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Entertainment & Pop Culture

Entertainment and leisure activities have been a part of all cultures in one form or another since the ancient times, whether the activity in question involved participating in a dance performance, attending a Broadway show, going to a music festival, or watching a movie.
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Featured content, March 14, 2021

Why Was the Black Panther Film So Popular?
Find out why Black Panther (2018) became one of Marvel’s highest-grossing blockbusters ever.
Companion / Entertainment & Pop Culture
Publicity still from the motion picture film "Black Panther' with (from left) Lupita Nyong'o, Chadwick Boseman, and Danai Gurira (2018); directed by Ryan Coogler. (cinema, movies)
Celebrities with a Conscience: 9 Stars Making a Difference in the World
See how nine celebrities are using their star power to benefit humankind.
List / Entertainment & Pop Culture
Jackie Chan. Premiere of Walt Disney Pictures/Walden Media 'Around The World In 80 Days' held at the El Capitan Theatre in June 2004.
9 Things You Didn’t Know Were Named After People
Wait, there was a real guy named “Henry Shrapnel”?
#WTFact / Entertainment & Pop Culture
Beef and cheese corn nachos served on a big plate ready to eat, mexican food
Can You Drink Water from a Cactus?
You’re lost and thirsty in a desert. Is that cactus a bastion of potable water, or will you regret your efforts to get past...
Demystified / Entertainment & Pop Culture
Saguaro cacti dot the Sonoran Desert landscape at Saguaro National Park, Arizona. Formerly Saguaro National Monument cactus
Popular art
Popular art, any dance, literature, music, theatre, or other art form intended to be received and appreciated by ordinary...
Encyclopedia / Entertainment & Pop Culture
Theatrical production
Theatrical production, the planning, rehearsal, and presentation of a work. Such a work is presented to an audience at a...
Encyclopedia / Entertainment & Pop Culture
Globe Theatre, London
Western dance
Western dance, history of Western dance from ancient times to the present and including the development of ballet, the waltz,...
Encyclopedia / Entertainment & Pop Culture
Egyptian dancing
Musical performance
Musical performance, step in the musical process during which musical ideas are realized and transmitted to a listener. In...
Encyclopedia / Entertainment & Pop Culture

Entertainment & Pop Culture Quizzes

Illustration of Vulcan salute hand gesture popularized by the character Mr. Spock on the original Star Trek television series often accompanied by the words live long and prosper.
Character Profile
You may know Homer and Bart, but how many Simpsons characters can you name? What planet does Spock hail from? Test your knowledge...
Retro Microphone with sample text on white background.  Hompepage blog 2009, arts and entertainment, history and society, media news television
Play List
From karaoke to Michael Jackson, test your knowledge of songs and music stars in this quiz.
The Jazz Singer (1927) Actor Al Jolson as Jakie Rabinowitz with Eugenie Besserer, who plays his mother as Sara Rabinowitz in a scene from the musical film directed by Alan Crosland. First feature-length movie with synchronized dialogue
Film Buff
Which film won the first best picture prize at the Academy Awards, in 1929? Test your knowledge in this quiz and see how...
cotton plants (cotton bolls; natural fiber)
Pop Quiz
From which country do most remakes in Hollywood and on U.S. TV networks come? From blue jeans to the Dalai Lama, set your...
Robert Altman (1925-2006) Lobby card of actors Donald Sutherland, left, and Elliott Gould in the comedy film M*A*S*H (1970) directed by Robert Altman. MASH movie Korean War
A Movie Lesson
Who directed Avatar? Which hit movie from 1986 was about the U.S. Navy’s best aviators? Test your knowledge of cinema...
Humphrey Bogart (center) with Ward Bond and Barton MacLane in the motion picture film "The Maltese Falcon"; directed by John Huston (1941).
Film School: Fact or Fiction?
You may be familiar with the term "spaghetti western," but are films set in the Wild West of America sometimes called "horse...
Illustration of muscular man on purple building wearing cape. cartoon superhero comic book costume similar to superman action hero silhouette
Comic Books: Fact or Fiction?
In X-Men, is Wolverine able to turn into a ball of fire? Is kryptonite a real element? Sort through the facts in...
Bollywood art illustration
Destination Bollywood: Fact or Fiction?
You may be familiar with India’s film industry, but is it true that Bollywood produces more movies than Hollywood? Travel...
George Clooney in the motion picture film "Up in the Air" (2009); directed by Jason Reitman.
A-List of Actors: Fact or Fiction?
From a cowboy to Gandhi, sort through the facts and faces in this quiz about movie actors.
Chess pieces on game board.
Chess Master: Fact or Fiction?
You may have heard of Bobby Fisher and Gary Kasparov, but how much do you really know about the game of chess? From its pieces...
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Entertainment & Pop Culture Subcategories

Lawrence, Jennifer Actors
Acting is a performing art that involves much more than just being able to cry on command. It requires the ability to react to imaginary stimuli and situations, to put oneself into another character, to create through performance a nonexistent event, and to repeat this performance at specified times and places. Actors exercise supreme control over their voice and their body and facial movements so as to effectively and believably convey the emotional experience of the characters they represent. Although theatrical productions, television, and movies each carry unique technical demands for the actor, skilled actors can move from one medium to another without a diminution of talent; celebrated actors such as Laurence Olivier, Judi Dench, Dustin Hoffman, Meryl Streep, and Viola Davis have been outstanding in both film and theatre.
Articles
Evan, Chris: Captain America Comic Strips & Superheroes
Spider-Man, Batman, Wonder Woman, Iron Man: in the early 21st century, these superheroes rose to staggering global prominence. Movies featuring characters from Marvel Comics or DC Comics regularly drew in high global box office earnings, and the likenesses of these characters could easily be spotted adorning clothing, toys, backpacks, and more. Prior to the rise of the modern comic books from which these characters sprung, their precursor, the comic strip, held court. Early comic strips were produced in Europe before the form began appearing in American magazines in the late 19th century. In 1933 the first true comic books were released, marketed as giveaway advertising premiums. Five years later, DC Comics introduced Superman, the character who truly launched the superhero genre.
Articles
Egyptian dancing Dance
Do you prefer tap dancing or ballet? Modern dance or line dances? The world of dance is expansive and covers a wide variety of styles and forms, ranging from simple spontaneous activity to formalized art or from a social gathering where everyone participates to a theatrical event with dancers performing before an audience. Dance is typically governed by the principles of aesthetic pleasure, self-expression, and entertainment, though these principles are not universally agreed upon by all dance groups. Regardless of ongoing debates about how to best define the art of dance, it remains true that dance is a universal language that can communicate emotions directly and sometimes more powerfully than words.
Articles
Golden Globe statuettes Entertainment Awards & Festivals
There may be no business like show business, but that doesn't mean that the people of show biz wouldn't like to be recognized with an award every once in a while. Honors like the Academy Awards, Golden Globes, Emmys, and Tonys recognize outstanding work in film, television, and theater, whereas honors such as the Grammy Awards and the Juno Awards celebrate excellence in music. Additionally, annual film festivals around the world honor exceptional works and performances with awards such as the Cannes film festival's Palme d'Or and the Berlin International Film Festival's Golden Bear. Music festivals such as the Montreux Jazz Festival (in Switzerland) and Lollapalooza (in Chicago) feature performances by a variety of artists and groups.
Articles
top 20 beer-consuming countries Food
The necessity of food for survival is something that all humans have in common, but the trends of diet and food consumption can vary considerably from region to region. Find out more about the ingredients, dishes, and drinks that fuel people around the world.
Articles
Enos Slaughter of the St. Louis Cardinals sliding home to score the winning run in game seven of the 1946 World Series; Roy Partee, catcher for the Boston Red Sox, lunges for the throw from the infield. Leisure & Nightlife
When it comes to free time, everyone has his or her own activity of choice. While some may like to repose with a nice game of bridge, poker, or chess, others may find bungee jumping or bullfighting to be more engaging, and still others would rather opt for hiking or archery. Luckily, there's no shortage of leisure activities available for those who have the time, resources, and inclination to pursue them.
Articles
subcategory placeholder Movies
There's always been a certain sense of magic surrounding the movies. Even though movies are technically just a series of still photographs on film, projected in rapid succession onto a screen to create the illusion of actual continuous movement, good movies are remarkably effective at conveying drama and evoking emotion, and they allow spectators to immerse themselves in the world of the film. Emerging at the end of the 19th century, this art form became one of the most popular and influential media and was perhaps the first truly mass form of entertainment. Without movies, we wouldn't have such iconic movie quotes as "We'll always have Paris" (Casablanca, 1942), "Here's Johnny!" (The Shining, 1980), and "Why so serious?" (The Dark Knight, 2008).
Articles
Kathryn Bigelow Movie, TV & Stage Directors
Although directors are often "invisible" to the audience in plays, shows, and movies (Alfred Hitchcock and his film cameos being one notable exception), they play an important role by controlling the evolution of the theatrical or dramatic performance. When there are actors involved, the director often oversees and shapes their performances as well. Although the auteur theory holds that the director is the major creative force in a performance, the role of the director actually varies a great deal, not only according to the medium in question but also according to the extent to which he works with actors.
Articles
Verdi, Giuseppe Music, Classical
Rosin up your bows and get to work on those sonatas! Classical music utilizes a wealth of different musical forms, including the symphony, concerto, and fugue, among many others. It can be written for musical instruments (such as an orchestra or a string quartet) or for vocal groups (as in choral music). Most of the best-known composers of classical music worked during the last 600 years in the Western tradition; even people disinclined to seek out classical music may recognize passages from some of these composers' standout works, such as Ludwig van Beethoven's "Für Elise," Antonio Vivaldi's "The Four Seasons," and Georges Bizet's "Haba?era" (from the opera "Carmen").
Articles
Louis Armstrong Music, Contemporary Genres
Hey, what's that sound? Music pervades many aspects of contemporary everyday life; it appears in commercials, blares from speakers in stores and restaurants, accompanies commuters on the way to work, and energizes gym-goers when their motivation is flagging. Music festivals such as Lollapalooza (in Chicago) and the Sziget Festival (in Budapest) attract enormous crowds by featuring an extensive lineup of musicians over several days. Today's music can be divided into any number of categories and subcategories, encompassing genres such as pop, jazz, rock, alternative, country, electronic, rap, and much more.
Articles
subcategory placeholder Music Theory
Why do the opening notes of Beethoven's famous "Symphony No. 5" sound strong and driving rather than leisurely and soothing? The answer can be found by turning to music theory, the study of the concepts and compositional methods involved in the creation of music. Music theory examines musical qualities such as timbre, tone, pitch, and texture, as well as compositional elements such as rhythm, dynamics, tempo, and much more. And do you have perfect pitch like Mozart? If you do you can usually hear a melody, then sit at the piano and tickle the ivories or strum the strings of a guitar and play it by ear. A song—or any piece of music—is made up of two or more parts, or sections, which together create the whole of the composition. A ritornello, for instance, is a melodic sequence that “returns” multiple times throughout the composition. Harmony, the musical scale, how chords are formed, and the musical notation necessary to allow other musicians to play a piece of music are all parts of the musical education you’ll need to be a pro in the field.
Articles
subcategory placeholder Musical Instruments
Not everyone is gifted with an exceptional singing voice. That's where instruments come in! The principal types of musical instruments are percussion, stringed, keyboard, wind, and electronic instruments. Musical instruments have been used since the earliest times, and modern technology has in many cases simplified or improved the construction of instruments, while mechanization has made possible the mass production of instruments of all kinds. It remains true, however, that the production of an instrument of the highest quality still demands the highest degree of individual skill.
Articles
scene from Seinfeld Television & Radio
Is it true that video killed the radio star? When broadcast radio came into prominence early in the 20th century, it delighted the public by providing news and entertainment with an immediacy that had been unimaginable beforehand. Radio developed into the first electronic mass medium, but broadcast radio's popularity was eclipsed by television, which appeared about 1945. Television, which was originally conceived as a potential medium for education and interpersonal communication, ultimately evolved into a vibrant broadcast medium that offered a diverse slate of news and entertainment to people all over the world. By the early 21st century, the Internet made it possible to watch TV anywhere, anytime, on small portable devices.
Articles
Shonda Rhimes Movie, TV & Stage Development & Production
Even before the director can first call “Action!,” there’s a lot that must be done to get a movie, television show, or theatrical production ready for production or rehearsal. Screenwriters, producers, and distributors all come into play before a project moves on to the process of hiring the cast and crew, designing and building sets and costumes, creating storyboards, and more. Cinematographers, animators, and special-effects artists are among those who may be called upon to shape the look and feel of a production, ensuring its maximal success when it hits theaters or screens.
Articles
subcategory placeholder Theater
There's no business like show business! Nothing quite matches the immediacy and electricity of a live dramatic performance, a fact which may help explain why the art form has persevered from its ancient origins up through the present day. During the 20th century, live theater demonstrated an unexpected tenacity in the face of tough competition from film, television, video, the Internet, and other media. Some works can be given full expression only by stage representation; this is why, despite economic challenges, limited technical resources and funding, and the logistical problems of touring, live theater is likely to continue captivating audiences, as it has done for centuries.
Articles
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