Screenwriter Danny Rubin says that he came up with the idea for the classic comedy "Groundhog Day" while
thinking about the idea of immortality—and, specifically, how a person might change over time if they were immortal. "I was curious about whether one
was enough for somebody," he says. "There are some people, those
development type men who can’t really outlive their - out grow their
adolescence and I thought, well, maybe one lifetime isn’t enough. Maybe
you need more."
The hard part, however, was getting his script made into a movie. In his Big Think interview, Rubin says that he met with maybe 50 studio executives about his screenplay, and was told time and time again: "I loved Groundhog Day. Of course, we can’t make it." Finally, Columbia Pictures and director Harold Ramis took the film on, bringing Bill Murray and Andie McDowell on board. Despite getting a few tepid reviews at first, "Groundhog Day" won Rubin a number of screenwriting awards, and soon became a cult classic.
Rubin attributes the film's success, on some level, to the universality of its theme. "The movie shows that it is the repetition of days itself which pushes us forward in our own maturation as we start to encounter the same things over and over again," says Rubin. "And so, there's an element of truth to the fact that we are repeating the same day over and over again. But, I think the biggest thing that affects people is the fact that Phil is presented with the exact same day and the very first time he’s presented with it, it’s probably the worst day of his life. And, by the end of the movie, we see that it’s the exact same day but somehow this is probably the best day of his life."
Rubin, who teaches screenwriting at Harvard, spoke as well about what it takes to write a good screenplay, saying that the hardest part of writing has to do with being original. "Screenwriting is an art form, but it’s also a craft," says Rubin. "It’s both of those things. It’s a commercial art and both of those things you need to be good at. If you just know the craft and you don’t have any sense of the art, that means you don’t have anything to say and you don’t have an interesting way to say it. If it’s all art and no craft, then you’ve got these great ideas, but you aren’t able to articulate them in a way that makes it all work out as a good blueprint for building a great movie. So, I definitely think there's a great deal of artistry involved. I’ve never seen a good screenplay that was nothing but craft." He also talks about the importance of structure in screenwriting, and says that novice screenwriters most often get tripped up by relying too much on dialogue.
Famous physicists like Richard Feynman think 137 holds the answers to the Universe.
- The fine structure constant has mystified scientists since the 1800s.
- The number 1/137 might hold the clues to the Grand Unified Theory.
- Relativity, electromagnetism and quantum mechanics are unified by the number.
Younger Americans support expanding the Supreme Court and serious political reforms, says new poll.
- Americans under 40 largely favor major political reforms, finds a new survey.
- The poll revealed that most would want to expand the Supreme Court, impose terms limits, and make it easier to vote.
- Millennials are more liberal and reform-centered than Generation Z.
A 2020 study published in the journal of Psychological Science explores the idea that fake news can actually help you remember real facts better.
- In 2019, researchers at Stanford Engineering analyzed the spread of fake news as if it were a strain of Ebola. They adapted a model for understanding diseases that can infect a person more than once to better understand how fake news spreads and gains traction.
- A new study published in 2020 explores the idea that fake news can actually help you remember real facts better.
- "These findings demonstrate one situation in which misinformation reminders can diminish the negative effects of fake-news exposure in the short term," researchers on the project explained.
Previous studies on misinformation have already paved the way to a better understanding<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNDU1NzQ4NC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxNjE2Mjg1Nn0.hs_xHktN1KXUDVoWpHIVBI2sMJy6aRK6tvBVFkqmYjk/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C800%2C0%2C823&height=700" id="fc135" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="246bb1920c0f40ccb15e123914de1ab1" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="fake news concept of misinformation and fake news in the media" />
How does misinformation spread?
Credit: Visual Generation on Shutterstock<p><strong>What is the "continued-influence" effect?</strong></p><p>A challenge in using corrections effectively is that repeating the misinformation can have negative consequences. Research on this effect (referred to as "continued-influence") has shown that information presented as factual that is later deemed false can still contaminate memory and reasoning. The persistence of the continued-influence effect has led researchers to generally recommend avoiding repeating misinformation. </p><p>"Repetition increases familiarity and believability of misinformation," <a href="https://engineering.stanford.edu/magazine/article/how-fake-news-spreads-real-virus" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">the study explains</a>.</p><p><strong>What is the "familiarity-backfire" effect?</strong></p><p>Studies of this effect have shown that increasing misinformation familiarity through extra exposure to it leads to misattributions of fluency when the context of said information cannot be recalled. <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/0956797620952797#" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">A 2017 study</a> examined this effect in myth correction. Subjects rated beliefs in facts and myths of unclear veracity. Then, the facts were affirmed and myths corrected and subjects again made belief ratings. The results suggested a role for familiarity but the myth beliefs remained below pre-manipulation levels. </p>