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Robots & Pop Culture

We consider the role of robots - whether cyborg, android or operating system - in our culture and what they tell us about ourselves.

NPR

Box Office Wallows In A Summer Slump, And Some Seek To Find Out Why

Only one movie in July, Transformers: Age of Extinction, has broken the 100 million mark during its opening weekend. Box office receipts all summer have proven anemic. Paul Dergarabedian, a senior media analyst with RENTRAK, talks to Audie Cornish about the box office slump.
NPR

From 'Star Trek' To LGBT Spokesman, What It Takes 'To Be Takei'

George Takei is famous for his role as Mr. Sulu on Star Trek. Now a new documentary, To Be Takei, delves into his personal story — including growing up in Japanese internment camps, and coming out.
NPR

Latin-Funk Band Goes Metal, Covers Black Sabbath

Into funk-jazz-Latino-soul-psychedelic-metal music? Then check out Brownout's new album Brown Sabbath. NPR's Arun Rath speaks with bandleader Greg Gonzalez about the surprising mix of styles.
NPR

Director Says Hoffman Inhabited 'Most Wanted Man' Role

Anton Corbijn directed Philip Seymour Hoffman in one of his final roles — playing a haggard German intelligence agent in the film adaptation of the John le Carré spy thriller A Most Wanted Man.
NPR

Silent Film Fans Make Some Noise To Help ID Forgotten Treasures

At the Library of Congress' Mostly Lost workshop, viewers are encouraged to yell out possible settings, actor names and even car models — anything that might put a name to an unidentified film.
NPR

In Which Colin Firth Debunks Some Myths About Working With Woody Allen

Allen doesn't rehearse, and he isn't a big talker. But Firth pooh-poohs claims that he doesn't direct. He says Allen was a "very involved and meticulous director" while making Magic in the Moonlight.
NPR

Philip Seymour Hoffman Leaves Indelible Bond In 'Most Wanted Man'

The late actor hit his peak in the adaptation of John le Carre's 2008 novel. The movie isn't a clean piece of storytelling, but Hoffman connects with viewers on a level most actors never approach.
NPR

'Purple Rain' Taught Me How To Be In A Band

For Eric Deggans, Prince's movie wasn't just a spectacle. Sitting in a theater packed with kids his age, he saw Purple Rain as "a validation of the musical world I was already seeking out."
NPR

How To Name Your Sequel II: Not Just Roman Numerals Anymore

In the middle of a summer of sequels — from The Expendables 3 to 22 Jump Street — it seemed the right moment to have Bob Mondello look at the art of (Son of, Bride of) sequel titling (Part Deux).

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