Benedict Cumberbatch get into character as fearsome Smaug the dragon

Ahead of the release of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug”, Warner Bros. has released video showing the 38-year-old actor immersing himself into the role. To prepare for the role, Cumberbatch told Los Angeles Times last year he went to the London Zoo to study animals including lizards.

To get into the role, little motion capture tracking dots were placed onto Cumberbatch’s face. He was fitted with a helmet that has a little camera attached to capture his every facial movement.

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“I absolutely loved it after a minute of stepping on and feeling completely like a nob,” said Cumberbatch. “Once you get over that bit of self-consciousness, it’s so freeing. I just played like a kid in a bedroom, just imagining this thing, which is great.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHuXSZv6Tqs

Did Cro-Magnons invented the cinematography?

Distant precursor of the cinematography was a simple toy called taumatotropom. It is believed that it was invented by the famous English physicist and astronomer John Herschel. In 1825 he argued with his friend, the mathematician Charles Babbage that he will be able to simultaneously show both sides of the gold coin, with no aid of a mirror. And he won the dispute. Herschel Babbage asked to put a coin on the level of eyes of and spinned the coin. Because of the inertia of visual perception, coat of arms merged with the profile of the Queen’s on the other side of the coin. Herschel did not pay attention to the ingenious trick, and the next year other people have patented a toy – a disk with two different images on its sides. When the disc is rotated quickly on threads inserted into the holes, the two images are merged, creating the illusion of movement. For example, the figure jumping frog, because on one side of the disc it is painted seated, and on the other – hanging in the air with outstretched paws.

But recently French archaeologists Marc Azema and Florent River found bone disks with a hole in the middle and animal prints on both sides in caves in southwestern France. Drawn same animal, but with legs in different positions. If you thread the string through the hole and rotate the disc, we will see a running animal. These findings about 15 thousand years.

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In addition, Azem and River found an ancient animal wall paintings in many French caves – buffaloes, lions, antelopes, with eight legs. According to them, the artists tried to depict different stages of leg movements while running. Perhaps, in the flickering light of torches, where the ancient people saw these pictures, it seemed that the animals actually run. These artifacts are much more older than bone taumatotropa – it more than 30 thousand years.

Titanic Violin to Be Displayed at Two U.S. Museums

(Originally published here:  http://www.allthingsstrings.com/News/News/Titanic-Violin-to-Be-Displayed-at-Two-U.S.-Museums  )

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A violin that is reported to have belonged to Wallace Hartley, the bandmaster of the RMS Titanic, will go on display at two US museums in 2016.

The display will mark the first time the violin will be available for the public to view since it set a world record in 2013 after an anonymous buyer paid more than $1.6 million during a British auction held by Henry Aldridge & Son.

The violin, which Hartley was said to be playing while the “unsinkable” luxury liner sank as passengers boarded lifeboats—a now infamous scene in James Cameron’s 1997 Titanic—will head to the Titanic Museum Attractions in Branson, Missouri, from March 7 to May 29, 2016 and Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, from June 5 to August 14, 2016.

Prior to the sale the violin, now deemed unplayable from damage at sea and “repairs” made to it since its discovery, it underwent a series of tests and CT scans for seven years, commissioned by auctioneers Henry Aldridge & Son, to authenticate its origins.

“The Titanic violin may never be played again,” Mary Kellogg, co-owner of the Titanic Museum Attractions, said in a statement. “But one of the final songs [“Nearer, My God, To Thee”] Wallace Hartley was said to have been playing during the ship’s final moments can still be heard in our imaginations.”

The violin is said to be a gift from Hartley’s fiancée Maria Robinson—it bears the engraving: “For Wallace on the occasion of our engagement from Maria.” It is reported that the violin was recovered more than a week after the Titanic sank, strapped to Hartley’s body in a leather case that bore the musician’s initials “W.H.H.”, whose life was claimed along with the disaster’s other 1,517 victims.

After the violin’s recovery, it was reported that it was returned to Robinson. It’s believed that Robinson’s sister gifted the instrument to a Salvation Army after Maria’s death, and that the violin ended up in a violin teacher’s hands before it was acquired by Henry Aldridge & Son.