1. Robert Zemeckis on how Denzel Washington prepared for his role as a pilot, who’s also an alcoholic

    "He had his own guide of what he was going to do, and he never really was specific with me about it. But he kind of gave me a sense of where he was going to be … performing, like he’s like really drunk, or he’s just-got-a-sort-of-a-slight-buzz-on kind of a thing. One thing he did tell me that he did do, though, is he watched a lot of YouTube videos of drunks … I guess you can go online and just watch drunks, and I don’t think they know if they’re being videotaped. But he would come to me and say, ‘You know, I watched this one where this guy was trying to put his shoe on, and he was working on this for like, you know, 10 minutes to get this shoe on, and he was out there on the street, and he couldn’t get his foot in his shoe.’"

  2. Robert Zemeckis

    Denzel Washington


    Fresh Air


  1. We do know now that flight came after the feather, and that the early stages of feathers were not aerodynamic. It’s only the most advanced stages in feather evolution that have that aerodynamic structure. But ultimately the result of all of this evolution is an incredible adaptation for flight. If you look at a bird’s wing, it has a particular shape that is similar to the shape you would see if you looked out the window of an airplane, and that is an airfoil-shaped wing with a curved upper surface that gives that wing a bit of extra lift in the air, and a bird wing has that shape just as an airplane wing does. But what’s amazing about a bird wing is that the individual flight feathers are also shaped like airfoils. …

    So what you get for a bird wing is an airfoil made up of airfoils and the bird has muscle control over all of those feathers, so it can constantly adapt and change the position of feathers and the shape of the wing to react to any change in air temperature, or wind direction, or air pressure, making it a truly incredible way to fly.

    — Thor Hanson on how feathers enables flight in birds

  2. Thor Hanson