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Episode 222 - Unforgettable

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Recorded live from Durham, North Carolina, Paul, June, and Jason discuss the 2017 drama thriller Unforgettable starring Katherine Heigl. They talk about cyber sex, Chapter Pad, and why the movie is called Unforgettable. 

This episode is brought to you by Great Moments in Weed History Podcast, Squarespace (www.squarespace.com/BONKERS), Hotel Tonight (www.hoteltonight.com), Away (www.awaytravel.com/bonkers code: BONKERS), and Betterhelp (www.betterhelp.com/bonkers).

Subscribe to Unspooled with Paul Scheer and Amy Nicholson here: http://www.earwolf.com/show/unspooled/

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Check out new HDTGM merch over at https://www.teepubli…wdidthisgetmade

Where to Find Jason, June & Paul:

@PaulScheer on Instagram & Twitter

@Junediane on IG and @MsJuneDiane on Twitter

Jason still not on Twitter

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scheercastle.jpg.31637308d898aa25769d1e3402149e97.jpg

This can't be a shirt... but it deserves to be made!

#illbearookandtakethatcastle #notmycastle #paulscheernewcastle #paulscheeriscastle?

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I know Kate Hudson was originally eyed to play Tessa, but I can't help but think that the role was originally written for Louise Linton. 

shutterstock_editorial_9224878a_huge.jpg

Beyond Mnuchin's involvement…just look at her! The hair! The gloves! The racist undertones to her animosity toward Julia that I was convinced the movie was going to steer hard into, which Kerry Washington's near-casting also suggests!

And most damning of all, Linton's total willingness to lean into her public persona as an obscenely wealthy psychopath. Beyond straight-up Cruella Deville-ing it with sheets of uncut money and insulting people for being poor on Instagram, there's the matter of her upcoming directorial debut:

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Here are some more words that also don’t seem like they should go together: Linton wrote, directed, and stars in the film, Me, You, Madness, which is about a thief, played by Ed Westwick/Chuck Bass, who robs a Malibu mansion, only to discover that it belongs to a serial killer, played by Linton.

According to the Daily Mail, Linton plays a “bisexual psychopath killer” who is “uninhibited” and “very carnal and confident in her sexuality.”

 

Steve Mnuchin should probably hide the thousands of fireplace pokers he presumably has in their castle. Or not, because fuck Steve Mnuchin. 

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I can't believe I just learned today that Steve Mnuchin was a film producer!!! AND that he's worked on MANY big films! I'm at a loss for words...

Executive Producer of the following films:

6 Below: Miracle on the Mountain, The House, Annabelle: Creation, Wonder Woman, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Unforgettable, Going in Style, CHIPS, Fist Fight, The Lego Batman Movie, Collateral Beauty, Rules Don't Apply (he also appears in this one!), The Accountant, The Midnight Man, Storks, Sully, Suicide Squad, The Legend of Tarzan, Central Intelligence, Lights Out, The Conjuring 2, Keanu, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Midnight Special, How to Be Single, In the Heart of the Sea, Pan, The Intern, Our Brand Is Crisis, Black Mass, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Vacation, Entourage, Mad Max: Fury Road, Get Hard, Run All Night, American Sniper, Inherent Vice, Annabelle, This Is Where I Leave You, Edge of Tomorrow, Blended, Winter's Tale, The Lego Movie!

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Mad Max: Fury Road is a particularly good one because it's about how people like Steve Mnuchin go on to literally destroy the world.

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Steve Mnuchin’s role is particularly interesting since it was CLEAR to me as someone who work in costumes and wardrobe that every aspect of  Katherine Heigl’s costuming, makeup, and hair is supposed to look like Ivanka Trump. Aj9nQLm.jpg

There is no way this wasn’t intentional. 

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I’d like you talk for a second about Tessa and her mother singing Alouette. 

A jaunty French traditional tune that a lot of people recognize from French class or pop culture in general... but when translated is a fairly violent song. 

The English translation:

Lovely Skylark, lovely little Skylark

lovely skylark, I’ll pluck your feathers off. 

Each verse then describes each part of the bird that they will pluck the feathers from. 

A telling song for 2 women who pick and pluck at each other (and Lilly) metaphorically... and then perhaps literally when Tessa angrily cuts Lilly’s hair. 

Ultimately a smart little Easter egg for a pretty dumb movie.

 

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So we never will find out the meaning of "put me near the toilet", huh? That's cool. Cities gotta have their secrets.

I just cannot wait for the new Chicago shows to be posted so you all can hear the amazing Paul Scheer childhood story behind this design.

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I haven't finished listening to the whole ep yet but before I forget, I want to talk a little bit about Wattpad and other apps like it, since (as some of you know)  work in publishing.

 

The audience member has a correct description of Wattpad. Plenty of original books and some fanfictions posted on there have been picked up my major publishers.  Just this year they announced their own publishing arm. They had previous had a film arm which produced the Netflix movie "The Kissing Booth" which was written on Wattpad and was one of the most watched movies on Netflix for several months.

But, as June points out, it would be odd to have an editor at the Wattpad 2017, since they only announced their publishing line this year--unless she is some kind of content editor which it didn't seem like she was. I think in this case the "ChapterPad" of the movie might also have been inspired by some other publishing start-ups of the time. With smart phones getting more popular, a lot of people were intrigued by the idea of people reading on their phones (and 70% of traffic on Wattpad is from mobile devices). There were companies that would send you a chapter of a story each day to your email, for example. Alternatively, it could be an app you subscribed to that would provide the content. In this case, I could see why Rosario Dawson would be needed as an editor, and why she would have to do things by chapter, rather than all at once.

This kind of publishing is called "serial" (not like the food, like the killer). It used to be quite popular when newspapers and magazines were the thing. Most of Charles Dickens' novels, which we now read in long form, were originally serialized in the newspaper.

Here is a NYT article from the time about some of the "new" apps: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/12/books/review/new-apps-provide-a-world-of-literature-one-chapter-at-a-time.html

 

Publishing likes to find ways to make new things do the old way, instead of imagining what the new things could do.

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Is it just me or do Paul’s reactions on the Drop Dead Fred episode and this episode sound conservative, as if a Fox News host has temporarily taken over his body? 

I’d have to pay more attention to the details, but his sympathy for the mom’s POV in DDF and his badmouthing of the kid here sound weirdly...cranky.

Or maybe I’ve just been huffing too much paint.

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I'm pretty emotionally devastated right now. I saw the title topic and got very excited that they were finally covering that fucking bananas Ray Liotta movie where he injects his dead wifes brain juice into his own brain in order to see her memories. 

I'll have to watch this one but man I feel like they chose the lesser of the two movies titled Unforgettable. 

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2 hours ago, GrahamS. said:

Is it just me or do Paul’s reactions on the Drop Dead Fred episode and this episode sound conservative, as if a Fox News host has temporarily taken over his body? 

I’d have to pay more attention to the details, but his sympathy for the mom’s POV in DDF and his badmouthing of the kid here sound weirdly...cranky.

Or maybe I’ve just been huffing too much paint.

 

I was blown away that there is an apparently strong contingent of people who back the mom in that movie. 

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32 minutes ago, Ofcoursemyhorse said:

I'm pretty emotionally devastated right now. I saw the title topic and got very excited that they were finally covering that fucking bananas Ray Liotta movie where he injects his dead wifes brain juice into his own brain in order to see her memories. 

I'll have to watch this one but man I feel like they chose the lesser of the two movies titled Unforgettable. 

THANK YOU. I posted the 1996 Unforgettable with Ray Liotta over the summer in hopes they would pick it for Seattle (It was partially shot here and would have been a solid choice). It wasn’t. I was bummed (although I have watched Fateful Findings and it is legit insane, so it should make for a very fun show). In their current HDTGM episode, Paul and June reveal that they had seen the 2017 film (I was going to call it a “version” but the films appear to be completely different),, loved it, already picked it. I’m betting they didn’t want to pick the 1996 Unforgettable in order to avoid confusion. Such is life 😔. I might bump the 1996 film again just for fun.

RE: DDF, interesting experiment. I listened to the podcast before watching the film because the film didn’t catch my interest at the time. When I listened to the podcast, I initially sided with Paul but thought Jason and June made interesting arguments. I would have been Team Sanity if I had to choose.

I let things cool down, I watched the film a couple of weeks ago. Not only was I surprised at how much I enjoyed it, but I had way more in common with the Team Fred view than Team Sanity. I’ve bought a shirt and am wearing it to the Seattle show.

 

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Haven't listened to the episode yet- probably tomorrow- but my wife and I watched the movie tonight and woof, it is rough. My main takeaway from it is that it feels and largely looks like a Lifetime movie with somewhat bigger stars than usual but much the same tone and plot (ie., ridiculous and offensive/racist/sexist/dumb). We are gobsmacked that this was ever released to theatres. On the bright side I was pleasantly surprised when a (mild spoiler) a particular supporting cast member was NOT murdered. And hey, Cheryl Ladd is still alive and working! If you call this working.

Seriously though, this movie is garbage.

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3 hours ago, theworstbuddhist said:

My main takeaway from it is that it feels and largely looks like a Lifetime movie with somewhat bigger stars than usual but much the same tone and plot .

That’s exactly what they all liked about it. Haven’t seen the movie, heard the podcast. They all unanimously loved it. So prepare yourself if you think this movie is going to be torn to shreds, because it is celebrated.

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20 hours ago, ClefCrescendo said:

I can't believe I just learned today that Steve Mnuchin was a film producer!!! AND that he's worked on MANY big films! I'm at a loss for words...

Executive Producer of the following films:

6 Below: Miracle on the Mountain, The House, Annabelle: Creation, Wonder Woman, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Unforgettable, Going in Style, CHIPS, Fist Fight, The Lego Batman Movie, Collateral Beauty, Rules Don't Apply (he also appears in this one!), The Accountant, The Midnight Man, Storks, Sully, Suicide Squad, The Legend of Tarzan, Central Intelligence, Lights Out, The Conjuring 2, Keanu, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Midnight Special, How to Be Single, In the Heart of the Sea, Pan, The Intern, Our Brand Is Crisis, Black Mass, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Vacation, Entourage, Mad Max: Fury Road, Get Hard, Run All Night, American Sniper, Inherent Vice, Annabelle, This Is Where I Leave You, Edge of Tomorrow, Blended, Winter's Tale, The Lego Movie!

Knowing this monster was attached to Wonder Woman and Keanu breaks my heart.

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12 hours ago, Elektra Boogaloo said:

I haven't finished listening to the whole ep yet but before I forget, I want to talk a little bit about Wattpad and other apps like it, since (as some of you know)  work in publishing.

 

The audience member has a correct description of Wattpad. Plenty of original books and some fanfictions posted on there have been picked up my major publishers.  Just this year they announced their own publishing arm. They had previous had a film arm which produced the Netflix movie "The Kissing Booth" which was written on Wattpad and was one of the most watched movies on Netflix for several months.

But, as June points out, it would be odd to have an editor at the Wattpad 2017, since they only announced their publishing line this year--unless she is some kind of content editor which it didn't seem like she was. I think in this case the "ChapterPad" of the movie might also have been inspired by some other publishing start-ups of the time. With smart phones getting more popular, a lot of people were intrigued by the idea of people reading on their phones (and 70% of traffic on Wattpad is from mobile devices). There were companies that would send you a chapter of a story each day to your email, for example. Alternatively, it could be an app you subscribed to that would provide the content. In this case, I could see why Rosario Dawson would be needed as an editor, and why she would have to do things by chapter, rather than all at once.

This kind of publishing is called "serial" (not like the food, like the killer). It used to be quite popular when newspapers and magazines were the thing. Most of Charles Dickens' novels, which we now read in long form, were originally serialized in the newspaper.

Here is a NYT article from the time about some of the "new" apps: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/12/books/review/new-apps-provide-a-world-of-literature-one-chapter-at-a-time.html

 

Publishing likes to find ways to make new things do the old way, instead of imagining what the new things could do.

I was just about to mention Amazon's Kindle Serial. One of my favorite authors (Seanan Mcguire ) did two books with the service and I would get chapters added to my book as she posted them. I was able to get the first book by the time it has been completed and then I think I was at the half way point for the second one.  It was ... An interesting idea. Not for me because once I'm in a book ( and I'm always into her books)  I want to gobble up the whole thing in one sitting. I'm the same with tv shows and go out of my way to not watch while it's on air so I can binge watch. Sadly it doesn't look like she will be writing a third because I really loved the series she was building.

Also you can buy straight up fanfiction on Amazon now and I don't mean fanfic that's just had the names sloppily changed. Like full on fanfaction is for sale as I found out when I accidentally bought a bunch of "books" I thought were Veronica Mars books because the actual tie in books had just been released and I assumed Rob Thomas had passed on the writing to other people after the first 2 like a lot of tv show tie in books do.  So that is somehow a thing. Is called Kindle Worlds and it's legal because they split royalties between the writer and the owners of the actual thing. It sounds really iffy when you look at it. Like who actually owns said work now and stuff. Also you only get like 20% or something.  

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21 hours ago, GrahamS. said:

That’s exactly what they all liked about it. Haven’t seen the movie, heard the podcast. They all unanimously loved it. So prepare yourself if you think this movie is going to be torn to shreds, because it is celebrated.

I’m not quite done with the movie, and therefore haven’t listened to the episode yet, but while on an intellectual/technical level I wouldn’t call it a “good” movie, I think it does work on a gut/emotional level. The main reason I turned it off last night was I was getting so upset and anxious by what was happening that I didn’t want that to be the last thing I was feeling before bed.*

Dont get me wrong, there are plenty of things not right about it, but as a piece of Art (Oh boy, where am I going with this?) meant to evoke certain feelings, I think it works pretty well.

*ETA (after finishing the ep): Heigl nailed it.

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2 hours ago, Cameron H. said:

I’m not quite done with the movie, and therefore haven’t listened to the episode yet, but while on an intellectual/technical level I wouldn’t call it a “good” movie, I think it does work on a gut/emotional level. The main reason I turned it off last night was I was getting so upset and anxious by what was happening that I didn’t want that to be the last thing I was feeling before bed.

Dont get me wrong, there is plenty of things not right about it, but as a piece of Art (Oh boy, where am I going with this?) meant to evoke certain feelings, I think it works pretty well.

My biggest problem with the movie in respect to the podcast was that it lacks the “ridiculous” that we’ve come to know and love from movies like this on HDTGM. Most of the time with a glorified Lifetime movie there will be something just plain absurd... like with the mothers dating the sons in the Naomi Watts movie.

I honestly thought while watching it that the absurd was found in the Ivanka Trump doppelgänger performance of Katherine Heigl, but then it went unmentioned. 

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So the whole debate about whether Tessa killed herself over vanity or to do better for her daughter reminded me of a REALLY stupid debate I was following on the internet.

On The Office (US), Jan (Michael Scott's ex-boss and ex-girlfriend) has a baby ostensibly from a sperm donor. Michael is very excited to have some role in the baby's life, and throws Jan a baby shower at the office. Meanwhile Holly, the new HR rep has joined the office. She and Michael hit it off immediately. At the end of the episode as Jan has packed her baby shower gifts and new baby into her car she turns to Michael and says "Don't date Holly." (Jan has witnessed a spark between them at some point in the episode.)
Office fans are divided on what has happened here. Some people read this moment as Jan being her usual ugly self and doing her best to manipulate Michael into doing what she wants... afterall, one of the last things she says to him before this is in reference to Michael starting a college fund for her daughter. Other people read this as Jan suddenly having a magical change of heart and telling Michael "Don't date Holly" as an unselfish act, since she knows Michael will do the exact opposite of anything people tell him to do... therefore Jan is pushing Michael to be with Holly. Which is what he does immediately.

My problem with both that scenario and Tessa suddenly having a magical change of heart is that there is absolutely nothing in the history of their behaviors to support this sudden act of... maturity? Jan spends the episode dominating the shit out of Michael and Tessa spends the whole movie gaslighting Julia to get her man back. Why the change of heart right at that moment?
One of the very first thing Tessa says is "Now you're perfect... just like Mommy." Her vanity is an enormous part of her character.
Not only that though, but I assumed that when Tessa commits harikari it was 100% to inflict one last manipulation on Julia, since Julia's hand have been all over the knife. How could any coroner prove Julie didn't drive that knife herself? Tessa wasn't thinking about her daughter... she was trying to get Julia until the bitter end.

If it were truly an unselfish act, why not clearly commit suicide?

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A lot of people are understandably a bit confused as to why Steve Mnuchin has produced all of these movies. I'm currently reading "An Economist Walks into a Brothel" by Allison Schrager, which discusses the economics of risk. As she describes it, movies are a particularly risky investment. It's not unusual at all for movies to flop when projected earnings are high or vice versa. Movie investors and economists have tried to create algorithms to predict which films will be critical and box office hits, but no one has nailed it. I'm sure we can all think of movies that have big budgets, high-profile directors and/or cast members, and a topical theme that nonetheless fail, and smaller movies with perhaps less recognizable individuals attached that manage to get awards, critical acclaim, and/or surprisingly high box office figures. A majority of films don't earn a profit at the box office, and certain genres which tend to earn more box office revenue, such as action, also have significantly higher production costs than, say, an independent drama. As a result, when people invest in movies, they frequently invest in a bundle of projects because it mitigates the perceived risk (slate financing). 

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Investors who finance the films usually get equity, meaning they get a share of the film's profits after writers, actors, directors, production crew, and editors are paid. Because the expected return on most movies is less than zero, the investors shoulder most of the financial risk for next to no reward. To offset the risk, deals are often made for a slate of about a dozen movies at a time, but investors often cannot choose which films are included in the slate.

Steve Mnuchin founded Dune Entertainment, a film investment company, which later merged with Brett Ratner's film financing venture, RatPac Entertainment. RatPac-Dune relies on slate financing to generate profit and has invested in countless movies, especially due to its partnership with Warner Bros (which ended in 2018 because of Bret Ratner's #MeToo scandal). Some of these films, like Unforgettable or Collateral Beauty, turn out to be flops. Others, such as Wonder Woman and Mad Max: Fury Road, are profitable and well-received by critics and audiences. Those successes are expected to compensate for the losses of the flops, thereby increasing the chance that Mnuchin will earn money on his investments. So the next time you're wondering why Steve Mnuchin has production credits on such a seemingly odd array of films, slate financing through RatPac-Dune Entertainment is your answer. 

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1 hour ago, PollyDarton said:

My biggest problem with the movie in respect to the podcast was that it lacks the “ridiculous” that we’ve come to know and love from movies like this on HDTGM. Most of the time with a glorified Lifetime movie there will be something just plain absurd... like with the mothers dating the sons in the Naomi Watts movie.

I honestly thought while watching it that the absurd was found in the Ivanka Trump doppelgänger performance of Katherine Heigl, but then it went unmentioned. 

I get that. It’s certainly not a “fun” movie to watch - certainly not “ridiculous” fun. I’m horrified by what is happening to Rosario. Tessa just threw her goddamn self down the stairs, and I am a ball of unraveling anxiety yarn.

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18 hours ago, Ofcoursemyhorse said:

I'm pretty emotionally devastated right now. I saw the title topic and got very excited that they were finally covering that fucking bananas Ray Liotta movie where he injects his dead wifes brain juice into his own brain in order to see her memories. 

I'll have to watch this one but man I feel like they chose the lesser of the two movies titled Unforgettable. 

Follow up episode! Support it in the recs thread. 

 

9 hours ago, gigi-tastic said:

I was just about to mention Amazon's Kindle Serial. One of my favorite authors (Seanan Mcguire ) did two books with the service and I would get chapters added to my book as she posted them. I was able to get the first book by the time it has been completed and then I think I was at the half way point for the second one.  It was ... An interesting idea. Not for me because once I'm in a book ( and I'm always into her books)  I want to gobble up the whole thing in one sitting. I'm the same with tv shows and go out of my way to not watch while it's on air so I can binge watch. Sadly it doesn't look like she will be writing a third because I really loved the series she was building.

Also you can buy straight up fanfiction on Amazon now and I don't mean fanfic that's just had the names sloppily changed. Like full on fanfaction is for sale as I found out when I accidentally bought a bunch of "books" I thought were Veronica Mars books because the actual tie in books had just been released and I assumed Rob Thomas had passed on the writing to other people after the first 2 like a lot of tv show tie in books do.  So that is somehow a thing. Is called Kindle Worlds and it's legal because they split royalties between the writer and the owners of the actual thing. It sounds really iffy when you look at it. Like who actually owns said work now and stuff. Also you only get like 20% or something.  

There is another thing called Amazon Worlds where content owners basically sold their rights to Amazon? And now authors can write fanfic and sell it there if Amazon says it is okay? If I recall correctly, a lot of them are Alloy Properties like Pretty Little Liars and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants? I tried Googling it and got confusing results because Amazon has so many dumb initiatives and they are listening to us all over Alexa and I will probably be attacked by drones for saying this.

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41 minutes ago, Elektra Boogaloo said:

Follow up episode! Support it in the recs thread. 

 

There is another thing called Amazon Worlds where content owners basically sold their rights to Amazon? And now authors can write fanfic and sell it there if Amazon says it is okay? If I recall correctly, a lot of them are Alloy Properties like Pretty Little Liars and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants? I tried Googling it and got confusing results because Amazon has so many dumb initiatives and they are listening to us all over Alexa and I will probably be attacked by drones for saying this.

I believe (I could be wrong) Amazon Worlds has been shut down. From what I understand, it was some fan fiction, but it was also books just based on different “themes” or “worlds.” It was a way for indie authors to get their work in front of eyes that might better appreciate their genre. So, for example, if you were into Dinosaur porn books, you could have your book included in the dinosaur porn “world” for people to easily find. This was, for awhile, a pretty good way for indie authors to get noticed and make a decent living. Ultimately, its downfall was that each “world” had a head author whose responsibility was to curate the work being uploaded. Essentially, they acted as the EiC and it was their job to either approve or reject incoming submissions. The catch was, for each book uploaded to their world, the head author would receive something like fifty dollars - whether that book was profitable or not. Unfortunately, as you might suspect, this lead to a lot of abuse when many of these (not all) head of world figures would accept a ton of books without regard to quality. (i.e. Lots of dinosaur porn books, just not *good* dinosaur porn books) This created a situation where no one was really making money except these heads of world, so Amazon shut it down.

To my knowledge, some of these worlds do still exist except now the *author* pays the head of the world instead of Amazon - which is in itself pretty shady.

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