Daily Archives: November 9, 2010

Radio Killed the Cinema Star: Scena’s The War of the Worlds

Orson Welles’s hour-long radio play The War of the Worlds was the greatest Halloween prank of the 20th century. Twelve million people tuned in for the original broadcast on Oct. 30, 1938 — about the same number as watch Glee now, but the population of the U.S. was only 40 percent of its current size back then. In a 1947 Princeton University survey, roughly one in 12 respondents said that upon first hearing Welles’s radio verite report of hostile Martians landing at Grover’s Mill, NJ, they had indeed believed it to be real news coverage of a frightening calamity. Continue reading

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Float like that one thing; sting like another thing: A conversation with Boxing Gym director Frederick Wiseman

I teach a boxing class on Wednesday evenings. It’s at a general-interest gym, not a boxing gym, so we’re not equipped or insured for sparring, and we don’t have a speed bag or a double-ended bag, though I’m working on that. We drill with heavy bags and focus mitts with lots of calisthenics stirred in, and people looking for an intense and unique workout really seem to like it. Most folks who try the class once come back.

Anyway, I interviewed Frederick Wiseman, director of the new documentary Boxing Gym and more than three dozen others, for the Washington City Paper. You can read that here.