’re welcome!’” laughed Whedon. “But when I read the comics, Thanos was the guy behind the guy. He was always the great evil deity, and eventually, it’s gonna come down to facing Thanos.”
    • Whedon’s first cut of Age of Ultron came in at nearly three and a half hours; eventually, he and Feige worked together to slice the film down to 142 minutes. “There’s one or two things that I’m unhappy about nothaving in there, but they’re small,” said Whedon.
    • “Is it perfect? It is not,” said Whedon. “Is it me? It’s so baldly, nakedly me. To do something that is as personal as this movie is—on that budget, for a studio that needs a summer tentpole—is an extraordinary privilege.”
    • The F-35 program has become something of a dark comedy. Yes, it has huge fiscal and national security implications, but sometimes you just have to laugh at how big of a fumbling mess it really is.
    • “Exciting but a real challenge… By fiscal year 2018 we’ll have the first ever F-35s deployed… The integration council is really drilling down into what those requirements are… It’s not going to be how we operated the Harrier. This is fifth generation… What’s the requirement for the F-35 to be able to communicate and disseminate data across the battle force?
    • So even though the F-35 has been flying for almost a decade, its avionics testbed the CATbird flying long before that, and the fact that dozens of jets are serving in multiple non-test squadrons today at places like the USAF Weapons School, AND with the reality that the USMC is going to declare this aircraft operational in a few months, how doesn’t the Navy know what tech it needs to exchange information with it?
    • The F-35’s data-link, known as Multi-function Advanced Data Link, is stealthy in nature as it uses low power, has low probability of intercept functions (jumping frequencies, quickly bursting data etc) and utilizes a series of antennas mounted all around the jet under the aircraft’s skin to send data directly to other F-35s within line of sight.
    • You call the lack of a well deck a bad thing. We in the DoD call it an excellent opportunity to use the Osprey to handle all the significant logistical needs of the entire aircraft carrier. I think I just justified purchasing another squadron! I bet my supervisor will put me in for an award.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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